“ Except for a few pimpy-looking guys, and a few whory-looking blondes, the lobby was pretty empty.”
“But you could hear the band playing in the Lavender Room, and so I went in there. It wasn't very crowded, but they gave me a lousy table anyway--way in the back.”
“I should've waved a buck under the head-waiter's nose. In New York, boy, money really talks--I'm not kidding.”
Three women are seated at the next table, and Holden summons up the courage to ask if any of them would care to dance.
“I started giving the three witches at the next table the eye again.”
“That is, the blonde one.”
“The other two were strictly from hunger. I didn't do it crudely, though. I just gave all three of them this very cool glance and all.”
“What they did, though, the three of them, when I did it, they started giggling like morons.”
So all of a sudden, I sort of leaned over and said, "Would any of you girls care to dance?"
I didn't ask them crudely or anything. Very suave, in fact. But God damn it, they thought that was a panic, too. They started giggling some more. I'm not kidding, they were three real morons.
"C'mon," I said. "I'll dance with you one at a time. All right? How 'bout it? C'mon!" I really felt like dancing.
“Finally, the blonde one got up to dance with me.”
“She was one of the best dancers I ever danced with. I'm not kidding, some of these very stupid girls can really knock you out on a dance floor.”
“You take a really smart girl, and half the time she's trying to lead you around the dance floor, or else she's such a lousy dancer, the best thing to do is stay at the table and just get drunk with her.”
“ They didn't invite me to sit down at their table-- mostly because they were too ignorant--but I sat down anyway.”
“ The blonde I'd been dancing with's name was Bernice something--Crabs or Krebs.”
“ The two ugly ones' names were Marty and Laverne.”
“ I told them my name was Jim Steele, just for the hell of it.”
“ Then I tried to get them in a little intelligent conversation, but it was practically impossible.”
“ You could hardly tell which was the stupidest of the three of them.”
“ And the whole three of them kept looking all around the goddam room, like as if they expected a flock of goddam movie stars to come in any minute.”
“They probably thought movie stars always hung out in the Lavender Room when they came to New York, instead of the Stork Club or El Morocco and all.”
“I danced with them all--the whole three of them--one at a time.”
“The one ugly one, Laverne, wasn't too bad a dancer, but the other one, old Marty, was murder.”
“Old Marty was like dragging the Statue of Liberty around the floor.”
“The bar was closing up for the night, so I bought them all two drinks apiece quick before it closed, and I ordered two more Cokes for myself.”
“All of a sudden, when they finished their drink, all three of them stood up on me and said they had to get to bed.”
“They said they were going to get up early to see the first show at Radio City Music Hall.”
“ With cigarettes and all, the check came to about thirteen bucks.”
“ I think they should've at least offered to pay for the drinks they had before I joined them--I wouldn't've let them, naturally, but they should've at least offered. I didn't care much, though.”