missing phones & found identities

‘”Excuse me, guys; do you mind if I sit here?’

She sat down before we could answer. Who would say no to a mini skirt and black leather jacket anyway? She knew it wouldn’t be us.

“Sure, have a seat.”

Female stranger was a black-haired, blonde-rooted, student? who had commanded too much alcohol to go down her throat. If anyone was giving badges that night for livers working the most overtime, her liver’s badge would’ve been accompanied by a ceremony and standing ovation. Her ester and aldehyde breath confronted my date’s left cheek. As always, he was able to laugh off any discomfort. “Why are you laughing?” she wondered. Instead of being honest and telling her that she was a class syllabus for a DUI program, I told her that we were reading through the Christmas cards in front of us and they were pretty funny. “‘Have a wonderful time trying to take the wrapper off the sausages in the gift basket I sent. Remember how frustrated you got last year?’ That’s hilarious, right? That’s why he’s laughing.”

Apparently laughing was an exclusive activity. She didn’t find my explanation funny and neither did I.

“Well, I don’t know why he’s laughing, but here’s something, and you’re going to hate me once I say it – you’re going to want to hit me!” She trailed her long, red, manicured nails along my thigh while gurgling something about me being beautiful. Her manicure only looked a few hours old. If I hit her, she’d surely scratch back and I don’t wear red.

“Ok.”

Stranger  proceeded to tell me how I looked exactly like Rimanelli from “Bad Girls Club.” I didn’t know who she was talking about. Neither did my date. Her statement needed reference material. Out came the cell phones. Let’s just say I did want to hit her.

She amplified her drunkenness with a nonsensical, “How do you do it? HOW? I want it.”

1) Gain 30 lbs

2) Change ethnicities or wear bronzer

3) Breast implants

“Noooo, nooooo, but I want it! I want what you have!” Oddly enough, I could relate to her. I remember being her age and wanting what someone else had. I had said that same thing a number of times. Fuck, just recently I told my cell phone, ‘I want to be tapped like that.’

During this whole conversation, stranger kept shifting in her seat. She stretched her body across my date’s and reached towards my phone to help me find the best Rimanelli photos. She was horrible at helping. Her eyes were looking for a way out of the maze in her brain. Date and I tried to design a joint departure from the sofa. A Christmas tree, bright with lights and branches heavy with decorations didn’t work. “Look at that tree! Don’t you want to help decorate it?” No response. A hanging mistletoe, two weeks past its prime, didn’t work either. “How about you keep that guy under the mistletoe over there company?” No response.

We stopped politely trying and just got up. “There are hot toddies in the kitchen. Talk later.”

Stranger watched us ascend and forced her shifting eyes towards the ceiling. Close enough. This class syllabus is a long one.

The hot toddies were interesting – worth studying. They were flavored above and beyond the typical honey and lemon. Adult conversation turned to one word exclamations. “Ginger!” “Cinnamon!” “Cloves!”

We aced this new special subject, taught by other party-goers, but surprisingly neither of us finished our drinks. I was always good at getting high marks even when submitting incomplete projects.

Our still hot hot toddies were left to find foster parents, making us one of the few people residing in the boundaries of the sober state. Within a few minutes of enjoying our quiet time, away from slobbering strange students, my date reached into his pocket for his phone and realized it was missing.  His search efforts including tearing apart the sofa we were sitting on, searching the 1500 sq. ft. confines of the previous party we had attended in another unit, and verbally hating on three pretty girls who looked capable of snagging black and shiny technology. I did absolutely nothing except keep my date at arm’s length from the overly made up faces of the pretty girls. My date was uncomfortable. I could see it in his clenched fists.

“What do you want to do? We don’t know where your phone is and I don’t know anyone at this party. I don’t have any ideas.”

“That girl who was all over me has it – I know it. She’s probably rolling down College Road right now she was so high. Let’s find her. I already approached her and she ignored me so fast. I just know she has it.”

We went on the hunt for the drunk girl. She wasn’t inside. She wasn’t passed out in the middle of the street. She wasn’t kneeled over a toilet puking. She was nowhere.

My date calmed down. His fists had stopped flying. “Well, if we see her again, the main emphasis of the interrogation will be to remind her of medieval torture methods. Would you support me with that? You have planks of wood and rope in that cluttered trunk of yours, right?”

“I thought you might start with a discussion of how beautiful she was and how you’d like to take a picture of her. Ask her for her phone. Maybe it’ll be yours.”

“I’m too gay for that to work.”

“No, you’re just gay enough for that to work.”

We repeated this conversation all around the house. Eventually a mother figure overheard. “Can I help you guys? You’re looking for a phone?”

“Yes! There was a group of young girls around earlier and we think one of them might have accidentally taken it. She was sitting with us.”

“Oh, I know those girls. They’re all GOOD girls. None of them would ever do such a thing. I know where they are.”

In a quick and comfortable moment, the mother figure went Thor on a nearby door, hammering it down to splinters with her bare fist. “GIRLS! GIRLS! WE’RE MISSING A CELL PHONE! I NEED ALL OF YOU TO EMPTY OUT YOUR PURSES AND CHECK FOR AN EXTRA PHONE!”

A huddle of high heels dispersed and girls scattered in every direction. One in particular darted further than the rest.

“It’s her!”

“I’ll get her!”

The only statement left to make that would illustrate exactly why we were approaching her yet again was, “Skank, I knew you were fucked up when you called me Rimanelli and I know you have my friend’s phone. You’re roots are showing, your skin looks fabulous, you’re dressed cute, and you have the breath of a dozen week old samosas. You are ALL over the place. Which one of these pockets is the phone in?”

Gosh darn she knew what a pocket was!

“I only have one phone. Here, look.”

She took it out and placed it in my date’s hand. A correct password and swipe later and I was all over that screen. I had been calling him all night trying to help him find it.

“Thanks. It’s mine. I’m ready to go.”

Stranger student was confused as all hell. We might as well have been talking walls. She barely moved while mumbling, “I guess you had my phone. I guess it was mine.”

A friend of hers swooped in for support with a long, tight hug and reassuring words. “Ooooo….it’s okay. Hugs, hugs. You’re just drunk, baby. It’s okaaaaaaaay.”

“We found it!” I yelled for all to hear.

“Who had it?!?! Who had it?!?!” inquired Thor mother figure and everyone else who was paying attention.

“_________.”

I don’t remember her name. Everyone laughed.

(There was another name we didn’t remember that night, but we found it.)

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