Blogging in E minor
Usually just a bunch of silly crap.

Love and the Deadbeat Boss, Part II: Green Means Go!

My whole Saturday had been devoted to preparing for the evening’s excitement. It had been quite a while since I had been on a first date, so I was pulling out all the stops.

             While dilligently cleaning my trashed-out Mazda courier mobile inside and out, I managed to catch some July rays and enhanced my tan in the process. The necessary reservations had already been made. Clean clothes were at the ready. Now all that remained to be done was to shower, shave and style my giant mullet. Yes, I had a good feeling about this girl. We seemed to have a chemistry, and everything so far had all the makings of a fairy-tale romance. I wanted things to be perfect.

             I was amazed that the orange cat had approached me, however briefly, as I sat in the sister’s parlor doing the prerequisite waiting ritual. And when she finally made her entrance, Felicia was more beautiful than I had remembered! She wore a powder blue and white ensemble with a lengthy skirt, which agreed with her modest-but-radiant persona. She had obviously spent time curling just enough body into her already gorgeous, long, blonde hair.

             After navigating the many detours made necessary by multiple flooded out bridges, we found ourselves in a casual restaurant wasting giant salads. Though neither of us had much of an appetite, we were comfortable enough talking to each other at dinner despite some obvious jitters. Felicia confessed that she initially thought I was 18 years old until our boss, Darwin, told her I was really 27. She had told her sister all about me, which was immensely flattering.  

             Following dinner, we walked to a nearby comedy club, where Felicia revealed that she had made reservations also, just in case I was too much of a slacker to follow through on my end.

             We ordered drinks and had our picture taken as we waited for the show to begin. The photographer compelled us to pose cheek-to-cheek, which was the first time we had entered each others’ personal space. She returned later with our picture enclosed in a keyring. It had turned out well. Our smiling faces were tightly framed by our giant heads of hair. I bought it and gave it to Felicia. “If we turn out to be an item, we’ll be glad we have a picture from our first date,” I said.

             We enjoyed a hilarious evening of entertainment. Between the laughter and the alcohol, we were becoming sloppily comfortable with each other. As the show was letting out, we decided to go check out a club.

             Upon returning to the car, it had become apparent that it was time we kissed. It happened to be that part of the story, and we both knew it. As we sat closely together, I leaned in and her mouth met mine with willingness, submissiveness and abandon. It was nice. And time stopped briefly. Then the fairy tale resumed . . . .

             We ended up on the cusp of the diluvial battleground at a club called River’s, which was close to becoming an underwater casualty itself. The rear deck offered an impressive view of the flooding. Wharf Street was completely underwater and sandbagged levees stood ready just in case the currents crept any nearer to the 1st Street businesses. Most impressive was the fact that the river was coming dangerously close to overtaking a set of elevated railroad tracks that ran along what used to be the bank. Having seen the muddy waters of the Mississippi rise and fall over the years from this vantage point, the unprecedented magnitude of this flood was humbling.

             Felicia and I drank in excessive moderation while hanging, nibbling and slobbering all over each other. I was impressed when she tied a cherry stem in a knot with her tongue; yet, she was not in the least impressed with my beating her with a wet cherry. We had fun despite my drunken, sophomoric antics.

             At some point in the wee hours we decided to call it a night. As we waited to get onto the highway via an avenue choked by endless red lights, I mentioned that I would be going to the lake the next weekend with several couples. “You must go with me,” I implored her. “You must say yes!”

            After feigning deliberation, Felicia replied, “I’d love to go!”

            I gunned the accelerator as all the lights before me turned green. I recklessly passed a long line of traffic on the right and cut over just in time to hit the on-ramp to the left at full speed. Green means go, folks!


            “Good morning,” I said Monday morning.

            “Good morning,” Felicia replied through the tinny radio speaker.

            “Why would you say good morning when you haven’t said goodnight?” Darwin cut in. Felicia and I had both reported to work late, and he had erroneously assumed we had been together.

            After a few days, I was noticing that I was doing a lot of standing by and wasn’t getting the secret, under-the-table deliveries that I had grown accustomed to during the slow days. It had become apparent that I was no longer the benefactor of “most favored” status. Instead, Darwin had begun treating me in an underhanded and impersonal manner, which I had taken personally.

            Meanwhile, Felicia’s relationship to the boss had taken on an upsetting hot and cold dynamic. One minute, he was complimentary and accommodating, while at others he was condescending and judgmental. I had noticed that other drivers and clients were beginning to treat me differently, which made the covert gossip and rumors apparent. He began making disapproving comments to Felicia in the office about me along the lines of: “Why would you want to go out with an employee when you could be seeing the boss?” Like . . . as if!

            I realized that the other shoe had already dropped, that the tide had turned, that the pendulum had ascended to its highest point and was now swinging with increasing velocity in the other direction.  Darwin had previously been supportive of us getting together, putting his own ambitions on Felicia aside.  Now he was obviously jealous, and an entirely different side of his personality was emerging.

            Despite these troubling on-the-job circumstances, Felicia and I were on Cloud Nine. After all, we were in love, and our big weekend at the lake was quickly approaching.

to be continued


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