Happy New Year at the Green Mill!
“Do everything in moderation…but do everything!”
– a penned-in quote on the Green Mill’s bathroom wall.
What is it about New Years that feels so important? I mean, really, it’s just an arbitrary day where we all stay up to watch the clock change from 11:59 to 12:00. To drink champagne. To, if you’re lucky, kiss someone you love madly. December thirty-first is really no different than January first. The day isn’t like a birthday when you can measure your own life’s journey. But here we are, New Years, a day when everything seems as fresh as morning snow as if our lives can completely change because the year has. We balance our accomplishments, our goals, our resolutions, our failures on what happens between January first and December 31. But that brief moment, between December and January, as that clock turns from 11:59 to 12:00 we are free and innocent and accomplished and fresh and given an excuse to start everything over.
I love that moment.
My New Years was fucking amazing. I can’t imagine ringing in a new year with anyone other than my very best friends 🙂
We started off with some Merlot and pasta at a small but amazing local Italian joint ridiculously early at 4pm. We walked in and said we had reservations. The guy said “That’s 5 plus a high chair right?” Ummm, was there something Jenny was not telling us??? Alas, he was just a little mixed up on the reservations. We shared an appetizer of crab salad, shrimp baked in crepes, and salmon and goat cheese crostini. Mmmmm. Then I had chicken ravioli with mascarpone and pistachio sauce. Mmmmmmagain. We forwent on dessert though so we could head out and get to the The Green Mill early (and because the meal was getting pretty pricey already…)
So, off we went to Uptown to the Green Mill, which is an incredible little former mob-house jazz club that opened in 1907. From the tacky old-school Vegas-style lighted sign to the doorman with a thin little curly mustache, to the 7 songs for $1 jukebox that played records, who could not think this place was perfect? It’s so nice to see some places that retain all that vintage charm.
Jenny and I had some sex on the beaches (although she had trouble saying her order to the waitress but later proclaimed that it “wasn’t the best she ever had”) and settled into a booth a little before 7 (we wanted to get in early so we could sit…good plan). We got a little booth right near the stage for a perfect view of the dueling saxes show that started at 8.
It was me and Jenny and Adam and Josh and Jennifer and Nadia and Bryan and a whole lotta people I don’t know.
The show featured two saxophonists (Von Freeman and Edward Petersen), Willie Pickens on piano, Brian Sandstrom on bass, and Robert Shy on drums (who was totally awesome). They played three sets of jazz induced with the saxophonist’s proclamation (before playing a slow one) that while he was as “straight as a curveball” he liked to play the ballad’s for the ladies, but they were really for the gentlemen to “cop one.” 🙂
Other than having plenty of sax-action, it was a night of great friends, great conversation, and lots of champagne (I drank at least half of a bottle myself).
We counted down to midnight…on the official watch…of the official center of New Years…and as the clock was ready to change I felt so wonderful knowing that I am a completely different person than I was last year at that moment, and that I was surrounded by the best friends anyone could ever ask for.