I took two painful years of French in middle school, and a year in high school. Afterwards, it was suggested by my teacher that I take a much simpler, much more my pace, Latin class.
As I’ve explained in previous stories, I’d been exposed to an abundance of international men my freshman year of college. Although the French scene in Boston wasn’t particularly large at the time, those who spoke the language of love seemed to really gravitate towards me. I should have bought repellant.
I was the type of girl who would go out with anyone who made the effort to ask me on a date. I don’t like rejection. Therefore, unless he showed obvious signs of being a serial killer, I would never pass a guy up on a dinner date.
I was sitting in my school cafeteria doing work on my website when a dark haired man came up and asked me if I had a piece of gun. Although a little confused by his approach, I gave him the last piece I had in my pack. It did seem a bit rude to be asking complete strangers for favors, but he was bold.
As I should have known, fresh breath wasn’t this guys only motive for talking to me. He picked up the conversation out of nowhere, asking what I was doing; editing my fashion blog. He told me about a startup business he was involved with, involving fashion also. I was genuinely interested. He invited me to go to a fashion show with him that night. I told him I was unable to attend because I had prior obligations, and he didn’t seem fazed. He asked to use my phone for a moment, and called himself. Once he had my number saved, he texted me with his name “Augustin”. Augustin stayed with me a little longer, talking my ear off about fashion. In America, only gay men outwardly enjoy fashion—without judgment.
Augustin texted me later that day inviting me to the Vienne Millano fashion show at the Intercontinental hotel. I had never heard of the brand before, but I didn’t look further into it. I trusted my new friend’s judgment. He instructed me how to buy my ticket online, as most friends would. We agreed to meet at Park street station, where we would catch a cab together.
As soon as Augustin and I were close enough in distance, he reached out to grab my hand. First he planted a gentle kiss on the top of my hand, then holding on tight, clasping fingers. I was under the impression I was going to this event with a fellow fashion lover, not a heterosexual male.
When we arrived at the show he guided me straight towards the bar, a gesture I always appreciate. Augustin suggested we split a bottle of wine on our cards. Sadly, that bottle of wine was $40 and my bank statement revealed single digits. Free champagne was given upon entrance, so I recommended we take what was prearranged to us instead.
After we retrieved our free glass of champagne, Augustin chose to stay behind and barter with the bartenders. One class of champagne wasn’t enough for him, so he resorted to schmoozing. He was unsuccessful. In the meantime, I found us seats.
I was thrilled to be attending my first legitimate fashion show. However, when I was invited to attend I was under the impression clothing would be involved in some way. Instead of the elegant ball gowns I expected to see, I was greeted with bare chests, naked women—wearing nothing but pantyhose. Had I looked up the designer beforehand, I would have known that this was a hosiery fashion show.
The audience was a classy group, wearing mostly tuxedos. My date played the part well, foreign, rich, and snobby. Yet, unlike the rest, Augustin was cheering on the models in the show as if they were football players. This included mocking the women he did not find attractive, or those whose walks he did not appreciate. I sat there with my head down, hoping it was obvious to bystanders that this was the first date and not one I had consciously gone on.
Before we went out that night, Augustin told me he had reserved bottle service at the club and I was not to worry about expenses. Seeing as I had $1 in my bank account, not nearly enough to pay the $30 cover, I really had my hopes up that this guy was good for his word.
Once we arrived at the club I realized was right to be skeptical; once we arrived he tried to convince me to pay the discounted cover, so that his friends could get in for free. Being the passive person I was, I normally would have just agreed. This day was different, however, I was broker than the spare change guy who sits outside of Tremont Street.
The only thing I could think to do was pretend I left my wallet at home. Sure, it may have been one of the most obvious techniques ever, but whose going to question you to your face? He gave me one of the admission tickets and I went through the velvet rope. I was embarrassed I had to lie, but even more relieved it actually worked.
My freshman year of college I was a “club rat” as they call them. I had been to this club, Bijou, countless times—enjoying myself every time. However, this particular time was different. First off, Augustin only ordered one bottle of Grey Goose, essentially a waste of bottle service since there is a limit you have to charge, the equivalent to three bottles. My date also insisted on dancing on the table, which was only about 2×2. The table once held pitchers of mixers, ice, and cups. Augustin kicked them off to make room for himself; shattering glass all over the club. The bottle server replaced the glasses and mixers, notably holding back tears, as he screamed at her.
Despite minor setbacks, I still made an effort to enjoy myself. His girlfriends and I discussed how socially awkward he was. They too had just met him very recently; it was their first time going out with him as well. I also didn’t mind his guy friends. He had one French friend in particular that I spent the entire night dancing with. Some say its rude to make out with your date’s friends, but if I wasn’t aware I was on a date in the first place– am I still rude?
As the club was closing, Augustin called me over. “You and me, we will never workout, but we should be sex friends” he said to me in a thick French accent. My jaw dropped, I laughed awkwardly, and agreed. Of course I had no intention in hooking up with him, but like all the French men I know—he was bold. The only thing that sucks more than finding out your gay guy friend is straight, is finding out your date is a douche.