Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Extramuralisation

I hate first dates, but you know what? Second dates aren't that great either. Josh took me out again last night, but before he picked me up I had no idea what we would talk about. We already knew each other's favorite music and movies, where we grew up, and what we studied in college. I'm a slow reader, so I was still reading the same book as I was when I saw him a week earlier.

Someone more socially adept might suggest we dig deeper--religion, politics, child-rearing strategies--but I was mostly hoping we could focus on the food. He took me to The Black Adder, you know, home of the Anaspeptic Ribs, so I figured that's what he wanted to do too.

Then our waitress came over.

"Hey guys, welcome to The Black Adder! Can I--oh, hi, uh Josh." She put our waters on the table and took a step back.

Josh looked up. "Oh, Abby, hey!"

"What...brings you guys here tonight?" Abby asked.

"The ribs," I offered. "I'm Erin, by the way."

Abby nodded and pulled out her order pad. "Do you want to start with drinks?"

Josh, who had been playing with his straw wrapper this entire time, ordered a beer: "Just whatever's on tap."

"I'll take a whiskey and coke."

Abby smiled. "I'll be right back with those."

"Wow, that wasn't awkward at all. I'm guessing you guys have a sordid past? Please tell." I was elated at being off the hook for coming up with conversation--that interaction alone could entertain me for a night.

Josh looked over his shoulder, presumably to check that Abby was out of earshot. "We dated. For three years. She wanted to get married, I wasn't ready, and we fought about it daily until we just...stopped."

"Stopped fighting?" 

Another waiter came around with our drinks and Josh took a big pull from his beer. "Stopped talking."

"Oh." I stirred my drink.

"Yeah. Then one day, she was gone. Took all her stuff, no note or anything. She must've started working here recently. I saw her once at her old job. She used to tend bar at Eclipse. She threw a drink in my face."

"Well she sent someone else out with our drinks tonight, so that's a step in the right direction." I lifted my glass. "Cheers, to mending broken hearts."

He clinked his bottle with my glass and we both drank. I felt as though the night was going great. I already got this guy to open up to me! And with a juicy story nonetheless. 

Josh took another look around. "You know, I um, I'm not sure if I fed the meter enough, now that I think about it. I'm gonna go...check that." He got up and put his coat on. "Order me a burger?"

I sat there and waited, but he never came back.

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THANKS: Brooke, for making dinner last night and tonight when all I wanted to do was eat and sleep. 

22 comments:

  1. Hey, Chicago... I liked your story. Believable story with realistic dialog... and I loved the ending. Now I'm trying to figure out what 'extramuralisation' is.

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    1. Last line prompts are difficult because I feel like any reader from the speakeasy community already knows how the story ends, so I'm glad you still enjoyed it! As for extramuralisation, extra = out/outside, murus = wall, so it means leaving a building, going outside (I got that from here, not on my own! http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=271867).

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  2. I also wondered what it was, but Black Adder the restaurant,sounds awesome. Anaseptic ribs? I wonder how they taste. You have a unique way of using the prompts. Well done!

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    1. Thank you! I don't think anaspeptic ribs would be very good, actually. :)

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  3. Haha what a brilliant idea, a restaurant :D Loved the first date story...Love the dialogues :) Beautiful !

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  4. Enjoyed the dialogues and thoughts of the young lady. Could feel the relief of her.

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  5. Great story! Your dialogue is always so natural – I love that! Great premise too, though I would track him down and kick his ass for taking off like that. :)

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    1. I don't know if he'd even be worth the tracking down...but I suppose someone will have to teach him a lesson. :) Thanks for reading!

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  6. Anaspeptic ribs - good one!

    What a jerk for not coming back. I hope she ate his burger :)

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  7. So first he gets left without a word, and then he turns around and does the same thing to his new girlfriend. He's a worse than a dog.

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  8. Ouch! One relationship ends another. How awful. Well told.

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    1. I think past relationships can do damage to current ones more than we know...hadn't really thought about that until you mentioned it!

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  9. Great dialogue! This was a fun read. I enjoyed it.

    Karen

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    1. Good, I'm glad! Thanks for stopping by!

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  10. Wow! Abby must have been really horrible to Josh for him to bolt in fear like that. Poor Erin, caught up in old drama and left. Great story!

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    1. Yeah, Abby did a number on him. Luckily Erin wasn't super emotionally invested yet--she'll be fine. :) Thanks for reading!

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