America, April 28, 2005
Would you break out Jefferson, Grant, or Franklin for me?
I bet you've never asked yourself that question. I never asked it either until last night when I wandered through the packed throng of bidders, wearing my 'Buy Me!' sticker, and feeling like a prize steer.|
It was odd seeing folks scan me like a piece of meat, and not in the usual gay man in Dupont kinda way either. There were women, hot women, wealthy women, women who would be waving $20's in the air even before I took my shirt off. Women, and men, who were at Whitlow's on Wilson to bid on Babes for Boobs, the Third Annual Celebrity Dream Date Auction to raise money for the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer Research.
And I was a Babe up for bidding.
Or a man about to be humbled as the first guy up, a steaming hunk of Indo-American exotic, was bid for hard. Up his price went, not even pausing at the $20 start, nor slowing till the $110 winning bid went unanswered. Next up a hottie from Hawaii smoked out the high rolling guys as her bids screamed past $110 to settle at a wallet-scorching $250.
Melting into the crowd, my ego started to scream at me. How could I be this foolish, this crazy, this arrogant to think that a date with lowly little me could command more than pocket change? Then I thought about all the others, the 30+ Babes (boys and girls) who were also thinking the same. I could hear egos warp under the pressure and I knew what I had to do.
To the front of the crowd I raced, and with each new Babe I jumped into the bidding when it stalled or slowed before topping $100. Luckily, I was outbid every time, preserving their delicate egos and my paltry budget.
Then, of course, it was my turn, my shot, my time to work my walk and raise my bid. Onto the little milk-crate stage I climbed and into a Trikonasana (Triangle Pose) I went as my date would not only get my sparkling personality, charming wit, and dashing good looks at her side for a date of her choice, she'll also get six free passes to Tranquil Space Yoga, an $85 value!
While the MC garbled my name and my details (I'm the Connect Four Worldwide Champ, dropping four in a row from Miami, to Moscow, to Madrid, you fool!), I did my little dance and tried to be too sexy for my black linen shirt.
When the bidding started, it was fast and furious, with my friends Lina and Jin bidding against each other for me till I broke $100. Ego saved (thanks you two!!) the real bidding began. With phantom hands waving from deep in the bar, I couldn't see if I were going to a hottie or the heavy, or worse, the hairy guy who pinched my ass.
Slowly the counter bids fell away and the price topped out. My new-found friend, my Dream Date buyer, came forth with a big smile and bigger wad of bills. To the back we went, she and I, with her cash roll in tow. There, she started counting and didn't stop till $130 sat on the table.
One-hundred and thirty dollars going to the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer Research, and lured out by me. One-hundred and thirty dollars that tied me with the other guy Babes and put me at the bottom of the girl Babes. Girl Babes had the luxury of rich men bidding on them, men who are used to throwing down $150 on a date, and so bid $200 easy every time that night.
Still, with her Dream Date on her arm, my buyer was smiling ear to ear. So was I till she spilled the beans. It seems that she didn't use her own money for me. No, her coworkers had pooled the cash for her, as she's an intern. Ego deflating quickly, I stopped myself right before I asked what I was thinking: Did they kick-in the cash because they were cool, or because they pitied her lack of a dating life?
Nuladna, it doesn't matter. What does matter is that later on, after my buyer left, a girl Babe came up and asked to bid on me herself. While I tried to assure her the bidding was over, she insisted and threw down $50 more for a prize and I. That means I drew out a total of $180, not $130 and went from average Babe price to highest guy Babe price!
Or so I think, and if I'm wrong, I really would rather not know. It's the ego; it doesn't need that kinda blow.