…but a lot of sense.
I take a lot of pride in listening. Valerie used to tell me that was the one of the best things about me on our first date. I listened, and I didn’t make a move on the first date. The best relationships just happen naturally.
Listening skills must be crucial in any professional or personal relationship with Marcus. Because Marcus takes a lot of pride in talking! Much more so quantity talking, rather than quality talking.
And if there’s one thing that Marcus isn’t very good at–it’s NOT wanting to stop talking. (Funny thing, ever since I met him, I find myself speaking in a lot of double negatives whenever describing Marcus.)
While Marcus is sober, I have a hard enough time getting a word in edgewise. Now put a drink in his hand, and that’s darn near impossible. He doesn’t realize how much he rambles and slurs, but that’s OK if he’s not speaking to anyone super important, such as a hedge fund manager, a real estate developer, or a private banker.
Or even a FinCEN investigator. I could never be that way myself. I always watch what I drink. You never know who’s listening.
If you haven’t figured it out, I’m very self-controlling. I’ve never felt like I was very controlling. Even Valerie would testify to that.
Marcus is the type of guy who might carry drinks in both hands. Alcohol for Marcus’ mouth is like oil to his motor-mouth, so he can run non-stop. Shockingly, he still makes a lot of sense. That’s his gift.
For example, Marcus can utter ten sentences without taking a single extra breath. Nine of those sentences will probably be completely ludicrous, preposterous, and ridiculous. On our first day alone, he tells me that he alone knows how to bail out Obama and the federal deficit. He tells me how he has manipulated the credit card system into giving him credit card after credit card even though he will default on each of them within the first year of use, which is fine as long as you buy your cars and houses in cash. He tells me that he turned down a full-ride to Princeton because it wasn’t close enough to the ocean. He tells me that he has slept with at least one Hooters waitress from every Hooters he has ever visited—with the exception of the uggos at Hooters in St. Louis. (As if qualifying that last remark makes it sound all the more true.)
From any other guy, he would have said these things like a huge boast. But Marcus says stuff like this he has convinced himself these were all true.
I must have been rolling my eyes after he mentioned his personal legend with Hooters waitresses. So Marcus flags down the very next woman glued to her Crackberry as she walks past us by the bar. She’s smartly dressed, with her brunette hair tight in a bun, probably twenty years his senior. I will always remember her as Executive Cougar Bun. Executive Cougar Bun is polite enough not to completely ignore him. Clearly, this already places her out of his league.
Marcus musters, in the fewest slurred syllables possible, that Executive Cougar Bun goes home every night after a long day at the bank, and gets all sexy looking, because while Executive Cougar Bun knows she’s smarter than every man she works with–she can’t be both sexy and smart to get ahead in this profession…without anyone thinking that she’s really relying on the world’s oldest profession to get to the top.
She lets this sink in. But he doesn’t even bother for her reply. Marcus flags down the bartender and offers to pick up Executive Cougar Bun’s first drink on his tab. And then he casually turns his back on her, as if giving her permission to leave and get back to her business—compliment in hand.
Executive Cougar Bun, this very self-assured female executive, is flabbergasted. Part of her knows that Marcus’ uncouth behavior is beneath her normal tastes. And yet, she stands there glued to the spot, even with his back to her. Executive Cougar Bun doesn’t want to leave. Not just yet. Like most people, she’s intrigued by Marcus the first time you’re exposed to him.
Finally, Executive Cougar Bun breaks her silence to ask Marcus what he’s drinking.
“Bud Lights. Two-for-one.”
He practically deep throats his Bud Light bottle and guzzles what’s left in the bottle. Later, I learn this is because there’s only five minutes left to happy hour prices. She rubs his shoulder for his attention. He still never even bothers to turn back around to face Executive Cougar Bun.
She orders a martini…neat…because that’s the type of woman she is. Outside the bedroom, anyway.
“Go meet up with whoever you came here to meet,” dismisses Marcus. “I’m not buying your drink because I need your company. I was just making a point to my new friend. We’re busy talking business here.”
She rubs his shoulder one last time before Executive Cougar Bun slinks away. Almost embarrassed, but still intrigued. So focused on Marcus that she didn’t give two glances to me carrying ZoElizabeth in a Baby Bjorn over my best business suit! One day, when ZoElizabeth is old enough to hang out in bars without her Dad, I’ll explain to her that Marcus could easily have left the bar that night with Executive Cougar Bun and really seen how sexy she can be stripped of her conservative business suit. Marcus has that bad boy effect that some women find magnetic—even though he’s really more of a Catholic mama’s boy.
I want to say that this encounter with Executive Cougar Bun demonstrates how Marcus is very smooth. However, I’ve never seen him this smooth when he’s sober. Nor this smooth when he’s drunk. You basically get a narrow 15-minute window of smooth where stuff like that can happen. Always make sure you’re around for it! If you run to the restroom, you’re liable to miss it.
In the span of the next hour (or the equivalent to ten super long, run-on sentences) seated at the bar, Marcus touches on the following subjects: gold bouillon futures, un-cut gemstone markets, bank guarantees, medium term notes, cash-backed collateral, hard money loans, the origins of the Federal Reserve Bank on Jekyll Island, the Miami Heat, boat racing, and the most loyal dog any guy could ever own.
Purposely or not, if you’re willing to hang around him long enough, Marcus can and will say something completely innovative, logical, or insightful to amaze me.
In my life, there are so many people close to me who have never amazed me.
That’s why I listen. And listen. And listen even more.
I don’t like interrupting Marcus because scientifically, that’s not even possible. But really, if I attempt to interrupt, he continues talking anyway–never listening to a word I’m trying to say under his own louder words. And then I’ll later discover, he was listening to me as I was simultaneously talking under him. Even more astounding, he actually remembers what I said–verbatim–even when I don’t remember.
Just who is this guy?
He wants something from me, but I still didn’t know what that would be. I am currently in a position without a position. Thus, I gotta see where this is going.