This afternoon, I had drinks with an older gentleman, (ok, so he's only like 10 years older than I am, but that's old), a friend of a friend. I'd met him once before, but this time it was just the two of us.
It was a platonic meeting, certainly for me. For him, who knows.
Anyway, it was pleasant enough, and mercifully short. However, in the hour and a half or so we were there, a good 20 minutes of it was taken up by his chatting with a colleague from work. (bad form), and he fielded three cell phone calls, (bad form again, sorry). Somewhere in the conversation he told me all about a friend of his whom I had met the same night as I had met him, speaking as if I had never met him (the friend). I had to wonder, "do you have no memory of my being there? It was only four of us."
But I didn't say it.
Anyway, he kept buying drinks...drinks that I really did not want or need. They were awfully strong. I have a pretty good tolerance for liquor, but I was feeling them. Now the migraine I was nursing on the way over has only intensified.
We met at the Columns, which is a nice place. I always like going there.
It's a small hotel, with a bar in the former dining room.
I haven't been there in a while. I used to go more often when I lived uptown. Back then, more than a decade ago, I used to have a friend, the partner of my friend and mentor's, Mary, who worked there as a night manager while in grad school. I remember how excited she was, showing off the gun they gave her. She'd carry it around everywhere. She'd tell tales of what she'd seen, this local anchor person's or minor politician's clandestine affairs, or this
(boring) writer's many mistresses or how easily it was to bribe the fire and health code inspectors.
One night, I remember, she and her gun giddily took me on a tour of the rooms upstairs. The rooms were kind of cool, funky...sort of late Victorian meets 70s porn.
(They've since redecorated.)
Speaking of 70s porn, it was also the site of the filming of Louis Malle's "Pretty Baby," a movie I haven't seen in centuries. I'd like to see that again, Brooke Shield's "star making" turn.