Sunday, April 28, 2024

Waiting Around

First off. . . my mother is feeling fine.  I sat with her yesterday, made meals, and just generally kept her company.  Her neighbors all stopped by to see how she was and to tell me I'm a good son.  I might be.  Concussion protocol is to rest for 48 hours after bumping your noggin.  Her 48 will be up sometime this morning.  Still, I will sit with her awhile and will make us another scrumptious meal tonight.  

Such is my life.  

I got a text from my band's old drummer who lives out in S.F. yesterday morning.  It was a group text to me and my colleague from the factory who was also in the band.  A band we used to like, who really got us our first club gigs, was having a reunion at a bar owned by a fellow who used to play drums in a band we let open for us some nights.  So said the screen grab our drummer sent.  

How do people know this stuff?  He lives in S.F. and knows this.  It must have been a grab from a FaceBook page.  I never know anything until the day after it happens no matter if it is a protest, a parade, a political event, hooker night at the sports stadium. . . whatever.  I NEVER know.  

The bar is not so far from my house, and I said that maybe I would swing by to see them.  The screen shot said that table seating was sold out, but I figured, being who I am, I could whisper in the club owner's ear and get backstage to see the band.  I told the drummer that if I went, I'd take at least a phone snap.  

"Be sure to wear a biker jacket, shit kickers and scowl!" the drummer said.  

That's how the crowds we played for used to dress.  It was the era.  

"Ha!  I'll be in shorts and flip flops."

"Jimmy Buffet gear. No skinny ties for you man," said my old roommate colleague, always quick with a putdown.  

"Nope.  I won't have on short shorts with a belt, no mustache, and I won't have on boat shoes without socks nor a tucked in flowered shirt."

"What about a checkered shirt?"

"All I have now are t-shirts and linen shorts." 

And I sent the picture above.  That is it now.  That is what I wear most days.  I haven't much else anymore.  It is one of the privileges of living in the Sunny South.  That photo is from Christmas, just days before.  All those snowy Christmas scenes are nice to look at and even go to visit, but my blood has thinned here in the land of sunshine.  I'm a lazy boy.  I hate getting dressed.

But I didn't go to hear the band.  After sitting with my mother and cooking dinner and sitting out with her until it was dark, I had no desire to go out.  I came home to sit on the couch, drink a little drink, and watch one of those airplane in-flight romcom movies that I wouldn't tell you the name of on a bet.  It would be too embarrassing, but it made me really very happy.  And I mean, it was really stupid.  Sometimes you just need stupid, I guess.  It can't all be Nietzsche, Kierkegaard, and Sartre.  There needs to be a little light fun.  

Other texts came in yesterday, too.  My friend who moved to the midwest was flying to Brussels and then on to Bruges for a beer festival.  WTF?  The girl hasn't been home for a week at a time since she left, I think.  Her pop must have left her a good chunk of money when he died, and she is not sitting on it "waiting around to die," as they say.  Nope.  And she's a lone traveller, too.  She's been that way since I first met her some twenty years ago.  She'll just take off, not telling anyone until she sends pictures from parts unknown.  A real adventurer, that gal.  

I've always said she likes "rough trade."  She laughs but doesn't deny it.  

Then, there was a text from Sky sending tales from Japan.  She's been on the road working for weeks, she said, and decided to take a little vacation there.  Japan!  I'm out of my mind with envy.  She says she is infatuated with it--not her words, but my takeaway.  I'm waiting on her tales of exploration and adventure.  

While I sit at home.  Everybody's everywhere and I am nowhere.  That's how I feel here at five o'clock in the morning, unable to sleep.  What the fuck happened, anyway?  

Oh. . . yea.  

Well, there are plenty of ways to go.  Here's a song the legendary Townes Van Zandt wrote.  There are any number of movies about him.  For whatever reason.  He wasn't well known outside a certain musicians' circle, but almost every folk and country performer had hits with the songs he wrote, and now, long after his death, he has inspired something of a cult following.  Much, if not most, of his recorded music has been released after his death.  

Townes never imagined himself growing old, and many people who knew him well were surprised he lived as long as he did. “I think my life will run out before my work does, you know?” he said once. “But I've designed it that way.” Van Zandt was 52 when he died of a heart attack in 1997.

Writing here in the dark this morning with a cup of coffee, I think of this song.  I like it better than the Van Zandt version, but I feel that way about much of his recordings.  

You can’t get much bluer than a Townes Van Zandt song. His first real song is also his bleakest ballad, Waitin’ Around to Die, sung with a high straining whinny and twang: “Lots of booze and lots of ramblin’ / It’s easier than waitin’ around to die,” the refrain of “waitin’ around to die” eerily evolving as the song progresses from imagined possibility to reality.

 So. . . what am I doing?  What am I going to do?  In the past, I just had to sit and wait for the knock at the door.  I fool myself now thinking at least once more it will happen again.  It will, but it won't be the one I was hoping for.  

Tonight, you know. . . there is dinner with mother.  

"You're a good son." 

No comments:

Post a Comment