A little while back, I made a decision; in an effort to change my life, I was going to start living as the main character in my own private sit-com. I've really given this some thought, loyal readers, and I've decided that the perfect genre for me is the newly minted hour-long comedy, à la ABC's brilliant Ugly Betty. This means that my minor problems will all be solved within 45 minutes, and any major ones will work out for the best in the long run, probably to a very good soundtrack, and with a helpful life lesson tacked on for good measure. Even better, once my life truly became the sit-com it has always resembled, men would begin chasing after me all the time! I come complete with the wacky friends, over-the-top co-workers and a colorful family...all I have to do is to start living like I'm actually in a television show. I decided that this plan was fail-safe, and vowed that the next time I was presented with an opportunity I would ask myself the question: "What Would Ugly Betty Do?"
This week, I attended a reading on Monday night that can at best be described as interminable at 2 hours and 45 minutes long. The play, which shall remain nameless, was 100 pages and three acts. Naturally, my dear friend Adam was a shining beacon of light that kept hope alive as my life irrevocably slipped through my fingers, but not even he was enough to keep me from mapping out possible escape routes should the evening have stretched into a fourth. Option one: fake a ruptured spleen, and excuse myself so as not to interrupt the show with groans of pain. Proceed immediately to a bar and drink heavily. Option two: act as if I'm hard of hearing, loudly ask questions about the plot to strangers around me, and aim to get ejected from the show. Proceed immediately to a bar and drink heavily. Option three: try to master the ancient art of sleeping with eyes open. Dream of proceeding immediately to a bar and drinking heavily. Fortunately (unfortunately?), the show ended after the 3rd act, and none of these last ditch plans needed to be put into action. Even more fortunately, we proceeded immediately to a bar and drank heavily. And it was here that I first the chance to let my inner television star shine.
As it happens, I've been in a bit of a dry spell with the boys. And I asked myself Monday on the way to Gym Bar, "Self, what would Ugly Betty do?" Well, Betty would no doubt down a couple of fruity cocktails for a little liquid courage, then march right up to a handsome gentleman and strike up a conversation. So there I was, talking to friends, quickly slurping down Stoli Razz and sodas, and watching the Met game while surreptitiously scoping out the bar for likely candidates (FYI, the Mets won 9-6...a good omen!). Two drinks in I was ready, marched my cute, Betty-inspired ass up the hottest guy in the bar and struck up a conversation. This is a loose term for what transpired, because, as luck would have it, Simon was from Australia, but born in Ireland, which gave him a sort of uber-accent. This meant most of what he said I responded to with some variation of "what," "come again," or the ever popular (and possibly overly loquacious) "I'm so sorry, but I'm a little tipsy and you're accent is totally hot, but I can't understand a single solitary word coming out of your extremely well-formed mouth, so would you mind just repeating it again, slowly and with extra emphasis on the consonants, thanks, you're a peach." Sadly, this is not a posting to report that I now have an international lover...Simon, as it turns out, was getting up at 6 am tomorrow morning to fly to Ireland, and our love was not to be. A sad ending to the first episode of the sit-com of my life, but hey, I still got to talk to a hot Irishman. And, obviously, the show ends with me and David getting married, so Simon was always destined to be a guest star.
Meanwhile, in another corner of the bar, the comic B-plot was shaping up nicely. The other boys had started talking to various gentlemen of their own, culminating in a rather sheepish looking Mark deciding he did not want to go home with his beau, but not knowing how to tell him. Enter Ugly Betty! Betty would undoubtedly say that honesty is the best policy in this situation and she always wants to help her friends, so Josh and I quickly offered to shed Mark's newly acquired and unwanted fat for him. Mark fled to the bathroom, and Josh asked me how we were going to do this. I downed the rest of my beer (did I mention I had switched to beer at this point?) and innocently replied "I was just going to walk up to him and say that Mark doesn't want to go home with you. Too harsh?" Josh (being from the west coast, and hence somewhat kinder in general) quickly took the reins of the operation, and walked over to the young man in the overly v-necked t-shirt to inform him that he would not be having all the homo sex that night. At least, not with Mark.
As we stumbled out into the early morning, and I imagined the camera panning out to a wide shot of us walking down the street giggling to each other while an extremely appropriate (yet still under the radar) pop song played, it occurred to me that Betty had served me well that evening. She had gotten me into a conversation with a hottie and gotten Mark out of pity-sex, so I gift this question to you, dear readers. The next time you are in a jam, just think to yourself, "Self...WWUBD?" I'm telling you it works.