Notes From a Normal Boy
by Charles C. Cole
There’s a strange woman in my apartment lately, yet I am alone. I am paralyzed by my own bile. Nothing I do will chase her away. She’s beautiful, admittedly, but vehemently unwanted and uninvited. I wish she’d leave and never come back.
I was a known male chauvinist pig and proud of it. I scored women against each other. I whistled and hooted at them in public — only the hot ones — letting them know I appreciated their efforts to get my attention. I knew better, I suppose, subconsciously, but my symptoms were like flirty Tourette’s.
“Words can never hurt me,” some nameless idiot once said a long time ago. This makes sense, unless the words are part of a vicious curse by a woman of unimaginable power.
I’d been taking a lunchbreak with a likeminded male co-worker at a local coffee shop. The barista, “Blondie” on her nametag, was pushing middle-age but a looker nonetheless, short, spiked white hair and tattooed arms that clearly worked out — and could no doubt hold on when needed — with painted fingernails that could grab passionately.
“Here you go,” she said, with a smile that strongly suggested she wanted to be casually intimate at a time and place of my choosing, as soon as possible.
The two young ladies at the next table giggled and whispered like junior-high girls at a slumber party, pretending to compare notes on their smartphones. I was pretty sure the oh-so-innocent ruckus was just to get my attention. After all, I’m quite a looker myself. I’m tall, rugged, well-dressed. And I have endurance when it matters most.
As we were strolling back, minding our own business, this attractive female with the perfect bum, in a short plaid skirt right in front of us, dropped her car keys. When she bent to retrieve them, I slid close behind her, briefly, holding onto her hips to keep from falling, for balance.
“Hey!” she yelled. “Personal space, you bastard!”
“Next time, use your knees,” I responded, letting go and backing away. “It was instinctive. I was going to stumble into you, one way or the other. This way was a little more fun, for both of us.”
“You really believe that?”
“Sure. I mean, you started it. I just responded like any red-blooded American male would. If you don’t swing that way...no harm, no foul. You’re entitled to your personal sexual preference. Nobody understands the highs of sleeping with hot women better than me. Good for you.”
“What are you saying? Because I’m not turned on by a complete stranger ramming my ass on the sidewalk, I don’t like men?”
“You do? Great! My mistake, I guess.”
“You bet it was. So I’m going to give you a chance to apologize.”
“For what? Bumping into you?”
“For being an unrepentant sexist dog,” she said.
“Or what? You’ll call your daddy and tell him I got handsy? It was an accident. You’re lucky it was me and not some 400-pound Sumo wrestler.”
“Last chance, you entitled turd!”
“I’m sorry... I didn’t hold on longer.”
“Nice. You worked your magic, now I’ll work mine!” She reached over and tore a couple of hairs from my forearm.
“Something to remember you by. You’ll be hearing from me. And wishing you hadn’t.”
Then she was gone. That was then.
I’m not a bad guy. I go to church on Sundays. I call my mom once a month. I wipe my sweat off the treadmill when I’m done. I even worked a rape hotline while at college. I hold doors for the elderly. I sometimes give my seat to little old ladies on the subway. I’ve even given dollars to panhandlers, the ones that play music. And I never road-rage.
But pretty women are my red Kryptonite; I can’t behave around them. I want to. I’ve known guys who slapped their wives during a jealous rage. I’m not like that. I’m not violent. Some day I hope to have a wife who will raise our kids right and make dinner and meet me at the door when I come home from a hard day at the office. But my “perfect future family portrait” has been permanently recalled.
Because today, boys and girls, I resemble a woman.
Thankfully, my co-workers don’t see the change, but I do when I look in the mirror. I hear a voice when I speak that is not my own. One night I went to bed me and I woke up “her.” I’m pretty sure I resemble the girl I grabbed, ever so briefly. She yanked my arm hair for a reason, for some dark Satanic spell.
I still have my male parts, to the touch, but I can’t see them. They may as well be locked up in Grandfather’s gun cabinet. I can’t stand going to my former favorite bar because there are mirrors everywhere, likewise the gym. What’s the point of working out if you can’t admire the results?
I hate her for doing this — overreacting — over a simple misunderstanding. I’ve done worse: had crazy sex with a girl who was too drunk to remember, had insta-sex with a girl who was so asleep that she thought I was my roommate until she woke up, had consolation sex with a girl who had just broken up with her boyfriend. I’m not the only guy who would take advantage of these opportunities, just the only one paying for them.
Am I learning my lesson, you crazy witch? Yes, I promise, I will never again publicly grab the bum, no matter how perfect, of a woman I have not been formally introduced to, without notarized written permission, in triplicate.
Someday we’ll meet again. I’ve been looking for you. I know what you look like; your mistake. No hurry: I’ve been learning some black magic, getting ready for a rematch. Two can play this game. I’m going to get even in a way that will make your head spin, literally. See you soon.
Copyright © 2020 by Charles C. Cole