I was supposed to go to D.C. this weekend with a group of kids from the factory, the fun, birthday group that still includes me in their shenanigans. I also had an invitation to NYC to meet my old college roommate and his wife, also members of the factory crowd. I could have done both, actually, if I'd spent the weekend in D.C. and the next week in Gotham. Rather. . . here I sit. What happened? What's wrong?
The D.C. crowd began sending me pictures of their cocktails at yesterday's breakfast. Breakfast cocktails are not the way I like to start the day, but they are monsters, by and large. They sent me the cocktail photos, of course, because I fancy myself a cocktail photographer. I'm not sure they actually get the aesthetic distance between their photos and mine. Perhaps they do, but in the opposite direction. But I think more likely than not, mine win the day.
In the afternoon and then in the evening, more cocktail pics. A message from my roommate's wife that they were headed for the plane. Housebound as I am, I felt that I needed to get out on a Friday night. I decided on a happy hour at my favorite bar which has become many people's favorite bar and restaurant since they've received so many favorable national write-ups and reviews. They may have gotten a Michelin star or two. I was worried that when I got there, the bar would be full, but for some reason, luckily, I had beaten the inevitable crowd. The new bartender I'd met a couple weeks ago when I went in remembered me. Not only that, but he remembered what I ordered. I was stunned. I know it is a trick of some sort. This happens quite often, and I don't know how they do it. I can't remember friends names half the time. I don't know anyone's birthday (other than my mother's). But maybe if it was for money, my memory would improve. No matter, the trick worked. I ordered one of their home-brewed IPAs and their wonderful shrimp tacos. I had an Old Fashioned to "settle my meal," and called for the check.
"What are you going to do now?" the barkeep asked.
"I'm going to go home and pour a scotch and sit on my deck for a bit."
"Cool. What kind of scotch do you drink?"
The conversation went on like this. And like I said, such flattery works. I tipped him double. Whatever. I like being recognized in my own bar.
Last time I was in D.C., I stayed at the James Madison. Was put up there by a publishing company. It was a great hotel with a great bar and great bartenders who liked me. The place was packed with stars in town for the rechristening of an old music hall, but at the bar, the pretty barmaid was giving ME free drinks. I'm bragging, of course, but it is true. There is more to the story, but you wouldn't stand for it. You'd call me a liar, but you would be wrong. All I'm saying is that bartenders are o.k. with me. Maybe that is not ALL that I'm saying, but that is what I'm saying. Alright. . . I know what I'm saying. I am, though. I'm special!
Ha! That's why I'm sitting here writing you from my own hometown rather than writing from Metropolis or Gotham. I'm special.
The morning is all but gone. I slept later than I have in years. The sky is blue and cloudless. These are perfect days, and I should be out. There is something wrong with me, I am certain. I do not lament not going to the cities this week. I don't really like D.C. and it seems a long way to travel for a cocktail. And NYC was simply too expensive. I couldn't find a decent room in town for under $365/night. The places I usually stay were much, much more. Like all pensioners now, I am financially uncertain and this blog is far from paying my bills. And so. . . .
I should go to the beach today, but the day is slipping away. Maybe tomorrow. Hell, man. . . there is nothing that can't be done tomorrow.