Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Nurse the Hate: Nashville Brunch Table Sunday 11:17 am

Keegan stared blankly at Piper, his worn oxford shoes absentmindedly tapping out the rhythm of a Cat Power song being played in the restaurant.  He had his long dark brown hair pulled back into a pony tail meant to ape the look of the Spanish waiters he had seen that summer while backpacking through Europe.  Instead he looked like an effeminate version of one of the Kings of Leon, his beard perfectly trimmed to the “slightly scruffy” setting on his clippers that he kept in his well-appointed bathroom.  In his messenger bag at his side was a used volume of Charles Bukowski poetry he would pull out when he was killing time at local coffee shops.  He believed the choice made him look dangerous while at the same time vulnerable, the ideal combination for the thrift store targets of his affections.

Piper sat across him and whined on about the delays in finishing her installation at the pop up art gallery that had for two decades been a wig shop.  This was, of course, until the recent gentrification of the area.  Though Piper and her equally trendy friends had made the rents sky rocket out of affordability for the working class black families that had lived there since the 1950s, she often lamented about the “grit” that was being whitewashed from her neighborhood.  Keegan had great difficulty following Piper’s line of conversation, as instead he had zeroed in on a remembrance of that night two months ago when they had clandestinely “hooked up”.  After numerous Yazoo Pale Ales, he had lured her back to her apartment where he had spread her pale white thighs on her roommate’s futon.  With his underwear caught between his hairy knees, he had humped her quickly like a high school boy.  Her eyes opened slightly in surprise as he quickly started to come.  He buried his face into her hair as his spasms slowed.  He slid himself and the full condom out of her, the rubber sliding out like a slippery fish.  After a few moments of awkward clean-up, Keegan invented a reason to leave with a quick peck on Piper’s thin lips and an even thinner promise to “call ya later”.  He could feel her texting criticisms of his performance to her friends even before driving away in his battered Volvo. 

They saw each other several days later at the bar where “everyone” hung out.  They both pretended nothing had happened, a wordless mutual agreement that spared them both from having to offer up flimsy explanations for what each one of them regretted.  Quickly they fell back into their normal social arrangement as if the episode was a dream.  It could be difficult for Keegan to pretend that he didn’t care about Piper or his overwhelming desire to go back into time, make love to her with film star confidence, and feel her melt into him like a candle .  Instead he reassumed his role of sounding board to hear her struggles to “evolve” and shoehorn herself into prominence in the Nashville art scene.

Eventually Piper would purge all the details of her life, and only then would she ask about Keegan.  Exhausted she would reach for her skinny vanilla latte and prepare herself for the impossible task of giving someone else attention.  The tables turned as Keegan would speak with growing animation about the difficulty in finding a reliable drummer and the intellectual decision to minimize his band’s “sound”.  Piper would try to be engaged, but frankly found his band boring as did most of Nashville.  She looked over his head to see if someone more interesting would walk in.  Eventually the conversation lulled.  There was an art walk later.  Keegan did not want to go, but the promise of her dark red bra showing a slight shadow against the thin veneer of her American Apparel t-shirt was too much.  He would get to the Bukowski book later. 


At January 16, 2014 at 7:48:00 AM EST , Blogger Frank said...



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