The girls, Ola & The Haze, were watching the SNOW WHITE - DVD I bought awhile back and they were tooling around with the "extras" on disc 2. I hung out with them a few to make sure they were cool. And then I rolled back upstairs for a horny cuddle with SBX. She was one dogged cat. Her hangover was setting world records. I started SBX on the fluid recovery plan and got her some water and made hot tea. I split for chocolate croissants for the girls, some home-fries for SBX, and a bacon & egg on a roll for me. In-between the diner and Chez Isabel, I swang by Music Matters and snagged GZA's latest, "Legend of the Liquid Sword." Just because, why not? Plus, I foolishly own every Wu-Tang effort, and GZA was one of the better clan members [turned out, the album was weak].
Breakfast got us going and The Haze made a snowman shrinky-dink for Mike & Marie's afternoon tree trimming. I drew a smiley Santa Claus on scratch paper and The Haze looped a string through it so we could dangle it off the tree. We all four walked from Park Slope to Columbia Heights [Red Hook] making a pit stop at my abode to feed cats and pick up a copy of my wedding speech for Mike & Marie to have in print. SBX scoped out a sample sale across the street from my stoop, and I gave The Haze AKIKO vol.5 to read.
Mike & Marie's Xmas tree was adorable. We trimmed the pine with our jolly hangings and dug into some cider, drink, and snacks. The girls stared at Dr. Seuss' HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS on the television as SBX relaxed into the second wave of her hang over. I officiated the opening of M&Ms wedding gifts while Ola & The Haze ripped them open and made a mess. The Haze was cuckoo over the various ribbons and coveted them like a rat. A couple of hours of mellow mirth and we were back in our coats and off to dinner.
We walked back to Park Slope and looked at all the homes that were dressed up in Xmas lights. At one point, SBX acted like a 4-year old, recounting Hazel's earlier, more inquisitive days where every single thing was the most fascinating thing in the world. Pretending to lick gates and skip off the curb like a 6-foot tall bunny rabbit in an Ostrich suit, SBX was cheerful and silly, making the girls, and more importantly ME, laugh. We went to THE CURRY SHOPPE [right next to/a part of THE CHIP SHOPPE] and sat down for some traditional English style Indian food. I asked that the Chicken Tikka Masala be spicy and I regretted my charge. The food burned my mouth like curried napalm. SOMEONE in the kitchen was laughing at the rambunctious American at table number zero.
SBX took the kids home to get them ready for bed and I went to browse books and games. On my walk over, I noticed a gang of folks singing Xmas songs at the foot of a brownstone. A woman was standing at the top of her stairs holding her baby while the Caroler's serenaded her with holiday song. I usually just keep walking and whisper "Bah Humbug," but this time the caroling got to me. There was something about this group of people, standing their singing to a stranger and her child, bringing harmony to the 'hood. A minute of joy. It broke me. My back slumped. I took close notice of each and everyone of the carolers. Businessmen, mothers, fathers, assholes, and jerks. One of them yawned, another batted her eyelashes. Tired. They sang, anyway. Made me think about a story I could write. About common people with common lives. About neighbors getting together one night a year to do this thing that they do. Troll the streets and sing to strangers, regardless of beef and secret affairs. Do it for decency. They did this thing to connect. No matter what.
I stepped into Barnes & Noble on 6th & 7th, looking for a game that both SBX and I could play with the kids. If I'm going to be hanging out more in a family environment, I'd better get hip to some communal activities. Nothing caught my eye and so the thought was a bust. The cover to Nick Tosches new book, IN THE HAND OF DANTE, caught my eye. I read the first line and had to have more. The first paragraph sucked me in and I was licked by pp2. Couldn't pony up the 25-clams it would take to own his hardcover, but made a mental not to grab it in soft a year from now. Got back to SBX's pad empty handed but told her about the Tosches novel and it turned out that she had an advance copy of it upstairs in her office. Goody gum drops!
SBX read some HARRY POTTER to the girls and put them to sleep. By 8:30PM, SBX and I were in her bedroom wrapped in each other’s arms, fading fast, coasting on 5-hours of bad sleep and a harrowing hangover. Despite her invite to sleep over, I hushed her to sleep, dimmed all the house lights, locked the front door, and took the F-train home an hour before the threat of a City Transit strike and a minor league snowstorm.