Sunday, June 15, 2008

The People You Meet - Day 29

Note: The next three blogs actually happened in one day. They are all very different, however so I though I would oblige them with recognition all their own. Each will be counted as a separate day.

It had been a while since Guy and I danced the light fantastic. With an overabundance of work on both of our parts and new relationships in our lives, the first thing to go was our “special marriage”.
I truly can’t remember the last time we let loose, per say and it felt good, though the next morning I was accused of “ruining” him. Let me tell you. That boy was ruined long before I met him.
There were the bits of bickering we are famous for: “You’re late”, “This isn’t about you right now, it’s about me” “Oh I forgot when I am around you I can’t say anything” and a flash of the bird.
But that’s what couples do. It always ends in a smile and a bit of wit, shaken up to a nice delicate froth that inspires winks.

We started at the Artist Emporium. It was a big fashion show night with a bunch of cool-dressed young people and pouts to surpass any issue of Vogue. The clothes were designed by blackbird and raven. Very retro-fashioned motifs with hip punk additions in a modern twist (or should that be twisted?). The models were all young and somewhat hip. Let me rephrase that. Some were hip, and others quite generic in my eyes. The brunettes inspired the flash and flare of Soho while the blondes simply looked like Valley Girls trying to go bad.

We met Renee there and she had the family in tow. Lelani, her three year old was making sure to be the center of attention playing in the band that entertained outside. She is a natural drummer with unbelievable rhythm. Guy saw an old friend there, Shelby, who happens to own the gallery. They met at the Erasure concert years ago. That was the same concert that Guy confesses he called me about, but my memory is better than his and I have no recollection of such an invite. Can you tell I am still bitter? He can.
Then off to drinks and dinner at Fly, a trendy restaurant down the road from Tampa Theatre on Franklin. Very hip and chic, the clientele was the cream of highly paid downtown society. We were the tragically unhip in the joint, especially me in jeans and my Sketchers and hobbling foot. The sundresses that mixed and matched on the femmes were a bloom of flowers and I was the compost heap. Guy, always dressed smartly in black and gray, helped balance the faux pas of my fashion.

I am not into places that are all show and no substance and Fly is a bit of both. The baby beets with blue cheese and the grilled romaine salad were luscious. The sashmi made Guy ill and the halibut was a bit too small. The portion control there explained why the patrons were wafer thin. The garlic frites were nice, but I was highly disappointed that they refused my request for mayo. I didn’t cause a scene or explain to them that if they mix oil, egg and lemon they could make me some, but I did mention to my companion that they were misnamed. Frites are Belgian, the birthplace of fries and in Belgium they are served with mayo, ketchup must be asked for and paid for. Since these were sans mayo as an accompaniment, then they should be called French Fries and not Frites. Enough on that.

Two martinis and a glass of wine down, I had to suggest twisting Guy’s arm to go to the Hub. Usually Guy is all about the pub crawl, but he was jonesing for the hot lovin’ he was going to get when this was over. I persuaded him to stay with me and promised that I would let him go after one libation at our favorite dive. We each had two manhattans.

As we sipped our strong, yet pleasantly sweet drinks, a wedding party came into the bar. The boys were the average and didn’t even catch Guy’s notice, but the ladies were stunning, well some of them. Like the fashion show, the brunettes were definitely having more fun and were better dressed. I know it seems like I have a thing for brunettes, but this was just something I noticed last night, nothing against you blonde babes – even Debbie Harry is a blonde.

Three girls immediately caught our attention, not just for their look, but their personalities, which were shining. There was the ring-leader, the maid-of-honor who was dressed like a flamenco dancer. She told us that the bride was sweet enough to let her bridesmaids choose their own dresses, with the only stipulation being that they had to be black. The senorita introduced us to her two co-horts, a Betty Boop look-alike and a very vintage woman in a beaded dress that just rang out class. We talked with them and were introduced to a sailor boy that was the flirtation of the night for Betty Boop. It was like I went back 60-odd years. Another drink down and we made our way out wishing them luck, but not saved from a portrait of Guy and I paired with Betty.

The night was still young, even if we weren’t as we journeyed over the Bay and back to St. Pete. Gas prices being what they are, a horrible mess, we stayed close to a middle point for both of us. Luna lounge at the Hilton. Deader than dead, the bar, which boasts a cool blue lit-up bar, Chihully chandeliers and overpriced drinks, housed only us and two young business guys and a hooker. Now I am not positive on the choice of profession this girl had, but evidence pointed to paid escort, and a cheaply paid one. The TV range out the highlights of the US Open as we sipped more martinis. Guy chose an expresso one, but once again it was a misnomer. It was one of those creamy froo-froo drinks and didn’t resemble any expresso I every had. But with the current generation swallowed up by what Starbucks calls an expresso (sorry Mr. Chris), it was no wonder this had cream. We then ordered a princess martini of vodka and Grand Marnier and called it a night.

Yes I had quite a lot to drink, but this binge pretty much set me up for a good month or two on the wagon. Irish heritage and years of partying practice left me buzzed, but not wallowing in drunkenness or tears. No hangovers and no lost memories so I was fine. It was a nice step back in time and hopefully into my long future with Guy.


callenstewart said...

Having just returned from the mother-land, I will grant you that fact - that Starbucks has an evil side and has usurped the "coffee generation."

And just to be clear, go ahead and sit down, this may shock you, but Starbucks is not the best coffee. Just the best we have around here (that I've found so far).

While in the great NW, I made a stop by Peet's ( The best fuckin' latte in the universe - better than SBX by FAR!!!

I'm getting a little teary just thinking about it.

Praers said...

And I thank you Mr. Chris for correcting my spelling of espresso. Honestly, I hate when I make a mispelling, especially when I am bashing someone for some such error.
And I did try Peet's when I was up there and loved it. Oh so loved it. I tried other kinds too, but no Starbucks. Even some of the locals made fun of the big S.

misschris said...

Wow that sounds like a great night out. I'm impressed that you can walk after that many drinks. I think I'd need a taxi.

The artists emporium sound like fyn. You mentioned this in another post. Is it a gallery?