I can’t quit you – oh, yes I can
He borrowed the dog, the car, and the book. He wore a fake Rolex and carried a broken Mont Blanc pen. The only thing that belonged to him was the toupee.
Charles must’ve been a prop master in the theater in another lifetime. He had accumulated enough stuff to have it appear that he was successful. He heartily acted the part and began to believe it himself.
His neighbor agreed to allow him to walk her “chick bait” chocolate Labrador retriever, Bella. Around 11 AM each day, Charles strolls down Union Street with Bella- the world’s friendliest dog.
Although he is not a prolific reader, he knows enough about cause and effect and to always carry a New York Times bestseller with him. The library book (never read, always carried) is strategically placed, on the table, bar, or counter for all to see- next to his iPhone and his Mont Blanc pen. His Rolex in full view.
Prey For Success
The sky blue cashmere sweater tied around his shoulders – appearing rakish – perfectly planned, as well as the deferred maintenance look of old money: tasseled loafers with no socks. On the foggiest days he has a Burberry raincoat – two sizes too small- over his arm. He does ‘forget’ his wallet – on occasion. His meager pension and Social Security coupled with the money he gets for writing fake Yelp reviews covers his tight budget. He often jokes that he forgot his wallet and “depended on the kindness of strangers.”
The con man with je ne se quois
The self-elected mayor of Union Street, he goes ‘out to dinner’ out five nights a week. Somewhere in his dating career he had set a goal of having three dates a week. At one time, he rotated between Perry’s, Brazenhead and the Blue Light. When money got very tight, he developed a penchant for any Happy Hour and grazing at the free hors’d oeuvres trough.
By mistake, I went out with the very charming Charles three times and gradually put the pieces of the faux puzzle together.
Easy way out, I told Charlie I was going to quit the dating scene and he actually said, “You can’t quit me!” and I smiled, and walked away.