De Lauer’s, Thursday Night, 10 PM

“Hey…hey, you’re pretty, can I get a hug?”

Currently, I am skulking through De Lauer’s, in a half drunken phase looking for a bag of chips with which to stave off the inevitable impending level of drunkenness into which I am planning to dive as soon as I enter into Radio, across the street. I was feeling pretty astute when I stumbled out of the car, realizing that my hunger pangs were probably not going to be sated by more tequila, but, rather, exacerbated by more booze. Hoofing it to the corner store seemed like a smart call as I, in my booty shorts and summer time tank top with the four inch heels, pranced my way through the wafting classical music and blasting lights into the De Lauer’s.

Now, I’m not going to hate. We all know about De Lauer’s – it’s not exactly known as a beacon of culture in the Downtown bar scene, but, hey, I said I’m not going to hate. There has been plenty of rambunctious cigarette trips and last ditch attempts at bags of chips that have happened here, over the years, and consistently, so I’m not mad at De Lauer’s, even if it did attract the so called riffraff that was robbing people at Radio and also the drug dealers that camped out in the smoking room there and ultimately caused the demise of my Monday night DJ set there in 2012 because apparently management thought that playing dated hyphy and crunk music attracted the wrong element. But – I said I’m not going to hate.

And in lieu of not hating, as I was prowling through the three open aisles, looking for an off brand bag of low sodium potato chips, I turned around to see who had asked me for a hug. Ah, yes. There she was. A too skinny bitch of ambiguously brown ethnicity asking me for a hug.

“Oh, no, I’m okay,” I said, walking away from her still.

“No, it’s just that, you’re pretty, and I just want a hug.”

Now, my Oakland mind was cycling through one of three scenarios: 1) she was going to try to rob me, which seemed crass in this brightly lit store 2) she was a bonafied creeper lesbian predator who was playing true to the Bay Area legacy of flipping the gender script and trying to stalk me or 3) her pimp had sent her in here to feel me up and see what the fuck was up.

“You know…I don’t really like touching people,” I responded as I grabbed my bag of chips and headed to the counter.

“Yeah, me either, I don’t like touching people, but I think you’re pretty and it’s no big deal.”

I reach the counter and pull out an appropriate amount of quarters with which to pay for my bag of chips.

“Uh huh,” I respond, sensing that her M.O. is probably falling into #3 on the list because if I wanted something from someone like me it would be (like most men in this city think) a dime of pussy, and what better set up than to feign female friendship via assessing how willing is this bitch when it comes to hugging a random person. Answer: nah. Never. Nice try, pimps of Oakland. You lose again! Of course, I lose, too, mostly because it was my dumb ass that drove over here in daisy dukes and pumps just to wiggle around Radio and giggle for free drinks. But, then again, I’ve lived here my whole life, so I know what score is out to be settled when I leave the house looking like this. I’m not mad at it. In fact, I’m laughing at it. We’ve all tried that one before. It usually doesn’t work, but I can’t knock a hustle that has never done me wrong.