I’m working away at the salon and I hear, “Charles!” Of course it’s sweet little Kita to see me. As always, I’m delighted to see her.
“How are you feeling, dear? You said you were getting a sore throat on Sunday.”
“I’m fine. It’s just allergies. I was just sneezing and my right ear is clogged up.”
“Aww! I’m sorry. But I’m glad you’re not getting sick. Are you taking anything for the symptoms?”
“Just some allergy medicine. I feel better.”
“Cool. You didn’t text JR, did you?”
“No but I wanted to. I just wanted to tell him something like… I miss you.”
“Resist the urge. I went through the same thing with my ex Annabelle. (See: Annabelle – Nice to Meet You.) All that back and forth just tears your heart to pieces. Young people need to go through the pain of a breakup. Once you’ve had a bad one, you mature and your mind resets itself to never let anyone hurt you like that again. You don’t become hardened as a person but you put things in place so that when you go into your next relationship you know you’re already prepared if something should happen. When you don’t know what to expect going into or out of a relationship, the effects can be devastating.”
“How long can the pain last?”
“Sometimes a year.”
“Yea. But you’re young and you’ll bounce back faster than an older person because you have so many options that happen faster than an older person. You have youth, beauty and opportunity on your side. You’ll be fine. Your case is a little more special because You’ve been with this guy since you were 17. There’s a real history there with your first love. You’re 21 now, and you know it hasn’t been good for the last year or so.”
“True. He did lie to me and treated me badly. That hurts, but I still miss him being my boyfriend.”
“That’s nostalgia, Kita. You just miss the good times in the beginning. You’ve obviously grown apart because you’ve matured and he hasn’t.”
“I guess you’re right but I just want the pain to stop and I want to move on now, but I can’t.”
“That’s because you need to heal. That takes time and unfortunately with matters of the heart you have to put your time in. Befriend time. Because that’s the only thing that makes the wound heal. It’s just a sad truth of life. But you’ll learn from this. You’ll come out on the other side of this experience a much more mature woman who’ll know how to navigate relationships and make better choices in the future.”
“If you say so, Charles.”
“I know so. I’ve been there enough times to now know what I want and I won’t let myself be hurt like that ever again. It took me a long time to learn it but I hope you come to it faster.”
“I hope so.”
I look into her dark almond eyes. She really is beautiful to me. “You’re eyebrows look amazing by the way.”
“Thank you.” she smiles. “I’ve never had good eyebrows. They’re like these little fine hairs and you can hardly see them.”
“They look great to me. What do you mean?”
“Oh, I had this treatment done. They actually tattoo in little specks of color to make it look like I have good eyebrows.”
“Oh really.” I look more closely at her and I see that they’re not real but look really good. Perfectly shaped eyebrows on a chick that genetically couldn’t grow a decent set.
“Yea I think good hair and eyebrows make your face.”
“I never thought of that but I guess you’re right. Looks great. What’s on for the weekend?”
“I’m going to Steve’s birthday dinner with his parents.” (Steve is the guy that sent her a message on Instagram and she’s been sort of dating him.)
“Oh nice! You’re meeting his parents!” (I don’t like any of this, but come on… I know my place here and should be happy that this little dopamine-drop doll is even talking to me.)
“I met them already before. But yea, should be nice. But this guy REALLY likes me.”
“I mean he REALLY likes me. It almost seems like too much.” (Okay…this is good.)
“Like… how do you know?”
“Well, I tell him I’m not over JR and I’m struggling with that, and Steve is like, ‘Hey take all of the time you need I’ll be right here.’ I’m just not used to that. I can see he REALLY, REALLY likes me and I know I’m not ready for anything serious. (Sounds desperate and playing his hand to hard. I like this.) We’re not OFFICIAL anything. (Love this.) Like nothing right now. I think I really need to take some time and heal like you said.” (Yes… young padawan…)
“That’s good, Kita. take all the time you need to get better. It’s a steep curve but I know you can do it. Take all of the time you need. I’m proud of you.” (All I’m thinking is… next month I take her to Dan Dan for some delicious noodles and pot stickers!)
“Thank you, Charles. You’ve been such a great help to me.”
“Happy to assist, Kita.”
“Sunday my sister is coming up because at her college she’s on crew (rowing) and they are racing on the Schuylkil river.
“Oh, awesome. My Niece and Nephew used to do that. They’re from Egg Harbor Township in Jersey and they used to come up and do that. I would go out there and hang with my sister and brother-in-law and watch the kids. It was great.”
“Yea. Should be fun. I miss my sister.”
“Older or younger?”
“She’s 19, so like a year and a half younger than me but she’s a little taller than me.”
I love that she just hangs at the counter like a puppy now. No rush to tan like most of the clients that come in here. Kita actually likes to spend time here with me. There can’t be much going on in this college sophomore’s life. Separated from friends and family in DC and Florida. This cute little fish is out of water and trying to make her way through a recent heartbreak.
Do I love the smell of desperation?
Let me note here that I love the attention of this petite beauty, but I’ll be an absolute gentleman to her and mentor in any way I can. I’ve been in this game long enough to not fuck it up with some clumsy romantic move. EVER. She’s my daughter’s age for fuck’s sake.
But I do love the ways she looks and she has a sweet personality, and I am honored she wants to hang our with an old lion like me. I don’t know what her relationship with her dad was like, but some guys aren’t all that sensitive. I don’t know why he and his wife never had any kids of their own or why they picked out a couple of little Chinese baby girls to raise, but I’ll get that back story.
But just know as a sort of disclaimer: Phicklephilly will do nothing to pursue this sweet girl. I will only give her attention, tanning and whatever advice I can. Do I find her beautiful and desirable? Of course, but only a fool would ever do anything to mess that up. I’ve been a consummate professional for 35 years in the business world. Kita’s a client here at the salon. She trusts me and I would never do anything to mess up a business relationship with a client that has a monthly premium package that we hit her card for every month. She’s the perfect client that we want. I’m a dad. My daughter Lorelei has chosen to live with me. She’ll be 21 next month. Your daughter doesn’t leave her mom in the middle of senior year in high school if dad’s a dick. I’m a father and a gentleman first and foremost.
But I also want you all to know, that I can separate lust from sensibility. I really like little Kita. She’s a great, smart girl from a nice family with a dad that probably has enough firepower at his fingertips to turn my apartment into a cinder if Kita came home one night even whimpering.
But I’m still phicklephlly and can’t help that in my heart has feelings for her if she ever advanced towards me. That won’t happen, and I’m just happy to be near her. But if given the chance and she came to me…. I would bang her back to China like an ICBM rocket.
I hope you understand the difference.
I hope I do…
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