One needs to stay alert.  One never knows when one can make a sale.  Even train stations and train rides can provide an opportunity to sell the book.  I had to ride SEPTA to Trenton to connect with a New Jersey Transit train on my way up to New York City.


I sit down and get lulled into a conversation with a couple French ladies also heading to New York.  I make a few pathetic stabs at speaking French but I am determined to make some sort of impression.  So, of course, I have to bring up my poetry and my first collection of verse.  Of course, I also just happen to have a couple copies buried in my backpack.  I pull them out to show off.


They actually like the book or so they say.  But I’m inclined to believe them since they both wanted to buy copies.  It’s a sudden, drastic increase in my European sales.


We get on the Jersey train and I tell them about a band called the Radiators playing a gig at Irving Plaza in the Big Apple.  I try to talk them into going to the show.  Somehow my charm doesn’t extend that far.  I can’t even blame Conan O’Brien for this one.


We’ll get to New York and they’ll go on their way and I’ll go on my way.  I’ll roll onto the show and hope the Rads kick ass tonight.  They’ll go back to France and show all their friends my book and soon I’ll be the toast of Paris.  They’ll eventually come to call me Le Grande George.


Maybe I’ll be the next Jerry Lewis—super huge in France for unknown reasons.  I never did figure that one out.  But a am disappointed I would think that in France, poets are a bigger deal than here.  Maybe I should have tried seducing these young ladies.  They could have a tale of sleeping with a wild, drunken American poet they met on a SEPTA train.


It almost seems like a missed opportunity.  It could have been a wild trip galavanting around Manhattan with a couple belles femmes Français.  It would have cemented my legend as an American poet; really would have closed the deal.


So now I’m just writing this as an open letter to these long lost women that we really should try it all over again.  It was a sin to let the opportunity be squandered.  Maybe guilt them for not living up to their country’s reputation.  Surely a nation that produced the Marquis de Sade can’t be pleased that nothing carnal arose from the event.



And think of the damage to my reputation:  now I’m the American poet that failed to close the deal on the lovely young French girls.  I failed to score in both Paris and New York City.  It really sucks that I have to bear this great shame.  Surely, I like to believe I was once destined for something greater than what I got here.                 



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