Well, I just returned from an exhausting night out on the town. As I glance up at the clock, I see it’s almost gone half past 8:00 p.m. — perilously close to the Witching Hour (formerly midnight, but now closer to 10:00 p.m. since I can rarely stay awake until twelve these days).
Though I would like to think I am capable of some very Big Lebowski-ish nighttime activities (you absolutely must read the linked post for reference), those days seem to have faded into the mists of time, and tonight was a perfect example of same.
A nice evening featuring a good meal and even better wine? Nope and nope.
Wandering around Ikea? Yeppers.
So, allow me to take you through the minimalistic thought processes that now dominate my gray matter when contemplating this sort of Friday Night Activity:
1) Should we visit Friday night or anytime Saturday? Hands down, Friday night. Lots more parking, and the Urban Ranger clientele who normally prowl the store on Saturdays are absent on Fridays because they are out getting drunk at their obscure, trendy hotspots — you know the ones. Everyone is wearing black – lipstick, nail polish, clothes, teeth – both females and males. The music, if you can call it that, consists entirely of bass guitar thumping sounds.
Don’t ask me how I know all this.
2) It’s a great opportunity to eat Swedish meatballs. Ingesting these meatballs almost makes the effort to wander the three miles in the store it takes to find the café/restaurant worthwhile. And I also really appreciate the fact that they give you exactly fifteen meatballs in the combo plate. That somehow makes me whole.
Love those Swedes.
3) The customers marching their circuitous routes from department to department remind me of my old self. Well, that is myself thirty years ago, back when I had an open mind, harbored positive visions for the future, and actually cared about what my bookshelves looked like. As I people-watched tonight, I saw couples (of many, many different varieties) planning their wonderful futures through furniture and unpronounceable accessories.
At the same time, I was trying to determine the shortest way to the exit through the Ikea showroom maze.
4) There’s always lingonberries to look forward to. No matter how crappy my day has been, or how little I care about visiting Ikea, no one can take those lingonberries away from me.
Lingonberry juice. Check. Wonderful.
Lingonberry jam. Nope. Out of stock. Again.
Just when I thought everything was going to be okay this evening, or at least tolerable, they deny me the simple pleasure of lingonberry jam.
Damn them. Damn them to hell.
At this point, I suppose I could write some more about Ikea and, by extension, how brutally sad what’s left of my social life has become, but those meatballs are making me sleepy and it is, after all, after 9:00 p.m.
But rather than turn in for the evening while wallowing in a fairly shallow pool of suburban self-pity, I take heart in an invitation my wife and I received earlier this week: Some friends of ours suggested we join them for dancing lessons.
On the face of it that sounds somewhat interesting, perhaps even enjoyable. Of course it would require effort, movement, practice, and a modicum of attention and dedication.
I think the decision to join in or not is better made while eating a warm slice of freshly made bread covered in lingonberry jam, don’t you?
In other words, it ain’t happening anytime soon.
Time to go to bed, now. Thanks.