Monday, June 29, 2009

Thou Shalt Dump the Zero and Get with a Hero

Aaron went on a date.

ME: And?

It went very well.

ME: Excellent.

Only one problem.

AARON: I don't like him.

Of course.

Aaron and I were getting lunch at Paragon, and discussing his latest problem.

ME: You want to let the guy down easy?
AARON: Well, in a manner of speaking.
ME: What do you mean?
AARON: I kind of hate him.
ME: I thought you said you didn't like him?
AARON: I was being kind.
ME: So you wouldn't want to keep him as a friend?
AARON: No, otherwise I would just say that. I kind of just want him to disappear.
ME: Okay.
AARON: That's why I haven't returned his phone calls.
ME: And you haven't been returning the phone calls for...?
AARON: Um...close to two weeks.

I reacted as calmly as I could.

ME: AARON!
AARON: What?
ME: That's typical caveman behavior. I'm so disappointed in you.
AARON: Surprise, surprise.

Clearly I was going to have to use this as a lesson opportunity.

ME: If you're upfront with the guy about how you feel, you'll see that he probably feels the same way that you do.

Actually...

AARON: He told me I was wrong.
ME: What?

I was wrong, and apparently so was Aaron. He went home after our lunch and tried to be straight with his No-Go (pardon the pun) about how he felt.

The No-Go wasn't having it.

AARON: He said that I couldn't know after one date that we're not good together.
ME: So he rejected your rejection?
AARON: Yup.
ME: This is very Seinfeld.
AARON: I'm aware. Should I try again?
ME: No, I think this calls for some brutal truth.
AARON: You're going to have Brad coach me?
ME: You got it.

I made sure Brad was there that night when Aaron and I convened at his apartment. He put No-Go on speaker phone. The idea was to have Brad coach him by whispering into his non-phone ear. I would write my suggestions down on a piece of paper. Between the three of us I was pretty sure we could dispatch of this guy and still have time to hit up karaoke.

AARON: Hey.
NO-GO: Hey Cutie! When am I seeing you again?
BRAD: Never.
ME: (Writing) NO! Say 'That's the thing...'
NO-GO: You there?
AARON: That's the thing.
BRAD: Do you want my help or not?
ME: (Writing.) Fine.
BRAD: Tell him you're seeing someone else.
AARON: I'm seeing someone else.
NO-GO: Haha, you're totally lying.
BRAD: Wow, that was creepy.
NO-GO: How about I just pop by your apartment?
BRAD: If you do--
AARON: If you do--
BRAD: --There will be two naked men here on top of me.
AARON: There will be--WHAT?
ME: (Writing.) I'm sorry, but I just don't think that would be a good idea.
AARON: I don't think that would be a good idea.
NO-GO: Only one way to find out.

Click.

ME: Dear God.
BRAD: Welcome to Fatal Attraction.
AARON: He's on his way over here!
BRAD: How does he know where you live?
AARON: We hung out here after our first date.
ME: But you said the date didn't go well.

Silence.

ME: You slept with him, didn't you?
AARON: I didn't say he was ugly though!
ME: You cannot sleep with someone and then try to blow them off! That makes this whole thing really wrong.
BRAD: In the words of Cameron Diaz in that awful film Vanilla Sky, 'You came in me four times. That means something.'
ME: I forgot how ridiculous that movie is.

A short while later, No-Go did, in fact, show up.

ME: You have got to be kidding me.

Of course, I knew him.

CLINGY DINGY: You know Kevin?

http://100dates100boys.blogspot.com/2006/11/date-43-clingy-dingy.html

AARON: He's a friend. And this is Brad?
BRAD: I'm just an alcoholic.
CLINGY DINGY: That's cool. Would you guys mind if I had some alone time with my boyfriend?
AARON: Your boyfriend being--?
CLINGY DINGY: You silly!
ME: Aaron, could I see you for a second before I leave you and your boyfriend alone?
AARON: Yes, yes, and yes.

I brought Aaron into the bathroom and explained to him how to dispose of Clingy Dingy.

ME: Just come onto him as strong as he's coming onto you.
AARON: Are you sure that'll work?
ME: Yes, and by the way, he's not nearly cute enough to justify a fling.
AARON: Can we work on raising my expectations some other time? He's about to maul me!
ME: Just remember what I said.

Brad and I made our departure as Clingy Dingy was measuring Aaron's apartment to see where he could put his couch once they moved in together.

BRAD: That is one scary boy.
ME: You have no idea.

An hour later I got the call.

AARON: It worked.
ME: Excellent.
AARON: Thanks so much.
ME: Did you use the Jeb Bush line?
AARON: No, I swapped it out for Glenn Beck.
ME: I don't recall giving you creative licensing.
AARON: Haha, you're the best, Kev.
ME: Only one question: Why did it take an hour to get rid of him?

Silence.

ME: You didn't.
AARON: Oh no! I think I hear my oven. My biscuits must be done.
ME: You mean your tramp biscuits?
AARON: Gotta go!

One step at a time, one step at a time...

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Thou Shalt Read Something Other Than a Witty Blog

I didn't think this was going to be easy.

AARON: No.

I assumed they'd fight me on it.

AJ: No.

I expected hesitation.

ANTHONY: No way.

I even thought there'd be crying.

ALICIA: Kevin--wahhhh...

Mostly because I know Alicia.

BRAD: You can't be serious.

All this just to start--

ALL: No!

--A Book Club.

ME: So, let's talk about the book.

I decided that my proteges needed to educate themselves a bit. Part of the reason they never have anything to talk about with anyone is because their entire cultural frame of reference consists of VH1 and clips from The Soup.

AARON: What if we didn't read the book?
ME: I guess we move on to the talent portion of the afternoon.
AARON: Really?
ME: No, Aaron! It's a Book Club. Reading the book is sort of essential.

I had everyone--including Brad--meet me at the local Barnes and Noble after giving them two weeks to read one of my favorite books--Christopher Rice's A Density of Souls.

Unfortunately, there was a little too much density and a massive lack of soul.

AJ: I read, like, the first chapter.
BRAD: Ha!
ME: Brad, maybe he did.
BRAD: AJ, when you say first chapter--
AJ: Fine, the first page.
BRAD: Really?
AJ: The first line. It sounded boring.
ME: At least you didn't try and fake it by quoting from the back cover.
ANTHONY: Damn! How did you know I was going to do that?

I turned to Alicia. I knew she wouldn't let me down.

ALICIA: Um, I sort of, read something else.
ME: Oh, well...that's okay. A Book Club is meant to be a place of sharing.
AARON: In that case, can we talk about this guy I--
ME: Sharing about books, Aaron! Books!
AARON: Sorry.
AJ: Apparently books make you bitchy.
ME: Alicia, you have the floor.
BRAD: I wish I had a mimosa.

Alicia took a magazine out of her bag.

ALICIA: Have you guys read US Weekly?
ME: Alicia! That's not a book.
ALICIA: But it's reading.
ME: No it's not!
ALICIA: Kevin, there are articles.
BRAD: Tell us, Alicia, whose fat this week?
ALICIA: Brooke Hogan.
AJ: Please, that bitch is fat every week.
ME: AHHH!

Everyone in the B&N Cafe turned and looked at me. I decided I needed to try a different approach.

ANTHONY; We're in trouble. I can tell. He's got that look on his face like he just peed himself.
BRAD: Know that look well, do you, Anthony?

I stood up.

ME: Since none of you read this book--and since you clearly have no intention of reading it or anything else that has more substance to it than the back of a ketchup bottle--I might as well tell you what you missed.
BRAD: Lots of intellectual rambling?
AARON: A convoluted storyline?
AJ: Big words like convoluted?
ANTHONY: A plot and shit?
ALICIA: Whatever it was it CANNOT be as good as what Kate from Jon and Kate was wearing on--
ME: Sex.

That shut them up--I smiled.

ME: You missed gay sex, straight sex, murder, floods, depravity, sin, grudges, revenge, scandal--and not one, but four twists.

They looked at each other wondering if they'd made a mistake.

ME: You see I picked this book because I wanted to get you guys excited about reading and enlightening yourselves. Expanding your horizons. But I knew if I just shot you out of the Jane Eyre cannon, you'd have been turned off. So I started you out with something more to your liking, but you all decided to pass on it. Fair enough.

I dropped a copy of the book on the table. Then I drove the knife into their hearts.

ME: Oh, and I forgot to mention. The whole thing takes place in New Orleans--dirty, hot, sultry New Orleans.

As I turned and started walking away, I caught them out of the corner of my eye--grabbing and pulling at the book I left on the table like wild beasts going at a deer carcass--wanting to find out what happened in it.

Now that's how you get kids excited about summer reading.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Thou Shalt Ignore Thy Foolish Heart

I see this problem often with girls.

GIRL #1: But my heart's telling me he's the one.
GIRL #2: My heart aches for him.
GIRL #3: Am I supposed to just ignore my heart?

ANSWERS:

Your heart is lying.
Your heart needs to get over it.
Yes, yes, yes.

It only stands to reason that Alicia would want to take a cue from her foolish heart.

ALICIA: Kevin, why would my heart hurt this much if it weren't for a reason?
ME: Your heart isn't hurting. Your brain is hurting because you're depriving it of stimulation by focusing all on your time on an idiot.

Harsh, I know. But she needs to hear it.

Alicia went on a date with a guy, who following the date, refuses to respond to her phone calls AND (the kicker) defriended her on Facebook.

ME: Honey, he's gone. He's long gone. He's in social Siberia for all intents and purposes.
ALICIA: But then why do I still care about him?
ME: Because you've seen too many movies and you think that if you care about someone enough eventually some sort of magical screenwriter in the sky will put the two of you together.
ALICIA: So you're saying I shouldn't have watched 'Maid in Manhattan' last night?
ME: Nobody should EVER watch 'Maid in Manhattan.' Ever.

I decided to demonstrate what I was talking about since Alicia is more into visuals--especially visuals of Care Bears.

We were at her apartment where she had sequestered herself in her bedroom. I opened up her window, checked to make sure there was nobody underneath it, then took the glass of water on her nightstand and poured it out the window.

ALICIA: Hey!
ME: That's what it's like when you focus on a guy who isn't focused on you. It's like pouring good water out the window. It doesn't go anywhere. It doesn't magically land back in your mouth. It's just gone.
ALICIA: That was actually Sprite and Vodka.
ME: Okay, so that was a more expensive lesson than I had intended. I apologize.
ALICIA: But I get what you mean.
ME: Alicia, the key point here is that while you've been locked away in this room, you could have been missing opportunities to meet better guys than the one you lost.
ALICIA: I just don't feel like there is a better guy.
ME: Okay, are you ready for me to blow your mind?
ALICIA: Sure.

I took a deep breath.

ME: There's always someone better.
ALICIA: No, but--
ME: No, there's ALWAYS someone better.
ALICIA: What about when you're married to someone for thirty years?
ME: Still someone better.
ALICIA: What about Johnny Depp?
ME: Someone better.
ALICIA: What about George Clooney?
ME: Yeah, that's the top, but other than him, always someone better.

Alicia sat right up in bed, tossing aside her Spongebob plush toy. (What do you call a Peter Plan complex in a girl?)

ALICIA: So even when we do find someone we're settling?
ME: Hey, some settlements are great. Not Roanoke, but you know, other ones. Some are deals! That's what you're trying to do. You're trying to find the best deal. But the nice thing is, when the deal goes sour, there's always another deal. You just have to be willing to walk.

I stood up and held out my hands.

ME: Are you ready to walk away from this deal?
ALICIA: Kevin, is this where I give you my suitcase?
ME: Metaphorically, yes.

She gave me her hand, and I helped her up.

Then we went to get a drink, since I sort of owed her one.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Thou Shalt Start with the Man in Thy Mirror

If my life were an Elton John song, it would be 'Levon.'

ANTHONY: Huh?

But if this particular moment in my life were an Elton John song, it would be 'Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word.'

ANTHONY: Okay, that makes more sense.

After leaving Anthony seventeen voicemails a day (don't think you can out-stalk me, it's impossible) he finally agreed (aka was eroded enough) to see me.

ME: I'm sorry that I accused you of only wanting friends for orgies and alcoholism.
ANTHONY: That's not exactly how you put it, but I accept your apology.
ME: I just think you're a great guy. You deserve a better quality of life.
ANTHONY: But Kevin, I've done everything you've told me to do, and my life keeps getting worse.
ME: That's because you still have so much baggage left over from your Mean Girl days.
ANTHONY: And what am I supposed to do about that?
ME: What any recovering addict does--

Apologize.

ANTHONY: Oh no. I'm Italian. We don't believe in apologizing. We believe in grudges and hair gel.
ME: You don't have to apologize to everyone. I just think it would be nice if you offered some sort of...um...offering. A peace offering.
ANTHONY: How?
ME: Well...

We wound up at karaoke. Without telling Anthony, I signed him up to sing. When he found out, he was less than pleased.

ANTHONY: How is this an apology?
ME: It's an apology through song.
ANTHONY: I'm going to make an idiot out of myself.
ME: That's the point! People will see that you're not trying to hold onto this ridiculous image anymore. Plus, they can laugh at you, which always helps the forgiveness process.
ANTHONY: I don't know, Kev...
ME: I'll be right behind you.
ANTHONY: Supporting me?
ME: Yes...and doing back-up.

Before the music even started, I had assembled a small group of supporters to give Anthony the ummph, he needed.

BRAD: Ummph?
ME: Just shut up and cheer.

The rest was going to be up to him.

VOICE: Next up--Anthony!

Mild applause, until I shot my table looks and then everyone cheered. Assembled were Brad, myself, AJ, Aaron, and Alicia.

ALICIA: After this, can I sing 'Dirty Diana?'
ALL: No!

'I'm going to make a change...'

The second he started, I knew he had it. The crowd loved him. The same group of people that had been giving him dagger eyes at Pride were smiling and singing along.

At one point in the song, Anthony looked over at me and gave me the thumbs up.

It was a little bit like The Sandlot...and...um...

Great. I can't even think of The Sandlot without crying.

Let's just say I'm glad I got my protege back.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Thou Shalt Not Be A Catty Bitch (Wrong Blog)

I feel I may have contributed to this problem.

AJ: Did you see that lazy eye? Tragedy.

Catty.

AJ: Did you see those shoes? Tragedy.

Bitchy.

AJ: Did you see his boyfriend? Tra-ge-dy.

Queens.

AJ: No me gusta that haircut. Tragedio.
ME: That's not Spanish for tragedy, AJ.
AJ: Whatev's.

AJ and I were shopping at the mall, and it seemed like he had a comment for every guy that walked by us. This seemed like the perfect opportunity to try and rid of him of his CBQ-ness.

AJ: But I like being this way! It shows that I'm witty and confident.
ME: When done right, it does. When done poor, as you do it, it makes you sound like a Chuck Bass knock-off.
AJ: Isn't that the point?
ME: AJ, everyone's a little catty from time to time, but you do need to know when to flip the switch. You sound defensive when nobody's even on the offense.
AJ: So you're saying I should be nicer?
ME: I'm saying that when you're bitchy, it makes it harder for people to approach you, especially nice people.
VOICE: You should talk.

We both turned around--

ME: Oh damn.

--And there was Miles.

MILES: You coin the damn term and then you try to get the boy to quit it? Are you for real?
ME: I'm sorry. I didn't realize we were shopping at the Crab Shack.
AJ: Kevin--
ME: I mean, hi Miles. How are you?
MILES: See? Even you can't cut out the bitchiness.
ME: Of course I can, but there's no point wasting kindness on steadfast assjockeys.
AJ: Forget it. I'm not quitting if you're not.
ME: OKAY! Okay. I'm quitting.
MILES: Really? Hey guys!

Sure enough, the Dick Clique was within walking distance.

MILES: Look who I just ran into here at the Crab Shack.
LOGAN: I thought this was a Borders?
ME: Hi guys, how are you?
MATT: Better than those jeans you're wearing.

Oh boy.

ME: AJ, why don't we head out?
AJ: No way. I want to see how you handle this without being bitchy.
ME: It's like you're asking me to handle a crockpot without oven mitts.
AJ: If you can't do it, how am I supposed to?

Time to put my moxy where my mouth is, I guess.

PRYCE: So, where did you buy that shirt? TJ Maxx?
ME: Actually, it was on sale at--

I wanted to say--Your Mother's Brothel, but I bit my lip.

ME: Never mind.
RICKY: Those glasses make you look like The Nutty Professor.

Okay, time for a new approach.

ME: Don't forget the bad teeth, scrawny physique, and oddly shaped head.
MILES: Huh?
ME: Just thought I'd mention what you forgot.
LOGAN: Uh...
ME: Anything else?
MILES: No, we're going. We have reservations.
AJ: Where? At the--
ME: AJ!
AJ: Church?
ME: Amen.

The Dick Clique took off.

AJ: You don't have an oddly shaped head.
ME: That was to throw them. Let's get dinner.

In the meantime, I have to go buy some new clothes.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Thou Shalt Go Long

Aaron is on a bad date.

AARON: I actually love toenails. Different shapes and stuff...

Luckily, it doesn't matter.

AARON: How some look like little slivers...

Because we're in New Hampshire.

AARON: Like...crescents.

Thank God.

I took Aaron to New Hampshire to do some dating practice. In a state as small as Rhode Island, a few bad dates can haunt you for a long time. That's why it's a good idea to get some out-of-state dating done.

AARON: How was that?
ME: I'm thinking of taking you to Montana. I don't think you can date anymore in New Hampshire after that.
AARON: Hey!
ME: Toe slivers?
AARON: He mentioned toenails.
ME: No, you misheard him, he said 'go sailing.'
AARON: Ohhh, that does make more sense.

So far, Aaron has been on dates with guys from Massachusetts, Connecticut, and even New York (that one was around Pride Time when gays from every nearby state flock to wherever the nearest Speedo competition is.)

AARON: I'm a failure.
ME: That's why we're doing this. So you can fail without repercussions.
AARON: I just get so nervous.
ME: Why?
AARON: Because I can never think of anything to say.
ME: So let them talk and just jump in when you feel inspired.
AARON: I'm just boring.
ME: Aaron, you can talk to me without any problems.
AARON: That's different. I'm not trying to date you.
ME: Well, here's an idea.

I stopped off at a nearby coffee shop. We got out and went inside, but Aaron didn't know what I was up to. Once we were seated, I took out a pad and paper, and gave him a look.

AARON: What?
ME: Talk.
AARON: Talk?
ME: Yes. Talk now, while you're not nervous, and I'll write down key points you seem comfortable discussing.
AARON: But now I'm nervous!
ME: You must want to talk about something!
AARON: Can we talk about Anthony and how he hates you now?
ME: Sure.
AARON: Really?
ME: If it helps.

Anthony hadn't talked to me since Pride. I hate having people be mad at me. I know it's not cool to care if someone's angry with you, and I know I do enough to inspire hatred, but that doesn't change the fact that it unsettles me.

We talked about Anthony, and that went into talk about friendships, relationships, things that make us feel guilty, our love of Jeopardy, how our love of Jeopardy makes us feel guilty...

Before long, I filled up my pad.

ME: See that? Now you have conversation points you can hit.
AARON: Are toenails on there?
ME: No, I think we're going to put 'toenails' on the black list next to STD's and crimping hair.
AARON: Fine by me.
ME: So this helps?
AARON: This is fantastic. You're fantastic. Thank you.

Well, at least somebody still likes me.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Thou Shalt Be Gay and Proud

I knew this was a bad idea.

AARON: Kevin, I'm scared.

I'm not even halfway through the challenge, and already I'm faced with a Mid-Term.

AARON: What if I run into the DC?

One word.

AJ: We're about to get toasty, y'all.

Pride.

BRAD: Oh, I can't wait to see how you handle this one.

I had a plan. The plan was to make sure none of the boys got kidnapped by deranged roofiers, spun around on coffee tables, or engaged to a Kardashian.

ME: Where's Aaron?
ANTHONY: He was here a second ago.

Five minutes after arriving at Prisms' Block Party, I was already failing.

It seemed essential that the boys be able to go to Pride. After all, what good was I doing in making these boys be productive members of the gay community if I couldn't even let them be AROUND the gay community?

Still, Pride is not known for being a conducive environment when it comes to rehabilitation.

AJ: Hey K-Brock, the bartender says he'll give me a free drink if I show him my--
ME: Brad, watch AJ. I have to go find Aaron.

Aaron ended up being on the dance floor, or as I like to call, the Tenth Circle of Hell. Prisms isn't nearly large enough to accommodate the number of people trying to squeeze themselves inside, so the dance floor ends up resembling a clown car.

A very gay clown car.

I managed to work my way over to Aaron, who looked frantic.

AARON: Kevin! I don't know what happened!
ME: You got sucked into the gay vortex!

I grabbed his hand, aimed for the door, and propelled myself forward.

Outside, I managed to locate Anthony.

ME: How you doing, slugger?
ANTHONY: Everyone keeps shooting me dirty looks. I think the Dick Clique has been spreading it around that I'm not a part of their group anymore.
ME: If someone shoots you a dirty look, shoot them a smile. It disarms people.

He tried it. The person flipped him off.

ME: That's it. I'm never reading Emily Post again.
AARON: Where's AJ?
ME: I left him with Brad.
VOICE: You did?

I turned around to see Brad sipping a drink.

ME: Brad, where's AJ?
BRAD: He ran inside.
ME: And you didn't go after him?
BRAD: And risk spilling my drink?

I took a deep breath, and barreled back into the club. I couldn't find AJ on the dance floor, but when I went up to the second floor for air, I saw him about to duck into a men's room with some guy who looked like Lon Chaney's body double.

ME: AJ!
AJ: Ohhh, hey Kev.
ME: Where are you going?
AJ: This guy wanted to show me his tattoo.
ME: You mean the one he got in prison?
AJ: Kevin--
ME: Let's go.

A few minutes later we were outside again. I found Aaron and Brad dancing--a little too closely, I might add.

ME: I hope you two aren't planning on making out, because I don't think my heart can take it.
BRAD: I'm so drunk; I can't even understand you.
ME: Where's Anthony?
AARON: Uh...
BRAD: Take a guess.
ME: Inside?
AARON and BRAD: Yup.
AJ: I can go get him!
ME: Sorry, AJ, he's not in the men's room...I hope.

Round Three: Anthony was inside on the box. I paid a shotboy five dollars to get down on all fours so I could use him as a mounting device to get up onto the--

Did I just say 'shotboy' and 'mounting device' in the same sentence?

ME: Anthony, what are you doing?
ANTHONY: I'm trying to have fun. Do you want to explain to me why that's a bad thing?
ME: I just want to make sure you're okay.
ANTHONY: Of course I'm not okay! I have no friends! I have no boyfriend! Everyone hates me! And guess who I blame?

Well, knock me off the box, why don't you?

ME: Anthony, I know this transition is rough--
ANTHONY: Kevin, I liked my life. I liked it a lot. Maybe it wasn't much, but it was fun.
ME: And what were you planning on doing once the fun stopped?
ANTHONY: Huh?
ME: You know, there is a point where orgies with people you call your friends and drinking yourself into a stupor gets kind of old.
ANTHONY: Well I hadn't reached that point yet, but thanks for making me leave the party early.

He hopped down from the box.

ME: ANTHONY!

But he just kept walking.

And I couldn't help but wondering...

Did I just lose one of my boys?

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Thou Shalt Not Talk Dirty

Alicia is trying to be sexy.

ALICIA: Oh, I could show you a good time.

She's failing.

ALICIA: A really good time.

She's really failing.

ALICIA: Well you know, I used to be a gymnast.

Oh dear God...

I went out with her to a single's night at a local bar to see how she converses with guys. What I found horrified me.

SINGLE GUY: Are you enjoying your drink?
ALICIA: Oh yeah. I can fit this whole bottle in my--
ME: TIME OUT!

I dragged her into the nearest restroom.

Men's Room? Women's Room? Who cares? I take the Ally McBeal approach to that whole thing.

ME: I'm sorry. I thought I was out with my friend Alicia tonight. Not a castoff from Charm School!
ALICIA: You told me to be more outgoing.
ME: I'll have to get a thesaurus because I don't remember outgoing being a synonym for slutty.
ALICIA: You told me that a girl shouldn't be afraid of her sexuality.
ME: Yes, but insinuating that you can swallow an entire bottle of beer while you slide your tongue over the label is not the same thing as embracing your sexuality.

She burst into tears.

I never have this problem with Anthony.

AJ? Sometimes. Not gonna lie.

ME: Alicia, there's a way to be sexy and not be--
ALICIA: A ho-bag?
ME: Yes.
ALICIA: How?
ME: First off, sexy is all about not trying. Girls who pose. Girls who flip their hair. Girls who do the nod and smile. None of it works.
ALICIA: I've done it before and had it work.
ME: Work in the sense that the guy went home with you, slept with you, and never called again?
ALICIA: I--Wait, is that considered 'not working?'
ME: Let's do some exercises.

This is where my theater degree comes in handy--I can now improvise flirting with girls.

ME: Hi, I'm Kevin.
ALICIA: Wanna screw?
ME: ALICIA!
ALICIA: I was kidding.
ME: Okay, try again.
ALICIA: I'm Alicia, nice to meet you.
ME: You have really gorgeous eyes.
ALICIA: You're a tool.
ME: Good. That was me trying to trick you.

This girl is a bit more savvy than I gave her credit for--thank God.

ME: Are you into sports? You look pretty athletic.
ALICIA: I'm also very flexible.
ME: No.
ALICIA: No?
ME: Too much.
ALICIA: Okay.
ME: I would say--'I like to keep active.'
ALICIA: 'I like to keep active.'
ME: Yeah, so do I.
ALICIA: Keeps me out of trouble.
ME: No.
ALICIA: I definitely lead an active lifestyle.
ME: Sounds like you're a hooker.
ALICIA: But I can always find the time for a nice coffee date.
ME: Not bad.

That was when a guy walked into the restroom.

RANDOM GUY: Sorry--
ME: Oh! This is the men's room.
RANDOM GUY: Uh, it is?
ME: Yeah, my friend here is a drag queen.
RANDOM GUY: Dammit! I knew my friends were lying when they said this was a straight bar! Why did I let them plan my bachelor party? Dammit!

And he walked out.

ME: Okay, ready for some live practice?

Alicia got progressively better with her flirting as the night went on, and by the end, she had a few dates lined up.

ALICIA: Not bad, huh?
ME: Not bad? That was great. You're a fast learner.
ALICIA: Oh, you bet I'm a fast--
ME: And you've relapsed.
ALICIA: Great. My love life is becoming exactly like my diet.

Hey, the girl's actually funny.

I think I can work with that.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Thou Shalt Ditch the Dick Clique

You've seen them every time you go out somewhere.

ANTHONY: Kevin...

A tight little clique.

ANTHONY: Don't.

A small, solid wall of people that move about like a tank on a battlefield.

ANTHONY: These are my friends you're talking about, Kevin.

And you always wish--

ME: Anthony, I have a theory.

--You could find a way to break them up.

ANTHONY: Is this like your theory on Lost? Because I'm pretty sure they're not all stuck in a snow globe.
ME: Well, I guess we'll see about that, won't we?

I was out to dinner with Anthony on Thayer Street, and I had decided to go the next step in helping him because a grown-up.

ANTHONY: What's your theory about my friends?

The plan involved ditching Regina and her band of bitches--otherwise known as his friend Miles and their band of...well...bitches.

ME: My theory is that you're not meeting any nice guys because whenever you go out your friends create a fortress around you that's impenetrable.
ANTHONY: I think your theory is wrong.
ME: Only one way to find out.
ANTHONY: How?
ME: Fly solo for the night.
ANTHONY: You want me to go out by myself?
ME: Not exactly.

Luckily for me, one of Anthony's friends was having a sex toy party (don't ask) which meant he could see Slice through bitch-free glasses.

ANTHONY: Didn't you say I should go to clubs less?
ME: I don't care where you go, as long as you're open to meeting new people.
ANTHONY: I am!
ME: Maybe, but your friends aren't.
ANTHONY: You have no right to say that.
ME: Let's examine the evidence.

Meet the Dick Clique

MILES: Head Bitch, Wants to Sleep w/Anthony
LOGAN: Miles' Boyfriend, Always Drunk

-- And they fight constantly...in public --

ANTHONY: Hey, how many successful gay relationships do you know of?
ME: You call that a success? What would you consider a military success? Waterloo?
ANTHONY: Go on.

MATT: Wants to sleep with Anthony
PRYCE: Wants to sleep with Anthony
RICKY: Wants to sleep with Anthony, Miles, Logan, or Pryce

See where I'm going with this?

ME: You call that a group of friends? Because I call it an orgy waiting to happen.
ANTHONY: Look, we're all gay. Of course we're going to be attracted to each other. Aren't you attracted to your friends?
ME: No, but then again, I'm friends with Brad.
ANTHONY: What's wrong with my friends thinking I'm cute?
ME: Because one day you might not be cute, but you'll still need friends.

That was the line that convinced him to come out with me.

ANTHONY: But if my friends find out about this--
ME: C'mon, what are the odds?

I know, I know--famous last words.

Within a few minutes at Slice, Anthony was bombarded with people saying hello.

ANTHONY: It's so weird. I've seen so many of these people before but they never said hi. I just thought they were snobs.
ME: You realize they might have been thinking the exact same thing about you.
ANTHONY: I've already made two coffee dates. This is awesome.
ME: See what happens when you trust me?
ANTHONY: I'm going to get beat up.
ME: I wasn't thinking of that but--
ANTHONY: Kevin, my crew just walked in.

Apparently, the sex toy party was a bust--if you've seen one vat of grape jelly lubricant you've seen them all--and the Dick Clique had decided to see what was happening downtown.

ANTHONY: I'm screwed.
ME: Relax, you're allowed to hang out with different people, aren't you?

As if I didn't already know the answer to that question.

The DC hobbled right on over to us. They were a little tipsy, and by tipsy, I mean shattered, which is when you're wasted AND trashy.

MILES: Well, well, well...
ANTHONY: Hey Miles.
MILES: Thought you were staying in tonight.
ANTHONY: I changed my mind.
MILES: Didn't want to call us though, huh?

The other members of the Dick Clique hung back, preferring to let their leader eat Anthony alive.

That's when I decided to step into the mix.

ME: Anthony's just having some fun, but now that you guys are here, we can all have fun.
MILES: I'm sorry, Puffenstuff, was I talking to you?

Or maybe not.

ANTHONY: Miles, I'm just hanging out with a friend. I can have more than you guys as friends, right?

The DC members all looked at each other as if he'd just asked them to do long division.

MILES: Hey, do what you want, and so will we.
ANTHONY: What's that supposed to mean?
MILES: It means maybe we don't want to hang out with you if you're going to shack up with the Billy the Blogger over here.
ME: Wait, is that me?
ANTHONY: Kevin's my friend, that's all. If you guys are my friends, you'll respect that.

I wanted to cheer for Anthony, but that was when Miles turned his glare on me.

MILES: What are you making over the whole city?
ME: Nooo, some people I just marked for demolition.
MILES: Oohh, someone's getting catty.
ME: If you want catty, I can give you catty.

The DC looked ready to fight.

MILES: You going to take us all on?
ME: No, that's why I have back-up.
MILES: Huh?

Thank God I'd sent out a text message as soon as I saw the Dick Clique walk into the place. I could already feel the boys behind me.

DAVIS: Is there a problem here, Kevin?
CARTER: We heard there were might be a brawl.
ME: No, guys, I've been teaching my proteges that violence is not the answer.
RITCHIE: Yeah, we could always just put you guys on the list.
MILES: What list?
DAVIS: The list of guys no club in this town will serve if I tell them not to.

That's when I saw Miles start to shake.

MILES: We're out of here. You're finished, Anthony.
ANTHONY: Fine. I'm done with you guys anyway.
RICKY: Whatever! I mean, if you want to meet up for drinks once in a--
MILES: Ricky! Let's go.

They took off, but before they made it to the door, a few bouncers grabbed them and tossed them out of it onto the sidewalk.

ME: Davis?
DAVIS: Ohh, I might have told them to do that. Oops.

We all had a great rest of the night, but I was a little nervous that Anthony would be hurt at losing his friends.

ANTHONY: Friends? Those weren't friends. You're my friend, K-Brock.
ME: Anthony, that's so sweet.
ANTHONY: You know how I know you're my friend?
ME: Because I look out for you.
ANTHONY: That, and I never want to sleep with you.

So much for the Hallmark moment.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Thou Shalt Abstain from Clubbing

Let me show you AJ's schedule:

Monday: Prisms--College Night.
Tuesday: Slice--Cowboy Night.
Wednesday: Prisms--80's Night.
Thursday: Slice--Goth Night.
Friday: Prisms--Techno Night.
Saturday: Prisms--Top 40 Night.
Sunday: Slice--Nobody actually knows what happens on Sunday nights at Slice, but everybody always leaves covered in grape jelly.

AJ: But I have to go out! It's Friday!

I was about to expose AJ to something other than clubbing.

In general, all my proteges were ill-versed in any sort of socializing that doesn't involve walking around shirtless and making out with strangers.

That was all about to change.

ME: I didn't say you weren't going out.
AJ: Oh, okay, because Chet's going out tonight and I want to see his new boyfriend.
ME: That tool already has a new boyfriend?

I haven't checked Vogue in awhile--is an idiot the new accessory for Summer '09?

AJ: Yeah, and I totes have to check him out.
ME: You totes don't. All you need to do is say a prayer of thanks that you're not dating that nimrod anymore.
AJ: Nimrod?
ME: I'm trying to bring it back.
AJ: Not happening, K-Brock.

Now time to drop the bomb.

ME: We are going out, but we're not going to the club.

AJ looked like I'd just told him it was possible to have a baby without having sex.

AJ: I'm confused.
ME: We're going to go somewhere else.
AJ: Where?
ME: Believe it or not, there are these places people go that aren't Slice or Prisms, that are still a lot of fun.
AJ: You're going to take me to a carnival?
ME: After hearing the things you've done on a ferris wheel? No chance.

At around seven, I drove us up to Newport.

In the car, AJ was getting shaky. It must have been the club withdrawal.

AJ: I'm going to miss sooo much.
ME: Like what? What ever happens any time you go out that is so earth-shattering?
AJ: Um, last week, this guy fell off the box and landed on this fat chick.
ME: Well, as riveting as that sounds, I think we can do a little better.
AJ: Why is it such a big deal that I go somewhere else?
ME: Because right now, your entire mindframe is centered around clubbing. I've never even heard you talk about anything else.
AJ: That's not true! I try talking to you about The Hills, but you don't watch it!

I wouldn't say I don't watch it as much as I avoid it like expired milk.

ME: AJ, you come from an amazing culture.
AJ: You mean Italians?
ME: Well...yes, but in addition to that, you're gay.
AJ: Being gay isn't a culture.
ME: Of course it is! AJ, there was a time when being gay was synonymous with being witty, intelligent, and stylish.
AJ: I'm still pretty stylish.
ME: Having style is not the same thing as spending hundreds of dollars on slutty underwear.
AJ: How'd you know what I was wearing?
ME: I'm talking about Oscar Wilde. I'm talking about Lorca. I'm talking about...uh...
AJ: Elton John?
ME: Sure, why not. As long as we're not talking about the Donald Duck costume.
AJ: So you're going to teach me shit, huh?
ME: I'm going to teach you to be proud of you who are based on what you know and not who you've gotten to sleep with you.

He seemed to quiet down a bit after that.

ME: Well?
AJ: Well...you can give it a shot.

That's all I needed to hear.

First we did dinner with Brad and some friends at a very nice restaurant.

BRAD: You did tell AJ not to steal the silverware, right?
ME: You did tell your mother how that grape juice stain got on the comforter in her guest room, right?
BRAD: Fine, I'll be good.

Then we took in an independent movie.

AJ: This shit is low-quality, K-Brock.
ME: They filmed it on less expensive film.
AJ: Wait, is this a snuff film?

Finally, we wound up a friend's house party.

CONNOR: Long time, no see, Kev.
ME: Hello Connor. This is my friend AJ.
CONNOR: Is he one of the--
AJ: Yeah, I'm one of his prototypes.
CONNOR: You mean--
ME: Connor, please. We're working on vocabulary next week.

AJ did a great job of circulating throughout the party. At around midnight, we were on our way back to Providence.

ME: Did you enjoy yourself?
AJ: Yeah, it was...interesting.
ME: Interesting is good.
AJ: I didn't like that movie.
ME: AJ, you don't have to like any of the stuff we just did. I just think it's important that you check out different scenes, you know?
AJ: Yeah, I see what you mean.

I decided to test the water a little bit.

ME: You know, we could probably still make it to the club if you wanted to catch the last hour.

He seemed to think this over for a second.

AJ: Nah, I'm beat. I think I'll just go home and crash.

Another exhausted boy, another successful Friday night.

I'll rephrase that later. I'm beat.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Thou Shalt Turn Thy Frown Upside Down

I managed to locate Alicia.

ALICIA: It was so awesome!

She'd disappeared at a party Brad brought her to, per my request.

ALICIA: What ended up happening to Brad?

He ditched her, of course.

ME: He...is a prick.
ALICIA: Oh...okay.
ME: So you met a guy?
ALICIA: Yeah, he's great.
ME: See, guys can be nice.
ALICIA: I know! I probably shouldn't have slept with him on the first date, but--
ME: Wait, what?
ALICIA: He came back to my apartment, and...you know...hehehe

Oh God.

ME: Does he have your number?
ALICIA: Yeah.
ME: Has he called yet?
ALICIA: No, but it's still early in--
ME: Tell you what. I have to run an errand. Let me call you back.

Note to self: Buy tissues and head over to Alicia's place ASAP.

First, however, I had to check in on Aaron. He and I were having dinner at Andrea's.

He'd managed to snag the attention of a great guy the other night, and I couldn't wait to hear all about his progress.

AARON: He's an asshole.

Another failure? I'm producing more ruined relationships than The Millionaire Matchmakers.

ME: What happened?
AARON: He thought I got too serious too fast.
ME: Did you?
AARON: No.
ME: You mentioned marriage, didn't you?
AARON: Is it so wrong to tell someone you can see yourself marrying them?
ME: God, I need to take up alcoholism.

Aaron's sweet, but you have to be sweet AND savvy.

AARON: I know what you're going to say.
ME: You know I'm going to order the salmon?
AARON: No, about what I did.
ME: Aaron, I think you know what you did. I'm not going to pour lemon juice in the gaping wound.
AARON: The thing is, I get how to be now.
ME: How to be?
AARON: Yeah. I have to be tough.
ME: Well--
AARON: Not so vulnerable.

Uh oh. I was afraid of this.

AARON: Men want to hear what they want to hear, and you have to know how to play them.
ME: No.
AARON: No?
ME: Not at all.
AARON: But you're the one who told me this was a game.
ME: It is a game, but that doesn't mean you have to play it dishonestly.
AARON: Kevin, I tried honesty. It got me blocked on Facebook.
ME: You were blocked on--Never mind.
AARON: So from now on, I'm going to be stoic. That way--
ME: You never get hurt?

I could see that remark landed. He looked down, and seemed on the verge of tears.

AARON: I just can't keep letting this happen to me.
ME: So the solution is to become an asshole? Who do you think that's going to land you? Aside from another asshole?
AARON: Then what do I do?
ME: You stay honest, you stay funny, and you stay yourself, because you're all of those things.
AARON: And nobody cares.
ME: Somebody will care--just not everybody. Luckily, you're not looking to meet, date, and fall in love with--EVERYBODY. Just one person, right?
AARON: But what if I meet them and they run?
ME: They won't run.
AARON: How do you know?
ME: Ready for rhyme time? If they run, they're not the one.

Look at me rhyming. All I need now is DVD and a cork board and I'll be the next Secret.

ME: Look, Aaron, many people have become cynical after being in the gay community for awhile. Hell, I became a bitter old queen by the time I was twenty. You can't embrace misery. You have to embrace joy. Actually, that's the overall choice in life. Embrace misery or embrace joy.
AARON: But I'm miserable. Are you saying that's a choice?
ME: No, I'm saying STAYING miserable is a choice. You can't help how you feel, but how long you feel that way is ultimately up to you.
AARON: Embrace joy. That sounds like guru bullshit.
ME: It keeps the gurus happy, doesn't it?
AARON: I just don't know if I buy it.
ME: Well then, buy this. If you're trying to be the person you want to date, and you want to date someone happy, what's the next part of the equation?
AARON: I have to--
ME: Thank you. Now it's time for salmon. I'm buying.
AARON: Wow, thanks.
ME: See? Happy already?
AARON: Embrace!
ME: EMBRACE THE JOY! I'm putting that on t-shirts.

That was when my phone rang.

ME: Hello?
ALICIA: Kevin, he's...he's not calling...is he?

Then she broke down crying.

ME: We might need to get the salmon to go.

And I need to get a move-on on those tissues.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Thou Shalt Descend a Giant Staircase

The proteges were getting a reward.

AARON: Matching t-shirts?
AJ: Body piercings?
ANTHONY: The chance to punch AJ in the throat?

I was taking them out for a night on the town.

ME: You're all going to make a grand entrance back into society. Just like Dolly.
AJ: Who?
ME: From the musical.
ANTHONY: What musical?
ME: Hello Dolly!
AARON: Never heard of it.
ME: Wall-E. "Put on Your Sunday Clothes."
AARON, AJ, and ANTHONY: Ohhh...
ME: It's really sad that has become a reference point for all of you.

Education comes later. Right now, I was worried about having them socialize at Prisms without it turning into the brawl that happened the last time they were all in the same room together.

Alicia was not going to be going with us. Since I would be taking the boys to Prisms to try out their new statuses as students of Broc-ism, and since Alicia spends wayyy too much time around gay boys, I handed her over to Brad for the night.

I know what you're thinking, isn't that like giving a diabetic a Nestle's crunch?

It just so happens, however, that Brad knows some of most eligible straight man in town.

(That's what happens when you're a Poli-Sci major.)

BRAD: I can't believe you talked me into this.

Brad was to check in with me on an hourly basis via texting. I had instructed him to take Alicia to one of his friend's parties. A surefire way to meet guys who aren't into shows that start with "The Real Housewives of..."

ME: How's she doing?
BRAD: Well, there aren't a lot of people here yet. It's still early.
ME: Oh, great. She can be eased--
BRAD: That being said, she's locked herself in the bathroom and I can hear whimpering.
ME: GET HER OUT OF THERE!
BRAD: How am I supposed to do that?
ME: Use your charm.
BRAD: Really?
ME: Bribe her. I'll pay you back later.

After hanging up with Brad, I checked on Aaron, who was talking to a guy at the bar. Once the guy took a break to head to the men's room, I gave Aaron a pop quiz.

ME: Name?
AARON: Rob.
ME: Occupation?
AARON: Law student.
ME: How many people in this room has he hooked up with?
AARON: From what I can tell, none.
ME: Excellent.
AARON: Yeah. No annoying accent, no offers to go make out on the dance floor, and I'm pretty sure he's not high.
ME: Wow, how have I never heard of this guy?
AARON: He's from Massachusetts.
ME: ARE YOU SERIOUS?
AARON: Is that bad?
ME: THAT'S AMAZING! That means he's a clean slate.
AARON: Oh cool. I did something right.
ME: Just make sure he's not too far away. Long distance plus newfound attraction equals devastation, frustration, and masturbation.
AARON: Got it.

AJ was downstairs on the dance floor. I had instructed him to get rid of his boyfriend--who he had stolen from Anthony--and to apologize for being a sneaky little Claire Danes.

AJ: Anthony shook my hand.
ME: I told him to do that. It's a symbol of a truce.
AJ: Ohhh...I thought he was saying he wanted to give me a--
ME: Nooo.
AJ: Hey, I haven't knocked anybody out all night. Are you proud of me?

That was when a guy bumped into him, causing him to spill his drink all over himself.

It was amazing. All of a sudden, I saw this tiny little guy turn green and split his shirt open to--Okay, maybe I'm exaggerating.

ME: AJ, remember what I told you.
AJ: This is my FAVORITE shirt.
ME: It says 'Spank Me' on it.
AJ: I made it myself!
ME: Then that's what we call a blessing in disguise.
VOICE: Hey!

It was the guy who had bumped into him.

BOY: Hey man, sorry about that. Want me to buy you another one?
AJ: Uh...

I saw the green disappearing. The muscles disappeared back into his miniature physique.

AJ: Sure.

The guy went off to get the drink.

ME: See? When you wait to lose your temper, sometimes people actually turn out to be decent human beings.
AJ: Plus they buy you shit.
ME: Yeah, that too.

Anthony was outside the bar when I found him. He was sitting on the curb looking a little forlorn. I sat down next to him.

ME: Hard to be here right after a break-up, huh?
ANTHONY: Wicked hard.
ME: Can I make a suggestion?
ANTHONY: Sure.
ME: If you act okay, you'll find that eventually you'll be okay.
ANTHONY: That really works?
ME: I've faked my way through three break-ups, two deaths in my family, and a walk of shame through a courtyard on the Brown campus.
ANTHONY: Whoa.
ME: Trust me. Faking it works. The mind is a lot simpler than what all those scientists say.

I helped Anthony up and we went back into the bar. The rest of the night went by swimmingly.

It wasn't until I was walking back to my car that I thought to check on my girl.

ME: How'd she do?
BRAD: Once I got her out of the bathroom?
ME: I'm assuming that happened.
BRAD: She actually had a lovely time.
ME: What time did you bring her home?
BRAD: Uh...
ME: You did make sure she got home okay, right?
BRAD: See, there was this guy...
ME: You said there were only straight guys there!
BRAD: I didn't say he was gay. He was just...drunk...and...willing to consider new ways of thinking.
ME: You DITCHED Alicia for a closet case?
BRAD: I'm sure she's fine.
ME: Where is she?
BRAD: Last I checked, she was heading to a spare room with a very nice looking man.

Great. I've lost one already, and I'm barely out of the gate.

BRAD: Hey, why would I help you win a bet where I'd be the loser?

This means war...once I find Alicia.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Thou Shalt Not Spurn the Women Folk

I knew my first girl would be a challenge.

BRAD: Do you want to rephrase that statement?

But who doesn't love a challenge?

Getting Alicia, my only female protege this summer, to befriend me was easier than I thought.

FACEBOOK MESSAGE:

Hey Alicia,

My name's Kevin. Want to be friends? :o)

-- Kevin --

FACEBOOK REPLY

YESSS!!!

I was a little scared.

It turned out, however, that she had read my 100 Dates blog a few years back, and was more than onboard for my little Pygmalion project.

ALICIA: Do I look that bad in green?
ME: No, Pygmalion isn't actually a pig, it's--

I'll skip to the point.

For her first lesson, I took Alicia--and Brad, the what's-his-name-from-Wham! to my George Michael--to a bar.

I know what you're thinking, but think again--

It was a straight bar.

ALICIA: Um, I really don't feel comfortable being here.
ME: That's the point. I need to get you comfortable being here.
ALICIA: I just don't like being accosted by guys.
BRAD: Not to be cruel, darling, but when was the last time a guy accosted you?
ALICIA: It's happened!
ME: Alicia, believe it or not, you need to give straight guys more credit.
ALICIA: So that's my lesson? Trust straight guys more?
ME: Nooo. That's too advanced for your first lesson. Right now, we're just going to get you used to having a support team that doesn't involve members of the Gaga fan club.
ALICIA: Huh?
BRAD: He's talking about being friends with other girls.

Alicia looked like she was going to bail. Then, she actually attempted to bail.

Luckily, Brad grabbed her and spun her around so we could continue with our lesson.

I had invited some girls to the bar that I thought Alicia might like.

PAIGE: KEVIN!

Might like slash the only ones who were available.

CARLY: You owe me sooo big for this.
BETH: You owe me the last three drinks I just had.

Alicia looked even more terrified, but this time, I couldn't really blame her.

Maybe I should have tried to find some nice Amish girls.

ALICIA: Kevin, I don't really do well with women. They're competitive, shallow, and cliquey.
ME: As opposed to gay men, who are Buddhist monks with flare?
ALICIA: I just feel--
ME: Safe when you're around the gays?
ALICIA: Yes!
ME: Too bad. You're a girl. You're a beautiful girl. And you're wasting all that pretty standing around a gay bar on a Friday night watching your gay friend puke in the bathroom right before he ditches you for his latest hookup.
ALICIA: Wow, you're a self-hater, huh?
ME: No, I was just describing your Saturday night.
ALICIA: Ohhh, right.

I convinced Alicia to have a few drinks with the girls.

PAIGE: I think we can be great friends.
ALICIA: Uh...maybe.
ME: Alicia, you were so quick to be friends with me. Why don't you just give Paige the same chance?
CARLY: You've been cheated on, haven't you?
ALICIA: No.
CARLY: Yes, you have. Women who hate women have always been cheated on--I read it in Marie Claire.
ALICIA: I've actually never dated anyone.
BRAD: Never?
CARLY: Not even a one-night stand?
ALICIA: What's that?
CARLY: Oh God, Kevin. Why didn't you just try converting a nun?

Alicia was now mortified. I made eyes at Beth, and she swooped in for the save.

BETH: Do you want a drink?
ALICIA: Yes--now--please.

Leave it to me to completely forget that alcohol speeds up the friending process.

BRAD: It looks like your little Alicia is actually warming up to the ladies.

Paige and Alicia were on the bar grinding on each other while "Halo" played in the background.

ME: I'm going to call this progress.
BRAD: I call it being a skanktank, but hey, tomato potato.
ME: You mean to-mah-toe?
BRAD: Whatever. I'm too drunk to care.

Seeing Alicia dance and laugh and have a good time was heartwarming.

Maybe girls aren't so bad after all...

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Thou Shalt Not Fall in Love (On the First Date)

Something told me Anthony was going to be the tricky one.

ANTHONY: I appreciate you wanting to help, but I already have a man. So I think I'm doing all right.

For one thing, I was going to have to break his heart.

I met up with him at Winstead, a little coffeehouse on the East Side. At first, he seemed receptive to becoming my third protege, but then he dropped the bomb.

ME: Who are you dating?
ANTHONY: Chet Taylor.

The Chet Bomb.

Chet is a human disaster. He's loud, crazy, and trashy. He's part of the group I saw Anthony with the night I made my deal with the devil.

The devil being my best friend--

BRAD: This place is a wannabe Peach Pit.

--Brad.

I brought him along to help me convince Anthony that he should take nest under my big gay wing, but as usual, he wasn't being too helpful.

BRAD: I ordered something called a Mocha Chocha Latte.
ME: And?
BRAD: It tastes like Patti LaBelle.
ME: What--you know what? I'm not even going to ask.

Apparently, Anthony was waiting for Mr. Chet to show up so they could go have a picnic.

I know, I threw up in my mouth too.

ME: Anthony, how long have you and Chet been dating?
ANTHONY: Three weeks.
ME: And it's been going well?
ANTHONY: Definitely. I'm practically living with him. We're so in love. It's insane.
BRAD: Well, it DOES sound insane.
ME: Brad!

There were a few ways I could go about helping Anthony become a better person--but none of them involved Chet.

That meant it was fear time.

ME: Anthony, how many times would you say you've been in love?
ANTHONY: Before Chet, I would have said four times, but this is the real deal.
ME: Okay. Would you mind humoring me for a second?
ANTHONY: Sure, but if you're going to try--
ME: Let's say Chet loses his nose.

Brad almost spit out his Mocha Chocha.

ANTHONY: Excuse me?
ME: Horrible freak accident. He loses his nose. Are you still going to love him?
ANTHONY: Yeah. Of course. He's my baby.
BRAD: Bullshit.

Anthony shot Brad a look.

BRAD: Oh, come on. You're going to date a circus freak and I'm an asshole for pointing out you're lying?
ANTHONY: I'm not lying!
ME: Let's say a foul smell starts coming out of the nose.
ANTHONY: It won't matter.
ME: Let's say there's pus.
BRAD: Okay, at this point, I'm going to vomit.

I admired Anthony being so sure of himself and his love. Who knows? Maybe he really would stick it out, but if Chet was really his true love, then there wasn't much I could do for him.

It would be like putting a band-aid on a giant tumor.

ANTHONY: Do you just not believe in love?
ME: No, I just don't believe that you can be so sure after three weeks.
ANTHONY: Some people are sure after three seconds.
ME: It's very rare when that happens.
ANTHONY: But it happens, right?
ME: Yeah. It does.

Look at me, the cynic.

ANTHONY: Maybe you need to fall in love before you lecture me.

Ouch.

That was when Chet walked into the coffeehouse, and right over to us.

CHET: Hey Ant.
ANTHONY: Hey Chet, you ready to go?
CHET: Uh, slight problem.

The door opened, and AJ strolled in--otherwise known as "My Special Project."

ANTHONY: What the hell is he doing here?
BRAD: Don't worry. He won't punch you in the face again. Kevin had a talk with him, and now he's castrated.
CHET: Anthony, I'm in love.
ANTHONY: I know.
CHET: But not with you.
ANTHONY: WHAT?

He jumped up. I looked over at AJ, who appeared to be smiling.

I could see that my lesson on "Stealing Boyfriends and Gloating About It" was going to have to get pushed up as soon as possible.

ANTHONY: I thought we were going to be together forever?
CHET: Sometimes plans change. Sorry kid.
ANTHONY: I hope your nose falls off.
CHET: Huh?
ANTHONY: Never mind.

He sat back down. Chet took off with AJ. I put my arm around Anthony.

ANTHONY: So you're going to help me, right? So I don't pick any more jerks like that?
ME: Oh, I think I can give you a few pointers.
ANTHONY: When do we start?
ME: We start with this--no falling in love on the first date.
ANTHONY: I guess I can try.
ME: I have an electric zapper bracelet if you need it.
ANTHONY: This is going to be Hell, huh?
ME: No pain, no gain.

Brad pushed his drink over to Anthony.

BRAD: Here you go.
ME: For me?
BRAD: You've just been broken up with--it's time for a massive calorie intake.

I have my methods, Brad has his.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Thou Shalt Not Cut a Bitch

Meet my newest problem child.

AJ: I ain't interested in your teachings, Yod.

After my lesson with Aaron in avoiding the bad boys, I was now forced to convert a bad boy into a good boy.

Where's Ricki Lake when you need her?

AJ: Look, I happen to L-O-V-E myself, my life, and my biz.
ME: Is there any word you can't abbreviate or alter?
AJ: Neggo.

Once again, I found myself at Prisms. At some point, I was going to have to expand some horizons in terms of socialization spots, but it's all about one step at a time.

ME: What if I were to just help you with one thing?
AJ: What's that one thing?
ME: Your temper.
AJ: Nah, son.
ME: Okay, how about the fact that you talk like Vanilla Ice?
AJ: Who?
ME: God, I'm old.

Luckily, I brought along reinforcements.

BRAD: Does accepting my help mean you lose the bet?
ME: Nooo, it means you're a good friend.
BRAD: It also means you're buying my next drink.
ME: Deal. Just make A.J. do what I tell him to do.
BRAD: Great. Now I'm the Dog Whisperer.

Brad followed me back to the table where A.J. was seated shooting daggers at some guy across the room.

BRAD: Since Kevin doesn't seem able to speak your language, perhaps I can try.
ME: You can try me out, Vodka.
BRAD: You're a nasty little bitch who's going to end up catching go-noggo before you turn twenty if you don't let my broseph here help you out. If you say Neggo to his help, I will spread a rumor that you slept with Timmy the Troll.

We all looked over at Timmy, who was sitting at the bar licking something off his fingers.

BRAD: ...And everyone will believe me.
AJ: Aight, y'all. Give me some tips.
ME: First thing's first, bar brawls do not signify that someone is, um--
BRAD: Not trashy.
ME: Yes.
AJ: Look, that guy deserved the punch I gave him.

He was referring to Anthony, my other protege, who I'd yet to introduce myself to, probably because he didn't want to show up at Prisms until his nose healed.

ME: What did he do exactly?
AJ: He told someone I gave head in the back of a car.
BRAD: Didn't you?
AJ: Yeah, but that's not his biz to be spreading.
ME: That's the thing--when you do the wrong thing, your biz becomes the world's biz.
AJ: That's messed up.
ME: That's life.
AJ: So what am I supposed to do?
ME: I want to show you how to handle it when somebody spreads a rumor about you.
BRAD: It's actually not a rumor if it's true.
ME: Nothing is true until you say it's true.
AJ: I like that.
ME: See, I'm not a total idiot.
BRAD: Keyword: Total.
ME: Moving on.

I briefed AJ in how to handle a rumor-monger. Then I sent him out to try his new technique.

The boy across the bar that AJ had been glaring at was named Vinny, and apparently he'd been telling everyone that AJ hooked up with someone at the men's room of a TGIFriday's.

BRAD: Did you?
AJ: Nah, it was a Chili's.
ME: From now on, pretend I'm your lawyer, and only tell me things that make you seem innocent.

AJ walked over to Vinny and--

AJ: Hey Vinny, why don't you let me buy you a drink?
VINNY: Uh, have you started doing stuff? Cuz I might be lookin' to buy.
AJ: No, man. I just want to bury the hatchet.
VINNY: You ain't comin' at me with no hatchet.
AJ: I told them you wouldn't know what that means.
VINNY: Told who?
AJ: Never mind. Look man, I'd appreciate it if you stopped saying stuff about me. If you want to talk to me about something; just talk to me. I'll do the same, okay?

This was where Vinny was supposed to say 'Okay' and they were supposed to share a drink and become great friends.

VINNY: Man, fuck off.

Yeah, I probably should have seen that coming.

AJ walked back over to me with fury in his eyes.

AJ: I did what you told me to do and it didn't work.
ME: I understand that, but now you look like the bigger man and he looks like the asshole. And nobody listens to what an asshole has to say.
BRAD: Unless they have a blog.
ME: Hey Brad?
BRAD: Yeah?
ME: Knock knock.
BRAD: Who's there?
ME: Shut up.

By the way, check out my other blogs.

AJ: What am I supposed to do about the fact that I was disrespected? Just take it?
ME: Of course not. I don't want you to be a wimp. I just don't want you to be a crazy person who fights in bars.
AJ: So what do I do then?
ME: Watch.

I walked over to Vinny.

ME: Hi.
VINNY: You AJ's boy?
ME: No, I'm his friend.
VINNY: He doesn't have friends. Just Johns.

Vinny raised his voice when he said this so that AJ could hear. I saw Brad grab AJ in a headlock so he rush over and knock Vinny out.

ME: Well, I'm his first friend then.
VINNY: Poor you.
ME: No, poor you, because people who are the enemies of my friends are my enemies. And I don't think you want to be my enemy.

Vinny got right in my face.

VINNY: Maybe I do. Then what?

Watch and learn, AJ.

ME: Then I take that video of you on Nasty.com, post it in a Facebook video, and send it to everyone you know.
VINNY: Uh...
ME: You know, the one where you're in a diaper, sucking on a pacifier, and making out with Timmy over there.

We both looked at Timmy. He was discreetly picking things out of his ear.

VINNY: Listen, forget all about the AJ thing, okay?
ME: I'll forget it if you forget the Friday's story. Okay?
VINNY: Okay.
ME: And if you keep your mouth shut from now on, okay?
VINNY: Okay, okay. I'm sorry.
ME: Terrific. AJ?

AJ walked over to us.

ME: Vinny has something he'd like to say.
VINNY: You gotta be kidding me.
ME: Cough cough Huggies cough cough.
VINNY: I'm really sorry, AJ.

My little protege looked shocked.

AJ: Uh...okay.
ME: AJ?
AJ: Oh right. I accept your apology.
ME: Excellent. I think you boys have a great friendship in your future.
AJ: Can I at least throw the drink I bought him in his face?
ME: Knock yourself out.

AJ picked up the drink, threw it in Vinny's face, and then we both walked away smiling.

ME: So am I cool yet?
AJ: Are you kidding me? You're the K-Brock.

Yeggo.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Thou Shalt Wait For It

This is Aaron.

ME: Hi Aaron.
AARON: Do I know you?
ME: Fateful first words, my friend.

He's my first protege.

I found him on the top floor of Prisms a week after I bet my friend Brad that I could take three ugly gay ducklings (and one duckette) and make them into charming, intelligent, sassy swans.

ME: Mind if I sit down?

Aaron was about to have his first lesson.

AARON: Sure, go ahead. Not like anybody else is clamoring to sit next to me.
ME: I'm Kevin, by the way.
AARON: Nice to meet you.
ME: Let me guess. You've been out for three months, two weeks, and five days?
AARON: Uh...wow. Are you--
ME: I read your livejournal.

Some call it stalking, I call it research.

AARON: I'm a little weirded out.
ME: Don't be. I'm here to help.
AARON: Help what?
ME: Not what, who. Who being you.
AARON: So you're the Cat in the Hat?
ME: In a way. I'm going to help settle you into the gay community.
AARON: So you're the welcoming committee?
ME: In a way. I'm going to give you some pointers.
AARON: So you're--
ME: I'm your new best friend.

We talked some more, and I got the basics--the basics Aaron's LJ didn't give me--about Student #1.

BASICS:

- Very shy
- Very shallow
- Very short

AARON: I wouldn't say I'm shallow. I just don't have a 'type' yet so I just go by who I think is cute.
ME: And that's where you're going to get into trouble.
AARON: How?
ME: Tell me about the guys who've talked to you so far tonight.

CONTESTANT #1: Benjamin

AARON: Really cute, right?
ME: He's not wearing a shirt.
AARON: But he's got a nice body.
ME: There's something to be said for humility.
AARON: He seems fun though.
ME: Yes, well, club drugs do tend to make you the life of the party.
AARON: Okay. He was just the first anyway.

CONTESTANT #2: Freddie

AARON: He seems really nice.
ME: Everything's going to seem nice when they want to get in your pants.
AARON: Sweet, I meant to say sweet.
ME: He's a little young, don't you think?
AARON: I'm only twenty-two.
ME: It's not so much the age difference as it is the fact that you'll be driving him to school in the morning.
AARON: You mean--
ME: High school.
AARON: Oh God, I thought that hockey jersey looked too new.

CONTESTANT #3: Ryan

AARON: That guy has to be a winner.
ME: Based on...?
AARON: Look at him. He's surrounded by people.
ME: And he's slept with every one of them.
AARON: Are you kidding?
ME: That's how Ryan makes friends.
AARON: You're kidding, right?
ME: Some people have barbecues, he gives--
AARON: Tell me you're kidding.
ME: Not that I'm a prude, but he doesn't know the value of discretion either. Most of those people are friends with him because if they turned their backs on him he'd spread their business all over town.
AARON: That's horrible.

I could see Aaron was getting disheartened.

ME: Don't feel so bad. You're new at this.
AARON: I just feel like there's so much I don't know.
ME: The first thing you need to know is this--Wait It Out. The good guys aren't going to be the first ones in line. They're going to see what you do first. How you interact socially tends to define who you are and if you're dateable.
AARON: Look, if you're into rules, you should know, I'm not. I don't play by the rulers.
ME: Then not only will you be a loser, you'll wind up with one.

I started to walk away.

AARON: Wait!

They always freak out when you walk away from them.

ME: Yes?
AARON: Okay, I'll bite.
ME: Not during the first lesson, mister.
AARON: So I have to wait for a good guy to come around?
ME: I'd give it a few weeks. Until then, you're Mr. Mysterious.
AARON: Meaning I have to sit in the corner and sulk?
ME: Absolutely not! Just because you can't date right away doesn't mean you can't make friends.

That was how an hour later I had him downstairs dancing. I don't have to tell you that half the dance floor was looking in his direction.

AARON: I think I like being Mr. Mysterious.
ME: Great. Now time for rule number two.
AARON: Which is?
ME: Never stay until the end of the night. Let's go.

I took him to Bickford's for a late-night breakfast, and we got to know each other a little better.

Aaron, without a doubt, is going to be a huge hit.

So long as he can wait to become one.

Friday, June 5, 2009

The Challenge

Hi, my name is Kevin.

BRAD: Introductions are entirely unnecessary.

Welcome to Friday night.

BRAD: I promised myself I wouldn't drink...heavily.

This is my friend Brad. We're on our way to Prisms. It's the first nice night of the year, and for once, I don't mind walking the eight blocks from the only parking spot I could find.

BRAD: Why don't you pay for parking?
ME: Some of us aren't trust fund babies, Brad.
BRAD: God, I hate being friends with the poor.

I keep Brad around because he's good for a laugh--and free Sprite at the bar.

BRAD: I'm embarrassed for you when you order that.
ME: Some of us like to keep our bearings.
BRAD: I think I lost mine at Boston Pride last year.

As we passed a car right near the club, we could hear rustling in the backseat.

ME: Tell me someone is not--
BRAD: Yup.
ME: In a hybrid.
BRAD: Apparently the driver's not the only one doing his part.

We went up to the top floor and ordered our drinks.

BRAD: When did being gay become the same thing as being trashy?
ME: Not all gay men are trashy.
BRAD: It doesn't take that many bad apples, and last time I checked, the barrel was looking pretty rotten.
ME: Most guys just need a push in the right direction, and they'd be fine.
BRAD: Maybe--if you're talking about pushing them off a cliff.

A gaggle of gays near us burst into laughter. They seemed to be laughing at a clearly drunk boy who was making an idiot out of himself near the door.

BRAD: I can't tell who's worse--the drunk or the catty bitches making fun of him.
ME: Clearly the bitches. We all make mistakes.
BRAD: Kevin, please--
ME: November 8th, 2007 ring a bell, Brad?
BRAD: Point goes to you.

I looked around the room and surveyed the microcosm that is Prisms on a Friday night. Yes, there were many bad examples of being gay, but there were also people walking the fence--people who just needed someone to guide them.

Someone who's fallen off the fence a couple of times himself...

ME: I bet I could turn some of these people around if I had the chance.
BRAD: That sounds like a bet in the making.
ME: I'm not making a bet with you, Brad.
BRAD: It doesn't have to be for money. Just pride.
ME: Fine.
BRAD: How many converts are you going to need?
ME: I bet I could do four before the end of summer.
BRAD: All right, but I get to pick the four.

This was dangerous. Brad isn't known for pulling punches. Still, I didn't want to show weakness.

ME: Go ahead. Pick from anybody in this room.

Brad immediately pointed to a boy sitting in the corner.

BRAD: Wallflower over there.

He was sitting in a chair trying to not cute but inconspicuous, which, by the way, never works.

BRAD: I believe his name is Aaron.
ME: I'll take him. He's clearly new to all this, so it won't be like I have to break him of any bad habits.
BRAD: Or he could be a serial killer.
ME: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Pick my next victim, Bradley.

This time he looked around a little bit more, then settled on the group of bitches.

BRAD: Him.
ME: Who him? You pointed at an entire group.
BRAD: Right in the middle.
ME: The one cackling like he just laid an egg?
BRAD: With the bling and the head full of hair gel.
ME: Ugh...

That would be Anthony, one of the key figures in the Dick Clique--Providence's least friendly group of CBQ's.

ME: You want me to help Anthony?
BRAD: Help? No. I believe we're looking for transformations here, aren't we?
ME: You're a bastard.
BRAD: No time for insults. I have two more picks.

He seemed to be considering how to make my job that much harder. Then he chose.

BRAD: Her.

I thought he was just referring to some especially queenly guy, but then I noticed that he meant an actual girl.

ME: Um, Brad--
BRAD: You said anybody in the room.
ME: This is supposed to be me as a guru for gays.
BRAD: That girl needs a guru. Look at her.

She was really drunk, and falling all over herself. She was with two guys who seemed to be trying to distance themselves from her as much as possible. And she was yelling out something--clearly trying to be heard in a room full of people who didn't want to listen.

ME: I'll make an exception.
BRAD: Great. One left.

That was when Backseat Barbie showed up.

He walked into the room, straight at the Dick Clique, and punched Anthony in the face.

BRAD: I thought Brawl Night was tomorrow.

I pulled Brad towards the door as the Dick Clique descended on the little guy. I guessed his name was AJ since he was wearing a shirt that said--'AJ is Sex Appeal.'

BRAD: I bet he made that himself.

The brawl was quickly broken up, but not before someone spilled a drink on my new girl pupil. Her friends didn't even offer to mop her up.

GIRL: God, leave it to me!
GIRL'S FRIEND: Oh relax, Alicia.
GIRL'S OTHER FRIEND: Take a valium.

Alicia--I made a note of that.

ME: I should introduce myself to Wall Flower.

But when I looked around, he was nowhere to be seen. With my luck, the brawl had scared him right back into the closet.

BRAD: I've got my fourth pick.
ME: And who would that be?

He motioned towards the door where AJ is Sex Appeal was being dragged out by a bouncer.

ME: You've got to be kidding me.
BRAD: Oh, you should get along fine. After all, you drive a Buick.

The challenge had begun.