December 06, 2004

Part Two

This is a story in two parts. Part One is below.

Chris was under me in the food chain on the corporate buffet. We worked in the marketing department of a Very Large Company, and I was the director of the staff he was on. We used to chat a little on our smoke breaks; Chris smoked these real long cigarettes, like Virginia-Slims or something. He was a tall guy, kinda fleshy, but not fat, if that makes any sense; he wore his hair slicked back to reveal a high widow's-peak. He had a shiny forehead and was slighly dish-eyed, like an Arabian horse. Decent-looking guy, but the vibe I got off him was totally gay. Not like I'd go trolling for, erm, strange on the jobsite, oh, no, no, no, but I say this because I started taking Chris out for coffee on occasion, having lunch with him...that kind of thing. I had no idea that he was straight. We never really talked about anything personal...and I was totally convinced that he was not of my orientation, anyway. All very aboveboard, all very much in the company of others on my staff.

So, one day we're having lunch, brown-bagging it in the office.

"Queenie? I gotta talk to you about something." Chris comes chugging into my office like a fleshy little engine that could, huffing and puffing and red in the face.

"Of course. Come on in, sit down. We'll eat and talk."

"No, this is bad, this is really really bad, " Chris flopped into a chair. "...I told Mary about...about us, and she's really pissed."


"I told Mary. Everything. And now she's pissed at me!" Chris wailed, clamping his hands to his cheeks and looking at me like a stricken Bambi.

"Okay, slow down, hotshot. Who is Mary? And what about "us"? You've lost me." I looked at him in genuine puzzlement. "I don't get what the big deal is."

"Mary is my girlfriend! We live together!" Tears welled up in his Precious Moments eyes as he sniffed back sobs. "I told her that I'd made friends with you and that we smoke together and go to Starbucks and stuff, I told her because I want her to meet you, and now she's really pissed and says...she says..she's chaaanging the locks!"

Chris dissolved in tears and snot as I sat there thinking, what the fuck? "Chris. Chris. Big guy. Dude. Hey. Chris? Honey? Can I tell you something to tell your girlfriend that will totally get you off the hook, but might hurt your feelings in the process?"

Chris looked up at me slowly. "What?"

"Chris, I want you to pick up the phone right now, call your girlfriend, and tell her that I was absolutely, positively, completely certain that you were gay. Also, tell her that the only man I'll ever love dumped me three months ago, and that I am now rendered totally frigid. If I hadn't thought you were gay, I'd have never even struck up a friendship." I looked him in the eye. "And that's the damned truth, too. You never mentioned that you had a girlfriend, which you should have. I'm sorry if it hurts your masculine pride in some primordial way, but I had you pegged for a gay guy. I’m not interested. Deal with it. Mary can deal with it."

Chris sat up, drying his eyes. "Oh, that's okay. I get that a lot, actually." He smiled over at me, pulling himself together a bit. "Will you meet Mary? I mean, would you be willing to come to dinner with us, or something...?"

Well, I went and met the infamous Mary. Mary, it turned out, was another item entirely. Envision, if you can, the actress Sherilyn Fenn wearing an extra hundred pounds and you have an accurate description of Mary. She was gorgeous but heavy - like so many fat girls (and I can say this, because I've been one) she had a beautiful face. Mary was also rapier sharp in her conversation, her grasp of politics, and her sense of humor. I was engaged by her immediately - I liked her personality and her style much better than her boyfriend's. Also, she smoked weed and knew where to buy it, which made her instantly that much more likeable, in my selfish worldview.

Mary and I became fast friends. We hung out in the evenings watching TV together and getting stoned, we went shopping, we talked on the phone. I don't remember how the subject first came up, but Mary eventually dropped the information that she and Chris were heavily into BDSM. I'm not sure I even really knew what BDSM stood for at that time, but I think, somehow, that telling me about their so-called "kinks" made her feel better, validated. Or maybe it just got her off. I don't know. I didn't care. It was interesting - until it degenerated into the level of TMI, that is - and I was stoned, anyway. Relaaax, Queenie. No biggie.

One night, Chris and Mary announced that they were going to a BDSM night at a club in yon nearby city, and that Queenie was coming along. You know me; I was game, if only to get in the doors of the place to see what the fuck went on in them joints. We literally spent hours getting ready for this gig; Mary dressed as a full-on Dominatrix in a whalebone corset that made her waist look freakishly small, with a leather skirt and a bustier thingy that matched. And, of course, a whip. Chris, on the other hand, delighted in dressing up as a woman and posing as Mary's submissive lesbian partner, Christina. I watched, fascinated, as Mary made him over as a woman - very skillfully, I might add - and then Mary added a few touches to my slouchy jeans and sweater. Some boots, a crop.

After we were all ready and in the car, Mary turned around and explained why it had been important for me to "go with a Dommish look," so that guys wouldn't try to "do stuff" to me.

I just looked at her, thinking, now you tell me?

In the end, the party turned out to be a real dud. Some of the scariest-looking people I had ever seen - real four-toothers - all gothed out, drinking to a live sex show. Big fucking deal. I had taken clients to worse in San Francisco and L.A. Bo-ring.

I planted myself at the bar and commenced to drinking. I sat next to a normal-seeming guy, who later introduced himself as PJ. He wasn't dressed up or anything, and claimed that some friends had brought him by and that he wasn't "in to that whole scene". We chatted for no more than fifteen minutes, about the weather, local sports teams, the costumes of the assembled, and the like. Mary and Chris collected their 'oohs' and 'aahs' from the local BDSM community, and we three left.

Imagine my shock, then, when four days later, my phone rings at home, and it's PJ. I hadn't given this strange fucker my number! I asked him how he got in touch with me, and he said that Mary had given him my number. As I made a mental note to kill Mary later in the day, PJ spoke in a nice, relaxed way of how much he'd enjoyed meeting me at the club night, and that he hoped to see me again soon. I said that might be nice, and hung up.

Three months went by. I moved out of my parents' house and into the city, into an apartment of my own. Three more months went by, and I'd met someone that I was interested in and was dating steadily. Bear in mind that this is prior to the advent of the cell phone, prior to porting one's number everywhere one went. I'd forgotten all about that night at the BDSM party. Chris and Mary and I were no longer in contact, due to some of that TMI I mentioned - namely that I'd gone over to see Mary one day and that she thought it would be cool to sort of use me as a straight-man to her sex-play with Chris. Specifically, she wanted me to be there to add to his humiliation as she "did stuff to him". I told her no, vehemently, once…and then when I came over again a week later, she had Chris naked and completely bound to a column in their foyer, with Saran Wrap. I shit you not, Saran Wrap, layers and layers of it cocooning him to almost complete immobility. He was on display for passersby, because he’d been “naughty”. To each her own, and I never seek to judge – but don’t drag me into it. Nuh-uh. Queenie say "bye".

Anyway, life marched on. I even had a new job, one that I actually enjoyed. I came in late one Friday night. I'd spent the week with clients in the northeast, and had gotten stranded in a snowstorm in Newark, missing my connection. By the time I got a flight to my home airport, collected my baggage, found my car, and drove home, it was probably one-thirty in the morning. As I sagged over the threshold to my apartment, I started shedding clothes, making my way first thing to the bathroom and running a hot, hot bath. I soaked in the bubbles, relaxing for the first time in a week. I toweled off, put on my nightgown, smoked a bowl, brushed my teeth, and went to bed.

Four o'clock in the morning, and the phone rings. I pick it up.

"Hey, Queenie! What you doing??"

"Mrrphur - mrr - who - is this?"

"It's PJ, honey! Don't you remember me?"

Now, bear in mind that I was sound asleep and hadn't the presence of mind to ask the fucker how he'd found me this time. As I shook myself awake, I asked him, "Wha's going on? Why...are you calling me at this hour?"

"Because I wanted to see if you'd come over and let me spank that little round ass!" he cried. "I want you to come awn over, Queenie, and let me beat that thang."

I hung up, of course, and went back to sleep. On Monday, I related the story to my co-workers at the watercooler, sort of the old, “a funny thing happened to me this weekend.” It was quickly forgotten. Months went by, turned into years. When I even remembered the episode at all, I thought of it as bizarrely humorous - the guy was drunk and going through old numbers...maybe he'd called information...poorly executed booty-call...I didn't dwell on it.

Sixteen months or so pass. Again I moved to another part of town. I was been promoted twice, and split off into yet another company as part of a corporate merger. Once again, late on a Friday night when I'm sound asleep, the phone rings, and I answer it out of habit.

"This is Queenie," I said, mechanically.

"HAAAAY, baby, what's shaking??" Like he's my best friend.

"Who the fuck is this? Do you know what time it is? You have the wrong number."

"No, I do not. This is your old buddy, PJ! Remember me from the bar at the bondage night..."

I was awake now, and fuming. "Of course I remember you. NOW WHAT THE FUCK ARE YOU DOING CALLING ME AT FOUR IN THE GODDAMNED MORNING???"

"Queenie. I gotta spank that round ass, girl, I gotta spank it sometime..."

I hung up, pretty weirded out, and it took me a long time to go back to sleep. I told my boyfriend. I told my friends. I wondered just exactly what one could do about something like that. PJ had done nothing illegal, not a case for the cops...and, as usual, time went by – years - and I forgot about it.

He called me again in 2000, when I was pregnant with my youngest, married...and living in a different city! Wanted, again, to spank my round ass. He hung up when I put my husband on the phone.

This long, long narrative brings to mind certain questions, certain conundrums. First of all - my ass isn't even round. Second - where does this guy keep getting my numbers? After all, I'd even changed my name before the last call, when I got married. What the fuck is his deal?

I always wonder if he'll call again - if so, he's about due. I also wonder whether he's some harmless freak, or a real sicko who's been stalking me for years, and who will eventually knife me to death in my sleep, spanking my round ass all the way.

Posted by Queenie at December 6, 2004 11:24 PM

Well, if you ever do need that round ass spanking.....

I'm just saying is all.

Posted by: bitterman at December 7, 2004 12:40 AM

Oh Queenie, what would I do without you?

I'm doing the wave, your writing is delicious, better than any ballgame I've been to, one home run after another.

Wave, wave, wave....

Posted by: BeeBee at December 7, 2004 07:28 AM

That is seriously scary. These days almost anything can be found out about people through the internet, but back then? Who knows?

I suggest you take him out before he gets you. ;)

Posted by: U at December 7, 2004 01:47 PM
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