Monday, February 23, 2004

Lonely, Lonely, Lonely Monday Morning

Okay, who besides me remembers rapper/one-hit wonder Snow? His one hit, "Informer," was popular at some point in the early 90s. I was one of the lucky ones who actually paid money for the CD, 12" of Snow (which includes the song "Lonely Monday Morning," which provided the title for this entry). Over the years, I've thinned my CD collection a couple of times by selling some of them to used CD stores, but I've kept that one, and I still listen to it from time to time. The songs are so terrible, lyrically, that you can't help but find them amusing. When you can understand what he's saying, of course.

And a lonely Monday morning it is. Monday mornings are always a little rough. I hate getting up at 7:00 a.m. anytime, let alone after two days of sleeping in. Getting out of bed and leaving for work this morning brought about the end of a good weekend with Brandi, and I likely won't see her again until Saturday. There are certainly better ways for a week to start.

I really can't complain too much, though, because as I said, the weekend that ended this morning was a good one. It started, for all intents and purposes, on Thursday evening. Brandi had a bit of a financial windfall, and thus decided to come to Bowling Green that night and stay for the weekend. That was nice: I certainly don't mind driving to Stow, but it's good to occasionally have a weekend when I don't have to. Besides that, I wasn't planning to go to Stow until Saturday afternoon, after the BGSU basketball game. With Brandi deciding to come on Thursday, we got two extra days.

Weekend highlights:

We went out to dinner on Friday night at Easystreet Cafe in downtown Bowling Green. It's one of our favorite places to eat, and since Brandi is in BG so infrequently, I didn't want to miss the opportunity. We went pretty late--it was after 9:00--but we still had to wait for a table. That was fine, because it gave us a chance to sit at the bar and have a glass of wine.

Through dinner, we debated whether or not we wanted to go out afterwards for drinks. About halfway through her second glass of wine, Brandi decided she was ready to go. So, after dinner we headed over to BW3, intending just to kick back and relax, listen to some tunes and have a few drinks. As it happened, we ran into some friends (Adam, Jamie, and Mike and Charissa), so we ended up joining them. We hung out there for a while, then went en masse to another bar called Downtown. It was pretty crowded there--that can make it fun, but it can also make it a real pain to get a drink, especially when you've got a jackass behind the bar who only waits on females. That aside, it was a lot of fun to hang out with everyone for a while. Brandi and I finished the night at Uptown, which is a dance club right above Downtown (clever, yes?).

As a sidenote, I'm discovering that I have a higher alcohol tolerance than I have any business having, given the size of my body and my relative inexperience with drinking. I had seven drinks on Friday night, and never a hint of a buzz.

Saturday essentially began with Brandi's first trip to Anderson Arena, as the Bowling Green Falcons took on the Youngstown State Penguins in an ESPN Bracket Buster game. It was fun, as games at Anderson have a tendency to be, but it could have been better. The Falcons won going away, despite a couple of injuries, and the crowd was small and lackluster. I wanted it to be more exciting so Brandi could get the full effect, but it was not to be. I think she had fun, but it could have been better. I wish she could make it to the game coming up this Wednesday, which is against our hated archrivals, the great unwashed, the Toledo Rockets. I sincerely hope we can pack "The House That Roars" for that one, at least.

The game was followed by a trip to Wal-Mart for some necessities. That was quite irritating. Apparently Wal-Mart has stopped allowing debit MasterCards to be used as credit cards, which is how they're supposed to be used. They now make you enter your PIN number to use them. The kicker, of course, is that my card, for whatever reason, won't allow itself to be used that way, so it kept rejecting my PIN, and I ended up having to use an actual credit card. Something is going to have to be done about this--the great thing about such a debit card is that it can be used so easily, and if it's going to be such a pain in the ass, we might as well go back to writing checks.

Anyway, that night we ended up going out to dinner again. We thought about going to Olive Garden, which is another of our favorites, but didn't really feel like driving to Toledo. Eventually we remembered that there's a new Italian place in downtown Bowling Green, so we decided to check it out. First, though, we stumbled into another place, called Cohen & Cooke--it's another new place downtown, so we thought it was what we were looking for. It wasn't: too high priced, and you didn't seem to be able to choose what you got. Once we got a look at the menu, we were out of there. The Italian place was a few doors down, and it's called Cucina di Betto.

Trust me, this place deserves a paragraph all to itself. It was incredible. The service was great, and the food was awesome. As usual, we started with a glass of wine. Then they brought out a basket of bread, with a seasoned olive oil dipping sauce, and our salads. I love a good salad, and this one was really good--a good variety of vegetables, including some yellow pepper, which was excellent. All the veggies were fresh and crispy, as were the croutons. For dinner, I ordered chicken marsala, and I got the best chicken marsala I've ever had (and that's saying something). The chicken was very tender, the dish was covered in mushrooms, and the sauce had a slightly nutty flavor. Brandi was equally pleased with her dinner, which was portabella ravioli. My only critique is that their menu could offer a bit more selection. Other than that, it was outstanding, and I highly recommend this place.

No, I'm not a professional restaurant reviewer, but apparently I play one on the internet.

Sunday was a pretty laid-back kind of day, which is what Sundays are for. I watched the first half of the Cavs-Knicks game, as I always try to catch Lebron when I get a chance. After that we went over to the Wood County Humane Society to hang out with some cats. Brandi really loves cats, and I like them pretty well myself, although I tend to identify myself as more of a dog person. Unfortunately, neither of us is allowed to have pets in our respective apartments, so we visit the Humane Society from time to time to get our fix. Animals are just funny, and even moreso when there's an entire room full of them (two rooms, actually). At one point, Brandi crouched down to pet one cat, and another cat leapt up onto her back, and was thinking about climbing on top of her head before I plucked it off (the cat, that is; not Brandi's head). Another cat was hanging out in the sink. Some of this stuff you just have to see to know how funny it is. There was one cat we both really liked, a gray one named Doc. He was sleeping when we first got there, but Brandi eventually petted him awake. He was pretty calm and lovable, and sat on both of our laps for a while. Of course, that meant Brandi talked about him for the rest of the day.

The only other really notable thing about Sunday (besides a nice long nap upon arriving home from the Humane Society) was the weather. Mostly sunny, calm (which is a big deal for Bowling Green, which is normally extremely windy), and pretty warm for a day in February. It inspired a trip to Dairy Queen, and we took a walk later in the evening, onto campus and around town.

After all that, I had to come to work today. What a letdown. This should be a good week, though. Tonight I'm just going to chill out and relax; on Tuesday night, I think I'm hitting the town with a friend for Mardi Gras; Wednesday I get to watch the Falcons defuse the Rockets; Thursday is a possible roadtrip to go see the Troy Trojans play in the first round of the Ohio High School Division I tournament. On Friday, of course, I get the rev the whole thing up again.

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