Wednesday, July 6, 2011

good music, great music, really really great music

After carrying on endlessly about how wonderful the Holmes Brothers are, I finally saw them play again last night, for the first time in over ten years.  They don't play in New York that often, and sometimes it's at places I can't afford at the time, but still, I should have managed at some point in all those years.  Anyway, they certainly didn't hold it against me.  They may be the tightest, most diverse, and most purely entertaining band I know.  I'm not sure why it is that I'm getting older and they're just getting better, especially since I believe they're all past 70 now.  I was really spoiled in the 80s when I got to see them a couple of times a month.  Hard to believe that I used to carry the tip can for those guys at the ever-sleazy Dan Lynch Tavern (former scuzzy home of the blues in NYC).  And I used to go to some horrendous places to hear them, although it was mostly at Lynch's.  They'd play there one or two Saturday nights a month, just pack the place, and Sherman always said that if any guy hassled me too much, I could say he was my boyfriend.  I used that a few times and it worked really well. 

This Friday, Los Lobos are playing in Prospect Park, another very talented and diverse band.  And I have a terrible crush on David Hidalgo (file under Attractive Chicano Men).

I guess that thing about Sexy Jewish Men was a little silly, since the truth is that there are sexy men of every race, creed and color.  And as much as it makes sense that I did eventually marry a Jewish man, it still kind of surprises me.  I never really thought that way when I dated.  I knew that a guy was this or that, Jewish or Catholic or Protestant, Irish or German or African-American, my age or significantly older, and I appreciated all of the differences and nuances of each.  Good things to be said about all of them.  But it wasn't as if I would think, when I was dating a Jewish guy, "This might lead to something," or when I was dating a non-Jewish guy, "This won't go all the way."  For a large part of my life, I was actually not convinced that I would ever get married, although there were two men I did think about that way over all those years.  The first was German-American and older (I was 20), and the second was my age and African-American (I was 35). 

And speaking of the guy I wanted to marry when I was 35...I guess I owe it to him that I wasn't in the middle of Hurricane Katrina.  In mid-1994, after he had gigged in New Orleans, he started telling me about how much he loved it there, how much he could work there and how cheap it was to live, and that we should think about moving down there together.  We had actually planned a vacation trip down there to check it out, and I was thinking about getting a graduate degree at Tulane (this was about a year after I got my B.A., and grad school was much on my mind).  About a week after proposing this New Orleans thing, he broke up with me, saying he didn't want to get too seriously involved with anyone.  Commitment problems, you think?  So, I've still never been to New Orleans and managed to miss Katrina.  Still, I'm not really sure I ought to thank him...

I'm rereading The Right Stuff on my Kindle, one of my favorite books ever.  (I love the movie almost as much.)  I don't feel much about the Space Shuttle era coming to an end, but I have a real sweet tooth for anything about Mercury, Gemini or Apollo.  Not to mention, of course, that Tom Wolfe is a pretty amazing writer.  Reading the book is almost like watching a documentary film rather than reading non-fiction; it's vivid and wildly entertaining.

Even with all of the health stuff and still feeling financial pressure (I have a decent job, to be sure, but it's still one salary supporting two people), I always feel blooming in the summer.  It's my first full summer with my great summer wardrobe and trying on a particular style of dress/grooming, and I actually feel somewhat attractive for the first time in a great while.  I know people who will go to great lengths to feel attractive, which is not me, but I'm pleased when I'm comfortable and feel good about myself and it also affects other people.

Apropos of nothing:  I got a LinkedIn invitation from V's wife.  huh?  I have problems with her as well as with him, although he was my friend first and closest, and the break was primarily with him.  But it's really odd to be approached by her at this time and in this way.  She actually could have extended herself to me professionally around three years ago, when I lost a job in the same field that she works in, but she never did.  She never extended herself when I broke with V; she had always been supportive of our friendship, but according to him, she totally blocked our last effort to reach out.  I'm very curious;  Barry says, Ignore it.  V was always someone who hurt my feelings unintentionally, by not thinking, but she was mean at times and told stories and badmouthed me and accused me of lying.  Were we dear friends at times?  you bet.  Would that have been the case without V?  doubtful.

Anyway, this is me, trying to let it go....

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