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Single in the City: Money Can Buy Love
posted by Esther Zinn on October 10, 2010
I recently went on a date with a woman named Roxy, whom I met online.

There I was at the appointed time, waiting outside of the cafe we decided to meet at, scanning the horizon for my date. Finally, a hooded silhouette emerged from the shadows.

“Oh, hello there!” said Roxy. She pulled back her hoodie and stepped into the light.

Roxy looked nothing like her profile. She had an asymmetrical mullet and a bald spot on the side of her head, and her hair looked like it hadn’t been washed in weeks. The girl was wearing an old purple dress that looked like it came out of some blind grandmother’s closet and yellow Doc Martins.

“I hope I’m what you expected…I tried really hard to look cute for you tonight,” she said.

“Oh…you’re so sweet,” I said, giving her a big hug.

We stepped inside the cafe. She had selected a coffee shop that had broken rocking-horses and Christmas lights strewn all over the place. It tried to be kitchy, but it sort of looked like a garbage heap. As we walked in, I thought to myself that I didn’t want to be high maintenance, so I should order something cheap.

“Can I have a peppermint tea, please?”

Roxy dug her hands into her pockets and looked up at me sheepishly. “I…don’t have enough to pay for you tonight. I’m sorry.”

I was flummoxed and looked at the menu prices. The tea was $1.25. One dollar and twenty-five cents.

I said, “Oh. Well that’s too bad. I have no cash and only brought my card because I thought you were taking me out.”

There was a long pause. It was a Mexican standoff, with $1.25 at stake.

“Well…fine,” she said. “Let’s go to an ATM, I’ll get cash.”

She did so begrudgingly and at first I felt bad, but I had to check myself. I mean, $1.25? The more I thought about it, the more pissed I became, and I thought, “Jesus Christ, if you can’t afford to spend a dollar on me then you’d better just go outside and panhandle until you can afford a tea or else I’m just walking the hell out of this shop.”Roxy did go to an ATM and she bought a tea, a coffee, and a slice of cake, which cost her $6.00 See, I’m like that, I’m a gold digger who sends women straight into the poorhouse.

We talked for awhile and went back to her apartment. She lived in an old warehouse with ten roommates who had built their own rooms out of wood. She began to relay her money troubles to one of her roomies, as if I weren’t there.“Now I’m only four dollars short of rent because I just had to withdraw some money,” she sighed, blowing cigarette smoke in the air.

Afterwards, she strummed some songs on her guitar.

 

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