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2004-07-12 - 9:54 a.m.

THE FOUR SEASONS

The purpose of a hangover is to restore the humility you threw off the balcony the night before.

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I went to dinner with a few friends Friday at this great new vegetarian restaurant in town called Lush. Since I gave up vegetarianism a few years ago in favor of meat, meat, and more meat and have seriously considered changing my name to Meaty Meatikins, vegetarian cuisine just doesn't hold much interest for me anymore, but the food was good and the wine was really good. We had such a good time, in fact, that our noise level became offensive to other diners in the bar area and we were asked by the management to keep it down. Actually I think it was more a combination of the noise level and the fact that we were discussing ball sacks, circumcised vs. uncircumcised, and Puppetry of the Penis with the men at our table. The manager was really cool about it, though, and even complimented us with a champagne cocktail. Yeah, that's exactly what loud, drunk people need: more alcohol.

Afterward we were invited to go to the house warming party of a friend of a friend who had just purchased a sweet little condo at the Four Seasons in midtown. Who was I to say no?

The people were nice and beautiful and so was the view. After debating with more authority than I probably should have at this point in the evening with an engineer (who I had just met) and a softball player (my friend Julie) about how much farther, if at all, a ball could be thrown from the sixteenth floor than from the ground, we swaggered down to the Four Seasons Bar. More beautiful people. The dirty martini was too dirty for my taste, though, so I just mingled around and generally made an ass of myself until Julie and I left. That's when the real fun started.

We were heading home on North Avenue, a road I've driven like a billion times, when I clipped the curb and blew my front tire. It's 1:30 in the morning. Yippee. I got out, opened the back of the car and started unscrewing the spare from the wheel well. Some guys pulled up next to us and asked if they could help. I said I would appreciate it and I carried the tire around to the front of the car. When I went back for the jack, they were gone. Okay....? Luckily another car stopped and two super nice guys got out to help us. They worked and sweated for two hours, and my car only rolled off the jack twice. They were persistent, though, and finally got the spare onůand...it's flat. By now, however, they'd understandably had enough and left us there wallowing in our own karma. You see, Julie and I had pointed and laughed with abandon after witnessing someone else's bout with car trouble only a few weeks before. Damn that balance in the force.

We carefully drove the car two blocks to the nearby filling station, filled the spare with air and limped home. It's 3:30.

The next morning as Dutch fairies danced on my head in clogs, I called around for a tire. Apparently my station wagon doesn't take 'normal' tires. It's a Saab 9-5 SportWagon, so it's like the batmobile of mom cars and only takes 'performance' tires, which are twice as much money. Of course, it's worth it to be able to take those corners at 30mph like a racecar driver on the way to pre-school. The wonder kids and I spent the majority of the day getting a tire put on the car, and I spent the majority of the day trying to battle my hangover with liquids. Here's what I had: a glass of Gatorade when I first got up, two cups of coffee, an 8 ounce glass of water every fifteen minutes for two hours, a coke, a liter of Gatorade, another big glass of water, a club soda with lime at dinner, another big glass of water after dinner, and a cup of Echinacea tea while reading in bed. I finally peed at 10:30pm.

Hey, speaking of the Four Seasons, have you seen this show Sex and the City? I never really got into it when it was on HBO simply because I was in the June Cleaver / Martha Stewart season of my own life when it originally aired so I had absolutely nothing in common with any of them. While I'll always carry a little Martha with me (who doesn't?), my kids are growing up and I am growing out of that season. Now Sex and the City is on cable every night and they've cleaned it up a little so it's more bearable for me to watch (despite what you may have inferred from the conversation at Lush).

Anyway, being the deep thinker I am, I've noticed that each of the main characters represents a different season or phase of the goddess (I know there are really three major phases of the goddess, but it's my analogy, so shut up). Miranda is winter (Crone) because she is world-wise, cynical, and kind of cold-hearted. Charlotte is spring (Maiden) because she is so sweet, romantic, and a little na´ve. Samantha is summer (Mother) since she has sex all the time, and summer is the season of sexual peak and ripeness. Since Carrie is our heroine, she has a little of all the other three women in her (ideal woman: Maiden, Mother, and Crone) so she would be fall, the most sacred season of the goddess.

Okay, maybe it's a stretch, but at least I'm getting more out of the show than trendy fashions, which is more than I can say about my night in the Four Seasons bar.

~Samantha

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