Part 3: Dinner and an (improv) show

February 19, 2011

Maybe you remember that last year we forgot to make reservations until February 13.  And the year before that we didn’t have reservations and ended up with a three hour wait at Claim Jumper in which I was so hungry by the time we got our food I ended up with a migraine, so this year I was determined to make Valentine’s Day reservations early.

I booked us a romantic dinner cruise.  Basically, we get dressed up fancy and eat aboard a cruise ship while it does hot laps around the harbor for three hours.

If you’re not one for Valentine’s Day mushy stuff, I will admit that it’s pretty nauseating.  All these couples playing lovey-dovey and scooting their chairs so they’re sitting on the same side of the table right next to each other and there’s some Barry Manilow playing in the background and rose petals on your table and they greet you with a glass of sparkling champagne when you board.

As you can see, there's even pink napkins and chocolates and candles and such.

One thing we didn’t know when we booked is that the champagne is unlimited.  This turned out to be more of a bonus than we had ever imagined.  And not because we were the ones drinking it.

Our server was very pleasant, but a bit new.  Chris and I chose a bottle of white wine to share.  I told the waiter its name, and he had to look at the menu to figure out which one we had ordered (and it was not some fancy French name, it was a pretty simple American vineyard).  He takes the menu and he’s looking, and he’s looking, and it’s getting a bit awkward because my god, man, you only have 4 options for white wine on the menu how hard can it be to pick out one of four?!

The cruise was just supposed to be dinner and dancing while the lights of the harbor dazzled you from the windows, but it turns out we got an extra bonus:

Seated somewhat near us was a younger couple.  Early on in the night, Chris nudged me.

“See that couple?  They’ve really been knocking back the champagne.  I guarantee they are going to be completely wasted by the end of the night.”

And thus, the show began.  The rest of our night revolved around the Drunk Couple.  And making fun of the Drunk Couple.

So, after about an hour it because obvious that Chris was right and this couple was definitely on their way to being completely smashed.  The woman’s voice became gradually louder and louder, and her hand motions more and more animated.

Then they must have gotten into a fight, because the next thing we know the guy is completely turned away from her, staring out the window at nothing.  And she has her head resting drunkenly in her hands while she is texting her friends on her cell phone.

Chris and I decide to head to the dance floor to dance to a slow song and the next thing we know, Drunk Couple is on the dance floor, making out.  I guess they made up.

After a nice romantic dance, Chris and I return to our seats.  About two songs later, the Drunk Couple returns.

Only they don’t remember where their table is.  

They try a couple empty tables before they realize which one is theirs.  Then the girl spies an unopened bottle of champagne on the table that they sat down at (before realizing it wasn’t their table).  She looks around to see if anyone is paying attention and grabs the bottle off the table.  “SHHHHHH” she says, quite loudly, as she giggles drunkenly.

After a couple attempts, her date manages to coordinate himself just enough to make it into his chair.  They are seated for about 0.2 seconds before she wants to get up and go dancing again.

He doesn’t want to dance.  He wants to leave.  He stands up and puts on his jacket.

Chris looks at me.  “Where does he think he’s going to go?  Jump off the boat and swim back to the harbor?”

Drunk Girl looks up at Drunk Guy.

“You are not leaving!” she screeches.  “This is a once in a lifetime opportunity!”

“Fine, then I’m going to the pisser.” He says.

He disappears for what seems like a really long time.  While he’s gone, she opens up the champagne bottle.  The “pop” sounds really loud in the room, and she looks over at the sweet older couple sitting at the table next to theirs.  “Would you like some?” she offers.  “We’ve had plenty, really.”

They try to defer gracefully but before anyone can blink she’s up out of her seat and chatting their ear off, completely spoiling their tender romantic moment.  Finally her date comes back and the two of them walk back to their table.

“This is a once in a lifetime opportunity!” she slurs at him for like the fifth time.  “Now sit your ass down and then drink this champagne and then we’re going to dance to a romantic song.”

He sits but starts staring out the window again.  She pours him a glass of champagne.  She forces him into a toast but after a half a sip she is ready to go dance.  He wants to sit and stare out the window.

“Fine,” she says, “I’m going to dance by myself.”  She makes a beeline for the dance floor.  He gets up and starts to stumble after her.

“Whore!” he yells after her.

I look at Chris.  Chris looks at me.  “Did he just call her a whore?”

“Yes,” Chris says, “I believe he did.”

Right then Drunk Guy realizes that he was standing in front of the older couple’s table as he was yelling obscenities at his date.  He glances at them and offers a sheepish, “sorry.”

So he heads to the dance floor and we can only assume they are dancing.

That is, until right in the middle of some sappy romantic song, we hear a commotion on the dance floor and see a flash of someone falling down.  And in case there was any doubt, we hear Drunk Girl’s voice wail, “I fell!” and then start giggling.

Chris looks at me.  “This was the best Valentine’s Day ever, honey.  I’m glad we could take this moment to reflect on our love for each other.  And make fun of other people.  But mostly I enjoyed making fun of the Drunk Couple.”

Finally, the cruise came to an end.  Chris and I gathered up our things and got ready to head off the ship and to our car.  But not, of course, before I opened my purse and deftly scooted all the chocolate candies right off our table and into my bag.  I may not have had room to eat them just then, but I certainly could save them for later.


Valentine’s Day, PART 2

February 18, 2011

The one that all the food servers will appreciate.

Part 3 of this story, “Dinner and an improv show,” is really the best part.  I will give you a little bit of foreshadowing when I say that our dinner cruise involved unlimited champagne and some people have no self-censorship when it comes to free booze.

So based on some free-champagne antics of our dining neighbors, one of the waitresses told us this story.

“You know, people do crazy things.  This one time I had a couple, and I kept noticing throughout the night that their wine glasses were always full.  I thought, ‘that’s a little weird, but they must be getting their drinks at the bar.’  However, every single time I approached their table, the glasses were full.  And I saw them drinking out of them.

Well, finally I noticed that they had brought in several bottles of wine and hidden them under the table.  They were pouring themselves wine from under the table when they didn’t think I was looking.

So, I decided to play a little trick on them.

I went and found the biggest, meanest-looking bouncer that we had (he’s actually a big sweetheart).  And I had him approach their table and tell them that we caught them on security camera (we don’t have cameras).  And he told them that if they didn’t pay the corkage fee, we would call the coast guard and have them arrested.  A group of us were hiding in the kitchen and watching this exchange through the window.  You should’ve seen their faces.  It was fantastic.

And they paid the corkage fee.

P.S. Apparently I need to retrain myself on how to use a staple gun

February 14, 2011

So to make a long story short, I was attempting to staple some things to some stuff and in the middle of attaching a laminated piece of paper to some corrugated plastic I hear, "pffffft".

I paused, perplexed for a minute.  Then....


I just stapled into a can of spray paint.

I lift up the corrugated plastic and underneath is a can of spray paint, rapidly exploding paint out of its side.  It's spraying everywhere and I panic and I don't know what to do so I throw the spray paint in the tool box but then it is still leaking paint everywhere and I scramble to put it in a plastic bag and finally get it in the bag but now I've got paint all over my hands.

Bonus: I managed not to get black spray paint all over my clothes.

Bummer:  I did get black spray paint all over my hands.  So much for having a pretty manicure at my fancy dinner tonight.

And so ends Part I.  Stay tuned for Part II...