The Midnight Doorway Soul Revue

7 11 2010

I didn’t really have a requiem for the passing of summer yet. Not that I usually do, but with plays and music and general busy-ness I don’t feel like it should be the first week of November without some sort of wake for warmth. Well, in an odd bit of appropriate-ness, a wake was indeed held last night. “Her Wake”, as a matter of fact, a one act play set in Cape Breton with two old biddies gossiping at the wake of a friend of theirs. Hilarious!

But that really didn’t send off summer in style or with any appropriateness. That sort of happened by accident. See, I’m walking downtown, Saturday night in November in a university and college town, marvelling on the 20,000 students downtown, fully 10,000 of whom were displaying the cleavage of 20,000 boobs, and between those 20,000 boobs there were over 9.5 million goose bumps for there were only three sensible coats between them.It’s a scene borne out all winter and with the plummeting temperatures the plummeting necklines become more absurd. Style over substance indeed.

So being over 30 I was invisible to students with any non-zero blood alcohol level apart from being a dark blob that needs avoidance, a non-issue as most are standing outside the insanely popular dance club that is so exclusive a place that Our Nation’s Future will queue semi-naked in freezing temperatures to be seen semi-naked inside a packed and loud dance club to semi-nakedly imbibe roofie-laden drinks by the score which will be later vomited in a semi-naked manner at the base of parking meters without the benefit of a puffy coat to cushion the piece of asphalt on which they lay until the universe stops spinning, at which time they head back, semi-naked, to residence, promptly forget all bad things, reminisce on the great time they had and decide which jacket they won’t wear next week. And that’s just the guys.

The only eyes that focus on me are those of the beefy security detail whose collective wary glare unanimously expresses, “oh crap, I hope that old fart doesn’t try to get in.” Worry not, boys. I pass by.

My attention is caught by a guitar and some noise coming from a doorway. A guitar and banjo, as a matter of fact. With a couple of amps and microphones, they’ve actually set up shop. Gotta say, all the songs sound pretty much the same, but I can’t really appreciate what it would be like to play with icy fingers. But a valiant attempt is made to take requests and I am dancing and singing along to “Moondance”. No open guitar case for change collection here.  They’ve taken a plastic tub and outfitted it with a flashy LED thing to call attention to the location, adding a “Change Welcome” sign to aid the terminally obtuse. In deference to the harsh realities of the street, they’ve fastened a wire grid over the tub so change goes in, but fingers do not.

And so, at midnight, I find myself singing and dancing and blissfully unaware of the semi-naked students who are looking at me through shivers thinking I’m crazy. I’m outside, and I’m feeding on the vibe built on the energy they bring and I dance to the night sky and the evening that passed, to the seasons gone and imminent and it’s not much, but for a moment I am alive and happy and that’s enough. I get out of Dodge before the barfing starts.