The Empty Glass

Posted on by Dave Woodruff

The Empty Glass was half empty. I was waiting for the bartender to look my way so I could order a drink. But if I was a superhero, my power might be the ability to be invisible to bartenders. I stood clasping my twenty dollar bill in my hand trying to keep it visible when I noticed some fellow co-workers walk into the bar. “Damn.” Just what I needed, these guys who are always hassling me about not having a girlfriend. The last thing I need right now is these guys giving me a load of crap. 

Just then from behind I get bumped by someone. I turn to give my best annoyed glance, but I’m greeted by an attractive, picturesque woman, she smiles and apologizes for bumping me. “It’s hard to find your place.” She says simply. All I can do is listen to those words as they echo in my head. She couldn’t be more right about that.

Just then, the co-worker guys, notice me from down the other end of the bar, I see them trying to wave me down, but truthfully, I don’t want to join them. I try to avoid their overt gesturing, but instead I get a poke on the shoulder. It’s the same woman from before. “I think those guys are trying to get your attention.”

I look at her, and then to the guys. They wave me over, and now I have little choice except to join their ridiculous adult fraternity banter club. Unless…

I turn to the woman and clear my throat and ask a question. “I know this sounds like something from a movie, but… Would you pretend to be my girlfriend for a few minutes?” She looks at me, then down the bar to the group of guys, still waving me towards them, and them back to me. “Sure.” She says. She takes my hand and starts to lead me across the bar. The feeling of her warm hand inside mine give me an instant feeling of elation and excitement. “By the way… She turns to me, What’s your name?”

The evening goes amazingly, Rachel, (I only find her name as she introduces herself to my co-workers.) is charming, attractive and has the unique ability to flirt without seeming sleazy in any way. She is evocative and eloquent, bossy but not overbearing. All the guys are shocked that she’s with me. And it’s clear my status to them has taken a tremendous jump in prominence. 

That was 9 weeks ago. Rachel and I are married, with her three pugs, Winken, Blinken and Nod. She has already selected our new wallpaper with my Mother and made most of the plans for our children. She has combined our checking accounts, redecorated the bathroom and kitchen and apparently we’ve made plans to move to Charleston, South Carolina. All this from asking her to pretend to be my girlfriend.

I’m still not sure how it all happened, maybe she was looking for something, or someone, and I guess it was this place and me. I still don’t have a real clue what’s going on, except every time I go to work everyone asks about her, my Mother calls and wants to talk to her instead of me. I’m not sure she really knows who I am or cares for that matter.

I’m trying to watch baseball and Rachel asks me to run to the store to buy some pasta for a new recipe she wants to try for a dinner party we’re throwing this weekend. In the past I’d never have a party, or a dinner party for that matter. I’m walking down the block and decide to stop for a drink at the Empty Glass, this time it’s nearly empty. Since I’ve been with Rachel I always get great service here, actually… everywhere. But it’s not me, it’s her.

There are two lawyers standing next to me at the bar. I only know they are lawyers because I’m eavesdropping on their conversation. After a few moments one of them accidentally bumps me and turns to offer his apology. “Whoa, sometimes it’s hard to find your place.” He says. I take a stiff long drink and tap him on the shoulder to ask a question.

“Would you pretend to be my divorce lawyer?”