Ten words: the Jasna edition.

April 7, 2010

Writing After the Rain turned out to be more fun than I expected. So I figured I’d play another game. I asked a group of people for ten words. Any ten they might fancy. And I’d write something that used all ten. The very first person to reply offered: shoe, ache, flame, bastard, tea, simple, paint, disastrous, hair, lush. As soon as I read the list, I knew the opening line. Nathan’s real, you see. And he is always late. The rest, however, is purely fiction. Please enjoy my attempt at Jasna’s ten words:

Nathan’s late again, the bastard. I check my phone for the time, then text him to tell him I’ll be inside, at the bar. There is only so long that I’m willing to stand outside, alone and looking desperate. For the sixtieth time today, I wish that I still smoked, as all it would take to make me look like I’m out here for a reason, with purpose, because I want to be, damnit, is a cigarette between my fingers. Life is so simple for a smoker.

As if reading my mind, the guy just past me on the sidewalk offers me a cigarette as he pulls one out for himself and lights it with the flame from a table centerpiece’s candle. I shrug off the offer, head inside, and order the first beer I see on draft. Thank God for alcohol. And for solitaire on my phone.

Four games and one win later, I feel two hands clasp my shoulders and then pull at my hair. I whip around to find Nathan, as expected, and Liam. Not as expected.

“Oh. Hey, Liam. I haven’t seen you since the night of that wild burlesque show down at South Street. What have you been up to?”

Two things. 1. That burlesque show was not wild. It was disastrous. And 2. I don’t care what Liam has been up to. Don’t care, don’t care, don’t care.

And to make sure he knows it, I turn back to the bar and wave to get the bartender’s attention, forfeiting Liam his chance to answer.

Nathan leans over my shoulder, whispering, “Real smooth,” in my ear before focusing on the bartender and ordering three shots.

“Absolutely not, Nathan. The last time we did shots, I ended up…” He smiles as I mentally finish the sentence: …participating in a burlesque show.

“…I ended up with the worst hangover of my life. I had to miss my flag football game the next morning thanks to a headache, a stomachache, any ache you can think of.”

“A toothache?” Liam pipes up.

“No.” I glare over my shoulder at him. “Not a toothache.”

“Didn’t you lose your shoes, too?” Nathan’s still smirking at me.

“No, Nathan. I did not lose my shoes. I lost a shoe. And -”

“That’s even worse!”

“Let me finish. I lost one shoe. And only temporarily. Miriam found it in her car and returned it the next day.”

He’s pissing me off enough that I don’t even feign a proper segue before spitting out, “How was Liz’s party last night? Did you let a crew of lesbians paint your toenails again? They aren’t going to put out, you know. You’re just a boy painting his nails at that point.”

Well, damn. Turns out he did let them paint his nails again. Turns out he’s not embarrassed by the last time it happened either. Turns out I’m the only lush who gets plastered on shots and a Long Island Iced Tea and 3 (or was it 4?) whiskey sours and then makes regrettable decisions. Like stripping down to my underwear in a room full of strangers and then to the buff in a room full of…Liam.

“Shots are up! Who’s in?” Nathan looks at me expectantly. Still smirking.

Who am I kidding here? It’s been three weeks since the burlesque show, two weeks since the 4 am joyride to the beach, and six days since skinny dipping in the mayor’s pool. We were this close to being arrested for that one. But we weren’t. And whatever we do tonight, we probably won’t be arrested either. But it’s Friday night, and I’m in a bar, and I’m feeling randy.

Nothing to do but down the shot.

And then, maybe another.

I’ll deal with the repercussions tomorrow.



  1. Really cool–thanks for sharing.

  2. […] Today. I am World Leader Pretend. « Downtown Eindhoven. Nathan in the Netherlands. April 25, 2010 As I’ve mentioned before, Nathan is real. […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: