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Sunday, December 28, 2008

My Year In Review, Part I

Tiresome are the lists re-capping the best sports stories of the year or the most bizarre photos. Every single news site has every single list imaginable, but one thing I don't necessarily see too often is bloggers posting their own personal year-enders. I suppose that's mostly because no one cares. But I've been away for too long, as the new job is a great challenge and leaves me exhausted at the end of each day, unable to post.

So, herewith, are my five most memorable days of 2008:

+ Friday, Jan. 18 -- Wall Hits The Big Apple: Ohio bud Jeff Gluck was in New York for work one week in January. Fellow Buckeye Troy Freel, the proudest Bayonne resident you'll ever meet, came into the city for a day of food, drink and laughter. The fellas were a little overserved, so they crashed on my spacious living-room floor after we had one last drink on the roof with an interesting new friend we met on the subway.

+ Friday, May 9 -- Barry, Zack and Jason Hit The Big Apple: I met Barry and Jason about 20 years ago in Cincinnati, and we've been good buds ever since. Barry's in San Francisco now, but we planned a New York weekend for almost a year. We kicked it for a few days, but Friday was probably the best, as we hit Alex Grey's Chelsea studio, ran up a $200 bar bill in just a couple hours at Molly's Wee Pub and then threw down at Anthony Bourdain's joint Les Halles.

+ Friday, April 18 -- Amanda and Friends Hit The Big Apple: Great friend Amanda van Rooyen and some of her out-of-town friends meet once a year for a girls weekend reunion, and this year New York was lucky to have them. An afternoon rooftop drink or three led to a lazy walk in sunny Central Park before the girls split for dinner. I caught back up with them at my favorite SoHo bar, Pravda, for a long night of vodka reviews.

+ Saturday, March 1 -- Alli Hits the Big Apple: I met Alli in aisle 6 at the Kroger on Bardstown Road in Louisville back in 2004. We'd been in touch here and there, but never really hung out until she visited in February. The Saturday of her visit took us to the Guggenheim, Canal Street for a fake designer bag, dinner at Lattanzi and drinks at the Pig and Whistle.

+ Friday, July 18 -- Pat Kuhl and Crew Hit the Big Apple: Pat, Eric and Tim brought their Louisville act up to New York because they're dorky baseball fans who wanted to take in Yankee Stadium before it was torn down. The Saturday game was plenty fun, but I think I enjoyed Friday better. Dinner at Eletarria, then drinks at the B Bar, PJ Clarke's and the Auction House preceded a late pizza run. This time, three dudes crashed in my living room, eclipsing the previous mark set months earlier by Gluck and Freel.

OK, so that list seemed to be about other people visiting New York. Let's talk about me now for a minute. Below are my three other favorite days of the year.

+ Saturday, Sept. 6: Just returned from a productive and satisfying two weeks on the road covering political conventions, and little more than 24 hours after my arrest at the RNC, I woke up well-rested in my own bed on a Saturday morning. My first task was to watch Ohio State play on the big screens at Blondie's. I then came back to the crib with my boy Steve as new friend Jema was setting up her party at my apartment. Her friends started to arrive late in the afternoon during that terrible downpour you might remember. Many drinks later, we left for the train to get down to Vig 27, my first visit to that cool bar. I'd heard reports that the fun continued there and afterward.

+ Saturday, Aug. 9: Great friend Frank and me like to meet for a beer every now and then. And on one aimless summer Saturday afternoon with no schedule of which to be mindful, we hooked up at the very cool Cafe Noir. Of course a beer turned into two and then of course a third. We sat at a table next to a huge open window, next to a cool pianist named Lon Kaiser, who was awaiting the arrival of the beautiful woman he was going to marry in just seven short days. Overall, Frank and me were there for a good four or five hours, and of course one of the waitresses coughed up the digits and asked for an invitation when I told her I like to plan frequent parties. Surprise, surprise; she turned out to be a complete flake. Nonetheless, Frank and me had an excellent time, and, he being of stronger judgment than I, called it a night when we left. I, however, hustled home, showered the buzz of myself, and went back out to some rooftop party to meet up with my boy Dave. It was there that we met leggy Meggie, the gal I photographed in my luxurious home studio in November.

+ Saturday, Nov. 8: After months of those we-need-to-have-a-beer types of conversations with my boy Miles, we finally committed to meeting out one night at Lucy. He and his lovely wife, Rachel, brought their darling friend Elisa, who told me on our most recent date that Nov. 8 was the date we met. Nearly eight weeks later, I'm meeting her family on Saturday. I'd better get a shave.



At 1:20 AM EST, Blogger Arun said...

You had a cool year, bro!


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