Monday, October 02, 2006

All throughout adolescence and a good part of my adulthood I was painfully shy. If I had the opportunity to address an attractive woman, I would usually just keep my mouth shut; if I said anything at all it would invariably sound inane and inappropriate to my ears and embarrass the hell out of me.

No longer. These days I am, as they say, a silver-tongued devil. I not only kissed the Blarney Stone, I took it to orgasm. Four times. Now, when I address an attractive woman, I am the wittiest conversationalist I can possibly imagine. “Glib” and “facile” are words that leap to mind when I reflect upon my ability in this regard. All of this is a result of a dramatic change in attitude that I had at some point – I decided I didn’t give a shit what anyone else thought about what I said and from then on I would simply say whatever the hell I wanted to. The arrogance implant I had didn’t hurt, either.

Having said that, at one point my pal Unca Don and I were both working in Toronto. Neither of us really knew anyone there socially, so I was constantly exercising my conversational talents with strangers of the female persuasion. It is not too much to say that Don was awestricken at my ability to win over young ladies with my charm, frankness and self-deprecating wit. As a case in point, we were sitting in the cocktail lounge of a hotel, and I wagered that I could make the lovely woman sitting by herself at a table come and join us in ten minutes or less. Not only did I win the bet, she enjoyed talking to us so much she blew off the wedding rehearsal dinner which had brought her to the hotel in the first place.

Of course, as with all arrogant people, I eventually had my comeuppance. Unca Don and I were sitting in a small bar on Queen Street in downtown Toronto drinking Belgian microbrewery beers at the time. His back was to the window onto the street, but I sat at right angles to it and could (and did) watch the passersby as we talked. At one point, a gorgeous brunette with a phenomenally cute ass walked by the window. She was wearing skintight blue jeans; I could read the date on the loonie in her pocket. As she walked by, my head obviously tracked her passage as I sat there chatting with Don. She noticed me watching her, walked in the door, walked up to me, stood next to me, and said to me, “Is that your Porsche outside?”

Now there are two words that could have been created specifically to describe me at this exact point in time: ‘dumbstruck’ and ‘poleaxed’. My brain flatly refused to believe that this totally hot woman would come in off the street and start flirting with me. “That’s it,” said my brain. “I’m out of here until reality starts up again.”

Don later said he thought to himself at this point, “Here we go. This will be like shooting fish in a barrel for Hulles.” As a few moments went by, however, he noticed my stricken look, and incredulously heard me say:

No.”

And silence reigned.

At this point, Don figured out that I was completely stunned by this whole thing, and began struggling hard not to laugh at my obvious discomfort.

This plucky woman was not to be deterred so easily, however. After a couple of minutes of uncomfortable silence, she looked at the Belgian bottle in my hand and said, “How’s the beer?”

Good,” I replied.

After a few minutes more of silence, she turned and walked out of my life forever.

Freed from restraint, my putative pal Unca Don began rolling on the floor laughing.at me. Me, I just sat there and quietly whimpered until my brain turned back on. Color me chastened.

I felt then, and feel now, that such an incredible event as this beautiful stranger walking in off the street to chat me up will never happen to me again. But if it does, I’m ready. I have about 20 Porsche lines prepared, and I’ll buy her as many Belgian beers as she wants if I have to steal from church collection plates to do it.

Come back, dear. I’m better now.

- Hulles

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