a cocky bouncer, two policemen, one passport, a tow truck, several very drunk swing dancers and one badly drawn boy.

as we crossed the damp street, christian grabbed my hand and asked if i had my i.d. my driver’s license was snuggly in my back pocket. we rounded the corner of neumo’s looking forward to the concert, and the warmth. i however was not looking forward to the smokiness that would linger in my hair and skin tomorrow…

a meathead bouncer sat atop his bar stool throne. his hair razored. his arms tatooed and his ears, lips and brow pierced. as licenses exchanged hands, the bouncer’s gaze faltered on the small piece of plastic. he descended his throne, only to examine the virginia driver’s license more closely under a black light (a skill i’m sure he mastered at some very high-techy-retro-urban seminar on “how to detect underage crashers.”) i offered mine… thinking maybe he just wasn’t used to what the virginia dmv issues. with both raised to the light he said with an emphatic air of authority, waving christian’s, “this one’s fake.”

he radioed for back up, returned to his seat and had us move to the side…

i thought for sure he must be kidding… for all practical and logical reasons, why would someone make a fake id making them eight years over 21?! and if someone actually had control over the picture on christian’s license, that would not have been their photo of choice.

we were quickly informed by backup bouncer that christian’s “doctored photo” id would not fly at neumos and that they would not give it back to him. it’s amazing how in the past two years, that license has gotten christian on nearly 20 flights, leaving from tight security airports like reagan, dulles, sky harbor and seattle. amazing that that license has been examined at various grocery stores and gaps and other establishments across the country to validate his credit card. what recourse did we have? i’m sure a job specification for bouncers is that they must be something akin to the backside of a donkey… but if you irritate them, they reserve the right to refuse service… meaning no refund for our $20 tickets that were purchased with a valid id. so we did what any law abiding citizen would do… we called 9-1-1.

i shivered on the corner and christian explained this was not an emergency… but within five minutes two seattle police cars pulled up. “who’s playing tonight?” the conversation was light… obviously we were over 21. obviously if we had a fake id we would not have called the police. obviously we would not have a sip of alcohol that night making the issue of our id’s a non-issue.

it went rather smoothly. law enforcement verified we were indeed well over the age limit. law enforcement left… leaving an underground form of marshall law in its wake. the aforementioned meathead refused to take our tickets or even look at us. “we don’t like your id.” sidekick bouncer said. my pleas to logic did nothing. the only alternative… go and get our passports.

we live just blocks from the club. in those few minutes of maneuvering seattle’s hills and roundabouts, my car started exhibiting odd behavior… but we were on a mission, prove meathead and sidekick bouncer wrong… and see badly drawn boy up close of course.

just two blocks from the club my car completely dies in an intersection. any attempt to revive it is fruitless… it starts. but it won’t go into gear. it won’t rev. it has become dead weight on a slick hill near 8th and pike. cranky drivers ignore my hazards and ignore the fact christian is pushing me and choose to honk at the situation. i choose to sob. he takes the steering wheel and is able to use the decline we were on to his advantage… sliding the car into a parked position.

armed with passports and leaving one casualty of the night behind… we cross that same damp street, getting wetter now.

bouncers one and two choose not to make eye contact with us. but we are in… and we wait for the main show. it’s small and roomier than say the 9:30 club or black cat. i’m amazed at the ease in which we are able to position ourselves within grasp of the stage… one bright spark in a very dark evening.

damon gough entered after an awkward wait. he approached the micrphone and with an eloquent british lilt, we learned his grandad had passed… funeral the next day… he… not dealing very well. but he played. and it was amazing… but we could have done without a few sideshows…

there were those nearby, who made us question the “bouncing” policy… a couple so drunk out of their brains that they decided to full body swing dance to every upbeat song, ramming into more sober counterparts. then there was the smashed guy who really felt the music and it showed in how he crashed into those around him and spilled beer on others. then there was the very masculine women who ploughed all of us to get to the stage, she then made somewhat guttural clicking noises and whistles at strange times…. she even interjected in slurred words what he should play next. in true british fashion he let her know exactly what she could do with that advice. there was also the guy just in front of us, looking like he had accidentally arrived at this concert thinking it was megadeath… he wore a tori amos concert shirt… and clogged the night away… he also made a little heart with both of his hands together, raised high in the air…

the night ended perfectly with a singer in a smoky room and a journey cover… in that moment i didn’t stop believing… even though my car was very much dead… even though i shivered inside it… waiting for the tow truck, while street light people wandered by…


4 thoughts on “a cocky bouncer, two policemen, one passport, a tow truck, several very drunk swing dancers and one badly drawn boy.

  1. >oh. my. word.robin, i am now insanely jealous, and only the fact that the rest of the night (minus the concert) was horrible is consoling me right now.you saw badly drawn boy? and sat right beneath him?so jealous. so, so utterly jealous.not that i’m letting it show, mind you.

  2. >Are you &$^%ing serious? That is most definitely NOT how things went. If you’d like more clarification on my personal stance regarding issues that night please email me at tstslkkity at aol dot com. I apologize, but your response to my actions that night are almost entirely a work of fiction. While I do appreciate the artistic liberty taken to produce a very evocative monolog, certain truths are strangely omitted. I think I owe you a free show based on sheer entertainment value alone. Hit me back.

  3. >Hilarious. If Christian’s picture on his Driver’s License is anything like his “Fetchers” shirt picture, than I’d agree with you Robin.

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