I love Emily. She’s a doll. 4’11, sweet girl that looks 15. I’m supposed to meet her at 6pm. It’s around 4:30 and I have some time to kill. I stop at 1518 on Sansom for a glass of wine. I chat with the owner about business. He introduces me to one of the regulars, named Sam. He’s been a barber that has a salon over Oscar’s bar a few doors down. I didn’t even know there was anything over that dive.
I like the guy. He has all these great tales from the old days. Sinatra, Martin, etc. He’s well into his sixties. He told me cut Eddie Fisher’s hair back in the 60’s. I’m thinking my regular stylist hasn’t been doing the best job with my hair lately. I want to go to this old Philly guy. That’s who should be cutting my hair. A pro that’s been doing it for four decades and has good stories. So he gives me his card and I tell him I’ll come see him when I need a cut.
He tells me not to let anyone else in his salon cut it. It has to be him. I promise the old guy I’ll do that.
I have a few wine’s with him and listen to more stories before I leave for my meet up with Emily at and Asian fusion bar called Dan Dan.
My buddy Chet is there bartending, so no matter what time it is, it’ll be happy hour all night for me. I order my usual chardonnay with a side of ice.
Emily shows up a little while after that and she looks adorable as always. Black lacy top, black tights, high heels, long lashes. She looks hot.
She orders her usual go to, a whiskey and coke.
She said her life has been much better since we last hung out. She’s still employed at the restaurant, but she’s working mostly events upstairs now. She has landed a gig at Live Nation which she is super amped about. Planning and managing live musical events and concerts is what she really wants to do, and getting this job has gotten her one step closer to her goal.
Emily expresses to me that she feels better about herself and no longer feels like she’s a piece of meat to anyone. She was alone for awhile and worked on herself and I think that’s great. Hopefully what I told her last time I saw her helped.
Recently she’s met someone she really likes. She met him in Florida, but he’s from Indiana. I’m all for long distance relationships, but Indiana is a bit of a drive from Philly. But I’m rooting for these kids. She says he’s good to her and she really likes him.
She orders up some pot stickers and wings. The food is great at Dan Dan, and Emily just doesn’t go out much because she’s always working and has little money. She’s loving it.
She turns to me. “See those two middle-aged women across the bar?”
“They totally think you’re my Sugar Daddy!”
“Oh yea. I can tell just the way they’re looking at us.”
“No. I like it! I think it’s fun!”
“Okay.” (I’m totally loving it)
Nate hooks us up with the happy hour pricing that goes beyond 7:00pm. We discuss more about her life and I tell her what’s happening with the phicklephilly and the soon to be open fitness center.
We’ve been there for a little while and we know we’re ready to go soon. She excuses herself to use the ladies room. I see my opportunity. I grab the bill from Chet and quickly pay it. When she returns and I’m siting there with my blazer on she knows what’s up.
“You got the bill?”
“Well you are my Sugar Baby.”
“Where we going now Daddy?”
We head over to the Sofitel Hotel to the Libete Lounge. It’s a dark posh bar that’s quiet and the music is always soft and in the background, not coming at you. My buddy Liam the bartender and the girls are working but I just want to show Emily the place. She would never have a drink here. I’m trying to broaden her horizons.
“Wow. This place is so nice!”
“Yea, and it’s right across from where you work and you’ve never been here.”
I go with my usual chardonnay and baby goes with whiskey. They server brings us the little snack tray with the nuts, popcorn and olives. I know it doesn’t take much to impress a 23-year-old girl, but I don’t see little Emily that much and I really enjoy her company.
We only hang there for the one drink because I have my grand finale planned. I tell her I want to take her one more place. She is more than game. I can tell she’s having a good time. We split the bill and head over to The Gran Caffe L’Aquilia on Chestnut Street. She’s never heard of it, but I know she’ll love it. Great two-story Italian place.
What she doesn’t know is that I know the bartender upstairs through my buddy Church, and he gives me the hookup. But I also know one of the owners because he comes in the salon to tan. But what strengthened that relationship is that one day he lost a gift card in one of the rooms. I found it a few days later under the bureau when I was sweeping, and returned it to him. He doesn’t speak much English but when I saw him in the salon the next time and whipped out his lost card, his face lit up like it was Christmas day. That card must have been loaded. Without the card, whatever money was on there would have been lost if I hadn’t returned it to him. My coworker, Summer told me I should have just kept it, but as you know, she’s a cunning little outlaw.
I order a chardonnay and I don’t remember what she ordered. She says she’s had a tough week. Just roommate stuff and the usual problems that most twenty somethings in this city face everyday.
I order her some calamari and we rip into that. It’s delicious. Then I start telling her about the gelato flights they serve here. I tell her she must try it. She’s had a few drinks and she is ready to roll with that dessert.
“Luciano, could you please do the honors and pick the best flavors you have?”
“As long as one of them is pistachio!” Emily chirps.
He brings them out and they look amazing. They serve the five gelatos each one on it’s own long, elegant spoon. I tell her I can’t eat a lot of this type of food, so I’m just going to use my fork to take a little nip off the end of each one just to get the taste and then she can have the lion’s share of each spoon.
She agrees, and I tap the first one. I take a tiny bit off the end and then watch as this woman/child grabs the spoon and puts the whole dollop into her mouth in one bite.
This happens four more times and each one is exquisite. I’m glad she wanted the pistachio because it was especially good.
Emily is raving about how wonderful it all is and she’s so happy and is having a fabulous night. What Emily may not realize is I’m showing her what it’s like to be out on a date with me. But the bigger lesson here is: Emily, this is how men should treat you when they take you out. Wine and dine you and treat you like a lady, instead of getting you loaded and trying to finger you in the back seat of some car.
Luciano suddenly appears again with a tint glass cup of pistachio for the lady. He’s a class act and Emily is absolutely delighted.
She tears into it like a teenage girl on her 15th birthday. (yea..I make these references just to give it a bit of lechery)
So after two Chardonnay, her cocktail, and order of calamari, and a flight of their best gelato, the bill comes to $22.
Yea. Hookup. I pay the bill and she throws in some for the tip. We say our goodbyes and thank Luciano for the great service and hospitality. She’s still raving about what an absolutely wonderful night she’s had with me. She hugs me and I kiss her cheek.
“How are you getting home?”
“I’ll take the subway.”
“No sugarbaby of mine rides the subway.
I call her an UBER and send her on her way.
Little Emily smiles and waves as the dark sedan disappears into the night.
I turn and make the short walk home down 17th street back to Rittenhouse. I light a cig and breath in what is left of this beautiful evening.
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