Staying out on a school night

Last week I enjoyed a wonderful dinner with some buddies — past and present co-workers. Rarely do I go out after work – especially on a weeknight other than Friday, but due to our respective calendars, it couldn’t be helped. We dined at a popular eating establishment that by day is a mild-mannered sports bar. When the sun goes down – as I saw with my own two eyes – the joint morphs into – da club!

It was a slow transformation. First, the music got a little louder. The bar staff doubled. Then the lights over a section of the dining room that housed several booths — not so much dimmed — turned a funky red. It was like the red light they shine on Dancing with the Stars couples in danger off being voted off. I guess this was the VIP section. (Which is hard to say with a straight face about a place located in a strip mall between a Smoothie King and a dentist’s office.) The last signal – a serious looking Atlanta police department officer outfitted in tactical gear – so big he made me look small – took a spot at the front door. At first I thought he was there to drag me home because, after all, it was past 8 o’clock!

Somewhere, deep down in my subconscious are foggy, beer soaked, wing sauce stained memories of the days when I could hang in an establishment such as this – from the time the red lights came on until the last call house lights came up. Good times!

Those days are gone.

Week night club hopping is definitely a sport for the young. Or, I should say young at heart, because there were clearly a few early arriving vintage playas crossing the threshold who might have had me by a couple of years (Can we lobby Congress for new legislation prohibiting guys over 45 from dressing like Chris Brown?).

This particular evening, after a round of good food, good wine and great conversation, I was ready to go. Although I didn’t partake too heavily in the grape, I began to hear voices calling me. No, not Carla and Zoe. I knew they’d be tucked in asleep. It was Derek, Bailey, Christina, and the Chief calling me home. Goodnight club goers! It was Thursday and time for Grey’s Anatomy.

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