See Dick Dance

Only a few people are outside the bar. It looks rather seedy and discreet. I remember an article I once read about women and smoking, the cigarette becoming a symbol for sexual emancipation. There is no Monroe here, no Hepburn. “There’s never a rough puff in a Lucky,” a 50s Hollywood actress once said, “A good cigarette is like a good movie – always enjoyable. That’s why it’s Luckies for me!” But tonight I see no dainty fingers, no cherry lips whorling out white clouds of smoke. I can only see bad luck. Edith wants to dance. She wants to dance where the men will leave her alone. She suggested a gay bar, but I think that she will probably receive more attention there than at any straight bar – because she is beautiful. And different than the cookie-cutter girls that one sees so often at nightclubs. Straight men would be intimidated, but gay men are drawn to a beautiful woman like flies to electricity. At six feet in her stilettos, Edith can easily see over the heads of the people standing in front of us. The line is short, but inside the bar there is a respectable number of people milling about. We decide to stay. Edith is wearing a sleeved, very short black-lace dress that accentuates her long legs and she has draped many long silver chains around her neck. Her hair is a dark asymmetrical bob and her new faux-lashes really make her eyes flash. I don’t look too bad myself: faded skinny jeans and a vintage-looking grey t-shirt with black stitching, outlining various wild creatures. Always a little casual – I hate dressing up to dance. I hate dressing up – period. I once knew a witch that thought periods made her powerful, but that’s another story. After listening to obscure bands on the way over, Edith and I are a little disappointed with the DJ, but we numb our highly-evolved musical pallets with shots of whiskey and try to enjoy, Everybody’s gettin’ drunk, drunk. Boys wanna touch my junk, junk. Out of the corner of my eye, I see a familiar face. Edith knows him as well, back from her high school days with the occasional meet-and-greet thereafter. His name is Doug and he used to date a former friend of mine. Aware that Doug doesn’t really care for me, I remain pleasant, but distant. I speculate that Doug dislikes me because, one time when we were out, his boyfriend kept buying me drinks. For the record, I did point out that Doug looked a little bit thirsty. While Edith and Doug are chatting back and forth, I let my attention drift around the dance floor. Everybody looks the same. Different shapes, different colours, but generally cut from the same block. And then I see the jogging pants. Light grey with the letter ‘A’ stitched in red on the thigh. The man with the jogging pants is dancing and smiling like he doesn’t know he is wearing jogging pants. I am intrigued. I am impressed that this man chose to wear jogging pants to a club when everyone is trying so hard to impress. I am impressed that this man looks pretty good in jogging pants. I am also a little bit jealous because, right now, I want to be wearing jogging pants. Jogging Pants introduces himself as Sam and mentions that he would be hitting on me if he didn’t have a boyfriend. I am aware of this game. I figure, why not? Let’s see where this goes. Suddenly, one of Doug’s women taps me on the shoulder. Judy. Her hair is a lot shorter than the last time I saw her, but she still has the same vacant look in her eyes. “Why are you talking to Jogging Pants?” She demands. Sam smiles. He is composed. He looks at Judy and says, “You know I can hear you, right?” Judy ruffles her short feathers and stomps away. I apologize to Sam, explaining that Edith is my only friend at the club and the others are merely people who are passing by in life. Sam is still smiling like he doesn’t have a care in the world. I am suspicious of his happiness. He is reaffirming his attraction and his intentions when we are interrupted yet again – this time by a stranger. A girl with long dark hair swoops in between us. She slips me a devious smile and then turns around, pulling Sam away, pushing her male friend in front of me. I glance at this man who was thrust before me. He is not unattractive, but I am irritated nonetheless. I walk away. Why is it that women are used as bridges to bring two men together? Why are there oceans between us when we should have so much in common? A beautiful woman with audacity, selling her wares, her fair boys, does not a check on Dick’s list make. Edith catches up with me on the other side of the dance floor. She comes bearing an invitation to Doug’s housewarming party and some gossip. Doug was explaining to her that he and his friends think that I am a snob. Edith relays their sentiments: “Dick, they say you are hot, but you are a snob because you will not hang out with them.” She starts laughing at this point and then continues, saying that Doug has made a self-proclamation that he is a part of the A-list gay community and he doesn’t understand why I am unlisted. I decide that my snobbery is well-suited for keeping preposterous men at bay and that I will choose jogging pants over an A-list any day. Sitting in the cab, driving home with Edith, I realize how amused I am with our little adventure. I muse over the ramifications of jogging pants on the dance floor and so many people trying to protect me from the jogging pants. How dangerous are jogging pants, really? They don’t hide things very well, that’s for sure. It is the designer jeans of which you should be wary; they act too much like disgruntled celebrities. I keep my jeans independent and try to bend the limelight. Good friends like Edith keep me grounded. At the end of the night, after all is said and done, I would have to say, the best option for pants… is no pants at all.

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