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[Up close and too personal]

I s I t J u s t M e?

O R I S N o O n e H a v i n g S e x?

I hadn't shaved my armpits in a while, so I was happy not to be wearing a sleeveless shirt when I ran into my good friend Dan last Saturday at a cafe in Cow Hollow.

He was chewing on some tobacco thoughtfully, gazing out into the distance. We were chatting aimlessly about the moon being made of cheese, and we had just decided it must be blue cheese, not Swiss, when he yelped, spitting some tobacco onto my velvet top, "I can't get a date to save my life."

Now, Dan is a good-looking fellow. Funny, warm, pine-scented, kind of hairy, drives an Acura. Resents his mother. Devoted to his bank account. Buys his beagle fancy dogfood. Wears socks to bed. In other words, a catch.

But today he looked wilted. Flaccid even.

"Impotent?" I asked.

"No ... not this time. But I really think women don't like men anymore. Sick of 'em. Won't come near 'em."

"Well, ain't that something," I said.

"No, no. I'm serious. Listen." He kicked over a chair. "I mean it. Really listen for once, OK? I'm really serious."

I gurgled, having spotted an Irishman with some keys to a Jaguar in his hands.

"Women ... they don't pay any attention to me. I don't get it. I mean, all I really want is to get laid, but it's so complicated these days. I think it must be some kind of big Trend."

"You think so?" I asked, furtively gazing at the Irishman behind his shoulder. He reminded me a little bit of Julian, who, as you'll recall, wasn't good enough for me.

Dan continued, "Yeah. I mean, if I'm not getting laid, that means that no white boy in San Francisco with an Acura and too much free time on his hands is getting any. And if they're not getting any, then no men in San Francisco and probably no men in the world are getting any, and that means that no one is getting any! No one is having any sex!"

"Huh," I grumbled. Mr. Ireland was winking at me in that way that gets my motor running, but Dan had a good point. Almost all of the sexual experiences my friends and I have are generalizable to people of any class or race, anywhere in the country. But then, sometimes I wonder if our experiences are strictly San Franciscan.... It's so hard to tell sometimes.

I began to trace the latte foam across my mug, thoughtfully. Also, I thought it might turn on the Irish guy.

"I mean, how am I supposed to get a piece of ass when almost no one in the world is serving it?" Dan whined, spitooing a huge wad of chewing tobacco over my shoulder and onto the cafe floor. "It doesn't seem fair somehow." The Irishman behind him was motioning towards the door, and I found myself secretly hoping that he had a huge penis, a deep understanding of the clitoris, and a bitchy Irish girlfriend I could catfight with if I ever had the urge.

Acuras, latte foam, fancy dogfood ... I'd heard so many versions of this. There's no one out there. I can't meet anyone. The truth is out there. You owe me 20 bucks. And finally, the I'll-fuck-anything-that-moves stance.

"Get over it, Dan. That's just how it is." I was getting impatient. Dan started sobbing inconsolably, but my moment of pondering was over. I strode purposefully across the room towards the Irish object of my desire.

"Care to beat the odds with me?" I asked, and he grew visibly excited.
April 1, 1997

Courtney, what will you write about next?

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