Aaron has a problem.
BRAD: What else is new?
Every time he goes out, he seems to get stepped on over and over again.
AARON: Kevin, it's horrible. I'll be talking to someone really cool and then this guy comes over and totally slams me.
ME: Pick a new verb.
AARON: He makes fun of me.
ME: Gotcha. What's his name?
Take a look at how I met Tommy.
Good to know he's back reeking havoc on the general populace.
ME: Aaron, how do you keep running into everyone I don't like?
AARON: It's a large pool of people to draw from?
I invited Brad over Aaron's house so we could come up with strategies for taking down Tommy.
ME: You just need to level him. If he starts spouting those catty lines at you, you spout right back!
BRAD: The word 'spout' is really disturbing me.
AARON: I thought you were against being catty?
ME: I'm against AJ being catty, because he's already so good at it people know not to mess with him. They don't know that about you yet, and you don't want a reputation of being a doormat.
AARON: But I'm not good at putting people down.
ME: It's not about putting him down. It's an opportunity to raise yourself up.
AARON: You mean like saying--Hey Tommy, God loves you.
BRAD: I better get more wine. It's going to be a long night.
The next night at the club, Brad and I hung back while Aaron found a chance to talk to a guy at the bar. Sure enough, a few moments later, there was Tommy.
BRAD: He's cute.
ME: He's crazy.
BRAD: All the cute ones are.
I wasn't too worried. I'd given Aaron enough quips to fill up a Noel Coward play. Tommy said something, then Aaron replied and the guy he was talking to laughed. Tommy was instantly crestfallen and walked away.
...Of course, he walked right over to me.
ME: Wait, the judges are deliberating on that score.
He was smiling, but I could tell he wasn't pleased to see me.
TOMMY: Hello Kevin.
ME: Hi Tommy, how are you?
TOMMY: Not thrilled. I see you're back in action with another little blog.
ME: Just a little project, nothing major.
BRAD: We're hoping to get it on HBO right after Stupid Vampires and Stupid Therapists.
TOMMY: Do your little proteges know that you're blogging about them?
ME: Nice try, Tommy, but I'm much more honest about stuff like that then I used to be. All of them know about the blog and they don't mind.
TOMMY: Really? That's great. I wonder if everybody would feel that way.
ME: I guess I picked the right four people then.
TOMMY: No, I meant everybody in the literal sense--as in EVERYBODY.
I felt my blood run cold. It's fun to think that people read what I write, but if more people in Providence knew about the blog, it would completely defeat the purpose of what I was doing.
It would be like bringing vodka into Promises.
ME: Tommy, I'd appreciate--
TOMMY: I'd appreciate reciprocation if you want me to stay quiet.
BRAD: Well look at Dr. Seuss.
ME: Stop, Brad.
Tommy was really smiling now--a rat practically fell out of his mouth.
TOMMY: I'll be in touch.
He walked away, this time for good.
BRAD: So much for not being a doormat, huh?
ME: Apparently you didn't hear the doorbell.
There's a wolf at the front door.