Price Breaks And Heartaches
A journal of retail and failed romance
Al And Tallulah’s Wild Ride
It was Kevin, his newest girlfriend Sarah, who was the best friend of Alice the girl he had been going out with. Now Sarah had been going out with Corey but now Corey was going out with Alice. This wasn’t the first time they had switched off like this. It was a like the pair of them were some kind of a herpes brewery. Ida was there and he and I were soon trading friendly insults, Ida’s brother Marv was there too in his leopard print Speedos, his girlfriend was with him.
Tallulah and I were near the deep end of the pool, rough housing and talking. She asked me, “Why isn’t Joanna wearing a bathing suit?”
“Maybe she’s self conscious.” I shot her a baleful glance, “I wish she’d just stayed home.”
I tried to shrug while treading water but it didn’t really work out, “She just bugs me. I don’t know why.”
Tallulah swam closer to me and whispered, “She still can’t take her eyes off you.”
“You’re all the girl I need.” I pulled her against me.
“What is that?”
I grinned, “It’s my water wing.”
There will be a brief pause so you can all be sick.
After a while Tallulah swam over to where the girls were sitting on the pool steps and talking, I managed to reach the guys by doing a cross-legged dog paddler.
"You all right Al?" Corey asked.
"Never better." I croaked.
Marv said, "We want to get a volleyball game going here. Ida's setting up the net.
Kevin said, "Yeah its gonna be guys on girls-"
"Oh yeah... heh heh heh..."
"Marv," I said, "never brush against me again when your laughing like that again."
"So anyway," Corey said, "it is guys versus girls but Joanna isn't gonna play because she didn't want to swim today."
"A girl thing." Marv said, "If you know what I mean."
"For the love of God Marv..." I said, "Wait...won't that leave us with an advantage?"
"Nah." Ida said, "You'll just have you play on the girl's side."
"What the Hell are you insinuating?"
"You're the one wearing a pale pink bathing suit."
"It was red." I said icily,"It faded."
Marv laughed so hard he swallowed a mouthful of water, "Sure buddy.."
"Look I'm not the one wearing a suit so tight we can see his circumcision scars!" My shout faded when I realized everyone was giving me that look again, "...not that I was noticed."
The volleyball game started normally but it soon ended up being multiple ball dodge ball with a net in the way. The game got more and more brutal until the girls fled the pool to the relative safety of the deck. Ida and I climbed out of the pool started running around the edge of the pool grabbing beach balls and volleyballs to throw at each other. Neither of us were very good shots and I started taunting him with my William Shatner impression.
A ball zipped past my ear and crashed into a picnic table sending plasticware flying in all directions. I shouted to him, “Like a poor marksman you-keep-missing- the target!”
“For a fat guy you move pretty fast!” Ida said.
“CANNONBALL!” Marv ran off the end of the diving board and curled into a ball. It made his bathing suit ride up in all the wrong ways.
Water splashed everywhere and drenched Joanna, she had been coxed into manning the barbecue grill and was now suffering for it. I took a moment to look at her as I ran to the other side of the pool, laughing at the fact bathing suit or not she had gotten soaking wet anyway. Her dark eyes were flashing with mock anger, the locks of her wet hair clung to the sides of her face and the moisture had made her tank top almost transparent. I was so transfixed by the sight of her nipples thrusting up against the translucent fabric that I didn’t see that lawn chair.
I went down on the ground chin first and hard.
My front tooth cracked in half, not straight of course, it was a ragged fang like edge. There was a moment when I was too stunned to feel anything and then the cold air hit the exposed nerve of my tooth.
“Oh my God Al!” Joanna shouted, “Are you Ok?”
My eyes were watering but I managed to say, “I think I just had an out of body experience.”
Tallulah and Joanna were at my side to make sure I was all right, Ida was apologizing, Kevin was on the line to his parent’s lawyer and Marv was too busy trying to fish his Speedo out of the filter to notice anything.
It was a Sunday but a dentist had recently opened for business in Mohawk Mall and he kept Mall business hours so Tallulah drove me there as I tried to weep in the manliest manner possible. I was glad she was there, the only thing I hated more than needing medical care was having to go get it alone. It just makes he feel vulnerable, it always has.
The irony that I was at Mohawk Mall with my best girl was that this was the same mall where I had gotten my first kiss years ago.
And no I wasn’t practicing on the mannequins, it was with Lilly I will have you know.
It was another old ghost laid to rest, or so I thought.
Once my smile was repaired Tallulah and I went to our favorite parking spot. Just to cuddle this time but I was still because I my whole mouth was numb and I couldn’t stop drooling. Although Tallulah was pretty used to the drooling part.
“I wonder if they’ll ever find the other half of your tooth.” She said.
“I hobe he cubts hibs fob obn ibt.” I slobbered.
“That’s what you get for running and horseplay.” She nudged me with her elbow.
“Hobrsebplaby? Ib wabs ebstablibsibng mybseblf abs theb ablphab mable.”
She looked at me, even in the dark I could see her eyes were twinkling, “You know I love you right?”
“You still want to marry me?”
“Gobd yebs. Youbr myb gibrl.” Spittle was flying everywhere like I was a defective lawn sprinkler, “Bubt Ib dobm’t knobw whabt web wibll dob.”
“I want to have your babies.” She said, “Lots of ‘em.”
“Ib libke theb soubnd obf thabt.”