The other day, after a lovely lunch out with MV (and when I say lovely, I mean messy, as we spent nearly half of it under our table picking up peas and God knows what else that our kids had dropped) I get a call from her.
“I have an idea!” she tells me, full of spunk.
I immediately become afraid. The last time MV had “spunk” we ended up stranded in Punta Cana with two Mexican salesmen and a van full of sombreros. (Long story.)
Nevertheless, I bite.
“What is it?”
“I want to go to the bar! Let’s get dressed up like hookers and just get wasted!”
“That’s how people wind up on Dateline,” I tell her. It’s my favorite show and if I’ve learned anything, it’s that bars and wasted ladies dressed like hookers don’t mix.
“Seriously, let’s do it!”
“I’m too fat to be a hooker,” I whine. “Can you give me a couple of months so I can lose some weight first?”
“Whatever, there are fat hookers,” she tells me.
I am silent.
“You’re not fat and anyway, I’m fat too.” She tells me. “I just want to go out like the old days!”
I tell her politely but firmly that I have no interest in dressing up like a sex trade worker and that if she wants to get wasted, we should do it in the safety of our own homes, and in the comfort of our sweatpants.
We pull up to the bar and get out of the van.
“Be good,” Practical Joe warns as he pulls away. (My mother is babysitting and Practical Joe was
cheap kind enough to offer us rides in lieu of going out on the town himself.)
We teeter on our high heels into the bar, which is a real dive, by the way. It’s filled with VLT’s and hairy old men inserting coins into them. We frequented the Dive as teenagers, using our fake IDs. The smell of chalk and air freshener brings me back to my youth and immediately I want to turn and run. MV, on the other hand, looks like a kid in a candy shop, full of awe and excitement.
“Maybe if the Bar Gods are smiling on us tonight, we’ll get hit on!” she squeals, as she pulls me through a crowd of sweaty people.
MV plunks herself down on a bar stool and carefully I sit down beside her. My feet are already killing me and my stomach has that bloated feeling that only comes from sucking it in for too long. Even worse, my thong is doing that annoying thing where it cuts into my sides and leaves me with the most hideous “hip rolls” on either sides of me. (As if I didn’t have enough rolls to try and hide!)
As we are uncomfortably tight roping it on our teensy bar stools, a skeevy looking guy approaches. MV gives me a quick glance of elation. He sits down next to me, plastered.
“Can I get a ride home?” he asks but it sounds more like, “Cud eyeee have rad hm?”
MV laughs and launches into a conversation about not asking strange women for car rides. (Doesn’t he watch Dateline?) Carpool buys us a drink, which I accept only because I need something to get me through this dreadful situation.
Finally, one of his equally plastered friends calls Carpool over and he is out of our hair. But as he is joining them, I swear I hear his friend say something to the tune of, “Josh, what were you doing over there with those cougars?”
Cougars?! We’re in our mid (okay, mid-to-late) twenties!
“That’s it, we’re leaving,” I tell MV who is already eyeing up her next victim.
“I don’t want to go yet!” she hollers as I practically have to drag her to the coat check.
PJ picks us up and it is a quiet ride home in the mini-van.
“So did you girls have fun?” he asks.
“Cougars. Did us cougars have fun,” I correct him.
“NO!” MV shouts. “And it’s all her fault!”
At least we didn’t end up on Dateline.