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May 1, 2009

If you find yourself downing bourbon at happy hour in a bar called Bloodhound, then you know your night might be going somewhere interesting.  Soon, you will decide to say hello to your boyfriend at his restaurant near your apartment.  You may sit at the bar, on the very stool where said boyfriend is threatening to put a plaque in commemoration of your frequent visits.  You may engage the gay couple next to you in lively discussion about olives and thoroughly annoy the serving staff by asking them to list their top 3 menu items in reverse alphabetical order.  You may annoy your boyfriend by intimating that you would really rather have butter for your bread.  Then, during a brief lapse into silence, when you are reading the San Francisco Bay Guardian, you may see that a columnist you like has listed their e-mail address in their byline and decide that it would be neat to email them from your phone right then and there to enthuse that you like their column, and that you should get together for some Vitamin V and discussion of what it’s like to be a hard-nosed journalist, a subject about which you know almost as much about as a cat knows about teamwork. 

You may wander outside, and while waiting for boyfriend to come say bye, enter into a heated conversation with the editor of the San Francisco Bay Guardian, who you will feel the need to inform that you too are a hard-nosed journalist deeply interested in his paper’s on-going battle with The SF Weekly.  Then you will say, just to be annoying, that you’re on The Weekly’s side.  Then he may tell you, just to be annoying, that you have no idea what you are talking about, and may give you his card so he can tell you the real story sometime. 

Then your boyfriend may come outside and inform you that he doesn’t like being ordered around in his own establishment, and that the plaque that hasn’t even been put on your stool might now be taken away, and you may feel that wistful kind of sadness, like when you’ve lost something that you never even had in the first place, and it’s the saddest strangest thing in the world. 

But then your boyfriend might look at you in that Russian way of his that makes you realize that he still likes you, kind of.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Kent McMIllan permalink
    May 1, 2009 11:02 pm

    So, I’m trying to remember what Tony Hillerman the mystery writer described as the proper etiquette for entering a public place like a trading post on the Navajo tribal lands. It seems to me that the object, according to him, was to slide into the place, taking care to leave the glare and the heat of the day outside and to disturb the dim air inside as little as possible.

    If there were people there, the arrival should find some corner or wall to stand quietly against until his or her presence settled in. Then, those who had been there would no longer be startled by a stranger in their midst and could notice the arrival as if they were a person rather than some spirit descended upon them from the emptiness of the day.

    That is, of course, one theory, a product of a culture where people live in remote places rather than in great piles of rooms beside a sidewalk.

  2. Kent McMIllan permalink
    May 2, 2009 5:48 am

    By the way, the intrepid writer-up of Happy Hours may want to consider the important role of her friend or friends who accompany her on her five o’clock forays. These are important figures who can get away with saying all sorts of things that the writer herself might risk being blackballed from an establishment – or at least foregoing complimentary libations or comestables – for reporting as her own observations or opinions. Naturally, such a place would be the sort of joint that doesn’t consider any sort of publicity to be better than none.

    Likewise, the associate can do all sorts of things that the writer may describe as if she herself were merely a wholly innocent bystander. It’s slightly dishonest, I admit, but what isn’t.

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