… you’ve been warned …
Shortly after my trip to Portland back in 2005ish, I had a ‘stop n pop’ meeting with my director at Phoenix Sky Harbor.
‘Stop n pop’ is shop talk for an impromptu meeting at the airport as a leader type flies through the city you’re in as they are en-route to somewhere else.
That was the reason for the ‘Stop n pop’.
When my director learned of my desire to discontinue pursuit of my degree, he objected harshly, admitting to me he had an agenda clearly requiring a face to face discussion.
“Brian, I’m retiring in a couple years, and was hoping you’d want to be my replacement,” he said, “You’re going to need at least a Master’s to take over.”
I was flattered, and had never thought myself to be the leader type.
But it had always been staring me in the face the entire time.
So I stayed locked on my educational plan too.
University of Phoenix has an interesting approach to education which in my opinion is far more suitable to the corporate world than your traditional brick and mortar installations such as Arizona State University.
But there were the drawbacks. Among those drawbacks, like any night based education, this completely tied up my evenings. And with every class being a five week session, it’s ill advised to take more than two classes at a time because lengthy team meetings outside of class are a necessity.
Not long after I had gotten married to Amy Newton in a whirlwind relationship, I was finding myself miserable, so I immersed myself in my work and education.
At about the time I am considering a divorce again, and remaining single the rest of my life, I began a new class in Chandler, Arizona.
As was typical, I find my seat, as front and center as possible with a clear view of the door (I always keep an eye on the exits, nasty habit), and in walks the most attractive woman I have ever seen.
She asks if the seat next to me is taken, and I feel like a giddy little kid.
Now mind you, it’s not that she’s that stunningly gorgeous, it’s just there’s something that this girl has touched on in two seconds is palatable with the way she holds herself, her sophistication, her beauty, all combined with an amazing approachability that you don’t tend to find in highly attractive women.
She was like a breath of fresh air from the moment I first laid eyes on her.
University of Phoenix reinforces team meetings, after all, that’s what the corporate environment is like, and with that, Rachel and I and an older lady named Donna haphazardly selected each other for our small team to work on a team project for the 5 week session based on simple proximity in our seat locations.
I was delighted.
Team meetings can be held anywhere, so at first we selected the campus conference rooms for our meeting that week.
The meeting went off uneventfully, we had a deliverable, we assigned tasks.
But Donna dropped the ball for the assignment. So Rachel and I ended up pulling together to get her work done for the team assignment.
We turned the assignment in, accepting Donna’s excuse, with all our names on it.
The same thing happened the next week.
This time, Rachel was caught up until whee hours of the night finishing the assignment.
Again. We turned in the assignment, begrudgingly, with all our names on it.
All the while, my attraction to Rachel is WAY HIGH, but I’m being a good boy, I was married and was trying hard not to fuck that up a third marriage thanks to the temptation. But we were both flirtatious from the start.
The next team meeting is where I saw the passion of the woman.
I don’t remember precisely what was said. All I remember was we both confronted Donna on her lack of reliability, when she turned it around and questioned our morals and character and accused Rachel and I of having an affair on our partners, not that it was any of her business but the accusations were completely unfounded.
Yes, her and I had been flirting, but we both had ailing marriages and the truth was, it made us feel good to feel… desirable, which our respective partners were definitely not doing nor seemed capable of. We were both ‘working’ on our marriages.
Rachel verbally went off on Donna. I sat back and watched the sparks fly and thought a cat fight was going to erupt. The defense seemed just as much for me as it was for her. I’d never had a woman stick up for me before, which was.. refreshing.
About then, Donna flipped a wig and I literally had to tear them apart. A cat fight had indeed erupted.
I took Rachel outside, and calmed her down, but the meeting was done.
That week, Donna actually did do some work, but it was shitty at best. She was clearly trying to ride easy street to obtain her degree. Yep, unfortunately University of Phoenix has that problem with it’s approach to education, the lowest bar still can make it through based on the efforts of those who are interested in an education. Again, such is the case with the corporate world.
This time, we decided to have ‘the last’ team meeting at Ra, a trendy Sushi restaurant with tons of eye candy in Ahwatukee. Rachel and I figured a more relaxed setting where we could share a cocktail might be favorable, and I figured a public setting might keep Donna and Rachel’s tempers in check.
Rachel and I both showed up early. And started getting into a pretty heavy conversation about our relationships and problems, sexually, with being wanted and desired. The alcohol set in. And two hours roll by, and no Donna.
Rachel for the first time explains how her husband had cheated on her last week, so her marriage issues are intensifying…
And the alcohol makes me brave and has me ask her why she got fake boobs. I’m not a fan normally, nor am I this forward, but on her they looked great and she deserved to be complimented.
She responds with ‘You know, Chris (her husband) made the same comment to me on our first date too’
I didn’t know we were on a date.
We’re feeling the moment. Conversation heats up. Subconsciously, I am on a mission to make Rachel seem less attractive to me, so I make a comment along the lines of ‘you arent the kind of girl I could take to a dive bar in Mexico,’ to which she defends herself by saying ‘there is nothing I cant…’ as she leans in flirtatiously and adds
‘….or wont do, just try me‘.
About now. I am completely torn. Go for the kiss. Fuck up the relationship. Or…
“Rachel, see that guy over there by the bar,” I point to a guy I’d noticed was similar to how I’d been in the past, a bit lonely and in need of company “I dare you to go kiss him. With tongue. “
She smiled. This was totally unexpected. “Are you serious?”
I could see she was visibly turned on by my request.
“Of course I am serious,” I said, hating myself for saying it, “I dare you to go kiss him and make him feel a little less lonely and good.”
She wasted absolutely no time, and it was one of the most bewilderingly intoxicating moment I have ever had. I have my dream girl here, and here I am letting someone else have her without letting myself have her?
Since that night, I have had countless dreams of an alternate reality where we’re both in the same situation, where my words are replaced with: “I dare you to go give him a blowjob” as she does and I’m every time beyond turned on by it. I wish this reality were different sometimes, this would be chief on my list of things I’d do..
Brian’s list of things I would do in alternate realities:
1) To dare hot chicks to do risky sexual things with other guys in public.
Dunno why it’s a turn on.
I’m bizarre, I know.
In any case, she returns with a triumphant smile on her face.
And I felt good about myself…
We hug as we depart ways that evening, and I can tell that she’s somewhat wanting things to continue between us, but I resist. As insurmountably difficult as it was.
For me, it was the feeling I had as I drove home that night – the feeling that I deserved a woman like this, a classy, sophisticated, adventurous, sexy, selfless and playful woman – that made me realize I needed to get out of my marriage with Amy for both our sake, I wasn’t happy with who I was when I was with her.
Not long after that, Amy and I took a trip to Costa Rica for our one year anniversary, where i was seriously hoping to rekindle the spark – we did a tour of San Jose, Guanacaste, and Monteverde where we stayed at the amazing Swiss Hotel and did the zip lines and canopy tour over the rain forest.
I apparently couldn’t do anything right in Amy’s eyes. And her voice, which really was sounding like Fran Drescher‘s, was beyond irritating at this point. Dunno why I added that. So on the final night in San Jose, I announced my intention on returning to the states to file for a divorce.
Within two weeks, Amy was out of the house.
That’s when I received a call from Rachel. She was clearly emotionally distraught.
“Can I come over?” she asked.
The last thing I wanted was to consul an emotional female, but this was no ordinary female. So I gave her my address.
Within half an hour, she was there.
What happened next easily ranks among my favorite moments of my life.
I showed her around the house. And she looked at the bed, and says matter of factly
“Can I… Take off my clothes. i just want you to look at me,” she said.
I pinch myself. Literally.
Rachel is, to this day, the woman I am easily the most attracted to, ever, in my life, physically, intellectually, and emotionally. And here she is standing right in front of me, and she’s asking _me_ if she can be naked?
The little kid in me emerges.
She proceeds to take off all her clothes as if it’s…. Nothing.
Wearing nothing but a smile. She then says:
“Will you hold me in your bed?”
For about 3 hours that day, we kissed and made out in my bed, an unforgettable moment in the annals of me.
Yet the entire time she remained unclothed while I stayed clothed.
It just didn’t feel right to me being any other way at that moment.
If I had a time machine. I’d go back to that moment and make a few different choices.
In any case, the holidays rolled by, and we talked less and less with eachother.
By this time I’ve rationalized my self-controlled behavior and lack of sexual follow through by saying to myself that this was my way of respecting her marriage.
That’s because the truth hurt more than I was willing to admit.
I always knew I had a different expectation of what I wanted in a relationship that violated the norm. And whether it’s a dare to give a random kiss to a stranger or a blowjob to another man in an alternate reality, it’s this kind of carefree partner I have deep down always craved to play a part in my life.
Heck, my high school crush, Nikki Putnam labelled me with the label ‘Pervert’ when I was 15. A label I consequently adorned with pride. Incidentally, it took 20 years after graduation to hook up with her, a story I will detail later.
But with relationships, deep down, I had always felt that I did not deserve my own version of what I considered to be a healthy one. It was too.. out of the norm. So my subconscious undermined me every step of the way. Rachel, as funky and offbeat and physically and sexually confident as she was – represented this nonconformist idea of a beautiful relationship with an amazing woman to me.
But going back to early 2007, Rachel and I haven’t talked much throughout the holidays, and I soon find myself out celebrating my divorce in late February.
That’s when I get a call.
“Bri. I saw your message (I had texted her earlier). My husband’s out of town. Would you like to come over?”
There was a tone to her voice that made intentions clear.
“I’ll be right over.”
She answered the door in a robe, with nothing underneath and led me to her patio where the candles were all lit.
She pushed me down onto the wicker bench, where we again kissed like old lovers, petting got heavier and heavier, and then she pulled down my pants and started going to work.
It was awesome.
Then she stopped. Pulled a candle next to my… well you know…
I was embarrassed as all hell.
“Rachel, the rash is from me masturbating too much.”
She laughed. And resumed fellatio.
Not long after, she jumped in the pool.
And we tried having sex.
I say tried, because no matter what I did. I could not keep the little guy’s attention going. Between the alcohol of the evening, the water, and the little bit of cocaine I had in my system that evening – there was just nothing doing.
After trying numerous times to get the little sergeant going inside her to no avail, she jumped out of the pool, frustrated.
“Get out. Put on your clothes,” she demanded
I’d felt like a mammoth disappointment to all of mankind at this point.
“I think you should leave,” she said.
It was harsh. But I felt like I deserved it.
In 2012, I was coming clean and sober and apologizing to some of the people I’d wronged, and Rachel had lived near the top of the list of personal regrets.
Not for my flawed performance.
But for letting my vices fuck up my judgment and actions which led to the flawed performance.
In any case, I’d wanted to directly talk to Rachel, but I was reluctant to call, as I had heard a rumor that Chris Gooch, Rachel’s husband, was and still is a prominent lawyer in Phoenix, was being groomed by Senator John McCain to be President in 2020.
Now I don’t give those rumors any credibility, my sources sucked at that time anyways. But I had heard her marriage was enduring, so I debated whether or not I should even consider coming between them, again.
But on hearing this rumor, I experienced a number of vivid dreams featuring Chris and Rachel Gooch – and (of all people) Will Ferrell – that inspired my story “The Idiot Who Made Everything” (I’m the idiot featured in that story, by the way).
I blew this dream off, as it was partially inspired by Will Ferrell’s filming of Everything Must Go right down the street from Rachel and Chris’s house in Phoenix.
Then the next night I had another dream.
I had remembered a conversation one night in which Rachel referred to the ‘Brown House’, Brown being her maiden name (Rachel Brown). One dream was of the White House in an alternate reality becoming so brown due to pollution or dust that it was given the nickname the ‘Brown House’.
On waking from that dream I ‘remembered’ a conversation with Rachel where she discussed how her father was Secretary of Defense.
Her father never was. But I didn’t know Rachel to be a liar and found this inconsistent statement a little.. bewildering to reflect on.
I blew that one off..
Not long after, another dream where I see Chris watching us from the bedroom window that night I came over, and something told me we were ‘linked’ and he’d told her to do what she did which is why I was unable to perform.
And shortly after another dream where I saw Rachel in a complete alternate reality, crying, in a Mad Max scene that looked like she was walking, all alone in the middle of a desert with a weird dog like robotic companion.
Within a week of that last dream, Rachel randomly sends me a message on Facebook of a project called MK Ultra. MK Ultra was a covert CIA project in the late 60s early 70’s of mind control.
This had me thinking – was Rachel trying to say something through the dreams, through the link? Was it possible she was a very real Stepford Wife and her mind was rebelling against it? Is this why we sparked? Were we really soulmates and was she….
I was definitely finding myself going down a rabbit hole of conspiratorial thoughts….
The paranoiac benefits of having worked for the NSA.
Unable to control myself, I called them up, under the guise of asking the Gooch’s permission for using their name and likeness in a story I was crafting.
Ok. I admit it. I was checking in on her.
The conversation was short and sweet. Chris did indeed remember me. Which was unusual.
I also learned he, like me, was 42, the number Douglas Adams presented as the answer to “Life the Universe and everything” in the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (which served as a basis for my story). This had me questioning my memory because I’d previously thought he was 2 years younger than me.
In any case. Permission was granted, and Chris wanted to read the story when it was done. I (we?) will get there one of these days.
Chris, there’s no lie to that story, it’s detailed in its incompleteness in “The Idiot Who made Everything”
It’s a story that needs someone else to help complete.
But Rachel immediately phoned back privately.
“Brian, “ I remember how she enunciated this to make sure i heard it properly, “my reality is not the same as yours and I would appreciate you never calling here again.”
… Such a bizarre choice of words she should use, I remember thinking at the time.
Shortly after, she removed her profile off Facebook and all traces of “Rachel Gooch in Phoenix, Arizona’ off the internet.
Now here’s the thing.
If I had a time machine. Not saying I do. But if I did.
The first thing I would do is go to the night where I left her house after the nonperformance.
Knock on the door.
And look her in the eye and say in my calmest, crazy man tone:
“Rachel, I’ve always loved you, and I believe they made the movie Hancock based on who we are and our fucked up relationship. I’d like you to come with me on the journey of a lifetime. We may screw up the world. Maybe even countless others. But then again, we could potentially change them all to be something incredibly fun and perverted along the way, in a sophisticated and classy way of course.”
Of course I’d have to explain the whibbledy wobbledy nature of time and how the Rachel now would continue to exist despite her choice in the past because I’d already witnessed one path she took which solidifies that reality.
And then. After asking the question.
I’d be perfectly ok with the response I received.
Sure my arrival would have meant I had displaced time and space itself to ask her the question. But then, I’d want her to come to her decision on her terms and I’d be ok with whatever choice she made.
I figured. At least I’d had the balls to ask when the time was right for both of us, where I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt I deserved her and she me. I simply wasn’t ready when I met her.
And deep down I do believe while there can be infinite potential realities where she says no.
There’d be one where she’d say yes.
And I was capable of doing this to begin with.
And Chris. I mean you no disrespect. And I have a feeling you already know about what happened between her and I.
If that’s not the case.
It’s been 7 years. If she’s with you now, I ask you to forgive her.
She’s an amazing woman.
Consider this my release 🙂
And keep in mind, technically, while we did have intercourse.
It was only the tip.
I will make up for that faux pas next time.
WHEN my desired reality actually manifests itself.
Then again. I’m not waiting for that.
I figure the Rachel in this reality is taken, so now I focus my efforts in manifesting a liberal Bajoran, (Star Trek race) Time Traveling , Sexy Alien Rachel from the future.
You know. Bending space and time to my whim.
In any case. The Rachel I met, in this reality. Was truly a class act. In such a short period of time, she made me look at women altogether differently – from the cute pants flared at the bottom she wore all the time, to the ugly appropriately named UGGH shoes she wore which she somehow made seem classy… She was, to me, more than just an image of what I wanted in a woman – she was someone to me who effortlessly seemed to make sex – classy yet secretly pervertedly fun in it’s potential too. For me, it was a very refreshing and welcome perspective shift from a woman who set the bar for what I absolutely deserve in a woman from that point forward.