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Funny Inspirational Romance

This story contains sensitive content

TW: People in conflict over mistakes made.

Arne entered the meet up club where he planned to meet Gloria. Her text said she’d be wearing a white Gardenia to more easily identify her. ‘Meet ups’ are an informal version of the blind date. They allow singles to get acquainted and pursue deeper connections.

Almost immediately, Arne saw a problem. Across the dimly lit room, he saw two women with Gardenias. Either would make him look good. One wore a Gardenia in her hair. She had a model’s figure, but was too slim for Arne’s tastes.

She stood near the bar and looked expectant. Was she high-strung? Anxious? Had she been stood up? For Arne, too much drama.

In his terms, the other, and more beautiful woman was ‘stacked.’ Though not as tall or slim as the first, her extra weight resided exactly where Arne liked it. Apparently in no hurry, she lounged at a table, nursing a tall drink. She watched people come and go with an amused expression.

Arne considered himself a ‘breast man.’ Before looking at a woman’s eyes, smile, hair or her fashion sense, Arne checked out her chest. Some would call him obsessed. Arne preferred the term ‘curious.’ After all, it’s what men do. Evolution provided the male species with something to look at. Why shouldn’t he? How could he not?

He sought perfect breasts with the devotion some use pursuing a knowledge of God. Some intellectuals would draw a distinction there, but Arne saw no difference. And by ‘perfect’ he meant ‘ample,’ ‘large,’ and ‘abundant.’ Arne had always sensed something mystical about a woman’s body. It was the only object which generated in him, an appetite for worship. He satisfied that hunger with his particular brand of fervency.

He knew, regardless which woman he approached, he couldn’t help but disappoint the other. He took the simplest solution and approached the woman he considered most well-endowed.

Their eyes met as Arne stepped up. The Gardenia nestled in her cleavage.

Smiling, she said, “Hey sailor… what floats your boat?”

Arne said, “Hi, I’m here to meet…”

“Gloria?”

Last name Hallelujah?’ He extended his hand. “Hi. My name is Arne.”

She did a coquettish little shimmy.

Arne felt he’d died and gone to heaven, a concept difficult for an atheist to grasp. Beholding her in awe, he touched his chin to ensure he wasn’t gawking.

Feeling audacious, he said, “May I sniff your flower?”

He bowed and inhaled deeply. He’d found his house of worship. His Lourdes. His Shangri-La. Paradise. Whatever you would call it, he felt at home.

“I’m sorry. What was your name again?”

Arne stood up and refocused. He offered his hand. “I’m Arne.”

“You’re my date!” Speechless, he nodded. She patted a chair. “Sit. Let’s get acquainted. Come to Mama…”

He sat. She embraced him tightly and shimmied.

Arne suppressed the thought, ‘Can they be real?’

Opening her arms, as if introducing a buffet, she said, “They developed when I was about nine. Overnight! I was huge. It was embarrassing but I couldn’t do anything about them. I worried they would take over the world.” She paused and Arne’s eyes widened. “Then they stopped. And I thought, ‘Why stop?’”

Shaking his head, Arne thought, ‘Stop!

“So, I had some work done. A little enhancement.” Mesmerized, Arne nodded. “Now I’m thinking I went too far. Considering a reduction.”

“No!” Arne had one rule about such things, ‘Size doesn’t have to matter. But they must be real.’

“You think they’re too much? They got your attention. Should they be bigger? What if I…?”

“Impossible!” Arne bolted. His brain screamed, ‘Too. Much. Information!

~

Standing alone at the bar, Brenda watched Arne and Gloria talking. She touched her Gardenia to ensure it hadn’t drooped. She’d worn it so her ‘date’ could find her in the crowd. ‘But,’ she thought, ‘Gardenias don’t cut it anymore. You’ve been stood up. I don’t get it.’

Arne staggered blindly through the crowd. He needed time to process what Gloria told him. Nearing the bar, he bumped into Brenda, the woman with the Gardenia in her hair.

“Oh! Hi! Excuse me.”

She gripped his arm for balance.

He said, “Are you alright?”

“Yes. Of course. Just need to sit for a moment.” He helped her to an empty table. She smiled at him. “I’m Brenda.”

“Arne… May I join you?”

She nodded absently. He followed her gaze and saw Gloria talking to another man. Arne sat.

Brenda said, “No way, those are real. They defy gravity. You could build a super-computer with the silicone in just one of them.”

She looked at Arne who had to agree.

She continued. “Why are men so single focused on breasts? Why? They feed babies. Are men babies? One woman’s fashion statement doesn’t affect their practical function.”

Arne said, “She could feed an army with those.”

Brenda laughed. “Men are so superficial. You meltdown at a two-inch incision, but don’t think twice about blowing up a country.” Arne blinked.

She was on a roll. “With their heads in the clouds men set out to rule the world, but they really just want to play with these.” She reached out and pantomimed turning large dials. Arne laughed.

Brenda smiled. “Men think they’re mechanical geniuses but cannot understand inherent bodily functions. They aren’t squeeze toys, Arne. Mothers give boys trucks to play with because they’re weary of the constant poking and prodding.”

Arne had never heard a woman talk like this. His reality had shifted.

Brenda touched Arne's arm and looked into his eyes.

"I hate it when men look at and stare at me. I want to be seen. Do you get that?"

Arne didn't really get that.

He said, "Yeah, I get that."

She continued. “Women are more grounded. They’re aware of consequences. I may not be good with maps, but I understand how gravity works.”

She flicked a napkin from the tabletop. They watched it waft to the floor.

“Anyway, breasts draw attention like nothing else, but I don’t base my identity on them.”

Listening to her, Arne grasped something he’d never understood. Brenda possessed an autonomous spirit with her own hopes and dreams. Not a mere object of convenience, she deserved respect like anyone. Like everyone.

She touched his arm and his gaze rose to her face. “Listen to me go on. Bet you don’t often hear such wild ravings…” Brenda glanced around the room. “So, I’m gonna go.”

“What? No. Stay. Can I buy you a drink? I like talking with you.”

“You do? You’re not with someone?”

They looked at ­­­Gloria who laughed with the man at her table.

“No. A case of mistaken identity. I’d rather be with you.”

A man entered. He surveyed the room, looked at his watch, at Gloria and at Brenda. He approached Brenda.

Arne said, “She’s with me.”

The man addressed her. “Sorry I’m an hour late… Brenda?”

Arne stood. The men faced each other.

Arne said, “I said she’s with me.” He pointed at Gloria. “You looking for her?” Arne offered his hand to Brenda. “Let’s go someplace quieter.”

Brenda weighed her options. She smiled and took Arne’s hand. They walked out together.

Arne liked Brenda. She was real.


August 30, 2023 14:09

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6 comments

Amanda Lieser
13:37 Sep 22, 2023

Hi John! I admire the honesty in this piece. You use the characters to point out true flaws within society’s view. But to play devil’s advocate, I think there’s nothing wrong with knowing what you want. I think the singleminded ideas of this characters is what pushed him over the edge. I’m glad we got first impressions, too-that scene, while so quick in the characters’ reality, took a bit for us to digest as readers. I think it gives us a mirror to consider all of the first impressions we allow ourselves to consciously, or more likely, uncon...

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John K Adams
14:48 Sep 22, 2023

Thanks again, Amanda. Your observations mean a lot to me.

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Delbert Griffith
13:41 Sep 08, 2023

LOL Ok, I don't know that I'm a breast man or a leg man or any "body part" man, but I get the point. I do like the second woman (Brenda), and I found it hilarious with the napkin demonstration. I found it a little disconcerting that Arne changed his opinions and perceptions so quickly. "He sought perfect breasts with the devotion some use pursuing a knowledge of God." That's the only part that jarred the continuity of the tale, for me. Be that as it may, this is a wonderful tale with a lesson. I'm a sucker for aphoristic tales, and this on...

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John K Adams
13:58 Sep 08, 2023

Thanks for your thoughtful comments, Delbert. As for his rapid turnabout, I've seen similar turns when some devotee realizes they've been hoodwinked. At least Arne wasn't prone to violence. The zealotry of converts, and all that. Nonetheless, I'm glad you enjoyed the story.

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Mary Bendickson
05:06 Aug 31, 2023

Good choice.

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John K Adams
14:38 Aug 31, 2023

Mary, That's the funniest two word review I've ever gotten. Thank you very much!

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