This is a story of shame and defeat.

Meghan and I were celebrating our TWO YEAR ANNIVERSARY this weekend at Double Knot in Philly. Afterward, we had a reservation for drinks at a speakeasy called The Franklin Mortgage & Investment Company. The problem is, dinner ran long and we were 30 minutes late to this reservation!

As we’re walking, we find what we think is the place and a few people standing outside. We try to go in and a man stops us saying “You need a reservation“. I reply “well, I HAD a reservation, but it was for 30 minutes ago…“. One guy goes inside to see if we can be accommodated and the other asks for our IDs.

The guy from inside returns, and to set the scene, this guy has SLICKED back black hair with a swag ass jacket on and a 10/10 mustache.

I’ll tell you what I’m gonna do” as he lights a cigarette and takes a drag. He exhales then looks me right in the eyes; “You have 60 seconds to tell me your best joke, then I’ll let you inside.

Holy shit. This may be the most intimidated / emasculated I’ve felt in my entire life. Meghan and I both laughed and I froze. I was born for moments like this! But I couldn’t speak. My mind was racing for any (appropriate) joke that might get a laugh. I just kept stammering, “oh god…“, as he’s counting down the seconds aloud.

Eventually he says to Meghan something like “Is this the first time you’ve ever brought him out?“. We joked that it was our first date, then I said “You want to see a joke? THIS RELATIONSHIP!” But it was too late (and he knew our relationship WASN’T a joke).

He let us in and I felt ashamed. It was like the Magician skit in I Think You Should Leave. Meghan would never say it, but she must’ve lost some respect for me after it was all said and done.

A day later, I still don’t have a good answer to that question. So I guess the lesson is to find a great joke, memorize it, and have it in your back pocket at all times in case of emergency.