I met Chris on the 4th of July. I was out with friends in Silver Lake, that uber-cool area of L.A. that I always feel insufficiently dressed for, and insufficiently awesome for too. After watching fireworks and drinking booze, booze and more booze, my friends and I headed to a bar to drink some booze.
That’s when I saw him. Chris was wearing a tank top and actually pulling it off. That is the level of coolness we are dealing with here. He had long stringy hair, a crazy glint in his eye, and he looked like Javier Bardem and Benicio del Toro’s butt baby.
I was just out of a relationship where I’d been burned, and wanted to have some fun with someone beautiful and cool. And wanted to feel beautiful and cool again too.
So I fake-bumped into him, apologized, we got to talking, and by the end of the night, we’d exchanged numbers.
Chris started coming over a lot. He was easily the weirdest guy I’d ever dated, and that was saying something. His zaniness was not a hipster-affect. He would go on these passionate, incomprehensible rants all the time. His diatribes were like improvisational jazz — noisy and chaotic, but poetic in their way, and impressive for their sheer ability to sustain and free associate endlessly. I could never figure out whether he was a lunatic or a prophet.
“I know Chris was here because I saw his skateboard in the hall,” my roommate would say, the subtext being, “seriously?” But since I’ve always liked men who perplex or repel my friends, I grew closer to Chris. Then he invited me to his house.
It was cute from the front, a weird little cottage, but when I got inside, shit got real.
It looked like a crazy hoarder lived there. Every inch of the place was packed with stuff: discarded food, piles of lumber, homemade instruments, long-forgotten appliances, and everything from a rotting apple pipe to a taxidermy hamster.
Chris was excited to have me there; I could see it in his eyes. And his expression so moved me that I stepped forward into the danger zone. “No, let me carry you,” he said. I thought that was pretty adorable until he qualified his remark with: “There is broken glass, like, everywhere.” So he carried me across the broken-glass-covered floor and into his room.
There, the horrors continued. Overwhelmed, I went to the bathroom. A move I came to regret.
Not only was the bathroom terrifying in its disarray, but there was no flusher on the toilet — I called to Chris, embarrassed and asked how to flush the toilet. “The wrench!” He called back jauntily. Yes, in order to flush the toilet, I was to grab a chunk of metal that was protruding from the toilet with a wrench and twist. It worked.
I went back into Chris’ room, resigned to make the best of the situation. He found a shirt in his unmade bed and passed it to me to sleep in. It smelled like two skunks had been mating in it. I closed my eyes and prayed for morning.
When I got into my car the next day, I felt a powerful sense of relief. I clicked the seat belt, turned on the ignition, and fished through my purse for my phone. I couldn’t find it. I panicked. What was I supposed to do? Go back?!? No, that was not an option. I’d get a new phone. Change my number. Anything to avoid returning to that… that place! Then my hand bumped my phone in my purse. I let out a sigh of relief. I was gonna be okay. I pulled away for the first and last time.
As I was writing this post just now, I googled Chris for some inspiration. Lo and behold, he has a bit part on a reality show, and even has some fans. They love the zany things he says, and they love the way he looks.
Well, sure. But have they ever been to his house?
- onlulu posted this