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Jimmy and Katie

I have a sister. The last time I saw her was in May 1994, on the day of my college graduation. Since then, we sort of fell out of touch, what with me on the West coast and her still on the East. Needless to say, I was apprehensive about seeing her again…I mean, five years had gone by! When she found out that we had moved to Hartford, she weaseled our street name (but not the street number&#41 from our mother, and proceeded to basically stalk Avery and me by driving around our neighborhood at random times of day, hoping to catch us outside. Last Friday, as we came home from a dinner out, we were standing on the porch for a couple of minutes when all of a sudden we heard someone yell "Hello..!" It was my sister, successfully stalking.

My sister and I cannot be more opposite. She is super-thin and flat-chested. I am not. She is a waitress. I work in the financial industry. She has a 10-step hair-styling process ("It's all John Frieda! First you wash it with the shampoo and then the clarifying shampoo and after that you have to put in the conditioner, but only after you get out of the shower because it has to stay on for 20 minutes, and then you rinse it, and after that you need to put in the hot oil and then the serum for the curls, you finish up with the hairspray…and after an hour, I'm done!"&#41 and likes to coordinate her outfits down to the last detail (on Friday, it was head-to-toe Tommy Hilfiger. Even the socks. The sneakers too.&#41 I'm lucky if I remember to put my deodorant on in the morning.

We decided to go to the Spigot to have a drink and catch up. With her skimpy tank top, skinny body, fake tattoo, and shiny, long curly hair courtesy of the John Frieda styling line, a lot of men seemed to be looking her way. (That, and she ordered a Zima as her first drink. I mean, what does that say about a girl?&#41 I asked her, "what the hell is a Zima, anyway?" "Clear malt beverage" she replied. A guy drinking a Corona (which, in my opinion, doesn't belong anywhere other than on a beach in Mexico&#41 came over and "accidentally" bumped into her, then started making small talk: "What's your puppy's name?" (motioning to the small stuffed puppy on her keychain.&#41 "Oh, it doesn't have a name" she told him. "OK, then what's yours?" asked the guy, who then introduced himself as "Ed." Of course, she starts talking to him. Then he starts trying to involve me in the conversation. He keeps drunkenly babbling until my sister gets up to get another drink (which Ed offers to pay for.&#41 Avery goes with her to try to coax her away from the Zima, leaving me alone with poor, desperate, pitiful Ed. Good Lord. I position myself facing away from him. He keeps talking. I ignore him. Trying to establish some sort of connection, perhaps, he then starts acting as if he's in the final round of the $10 Million Dollar Pyramid Game, saying things like "Chinatown." "Fisherman's Wharf." "Alcatraz." (THINGS YOU CAN FIND IN SAN FRANCISCO! YES! JOHNNY, TELL ED WHAT HE'S WON!&#41 I keep ignoring him. He starts saying "I know you're ignoring me." "You're ignoring me, huh." You are ignoring me." (Very observant, this Ed.&#41 After annoyingly repeating himself, like, nine times, I finally stop ignoring him. I turn to him and say, "Look, I'm married and she's engaged" which is kind of a lie because my sister isn't engaged, but she's had the same boyfriend for six years, so whatever.

He says, all crazy-like, "I know! I'm not trying to pick up on anybody!" God damn it, Ed, get the fuck away from me! You don't just buy drinks for people out of the blue because you're a Good Samaritan! And you don't keep talking to someone who obviously wants you to Go Away! What's with these men who do that — talk to people who are obviously ignoring them? Anyway, Ed eventually finished sipping his Corona and left, a couple of other guys stared at my sister and she batted her eyelashes at them a few times, but nothing else of Ed-proportion really happened. Maybe we'll just go for pizza next time.

Posted in Barflies At Large.

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