Saturday, August 20, 2011

Familiar Faces and a Yankee's Tailgate

Way, way, way earlier in the summer my Childhood Friend and I began to discuss seeing each other. Though we don't live too terribly far apart (she currently calls Passaic, NJ home), we hadn't laid eyes on each other since our tenth year high school reunion (she's identified as "J." in those photos but really her moniker is, and always has been, "Childhood Friend). We decided this needed to be fixed during a rather epic Facebook conversation on a former teacher's wall, obviously. We eventually settled on last weekend, but the exact plan went from her coming to Philly to see me and perhaps that aforementioned teacher ... to the two of us going to the teacher's (known from here on out as K.) tailgate near Yankee Stadium. At first there was talk of going to the game, but my Childhood Friend is a serious fan. I mean super serious. Girl painted her bedroom in Yankee's colors serious. And though I assured her I could make it through a game, I couldn't promise that I wouldn't be goofy, poke fun at the Yankees, or read a book ... and this was totally unacceptable to her. Anyways, we made it to the parking lot and what a spread K. laid out. In addition to grilling burger and chicken sandwiches, he had ribs, chicken, seafood salad, mac n cheese, spiked-with-midori-lemonade and a host of other treats.

I went with the chicken, ribs and seafood salad. I should have gone back for a burger, because they were most certainly going to be good, but I never quite made it to a round two of food.
K.'s uncle suggested I try the lemonade. It was super sweet, and fitting to Childhood Friend and me. By this I mean that on some weekend afternoon, during our senior year, we somehow decided that making lemonade is what we should do with our day. The thing of it was, however, that we had no idea how to actually do this. I think we basically just thought you squeezed lemons and added sugar and boom, lemonade. K. came across us, or perhaps we asked him for a pitcher, and totally showed us the light -- water and ice. So here we were, nearly fifteen years later, drinking spiked lemonade. Well, Childhood Friend didn't, and I only had one glass. But you see where I'm going with this don't you?
This was the scene. People throwing baseballs, grilling, drinking and all that in preparation for the game. I think we also saw a dude on a longboard.
It also turned out to be a birthday celebration for K.'s friend/significant other...we weren't quite sure. So the Yankee's themed tent was extra special with streamers. Also in attendance was another teacher from high school. He taught me Middle-Eastern history, but didn't remember me, which was fine. We still had good conversation.
Cupcakes in honor of the birthday girl.

K. lit the candles with his super fancy cigar lighter.

Advisor and advisee all grown up. K. no longer works at the school. Instead he's some kind of big deal lawyer in Philly. I envisioned asking him to set me up on blind dates with his associates, but realized that would be a really weird thing to ask someone you haven't seen in over ten years. And yet here I am talking about it on my blog. #thingsyoushouldkeeptoyourselffail
I love it when I tell people to wave at the camera and they do so.
At some point Childhood Friend and I joined the larger circle (we were at first sitting not under the tent). I mentioned to K. that I liked sitting next to him because I enjoyed the smell of cigars since I quit smoking. Plus I just like a cigar now and again. And he was generous enough to give me one. This picture needs no further explanation.
I eventually had to drive back to Philly, so while I wanted to drink really nice Whisky with two former teachers, I thought that probably wasn't in my best interests. But I did get to hold K.'s glass while he went and did something. This, my friends, is how I roll.
I look way weird in this photo, but Childhood Friend looks lovely and it's the only photograph of the two of us taken that day. Well, there's another photo, but we look almost exactly the same.
And then the game began and we left, walking by the stadium as we did so. J. has a photo of me standing in front of it, but I don't, so you'll just have to imagine me in front of it, smiling.
It was so great to meet up with Childhood Friend. Neither of us understands why we go so long without seeing each other, since each time we finally do meet up the conversation is still easy and the laughing is good. I have known her since I was 14. That is a long time to know someone, I think. It was also fantastic that K. welcomed us into his Yankee's fold. Dude knows how to throw a tailgate. No lie. Shame he has no Phillies love.


Huckleberry said...

And so I've learned something new today: tailgate. #thingsIshouldknowmoreabout

nc catherine said...

Tailgate is a verb. A noun. A process. A state of mind.

Your advisor teacher K tailgates like nobody I have seen.

Glad for Childhood Friend's sake you did not attend the game...overcoming snark and resisting a book would have been very difficult. And Yankees fans don't brook the interference...I work with a crazed fan. Yup. Brooks no interference or frivolity.