Today was awesome and I think I found my calling. More on that later. It’s probably a false alarm anyway. I’ve made that bold declaration a hundred times before. I was going to be an Egyptologist, a super model, a beloved author, lion tamer, kitchen designer, professional muse, and gold digger with a heart. So far, no luck, but here’s hoping.
Work was the usual: a child accused me of being a racist because I asked him to do his work, another marked my pants with a Sharpie, one threw a dirt clod at me, yet another thought he could tell me how to do my job. I really enjoy going home some days and doing things outside of work, and because of that, today was pretty much amazing.
Après mon boulot, I had to go to the coffee shop for a quick photo shoot. I lead such an exciting life! I’m not so sure about the picture, though. The camera was older than me, the photographer seemed disinterested, and the lighting was pretty horrible. We will have to see how my handsome face looks in the paper next week in the advertisement. I wish I could have supplied my own headshot, I have dozens to pick through. All edited and rather nice and all done by myself with a self timer. I like to think that I have a great talent with self photo shoots. Take one, talent scouts and/or fan(s), if you like. Send it to me with a SASE and I’ll personalize it for you! I’m not famous, yet, but it could happen, so why not get yours in before the rush?
I went to the mall where I excelled at getting free shit. It’s such fun! First, I did my usual routine where I go to Williams-Sonoma and wait for somebody to start flirting with me or loiter around the espresso machines with a confused look on my face — it’s adorable, trust. Today I had to do both to get my free espresso.
“Oh my god, your shoes are so cute,” the silver haired employee that always eyes me and surely knows my game told me as I walked in.
“Thanks…blue suede shoes,” I muttered with my most charming smile.
“Weather’s terrible,” he sighed with an exaggerated Andy Cohen-esque pout.
“Yes,” I played the weather game for a while before slowly luring him towards the espresso machine section. “Oh!” I exclaimed, “Is this a new one? It’s so shiny.”
He told me all about the machine before finally asking if I wanted to try it out. I refrained from shouting, “I THOUGHT YOU’D NEVER ASK!” before accepting and carrying on our chat. I decided to go for the employee discount, something I have not yet managed and sadly failed to do again, so I had to pay full price for my diffuser and Nakiri knife. Oh well, there’s always next time. He did let me in on a secret sale starting on Tuesday, so things are looking up. I really need to up my level of seduction in that store. Do you know they get forty percent off everything? EVERYTHING!
Next, I slowly walked into Sephora so that the assistants were aware of me, then made a confused face at the wall of fragrances before exclaiming with exasperation, “There are just so many choices! How will I ever know what’s right for me?”
“Would you like a sample, sir?” the kindly sales associate asked.
I refrained from shouting, “I THOUGHT YOU’D NEVER ASK,” before saying, “Oh, could you really?” A few minutes later, I walked out with a week’s worth of Dior’s Eau Sauvage for nothing. I’m going to milk this one for all it’s worth. Next time, I think I’ll try something by Hermès. I didn’t even know they made cologne! And, this Dior stuff is amazing. I smell like a delicious mix of rosemary, lemon, and vetiver.
On the way out of the mall, I stopped by the Godiva chocolate shop to get a sample and a free truffle. If you sign up for a rewards card there you get free chocolate. #winning. I spent a whole $12.95 during my trip to the mall since I still had a gift card from my coworkers that I received for my half birthday. They’re a kindly group.
After this, I made my way to the Gateway Market to get some breads. One should always have a large selection of breads in one’s freezer. That’s a life lesson, yours free. (And you say I give you nothing.) I like the Gateway Market, you can buy pearl sugar. The only other place I know that you can get pearl sugar is the grocery department of IKEA. That’s not exactly a quick ride. They still have those horrible macarons there at the Gateway Market. I don’t know who their baker is, but they need a remedial lesson in macaron making. You can’t even see the filling! And besides that, they put a chocolate disk on top of their chocolate macarons and that looks dreadful. I’d bake them for them, cause you know, I’m really good at making macarons *brushes shoulders off*, but I can’t be bothered. Busy. Macaron examples:
For dinner, Ma and I met a coworker at Centro. I’m not crazy about Centro. It’s good, don’t get me wrong, but it’s not my favorite place by any means. They make this good mushroom ragu, but I get that every time I go there, so instead I had a dish that was made of tofu gnocchi. I don’t understand how gnocchi can be made out of tofu. I’m googling…bear with…bear with…okay, you crumble the tofu and then proceed as usual. Strange. Why not just use potatoes? Potatoes are always delicious. I’ve never met a potato I didn’t like. I take it back, I don’t like those instant ones that come in a box. I don’t like anything processed, really.
Back to the meal. I ordered a sidecar, which is my favorite cocktail when I can’t get a margarita. It’s made with Cointreau, Cognac, and lemon juice. I’ll take another. And another. This one was excellent and I wish I had one in hand at this very moment. I really think we should bring back cocktail society like in the 60s–where you drank at work and at home and as you drive to the mall. People must have really enjoyed the 60s, well, if their livers survived.
The gnocchi was okay, but Centro is no Django. Sorry. Not sorry. I enjoyed it and they had some good foccacia, but it wasn’t special. You know what is special? Mushrooms faux poivre at Django. I’ll stop now. I had the flourless chocolate torte for dessert. I also had an espresso. I love espresso with lemon now. Gives it a nice…je ne sais quoi. (Aside: did you know that in a manuscript, foreign languages are to be italicised? I didn’t. Now I do, and so do you!)
As we left, we couldn’t, for:
Ma has a serious aversion to rain. She looks at it with animal like fear in her eyes. She refuses to go out into it. She will tilt her head to one side should she find herself caught in a rainstorm — a reaction I have tried to understand for years. Why do this? The rain will just fall easier down the other ear canal, wouldn’t it?
Well, we had to go because…I forgot to tell you what I was doing! I WAS GOING TO SEE DAVID SEDARIS! Okay, we’ll get to that. I had about twenty minutes to get to the show, so we had to run to the car in the rain, and good Lord, was it ever raining. It was a pouring. I was drenched. I still looked alright, since my hair has so much product in it most days that it will likely survive a nuclear blast with nary a strand out of place. My skin will melt off and everything, I’m sure, but my coif will survive me. Archaeologists will marvel in the years to come.
The rain reminded me of the first time I was in London. We were staying on the outskirts of town, which, let me tell you, just don’t do it. Spend a few bucks extra and stay in the city. I cannot get my mother to understand this and it’s always inconvenient to take a forty minute train into the city. No fun. Anyway, one day there was more rain than the brief English shower you hear people romantically rhapsodize about. This was ark building weather and we were trapped in the middle of it and had to run a few blocks down the road to seek shelter at a bus stop. Quite fun actually — I enjoy running in the rain.
I didn’t get much of a chance to dry off before I found myself deposited at Hoyt Sherman Place, where I had seen Craig Ferguson the year before. Good time. I love that place, it’s so ornate and I love ornate. I don’t subscribe to modern anything. Technology, yes, but not in my architecture. Anyway, David’s flight had been cancelled and he had had to ride up in a hired car from St. Louis, so the show was going to be delayed a bit. No worry for me, I needed to sponge myself dry and buy something. After going through a ream of paper towels with several other like minded gentleman, I wound myself through the manor, admiring the doors and then found myself in a ballroom where David was signing books. What’s this? I mused as I peered inside. I didn’t know this was happening, so I dashed over to the table where they were selling books. I preordered his new book, Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls, and hurried over to the line where the kindly woman said I couldn’t enter.
I put on my most upset face before tossing out a charming smile and said, “Even if I tell you how lovely you look this evening?” She wasn’t buying it. My skills of seduction failed me tremendously that night. No employee discount and now I couldn’t even charm an old woman. What’s happening to me? So, dejectedly, I made my way to my excellent seat in the third row next to an (a?) hilarious woman and a journalist who was not funny at all.
We were all chatting amiably — for some reason, I really turn into a social butterfly around strangers — when the power dramatically cut and the hall resonated with thunder. It was like the scene in a movie where the power goes and when it comes back somebody is hanging from the ceiling on the stage. Sadly, (or not, if you’re not the story telling kind) nobody was dead and the emergency generator soon kicked in.
Ushers started running about and shouting, “Stay calm! Don’t panic! Please stay in your seats! We will update you on the situation as soon as we have news.”
“Ha!” I declared, “I’ve seen Titanic! I know how this ends!”
That was one of my best public laughs so far. My little section adored me. I’m pretty sure I saw somebody furiously Tweet my joke. #proud
Finally, after we demanded the ushers to allow us to do an open mic session, David came out. I like to think he was hurried on stage before we started singing. The lady next to me wanted to do Cher. I wanted to see that. But, I was still happier to see the show get started, late though it was.
He was sensational. I am really looking forward to getting a copy of the book so that I can reread the stories he read us. There were great ones about fictionalized child abuse, idiotic patriots, a great story about his life in Sussex, he spoke at length about his team of French dentists, and I loved every minute of it. He also read various bits of his diary to us and taught us a Romanian curse (that I have since forgotten) that translates roughly to, “I shit in your mother’s mouth.” I want to use that all the time. I’m googling…bear with…bear with…couldn’t find it, tant pis. It would have been great! The power went on and off throughout the show and many alternatives were found for light and sound and it was funny, though terribly annoying.
It was at this point that I had a revelation — the one I mentioned at the beginning of this post. David is not all that different from me. We’re both socially awkward, like to write, keep diaries, and exaggerate our stories. My blog posts are all based on things that have happened to me, but I leave boring bits out and sharpen the good times. Every writer does this. He just pumps things up more and more, I think. Either that, or he lives in a sitcom, and would that not be amazing?
I’ve been researching the way the publishing industry works lately, so I’m really in tune to this kind of thing right now. I’m working on query letters and manuscripts and it’s exhausting. I thought the hard part was writing a novel. Turns out: no. We’ll see if this ever happens. But, back to my revelation. I like this kind of writing. I do it all the time. If he can do it, why can’t I? So, this summer, when I have down time (I’m imagining myself chilling on the concrete steps of a brownstone near Riverside Drive scribbling away at a Moleskine wearing an oversized tanktop and slurping from a flask) I’m going to start working on this project. I enjoy writing fiction and will continue to do so, but I might be on to something here. Maybe not. I don’t know. Is there a Greek god of publishing I can pray to?
After he was finished with the Q&A, those of us who wanted to have books signed lined up as the rest of the peasants filed out. I was surprised that so many people left without a signed book. I’m sure a few went to the pre-signing that I was unaware of, but still — why not go chat with a national treasure when you get the chance? Am I right? So I was in line.
It was slow moving and I was surrounded by business people. All they do is talk about stocks and boring things like market research. I am so disinterested in all this that I just realized I spelt stocks as stalks. Don’t ever let me turn into one of those people.
Ahead of me, I could begin to hear snippets of conversation and he kept asking if people were watching RuPaul’s Drag Race. So many were saying no. I had two reactions: 1) what the hell is wrong with these people?, and 2) oh my God, David and I are going to be besties after we have a Drag Race kiki. If you don’t understand that phrase, I don’t want to know you.
Finally. My turn.
“So, are you watching RuPaul’s Drag Race?”
David looks up from the card he is signing for me and grinned. We proceed to discuss the talents of the remaining contestants. We’re both rooting for Jinkx, but we are worried that she might have trouble following the advice Ru gives. For example, her Sweet 16 Realness in the last episode was more Sweet 47 Realness and none of us were amused. We were both entranced by her lipsync of Yma Sumac’s “Malambo #1.” I can’t find a video and that’s tragic, but here’s the song and a GIF:
We then bitched about Roxxxy and agreed that Alaska would be a worthy winner.
“Do you speak German?”
“Ja, ich spreche ein bission deutsch”
“Das ist gut.”
Oh, how we laughed.
We chatted a bit more about the Louvre food court and then he shook my hand and off I went. It was all kinds of awesome. I wish I had thought to take a picture with him. I have one with his sister, Amy.
Remember when I got her to say “hobocamp?” Good times.