Sunday, February 15, 2009
I'd like an adult beverage and a children's menu...
Those nights are rare that start out as one thing and end up completely surprising you.
Saturday night I met up with my friends CC and MG, who had signed us up to volunteer serving Valentine's dinner for couples at a church in Dallas. CC, who constantly has an unrivaled number of weddings to attend, had been at a bridal shower for a friend from high school. MG, a high school teacher, had been at a track meet with her runners all day. CC was still in her bridal shower attire, a tasteful Anthropologie top, skirt and heels, and MG was wearing a mom cardigan. I had on a black turtleneck sweater dress and black tights.
Anthro Skirt, Mom Cardigan and Black Widow. Ready for Valentine’s Day.
The people we were serving live in Dallas but were born or raised in Africa, which made the fact that we were serving Mexican food all the more entertaining. I spent at least 90 minutes explaining the relative merits of enchiladas to each person we served.
Once the dinner was underway, it was time to clean. Only, wait! Someone ordered food for the volunteers, including but not limited to shrimp fried rice, lo mein, three different kinds of pizza all including pineapple, French fries, fettucine alfredo (which looked more like fettucine cheddar), spaghetti, sweet potato chips, etc. We found ourselves in the church’s kitchen, completely over food and trying to get the cleaning in process. That’s when we discovered that there was only one functioning sink. One, and no dishwasher, for the dishes of about 150 people. A guy was already starting on the dishes and did not want anyone assisting him, for whatever reason, so we tried to scrape all the dishes as they came through and stack them neatly on a push-cart for him.
I have a nice visual memory of CC pushing the cart, towering in dishes, in her Anthro skirt and peep-toe heels, and MG grabbing an industrial-sized trash bag out of a can and commenting that you could keep a dead body in it. Ah, memories.
We wrapped up our duties around 9:30 and once separated from the kitchen found that we were, in fact, hungry and in need of a drink. We landed on a place called Snuffer’s, a restaurant and bar with adult beverages and kid’s menus, known for their cheese fries. Completely unromantic and not a couple in sight, it was the perfect setting for our Valentine’s evening. Our waiter Charlie was on the chatty side and started off on a great foot by asking where our dates were.
A Message, from the Single Female Community: do not ask why I'm not out with a guy on Valentine's Day. I am not wallowing in self-pity, I am enjoying a random evening with friends, I am clearly not on a date, so do you really have to ask? I think you can answer that question for yourself, thanks.
At the end of our meal he insisted we each try a chocolate cake shot. He said they actually had real chocolate cake as well, but that we didn’t look like girls who ate dessert. Thanks for the added charm, Charles. Since it seemed like an appropriate-enough way to end our evening, we obliged and ordered a round.
We finished and were taken off-guard by the sudden presence of a guy who was not our waiter, leaning over the railing that blocked in one side of our booth. He was wearing a t-shirt bearing the name of the bar, looked a little buzzed and had mutton-chop sideburns. A winner. He tried unsuccessfully for a few minutes to make small talk and chided us for not waiting for him to take our shots.
He left for a brief moment and we started asking each other what just happened? while trying not to laugh. MG and I were on one side of the booth, facing a wall, while CC was sitting on the other side, facing the bar and the action. CC’s blue eyes got big and she uttered her token phrase, “oh help!”
Mutton Chops returned, only this time wearing a bunny ears headband and bearing another round of shots. He failed to tell us what kind they were, and dismissed himself to go help some customers. MG examined and said “I think it’s a blowjob…” as Charlie returned, asking where our most recent round came from. MG voiced her speculation and he confirmed that she was correct.
MG told CC that she was supposed to put her arms behind her back and pick up the shot glass with her mouth, to which we heard another “oh help.” We took them, only with our hands, and by that time Charlie was inquiring as to our post-dinner plans, wanting to make sure we were going out afterward. Oh yes Charlie, of course.
Has anyone else ever heard of a Red Light/Green Light party? To use Facebook terminology, if you are In a Relationship, you wear red, so that you can attend the party and people won't hit on you. If you are Single, you wear green, and basically allowing permission for people to approach you. If you're wearing yellow, then It's Complicated.
Walking into a bar in the yuppie area of Dallas last night was like walking into a St. Patrick's Day parade. Everyone was wearing green, figuratively speaking, since the implication is that if you are out on Valentine's Day, you are single. Since all three of us had seen He's Just Not That Into You, we were keenly aware of the reeking desperation everywhere. We were roaming to a less crowded part of the bar and CC had the fortune of running into two friends who had been at the bridal luncheon earlier in the day.
She mentioned that next time we go out and run into girls from her high school, to give her some warning and she would be sure not to be wearing the same outfit from 12 hours prior. Duly noted.
We politely escaped from them and CC sat in an open bar seat. We were talking and all noticed the same guy slowly creeping over to her, not saying a word. He was practically giving her a hickey and CC was about to koala-cling onto MG, so after silently communicating the same thing to each other, we skirted away. We left the bar soon after and were barely outside before we heard “C!! Omigosh I would know that hair anywhere!” CC, with her curly brown hair, turned around to get mauled by a blond girl wearing a black sequined mini skirt, or lack there-of, who apparently played basketball with her years ago. I believed it, considering she had seen half of her graduating class up to that point.
The designated driver, I dropped them off at their respective homes and was snuggled in bed by 1:30 a.m., exhausted.
A night for the books, and a Happy Valentine's Day indeed.
"E is even more than anyone that you adore..."
-L-O-V-E, Words by Milt Gabler