There was a Youth Group get together at Tali's school last night and she wanted to go. So I managed to rouse myself and drive her into the city. It was two hours of basketball/soccer fun capped off with ice cream sundae making. So with two hours to kill and a veteran at wasting time, I hit the streets.
First stop - Starbucks. Now the Sunday Times staring me in the face was tempting and for a brief moment I went into a daydream mode in which I was sitting for two hours of undisturbed latte sipping and paper reading. Then I thought, you know walking would be better exercise and so latte in hand, I hit the streets. The other thing was that I didn't have my little reading magnifiers and would have spent the whole time looking for big pictures.
But it was in Starbucks that the overhearing of conversations started. When you are alone, you can't help but listen or well, hear what's being said. It started with the poor barista not knowing what hit him when he attempted to fill the highly specialized order of Mr. and Mrs. Truman Snooty. Overheard of their conversation:
Mr. Snooty: "Is that okay now darling?"
Mrs. Snooty: "Well it could be warmer. I'm not going to be a brat". This after two go-rounds with her drink.
They then went on to dish about some annoying contractors or people "in the trade" and "trade discounts" and blah blah blah. The whole time looking down their little upturned noses which is difficult when neither of the Snootys exceeded 5'2" in height but they were real pros at it.
Onto Third Avenue and stroll along hearing snippets of conversation of the passers-by:
"Just got back from Monaco"...next
"the kid bought her Gucci boots, they're not even best friends"...next
"the prenup is golden"...
Well such is life on the guilded coast of Manhattan's Upper East Side. Certainly a different set of concerns and outlook on life than little ole me has. Could I be happier to just be me after that stroll?!
Reeling from the pretensions that threatened my ears at every crosswalk, I dropped into Urban Outfitters to begin the waste of time. Lots of cute shirts priced at about $40 bucks. Don't get me wrong that's not expensive per se, but for something that would be a schmatta after one wash, I don't think so. Up another level for some more browsing nonetheless - like to see what "the kids" are wearing. As I make the descent and stop to look at some tee shirts, a couple is having a discussion - the repurcussions of which will haunt the poor sod all weekend:
She: "What do you think of this?"
He: "Nice, listen why don't I just meet you at the Martini Bar"
Slightly annoyed She: "Where?"
Flirtatiously coy He: "You know the one that we just passed. I'll be right there. I want to catch the game" This last part pleadingly.
Annoyed but Resigned: "Okay, bu..." something in her tone said "you'll pay for this"
But he had already planted a kiss on her cheek and was taking the stairs two at a time for the nearest exit.
They'll learn, you're better off not forcing each other into these no-win situations. Kids.
I really could go on and on, the vignettes played out one after the other. I mean even the more common than dirt Bed Bitch and Beyond wasn't safe from the assault of the attitudes of entitlement. But look at that, only moments to spare - two hours gone like that!
I flew back uptown in time for the alotted pickup and found Tali blissfully enjoying her night out. Some of her classmates are from the entitlment that I mentioned. None of the kids seem to care. Tali finished off her sundae and we headed to the car.
Heading over the 59th Street Bridge, I have never been so glad to live in Queens.