My parents hadn’t even been gone an hour before the stench of loneliness crept into my new 4×6 bedroom/closet like Bill Cosby to a room full of ex models. The pink door that was so proudly displayed online was nowhere to be found–my first taste of disappointment in the city. I hauled the entirety of Costco’s vegan baked goods aisle up four flights of stairs—the same stairs that would become the bane of my out-of-shape existence in the months to come. My roommate was out so I did some investigating, that may or may not have included briefly exploring her underwear collection, and making premature judgments about her character.
After deducing that she was a crack addict from The Jersey Shore, thanks to the open bottle of Vodka on her dresser (I sometimes equate any alcohol not in the wine cooler family with crack. I didn’t get out much in high school, or in college, or ever, really) and the 7+ bottles of self-tanner (she ended up giving me one later so I feel bad about thinking she was a crack addict from Jersey), I decided to do something more productive with my time and search for reasonably priced concerts I would be safe going to alone (ex. not an R. Kelly show). After all, I was there to pursue music and not crack heads! Or so I thought…
I remembered walking past a Webster Hall earlier in the day, and decided to start there. The slew of underage scene tweens standing outside in matching Hot Topic outerwear assured me that I would feel at home. I scrolled through their online calendar only to find a roster of bands too hip for me to ever know about. I finally came across a vaguely familiar name: Mike Posner. I knew he was either my cousin’s inbred rapper friend or that dude who had that one song on the radio once. My suspicions for the latter were confirmed when a Google search uncovered an autobiographical blog posting called “What the Hell Happened to Mike Posner”. I’m a sucker for washed up pop stars, so when I saw that tickets were only ten dollars, the same amount I spent to see my little brother play crabcore at his high school talent show (and win?), I decided to splurge. I needed to get myself out of that room before I started doing anything weirder to that poor girl’s underwear. Plus, I recalled that there was something about Mr. Posner that I liked.
That something was very talented, very Jewish writer/producer and all around good guy Benny Blanco. I had essentially memorized Benny’s catalog of works over the past year after a few encounters with highly disreputable psychics led me to believe he would one day father my hypothetical children. I recalled that he had done some work with Mike before and hoped he might attend. I had already met Benny in all corners of the dark web and this was my chance to finally get him in the flesh!
I spent the month leading up to the concert violently masturbating and gaining seven pounds. My mom reassured me that the weight was muscle from all the walking I was doing and had absolutely nothing to do with the fact that I share a building with The Halal Guys. We both knew the truth. Fuck that white sauce and all the nice foreign men who so generously serve it and occasionally ask my current roommate out through Whatsapp with excessive use of the rose emoji! You can clog an artery just from being in close proximity to that shit!
When July 27th rolled around I took an embarrassingly long time squeezing into a leather skirt that made me feel like a much thottier Kardashian sister. I topped it off with a scandalous cleavage-bearing crop top of the porn star variety and pulled out the only bra I own that wasn’t three dollars from Walmart. What an occasion! I slapped on some too big nude pumps to show that I was not 100% trash and strutted my stuff past a homeless amputee on 2nd Ave before arriving to the show unfashionably on time. The dude checking ID’s made a passive aggressive remark about my 15 year old self, but I took it as a compliment.
I went on to explore the entirety of the modest living room-sized venue, realizing that this Mike dude must have really hit rock bottom. There was no Benny in sight. I should’ve known I couldn’t just will myself to meet my future baby daddy without putting down a little more than ten dollars! This uncultured suburban white girl was far too green for the cold realities of the concrete jungle. I wasn’t in Peabody, MA anymore.
Blisters had started forming well before I passed the amputee and all I cared about was finding a way to relieve the pain, emotional and physical. I rejoiced at the sight of empty chairs ahead of me before having my dreams shattered yet again, realizing they were reserved for the self-righteous elitist assholes of Island Records. Some worthless bitch at Island told me I was “not the right candidate” after applying for an A&R position with them a few months earlier. I wondered if she was in the room and ended up glaring at every female, contemplating the cruel and unusual ways I could find retribution in their deaths. I told myself I was much happier with my current position in licensing and data management at a company everyone hates and began crying internally. The dimming of the lights broke my pity fest and I caught a glimpse of a familiar face from across the half-crowded room. It was him.
No, not Benny. It was that washed up has-been Mike! He was looking particularly lumbersexual on this occasion with a freshly grown beard and denim button-up. I guess he traded his early 2006 club-douche buzz cut and chin strap for something a little more Brooklyn hipster meets genuine Mississippi forest dweller– perfectly suitable for a man now doing a six-state unplugged tour.
He took the stage and I could not contain my excitement. No sarcasm there; I had become a serious Mike Posner fangirl in the week leading up to the show. I even subscribed to his mailing list! The poor guy has a whole section on his website dedicated to hate mail. I had to.
He went on to perform a beautifully honest set of raw, self-reflective music. I didn’t care that I had just waxed my vag in anticipation of conceiving a child, only to be let down like every other time in my life; Mike was perfect and sweet and just refreshing.
I sent Mike an uplifting tweet at the end of the show to remind him that vulnerability is sexy and went on with no plans to return for his show the next week. However, on the night of August 2nd everything changed when I awoke to an overwhelming sensation that was unlike no other radiating from deep within my fallopian tubes. I had to go to that show.
I rummaged through the dark for my credit card, desperately trying not to wake my roommate. My previous Vodka-abusing roommate had moved out three weeks early because she was convinced an infestation of bed bugs had taken over our room. I’m pretty sure she was just tired of me threatening her life in my sleep though. My new roommate was a lot scarier and told me on multiple occasions that she would not be surprised if I was raped on a park bench someday.
I prayed tickets would still be on sale, knowing they definitely would be, and got one. When I arrived home from work I slid into a more modest get up than my last ensemble that had a Bengali drug dealer calling me his “naughty girl.” I went with a high-collared grey dress and black strappy heels: responsible, nurturing mother in the streets, daddy issues in the sheets.
The man at the door referenced the passive aggressive remark he made the week before and I still took it as a compliment. I took a quick look around the venue before taking a spot in the front of the room. No Benny. I should’ve known he would just keep letting me down after I paid five dollars to message him on Facebook six months before only to get no reply. It just wasn’t meant to be.
I stood for a while before that burning feeling deep within my reproductive system returned. No, not an STD; I’m very careful in public restrooms. The feeling was leading me to the back of the room. I followed. That was when the gates of heaven opened up and I saw Him.
It was God! Just kidding. It was Benny and his subtle Jew ‘fro glistening in the fluorescent light. Same thing, right?! Except everyone knows God isn’t Jewish. What do I do? What do I say? Boy was looking fine, but my spray tan had me smelling like a two-cent hoe and I couldn’t remember the last time I had washed my hair. Still, I had to do something.
I slowly but surely made my way over in his direction until I assumed position approximately ten feet northwest of him and tried to make do with the fact that he was in full view of my bad side. As more people entered the room, I took the opportunity to move closer and closer until my ass was just mere centimeters from his junk. I was wondering if this was the moment the psychics were talking about. Could I be impregnated this way? My pediatrician tells me I’m very fertile!
I quickly realized that I did not think this move through because I would have to make a 180-degree turn, look him straight in the eyes, and introduce myself, pretending to have no clue he was there in the first place. Thankfully, he knew exactly what to do. I overheard him tell his friend he was going to go “pee pee” and I knew that was my cue to attack. No, I did not follow him into the restroom like I had so strongly contemplated. I have boundaries you know!
He said “excuse me,” initiating our first interaction (such a gentleman), but I played hard to get and waited for him to return before saying anything. He came back earlier than expected and I jumped at the sight of him approaching. Just do not mention the fact that you know his mom’s name and where he lives and all the other things you definitely should not know about him.
I had to act fast. He was gaining on me. In my final seconds of deliberation I decided animals were safe territory: “OMG Benny your dogs are so cute! I straight up stalk them on Instagram!” I thought it was perfect, but the look of sheer terror that came over his eyes insisted otherwise. Oh no was that weird? That was probably weird. He let out a consolatory laugh and “thank you” followed by a pat on the shoulder–code for “I feel so bad for you, you poor crazy bitch.”
I told myself it could have been worse. I could have told him about that time I “accidentally” ended up in front of his apartment because I was sad and wanted to snuggle with Larry (his dog who has an impressive under bite and more Instagram followers than most humans) after a Ukrainian cardiologist asked if he could pay to put his wiener in me.
I had a bright idea. I knew Mike would be performing “Please Don’t Go,” the song he and Benny had written together, and that would be the perfect chance for me to show my extensive knowledge of his work. I waited and waited, but the show was drawing near and the song never came. I had already wasted so much valuable conversation time drunk white girl dancing (By drunk I mean completely sober. I’m just a really terrible, enthusiastic dancer), that I probably blew any chance of him ever viewing me as a respectable human being. Mike finally answered my prayers with the song I had been waiting for and I turned to Benny and asked, “You produced this one right?” He smiled and nodded. I said it was “so good.”
When the show was over, we began heading out in opposite directions, but I wasn’t going to let him get away that easily. Before he had time to make his escape, I reached out for his arm and called out his name. He turned around and I pulled out a pre-written post-it with my information on it (I keep a few in my bag at all times to stick on unsuspecting industry folk): “Can I give you my card? It’s actually a post-it. You can totally throw it out if you want, but if you check my Soundcloud in a week I’m gonna be posting a dope new original!” He was kind and appreciative– probably a tactic of defense developed after years of fuckbois approaching him with low quality mixtapes. He took it and thanked me before bowing and leaving me with a warmhearted “peace.” I let him go, but refused to say goodbye; for I knew it was just the beginning. ‘Twas not the end, but an “until we meet again”…
“If you leave I’m gon’ find you”
-Mike Posner (“Please Don’t Go”)