She says ‘I ain’t good looking, but I take my time’

I am quite the gifted liar.

Dishonesty comes naturally to me, for whatever reason. I can deceive, bold-faced, with grace and ease.

God’s honest truth.

Ask any of my ex-girlfriends.

On rare occasions, like last night, I have used my considerable powers for good. Weeks of whispered phone calls, ciphered notes slipped under unmarked doors, and hushed conversations in dark corridors came to a head and we threw our surprise party for Candace, who has (briefly) returned from Israel.

All the lying worked out, in the end. I told her I was taking her out to dinner, and we stopped by my place to pick up something. As we walked into my front room, ten of Candace’s friends jumped out, shrieking. We live in bleak and terrible times, and spontaneous, joyful moments are few and far between. People should surprise their friends more often. Candace seemed to enjoy the festivities, so we’ll go ahead and say Mission Accomplished.

Hurrah.

——

The party’s over, but I’ve still got two platters full of sandwiches, a thirty pound Costco bag of tortilla chips, and fifty Pacificos sitting in my pantry.

Damn. Where are the homeless when you need them?

——

We had all gone out to breakfast in the Marina and, as I was on foot, I figured I’d just walk down by Traitor Joe’s on Bay and carry a case of wine home.

Mistake.

I had no damn idea how heavy a case of wine is. Jesus Christ.

Carrying it up to the checker, straining, I began to worry.

“Shit man,” I said to myself, “this bastard’s heavier than I expected. This might get rough. Oh well, it’s only two miles.”

Only two miles. Fucking idiot. I hate me.

Six blocks later I hit the bottom of the Hyde street hill near the cable car turn around, gasping and coughing, the wine resting on my shoulder. To call Hyde a ‘hill’ down there is misleading; it’s more like a paved cliff. I started to despair, looking up from the base of that evil damn mountain. Pride alone kept me going. Pride and a faint hope of catching the fourth quarter of the Chargers – Patriots clusterfuck.

Twenty hellish minutes later I crested the hill and collapsed in a heap, legs spasming, lines of bloody drool running down from my mouth. Several of the people taking pictures of Lombard’s famous curves turned their cameras on me. One lady leaned out from the cable car.

“HEY HONEY LET’S GO TO THAT GUY’S HOUSE HAHA. HE’S GOT A WHOLE CASE OF WINE! HAHA.”

She clapped and laughed, immensely pleased with her own wit, as the cable car pulled away.

“fuckyoutouristbitch *GASP*” I moaned from the pavement. “fuckingthingweighs*GASP*agoddamntonso*GASP*shutup.”

*GASP*

Two Japanese tourists came up, cameras at the ready, and stood over my twitching body. I waved my hand feebly in a vague gesture.

“can’tbelievethisfuckinghill.”

*WHEEZE* *COUGH*

“steepestfuckinghilli’ve*GASP*evergoddamnseenshit”

I regained my feet after a few moments and stumbled on, my Herculean task half done.

Other pedestrians continued to point and smile as I hobbled along, my awkward burden held down in front of me like some gigantic, unbearable pregnancy. I don’t know why it brought strangers such joy to see me laboring and sweating for booze, but they were god damn thrilled. I got many thumbs-ups and big grins. They loved it.

“fuckershateyou” I hissed at them.
*GASP*
“don’tfuckingsmileatmefuckinghelp”
*WHEEZE*

At Greenwich, I saw a good-looking redhead unlocking the door to her apartment. I threw the wine up on my shoulder again, and straightened my back with poorly feigned ease. I walked up, the picture of nonchalance.

“Hi there.” She said, smiling.
“heyhowsitgoing” *COUGH*
What girl says hi to random, sweating strangers? I should carry this awful fucking box around all the time. It’s god damn magical.
“Is that heavy?”
“notsobadjustalittleunwieldy” *POORLY HIDDEN GASP*
“Cool. Have a good party!” Smile.
“yeahyoutoothankslater”

Her door closed and I slumped down into her flower bed, dry-heaving, my Charles Shaw crushing her petunias. I lay there for several minutes, coughing and shaking.

“suchamorontrevorfuckingthingweighsaton”

A mile later and my door was in sight. I set the box on a fire hydrant and leaned back against some scaffolding, cursing my burning lungs and exhausted arms. A guy and his girlfriend walked by.

“Whoa, did you carry that all the way from Trader Joe’s?”

Must be a local. He knows these wicked hills.

“yeahmanfucking”
*GASP*
*DEEP BREATH*
“worstmistakeofmylife”
*SPIT* *DRY HEAVE*
“That’s rough bro.”
“weighsseriouslyeightyfuckingpoundsman”

His girlfriend gave me a thumbs up and they walked on.

——-

We ended up only drinking two and a half bottles.

Fuck.

-T.

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