Today is Cody's birthday! Happy Birthday!
And, just like three days ago when it was Lindsay's, I'm going to try to write a beautiful sonnet about how I met Cody. This is because I have no updates. Except that some Australian dudes moved in next door to me on the beach. They ignored my full name and quickly settled on calling me Ash. Highlight.
In the last 12 hours, I've tried to get people to tell me their first memory of Cody. Basically no one responded to me. Lindsay is an exception to this but she didn't really respond, per se, she more of came out with it without requiring the question in the first place. Sheila offered up some word fragments. Ellen just a moment ago commented that she couldn't remember. But what Ellen does remember is a story of Cody being so hungover once when she decided to shave her cat (which she does do) and the cat, Buddha, ended up traumatized and looked a bit jacked/unevenly groomed for the next few weeks. Classic.
If this were five months ago, I wouldn't have responded to me either. I would have scoffed at this blog. Sometimes, I still do. But don't hate the player, hate the game. And quit your job, readers. That is the lesson of all of this Don't work. Ever. Write blog posts that 1.5 humans read.
Back to Cody.
In broad strokes I'll say this. 15 years ago, nothing pointed to any of us being friends with Cody. Let's take a look at the facts.
1. We (Cody and I) did not grow up in the same state. She grew up in Ohio. For those friends who also grew up in Ohio (a solid but not a majority of the group) no one knew her or went to her school
2. We attended colleges in different states and no one in our posse went to college with Cody
3. We each moved to different cities upon graduating from college
4. We don't work in the same field
Yet, here we are!
Large props go to Cody's BFF in high school, Stephanie, who was Emily's (aka Royal's) roommate in college. And, Emily and I just so happened to have gone to college together, along with Lindsay and Teach.
But it isn't that easy. The plot thickens.
While Emily and I went to the same university, I didn't know her. This is unfortunate because I think my college years would have been even more fabulous if I had. Teachout only lightly knew Em (I believe) through two friends she had made in class.
So really we owe it to Stephanie, Emily and now Teachout for being friendly enough to befriend classmates. And then we need to credit those friends, Brett and Monica, thinking so well of Teach that they would introduce her to their friend, this now being Emily. And then we need to say thanks to Brett and Monica for continuing to like Teach once college was over so that when she finally moved moved to New York, they would invite her to hang out when Brett would visit from St. Louis and Monica would ask Teachout to play on a softball team with her. All this hanging out ultimately would allow Teach to get to know Emily better, who had moved to New York after college and FINALLY Teach would stop hogging Royal and introduce her to the rest of us.
This string of sentences/events acts as the precursor to getting the very exclusive invite to Emily's 2008/9 (?) St. Patrick's Day party at her Upper East Side apartment (which notably had a yard!) And it is here, on St. Pats Day, where we finally would find Cody, having just moved from Chicago wearing a t-shirt and asymmetrical sweater. Not much has changed. She loves drapey, cozy sweaters to this day.
Whew! Quite a few things had to line up for me to be writing this post. And, so many things have happened since they have. Let's recall a few....
I. Cody graduated from The School of Aggressive Brunching.
The first thing that occurred to Cody upon making our acquaintance was that she, unbeknownst to her, was enrolled In the school of aggressive brunching. It's a very rigorous institution. Cody realized that she was really in for something with our gang of thieves the first time she met us (Royal, Teach, Lindsay, Alissa and myself) for brunch. She arrived to the Australian bar/eatery, The Sunburnt Cow with "returns" to do after brunch. Ha! Returns. We quietly raised an eyebrow at these returns or exchanges or credits to Mandee that Cody needed to handle as the bloody marys were placed on the table.
A few notes about The Sunburnt Cow. 1). The bloody marys during brunch are unlimited as is beer, well drinks and mimosas 2). The drinks seemed to always arrive with a fruity shot on the side 3). The alcohol to horseradish ratio in the BMs wants to rip out your esophagus. Cheers!
All of these things led Cody to arrive at a conclusion, pretty quickly I'd say, that we had also learned in the company of one another. This conclusion being that when around a dining table with beverages and sitting along side this motley crew, there is no stopping the awesome time that will occur. But, when that meal is brunch - you best not plan anything else for the rest of the day.
II. In 2014, Cody was my date to the Conan hosted, MTV Movie Awards.
Among my work colleagues and clients, I called Cody my "life friend." Only now does this sound like we were in a committed long term relationship. But I guess, basically, we were/are. You look good girl. ;)
III. In.... 2012? we celebrated Lindsay and Cody's birthdays at Medieval Times.
A knight threw her a carnation. Later that evening, she made a face.
IV. Cody has proven herself to be a consistent fan of campy, feel good folk music.
Over the years, Cody has tried to pass on the love for hootin annies to us. With such passion did she get us into a circle one summer in the Hamptons, encouraging us to clap as she strummed the guitar and to also sing along, following her lead to the hit tune, Wagon Wheel. She did try, she did. But we are largely tone deaf and probably got distracted by a bowl of guacamole placed on the table, so this had a 57% success rate.
V. Cody and Teachout once unearthed / stole / found / robbed from a man from historical novel these old timey glasses. What is more than likely, is that they traveled back in time while wearing them.
VI. Cody has expanded our wine knowledge + appreciation
Cody has introduced every last one of us to Virginia and specially Virginia wine country. In 2013, we celebrated New Year's Eve with Cody and her lovely mother in Virginia wine country - on the vineyard and in their wine room! Shameless plug coming--- 22 Brix is a wonderful tasting room in Charlottesville, Virginia if you head that way. When you are there or hell, even if you are not (http://22brixwineroom.com), buy a case and high five yourself as you bring it home. You are a winner and in your possession is some wonderful vino from a family run winery, Ankida Ridge.
VII. Cody has shown us proper ping pong form.
Arm bent yet without a care in the world, in a heated match against Alissa one St. Patrick's Day, at The Standard.
VIII. Cody is crafty and loves Sam Cooke. Ergo, we love (to eat) her crafts and listen to Sam Cooke while she makes them.
We've seen Cody's artistic talents in her work - she's an editor and is one of the craftiest in the group. Cody pays special attention to details that make her home feel warm - smells of delicious (potentially organic, locally sourced) food, orange-red paint, a record player, twinkle lights and restored furniture.
IX. Cody has spread the love of her signature cocktail
The ordering of this beverage always makes me laugh. But, it is delicious. Please find the below scenario.
Cody: I'm drinking martinis! It's been a hell of a week!
Gang of idiot friends: Whoo! Yeah! Drink ten! Get it! Chop chop! You're falling behind already Rogowski and no one here likes losers or quitters! Are you a quitter?
Cody, post rolling her eyes to her idiot friends, turns to the bartender: Hello. I would like a gin martini. Do you have Brooklyn gin? (Bartender shakes his head) No? really? Sigh. Fine. I would like a gin martini with fresh squeezed (at the word squeezed Cody actually mimes the act of squeezing with her hands) lemon juice. Do you have that?
Bartender: Uh, yeah
Cody, still squeezing invisible lemons: Fresh? Fresh squeezed lemon juice? Not from the bottle!
Bartender: Yes, fresh, got it
Cody: Great. One gin martini. Shaken. With fresh lemon juice.
Bartender raises a brow: Is this a martini?
When Cody gets handed this martini she will always grab it with both hands, with one on the stem and one on the lip. She will sip, close her eyes and upon opening them say "oh yeah." She'll then offer everyone a taste of her famous drink that clearly tastes much better than anything else people are slugging down.
X Cody is involved in a multi-year coffee house debate regarding extra dry cappuccinos. Are they a thing. Or aren't they.
Cody remains convinced that an extra dry cappuccino is a thing. (I've just googled it and some people are very much on her side.) She'll order it, on occasion when she is feeling particularly cozy, bougie and like a coffee house writer. Some places understand, some don't. But she is committed to her beverage order. Like the martini, when someone doesn't understand, she doesn't mime the squeezing of lemons - rather for the cappuccino, she discusses foam. A wet cappuccino apparently has more creamy milk whereas a dry cappuccino has more frothed milk. Sigh. This is even complicated to write.
No one else has more passion for beverages, cooking great food, weekly manicures, Brooklyn as a whole, making great television, head scarves, the retail giant Mandee and more love for their family than Cody. It is what makes her a great friend to so many of us. There is never a question that if you are feeling down or just lazy on a Saturday night that she'd love to have you over to drink wine, listen to a carefully selected Pandora radio station and talk around the kitchen table she has no doubt recently sanded and stained back to life.
So happy birthday Cody, and here is to many more.