Saturday night and I’m at Winter Wonderland in Hyde Park. There’s a long strip of franknfurter stalls, bierkellers, fudge shops and even an ice rink. Very German. You’d think the squareheads had won the war or something. Best of all, in amongst the festivities are dozens of sets. Tony T has a couple of students with him so before long I end up watching over one of them. He’s asking about two sets so I demo with 2-set HB6 Italian. Doesn’t hook. I go again with 2-set HB6 Dutch. Nice hook, I bring in Mark and we bounce them. Unfortunately he can’t deflect the cockblock and she pulls her friend away. No loss.
In a makeshift beer tent I open mixed 2-set HB6 Australian Blonde. She hooks good and the guy fades into the wallpaper. Knows her from back home, apparently. She’s well into the conversation but I’m not much fussed and eject after ten minutes or so demoing for the student. They are picking our brains on all kinds of things because last night with Tony was literally their first night gaming. Good enthusiasm and they try to implement everything we tell them. I’m hungry and go to the pizza stand for a £3 slice of margharita. I notice HB8 Actress come over and look at the pizza next to me. She seems to be looking at me a bit too, curious. I suppose my Russian fur hat, the fur-lined aviator jacket, and wildman beard make me stand out. I open casually, still pointed towards the serving staff.
Krauser: What pizza do you recommend?
HB8: Hmmmn. Let’s see *runs her eyes across the display window*. The ham and pineapple looks nice.
Krauser: True. I’m vegetarian though, so that’s no good for me.
HB8: How about this one *points at some vegetable monstrosity*
Krauser: I don’t like mushroom. It’s an evil food. I think I’ll try this one *points at margharita*
It’s very low key and casual. I’ve barely looked at her, much less turned towards her. I forget exactly how I transitioned but it was something really basic like:
Krauser: Anyhoo. *puts out hand* You are?
HB8: I’m HB8.
Krauser: Ooooh. HB8 is awfully posh. Private school I’d say.
HB8: *giggle* No. Well sort of.
Krauser: You must have middle class parents. You manner is very proper.
HB8: *giggle* blah blah.
I see my student loitering behind her, eavesdropping. I do relatively AFC resume-exchange questions but frame it as statements not questions, and add some spice to it. I qualify her on every bit of information she gives, like:
HB8: I’m an actress.
Krauser: Uh-huh. Have you been in anything I might have seen?
HB8: I’m in The Wolfman. [lists a couple more movies I’ve forgotten].
Krauser: Nah, haven’t seen that.
HB8: Oh no, it’s not out yet. It’s released early next year.
Krauser: What brings you out tonight?
HB8: I’m working on the [food] stall. *sigh*. I’ve been doing twelve hour shifts all week. It’s tiring.
Krauser: [snips thread] That explains the mess all over your jacket. I didn’t want to say anything because I thought you just had bad fashion sense. It’s all icky.
HB8: *self conscious, smiling*
The main point of interest in this sarge is how low-key and indifferent I am. My student commented later that it didn’t even look like I was hitting on her. Burto and Tony T both come in to DHV me:
Burto: Krauser. The boys are asking what we’re doing next.
Krauser: Right. Can you round them all up over by that stall. I’ll just be a minute then I’ll take you over to the bar.
My vocal tone was relaxed, slow and deep. I only occasionally turned my body to give her full attention, and I was constantly qualifying her in subtle ways, even when number closing:
Krauser: I’ve gotta go now. Look, you seem fun. You are fun aren’t you?
HB8: I’m fun
Krauser: I thought so. I’m headed back to Newcastle to see my family [lead into short “loves children and animals” DHV about nephews]. But you’re fun so I’d like to see you again. Can I take your number?
HB8: *excuse, but offers Facebook*
I leave it two days then add her. She accepts right away. From browsing her photos it seems like she has a boyfriend but it’s not obvious. No pictures of them being a couple, no “HB8 is in a relationship with*, but the same guy keeps popping up. Maybe an orbiter. Whatever, I decide the way forward is to build a non-dating vibe through Facebook, DHV, and wait for the moment to escalate. I send a message at midnight, and she replies six hours later:
Krauser: Hey! I took my little nephews to the cinema today. We saw a big lobby display for The Wolfman. Are you really in that, or were you just pretending to be cool to impress me? They were totally thrilled when I said I knew the Wolf Woman, and I’d feel bad if you tricked me into lying to two innocent little boys. 😉 I told them you were really hairy in real life too….
HB8: haha yes i really was in the [scene] where the wolfman comes in and [describes scene], but i doubt you’ll see me there was a huge crown of us, it looks like an amazing film though, have a merry christmas. HB9.
Krauser [three days later]: Aye, I’ll be watching it. Trailer looked good. I’ve been stuffed full with four consecutive days of homecooking washed down with flaggons of red wine. It’s been a great Christmas. I started a snowball fight yesterday with the local kids and that quickly degenerated into a melee and then we all built a huge snowman. Did you get up to much?
That was yesterday. If anything comes of it, expect further posts. Overall, it was nice to close a model and an actress on the same day.