The annual B.E. Taylor concert has become a tradition for us. After months of not hearing anything about it, I was pleased to hear that my mom’s friend Fran got tickets for Brandon and I–my mom wasn’t sure and it sounded like she didn’t initially, and my irrational insecurity kicked in and started thinking that Fran didn’t want me there. Shocker, I was wrong and, you know, irrational.

After a successful experiment with public transportation over the weekend, I decided to do it again, especially considering mandatory overtime was still a thing and I had to work until 4 while our dinner reservations were for 4:45. Making it into Pittsburgh’s Cultural District in 45 minutes from my workplace during rush hour plus construction basically everywhere was next to impossible, and I’m already damn sick of being late for just about everything I go to in the city no matter how much I try not to be–I was late for the pre-B.E. dinner last year, too. The catch was that making it in a reasonable timeframe hinged on me catching the T exactly on time. I told my mom 5 was about the earliest I’d be able to make it, so I at least gave some notice I wouldn’t be on time, but if I missed that train, I’d be up to a half-hour late.

Of course, it’s times like that when people decide to take their sweet time, but I made it just in time. Right as I was parking, a bunch of people were getting off, and fortunately, since that’s the end of the line, the train had to get turned around to get to the other side of the platform and go back the way it came–meaning I just made it on.

Of course, my mom was a bit worried about me taking public transportation on a 40-minutes trip by myself then walking from the station to the restaurant by myself, but obviously, I was fine. I’m genuinely surprised she didn’t send my dad to come collect me, but judging by his texts, it was the original plan and he talked her out of it. But she did drive me to a stop going home. Nice a gesture as it is, it actually would’ve been faster for me to walk but hey.

Dinner was great. We go to this pretty nice place every year, Six and Penn, which regularly changes their menu and features some more interesting dishes. They always have a vegetarian option, and this time it was a pasta in I believe a wine sauce with roasted vegetables that was really good and a lot more filling than it looked. Yet I still had room for sorbet, which if I remember right was strawberry, pomegranate, and orange.

Brandon was supposed to come, like I said, but ended up still having class as his semester wound down. So Fran’s daughter took his place, and she–like Fran–was really nice. And we have something in common. We’re both in relationships with men who have difficult, overbearing mothers, and Fran’s advice is hilariously blunt, telling us that our men need to tell their mothers to back off. It would be a great solution if it wasn’t guaranteed to send Paul’s mom into a childlike tantrum, but I digress.

And the concert was great, as always. It’s interesting to see how a concert that only changes a little each year is still really good and fun, but I guess that’s sort of the nature of performance.

And then I settled in for two days off from work. Such is the nature of trying to use up vacation time before you lose it.

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