I get a call from Subzero cos he’s back from Tokyo and wants to go out. I tell him I’m in no mood for sarging – we’ll just go to a bar in Old Street and have a drink. Chat, catch up – be like normal people. My mood is good and we’re sitting back in the beer garden when a fairly cute waitress comes over to take our drinks order. Hmmmmm. Reflexively I start teasing her about her accent and then do a few interesting rapport exchanges. She forgets about her job and chats to us for ten minutes. I file away the interaction and remind myself I’m not sarging. An hour later the sun goes down and we head inside to sit on some sofas. I open a pair of unremarkable Aussies next to me.
Krauser: ‘cuse me ladies. Just a quick question. When I say to you the word “hazing” what images does it conjure up?
Girls: Ummm. Hazing? Er, I’m not sure.
Krauser: You see me and my friend were discussing it and it makes us think of initiation parties and broom handles.
They laugh, chat for a minute then I say thanks and turn away. I’m not sarging, remember.
The waitress comes over and Subzero orders a round while I’m having a piss. As I sit down to my new beer she comes back with the change. I tease her again and she’s IOIing me. I let her go but there’s a crowd of people in the way and as she asks two chodes to move they start hitting on her. Really needy embarassing stuff. It’s happening about four feet in front of us and she looks uncomfortable. They give up after a minute but she’s still standing there trying to plot a route through the crush. Fuck it I think. I lean over and whack her on the back of the thighs
Krauser: C’m ere!
Waitress: *smiles, comes over, bends over to get eye-to-eye, brushes hair behind ear*
Krauser: This road trip I’m planning. Where was it you said I should go?
Waitress: [her hometown]
Krauser: Thanks. Mind, if I don’t enjoy it I’m gonna hold you personally responsible. What’s there to see?
Another few minutes and I add her to Facebook. A few days later we have a follow up chat. We are getting bored sitting down so me and Subzero stand in the middle of the bar. Four asian girls walk past a chode crystal and the bravest chode taps a straggler and says hello. The girl pauses awkwardly then keeps walking. Fail. As the girls walk past us I whisper to Subzero “this is how its done”. I grab the straggler by the elbow and yank her over to me. Her friends look back, shrug and leave her to me. My opener?
Krauser: C’m ‘ere!
That’s a nice ten minute set with some kino escalation, DHVs and so on. A cute Japanese girl fresh off the boat. We swap Facebooks and I walk out, it being home time and I’m not sarging tonight. Once we get to the platform at Old Street station the noticeboard informs us it’s over five minutes till the next train. I see a short English girl waiting next to us. Unremarkable but cute in her own way. I stare at her until she notices me and gets self-conscious.
Krauser: *shakes head ruefully* I don’t like your dress.
Girl: *realises I’m hamming it up, giggles*
Krauser: Yeah, you’re kinda cute but it’s not helping you.
It’s a beautifully orchestrated sarge with the right helpings of DHVs, teases, light kino, compliments and so on. There’s a young couple behind us who watch the whole thing like live entertainment with the dude providing a running commentary to his girl. I take her Facebook and have a chat with her the next day but I won’t pursue it because I’m not sarging. Me and Subzero get on the train and there’s two girls standing in front of us chatting animatedly about their night. The unremarkable blonde is doing most of the talking and her much cuter Indian friend is holding a kebab in a polystyrene box. I’m just chatting with Subzero about the last UFC until finally after five minutes I feel compelled to open:
Krauser: Excuse me ladies. If you’re not going to eat that kebab can I have it?
Girls: *laughs* It’s rude to cadge people’s food.
Krauser: *to blonde* You’re a yank aren’t you
Yank: *faux-outrage* That’s so rude.
I take the Facebooks of both girls then go home and sleep. Sometimes I really enjoy a normal night out with no pressure to open sets.