I’ve never been attracted to conventionally handsome men. More so than overt symmetrical perfection, I tend to pick up on a vibrational frequency. The way they carry themselves. Sometimes it’s a uniquely aligned facial feature like a crooked nose– or the size and shape of their hands or the depth and length of their gaze. Sometimes it’s the way they work–a certain level of concentration and attention to detail that interests me.
I end up on the dinner shift, having been written up too many times for not completing my side work properly and being a general pain in the ass on the late nights. Alan is tall, a little too tall, six-foot-four. Shy, underweight. He has Irish features: straight, ginger red hair flowing all the way down his back, pale, almost transluscent skin spotted with dense freckle patches. His eyes are strikingly blue with pale fringe lashes which he bats flirtatiously when he flashes his big, open, sexy grin under a pale fuzz of mustache that disappears from time to time.
I think he is over-qualified for his position as short order cook. It is obvious that he is intelligent (he has intelligent eyes) if somewhat awkward socially. I can’t help being impressed by his clean, organized efficiency. I am immediately drawn to his quiet demeanor. He shows no particular interest in me, which intrigues me all the more.
He is also young, a recent high school grad. I am only a few years older by the numbers, but in life experience we are miles apart. Married young and newly divorced, I have dated a couple of the cops that frequent the place, but I found them endlessly boring. Their sex, however lackluster and perfunctory was infinitely more interesting than their conversations.
I hear that Alan is a rock musician and that fascinates me, having spent my adolescence idolizing the raw physicality of lead guitarists like Jimmy Page, Eddie Van Halen, Mike Campbell. With my newfound freedom to choose my partners at will, I can’t help but see him as an attractive option. And I long to be played like a Neil Giraldo solo.
I set about my scheme—offering my most winning smiles and chatting him up from beneath the heat lamps at the pick up window, dropping casual innuendos here and there. He is tough to crack but I am persistent.
He never hangs around after the shift the way the other cooks sometimes do. He punches the clock and off he goes, but not before releasing his rich mane of long, thick hair he keeps tucked inside his white chef hat. He is out of there so fast I hardly have time to work my magic.
Finally, I decide to take a bold step forward and I send him my phone number through the dining room computer via a food order ticket. I watch his face when he rips the ticket off the printer and does a double take.
He smiles to himself, darting his eyes to where the fry cook waits for instruction. He carefully tears the bottom edge and pulls out his wallet, wedging the little white slip between the folds and goes back to work. He finally gets the hint.
To be continued…