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The Literary Girlfriend: The Designated Driver

January 4, 2014

Literary Girlfriend Shrugged

Being in a relationship with a liar has its advantages, especially if both people involved know that the other doesn’t always tell the truth.  Daniella danced at Nero’s, but we told my friends she was a paralegal who didn’t like to talk about her job.  She carried around classic literature but didn’t read any of it.  I had no problem with that.  I had a bookshelf in my living room with hardcover classics that I’d claimed to have read.  The problem with Daniella and me lying to my/our friends was keeping the lies straight and then not getting caught.

New Year’s Eve was supposed to be a big money-maker for Daniella, but I had images of what she would do to earn that money.  Guys got really drunk on New Year’s, and I had no idea how crazy things could get at a topless club that night.  I had images of Daniella dancing in extra-slutty ways to make money.  The mistletoe crap was bad enough, but I had pictures in my head of guys holding onto Daniella at midnight and expecting her to…

But I couldn’t talk to her about that.  Daniella had told me several times not to think about Nero’s.  She said boyfriends had broken up with her after they’d seen her dance at Nero’s.  I didn’t want to think about her previous boyfriends either.  This didn’t make any sense, I thought.  I was going to have to break up with Daniella soon for financial reasons, and I was still getting jealous.  If anything, the dancing should have bothered me less than it had before.  I guess jealousy doesn’t work that way.

I wasn’t going to sit at home all night on New Year’s Eve while Daniella worked.  Jerome’s New Year’s get-together was an all-male bar-hopping extravaganza. My best friend Kirk was single again, and since he was a decent looking charming guy with a passion for drunk women, Kirk was great for bar-hopping.  I was invited as a driver.  New Year’s Eve was for amateur drinkers, and I didn’t drink and I was overly cautious when I got behind the wheel, so I was the safest guy to have around.

When I got to Jerome’s at 9:00 (what happens next might make more sense if you read this first.), about ten other guys were already there watching a late football game and getting boozed up.  Most of us were in our 20s, but I only knew a few of them.  I was a quiet guy, so I probably wouldn’t talk to many of them.  I would never have been in this social group without Kirk vouching for me.

“What’s Danielle doing tonight?” Kirk asked.  He had a beer in his hand but still seemed sober.

“Did you know her name is really Daniella?” I said.  “I just found that out a few weeks ago.”

“No shit,” Kirk said.  “What’s she doing?”

“New Year’s Book Club,” I said.  “They’re discussing their favorite books of 1992.”

Kirk guffawed.  “I’m never going out with a woman who reads again,” he said, probably thinking of Linda, his ex-girlfiend.  “But Danielle is cool… I mean, Daniella.”

“Weren’t you Frankenstein?” some guy said, interrupting.

I almost didn’t recognize him without the eye patch, and his hair was longer now.  I found out later that his name was Mitchell.  “At the Halloween party, you’re the guy with the Frankenstein head,” he said.

“Yeah,” I said sheepishly.  I felt like saying “Frankenstein’s monster,” but I was sober now and didn’t care about that anymore.

“Your girlfriend called me a douchebag,” he said.

“She called me an asshole,” I said.  I was a quiet guy, but I didn’t mind one-upping others when I could.

“Damn, she’s hot.” Mitchell shook his head.  “A shit-talking librarian.”

I looked around the room, and a bunch of the guys were nodding at me, not because I had a lot of good qualities, but because they remembered Daniella.  She had made an impression, the crazy dancing hot chick in the Jane Austen costume.  I was usually the guy who was jealous of some other guy’s girlfriend.  Now they were envious of me.  It wasn’t the bad kind of evil Biblical jealousy that got people killed; it was simple mild envy.  I took it as a compliment.

“So, where are we going?”  I didn’t like bar-hopping because it always took me a while to get comfortable in a new place, and as soon as I would relax, everybody else would want to leave and go get drunker somewhere else.  It was frustrating. Kirk and the other bar-hoppers liked having me around because I could put up with drunks, and I’d keep them from getting arrested, but if they got into fights, they were on their own.  I was the type to hide under a table and pretend I’d already been knocked out.

“Nero’s, my man,” Kirk proclaimed.  “We’re going to Nero’s!”

Nero’s?  The city probably had close to a hundred topless clubs, and Jerome had to pick Nero’s?  Daniella had warned me to never go to Nero’s.  It was a deal breaker in our… relationship.  I couldn’t go to Nero’s.  I wouldn’t go to Nero’s.

“I hate Nero’s,” I said.  “Let’s go somewhere else.”

“What do you know about Nero’s?” Jerome asked.

“The food there sucks,” I said, and everybody laughed, and I had to think of another reason.  “And they enforce the two-foot rule.”

“They do?” Jerome said.

Nero’s probably didn’t enforce the two-foot rule (I’m sure Daniella made a lot of money violating the two-foot rule), but it was a great argument, better than complaining about the food.

“When have you been to Nero’s?” Kirk asked.

“I went a couple times when I first moved down here,” I said.  “But it’s been a long time. You know, strip clubs can eat through your wallet pretty quick.”

“Does Daniella mind you going to a strip club?” Jerome asked.

“She doesn’t know,” I said.  Of course!  Daniella was my built-in excuse not to go.  “I didn’t know.  She’d kill me if she found out.” I pretended to be flustered.  “I can’t go.  I can’t risk it.”

“Whipped,” Kirk said.

“By a hot, shit-talking librarian,” Mitchell said.  “I wouldn’t go either.”

“I’d better not,” I said, acting like I was reluctant.  “But, I’m telling you, if you want to see strippers, don’t go to Nero’s.”

Jerome had his heart set on Nero’s, and even though I kept trying to convince him otherwise, he wanted to go to a high-class place with valet parking where he could throw a lot of cash and credit around.  It was Jerome’s money, so Jerome got to decide.  Kirk, Mitchell and a couple other guys worked themselves up by shouting euphemisms for female body parts they were hoping to see that night.  I was trying to think of a way to warn Daniella.

I didn’t know how important it was to Daniella that she keep her dancing a secret from my/our friends.  Maybe at first she was keeping the secret for my benefit, but now she had friends who’d bought her act as well, so she had more stake in this than she did a few months earlier.  If Kirk and Jerome recognized Daniella, word would get back to Linda and any other friends in that clique.  I didn’t know if it mattered that much to Daniella, but I figured she might want to know ahead of time that a bunch of guys in our social group were about to roll into her strip club.

“Call when you’re about to go home,” I told Kirk.  “If you need me, I’ll still pick you up.”

The guys understood, and they probably wouldn’t call, but I really didn’t want them driving home.

Jerome, Kirk, Mitchell, and the others piled into a couple cars, and I had no idea what to do.  Nero’s was about 20 minutes from Jerome’s house.  My apartment was at least 30 minutes away.  I didn’t know the phone number to Nero’s; I didn’t even know if the place had phones.  I couldn’t just walk into the place and warn her.  My only chance was to get to a pay phone and try to warn Daniella.  Maybe I could call information and somebody at Nero’s could relay a message for me.

It was a long shot, but I had to try.

*****

To be continued in… The Literary Girlfriend: The Designated Driver, Part 2 .

If you want to read “The Literary Girlfriend” from the beginning (it’s gotten kind of long), start here.

6 Comments
  1. A pay phone?? I must read the rest! Lolol

  2. ah, yes. “the time they all come into the club where you work.” should have included that in my post.

    • You think THAT’S bad? Wait until Daniella’s evil twin makes her first appearance.

      • Who IS Jimmy Norman?
        Come visit my blog.
        Some days I’m all pensive and stuff.
        Today I’m naughty. But I need comments, to prove you were really there. It’s a badge of honor when DL shows his (her? its?) face on your blog.

  3. Hello, I enjoy reading all of your article. I wanted to write a little comment to support
    you.

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