Monday, October 9, 2006

There Were 3 Women in a Bar–2 Single, 1 Taken

Gorgeous, crisp, cool Sunday. Liver toast, French wine and girl time at the “Spotted Pig” (yummmm, I swear you’d love Batali’s take on the classic pub fare). Gossip, career advice and big laughs from our sun-dappled corner table. Set to the back, we were in perfect position to spy on Jimmy Fallon eating his eggs and hash, check out the Catherine Malandrino and Stella McCartney runway show streaming through the door (trust me, you’ll always leave “The Pig” feeling slightly frumpy) and then quickly resume our private conversation.
And, then? Our table for three began flirting with their table for two. Girlfriend 1 can be described as nothing short of ballsy (any other word would shortchange her bravado)—she teased and taunted the neighboring table until they were totally flustered AND smitten. Girlfriend 2 introduced herself into the conversation but in her own coy, flushed-cheek manner.

And, then? Then, there was me… I’ve never been the “attached girl,” the one with a boy back at home, watching NASCAR, turning the apartment into a smokehouse while he sautees pancetta in the cast-iron, devising as many swine-centric recipes as possible for our cookbook proposal. To tell you the truth, I had wasted a bit too much brain space trying to imagine the scenario and gauge my subsequent reaction.
But, there I was, lounging on the banquet, sunlight playing across the table and the handsome men’s faces… wanting to be home, watching my boyfriend flip his baseball cap around when he’s in serious “chef mode,” kissing the top of a head that smells a lot more like a butcher shop than a bottle of shampoo, remembering how long I’ve wanted to be in a serious relationship (and seriously in love).
“I’m gonna go. Call me later,” I mouthed to my friends, slipping out of the table and single Manhattan on a Sunday afternoon. Chef and I met up on the corner of Lafayette and Broadway and strolled through late afternoon cityscape, watching the water towers fade into Houston Street’s twilight sky.
(Dinner, you ask? The fruit of his copious notes and bacon grease-splattered kitchenette: Country Farm Egg Salad with Pancetta, Parsley and Frisee. A bottle of Sancerre. A Balthazar baguette. When Chef is good, he’s very good…When he’s bad? I have girlfriends that are even worse…)

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