“this week, on coldwater creek…”

I woke up at 9:26 on Sunday morning. I was to meet Elisa and Kelly for brunch at Café 28 at 9:30.

Fuck.

I sent Elisa a text message, bowing out, but then I got a text from Kelly.

Oh no! You’re not getting out of this. I’m just now leaving my house. Take a fast shower and get your butt here.

I did as I was told. So what if I was an hour late! Elisa and Kelly were having coffee at the bar when I arrived. The restaurant was quiet, so we were seated quickly. We ordered, and got down to rehashing the previous night’s activities at Big Star. I don’t think it would have been nearly as fun as it was had I not been with these fun ladies. Yes, even the part with the waiting and the confusion with the line and all.

Brunch was a more sedate affair, though the restaurant did fill up as the morning progressed, and it got closer to 11. As it was before 11, Kelly wasn’t able to order a mojito. A would-be tragedy had the food not been so tasty. Kelly coveted my chilaquiles.

(Oof, that sounded kinda dirty didn’t it?)

As ever, good conversation about weight loss and Couch-to-5K and body image. Like me, Kelly’s been heavy for a while. It wasn’t until college that she developed the confidence that has made her into the social butterfly that she is. People in high school had been pretty awful to her, but she was able to get past that and move on.

I remember grammar and the earlier years of middle school being brutal. By the time I got to private school (seventh through twelfth grades), it had subsided but by then I was so self-centered and self-conscious but not self-aware that I don’t think I would have noticed if any of the girls in my class had anything to say. Or maybe I would have, as there were only 40 girls in my entire grade.

After brunch, we split up. Kelly had to pick up some co-workers at O’Hare, so I tagged along with Elisa as we made stops at Floriole (just opened on Friday!) and Fritz Pastry (where Elisa’s boyfriend works). I had time for a coffee and a croissant at the first stop, and an orange soda and a chocolate and black pepper cookie at the second, before I went to meet Kathy to get our nails done.

I got there before Kathy, and just ahead of there other people. I wish I could keep my cheap, no-frills nail place a secret between me and my friends but alas a cheap mani-pedi doesn’t stay secret for long. I brought my own polish, getting Chanel nail polish in Vanity (a bright but soft pink) on my hands, and it got me to thinking that I should collaborate on a line of nail polishes named after proteges of Prince.

  • Sheena (after Sheena Easton): metallic raspberry
  • Sheila E.: orange-red
  • Apollonia: sheer apricot with gold flecks
  • Wendy & Lisa: sheer white with gunmetal gray glitter
  • Carmen (Electra): electric blue

I’m so genius.

Kathy had some last-minute shopping to do before her trip to Walt Disney World with Sylvia, so we drove to OakBrook center. Kathy was on a mission to find black bermuda shorts. We struck out at Coldwater Creek (which sounds like a bad soap opera) but ended up finding her a winning pair at another store. Also, she got some gray leggings at American Apparel, where I was thisclose to buying a scunchie. A scrunchie! It’s ninth grade all over again.

We walked past Caché, which sounded like the more exciting telenovela that would air on a rival network opposite Coldwater Creek. White House | Black Market was clearly meant to be the business run by those twins on “Degrassi High” who only ever wore black and white. I bought some pants and underwear (oooh!) at Lane Bryant, which doesn’t sound to me like a store for the big lady. It sounds like a small real estate office. A sub-division. The name of the attorney who will be taking your deposition. I understand that it’s less of a mouthful than, say, “Cheap and Cheerful (Though Not Entirely Fashionable) Apparel for the Large Lass” but still, the name could use some flair. If I come up with any suggestions, I’ll be sure to let you all know.

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