Lawyers and porn, that's the stuff good evenings are made of.
After a trip to the thrift store and a couple of great scores, I got busy writing late in the day and by the time I came up for air, it was heading toward 6:30.
Time to get cleaned up and see what the evening had in store.
I walked into Amour to a staff remark about the bad weather being all my fault, momentarily forgetting about the tropical storm bearing my name and causing all this unpleasantness.
My intention was to indulge in the Fall rendition of the l'heure heureuse menu, hugely appealing to a starving writer at four small plates for a mere $14.
It was barely ten minutes I was there and in came a lawyer to join me at the bar. We recognized each other because we'd met a while back at Belmont Food Shop.
He must have been a regular because when he saw me looking at the happy hour menu, he highly recommended the roasted beets with candied walnuts and lemon goat cheese over frisee with a honey citrus vinaigrette, having had it recently.
Paired with a half glass of Chateau de Valcombe Costiere de Nimes, it was stellar, so he was right.
Both of us ordered the steak gougeres of grilled flat iron with caramelized onions in a Roqueforte puff pastry with a cabernet demi-glace, but I savored mine with a small pour of Chateau Beau Rivage Bordeaux while the lawyer stuck with coffee.
The lawyer started talking about a magnificent pork chop he'd gotten at Libbie Market about the time I ordered my bratwurst gratin with red onion, potato and Comte, a small crusty crock filled with big flavors.
To go with that cheesy goodness, I had Chateau Jacquet de la Grave Bordeaux while I explained to him that Berkshire was not a brand of chop as he thought, but an heirloom breed of pig.
I know from Berkshire, having recently had the best chops of my life which had come from a Berkshire poppa and a Tamworth momma, which I told him.
"I didn't expect you to know so much about pigs," he said, surprised.
Sir, you don't know me so you couldn't possibly know what I do and do not know.
Let's just say I wasn't sorry when he paid his bill and went back to the office.
Seems he had a brief to finish tonight.
That said, it was barely ten minutes before the owner's lawyer came in for dinner and I had fresh legal company.
What is it with me and lawyers lately?
This one was much more pleasant and far less predatory.
While enjoying a buckwheat crepe filled with poached seafood and wild mushroom-tomato ragout, I sipped on an exquisitely juicy and elegant Henri Bourgeois Sancerre La Porte du Caillou, the epitome of everything a Sancerre should be.
This lawyer was also a biker and he told me about some of the trips he's made, most of them sounding like far greater distances than I'd care to traverse with pedal power.
We got off on a tangent about the law, first about when women got the vote and then about workplace harassment, allowing me an opportunity to share some of my favorite workplace stories from the past.
Between the boss who kissed me in the elevator after a job interview to the co-worker who slapped me on the ass while complimenting said backside, he was aghast that such behavior was still going on in 1992.
I'm here to attest that it was.
By the time he left (seems he also had a brief to finish tonight), it was time for me to go, too, so I could catch the 10:50 showing of "Don Jon" at Movieland.
I was curious to see Joseph Gordon-Levitt's screenwriting and directorial debut, especially given the rave reviews I'd read.
Well, raves once you got past the porn, they all said.
I wasn't going to let a little porn get in the way of a good relationship movie.
As you'd expect for a movie starting after 11 p.m. on a rainy, Wednesday night, the theater held only a handful of people when I arrived.
The film began with JGL's character explaining how porn is better than a real woman, despite the fact that as a bartender, he can get any women he wants any time.
Frankly, it's a little depressing.
Watching porn is just part of his everyday routine, like pumping iron and making his bed, and we see it.
Ten minutes into the movie, three people behind me got up and walked out. Not porn fans, I guess.
Don Jon's a Jersey type- wife beater, chain, pumped-up body- and he and his two best friends hit the bars to pick up girls, preferably nines and tens, as they score them.
His short buddy justifies going out with plainer types, saying, "Twos and threes are some open-minded ladies."
When he meets a true 10 (Scarlet Johansson), who's looking for storybook love like in the movies, his buddies warn him, "This is a long game," meaning she'll take work to bed down.
By work, they mean, taking her to lunch and dinner and having to talk to her before getting naked.
What's amazing if that JGL somehow makes a guy like this likable.
She holds out on him, saying, "I don't want to do anything until it means something," but even once they do start having sex, he's still on porn sites.
A lot. Like 46 times a day. Says the only time he can get lost in himself is with porn.
When she discovers this by looking at his computer's history, they're through.
He defends himself by saying, "Any guy who says he doesn't watch porn is lying."
Okay, guys, is that true? I'm really curious.
On the advice of a casual friend, an older woman in a class he takes, he tries to address his porn habit as an addiction by giving it up.
As it happens, he also starts talking to her about his issues and eventually he's comfortable looking her in the eye and getting lost in her when they're having sex, something he'd never been able to do before.
Once again, an older woman saves the day.
Plain or not, I like to think we're just more open-minded.