Tuesday, May 05, 2009

The Streak - 27

The obvious place to go was Lisa's, so Evan dialed her number from the cab. Lisa started out as a party girl; a groupie, to be blunt. But unlike certain others, she seemed to have no devious designs on the men; no one's wife ever got a call from her, no one's management company ever got a FedExed video of her sucking his cock, and she never rifled through a wallet while its drunk and naked owner lay snoring on a bed. She knew other girls, the ones to trust and the ones to avoid. She provided something more than sex: an anti-home for stunted boy-men lost in the fiction of a life of play. Her seedy virtue had made her exceptionally popular among the team and eventually she graduated to the status of private Yankee icon, a sort of underground Bob Shepherd or Yogi Berra, an object of unquestioned, dogmatized affection. The players loved her for fairly obvious reasons. But management loved her, too. She kept the players out of lots of trouble by inoculating them with a little.

She disliked the game of baseball and did not care to learn thing one about it.

"Hey, Ev."

"What's up, Leese?"

"Not much. How's Bungalow 8?"

"What? I'm not at Bungalow 8. I'm in a cab with Kyle."

"Oh. How was it, anyway?"

"What makes you think I was at Bungalow 8?"

"Jackie saw you there! You remember Jackie."

"What makes Jackie think she saw me there?"

"I dunno. Your face? She saw your face?"

Lisa cupped the phone with her hand and shouted into the din of her apartment. "Jackie! Evan wants to know why you saw him at the club!"

A few moments of indistinct speech and laughter followed.

"She says you bought her a fucking drink."

"What did I do next?"

More muffled conversation.

"She says you acted like you'd never met her. She says you were pretty drunk."

"But that wasn't me."

"Yeah, yeah, yeah. I get it, I get it. And this conversation is not happening."

"No. I mean that person that she saw. Was not me."

"This telephone will self-destruct in –"

Another pause.

"She says you were hooking up with someone else. You don't have to lie to Lisa, baby. Who's the other girl?"

"Jesus, Lisa. I'm high as hell right now but the one thing I know in the world is what I didn't do tonight." Even as he spoke the words, he doubted them. Cold sweat soaked through the back of his shirt.

Lisa laughed. "Maybe you have a double."

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