from what angle do you see things? i can assure you that the one you’re used to using isn’t doing you any good. try standing on a chair, or on your head, and notice how everything alters. snap a shot over your shoulder with no clue what’s behind you. capture that, a part of your past, and notice how the ether fills in again where you just were, as if it never even happened. we have less effect on reality than we’d like to imagine with our forward-facing stare. really, what happens when you’re not there? you’ll never ever know.

there’s a representative girl, that one who just pushed her bike away from the cafe with her two year old in tow. that girl who’s single, and only just busted up with, or never really had a thing with, her daughter’s biodad. she comes in here, maybe a bit still tipsy from last night’s til-five, especially since she had to go pick the kid up by noon from her mom and dad’s.

party girl. she got pregnant with that guy, the one who scooped her up when she was so sure of herself, so confident, with her pack of girl players, some single like her, others out for a wild night of anything goes. and she held him at bay for all those hours of dancing, drinking, doing jægerbombs or russian cocaines. then the lights came on and her resistance faded and she let him take her home to his boy hovel, a charmingly seedy place while still wasted, and which she subconsciously imagined fixing up the morning after, after spoon sex where no one’s morning breath had to be smelled. he lit a cigarette and mumbled something about what was it she said she did, him gramsing about trying to remember her name. and she coyly gave him the basics, because she was still in control. he took her number, didn’t he, and even sent a cursory text a day later, thanx for the night, it was awesome, let’s meet up again sometime soon.

and by tuesday she’d told her friends about him, painted him more shiny than he really was, because that’s what she wanted him to be. the girls dug about in their memory boxes to figure out if they had any scraps of detail about him, aside from his obvious party-boy demeanor, and if they found anything ugly, called each other to get advice on whether or not to tell the girl what they thought they might know. that’s how the first days went down.

by friday, after a series of purposely leading and coy texts, it was agreed that they’d try to find each other downtown that night. anything could happen! and so she hooked up with her single galpals, pre-drank while putting on far too much makeup and that outfit, hipster, bordering on sleazy, some nice ass-fitting leggings and a color-pop top from that overly expensive mod designer store down the road. who cares that it cost a quarter of her paycheck as a shop girl, and that at least two half-full beers will be spilled on it. boom! they cruise town a bit, playing out the excitement about what might happen next.

at 2am the hopeful girl gives a party hoop and holler and declares their next destination: where he might be! though she’d never admit that‘s the reason why. of course, her pack knows. so with all sorts of group faith and energy, they saunter to the bar and wait, with focused casualty, in the line smoking cigarettes and half-flirting with anyone near. one of them shrieks out a loud OMG HEY!!! at some half-forgotten player, calling attention to their group so they’ll feel more fabulous than they really are, make-up starting to smudge and all. tension mounts as regulars get let in via the unofficial VIP line...should the gaggle brave it too? will the doormen remember them from last time? a collective, silent sigh emits from them all as they realize that it’s not gonna happen, and they’re stuck in the retard line with the tourists and all the other losers.

 

finally inside, and they let out a group whoop! here we are! hahaha, and everyone who isn’t here isn’t here to see how amazing we are. get the party started! they pause then split up, all aware of their job: to scope and scan the scene. our girl heads for the bar, tensely smiling at everyone she gets even the slightest of eye contact with. because he might be anywhere, could be watching her as she speaks, at this very moment. safely at the bar, she hunkers into her chore: get a beer. keep cool, keep cool, stay cool, move hips, sway to the music, and don’t at any cost look like you’re looking! but with party girl adeptness she surveys the crowd at the bar with her peripheral vision, and he’s not there.

the girls regroup at the dance floor, just a spot of space in front of the dj, and emit ecstatic noises while shaking their hair in that drunken i-don’t-care. they all have their own version of our girl’s guy, and are all on the hunt. one hustles the poor dj, grabs his balls in a creepy fervor and when he shakes himself free from her gets in his face instead, squalking something like this: what! don’t you think i’m pretty? what’s wrong with you??? don’t you like to fuck? with the ugly sneer of a totally drunk and scummy broad. her friends pull her off of him, knowing in their dizzy state that come lights-on they’ll have to drag her away from the place with her still thinking she has a sjens with him when he finally realizes how hot she is.

but the boy from last weekend is nowhere to be seen. didn’t they have a plan? she sends him a text, then grips her phone in her paws to she’ll in no way miss the buzz of his reply. he doesn’t come. 3 am, 4. half an hour to go until the music stops, she takes more shots. she smokes more ciggies than she ever does, out back with the smokers crowd. she has that arrogance that comes from deep insecurity and a sneaking sense of rejection and of failure, of having been bluffed. it’s not appealing, except to the dudes who’ve been dissed themselves too many times that same night, and they hover over her, smelling her horniness, waiting until she’ll give up on whatever romeo she’s waiting for and let them lead her away. a girl she knows from school chats her up, but she can’t focus on her, her eyes scan and wander, looking for this human who’s somehow become both a travesty and a superhero in her addled mind. she has to find him. everything, her whole persona, is riding on it!

she goes back inside, waits at the toilets where a person can see everyone who passes by. when it’s her turn, she goes as quickly as possible, shakes herself dry and wonders if he’ll notice the smell in her panties if she ever finds him. she shoots back out for another now-disgusting smoke. and there he is, buried deep in the human madness back there in the corner, as if he’s been there the entire time. she sallies over. and guess what, he has been there, for quite a long while according to some innocent comment his buddy makes, and it imprints for a terrible and immediately forgotten moment that he did not at all look for her the whole time.

still, here she is! and she is not going to waste this moment. slightly smeared lipstick, smudged eyeshadow, wettened five hundred dollar blouse, slightly frazzled hair, she’s going in for the kill. he seems surprised to see her. hey, you! what’s up, elskan? side hug and a kiss that lands on the corner of her mouth. what’r you up to? she tosses an equally cool and flirty salvo right back at him, not much honey, just having fun! his friends perk up at the embedded innuendo, and they get that this is the chick he laid last weekend. they give her a once over, and just a whisper of approval, enough to keep her going on her assault. her guy, unkempt and, well, what she decides is musky-smelling, in yesterday’s clothes and nearly wobbling, gives her just passing attention. he flicks his smoke away, laughs at some group dude-joke, and announces he’s going inside, he’s cold. she purposely catches his eye and chooses to believe in her desperate state that he’s giving her the signal for some much-needed warmth. as casually as she can, she follows him inside, all the while pretending not to.

then tracking him with her super sight, noting how he doesn’t leave right away when the lights go on, grouping up with the leftovers of her original entourage, someone calling out where’s the afterparty?! outside, on the street, she spots him, he’s chatting up another girl, but she knows in her drunken heart that he’s really waiting for her. if she can play this right, right now, he’s gonna be all hers. a mutual acquaintance claims the afterparty, and pulls her into it, and she makes sure he pulls her guy into it too. soon, amazingly, they’re all on their way to some or other extended adventure that lasts way too long...

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