Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Oh yeah, this happened.

Oh, I asked out a guy yesterday.

His name is Charles, and he works as a department manager at Publix. Once, a couple weeks ago on my lunch break at the store, I went there to buy a yogurt and chocolate milk or whatever.

Since I only have two items, I go to the customer service desk to avoid the line. Usually, it's a good plan.

But the day I met Charles, he was waiting on a guy who wanted, like, 14 separate Cash 3 tickets. And Charles went over it with him. And over it. And over it.

And I'm waiting there, watching him mask his frustration. And I look up on the wall and see his photo - for all the manager's photos are posted.

So when he gets to me, I said, "Hey, your hair is much better now than it is in the photo. That photo really doesn't do you justice."

He smiled.

And he tells me that the photo is years old, and I say it looks about three years old.

He said that's it exactly, and I told him that I'd guessed, which I had.

So I told him I worked at Barnes & Noble and that I'm in there regularly to buy yogurt.

And as I'm walking away, he asks me his "I'm going to make sure he's gay" gateway question.

"Why don't you guys sell OUT Magazine?" Charles asks me.

"We do," I said.

"I've looked for it," he said.

"It's over in the business section, though, for some reason. If you come in the store, look for me, and I'll tell you where it is."

So last night he walked in. And I offered to show him where the mag was. But he said he'd already come in and found it, although he said I wasn't there the night he came in to look.

"You weren't working today," I said, for I'd noticed how he was dressed - and also because I'd been in his store earlier, and he wasn't there.

So I asked him what he was doing at my store. And he said he was just killing time before going home because he'd been out at a friend's birthday party.

(Uh huh. He was SO looking for me.)

So I talk to him until I get a customer. So he walks away from me toward the shelves.

And I'm starting to think, "OK, no. Maybe I shouldn't approach him."

But I wrote down my phone number anyway, carried it in my hand and approached him at the shelves.

"Sorry," I said. "I had to take that."

"I'm a store manager," he said. "I know you're working. I just didn't want to block the register. So I came over here to look at what your own staff recommendation was."

(Yeah, he was so looking for me.)

So we talked about books. And we went over to the shelves. And we talked about books and culture and DESPERATE HOUSEWIVES and other stuff.

And, seeing my own manager eye me while pushing carts by himself, I asked Charles directly if he wanted to have coffee sometime.

Charles said yes.

So I handed him my phone number.

And he said that I probably didn't have much free time because of my two jobs.

"I'll be free," I told him plainly.

Then, I said goodbye, told him to browse in music if he liked and got back to work.

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