- Monday, December 12th, 2011 -
Oh Winter, you beautifully cold bitch, or perhaps, you terribly handsome bastard. This past week, we’ve experienced one of the first decent cold streaks of the winter, so it seems only right to get some ice skating in. I haven’t been in years, I don’t think, so it should be fun.
Lucky for me, I’ve been set up on this little date. My companion for the night, Carly, is a former co-worker of my co-worker Phil’s girlfriend Monica. Pretty easy to figure that one out, right? Let’s break it down again!
I work with Phil. Phil’s girlfriend is Monica. Monica used to work with Carly. Monica reached out to Carly to set up this date. Got it? Fabulous.
Carly and I emailed back and forth last week and exchanged a few text messages yesterday. She’s warned me that she might fall on her “tush” and now I’m a tad worried that I am going out with someone who might be a bit too young for me. “Tush” is just such a silly, childish word.
Can you imagine if a woman ever whispered to you, while having sex, “put it in my tush?”
I’d die from laughing. I would literally die.
As I walk to Bryant Park, I already suspect that there might be some minor confusion in meeting up. I told her to meet at the Western entrance of the park and specified the corner of 40th St & 6th Ave. As it turns out, those are two different locations. The western entrance to Bryant Park is at 41st & 6th. I bet most people don’t really worry about this kind of thing, but if I’ve screwed up someone else’s logistics, it stressed me out.
I wait for Carly on the corner since I figure this is the direction she’ll be coming from. If she is going to meet me at the entrance, she’ll have to walk by me here first. So, I wait.
Okay. It’s 7PM, our official meeting time, and I don’t see Carly yet. Maybe she’s at the entrance. I walk up to 41st and search the large, sprawling staircase on the edge of the park. She’s not here, but I can wait someplace conspicuous. I stand in the middle of the stairs and text her to tell her where I am. As my eyes scan the area again, Carly appears. She hasn’t even received my text yet.
As soon as she greets me, I can see how very bubbly and immediately friendly Carly is. I love it. This will be a good date, I can already tell.
So yeah, check this place out! The miserably branded Citi Pond at Bryant Park! I haven’t actually been down here since winter began but there are a number of little “Holiday Shops” set up all around, a dining area, a bar, and the ice skating rink. It’s really cute. She’s been here before and assures me that everything the little shops sell is crap. Nevertheless, I’d probably be willing to pay too much money for the junk here. It’s all about the charm.
As we walk through the Winter village, I get my first introduction to Carly, learning some basic information about her. We review our loose connection to each other through Monica and Phil, what exactly she does for work at Macy’s, and inexactly what I do for work at Eze Castle. It sounds like she has one of those jobs that she’s been in for too long and maybe it’s time to look for something else, but that describes most everyone I know, so maybe it doesn’t say much about her specifically. I can certainly relate.
We walk around the rink, by the enormous Christmas tree, and decide to do full lap before we actually lace up to skate. She asks me about the project quite a bit - what would compel me to do it, if finding dates is hard, and questions such as those. We also talk about living in New York and what we enjoy about it. It soon becomes clear that this isn’t the innocent “tush” girl I thought she might be. Carly likes to party and even injured herself this past Halloween in what might have been an alcohol related incident. She swears just as much as I do, so I know I’m in good company. I wonder where the hell that “tush” comment might have come from.
Eventually, we wrap back around to the rink entrance and it’s time to get our skate on. Carly is understandably nervous - she hasn’t been skating in years. I try to figure out for myself how long it’s been. The last time I was on ice skates was the spring break of my Freshman year of college, which was 2005, so it’s been a little over six and a half years. That’s not terrible, I suppose. Definitely pretty bad though.
We enter the lobby area, on the south side of the rink, and are directed towards the skate rental counter. I pay for our skates, in a sign of good faith, and Carly thanks me. Skates in hands, we sit down to lace up our blades. I’m somewhat anal about certain things, like boot laces, so Carly gets her skates on well before me and as I tie the knot of my first skate, she asks if I need any help. No, I assure her, I am just fine. I may be slow, but I’ve got this, trust me.
To our feet we go! Oh man. If you haven’t walked on skates for years and years, it’s an interesting sensation. I’m not sure if sensation is the right word, but you totally know what I’m saying.
It’s kind of nerve-racking, stepping onto the ice. I’m assuming that I’ll be okay with this whole skating thing, but then again, I might fall flat on my ass. And what if Carly can’t handle herself? I certainly don’t know that I’m good enough to support another person. We hit the ice devoid of confidence.
As I enter the rink and glide the first few feet, my body remembers what ice skating feels like. The first steps (are they really steps?) are tedious but successful. Carly is doing just as well. This is great. We make our first loop around the rink without any hitches. Look at us! We’re doing it, mom! We’re like the big kids!!! Really though, this is a huge relief.
At the very least, we’ll survive the physical challenge part of the date. All we have to worry about now is the date part of the date.