Ok, so Mel Gibson’s Older And Not As Good Looking Brother was probably not actually Mel Gibson’s brother. There would have been name-dropping to go with the misogyny and antisemitism, for starters, and a much better accent.
It started like this. I was in line for a “B Scene” event at The Blanton Museum. Happens every first Friday of the month. I’m in a cute pink skirt with a black top and black ruffle pumps. This particular “B Scene” event was for a 1950s – 1960s art and design exhibit, like ‘Mad Men’ without the cigarettes. And regret. (I thought, at the time.)
This older gentlemen, older than I am anyway — I’ll be kind and say somewhere in the mid-50s started chatting me up about the exhibit, how someone of my youth could be familiar with Eames, et cetera. I should have known then. So this goes on while I’m in line and he’s in line. Eventually this somewhat professorial gentleman lets it be known that he’s a WRITER. And he’d like to meet me for coffee. Oh, and bring along a snippet of your favorite poem.
Is that like an artist saying to a girl: hey, baby, come and see my etchings?
So I’m a “nothing ventured, nothing gained” sort of girl. I’ll give it a go, you know? So I said sure. I accepted.
I’m an idiot.
I met him at this small cafe on West Lynne. I had my poem in my head. I had another one just in case this actually turned out to be an interesting evening.
Oh, it was interesting alright…
Inside of half an hour, he professed the following:
- Women belong in the kitchen, not in the workplace.
- Jews are responsible for all the wars in the world.
- He’s only a “writer” if you count writing hate mail messages to a science fiction author.
Oh my God, I said to myself: I am on a date with Mel Gibson’s older, poorer, not half as good looking brother.
I was half on, half off my chair, trying to slide out of it and right on out the door. It took me another fifteen minutes or so to get free. And this was after my phone “alarm” went off.
…Thank my conniving little brain that I always set an alarm on my phone to go off within the first thirty minutes of a date (or first hour if I really dug you), to give me an escape hatch…
Which I, of course, took.
And the poem I chose? A translation of Catullus:
“I don’t care to have dinner with you, Caesar. I don’t care to learn the very first thing about you.”
I should have played the lottery that night.