I know a server over at Misconduct on JFK Blvd, named Brianna. She’s a sweet baby with raven curls, caramel skin and slender legs. One day I’m lunching over there with my buddy, Rocco. I see Brianna giving her phone number to a guy that appeared to be in his sixties. I’m astounded. I call her over and ask her what’s going on. “If you just gave that old dude your phone number and you’re going to meet him for coffee, I want to go shake that man’s hand, on a solid close.”
She says she knows him from another bar, and he’s really nice. He looks lonely. He also comes into Misconduct to see her. (Hell, I did the same thing when Maria worked there) He asked her to meet him for coffee.
“And you’re going to go have coffee with him?”
“Of course not. I get hit on all of the time in here. But he’s nice and I didn’t want to be rude.”
“I really respect this man’s initiative at his age. But what happens when this guy texts you to set up a time to have coffee?
“Nothing. I just never get back to him.”
So I get it now. No matter how nice they are to you and even if they give you their phone number they will simply ghost you.
I was a little miffed, but understood. The odd thing was, Daphne knew me as a regular. I would hang with Carly and Church there all of the time. I get the hook up from Roman the bartender. I know basically everyone that works there and she doesn’t even have to get back to me even as a common courtesy.
But what right do I have to her? None. She’s young and beautiful and holds all of the power. There is truly nothing I can do about it. Fucking crickets.
So a few weeks pass and I don’t see her. I figure maybe she went on another of her global trips or was busy with school. Then one night I was sitting at the end of the bar with Church, and I see her. She’s chatting close by with a few of her coworkers. I tell Church what happened. (Rather, what didn’t happen!) I tell him I’m going to say something to her. Church at this point thinks I am trying to get her to sleep with me, and he says, “Pump the brakes.”
I am who I am, and have become the person I am by doing the very opposite. If you tell me I can’t have something, I will find a way to have it. If you tell me it can’t be done, I will find a way to do it. My father used to say, that if I didn’t apply myself and get an education, I’d never amount to anything. I’d end up like the homeless guys in the Subway. He even once said that if I had a woman, he would be able to take her away from me, because I was nothing. He also said, “(My Name) always takes the path of least resistance.” I was older by then, and tired of taking his shit so I said, “You know what else always takes the path of least resistance?”
“What?” he says.
“Water. Water always finds the path of least resistance. You know that thing where all life on this Earth has emerged. You’ve seen the Grand Canyon, right Pop?”
He didn’t say anything after that. He just glared at me. It wasn’t worth continuing the conversation. I just had to consider the source. So if I’m thinking something, or wanting to do something that I believe in, don’t ever fucking tell me to “Pump the brakes.”
It’s a matter of principle now. I’m going to “Drop the clutch and go.”
Daphne approaches. “Hey…” she says using my name in that honey contralto. “What’s happening?”
I tell her the story about my friend at Misconduct, and tell her it’s okay, and I realize now that’s how it’s done in this business. When a gentleman asks to meet with you, you simply ghost him. She’s like… “What?”
I remind her about the text I sent her and how we were going to try to meet up on that Sunday. She pulls out her phone and holds it up to show me. “See the last text is from me, thanking you for bringing me the cough drops when I was sick a couple of months ago. I don’t know what Daphne you sent the text to, but it wasn’t me.”
I feel like a jackass, but an extremely happy jackass. We have a laugh about it and she tells me to try again. She has finals coming up and the holidays are busy, but we should try to get together.
I text her a few days later and wait. An hour or two later I have a response from Daphne. So we’ll see what happens.
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