It was a Monday evening and I was rolling down Hwy. 83 and trying to find a radio station playing something worth listening to and not having much luck. It was a perfect ending to a sucky day that was one more in a lousy week that was in turn a part of a god awful month.
It was one month to the day since I'd found out that my fiancé was cheating on me. Of course according to her it wasn't cheating and maybe by her definition of cheating it wasn't, but by my definition it was and it was mine that counted as far as I was concerned.
Cara and I were supposed to go to a party, but I had run into a problem on the trailer I was working on. I had promised Wade that I would have it done in time for him to move two horses to Ruidoso Downs in New Mexico the next morning. I called Cara and told her what was going on and told her that I would make it up to her later.
I got back to work on the trailer and got it done a little quicker than I expected, called Wade and told him the trailer was ready for pick up in the morning and then I headed for Cara's place figuring that I could salvage at least part of the evening. I got to her place just in time to see her climb into Bill Anderson's Ford F-250. WTF I thought as they pulled away. Anderson was the guy she was going with when she met me and no, I was not the one who broke them up.
I followed them from Cara's place to Jill's place where the party was being held. The two of them went inside and I sat in my pick up and fumed. Twice I got out to go inside and both times I stopped and got back into my truck. My mood was not good and if I went inside there would probably be words said and I liked Jill too much to cause a disturbance and disrupt her party. As I sat there I thought about what was going on. Anderson knew we were engaged and he knew, or at least would have expected, that Cara and I would be at the party. Therefore, at least to my way of thinking, Anderson wouldn't have called her to ask her out. To me that meant she called him.
Curiosity finally got the best of me and so I got out of my truck and approached the house. I wouldn't go in and mess up Jill's party, but I would look around to see what I could see. I looked in a couple of windows, but didn't see Cara or Anderson. As I moved down the side of the house I heard the sounds of a party coming from the back. I reached the back of the house and saw several couples dancing on the patio including Cara and Anderson. I stopped where I was in the dark shadows and watched.
Cara and Anderson were dancing close — too close as far as I was concerned — and Anderson had both hands on Cara's ass as they swayed to the slow tune. Cara had her head on Anderson's shoulder and it looked like her face was nuzzled into his neck. I took out my cell phone and snapped a picture of the lovely couple. The music stopped, but they still swayed together for another twenty seconds or so until it suddenly dawned on them that the music had stopped. They stepped back from each other and Anderson leaned forward and kissed Cara and I turned and left.
It was four days before Cara called me at work on my cell and asked me where I'd been and why hadn't I called her.
"Didn't want to interfere with your social life."
"What does that mean?"
"It means that I have gotten out of your way so you can get on with your running around."
"I still don't understand what you are talking about."
"Bluntly Cara? I don't want anything more to do with your cheating ass!" and I disconnected and got back to work.
At ten to five an obviously pissed Cara came stomping into the shop. I was relining the brakes on a Sooner stock trailer when she came up to me.
"Why did you hang up on me and what is this shit about running around and cheating?"
"You know damned well what I mean."
"I don't have a clue what you are talking about Frank."
"You deny that you went out with another guy behind my back?"
"Of course I deny it because it didn't happen."
"Well I say it did Cara."
I put up my hand and said, "Stop it Cara. I can't be doing this shit in the shop and on company time. Go up the hill to the café and I'll come up there when I get off at five-thirty and then you can have your say."
"Damn it Frankie I wan..."
"Just shut the fuck up Cara! If you really want to waste your time telling me lies get over to the café and wait for me."
I turned away from her and bent down and went back to work on the Sooner. Cara stood there staring down at my back for maybe ten seconds and then she turned and left. I finished the brake job, cleaned up the work area and myself, punched out and went to the café to face Cara.
She was in a booth in the back and I went and sat down across from her. Angie was there as soon as my butt hit the seat and asked me what I was going to have. I told her just coffee. As she walked away I looked at Cara and said:
"I might as well go first since it will save time. What did you do last Friday night?
"I went to Jill's party."
"I went by myself."
"What did you do there?"
"What you do at a party. I drank some, danced some, talked to some people."
"Nothing out of the ordinary happen?"
"No. It was just a party."
"Okay, that's your version. Here is mine. I got done at work sooner that I expected so I headed for your place. I got there just in time to see you climb into Bill Anderson's pick up truck. So telling me you went to the party alone is your first lie. Your second lie was telling me that nothing out of the ordinary happened. Maybe it wasn't out of the ordinary for you because for all I know it is what you are always doing when I'm not around, but to me it is definitely out of the ordinary for my fiancé to plaster herself to an ex-boyfriend on the dance floor and neck with him. And don't bother to deny it."
I flipped open my cell phone, pushed a couple of buttons and then showed Cara the picture that I had taken.
"I watched for two minutes before I took that picture. Notice where his hands are? They were there the entire time I watched and you made no attempt to push them away. Notice that there isn't enough space between the two of you to push a piece of paper through. See how you are molded to him and how your face is nuzzled into his neck? It was that way the whole time I watched. I was watching when the music stopped and you stayed molded together and swaying for twenty or thirty seconds after the music had stopped. I was watching when you finally realized you had no more music and broke apart. I was watching when he leaned forward and kissed you. Unfortunately I had already put my cell phone in my pocket so I didn't get a picture of that tender moment, but my eyes managed to capture it and store it in my brain.
"And before you even try it don't bother to give me any bullshit about how you had too much to drink and were in a really mellow mood and didn't know what you were doing. It was only thirty-five minutes from the time you got to the party until I took the picture. Not near enough time for alcohol to have an effect on you.
"You don't have to having sex for it to be cheating Cara. When you let me put that ring on your finger you took me to be your man — period! Not one of many, not one of a select few, but one of one. What you did with Anderson was unacceptable. When you did what you did you cheated on me and that ended it for us. Your turn."
"You have it all wrong Frankie. I didn't go to that party with Bill. All he was was my ride. I called a half a dozen people to see if I could catch a ride with someone, but I wasn't able to hook up with anyone. The last person I called was Debbie and she told me that she had the flu and wasn't going to go, but that Bill, who was supposed to be her date that night, was there and she put him on the phone. He said he was still going to the party and that if I wanted he would stop by and pick me up. He picked me up, gave me a ride to the party and then we split up and went our separate ways.
"After we had been there a while he asked me to dance. Okay, maybe I should have been a little more circumspect when dancing with him, but he is a damned good dancer and we had always danced well together. Yes, he had his hands on my ass, but so what? He wasn't going to get anywhere with me and I knew it. I'd already arranged with Tom and Sherry to give me a ride home. As for the kiss? You apparently didn't stick around to see the outcome of that. He caught me by surprise when he kissed me and I slapped him so had I left a hand print on his cheek and then I walked away from him and left him standing there looking stupid. I didn't speak to him the rest of the night.
"I have not been running around on you and I have not cheated on you. One dance with an old friend is not even close to cheating."
"I'll give you that normal dancing isn't cheating, but dancing the way you danced with Anderson wasn't even close to normal by my standards and my standards are what I go by. So, it was fun Cara and it is too bad that you decided to end it. Have a nice life" and I got up and walked away.
I spent some time that night thinking about what Cara had told me and I wondered if I was being fair. True, what she did dancing with Anderson didn't set well with me, but would anyone else call it cheating? The next morning when I got up I decided that I would do some checking. When I got off work that night I called Debbie and told her up front that I had a problem with Cara being at Jill's party with Anderson and since she was supposed to be dating Anderson I wanted her input. She backed up Cara's story. She had come down with the flu, couldn't reach Anderson to cancel and he had shown up to pick her up. He was there when Cara called and he had offered to give her a ride.
"He took her to the party Frank, but not as a date. He just gave her a ride."
"Thanks for helping me clear it up. You feeling better?"
"Take care and thanks again."
My next call was to Jill and after some small talk I told her the reason for the call.
"Cara and I are on the outs over what happened at your party between her and Bill Anderson. The story that I got was that she and Anderson got pretty touchy-feely and she said that I'm reading things wrong. If I'm wrong I want to know it so I'm asking others who were there."
"I don't know that I can tell you much Frank. They showed up together, but didn't spend too much time with each other. They did dance once and it did raise a few eyebrows. As far as I'm concerned the way they danced wouldn't have passed the boyfriend test, but other than that the only thing that happened was she slapped him when he kissed her."
"The 'boyfriend test?' What is that?"
"If it is something that you wouldn't do in front of your boyfriend then it is something that you shouldn't be doing at all."
"Good point. Anything else?"
"No. After the two slaps they didn't go anywhere near each other for the rest of the night and then she left with Tom and Shelly."
"When she turned to walk away after the first slap he tried to grab her arm and she belted him again."
When I hung up the phone I thought about what Jill had said. She was right. What Cara had done with Anderson did fail the 'boyfriend test' and I had to wonder if she could do that in front of a bunch of people that knew the both of us what would she or could she do when she wasn't around people who knew me or worse still, when she was in private. I didn't like the thoughts that gave me. I didn't like it so much that I decided that it was just as well that I had split with Cara.
I let things settle for a week and then I started calling around and asking the unattached women I knew for dates and to my surprise they all turned me down. That to me was odd because before I put a ring on Cara's finger I never had a problem getting a date. Finally Nancy Abbott told me:
"Sorry Frank, but after the shabby way you treated Cara I'm not interested in a guy like you."
It turned out that Cara had wasted no time in putting out the word that I had dumped her and was being an absolute asshole. The big surprise to me was that none of the girls who were turning me down thought that Cara had done anything wrong.
"It was only a fucking dance for Christ's sake. Get a grip Frank."
It didn't cause me to rethink my decision where Cara was concerned, but it did cause me to rethink my attitude toward the women I knew. Fuck the bitches! If they thought nothing was wrong with what Cara did then they would probably be cheaters too.
That was the mood I was in as I rolled down Hwy 83. Up ahead I saw emergency flashers on the side of the road and I slowed down. As I got close I saw smoke coming off of the left front tire of a Featherlite three horse gooseneck. I pulled over to see if I could help.
The trailer was being pulled by a Ford F-450 Super Duty and the driver's door opened and a smallish figure got out and walked back toward me. Maybe 5'2'' and wearing Levis, boots, a Carhartt barn coat and a JB felt. I almost chuckled. In the equine business it always seemed like the smaller the guy, the bigger the rig he drove. It turns out that I was wrong. It wasn't a guy; it was a woman. As she walked up she said:
"I think I smoked a bearing."
"Smells like it."
"I tried calling the trailer place back there, but I guess they closed for the day. Looks like I'm stuck here until they open tomorrow."
"Maybe, maybe not. I can always go back and open it up."
"You know trailers?"
"Been working on them a good while. Let me see if my truck jack will go high enough to lift the trailer so I can pull the wheel."
"I have a Jiffy Jack."
"Get it out and let's get the trailer up and see what we got."
She got the Jiffy Jack out and I placed it under the rear tire and she backed the trailer up onto it. I got my travel tool box out of the back of my truck and pulled the tire and wheel and then popped off the dust cap. When I got the axle nut off and pulled the hub I saw that it was a blown rear grease seal. The brake linings were soaked in grease and the rear bearing had disintegrated.
"Bad?" she asked.
"It's a Dexter hub so I should have the parts and probably a hub if needed. I'll need to take it back to the shop, clean it and check the outer bearing, races and the drum itself for cracks. Take me about an hour."
"Can I ride with you? I'd just as soon not sit out here alone with nothing to do."
"Of course you can."
I crawled under the trailer and read the data tag on the axle. It was a Dexter 10k and seeing that I was almost certain I had what I'd need to get her on her way.
Her name was Betsy and she had just dropped off three horses at May Hill Farms and was on her way back to Oklahoma when she saw the smoke rolling out from under the rear of the trailer and had immediately pulled over. We drove back to the shop and I unlocked it and turned on the lights. I put the hub in the parts washer and set the timer for fifteen minutes and turned it on. While I was doing that Betsy took off her barn coat and I saw that it had been covering up one very well built young woman. She took off her hat and her dark brown hair fell to her shoulders. Very nice indeed.
I showed her to the customer waiting area up front and went back to the shop. I checked out the Dexter 10k in the parts book and got the numbers for the inner and outer bearings and races. The hub wasn't cracked, but the inner race was shot so I replaced it and the outer just to be on the safe side. There was no sense in trying to degrease the brake linings so I grabbed a complete backing plate assembly off the shelf and went to get Betsy. She told me that she was going to pay with a credit car so we should take care of it before leaving so I made out an invoice, ran her card, and then we drove back to her rig.
I put everything back together, slid under the trailer and adjusted the new linings and it was done. I gathered up my tools and put then back in my truck and wished her a good trip. As I turned to walk back to my truck Betsy said:
"While you are here could you look at something for me?"
"Sure. Why not?"
"It is in the tack room."
I followed her into the tack room and she said, "Up there" and she pointed up at the gooseneck deck where there were blankets, pillows and a mattress.
"What am I looking for?"
"The mattress. It's brand new and needs to be broken in" and as she was saying that she was shedding her Carhartt and was unbuttoning the buttons on her shirt. "I need to tip you for all you have done for me."
By then she had already dropped her bra on the floor and I was saying:
"No need. You were charged enough for it."
"You could have just driven on by when you saw me here. Your day was done and you were on your way home to put up your feet, drink a beer and relax. Instead you decided to stop and give a poor girl a hand. Don't argue with me. Get your pants off and get up on that gooseneck."
Looking at that hard-bodied hottie convinced me to shut up and do what she said. I kicked off my work boots, dropped my pants and got up on the mattress.
"Are you sure about this? It seems awful excessive for a tip."
"It is a case of the stars coming into just the right alignment sugar. The need to give you a tip just happens to coincide with my need to do something about a bad case of the hornies."
"We are only five minutes from my place and a good bed."
"Maybe next time sugar. Right now I'm tight for time. I've got to get down to Oklahoma and pick up two horses and get them to Elk City, shoot over to El Reno and pick up three and have them back up here to Hillcrest Farms by Friday. Maybe when I get back up here we can try out the bed."
She climbed up on the gooseneck with me and proceeded to give me the absolute best tip I'd ever received. She told me that she worked with horses and that made her a cowgirl so she got to be on top. She mounted me and rode me and got herself off twice before I got mine. She rolled off me and said:
"Thanks sugar; I surely did need that."
"I'd be pleased to help you any time you need it."
She laughed and said, "I'll just bet you would."
We dressed, she pulled forward off the Jiffy Jack and I tossed it into the tack room and waved as she pulled off the shoulder and pointed her rig south toward Oklahoma. I got in my truck and headed home with a smile on my face. Fifteen years of working on trailers and it was the first time I'd ever gotten laid in one. I wondered if she would look me up when she came back. She had taken my phone number, but would she use it?
Tuesday after work I was feeling in a pretty good mood so after a bit of dinner I drove over to the Wagon Wheel for a drink or two. I noticed several of the girls I'd asked out sitting at a table, but I ignored them and took a stool at the bar.
I was sitting there drinking my beer and watching the Avalanche game on the TV mounted on the wall above the bar and in the mirror behind the bar I saw Cara come in. She joined the girls at the table and Marsha said something to her. Cara quickly glanced my way and started to get up, but Marsha grabbed her arm and pulled her back down and said something to her. I didn't need to be a rocket scientist to figure it out. Cara hadn't noticed me until Marsha pointed me out. Cara was getting up to come over and Marsha pulled her back down and told her that she should leave me alone. Probably said something like:
"He's the one being the asshole. Make him come to you."
Benny asked me if I was ready for another beer, but my good mood had evaporated so I told him no and he moved to the other end of the bar to take care of a customer. I finished my beer and left without looking over at the table where the girls were sitting.
Wednesday I was beat so I went straight home from work and made an early night of it. Thursday at two my cell went off and I turned off the cutting torch and took the call.
"Hi there my knight in shinning armor."
I recognized the voice and said, "Hello there fair damsel in distress."
"I'm about two hours out. What does your shop schedule look like?"
"Hang on, I'll go check."
I walked over to the service desk and checked the schedule. "What do you need?"
"After what happened the other night I want all the wheels looked at so a bearing pack and a trailer tune up, but I need the trailer back by tomorrow afternoon."
"I can slip you in, but I can't promise it for any earlier than close of business tomorrow."
"That will work. As long as I'm on the road by seven Saturday morning I'll be okay. How is your personal schedule?"
"I can probably slip you in."
"What a coincidence. Slipping it in is exactly what I had in mind."
She pulled into the yard at four, dropped her trailer and after we filled out the work order she told me that she was in room 114 at the Holiday Inn Express. I told her I would pick her up at six-thirty.
"Pick me up? I thought we would stay in."
"Nope. Dinner and then some drinks and dancing at the Wagon Wheel. After that, who knows? Maybe some slipping and sliding."
"I can do slipping and sliding."
Over dinner I found out that she and her sister Betsy ran a business moving horses and had contracts with several of the large breeding farms in Texas, Oklahoma, Colorado and New Mexico. Kept her on the road a lot. She asked about me and I told her:
"Not much to tell. I stay busy working and spend my free time hunting, fishing and going for long walks in the mountains."
"No women in your life?"
"Not any more. Present company excluded of course."
"Tell me about the "not any more."
"An ex-wife who never got the part about "forsaking all others" in the wedding ceremony and an ex-fiancé who failed the boyfriend test."
"The boyfriend test?"
I explained it to her and she said that she could understand it.
There were a dozen people there I knew when we walked into the Wagon Wheel. Becky and I took an empty booth, ordered drinks and then I pulled her out onto the floor for a two-step. She was pretty good and we stayed out there for a shadish and another two-step. We were on our second beer when she asked me if they ever did line dances.
"All it takes is for someone to get up and start one."
She grabbed my hand and said, "Let's go."
We got off to one side and she said, "What they are playing is good for a 'Tush-Push'. Okay with you?"
"Lead on fair lady."
We started and then Jill and her boyfriend Ron joined us and then a half dozen others. We stayed there and did an Electric Slide and another Tush-Push and then went back to our booth. Becky took a pull on her beer and said:
"I've had a long day lover and I think we need to get to the important stuff before I get too tired."
We were walking out the door when Cara pulled up and parked and I could feel her eyes on me all the way to my truck.
Cowgirl was Becky's favorite, but I did get to spend some time in doggie which was mine. It was a long night and I never made it home. I had to go to work from room 114.
I had Becky's trailer done by three and I called her to let her know. She picked it up at four and we made arrangements for me to pick her up at six-thirty. I drove her to my place and fixed us dinner and then we sipped wine and played in front of the fireplace until we went to bed and played some more until we fell asleep in each others arms.
At six we got up, had a morning romp, took a shower together and then I drove to the Holiday so she could check out. She gave me a kiss and told me that she would be back in two weeks and if I wanted she would give me a call. I smiled and told her she wouldn't need a hotel room the next time she came up.
I spent the weekend doing chores around the house and maintenance on the truck. The week was pretty uneventful and I stayed pretty much close to home. Friday around one my cell went off.
"Is this Frank?"
"Yes it is."
"I'm Betsy, Becky's sister. I'm here dropping off a couple of horses and she told me to give you a call. She said you could show me a good time if I liked country and western dancing."
"I can do that."
"I'm at the Holiday. Room 221."
"Six-thirty work for you?"
Betsy was taller than her sister and had bigger breasts, but the hair was the same and in the face you could see that they were sisters. I took her to Three Margareta's for dinner and then we hit the Wheel for drinks and dancing. As usual it was full of people that I knew. I spotted Cara and a couple of her girlfriends in a booth toward the back. There was one open table near the front and Betsy and I took it.
Betsy was a very good dancer and she liked dancing so we spent a lot of time out on the floor. I didn't go out of my way to look at Cara's booth, but whenever the dancing had my body in a position where I was looking her way she was watching Betsy and me. Betsy and I were in the middle of a western swing when I saw Cara and her two friends get up and leave. Cara didn't look my way, but her friends did and the looks they gave me were murderous.
Betsy and I left around eleven and as I was pulling out of the parking lot Betsy said:
"Sis told me that you have a very comfortable mattress on your bed. Do I get a chance to try it out?"
I was going to say no? She was just as much of a sexual dynamo as her sister was and she pretty much reduced me to a quivering lump of Jell-O before we fell asleep.
I dropped her at the Holiday and she gave me a big kiss and asked if she could call me the next time she was in the area. No fool me I told her I would be very disappointed if she didn't.
For most of the rest of the weekend I wondered what was going on with my life. I do not suffer from delusions about myself. I am not God's gift to women. I'm pretty ordinary looking; nothing special at all and even though I usually could always get a date women don't chase after me and truth be told I've always had to work pretty hard at getting a long term relationship going with the opposite sex. It took me six months of busting my ass to get my first date with Holly and another six of off and on dating before we settled into a period of going steady. It took her four months to get around to saying yes after I proposed. The marriage didn't last as long as the time spent leading up to it. It took me a year of dating before I was comfortable enough to ask Cara to marry me and she said she would have to think about it and she did for three weeks before she said yes.
And now in the space of three weeks I have two super sexy ladies practically fall into my bed? I had to admit to myself that it just did not compute. But I couldn't argue with the facts — it happened!
I debated going out Saturday night, but decided to stay in. I was throwing a load in the washing machine when the phone rang. It was Jill and she asked me if I was going to be home for a while. I told her I was staying in for the evening and she asked me if she could come over. I didn't see any reason to say no so I told her to come on over.
Half an hour later the doorbell rang and I open the door to find Jill standing there alone. For some reason I had expected her to have her boyfriend Ron with her. I stepped aside and let her in and offered her a drink and she said she'd take a beer if I had it. I got her a PBR and then asked:
"Have you talked to Cara lately?"
"No. Why do you ask?"
"She's pretty much a basket case since you broke your engagement and I'm worried about her. Did you know that she left the Wagon Wheel in tears after seeing you with that girl you had with you?"
"No I didn't, but so what? She has no claim on me any more."
"Maybe not as far as you are concerned, but she wants to have claim to you. You were not supposed to be there with that girl last night."
"You need to explain that."
"In the fifteen years I've known you Frank you have never been seen with a girl who wasn't local; a girl outside of our social circle so to speak. No one expected you to suddenly start showing up with girls who were not from around here."
"Well excuse me all to hell Jill. I probably never would have except all the local girls have pretty much told me to crawl off into a hole and die. They didn't want to have anything to do with the cruel heartless asshole that treated poor Cara so badly."
"They all got together and did that Frank so you would be more or less forced to get back with Cara if you wanted feminine companionship and Cara does not know about that by the way."
"Why would I want to get back together with her? Christ Jill, you are the one who told me that she failed the boyfriend test."
That didn't mean that you should kick her to the curb Frank. What she did wasn't quite right and she should have been taken to task for it, but it wasn't bad enough for you to call her a cheat and walk away from her. How it happened I have no idea, but she did finally realize it was wrong and she hit Bill a good one across the chops when he tried to take advantage of the situation. He tried to grab her and she hit him again. Those aren't the actions of a woman fixing to cheat on her man. She is hurting right now Frank. She loves you and she can't understand how you can behave toward her the way you are over nothing more than a slightly inappropriate dance. You need to talk with her Frank. Did you know she is still wearing your ring? She refuses to take it off because as far as she is concerned she is still yours. Think about it Frank. You two had something special going. Don't let it get away."
She stood up, kissed me on the cheek and left.
After Jill left I thought about what she'd said. I had also believed that Cara and I had something special - right up to the time I saw her dancing with Anderson. What was it that Nancy Abbott had said? "It was only a dance for Christ's sake. Get a grip Frank." And then Jill herself had told me that she didn't think Cara's dance with Anderson would pass the boyfriend test and the rest of the women that knew Cara and me were treating me like a pariah because of my breaking up with her. Why could not any of them understand? I decided that I would help them understand. It would piss off a lot of people, but what did I care. I was tired of being dumped on. It was time to throw some shit back at them. I decided that come the next Wednesday I would let it all out.
I spent the weekend hiking in the mountains and trying not to think about what I was going to do. Monday and Tuesday were normal days at work, but at four in the afternoon on Tuesday my cell rang and when I answered it I got a "Hello stud" from Becky. She was going to be in the area on Wednesday and she could maybe see her way clear to overnight if I could think of something to do to keep her occupied.
"I can probably think of something, but I have something that I have to do around eight. It will take me about an hour. You can come along with me if you want, but it might make you a little uncomfortable."
"I'll chance it."
"Okay, but don't waste your money on the Holiday."
Becky and I walked into the Wagon Wheel around seven-thirty. The place was packed and I knew most of the people there. I saw Cara sitting in a booth with a couple of her girlfriends, Jill was there with Ron and I saw Bill Anderson sitting at a table with Debbie. I got some disapproving looks as Becky and I walked to one of the empty tables. Becky commented on the fact that there wasn't a band on the band stand and no music was playing on the juke box. I told her that it was the third Wednesday of the month and then I had to explain the Wagon Wheel to her.
The Wheel, while normally a country/western bar, catered to a large clientele and tried to be all things to all people. Every other Monday night was a golden oldies rock and roll night. Every other Tuesday was waltz, foxtrot, tango and mambo night. The second Wednesday of the month was salsa night and the third Wednesday of the month was open mike night. On open mike night you could do comedy, karaoke or just stand up there and read poetry if you felt like it.
Joyce Barnhouse went first and did a karaoke number. Then Mike Bellah got up with his guitar and did an old Marty Robbins number. When Benny asked who wanted to be next I stood up and headed for the microphone. This caused a bit of a stir because I had never done it before. I took the microphone from Benny and looked out at the crowd and said:
"I've never gotten up here before, but I had a customer in the shop the other day who just got back from Arizona and I just have to share the story that he told me while he was waiting on me to fix the seven pin plug on his truck. He'd driven there to look at a couple of horses he was thinking of buying. They were out on one of the Indian reservations and while he was checking out the horses the man he was dealing with got a sudden phone call. Seems that his sister who was pregnant had just had her water break and her husband was nowhere to be found so she called him. The man had to rush off and my customer made arrangements to get together with the seller the next day.
"When the two got together the next morning my customer asked the seller how his sister was doing and the man said that mother and baby were doing fine. But then he said:
"It was the damnedest thing. There were four babies born to three different squaws at the same time. One of the squaws slept on a deer hide and one of them slept on an elk hide. My sister slept on a hippopotamus hide. God only knows where my brother came up with it. Anyway, the first two squaws each had a baby boy. My sister who had slept on the hippopotamus skin had twin boys. It just goes to prove that the math books were right. The squaw of the hippopotamus is equal to the sons of the squaws of the other two hides."
There was silence for the second or so it took for the play on words to register and then I got a big laugh and when it died down I said:
"Did you hear about what went on over at the Brighton Police Department? A thief broke in and stole all the toilets and urinals and leaving no clues as to who he was. A police department spokesman was quoted as saying: "We have nothing to go on."
That one got a fairly big laugh and when the laughter died down I said:
"I'm really up here under false pretenses, but I had to do something to justify getting this microphone in my hands. Lately I have been getting a ration of shit from most of my so-called friends about the treatment I have given my ex-fiancé. Every one is saying that my behavior and attitude are totally unjustified, but are they? Let us look at it from my point of view.
"Most of you here tonight have known me for more years than I care to remember. Almost all of you are aware of my marriage to Holly and why that marriage ended. It ended because she was a cheating slut who stabbed me in the back by having affairs with at least three other men, one of whom is here tonight sitting in the back."
All eyes turned to the back of the bar and settled on Howie Meyers and he abruptly stood up and hurried out of the building.
"So let me ask you this. If you had been cheated on and had gone through the absolute hell that followed finding out just how badly you had been fucked over, how would you view seeing your fiancé dry fucking an old boyfriend on a dance floor in front of a room full of your friends? Think about that the next time you want to tell me that I over-reacted."
I set the microphone down on the floor, walked to my table and said to Becky:
"Time to get out of here."
As we left I looked over to where Cara was sitting and saw that she was crying. Her friends were too busy trying to comfort her to give me nasty looks. Once we were in my truck Becky took hold of my hand and said:
"Had that stored up in you for a while?"
"You could say that?"
"You feel better now?"
"Much. I may not have changed any minds, but at least now everyone knows where my head is."
"Was she there tonight?"
"Yes she was and so was the asshole I caught her dry fucking. She was with some girlfriends and he was with the girl he has been dating for a couple of months. I don't know if she knows what happened that night or not, but she knows he used to date my ex-fiancé and she knows he was at the party with my ex. Hopefully she will be asking him some pointed questions before the night is over."
"So just what is the whole story behind what happened tonight?"
I told her about Holly and then what I'd seen Cara do at Jill's party. She shook her head and said:
"Poor baby; no wonder you were pissed. I can see that I'm going to have to work really hard at cheering you up tonight. See if I can make you forget that bitch."
She did a damned good job of making ne forget. I got two out of the world blow jobs, enjoyed some great sixty-nine and did a lot of pussy pounding before we fell asleep wrapped up in each other.
Then in the morning she ruined it for me.
We were having breakfast at Patty Ann's Café when Becky said:
"I may turn out to be sorry that I told my sister to give you a call."
"Why would you be sorry about that?"
"She was quite taken with you. Told me that she would even consider leaving her husband for you. If she did that I'm not sure that I could mess around with my sister's man."
"In that case maybe you should stake your claim before she gets a chance. I do have an opening for a fiancé."
"I don't think that my husband would be too keen on that."
"You and your sister are both married? I didn't see any rings."
"Don't like jewelry on my hands when I'm working with halters, reins, lead ropes and the like."
"I do wish you hadn't told me that."
"You remember my speech last night? The part about being cheated on and the hell that followed? I promised myself that I would never do to another man what was done to me and you have just told me that I've done it. I've stabbed two men I don't know in the back by having sex with their wives."
"No biggie lover. Betsy's hubby knows she plays around and he is okay with it."
"What about yours?"
"Phil gets so much from me that he will never miss what I give others."
"That is the same attitude that my ex-wife had and I kicked her out of my life because of it."
"What are you saying Frank?"