403. Defining Moments
Someone once said that when one door shuts, a window opens. Big and I had shut our door, but our window was open and blowing a great breeze.
- People don't dress up any more. - Like with waistcoats.
And watch fobs. I'm going to bring back the watch fob.
A man with a plan. Smoke, please.
Now that Big and I weren't playing the dating game, we were free to just play. It had never been better.
- Where is it? Impressive. - The ladies enjoy sleight of hand. - And the watch fob.
Meanwhile, 35 blocks north at Dr and Mrs Young's cocktail party, another set of ex's were enjoying the view.
Look all the sheets of greens in the hillside? It's beautiful.
What's beautiful is your ass in that skirt.
Now that they had opened the door of communication, Trey wanted to get in...everywhere.
These are very dirty things to you now.
We're at a cocktail party and I'm your estranged wife.
My estranged wife has a damn fine ass.
I think it's really great how up for things you've been lately, but we are in public. So let's get our coats and go back to your place because my ass will be damn fine there too.
- Her radiologist is full of himself. - His wife is even worse.
They were passed over for three Park Avenue co-ops because of their dog.
That's what you get with a breed of Pekinese.
Certain behavior stops you getting into a co-op. And certain behavior is almost assured to get you kicked out of one.
There's an entire surgical staff of hospital in the next room!
- They’d understand. This is an emergency. - At least close the door.
While Charlotte walked through her door, I reached mine and kept it firmly closed.
- OK then, Houdini. - I'll walk you up. - I've got it from here.
Then I'll watch from down here in case you trip.
What's with the...? There'll be no...
- You're the boss. But I'm always available for the... Nighty-night. - Nighty-night.
Have you guys ever done it in a restaurant bathroom?
- Lotus. - Sparks.
- Somewhere over Chicago. – She said restaurant bathroom!
- There were warm nuts involved. – Classy.
- How about a coatroom? - Lotus. - My last birthday party. - I'm out. Syrup!
Is this theoretical or are you getting busy, Missy?
Trey and l. Coatroom. Friday. Bistro bathroom last night.
- But I thought he couldn't... - He can. All over Manhattan.
This is a happy development.
- No, it’s not. We're not even together any more. - It doesn't sound the way it means.
- We’re supposed to get to know each other again, not... - Fucking against a hand drier?
This is so confusing. Are we dating or back together? Is he my boyfriend or my lover? Or my ex-husband, whom I have sex with occasionally in coatrooms?
- And bathrooms. – I’m going with the all of the above.
- Who cares? Just enjoy it. - I need to know where we're going.
We'd like to know where you’re going as well since evidently you'll be having sex there.
Why did you have to define him?
He's my husband. We were defined by law. Now it's all blurry. It’s so hard.
Thank your lucky stars.
- So what did you do this weekend? - Monkey Bar.
- Fun! With whom? - Big… The bar, not the bathroom.
So you and Big are really friends or something?
- Friends...or something? - Easy, prosecutor.
- Don't you think you should define what you're doing with him? - Charlotte didn't have to.
- Charlotte married the guy. - We're undefinable.
She’s sleeping with him.
I am not sleeping with him. We're just...hanging out. It's fun. Now the pressure is off, we're friendly just enjoying each other. It's good.
It's a slippery slope. Without boundaries, you should never know what’s gonna happen.
Yeah, we might actually have fun!
- Have fun. Just don’t have amnesia. - Exactly.
Can we lighten up on the boundary talk? I'm fine. Shitties.
- Are you thinking about sleeping with him? - No.
- You hesitated. - I was swallowing.
The Eskimo have hundreds of words for "snow". We have invented three times as many words for "relationship". The more words we invent, the harder it becomes to define things. In a world when you can date without sex, screw without dating and in the end keep most of your sex partners as friends long after the screwing is over, what really defines a relationship?
That night, Miranda let her boundaries down with Doug, a cartoonist of New Yorker. They had been dating for about a month. Miranda didn't know what they were, but it felt good. It was a morning of firsts. It was the first time Doug had spent the night.... and the first time a man had peed in front of her.
That night, we went to Charlotte's gallery for the opening of an exhibit by Maria Diega Reyes, the Brazilian artist.
He just whipped it out. I'm brushing, I look over and he's peeing.
What his peeing probably says is he’s your boyfriend. Only a boyfriend would do that.
I don't want a boyfriend who does that. It's never OK to do that. Wait your turn, shut the door, do your business.
This is perfect. Ms Boundaries has found Mr No Boundaries.
- Do you like it? - I do.
- It's the artist's favorite. - Do you know her?
- I am her. - I'm sorry. I should have...Samantha. - Maria.
I have a bone to pick with you. I came ready to buy and look, all these red dogs and nothing left.
That's never bad news for the artist. But I have many more in my loft. If you ever want to come down and take a look.
- I will and soon, before those get sold out underneath as well. - It's a deal.
Now a non art-related question. Where are all the hot guys?
- Maria. It is stunning. All of it. I'm so proud of you, chica. - Enjoy!
It's my ex. And about the hot guys... No hot guys.
That's good for you. But what's in it for me?
The next night, my ex introduced me to a tiny jazz club in the East Village.
- Aren't these cats amazing? - Cats?
- Loosen up, baby. We're below 14th Street. - Ok, baby.
There I was, inches away from my ex-boyfriend, friend, whatever, Iusting after a bass player.
- Want another drink? Do you want another drink? - Yeah.
Thank you very much. We're going to take a short break. We’ll come back. If you're nice, we'll play another set or two.
Apparently everyone in the universe wanted me to define my relationship with Big.
- What do you think? - I like it, baby.
- Didn't think I had that groovy jazz club in me, did you? - No.
- You were really great. - I was just trying to keep up.
- You were great. - You know jazz?
- No. - Can I buy you a drink?
No, I am all set. I own the place. It's the only way they'll let me play. I can’t keep the beats over the second drinks free. Ray King.
Hi, I'm Carrie. Carrie Bradshaw. Jazz neophyte. Sorry, this is...
- You're running low. Joey, Glenlivet. - Come right up.
- So, you own this place? - I do. And this one uptown. Hell of a lot of mortgages.
- Well, I've got to go. - Heading uptown?
- Yes, I am. Do you need a ride? - That would be great.
- I'll call my car. – This time at night, cabs are in line outside.
- So we'll take a cab. - OK. Take a cab.
Your bass is going to be OK?
It sleeps at the club all the time. Sometimes it even hooks up with the snare drum.
Cabs are bullshit.
- Listen. Can I get your number? - Yeah, sure. I'm a writer with no pen. Thank you.
- No problem. 6739. - I know.
- This is me. Thank you. - Nice to meet you.
Nice to meet you. Hey, what are you doing?
- What do you mean? - You know what I mean. Now he'll think we're together.
- You like the pork-pie hat? - That's not the point.
- He had some breath on him. - His breath was fine.
Are you kidding? It was like he had a bad burger with BB King in '75.
All right. We've got to figure out what we're doing here.
- What are we doing? - What are we?
- We're friends. How's that? - What kind of friends?
Friends who listen to jazz, friends who eat pizza, friends who...
No, there will be no...
- Carrie likes a jazz man. Jazz! - That’s it. I'm going upstairs.
- Suit yourself. - I have to go to sleep. - Nighty-night!
But I couldn't sleep. My bizarre ménage-a-taxi was haunting me.
When I hear that song, I think of you. I don't even know you. How fuck-up is that?
That's good. Can you hang on a second?
- What are you doing? - I can't talk now.
- You're on the other line? - Yes, I am.
- Pork pie? - I've got to go.
- Tell him he needs mints. - I’m hanging up.
- Carrie likes a jazz musician. - Sorry.
No problem. Listen, I'd like to take you out on Saturday night. I promise you won't have to listen to me play.
- I'd like that. - Great. Don't bring the angry guy.
- He's not so bad. - See you.
- What do you want? - What do you see in that guy?
He knows when to say goodbye.
Next morning, Miranda decided I might be right. Maybe she was Ms Boundaries. If she wanted a decent relationship, she couldn't throw the boy out with the toilet water. She would have to let down her boundaries and there was no better time than the present.
- Hi! You scared me. - You got any bagels?
- Top of the fridge. - Cool.
- What about filters? - Above the coffee-maker!
While Miranda tried to do her business, Samantha helped Maria with hers.
- Am I doing this right? - Don't think. Just do it. Painting is like eating, like sex.
I can do that. I came to buy art, not make it.
This is a Brazilian thing. Everyone that crosses my door has to help. But you have a choice. You can make a painting or you can do my laundry.
- Not going to happen. - You're buying one of my paintings?
- You're buying my next manicure. - I'm sorry.
- Do we... do we need to talk about this? - Do we?
I've done the girl thing once, twice, usually involving a guy and a couple of Quaaludes. It was nice, really. Really nice for the guy. But... I'm not a relationship person. And you're really something. Could we be friends?
It depends. In my language, "friends" translates to "a person with a warm heart that buys a lot of my art."
- What's Portuguese for "work at it"? - Working it.
The next day, I found the perfect color on me and something else on Charlotte.
- Excuse me, but is that a hickey? - Let me see!
- That's so retro! - Trey and I made out in the movies. - That is retro.
That's not all we did. In the middle of the movie, I gave him a blow job, in the theatre.
Crouched Charlotte, hidden hammer.
You guys are right. Once I stopped trying to define everything, I realized how great Trey and I have it.
Congratulations. It sounds like you've got a nice healthy relationship.
Charlotte realized if Samantha defined her relationship as healthy, she had one sick relationship on her hands.
The next day, as Trey looked for action, Charlotte was looking for answers.
- Trey, please, not here. - Shall we go to a movie?
No! We're five blocks from your place. We’d just wait. We'll get in our old bed and we'll really make love like man and wife. Why? Why can't we wait? It's five stupid blocks! What is wrong with us? Are you so scared because back to our old bed will bring the same problems for our record?
- Let's not discuss this in front of the driver. - You just wanted to have sex in front of him!
Just like that, Charlotte slammed the door on her and Trey.
- Hello. - It's me. If we were to, say, make love in my bed, could we still do it in a taxi?
- We'll see. - All righty, then. Call you tomorrow.
Evidently, when Charlotte closed the taxi door, she opened a whole new window.
Next morning, Miranda got up early to pee in peace and make Doug coffee.
- Smells great! - It's the cinnamon I add to...
Apparently when Miranda left the door open for peeing, she opened the door for everything else.
Sometimes I like to add a pinch of nutmeg to my coffee...
Maybe it was narrow-minded, but for Miranda, an open-door dump was definitely worth dumping someone over.
That’s the thing about New York. Everyone is always going. Tonight, it was to the opening of Tao.
Ray's and my first date. Everyone was there. Everyone.
So what? This is the only restaurant in New York opening tonight?
Burger King had a line around the block.
- You remember...? - Yeah. This is Sha.
- Sha? - The Y is silent.
Thank God, you're finally here! I got the last table. Let’s go.
There we were: me, my ex, the jazz guy, the model, the lesbian and her friend Samantha.
- She's a supermodel. - Super for you.
- Will we ever get our Mee Krob? - Oh, I love that! It's their specialty.
- Is there any more wine in there? Thanks. - I'll be back.
- Look at me. I grabbed some Mee Krob. - Mee Krobilicious! How did you get this?
- It’s turns out the chef worked at one of my clubs. - You know all the right people.
I got the "in" on the noodles. If it's OK with you, I'm going to camp here for a while.
- It's OK by me. - That table is bad. - Yeah, man.
- Good thing we weren't hungry. - I'm going to go to the bathroom.
Turn right at the Buddha, honey.
So, just to get things straight, you and Carrie are just friends now, right? You're available?
If you're just friends, what exactly do you think you're doing? Because that girl might come off like she's all strong and over it, but she's fragile, and she's my best friend. So I suggest you back off.
- Can't we all just get along? - Excuse me.
- You OK? - I'm fine. I'm sorry. That guy's not good for her.
- I'm going to go. - No, don't go. We can get another table.
I lied. I can't just be your friend. What I saw back there... You... You are magnificent. How do you say that? You kick ass! I see where this is going. You don't do relationships and it would be very bad for me.
So we can't even be friends?
I'm going to go in here and you, you go back there. You're really something.
Right then and there, Samantha decided to let down her boundaries and open herself up to the possibility of a relationship... with a woman.
And in a different bathroom...
- I'm sorry. - No, it's OK. Come in. Come in. Want some?
- No. All set, thanks. - You can go. It's OK.
- I don't really have to go. - He talks about you. Did you two used to date or something?
Something like that. I'm going to... My date's waiting for me. Sorry.
I couldn't avoid it. Everywhere I went, I was confronted by my Big relationship.
I just left Silent Y in the bathroom. P.S. Apparently the '80s are back.
- We're going to go. - Ray and I were going to go first. - See you later.
You know what I love about this city? Everything can sound like a jazz riff. That garbage truck is...
Really? Because I get more of a...like a...I don't know.
You really don't know jazz, do you?
I just scatted on my first date. Give me some credit.
Somewhere between the Mee Krob and the model, I was dating again. It was nice.
This is me.
- You know what you are? You're... doo-doo-den - Back at ya.
With every second of our kiss, it was becoming clearer: I really liked this guy. Maybe that's it. What ultimately defines a relationship is another relationship.