get a tan
adam j. silver
I'm wearing the checkered hearts tie my mother bought me specifically for today. It's Valentine's Day.
The flagship dealership has a showroom that showcases the hot cars. The Dodge Magnum(attracting the daring), Subaru STI(attracting the speed junkies), Hyundai Tucson(attracting the twentysomething couple), Dodge Grand Caravan(attracting the new families, the car pool generation). A television runs a tape of the owner in a Dateline interview describing his renaissance business ethics for the auto industry, replaying all day long. The service department planted next door, has their waiting room lounge connected to the showroom. The lounge, only separated by floor-to-ceiling glass, provides a unique view from my office.
I'm playing on PartyPoker in between desking deals, assisting customers with their funding needs. They want to buy a car, they come to me, I disclose the paperwork. I'm in a no-limit Texas Hold-Em online table with a bankroll of three hundred dollars. My blood circulation wakes up. A woman in her mid-fourties in a loud jump suit covered in a tacky geometrically shaped design, sits legs crossed, twiddling her thumbs, bouncing her leg back and forth. A blonde boy of five years old builds with linkin logs at her feet. Puckered lips, she beams at me. She wants me.
The making of a cougar magnet: I saddled up at a Days Inn bar last night, sipping iced tea, glowing, young and dumb. Becca, fifties-ish and predatory, strong armed her way to my attention. She bought me a Jack and Coke, we chatted sex, I complimented her nicely carved legs, didn't drink the drink, and we elevated to the fourth floor and had wild animal sex. Why do older women have such long nails?
This mother in the lounge has more of a soft appeal. Passive and hintful. She will not avert her eyes from my hearty necktie. And a five hundred dollar pot I take with trip queens. Subconsiously clicking the mouse for the last three hands, my bankroll exceeds two thousand dollars. My blood circ peaking. My manager interrupts my high with a deal, slapping a five pound folder on my desk. "Book and cook em, bud."
I reach for the folder and belt, "Hey, buddy, do you have a cigarette?"
My manager dips into his pocket and throws a cig onto my lap, "Sure, bud, we're like a real car dealership."
Walking away, he concludes, "Yeah, except for the salespeople don't have a clue."
The intercom beeps, the receptionist pages, "Adam Silver, you have a call on two nine zero." I wink at the lady in the lounge and pick up the phone, star two nine zero.
"Hello, this is Adam."
"Hey baby, it's your cheetah. I am so horny." It's Becca. Christ, I told her where I work?
"I'm in the middle of something, cheetah, gonna have to call you back." Hang up.
"You don't have my num-" Click.
My bankroll dwindles to eight hundred dollars. Blood boiling. The happy fun bunch family intrudes into my office. They're buying a minivan.
"We love our new car." That's great.
"Sign here..and here....and here. Congratulations." Push em out, get the car across the curb.
My bankroll equals zero. I whip out an uzi and spray the whole dealership. The manager, the fun bunch, Sally on the phones, the asian teeneagers kicking tires on the Subaru. They all drop swiftly, no calculated shots, just random hits. No, I don't do that. I dig in my trousers to see what I really have left in my bankroll: thirty bucks.
Bookstores have been sanctuaries lately, my buddist temple. I jet out and fish through the Romance section at the Borders next door. One cover sings out to me. An Onastic Compulsion by Dee Weaver, a giant neon green tongue for the cover artwork. I buy it, I shell out fifteen at the checkout.
Snow surprises me when I step into the cold. I'm paler than chalk. I need a tan. It's Valentine's Day. Coincedentally, L.A. Sun is located next door to my dealership. A beautiful blonde, eh, early twenties, books me a tanning session. I release my last of it, the remaining fifteen. When I dump it in her bronze hand, I plead.
"Can I ask you a favor?"
Bronzy says sure.
"It's V-day, and obviously you and I, are alone." Her face turns solemn. "But, we can make it special. I have this romance novel here and-"
"Say no more," She cups my mouth with her pealing hand.
The bulbs invisibly shoot their tanning rays into my naked body while a caressive voice starts, "Fabio was wearing the checkered hearts tie that his temptress, Olivia, had bought for him." I light my cigarette and relax.