New Years Eve
Since you ask so nicely, Diana, Older Eyes and his wife, Muri, are going to our favorite Mexican Restaurant for dinner then to our local theater to see Star Wars – The Force Awakens. We will be home in time to watch the ball come down in Times Square … via tape delay, of course. What, you expected extravagant dining and all night partying at my age? No thank you. But we weren’t always early to bedders.
For many years, our New Year’s Eve hangout was a place called Bobby McGee’s in Brea, California. Bobby McGee’s was an ordinary American restaurant that featured waiters and waitresses in costume as humorous characters. On New Years Eve, Bobby McGee’s would serve dinner until ten, then would remove the tables from the main dining room for dancing. Yes. Cool and the Gang – Celebrate. Lionel Ritchie – All Night Long. You know the playlist. Dancing the night away doing the White Man’s Overbite.
One year, we were there with our friends, Rita, Barry, Annette and Ben. To appreciate the story, I need to give you a brief description of the fifty-something male members of this hard-partying group. Ben was blessed with genes that gave him a full head of hair, albeit of the salt and pepper gray variety. Older Eyes was in his Dick Cheney sartorial phase, bald on top and snowy white below. Barry was also bald on top but wore a full brown toupee which he imagined made him look younger. Our waiter this particular evening was Ball Park Frank and he was doing what waiters at Bobby McGee usually did, kidding with the clientele good-naturedly. As he delivered our appetizers, he began teasing Ben about his gray hair and as he brought our salads, he started in on me, admiring the shine of my scalp above the snowline. When the main course arrived, he turned to Barry. OK, he said, What’s with you? How come you’re not showing any gray? Are you … Before he could finish, Barry pulled off his toupee and threw it down on the table, pretending to be angry about Frank’s teasing. I need to talk to the manager, Barry said. Ball Park Frank blanched and stood with his mouth open until we all burst into laughter and he knew he’d been had at his own game. He even remembered us a year later when were back again for New Year’s Eve. I still laugh when I think about it.
Have a very Happy New Year, everyone.