It’s all about you, sweetheart. It’s always all about you. – Rob
Actually, I’ll start and end with Rob. Because, well, I have no other choice.
Here’s my story all about Rob. We met just before Memorial Day in 2012. We met at a bar. We didn’t know we were coworkers, right away, even though we had just both gotten out of work and had headed for the same bar.
Me, I was new to the tavern, and to Pennsylvania, pretty much. Rob was not as new and had acclimated from Long Island far better than I ever could. And, he was wearing a uniform with our work logo on it. I wasn’t.
His pickup line to me, that day, after having shared some conversation and beer at the bar, was, “You wanna come home with me, smoke some weed, and meet my dogs?”
Well, jeez, how could I resist?
I hadn’t gone to any guy’s home in years, hadn’t smoked weed in over seven months, and really liked the guy, odd as it sounds.
He said he lived just around the corner on Route 390. I said, “Okay. I’ll follow you there.”
I followed him for what seemed like days. I remember suddenly thinking that I should pay attention to side streets in case he was an axe murderer intent on locking me up in a basement for weeks on end before killing me. I remember laughing the whole time I followed his big green truck down winding and twisting roads onto a gravel path. I remember meeting his dogs and loving them at first sight, and letting them out to run in the yard.
I remember looking around the place and soaking everything in. His previous girlfriend had been with him for several years and then had suddenly died in a car crash just three years ago. He was displaced, heartbroken, and he had lost just about everything. But he had salvaged as much as he could of their belongings, relationship, and friendships, and he was hanging on, and getting by. That was the impression he gave me, and it’s the impression I got.
We sat across his kitchen table for two hours, drinking beer, smoking weed, and talking, talking, talking. And I liked him. We exchanged phone numbers, and when it got near dark outside, I headed home. I found my way home from a strange place, in the dark, and I was happy that I had met a nice guy. It was a weird, new kind of night.
We hooked up again that Saturday, our day off. Late in the day. We met up at the tavern again and then I followed him home again, but this time, we determined to cook dinner and eat it.
So we scrounged up a meal, after I searched his refrigerator, cupboards, and freezer. We found that we could make frozen ravioli with a jar of spaghetti sauce. Mangia!
He lost me when he poured the sauce into a frying pan instead of a sauce pan, but I was happily stirring the ravioli into boiling water within minutes, figuring we could make this meal really work. He seemed satisfied with our cooking endeavor, enough to announce that he wanted to change into his pajamas, if I wouldn’t mind. And I didn’t. So he did.
Two minutes later, he emerged from his bedroom (which, for the record, I had not seen yet) wearing flannel pajama bottoms and a t-shirt, and slippers.
For a moment, he stood there, watching me stir tomato sauce in a frying pan at his kitchen stove, and then, with two lunging steps, he reached for me and took me in his arms. I remember dropping the spoon somewhere and grabbing him right back, and kissing him, and just falling to the floor, with his arms around me and our mouths still joined and joining further. And I remember gasping for breath, and at the same time, Rob gasping and then moaning and then saying, “Oh my god. This is fucking ridiculous,” before we both started kissing and moaning again.
We did not eat, that night.
I did not go home to Mom’s, either.
And I have loved him ever since.