There have been a few dates I haven't written about. My apologies, but I figured I'd rather give you a condensed version rather than a boring day-to-day anthology. You see, Thursday night was really boring; the only thing that was amusing were the two girls who danced all night who happened to be "living an alternative lifestyle"
, and the group of inebriated, horny men who swarmed around them like bees, hoping that they could entice the queens for mating. Some of us were laughing at the poor fellows, who were following the trail to the hive, only to find no nectar. Other than that, Thursday was quiet and boring.
Friday was more eventful. I managed to catch a matinee of The Phantom Menace
, and I emerged completely wired. I felt that the movie was worth waiting some sixteen years for. Yes, there were a lot of people who felt that the movie didn't live up to the Star Wars franchise or hype, but this isn't the place to discuss science fiction, or popular culture.
Friday evening began with KH coming to the bar and taking photographs of me on the stage. We decided to get the pictures done early -- so we wouldn't aggravate the drunkards with flashes of light. Some of the better photographs are attached.
The bar was busier that night, and even though I knew only a few of the patrons, I knew most of the bar staff quite well. I also met "Magenta" -- the shooter bar girl. She was quite a lovely woman. Red hair, tongue, nose and eyebrow rings; qualitites of which I have an inexplicable attraction to. We talked extensively that night, joked around, and flirted a little bit. Of course, I ended up being drunk for the third straight night.
I woke up Saturday feeling the effects of my drinking. I wasn't hung over, but I sure felt sluggish. The details of the afternoon were a blur, but I had to be at the Royal by 4:00 to play our first set. We opened the jam session, and then we could sit down and relax. It ended up that Arleen and Dave took off and left me to host the jam myself. LC was one of the first people to show up. He was one of the first people on the stage, and once he got up, it was impossible to get him away from the keyboard! While making my rounds about the bar, many local jammers were impressed by his performance.
The first few hours of the jam were quite slow -- maybe because it was a long weekend. Slowly, jammers trickled in. I began drinking beer, much to the dismay of my innards, and soon I lost track of time.
Magenta returned, and I made regular appearances to talk to her. Either she likes me, thinks I like her, or both. Sometimes you can see those things in their eyes, and she definitely showed me that sparkle in hers. I really didn't want to play a game of hardball, since I didn't know if she was involved with someone else -- or if I really wanted to get to know her myself.
After an afternoon of drinking, I was feeling no pain. It was 9:30 when my parents walked in with some friends, and they could clearly tell that I had plenty to drink today.
We managed to begin playing around 10:30, and we ended up playing quite well, though my playing abilities were somewhat compromised. When we finished playing the first set, I sat down with my parents and met their friends. AP was be one of my mothers' piano students. Her husband, BP, was a chemistry professor at the local College. Ironically, he's the exact same professor who failed me in my first year Chemistry class. What a world. Maybe I'm glad I never lipped him off, even though the thought had crossed my mind before. His big joke that evening, was that out of all the past students that he had -- who were present at the bar -- there was only one who had passed his course. I have a real problem with those people who have a lack of faith in our youth.
My parents left late; close to 1:00 AM if I recall. My mom was pretty drunk, and Dad managed to sober so he could drive her home. Of course, they weren't going to stick around to drive me home -- I was going to be there until 4:00 in the morning.
We finished playing somewhere around 2:00 AM, the three of us exhausted. Of course, I had already spent 10 1/2 hours in the bar that day. Arleen didn't look well at all. She had been sick all week and her asthma was acting up.
Dave suggested that we leave the equipment, and take it down the next day. I didn't argue. That left me more time to party and see if I could make something out of the Magenta situation, who had just finished her shift. She had a beer in hand.
Magenta disappeared for a few minutes, and I wasn't about to follow her around like a lost puppy. I decided to be cool, casual, and relaxed, standing against the now-vacated shooter bar. Magenta returned moments later and asked "Do you want to come with me?"
There appeared to be a bit of duplicity in the way she worded the question. I think it was my drunkenness which made me think about all the possibilities of what her question meant. Sit by ourselves? Go somewhere and 'talk'? My mind raced and my heart skipped. My response was a simple, an unassuming "where to?", to which she replied: "to sit down". We ended up sitting down with another few people at the table and one of the bouncers. Maybe I did jump the gun, but then she could have left me at the shooter bar -- and I could have found someone else to mingle with.
The bar closed and people slowly drifted out. All that remained was the bar staff and myself. I had quit drinking for at least 2 hours, and I didn't feel too bad, but I was still debating whether I should drive home or not. Truth be known, I was secretly hoping that Magenta would offer me a ride home. She didn't -- though she asked me if I was okay to drive. I assured her that I would find a safe means of getting home -- even though I was unsure. One of the bouncers escorted her to her car, and I was left in the bar, felling somewhat like I really shouldn't be there, even though they did not ask or tell me to leave. I waited a few extra minutes, and left the bar -- headed in the direction of my car -- still unsure if I was going to drive, or just drop off my phone and my recently-developed photographs.
Call it fate or coincidence, but Magenta was parked beside my car -- and still speaking with the bouncer who escorted her out.
I opened the car door, threw my stuff in, and the conversation between the 3 of us began. "MC, are you okay to drive?"
Magenta asked. I honestly didn't know. I felt okay, but in the course of the last 10 hours I did put down at least 6 beers and 2 Rye & Cokes. I coun't even recall how mauch I had to drink since I had lost count by my third beer.
I thought I was okay to drive, but I really wanted a second opinion -- preferably, a sober one. The bouncer said "I know you're over the limit, although you might feel okay, I know you'll blow over,"
and that was all I needed to hear. I said: "Then I won't drive"
, and I locked my car. As I was about to walk to the cab station, Magenta offered me a ride home. Of course, I graciously accepted. We had a good conversation on the way, mainly about music, the Royal, and life as a touring musician. As a means to get to see her again, I invited her the Alamo, where we would be playing. She told me that she probably wouldn't make it. With all the piercings, she didn't appear like Alamo material anyway.
By this time, she had pulled in front of my house, and it began to feel like I was stalling. I thanked her again for the ride, and I stepped out of the car. She drove away as I was walking to the front door, and I realized (a little too late) that I should have asked her out for coffee. Though I've only known her for a couple of days, I can tell she is the kind of person that you'd want for a friend -- regardless if it would develop into something more.
Now I'm shrugging things off. I know where she works, and I'm sure we'll meet up again soon. There are still possibilities, and there are still gigs to happen -- and more women to meet. Anyway, do you think that my parents would like it if I brought home a woman who had more piercings in her face than I can count on one hand? I would hope to think that they wouldn't -- no matter how respectable a person she might be. (That, and much like 20 million other male Star Wars fans, I am now completely infatuated with Natalie Portman
P.S. As I write this, Arleen is in the Hospital in Calgary. She was flown up early Sunday morning. I do not know what they are doing with her, but Arleen had difficulty breathing at the bar Saturday night (In fact, so did I). Dave is optimistic that she will be released in time for us to play in the Alamo Wednesday -- and so am I.