I spent one of my better New Year's Eves with an academic. He was (or still is) a professor of Latin American Studies at a small university in the outer, outer western suburbs of Philadelphia. We went to see a band at a club on South Street.
We'd arrived early enough to get seats at the bar and started kissing shamelessly as soon as the clock on my phone rolled to midnight. The bartender passed out tiny portions of champagne in plastic cups.
Part way through the show, another former lover of mine arrived unexpectedly. He immediately fell in love with the bass player of the opening band. When she walked past me on her way to the bathroom I told her that my friend wanted to take her home after the show -- but sadly for him, she was engaged to one of her bandmates. The 3 of us enthusiastically wished her a happy new year. I don't know if the band is still together; they weren't a very good band.
After the main attraction wrapped their set, my date and I staggered home on South Street against the flow of drunken New Jersey suburbanites walking the other direction, from the Penn's Landing fireworks to their PATCO trains.
The next morning, my lover taught me how the Incas counted with their quipus and explained the Mayan doomsday prophecy.
He mistakenly believed that how I like to be treated in the bedroom also extends to how I like to be treated generally. A week or so after New Year's, we went to go see a movie at the Vox Populi gallery with some university colleagues of his. We looked at the sculpture exhibits outside of the makeshift cinema before the film started. When I touched one of the sculptures to get a better understanding of what it was made of, he slapped my hand, and not gently. "Don't hit me," I said. He laughed at me and looked at his friends. "No, you don't hit me," I repeated. He didn't understand why I was annoyed.
I think he thought he was slumming it, sleeping with someone whose B.A. was good enough only for secretarial work. Most of the time he would wait until I was done speaking and say whatever he wanted to say, with no actual response to the content of what I'd said.
I've completely forgotten his name.