Yesterday turned into a bit of a maelstrom as happy hour started with a beer and shot of Irish whisky at 3:30 pm.  One of my charge card colleagues was in town to review some business strategy and we wound up at DBGB’s before they were even officially open.  Fortunately, Hope was bartending and eager to serve us beverages pouring herself a shot as we raised a toast for what would evolve into a most peculiar evening of shenanigans.  We were soon joined by one of Melody’s acquaintances, Mike, and they had worked together at a local television station, CW (formerly WB).  Mike now runs his own suite of internet-based businesses with a satellite office in Bangladesh where he employs 10 programmers full-time.  He seemed every bit the nouveau entrepreneur with success in his various ventures.  Before long another round of whiskey was served and the day soon became night.

We were about to migrate to Mike’s home office in the interest of budget where he had some cold ones in the frig; however, a buddy of mine whom I’d yet to meet offline wanted to meet up and participate in the revelry.  Brian finally showed face and then we made our way back to Mike’s Allentown apartment out of which he runs his international company.  His roommate was busy finishing up a project in the living room as we enjoyed a round of Guinness over conversation.  We’d all developed an appetite and headed back to DBGB’s where Hope was delighted to take our order, strongly suggesting the smoked wings- dry rub, smoked for 8 hours then tossed in BBQ and hot sauce- tres bien.  I saw another friend Kelly who had come right from a gardening job to the bar and as she chatted with some folks I managed to lift a pair of pruners from a holster slung around her tiny waist.  Needless to say, she was quite astonished when she saw them sitting on the bar and turned to me sporting a big shit-eating grin.  I’m such a shyster.

Mike suggested we make our way across the street to The Bend where they serve PBR pounders for a bargain rate at $2.50 a can.  We had indulged in a couple more rounds of shots before the change of scenery and I don’t believe I even finished my PBR.  There was a funny show on the bar TV, Practical Jokes Gone Wild, and I could relate to some of the pranks being pulled.  Brian had already waved the white flag with a drive back to Niagara Falls ahead of him as Melody plotted out the remainder of her evening.  Mike had offered a place to crash and we made our way back to his pad for a nightcap where a 125 pound English Bulldog/ St. Bernard aka “Bullthoven” named Bacon took a sudden interest in Melody.  In fact, he had got up on her leg and had to be forcibly separated as she cowered next to me.  Staying at Mike’s was now out of the question and I didn’t have a place to offer her so we sobered up some more at Jim’s Steakout enjoying a deeper discussion on the vicissitudes of life over a large diet Pepsi.  I just got a text from her that she was fine and made the drive back to Rochester without incident, despite having only one headlight.

I did make it to the gym earlier in the day for a good workout where I was able to do engage in light bench presses without pain for the first time in weeks.  It’s very encouraging progress as the shoulder continues to mend.  Following the workout I went over to my friend Maura’s for lunch where she served a delicious tossed green salad.  Her daughter Ellie joined us snacking on chic peas and olives as we dove into the mound of vegetable goodness.  She gave me some cash to pick up a ticket for her at Terrapin Station to Melvin Seals performing at Nietzsche’s next week for the second night of a back-to-back booking.  It should be a great evening of soulful jams that make you wanna smile and dance as the legacy of Jerry Garcia lingers on many years after a life cut tragically short.

The winds are howling as garbage is strewn about the backyard.  After I wrap up this blog I’m packing up to head south for an overnight with my good friends Mark & Courtney who live on 29 acres south of Ellicottville.  We have plans to take in a Roller Derby in Salamanca which will be a first for me.  On the way down there I’m going to meet up with my business partner Nick in Gowanda to finish up construction of the greenhouse for Plantasia.  I have a young artist lined up to decorate the rain barrel with a mural that will be set up with the greenhouse.  Nick was offered a significant promotion at his current company that may make it unlikely for him to leave and do the landscape business full-time.  It is contingent on a visit from the VP of Operations next week and should he in fact get an official offer it will require some tweaking of the vision for Landscape-Tec heading into the season.  Either way, I’m looking forward to a really awesome experience as we set out to put the company on the map.

In common wealth,