Nice to Have Some Mojo Even if I Am Not Using It.

30 June 2008

The last time is saw the Petite Latina Attorney was almost two years ago.  She was wearing my bathrobe, drinking a mimosa, and telling me that she needed more time from a man in her life.  We had been dating for a couple of months and I was in the midst of opening a new restaurant which is to say I had very little to offer besides late night drinks and breakfast on a Sunday morning.


I had been on the opposite end of the exchange we had this morning numerous times; I have randomly encountered exes when I was not in my most flattering light – in my mind.  This morning on the Metro however was different.  I was wearing a suit that was designed for crossing paths with an ex, my favorite crisp blue French cuff shirt, and the accompanying confidence one has when you are complimented by strangers on the street.  I believe the female equivalent would be a great hair day and the killer black dress.  PLA was headed to the gym, hadn’t showered, and her hair was a hot mess of tangled bed head strangled into slight submission by a pink scrunchie.


We exchanged random bits of information from the last two years.  She was charming despite the insecurity that shone through her smiles.  I wish she knew that I thought her extremely sexy in her gym shorts and sweatshirt.


Given that insecurity, it was little surprise when I received the email inviting me for drinks at the bar of the hotel next to her office.  In my role as amateur psychologist (by the by, lem, you still owe me for the full hour even though we didn’t finish your session – I can be paid in cupcakes) I presume her invitation to be more about changing the last picture of her in my head.


What the hell, I am still wearing the suit. I might as well have the Manhattan that is the perfect cocktail accessory.


Moments when you should drink great wine

28 June 2008

I have long said that great wines are for really good or really bad days.  At the moment I am drinking a bottle of 1998 Krug Clos de Mensil.  Nothing good happened today.

Ordinary Pain

27 June 2008

It was odd that I was found myself having a beer and consoling my super cute colleague about a very recent breakup with her boyfriend. It was not odd that I would lend a sympathetic ear to someone I don’t know that well. It was not odd for me to provide an opportunity for a woman to vent about a “man that done her wrong.” It was odd that I, a gentleman with a close history of heartache, would have that ear, that capacity to allow someone opportunity to vent. But there we were at a slightly divey Capitol Hill pub discussing her pain and a bit of mine too.

She had the misfortune to fall for a man incapable of making decisions of life long consequence. What makes this so painful for her is that she never had a baseline of happiness; she was mostly happy before she met him but felt incomplete without that significant someone. It wasn’t the right moment for me to tell her about the need to be happy with and by one’s self before developing the capacity to be with someone else. I just listened, offered advice when asked, and was the person who wouldn’t let her go home after work because she really didn’t need to rattle around in her house alone with her thoughts.

I wanted to take away her pain – no gentleman likes to see a woman cry – but all I could do was listen. SCC I hope you know that pain will fade because it always does, my phone is always on, my door always open, and you are always welcome to my scotch.

Dating advice from the Refugee – sure, why not?

26 June 2008

I am qualified to give advice on a number of subjects.  I am not sure dating is one of them but since I received this email from a reader, why not…



To: restaurant refugee <>

Date: Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 8:15 PM

Re:  Advice for a first date


I really liked your list of favorite restaurants and your blog in general.  The list didn’t have any restaurants near the E Street Cinema though.  I have a first date this Friday and was thinking of dinner and an indie flick at E Street any advice?


First I am flattered that you like the blog, and humbled by the question.  While there are a number of good places to dine in that part of town, you don’t need to restrict yourself to dining by the theatre because your idea for a first date sucks.


I know that was harsh but this is tough love time.  “Dinner & a Movie” is thoroughly unimaginative first date; it is a cliché wrapped in slices of low hanging fruit.  More importantly it does little to advance what should be your only objective for the date – to determine if you want another.   A good first date answers that question which means that if she were to stand you up it is still a good first date because you learned everything you needed to know to determine that you don’t want a second date.


If you are going to spend 4.36 hours with this woman (the average time for a dinner & movie date – yes I just made that up) spending two of them in a darkened theater does not help you gather that information. And have I mentioned that is cliché?  You live in one of the best places in the world for FREE cultural events.  Go to a museum, and then dinner.  Go see jazz in the sculpture garden and then dinner.  Do something different; mark yourself as a gentleman capable of crafting a date not born of a cookie cutter mold.  Think.


One more thing, don’t wear khakis and a polo – they’re like garanimals for grown-ups.

Dear Hipster Mom on Metro,

24 June 2008

I don’t want to see your ass.  I am sure someone finds that ass hot.  I, however, am not in that group.  Even if found that ass to be hot, I would not want to see it during my morning commute.  HMoM, surely you could feel the breeze of the air conditioning blowing across the large section of ghastly white ass left bare as your low rise cargo pants and too short tank top failed to cover the fuchsia thong revealing approximately 36.4 square inches of that ass.  That your thong matched your hair is certainly a nice touch for the people that find that ass hot.  I just don’t happen to be among them.


HMoM, I am sure you are a great mother.  Your children were well groomed and as well behaved as toddlers on the Metro could be.  However, I am sure that you would not appreciate your children singing a refrain that involves two world capitols and Mommy’s underpants.



Restaurant Refugee




Among the things I don’t miss about running a restaurant…

20 June 2008

True Story from Restaurant Week three years ago…


10:40 pm; Saturday, restaurant week. Full house, kitchen closing in 10 minutes.

Phone rings.
RR: good evening and thank you for calling Anonymous Restaurant, this is RestaurantRefugee, how may I help you?
Caller: we, um, have a 10:15 reservation, and we are, like, lost. Can you, um, give us directions?
RR: it would be my pleasure, where are you right now?
Caller: um, I don’t know?
RR: ok, well what do you see around you?
Caller: um, there are like, um, big buildings on each corner
RR: ok, well do you see any street signs?
Caller: um, oh yeah, um, 32nd street and J street.
RR: great you are just a few blocks from us. Are you on 32nd or are you on J Street?
Caller: um, I think we are like on J
RR: that’s great, go straight and make the next left that you can make. That should be 33rd street. You will pass a Four Season hotel on the left side of the street.
Caller: um, ok, um, like I see 33rd, we make a right?
RR: no, you need to turn left.
Caller: oh, um, like we missed it.
(Repeat the last four minutes – four minutes of my life that I will never get back)

RR: where are you right now?
Caller: um, like, we’re back at 34th and J.
RR: can you safely pull over?
Caller: um, like, yeah.
RR: pull over. What kind of car are you driving?
Caller: a Hyundai Elantra
RR: great, I will be driving a black convertible. I will be there in two minutes to guide you to Anonymous Restaurant.
Caller: ok.
RR: my pleasure, I will see you shortly.

RR: (to assistant general manager) I will be back in 5 minutes with some lost guests.
AGM: (very puzzled look about her) uh, ok.

Race to lost guest location. Slow down; wave heartily to indicate that their personal Sherpa has arrived. Drive, slowly, back to Anonymous Restaurant, lead lost guests to valet parking. Leave car in driveway to meet lost guests at the door. Meet guests at the door.

RR: good evening. We’re happy that you found us.
Lost guest #1: um, like, yeah, where’s the bar?
RR: just through this door, allow me to show you.
Lost guests #2: tell dude to take it easy on my brakes.
RR: absolutely sir.

Five minutes elapse; guests are seated at the bar. No “thank you” has been offered from either lost guest #1 or lost guest #2.

LG#2: (to our female bartender) dude, can I see the menu?
Bartender: here you are sir.
LG#2: (to lg#1) this isn’t French!
LG#1: no, this, is like, um Spanish.
LG#2: wanna go some place else?
LG#1: like, yeah.
LG#2: (to RestaurantRefugee) can you have that dude bring my car back, we’re gonna go someplace else.
RR: absolutely, sir. Have a good night.
LG#2: thanks, champ.


The Theory of Kissing Relativity

19 June 2008

The Theory

Everyone thinks that they are a good kisser.  Many of you are mistaken.  I have kissed more women than need be mentioned here and while the quality of kisses has improved dramatically since the first one at summer camp with Kimberly Channing all those years ago, more than a few women kiss as well as Dubya runs a country.  They are, of course, outliers of the negative variety, just as the truly knee weakening kissers are outliers of the positive variety.  Most people exist under the heart of the bell curve where the quality of the kiss is dependant on the compatibility of kissing styles of the participants.  That compatibility is not the most important component of a relationship, however how can one truly get past it?


I once dated a woman that was a bad kisser – she used her tongue as a weapon to be precise.  Her positive qualities – drop-dead-gorgeous, insanely smart, very sexy, etc – were enough that I kept trying to make it work.  I tried to show her, gently, non-verbally, and eventually verbally, how I liked to be kissed.  She was unable / unwilling to change, and I was unwilling to have a serpentine tongue assault my mouth every time I kissed her.   


The Solution

After 30 minutes of a date, there shall be a mandatory kiss or get off the pot moment.  If either party has not garnered enough information to make that decision thirty minutes into date, then you actually have all of the information you need.  Why go through the steps of dinner, continue walking through that art gallery, or whatever other activity if kissing compatibility fails to exist?


Why allow emotions or expectations to build through the course of the night, only to have to place your date atop the just friends pile?  Surely both sexes would rather know early if the evening is a waste of make up, cleaning up, or the lucky underwear.