Birthday Weekend

This past Saturday, June 16th, was my 23rd birthday. While not a particularly special age, I have not truly celebrated my birthday since 5th grade when I took my friends to a pottery studio to paint. Not even my 21st birthday. For that I was stuck in a hotel in NJ for corporate training. This year, with my friends being so spread out, I decided to attempt at gathering them together.

Friday evening, began with dinner at a delicious local Greek restaurant called Kefi. The entire table order Souvlaki. Mine was with pork and incredibly flavorful. The meat was tender and smoky creating the perfect mix of flavors with the tzatziki sauce.

After consuming a wonderful meal ending with lemon and mango sorbet, we headed to the Little Kitten’s apartment on the Upper West Side for some homemade concoctions while we waited for the arrival of friends in transit. By midnight everyone had arrived including the infamous Minxy from Boston, two of my cousins and the ever ridiculous Doctor.

Once gathered, we headed out to the bar Prohibition, with live music every night, it’s one of Little Kitten’s favorites. The band this evening was quite good and the place was packed with people pushing up against each other, groping on the dance floor and enjoying their respective beverages.

Upon entering the bar, Little Kitten made her grand appearance by falling in her stripper heels. True to their nickname, these heels are 6 inch deadly platforms that should belong to Jenna Jameson. The bouncer, eying Little Kitten after her fall, made note of her name while checking IDs and wished her a wonderful night when leaving hours later.

My favorite quote of the evening came from a surprise guest, V, who I had not seen since graduation. While us lovely ladies were hanging out there was a group of gentlemen close by. She looked at them as said, “Hi! Why is there no beer? Don’t you see us. Buy us beer.” Mind you V is usually incredibly polite and she has no recollection of saying any of this. We did end up with a round of beer.

After Prohibition we headed to Jake’s Dilemma before drawing the evening to a close and making our way back to the apartment. The Little Kitten had one more tumble in her porn star heels at the apartment. She giggled throughout the whole spill.

Saturday morning began with a delay as we all showered, chugged water and popped some Advil before heading out for a delicious brunch at Max Brenner in Union Square. After a round of White Russians and chocolate martinis, Minxy, the Little Kitten, my two cousins and I enjoyed our scrumptious breakfasts of sweet treats and savory delights. I indulged in the Huevos Rancheros Sunrise Burrito with chorizo sausage and pepper jack cheese. I also had a side of Black and Tan Beer Battered Vidalia Onion Rings with Dark Chocolate Ranch Dressing. Heaven. Absolute, pure, white light, bliss. Best onion rings of my life and the sauce was incredible. It didn’t really taste like chocolate or like ranch, but some sultry, spicy concoction. Yum!

After brunch, my cousins departed and Minxy, Little Kitten and I lounged in Union Square for a while absorbing the heat from the sun. We slowly meandered our way into Chelsea stopping by a few stores and and an ice cream truck along the way. Upon reaching the High Line, we climbed up the stairs and onto the raised tracks that once held subway cars now covered with grasses, trees and flowers.

We followed the greenery for a while lavishing in the vibrant life surrounded by so many steel and glass buildings before leaving the high road for the shores of the Hudson as we found ourselves on a long line leading into The Frying Pan. The line moved swiftly and we were soon seated at a large table sipping on our drinks, Minxy with Jack on the rocks of course.

View of Manhattan from the Frying Pan, courtesy of Minxy.

As we consumed our drinks and the order of calamari I could not resist getting, the leftover pitcher of sangria from the group before stared at us longingly, willing us to drink it. Once all those who were privy to the true owners of that pitcher left, Little Kitten, in one bold move, grabbed the pitcher and filled her glass with sweet white wine with blueberries and pineapple. Minxy soon followed suit though my doubts about table sangria prevented me from joining in, I gave them credit for their bravery.

We soon walked over to Bathtub Gin, a prohibition style bar hidden behind a secret wall in Stone Street Coffee Company. Probably one of my greatest finds, this little nook offers a dark and romantic atmosphere with a cocktail selection that will make your head spin.

I wet my palate with a delicious wine cocktail made with elderberry liquor and a whole bunch of delicious stuff I wish I could remember. It was a mouth sensation that tickled my taste buds.

We ended the evening with sushi near the Little Kitten’s apartment and some free samples of gelato from a very nice man eager to get us to try the chocolate whiskey brownie. It was a wonderful weekend.

Epic Reunion

Epic: The penetration of the veil separating material and immaterial existences allowing for a greater intimacy between gods and men.

Thank you high school humanities teacher, Mr. O’Connor, for your wise definition which will be forever imprinted upon my mind.

Prepare thyself for a tale of debauchery and depravity capable of scalding the ears of Chaucer’s Miller and causing a flush on the cheeks of the Wife of Bath. I call on thee, Jim, Jameson, and Jack, the amber muses, to aid in the retelling of events dutifully inspired by your wisdom and influence.

Where it all began…

Irish Exit, a place held in infamy, infested with the lewd, crass youth of Midtown East, scattered with professionals too old to be partying and and the bizarre you hope to never encounter. Little Kitten won a happy hour – half priced drinks from 9-11pm. Despite the despicable crowd, this is our favorite dive and discount drinks cannot be ignored. Arriving to a packed bar and a small crowd of invited friends pushed back against a wall by the impeding crowd, Little Kitten, Minxy (visiting from her new home of Boston), and I started off strong with our good friend Jack.

It was not long until Little Kitten and I found ourselves invited onto the bar by convivial bartenders seeking pretty girls to dance and open mouths for shots. Gaining the attention from a group of Irish football players in for a game, we won ourselves a few more drinks and a certain Little Kitten took a short trip to the wild side.

Mingling with the strange and catching up with old college friends, the hours flew by and the drinks continued to pour. Irish Exit drew to a close when somehow I managed to finagle all three of our coat check tickets and retrieve jackets and scarves, tossing them to Minxy before scurrying off to locate Little Kitten. Astray for a bit too long, Minxy sought to locate us, finding Little Kitten sitting on the floor of the bar, the little lush, and me enjoying “tea time” (tea time: intoxicated, catachresis articulation about tweedle dee and tweedle dum, Russian Literature, all relevant and irrelevant subjects) with strangers outside the ladies room.

We make it about ten blocks (estimating) in a cab before I get out at a red light simply stating, “I need to get out.” With both Minxy and the cab driver telling me to get my ass back in the cab, Little Kitten comes to my defense stating with drunken wisdom, “She needs to do what she needs to do,” as if this were some life mission. Light turns green and they’re off.

Little Kitten and Minxy shared an emotional moment on the car ride back. Or many I should say. Tears poured down and the cab driver begged them to stop crying. As I was not present for this, I did miss any possible reason for their emotional downpour, but according to them it was a general “life” moment. Upon arrival back at the apartment, Little Kitten rid her body of some unnecessary alcohol. She won’t be the only one this weekend.

It takes me a few blocks of walking to realize I am still on the east side with the vast Central Park between me and my destination. Drunk decisions are never good ones, but let’s bypass my stupidity. I continue my trek, not really sure of where I am going, but I seem to find it essential to stop at a bar along the way. No more drinks of course, but a quick bathroom break and conversation with a bubbly blonde and her friends. After a phone call with my worry crazed boyfriend in Afghanistan, a few moments of complete disorientation, and probably an hour and a half of walking, some aimless wandering, I make it back to Little Kitten’s apartment on the Upper West. How I made it back alive, no fucking clue. Woke up the next morning to a lecture from my boyfriend about how I am in more danger than he is in Kabul and I need to straighten up. I fully agree with him.

No hangover! Perfect! And a lovely brunch at the Cuban Calle Ocho on 81st. Besides the food being satisfyingly succulent, this place offers complimentary sangria (as many glasses as your heart desires) with the purchase of an entree.

Though sangria truly belongs to red wine, I cannot deny the sensational bliss that is Tropical and Havana Banana, especially after a night of chugging whiskey when the body craves something crisp and refreshing.

Conversation ensued, travel at the forefront. With Miami as our intended destination, Minxy, Little Kitten and I discussed possible dates for a definite trip in the fall to relive our adventures from March 2011. South Beach is a beautiful place.

Still hangover free (excluding Little Kitten), between the wine and tasty food we were a little sleepy and decided to head back for a nap and cuddle fest in Little Kitten’s purple queen. It quickly turned into laughing maniacally for no reason, or high of the reunion and wine at all before eventually drifting off to sleep.

Feeling rejuvenated, we headed over to Gabriela’s, a tequila bar and Mexican restaurant for a round of quesadillas with a spicy chipotle sauce and bright colored strawberry and mango margaritas. Dinner at 9pm. This is how we do. Minxy’s last night in NYC had to end with a bit more fun than just a dinner outing, so we decided to head down to 84th and Amsterdam to hit up a few bars all packed with twenty-somethings. This is of course after stopping back at the apartment for a few quick drinks, mainly Minxy finishing off about a third of a bottle of Jameson. She even beat me out. Not the norm I promise you.

Our first stop is an old classic- Jake’s Dilemma. Starting off with straight Jack, Minxy and I were applauded by the two largest black men I have ever seen for our taste in beverage, offering to treat us next time around. We sauntered off quite please with our level of intensity to join Little Kitten. Drinks in hand, we were abruptly approached by an attractive young blonde woman trying to give us a Kettle and vodka. “Please, I am not trying to roofie you.” We took the drink. Held it for a few minutes, then Minxy gingerly placed it on the floor behind us half tucked away under a booth.

“You cannot call yourself a truse geisha until you can stop a man in his tracks with a single look”(Memoir’s of a Geisha). How about three looks? While they were exiting the bar, two very attractive men, architect and a marine, stopped dead in their tracks as their eyes feasted upon Little Kitten, Minxy and I. Modern geisha’s perhaps? I prefer to refer to us as 21st century Aphrodites, who undoubtedly share the talent.

We eventually made our way to the next bar, not before Little Kitten and Architect exchanged numbers and Minxy, after being chased out of the bar by Marine, provided him with the wrong number. Little bit cruel? Perhaps. Next stop, George Keely. A bar very big on its beer. Minxy and Little Kitten were a bit spent, but I happily sipped on a beer courtesy of a very kind doorman attempting to chat me up. The highlight of this quick stop, the Polish bouncer who insisted Minxy’s last name was not in fact her last name. I think he even asked her to spell it out for him. Quite amusing.

The evening drew to a close with me giving the incorrect number to the kind doorman with the utmost confidence in its integrity and the three of us heading back up to that luxurious purple queen for bed. But the night is not over until Minxy gets sick which comes to pass soon after our arrival at home. Minxy shunned to the sofa for the evening, Little Kitten and I curl up in the queen for a night of deep drunken sleep.