that is not my photograph.

because there are no photographs of this magical evening. why would we have stopped to take photographs?

let's say i dreamt of au cheval. it's almost my dream restaurant, where everything is delicious and savory but not too salty and the place really prides itself on throwing a fried egg atop everything. this is practically the place that blake and i hypothesized about years ago.

it should be noted that we did not begin our evening at au cheval, but at scofflaw. (have i mentioned yet that i was in chicago with shira? i was in chicago with shira for the weekend.) the longest happy hour of fries and three well-crafted bourbon cocktails had us in just the right mood for this grand date.

date? yes, date. shira and i had dinner dates at au cheval. we shuffled up to the door after 9pm, thinking that our late-ish arrival would mean we wouldn't have to wait too long. we were wrong--discovered as we were informed the wait would be one to one-and-a-half hours. we must have had looks of devastation, because two men about to be seated in a four-top immediately invited us to join them.

of course we did. i sat across from shira, but next to my dinner date, sean. across from him was david.

it was glorious. the beers, all reasonably priced (no, i have no idea what i drank). the fries, with a mornay sauce (maybe). and the burger. yes, i ate part of a burger, shared with my real dinner date, shira. amazing. really. better than anything i have consumed in a while. no, not just the burger--the evening.

we were there for two hours, eating and drinking with our dates--both from minneapolis, though one now lives in portland, oregon and the other in chicago.

and so i have big love for you, au cheval. but also for shira, the windiest city, and our dinner dates, without whom this night would not have been possible.

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