Last month we went to a brunch.
Now, before I go too far into this blog, I need to warn you – we are not good at brunch.
In fact, until about 5 years ago, we would just sit there uncomfortably after our food was done, feeling bad for the server who we’re sure wanted to turn over the table for more tips.
But that’s not the point of brunch. We learned that in LA a few years ago, when we were visiting friends who happened to have a birthday while we were there. They celebrated with brunch, so we went.
And we were the first ones there, which apparently was NOT the move, because the birthday girl wasn’t even on time. Which was, we learned, almost normal for a brunch?
That was just one lesson we learned at this brunch experience. Others we learned?
Pace yourself and be prepared to hang and talk well after the food has cleared.
So, as awkward and unnatural as those felt to our neurodivergent brains, we took them to heart for the next brunch we attended. Oh, and we had an actual good time and had intelligent conversations once we realized the vibe of the event. (at both the LA brunch and our most recent.)
Then the pandemic happened, everything closed up and our entire lives were upended and now, 4 years-ish after our first successful brunch experience… we finally made it out to brunch again.
In case you didn’t know, we moved to Detroit last year, so where ever we brunched next would be a completely new experience for us. Plus, we barely know anyone up here socially, still, so that always makes my brain feel awkward.
I feel like I need a social buffer. I would say social lubricant, but I do not need a drink and that’s the first place that phrase takes me. What I do need is someone who has been to the places/events that I would like to go to, so they can tell me how it works.
Do I wait for a table? Do I order at the bar? Do I clear my own plates? Am I allowed to request songs?
This brunch we went to was one I’d been eyeing for a couple months, but me being me, I felt too intimidated to go. Who wants a middle aged white lady at their brunch? That sounds like a nightmare honestly!
I’d found this brunch by obsessively following local artists. We discovered one on our Free Comic Book Day. His name was Sintex and we bought art from him and I followed him on Insta. Where I soon found another local artist who’s art vibed with my brain almost perfectly.
Every month he hosts a Ghetto Brunch at a place called The Elephant Room (I mean, I’m writing a book about elephants… could it BE more perfect?!)and I lusted after this event silently for two months before I even casually mentioned it to Mickey. And by silently, I mean that I even sent Sheefy a message on Instagram to see what the vibe would be like for the aforementioned middled aged autistic white lady. He assured me I would be fine.
Spoiler alert: we were. I was planning to go by myself because Mickey’s schedule is all wonky and I was tired of being scared of things! I did get lucky that he had Sunday off for the next Ghetto Brunch… so we went!
And we were the first ones there. Of course.
We ordered some drinks at the bar and sat there awkwardly and made some conversation with the bar folks.
The music was coming from outside, where it was a bit chilly, but the vibes were worth it. WE chose a picnic table with a view from the corner of the patio. Prime people watching without being perceived too much.
And we just sat there and experienced all the things that were going on all around us. There were conversations and some chill bopping around dancing. Everyone was happy, everyone was smiling. People were coming and going. We eventually learned to go inside for drink refills and food.
For the better part of 6 hours, we did very little other than vibe.
Throughout the day, we noticed folks smoking at other tables near us. We’re still kind of nervous about stuff like that so we didn’t even bring anything with us. So, we just sat and watched clouds form all around us.
One fella had the most incredible set up. He rolled up with a backpack and set it down in one fluid movement as he unzipped and removed another bag. Bagception!
Inside the smaller bag was a small foldy rolling tray and all the bits and bobs to roll up a whole adventure, if you catch my drift. It was magical to watch him. He was so practiced at this singular task, it was like watching a ballet. Every movement was made with intention and to the fullest extension. At the same time, not a single movement was wasted.
It was magical to watch. And the resulting smokable was enormous. I wish times were different and we all coulda shared it!
By the time the evening was wrapping up (yes, we stayed the entire time), we had made friends with another bruncher. I also awkwardly thanked one of the other DJs (Nick Speed, I later found out) for “playing my night time music.”
I can’t think of that without cringing, but it’s 100% accurate. The music he played is the jangly-limb dancing, absolutely free feeling music that I play alone at night with all the lights off when Mickey is working.
It makes me feel incredibly empowered. (It’s mostly the P-Valley soundtrack, if I’m being honest).
You know what else has me all empowered and hype? The fact that there’s another Ghetto Brunch this Sunday.
It’s costumed themed and I think I laded on something very Jacki… and very Brunch.
I’m gonna be a Waffle Ho.
And this time I’m bringing a blunt of my own.