Today is really Mike’s birthday, but I have work tonight so he’ll have to celebrate without me. Ally and Crockett are visiting so they, Mike, Troy and Jason meet up at Lilly’s while I’m working. I think they’ll only stay for a drink and then head out but they keep me company for a while and I have a great time catching up with everyone. As soon as Ally walks in I get really excited. You’re in California! “I know!!” So crazy. I want all my friends to come to California.
Ally and Crockett are our friends from Hoboken. Ally and I first met while working at Liberty Bar and she was instantly sweet and nice to me. Crockett and I met later – he was a friend of Ryan’s, who I also worked with at Liberty. Later, Ally and Crockett started dating, so I got to see a lot more of Crockett when we all hung out. Ally makes a comment that Mike is a mini version of Crockett. The beard, the hair – and let’s face it, they’re both really silly.
I’ve decided not to drink for seven days. I was inspired by Doug and Heather, who posted it on fb. They gave up after one day, so I’m on my own. Thanks, guys. Mike promises to help – first by finishing the wine in the apartment before he came out tonight. So tonight is my first night not drinking. It’s not so bad while I’m working, but when I get done around 12 I meet up with them at The Other Room – one of the few bars on Abbot Kinney that actually stays open until 2. By the time I get there, everyone is pretty much hammered. Ally and Crockett I think are the most sober of the group. I ask Mike to hold my bag: he puts it across his shoulder so the bag is hanging in between his legs as he yells, “Khaleesi!” (He just finished watching season I of Game of Thrones). OK, Mike, give me the bag back. Crockett asks me what I want to drink. I’m OK, thanks. “Really? Nothing? A diet coke?” He’s making fun of me. That’s all it takes. OK, I’ll have a malbec. Just one. Dammit. As I’m talking to Crockett he is really reminding me of someone. I can’t figure out if it’s someone I know or an actor. Mike figures it out. “Kevin – from Shameless.” YES. Wow he talks just like him; same mannerisms and stuff. That’s awesome. Kevin (Steve Howey) might be my favorite character on the show. After a drink we part ways – Ally and Crockett head back to their hotel in North Hollywood. Mike hits up a food truck on the way home and my bike is annoying to walk so I just get on and ride really slow next to him.
After he finishes his pork sandwich he throws his trash in the street and I get mad at him. Seriously, Mike? You have to litter? “Sorry.” That’s it. I’m annoyed as we get closer to the apartment. I speed up to get to the door before him so I can lock up my bike before he gets there, but Mike doesn’t want me to go ahead of him (I guess), and starts running to keep up with me. I can’t stop laughing. He’s now drunk and sprinting down the street. It’s hilarious. The door is unlocked because Mike gave Troy the key so he and Jason could come back and crash on our floor. I walk in and Mike is sprawled on his back, panting. Idiot. We pull out the couch bed and I turn up the sound on the TV as I try to fall asleep – Troy is the loudest snorer in the world.
On Saturday, Mike and I meet Tara in Santa Monica to see The Hunger Games at noon. I’m super excited – as is everyone else in the world who’s read the book. Mike and Tara really want to see it, too, and they haven’t even read the trilogy. I like the film. My favorite part is right before the kids are about to start the Games. I was nervous and giddy in my seat – it’s incredibly suspenseful. I won’t go into anymore details – except that Tara and I couldn’t stop talking about how hot Gale is – but you can look for my book-to-movie review on Moviewiseguys in the next couple days. For now, check out the regular Hunger Games movie review by JohnnyManf.
After the movie, the three of us drive to Malibu to have lunch with Ally and Crockett. We eat outside at Malibu Seafood, right off the Pacific Coast Highway, and enjoy an awesome view. We have fun catching up on our former Hoboken lives and all our friends. By the end of lunch, I’m hoping Ally and Crockett will move to California. I have a plan to get everyone out here. The first step is getting people to visit. After that, it will be easy as pie.
*Matt Pond PA