I have to admit, I don’t know if I have a follow-up to this.
The Time I Went On A Date With A Man By Accident
Though it surprised me as well, not that long after I shit in a bag I found myself with a girlfriend who I liked. This is only relevant for context. I was still working in the kitchen, making very little money of course, and probably drinking every day. One of those days I had planned to do so on the North Shore, where a band-mate was having people over for champagne and jellybeans (it was a very twee band, full of lovable art-hippies (obv.)), which meant I was walking toward the Seabus (for people outside Vancouver, that is a boat that goes to North Vancouver). SCENE SET.
Heading down Pender past some hotels I failed to notice a slight asian fellow looking at a map, who ended up walking toward Chinatown right behind me. After a block or so he asked for directions to said Chinatown, and I told him to continue straight ahead. Can’t miss it. He kept up the conversation, asking about my clothes. This was not so unusual, as I only wore black at the time and had taken to extremely poor sewing. He had noticed my blazer, which had a fake fur collar and cuffs, and a shirt I had sewn a lightning bolt to.
Let me just parenthetically realize that I was a strange fucking dude for a long time. Moving on.
His name was Joseph, and he told me why he was in town alone; to expand his hair-extension business into Canada. His celebrity clients included Beyoncé* plus maybe two other people I have forgotten, and due to my outlandishness and the fact that I was talking to him he figured I might have advice on what parts of downtown would be amenable to his product (the answer was Yaletown). We went on a few blocks before our paths were to split, mine north to the Seabus and his further east to find food. However, he explained, nobody likes eating alone, and I had been helpful, so he wondered if I would like to join him for dinner.
My first thought was “I wouldn’t, at all”, but then I realized that this was A Weird Thing, which I did like, and such an opportunity would probably not come along twice. Also I was broke, and he was paying. So I said yes.
We went to a restaurant I wouldn’t have noticed myself, where the menu was all in Chinese. In between recounting how he left China with nothing for Atlanta 15 years ago to build a Weave Empire and asking me how I spent my time, he ordered maybe 5 dishes. These would be a mystery until they showed up, since nobody else was speaking English. Before the food arrived I snuck away to call my friends and tell them I would be late as I was eating with a complete stranger.
He had ordered some vegetable dishes, unnamed whole fish, soup, and a lobster. I’m not sure anyone else has bought me lobster to this day. Everything was good, but not quite good enough for Joseph, who berated the servers a bit to look important. I didn’t order drinks to not tax his hospitality. By the time we left he was offering me a job should he expand into Vancouver, which was hilarious for all kinds of reasons.
We headed back the way we came, and soon passed Jack Chow Insurance and its rainbow neon sign.”Is that…a gay place?’ he asked me, and I said no it just sells insurance, but drawing inference from his tone things started to make sense and I quickly added that the Davie St area is where most of the gay stuff happened. Inevitably, I saw then, he followed with “Are you gay?” which I was not.
Though I had apparently gone on a date with this guy. I imagined not having passed that sign, and only realizing over an awkward drink in his hotel room when he came out in a robe. To his credit the subject was dropped, and he still insisted he wanted me in his organization and would drop a business card off at the restaurant because “everything happens for a reason”**. He did that, on a day I wasn’t working, which confused the front staff something fierce. I had somewhere to be anyway, so I went on to drink champagne and eat jellybeans in the suburbs, and he did god knows what.
The next morning I told my girlfriend I had accidentally gone on a date with a guy, and that I would be expecting lobster-class sugar-mamaing in the future. We broke up much later due to unrelated issues.
I wasn’t sure she believed me until she came home from work after a day or two and told me that a co-worker’s husband noticed a middle-aged asian man in a suit on the local nude beach, on a laptop. Visible on the screen was a hair-extension website. The husband thought this was odd, asked Joseph what he was doing, and was invited to dinner.
He didn’t go because that is a weird thing to do, but he probably ate some non-lobster bullshit with his wife like a chump and I regret nothing.
*holy shit it autocorrected the accent. Technology, man.
**It totally does. This is a true thing. A truism, even.