I went to the blogger BASH last night, though it ought to have been called the Blogger BAN, since we were all but kicked out of AZ. Apparently our green wasn’t what they were looking for, so, we headed west to Siberia, to greener pastures… here I am prior to the ban:
So I’m at Siberia, a bar with no name outside, desert. Downstairs, a guy sings in Aasics sneakers, a tee shirt and blazer–probably a lawyer or an analyst at JP Morgan. Watching him sing, his mouth open and crying into the microphone, I can suddenly see through the grunge-cool to the kid who shite himself in kindergarden. Joe Rogers Band. After his set, I introduce myself… his hands full with gear and a mailing list tucked beneath a winged arm, we don’t shake. "Hey, I appreciate what you do out there. You guys were good." I sound like I’m in kindergarden.
"Oh thanks man." He says it, and something about the way his mouth moves, I think of a kid who was on the chess team and who probably had a pet Lizard. Social skills equal zero. Lips tight. I’m waiting for the awkward inhale of a laugh. I turn and walk.
Okay, so hanging out in basement music establishments is a nod to my college years. Now, I usually hang out in wine bars, slurping oysters and pecking away at good Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand. It just is. People think it’s upper crust, whatever. I’ve never been a beer drinker, not even Corona, even when it was the thing to do. You know, I can "do" basement. I actually liked the Joe Rogers Band. People are drinking in their hats–like 25 people, one woman–okay, no, two–in skullcaps. We’re inside people; you can remove your sunglasses too. That fashion statement went out with The Cars.
In college, I met a man with a hat at The Raccoon Lodge. Obviously, not my type of place anymore, yet in college, they didn’t hassle us with IDs. We entered, played good tunes on the jukebox, and we let men buy us drinks. So, I meet this guy toward the end of the night, backwards baseball cap. I’m feeling seexy and drunk, warmth and a certain laziness has settled over me, and I smile. We talk it up about how much there is to do in New York, and how no one who lives here really takes advantage unless we’ve got to show it up to a friend from out of town. Neuyorkican Poetry Cafe used to be my favorite place to take people… typical dark (at the time smoky) spot, with a DJ, some adult beverages, and yes, poetry. How Jack. Back to the hats, so we talk, and he’s cute. He says he goes to the theatre all the time. "Oh yeah, so when are you taking me?" I’m bold, and it’s time to go home soon, my let’s-get-to-it-move. Numbers are exchanged.
The next weekend, I’ve been manicured, waxed, and blown smooth. I approach the restaurant with nerves and adrenaline. My hands are damp. Then, I see him in the restaurant. Actually, that’s not true. I don’t see him at all. A man approaches me that I had never seen before, and says, "Did you find the place okay?" Could this bald man with a lazy eye be my baseball cap date?
People, no more hats inside. It’s just not fair… it’s like chicks who wear padded bras.