“Hey, aren’t you that artist who paints sunsets?”


“Wow. You look exactly like him. I forget his name.”

“George Clooney?”

“No, silly. I’m not trying to hit on you or anything. Wait. I’ll look him up. Oh, here he is. See?”

“All right. He’s a handsome fellow, and he’s not me.”

It was a picture of some 50ish guy with a baseball cap and goatee. We’re about as rare as winos at a winery. I’ve tried trimming and shaping my goatee to be unique. I’ve tried wearing a different cap. Nothing changes. I’m the same old chap.

Women seem to be perplexed by baseball caps. They need to know what’s below. I’ve had one recently take my cap, then tell me I should “just shave it all off.” I said it just started growing in since my chemo ended last month. That shut her face nicely.

I’ve learned not to tell people they look like anyone. People aren’t flattered by comparisons. I call women love, lovely, cuteness, angel, and adorable. Those are all harmless. I don’t say things like, “Hey, has anyone told you that you look like [insert name here]?” People assume the rest of that thought goes:

  • … except much older/younger.
  • … without all the talent and fame.
  • … but uglier.
  • … because you don’t, but I’m totally trying to start up any conversation with you so that you might consider me a mating option.

The only time I give any appearance suggestions to a lady is when she is bartending with me, and I’m pooling tips with her. That’s when I suggest  undoing a button and letting her “boys” breathe a little. I advise her to smile and flirt with the money whales. Men are easily manipulated and they’re going to be pervs regardless, so why not make them pay?

What can I do with my lady patrons? Should I expose my abs or an upper row of pubes below? Fuck, no. Should I roll up my sleeves and advertise my gun show? Fuck, no. Should I wink, kiss her hand, and say I’m a cunnilingus pro? Fuck, no.

All I can do is offer her a friendly smile and a quick, stiff drink. At this age, the best I can be to get that extra quarter is the nice guy.

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About the author

Author of humorous essays about relationships and lifestyles.