T-Rex and the City

Veronica Writing

There’s passion on Manhattan. I felt it as soon as I arrived on the island. For me, a major part of this enthusiasm radiates from my fast-walking, subway-chasing, black-wearing, taxi-flagging urbanite daughters, The Piglet and Decibel.

The New York I know is viewed through their eyes and it is a very youthful place. The Piglet had recently moved in to her first studio apartment (all by herself!), so it was decided I’d stay with her.

Between work and school, Decibel was fitting me in where she could. I was on my own during the day and, at night, we’d go out. I have to say I’m a bit flattered that The Piglet felt she could drag this old T-Rex around everywhere she went. But, apparently, this dinosaur can hang.

First it was off to Splash (holy crap, it’s a NYC gay bar!) for Musical Monday and a co-worker’s birthday party. I like musicals as much as the next guy, but I have to say that walking into a huge space with wall-to-wall video monitors featuring obscure song-and-dance numbers initially took me aback.

But as luck would have it, the DJ was masterful – he spun those show tunes in a way that no one could possibly deny the sing-a-long fever (I, proudly, was the only one in our group who knew all the words to “Age of Aquarius” – singing enthusiastically while the musical Hair played around me in its embarrassingly dated way).

One would think being in a group of mostly men that you’d get to sing the “Sandy” parts from Grease, but your thinking would be wrong. Whether it be Sandy, Evita, or even Cossette, any girl will be outdone by the men in Splash – these are seasoned professionals, ladies.

The Piglet’s friends were fantastic, charming me with the proper mix of “I can’t believe you’re The Piglet’s mom – you look better than I do” (I had stepped into some good lighting) and “What musical is this song from?” when anything black & white showed up on the screen.

The next night, The Piglet and I found ourselves at The Mercury Lounge for a concert. The Piglet had thoughtfully e-mailed me soundfiles and a link to the artist’s webpage in preparation for my trip. I did my homework and was ready.

We arrived and pushed our way up to the bar in the front room. Trying to be hip, I opted not to order coffee and chose red wine (I know, also not hip, but — hey –it’s the best I could do and it was surprisingly hearty, warm and delicious). I had been literally walking all day — taking in the City — and couldn’t wait to get my wine to a table, take a load off and enjoy some good music.

I followed The Piglet into the showroom and — bloody ‘ell — NO TABLES. Oh yeah, I remember this now. A big, dark room; lots of sweat and energy. And. No. Flippin. Tables. The blister on the back of my right foot toggled between whimpering for clemency and screaming for mercy. This was not good.

Thankfully, the band really delivered. By the second song Mr. Blister was all but forgotten. I was loving being in a mass of happy, swaying bodies and took up my old hobby of watching groupies. It’s sad, but I had let myself forget the fun of it.

Decibel, on the one night she was free to let loose with dino-mommy, decided on a comedy club. We arrived at the Laugh Lounge at 10:30 PM on a Friday. The college kids at the big table (YES! Tables!) in the corner were well lubricated and ready to rock. The place was packed and filled with energy.

Several comics took the stage, each one a bit more risqué than the next.

It’s a subtle thing, but there is that moment when you find that you are capable of having true adult-to-adult experiences with your grown children. For Decibel and I, it wasn’t your typical teary-eyed mother-daughter Hallmark card moment.

It was laughing together in a dark comedy club at off-color “microphone as penis” humor and finding that the embarrassment we were feeling wasn’t because the other was in the room.

Instead it was the embarrassment that all adults feel when they are hysterically laughing at something they should be shocked by.

Not exactly a Hallmark commercial, but I’ll take it.

Veronica, GypsyNester.com

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22 thoughts on “T-Rex and the City”

  1. Your daughters? are so lucky to have a mom that they can get along with, hang out where they hang out without all the drama. But I’m pretty sure I can do this with my daughter when she gets older.
    I enjoyed your post. 🙂

  2. I think that SPLASH closed – going to NYC in November and was looking to some good times singing the male parts (I am female) in the musicals.

  3. I love this post. Having sons it wasn’t quite the same, but last year I think my elder son realized that I was “an adult” rather than just mom. That he suggested I might like to go rappelling was step one; step two was when we went and did it and I did good and he was clearly pleased that I did and that I enjoyed it; but step three was when I realized our relationship had changed. It was when he took me to his local climbing wall, gave me lessons and encouraged me – and then told his friends how great and brave I’d be about the rappelling. I was so proud that he was proud of me!

  4. I am a 23 yr old woman living in NYC for about 18 months now and this article really hit home. I am Irish and I’m a long way away from my parents but I completely understand that feeling the moment you realise you have an adult relationship with your parents. I think it happened for me when I openly made a sexually explicit joke with my mum (Im still not too comfortable doing this with dad but in time I’m sure I can crack a joke like that with him!). It was hilarious, we fell about laughing and I realised- my mum has become my best friend. Its important for kids to appreciate thier parents and all they have done for us over the years. I searched for a long time for a way to re-pay them but concluded the best way I can do this is to be healthy, happy, successful and loving. This is my goal – to show my parents they raised a kind, caring, generous, successful, happy, loving daughter. And I make sure they know that by texting Ireland everyday to say hi and I love you. It is the little things in life that make the difference, it makes me sad to think a lot of people have forgotten this. But not me. Not me.

  5. Great story and has got me thinking. With my son we shared those adult moments together in Atlantic City. It was odd watching him at a black jack table WINNING and having cocktails.
    I am waiting for that moment with my daughter. She is 20 and it is still Mom and child. Soon I hope she will change and grow up!

  6. I love your writing, always makes me laugh and makes it so real! I still think you should wite a Gypsy Nester book! Keep it up!

  7. GypsyNester, I wish I could have been there with you all. It all sounds like a blast. I completely relate to you transitioning to that adult-to-adult relationship. This summer I went with my daughter to my niece’s bachelorette party… I was the only “dino” in a group of 20-somethings. I had so much fun. It was really outrageous and I can’t go into all the funny things that happened over the weekend (in Austin…a party town anyway), but wish, like you, I could. Those girls, all married, were a hoot!

  8. i love this! good post! i have a 22 yr ol. it is amazing how u suddenly get an ohhh?! i’m having true adult-to-adult experiences w/her…and, i like it! is a joy..an awakening.


  9. This sure put a smile on my face. I love NY and would live there in a moment. But looking at it thru the eye’s of a newbie is awesome. Additionally, I can relate to the bond you shared with your daughters. I have a 19 year old and we started making that adult connection about a year ago. It’s amazing.

    So glad you enjoyed your adventure in NY. I’ve never been to Splash or The Mercury Lounge but know where both are. Might have to check it out. I have lots of gay friends who love show tunes. lol. And someone special I’d love to show NY to.

    Thanks for this post.

  10. Wow GypsyNester…my son is attending Harvard. I am now sooo excited to go visit him! Thank you for the play by play. My son tells me that he has really gotten into the good jazz of Boston. He was not a fan when he left home , nor am I but I so look forward to attending a couple clubs with him to experience the grown up version of my 22 year old son. Thank you for opening my eyes 🙂

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