This episode will probably come later in the story but I want to write it now and fuck it, MY BLOG, MY RULES.
In Which Erica Experiences Some Firsts
Erica – not unusually for an average earthling – had no first hand knowledge of the world before her own existence. If she had done, her perspective may have been much broader and one of the things that she perhaps would have noticed was that her ancestors were generally a lot more still than her contemporaries. Her parents generation believed their children had a far more frenzied demeanor, and were generally of the opinion that this habitual mania stemmed from a sense that time was short; that their poor offspring felt the pressure to achieve before their chips were subdued at midnight, and their lives jumped forward another two days. Erica’s parents could not fathom how it might feel to fall asleep on Monday night and wake up on Thursday, with half the week already done. Erica could not fathom anything else.
Something that Erica was slightly more aware of was that her generation was much more attractive than her parents generation. This was a natural consequence of culling the bottom two thirds of the population based primarily on physical traits. This phenomena did not present itself as an issue often since, for most of history, younger people have generally been perceived as more aesthetically pleasing than their older counterparts. The only time that the general handsomeness of her contemporaries was brought to her attention was when she saw a young person that was unattractive. As is the way with most rare and unusual things, being unattractive had taken on a ‘hip’ and exotic quality and had, of late, become a very attractive thing indeed.
Erica was sitting alone in a bar near Embankment station. The bar was famous for cheese and red wine and Erica was enjoying 80% of her daily fat recommendation and 25% of her weekly alcohol ration on her first Friday evening in three weeks. Her attention was caught by a man sat in an alcove a few metres away from her. He was extremely plain and this was, naturally, what had caught her attention. But he was also very still and this was what held it. Careful as she was, one glass of red wine was enough to embolden Erica. She had not drunk any since last Friday – three weeks past – and it took her approximately 140ml of table red to summon the courage to broach conversation.
Erica was, as has been previously stated, very attractive. She had blonde hair which communicated a sense of warmth and youthful innocence, her abs were visible on most days and her body fat had recently been measured with calipers at just over 18%. Erica took little pride in these statistics since they were, in her view, the statistics of Pretty Jenny. It had been a while since Erica had experienced resentment, angst or indeed any heightened state of emotion about this fact. Instead, her teenage sense of injustice had translated in early adulthood to a faint detachment; an anxiety to keep things tidy and not to use anything without permission, as though she were a guest at the home of an old, revered aunt.
But today had been a hard day, and the man in the alcove was looking at her. Erica was tired of playing the role of wallflower.
She rose and walked toward him. She knew that she was attractive and she knew that his looking at her was a subtle social code that it was acceptable for her to initiate conversation. She decided that she would take the plunge and trust that something intelligent and alluring would come to her as she sat down. It didn’t. She lowered herself onto the sofa next to the plain man, smiled politely and looked at the bottle of wine on the table in front of him. There were approximately ten seconds of silence, which her companion seemed to find far less alarming than Erica did. Eventually the chasm became too big and she had to fill it.
“You’ve got a whole 75cl bottle of red wine in front of you but you don’t look like you’re waiting for anybody.”
“Thanks for letting me know.”
Erica waited for him to add a question; a statement of his own; anything to move things forward. Instead he returned to silence. His nose was crooked in the middle and his eyes were sunken and lined beneath a heavy brow.
“It’s just, I happen to know that there are 9 units of alcohol in that bottle of wine. And so I was wondering how you were managing the 6 unit limit with… If you’re drinking it all to yourself.”
The man laughed. There was another uncomfortable silence and Erica was just reaching to fill it when he spoke.
“What’s your name?”
Erica smiled a smile of relief and told him.
“I’m Lee. Can I tell you a secret Erica?”
Erica confirmed that he could. Her role as agony aunt had taught her to respond to personal admissions with warm sincerity.
“This is… This is not my first bottle of wine this evening. It may not be my last. I am throwing caution to the proverbial wind with regards to units of alcohol consumption tonight. Would you like a glass of this finest table red, Erica?”
It was rare, in a society of easy promiscuity and frantic busyness, to meet someone with such a present manner and playful sense of humour.
“Yes but first I must tell you something. Anakin I – I’m your father.” Confusing Star Wars and real life had been her favourite joke as a child.
“Erica… I’m pretty sure Anakin is the father.”
Erica laughed and poured herself a glass of wine. She had never had a second glass of wine before, but tonight felt like a night of firsts.