Thursday, February 25, 2021

Hey You! Get Out of My Way! Enter the Ninth Circle Part 3

Honestly, I think that it was my fault when I got kidnapped from Uncle Charlie’s. There was a patron who would find out I was working and make sure that “he was there”. I started to see him every night I was working. This went on for several months, at first causing me to think that he was just always there. Uncle Charlie’s had its regulars. Afternoon and night, you could rely on the same people to be there nightly hanging out drinking. 


I did think that he was a really nice guy. I would laugh at his jokes and tell him that I was flattered when he would tell me how “cute” I looked or when he would bring me a little gift. The fact that he would tip me heavily every time I brought him a drink would make me look around for him when I started my shift. 


I was even flattered when he asked me to work a desk job at his construction company. When I asked him what I would have to do at this desk job, he responded with a wink, “Answer phones.” 


“Right,” I thought to myself, just answer phones. Is this because he could tell how lovely my voice was as I screamed at him over the loud bar music night after night? Truthfully, I paid a lot of attention to him because, like I said, he would have order five drinks and tip up to twenty dollars per drink. The night I got abducted he was tipping fifty per drink. At fifty dollars a tip, I paid extra close attention to his stories.

Everyone in the bar was laughing the night he picked me up and threw me over his shoulder. He had been drinking and decided that I was going to go home with him. When he marched me out of the bar, the crowd was laughing even harder. Even though I was screaming “Help, this is serious, I am really being kidnapped!” no one did anything. They must have doubled over in hysterics when he pulled me through the door and started running up the block. All the while I was fighting and struggling to get free of him.

When we get to his car, he fumbles for his keys while pinning me to the door with his body. He gets the key in the lock, opens the door, and pushes me in. I watch out of the passenger window as two bouncers and assorted staff tackle him and slam his body on the hood. 


Suddenly it becomes a blurred sea of faces bouncing off the passenger window. Every time someone jumps in, he flicks them off like a fly at a banquet. I climb into the drivers seat and push open the drivers side door and climb around a swirling mass of arms and legs that have travelled over the hood and ended up on this side of my escape. Suddenly, his bright red face comes within inches of mine; someone’s arm is around his neck cutting off his air. “Get back in the car!” he gurgles to me. “Fuck you,” I respond and slide out of the car.

I run through the mass of people who have gathered and head back into the club; the manager has called the police by this time. When the police show up, they don’t want to take a statement from me and they let the guy go. They figure that this is going to be a lot of paperwork and it’s low on the crime list. “Another brawl at a gay bar. Alert the media,” says one of the cops out of the side of his mouth.


The next night when I show up for work, the owner summons me to his office.  He yells at me for leaving the club during my shift the night before. I explain the kidnapping, the cops, etc., but he is mad that a good paying customer won’t be back.

To make it up to him, the owner gives me a new chore. He wants me to bring people into the club. “I really don’
t understand,” I say. “Where am I supposed to find them? I have seen the same people here night after night.” I have yelled out “Merry Christmas,” “Happy New Year,” and “Happy Thanksgiving” to the same motley bunch every holiday. Sadly, new faces appear only on the weekend. “Well, we need to get more people in the club,” he snaps and dismisses me with the wave of his hand.

I am not alone in my first task. My friend Mitch and I get the job of decorating the club for Halloween and then handing out fliers for a party. I met Mitch at another bar I worked called The 9th Circle and got him a job here at Uncle Charlie’s. Mitch and I are the perfect people to be given this job; Halloween is a favorite holiday for both of us. 


We are given a budget and we run to the store and buy plenty of day glow paint, cobwebs, lights, and assorted skulls. We have decided to make the video room into a graveyard (sadly, lately not too far from the truth on a nightly basis). I get to the job of painting tombstones all over the mirrors and Mitch installs yards of cobwebs. We have only one day to start and finish the task. The club will be filled in the evening, because in the Village, Halloween is a huge celebration. I mean, just give gay men the chance to dress up and become anything they want to be, and the sky’s the limit.

I paint what feels like hundreds of tombstones and my arm is tired. I have written most of the staff’s names on the grave markers and Eric (one of the newest waiters) tells me that he can’t find his name. Eric stands at about 6'7" and his arms dangle from his shoulder sockets. I write, “Eric the Fish” in bright red paint on a grave and call it a day. He demands to know why I call him “Eric the Fish?” Just the fact that he gets annoyed when Mitch and I say it is enough joy for me. I finish up and run home to get into my costume. I have worked for weeks on it and it is perfect.


Most everyone in the club is planning on going as a sexy nurse, sexy kitten, sexy pirate, or sexy construction worker. I, on the other hand, am going as Piper Laurie from Carrie. I have taken two ratty falls and combed them out so they are enormous. I attach them to my head. I’m wearing a big pink muumuu that billows when I walk. I am impressed with what I have accomplished and get the desired effect when I walk down the street brandishing the knife above my head. “Oooooohhhh, you go scary girl!” A scraggly looking Queen strolls past me.  Then Sexy Batgirl calls to me as she passes. “Work it out Mama!” I am feeling good and looking fabulous when I enter the club.

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