Muse’s Latest Discovery
“MOV, have you ever shopped online?” said a little voice, startling me in the middle of the night while I sat at my computer shopping online. “It’s kinda fun.”
“Muse, my gosh, do you never call first? You almost gave me a heart attack.”
“So answer the question. I found this cool web sighting, it’s called Overstock, and, like, they have really good deals.”
Receiving this piece of news was like finding out that trees are made of bark and leaves and roots. “Umm, yeah, I already knew about Overstock.”
“Oh, you did? Huh. Well, they send me 10% off coupons all the time now, so if you ever need a coupon, I can give you one.”
I was slowly realizing that she’d been drinking again. “Muse, they email coupons to everyone. I don’t really need your coupons. But thanks anyway.”
“I bought a couch from them! But then it arrived and we had to put it together, you know, it came in pieces.”
We?! “Muse, who? Who put it together for you?”
“The UPS guy. I asked him what was in the box, he said ‘How should I know, you ordered it,’ and the next thing you know, he’s sitting on my floor with his shirt off, drinking a beer, and putting my couch together for me.” She winked at me.
“Muse, are you trying to say you were flirting with the UPS guy?”
“No, I am not trying to say that, I am saying that. Have you seen my UPS guy? He’s hot.”
I only knew what my UPS guy looked like. Not hot. Not even lukewarm.
“So anyway, Paulo and I are going out to dinner tomorrow night. Wanna come?”
“Who is Paulo?”
“Have you not been listening just now? My UPS guy? The one who put my couch together? I told him it was the least I could do, buy him dinner, after he stayed all afternoon adjusting my—”
“Muse! I have heard enough. Wait—his name is Paulo? What kind of UPS guy has a name like that?”
“So you will have dinner with us? I don’t want him to get the wrong idea about me.”
I decided I would have dinner with Muse and Paolo. What could possibly go wrong?
(To be continued …)
Meal With Muse
I got to the restaurant early, as per my Virgo nature. The maître d’ greeted me warmly. “May I help you, miss?” I could see why Muse picked this restaurant—what 40-year-old woman does not want to be addressed as “Miss”?
“Why, yes,” I enthused, “I’m meeting some friends here, and—”
The maître d’ was looking behind me, and I realized he had not been speaking to me after all. I turned around, and there was Muse.
“Hello! Yes, there will be four of us.” Muse winked at him, winked at me, and gave a few extra winks to whoever happened to be within winking distance.
I smiled in relief that she was here. “Muse! Hello!” I leaned in for the European back-and-forth kiss that I always seem to get wrong. Muse leaned in for the American air kiss and accidentally got her hair tangled in my necklace.
“Ack, MOV, take the necklace off!”
“I can’t! You’re choking me!”
We someone separated, hair and jewelry intact, and then her previous words seeped into my brain: four. She’d said four people.
“Muse, who else is coming besides Paulo?”
“Aha, MOV, he has a twin! Armin.”
“Why is Armin coming? I’m married. You know that.”
“Oh, dear God, MOV, don’t be naïve. Armin is not for you to suss out, he’s for me to suss out. I might like him better than I like Paulo. I don’t want to get stuck with the wrong twin.” She shrugged, as if she’d said, I don’t want to accidentally buy the wrong size shoes.
“Muse, you do realize we are talking about people, don’t you? You can’t say this person is better than that per—”
“Ladies,” interrupted the maître d’, “shall I seat you now and bring your dates over when they arrive?”
“Yes, please!” Muse exclaimed. “Perfect.”
We sat down and before we even had a chance for Muse to flirt with the waiter, Paulo and Armin approached our table. To say they were handsome is like saying the sun is a tad bit warm. I was mesmerized by their good looks and could not stop gawking at them.
Muse jumped up out of her seat and hugged them both, as if they had been long-lost best friends from childhood, not the UPS guy and his brother whom she met for the first time four hours ago.
“Guys, guys, I am so happy to see you! This is my boss, MOV.”
Wait—what? Did she just call me her boss?
“Nice to meet you, I’m Armin,” said the one with the blindingly white teeth.
“How do you do, I am Paulo. Muse has told me so much about you,” said the one with a better tan.
We all sat down in the booth, with Muse and me on the same side.
“Shall we get a bottle of wine?” asked Muse.
“Absolutely! You know, our uncle owns a small vineyard in France. Maybe his wine is on the list?” said Paulo.
Armin scanned the list. “Look, Paulo, they have three of his wines! I told you this was a good restaurant.”
I excused myself to go to the ladies’ room. I stood in front of the mirror critiquing my outfit. I always felt old next to Muse.
When I returned to the table, they were gone. I looked to the right and left, and then in desperation, under the table.
The waiter appeared and set a glass of wine down for me. “Ma’am, are you MOV?” he inquired.
“Yes? Hey, do you know what happened to my friends? Did they switch tables and go outside?” I craned my neck to see the patio section.
“No. They left. They left $100, and said for you to have a very nice dinner on them. What can I get for you?”
This was not the first time Muse left me stranded …