Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Episode # 418

    The combined whir of the washing machine and dryer bounced off the concrete walls as Richard strode into the laundry room. Clipboard in hand, he was on a mission. Directly in front of him were his first two targets... Lance and Brad, both casually dressed in their underwear and t-shirts as they tended to their laundry.
    "All right, gentlemen," Richard announced. "Kyle's put me in charge of organizing our annual pumpkin picking expedition next month."
    "How proud your mother must be," Lance said wearily, barely turning from folding his laundry to acknowledge Richard's presence.
    "Very funny, Lance," Richard said, undeterred. "Now, please... just check off on this list whether you'll be going." He shoved the clipboard in their direction, adding, "And you had both better be going!".
    Brad scanned the list of names on the clipboard. "Hey... how come Price isn't on the list?" he asked, his blond hair catching rays of sunlight through the laundry room window as he casually adjusted the bulge in his tight white briefs.
    "Um... because he's Price," Richard answered, arching his eyebrow.
    "He ain't that bad, Richard."
    "Please. He's the anti-christ," Richard said wryly. "Dressed in Lacoste with a Kentucky accent."
    Brad winced. "Maybe if you guys didn't harrass him so much... you'd see he's actually a nice guy."
    "How have I ever harrassed him?" Lance asked, incredulously.
    "Didn't you throw a wedding cake in his face?" Brad countered.
    "You... you actually think I instigated that ridiculous melee?" Lance stammered, still shocked that Brad... that anyone in the B&B... would be siding with Price Kingsbury.
    "Well, you sure didn't run away from it," Brad pointed out, his pecs pressing hard against his tight blue Captain America t-shirt.
    Lance and Richard glanced at each other uncertainly, mystified by Brad's sudden defense of the man who had once tried to illegally seize control of the B&B. And that was only the beginning of the list of egregious offenses he'd committed during his stay at the house.
    "Look, guys," Brad continued. "All I'm sayin' is, this pumpkin pickin' trip is for the whole house. N' Price lives here. Like it or not, he's part of this house. So... put him on the list... or you can cross me off."
    Picking up his laundry basket, he began walking towards the stairs, his white socks quiet on the concrete floor. "Anyway, I gotta' go get ready for baseball practice. Later."
    Richard and Lance both stared in disbelief as he ascended the staircase.
    "Oh, I do not like this at all," Richard declared.
    "Neither do I," Lance affirmed, smoothing his plaid boxers. "And things must be really bad if we're so easily agreeing on something."
    "I agree. I mean..." Richard stopped himself. "Oh, my, this is disturbing..."

Tuesday, August 4, 2015


    The sun was just setting as Jake and Eduardo stepped onto the dock for an after-dinner walk along Northport Harbor. The sky was painted with breathtaking shades of red and magenta, and the very air seemed to be suffused with a warm pink glow.
     Jake marveled at how easily the conversation had flowed over dinner; any nervousness about going on a date with such a significantly younger man as Eduardo had evaporated as they shared stories and jokes and laughter. Even the dinner itself had been surprisingly delicious. Why couldn't any of the blind dates that Richard had set him up with have gone this smoothly?
    Only now, as they walked along the water, a certain quiet settled over them. Perhaps both felt some apprehension about what was to come next. Jake searched his mind for something to chat about, some subject they hadn't covered over dinner.
    "So, Nick and Dave are thinking about setting their wedding date for next Spring," he offered, confident in the fact that Eduardo would share his interest in their mutual friends nuptials.
    Eduardo frowned. "Wonder if they'll even invite me, " he said, scowling.
    "Why wouldn't they?" Jake asked, surprised at the notion that Eduardo would be left off the guest list.
    "Nick and I aren't speaking lately," Eduardo said, looking down. "We had a little difference of opinion."
    "About what?" Jake asked.
    "About you, actually."
    "Me?" Jake said incredulously. "What about me?" He couldn't fathom what there could possibly be about him that would cause Nick and Eduardo to stop speaking.
    Eduardo looked off across the harbor as a warm breeze played with his short, spiky black hair. "Nick thinks I have, like... Daddy issues. Or something."
    Jake felt a slight sinking feeling in his stomach. "Do you? Have 'Daddy issues' ?"
    "I'm not even sure what that means," Eduardo said, rolling his eyes. "Nick brought up the same crap when me and him were...um..."
    "You and Nick were dating?!"
    "Almost," Eduardo hesitated, searching for the right description. "It didn't really...get off the ground."
    "Man. I need a scorecard to keep track of all these B&B relationships, " Jake said, adjusting the brim of his Chicago Cubs cap.
    Eduardo stopped walking and fixed his gaze directly into Jake's eyes. "Look, Jake... I like you. But it's got nothing to do with your age... or about any of this 'Daddy' stuff. So can we forget about that... and just enjoy our date?"
    "Fine with me," Jake answered, relaxing his shoulders a bit. Whatever the trouble was between Eduardo and Nick, well... that was between Eduardo and Nick. And, frankly... it sounded to Jake like Eduardo was the more rational one. Still, while they were on the subject, perhaps now Jake could ask the question that had been in the back of his mind ever since he and Eduardo had began their... whatever it was they were doing together.
    "Can I ask you, though, " Jake inquired, as they resumed walking along the dock. "How old is your father?"
    Eduardo cocked his head to the side and thought for a moment."Um...55, I think."
    Jake breathed a heavy sigh of relief. "Ah, good... at least I'm younger than your father... even if it is only by a couple of years." For some reason, this had been weighing on his mind. The thought of dating a man whose father he was older than, well... it just didn't sit right with him.
    "You look older than him," Eduardo said, his words hitting Jake like a bucket of ice.
    "Okay, we can change the subject now," Jake said, frowning.
    "Maybe 'cause you're heavier," Eduardo continued.
    "Or bald," said Eduardo, chuckling lightly.
    "So glad I brought this up," Jake said, finding it hard to avoid chuckling along in spite of himself.