The ski trip in the Poconos with the gay cheerleaders started out beautifully. There were six of us in attendance: me, L.O. (the captain), the gymnast, the bodybuilder, the pretty one, and the Jersey boy. (I’m not giving the last four initials, because it would just be too confusing, and also they aren’t relevant to the story as individuals.) It rained on Saturday, which meant that we didn’t have to ski; we were of course all thrilled and relieved, the obligation to ski having been the only downside to the trip.
So instead of skiing we went shopping at the outlet mall, where I bought things that I liked, needed, and couldn’t afford even at outlet mall prices. Long live plastic.
After such a delightful afternoon, one might ask, what could possibly go wrong?
We went to a bar, that’s what.
Even this started out promisingly, with my virgin karaoke performance (“I Don’t Know How To Love Him” from Jesus Christ, Superstar) a smashing success. Then I went upstairs to the bar and smiled at the cute, shirtless bartender, who smiled back at me.
Then everything started to go to hell.
One of the other cheerleaders (the bodybuilder), on whom I had theretofore had a crush even though, as my friend D.R. says, he looks like a young Bob Hope, saw the cute, shirtless bartender smiling at me and said, “Oh, he does that to everybody.”
My soul shriveled into a little ball of self-hatred and despair.
Then the young Bob Hope said, “Hang on a second,” and walked away. He came back three minutes later and said, “He asked me to meet him after close.”
Any normal person would of course have committed entirely justifiable homicide. However, since my soul was now, if you’ll remember, a little ball of self-hatred and despair, I just said, “Oh,” and went into the bathroom and tried not to cry.
Of course, it gets far worse. The gymnast, the bodybuilder (a.k.a. the young Bob Hope), the pretty one, and the Jersey boy all got roaring drunk (L.O. and I weren’t drinking—I because I don’t, he because he had to drive), and the gymnast and the bodybuilder started dancing shirtless in the gogo cage, clearly having more fun at that moment than all the fun I have had in my life put together. I watched them in agony for a while, torn between my desperate desire to join them and actually have one iota of fun and my mortal terror of joining them and making an utter and complete fool of myself. Eventually the former won out over the latter and I took my shirt off and got into the gogo cage with them.
Where there wasn’t really enough room for three people.
And where I felt like a total idiot moron because I have about as much confidence in my ability to move gracefully and suggestively as I have in Ricky Martin’s ability to enjoy cunnilingus.
So I gyrated half-heartedly for about two minutes, during which time I was so miserable I wanted to put my eyes out with a carving fork, and then I got out of the gogo cage.
Then the four roaring drunk cheerleaders started to get really annoying, as drunk people tend to do when you are not drinking. There was all this drama about who was taking whom home, and who was trying to avoid taking whom home, and in the end nobody took anybody home. After puttering around for a while I went up to the room I’d slept in the night before to find the drunk Jersey boy blowing the drunk gymnast. I figured this was my cue to find somewhere else to sleep, so I made up the air mattress downstairs. Then I puttered around for a while longer, helping L.O. clean and rolling my eyes with him at the drunken behavior of the other four. It was a shared moment with somebody I like and respect and for the first time since the fateful intervention of the bodybuilder (a.k.a. the young Bob Hope) I felt like maybe my life wasn’t a cruel joke somebody had decided to play on me.
At some point in the middle of the night, the bear with whom the bodybuilder had been locking lips all night arrived, and the two of them had annoyingly noisy sex. I comforted myself, however, with the knowledge that L.O. and I had a special bond that was infinitely more meaningful than the shallow fun the drunk cheerleaders were having.
Then, when I woke up the next morning, I found out that L.O. had had sex with the drunk gymnast during the night.
I had forgotten how much it was possible to loathe oneself.