Jorge was early (it seems he’s actually read my blog before and knows that I slice late people into bologna-sized slices) and looked exactly as he does in the photos on his site. Refreshing. I removed my fake mutton chops before he had the opportunity to see them; I didn’t want him to think I was trying too hard. Jorge limped a little as we walked to the restaurant. I must confess that I had a little bit of a Silence of the Lambs flashback and worried that the “injured” Jorge would lure this American girl into a well with a poodle and a basket of assorted lotions. He didn’t try, but I’m pretty sure I could have taken him anyway.
We plopped down in a pleather booth at the restaurant and were waited on by a young, dramatic gent who may have worked at Medieval Times for a summer or two in the 90s. Jorge handed me an envelope. I suspected he might be from Publisher’s Clearinghouse and scanned the premises for Ed McMahon. That was a no go, so I opened it, only to find two fun photos of Jorge and his Canadian lover (read: Dave) as well as the nighttime snapshot from here. [For those of you who don’t already know, with Jorge comes Dave. I had once thought that they were probably both married simply to disguise a long-term infatuation with one another and Strawberry Shortcake, but it turns out they’re just heterosexual nerds like I am. We would have been the kids who high-fived when we finished our first book of sonnets ahead of the other kids in Language Arts.] Jorge used some technical Canadian jargon like “half carafe” and “Chardonnay” and “cell phone” and before I knew it we were drinking and I was harassing Dave via cell in some city called “Too shy, shy. Hush, hush, Ottowa.”
Within two glasses of wine I confessed that I had asked the cab driver what that large, lake-like body of water was out of my passenger window. Jorge stifled the urge to label me as “stupid American girl” and continued to hang out, wishing all the while his friends would call with a pseudo-emergencie. I’m pretty sure this alone changed his view of me; after that he calculated km/m conversions for me and encouraged my use of an abacus to calculate tip.
After 2.5 glasses, I was singing at the table and Jorge was ordering shots of Jagermeister. I called him a frat boy and refused to do mine, based on the fact that I had to give a presentation to fifty people within mere hours. Jorge persisted like a plantar’s wart, and I ended up taking two baby sips before recoiling like the first time I was felt up. I shuddered and chased it with a familiar swig of white wine.
And then at some point Jorge revealed that his name was actually pronounced George. As in W. Bush.
At 2.75 glasses, I berated G/Jorge for writing haiku about everyone, their brother and even their drunkcles. At three glasses, I was grilling G/Jorge about photography and studying that picture again. Within the same glass of wine, I was overtaken by the beauty and the messages written on those photos, and I did what only Kris does in every touching and/or tipsy situation: I started to cry.
G/Jorge was gracious about it and made some joke about puppies being kicked against barn doors and immediately the mood lightened. Soon his beautiful and newly-coiffed wife joined us (think the rare female creature who is funny and gracious to an Internet woman she doesn’t know who has taken her beau away for the evening) and there was more wine and more giggling. And pictures of myself and of G/Jorge and the Mrs.
And I just had so. much. fun. And was so happy my work dinner plans were called off.
How do I keep getting so lucky? I feel privileged to “know” all of you, blogger people.
Saturday was my presentation. Four of us showed up to present on a panel about research methodology.
And two people showed up to hear us.
I should have had the Jager shots. (Or is it J/Yager?) [insert our waiter’s melodramatic wink here.]