(Lauren putting makeup on me, with Dave in the background)
A successful week without drinking (mostly-- one notable exception below) & coping with a slew of birthdays. This year, Danielle pulled the Double Birthday Gambit, with Joe's help. We met up at BarBossa for her semi-surprise dinner on Thursday; Joe came in with a bunch of her out of town dudes for an ambush. Dinner was sly; conversation was nice & the feast was ample. bluesmurf, Nate, Mike, & um, that other couple at the opposite end of the table, plus our cadre. David, Maggie & Jenny were all making fun of me: apparently my stomach was bottomless. Well, I was hungry. I got a crab-burger, which was acceptable, but I kind of wish I'd gone with my first pick, the shrimp & avocado curry. Also crammed a beet salad down my throat, & then some Guinness chocolate cake & some of David's "Romeo, Juliet, & the Lover" which was dulce de leche, ricotta cheese, & mango paste. Afterward we steered them to Tropical, which I forgot to ask if they went to-- anyhow, Jenny & I bailed & Maggie & David came with us. Some train troubles, but home before too long.
Friday was the same, more of the same! I was tempted by Nick Courage's watermelon Jack O' Lanterns for his Halloween in July party (you know how I like extra holidays) but no! Nay I say! Danielle part two. I'm going to miss her when she leaves. Jenny & I walked over to the venue along Smith street, scoping for a restaurant; nothing took her fancy so we ended up at Tripoli, the place we briefly considered getting married at because it has a boat inside of it. Dinner was followed by coffee, which was followed by Jenny saying "didn't I just swear off coffee last week?" Oops. Still, our no drinking policy going strong, a little Lebanese coffee between spouses isn't the end of the world! We were running early, & were trying to kill time, but eventually we went over to Floyd, the bocce-bar that spawned Union Hall, arriving spot on the nose. Punctual as ever. We were first & alone; then David & Maggie, then Ovieh, then the trickle-ins turned into a deluge & Danielle & her tribe piled on. We ended up seizing the chairs in our section; a triumph. I was drinking "The Bruce Wayne" aka seltzer & bitters, though ginger ale might be more appropriate. We ended up leaving a little after ten-- again, we're sober fuddy-duddyies! Danielle & I took a set of pictures in time elapse to "prove" I was there longer, though!
Saturday I got up early & David & I went to the gym together! I was planning on doing some light workout stuff (I went Friday, too) but David was gung-ho as hell! He'd be a good gym buddy, except there are gyms closer to him. So we did about an hour & fifteen minutes of lifting (free weights & machines) before closing out with a little cardiovascular work. Not a shabby hour and a half or so. Afterward we gobbled up brunch at Rachel's, where he had the chorizo & egg burrito I recommended & I went with the burger burrito. Then some video games & that was that; off we split for our own horizons (for now!) Enough of the foreplay! The real action was at The Clover Club for Nino's birthday. One of those old school joints where it takes them a cool ten minutes to mix your drink. Kira & Nino had it catered by the joint, so there were deviled eggs of six different varieties (trout, bacon, garlic, olive, & others-- gotta catch 'em all!), potato chips fried in duck fat with creme fraiche & truffle oil, shrimp sliders, steak crostini, pigs in blankets, & a bunch of other things. Going into it, Jenny said "what do you think about maybe having one cocktail each?" Well you don't have to hard sell me, sister. I got a martini & so, after the bartender was done making it I kind of had a crush on her. The martini came in something like an old school champagne glass (not flute) with a little sidecar of ice, with a 1900s era medicine bottle in it. I was baffled by this & had to ask what the heck it was-- it was the rest of my martini. They kept it buried in a bath of ice, like a kidney going to transplant. I wouldn't shut up about this; all night I kept talking about it. Then the next day, & so on. I had a nice time but again, we elves slipped out for the West before the night was old.
Which brings me to Sunday. We woke up early to go see Harry Potter & The Half-blood Prince. Walked over to Court street-- seriously, our whole weekend was spent walking around Carrol Gardens. I don't know what people's complaints (littlewashu I'm looking at you!) are? I liked it a lot. I thought the Death Eaters were spooky, I thought Malfoy seemed tortured, I thought the love stories were hilarious & the adult's reaction to them even more so. I mean-- it is a Harry Potter movie; I got what I expected. Magic, teenagers. No complaints: I chuckled frequently. By the time we got out, Jenny & I realized how much of the day had marched past us-- fun! We got lunch at Palo Santo, which is the tiny hidden place on Union. David & Maggie (who I saw Thursday, Friday, & Saturday!) recommended it, & I'd never been; it is a nook! I was pretty pleased with it over-all, though Jenny's meal of whatever it was trumped my Fish & Grits. We had ourselves a million chuckles there, then headed home. Running into Allison & Dan on the way back, who I'd also seen Saturday. Super synchronicity. Home was a massage & then nap for Jenny, dinner of shredded chicken, broccoli, pasta & vodka sauce, & then a bunch of episodes of Angel.
(Did you know there are purple "green" beans? There are, I have proof!)