HER: I really can’t stay.
HIM: That’s cool, you’re free to leave at anytime. You’re a strong, independent woman in charge of your own agency, capable of making her own decisions and if remaining here is not your wish then I bid you adieu.
HER: I’ve got to go away.
HIM: No problem. There’s the door. Right there. Good evening. Drive safely.
HER: This evening has been…
HIM: I’m sorry, but I see you’re lingering. Would you mind signing this memorandum indicating that you remained on the premises even though I distinctly said you were free to leave and I in no way impeded your exit?
HER: …so very nice.
HIM: Don’t mind me. I’m just going pull out my phone so I can stream us on Facebook live and, ok, here we are. Hello, everyone. Shout out to all my followers. I just want to show the world that I’m being a total gentleman and I am not keeping this strong, independent woman from leaving. See? Right there’s the door. Nothing is blocking it. I’m all the way over here. She’s free to go whenever she chooses.
HER: I ought to say, “No, no, no, sir!”
HIM: You have and I respect that. Just a reminder you are more than welcome to walk out the front door and I will not interfere in any way.
HER: At least I’m going to say that I tried.
HIM: Yes, and as loudly as possible I am telling all 257 of my Facebook friends that I am trying to make sure that you are aware you are free to vamoose.
HER: My mother will start to worry.
HIM: Hold on, I’m going to get on my landline because I’m one of the last few people ot have one of those and I’m calling your mom and, “Hello Her’s Mother how are you? Him here. Say, just wanted to clue you in on the situation. Her is fine. Totes fine. She’s here. I’m being totally respectful and I would never keep her here against her will.”
HER: My father will be pacing the floor.
HIM: You know, it dawns on me that maybe you aren’t leaving because you don’t have cab fare. Now, please don’t take that the wrong way. I understand you are a very powerful, strong, independent woman who earns her own living and doesn’t need a man to pay her way but please, my treat, let me call you an Uber on my account and we’ll have the driver take you home or anywhere you want to go. By the way, I will also pay a private detective to run a full background check on the driver and I will hire two armed guards to accompany you in case anyone tries to touch you during your ride.
HER: My sister will be suspicious.
HIM: Nope, she’s fine. Hi, sis! Thanks for friending me. See? Your sister’s A-OK. Hey I’m just going to step outside myself and I don’t even care if there’s 6 feet snowdrifts out here I’m just going to step out here on the front porch and, ah, that’s better! There we go! Now you’re safe in the house, and I’m out here so as to avoid the appearance of impropriety. No one can say anything unsavory happened if you’re in there and I’m out here. See that, Facebook? Everything’s totally legit.
HER: My brother will be pacing the floor.
HIM: I’m just going to send my carrier pigeon to your brother with a note in his beak informing him that you’re fine and if he or any of your other family or friends would like to come over and verify that you’re OK, they are welcome to come here and do so. Away you go, pigeon! In the meantime, I will keep speaking to you through the open door but I will remain outside in these arctic conditions so that you remain safe.
HER: Your welcome has been…
HIM: Oh thank god, it’s a police officer out on patrol! Officer! Yoo hoo! Would you be a pal and stand next to me to verify that I am not doing anything to harm this strong, independent female and Her, just an FYI if you feel unsafe I’m sure this officer would be willing to escort you past me just, again, to be on the safe side. You can never be too careful.
HER: …so nice and warm.
HIM: Shit! She won’t leave. Let me get on the phone again. Hello? Ajax Public Relations Firm? Look, there’s going to be a huge story about me tomorrow and we need to get ahead of it ASAP. Cancel all your business. I’m putting you on retainer because it is going to be blasted all over the inter webs and I’ll need your full staff ready and waiting to field press inquiries 24/7. I want to tell you right up front I did not lay a hand on this strong, powerful woman and in fact, I streamed our entire evening on Facebook from outside the house while a police officer was present and what? Well…no, of course I’m not calling her a liar! I’m not saying that tomorrow, she might believe that something bad might have happened, I’m just saying that I will not be the culprit. What? What do you mean that’s as good as calling her a liar? No, I don’t believe all women lie. Yes, I believe all women…
HER: So really I’d better scurry.
HIM: Officer, if you’d be so kind as to handcuff me and yes, there we go. My hands are now restrained behind my back. Officer, if you wouldn’t mind to use my phone to keep the Facebook stream going. Wait, let me shout to my neighbors. NEIGHBORS! COME OUT AND BE MY WITNESSES, PLEASE!
HER: But maybe just a half a drink more.
HIM: Oh no. There’s no alcohol here, ma’am. I’m not implying that you, as a woman, would somehow be prone to abusing alcohol or that women should not feel free to imbibe, I’m just saying I do not keep alcohol in the house so as to prevent a situation where a woman might become inebriated because then she would be in a state where she could be taken advantage of. You are welcome to get some tap water but please keep your hand over your drink at all times as you never know when someone might slip a mickey into it.
HER: My maiden aunt’s mind is vicious.
HIM: That’s fine. See? My neighbors came outside so I have over a dozen witnesses on the scene who can testify I did no wrong here.
HER: But maybe just a cigarette more.
HIM: I’m sorry, there’s no smoking allowed here. By the way, it just dawned on me that maybe you are not leaving because you fear reprisal if you do. Please rest assured that no harm will come to you, should you decide to leave. There will be no harm done to you at any time in the future, whatsoever. I will not say anything bad about your reputation and we don’t work in the same field so I have no power to get you blacklisted or drummed out of your profession and you know what? I’ll put this in writing. Let me just write this down. OK. Here’s a fully binding legal document indicating you are free to leave and there will be no repercussions for doing so and I will not interfere with your livelihood if you go and hey? Isn’t one of my neighbors a notary? Fred, you’re a notary, right? Cool. Fred just notarized this.
HER: You’ve really been grand…
HIM: By the way, just now, I wrote that all behind my back. I trained on how to write while handcuffed just for occasions like these. Her, it now dawns on me maybe you’re not leaving because you think you want to engage in voluntary sexual congress with me right now but perhaps thirty to forty years in the future you will regret having sex with me and will consider the act a violation of your person. It just so happens, one of my neighbors is a fortune teller so I’m just going to let her…
MADAME OLGA: By the light of the full moon, I gaze my eyes upon the wonders of my crystal ball and I look forward into the mists of the great beyond. Oh spirits, tell me if sex that happens today will be appreciated or despised in four decades time.
HIM: You know what? Cut that, Olga. I’m just going to refuse to participate in any sex at all. You hear that, everyone? I refuse sex. There is absolutely no way to tell if this woman, who has gotten all naked and is lying spread eagle on my bearskin rug, licking her lips and beckoning me to come hither with her finger whilst a bright, flashing neon sign points to her vagina that says, “OPEN FOR BUSINESS!” Yes, to the untrained eye, it looks like this strong, independent woman desires sex but there’s no way to know for sure. Anyone could have put that sign there. I’ll just decline. Fred, draw up a legal memorandum indicating my declination of any and all possible sex acts this evening.
HER: But can’t you see? Baby it’s cold outside…
HIM: Oh my god! She’s coming this way! Quick, officer! Shoot my dick off! I beg of you! I don’t want to be declared the next sex pervert du jour on the inter webs tomorrow! Please! Shoot my dick off! I beg you!