I am in the hotel bar at the Marriott in downtown Jackson, Miss. There’s some sort of convention in town. I can tell because the bar and lobby is full of cackling middle-aged women and their severe hairdos. There’s a sweating bottle of white zinfandel on the bar and I can hear good-natured ribbing and knee-slapping and there is no way these people would ever be drunk together were they not here for work. They’d be at home cleaning up kitchens and packing lunches and possibly giving out obligatory blowjobs if their husbands were lucky.
I ordered the $9 sauvignon blanc. It’s unremarkable but the finish is potent and makes me think of cognac but that’s probably just the salted mixed nuts talking. I once read a wine book that said to never order the cheapest wine on the menu. Go a price point up, the book said. So I am throwing caution to the wind and ignoring the $8 pinot grigio. Now I can sit and await life’s dividends.
The barkeep is running around like a madman. He is bussing tables in the lobby and then leaping down the stairs and landing right in front of my table. Every time he flies past, I imagine him taking a tumble right in front of me and I’m trying to figure out how I would react. I’d probably lunge to cover my computer and phone from the fallout, which would be super rude of me. Would I laugh? Maybe get that horrified/amazed look on my face that is contributing to my wrinkles?
Here are some quotes as I hear them across the room:
“My grandmother was alllll into that geneaology crap.”
“I got ALL the money. It just ROLLS.”
“Baaaaaaaaaahhhahhhmaaaeeehhhmeeehhhhhmaaah! *clap clap*”
“Come aaaahhhhn, bartender, come aaaaahhhhn!”
Some guy sitting nearby is telling a story and it involves long overhead arm motions and his chair is squeaking with every movement. It’s starting to make me want to murder him.
I have been sitting in this bar now for a couple of hours and I am bored out of my fucking mind. I am nearing the bottom of my second glass and I don’t have that warm fuzzy feeling I was chasing. I feel lonely and melancholy and bored and I miss my baby and I think I am going to just go up to my room and go to sleep. There ain’t shit else to do.
The cackling ladies are leaving and guffawing on the way out. As annoying as they are, I’m happy they have gotten this one night to act a fool. They don’t seem like the sort to get that chance very often.
Looks like the barkeep knocked a couple of bucks off my tab, probably because there was a stretch of about 45 minutes where he didn’t even remember I was here. I just sat quietly and watched the tennis match on the TV nearby. I don’t even like tennis.
It’s 10:12 and my night has been over for hours.