I know I said I was on a budget and I am, don’t kid yourselves, but in order to write my monthly Bemelmans piece I had to pay a visit. I used my birthday as an excuse. I mean a toast to myself was in order, don’t you think?
Last I was there there were hookers in the ladies room. Nothing quite as exciting this time around. They have still not replaced Tommy the long time bartender which makes perfect sense when you think about it. It’s a true testament to him that he’s not so easily replaceable.
They have the 2 part-time guys doing double duty unhappily I might add. Must be those little red jackets they have to wear. They could depress anybody.
I sat in a corner with a ginger-ale that quickly turned into a vodka and tonic. I mean I tried being thrifty but it felt sacrilegious not to be drinking while I was there. The bartender didn’t charge me for the ginger ale since I think he assumed it was flat. No I didn’t correct him, not at 6 bucks a glass I didn’t. Remember, you’re not in Kansas anymore once you find yourself nestled on an ice cold banquette. Just pretend you’re paying with Monopoly money, I find that helps. It’s all so surreal anyway when you’re there since it feels as if you’ve gone back in time 50 or 60 years. If Elizabeth Taylor strolled in with Richard Burton I wouldn’t be surprised.
I know they’re both dead. I was making a point.
The room was sparsely filled with couples in various inappropriate attire except for one elderly lady decked out in Chanel. There’s always one floating around. Sometimes I think they hire her just to add a little of the lost glamor to the place.
The people that stay there may have money but they look as if their trailers are illegally parked at the curb. Well it’s true.
One couple had on shorts and identical Hard Rock Cafe T-shirts. Their cans, as my mother would call them, were hanging off their bar stools like excess pie crust. It’s a pity one couldn’t pop over with a cleaver and trim it off. I’m just saying.
Another man came in pretending to look for someone.
Why do I think he was pretending?
I’ve seen him do this before. He must feel self conscious sitting there alone so he’ll make believe he’s waiting for someone who never shows up. He finally, after 2 quick belts, looks at his watch in exasperation, calls for the check then leaves.
Such drama for a measly drink.
A pretty girl came in weeping over something. To my annoyance she sat near me sniveling. I finally offered her Kleenex because I couldn’t stand it any longer. Blow your nose girlfriend would you please? He’s not worth all that snot pouring down your little face. No I didn’t say that, I wasn’t drunk enough to start giving out relationship advice.
To be young and in love can really suck but she clearly had money to be heartbroken in style so things could have been much worse.
She started to talk to me by saying she liked my shoes. (ah, the old shoe trick to get one’s attention)
Uh-oh, here it comes – the story followed by another tsunami.
Seems her boyfriend goes to Stamford and found himself another lady – a senior. Apparently she popped over to see him without calling first and there they were…yes they were.
I’d be drinking too.
What did I tell her?
That she was young and beautiful and he was a shit and that even though she didn’t know it, she’ll be in love again with someone much more worthy of her.
Then I told her to go shop. She liked that idea.
Let’s hear it for the resilience of youth.
Her tears made me think of Tommy.
See, Tommy couldn’t bear to see anyone cry, not even me.
He would have marched over to her with fresh chips and some cherries in a monkey dish to try to cheer her up. If that didn’t work he’d say something like, Has anyone ever told you you look just like Nicole Kidman? Didn’t matter if she looked nothing like her. I mean she could have had 2 heads and feathers and he would have still said that. The idea that he thought she looked like a movie star would dry most of her tears. We women are so easily deluded, thank God.
Yeah, he’s going to be hard to replace alright.