Being a plus one

Tuesday, February 9th, 2016

  • I like it when bars are free. This doesn’t happen very often in my life, and when it does I usually partake in moderation because as much as I like free drinks, the free hangover that follows the next is less forgiving than it once was.

    I was at the launch of a new bar and grill called ‘Motorhome Majestic‘ in Ascot Vale, Melbourne, standing among the beautiful people and the ‘darling lovies’ of the cities social media scene. Their words and color-saturated close-ups of the burgers on offer will doubtlessly reach farther into the world of clicks, bits, bytes, and likes than anything I could write about this place.

    I was there as the ‘plus one’ of my friend Theresa Winters, co-founder of the website ‘The Plus Ones,’ a site devoted to covering events in this city where bars, cafes, clubs, and restaurants come and go like Melbourne trams.

    At the invite-only event, every drink poured and burger served had to look wonderful for a few moments while it became the focus of a flurry of camera clicks. A few people asked me who I was covering the event for. I might have said I was representing the ‘Plus Nones’ – a new website for introverts and people with no friends. The trick is to look entirely serious when you say something that ridiculous.

    I spent a little while standing next to Theresa as she expertly ‘hobnobbed’ with fellow social butterflies. Being a reporter at such events seems like a pretty good gig to me. Theresa wasn’t dressed like a reporter, but then again nobody was. Instead, she was wearing a daringly short skirt and heels that made me worry about the injuries she might have suffered if had stumbled from such a great height.

    It was fun being a ‘plus one.’ Had I been reporting on this trendy new bar and grill there is little doubt those free spiked milkshakes would have spurred me to write something suitably flattering about the place and its curious trailer park decor of motorhomes and picnic tables. I would certainly have mentioned the cocktails that were served with – I kid you not – a slice of bacon! I might have also casually mentioned the pang of bicep and tricep envy I felt while watching the guy shake those cocktails, though I would swiftly move on to describing the deliciously intoxicating on-tap espresso martinis and margaritas.

    So in the name of social media, journalism, and ‘free shit,’ we ate burgers and chips, just as you would when standing that close to a motorhome, albeit a fake one. I can tell you, and I feel I probably should, that they tasted as good as they looked, better perhaps because they too were free on this opening night. Maybe I should have taken a close up photograph of my beautiful bursting burger, but as a ‘plus one’ I was under no such obligation, so I simply just ate it and enjoyed the fact that it hit the spot and softened the blow of all those spiked milkshakes and espresso martinis!