[October 2, 2015 Village Tavern 2:40 p.m.]
It’s my birthday. I'm forty-five today. I like this number better than forty-four. I like odd numbers. I’m drinking a spicy cucumber margarita next to the Tee Gee bar. I’m meeting Elizabeth there in a little bit. After some cheap drinks, we’ll walk down the street to All'Acqua for dinner: the perfect birthday in my book. Well, pretty damn close, super hot sex would be the cherry, but alas, the man I want is three thousand miles away. No slammin’ sex for me. That’s okay. My whole damn life is sex. I have men (and women) coming at me every day. I normally don’t mind, I put myself out there in a very open and sexual manner—not to mention that it’s happened my entire life—but sometimes it gets to me. For example, a couple weeks ago I received an email from a man who had many complimentary things to say about me as a person, and my writing. He compared me to Henry Miller. Included in his lengthy message, he made it sound like he could help with the prosperity of my book. I also got the gut feeling he wanted to be added to my client list, so I did something I never do, I gave him my phone number. I must have been drunk. I never give out my number, and I hate talking on the phone. Before the fated call, I responded to his email as I would any potential client: I asked what part of the world he called home and gave him an opening to say that yes, he wanted to pay for my time and intimacy—as well as help my writing career. He pussyfooted around the financial issue, which should have been my sign, but I’d love to replace The Texan, so I was giving him more rope than I should have.
The day of the phone call, I was at a dive bar getting some writing done when a call flashed from an unknown number. No one calls me, so I was pretty sure it was the man from the email. Although it was early in the day, I was pretty buzzed; another reason why I even picked up. I know the bartender, so I left my purse and composition book on the bar and went out the back to talk to Mr. Wonderful. He started the conversation with a lot of hot air blowing, which is useless to me; I’m not the type of artist that requires a ton of accolades. I want brass tacks (and brass balls). We established that he lives in Michigan, in “a nice part of town”, (which made me chuckle). I wasn't sure if he was trying to impress me. He told me about his girlfriend, who sounded like a piece of work. Within the first five minutes, I couldn't fathom why I was listening to this. I should have hung up on him. I'm not a fucking therapist...at least not a free one. But I was drunk and high, and therefore way too nice. I also don’t want to get a reputation of being rude to my fans. So I stood in a back alley in Glendale, in the blazing Southern California sun, talking to this fuck.
Here were some of the highlights: He thinks I’m going to be huge, “beyond my wildest dreams.” He saw a call girl once and asked if I knew her. He self-boasted about how good-looking he was and said that if I saw him everything would “magically click”. He said he knew I was a “woman looking for her life partner, but I had stuff to accomplish first.” By this point in the conversation (maybe seventeen minutes), I was getting super annoyed, so finally I said, “OK, it’s pretty clear you have no intention of being a client, you’re trying to sell me something, so go ahead and give me your pitch.” He said, “I’d like to edit your book." Are you fucking kidding me?! I was livid. Dude, you could have said that in your first fucking email. But no, you selfishly wanted to waste my time and get me on the phone. I wanted to yell at him, but got off the line gracefully, instead. A thank you, but no thank you, of sorts. The whole thing upset me. I was mad at myself for being stupid enough to waste my energy. This is why artists have managers—someone to sort through the bullshit. Another guy sent me a direct message once saying that he wanted to do something with my story. He was very complimentary and asked if we could meet for coffee. A twenty-minute phone call is one thing, meeting someone with no credentials or proposition? No. I asked him questions and suggested that he outline his business proposal in an email. He kept pushing the coffee idea. I don’t even drink coffee. Anything he could say to me at Starbucks, he could type into an email. I never heard from him again. I wonder what Mr. Wonderful was hoping would happen? That I'd propose marriage? Tell him that he sounded like the man of my dreams and my panties were wet? Perhaps he was angling for a squealing, The Price is Right reaction. When I walked back inside the dark bar, the frustration must have been sharpied on my face, because the bartender poured us a shot before I even sat down. It's good to have friends in low places.