“I Know You…”

Last weekend, Christy and I went out for drinks after work.  Christy was going to come straight from her office, and told me to meet her at the bar.  It was a local restaurant, but had a large bar area that was typically not too crowded.  Christy was at the end of the bar when I arrived.  She handed me a glass of white wine, saying “Nice outfit.”

Knowing she’d be coming from work, I thought I’d wear something nice.  I had on a sort of sheer white blouse, a beige t-shirt bra, dressy black shorts and black pumps.  It was chilly, so I added a pair of sheer pantyhose.

I sat down, and Christy and I began to catch up.  Suddenly, a woman approached from my left.

“I know you, don’t I?” she stated.  I was pretty sure I’d never met her before.  She was attractive, with shoulder length black hair and beautiful dark eyes.  She was wearing a short black dress.  She went on, saying “I always remember faces.  You’re Michael…Michelle, I mean.  We met at a party in Marina Del Rey, god, ten years ago?” she said, naming a couple I’m sure I didn’t know.  I glanced at Christy, who showed the tiniest smile and stayed quiet, leaving me on my own.

“I…I don’t think so,” I said.

“But that’s your name, right?”  (It is, kind of.  My name is Michael, but ever since I was about 12, everyone has always called me “Gee,” the initial of my last name.)  “I’m JJ.”

The woman rubbed her hand up and down my upper arm.  “I’m sure of it.  Give it a few minutes and you’ll remember.”  She went on to describe the couple, calling them Laura and Conrad, sure I’d remember them or the party.  “You look great, by the way.  I like the way you’ve grown out your hair.  You had a wig last time, didn’t you?  And your makeup looks great.  Anyway, think about it.  I’m sure you’ll remember. I’ll be back later.” She walked away toward the restaurant.

“You really don’t know her?” asked Christy.  I replied that I was sure I didn’t.  “Well, that’s interesting.  She’s certainly convinced she knows you, or at least someone trans who looks like you.”  I thought about this for a minute.  Christy was right, of course.  A person I’d never met before (at least not at a party in Marina Del Rey – I’ve never been there) was convinced that she recognized me as a transwoman, crossdresser, drag queen or whoever was really at that party.  It was a strange coincidence about the name, though I’ve only rarely gone by “Michelle.”  And ten years ago I wouldn’t have dreamed I’d be doing any of this.  It kind of blew my mind.

Quite suddenly, “JJ” appeared at my side.  She put her arm across my shoulder and held out her phone.  “I found some pictures of Laura and Conrad.”  She showed me a half dozen or so photos.  “None are from that party, but I thought these might help you remember.”  I looked on as she scrolled through the pictures.  Christy, once again, stayed silent and just watched, smiling slightly.

The bartender stopped by, to see if we needed refills on our drinks.  JJ ordered another round for the two of us, telling the bartender “Check this out, Heather, we met ten years ago!”

We drank our drinks, JJ doing most of the talking, while I maintained that I didn’t quite remember her or the party.  In the end, she insisted that we exchange phone numbers.  After we did, she hugged me and excused herself to get back to the group she was with.

Christy just smiled at me.

I’ll admit that I was kind of excited to talk to her, and I hoped I’d see her again.


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