Carrie Bradshaw once said the New York City is a ghost town, in which you are constantly haunted by the ghosts of your past relationships. When I first saw the episode, I thought that a silly statement...Manhattan is packed with people, and if all you want to do is avoid one specific person, that shouldn't be too difficult. As I have aged, I have discovered how wrong I was. I have never run into someone that I fell out of touch with and have no baggage with and really miss (granted, the number of people who fall into this category is not exactly large, but they do exist). However, one specific ex-boyfriend? Sure, all the time, at least 2 or 3 times a year. He's a doctor. We'll call him, in honor of Ms. Bradshaw, Dr. Big. Picture it, dear readers, Gay Pride 2008.
The day started out with brunch. Now, the time will come in everyone's life where they are asked a stupid question. The idea that there are no stupid questions is a ridiculous adage continually repeated by elementary school teachers in a vain attempt to get children interested in learning. Some stupid questions that I've been asked in my time are "Would you like that pie à la mode?" (Who wouldn't?), "Don't you think Crash deserved the Oscar?" (No, and please do not darken my doorstep with the mention of that film again), and, of course, "Do you have an opinion on that?" (Yes, yes I do, and I'd be more than happy to share it with you. There will be no need for you to talk). The stupid question I was asked at brunch was "You can have unlimited drinks for an additional $8. Would you like to do that?" The waitress looked slightly aback at the animated chorus of "Yes!", "I would!", "Me! Me!" that met her from our table, but quickly adapted to our mood, and started regularly stopping by our table for refills from the pitchers of mixed drinks she was carrying around. As you can imagine, standing up for the first time was quite the surprise to everyone involved in the early-stage debauchery. With all of us having had at least three drinks served in pint glasses, hand-eye coordination was at a minimum; naturally we decided we needed to get to a bar post-haste, as we didn't want to lose our cheap buzz.
We made our way down to Chelsea, and found out that the parade had been rained on while we had been throwing alcohol down our throats like Jack Nicholson at the Golden Globes. Ultimately, after a few false starts and one slightly extended period of being rained on (not to worry, I was wearing a white shirt, so the rain was really only going to help me) we ended up at Gym Bar. After my last visit to that establishment (chronicled in my WWUBD? post), one might think that I would have been prepared for shenanigans to occur. I can only blame the drink for my own foolishness, because this is where the day really swung heavily into high melodrama. Once we packed into the bar like a group of homosexual sardines, I leapt into action to find my gay for Pride, greatly looking forward to celebrating the homosexual community by making out with a ridiculously good looking guy with no discernable personality (Chelsea is a hotbed of these types). Moving into the back of the bar with the all the grace and stealth of a tranquilized jungle cat, I scanned my options and came up empty; it was like all the pretty homos were afraid they were going to melt in the rain. Undeterred, I made my way up to the front of the bar, and that is where, like Moses parting the Red Sea, the mass of men stepped aside and I was presented with Dr. Big.
Dr. Big and I have had quite the tumultuous relationship, which I won't get into here. Suffice it to say, that when I returned to the group, and was asked who I had been speaking with, I seriously considered lying. However, given my somewhat compromised judgment in the moment, I opted not to get myself into trouble, and told the truth. Which caused 4 people to pop up their heads as if they were targets in a game of Whack-a-Mole, and stare directly at Dr. Big himself. Victoria then proceeded directly to frothing at the mouth, threatening violence, and loudly proclaiming to anyone in the group who wasn't up on exactly who we were speaking about that this was my Mr. Big (which is funny, cause I'm totally a Miranda). Needless to say, we quickly moved on from the establishment at that point, mostly because Victoria getting a police record for assault & battery was not high on anyone's list, and furthermore none of us had bail money for her after all the drinking.
We ended up at Vynl Chelsea, and I couldn't tell you why. This is because shortly after the bar, I informed Ben and Victoria that they would be making all of my decisions for the rest of the day, as I was in no place to make them for myself. I was in no place to make decisions because, naturally, Dr. Big and I had started a text conversation. Why is it, dear readers, that we do this to ourselves? Why must we constantly not learn from past mistakes? I would say that my texting with Dr. Big was the triumph of hope over experience, but if I'm going to be brutally honest (that's how we roll here), it was probably more like the triumph of stupidity over experience. So, in the midst of my Can!Open!Worms!Everywhere! texting, I made one of my better decisions of the day and handed over the reins to close friends, while making certain not to tell them just what was going on with my cell phone.
Luckily, Ben and Victoria took their respective jobs very seriously, because not 5 minutes after they were entrusted with my well-being, Ben noticed me staring at my phone with an expression that was probably somewhere between gobsmacked and comatose. "Who are you texting?" he sharply questioned me. "Ummm...I'm responding" I mumbled. Leaping to (correct) conclusions, he snatched my phone, read the text I had just received, weighed his options, and promptly dropped my phone into his underwear where I couldn't get at it anymore. This act has been met with much adulation from many who have heard this story; Ben has been offered numerous monetary and material rewards from both friends and family for his heroic act of phone-napping. Victoria, still in full pit bull mode, quickly got wind of the affair, got the phone from Ben and after a thorough alcohol rubbing of it read my entire text conversation with Dr. Big. Obviously, my phone privileges were revoked for the rest of Pride. Probably a good thing, as I continued to drown myself in margaritas. By the time we left, I stumbled home, went to bed and slept like a drunken baby. As for future conversations and encounters with Dr. Big, well, one of those texts that I got while not in control of my cell was a dinner invitation. Who knows if that will happen or not, for as we learned from shows like Sex and the City, one can never be certain exactly when or where an ex will pop up again. And despite clearly having learned very little from my past experiences with Dr. Big, I did learn one very important thing this Gay Pride.
It's good to know one has friends who will shove one's cell phone next to their junk to stop one from texting an ex. Especially when the aforementioned phone is on vibrate.