I need a new late-night pizza place.
Or I just need to stop eating pizza late at night. I’ve been having strange conversations there for a while, actually. I went in for the first time in ages, and the guy behind the counter said he was surprised to see me by myself. I asked him what he meant, and he said I’m usually in there with my girlfriend, and we had just been in the other night. I told him he must have me mixed up with someone else, but he was adamant that it was me before he eventually gave up. Sort of: ‘But you have a girlfriend, right?’ No, no I don’t. ‘Oh, well you’re a lesbian?’ Nope, I’m not. ‘Really?’ Yep, really. ‘Really?’ I know this may come as a shock, but it is possible to a) have short hair, b) live in the gaybourhood, and c) like pizza at 2am on a weeknight and still enjoy the company of (some) men. On another visit, this same guy (hereafter known as Pizza Dude 1) asked me my name, told me he saw me on Tinder, and told his coworker to be nice to me since he’ll see me drinking on the stoop. Aside from wondering if perhaps I was becoming too much of a neighbourhood fixture, I didn’t give it too much thought, it was just kind of funny.
Last night though, things got weird. I went in pretty early (by my standards) for a post-drink slice and had what I thought was a normal-friendly interaction with a new guy (Pizza Dude 2) behind the counter. He made some quip along the lines of next time maybe I’ll leave with him as well, but I already had my earbuds back in, so I just did a smile and nod and left with my ‘za. I had just put the key in my door, when I heard, ‘Excuse me, ma’am?’ on the stairs behind me. I turned around, and there was Pizza Dude 2. He had followed me home. Mind you, I live maybe 30 feet away, but still. It was late, dark, I was by myself, and he called me ma’am. Ma’am. No. So here I am, pizza in one hand, key in the other, with a strange pizza dude at my doorstep. After he apologized for following me home (uh, okay?), his second order of business was to ask, ‘Are you a lesbian?’ Is it my pizza choice? Do only lesbians order cheese slices? Seriously. He then told me he and PD1 had a discussion about me, and said he ‘couldn’t let me get away.’ Uh, okay? He went on to discuss how much he likes girls with short hair (except, apparently, he feels compelled to ask us all if we’re into the ladies), told me he was from the south (that might give him a pass on the ma’am thing), and invited me to visit him at his regular store this weekend. While I was polite — my default when I am caught off guard — I do not foresee that happening. Maybe in a romantic comedy this is cute, but in the kind of city where I’ve had an online stalker, been masturbated at on a streetcar, and generally face some sort of crazy every day, cornering a girl where she lives probably isn’t the best course of action.
The icing on the cake (or cheese on the slice!): they were out of my usual and I had to settle for a less delicious alternative on top of it getting cold during his ill-advised meet-cute attempt. I think maybe I might make street meat (tofu dogs, of course) my new go-to late night food in the future.