Last night, after the rain subsided, Matthew had a meeting, so I did a good stretch of what seems to be one of the best things to do here at the BLH, people watching. There was a diverse crowd of comers and goers, a mix with enough tall and attractive people to make me feel generally awkward, not uncomfortable, just aware of my unchanging, inch-beneath-average stature. As disparate as the crowd was in styles and scenes, it did serve as a reminder of the fact that large groups of people having a beverage tend to be happier than large groups of people doing anything else.
When the party finally started to disperse, with that observation in mind, Matthew and another buddy named Matt made our way to Ted’s Hideaway. There’s a story in our trip there, maybe something about the female bartenders who were, across the board, preposterously positive and the odd fact that I happened to spend a summer in college living in the same beach town in Maryland that two of the drink dispensers had, and maybe a bit about me pretending to remember how to speak Russian and failing miserably, and possibly a garrulous flourish about the couples slow-dancing to fast music or the guy with a mysterious winter scarf on.
But the real story is in our trip there, because the following four minutes* somehow tied together the Haitian tragedy, a pop music sensation, Philadelphia, Miami, and the therapeutic powers of song:
If you’re wondering why I used a picture of Speedy Gonzalez, it’s because that was the pseudonym our driver gave after a farewell hand-shake and a deep-eye-contact refrain of the simple words, “Philly boy, man”. Also if you’re wondering if that’s him singing along and yelling throughout the entire end of the ride, it is.
*The recording was much longer, but I’m saving the Director’s Cut for my “Greatest Hits” album.