Monday, April 13, 2009

Auto Show Gala Preview: Part Two

Thursday night, the final hour of the Auto Show gala preview took a surprising turn.

As I mentioned in Friday’s post, Chris – one of three guys from UBS I’d met earlier in the evening – asked if I needed a drink. I soon learned that Chris was married and his newly-arrived friend Ted was engaged, while European-born colleagues Cedric and Patrick were both single.

Chris and I exchanged tales of wine-related travel (he and his wife favor Bordeaux and Napa, I recommended Australia’s Hunter Valley region). Then, the five of us headed into the showroom. Though I had already done a lap around it, I suspected doing one with men in tow might offer a different perspective.

Sure enough, each of the guys were boyishly smitten as they took a seat in several of the floor models. Patrick invited me to join him in a Viper convertible, where he launched into a 10-minute soliloquy about the merits of driving a stick shift.

Behind The Wheel: Patrick gushed about stick shifts while trying out the new Viper convertible

When we caught up with the rest of the group, talked quickly turned to dinner and reservations at Buddakan. Chris invited me to join them and I happily accepted.

For once, being unable to find a cab proved to be a good thing. We ended up leaving the Javits Center in a limo instead (economically priced as just $6 per person).

During the short ride down to NYC’s Meatpacking District, I found myself next to Cedric, who moved swiftly into flirting mode. He took my face in his hands and leaned in to kiss me.

“I’m not going to make it that easy for you,” I said coyly, pulling back.

He quickly got over my (temporary) rebuff, poking his arms through the limo’s open rooftop and waving at passersby.

Upon arriving at Buddakan, we were shown to a corner table downstairs, just past the Chinoiserie where Carrie and Big’s rehearsal dinner was held in “Sex And The City.” The sexiest part of the evening was still to come.

Up next…Jennifer Hudson and Robin Thicke rock MSG and pre-tax day imbibing.

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