Putting it to a Vote by Jennifer Anthony

Corner Booth Episode # 47

22 November 2008

Putting it to a Vote  by Jennifer Anthony
    The five women sat in their corner booth at Doma in the West Village, sipping on lattes and cappuccinos and sharing two orders of decadent blintzes. It was a chilly Saturday morning in the beginning of November, and the friends were grateful when the morning sunlight rallied and cast emboldened rays through the front windows. Even the potted plants beside Roxie and Kyoko, who sat facing the crowd in the window bench, seemed to perk up.
 The café was as crowded as ever, and the friends were nearly nose to nose at the table. They sat close enough to examine each other’s every detail, including new clothes and moods. They always begin their meals by complimenting each other on new looks and clothes before delving into the issues.
 Graciela tucked into a forkful of blintz and eyeballed Roxie’s black jacket. “Is that new?”
 Roxie smiled. “Yup. $19.98. I got Bitten.”
 All but Allison, who seemed rather spacey considering she was a morning person, laughed. “What on earth are you talking about?” she asked.
 “Sarah Jessica Parker’s line,” Noelle explained. “At Steve and Barry’s. They also sell Venus Williams’s Eleven line. And even though no one has asked, this hoodie from her collection is new.”
 “We were getting to you,” Kyoko said, with a chuckle. “A little more casual than you normally wear. Hope you’re not getting lazy, now that you’re in a relationship…”
 “First of all, we’re not official,” Noelle said. “And secondly, this is casual chic, not laziness.”
 “And this new jacket is for election day,” Roxie explained. “I’m taking the day off to work the polls. I hope all of you are voting?”
 “Girl, of course,” Kyoko said. “What fool would miss this election?”
 “I was so excited about it that I couldn’t wait. I’m rocking the absentee ballot,” said Graciela.
 “I’m taking the day off, too,” Noelle said. “And you know I’ve been working on the campaign.”
 Allison remained silent, poking at the edge of a blintz with her fork.
 Although politics may have been conveniently circumnavigated in some friendship circles, this group tended to face the issues head-on.
 “Please don’t tell me this silence means you’re not voting,” Noelle said. “I will personally slap you upside the head if you don’t vote and you-know-who wins.”
 “Of course I’m voting,” Allison said. “Sorry, I’m just a little distracted today.”
 “Really?” Roxie said, sarcastically. “We hadn’t noticed.”
 “This will seem so silly. I mean, it’s nothing in comparison to the election,” Allison started.
 Roxie softened. “The election is big, but that doesn’t mean we stop muddling through our personal lives. What’s up?”
 Allison turned to Graciela. “You know I’ve gone on a couple of dates with that guy Henry that you accidentally on purpose introduced me to.”
 “Of course,” Graciela said. “He is tan guapo.”
 “Yes,” Allison said. “Very much so. And I like him a lot. He’s old-fashioned. A true gentleman. He insists on opening the door for me, and treating me like a lady.”
 “That’s perfect for you,” Noelle said. “So what’s the problem?”
 Allison stared at the artwork on the far white brick wall to avoid meeting her friends’ eyes. “He’s bisexual.”
 Kyoko visibly bristled. “Again, what’s the problem?”
 Noelle laughed softly to ease the budding tension. “I don’t follow, either. Didn’t you have a few romances with women in college?”
 Allison nodded. “I don’t have a problem with the fact that he’s a bisexual.”
 Now Noelle was frowning. “Kind of like you don’t have problems with black people – you just don’t want to date a black person?”
 “No!” Allison said. “That is not it at all. This is so silly to admit, but I think you all know how jealous I am.”
 Her four friends nodded vigorously. They remembered the days when Allison would visit the cheese store, hoping to catch a glimpse of her ex’s new girlfriend.
 “Well, I’m just going to be honest,” Allison said. “I can barely stand competition from one side, much less two. We had breakfast this week, and everyone – I mean everyone – was checking him out. And we ran into two exes in the span of 45 minutes!”
 “He must be hot,” Noelle said. She took a swig of her latte, and added, “But what’s important is whether or not he’s faithful. In other words, when he’s with you, is he just with you?” 
 “You can’t cancel him out just because he’s bi,” Kyoko said, still a little perturbed.
 “It’s not because he’s bi,” Roxie said. “It’s because Allison is too jealous to endure rivalry from both men and women.”
 “He does seem like a really good person,” Allison said. “Very attentive. Not the cheating type.”
 “Oh hell, let’s put it to a vote,” Noelle said. “All in favor say aye.”
 Allison’s four friends said “aye” enthusiastically, causing heads to turn all around them.
 “Looks like you need to take a good look in the mirror, Allison, and realize you outshine all the competition,” Noelle said. “You are beautiful, inside and out.”
 “And maybe try to be a little more open-minded,” Kyoko said.
 “Okay, time to change the subject,” Graciela said. “Kyoko, what happened with that date you went on last weekend?”
 “Girl, I dumped her ass,” Kyoko said, shaking her head. “In the middle of dinner, she let us that she was a staunch conservative.”
 It was Allison’s turn to laugh. “Looks like I’m not the only one who’s not always open-minded!”
   “CORNER BOOTH” is the real “Sex and the City” Read the other episodes to see where it all started

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