Nope. Ladies night! I've never laughed so had in my life.
My number one hos Melissa and Tar Baby came over to my place last night for EstrogenFest. We do this periodically, gathering at someone's home where we cook, eat, discuss the intimate details of our lives and watch cheesy movies, commenting on the film the entire time. Ladies night is incredibly, incredibly fun.
Anyway, immediately we began discussing the funkier sex and at one point, I mentioned that we're getting to the age where we have to start calling men we see casually something geriatric, like "gentleman companion."
"What are you talking about! Never! That's ridiculous!"
But I gazed into an imaginary crystal ball and saw my frightening future.
"I can see it now." I said. "I'll have to bring my gentleman companion to Thanksgiving at Mel's big, glamorous house. You'll all have met him before, this Carl. My gentleman companion's name is Carl. He's awkward, he wears old man hats and suspenders. He won't really talk to anyone else, especially the other men. I'll have to give Carl a bottle of wine. 'Now you give this to Melissa when we get there.' And at one point, Mel will come up to me during dinner and say, 'Um, Bethy? Carl's been in the restroom for quite awhile. Do you want to go check on him?' And we'll get in a big fight about who's responsibility it is to go check on Carl in the can, when ultimately, we all know it's mine."
I began to speak about Carl like I already knew him. Tara and Melissa started to ask me questions about Carl and I stood in the kitchen, staring off into the distance, knowing every single answer. "Tara, you'll come up to Carl when we get there and get right up in his face, shouting, 'Hi Carl. My name is Tara. Do you remember me? We met at Easter.' And Carl will try to respond but you can't really hear him."
Tara was picturing Carl as a dashing cruise ship gigolo. Melissa strongly disagreed. Carl does not own a sportcoat, he doesn't drive. Carl's wife killed herself, which he brings up occasionally even though I've instructed him not to. Carl and I rarely spend time alone together. He's just my horrible, annoying, embarrassing date to holiday functions and because Melissa and Tara are my dearest friends, they try and be nice about it.
But sometime after dinner, the three of us end up in the kitchen were one of them inevitably says, "Jeez Beth, what on earth are you doing with Carl?" and I'll get all defensive and say, "Well, you find me someone better because at my age, it's damn near impossible."
And then Carl will innocently walk in the kitchen because he had nothing to say to the men at the dinner table and I'll scream, "Carl, what did I tell you?!?! Do NOT come in here! This is private!!!" And he's close the door slowly and go sit back down to stare quietly at the table while everyone else discusses sports.
Much to my frustration, Carl will only ask me if he needs more string beans or cranberry sauce and everyone has pretty much given up on trying to politely engage him. Even new people are quietly told, "Oh, that's Carl. He's Beth's gentleman companion and he's really weird."
I have never laughed so hard as I did last night in discussion Carl having been in the bathroom for "quite awhile." One of us would be laughing so hard, we couldn't finish our Carl-sentence. The others would fill in the hilarious blanks.
Wait. Poor me!
We ended our evening with a late night, enthusiastic viewing of The Last of the Mohicans. After the film and after we'd found every funny name in the credits, we googled the "hot Indian." In doing this, we discovered that there is actually a group of LOTM enthusiasts who gather every other year at filming locations and interview people, like the hot Indian! The next "Great Mohican Gathering" is next year, and needless to say, all three of us are planning to attend.
As I type this now, something occurs to me: I bet this is where I'm gonna meet Carl...