October 6, 2011

The Adventures of Mark Wins 6: A Return to Philly, Starring Sally Mae

So yesterday, I made an epic return to Philadelphia, PA.

For those of you not in the know, I went to Temple University for exactly one semester in 2006 after I graduated high school. While I was there, I met a number of cool people, but I hadn't met anyone nearly as beautiful, witty, intelligent, or elegant as Sally. (okay, the ass kissing stops here)

After that one semester, we somehow managed to keep in contact with each other. Years passed, and our friendship has blossomed into something special (though arguably not special enough... okay, the cheap shots might not end here).

I hadn't been to Philly since 2009. So, like, I made it kind of a big deal to return to Philly after a hiatus of one year and change. (actually, I didn't.) Still... returning here was... interesting, to say the least.

Like, okay... if you've been following this, then you may know that I've been adventuring around NYC practically all year and especially during the summer. I've seen some beautiful sights. I've seen some beautiful things.

Philly. On one hand, it's nice and all. On the other hand, it's not a pretty city.

Granted, I don't live in the projects in NYC, and I haven't exactly traveled to one either, so maybe there are places in NYC that look just as bad as Philly, if not worse.

And I'm not trying to rag on Philly, either. I am just making an observation. Philly is easily one of the not-so-beautiful sights in my adventures. And because I've had such adventures, it's contrast was even greater in my eyes... because, you know... I lived there for a while and didn't think it was that bad. Because it wasn't.

But that's a different story for a different day.

So in any event, the ride to Philly was a sleepy one. I got there relatively early due to an unclear understanding of whether the Chinatown Bus was shutdown or not, but the bus was operating on all cylinders, so I made the trip.

Got to Philly, got panhandled. lolollolol. Spotted some guy a dollar to "get on a bus" because he was a "dollar" short, but then did it like, three more times before he saw me laughing at him.

Yes. I laughed at him. Maybe he needs the money. Maybe he doesn't. Regardless, it didn't matter to me because I felt I was getting panhandled from the moment he showed up. Whatever.

So I wait a while and my dear Sally shows up. :D on face and everything.

First, we run an errand involving a doctor. As we walk, we first encounter some dude that apparently had a really good scheme for trying to talk to girls... except it was amazingly inconsistent... something about Sally looking like some girl he met in grade school, but then apparently being from Trinidad even though she said that she's not from around here, here being Philly, and him not even mentioning that he's not from here (Philly) himself.

We eventually find the train and on our way there, I sit on her lap and it triggers a random ass conversation with some old guy about how he once walked in on his wife eating another girl our. I'm not exactly sure how me sitting on Sally's lap triggers someone to tell a story like that (I have a theory though that, if anyone cares, I'll be willing to share). Odd story over, and boom, we're at the doctor's office.

I sit there and chill while Sally has her appointment, but then she tells me about some old guy that came in and started talking to her about relationships, sex, marriage, and the like, I suppose. Interesting stuff. I promise I was only in Philly for 2 hours when all this weird shit happens.

Anyway, we go to her house, eat some food, and I watch her play Spider Solitaire. Now I can play Spider Solitaire on Easy (it's a pretty brain-dead exercise), and I've heard my mom win on Normal, but Sally went balls to the wall and plays on Hard. The fact that she had the pure ability to play Spider Solitaire on Hard blew my mind, so I watched. At the same time, there was some show playing on the TV... I think it was called Dating Boot Camp or something like that. Oh, and then there was Bad Girls Club too. Both shows are relatively ridiculous, but at least the boot camp show tries to be real. Bad Girls Club is just so obviously a bawwing out for the camera that it's ridiculous. And to think... they get paid for this shit....

Regardless, Sally plays and Sally Wins. (lol see what I did there?)

Now I'm not one hundred percent sure about the jumble of events between watching her play Spider Solitaire, going to the laundry, and doing something else that I think I'm forgetting because it wasn't the game of chess that we were supposed to play but her cat hid the chess pieces and she didn't tell me this prior to such that I could bring a chess set and a Connect 4 game like I kinda wanted to do but ultimately didn't, but yeah. We went to the laundry because she needed my strength to help her out. Okay, not really, but she did need my help with carrying the bags, and I (un)happily obliged. The laundry mat had Ms. Pac-Man, and considering the quality of the joystick (read: complete ass), I did pretty well. I had two quarters in my pocket, so I played once on the initial trip and once on the trip back, and I scored pretty much the same thing, like 44,000 something points.

I don't think that was a top score since the machine had obviously existed when Joe was in his prime.

After that, there was an era of time that passed. I think we talked a bit and we orchestrated the rest of our time together. Oh, and there was a point somewhere along here where I learned that she plays Tetris. (in my mind, I'm like, "Wow, are you kidding me? I fucking love Tetris.") She suggests a competition for later. Challenge Accepted.

We head out to the movies and we see "Kevin Hart: Laugh at My Pain." This movie is excellent. If you haven't seen it yet, I just read direct off of Kevin Hart's FaceBook page that it's getting extended for like, an extra 2 weeks or something. I HIGHLY recommend that you see it. It is amazingly funny. So funny, in fact, that we almost died laughing. Well, Sally, almost literally died laughing, but that's another story for another day....

After the movie, we go to Ruby Tuesday's to eat dinner on that discount coupon status. There, we talk about a bunch of different things, including my trip to Atlantic City (I never did post that adventure on this blog... hence making it a lost adventure...). and other things. She suggests that we play pool, so we walk to this bar that just so happens to have a single pool room in it that is already occupied. We try to wait the ongoing game out by talking some more about various subjects... actually, I think I had to conclude the Atlantic City story, which lead to her minor Atlantic City anecdote, which somehow lead to me briefly informing her about my visit to the Wax Museum (another adventure that I didn't post on here.... hmmm... lost adventure indeed...

"Wow Mark, you really gave Sally the inside scoop. She must be important in your life, eh?"

What are you, Canandian? But yea. Something like that.)

We don't get the game of pool in, so we finally leave. On our way back to her house, I show her some pictures that I took at AC. She sees a picture of Jeff and she wants me to inform him that Jerseys died in 2006 ASAP. So I call him and tell him this and he goes off. And then I think he just hung up the phone shortly after I gave the phone to Sally, still going off apparently. Sally wants me to call him back, so I call him back but then give the phone to her. At this point, she informs Jeff herself that Jerseys died. They go into some kind of back and forth convo with Sally obviously trolling the fuck out of this guy and Jeff apparently still going off. Somehow the convo ends and Sally gives her impression of Jeff based on her obvious trolling.

We get home, and we get on with that Tetris competition. Essentially, we alternated with Marathon, a 15 level Tetris survival contest. She played first and got to Level 12 with a score of about 250,000. I played second and managed to get to Level 14 with a score of about 440,000. I pretty much won, but by watching me, she learned a technique or two. She tries again and fails (lol), but then she quickly redeems herself with a game that was long enough to put me to sleep, because at this point, I was devastatingly tired. (I hadn't slept the night before and the only sleep I got was on a bus and her bed was feeling mad comfy... well, not comfy enough, hur hur hur... but yea.)

She wakes me with an immature "made you look" joke and then she leads me back to the Chinatown Bus terminal. I hop on the bus and make my way home.

I just wanted to make a few notes about my ride home...

1) there was this escalator at the Canal Street stop on the F train line... shit sounds like it comes from a horror movie.
2) when I got off the F and had to catch the Q111 to get home, I had to run. Really fast. Because if I would have missed it, I would have had to wait an hour. In the fucking cold. I don't think I ran that fast in a long time (mind you, I'm quick as fuck) because my shoe soles literally felt like they were on fire when I got to sit down on the bus.

Ultimately, I totally enjoyed my trip to Philadelphia. Sally was a wonderful hostess, and she's just as funny as I remember her being. If things life decides that it wants to continue to cooperate with me, I will definitely be visiting Philly more often (and maybe I'll be able to bring Sally up here to NY for some fun times too)... but not until it gets warmer. I can't stand this cold shit. Like, I was there on Monday and what not, freezing my ass off half the time I was outside. So maybe in like Marrrrchaprillllmay... May, I may return.

But yeah, life and stuff. We'll see what happens.

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