MNP stands for Meet New People, which was the title of a party I attended last night at Landmark Grill + Lounge across from the Steppenwolf theater on Halsted Street. Prior to MNP I was at the Michael Kors opening at the 900 Shops, where I talked to roughly 15 of the 200-500 people I always talk to. Prior to that, I had a margherita pizza at Frankie’s Scallopini on the fifth floor.
MNP was not supposed to be a singles party, but upon arrival my friend Graham (who agreed to escort me so I wouldn’t have to meet new people by myself) took in the mostly female crowd and said: “Yep, smell that desperation in the air?” Later, when we were surveying the scene from the second-floor catwalk, we also detected a hint of tater tots and possibly a note of funnel cake.
Anywho, though we were sorely tempted to converse only amongst ourselves (like we do all day every day at work), we forced ourselves to seriously Meet New People. A sampling of the conversations that ensued:
Amalie & Graham, approaching party of three: Hi! Are you guys meeting new people?
Two guys & a girl: Yeah. None of us know each other.
A&G: Cool, where do you work?
(Banking, doctoring, and one other thing I can’t remember)
Graham, to doctor: What hospital do you work at?
Doctor: A children’s hospital.
Graham: How nice. What’s your favorite part of your job?
Doctor: The patients.
Amalie & Graham, approaching dude frantically texting on iPhone: Hi! Are you meeting new people?
iPhone dude: I’m waiting on someone I already know to bring me a drink.
Graham: Well, is this seat taken?
iPhone dude: My friend’s coming back. (Continues to text, fully ignoring further conversational attempts)
Amalie & Graham, approaching guy in blue shirt leaning on wall: Hi! Are you meeting new people?
Blue Shirt: No, I’m setting my watch.
Blue Shirt (fidgeting): It’s kinetic. It’s powered off the movement of my body.
Amalie: Oh, I’ve never heard of that.
Blue Shirt (appalled): What, you don’t know how a Rolex works? (Runs away. I kid you not. Literally exits the room at high speed.)
My arrival back at my apartment building held ten times more excitement, thanks to the fact that there was a mystery box addressed to me in the foyer. I had not ordered nor was I expecting delivery of any items, so my walk up the stairs was a fantastic exercise in imagination.
A gift from a secret admirer?
Popcorn? (That’s what it sounded like)
The reality: A three-month supply of prescription medication from the mail-order pharmacy my healthcare provider now requires us to use.