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A Self-Conscious Man Goes to the Club Alone to Find Love

Updated: Aug 17, 2018

It felt somehow natural, or he had convinced himself of this, walking alone in the half rain. He thought "I'm pretty good at being alone." He thought "I've got decent confidence levels." He just got out of a 12 year marriage; he lost both dogs. Loneliest he'd been since 18 and trying to keep it together.

He was walking to the spot that was popular enough for late nights of dancing to be what everyone meant when they said "The Club." It was 10 p.m. and he was wearing the leather shoes he had worn through the Louvre on his 10 year anniversary vacation, black, shiny but not in a plastic way, laced up to the ankle. A choice both symbolic and gesturing toward stylish.

He and his wife had divorced officially, papers signed online last month, but it was only yesterday that he'd learned she was keeping Fran and Larry. He hadn't felt heart pain fury in a real way till that text. He was walking now to The Club to find love. He was deciding to himself not to feel the past, to just close it up for now and simplify everything and hug it all in around this two-word goal, Find Love.

He was not allowing himself to think past the goal itself, to define love or imagine the person on its other side, their future together, their dogs, their London trips, their inability or maybe remarkable ability to communicate about, through, around sex. He was keeping it simple, basic. I am alone, I am confident, I am searching for love.

There was rhythm in his step and he felt balanced, strong in the quads. He looked up at the people he passed but confidently looked away right before they made eye contact. He hadn't needed anyone in a while. He didn't let himself wonder if he was going to fit in or look around to see if he was already standing out as he, right wrist stamped and ink already bleeding black along creases, walked down the stairs into the noise ocean of pulsing and bodies.

It was pushing against inertia. He knew if he stood and watched he would not find momentum again, would be edge-bound and then also creepy, left wanting. So he walked through parting sweaty shoulders like he was going somewhere till he was wrapped in the body heat cloud of others. He danced to the hip hop he didn't know, having always opted for classical at home.

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