Like a generously lubricated turkey thermometer, spring has finally sprung–and not a moment too soon.While winter is as good a season as any for getting sociably snookered, the Winter drunk comes with a heavy price for all. I’m speaking, of course, of the cruel ennui brought upon us by daylight savings time and the glut of C list holidays. I’m talking about the daily oppressive claustrophobia inherent in ensconcing oneself in layer after layer of sweaters, scarves and socks–all in order to survive the frigid sogginess of the daily commute.
Even in a winter as spineless and flaccid as this past one, there’s still that alienating sense of cabin fever that settles in, usually sometime between Valentine’s and St. Patrick’s Day, that threatens to warp the mind like something out of The Shining (All work and no play makes Gadabout a dull boy). Or maybe that’s just me.
After all, some folks dig everything about winter. They live for hot cocoa with tiny marshmallows, for Eskimo kisses and bearskin rugs. There are those that would argue that there is a snuggly-wuggly charm to be had sitting hearthside with a loved one in front of a crackling fire.
To those cock-faced optimists I say: Get Real! This is Manhattan for Christ’s Sake! I barely have a closet, let alone a fireplace, and a bearskin rug? The closest thing I’ve ever seen to one of those is a fuzzy, bleached sheep hide at Ikea.
I say bring on the spring and all its bootilicious bounty. Bring on warm weather and baseball. Bring on the songbirds and the blooms. Yes, spring is many things to many people. Chief among them: the rebirth of horny, and I am ready to celebrate that glory. The glory of horny! Or to put it in the parlance of our filthy footed, heathen brethren, the hippies: “Let the sun shine in!”
So it came to pass one recent Tuesday when I woke up daisy fresh with the temperature pushing a balmy sixty degrees. I set out to conquer the day at the crack of 10 am with a purpose: to procure a bauble from a shop down SoHo way for my special lady. For nothing tickles a woman’s fancy like fancy jewelry. And when the lady’s happy she’s infinitely more susceptible to my masculine charms.
10:45AM–The Blarney Cove, 14th &A:
“There’s an old Easter tradition among the Bloods and the Crips where they swarm restaurants in Times Square to dine and dash.” I was only on my second Double Double (double shots of espresso and Jack. What can I say? I love life.) of the day so I wasn’t sure if I had heard correctly. I didn’t even know there were Bloods and Crips in New York; and there was no way I was going to ask for clarification.
I’d been sitting there for a few minutes soaking up the dank, and the whole time the drunk at the end of the bar had been spittin’ out parables and wee pearls of wisdom. I didn’t want to break his rhythm. “Pussy is so good, even women eat it!” It’s funny how slim a line separates genius from utter bat-shit insanity.
It was closer to dawn than happy hour, but there was no way I was going shopping sober, so I popped into this old man bar that never closes. The joint was empty, just the philosopher at the end of the bar, the ageless Gypsy Queen bartender and me. Thanks to the sage four stools down this side trip was turning into an early morning education.
Eventually, I felt I needed to bring something to the table: “Sometimes when I pee I wipe the head of my willie. It’s because my older sister used to take me to the bathroom and she’d make me do it. You know, to be sanitary.”
Nobody batted an eyelash or said a word. Then a moment later Obi-Wan hit me with this little jewel: “Woman treat Dog better than She treat Man.” ‘K, now the guy was starting to sound like my Father. It creeped me out.
I decided to scram. I tipped the Gypsy Queen, hit the street and winced like a vampire as the daylight ripped into me. So much for joie de Spring–not even noon yet and I stopped believing my own happy bullshit.
11:30 AM–S’Mac, E 12th & 1st:
I needed to build up my strength if I was going to be shopping, so I stopped in to this gastronomic gem I know: S’Mac! If heaven had a blue plate special it would be the Gruyere and slab bacon mac and cheese served at S’Mac.
Its deliciousity defies description, and as any true gourmand knows, the perfect counterpoint to a tummy brimming with caffeine and whiskey is porous, French cheese baked with pork by-products, ANY pork by-products. Trust me, I’m a professional.
Noonish–Walking down Lafayette:
Few things are more satisfying in life than indulging one’s gluttony. As I lollygagged down the street enjoying the fullness of my gurgling belly and the memory of my sobriety, I took a moment to enjoy the moment. I lit up a Newport, shuffled one foot in front of the other and allowed myself to be embraced in the Now; I’m kinda Zen that way.
Sometime after Noonish–Gatsby’s, Lafayette & Spring:
In my heady stupor I found myself in front of the waving red flag of Gatsby’s. I knew I needed to shop, but the supple, Spring wind started nipping at the edges of my tipsiness so I ducked in for a shot. I plopped on a stool around the corner from a thundering herd of day drinkers.
It was a loud, mixed group of about eight…a couple guys, a couple girls, a couple Irish. As I was settling in, they were tossing back Jaeger bombs. I had a feeling I was gonna like this place. I ordered a Jack, then another.
I was getting ready to pack it in and go shopping, when I started eavesdropping on the group next to me.
Dude 1- “Well you know what a Dirty Sanchez is right?”
Chick 1- “Sure, and it’s totally gross.”
Dude 2- “Kay, what about a blumpkin?”
Irish Dude- “Oh yeah, that’s when you get head while takin’ a dump.”
Chick 2- “That’s just so wrong.”
…I was feeling a sense of camaraderie so I jumped right into it:
Me- “You guys know what a Spiderman is?”
Dude 2- “No man, what is it?”
Me- “It’s when you shoot your leche de hombre into your palm, fling it at a wall or a loved one, like you’re shooting a web out of your wrist, and shout Spiderman!”
Irish Dude- “That may be the coolest thing I’ve ever heard!”
Me- “How about the Screaming Seagull, also known as the chicken cutlet?”
Chick 1- “Eww, what’s that?”
Me- “It’s kind of intense, you sure you wanna know?”
Dude 1- “Absofuckinlutly!”
Me- “It’s when you’re about to make sweet love on a beach. Right before you skewer your sweetheart, you dip your love stick in the sand then go to town.”
Chick 2- “HOLY SHIT!”
Dude 1- “Christ! Everybody loses in that scenario.”
Irish Dude- “Nice! Let’s do some more Jaeger Bombs!”
Hours Later–Outside Smoking:
Chick 2- “Yeah, so we all used to work together, and Kyle’s going to go hiking all over Europe for a month tomorrow, so we’re all getting hammered today.”
Me- “That’s neat. My friend Katy just got back from London.”
Chick 2- “Oh, did she have any problems with the language barrier?”
Me- “What do you mean?”
Chick 2- “Well, did she have any difficulty speaking their language?”
Me- “Umm…do you know where London is?”
Chick 2- “Yeah, dude, England. Duh!”
Me- “…Okay then.”
I proceeded to bust a nut laughing.
Believe it or not, I had a plan when I left the house this morning. I was going to get up early, take a leisurely walk down to SoHo and buy my lady something from Fragments. She loves that store. Actually we both dig it. She goes nuts for the Jane Diaz jewelry and I groove on the celebrity pictures they have on the walls. My favorite one is of Sandra Bullock, with her panties around her ankles, sitting in a urinal to go number one. It’s both sensually provocative and thought provoking.
That was the plan anyway, but as Bobby Burns once wrote: “The best laid schemes of mice and men…yadda yadda yadda. ” Once I began paraphrasing Scottish poets in my mind I realized I was not only hammered, but lost too. The night was sneaking up on me like a ninja, the wind was filleting every inch of exposed flesh, I had no clue where I was, and what fucking language did that idiot broad think they spoke in England, anyway?
Chinatown–Sometime at night:
I realized I had to call it a day when I found myself staring at a duck hanging in a window and began empathizing with it. I didn’t remember walking here, but I had sense enough to know I needed to get home before I wound up on some white slavery barge.
??????–The 69 Bayard Street Restaurant:
There’s a giant, red, glowing 69 in the window and the interior is steamy in a sultry, celestial fashion. I’d been coming here since I was a kid, but I had no clue how I wound up here now. I stumbled through the doors, already tasting the clams with black bean sauce on my mind’s tongue…
11:30 AM (the next day)–My Bed:
I had absolutely no idea how I got home (it’s happened before so I wasn’t surprised). But lying next to me was a bag with a gift-wrapped box containing a pair of Jane Diaz earrings. I also had a sack of steamed dumplings that smelled delightfully like my childhood. My wallet was empty, my mind muddled, but at long last: SPRING HAD SPRUNG!