'I Was a Birthday Present for an 82-Year-Old Grandmother'
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Dot insists I have a chocolate-covered strawberry. It doesn't take much persuasion, really. Oh my God. That chocolate on that strawberry, it is just about the best thing I've had in my mouth--apparently it is some top-drawer chocolate from Belgium--it has a hard crunch to it when you bite into it, but then it gets all melty in your mouth, and the way it plays in symphony with the juice of the strawberry, perfectly ripe, ï¬‚ooding, singing with the chocolate... When I ï¬nish I see her watching me with a big grin on her face.
Dot tells me she really likes to watch people enjoy themselves. I tell her how much I am enjoying myself. And the crazy thing is, I totally mean it. Usually I just say it whether it's true or not. But it's much easier when it's actually true. She asks me if I want another one. I say no. But I really do want another one. Then she asks me if I really want another one but I am just saying I don't. Like she can look inside my head. Which I guess isn't so hard, since I am practically drooling to have another one. But then she totally insists that I have another chocolate-covered strawberry. So I do. I have two more after that. I could eat every single one. But I am there to do a job. I ï¬gure another chocolate-covered strawberry might impair my ability to perform.
Dot is one of those people who hates to have air in a conversation. She is telling me all about her husband, how they met, how he proposed to her. He was such a romantic, he took her to Europe, he took her to South America, they went to Broadway shows, apparently he was a massively charming fellow. She shows me a picture of him that she has in her purse, and I must admit, he was a dapper motherfucker. It's a black-and-white picture, and he's in this sharp suit with these two-tone shoes with his hair all slick and this debonair devil-may-care smile on his face.
Once he died, she couldn't live in their old place anymore. He'd been dead for ten years or more. He was older than she was. It's sad but it's happy. But it makes me like her so much, that she has all this love for this guy. They were married for like fifty years or something. I just can't fathom being married to somebody for fifty years, at this time in my life. But she says he was a pistol and a firecracker and a bundle of fun. Apparently, they used to have these parties with all their brilliant, zany, fabulous friends. And they used to get all dressed up and talk about art and politics and life and death and war and taxes. It's fun listening to her talk about her life. Makes me hope that at some point I can have a life. Some fantastic wife, brilliant, crazy, zany friends, some big house with a pool and lots of rooms where people can party. Sounds nice. Kristy, my girlfriend. I see her being my wife. Getting set up by her parents in some fabulous swank Beverly Hills pad.
This is such a great job so far, that’s what I’m thinking. But of course there’s that nag in the back of my head what is it going to be like when I have to perform? There are many things in life you can fake. An erection is not one of them. I’m trying to imagine a way that I can get it up and get it off. I believe I can do it. That’s what I think. But then the very next second I think, well what if I can’t? What if it just hangs there like wet spaghetti?