(Part two in an interminable series on trying to grow a pair.
This is not a happy field report. This is how an inner game problem manifests itself.)
Cinco de Mayo.
On a Tuesday at 11.
Why the fuck not? I'm doing nothing else with my life right now.
I was prowling the 355 corridor a few miles north of DC tonight when I saw a bar that dubbed itself an ale house. Fair enough, I was looking for craft cervezas. I walk in, plasma TVs everywhere, and there's a handful of people scattered around the circle bar and the nearby booths. It's fairly dead, but then it is a weekday. A couple of decent-looking Asian chicks are sitting at the bar. I strategically seat myself a couple stools out from them and order an Irish red. It's kind of sour.
A few minutes pass and this Dave Grohl-looking gentleman seats himself between me and the girls. He knows them; they order shots; I make one passing (lame) attempt at conversation with him ("where is everyone?"); he seems (understandably) uninterested. I instead talk briefly with an older Mexican man on my other side who's out for the real thing. Protip: If you want to meet people on CdM, you talk to latinos first.
I finish a good three-quarters of my beer, leave a tip, and start to consider hopping bars when I notice Foo Fighters pouring the remnants of his friends' shots into the dregs of his own shotglass.
"The first step is admitting you have a problem," I offer.
"Are you talking to me?" Then it hits him. He laughs. The girls are curious. He explains, they laugh and give me an inquisitive look. I don't think much of it and watch the back-and-forth between them and the bartender.
Somehow - and I don't remember the details well - Nirvana gets out of his seat for a smoke break. One of the two girls with a goddanged gorgeous face gets out of her seat and steals Beard's seat to sit next to me. She's leaning in, she's all smiles and giggles, this girl is eating out of my hand for whatever reason. We're playing guess ethnicities (I'm bad at it), and it turns out this Asian-looking girl doesn't have an ounce of Asian in her.
It doesn't matter. Somehow, she's in theater, somehow, I guess badly that her friend is Laotian, leading not-Asian to ask if I thought she was "luncheon" since I said Laotian and called her a ham for being so dramatic, and somehow, she's fun and bubbly and cute and I (successfully, goddamn it) invoke my best nonchalant in telling her she's fun and asking her what her number is.
"You get straight to the point, don't you?"
And now I fuck up.
"I'm tired, I've got work tomorrow, I lose my mojo after a certain point in time." Which is true, but it's totally not what I need to be saying. But now I feel pressure and my lightweight self is feeling the beer. (I'm 120ish pounds, it happens.) Weakness exposed, point avoided, frame changed.
She says something about Cinderella and turning into pumpkins at midnight. She starts to give me her number... Local area code... Three digits I don't remember... Two spanish numbers I know... And... Ni-ni.
What the fuck?
"Oh, sorry. I changed up languages on you. Would you guess that I'm so-and-so?"
She asks if I have a Facebook. Nope. Instagram? Nah. Snap? I say yes, and that I literally got it last week and-
INNER MONOLOGUE: Dumbass. You want to make yourself look like you live on an island? Well you do now, because loose lips sink ships.
"You know what? Never mind." Hot to cold. Done. Just like I do it every time. Every goddamn time. I don't think you understand, this actually claws me up inside to the point that I wanted to drive my car into a Jersey barrier on the way back up 270.
I go to the bathroom, knowing this is giving her a fantastically easy exit. She and her friends have ghosted with impressive speed by the time I finish.
I don't think I can. I can't internalize this idea that I actually have some worth. Not when this goddamn shit keeps happening to me. Not when I actually legitimately feel lonely by myself and don't have any friends in this place.
The worst part? I remember what ni-ni means. It's Japanese. Two-two. And my phone's forgotten the rest of the digits I punched in. Good game, you scrub.