Exception 2

24May10

If I haven’t already destroyed any notion you may have had that I am a respectable, well-balanced, kind, mature individual…well, this will probably do it.

Ashley had been mentioning going to Atlantic City for awhile now (can you see why I like this girl now?  Anyone that can not only tolerate my bad habits but actually encourage me to participate in them even more is a winner in my book).  She called and booked our room at the Water Club at the Borgata.  Apparently she is such a degenerate gambler that she got the room free right on a primetime weekend from Fri-Sunday (see?  See?)

The plan is to gamble like maniacs Fri and Saturday, but then use most of Sunday to just enjoy the attractions and each other’s company (gag).  We get up there on Friday, and she sits right down at a slot machine and plunks in $100.  Wow, ok, I guess here we go.  Now, I personally don’t get the appeal of slots, but I suppose me looking down on her for it would be equivalent to Ronald McDonald questioning the King’s life choices.

She’s teaching me craps (I’ve been taught five times or so but can never quite remember, which may have something to do with alcohol consumption at the time).  She makes like $400, I think I make $50.  Clearly I should have done what I usually do: just blindly follow someone else’s lead.

Sunday hits, and we squeeze a little more gambling in during the morning.  The plan is to have dinner at one of her favorite restaurants, Izakaya.  She has been going on and on about how awesome this place is and how she’s looking forward to us having some QT later, so I’m into it.  After that, she has tickets to a comedy show for us – bonus.

The show is at 9:30, so our plan was to grab food at 7, but we weren’t quite able to tear ourselves away from the tables until 7:25.  No big deal.  We get to the restaurant at 7:30 and they still have room for us.  We sit down, get our menus and order our drinks.  She points out two appetizers I “simply have to try!”  “This place has the best oysters I’ve EVER had!”  Ok, I got it.  So we order a few apps and give the waitress our meal orders as well.  I look at my watch and say, “7:45.  We have plenty of time to eat and still make it to the show.”  She responds with, “Oh shit!  I need to pick up the tickets and the box office closes at 8!”  Me: “Ok, well how close is the box office?”  Her: “Like a 5 or 10 minute walk.”  Me: “Ok, no problem – why don’t you go and I’ll just hang out here and wait for you to get back.”  Her: “Sounds great, off I go!”

The appetizers come a few minutes later and look awesome.  But being the outstanding guy I am, of course I wait.  The oysters don’t matter.  The beef skewers and shrimp might lose a little warmth, but it’s not the end of the world.  It’s been 15 minutes now, so she should be back soon anyways.  Luckily I have my phone to keep me occupied.  I play with that for a bit, and then the entrees come out.  Ok, it’s been 25 minutes now.  If it was truly 10 minutes away, this isn’t out of the realm of possibilities, but I better check in.  I send her a text: “Almost back?”

A minute later she responds with a text.  “Don’t kill me.  I sat down at a machine cuz I wasn’t feeling too hot and I won 50 spins!”  Wow.  I don’t even know what to say.  So I don’t say anything.  Anger was probably the first emotion to pop up.  But then I thought of the absurdity of the situation and almost couldn’t be mad.  Disbelief was instead setting in.  How could this really happen?  I mean, who does that?  Leave me hanging at dinner all by myself for 25 minutes and decide it’s ok to sit down at a slot machine and start playing?  And if you really “didn’t feel too hot,” perhaps a text to me would have been called for?  Just…wow.  So I start eating.

She doesn’t show up for another 15 minutes.  Guess she had to finish out her 50 free spins.  Of course, how silly of me.  She apologizes, but it feels quite half-hearted to me.  I expressed my frustration over the situation and I didn’t really get back from her the response I had hoped for.  I don’t even know what I was hoping for at this point.  Groveling maybe?  The waitress comes and asks if we need anything else.  I’m just about done eating at this point, but Ashley is just getting started.  I ask for another beer and give her my credit card and just tell her to close out the check since we have a shot to catch soon.  I get my beer and excuse myself to the bathroom.

Except I’m not going to the bathroom.  I mean, I walk towards it, turning the corner and heading down the hallway.  But I make a left.  I’m back out on the casino floor.  Hell, I feel pretty lucky at this point.  Time to play some Blackjack.

Again, I did warn you that this might shatter the perception that I have any ounce of maturity in my bones.  But I must say, it felt quite good.  I had debated getting into a shouting match in the restaurant, but this approach seemed strangely more rewarding.  She sends a text 15 minutes in, saying “I’m so sorry.  Should I just give you your credit card and we leave?”  In my grand scheme to be slick, I somehow forgot to grab my card back.  What a putz.

We trade a few texts.  At this point, I really don’t feel like going to the show, but what the hell.  She says she’ll meet me and asks where I am.  I say the poker room.  I plop down on the couch there and wait.  22 minutes later she replies saying she doesn’t want to go anymore, but she’ll play poker with me.  I ask her if that’s where she is now (knowing she’s not) or if she stopped off to play more slots.

Perhaps the most damage I do to my perception in sharing this story with you is the fact that we somehow got back together and dated for another two months after this.  The current theory a few people have offered me is that I love the drama.  I don’t think so, but it definitely helps with the material for the blog.

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