Sunday, January 21, 2007

Beer, Pool, and Feeling Really Awkward

You don't have to worry about me picking up any boys in local bars.

Rachel was in town last night, so we got together for a few hours of girl-talk and gossiping about our boys. Her boyfriend graduated with us from high school, and I've always thought he was/is an upstanding and sweet guy. He sat behind me in history or Close-Up (senior government)--so I am very glad she found a nice guy that I don't have to worry about for her. :) Anyway, the guy called her while we were talking and suggested we all go to Riley's in Albany. I drove Rachel and myself over there, and we met up with her boyfriend and three other people (two more that went to high school with us). While at Riley's, I was constantly looking over my shoulder expecting that, at any moment, one of my ex-boyfriends or a cousin or someone would come in and be astounded to see me out in a bar, make a huge deal about it, and then I'd feel ashamed.

You see, I have a hard time going out in places with people I don't know, being WAY out of my element.

Rachel bought me a pop in exchange for my chauffeuring her to Albany, and proceeded to drink herself a couple beers as well. The group convinced us to join in a game of pool. My "partner" kept showing me shots, pointing out the angles, and offering tips and tricks to make a shot. Ummm, thanks? I realize I suck at pool: that's why I didn't want to play in the first place. Not only do I understand how to play the game, but I've been hanging out with engineers for five years... please believe me when I say I understand angles and physics and inertia and what I'm supposed to do. It just happens that I am not good at putting those things together to get the balls in the pockets.

At least there was no smoking indoors... that really made things better than they could have been. I cracked up inside every time I saw a guy shake his can down to get a better dip. Or the guys in the tight-ass Wranglers and puffy shirts and white sneakers with the tongues sticking out on top of the pant legs. Or the guy in the corner, beer in hand, ballcap pulled low over his brow, snoozing while his friends played darts and pool. I especially loved the big-haired women with low cut tops, dark make-up, wrinkled and far too old to be wearing anything but a modest sweater...

Rachel promised me the night wouldn't be like a high school reunion. She was wrong. It was very much like high school at Riley's last night, except that the girls I never liked weren't there to pick on me, and my friends weren't there to laugh with me.

Funniest part of the night: my pool "partner" asked me if I wanted to go to another bar to go dancing. I'm guessing my ballroom skills won't do me much good in a club-style dance...

I don't drink (rarely, and very little when I do), I don't play pool, I don't chew tobacco, and I have absolutely no desire to hang out with guys in bars. For some reason, I feel like I might be missing out on a grand adventure... and then... I realize I'm very much okay with never going through last night again.

Well, except for the whole 'hanging out with Rachel' part--because that was really cool.

Somebody, please, find me a Lindy Hop!

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