Play of the day

Last night I enjoyed a very typical Saturday night here in the city of the good winds. Typical, I say, because in true porteño fashion the festivities did not commence until I sat down with a few friends for a late dinner (I ate around midnight) and didn’t end until this morning (at around 5 a.m.). Also typical in that I drank too much Malbec, hence my Sunday resaca. My hangover, thankfully, was mitigated this afternoon by the arrival of two fantastic American companions and the delicious pizza we shared at the famous local joint, El Cuartito.

But back to business: The play of the day is really the mishap of yesterday. My long and alcohol-fueled night was spent at a bar in Palermo called Caracas. There’s a terrace upstairs and a DJ spins dance music while lovely waitstaff serve up delicious Venezuelan treats. The place was packed and a comrade of mine and I whiled away the hours betting on where the folks crowded around, downing cocktails and bobbing heads, hailed from. We’d pick a target, make our guesses, and then introduce ourselves to verify. There were a few hits and a few misses. A guy we were sure was from California turned out to be from Venezuela. We correctly pegged a crowd of Colombians. The very tall, blond American celebrating her birthday was a dead give-away.

One great miss: I spotted what was sure to be a gringo hipster. He was too tall to be a local. The guy also had a mustache and was sporting a hoodie. My guess was Los Angeles and, were I truly a risk-taker, I might have ventured that he shared a flat with his performance-artist girlfriend in Echo Park. But, lo, how wrong I was. We approached and, as it turned out, he was Canadian! A beautiful, tall, Canadian hipster! This fine northern gentlemen even informed me that he’s working on his Great Canadian Novel!! A bildungsroman, no less. Obviously, I swooned. All I’ve ever wanted in life, after all, is a creative type with facial hair who’s citizenship gives him access to socialized medical care. Sure that I’d found, at long last, the love of my life,* I commenced flirtation. I sharpened my wit. I batted my eyes. I even tried a little trick a friend taught me of laughing ever-so-merrily as you place a hand on the fellow’s arm and lean your face into his neck.

It just might have worked, too, if it weren’t for those meddling kids! And when I say kids here, I mean it. Just when I was ready to move in for the proverbial kill my fair northerner and I happened to be discussing stage-of-life matters and (oh woe is my fate) he let slip his age. As it turns out I spent an hour flirting with a teenager, ladies and gentlemen. Nineteen. The man cannot buy me a drink in my own country, with or without his ironic mustache.

That, readers, was my clear cue to gracefully exit the situation. I did, clutching my glass of wine and what was left of my dignity with my wrinkled 30-year-old hands. As I made my departure the weight of a great nostalgia for the long lost days of my youth settled heavily upon my shoulders. Sigh…

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*As those of you who follow this blog already know, the real love of my life is a nameless Argentine repair man. But as the cruel hands of fate plucked him from his proper place in my destiny I am now forced to search for other, lesser loves. Such is the nature of my itinerant life.



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