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Pearl's 22nd Birthday

Pearl has lots of friends. It's no surprise then that 90% of us don't ever hear from her more ten times a year or so! I mean lots of friends: 38 people showed up at Versaille's for her birthday dinner, and the list was 42! We eventually had something like 10 or 12 tables in a continuous line down the restaurant... nuts!

Dinner was good, but the table was so long, people at the either end of the table couldn't see people at the other end. The long-table-photos were with a group of 28 or so, not even everyone... by the end of the night, Pearl had disappeared off into the darkness at the opposite end. Doh! The mango milkshake was ok, but the order #6 (1/2 garlic chicken) was pretty good, as promised! Literally, there were so many people there that this is about the extent of the description I can give to dinner: everyone who was near enough for me to talk to was pretty cool, and it was good to meet Dave, Jen, Marie, Tim, and Becky again, and the pile of presents was a lot smaller than I expected for 38 people- it didn't overcrowd the food, I mean!

After dinner, about half of this unmanageable group left as people debated where to go. Initial idea was Miyagi's, but with a group this big (or even half this big), I said heck no and would have left. From Anil's and Mike's birthday last week, I can tell you that it wouldn't have been a good idea! Thankfully popular opinion prevailed and we went to Cafe Friends in Korea-town instead. Had to juggle a few carpools though (since lots of people had driven in alone), so I ended up back in Westwood for a bit... which was fortunate, because I was able to pick up Sophia so she could see Pearl, too!

We got a private room at Cafe Friends, then promptly filled it to overflowing with some 20-odd people. Ended up segregrated into two groups: those at the table, and those at the end of the table by the door... because we didn't feel like yelling across the room to talk to everyone! = Lots of soju was spread around in VERY generous quanitites... I think we tried every flavor there: yogurt, melon, lemon, pear, and at least one other I've forgotten. Pearl didn't quite meet her goal of 22 shots (22 years old), but she kept a tab of how many drinks she had on her wrist- you can see it in some of the pictures. 20 (18?) shots for someone about the same size as Helma is still very impressive! (and probably 10 shots too many, as evidenced by the table pictures)

In the end, it was lots of fun. Pearl was worried about everyone not having enough fun after we left the Cafe- she or someone had the idea about karaoke- but the decision to go home proved a wise choice. Pearl may have still been dancing around clicking her heels in the air for a while after we left the Cafe, but she didn't last too long. Getting her down the elevator and into the car was an adventure! Almost getting a parking ticket after dropping Sophia off is another story, but I didn't get one so the night was unblemished. =)

Video clips: Cheers to Pearl  |  Happy Birthday
clips may be removed at some point in time (probably up to 1 year) due to space constraints.
Apologies for the darkness, but my Fuji Finepix has poor low-light capture!

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