having my regular lunch with my son the other day. We met at 14th
Street and found a sidewalk café on 7th Avenue
around 18th, a table right against the railing with a nice, dark,
pub behind us and plenty of opportunity to listen to the screaming of car
alarms and sirens from the ambulances hurtling past. The weather had gone back
to being hot and humid for a last gasp of Indian summer, and we shared
quesadillas, grilled tuna, and steak au
poivre, while discussing the ongoings of the last month or so. I tell him
what’s been happening in Manhattan and he gives
me updates on Brooklyn, now the genuinely
trendy and edgier locale among the younger generation when it comes to music,
hanging out, and of course, sex.
So, Slade says, last week he and his
pal, Dan Park were having a few beers at one of the Bedford
Avenue bars. Dan is a Korean-American guy with a seriously cut
body from much working out and tae kwon do, and one of those strong, hawkish
noses you sometimes see in Japanese and Koreans. He looks tough, and you
wouldn’t imagine from a glance at him that he’s a summa in engineering from
Yale. While they’re downing beers they notice a girl at the bar eyeing Dan;
tall and blonde, with the classic good looks of someone who grew up riding
horses and playing tennis at private schools. She was giving Dan the eye in a
focused and persistent way, and shortly he wandered down to her place at the
bar. When Slade glanced that way out of the corner of his eye, they were
wrapped in a dense embrace in what used to be called a lip lock, and
when he glanced again, they had vanished.
Dan reappeared after half an
hour, looking dazed.
“You know what?” he said. “She took
me out back where there are, like, these little cabins? And we were kissing,
and making out, you know, and suddenly, we were, like doing it, can you believe that? She’s gorgeous, and she’s a lawyer.
She graduated from Princeton!”
“Wow,” said Slade. “That’s
“Yeah, but you know she seemed
shocked when I told her I went to Yale. But she did give me her cell. I’m going
to text her, see if she wants to go out.”
Slade got reports from Dan over the
following days. He and the girl, Blaine, IMed back and forth for a week or so, after
which she agreed to go on a date.
“So you know what happened?” Slade
asked me over our wine glasses. “They went out to dinner, and it didn’t seem to
go that well. He said the conversation was really awkward; they didn’t have
sex, because he didn’t want to push. So afterward he texted her, but she didn’t
answer the messages. And she wouldn’t take his calls. So he thought, maybe he
was off base. I mean, thinking in terms of a relationship too soon -- maybe she
thought he was just some thug…”
“Well, “ I said, “You know, she
probably figured he was just a macho neighborhood guy. I think maybe she, um,
“Yeah!” said Slade, “She did. She
used him for sex. He shouldn’t have told her about Yale so soon."