“Anne?” asked a lanky guy with thick glasses that sat crookedly on his nose who wore a sweater that I’m quite certain not even my blind great-grandmother would wear. “It’s me. John.” Underneath the bar, I felt Anne give my leg a tight squeeze. She was silent and motionless otherwise.
“Mandy?” asked the other one who was straight out of the 1980′s movie Revenge of the Nerds with his tucked in t-shirt and high-waited slacks (yes, slacks.) “I’m Twain.”
“Twain?” I asked. “As in Mark?”
“Yeah! Just like that!” responded this Twain character with glee as if he were shocked I could put two and two together.
They sat down and joined us for a drink. Being civil, I did most of the talking while Anne sat silently and ordered shot after shot while John proceeded to put, what I’m assuming were “moves,” on her. When Twain spoke bits of froth accumulated at the corners of his mouth, and when John tried to make a joke it was something so far over both our heads that only Twain understood and laughed. They were awkward in their movements, socially inept in their conversation skills and explained that they didn’t drink — which had already become obvious as they consumed tea, while Anne drowned her disappointment in endless shots (that eventually became free once she unbuttoned her shirt a little more) and I sipped my Guinness slowly.
It was when John and Twain suggested we go to a “hot club for some dancing,” that Anne raced to the bathroom, missed the toilet and threw up on the floor instead. As I stood over her, with her hair pulled back from her face, I asked her if she had learned a lesson. “Yes,” she said, “No matter how interesting someone seems online, if they don’t have a photo up, it’s for a reason.”