The house was suddenly quiet and Mickey and I went around collecting the beer bottles and throwing out the food that had been sitting in the hot summer air for too long. Wilted shrimp, mayo-based dips and soggy chips all went away and the only thing left was the grimy kitchen floor. Although I had a few beers, I stopped feeling drunk by this point and the mopes took over.
I lounged on the living room couch with Bob cuddled between my legs and Mickey sat in the chair behind me, nursing a glass of red wine.
“It was a good party, dude,” she said at her normal volume, somewhere around eight on the dial.
“Yeah it was,” I replied, detailing all of the evening’s events in my head, “I was really happy that Candice came.” I had recently worked with Candice on the game show, her being the network talent executive and me being the beleaguered booker. We grew very close under our strained and difficult co-jobs.
“I knew she was coming, dude,”
“Her boyfriend was so cute.”
“He was totally cute and not at all what I pictured for her,” she said. I had to agree. Candice is young Meg Ryan adorable, only brunette and we both pictured her with a modally kind of guy. Instead she came with a husky and smart man who exuded an unexpected earthiness.
“Marc and Jeff were really cool,” she began, “and I got to talk to Jeff some about his gig.”
“I love Marc and Jeff is so perfect for him. It was so cool for Marc to make me those mixes.”
"Yeah? What'd he make?"
"Just some stuff he knew I would like on the road." I was really touched by the thought and effort that went into the pair of discs Marc handed me when he came in.
“And dude, Sean and Vinny are a crack-up and they’re really cute together,” I didn’t correct her statement because she was right about it. “But what was up with Tommy tonight?”
“You noticed it too?” I was surprised, thinking I was being overly critical of Tommy.
“No, dude, he totally freaked out about that picture.”
“I thought I was the only one who noticed. It was weird how upset he got and at me too!”
Earlier, when just Ricky/Tommy and Mickey were there, before the party started, Tommy brought up this story of one of Ricky’s oldest friends proudly showing them a shot of his two and a half year old daughter, naked. Tommy thought it criminally insensitive to show anyone such a picture and Ricky though it as an innocent and beautiful picture of their child. When I heard Tommy’s angry response, I chalked it up to his incessant need to sweep Ricky away from his old friends and seclude him with a new, collective group that would only have history with them as a couple. I’ve had a slow burn for the past five years with Tommy and every once in a while, there’s a flashpoint.
I said to Tommy, “I would hardly consider that pornography.”
“Well you’ve obviously haven’t been around many kids in your life,” there was distinct anger in his voice. My stomach tightened and I wanted to unleash but that would have created a fight and Ricky is dealing with enough problems in his family right now. I didn’t want to create further turmoil for him.
“Well you got me there,” I shrugged and let it go at that.
“I’ve been around my nieces and nephews and I would be horrified to see a picture like that,” he was practically prancing in his chair when he said it. Ricky stayed silent and the moment passed.
“Tommy’s a total control freak and just leads Ricky around like a fuckin’ puppy,” Mickey observed what I’ve been witnessing for years.
“And I’m sure it’s not without Ricky’s permission.”
“But Ricky is so cute. I was over rubbing his head and being all flirty and he was, you know, flirting back and I looked up and saw Tommy glaring at me,” she summed up what I had seen several times in many different situations.
“Man I wish I could’ve fucked Mitch tonight.”
“You want to fuck Mitch every night,” I shot back.
“It’s always the same every fucking time. I want to fuck Mitch then Marty gets pissed.”
“I love those guys.” Mitch and Marty Boone were guys I met at Comedy World. I gave them their own show and they were absolutely brilliant on the air and gained an immediate following. They’re quick, funny and unimaginably un-PC. Terry S., Mickey’s roommate, had Photoshopped a picture of a laughing Marty with a big black cock going in his mouth. The picture circulated the party and ended up causing a fight between Jimmey and his boyfriend, Mark.
Jimmey is a former Colt model that is agoraphobic, a tap dancer and has been David Kelley’s right hand for many years. We dated briefly before I met Billy and we’ve remained good friends although getting to see him in person has always been tricky. Apparently Mark found the picture racist and disgusting but more than likely, it was just Tommy-syndrome.
A wispy cloud of silence floated. I was tired and I wanted to go write to Billy and say my prayers.
“You gonna kick me out now?” Mickey said at volume nine.
I tossed off, “Yeah. Night.”
“Aw man. Why do you have to be like that?”
“Cause I love you now get outta here.”
“Dude you’re fucked.”
“No you’re more fucked.”
“Don’t make me use force,” I chided her.
“Fine,” and her dial was all the way to ten. “Go ahead. Treat me like a dirty Mexican.”
“You’re my dirty little Mexican girl.”
“Ugh. See? That’s how it’s going to be, isn’t it?”
“Would you want it any other way?”
“No.” I walked her outside to my gate and wrapped my arms around her. I kissed her on the top of her head and told her I loved her. She’s been my go-to since Billy joined the cloistered monastery. While I’ve received tremendous love and support from my friends, she’s the only one who has really been there. I’m going to miss my high-octane, louder-than-life dirty little Mexican girl very, very much.