Friday, June 20, 2008

Martinis, Old Men and Confessions to the Boss

Much to my delight, GSR is having a special during the month of June at the 20 500 East bar: free drinks, including six different martinis, to ladies on Mon-Thurs nights.

My boss scheduled a ladies night for this past Wednesday. Originally five people RSVP'd, but you know how that backed out to have sex, another backed out because she couldn't get a babysitter, and then we were left with three (plus boss).

I was the first to arrive, and was surprised to see the bar was almost full. Thanks to local advertising, the word finally got out and the bar was overrun with women. I found a table that would seat all of us, and grabbed it. A waitress came over and took my order.

Next to arrive was my boss, and next my cube neighbor. No one else showed up. My boss ordered appetizers, and we all ordered martinis (me, one more, everyone else their first!).
Martinis seem to have a way of loosening lips. Before I knew it, my boss was telling us a funny drinking story about my cube-mate's boss. I spilled some of my own secrets, and then my boss spilled another one. By the time my boss and I had downed three martinis, the party was underway.

As soon as the free drinks hour ended, the cocktail waitresses literally disappeared. We hung out, as a "band" was setting up. (Said band consisted of one guy and many synthetic instruments.) We decided to see this guy perform, so we stayed.

The guy was actually pretty good. He started out with some swing music, and people got up on the dance floor and danced. By people, I mean senior citizens. After the second dance, a senior citizen approached our table and asked if one of us "ladies" would care to dance. We all said no, but my no was different. I said "Thanks, but I don't know how to swing." Wrong response, because he said he could teach me. Next thing I knew, Grandpa had grabbed my hand and pulled me to the dance floor.

I will admit, he was a good teacher. We danced the length of two songs, then he led me back to my table and grabbed my boss and dragged her to the dance floor. (Gramps was pretty strong.) She did a much better job than I did, but I guess that's why she gets paid the big bucks.

Strangely, the music man decided to transition from swing to Pink Floyd. The dance floor was totally empty...for about two minutes. Then an old couple courageously hit the dance floor and waltzed to Pink Floyd. It was mesmerizing to watch. (Well, keep in mind mesmerization was easy after a few martinis.)

After the Pink Floyd debacle, the performer decided it was time to get us all back on the dance floor. He asked for requests. I shouted "Disco!" while the rest of the crowd shouted "Country!" He pointed at me, laughed and said "Disco?" Then he played the opening bars of Play That Funky Music to tease me, then launched into some old Merle Haggerd song. DAMN HIM. The good news is that for the rest of the night he flirted with me, but I think only because I was the only one in the crowd to actually put money into his tip jar.

After exchanging several winks and teases for disco music, the AV system crapped out. Even a squad of four geeky AV guys (one was replete in full outback regalia... from khaki shorts to floppy hat) could not put it together again. That was our cue to leave.

Even though it was now ten p.m., my boss insisted on treating me to dinner at Fin Fish. Hey, who am I to deny the boss this great pleasure in watching me eat? So off to Fin Fish we went. I ordered the crab "cakes" (actually, it ended up being only one cake; apparently the menu had a typo), and she had tuna tartare. She offered to buy me a glass of wine, and I know this is so unlike me but I declined. I mean, it was now about 10:30, and if I had any hope of getting home in one piece the last thing I needed to do was down another glass of alcohol so close to the time I needed to get in my car and find my way home.

I couldn't believe how easy it was to talk to her...alone. It's usually pretty easy to talk and joke with the boss when everyone else is around, but when it's mano-a-mano it can be a bit intimidating.

When all was said and done, I finally got home around 11:30 p.m. Way too late, because I had a job interview the next day and a skills test to take. But that's a story for another day...

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