Johnny America


An Evening at the Bour­geois Pig and Some Thoughts About Ben Affleck


I’m sit­ting at the Bour­geois Pig drink­ing my sixth gin-and-ton­ic. Frank’s on my left. I’m at the far end of the bar, so there’s no­body on my right ex­cept oc­ca­sion­al­ly an East­ern Eu­ro­pean type who’s been com­ing over every twen­ty min­utes or so to pick up and close­ly ex­am­ine the var­i­ous can­dies for sale, on­ly to put them back with­out mak­ing a selection.

Frank and I are talk­ing about the up­com­ing se­mes­ter, and con­ver­sa­tion drifts to pa­per-writ­ing and then in­tense dis­cus­sion of Fak­ing a Good Pa­per Through Adop­tion of an Aca­d­e­m­ic Tone. I’m mind­ing the girl at the end of the bar who I’d like to pick up, but Frank and I are hav­ing one of those rare Tru­ly En­joy­able ex­changes so I’m ne­glect­ing the fox hunt. Ten min­utes pass and a ri­val in a mal-fit­ting po­lo starts chat­ting up my in­ter­est. Four hours ago I saw this girl ridi­cul­ing one of her friends in the bank park­ing lot at 9th and New Hamp­shire, point­ing at her and mak­ing fun of her gaudy out­fit and di­sheveled hai — and was en­am­ored. I’m sup­posed to be at the Tap­room to meet friends, but I’m still wait­ing for an open­ing. Twen­ty min­utes lat­er with no lull in their con­ver­sa­tion, I tell Frank I’m ready to go. I in­vite the girl along even though po­lo shirt’s next to her and we don’t know each oth­er’s names. She pass­es, and my thoughts drift to Ben Affleck.

Ear­li­er in the af­ter­noon I’d been watch­ing Good Will Hunt­ing on the Su­per­sta­tion. I’m baf­fled by the fact he’s Peo­ple mag­a­zine’s Most Beau­ti­ful Man In The World, and for a few sec­onds I think about how I would like to cook pan­cakes with his for­mer fi­ancée Jen­nifer Lopez. I call Ali­cia and asked her to quan­ti­fy how much bet­ter look­ing Ben Af­fleck is than me. Bare­ly, she said, and I would edge him if I worked out. I ram­ble to her about my dis­dain for Af­fleck, and con­tin­ue walk­ing with Frank to­ward the Tap­room. I won­der aloud whether J. Lo is the kind of girl who squeals like a sis­sy when you throw a spoon­ful of bat­ter at her, or if she’s plucky and would chase you and try to pour syrup in your hair. Af­fleck is Won­der Bread. I hope some sweet la­dy in Told­eo or Bran­son sent a note to Beni­cio del Toro and apol­o­gized on be­half of her fel­low Peo­ple mag­a­zine read­er-vot­ers, for not elect­ing him.

Filed under Drinking on December 22nd, 2003

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Reader Comments

Faso Latido wrote:

This sto­ry gives me such a won­der­ful sense of place. I mean, I feel like I’ve been there be­fore. Hey, did you take those movies back yet? Talk to you later.

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