Jay was my best friend when I worked at the pet store during my second try at college. Jay was a transplanted New Englander and I still can't watch This Old House without thinking of him due to the accents on that show. "Bah-ston," I can still hear him say in my mind's eye.
Jay kind of adopted me. He was the type of friend that would come over and drag you out of the house to go do something. This fit my social anxieties well as I needed someone this aggressive to draw me out of my shell. Jay just wouldn't take "no" for an answer and I was known to protest at times and to try and stay at home.
"Where are we going?" I would ask as we would walk out from my apartment to his truck in the parking lot.
"Hockey and Lynn's Den," he would reply in that Boston accent with a devilish grin upon his face.
Lynn's Den was what Jay called a "titty bar" or what you would know as a strip joint. Can you imagine a guy riddled with social anxieties being thrown amidst exotic dancers crawling all in your lap and begging you for tips as they urged you to buy them mixed drinks? I never could get used to slipping those dollar bills down their skimpy thongs as they danced in front of me.
"Lighten up and have fun!" Jay would say, chugging a Miller Lite, as he would pat me upon the back.
Somehow, I would always go and manage to have a decent time as long as I could avoid the lap dances that Jay would occasionally buy for me. My avarice for sexual things was never very pronounced. I especially enjoyed the hockey games beforehand and the numerous beers and hotdogs we would consume. Me and Jay would drive home in his Silverado, late at night, singing, as Angus Young belted out old AC/DC tunes on the stereo. Those were good times and I miss that Yankee.