Friday, November 2, 2007

Perfectly Delightful

First, let me again apologize for using the phrase "perfectly normal" to describe CP and Becks. I really didn't mean it that way. What I meant to say was that they didn't conform to the blogger stereotype of unsociable introverts who are incapable of functioning in polite society without a keyboard in front of them. You know... like, for example, me.

At this time, I will also take the blame for the complexity involved in making our arrangements. Long ago, I was faced with the choice of getting a cellphone or an iPod. In my defense, it did not occur to me at the time that there might someday be people trying to get in touch with me who I might actually want to succeed. Until last week, my lack of portable communication had not proven to be a significant problem. I am now rethinking my decision.

Between working, procrastination, and my reliance upon late twentieth century communication methods, things turned into a last-minute scramble to finalize our plans. Becks eventually hit upon a white trash-themed restaurant. This seemed perfect, since I grew up in a white trash-themed town. CP gave me perfectly reasonable, simple directions on how to get there.

I would like to blame my late arrival upon the amount of time it took to achieve sartorial splendor, but unfortunately, there were witnesses. I stopped at the concierge's desk, asked how to get to the subway station, and was asked where I was headed. Eventually, armed with directions and a second opinion on the best way to get to my final destination, I sallied forth. In the station, looking for a subway map, I heard the Charlie Brown intercom say "Wah wahwahwahwah 23rd street wah wah wahwah E train wah wah boarding now." The guy at the hotel had mentioned the E train, so I hopped aboard.

As it turns out, there are two 23rd street stations on the E line located in opposite directions from my starting point. One is a dismal industrial wasteland in Queens, and one has bars and restaurants and my two favorite New York bloggers*. I mention this topographical oddity only because, two subway stops later, I found myself in Queens. I looked up and down the street and realized that something had gone wrong. I found a map, traced the line in the opposite direction and found out where I was supposed to be. Fabulous.

A second subway ride later, I was where I had intended to be and was only half an hour late. I set off down the street looking for CP and Becks and a white trash restaurant. My description was slightly more detailed than CP would have you believe. I also mentioned that I have a goatee. (Technically speaking, it's a van dyke, but if you tell someone that you have a van dyke, they will probably nod politely and assume you have some sort of falling-over-ottomans disorder.)

In any case, I walked right past CP (Becks was even later than I was. I think she was waiting for a favorable "maniac/not a maniac" report from CP before venturing within reach), but luckily he was cruising and intercepted me before I had to double back down the block.

He had taken advantage of the the intervening half hour to come up with alternative drinking and dining plans upon finding that our first choice was occupied by a private party. We quickly dispensed with the religion-and-politics rule, and entertainingly passed the time waiting for Becks. He delivered the "not-a-maniac" code word via cellphone (remarkably useful, those things), and she felt it safe to come join us.

We got another round in and then had dinner. We'd been discussing Top Chef, and in memory of Brian Malarkey, I had the shepherd's pie. Their version looked less like a big green turd, but was, nonetheless, quite tasty. They were out of the house stout, but the house wheat beer made a good substitute.

Because it was a Tuesday night, we kept the debauchery level down in the sub-500 milliCaligula level, and much too soon, it was time to end the evening's entertainment. Knowing my subway track record, CP generously offered me a ride. A short ride and one gaffe later, I found myself back at the hotel dealing with a minor middle of the night security breach at the symposium.

*Not that I don't enjoy reading Catherinette's blog, but I thought I might be straying over the line from perfectly acceptable blogstalking into unwelcome, unacceptable actual stalking by inviting her.


Dale said...

Sounds like you eventually had a great time! I was happy to hear (and a little disappointed) you were perfectly normal too.

Coaster Punchman said...

Actually I left out details about the goatee/van dyke (love your description of "vay dyke" by the way - I would have come up with something dirtier) in case you really are hiding from the feds.

And I would consider "perfectly normal" a compliment given my family history.

Writeprocrastinator said...

"In any case, I walked right past CP"

See, Coaster? You are not non-descript or plain by any stretch of the imagination, but I'm not the only one.

deadspot said...

Dale, I prefer to think of myself not so much as being normal, but that I do a pretty good impression of normal.

Damn! I forgot about the feds. I thought about going there with the van dyke, but you know about my consuming quest...

In my case, WP, it was just contextual camouflage. Because I was running late, I was expecting to see CP and Becks, not CP or Becks, so I was looking for two people together and wasn't paying close attention to people that weren't half of a pair.

BeckEye said...

I've probably not been killed by many a maniac because of my extreme tardiness. I'm late for everything. But, in my defense, my train started running local early on a Tuesday night for no damn good reason, which adds on a bit to my time.

Catherinette Singleton said...

You totally should have invited me!!

Now I feel all left out and uncool

deadspot said...

I'm sorry, Cath. Clearly I need to brush up on my stalker etiquette.

Catherinette Singleton said...

You best get on that. Also, you should feel bad for calling me one of your favorite NY bloggers because I'm actually in Baltimore. . .