As I get older, New Year's Eve seems to have less and less of a draw. It's a magical holiday filled with expectations and anticipation, whether it's who you're going to kiss at midnight or what the New Year will hold. But the actual event of finding something really crazy, fun, and over- the-top to do usually doesn't live up to the suspense.
This year I went with a group of friends to Turner Hall for a '70s funk party. We'd discussed dressing up in our best disco get-ups but, in the end, opted for more modern party outfits. Getting cabs down there was a breeze. The party, on the other hand, wasn't really what we expected.
The music wasn't the "Get Down, Get Down" we anticipated and, in the background on the humongous big screen, they were playing a bizarre mash up of clips from orgies, burlesque dancers putting on lipstick and, I think, a few car accidents. I began to forget I was at Turner Hall and started to think I was living in A Clockwork Orange.
We left and headed to McGillycuddy's where I came to realize I have grown up a little. The majority of the girls on Water Street were of college age, of course, and most of them made the classic college girl mistake of leaving their coats at home so they wouldn't bog down their skanky outfits with something sensible.
Of course, the minute the bars let out it was impossible to get a cab, and unlike at 10 p.m. when we'd left the house, it was now bitterly cold and windy out. We walked along Water Street begging for cabs to stop for us. I think I was delirious from the cold. I actually found myself clicking my glittery heels together and repeating, "There's no place like home, there's no place like home!" I'm not positive it had anything to do with a little Oz magic but after about the fiftieth time I said it, a cab pulled up and rescued us. Hello 2011! If I had it to do over, I would've made other plans.
The next morning, I was sure my guy pals would come to their senses and decide not to go through with the Polar Plunge, but they were more determined than ever. A few coffee-with- Baileys and mimosas and they were as ready as anyone can ever be when you've volunteered to become hypothermic.
I was born and raised in Wisconsin so cold weather has just been part of my life, but that doesn't mean I have any drive to throw myself into the freezing waves of Lake Michigan in January. And now that I've seen it first-hand, I know I've made the right choice all these years. But kudos to those that did do it.
Later that day we went out to Fire on Water just north of Joey Buona's, for a Rose Bowl Party. As we all know, the game didn't go well, but the beer at Fire was cheap and the food was pretty good. The pizzas were the biggest hit with some creative options and fresh-tasting ingredients. I gave the fried green beans a try; I like the concept, but they were a little too breaded for my taste. We headed back home to veg out in front of the television and called it a relatively early night at midnight.
Sunday was another blur of a day. We headed up to Lambeau for the Packers game with the Bears. I was still cold from my trek down Water Street on New Year's Eve and 'spectating' the Plunge so, like a wimp, I spent most of the tailgate in the car drinking coffee. I know I should hang my head in shame for this, but I couldn't get the chill from my core.
The game was great and the majority of the Bears fans we ran into were good sports and had a sense of humor about the relentless trash talking they received. It was a long day, but a great way to end a non-stop New Year's weekend. I've paid for it all week with the flu, but for the most part, it was worth it. Happy New Year to all! Here's hoping we're all a little wiser and better prepared for whatever comes our way than we were last year and the year before that.
It's occurred to me that some readers are under the impression that I consider myself something of a foodie or drink expert. Let me clear the air once and for all. I have no cooking or serious food education other than what I've experienced traveling and in trying new things. And I've never intended to imply more than that. I don't care what food or drinks cost. You can serve me the most expensive thing on the menu, but if I don't like it, I don't like it.
On the other hand, I can enjoy a good ol' bowl of Kraft Mac & Cheese occasionally. I've had glasses from $800 bottles of wine and I've had glasses from $2 bottles of wine. I'm no connoisseur, I'm just a person that knows what she likes and is willing to try most things once. By no means do you have to agree with me, but this isn't The Food Network so try not to take yourself so seriously.
I enjoyed the article and yes the older we get the more I try and avoid most places on Water Street i.e. puke/piss on my shoes, countless meatheads, and dumb underage girls who can't hold their liquor so great point on that. New Years Eve changes every year for us as we get older and I guess we just have to get that much more creative in order to keep it special.
never, especially in this arena, let them see you sweat.
3 comments about this article.
Post your comment/review now
Disclaimer: Please note that Facebook comments are posted through Facebook and cannot be approved, edited or declined by OnMilwaukee.com. The opinions expressed in Facebook comments do not necessarily reflect those of OnMilwaukee.com or its staff.
Recent Articles & Blogs by Alissa Lawton
Published Sept. 23, 2012
I've been trying to eat at new places rather than my favorite standbys every weekend. I'd been to Buckley's, located at 801 N. Cass St., just once before for brunch, so I figured it didn't really count as a repeat if I was going for dinner. With a different meal you get a new atmosphere, crowd and most importantly, menu options.
Published July 14, 2012
I met some friends at Blue's Egg last Sunday for my favorite meal: brunch. They'd been before, but I was a first timer and the place lived up to every bit of hype I'd heard. After two cups of complimentary coffee - a nice touch since the wait was over an hour at that point - we were seated and starving.
Published April 15, 2011
I have come to a point in my life where I feel like I should really have my "stuff" together. I'm not in college, I'm approaching 30, I have a full time job, a car loan, rent, etc. and I feel like I should really be on top of my game in all life's aspects. A small fraction of the time I do feel that way, but then tax season hits and I become a bumbling moron.
Published April 6, 2011
The week went by too fast, but still provided plenty of time to eat, drink and laze around in the sun.
Published March 31, 2011
Alissa gets roped into a benefit fashion show ... and loves it. A trip to the newish Alterra in Shorewood and some serious end-of-winter couch potato time made last weekend a great one.
Published March 14, 2011
Alissa takes it easy on a Friday night, grabs a tan and, although skeptical, gets way into Game Night.
Published Feb. 18, 2011
Alissa fights off the flu long enough to help inflate bids at a charity auction, and spice up a Bloody Mary.
Published Feb. 14, 2011
Super Bowl weekend was filled with tasty food and drink, and a little exercise, for Alissa.
Published Feb. 7, 2011
Date night, a basketball game and the Milwaukee Chili Bowl made for a busy weekend for Alissa last week.
Published Jan. 28, 2011
Alissa Lawton was in enemy territory the night before the Packers game against the Bears while attending a Cycstic Fibrosis research fundraiser.