5.04.2008

At least there's a window open before we die

Last night I went to a club that could be described as a divey deathtrap, a divey deathtrap that made me very happy.

At the beginning of the night, Charlie and I bought little bottles of Jägermeister in a corner store. Walking out, I said to him, "That just summed up my entire month here."

The man behind the counter had looked at me while ringing us up and said something. He started laughing, I started laughing, Charlie smiled, and we left. With no clue as to what we'd been laughing and smiling about.

"Honey," Charlie said, "Try my entire YEAR." I know he's exaggerating, though. I've seen him speaking in German; He can even say big numbers though he admits that they are traumatic.

I cannot say my address. I live at #64 but it's physically impossible for me to say that number. The one time I took a taxi, I tried to say it but my whole face got a cramp so I wrote it for the driver on an imaginary air chalkboard.

We got to the club - and illegal space that was unlicensed and unregulated, we literally crawled through some bushes to find it - while Mona was doing video. I stood by the mix position and stared at her images flashing against the wall. Later, I would be wedged between that video wall and a speaker.

I was careful not to hit the speaker while dancing since it was mounted on the same kind of rickety tripod I used for my High School Musical teleprompter screens, only these tripods didn't have a counterweight hanging for stability. Unless you count the guy who stood in front of the speaker with his eyes closed, hands spread across the mesh.

Ecstasy: Feel a love like you've never felt before. For whatever is right in front of you.

I kept dancing, in this style: Hi, hands? Have you met my hips? Have you guys decided to be Egyptian or Brazilian? Why don't you throw in some 80s bouncing just to keep it interesting?

My corner of the stage happened to be next to the only window in the deathtrap. High on the wall, covered in bars, people kept trying to stand on things to get some air. One couple, who'd been pawing each other on the dance floor came over for air and got distracted in my corner.

And I've got nothing against third base, I APPLAUD third base, but you should probably do that in private. No one needs to see the fur flying like that.

Sweat is pouring down my back. I've bunched my knee socks around my ankles and my arm warmers around my wrists. I really hope that my favorite wool jacket is still under a pile of coats behind the DJ booth but I definitely don't need it right now.

"The air is not working," I hear, "It's, like, kaput."

I open my eyes and see a boy in red tracksuit pants, a holey black t-shirt hanging in shreds, and a blond mohawk. He has the thickest German accent you can imagine. Think Mike Myers' Saturday Night Live character, Dieter.

I nod my head. He carries a black wooden fan and fans himself while he bounces around. He fans me for a minute, I thank him, and he disappears.

Later, the sun is starting to come up and he's back. He looks up at the window and says, "Can you feel that luft?" I nod. He fans me once more and goes, "At least there's a window open before we die." And is gone.

And I'm totally struck by that. Yes, my little mohawked friend, AT LEAST THERE'S A WINDOW OPEN BEFORE WE DIE. It could sound morbid but I think it's beautiful.

It was a perfect exchange: no stupid questions, no invasion of personal space, just a nice gesture and a little dance floor poetry. And poof.

4 comments:

zan said...

Yet again the perfect story from your slice of this great world. But you should have no problems remembering how to say 64, one of the best numbers to say out loud in German: just remember "fear and sexy."

And I dare you not to smile every single time.

Guess Who said...

You're making me nervous with talk of deathtraps!

ronckytonk said...

mom: Hi! Look, I'm fine! woo!

ronckytonk said...

zan: thank you for the precious gift you have just given me. fear and sexy from now on.