Tuesday, April 11, 2006


Spring fever in Halifax. Warm sun, jackets slung off, walks rhythmic, light and bouncy.

And some old familiar mating instinct kicks in.

Have I mentioned The Stock Market White Guys? This is a group of regulars at my favorite dark, musty local. At some point, one of them explained his work to me and I took it in with all the rapt attention of a six-year-old staying after school.

And all the regular guys in that group – engineers, business men from various backgrounds – became, to me, The Stock Market White Guys. It was handy. It was more specific than “the guys.” Or “the guys who talk about golf.” And because I’m a regular too, they gave me honorary guy status. I thought.

These are guys my age but of a different generation, if you know what I mean.
Once, when they were really drunk, one of them asked me if I was married. When I said “no,” he blurted out, “But…who takes care of you?”

Don’t get me wrong. I’ve grown to like them – but they’re men of a particular kind. The kind who, when a friend’s wife suddenly dies, get together and take him golfing for the weekend. They are from the Hank Hill school, when it comes to expressing deep emotion. They feel life’s vicissitudes, keenly as anyone else, but they believe that swallowing them firmly and in silence is the wisest reaction, and if one of their number mists up with feeling, they buy him another beer, shove him in a taxi or change the subject.

One of them kissed me today. ON the lips. Alright - there was no tongue, thank god, and Pollyanna that I am, I told myself this was in reaction to the fact that I’d lent a sympathetic ear when his father died recently. He’s grateful, I thought. Masterfully, I inserted a French fry in my face as quickly as possible so as to discourage any more grateful impulses.

And then he started to lovingly brush my hair off my face. Slowly. Looking into my eyes. And may I add that I was sitting at the front of the musty old’s deck, with dozens of people walking by, half of whom I knew. I took a large bite of my jerk chicken wrap and chewed vigorously, hoping this was not endearing in any way.

I’m trying to stop thinking about it. I’m trying to stop wondering how anyone can fail to detect my utter lack of that kind of interest. And I answer myself – Spring.

And beer.

Tomorrow, I’m taking a half day vacation and if I’m lucky, the Scorpio will have Spring fever. And that won’t involve beer or the French fry maneuver.



Mella said...

Oh LJ - what a great post. I once actually resorted to the elementary school fire safety rule of Stop-Drop-and-Roll to express my disinterest in a pair of lips that were puckered in my direction. A french fry is a much more tactful solution...

I wish you a wonderful day of Spring Fever with the Scorpio tomorrow!

LJ said...

Stop-drop-and-roll might have worked, (actually it's kind of brilliant - and would have conveyed my sentiments more clearly) except I'd have been cuddling up with the pigeons who are already scrounging on the floor of the deck. It did occur to me to shriek, "WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU'RE DOING??? ARE YOU INSANE?" But I felt that might embarrass us both unduly. Well me unduly. He was due for embarrassment or at least being cut off beer.
Thanks for droppin' in, Mella.

Teri said...

The Hank Hill School...I love it!

Koru's Daughter said...

I know these Stock Market Guys. It never even occured to him that a woman might not be interested in him. Funny post LJ and great reply M.

phlegmfatale said...

Perhaps if the fry and jerk chicken don't suffice you might employ the method I invented for ofuscation when a police officer pulls up next to me and I've an expired inspection sticker: a vigorous bout of nose-picking indicates an un-self-conscious disinterest in the danger/threat/amorous overtures of the environment. After all, someone with something to hide would never be preoccupied with a booger when the rugged male is in the area, right? Right?

Thanks for all your kind words about my gram. She was dear to me, and although I know we are all very casual here, it's nice to find a sympathetic ear/eyes/set of pixels to... well, you know.

Oh, and I finally got around to adding you to my links. I enjoy your blog, too. I'll be back in a few days and I should be back to my regular making the rounds and leaving smarmy comments on your blog. Keep enjoying that glorious weather!

Anonymous said...

Holy shit!

How far you've come from "So are you a witch?"

I know it's not funny. Really, not at all. Definately not hilarious. No sir.


Mary said...

Funny ... :-)

Enjoy your half day!

Jess D'Zerts said...

Hilarious... and a great excuse to order French fries!

I know what you mean about that generation gap. I've always felt more at home with men about eight years my junior because of it.

LJ said...

We have some great suggestions here, don't we, folks? I suspect Pfatale might actually DO that, while I (a mere pretender and devoted chicken shit)would threaten to do it.
Thanks Marko. I am now a GOOD witch, apparently. Or Goldilocks. One never knows, day to day.
Jess. Yep. Indeed. I make an exception for the Scorpio, who is a mere three and a half years younger but my generation.
I persist in thinking The SMWGs as older than me, when in fact all of them are younger. Go figure.
Mary - thanks. I certainly did!
KD, my sympathies darlin'. I hope you don't know many now.
Teri, the one thing I miss about TV is King of the Hill. Hank is a classic.
Thanks all.

Koru's Daughter said...

Alas, I still know many, many, many. I have always called them "The Lawyers." Obviously, you have forgotten where I live. I don't blame you... I would have erased most of that trip to the Midwest from my brain memory banks ASAP (except for eating outside and visiting the gardens).

Cruxley said...

I worked in a bar (actually bars) for years. I wouldn't be too hard on the guy. He was probably just a little drunk and lonely, and he likes you. It was nice of you not to embarrass or insult him by laughing, throwing up or writing about him in your blog...oh, you did do that. Oh well. He had it coming. Keep it up. I'll be back.