Monday, April 5, 2010

The Knife

It had been a little more than a month since she had left, it had been nearly three since he had felt her skin bush against his fingers, and it had been two since he had decided to swear off the embrace of women so as to find a deeper connection. The night was cold, Fall was giving way to Winter, earlier than it should, and the layers that he wore seemed to be too little for the night. It may be due to the fact that it was only days before Halloween, a fact no one cared about the gals and ghouls were out in full force, he even looking like a zombie.

He fancied himself a DJ, and though this isn’t something he would recognize in himself immediately and without some kind of external push, it was how he made his living. Instead of going out and working, he opted to go to the bar with group of acquaintances, they might as well been strangers. Feeling like a wallflower in a crowded room he had very few options, either he could continue sitting there in awkward silence, watching the girls fawn over the same guys, he could do the safer thing and call it an early night, or he could contemplate the possibilities at the very least over a drink and a cigarette. He walks over to the bar, the bartender recognizing what kind of night he was having taken some amount of pity on him and passed him his usual, a whiskey neat, on the house. He slams his drink and heads outside to suck down what would hopefully be a momentary stress relief.

He stands outside under the neon glow, the paint on his face slowly starting to peel and run; with each passing second he’s beginning to feel more and more foolish. “What the hell am I doing here? Why am I staying around, this isn’t any place for me…” He kept berating himself, acting as his own worst critic, never allowing a moment to go by where he wouldn’t make himself think of her… It’s funny how things don’t work out sometimes, then again it’s funny how they do—as he’s beginning to turn and walk away, he gets stopped by someone who just walked out the door, they turn to him and say “You have a smoke I can bum?” He looks inquisitively at first, making sure that it was indeed him they were talking too; he shakes the feeling and pulls out his pack. It’s serendipitous how “smoker’s karma,” can work out sometime, it turns out the guy who asks him for a cigarette was the DJ at the bar that night. Instead of going home he begins to talk shop with a fellow professional, trading lingo and being able to connect with someone other than the woman serving him drinks.

“You know man, I could use a break, you sound like you know what’s up, let’s make a deal, I’ll get you a few drinks, and what do you say to keeping this party going for a few, well I take a breather?”

He thinks about, but really it only takes a second, “You know… it’s been awhile since I did it for the fun of it… What the hell? You got yourself a deal, just as long as I get to play my music.”

“Man, you keep the set bumpin, any way you want, feel the vibe and keep those asses shaking on the dance floor, that’s all I ask.”

He walks back inside, it really had been awhile that he was standing behind a legitimate table set-up, and not some series of tape decks… He just kept getting worried, “What if I forget how to spin? What if I no one likes what I play?” And then it clicks… “Who the fuck cares? Either way I’m dressed as a Zombie!” There’s something freeing about being… not necessarily a zombie, but someone other than yourself. He looks through the vinyl’s that are there, he takes out his iPod, and he goes to work. Mixing music everyone could love, but had never heard, he lived for that, he lived for that moment where he felt like in his own little world, in his own private surroundings he could be Prometheus bringing light to man, it was a sense of exhilaration that was only made better by the synthetic serotonin pumping through him at that moment. To live like a rockstar for one moment, it’s enough to develop an addiction.

After a few songs, and the revitalization of a once barren dance floor, reluctantly he hands the reigns back to his thankful and rather impressed friend, “You didn’t tell me I was going to have to follow that,” the DJ says jokingly. He takes a deep breath as he tries to make it through the crowd, everyone still dancing, and he walks to the bar to get a much deserved drink. As he reaches the bar there only seems to be room towards the end where a pair of girls were sitting, a redhead, and blonde; not thinking of the girls but rather an expedited drink he walks down by them and takes a seat. As he sits down he takes off his hat wipes his face, and lets out a relieved exhale. He can hear the girls next to him both are going back and for saying, “No you ask him…” The blonde replies “No You!.” He gives a look in their direction, smiles and nods, in some odd way they get flustered and turn back to one another. A few minutes pass before the redhead reaches over and taps him on the shoulder, “were you the one just playing music a few minutes ago?” After three years as a DJ, after playing both good shows, and lousy shows someone actually is asking him the question that he had played through his mind thousands of times over—he replies, “yeah… I was taking over for a friend, but I had a few in there.” The two girls trade a glance, and a big smile, “you were brilliant, amazing really,” the blonde says, “We’ve been to many clubs and bars here in the States, and many from around the world, but we’ve never heard the music you were playing, nor heard it played…” her friend interrupts, “nor played quite like that… Can we buy you a drink? What are you drinking?” First of all it would be any man’s dream to have this type of attention from one girl let alone two; on top of that they were gorgeous. His scale had his last girlfriend at an easy 10, the blonde was at least 13 and the redhead was a 15… There was no way he could have ever accounted for something like this. So of course the only answer to “can we buy you a drink?” is undoubtedly yes.

Several drinks later, and through some overt flirtatious banter, the blonde one stands up and excuses herself to the bathroom. Normally being left alone with a girl wouldn’t be too much of a problem for him, he’s good with conversation, he can make anyone laugh and keep them entertained, but these girls were solar eclipse attractive, looking directly at them for anything longer than a second was just unnatural. After a few minutes of waiting for the second girl the redhead reaches over, and begins to play along the inside of his thigh… Things just got interesting. He looks at her, she leans over and whispers into his ear, “me and my friend have a list… things we need to…do, before we die, and a Latin man is on it.” The god’s were too kind, out of all the bars in all the world these two just so happened to have walk into his. The blonde comes back, and her friend gives her a reassuring look, she too comes over to him, and begins to rub the inside of his other leg; she leans over and in his other ear she whispers, “should we take this somewhere else?” The three of them stand up, and the girls lead him out of the bar and up the stairs to the hotel room they were staying in. There… well let’s just say they didn’t play twister.

All in full frenzy, sweaty, satisfied reeling from the satisfaction of feeding the pure carnal needs and desires they all had, they gather their things and dress trying to make last call, to close their tabs, and hopefully get one last drink in. They all have one more, and the girls follow him out the bar to share a cigarette, both standing arm and arm with him, in that moment he had to look like a pimp, and not in the contemporary context of him being a “true playa,” rather literally looking like a pimp, with two women on his arms. From a far you could hear the bells in all the bars ringing out closing times, and the subsequent drinkers piling out of the bars making all kinds of ruckus. A group of guys started to draw near, as they started to come closer to the three, the girls started to place some distance between them and him. The group walks up to the three, and the girls greet these three tall and relatively attractive guys, at the very least he thought them to be more attractive than himself. After the formal introductions, he comes to find out that the two girls were traveling with the three gentleman… all of which had somehow dated at one point or another in the past… An immediate alarm went off in his head, he had to get out of there, not soon, but then and there, and in the least noticeable way possible. He turns to the guys, and says nice meeting you, and then to the girls he thanks them for the drinks—the blonde looks at him sad to see him go, so she asks if he’s ok to get who, or if he rather a ride, since they do have their own car, not wanting to look rude of course he accepts. He gives the redhead a hug and a peck on the cheek again thanking him, he shakes the guys’ hands and him and the blonde walk off into the night.

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