I am a fatalist. Ask every friend. If you want to know how something can go wrong, just ask me. I will write you a story straight from a horror film. I’m that good.
Take Lemon, my favorite drinking partner. We partied hard for about a year. On one particular night, she met a guy and wanted to stay and hang out with him long after I hit my wall. Desperate to go home, I left her under the careful watch of one of our favorite bartenders with the instructions – she is NOT to leave here with him. And she was to call me the moment she got home.
Because of my flair for the fatal, I made her share her location with her. My entire Uber ride home, I tracked her location.
Still at the bar.
I brushed my teeth, washed my face, changed into my pajamas.
Still at the bar.
I lay down, promising not to close my eyes until I knew she was home safely. Religiously checking her location every 5 minutes (I mentioned I’m a fatalist, right?), the hair on my arms stood at attention when I saw she wasn’t at our bar. She moved across the street.
Damnit, Matt. I said she wasn’t to leave.
I called Lemon. No answer. I texted.
“Lemon. You said you weren’t leaving the bar until you went home. Tell me you’re OK.”
You see, I only liked going to our bar – the bar where we knew the bartenders (i.e. Tyler) well. Where with a single look, the bartenders got rid of the creepy men encroaching on our space. Where I knew my drink was safe and I could let loose without fear of being kidnapped, raped, and murdered.
Fatalist. I wasn’t kidding.
The bar where Lemon ended up – we didn’t know the bartenders. She was just another drunk girl with a guy. She wasn’t safe.
“Lemon. Answer me.”
And then her location was no longer shared.
The time was 3:30AM.
Thirty-three unanswered calls and 45 unanswered texts, I demanded she answer or I was going to show up at her house.
7:15AM – still no answer.
“Lemon. I am on my way to your house. Answer my calls, damnit!”
What the hell was I going to do when I got to her house? I didn’t have a key. Those brief moments of rational thought told me she was fine. She was a grown woman who could take care of herself.
You never should have left her at the bar, Melendez. I tend to talk to myself in the third person, referring to myself only by last name, when I am annoyed by something I did.
Driving to her house, I called several more times. I called one of our closest friends.
“Tina, you’re being a fatalist again. She’s fine. Just breathe,” she begged.
“I just need to know she’s OK.”
Pulling up at her apartment building, I stalked the main entrance, waiting for someone to let me in. But at 7:30 on a Sunday morning, not many people are coming or going.
Finally, ten minutes later, my phone rings. It’s Lemon.
“Dude! You’re insane. I’m fine!! I got home and passed out! I forgot to call,” she laughed.