What to download: Parqer

1403026087905There are two things I’ve completely lost the ability to do since moving out of Los Angeles: carry cash and parallel park. It’s like I left both of these skills – yes, consistently carrying cash in the age of plastic is most definitely a learned skill – somewhere in the desert between Palm Springs and El Paso. Better those than my sanity, which is quite easy to forfeit on that particular mindless, drab, dreary, BORING drive. There is one stretch of I-10 (or The 10 for you people out left) in New Mexico that I swear is how and where all horror movies ultimately begin.

I could go on for potentially 16 posts about how bad parking sucks balls in LA. It’s no secret. And as Dallas continues this freakish growth phase, it’s certainly no better. Henderson. Katy Trail. Uptown. Downtown. Lowest Greenville. Northpark on the weekends. All nightmares. If it wasn’t for Uber my girlfriends and I might never leave our houses. However, as much as we all love us some Uber, it’s not always a necessity. (Read: you don’t necessarily plan on drinking that much). Nor is it always an option. Maybe you’re headed straight from the office to a dinner meeting, office happy hour or an early date you’re super anxious to get to (it happens, I hear). It’s 5:30 p.m., 75 is a disaster (shocking!) , you’re beyond irritated and in need of a cold, frosty beverage. You pull up to the Ice House and there is of course no parking to be found this side of Cedar Springs and you have exactly 62 cents in your cup holder.

We have all been there. It’s the worst. But just like Uber has saved the cashless from avoiding taxi rides like the plague, Parqer is now rescuing the non-cash-carrying-hopeless from avoiding valet or having to park six blocks away and most likely illegally.

Parqer, a Dallas-based organization (and in full disclosure, founded by a friend) has partnered with three area valet companies and numerous trendy spots including the Katy Trail Ice House, Three Sheets and Northpark Center, to offer their brilliant cashless valet option. Once users download the app to their smartphones and store payment info, they need only open it up upon checkout and select the location at which they’re participating and confirm the charges. It works for valet fees + tips or tips only. Easy breezy.

Though Parqer is currently available in DFW only, have patience dear friends, it’s expanding to Austin and Houston soon. And from there? In my personal, yet biased, opinion, I see this expanding to all the places in all the country.

The app for my increasingly crappy parallel parking skills, much like my bug killing abilities, is called Find A Husband. Good luck with that, Nikki.





Where to eat: Hibiscus (with a side of Victor Tango’s)

photo 2Not every one of my Friday nights go from Hibiscus to Victor Tango’s to The Library Bar at the Melrose to Round Up and end with two strange gay men at Cafe Brazil at 3 a.m. But when they do, they mean business. And you’re welcome, Uber. These shenanigans all went down last Friday and I’m still trying to figure out how it all happened. It all began with three of my friends and me having a celebratory dinner at Hibiscus and…just went from there. I mostly blame the drink(s) I had a Victor Tango’s. The Start Me Up? Smash Me up? Turn Me Up? One of those. Well, really it was all of those things. It had whiskey in it. I don’t drink whiskey, y’all. But the manager who made them was cute so I would’ve said yes to Everclear at that point. (Side note, I just threw up typing that). Anyhow, the friends I was with and I all have really fun and exciting things going on in our respective lives, both personally and professionally and three of us just completed cleanses/challenges. Plus, we all used to work together, live in the same neighborhood and typically try to get together often. At this point it was both special and overdue, so might as well go big and go Hibiscus.

There’s this lovely restaurant and hotel group in Dallas called Consilient Hospitality. They own the majority of the deliciousness on Henderson and some of the absolute yummiest restaurants in all of the city: Hibiscus, Fireside Pies, Victor Tango’s, The Porch and CBD Provisions to name most. I seriously don’t have a single negative thing to say about any of them. I’ve even had birthday dinners at VT’s and Fireside. And just an FYI, I have recommendations at all of them should you ever be in need. Although they’re all extremely nice establishments and can get a little pricey, Hibiscus is definitely the classiest (and most expensive) of the group. So it’s not somewhere I go often. In fact, I’ve only been one other time and that was during Restaurant Week. And unfortunately I had a sinus infection and couldn’t taste a THING. It was awful. So this time around I had to go; I’ve not treated myself to a nice dinner like that in eons (for the love of all that’s amazing, get the yellow fin…and the mac-n-cheese!) And there is nothing like a night out with some of your most favorite people, eating a genuinely good meal, drinking wonderful craft cocktails and then…things getting questionable.

My crazy nights out in LA and the first couple of years  back in Dallas were many. Over the past year things have quieted down significantly (I know some of you are laughing…stop that, it’s true). Part of that is due to everything that happened and the other part is personal choice. And by personal choice I mean I was forced to because IT HURTS. Slurpees and Sonic breakfast burritos don’t seem to cure anymore.

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