It’s the coldest day of the year so far, as I run into Bemelmans to warm my face that feels frozen, despite a cashmere scarf wrapped around it mummy style.
I’m surprised how packed it is at 2 in the afternoon, but realize, at 9 degrees with a wind chill of 12 below, brandy sounds a whole lot better than tea.
I order a Hot Toddie with lemon, honey and mint, the way my mother made one, when the warm brandy makes a double dent in your nostrils.
Suddenly my fellow bar drinkers switch to what I start to call, a Mother, on the rocks, the aroma of mint whirling round the room like wrists of working girls…those lei lady lays of the night.
A robust redhead seated one stool away, starts to chat. Drenched in green, her hair piled high like the Taj Mahal, Minnie, I’ll call her, lives in Dallas, here to do some shoppin’ and museum goin’, pronouncing museum…mu..ZE’um.
Sitting nice and tall bedecked in jewels that heave as she carps about the frigid cold, and how it’s a good thing she brought along her three minks.
“Why three, “I ask, picturing her wearing all three at once.
“A girl gets tie’od of wearin’ the same thang’, don’t ya agree?”
I so want to stick a pencil in her hair to see if it would stay, but instead, look down at my old Chanel skirt I took out for her seasonal spin and say, “Oh yeah, I sure do.”
I’ve always been fascinated by women like Minnie…rich, bored and unconscious. Reminds me of the quote…if you want to know what God thinks about money, look who he gives it to.
Popping into the Carlyle for me is always a treat at 20 bucks a drink, justified by all that it comes with: chips, the Madeline Murals, Kennedy lore and much more. It’s a pricey package deal leaving you sated with eras gone by.
Minnie, for me, is like parsley on a plate, her garish, lavishness lending a side of what’s unnecessary, like fries with a good steak, or one of those umbrellas that come in a kitschy cocktail.
I knew she didn’t even appreciate where she was since, too much breeds little grace, so when she invites me to dinner, I politely decline. Frankly, an hour of her inanity is way past my limit, her voice now mewling like Muzak in an elevator.
A gentleman in a snappy sports coat sidles up to her other side, making my exit easier.
“Are ya shu’er sweetie, ya don’t wanna come out ta’ dinna? You look like you could use a good mee’al…is that how ya stay so theein’…ya just don’t eeet?”
If I didn’t know better, why I’d think Minnie was making a pass, but as quickly as she repeats her offer, I see her hand on her new companion’s forearm as she orders…
two moa’ Mothas’, on the rocks, extra meeint’. 🙂