In January 2012 I met BookWorm at a mutual friend’s going away to Africa dinner. There were 20 people at this gathering and all from far-flung origins. I left on the early side and BookWorm chased after to get my number just as I was getting in a cab home. A full month passed with busy travel schedules before we arranged a date. BookWorm is a blue blood academic through and through. He looks like Jude Law, speaks the Queen’s English, and dresses in laps of cashmere, tweed, and corduroy. It made sense that for our date he planned for us to attend a Sunday evening lecture / spoken word / music performance on the UES (Upper East Side).
THE FIRST DATE
Usually, I have a standing brunch plans at 1PM on Sundays, but this day they were cancelled. Instead, I cooked off an entire pack of turkey bacon and ate all 20 strips. I know – I am a disgusting person. By the end of it, my fingers were swelling up like little water balloons. Then, I made a full pot of coffee and drank the whole thing. This is less extreme to me than the bacon because of my full Danish ancestry. We Danes drink coffee like the Turks drink apple tea, or your step mom drinks Chardonnay (snap!).
When I have too much coffee sometimes it gives me that hole-in-the-stomach feeling. On this day it was real. During the lecture, my tummy started with little grumbles. It advanced into full wildcat snarls. I hugged my coat over my lap and after the roars, would look around making the silent confused face that says, “What is that sound? Where is it coming from? Not me.” I was inadvertently swallowing gulps of air to quell the noise.
What goes down must come up? About half way through the lecture, I started having the burps. Really amazing bacon burps, you know, from the pound of bacon I ate earlier. Obviously, I had to save BookWorm from these natural gas explosions, so I blew them on the woman next to me. To her unending credit, she never flinched. Dear Lady: If you are out there, I am so so sorry. I know I haven’t said much about BookWorm, but our job was to sit quietly for two hours, so NotMyFault.