Just about got my hearing back from last night’s Living Colour show at Johnny D’s. It was my fifth or sixth time seeing the band live – including the very first Lollapalooza tour, because I’m that old – and they blew the f@#king roof off the place. First came all the hits—“Glamour Boys,” “Open Letter to a Landlord” (which I wanted desperately to record for my man Josh, but I forgot my goddam camera), “Middle Man,” “Desperate People”—then they played their new disc, “The Chair in the Doorway”—in its entirety. And it’s every bit as good as the classic stuff.
The best thing about seeing a show at a standing room only joint like Johnny D’s is the politics of “jockeying for position” that goes on. In fact, I took a brief cataloguing of the audience last night, and I was happy to see that all the typical concert types were in attendance. These include:
Unchained Accountant: Or commodities broker. Or bank manager. Either way, you know the guy. Late 40s, early 50s. Rocking the dress pants and shoes. Starts doing that bizarre, side-to-side body thrusting once the music starts. Terrified that some of the kids from the mailroom might be there to see him “cut loose,” corporate style.
The Die-hards: The folks who show up early to plant themselves at the stage, spend the entire show recording and snapping photos and Tweeting about how close they are to the lead singer’s balls.
The Opportunists: These are the “lingerers” who stay back, waiting for someone with a more choice location to go for a beer, then move in to grab their spot.
The Quiet One: The dude who just kinda stands there, not moving, hands in pockets, staring straight at the stage. Thinking about the band or how he’s going to exact revenge on everyone who wedgied him in high school.
Guy Who Tries to Impress His Chick By Weasling Her Through the Crowd to a Standing Spot Closer to the Stage: Because, really, there’s nothing anyone loves more than some spikey-haired buffoon with a popped collar nudging his way into his or her space as his drunken ladypal bobs and weaves to the music. There’s a better way to do this: Being over six feet tall, I typically stand near the back of the venue, or in front of a pole or somethin’, where I’m not blocking anyone’s view. Sometimes a short chick will ask if she can get up on my shoulders for a better vantage point, and I always oblige. Not just for the cheap feel, mind you, but because it’s important that everyone have a chance to see the musicians. Although the cheap feel is pretty awesome.
Did I miss any? Let me know.
Anyway, our good friends, the Rays, come to town tonight. And I’m sure there’s nothing they’d like more than to play spoiler as we try to hurl ourselves across the finish line. With Lester vs. Small Game James, I like our chances.
That said, I have a feeling that the final weeks of the season are going to be an endless swirl of nausea, heartbreak, ecstasy, gin-guzzling and nails-across-the-blackboard torment. Not just for the women in my life. For all of us. It’s like that episode of Lost where Ben tells Kate that he wants her to put on a pretty dress and have a nice breakfast because the next few weeks are going to be very unpleasant. We’re going to have to grind it out for that playoff spot. Good thing we’ve got a team full of grinders.
And ditto on Denton’s post from earlier today: “Don’t let them win. Don’t ever forget.” My boss was supposed to be on that first plane that hit the Towers. A few days before her flight, our travel manager got a voucher for a different airline, and changed her itinerary. We’re glad she’s still with us, and today gives us another opportunity to think about how fortunate she was, and how our world–everyone’s world–has changed since that fateful day.