Shallow Dance

by Matty Sullivan

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Quit Complaining and Do What I Tell You

I met a girl named Marilyn. She was beautiful, so I took her to dinner.

At first everything was fine. But then we started eating and she began stealing my food. The first thing she took was a buttered roll. I had placed it in the corner of my plate so it would be ready when I needed it. Not half a minute later, as I was adding parmesan to my Fettuccini Alfredo, she reached over and took it.

I looked up at her and said, “What?”

She didn’t say anything, just threw the roll across the room. It sailed over a table full of lawyers and stuck to the wall, next to a framed picture of the restaurant’s owner shaking hands with Lou Ferrigno.

I looked back at her. “Huh?”

“Sorry,” she said. “Accident.”

“Okay,” I said. “No biggie.” It was our first date and I wanted to get laid.

A minute later, she reached over with her fork and took a shrimp off my plate. Then she sat back and stuck the whole thing up her nose.

“Why are you doing this?” I asked her.

“Doing what?” She had Alfredo sauce running down her chin. It was kinda sexy.

“Never mind,” I said. “Would you like some wine?”

“Yes,” she said—so I poured her a glass of wine. She picked it up and dumped it on her head.

“Stupid bitch,” I said.

“Look,” she said. “Do you wanna fuck me or not?”

“Yes, I do.”

“Then quit complaining and do what I tell you.”

“You haven’t told me anything to do.”

“I told you to quit complaining.”

“Okay,” I said. “And if I do, will you have sex with me?”

“Probably,” she said. “As long as you don’t act like a weirdo.”

So I kept eating.

Twenty seconds later, she began making sounds.

“Weeeeoooop!” she said.

I ignored her, but the restaurant went silent.

“Yowwwwwwzza!”

The people around us began murmuring in tones of fear and suspicion. I heard the word ‘taser’.

“Focus,” I said to myself. “Remember: you’re gonna get laid.”

“Strrreeewwwwwth!”

The waiter appeared. “Sir, would you please control your woman?”

“She’s not my woman,” I said to him.

“I beg your pardon?”

“He said I ain’t his woman,” Marilyn said.

“I see,” said the waiter. “In that case, madam—may I be of some assistance?”

“Yes, you can.”

“Yes?”

“I need someone who knows how to fuck off. Can you do that?”

The waiter started crying and ran away. I didn’t care; I was horny.

“This place sucks,” she said. “You ready to go?”

We got up and headed for the exit. Before we got there, the manager came out and stood in our way.

“Excuse me,” he said. “But you haven’t paid for your meal.”

“No shit,” said Marilyn.

“Well, I’m afraid I must insist.”

“You’re afraid?” she said. “You’re afraid? That you must insist? Well, I’m afraid too! But not of that! Do you know what I’m afraid of?” She was screaming. “You wanna know what scares me to death?”

The manager took a step back. “Umm,” he said.

“Spiders!” she shouted. “They scare the shit out of me!”

“Yes, I see,” he said.

“Literally! When I see one, I lose control of my rectum!”

“Jesus.”

Without another word, she pushed past him and left the restaurant. I watched her leave; so did the manager. So did everyone in that mortified place.

After a moment, the manager turned back to me. “Sir,” he said. “How long have you known that woman?”

“This was our first date.”

“Indeed?” he said. “As of this moment, you have not had sexual relations with her?”

“No, sir.”

He shook his head, then reached out and put his hand on my shoulder. “Good luck, my friend.”

“Thank you.”

He squeezed my shoulder. “But first, you must pay for your meal!”

So I paid for the meal and left. Marilyn was nowhere in sight. All I found was a mangled piece of shrimp on the sidewalk.

Thank you and goodnight.