We were sitting at our favorite bar: The Hill, chomping on some chips and house made salsa. He nursed a beer, while I enjoyed my usual gin & tonic.
“Alright man, it’s been awhile,” I said with some trepidation. “I’m ready to try and hit the dating scene, or whatever people who aren’t in Rom-Coms call it.”
“Don’t worry about what they call it (not ‘dating scene’ by the way). What’s important is getting you some action ASAP. How long has it been?”
“…..” I said, scratching my chin in thought. ‘Ummm. Well, you know. Maybe around…”
“Jesus man! That long? Josh. My dude. In that case, when was the last time you engaged in some self-love? You know, rubbed one out?”
“Hey man, that’s kinda personal. Not really relevant to the topic.”
“Oh yeah ‘tis,” he replied, shaking his head in what seemed to me to either be disgust or pity. Was I really that bad? Sure it’s been a while since…whatever, but I’ve had my share of debauchery. Some might even say more than my share.
“Listen,” I said, trying to defend myself and get this conversation back on track. “It’s just a little dry spell. All I need is a quick refresher course and I’ll be back to accidentally getting girls pregnant and/or paying for my half of abortions in no time.”
“This is not a dry spell.” He put his hand on my shoulder as if he was about to tell me that he accidentally ran over my dog. Or baby. Those two things are about equal, right? “This is the equivalent of crawling through the Gobi desert while dragging your tongue through the sand and then spending a week in the Sahara, gargling a different type sand, then heading over to Death Valley to brush your teeth with yet a third kind of…”
“Okay, I get it. Long time, no chick. So tell me, oh sage Yoda of the vaj. Where do I go to meet women?”
“The current operating procedure of the day dictates a few certain places to go when attempting to meet ‘nice girls,’” explained Mr. Brooks. “But in truth, funk dat. Don’t worry where to meet chicks. They’re everywhere. Fallin’ out of trees, crossing streets, ordering french fries fried in duck fat at the latest hipster, organic, locally grown and sourced food truck. Everywhere. The key is the approach and what to say.”
“Good, that’s the stuff I need help with. People think I’m outgoing, but honestly, I’m pretty shy and I end up tripping over myself trying to get words out of my awkward mouth.”
“It’s simple. Imagine that your balls are so huge that they won’t fit in your pants, so you carry them around in a satchel. This will get you pumped. The key is to always present yourself as confident. You’re the lion and this is your jungle. And even if you’re not confident, fake it ‘till you make it. Then you walk straight over to her, introduce yourself and then grab one of her boobs. Make sure all exits are clear and your escape routes are preplanned, because you’ll probably need to make a quick getaway.”
“That almost sounds like a good plan, Mr. Brooks,” I said with a touch of skepticism, (satchel?). “But what about humor? I’ve heard that women enjoy a funny guy with a good sense of humor.”
“That may be true, but to be honest Josh (and I’m saying this as your comrade) most of your jokes are cruel, insensitive and at the expense of others. Face it, you do and say things for an audience of one: yourself.”
“Hey now. I already have a shrink and one’s enough. Stay on topic. So, I should stay away from being funny. Got it. Just man up and go introduce myself. Sounds simple, but not easy. I’ll have to work on that. Practice or something. What’s next? I’m terrible at conversations. Starting them and maintaining them, and then I just end up talking about movies, or my Japanese porn shoes,” I said.
“You are (were) a journalist, right?”
“And what is it that journalists do?”
“Drink heavily and put some kind of spin on whatever they write?”
“Okay, not the answer I was looking for, but probably true.” He took a sip of his beer and looked around for the bartender. After signaling for another drink, he turned and looked at me. He eyes, were a bit glassy, but I could tell that he was trying to draw out the moment and milk it for all it was worth. Guess he was about to get into the important, insightful shit.
“No man, they ask questions. You need to bombard her with mad questions. The only thing chicks love more than spending your money and setting your car on fire is talking. About themselves especially. But make sure to keep the questions simple and appropriate. ‘What do you do? Where are you from? What do you think about the weather? What are you drinking? Where’s Waldo?’ Shit like that.” He gestured with his hands to accentuate each question. “Don’t ask her about her bra size, how many penises she’s seen in her life, or anything specific that could be construed as being stalkerish.” He fell silent as his beer arrived and he started gulping it down.
I pondered his words. Mr. Brooks was known for saying weird and often times irrelevant things, but if you got just the right amount of alcohol in him, sometimes some knowledge came through. Like those rare times when Alzheimer’s patients are lucid.
He wasn’t saying stuff I haven’t already heard a thousand times, but I guess Mr. Brooks saying it kind of cemented it. I was hoping that there was some sort of shortcut, or trick to meeting women, but I guess it was just a matter of being straight forward and having confidence. And then grabbing the occasional titty or something.
I looked over to Mr. Brooks to see if I had gotten it all, or if he had more knowledge to impart, but he was face down on the bar. So I dragged him outside and got a cab. Class was over for the day.