Who wasn’t drunk? Mister Wench: he wasn’t drunk. He was the only one. He doesn’t drink. He looks like he would, but he doesn’t. He’s the rare breed of teetotaler who fits right in with any dive bar crowd. But see, you can’t master much, let alone puppets, when you’re blotto. So Mister Wench was on his hands and knees in the men’s room wiping up the puke. “Think of it as another donation,” I told him. Believe me, it was his kind of snark, but he wasn’t in the mood. 

When the girls weren’t flaunting and exposing themselves or kissing each other, they were gathered around me and Slange. We talked about love and desperation. According to Slange, I need to view love more as a concept than as something tangible. That is, unless these words of wisdom were instead spoken by Nikki. 

(Something I didn’t think to ask: Unless you’re getting it on, when is love ever tangible? And, something else: How is love ever conceptual? I get how it’s consensual. But conceptual? No. democracy is a concept. No? I mean, you vote, and your vote is, presumably, counted. Yes? Beyond that, it’s conceptual. No? I dunno.) 

Slange said or Nikki said—while she wasn’t pressing my face into her cleavage, or maybe while she was—that it’s more important to get along and put up with one’s partner than to constantly crave them. In that case, I should be with Nikki. Sure the hell seems like she wants to be with me. And, sure, she’s got a world-class bust, but I think of her as a sister.* 

21 February 2007 

*[Both Slange and Nikki have since divorced their respective spouses. Mr. and Mrs. Wench split, too. And just in case they’re reading this, I’m using the word “wench” as a somewhat smartass term of endearment—one that only the “Wenches” would appreciate. (I hope.)] 

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