I joined fellow NYC bloggers for the first time at one of their happy hour gatherings last night. As I left work and ventured downtown on the D train to a bar on West 4th Street, I couldn't help but feel a little apprehensive. It almost felt like I was meeting about a dozen people for a blind date.
Upon entering the bar, I surveyed the scene trying to see if I could recognize anyone from the photos posted in our private New York Bloggers' Happy Hour blog. I searched for BNR, who had assured me that he looks exactly like the avatar on his blog, and I would eventually find them at the beerpong table in the back. I decided almost immediately that I was going to like them (listed in my characteristic-OCD alphabetized order):
An Irish and a Jew
Blog Name Removed
East Village Idiot
No Stop Till Brooklyn
Second Avenue Sagas
Tales of a Delectable Redhead
The Brooklyn Boy
Zombie Fights Shark
Note: The above list will likely undergo revision as I try to remember/figure out who I drank with last night. I think some latitude should be permitted here since BNR has had me in his Drinking Buddies blogroll since last spring and has twice commented in my blog: "Did I drink with you last night?"
I have to admit that I continued to feel awkward for an hour or two, but I found that the more everyone downed the $6.50-happy-hour-special pitchers, the more I began to feel like we were old friends. Alcohol has a funny effect like that, along with making you feel more attractive. BNR has a pretty thorough delineated recap of the evening with photos from DrunkBrunch.
I learned that An Irish and a Jew are just as funny in real life (some people don't always translate from paper to person) and I make a pretty damn good wingman [-girl] for Fiesty Red, even though the guys we were checking out turned out to be like 22 (I especially love her three-day phone number deletion rule). The Brooklyn Boy and I have some major six degrees of separation parallels. East Village Idiot has blog business cards. BNR's newlywed wife is super hot (or so I heard more than once), and he does indeed look exactly like his avatar.
By 10:30 p.m., I had been telling BNR for an hour that I had to go home if I wanted to be able to wake up for the gym at 5:30 a.m. After 20 minutes of reassuring BNR that I wasn't going to hate him in the morning while trying not to fall asleep on the treadmill, I finally closed out my tab and headed for the D train. But just as I was about to descend the staircase into the subway, my secret service buddy called.
"Where are you?" he asked. I replied, "On West 4th Street. Going home."
"No!" he said, "Come to [undisclosed location for national security purposes]. I have to buy you a drink to celebrate your recent accomplishment."
So I agreed to a drink and found myself at [undisclosed midtown bar] with about 60-80 (I'm not really good at estimating) secret service agents, who were gathering for after-hours drinks following their agency holiday party. For the record, I would like to release confidential information regarding the overall attractiveness of my secret service buddy and his colleagues - not to mention the increased sexual appeal of men in black suits with guns strapped to their ankles.
Ladies, if you ever want to find yourself surrounded by dozens of handsome men for the sole purpose of innocent eye-candy or in the pursuit of a life as a government groupie, find out where the secret service is partying. At the very least, if terrorist activity were to go down while you're sipping your trendy cocktail or knocking back shots of Patrón, you'd be in good hands.
I finally walked into my apartment at 2 a.m., double-checked my alarm for 5:30 a.m., and went to sleep. Did I make it to the gym?
Yes! And I actually had a good work-out and felt very well the rest of the day. My eyes were hurting a little bit as I exited the subway station on my way to the gym and accepted a copy of amNY from my favorite newspaper hander-outer; however, thanks to my secret service buddy, BNR can rest assured that it was not him that I was hating when my alarm went off at 5:30 a.m.
This afternoon, my friend Jeremy asked what I did last night. His reply to my brief text message summary was: "... i want to kick it with blogger people. I was just saying yesterday how i could really go for the company of some bloggers and ur practically living my dream. Im so jealous."
BNR, didn't we illustrate a similar scenario between bloggers and "civilians" last night over a pitcher of regular beer masquerading as light? :)