Soundbytes, a la Gigs


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A couple weeks ago some friends and I went to a gig. It was really fun and a little bit unpredictable. We had planned to see a friend of a friend of the friends with whom I went. The venue had a lot of interesting posters with trannies on them and announcements for the gay community. Some of the other audience members were clearly men dressed as women, but they were beautiful, but not entirely convincing. My friends looked a little nervous, but a gig is a gig is a gig. I figured it’d be music. The kind of music, I couldn’t even guess, but the friend of a friend of my friends was performing, and we knew she was a singer/songwriter. The friend of a friend of my friends was only a part of the show, and I learned that the main performer threw a birthday party and invited the public to hear him and his friends sing for his birthday. The music was quite entertaining. The personalities were cool; the songs were catchy; the talent was phenomenal. Even though the first act came out wearing a straight jacket, I knew we, with our pure minds and untainted sensibilities, had nothing to worry about.

The opportunities for live music in New York City are virtually endless. If I could afford to go every night, I would go somewhere different every night. Or maybe the same place for every night of the week. I’d probably save Thursday or Saturday for The Living Room. I’ve been to the Bowery Ballroom and Arlene’s Grocery and Piano’s and CBGB’s and The Bitter End and Madison Square Garden and the Knitting Factory and the Alphabet Lounge and Caffe Vivaldi and Town Hall and the Beacon Theatre. I’ve been to the Albatross in Queens and Pete’s Candy Store in Brooklyn and some place I don’t remember the name of deep in Williamsburg. Then they have Central Park and Bryant Park and The River to River Festival and the Siren Music Festival at Coney Island.

And for classical music? Bryant Park and the bandshell in Central Park and Juilliard and the Metropolitan Opera House and Avery Fisher Hall and Carnegie Hall and the corner by the escalators to the 4-5-6 line in Grand Central Station, not to mention the Metropolitan Museum of Art and all the churches that host free concerts.

That doesn’t even begin to scratch the surface.

And I’m not about to hyperlink all the places I mentioned.

Over the past five years, I’ve kept my eyes and ears open. I scoured the free city newspapers. I researched online. I listened to what my friends like and noticed who those bands listened to, and then I made informed decisions according to my tastes. I’ve seen a few bands I didn’t really care for, but for the most part, I cannot get enough or over the incredible talent. I heart music, especially here because I’ve put so much effort into finding what I heart. I heart New York. I heart the life it gave me. Will I have to give it back?

100 Things about My Birthday Month of Dates

Review of the event

Today is the last day of my celebratory dating month. Here are some thoughts and observations on the experience.

1.    I went on 7 dates this month; 7 doesn’t equal 32.

2.    But 7 is considerably greater than zero.

3.    4 of those dates were to museums. Creative much?

4.    The number of museums in the city lessened the chances of my attending the same museum twice.

5.    Staying on the 6 train past the last stop is more of an adventure than I thought.

6.    I really like watching movies that prompt a lot of discussion afterward.

7.    My last date was different. It was nice.

8.    There’s a lot that has to be said for chemistry. Who knew.

9.    Guys are competitive, especially toward the end of the month. They asked what kinds of things the previous guys did with me.

10.  Sidewalk chalk really dries out my hands.

11.  Guys need to be better planners.

12.  The non-museum dates were the ones best planned.

13.  Have a place in mind where we could eat, guys; I’m not usually down with wandering until we find a place.

14.  I don’t mind walking and talking, though.

15.  I still prefer darker hair to blonds.

16.  Some guys really like to talk a lot.

17.  It’s hard to have a conversation with a guy who’s in his own head all the time.

18.  Most of the guys were very present during our dates.

19.  Most of the dates lasted 2-3 hours.

20.  Most of the conversations were really good.

21.  Guys generally function much better when food is in their tummies.

22.  I would go out with any of the guys again.

23.  The guys wouldn’t ask me out again, at least not without nudging.

24.  They were all gentlemen, letting me walk ahead of them, opening doors for me.

25.  The guys wouldn’t ask out other girls, either, at least not without the elbow-poke.

26.  Well, I could think of two who would ask other girls out. Maybe three.

27.  That’s a good thing, because goodness knows guys around here need to date more.

28.  The guys were cute.

29.  I was pleased that none of the guys were shorter than me.

30.  The guys didn’t smell bad.

31.  The guys wore clothes.

32.  The guys were smart.

33.  The guys all gave me hugs to greet me and fare me well.

34.  The guys all had quite different personalities.

35.  One was more bohemian and is interested in filmmaking and writing a comic book.

36.  One is a consultant but really loves computers.

37.  One writes musicals.

38.  One is an acoustics engineer.

39.  One will be going back to school to get his Masters in organizational psychology.

40.  One works for an airline and aspires to be a comedian.

41.  Careers having nothing to do with personalities.

42.  One is a little rough around the edges, but he flirts well and is sensitive to a conversation.

43.  One is more introspective and needs a moment to warm up to a conversation.

44.  One is more introverted but intelligent and conversation comes easily to him.

45.  One is a natural, unforced talker who can speak to just about anyone like an old friend.

46.  One is all boy who has seen the world but not much of life. He listens well, though.

47.  One is fun-loving who doesn’t initiate conversation very assertively.

48.  It’s easier to flirt with one guy at church than on an actual date.

49.  Each guy has varying amounts of arm hair.

50.  All of them have amazing eyes.

51.  Pretty good hair, too.

52.  Did I mention the planning?

53.  It was easier to talk more personally with some than others.

54.  It was easier to feel I could trust some more than others.

55.  None of them seemed to come from perfect families.

56.  Which relieved me, for some reason.

57.  I like men’s shoulders.

58.  And hands.

59.  And strong brows.

60.  And boyish ways. Sometimes.

61.  It was sometimes easier to act like a child than to start a conversation. I’m talking about me, here.

62.  It was sometimes nice to have moments of silence between us.

63.  I like talking about my favorite books, movies, and music.

64.  I like talking about writing, sometimes.

65.  I like talking to a person as if I’ve always known him.

66.  I really like when a guy takes charge. My roommate and I were watching an episode of Little House where Charles Ingalls and Jonathan Garvey and Adam were being very, very manly. Sticking up for themselves; sticking up for their families. I almost couldn’t contain myself. I was “this” close to French kissing the television.

67.  These guys could have taken a bit more charge, in some ways. They’re still boys in this regard.

68.  The guys seemed to appreciate my personality.

69.  Okay, maybe two knew how to flirt; the others, while pleasantly talkative, went nowhere into flirt territory.

70.  No one took me dancing, though one place had live music where we ate. And live music in a museum, and live music outside of museums. Way to cover bases, guys.

71.  One is from California; one is from Idaho; one is from Oklahoma; one is from Arizona; one is from Utah; one is from Pennsylvania.

72.  You see lists of six everywhere, I’ve had seven dates. That’s because one took me out twice.

73.  Twice. The documentation is in Sunday’s entry.

74.  I do not know what a second date means.

75.  Much of my dating does not get past the first date.

76.  The weather has been lovely for each of the dates.

77.  The first and last dates were guys I hadn’t spent much time with at all.

78.  All the guys love New York.

79.  All the guys have musical or artistic ability.

80.  Three would be fun to dance with.

81.  All would be nice to cuddle with.

82.  All gave really nice hugs.

83.  I didn’t find out if they could make me belly laugh.

84.  I need a guy who can make me belly laugh.

85.  I could take three rock climbing, not necessarily the same three who’d be fun to dance with.

86.  I’ve imagine what our babies would look like with each of the guys. (If any of them is reading this right now, there goes any chance of future dates.)

87.  The babies would look SO cute, by the way.

88.  I’ve learned not to be as distracted during a date – NOT to look at my watch.

89.  I really felt like myself on each of the dates.

90.  I didn’t realize I could talk so much.

91.  To GUYS.

92.  Because I have never talked much with my own father. But I talk just fine to my brother.

93.  It was really nice getting to know these guys better.

94.  It gave me some clarity as to what I should look for in a relationship.

95.  I liked that I could talk church with all of them.

96.  I liked that I wasn’t inclined to share too much information, except when a guy admitted he might be getting a bit too personal sharing parts of his life.

97.  Guys could shave, but I don’t mind a little bit of scruff, as long as it grows evenly. Patchiness is weird.

98.  Everyone’s eyebrows were nicely groomed.

99.  This is one of Becky’s most brilliant ideas. I felt like The Total Queen of the Dating Dream Realm of Fantastitude. With a real crown and everything. And a special scepter.

100.               This has been one of the funnest months of my life. Seven dates in one month: Aww yeeeaah!