I walk along the side of my friend’s house and emerge into the back yard. I see a couple I haven’t met before and my friend and his wife, sitting on the back porch. A few of their kids are bouncing on a trampoline near the back of the yard.
When my buddy sees me I smile and bark “Is the food ready? I’m just gonna eat, use the restroom, and leave. I’ve got a TV show to get home to.”
We settle into a pleasant stream of conversation, enjoying the warm summer evening. This might seem like a social event, but in reality we’re gathering to honor the fifth-grade graduation of the kids on the trampoline out back. And these beers we’re drinking? We’re doing that for the kids.
The couple I’ve just met are recent transplants to the city. The husband mentions a local place called the Red Door. This spurs my friend’s wife to start talking about her early days in Seattle.
“So I walked into the Red Door,” she says, “And I saw all these attractive guys.”
I choke down a lump of burger and say “Too bad you didn’t find one.”
My friend cackles and instantly takes up the thread.
“So I looked around the room some more,” he says, as if continuing for his wife, “and then I settled.”
We all roar. If there’s a better reason to get up in the morning, I haven’t found it yet.