Man of Honor
“You’re kidding me. So you’re saying that while you were dating your exes, you never once checked out a guy?”
“No, not really. Honestly, I’m trying to think… Just when I fall in love, they’re so… they’re the only thing I see. Honestly.” I reply to my best friend over the phone.
“So you’re at a beach and some guy with huge muscles is there. You’re not gonna look at him more than other people.”
“Big guy with huge muscles… Doesn’t really appeal to me. That doesn’t… speak to me. I mean, I just.. I don’t think…”
“GAH. I forgot who I’m talking to. Okay, some guy that has whatever characteristics you think are sexy…You’re saying you wouldn’t check out this sexy guy?”
“I dunno if sexy is the right word—“ I mumbled.
“Oh my God. Now you’re just avoiding the question.”
“Okay, okay. I know what you mean. Honestly…Okay, there was one time. It’s the only time I can think of though…”
“I KNEW IT!” Willie squeaked through the phone line.
And I told him about the time on the train. Once, me and my ex were taking a train into the city. It was a weekend. The train was rowdy and crowded. A seat somehow magically opened up after a stop. My then boyfriend nodded over at the seat, asking with his eyes if I wanted it.
“No, no,” I said. “Go ahead. I’m good.” And so he sat down. I stood holding onto the rail. I can’t remember where we were going. I think to a concert. It must have been somewhere a little fancier, because I remember my eyes burning a little from the mascara. Damn make up. *Beauty is pain* my older sister always tells me. What a weird thing to tell oneself…
“Ma’am. You can take my seat.” I looked up, and a young man stood up and stepped aside from his seat.
“Oh, no. That’s alright. I’m okay standing.”
“Please sit down,” he smiled. His hair was shaved on the sides and short on top. Clean cut. Army cut. His buddies sitting down all had the same cut. All of them were army cut. I took it that all of them were army folk. I decided to reject his offer once more because I knew if I sat down it would make my boyfriend look like an ass. But the stranger still persisted.
“The way I was raised, no young lady is gonna stand when I’m sitting. I’m gonna stand and this seat is gonna be empty if you don’t sit down, Ma’am.”
“Okay then. Thank you.” I smiled. I sat. My then boyfriend rolled his eyes a little, but The Soldier (I called him “The Soldier” in my head after I sat) struck up a friendly conversation with him. Nothing menacing about him. I imagined that he was from somewhere wild and yet calming like…Montana.
I hadn’t even really noticed anyone particular on the train (I observed no one anymore than I usually did as a writer) and suddenly, sitting on that chair next to the soldier, I was sneaking glances. I wanted to know more about the way he was raised. I wanted to know if he really was a soldier. I wanted to know if he would give up his seat to me if I was a middle-aged hag of a woman. I wanted to say thank you for the chair once more, but I also didn’t want to piss off the boyfriend. When we reached our stop, I stood up. Just before I walked off, The Soldier said, “Have a nice evening, Ma’am.” And I told him to have the same.
“THAT’S sexy to you? A guy gives his seat up on a train and THEN you get goo-goo eyed? (I can’t believe your then boyfriend didn’t have you sit down! Grr!) Was The Soldier at least a hottie?”
“I dunno. I remember him smiling… I don’t really remember much of what he looked like. I remember his hair cut. He looked in shape, maybe. Honestly, the thing I remember the most is his voice.”
“You’re something else, Jade. You’re really something else. How weird are you,” he laughed good heartedly.
“I know.” I sighed. “Someone will find my weirdness endearing one day…Or so I’m hoping.”
“Don’t worry. 100% someone will. 100% you’ll find the guy. 100%.”
“And you’ll be my maid of honor, as promised.”
“MAN of honor. Geez, Jade. C’mon.”
“Right. Man of honor."