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Windy City Times 2023-12-13
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  NIGHTSPOTS

Dateland
by Jennifer Parello
2005-11-16

This article shared 2063 times since Wed Nov 16, 2005
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s soon as my Lady Friend announced that she was going away for the weekend, I started making big plans to misbehave. I was going to go to a lesbian bar and flirt with unstable blondes! I was going to drink too much and make bad choices! I was going to pay too much for parking and speak in a foreign accent!

But, instead, on Friday night I came home, ordered Indian food, watched a melancholy movie about adultery in suburbia, drank an entire bottle of wine, had an imaginary confrontation with my boss, and passed out on the couch. When I woke up, the dogs were snoring noisily, their bellies distended from scarfing down the remains of sag paneer, whose desiccated carton lay on the floor with its green guts spilled out on the Oriental rug. I wiped my eyes blearily and noticed a large drool stain on the newly upholstered couch.

Just then the phone rang. It was my Lady Friend.

'What are you doing?' she asked. It was five in the morning. Most people would answer her question by slamming down the phone and going back to sleep. But she knows that I'm at my best at dawn. The funny thing is that I didn't realize I was a morning person until I got involved with her. When I was single, five a.m. was the time I went to bed, not the time I woke up.

'Lying in my own filth,' I said, happily stretching on the couch and nuzzling my dog's face, which smelled suspiciously like Fritos.

'Why doesn't that surprise me,' she said with a weary sigh. Early in our relationship, my Lady Friend decided that she is the 'clean one' and I am the 'sloppy one.' Although her smug characterization irritates me to the core, I feel it necessary to live up to her low expectations every chance I get.

When we first got together six years ago, any criticism about my behavior would have caused me to storm out of the room. But now on the phone I just shrugged and told her about a rather dramatic dust-up at the dog park. Like most stories that take place at the dog park, it involved the inappropriate passions of childless people who treat their pets like toddlers and say things like 'a little urine never hurt anyone.'

My Lady Friend and I used to fight a lot. But somewhere along the line we turned our rage outward and joined forces to fight others. We're always mad at someone. Currently, we are at war with a large extended Greek family who are trying to screw us on a real estate deal. We hate them! This leaves us with only enough energy to have one big argument a year, which typically takes place ten minutes before a dozen guests are due to arrive at our home for a dinner party.

'So, are you going out on the town tonight?' she asked. I can hear the sarcasm in her voice, like she doesn't believe that I'll hit the bars and kiss some girls.

'Huh!' I think to myself. 'I'll show her!' But later that night, as I'm getting dressed to go out, I realize that it's only seven p.m. and no one will be at the bars until ten, well past my bedtime. I reach for the phone and order Chinese food, and then I settle into the couch to watch a Bette Davis melodrama. And I tell myself that next time my Lady Friend goes out of town I'll be a really bad girl.


This article shared 2063 times since Wed Nov 16, 2005
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