A Moment

I thought to myself, “I’m not drunk enough for this.”

A shame, too, because I’d spent the last five years learning how to get exactly drunk enough, and definitely not too drunk, for this. But my drink is far on the coffee table, and something - rather, someone - is blocking my reach.

I’m sitting on the couch at one end of the party between two other guys. The girl lying across us is short enough that her head can rest on the first gentleman’s lap and her feet just lightly graze the third’s. As for the middle, a very particular part of her is positioned on top of a very particular part of me in a very particular way. I’m trying to not rock the boat.

I could leave if I wanted to, but there are no other seats, and I’ve already made the standing rounds several times: there’s nobody else to talk to. I was invited by the girl who is hosting the party, and she’s attending to the rest of her guests in the kitchen. I’ve told her repeatedly that it’s okay, I can amuse myself. The partygoers at this end are all very relaxed. When I mentioned where I work, we started talking about music, although mostly they’re all into metal. As they chat around me in stereo, my hands rest precariously on our horizontal friend’s abdomen.

She notices me longingly eyeballing my beverage and reaches out to hand it to me with a smile. “Are you having fun?” she asks knowingly. I smile, “Oh yeah, this is a blast” and swig, and maybe it will be. If I can escape, if I can find our hostess, if I can think of the right thing to say. Another drink might help.

Mr. Feet, who has the easiest escape route, decides he’s done being an ottoman, and makes for the restroom. I don’t shift. I don’t have enough liquor at hand to forget the hostess and vie for Miss Torso, but I’m enjoying the arrangement as a conversational piece. Years ago, when I was a more easily-distracted man, I would have capitalized.

Instead, I finally do vacate my position and go in search. I find her where I left her, but surrounded by a new circle of friends. She introduces me around and says in brief how she knows everybody. She looks me aside and apologizes again. I take her sincerely and hope it means something. And I can’t think of even a single thing to say.

I slink back to find our girl still lying comfortably on top of Suitor #1, with her legs curled up to make room for non-competitors. I find another conversation to join and watch them out of the corner of my view as they make goo-goo eyes at each other. They inch closer and closer. I stare intently, as if willing them together. His finger encircles her lips. “Now, you idiot,” I all but shout.

And then finally, tentatively, their lips meet; quickly at first, parting as suddenly as they can, and then again more certainly, sustaining contact, and you can just barely see one’s tongue meekly poking its way across the breach. Finally. Damn it.