Monday, April 12, 2010


In all honesty, after a year of being apart, I was more or less indifferent to his presence. Yes, the breakup had been his idea; and no, I hadn't seen it coming; and yes, I was bitter for a while, especially when I found out who he'd dumped me for. But time had passed, and the wounds had healed. There were even times when I missed him a bit. Not enough to return his infrequent calls, obviously, but I still felt a little something whenever I picked up his voice mail: a tinge of nostalgia, as memories of the good times crept into the corners of my mind.

Enough not to mind his company for a few minutes while I waited for David, at least.

"So again." he said, after ordering his drink, "what brings you to the Jones?"

"I hope this isn't going to sound rude, but I'm meeting someone here."

A thin smile crossed his lips and he took a long, slow look at the handful of regulars strung along the bar. "Anyone I know?"

"Not even anyone I know." He looked at me, not quite comprehending, so I filled in the blanks. "It's a blind date."

Again came the smile. "A blind date?"

I looked away and sighed. "An Internet date. Are you happy now? Your ex-boyfriend is so pathetic that he's meeting someone he's only talked to through e-mail."

Stuart laughed. "Oh, Brian, that's not pathetic. Well... maybe a little. But why are you meeting him here?"

"Because I never come here. If I had him meet me at the Pub, say, he'd know where to stalk me."

"It sounds as if you've already decided it won't work out."

I shrugged. "It's an Internet date. What could possibly go wrong?..."

from the short story Happy Hour at the Cafe Jones
published in Fool for Love: New Gay Fiction

Cleis Press
February, 2009

Buy it at Common Language Bookstore

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