I met a member of MiniKiss yesterday.
I tried not to stare at him, but he was sitting alone at a table for ten, wearing a black bandanna with skulls and crossbones that couldn't stretch over his gigantic dented forehead, clutching a treasure chest, and chugging mimosas. I didn't care if it was none of my business, I was not going to leave the restaurant without knowing how it would all play out.
"Sorry to bother you," I asked, humiliating my boyfriend who sat across from me, "but what is going to happen here?"
"I was hired to play a pirate for someone's surprise birthday party. The guy has a thing for pirates and little people," he said. Damn, I thought, those aren't his regular clothes. I immediately wanted to ask him if he ever went drinking with Dave Attell, but I bit my tongue. It was not the right time to name drop all the famous people I knew who were into little people.
"So you're a professional party pirate?" I asked, deliberating editing the world "little" out from the version in my head. The question sounded sad enough already.
"No. I'm a member of MiniKiss, but they hire us out to do stuff like this, too," he said.
Jesus. I desperately wanted him to explain to me the emotional ramifications of being a human novelty gift, but I hunkered down. Be a real person, Myka, you can do it.
"I've heard of Mini Kiss," I said, "You guys have been on VH1, right?"
He nodded, unimpressed. (Later, when I went home to Google MiniKiss, I found that they had also been in Rolling Stone Magazine, and a million other TV shows and publications lauding their efforts. They were way more famous than I was, and maybe even as famous as Dave Attell.)
"Which member of Kiss are you?" I asked.
"Mini-Gene," he replied, and then stuck out this gigantic pointy tongue that stretched below his chin, which was really impressive because, as I've said, his head was huge.
"Thanks," I said, sure that anything could have been an appropriate response at that point.
Then I left Pirate Mini-Gene alone and went back to my private conversation with my boyfriend, begging him to order desert so we could have an excuse to watch the surprise unfold. Twenty minutes went by, nothing happened. The little pirate just sat and swallowed enough mimosas to inebriate a regular sized human. So much time went by that I forgot to pay attention and I didn't notice that the party had filled in the large empty table around Mini-Gene. Brunch just continued on in a pacific nature.
"Is anyone named Jared having a birthday today?" Mini-gene bellowed. Brunch halted to a stop. Everyone looked around. No Jared. Was Mini-Gene too drunk to remember to wait for the right guy to show up?
"Is Jared here?" he tried again. Nothing. Everyone at the restaurant squirmed with guilt for simultaneously wanting to see what was going and not being Jared. The people at the large party table chuckled uncomfortably. Shouldn't one of them be Jared? The mood was tense. No one admitted to being Jared.
"Come on Jared," said this yenta sitting next to me, who had earlier been discussing her Passover plans. "Fess up already" she meddled.
Almost invisibly, Jared looked up from the large table and timidly raised his hand. He had been there the whole time, but appeared not to recognize his own name or birthday. I began to wonder if Jared really liked pirates and little people at all, or if this was just some extremely awkward prank. Or worse, he had joked once about liking pirates and little people, but it was a front because he really LOVED little pirate people, in a sexual way. Maybe he hadn't owned up to his birthday because he didn't want a Sunday full of brunch-eaters to notice his bulging erection hidden behind a birthday card. If that is what was really happening, it never became an issue.
Mini-Gene toddled over to Jared, handed him the treasure chest and wished him a happy birthday. Jared thanked him quietly, and that was it. Mini-Gene had waited forty five minutes for that unimpressive exchange. I felt bad for him, and began to clap.
Everyone else in the restaurant started clapping and cheering too, and Jared decided to enjoy his birthday gift and invited Mini-Gene to join the table.
"What's your name, man?" Jared asked Mini-Gene.
"Anything you want it to be." Mini-Gene replied, seductively. It was a line straight out of "Pretty Woman ." Maybe the little pirate person sex fantasy was a real thing. I wanted Jared to give Mini-Gene one of Richard Gere's knowing looks, get his real name out of him, and then take him up to a hotel penthouse and ultimately change his life forever.
Instead, Mini-Gene took that moment to spill his fifth mimosa all over the girl next to him and mop her up with his mini-leather jacket. Who says mini-chivalry is dead?