“Check her out!”

The bar was crowded. Filled with 20- and 30-something hipsters. I was definitely old for the place.

Véronique sat at the far end of the bar, near the door, sipping her drink, alone.

I sat ten or so patrons down, sipping mine.

Two 30-something guys were talking behind me. I wasn’t paying attention. I was texting her, something or other. Enjoying our proximity and our distance, enjoying knowing that, soon enough, I would be using her for my pleasure, for her pleasure.

The guys got my attention. “Did you see that blonde down there?”

“No, where?”

They pointed out V. “Her ass is unbelievable!”

I craned my neck. “You’re right!” I said. “Maybe I’ll go say hi.”

I walked down the bar, placed my hand around her belly from behind, turned her around, kissed her, hard. “Keep drinking,” I said. And walked back to my stool.

I’m not sure if the two guys had seen the kiss. “What happened?” said one.

“She’s a good kisser,” I said.

They looked puzzled. I don’t think they had seen.

I sat down.

Their conversation continued. Now, in a more crude vein. I tuned them out. I texted V. “The guys I’m talking with say you have an amazing ass.”

“They do not.”

“Not shitting you. Come kiss me, and thank them for the compliment.”

She walked over. She kissed me. She turned to them, and said, shyly, incoherently (given the context from their perspective), “Thanks!”

She walked back to her stool.

“What the FUCK?!?” said one.

“What just HAPPENED?” said the other. “It’s some sort of a bet. That’s it.”

“No,” said the first. “How many millions do you have? I mean, if you have even just a couple of millions, I’ll kiss you.”

“It’s not about money,” I said. “We’re here together; we’re leaving together.”

I was relishing this. There’s a follow-up piece, more ruminative than descriptive, to write on thoughts about just why this all was so fun for me, what I got out of it, and I hope to write it. But for the time being, let me stick to the facts.

“It’s not?” one said.


“How’d you meet her?”

“It’s a long story.”


“I have a blog.”

“Which one?”

This question amuses me. As if there were seven, and the only question is which of the seven is mine.

“You wouldn’t know it. It’s a sex blog. I think it’s read mostly by women.”

“What’s it called?”

I tell him. He Googles it. He spells it wrong. It doesn’t come up. “You’re shitting me,” he says. I tell him how to spell “dissolute.”

“You’re a sex addict!”

“Some people definitely think that.”

They read, one over the other’s shoulder, on the iPhone.

“Which is she?”

“She’s V,” I say.

They can’t figure it out. I take the phone. I click on the “V” tag. Hand it back.

“See you guys later. I’m out of here,” I say.

I text V. “Settle up.”

She replies, “One step ahead babe.”

I walk to the front of the bar, where I wait for her. She takes my arm, and we walk out into the soft flurries.


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