Only a Buck
by Jeff Harvey, 3.24am July 10th 2021

Once I have a fun buzz going on, I go for a walk and pass a theatre that offers, See a Live Naked Man for a Dollar. With many hard-hitting D.C. years ahead of me, I may not have a chance like this for a long time. Yet, if I go in, this is something that could kill my career as a political consultant. I stop for a bourbon at a club across the street. A woman is singing. The lyrics Every time I start to live, the losers take a piece hit home and remind me of how I’m living my life for others, mainly my parents, and not for me.

In a booth that smells of garlic and sex, I slide a dollar through the slot. A curtain opens to a circular room with nine other windows. A man wearing only cowboy boots lies on a velvet chaise lounge in the center of the room. The theme music from The Sopranos plays as the lounge moves counterclockwise offering each patron a fleeting glance. He makes his way into my view, and I realize it’s the guy I hooked up with a week earlier at the notorious local gay bar. As the curtain closes, he points at me and mouths Kurt...

I manage to insert another dollar, and a different man is sitting on the lounge, a man I don’t recognize. He pops open a bottle of cold duck and the wine sprays against the window. Moments later the window clears, and the guy I hooked up with is back on the lounge. He points at me again, but I can’t understand what he’s saying.

A few months later, I find a job with the Biden campaign. During the interview process, I admit my sexuality. Biden’s chief-of-staff laughs and tells me, They have everything on tape.

After working on a losing presidential campaign, I visit Bear Creek to relax and prepare myself for my next job. I spend the week reading and walking and on the last night I go out for a few drinks. The streets are crowded with revelers celebrating a winning foosball tournament. It’s difficult to find an open spot at a bar, but I score one and have several beers and a shot of tequila.