Li'l Dickens

Or: How I learned to stop worrying and make love to the vice president

With that, he gave me another smooch. I wanted to recoil. And yet . . . I couldn't fight it. There was no other way. I had to ask.

"Are you gay, Mister Vice President?"

"Me?" He leapt from the cot and ripped off his flannel with such ferocity I feared he might tear a ligament. "I had so many chicks in high school they used to call them Cheney-acs!"

Illustration by Mr. Fish


Editor's note:
This article originally appeared in LA Weekly

Before this, I admit, I never knew the meaning of the word swoon. I couldn't help but stare at his tufted belly roll, his hairless chest and—be still my heart—his pacemaker. Yes and yes again!

Embedded under the skin over his left nipple was the outline of what looked like a pack of Luckies. He saw me ogling and beckoned.

"Wanna touch?"

I nodded.

"Figured you might."

Slowly, I raised my fingers to his subcutaneous square. "It's . . . it's so hard."

What can I say? He was overweight, and grunting, and no doubt capable of having me disappeared with a single phone call. But God, he was sexy. Soon my tentative touches turned to stroking, my stroking to outright caresses. Our eyes locked. The Veep parted his meaty lips.

With that, it was on. Lynne's hubby yanked off his belt, let his pants drop around the tops of his waders, and popped his thumbs under the elastic of his white undies, which rode so high on his belly they covered the button. "Big-girl panties!" he chortled.

Then the Veep turned, waggling his ample bottom, and dropped to his hands and knees beside the army cot. I wasn't sure how to react, but before I could, he grunted, stretched, and pulled out a monkey-head bong.

"Who does this remind you of?"

It's all a little foggy after that. Yes, he reached in my pants and chuckled that he'd found the weapon of mass destruction. Yes, he wanted me to duct-tape the cheeks of his buttocks. Yes, he wanted me to spank him and call his organ "Bunker Buster." The problem is, I've never really been that into grass. It always hits me harder than anybody else. And there are blank spots. Which is just as well, since, even now, my gorge rises at the very notion of anal sex with an aging fat man who voted against Martin Luther King Day.

After our "encounter," he stared off, and, to my surprise, began to recite, in that trademark Oval Office–adjacent growl, albeit a tad slurry after the high-grade government kush:

I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked,

Dragging themselves through the negro streets at dawn, looking for an angry fix.

"Beg pardon?"

After meeting the vice president, touching his pacemaker and pounding him with a savagery that still makes me cringe, I did not think anything could surprise me. But hearing him, in postcoital splendor, recite Howl did just that. His passion was palpable. Or so it seemed . . . Maybe he was just trying to impress me. When I glanced over, he snarled from the side of his mouth. "Ginsberg's my favorite. Next to Whitman . . . hug-hug-hug."

After that, I passed out. I may have been behind the gun store for 20 minutes, or an entire day. When I came to, he was fully dressed, and clutching a shotgun.

"You know I have to kill you," he said.

It was hard to tell if he was serious. You think Cheney, you don't think joke. But the shotgun in his hand was not laughing.

"Remember Harry?"

"Harry Whittington? The guy you accidentally shot in the face? When you were quail hunting?"

By way of response, he thrust the muzzle toward my face and yelped. "BLAMMO!" It was the first time I saw him smile big. And I quickly wished he'd stop. That rictus grin was scarier than his persistent scowl.

"Quail's a front," he said, looming over me.

Here—finally—was the proverbial Dark Force of legend. He raised his shotgun and racked it.

"There was no hunting accident," he went on, talking—literally—out of the side of his mouth. "I heard Harry was two-timing me. That bastard."

"You mean it was a lover's spat?"

"I shot him in the face." He sneered his trademark sneer. "But I was aiming south of the Mason-Dixon."

So saying, he stared off again. That double barrel was still pointed my way. But my chunky love mate seemed to have withdrawn into himself. Indeed, to my amazement, he wiped away a tear. This was my chance.

I began to back away. One step. Two . . . three. My fingers grazed the knob. Got it! But, just as I prepared to make my escape, Dick Cheney lowered the gun, turned away, and, as if pulled by invisible heartstrings, moved to a closed door. Sighing audibly, he opened it. A closet!

Over his shoulder, I could see within, where a single flannel shirt hung on a hanger. "Harry . . . Harry . . . Harry," he wailed, but quietly, burying his face in the buckshot-riddled flannel.

I knew I should leave, but I was touched. We'd shared something, after all. Tenderly, Li'l Dickens rubbed the holey material on his face. Tenderly, he inhaled the must of lost desire. Here it was. Brokeback Neo-Con. I felt myself tearing up, though at the same time I was concerned about the nagging chafe on my man bag.

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