I'm going to be honest. I am very much a flirt. I flirt with boys, girls, dogs... Pretty much anything with charm, I'm all about it. So is Archer and together we wink and blink and laugh and smile and wave and dance down the street blowing kisses to homeless trombone players with holes in their shoes.
Perhaps this is why it didn't surprise me when the other day I caught Archer playing peek-a-boo with Shaquille O'Neal. Okay, it wasn't REALLY him but it could have been his twin brother. He was very close in size and stature and very serious about the free-weights.
We were at the counter of the gym picking up some Pilates info. I'm about a decade behind when it comes to "it" workouts and thought it would be a good time to get started, you know, right when gym-rats are coming off their pilates high and pursuing aerobic-pole-dancing or cardio-strip. (How can one sexily strip off a sports-bra by the way? It takes me ten minutes to wiggle out of that shit, am I right?)
I'm not one to flirt at the gym or even make eye contact. I never got the whole makeup and hair-down thing either. I'm the girl in the sweats and oversized t-shirt, messy-haired and nondescript, sweating balls. Perhaps this is why I felt so out-of touch at my old gym. (Maybe it's just me but doing abs and arms between Ian Ziering and Gina Gershon is not in my comfort-workout-zone.) At the Y, people just LOOK like celebrities, coming full circle to Shaq-a-like, Archer's new BFF.
"Hey there, man," Shaq-a-like smiled at Archer who by this time was laughing and banging his head so hard into my shoulder (playing peek-a-boo) I was perpetually saying ouch.
"He likes you. Ouch."
"Yeah. Is he here to work-out too?"
"Ouch. He's here to play in the daycare, er hold his red blankie, ouch, and watch the other kids play. Ouch."
"Peek-a-boo!" Shaq-a-like wasn't even listening to me. He was too interested in playing and beating Archer at peek-a-boo, hiding behind his computer, crouching behind faux plant, smiling big-eyed.
"Heh. Peek-a-boo says Archer!"
"Peek-a-boo, I see you-ooooo!"
"Okay! Time to go to daycare!!!"
But I guess it wasn't time to go to daycare. Shaq-a-boo wasn't done playing peek-a-boo and Archer was now waving his hand hysterically and reaching out to go home with his new friend and leave me for always.
"He likes me," he said, now on his hands and knees crawling out of the information booth and toward us.
"So, yeah. About that pilates schedule..."
It's pretty amazing what a cute baby can do to a great, big, Paul Bunyan of a man. I started to think, "I have absolutely NOTHING on this kid..." And pretty soon it became a contest.
I pushed out my chest, pouted and gave our new friend the ol wink-bite-the-lip-wink. "So, what's your name, big guy?" (Okay I didn't say "big guy" who am I kidding?)
"Oh, I'm Jerome."
"Great, Jerome. SO nice to meet you. I'm Rebecca. Can I please have that pilates schedule, honey-buns?"
"Sure. Cute kid."
"Thanks. He came out of my va-gi-na." (Dudes! I totally didn't say that!!! I'm so kidding, don't worry.)
"Peek-a-boo. Who's the man? Who is he? There he is!? PEEK-A-BOOOOO!"
Yeah. I know. Peek-a-boo, very sweet. He's the man, I get it. I HAVE TO GO NOW.
Okay, so maybe I was just bitter because I lost the flirt-off. I have to admit, it takes some getting used to. No one warned me about the fact that when you have a baby you suddenly become obsolete. No longer are men, women, dogs looking at YOU. It's all about the kid. It's all about the baby's shoes and his cute little hair stylings and you (the mama) may as well drag around the streets looking like a bag lady. No one cares anymore.
I am not going to lie. If anyone turns their heads these days I wave and cheer. Cat-calls on dog-walks from perverts? Hell yeah! Homeless men looking down my shirt. Holla!
I suppose now I'm going to have to wait for Archer to become fluent in English to ask Shaq-a-Boo himself for the damn schedule. And in the meantime? I'll be the hag pouting in the background like an L-to-the-forehead-LOSER and (sniff) no one will notice.