Sunday, September 28, 2008

What I do sometimes on Saturday night because I am not married with children

What is a man my age doing heading out solo on a Saturday night in Northampton with no particular destination? Having two Miller High Life's ($2.50) at Hugo's on Pleasant Street while reading The Economist (specifically the articles about Richard Nixon and his increasingly iconic stature as his crimes start looking comparatively like Scooby Doo caliber mysteries foiled by meddling kids, a review of a new Marc Chagall biography, and an obit for typewriter guru Martin Tytell and his drawer-load of umlauts), watching Dirty Harry on the bar's TV out of the corner of my eye and commenting to anyone within a barstool earshot that Clint Eastwood has slits, not eyes, and buying a beer, upgrading to Sam's Summer Ale, for my dear old Faces co-worker Moira (right) who's out bar hopping with five guys who keep repeating the phrase "chicken fucker," and telling her how I locked myself out of my apartment today and how I would have called the building manager but that's me, and how the ladder was 8 feet shy of my third floor window-sill and how I borrowed some tools from my downstairs neighbor Laura who I share internet with and has a cute new kitten and forced my way in as gently as possible (though there are some splinters and paint laying about) and my story is so gripping she decides to split with the chicken fuckers, and then I got into a conversation with Kai, of the local band The Neon Tits (below right), about the finer points of heavy metal history, specifically whether the title of The Scorpions album with the guy pulling the gum off the woman's boob is called Animal Attraction or Lovedrive, and whether Fast Eddie was a better guitarist than Thin Lizzy's Brian Robertson who replaced him in Motorhead (for one glorious album, Another Perfect Day, that's Brian and Lemmy jamming below, dude I saw this incarnation of the band at a monstrously satisfying show at the Agora Ballroom in West Hartford in the late '80s, where I also saw Lemmy all alone playing pinball pre-show) but Roberson chose to leave when Lemmy gave him a metal ultimatum: lose the spandex and wear leather or leave, and what album Judas Priest's song "Saints in Hell" is on; Sin after Sin or Stained Class (the latter), and learning about Joan Baez's Diamonds and Rust, and Fleetwood Mac's The Green Manalishi with the Three Pronged Crown, via Judas Priest's cover versions, one of 'em on the blistering live US breakthrough album Unleashed in the East, and MC5's Kick Out The Jams ("motherfuckers" or "brothers and sisters", depending on which version) from Blue Oyster Cult's live slab "Some Enchanted Evening," (a great live BOC album but it doesn't touch their double live On Your Feet Or On Your Knees, with it's locust invasion-esque take on "Born To Be Wild")
and impressing Neon Tit Kai with the fact that my friend Jay Hughen is in the cult movie Heavy Metal Parking Lot, then heading to The Elevens and talking about further musical arcanities with doorman-booker-fanboy deluxe Mark Sheehan, whose latest Beach Boy related book was close at hand, and missing Brian Marchese and Rabbit Rabbit but seeing Space Captain who were not bad but I left after three songs and was feeling peevish anyway because the bartender called me "sir" which I whined about to my new pop-geek acquaintance Jodi Orino,

and buying a copy of Rabbit Rabbit's CD for $5 from their singer Louise(below), each with a custom cover and its own number (front and back covers shown above) , and running into Don Rook, Elevens booker and manager, in the street on the way out and talking about colonoscopys and stress tests and other unimaginable middle-age rites of passage (hey kids, it comes up quick), and seeing two cops looking suspiciously at some legs sticking out of a parked car, and walking by Kathy's Diner where through the window I saw Kathy's son (whose sweat drips and sizzles on the grill as he cooks) was about to open up for the late night post bar-closing crowd (Jakes's used to open at 1AM in the '80s and after seeing the Pajama Slave Dancers at Sheehan's or dancing at the North Star, we'd end our nights there with breakfast and sleep til noon the next day), and coming home to blabber about it here and go to bed. I have to write some poems on Sunday because I don't think my old one's are going to cut it for the reading this Wednesday night at Forbes Library. Things are either very right or very wrong. I should have known it might go this way when my 12 year old brother Tom commented this morning that he preferred the Guitar Hero vocals on "Sweet Child O' Mine" to Axl Rose's.


Alison said...

Sounds like a perfect evening

Mary E.Carey said...

You have a 12-year-old brother?

Anonymous said...

"On Your Feet Or On Your Knees" by BOC was my first album and first concert. I love your blog Jim! Pearl Street Jay.

Anonymous said...

Judas Priest rulezzzz