Geoff, the Santa Barbara boyfriend of 10 years, the chick-wrangler or “Sport-fuck” as his friends used to call him in my presence, was not one to keep his pants on when he should. Seeing as it’s been more than 15 years later, he and I are good friends and I don’t begrudge him the, um, multitude of indiscretions in which he may or may not have indulged.
The indiscretions so plentiful that it was reported in the local newspaper.
You could wonder why I would put up with something like that and I don’t blame anyone for wondering that. The answer is simple: I didn’t know at the time and how could he not? In a town with a population of only around 30,000 permanent residents, 90% of whom are female, it’d be almost rude of a man this beautiful to not indulge.
And it has been over 15 years. I really couldn’t care less now. We’re past it, so should you be. I appreciate your righteous anger, though, dear reader. If anything, I’m impressed that anyone could have that much energy or time in their day.
I only report that previous detail because, goddamn, it was in the fucking newspaper!
But I digress. This is just a story about a time.
There was this time when we went to a movie.
One normal night, we went to go see Golden Eye, Pierce Brosnan’s debut as James Bond.
As we’re walking through the doors of the Arlington Theatre, I excuse myself to make a bee-line to the ladies room. Geoff meanders towards the outside patio; doing the agreeable nod that we’d meet out there.
I find him holding a martini and grabbing stuffed mushrooms off a passed plate. It looked great, albeit odd for a random movie night, but I graciously accepted a martini off a tray held by a smartly-dressed waiter.
We wordlessly enjoy our good luck for whatever conceivable reason this was happening; not wanting to say anything lest saying it makes it stop. I look up and notice that everyone mingling in this little quaint outside patio was far better dressed than we. We were no slouches but we weren’t dressed in tuxedos and evening gowns. I also notice that Pierce Brosnan was about 5 feet away from us.
“Look!” I point with my pinky finger towards the doorman checking off names but otherwise turning away many people not on his coveted clipboard list. The doorman who let us through because our dismissive, belonging attitude–due to the fact we didn’t know we weren’t supposed to be there in the first place–gave us unquestioned credibility.
“We just walked into a movie premiere.”
Giggling at our stealth and trying to find ways to shove martinis and steaming hot mushrooms into my purse, we followed the elite crowd into the theater to watch the best James Bond ever portrayed.
–Oh knock it off. This is my story and my opinion. Get off your Connery.–
Two hours later, we stumbled out of the theater; stunned by our luck, and dazed by the many martinis…and also having hatched a plan.
Lightbulb lit, for the next few months, there wasn’t an event we couldn’t get into. We arrogantly strutted our way into gallery openings, elite polo gatherings, exclusive Montecito galas, and one hilariously successful entrance into the world-famous Sky Bar at the Mondrian hotel in Los Angeles to meet Geoff’s “agent, Jaime Bemis” whom he had conjured out of the air.
We had a great time. We really did. And, to this day, we both look back at it as a triumph.
It couldn’t last though. The problem with faking your way through life is that, unless you’re a psychopath, you can’t keep it up. Microexpressions, fatigue, and anxiety show through the facade. It makes pulling this kind of thing off harder and harder. You just don’t have the energy to do it anymore anywhere.
And when you’re trying to pull this kind of thing off in a town of only 30,000 people, most of whom know one of you really well by now, eventually someone is going to write up your story in their local newspaper.
I write awkward tales. Mostly funny. Usually true. Often truthfully funny.