Annabelle – 2013 to 2014 – Chapter 4 – My “A” Game Lunch

I wasn’t sure, but I sure felt the euphoria of Annabelle. It had nothing to do with her, but at that point, neither of us knew that.

I had sent an email to Annabelle sometime after our “First Date”  thanking her for a wonderful time. I also asked her if she’d like to meet me for lunch at Jones (Stephen Starr restaurant at 8th and Chestnut) I knew the General Manager and knew I would get the exclusive hook up.

She got back to me and said yes!

I made a reservation, and got there early. My table was clear and I took a seat. the staff knew what to do. I waited. Annabelle arrived and I waved her over. She she had a t-shirt on and was wearing a pair of denim cutoffs that showed off her long slender legs. I hadn’t seen them before, but at nearly six feet tall, she had incredible pins.

She said she had just come from the pool where she had been swimming. I didn’t care. I was just happy that she had shown up. She had this scrubbed, day at the beach air about her. I liked it.

Within minutes a bowl of their signature mac and cheese, (which is glorious at Jones) arrived with a side of siracha. Annabelle was impressed. She wasn’t accustomed to going to restaurants with older men that made things happen. I could tell this. She was a simple girl who was surrounded by artsy people who had nothing.

We dug into the mac and cheese with great fury. Baby was hungry and liked to eat. We chatted, and I was happy to see this beauty again. I did my nervous talking thing I do with all new women in my life. But she was laughing a lot and I knew it was working. I was still friends with Michelle, but she was moving on with Delaware Dave, and I was feeling the power with this one. (See: Michelle – 2007 to Present – A Brand New Day)

I gave her a dvd of “The Art of the Steal” the documentary about the Barnes museum that we went to on our first date. I also brought her two miniatures of Chivas Regal’s Maple Whiskey, or as I call it, Hangover Nightmare Juice. At some point on our first date she mentioned that she liked maple syrup. Annabelle was delighted. How crazy will it be when I go to her apartment and find that she has no DVD player or a TV???

Sadly, I was still in love with the idea of love and didn’t know what I was getting myself into. If someone had pulled me aside and told me that this whole thing was a mistake that would have been great. But I know I would have done it anyway. I missed the drug of love I once had with Michelle and wanted it again. Annabelle was twenty-six and I wanted her. I didn’t even care so much about her age, I just needed to feed the addict.

That was me back then. I suppose that was me always. The failure that could always close beautiful young women. I wanted Annabelle to feed my addiction to love. I was the guy who couldn’t have a healthy mutual relationship with a woman. I had already gone down in a ball of flames years ago. A failed marriage, and a string of bad relationships. Nearly more than I could count. The last few had failed because they were younger than me and wanted marriage and kids. I had already destroyed that and had a kid to prove it. A hundred thousand dollars blown on child support and a broken family. Nothing worked. I wasn’t cut out to be in a relationship, let alone a marriage.

I think maybe I should just be alone. I love women. Desperately. But what if for some reason I am only in love with the idea of love and I am unable to actually be in love. I want Annabelle. She’s receptive, and artist, blonde, long legs…

I’m a fool. I am only chasing and courting her because she is young and beautiful. Just like Michelle. That unattainable gazelle that is just out of reach. I must have her. But do I really know her? Is it a match? She works in the arts. They’re a bunch of weirdo losers in the “arts”. We have nothing in common. Just this common connection. A girl I met in a bar that is kind of finding her way in life.

But I’m happy in this moment. I love the sound of her warm voice.

The lunch goes well. It’s the 17th of July. My father’s birthday. He’s 83 today. I picked this day because 17 is a common number in my family. It keeps turning up. That’s why this second date is happening. Annabelle is along for the ride. I’ll call my father tonight and tell him all about it. He’ll listen intently and live through me for once. But not really. He’s had his life. It has been so much more colorful than mine. Just like when I’m talking to him and telling a story. He’s not listening. I know he’s just waiting for me to shut up so he can talk.

He’ll ask her name, and I’ll tell him. He’ll access her heritage and maybe approve. If she sounds western European she’s good.

I remember when I was out in L.A. and working as a musician. My girlfriend at the end was a nineteen year old black girl. I remembered when we finally packed it in and came home. I loved and trusted my dad, because he was awesome. I told him about the black girl and what had happened. I’ll never forget what he said, ” Are you into blacks now?”

I should date and fall in love with a beautiful black girl just to smite that motherfucker. Yea, I can call my dad a motherfucker, because he fucked my mom and made me.

But I digress…

The lunch goes really well. She was excited about the pair of miniatures of Chivas Regal Maple.(The shit tastes terrible)  I also told her I would have asked her out to a second date sooner, but I was waiting for the Art of the Steal DVD to be delivered in the mail!

I have to go meet with the nice people at Chris’ Jazz Bar and she has to go to a photo shoot.

We go outside, and her bike is locked to a pole out front. A bicycle. A simple girl. She’s young and beautiful. Oh, those legs.

I’m in love with the idea of love.

What’s wrong with me?

I tell her I have to go and we hug. I remember very specifically, I went in for the hug…and went for the kiss on the cheek back by the ear. I think we all want to kiss on the lips. But you must sometimes settle for the cheek. It’s just the stupid rules of dating. Especially in the beginning.

She tells me her birthday is coming up soon.

The baby seal is hot. She’s been sitting on the rocks with her mom. She decides to jump into the sea to cool off. The water is crisp, and frothy.

Twenty five yards away, a dark grey dorsal fin cuts through the  water, sensing the life. Feeling the drug of the next love affair. Ready to feed.

I tell her I have some good ideas for her birthday, and she agrees. (I’m so going to make this happen)

I kiss her cheek and say that she’s great.

I walk west on Sansom. I text her that it was amazing seeing her and want to see her again.

When I get to Chris’ Jazz Cafe, I’m waiting for the general manager, and I get a text.

It’s Annabelle. She agrees, and gives me the XO

When I saw the XO I knew it was on. I kissed her on the cheek. That’s still the friend zone. But you can cross over. If a girl throws you an XO in an early text, you’re in boys.

I wasn’t sure, but I sure felt the euphoria of Annabelle. It had nothing to do with her, but at that point, neither of us knew that.

She wanted her dad, and I just wanted to be loved by pretty girls when I was thirteen. So here we are, and we’ll have to see what happens.

 

 

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Mary – 2016 to Present – Chapter 1 -Unexpected Table for Two

Another tale of one man’s journey navigating his way through the dating scene in Philadelphia.

I was having lunch with my buddy, Rocco at one of our favorite places. It’s actually the place where I first met Maria. (Maria – 2015 to Present – Amor en Vano) The hostess is an older woman who’s always on point and nice to talk to. We’ve been going there for lunch since it opened. Mary works there Wednesday through Friday.

I’m sitting there looking over at Mary, and I say to Rocco, “I’m going to ask Mary out for a drink.” Rocco agrees that I should. Mary is 5’6″, slender and fit. She has light blond hair and blue eyes. She is as she says, “A whisper away from 69.” I know that sounds a little dirty, but that means she’ll be turning 69 years old in a few months.

Now I know what I said before about dating older women or women my age, but Mary is cool and looks great. I think maybe I just dated a few duds off Tinder, but I know Mary from the real world.

So I was going to ask her right then, but it looked like she was sitting down to eat something. I didn’t want to bother her while she was trying to eat so I just ended up leaving and not saying anything to her. I figured the next time I saw her I’d ask her out. But I was slightly disappointed in myself for not striking when the idea presented itself to me.

The next day was Saturday and I was out in the city running errands. I was walking up 19th street. There was a cluster of people and dogs up ahead, and I decided to avoid that whole mess by simply walking in the street. I’m going along and this woman comes up to me in sunglasses and says: “Do you always walk in the street?” I was startled at first but then realized it was Mary. “I was just saying to Rocco, that I was going to ask you to have a drink with me, but you were eating when we were leaving the restaurant yesterday!”

We chatted a bit and I told her that this was the first time we have ever seen each other outside of the restaurant. I then asked her if she’d like to meet me for a drink later. She said she was meeting some of her friends later for dinner, but could hang with me in a couple of hours. She had some errands to run and so did I. She gave me her number and said she’d text me in a bit.

I went to Target and picked up some things, and grabbed my dry cleaning on the way home. Some time later I got a text from Mary. We met up around 19th and Chestnut. She suggested Smith’s. We walked over and it looked crowded. I suggested Cavanaugh’s. We peeked in there and it looked packed and noisy. We continued down Sansom street. We went into square 1682 at 17th and Sansom. As always, it was perfect.

She ordered a scotch and soda and I went with the cider. This is the first time I’ve ever chatted with Mary outside of the restaurant. It was refreshing talking to someone who has lived in Philly her whole life. She has a rich history of stories from working in the hospitality industry most of her life. She’s basically retired but likes the structure that the hosting job gives her. She only works about four hours a day, three days a week. Mary has never been married and never really wanted to get married. She says she never really met anyone she wanted to be tied to for the rest of her life.

She seems like a pretty level-headed woman who enjoys her independence. She’s fourteen years older than I am, but we still have a lot in common having grown up in the sixties and seventies.

She’s been suffering from numerous maladies as of late. She’s been seeing a physical therapist about some pain and stiffness she’s been experiencing in her right shoulder. She’s also getting cataract surgery in the next few weeks. I know none of this seems all that glamorous, but these are real challenges that an older person is going to have to face. She’s in good shape and these are normal occurrences. I realize I’m not getting any younger, and I’m not going to be hotter or stronger, or any better a year from now. It’s all downhill from here. I just need to keep growing and evolving into a better person. If I can just maintain my health as long as possible I’ll be satisfied with that. I like that she wants to work too. I hope I can work as long as possible. I just like to have things to do to fill my day and interact with people.

Mary is a pretty basic Philly girl who gets it, and wants to live a simple uncluttered life into old age. She has a nice condo here in town and is very happy with the space and the view from her balcony.

I think she’s pretty. I like spending time with her and I want to get to know her. it’s nice hanging out with some one above my age. There is a simple wisdom that comes with age.

We have a couple of rounds and then she has to go to meet with her friends. I walk her outside and we share a brief kiss. I like Mary and want to see her again. Maybe I’m finally maturing and enjoying the company of women my own age.

Or even older!

 

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Annabelle – 2012 – Chapter 1 – Nice to Meet You

I get the bill. “The second one was on me.”

The title for the Annabelle series was going to be: “The Final Elegant Arc” but in light of what I’ve learned in the last year, I can no longer call it that. So I’m not going to call it anything.

My life has its moments of elegance and moments of pain, but it is far from final.

I was meeting ex-girlfriend Michelle (See: Michelle – 2007 to Present – Nice to Meet You) for brunch on a Saturday. She was getting her hair done in the morning and then we would do our usual Saturday ritual. I was early as usual and her hair appointment was running long. (That kind of amazing beauty takes time. Just happy we’re still friends!)

I stepped into one of the shittiest hotel bars I’ve ever been in. Just because it was a block from the hair salon. The Warwick Hotel is a beautiful place on 17th and Locust. They have a restaurant a coffee shop and a bar connected to the hotel. Prime Rib is a nice spot on Locust and Tavern 17 is at 17th and Chancellor. I’ve been to this bar many times before when friends would visit the city and stay at the Warwick. The drinks suck, the service blows, the management turns over on a semi-annual basis and the way the place is laid out is in a way where you can’t see anything. There are all of these large pillars or supports that are everywhere through the bar area, and you can’t see what’s going on at the bar. The bartender may not see you and you’ll have to wait.  You can’t find your friend, etc. It’s just a suck bar.

But I thought the number 17 would bring me luck. 17 is my family’s lucky recurring number. It is very prevelant in my father’s life and I thought there could be something there. Recently my friend Trish (See: Trish – 2011 to Present – The She Wolf) asked what my birthday was. I told her 8/9/62. She said,  “What’s 8 plus 9?” I responded…17.

I walk in a little hung over from the night before. The website I worked for at the time had a huge party the night before and we were all a little shattered from it. I walk in Tavern 17 around 1pm on that fateful Saturday. It’s empty and dark. Which for once I was happy about. Behind the bar was a very tall, fresh faced, slender blonde working the bar.

I swagger up to the bar and ask for a Corona. I introduced myself and run my usual program on her. “What’s your name, what do you like to do when you’re not working here?” She tells me her name, and says she’s a photographer as her full-time gig. The Corona is crisp and deliciously ice-cold. It’s actually just what I needed.

Something tall and golden that is no longer Michelle.

Annabelle seems nice and I’m making her laugh with my fatal charm. She’s 5’ll”. Taller and leaner than Michelle. We exchange business cards. I tell her I’ll check out her website. (Michelle is still way prettier though! Michelle reads this blog!)

I text Michelle and let her know where I am. I’m having a beer and she can just come here when she’s finished.

I crush the first Corona just to knock the edge off the day. Annabelle pops the cap from another and places it front of me. It’s just as good as the first. There is no one else in this shitty bar at this time of day, and she’s happy to have someone with which to chat.

She says she does a lot of head shots for local actors in the city. Annabelle is very connected with the local theater community here in Philly. She also does some wedding work as well. I’m assuming that pays pretty good. I can’t put and age on her but she looks to be about 24 or 25.

I’m feeling better now. Chatting with this tall blonde is good and the cold beer has reactivated the alcohol still in my system, giving me a gentle but effervescent buzz.

The door squeaks and the sunny afternoon light pours into the bar. Michelle enters the bar. “Oh, and here comes another charming and lovely blonde.” I say on cue. I introduce the two ladies and we have a laugh. “Your hair looks great, Michelle”

I get the bill. “The second one was on me.”

“Thank you, Annabelle!” I tip up to what the bill would have been and gather my stuff. We say goodbye to Annabelle and head out of Tavern 17 into the afternoon to have some delicious brunch and drinks.

Then we’d probably head back to my apartment and watch Netflix, sip wine, and smoke cigarettes. I’d be in my chair and she’d recline on my sofa.

I later checked out Annabelle’s website and reached out to her on Facebook, but nothing ever came of it. I didn’t ask her out on a date or anything. I may have asked if she ever wanted to meet for lunch or something. My usual gentle M.O.

But like I said, crickets.

When you meet someone like that, and it’s brief, there is a good chance they will quickly fade from your memory. I met tons of people back in 2012. I had a job that was 50% socializing. I didn’t forget Annabelle, but I wouldn’t see her again until a year later in 2013.

And it would be a whole new ballgame.

 

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Michelle – 2007 to Present – Chapter 12 – The Good, The Bad, and The Awesome

“Your behavior is making the other guests uncomfortable. We’re going to have to ask you to leave.”

These stories aren’t really long enough to support their own chapters, so I’ve decided to round them up into a nice little trilogy for you. Enjoy!

 

The Mann

Michelle was having some minor problems with her lady parts. It was nothing serious, but she said that until things got back into proper balance we couldn’t have sex for like two weeks.

I guess because I was still in my love/euphoria phase of our relationship and I went out of my mind. I don’t even remember why. We had a fight about it. It was weird. Why would I get angry if I couldn’t have sex for two weeks? I’ve gone for longer than that.

It was the Fourth of July and we had tickets to see the symphony play out at the Mann amphitheater. I remember us both being in a bit of a snit on the drive over. Then I decided to do something to hopefully impress her, because I didn’t want my bad behavior to wreck our night. I pulled out a cassette and popped it in the player in the dash. This was 2008 and although I had all CDs this particular car was a 1994 Ford Taurus wagon. All you could play in it were cassettes.

Anyway, the cassette I popped in were studio recordings of three songs I wrote and recorded in the studio years before. Tear Me Up, Betty Ann and Can’t Let Her Go. I composed those songs and played all of the instruments on them. Well not all of them. The drum track was digitally created. I played guitar, bass and sang all of the songs.

Michelle liked them. I think she said it sounded like eighties music. But as we listened to the last song as we were pulling into the parking lot, we had both cheered up and I was done being an asshole about not getting laid.

We got some food and got a couple of glasses of wine. It was still light out because of the time of year. You could see the city off to the east. It looked beautiful at sunset. I think we brought a couple of bottles of wine with us, but we didn’t want to crack them until we got situated in our spot.

We put our blanket down on the grass and took a seat. I was surprised at the amount of people who were there. It’s nice to see that classical music is still enjoyed. We ate the snacks we brought and drank our wine. It was so nice lying out on the grass like that on a warm night. The music was wonderful and at one point I may have even dozed off.

At the end of the show the finale was with fireworks. Behind us they began to burst in the sky as the orchestra played on the stage. We simply rolled over on our blanket and looked back and could see everything. It was a lovely night and one we won’t forget. We were so well-behaved for a change!

 

Parx Casino

Parx was a client of mine at the company Michelle and I worked. A casino is always good for recruitment as well as brand advertising. My contact invited us up for dinner. So we decided to make a night of it. They comped us on a really nice dinner with cocktails and wine. We gambled a bit. We’re not really into gambling. we’d rather spend $20 on wine than pump it into a slot machine. I remember sitting at the bar with Michelle, watching the Phillies killing it in the playoffs, playing video poker and smoking cigarettes. That’s a lot of vice right there. But we had a wonderful night.

Parx at the time had a hotel that was across their vast parking lot. I don’t know if they have built up and gotten one closer, but it did seem odd at the time. So we stumbled over to the hotel and went to bed. It was late and I think I snored a lot that night. If Michelle wasn’t drunk enough it would keep her up at night. So I don’t think she slept all that well.

I woke up early the next morning with quite a hang over. I figured if I got some fresh air it would give Michelle a chance to sleep in. I went across the street to a diner and ate a monster breakfast. If you’re not too sick to eat, a solid breakfast will fix you up. Eggs, bacon, pancakes are all good fuel for the body. Protein, carbs and sugar. That, and drink as much water as you can. You’ve gotta clean that machine. I was over there for a bit and then came back to the room. We checked out and drove back to the city.

But the story doesn’t end there. We put my car in the lot at the company where I worked. I planned on staying over at Michelle’s place that night. We ended up going to a bar out by her apartment for a little hair of the dog. It’s called Kite and Key. Solid food and beverage program. We sat outside and started with champagne, later switching over to wine. I think we were there for over six hours. But once again, we were well-behaved.

 

The Four Seasons

Let’s see if we can stay well-behaved three times in a row.

One night Michelle and I were out on what I believe was a Friday night. We went especially hard on Friday nights. Partly from the stress of our jobs in advertising sales and just happy it was the weekend.

We hit a few of our usual haunts, Twenty Manning being one of them, but at some point during the night we ended up in the Fountain Room at the Four Seasons Hotel. We were sitting at a table in the corner and were drinking martinis. The Four Seasons is one of the nicest if not the very best hotel in the city. It attracts celebrities and the affluent. I remember using the urinal in the bathroom and the guy next to me was wearing a tuxedo.

So we’re there at the table and we’re getting a little amorous. Now, I’m not a big fan of PDA (public displays of affection) but I love her, and she’s gorgeous, and I’m drunk. So some of the things that we were doing became a bit arousing and sexual in nature. But I’m not going to go into detail here. Use your imagination. We didn’t care, and frankly we couldn’t help ourselves. Love is a powerful drug.

So the Maitre d comes over and leans in and says: “Your behavior is making the other guests uncomfortable. We’re going to have to ask you to leave.”

I’m not one to start trouble. I was just a fool in love. I know when it’s time to go. If I fucked up enough to get thrown out of a bar in the nicest hotel in the city, I better do it with a certain level of dignity.

We apologized and paid our bill and got up and left. Of course we were escorted to the door to make sure we left, but at least this time it wasn’t by law enforcement.

But the story doesn’t end there. When we went out into the street. We saw that it had rained. We were up near the Ben Franklin Parkway. I looked down and there at our feet was around eight dollars in cash! The bills were wet, but we were both forty bucks richer.

But the story doesn’t end there either!

Around two months after the incident I called the banquet coordinator at the Fountain Room. I told her we had met at event and I was really impressed with her and the space.  I was representing my company and was considering the Fountain Room as a place we could have lunches with clients and hold meetings there. (A bold-faced lie)

She was delighted that I had called her, and invited me to come in and sample the food. I told her I would be bringing my associate with me to the lunch. I gave her my name and she made the reservation. I told Michelle, and of course she was nervous about going back there because of our behavior. I was nervous when we arrived there too. If the President of our company ever found out we used the company’s name to pull another stunt, I’m sure he would’ve fired the both of us.

We go in and I give them my name. I don’t see anybody that I know. The girl I spoke to on the phone wasn’t even there. They seated us in a small private room near the window. We had this really great waiter. They treated us like gods. The lunch was delicious. and so was the dessert. We refrained from anything alcoholic, but they offered. When we finished eating there was no bill. It was absolutely free. That had been my plan all along. Get a free lunch out of the Four Seasons as their apology for throwing out the Dark Lord and his Queen!

Sadly, the Four Seasons is no longer there. It’s called the Logan Hotel. It’s all different inside now. I don’t go there. The good news is, The Four Seasons is taking several of the top floors of the new Comcast tower that is currently being built. It will be the tallest building in the city upon its completion. So who knows, maybe I can get up to some new deviltry in the new Four Seasons in 2017!

Michelle always said: “I have so much fun with you, that when the day is over, I wish we could do it all again.”

 

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Nadereh – 2016 – Persian Beauty

Another tale of one man’s journey navigating his way through the dating scene in Philadelphia.

I met Nedereh on the online dating platform, Clover. It’s like Tinder but I think the woman has to speak to the man first. (Or maybe that’s Bumble) She lives in Jersey City which is up near Manhattan, so she’s really far away. Normally long distance just doesn’t work. But she is going to be in town to meet with her brother. I was at Square 1682 and ran into my buddy, Church. (See: Church – 2012 to Present – Seizure Salad) His phone was dead and he needed to use my charger. I always carry a charger in my blazer. He senses that I seem a bit on edge and asks what’s going on. I tell him I’m meeting some chick I met on Clover for a drink. It was the Wednesday before Thanksgiving which is a huge drinking night. Everybody gets together with family and friends and goes out to party. I didn’t plan on staying out late, I almost never do anyway. I’m getting too old for that shit. Besides nothing good ever happens after midnight when there has been a lot of booze involved.

Nedereh texts me that she is parking. Church asks me if I want him to leave. I told him to hang in case I hated her. Besides, she was only staying for about an hour or so and then going to her brother’s house.

Nedereh arrives and she looks good. Early fifties, but great skin so she looks younger. Pretty face and a fit body. I’m drinking my usual chardonnay with ice and she orders a glass of red. I introduce her to Church. We’re at the bar and she’s sitting between us. We start chatting to learn more about each other. She’s originally from Iran. Her family came here to the US twenty years ago. She said her husband is an asshole and they have been divorced since 2002. She has one son who lives in California and works in IT in Silicon Valley. Match.com and Clover haven’t yielded any good matches for her yet.

She works in Manhattan, selling insurance through brokers. She lives in a high-rise  apartment building in one of the better neighborhoods of Jersey City. A coincidence is that her birthday is 8/6/63. I’m 8/9/62. Both Leos and although a year apart, very close in birthdays. Who knows? Maybe we could share our birthdays with one celebration next summer if this works out.

She asked about the distance factor. I knew that would come up and be a problem. I like her. She’s pretty and sexy and I think we could be a match. But Jersey City? Come on. I lived there. She might as well be on another planet. I thought helicopter and told her that, but she had a better idea.

Nedereh  thought we should drive toward each other and meet in the middle. That’s a great idea actually. It would keep her away from my Philly lifestyle and my longing to be alone, but I could occasionally visit with her in some foreign town and explore, and go on a date. Could be sexy and fun.

I don’t know. Seems like a stretch. The holidays can be such a bitch.

I think the best part of the encounter was Church. He ignored us most of the time, which was respectful. He played with his phone and ran his business. But he would chime in and occasionally and be the best wing man ever. Nedereh asked me about my music career and Church started whipping out pics of me back in the day with my band. Nedereh liked the pics of the young, skinny, me but said I looked great now. I liked that. He showered her a pic of me last year holding my axe and she liked that too. Church was there making me look totally metal and I realize that he is an amazing wingman.  I don’t require a wingman, but he was perfect. I won’t forget him for that.

Church was funny and lively and I really appreciated having him there.

In some of my Tinder pics I have a beard. I shared some pics with Nedereh and she asked me about my beard. (Middle Eastern chicks like beards) I told her it now comes in completely white. She didnt’ seem to mind and liked the beard just like Michelle did. Michelle inspired the beard. She always thought I looked good with a beard and if I wasn’t clean-shaven, it would scratch her sweet face and she didn’t like that. I told Nedereh if she became my girlfriend I would grow my beard back. She loved that and laughed.

It was a wonderful hour and I’d love to see this Persian beauty again. She was fiery and fun. I love when there is good energy with people around the holidays. It makes it so much more intense and romantic. Everyone is in the spirit.

She had to go and I walked her to her car. She was driving a Mercedes 2 series. Which is little but I don’t care about material things. I’m sure she is proud of her little coupe. She said she may come back into the citylater to party with her sister-in-law. I told her I was down but I didn’t really want to do it. I was done. I hooked her, gaffed her and brought her aboard and was done.

I actually hoped I didn’t have to go out again. I spent my energy on meeting her and being in character and that took a lot. Church was awesome and he was waiting for a friend of his to show up to meet up for a drink.

I kissed Nederah and I told her I wanted to see her again. She is a solid lady and I would love to spend time with her. But the distance thing will probably sledgehammer any of that and I have to realize that. Fucking Clover. Too much distance. I am not ruling her out because she has great energy and we definitely had chemistry.  We’ll just have to see where this takes us.

I  texted her later and I told her I was tired and had family commitments, and wouldn’t be able to come back out later, (a bold-faced lie) and she agreed she was going to stay put as well.

Church said the best line of the night: “What nationality is she?”

Me:”Iranian.”

Church: “Maybe she’ll take you hostage.”

Me: “I hope so.”

 

I have spoken to her since that night and we both agree we like each other and would like to see each other again. It’s just the distance factor.

 

 

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Church – 2013 to Present -Seizure Salad

I’m sitting in my go to bar with Church. It’s our spot and it’s what we do. He’s sipping a Sailor Jerry and Coke, and I’m having my usual Chardonnay with a side of ice. He orders a salad and I go with the sliders. There is a couple a few seats down from me to my right. I know the guy, his name is Brian, but I don’t know the lady he’s with so I wave but don’t approach. He could be working.

On the left of Church, is a brunette in her thirties and an older gentleman. Looks like a lawyer. We don’t really pay any attention. We’re chatting and doing our thing.

Daphne rolls behind the bar and says hello. She tells me it’s a slow night. Not much happening. She goes back to her hostess stand and it’s just another night in paradise.

Suddenly, the woman who was sitting to Church’s left, goes off the bar stool and hits the floor. Normally, I’d call that Thursday night.  We see so many banged up people around the city losing their shit. But this woman was having a seizure. People within visual range are shocked and the bar goes quiet.

I point to the phone on the wall, because the bartender on duty didn’t see one of her patrons suddenly vanish from the bar. “Liz, call 911.”

She starts dialing. Church, with his cat-like reflexes, springs into action and goes from sitting next to me sipping a drink to all the way around the other side of her on the floor holding her head to keep her steady. I get down there and untangle her leg from the lower rail of his bar stool. I have the legs. Church is focuses on the poor woman’s head. She’s thrashing about, and Church is barking commands to those around him. He’s literally single-handedly coordinating the effort to help save this poor woman, and keeping her from injuring herself further.

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this before, but Church was formerly a Corpsmen in the United States Navy.

A Corpsman works in a wide variety of capacities and locations, including shore establishments such as naval hospitals and clinics, aboard ships, and as the primary medical caregivers for sailors while underway. Hospital corpsmen are frequently the only medical caregiver available in many fleet or Marine units on extended deployment. In addition, hospital corpsmen perform duties as assistants in the prevention and treatment of disease and injury and assist health care professionals in providing medical care to sailors and their families.

They may function as clinical or specialty technicians, medical administrative personnel and health care providers at medical treatment facilities. They also serve as battlefield corpsmen with the Marine Corps, rendering emergency medical treatment to include initial treatment in a combat environment. Qualified hospital corpsmen may be assigned the responsibility of independent duty aboard ships and submarines; Fleet Marine Service, SEAL and Seabee units, and at isolated duty stations where no medical officer is available.

Yea, pretty bad ass. That’s the guy you want next to you when somebody takes a header at your favorite bar.

She’s making what almost sounds like barking sounds, and staring wildly about. He’s got a good hold on her. He’s talking to her. But mostly he’s trying to keep her from bashing her face into the wooden wall of the bar. The bartender comes around, and some others have gathered. I grab a cloth napkin and ask if we need to put it in her mouth. I always heard that epileptics could bite or swallow their own tongues. Church says, no. He knows what he’s doing and has the situation well under control.

She seems to be calming down. I look over at the guy who was with her. He’s just standing there staring, and looking uncomfortable. The paramedics come and stabilize her. I feel so bad for her. It’s the holidays, and she’s out for a drinks and this horror befalls her. They get her onto the gurney and roll her out. The police are there and also ask some questions. Church is on point, he gives law enforcement the full report.

They also speak to the guy she came in with. He says he doesn’t know her very well. He met her over at DelFrisco’s steakhouse, and then brought her over here for a drink. That’s a big lawyer hang out. Not my scene. This guy didn’t do anything to help or comfort her when she had the seizure, and he didn’t go to the hospital with her. I don’t care if you just picked up the chick in a bar. Lady falls down, you go to the damn hospital with her. I’m thinking that weasel was married and didn’t want any problems. How would he explain to his wife that he was at the hospital with some other woman? I may be wrong, but I got the vibe something was definitely shady about that guy.

We go back to our seats at the bar and have another drink. Church is pissed because somebody was telling him to turn her head when she was foaming at the mouth and that’s not what you’re supposed to do. Me, I was just glad the lady was okay.

Daphne came over to chat and get a recap. I tell her what I know, and tease her.”You had to say it was a slow night and that nothing was happening, and look what you did, Daph…”

“I know, right? Me and my big mouth.”

Indeed…

 

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Michelle – 2007 to Present – Chapter 10 – Night & Day

A week went by after the Friends of Rittenhouse Ball crashing incident. I figured that we got away with it without incident.

Michelle: “We’re going to get fired.”

Me: “No we’re not. My numbers are good, so are yours and everybody loves you. We’re in the clear.”

But within a few days we were called into the President’s office. He ripped us new ones. Then they sent us over to human resources and we were written up. Those fuckers. I hate them all. As a matter of fact none of them are at that company any longer. The Prez eventually left, our manager the crazy Russian was fired, and the lady from HR left a year ago. So we’re all equal now. We didn’t even care that we got written up. We were both prepared to go work in a restaurant somewhere together if they had really fired us.

Ain’t love grand?

The whole thing blew over and we were all none the worse for any of it. Funny thing was, if anything it emboldened us even more to pull stuff. We were high on love and life and we just wanted to have fun. People would overhear our conversations and buy us drinks. We were a little surprised by that but loved getting free drinks. We were out almost every night. We’d hang out at Twenty Manning and spend our last $20 on wine on Sunday afternoons. Michelle even went as far as taking out a $1000 loan from our credit union just to maintain our lavish lifestyle. We didn’t buy a bunch of things, we just went out and drank and ate all the time. We’d be hungover and go to The Continental Midtown for lunch and our favorite bartender Mike G would hook us up with cool free drinks. He made us these cool drinks called Kate Moss. I think it was champagne, a shot of booze and a sugar cube which represented a lump of cocaine. We’d hang out at Chris’ Jazz Cafe and close the place. It would be two o’ clock in the morning and we’d be sitting at the bar drinking and smoking cigarettes. Speaking of which. I quit smoking cigarettes ten years before when my daughter was born. But sometimes Michelle had trouble lighting her Parliaments in the wind, so I’d do it for her. Next thing you know I would take a little puff. She was worried I’d get re-addicted to tobacco. I told her I’d only be hooked if I started buying them.

I started buying them again. God damn it.

We’d supposed to be out making sales calls and we’d be napping on a blanket in Rittenhouse Park. We’d also pack wine and snacks and go to Concerts in the Park every Wednesday night. We’d go to Devon and destroy an assorted seafood platter. We drank oceans of martinis. We’d be banged up after a crappy day of meetings and sales, and head right over to Mantra (Which is now where Dandelion is located on 18th Street) We would run out of money drinking martinis and the awesome bartender Kevin would just keep bringing them to us. I would always go back the next day and give him money.

Her bitch faced roommate traveled a lot and we’d go to Michelle’s apartment and drink her roommate’s wine. She always drank Clos du Bois chardonnay and we would drink the whole thing. We used to have to keep going to the liquor store to buy replacements for her. She never found out, but we must have replaced her wine at least five times. I still had an apartment in Pennsauken, New Jersey but I was hardly ever there. I practically lived in Michelle’s room. It was insane. We would work all day together, and then hang out every night and sleep together and then do it all over again the next day.

We were out of control and loving every minute of it. One night I just lifted up Michelle’s skirt out front of the Philadelphia Public Library and went down on her right there. Her sitting on the wall and me just going to town on her. Right on the street.

One day while out on four-legged calls, we crashed a private event for Deaf Children at the Rittenhouse Hotel. We drank their booze, and ate their food. Grabbed a couple of gift bags and left. I remember us dumping out the contents on the ground and just grabbing what we wanted. I took the DVD of North by Northwest, Michelle grabbed up the make up. I know all of this is wrong but we just didn’t care. Nobody probably heard us leave anyway.

Hanging out in Alma de Cuba, going anywhere we wanted. Michelle would take me to bars and I wouldn’t even remember having gone there we were so drunk most of the time. Once we decided to go see a psychic. Michelle believed it that stuff back then. I know it’s just a parlor trick, but it’s sometimes fun to do. But the night we went, this woman started bring up all of this stuff about my life and it was freaking me out. I started crying during the reading. Bizarre!

Oh here’s one… One of the local sales reps had just signed a new client. It was the G Lounge. I called it the D Lounge because only a bunch of douchebags went there. But he was all happy about getting them. It was a thirty thousand dollar ad campaign. Somebody came up with the brilliant idea to make a promotional video for them. But they would use Michelle and our boss, (the crazy Russian) as romantic interests in the video. That is wrong on so many levels. They went and shot the video and of course Michelle looked amazing, but after that everyone was drinking and our boss tried to kiss Michelle! Awful!

Michelle always said: “I have so much fun with you, that when the day is over, I wish we could do it all again.”

Oh, and here is the crazy irony of it all. After shooting the video and running it on their website, running banner ads, email blasts and newsletter insertions, G Lounge never paid the thirty thousand dollar bill. Never. Then they went out of business. There is now a place called 1925 in that space. It is equally awful.

 

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