I looked down at my watch after taking that first refreshing sip of my Manhattan on the rocks last Saturday and noticed the time – 5:46pm. Only fourteen minutes away from the beginning of the end, the last judgment, the apocalypse, the end of the world or something to that effect. I grinned. I had sort of pushed the silly notion to the back of my mind since today was my best friend’s wedding and frankly a little mumbo jumbo was not going to distract me from a rare day alone with my wife (aka no kid in tow), friends, fine food and beverages and if all went well a rare cigar or some Cavendish in a pipe to end the night perfectly. I was dressed, and please pardon the delusional benchmark, better than James Bond (even Sean Connery’s). I even tied my own bowtie (the three quarters of an hour it took made me feel that much more debonair). I was sitting high up amongst the gathering clouds (literally), wearing a simple, yet elegant tux and nursing my drink at the Mandarin Oriental in mid-town Manhattan. I was ready to give the Rapture the finger.
Heaven or Hell I figured it would be proper etiquette to show up black tie. I think both establishments are fairly conservative and I did not want any trouble with the bouncers, if anything to avoid the inevitable trek back up or down when I was turned away for not having on the proper attire. I pitied the poor schmuck who had just sauntered in wearing brown loafers with white socks and a black belt – Purgatory was a much worse destination since it was neither here nor there.
The storm clouds circled closer and obstructed the breath taking view of Central Park and the rain starting beating against the glass in front of us. Fine, so my last memory would be of clouds, so what? I was dressed to the nines, I was in great company, having a drink and smiling. A perfect way to go in my humble opinion.