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Friday, March 31, 2017



     We're going to a friend's house party. People probably don't really want to host a party so soon after Christmas, but they also don't want to admit that they have no plans, and they definitely don't want to drive out there on the mean streets with the maniacs of their fervid imagination. Plus it gives them a chance to get rid of all the food they couldn't get rid of at Christmas. Mythical confections like figgy pudding and fruitcake would never be consumed if alcohol were not conspicuously involved.

     Years ago we went to a New Year's Eve event at Beau Rivage in Dobbs Ferry, and it was fun. They served a nice dinner, some champagne, party favors and decorations, and they had a big band with a Sinatra singer. The big band was only a five piece, but they were all very tall. What you may not realize about Sinatra is that he eventually recorded EVERY song. He recorded a song about the coffee in Brazil, and he sings, "You date a girl and find out later, she smells just like a percolator." You have to be pretty selective with Sinatra, the guy would sing "Mary Had a Little Lamb" if you stuck the sheet music in front of him, and when he goes off-script, who knows what hijinks Mary would find herself in?

     One of these days I would like to spend New Year's Eve at a fancy-schmancy to-do, which I have never to-done. It doesn't even have to be that fancy, as long as it's schmancy. I want a band with a string section, and top shelf liquor that is so good that no one can reach it without a step-stool. I want to see ladies arriving in a giant pumpkin driven by a bunch of mice, wearing glass slippers. Be careful in those glass slippers, especially if you're going to dance to anything faster than the Righteous Brothers. Plus, everyone can see if you're wearing a Band-aid on your heel.

     I am convinced that women love big balls, and I'll tell you why, if you don't already know. It's so that they can wear that fabulous gown that's been sitting in the closet for two years. The one that looked much better on the mannequin than it does on an actual person. The one that requires a lot of infrastructure in the way of undergarments that don't show in the places where there is no dress. And frankly, a lot of living has been done in the last two years since this dress was first tried on. Thankfully, there have been many innovations in the science of "shapewear," and the evening could still be successful, as long as the shape that is finally achieved is not an isosceles triangle or a rhombus.

     Before you know it it's time for the big countdown, and everyone flocks to the nearest TV, where whoever is the new Dick Clark yells, "HAPPY NEW YEAR!" It seems too soon to tell whether it is or isn't, but I blow on my noisemaker, which gets stuck in somebody's hair. I go to kiss my wife, but she's already kissing somebody else. You're supposed to kiss your neighbor at midnight, but I don't feel like driving over there, and he's probably asleep anyway. One minute later, everybody's gone, because they all have babysitters that are now on "golden time."

     One place I wouldn't want to be New Year's Eve is Times Square, packed in tight like a shipping container, constantly looking around for suspicious packages, waiting to see if I see something, so I could say something. All this while trying to deny myself the fact that I REALLY have to go to the bathroom, and bathrooms are for customers only. I will have to buy a different dinner at Olive Garden each time I need to use the restroom. All this so I can watch a ball drop. If I was so interested in dropped balls, I could just stay home and watch the Giants. Last night I counted five. There's always next year, and it's right around the corner.

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