Disaster Scene Investigation


After a night out some women wake up with strangers. Not me. I wake up in strangeness. I spend the morning in a hung-over version of CSI, piecing together the clues and conducting disaster forensics. This morning I woke up to realize I had slept in my earrings. Only, these were new earrings, and definitely not the ones I had worn out the night before. As I brushed my teeth and couldn¶t stop staring at the mysterious blue crochet flowers hanging from my ears. In the kitchen there was evidence of a pasta experiment: half of a zucchini and a clove of garlic on the kitchen counter, noodles crusted to the pot on the stove, and the smell of sausage grease still lingered. The fire alarm was sitting next to the refrigerator, batteries removed, which brought back the vague memory flames« I checked my email. I had an email from my dear friend, Netflix. He wrote, ³How was the Picture Quality of ³Reno 911!: Season 1: Fireworks´? I looked in the living room, there was a pasta bowl on the coffee table. I replied back: ³Blurry.´ I checked my phone, and saw three outgoing calls a suitor, none of which were intentional. Pocket calls. It doesn¶t matter how much I can keep myself in check, my ass has a mind of its own. And then I saw my text messages, all eight from a new contact named Peter. From what I recall, Peter was happy, drunk, loved my dress, and, like many men before him, wants to be my gay best friend. (Unfortunately for Peter, that slot is filled.) The messages went like this: 9:09 AM 9:10 AM 9:12 AM 9:12 AM 9:12 AM 9:12 AM 11:36 AM 11:37 AM Hey LOL I¶m so hungover ? ? Lol ? Lol I¶m up now Hit me up

Hit him up? About what? The only thing I know about this man is that he shares my appreciation for synthetic fibers. And apparently, he¶s obsessed with question marks. I had no idea that I¶d given my number to a text addict. I felt so dirty.

I opened my purse and found two business cards. I remembered these. The first was from Robert, a whisky-drinking Texan who wore a suit and boots, and was already starting to slur as he told me about his work for the government. ³We do everything± construction, security, intelligence, basically anything that can be contracted,´ he said. ³I see. You know, when you talk fast like that, you kinda sound like George W.´ ³I used to work for him! Spent a year in the White House, and a year in the Pentagon.´ ³Interesting. I think we may be diametrically opposed.´ ³Probably not. We both probably eat food. Where should we go? Let¶s eat!´ Now, I¶m not used to this kind of charm-aggression, and I¶m not sure how to shake it. He wasn¶t wearing a ring, so I don¶t know what made me say: ³You¶re married, right?´ ³Yes,´ he answered. ³I¶m sorry, but I¶ve just lost my appetite,´ I said, and joined my friend at the bar. Business Card Number Two was from Felipe, the Chilean wine distributor with beautiful eyes. Now you should know that for such an extrovert, I¶m incredibly shy. I never approach guys in bars, which is highly problematic. But with Chile Pants, I just walked right up and introduced myself. It was an easy conversation. We talked about travel, and books, and San Francisco (where he¶s headed for his next three month stint). We must have talked for about thirty minutes, until his female co-worker joined us, at which point he opened his jacket pocket and pulled out two pairs of earrings. ³These are from Chile,´ he said, handing one pair to his friend and the others to me. They matched my dress, so I put them on. And I didn¶t think for one single second that it was weird that he was giving out earrings he kept in his jacket pocket. What can I say? Love is blinding. I looked over at my friend at the bar who was staring into her third vodka Redbull like she expected her ice cubes to do magic tricks. ³I-LOVE-THIS-ONE!´ I mouthed and pointed to Felipe, who had returned to his friends. She waved me over. ³Sorry babe, but he leaves tomorrow,´ she said finishing her drink. ³What?´ ³I was just talking to his friends. He is leaving tomorrow to go home to Chile, because HE¶S GETTING MARRIED IN TWO WEEKS.´ Just then Felipe joined us at the bar. I tried not to act flustered, but I immediately became self-conscious of the big blue earrings draping from my ears. I felt so foolish, but I couldn¶t take them off, not now. That would be admitting defeat. So I played it cool, nodded along to the conversation, and sipped my Amstel Light.

This morning when I saw the earrings in the mirror I was reminded of The Fish That Got Away: the Chilean sea bass on a plane on his way back to his fiance. He is off to get married, and all I had was my something blue. So I did what any tabloid-loving American would do. I turned on the royal wedding and drowned my sorrows (and my hangover) in a box of Dunkin¶ Donuts Limited Edition Royal Wedding Donuts. A wedding that comes with its own donuts? Now that¶s the kind of romance I can get behind.

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