The Summer Fling Turning Point

So this morning I’m waiting for an appraiser to come and assign a value to my apartment.  Depending on what he says, I will be able to then refinance to a loan with drastically lower payments.  This will allow me to either get a car or rent this fucker out so I can drag my ass out of exile. FINALLY.  But it is not at all a sure thing.

While we wait I will continue the saga of the summer romance that never wasn’t.  Ok, I’m at karaoke getting royally toasted with some friends.  Side note, this chick at the karaoke put on a song she wasn’t sure how to sing, so I bravely waded in with a mic to help her out…but I was so unsure that I made a few comments between choruses to the effect of “Wow, I’m not sure of the words here.”  She wasn’t singing at all by this time but took the opportunity to literally tell me to stop if I couldn’t take it seriously.  No on tells someone who’s nervous about singing to STOP.  Major breach of karaoke etiquette and it damn near ruined my fun.  Let that be a lesson to us all.

Ok.  I get a text from the summer fling that she really wants to hang out later and is that possible… And because I REALLY like hanging out with this girl I say yes.  This, by the way is the perfect opportunity to explain that this summer I chose on several occasions to ditch plans with friends in favor of spending secret time with the girl.  Of course almost every one of those occasions ended in her going home early or heading to some other engagement after an hour.  Which meant that I was left having tossed out a chance to solidify friendships for the meager crumbs of her time she was willing to give me.  She never did the same to see me.  Which saying it out loud now after the fact makes things fairly clear.  Isn’t hindsight amazing?

Blah blah, she gets dolled up and meets me and the birthday party friends at the rooftop bar of the Koreatown La Quinta.  She was stunning.  And friendly.  And I was WAAAAASTED but pulling it off.  I wish I could remember more about that conversation, but the important bit I took away was this:  She said something to the effect of, “At some point in the future I think we could have a great relationship.”  Have I mentioned that she had, over the course of this thing, done a LOT of that sort of thing?  There was the time she got royally jealous of me talking to other girls at a company party.  There was the nuzzling into my neck on a park bench before work.  ETC ETC.  So then she goes, “Lets go get something to eat!”

This was a big shock for me and a delightful surprise.  She had prefaced the night with the usual “I can only stay out for about 40 minutes” bullshit, but now she wanted to go get a late dinner with me.  Joy and sunshine things are turning around!  So we exit the bar, I apologize to the friends, and hit the street.  The street which is deserted.  Koreatown dies after a certain point, but never fear, this is Manhattan after all, so I begin to walk us toward Broadway saying something about the Odeon or something.  She stops me and says “Well I guess I’ll just go home now.”

Fuck.  Really.  A cab stops and I put her in, then decide to get in too.  I’m still not sure why I got in, but I was mad and upset.  She tells the cab driver where to go and reminds me I can’t come over to her place, to which I responded that I knew, I just wanted to get to the same neighborhood to hook back up with the birthday friends (they were heading down there too).  The rest of the cab ride I couldn’t bring myself to talk to her or look at her.  I was clearrrrrrly upset and she tried to ask me why, etc.  Her response was that I had known she needed to head home early so what was the problem?  Well, no shit… but that was BEFORE the conversation about ending up together and the “I’m dying to eat let’s go” bullshit!!!

Anyway, my getting mad in that cab was the end of us, in effect.  We saw each other one-on-one a few more times alone, but never did anything physical.  She moved into a new apartment and I came over, but by then something had seriously shifted.  She carried herself as though she was afraid one false move would send me immediately and irrevocably into lovetown.  Which is to say she was mildly cold and distant.  I got on better with her roommate.  Unfortunately she has been unable to really talk about it to this day.  Beyond the one phrase I will never forget which she said on our last date, “I wanted to be able to just get dirty and fuck around with you, but that can never happen now.”

Thanks, bitch.  Thanks.  I really appreciate that.

Adventures in Koreatown, The Beginning

Oh man.  Ohhhhh man.  So here’s an interesting thing.  Depending on how I tell this story, my Friday night was awesome, or it was bizarrely pathetic.  I will now attempt the awesome version.

As you know, this Friday was the Friday before a Saturday Halloween.  So.  Sort of a lot of pressure, on account of there’s not much excuse for not dressing up or doing something because you have aaalllll day Saturday to get yer shit together.  Except noone really wants to throw something together that last minute if they don’t have to, right? Right.  Hence, Friday night.  In fact, the special lady and I had attempted the trip to the costume shop (Ricky’s) on Thursday, failed, and instead pigged out on burgers and mac and cheese at Odeon.  I highly recommend that.  Much more fun than last minute costume shopping.

Ricky’s on Friday was a mad house.  Line around the block (ok only halfway, but the rest of those people were packed into the super stuffy sweaty panicky basement, frantically scrambling for last minute costumes, or wigs, or blood).  I almost bailed, as I was feeling a little reely from my recent successful swine flu vaccination and flu shot.  I prevailed.  I got a creepy latex dead pig’s head mask and some skeleton wings.  Swine Flu, and people actually got it.  Success…  But that’s Saturday! What about Friday, jackass?!?!

Ok, I take my bag of costume parts up to 34th St to meet the lady friend and a work friend of hers at this place.  What was it called?  Maru?  Something incredibly 90s trendy.  The bar top normally cycles continuously through the rainbow spectrum (red is especially annoying), awful top 40s dance pop, and asian fusion food.  And the only European whiteys are the ones you come in with.  Pretty awesome, actually.  The bartenders are super nice, sweet actually, and they have this deal.  For $35 you get a bracelet that lets you drink anything within reason all night until 12.  We got there around 7:30.  Fast forward to 10:30, after some truly terrible fried calamari (think frozen onion rings) and some really good yakitori’ed shrimp and pork belly, we three drunk white douches were trying out their high end private karaoke room FOR FREE.

Now, I’d like to play this off like we scammed them with some bullshit story, but the truth is our story was legit: we wanted to get a room for New Year’s Eve karaoke madness.  So they took us up, fired up the crazy remote controlled disco lights and handed us the toaster-sized control pad.  Problem: the karaoke book was only about an inch of laminated pages thick.  And of that, only about 5 pages were English songs!  DAAAAANG.  So we fired up a Britney song, pounded it out, and took the elevator to the OTHER super trendy Korean owned private karaoke room establishment in the building.  We gave them the same story and got the same treatment!  Awesome!  Except they had even fewer English songs.  I think we did a Gwen Stefani song (by “we” I mean “they”) and left.

Here’s the part that makes it tragic: they were utterly unbooked for New Year’s Eve.  We could have had a sweet pad in Korea Town with an awesome view and basically unlimited drinks for like $300.  But there weren’t anywhere near enough songs to fill even an hour of time.  Even so, my sweet lady had her checkbook halfway out.  It was that awesome in there.

End of the story:  Another hour of free drinks, taxi, and we held onto my costume! Yes!


I’ve got several things to touch on with this post, but I doubt I remember them for more than the next 4 minutes, so here goes a list:

Maintenance payments:
These are the thing that keeps home ownership from being the unequivocal “good thing” that we all believe it should be.  For all my rent paying readers (hahahahahaha: readers! with an “S”! HAHA. ok.) who may not know, it’s a monthly fee that pays for shit like the super (who charges to fix stuff in your apartment, btw) and heat and water and gardening.  And it is ALWAYS going up.  We just got another increase.  I can’t handle it.  My monthly maintenance is more than my car payments used to be (I sold the car to be able to get this place).  And we’re getting hit with–now follow this one closely–two one-time assessments of 200 bucks.  Assessments are how the building gets more money from you without raising the maintenance fee.  It just gets collected in one lump sum.  Twice.  Assholes.

Went to a friend’s birthday thing this weekend.  What do you call it when people meet up at a bar for a person’s birthday?  It’s not exactly a party, is it? Anyway, we started at this place called the Dove Parlour, which was overblown and maybe not all that great.  But then the party relocated to Planet Rose.  And here’s the thing; it’s a karaoke bar.  In fact it has no other reason to exist or be frequented.  It’s almost like people blow in off the street solely to belt out a song and then they flitter off again.  The people in the place are all there waiting for their selections to come up, and along the way they get rowdy for crowd pleasers, singing along to the hits.  Anyway, I popped my karaoke cherry.  It was magical.  It was definitely like the first time you try sushi and realize there was nothing to be afraid of in the first place.

Let me pause here to get a little philosophical.  Or at least introspective.  I was hanging out with a different style of person from the usual that night.  There were absolutely no hipsters per se along for the ride.  Everyone was in general characterized by a pointed lack of guile, very little irony, and possibly (i’m inferring here) musical taste that could be classified as unsophisticated.  This is part of my project to shift the type of person I spend my time with away from the ultra image conscious hipster stock I’m used to.  And it was incredibly awesome.  I wouldn’t have sung in a group of my old friends.  Never ever in a million years.  Too much judgement happening.  This group at Planet Rose was incredibly positive and it was a good feeling.  I heartily recommend it.

I don’t really know what it is, other than a blogging ubersite that keeps a list of active blogs and makes them searchably accessible to a buuuunch of people.  So I got on it and listed HIE with them.  I also added he ability to leave comments, and an RSS feed for those of you who know how to use them.  It only has my recent posts, though, so it will take some time for it to flesh out.  There’s also a button to add it to your faves on technorati.  I have no idea what that means.
But please leave a comment if you read this to let me know you’re out there… that means you, my one reader.