When the Money Talks

Posted on Sunday 20 January 2008

“He’s worth millions and millions, you know.”

That’s nice. He’s almost old enough to be my father.

“He wants to fly you down to the islands on his plane next week. You would stay on the yacht, attend several parties with him. That’s all. You would, of course, have your own stateroom. Do you think you can get a couple of days off?”

He wants me to do what?

What?

I am having dinner and drinks after work with my girlfriend. The gentleman saying this to me is the millionaire’s assistant, whom my friend and I have met once before at this very spot. He is buying a round of our drinks on behalf of the millionaire who has yet to join him, whom we also met briefly that same evening a week or so ago and later ran into elsewhere a few days ago. The millionaire’s assistant is very serious as he says these words to me about yachts and private planes, and I am positive I am not hearing him correctly.

“He likes you. He thinks you are interesting…and very pretty.”

There are moments when a tiny corner of your life hangs in an unexpected, quite sudden balance. A choice looms, even though you know the choice you will make. But you wonder how it is that such an unusual choice is so suddenly thrust before you at the end of a long, tough week, when lonely tears were the order of several evenings, when you were questioning so many of the major choices you have already made.

When the millionaire arrives, his assistant knows how to quietly stand near to him, always at the ready, but very much in the background so that the millionaire and I can talk. In the books and movies, my millionaire would be my age and incredibly handsome. In the humid night air at the outdoor section of this enormous upscale eatery, he is neither, although he is actually quite sweet, savvy, and fun to talk to, even about politics. For a half hour or so, I feel a little like I am chatting up an important somebody at a D.C. cocktail party.

A casual silence ensues, and then he says he’d like me to join him on his yacht in the islands. I pretend as though I am hearing the invitation for the first time. I talk too much and too fast about my impossible work schedule and what short notice this is and how it’s very nice of him to ask.

“You don’t have time off?” he asks after a moment, taking a long sip of his drink.

In the briefest of seconds, I see my life fast-forward before me if I say yes: I will panic about what to wear, about who else will be aboard the yacht as his guests, and about how being there makes me just another dumb girl on the arm of this millionaire. I see his unmarried son and two married daughters worried that their beloved, millionaire father has taken up with a girl closer to their own ages than his, and what does this mean about his intentions for his millions. And it will turn out that the private jet pilot and I hit it off far better than I do with the millionaire or his kids, and this will either spark a scandal or result in much confusion in the millionaire’s realm.

Ha!

My millionaire seems confused by my refusal. Really, can’t I just let my manager know I need a few days off? he asks. I smile to myself, picturing my GM’s expression if I were to explain to him exactly why I need three days off in the middle of this upcoming week. I thank my millionaire for his generous invitation and gently decline it, one last time.

He clinks my glass and tells me he is sorry. He likes me, he says. Maybe another time. I watch his assistant watching him and then me as we end our conversation. He, too, seems surprised by my response.

Clearly, neither of them has met a restaurant gal who never calls out.

18 Comments for 'When the Money Talks'

  1.  
    January 20, 2008 | 5:54 am
     

    Why RG! I thought these things only happened in the movies…with Cary Grant and Doris Day.

  2.  
    January 20, 2008 | 6:09 am
     

    The use of the assistant reminds me of using friends at school to ask girls out without fear of them saying no to your face:

    “My mate fancies you! Will you go out with him?”

  3.  
    January 20, 2008 | 9:56 am
     

    GAH!!
    PLease tell me you did not do that!

  4.  
    Restaurant Gal
    January 20, 2008 | 10:26 am
     

    Zazzy–In the movies, it’s all wonderfully romantic, with the dashing young millionaire and the girl swept off her feet. In real life, it ends up being my story ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Kim–You know, I think it was best he gave me a heads up on that, or I would have been sure I was being set up–and not on a date!

    yoyo–But, I didn’t go on the yacht, etc. Stop worrying!

  5.  
    caligal
    January 20, 2008 | 12:09 pm
     

    good choice, rg.

  6.  
    Restaurant Gal
    January 20, 2008 | 2:04 pm
     

    Caligal–Indeed!

  7.  
    m
    January 20, 2008 | 6:41 pm
     

    As I read this story, I thought, “Oh dear, this is a story that cannot have a good ending.” However, I was wrong. This story had quite the best ending because you are one smart cookie! Way to be smart, RG!

  8.  
    January 20, 2008 | 8:41 pm
     

    RG, anyone who needs someone to speak for them is not worth the time. Bodies, in south Florida, are a dime a dozen. Playing hard to get, priceless.

  9.  
    January 20, 2008 | 9:24 pm
     

    What the hell? You should have made this twat take you out for 3 days on your own time. “Yes, you can pick me up in 14 weeks from now and take me out to dinner, drinks, dancing, and you will have to compensate me for the 3 days I have to take off work to spend with you”. Girl…….I swear.

  10.  
    January 20, 2008 | 9:45 pm
     

    LOVE IT.

  11.  
    January 20, 2008 | 9:59 pm
     

    what do you think the assistant makes? Its warm there, right? I could so do that job. Half my guests think I’m a pimp already–why not go all the way!

  12.  
    Restaurant Gal
    January 20, 2008 | 10:54 pm
     

    m–all good.

    Ex RM–I know it sounds terrible, but it wasn’t as bad as it sounds–does that make sense? Probably not. I was wondering how it came across in my writing. Pretty bad, it seems, when it didn’t feel 100% horrible. Oh well, that’s just dumb me, I guess.

    UW–I know, I know! I am such a dumb ass. When are we having that drink or 20 so I can learn the wise ways of life in So. Fla. from you! Clearly, you have all the exact answers I can’t come up with under pressure. I am in awe, as always.

    Namaste–Because, in the end, it is a GREAT story, yes?

    Last one home–I think “pimp” is tad harsh. Thing is, his staff is very loyal to him–decades of allegiance by all of them, so I was told. The millionaire was sweet, in his older way. The assistant was very polite, in his way. No harm from asking. It’s just worlds away from my narrow realm. Okay, light years away!

  13.  
    Jennifer
    January 21, 2008 | 10:04 am
     

    You rock SO hard, lady. Absolutely brilliant. Flattering, though, as that might have been, I’d hold out for more money. You’re worth it. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  14.  
    January 21, 2008 | 2:16 pm
     

    I am so incredibly proud of you…I don’t know what to say. This, my friend, does not happen often (me not knowing what to say, that is…I get invitations from wealthy, slutty strangers all the time).

    Peace,

    – Dennis
    http://www.donttipthewaiter.blogspot.com

  15.  
    January 21, 2008 | 3:30 pm
     

    Hhaha, anytime RG. Looking forward to making you the best foo foo drink in town. ๐Ÿ™‚

  16.  
    Restaurant Gal
    January 22, 2008 | 1:23 am
     

    Jennifer–More money–of course!

    Dennis–I rendered you so speechless you didn’t even disrespect UW? Wow, this might be my best post ever!

    UW–Seriously, a bottle and a straw. Say when and where, me and the pup are there!

  17.  
    January 22, 2008 | 2:35 pm
     

    Awwwww! Why didn’t you go just for the experience? Would you have felt you were being dishonest about your feelings for him?

  18.  
    January 24, 2008 | 2:45 pm
     

    I can see how that would be flattering… even perhaps a tad tempting…. YOu are in another world RG>> millionaires and yachts… loyal assistants. indeed.. they are much cuter.. the millionaires of our dreams ~ lol~ =)

    give yourself a pat on the back (or an extra order of fries??) something.. because gal, you deserve some kudos for being true to yourself there.. especially when you’ve been questioning other major life choices.

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