…suddenly here you are and you’re not entirely sure how you got from where you last remember being to where you find yourself now. This is my current state of affairs. You have memories peppered over a blurry time line you think you took part in and then there’s a blank, as if you’re in the middle of a Raymond Chandler novel and someone has removed any clue as to what’s going on. Of course, in this post-blackout state of desperate consciousness, there’s nothing resembling Chandler’s sinister thugs waiting to rough you up but you do find yourself staring straight into the g-sringed ass of a woman of mystery. She’s the same kind of gal Raymond Chandler would have waltzing into your office in a raincoat except she’s gyrating to Def Lepard and she’s wearing a sparkly g-string and you have no idea who she is.
I’m in a room, some call it VIP and some call it champagne, but I’m in a comfy chair against the wall and there’s a gyrating ass in front of me shaking to the micro-rhythms of songs within songs and I got nothing in the way of an explanation as to how this all came about. I remember talk of titties and I remember a few scant seconds of a decadent dinner but then someone put the lights on low and I wake up with my face against some dancer’s ass.
She turns to me and smiles. She looks Bahamian, exotic with a hint of the result of people fucking people into cafe con leche homogeneity. She notices when I exhibit signs of life. Perhaps strippers can only see you when you move, much like velociraptors?
She throws a dainty leg over my shoulder and leans into my ear, purring my name. Apparently we’ve met but I’m at a distinct disadvantage. She knows my name and I don’t have a damn thing stored in the wrinkles in my brain concerning her. She laughs at my obvious confusion.
I stir and look for my friends or at least someone I know but I am in a dark room with chairs piled against the walls and pretty girls are dry-humping guys seated in chairs just like me. It’s the strip club version of The Matrix but instead of being plugged into machines we’re in plush chairs and sexy vixens are pumping our wallets dry.
I stand to go but the Bahamian goddess pushes me back into my seat with a giggle. I tell her I need to go and she shakes her head no. I insist and she petulantly relents with a puerile frown. She then tells me I owe $800. She does it nicely, with a sexy grin and a beautifully delicate hand extended palm up in front of her. She looks innocent, almost like Oliver Twist begging for food but with fantastic tits. I don’t remember walking in and I don’t remember what had happened since but now I am deep in the moment and I’m told I owe $800 for the last hour or so of entertainment. I make a move to protest but it’s curtailed by a large man in black shirt and red tie. I slept through $800 worth of lap dances. Strippers are like taxis and the meter runs until you get out of the car. The only way out of this is with eight crisp Benjamins as compensation for the least memorable $800 of my life. My first car cost $750. I just paid that much for fake tits and a pussy that smells like cookies being rubbed up against me while I slept.
It’s disturbing how easily I part with money, whether it be bar, stripper or casino. I have no attachment to money. I am merely a way station between where the dollars originated and where they’re going. She takes my pile of hundreds and moves on. I wander back into the world of the living, looking for Parker. Fuck everything that has just happened. If I’m going to burn through a grand I will do it with a conscious vengeance from this point on.
I make my way to the table and Parker and Rick are sitting around with cocktails but no cookie-scented pussies clinging to their wallet. I am somewhat annoyed. All the different conversations of brotherhood revolve around not leaving anyone behind but I found myself alone and sleeping through an $800 stripper tab. Who the fuck was watching out for me?
Parker stands up laughing and wants to give me a manhug but I’m having none of it. Fuck him for leaving me alone. It’s my fault for getting so drunk but there’s a code that he ignored.
He reads the agitation on my face and smiles before handing me a bottle of MacAllan 18. We’re going to be drinking scotch for a while, mostly due to the fact that we’ve just ordered a bottle for the table. I need some water but have to admit that scotch sounds tasty.
I pour a drink and just as the spicy notes are hitting my palate, Parker punches me on the shoulder and starts laughing.
“Mr Vegas is here.”
I have no idea what that means but within seconds I’m escorted outside the strip club and crammed into a limo full of my friends and 4-5 girls who might be strippers in their spare time. It’s hard to tell. I still have the bottle of scotch in my hand. Perhaps the night is not a total waste yet.
I’m in the awakening stage of the night. I’ve had a big time with everything before and now I’m starting to rally for the present moment. I’m in a limo, headed to a club, I’m $800 lighter but I’m also making my way with a bevy of slightly slutty looking girls. It’s a wash.
The seconds fire off instantaneously until I’m mired in the shoulders of undancing people on the dance floor at Tao. I have no idea why I’m surrounded by attractive women who seem afraid to dance and my sobriety is threatening to creep back into my consciousness, tainting it with the desire to leave the dance floor and go back to my room to sleep. Luckily there is a gal whose only concept of dancing is to grind her ass against my crotch. It’s not really dancing but it’s a good enough move to keep me close to her. We’re two rhythmless white people who are drunk, so we grind and we give each deep Vegas kisses that mean absolutely nothing. Almost nothing, I should say. I’m hoping that all the kissing ends up in drunken nakedness but her kisses indicate more of a Vegas party moment and that’s all she has to offer.
I take her by the hand and we go to the bar. Over the pulsing noise of the club I order two tequila shots. I look up at the balcony that wraps around the bar and see Parker and Rick leaning out over the floor from our VIP area. Mr Vegas is a limo driver but he also greases the palms of every bouncer in the city and he got us into the club and into a primo spot with no effort at all. We repay his kindness with more Benjamins. With enough credit cards, even I can be a baller in Sin City. The shots arrive and I hold one up to toast my new drunken friend. She told me her name on the dance floor but I couldn’t make it out. I just nodded my head. Parker sees me about to take my shot and he lifts his glass of scotch. I toast him from afar, shoot my tequila and then grab my new girlfriend’s ass, pulling her into me and planting another kiss on her lips. One of her friends comes up to us and starts whining about wanting a shot as well. I order up another round, toast the girls, toast Parker and then make out with both of the girls, one at a time. I have an erection the size of Kansas and smell like a stripper and now I really want to bang.
Girl 1 and girl 2 drag me back to the floor and we all grind against each other. Girl 2 places her hand at one point on my rock hard cock and raises her eyebrows before splintering into giggles. We dance, we do shots, we make out and we repeat until things start to fade again.
I wake up in my bed, naked and feeling as if I were a rag someone had wrung dry. I have created another blank space in the annals of time. I’m like some kind of time traveler who is always jumping forward – like Quantum Leap but instead of being a physicist I’m an alcoholic. I’m locked into a massive thirst that is only matched by my massive headache. Every move is touched by the vengeful goddess of the morning, the one that hates each and every one of us but especially me.
I sit on the side of the bed with my head in my hands for a few minutes, perhaps hours. I finally rise and walk toward the bathroom. I can’t help but see a note scrawled in lipstick across the mirror:
Jackson, it was great meeting you. You’re a lot of fun. Give me a call later. – K
Who the fuck is K? How did she get in my room? Did something happen? Why didn’t she leave a number?
I call Parker, who was obviously still sleeping when the phone rang.
“Hey. What the fuck happened last night?”
“What the fuck didn’t happen last night?”
“Funny. Who is K?”
“What are you talking about?”
“I have a note on my mirror signed by K.”
There is a prolonged silence.
“I have no idea man. You were en fuego and we were surrounded by women. Right before you disappeared you started calling yourself Sid.
Oh. Fucking. Shit.
The silence is palpable before Parker finally breaks it up, “You still there?”
“Yeah, call you later.”
I hung up the phone.
I hadn’t heard from Sid for amost five years. He was back. Things were about to come unglued.