“Excuse me, did you say the ‘time’ you come from?”
“The time. Not the place.”
“Well, the place is different, too, since I’m not from around here.”
“Where are you from?”
“Missouri. Close to Kansas City.”
He leaned in again. “When are you from?”
She spread her hands dramatically. “The early 21st century.”
Tate just stared.
Lalita nodded. “That’s right, man from the 19th century,” –she gave an exaggerated wink– “you’re looking at a 21st century woman.”
Suddenly she pushed back from the table, rose, and struck a pose with one hand in the air and one on her hip. Then she started to sing. “I can bring home the bacon”— she moved her hips a quick left and right– “fry it up in a pan”–she slinked toward him, spinning the cord tie at her waist—” and never ever let you forget you’re a man,” –she sat right on his lap, throwing her arms around his neck– “ ’cause I’m a woman.”
Tate was speechless, but Nellie clapped, and Lalita was biting her lip, trying to keep from laughing. She put a hand to the side of her mouth as she whispered, “I don’t know how much competition there is for airtime, but that should keep us off the editing room floor.”
Tate’s heart sank. This beautiful, young woman was absolutely off her chump.