It was an ugly day. More back ache…three courts in two counties in five hours…kids out of town…cold, gray, dreary. And that was the good part. Sixty-f#$!ing one years old—still busting my ass…..Oh well, TV on and phone off, I’m finally safe at home.

Maybe it’s the travel that’s got me down. (Well, not travel so much as virtual travel). For a guy that likes to stay put, I’ve been to Europe twice recently. Virtually.

Two weeks ago: Minding my business, screwing around on Match, an IM streamed across the Cuyahoga. Scrambling to read her profile, (this was no email; time was of the essence), I sensed something wrong, terribly wrong. She was a nurse, educated and (dare I say?), stunning. There had to be more to the story.

It’s 2011. Tired of deflecting last year’s serial and nuanced bullshit, my goal had been to stay date-free ‘til spring. Still, killing time on line, there she was and
truth be known, the subtle seduction of her note begged for response. I bit.

We rallied back and forth, but not long. I was eastside glib and, recalling the lesson from “The Rules,” opted out first. Giving it little thought and even less credence, I went to bed. By morning though, an email’d arrived: “Let’s meet at Salmon Dave’s this week,” she wrote. At 6AM it was just not a priority. I let it bake. Rocky River?

Day’s end brought coffee with Ed. Eyeing her picture, reading the email, his advice was unambiguous: “You’re crazy if you don’t meet her.”
“But we have nothing in common,” I noted.
“Including looks, asshole. I say go for it.”

Our meeting that Thursday went well and would have gone better if I understood anything that came out of her mouth. A Greek émigré, between her thick accent, short skirt and leather, it was like dining with Charro. Still, she was likable— even bubbly. Thought there might be something to pursue, but as I learned at dinner days later, I was wrong. Dead wrong. When you take away the perfume and pumps, nothing in common is still nothing in common.

My phone rang last week. “Haven’t heard from you,” (it sounded like she said).
Then, hesitating, I dropped the other F-Bomb: “You feel like a FRIEND.” (It was, for this poker player, one of the greatest pre-flop folds of my career).

Hours later it was coffee with Weiskopf: Caribou, 5PM. Same agenda.

“Just nothing to say to her,” I shared, explaining the blow off.
”Use smoke and mirrors, jackass.”
“Not my style.”
“Fine, then don’t complain the next time you’re alone.”
“Don’t worry, Dad.” I told him.

We spent forty minutes solving other problems of the world until finally, it was time to leave.

“You know,” he said crossing the parking lot, “You took points off the scoreboard.”

I pretended I didn’t hear him and kept walking. Like I said, it was a good fold.


  1. Marc says:

    Tough hand to lay down-well played

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