Monday, October 8, 2012

Florida, Fleet Week, Failure

LSU lost to Florida after our offense stalled and our defense couldn't sustain us the whole game.

The knees of 350 lb man-child linebackers are apparently made of dried out rubber bands and we should just preemptively replace them at the end of each season in the name of prudence because being gutted on O-line is not helpful for the decision making abilities of our skittish QB.

I was cranky about the loss, of course, as being a fan of any particular team for any length of time proves to be detrimental to one's mental health. But I can't say it was exactly surprising. Day time, in the swamp, for a team on the upswing as we appear to be on a downswing. I think I could feel that loss coming.

Besides! It was a gorgeous fall day in SF with a kabillion things to do. I'd rebound, right?

AHAHAHA! Of course not! Silly!

Sometimes when there are too many things to do, my brain gets overwhelmed with choices, curls in the fetal position and refuses to work.

I'm super bummed/mad at myself for not seeing any of the air show this weekend. I just could never wrap my brain around all of the things to do and I really think the quirk that is my football fandom is becoming a hinderance to behaving like a normal human being (obvious statement is obvious). I just knew I couldn't handle the 14 hour drinking day that comes with a noon kickoff, an air show, and then going out at night. I did that last year for fleet week and am pretty sure I wanted to die the next day. As it was, I just laid around and watched like 4 netflix movies on Sunday.

I had an opentable gift card from all of our reservations so I figured I could use it to meet Cheryl for a nice dinner and then we could go flirt with sailors. I chose Alfred's Steak House for its near North Beach location. My mom ends up giving me a ride down there because she doesn't have anything else going on. Which was excellent and meant I could avoid using Muni. But as I'm driving there Cheryl calls me. It's 6:45. Our reservation is for 7. She gives me some story about nextbus saying buses every 7 min and now they're every 17 min and should she just take a cab? My thought is WHY CAN'T YOU FIGURE THIS STUFF OUT YOURSELF?! There was, in case you missed it, EVERYTHING going on in SF. Getting a cab is gonna be nigh impossible. I tell her not to worry, because for all my bitchy tendencies, I am an understanding person, not to worry about it and get there when she gets there, I'll be at the bar.

Which really was fine. There were five naval officers in the bar. Not that they talked to me because their conversation and presence was totally highjacked by the annoying hippie girl and her boyfriend who stumbled into Alfred's from Hardly Strictly Bluegrass. I don't get how stoners ended up at the old school leather booth steak house of SF, but they did. She was insipid, ruining my chance to talk to the sailors and I hated her and her dumb boyfriend. I end up talking to the older gentleman sitting next to me eating at the bar but his conversing was really not appreciated, nor was his looking at my phone as I sat alone and constantly tweeted, checked scores, texted. He asked me what my phone screen saver was. The fuck? I have two drinks at the bar, am still waiting, and don't want to drink more because I know I need to eat. I also can't really afford to be there because, ya know, broke, so I stop after the two expensive cocktails.

Cheryl finally shows up. At 7:30. We get our table. The maitre'd nicely seats me and Cheryl next to the table of five navy officers.

We order. I don't drink during dinner because, again, I can't afford it. But here's what I underestimated: Cheryl taking an hour and a half to finish her steak. Again, I was polite and said, "No rush, take your time." I didn't realize she would surgically remove every last piece of fat from her ribeye and eat the whole thing. And then go to work on what had to be cold mashed potatoes. I was losing my mind. And hadn't had a drink in an hour and a half. I was long done, annoyed, and sober. I finally asked the waiter if I could look at the dessert menu while she continued to eat. I should have asked for a drink because he was pretty much ignoring us since we weren't increasing our tab with alcohol. I should be proud my 90lb friend went through everything but mostly it was frustrating.

The navy guys next to us were a) getting free everything from everyone and b) checking us out. Not in a super obvious way and I don't want to sound full of myself, but I pay attention to these things. I have mad observation skillz.

We're finally ready to order dessert as part of our prix fixe deal when Cheryl is like "I am sooooo full". YA THINK?! I tell her she can't have the amazing bread pudding because she's already complaining about having to drink after dinner, it seems impossible, so the bread based dessert seems like a bad idea. The Navy guys finally interject into our conversation and say, "Order the bread pudding. It's life changing." We have an interaction about that but they're, I imagine, a little bit lit and don't really chomp. I am also, have I mentioned?, super annoyed and sober. I'm like, "FINE. Whatever! Get the bread pudding!" I finally order a long overdue cocktail.

As we're waiting for our dessert and cocktail to come, the Navy guys are leaving. The one stands up and says to us, "Did you need any pictures?" I laugh loudly and say, "No!" I didn't like the presumptuousness/arrogance of the question. It was like, "We know we're special, want a picture with us?" I also am, for girl reasons, completely picture averse. I hate, ya know, pretty much everything about the way I look in that I'm not a size six when the photos come out. They take some pictures with a few other patrons and leave. My drink arrives. I take two sips, which hit me in the most amazing way, and realize: I'm a fucking idiot. Even Cheryl was like, "What were you thinking?" And she never picks up on anything. She'd missed the initial question and when I explained it to her, she was totally perplexed at my reaction. Oh. You mean. Asking me about a picture was a way in? A chance to flirt? And if I'd had a few cocktails and not had my annoyance level dialed up to a kabillion I may have noticed that? And got an invite to the private Navy party they were headed to at the Tonga Room? That?! GAAAAHHHH I AM SO DUMB I HATE EVERYTHING WHY AM I NOT BETTER AT LIFE?!

I left Alfred's kicking myself.

And the rest of the night didn't get much better. There weren't a lot of sailors in North Beach and I just couldn't really make my brain work to figure out where they were, what bar I should go to. We went to O'Reilly's and had a drink (where we spent last year on fleet week) but there were like five sailors in there. And the music was awful. So we sort of made a loop walking through North Beach only to see three officers walk back into O'Reilly's. I couldn't stand going on this hunt to find them. I just needed them to be where I was. I thought about heading toward the waterfront where I know the ships are. I thought about heading to the Pier 39 bars like Kennedy's and Fiddlers. We attempted to catch a cab back to Cheryl's neighborhood, thinking, fuck it, we'll just go to Bar None. But there were no cabs to be had. Cheryl is decidedly unhelpful in decision making situation and I realized, finally, this was pure folly, so we just went to North Star. It was super crowded in North Star. But we got seats at the bar immediately. There were no sailors there. None. For the whole night. What was there were tons of Buffalo Bills fans. It's the Bills bar and the Bills were playing the 49ers on Sunday. As the annual "get away from Buffalo football trip" this year, all of Buffalo had chosen the SF game and was now at the Bills SF bar.

It was fine. The Buffaloans were nice enough and I do have to say I only paid for two drinks at North Star. The bartender bought me one, a guy who was gonna run his credit card but wanted to run the minimum bought me one (he was funny), a Buffalo dude bought me one, and then the guy with the group having their class of 87 reunion from my high school bought me one. I was backed up at one point, which is always kind of a nice feeling. (You guys know what 'backed up' is, yeah? In case you don't: in SF bars, at least, when you have a drink, but someone has offered to buy you one, the bartender will put an upside down shot glass at your spot to indicate that your next one has been purchased for you. "I have so many free drinks coming I can't even drink them all now!" Been a long time since that's happened.) And I got to talk to lots of people while Cheryl kind of entertained herself. I'm, admittedly, kind of a bad a horrible friend at this point.

We end up staying 'til last call, even though we'd promised to leave early so we could catch a cab. Because we spend the next thirty minutes at the corner of Columbus and Stockton trying to hail a cab to exactly no avail. And I know I'm a little too drunk to walk into the police station and ask someone for a ride/am not that girl. My brother would have zero qualms about this. I am not, obviously, my brother.

The late night buses are still running so Cheryl finally suggests, after no success, that we head to that corner so she can at least jump on a bus. Fine, I say. As we go over there, she says, "OH! That one is going to West Portal!" So I hop on it. I mean, a $2 bus fair is better than a $30 cab ride, right? WRONG! This is why I drive all. the. time. even when I probably shouldn't. It was miserable. It went to West Portal all right. Via 3rd Street. I'm on a bus, crowded enough that I feel fairly safe, but there are still loud girls who almost get in a fight in the back. I'm at 3rd and Evans at 2:30 a.m. And I have to pee. It sucked. Suuuuuuuucccckkkkeeeddd. I finally get off, a block sooner than I should have, but whatever I don't care and I run the two blocks home so I can pee.

But. I'm finally home. At 3:30 in the morning. After seeing what felt like the entire city of San Francisco. (It was an unexpected surprise that the bus went right by my house. I thought I was gonna have to hoof it eight blocks from West Portal.)

I then slept all day Sunday and watched all the Netflix and the one upside is that Oh hey I have Dr Pepper in the house from when I freaked out about my mom buying a six pack. She then wanted McDonald's for lunch and picked up dinner so my stepdad could watch the Giants game so I got all the hangover foods without ever having to leave the house, let alone put on a bra. I really wish I could take care of myself a BIT though. (Hysterically, in all the stupid stuff I do that she does know about, she's never been more annoyed and yelled at me than she was for taking Muni late at night and said I should call her for a ride. I will not be doing that.) I'm bummed I didn't rally to go see the air show on Sunday either. I know it's not the end of the world but...I'd like to not suck at everything.

There are lessons here: mainly that I need to relax. I'm lately putting so much pressure on events or happenings to be THE BEST to distract me from the shit storm that is the rest of my life and am increasingly frustrated when they fall short. Which is all in my head. I need to calm down, take a deep breath, and enjoy the moment. Because nothing written above is anyone but my own damn self's fault. I'm gonna work on that. 

There is also this weird tension I face in my life as someone who is decisive and a bit take charge when I don't want that role. I sent Cheryl a long planning email essentially trying to say, "You make the choices because I can't brain." But since that's not the dynamic in our friendship, she didn't. Which is totally, in retrospect, fine and not her fault. I guess I need to be more clear when I really don't want to make the decisions but want to do something? 

I, additionally, am really considering this compulsive sports watching thing. I should have just gone out by myself for the day, it might have been good for me to wander around, and not felt like I had to be tied to this game. Could have popped into a Marina bar to watch a quarter or two in between the air show. But I really don't see the sports watching changing. I season...ya know? 

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