II. You Know Your Voice Is A Love Song
Siobhan: Did Lisa tell you who's coming?
Tata: If she did, it sounded a lot like, "Join my guests or I keeeeeeell you."
Siobhan: Ivan's meeting us there.
Tata: Damn it.
Siobhan: He and Mila broke things off two weekends ago.
Tata: Is Mila coming to dinner?
Siobhan: Yep. I feel her pain.
Tata: Which pain?
Siobhan: The In Love With A Married Man pain.
Tata: That shit never ends. Still, you can't help who you fall in love with, and the people I've been in love with, I still love them. I think of Morgan every day, that still hurts and it's been - what? - ten years?
Siobhan: At least you're mad at Ivan for something he's doing to himself and not something he's doing to you.
Tata: Didn't you have an epic tale to tell me?
Siobhan: I do!
Tata: Okay, I want to hear it, but first, try to remember I want to buy an air conditioner in the next two weeks, before they become ungodly expensive.
We are hurtling up Route 287 North on Saturday night toward some road that connects to some road that is the hell on earth we call Route 46. Because we are realistic and truthful, occasionally we point at motel signs and remember some old paramour and it is a space-saving device in that we don't have to keep their stuff. Shoot, I'd have to dedicate a wing just for band tshirts. This trip is over an hour and Siobhan's story takes more than half of it to tell. The condensed version:
Siobhan: So last night, I went out to the Frog & the Peach for Ann's birthday with Gary, Ivan, Agnieska and Kevin. The banter was excellent. I laughed really hard for hours. But that's not the point.
Tata: It isn't?
Siobhan: No. On my way over I stopped at the PNC Bank on Franklin Boulevard to use the MAC machine because I had no cash. I stuck my card in, punched in my pin and the machine went dead.
Tata: Lights out?
Siobhan: Exactly. So now I have no MAC card and valet parking at the Frog & the Peach is $8. Why you should have to pay for valet parking at the Frog & the Peach when a glass of water requires a down payment is beyond me.
Tata: To, you know, maximize the feeling of high-priced extortion.
Siobhan: It's not classy, it's cheap. I don't know why but as I leave the PNC Bank I call my Dad and tell him what happened. He says he'll go over there first thing in the morning and get the card. I tell him no and I'm about to tell him why when I see an accident and police in front of me so I tell him I have to hang up because I lost my headset and don't want to get an expensive ticket so I hang up.
Tata: Uh huh.
Siobhan: He calls right back. I'm like, "WHAT PART OF 'I HAVE TO HANG UP' DON'T YOU UNDERSTAND?"
Tata: Did you pick up to yell that?
Siobhan: No, I yelled it at the phone.
Siobhan: I find a ten in my bag I don't remember having and pay for parking.
Siobhan proceeds to describe the menu options in minute, flavorful detail and how she chose items that would fit her Atkins lifestyle. I'm only half listening because the best time to describe a restaurant's menu is not on your way to another place that does not serve seared scallops, and I will want those.
Siobhan: Agnieska says, "I had a hard time getting here. My apartment complex is on fire or something." I ask her, "By any chance, do you live in Highland Park?" She says, "I do! How did you know that?" I say, "I just got off the phone with Ta and a groundhog got his head stuck in a sewer grate." And Agnieska says, "I know that groundhog!"
Tata: GET OUT!
Siobhan: His name is Pudgy.
Tata: Of course it is. Agnieska used to hang out with our friends the Halo.
Siobhan: The waitress comes to take our order and Ivan says, "To start, I'll have the salmon...then, I'll have the roast duck...and to continue my aquatic bird theme, I'll have the cheesecake." So I said, "Few people remember the young cheesecakes can swim."
Tata: I can't breathe!
Siobhan: This morning, I go first thing to the PNC Bank. I wait-wait-wait in line at the information desk and tell them their machine ate my MAC card. She says to go to the teller where I wait-wait-wait my turn. The teller turns and says she can't help me but Debbie can. Debbie says she'll be happy to help me. "Is it a PNC Bank card?" she asks as she's walking into another room. I say no. She's holding my card. She says, "It's our policy not to return ATM cards our machine confiscates from other banks." I shout, "YOUR MACHINE DIDN'T CONFISCATE MY CARD. IT BROKE." Debbie's waving my card in my face like a cape at a bullfight, saying, "It's our policy..." And the security guard with the gun walks over. I glared at him and left. In the parking lot, I called my bank and they just didn't believe it. Then they gave me free checking.
Tata: You'd have to be stupid to work in a bank on that corner with that attitude. It's inevitable that kind of bitch karma's going to result in someone taking that very personally. Don't ever go to that branch again.
Siobhan: Not if my ass is on fire and they're holding a hose.