A Good Night

I was out with some new friends last night: someone’s house, and then the Southern Cross of course and then Havana (which I hadn’t been to since I was at good old Maple and which has not, in my humble opinion, improved in the intervening months) and then home. I like these girls a lot and we had a great time.

One of these friends, Shirley, was talking about my birthday evening (also at the Southern Cross) and how silly and fun it was and how when she walked in I was kissing a beautiful Italian girl right on the mouth. “I didn’t realize it was going to be that kind of evening,” she said, mentioning the interesting facial hair of several of my guests, premium levels of flirtation, and the excellent booty-shaking that took place. “It was a really good night.” We all chatted about other good nights we’d had in the past and about good nights we all planned to have together in the future, places we’d go and things we’d see and people we’d meet. Things got a little complicated, socially speaking, as the hours passed and by the time the evening was over I ended up being pretty glad to be done. In the cab on the way home I thought a little more about that, about good nights, past and future.

I generally enjoy my social life very much, which in Wellington involves “going out” much more than it ever did in Seattle—or indeed, at any other time in my life–but it turns out that I have this sort of Platonic ideal of a good night that exists only in my head and there’s often this little weird sense of disappointment when I’m in that cab heading back to my pink bed with its four pillows and clean crisp sheets, that I have not yet had that perfect night. It exists: I can feel it out there. Sometimes I think someone must be having that night, somewhere in the world, every weekend, and I will often find myself staring into space in the middle of a bar with people I like listening to halfway decent music, wondering who that lucky person is, the one having my good night.

My good night involves all the following: getting ready with three or four other people beforehand and having serious discussions about which necklace “adds value” (as A. would say); my wearing something very cute; my wearing something very comfortable and non-foot-hurting; my wearing something amenable to serious booty-shaking; being around people I know; meeting new people and becoming fiancés with them; yummy food that is heavy on the cheese; extremely fabulous music, some of which I should know all the words to and some of which should lend itself to dramatic hand gestures; wall-to-wall people who are seriously committed to dancing; a place to put my jacket and my bag; plenty of water with lemon slices in it for rehydration purposes; somewhere where people are doing karaoke; somewhere where people are playing Dance Dance Revolution; lots of fun flirting; a balcony where I can go out for a breath of air and the person I’ve been flirting with follows me out and says “Wow, look at all the stars tonight” and comes over and leans near me on the railing ostensibly to admire the ten thousand year old light but really just to stand next to me silently and feel the half-inchbetween our arms incandesce; a pool; a hot tub; a disco ball; comfy couches with people making out lavishly and inappropriately on them; a bunch of people arguing politics in the kitchen but taking a break when a Marvin Gaye song comes on; people taking elaborately staged pictures of themselves pretending to be spies or French maids or dinosaurs; a location that is within walking distance of my jammies when I get tired.

(Oh, wait. I just described an impossibly perfect ABL party. Huh.)

So I guess it’s not completely accurate to say that I’ve never had that night, that very good night. I guess it’s more that I’ve never that entire night, like I’ve had aspects of it, spread out over various pretty good nights. Just not all at once, at the same time, in a stupendous cataclysm that goes down in history as the goodest of all good nights. I am glad I’ve been able to at least have a taste, but there is still a part of me that secretly still is hoping that it’s still in my future, that I’ll find myself having that night and that I’ll have the sense to recognize it for what it is.

What’s your best good night? Have you already had it or are you waiting for it too?


  1. I’ve had some pretty darned good nights, but not my best night yet. One of my good nights was a friends birthday party, and included a limo. My best night would absolutely include dancing, and I’m right there with you on the water. It would also include cheap martinis, a responsible DD, cheesy nachos with lots of toppings, NO country music, and a boy who really gets my engine running who wants to hang with me.

  2. My good nights are often the ones that are completely unexpected. I find the ones with much anticipation disappoint, but the ones that grow organically out of something casual … those are the ones I remember most.

  3. Sounds like a movie. I don’t wanna live in a movie! LOL

    I have had some spectacular nights. And my favorites were the ones I could never imagine beforehand. ;)

    I would say you’re having a lot of those kinds of nights right now. Savor them!

  4. I prefer lots of good days to the one good day, because what do you do after you’ve had your one best day?

  5. Hot tub, DDR, warm weather, deck, cheese… *sigh* your very good night sounds very good.

    Knowing what you want makes it all that more probable.

  6. i feel like my best nite involves playing drums and singing with my band (consisting of me and my boyfriend who plays guitar) and it sounds cheesy but there is nothing like being locked into a groove and knowing you’re kicking ass and in the moment. also when the audience is into it and giving you lots of love. i would say i have been lucky to have nights like that – totally in the moment and inspired. however – as a performer – you can NEVER count on that happening – those little zen euphoric moments – you just go out – do your best – accept what happens – try to be positive about the experience. kind of like dating actually!