Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Kids These Days!

"Kids these days..." is/was often uttered by my dad and my father-in law whenever they saw someone from another, younger generation straying outside their moral zip code. I would secretly roll my eyes and ignore whatever perceived mayhem and foolishness existed to their older sensibilities.

Get ready to roll your eyes!  I was in Boston this past weekend and gosh darn it...KIDS THESE DAYS!!!

Okay, so let me backtrack a bit...our youngest, Emily had made plans to visit with college and post grad friends in Boston.  One of the young men in the group is beginning intensive training and discernment for a future vocation and a teaching assignment in Micronesia...very laudable, and the Loyola crew wanted to send him off with fun and well wishes!  Anyway, with all the roadwork around the city and limited public transportation out here in the boonies to the big city, Bill and I volunteered to drive her "in town"...that's what we say about goin' ta Bahstin up heyah...and drop her at South Station around 5:30pm.

I love this particular city and any excuse to visit, I am all over it!  As this was a rather impromptu event, we texted a friend who lives in the North End and asked if she'd like to meet us for dinner or drinks...she agreed to the drinks, but encouraged us to visit, for dinner,  a cute little out of the way restaurant about half way between Quincy Market and the Commons.  We took her advice and headed to Marliave on Bosworth Street.  To be honest, if we hadn't got a recommendation, we probably would have passed this place by. But, once settled into the flower box lined patio, Bill and I relaxed and absorbed the somewhat European atmosphere that embraced us as the soft summer breezes cooled us off from the heat of the day.  We were greeted by a lovely and friendly young waitress and informed her we were there for the long haul...Emily had plans to see the last Harry Potter movie with her buds...and the movie would get out around 11:30 pm!  Our after dinner drink plan was for around 9:30...so we had some time to relax at this new spot.

We ordered really cool, funky, cocktails, along with some cheese and charcuterie...ah...just like Paris <sigh>...and we talked and people watched...and Bill checked the Red Sox score periodically on his BlackBerry.  We were in no rush and our waitress friend was happy to have our company as we appreciated this little gem of a restaurant. 

As the hour drew later, we noticed that a number of foreign tourists found our little retreat...there were folks from France, Germany and I think one of the former Soviet countries...definitely a Russian accent!  This interesting turn brought us back to our time in Europe and we were happy.  We also noticed that around 7-ish, a younger, hipper crowd was joining us out on the patio...as Bill talked about his upcoming sales meetings, I people watched and reminisced about our youth...by the time we were the age of the cute couple sitting across from us, we were married and had our first daughter...I was slightly jealous...but then I remembered that at my current age, my nest was empty and woo hoo...we still have enough life AND maturity to enjoy the good things to come our way.

Then it happened...those kids...a group of early 20-somethings entered the patio.  Now this group of 4 guys and a girl were out of towners...and Marliave was not the first public drinking establishment they had visited in our fair city.  Dressed in various designer labels that immediately lead me to believe these were Hamptons kids...Ralph Lauren pink button-down , oxford cloth shirt and cargo shorts and docksiders...2 of the boys wore RL Polo t-shirts, plaid shorts and Bjorn flip-flops; weird kinda Bobsy-twins, I guess...a Ralph Lauren polo shirt with the collar popped and skinny jeans...Oakley sunglasses perched on sun-kissed locks...you know the stereotype.  The young lady was cute, cute, cute...in a sun dress, sandals and that quintessential hair bob, which at first was bunched up in a large butterfly clip, but the breeze begged for her hair to be loosed from its clip! 

At first the group seemed boisterous and a wee bit lubricated...but add more alcohol to the mix (get ready to roll your eyes)...and kids these days think that if they are having a good time, then everyone around them should know it!!

I mentioned that this restaurant had a quirky, cool cocktail list...but Oakley boy, rather than <quietly> peruse the cocktail menu insisted that everyone MUST have mojitos...dopey lad...although yummy, mojitos are soooo 2009! He convinced one of his buddies to have one and the other lads tried a variation on a mint julep...tres chic in my humble opinion and Miss Cutie...well she decided that even though they were not driving in the city, she would be the designated "driver"...someone has to be able to read the GPS on the iPhone.,,and ordered diet coke.  Mr. Oakleys gave her a rash of  you know what, until he thought about it and then loudly proclaimed,"Oh good!   Then we won't need to take a taxi...way to save us some money Bro!"  Silly boy...she is a lovely girl!

In the meantime, Bill and I ordered dinner and the wild bunch ordered oysters...and more drinks...our neighbors from Germany, packed up their leftovers and little curly haired daughter...I am not sure if they were done, done, or had had enough of the conversation dominating our end of the patio from a few tables over!

After their oysters and cocktails, the group ordered dinner and wine. Oh joy...more loosening of lips...then all of a sudden, the strangest thing happened...as if being called from the mother ship, all 5 of the prepsters pulled out their iteration of a cell phone and checked messages...an eerie calm ensued...momentarily... and then the loud mouth of the bunch called whoever texted them and everyone on the patio was briefed as to the groups' plans for the evening.  And yes...it was Oakley boy!  He talked over the person on the other end of the phone, idiotically forgetting that if you listen to the conversation...you get the answers to your loud questions....about where the club is...who will be there....what time you should be there..are Southie, South of Boston and South Boston the same place....and as his frustration grew over the fact that he couldn't talk and hear the answers at the same time, and, I'll go out on a limb here...as his third glass of wine kicked in...his language became the stuff that makes sailors blush.  Our friendly, young waitress, asked him to keep his conversation private or to perhaps leave the patio area...but he and his friends, ignored her request.

Being the mother of 2 twenty-somethings, who are wonderful young ladies and were brought up to know better, my tolerance for this young man's behavior had just about reached its limit.  Having a direct line of sight to the next table and the mommy secret super power of being able to stop idiots in their tracks with the arch of an eyebrow, I set to work on this pesky nemesis! Alas, the alcohol seemed to make him immune to my power, but his lavender t-shirted friend, was not so inebriated nor immune and upon seeing my brow arched sharply and upon hearing his lead-headed companion exclaim one of George Carlin's seven things you cannot say on television (at least back in the 60's) to the verbal abuse victim on the phone, reached over and gave said potty mouth a purple nurple...reached right over and twisted his nipple as hard as he could!  It took the breath and voice away from his pal...the other t-shirted fellow...his was a lovely shade of apple green...took the phone, concluded the call and dope slapped his friend for being such a loud mouthed jerk.

Bill and I had been on the fence about getting dessert...and with evidence that the Hamptons' crew were going to outlast us on the patio, we opted to take a walk over toward the North End.

Our stroll was not without further evidence of kids these days...I do not know what some of these young women were thinking when they got dressed before heading out...but it looked like this Saturday night, Boston was host to a hooker convention...mamma mia!  On a couple of occasions, my husband stumbled, his eyes transfixed by barely covered breasts, overly tight skirts and for want of a better term... je ne sais quoi...attitude, behavior and public display of practically pornographic mating rituals in and around the bars and restaurants at Quincy Market.  I can't fault the guy...he is only human and even after living a year in Paris, we were both a bit dumbstruck with the scene.

Seeking respite and wanting to make our way over to Hanover Street in the North End, we skirted around to the outside of the Fanueil Hall complex and crossed the street to the Greenway...ah..just the sound of traffic...not shouting, screaming, guffawing...and then we entered the quiet back streets of the North End.

We checked in with Bill's colleague and set to meeting for our after dinner drinks.  We were informed that another couple in for the sales meeting would also be joining us.  After a quick stop at Bovas for cannoli, we popped into a little cafe for some sangria for our younger colleagues and coffee for us oldsters...okay...my coffee drink consisted of  espresso, Starbucks coffee liqueur, vanilla vodka and Godiva white chocolate liqueur.  We chatted about the upcoming sales meeting, stuff in the news and Kristen, a woman after my own heart, was "people watching" the young guys at the next table...eating, drinking and texting...at one point, on guy said to the other that he had to go....his girlfriend was really mad at him for being out late, or whatever and he showed his buddy the text.  It made his friend, mouth filled with food, garble what seemed to be an expletive...he was so vociferous with his exclamation that he made our friend Kristen, turn to him and say, "What did you just say?"....awkward pause...."Not that I was eavesdropping or anything!"  Laugh. laugh...and we resumed our conversation. Shortly thereafter, our server, who knows Kristen well, asked if we knew where the guys next to us might be...out for a cigarette?...in the restroom?  And Kristen indicated that based on her encounter and subsequent additional people watching skills that the guy with the text message had left because he was in a heap of trouble with his girlfriend...and she assumed that the other young man left too...well, shut our mouths...they dined and dashed...stuck the waitress with the bill...they left their beer, food and yet not even a couple of $20s to TRY and cover the bill...kids these days I tell you!  How can you do that?  That waitress has to pay for those chumps!

Well, we finished our coffee (wink, wink) and it was time to head back to where we parked our car and collect Emily.  We timed it so perfectly that as we passed the Loews Theater at the Commons, Emily and friends were just crossing the street.  There was our almost 21 year old daughter amidst a group of young men....reminiscent of the group we left earlier at Marliave!  As they crossed the street, one young man took to her side as the other two fell in behind, creating a little safe cadre for our girl.  Emily made introductions and each of these young gentlemen extended a hand, shook ours, firmly but genially.  We enjoyed enthusiastic conversation...each speaking and listening in turn...and with well wishes to Gabe, who was beginning a very happy and exciting journey, we said our good-byes.  After Emily doled out hugs (and I got a very warm embrace from Gabe), we headed off to our car.  Thank goodness we finished our night with these kids...they demonstrated what is and can be so right with kids these days.

1 comment:

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