Monday, February 17, 2014

Creeper Followed by Bud

   Barflies # 2

Creeper shot:
1 oz mixture of whatever putrid combination of liquor rests in the bar mat
Garnish with cigarette ash, perversion, and leeriness
*Drink quickly trying not to think about gagging from your distaste for mankind
*Quickly do the chaser to prevent scarring yourself forever

Bud chaser:
2 oz of Grand Marnier
Orange squeeze
Sprinkle of sugar
*pour into a dignified golf glass and garnish with kindness and humanity


Note: the following is a fictional representation that does not represent the real individual beyond the italicized interaction/description.

I’m sitting in a bar with my two friends (we’ll call them Naomi and Meghan), and we are a couple drinks deep on that fine line between sobriety and buzzed. For some reason we begin playing a ridiculous charades game on our cell phones, just being our wild selves. The bar is fairly empty and those that are there are locals in this deserted tourist trap of a town. Of course we’re obnoxious and loud (perhaps we’d be an excellent specimen for someone else’s Barflies?), and inadvertently we draw the attention of a man, mid to late forties with glasses. He wears a baseball cap and a hoodie that says, “Wolfpack.” Next to him is that silent friend who minds his own business and laughs at this guy’s ridiculousness but pretty much stays out of all conversation. Close by us there’s a younger guy on his own who looks about our age. He has a goatee, knitted hat, and has a laid back posture as he watches TV.
My friend and I are laughing about how evil and stubborn Naomi can be when it comes to the littlest things, like when you don’t want to eat sushi and she berates and harasses you until you finally say you’ll try it (again), and then she shoves the entire thing in your mouth; this leaves you chomping something you despise, that resembles what a rotten piece of mystery meat wrapped in saran wrap  out of the trashcan and sprinkled with salt might taste like, as bits fall out and you choke it down, eyes watering, gag reflex on the ready. After we explain how cruel it is to force an entire spicy crab roll into someone's mouth, Naomi shouts loud enough for everyone to hear, “But you HAVE to put the whole thing in your mouth!” referring to sushi etiquette. Knowing how it could be taken out of context, I cringe. To my dismay, this unleashes the spectacled man’s real Wolfpack persona: Creeper…
So Creeper feels the necessity to repeat what Naomi has said and then looks at her and says, “Yeeeeesssss!” We blow it off, but the ogling, snide comments that we thankfully cannot hear clearly, and the random attempts to join our conversation to no avail, make it difficult to ignore the guy. But we try futilely. Naomi and Meghan lose themselves into their cell phones, the modern way to avoid people you don’t want to talk to, and I go into observer mode. This opportunity is too good to pass up, and I know I’ll need to write about it; only now, I’m thinking that I may not need to fabricate or create too much fiction here. The characters are entertaining enough without much embellishment.
I espy Creeper out of the corner of my eye by watching the television right above him. His shirt says it all. Wolfpack on a teen would be cute, like he idolizes his favorite movie, a movie his mother thought he was too young to watch. On a forty-something man though, it reeks of desperation and an upcoming midlife crisis. He wants to be young again, hit on younger girls, and be reckless. He’s so desperate to relive his youth that he actually cannot act upon it, much to our luck. Something keeps him at bay, but we still feel as if a predator is in our midst.
Soon it becomes irritating and we see him talking to his friend and pointing at us, both leering. I avoid his gaze in hopes he’ll stop. I mean, it’s pretty disgusting when a man gets excited about fully clothed girls in jeans and sweaters. On another attempt of Creeper’s to call across the bar to us, the quiet guy in the knit hat (let’s call him Bud) interjects, “Hey, did you guys know it’s Bob Marley’s birthday today?” It’s such a random thing to say when he hasn’t really talked to us at all, but his easygoing manner makes me relax. The fact that he looked at us briefly and at our faces, instead of what the ape-like specimens across the bar were looking at, shows he is at least a species of human.
The conversation ensues between he and Meghan, but we all listen in about the legend Bob Marley was and how he made an impact on him and others, how he was great, when he died (we had to Google it), etc. Then he tells us how he saw Ziggy Marley and that he was amazing.
Creeper interjects again, “Ziggy Marley sucks! He’s awful!” My first instinct with a man like Creeper would be to publically devalue his opinion and try to ignore him after that, but Bud, a man with the patience of a saint, takes it graciously and simply says, “Really? I thought he was pretty good.”
Creeper seems put off, is lost for words, and merely talks to his own friend. Bud had the power to render an annoying pervert merely with the subtleness of his opinion. I’m observing this with a newfound admiration that only a person who is too outspoken to let anything lie could. Creeper has been beaten not by harsh words, fighting, or confrontation, but by someone who showed him with the insouciance of a stoner that the conversation was closed.
Bud talks to us for a little bit, but once Creeper’s significant other enters, we are now safe from him. Bud goes quiet again. I don’t even notice when he leaves, most likely not announcing it but instead simply slipping away into the background and then out of the bar.
I realize that Bud didn’t really want to talk to us, not in the way most men want to talk to ladies in bars; no, there was no hidden agenda, no tricks up his sleeves. He wasn’t the typical guy bragging about his job or achievements, discussing himself while he looked at your breasts (and ass when you walked away). Bud was different and wanted no reward. He saw some girls who needed saving, observed our annoyance and discomfiture at Creeper’s aggressive attitude. It was like having a potent yet sweetly refined chaser to rid yourself of that horribly bitter and appalling shot you just unwillingly partook in. He was like a hero, stepping up in a time of need and then paling into insignificance when his job was done. Well, not today Bud. You are a bar hero who will be appreciated no matter how slight you felt your gesture was. Good always defeats evil, even among barflies.

4 comments:

  1. Bud seems great, but I want to hear more about this Naomi chick. She sounds hilarious.

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  2. Oh Naomi, you could always nominate yourself to be a barfly!

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  3. What kind of human being would enter a conversation, any conversation, by saying, "Ziggy Marley sucks?" That's psychotic behavior right there.

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  4. Definitely a psycho.

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