This past Saturday was the UEFA Champions League Final, which for all the uninitiated is the Super Bowl of European club soccer. The game was between an English Premiere League team, the Chelsea Football Club of London and the German Bundesliga team, Bayern Munich. Friends and regular readers know about my soccer love, so it should come as no surprise that I found myself in a packed sports bar at 10:45AM, Guinness in hand, making friends with an imposing gentleman named Matt who was wearing a Mastodon* tee shirt.
Matt and I did some bonding over the brilliant drama of soccer, and within 10 minutes I found out he was 39 years old; married (wife not a soccer fan, was out doing beauty treatments, which I endorsed having just done the same the week before); he played in college, somewhere in Ohio (?); and he knew the entire staff at the bar. I’m very good at making friends. We claimed a respectable standing-room-only spot while I waited for my real-life friend to txt his arrival, putting Matt on notice he’d likely have to go out and retrieve him from the blight of the line. Matt was gracious and said not to worry, and yes, went out and got my friend when the txt came. We love Matt.
The three of us watched the game to much delight, reveled in the good natured and multi-culti crowd, drank several pints and Matt even quaffed a few shots of Cazadores all the while. We were also being well taken care of by a very hard working and patient waitress. She and I, being some of the few gals among the sausage fest, exchanged knowing glances every time she walked past us. We got each other.
After half time the crowd rejiggered and we ended up with two fellows in front of us that, while not totally invading our spot, were filling that luxurious extra 14 inches of breathing room we had before. They were not tall, so we could see right over them without issue. However, they could not get into the rhythm with our waitress and kept backing into me whenever she needed to pass, instead of letting her go behind them as was the more natural flow of the space. At some point, she was passing and looked at me as he backed into me with that knowing eye, and I gently put my hand on his mid back to stop him from stepping on me and to let her pass. The next time she came through she looked at me before her stride arrived, then at him, then back at me so I put my hand gently onto his mid back and said to him, “Head’s up, waitress coming through.” She nodded a thank you to me and passed on by with a giant tray of drinks.
The next thing I hear is the height challenged chap (wearing those foreshortening, baggy, saggy knicker-pants) say to me very tersely, “Don’t touch me!” punctuated with a shoulder jerk forward away from me and a bonus sneer.
My real-life friend looks at me and my perplexed face and says, “Did he just say for you not to touch him? Wow. He’s got it all wrong.”
Right?! (And then we giggled at his expense.)
I am just glad New Friend Matt did not witness that, because I am quite certain the cranky young man would have been dealing with a 6’2″ hella-buzzed menace instead of an attractive brunette having a great hair day with above average sports knowledge gently placing her hand on his back a few times. I guess he just never experienced that before.
And probably never will again.
*Hat tip to brother for keeping me up on my metal.