Thursday, December 15, 2011

Birthday Smackdown

For us, it was about birthdays, not holidays.

But for practically everyone else at Stella's for lunch today, it was all about the season.

The table next to us had a big bag of red and green Hershey's kisses on the table, which they ate between courses and after lunch.

Not far away sat a table of what looked like office mates with two women in red blouses (one satin) and two others with leopard scarves. Very festive.

The group next to us opened presents after eating, oohing and ahhing over gifts like year-round greeting card packs.

Fortunately, my friend and I were merely celebrating his birthday, like we do every year. I'd missed his birthday dinner due to prior plans last Saturday, a fact which he'd shared with the restaurant staff.

Because the place was packed when he'd arrived, he'd put his name on the list and we were seated after about 15 minutes of watching diners come in, hear the wait time and exit stage right.

There were a lot of big purse, big jewelry women, we noted.

He opened my birthday card, the basic store-bought kind, which I always desecrate by adding speech bubbles to make it dirtier or funnier. Inside, I just heap abuse for his amusement.

"You should get a job writing birthday cards," he laughed. "They'd sell really well."

Oh, I know.

I ordered pork souvlaki in pita but the best part of the meal was today's special side: lima bean salad.

Fully a third of my plates was mounded with an incredibly delicious mixture of limas, green onion tops, Feta and chopped greens in a lemon/olive oil dressing.

It was simple and absolutely perfect. I'd eat it again tomorrow.

The birthday boy told me about a recent foray to Tobacco Company for music and tried to convince me that it wasn't as awful as I presumed it had been.

"Light rock," he said dismissively. "I don't think it would have been your thing."

W reminisced about an Alley Katz show we'd seen together and when neither of us could recall when it had been, he used his Smartphone to look it up on my blog.

Because this is the 21st century and we don't have to use our stinkin' memories if we don't want to.

A couple of women sat down next to us as we were paying. I must have checked them out because my friend smiled, saying, "I know what you're thinking."

And I know him well enough to know that he did know.

"Don't worry, if you ever start turning into that, I'll smack you," he reassured me.

That's the kind of friend worth adulterating a birthday card for.

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