Is He Being Flirty or Just Friendly?



I arrive at the Lower East Side bar about an hour into the soiree. By then, everyone there had consumed at least one cocktail and had loosened up. I decided to use the knowledge I’d gleaned from a Whiskey tasting a few weeks before and ordered a finger’s worth of Johnnie Walker on the rocks. Normally, I’d order a Merlot and nurse it, but it was a holiday weekend and I’d given myself permission to slack off.

“Bold choice,” said a voice next to me. I turned my head to see a lanky man wearing jeans and a black t-shirt. With dark hair graying around the temples, he looked about forty.

“Wish me luck,” I said. “I’m a Whiskey virgin.”

As I waited for the cubes in my drink to melt and water down my scotch, I learned more about him. His name was Max*, and he’d just completed his first novel and was in the process of querying agents. Max asked me my one sentence pitch for my book (“It’s a story about risk and resilience”) and nodded in approval, adding that he wanted to know more.  I told him about my struggles with finishing the draft and said I was getting frustrated.

“Feel free to reach out and vent,” he said. “You can find my profile through [a Facebook writer’s group we both belong to.]



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