“Outside of Mexican restaurants I’ve never seen a woman
who liked those,” the store cop said.
“To the best of my knowledge liquor bottles don’t state
gender restrictions.” I looked at him scornfully. Moron.
That had an effect.
“Drink whatever you want. Just usually women drink
sparkling wine or cider.”
“I’m not any just usually woman.” I appended a small smile
to my retort.
The man asked if I had ever visited Mexico. I confessed
never to have made it farther south than New Mexico,
though I had spent several years in New York. I told him
the same false story as usual, that I was in the restaurant
field and had worked as a guard for the organic gourmet
oasis Chez Monique, among other places. The man
introduced himself as Petri and explained he was in the
security business and could say no more about his work. I
told him my name was Kanerva, which is actually my
middle name. Petri thought the name lovely.
The women on the hunt left. The dyed-blond boob bomb
threw me a knife-sharp look and deliberately bumped my
back with her bag. She didn’t even bother with what serves
as the typical Finnish apology, O-ho! We both knew what
was in question and I didn’t have the energy to teach the