Monday, December 1, 2008

At first I think Anderson's jealous. He's got to make nice with somebody who's not only half his age, but more celebrated. The kid's the toast of the town, with a TVQ rating probably double Anderson's, and he's pulling down thirty or forty times what Anderson makes. Plus, while Anderson's working hard to protect his image, the kid absolutely could not care less. He doesn't even hide his dirty laundry before Anderson and the film crew show up.

So, Anderson throws softballs. He gushes about how Michael is picking and choosing his endorsement deals without mentioning that Kellogg's cereal is what you reach for when you think kids are supposed to be fat. He doesn't mention McDonald's. He's awkward. Giggling. Doesn't want to make waves.

And then it hits me: this isn't an interview. It looks more like a date.

I cross my fingers for the Silver Fox, because I've been there and done that. You may be hot shit with the cheerleaders, but that doesn't mean the football team's gonna do you. For me the ending always featured a broken heart and indigo balls.

Anderson puts in hard time at dinner. My God, have you ever seen so much food shoved into such a gaping maw? Michael's bending forks like Uri Geller. Anderson's polite. Doesn't hint with "Gosh, you sure must be hungry!" or "It must save time to eat pancakes whole!" He keeps a brave face and tries not to look. It's sitting through shit like this that turned Eva Longoria into a Parker, he tells himself.

We're on the edge of our seats. If anybody can win one over from the other side, our man Anderson can. But the night started bad and then swan-dives. Michael's yawning. "I don't care!" Anderson thinks, though he's obviously hurt the dude's not falling for his charms. Still, he didn't make it to the top by taking hints. "How fast do you think you could fall asleep?" he asks.

"Minutes," Michael says to a giggle. "Seconds."

Anderson keeps a stiff upper lip as Michael actually dozes off. "Fifty-one seconds!" he announces when his date comes back to life. "I actually timed it!"

Oh God, I think. That's humiliation. I flash back on when I was ten years old and asked a hunky Hell's Angel for a ride. He was obliging enough, but you should have seen the look in his eyes when I announced that I could keep house better than any old bitch.

But Anderson is determined. Though Michael has given up swimming until next year, they drive to a pool and get him back in Speedos. "How's about a race?" Anderson asks, unbuttoning his shirt.

This is it, I think. He's pulling out the big guns. But Michael doesn't even notice the chiseled white marble that is Anderson's torso. He's on the other side of the pool before Anderson's even got his water wings on, and then he says he's gotta go eat his fifteenth lunch.

C'mon, I yell at Anderson, GO FOR IT! The dude's clueless. He's not even gonna realize you're attracted to him until penetration has occurred. Your tongue will be in his mouth before he starts saying, "Hey, 'Thixty Minuteth' Man, whath up with thith?"


But Anderson doesn't listen: he just shakes the man's hand and then takes off. We try to put a positive spin on it. Morley Safer never tongue-kissed Ellen. Leslie Stahl never fellated Elton John. Hell, Mike Wallace would have looked like shit in swimwear.

Still, tears stream down our faces, because deep in our hearts we know.

He tried. He faced down the pitcher, and he swung. But there is no joy in Gayville today, because Mighty Cooper has struck out.

1 comment:

David said...

I wish I had half of your imagination.