“Charlie’s is the best fucking bar, man! You can get so much titty action there! Well, Levi can. I don’t got game.”
I overhear this, walking in front of a small pack of boisterous men and headed up 4th Avenue in Olympia, looking for a 24-hour coffee bar I know is up here somewhere. I’m also looking for my girlfriend and trip-mate Jasmine who was not allowed into my husband’s rock concert on account of misplaced identification (sad times!).
“She’s got more game than me,” the breast-aficionado indicates yours truly. Ladies know this ritual well: a male stranger, bringing you into a conversation on an awkward or slim segue. It’s usually harmless; it’s usually friendly. I return communication in that spirit, because I do not assume guys are unilateral creeps, or that they don’t have the right to talk to me. He compliments my fishnets. I tell him they can be his for $1 at Wal-mart. He tells me I wear them better than he could. I ask if he knows where the coffee bar is. He walks me to it and manages to shoehorn in several colorful Olympia facts as well as saying there’s “nothing to fucking do around here.” “I take it you live here,” I say, and after his assent I tell him: “I’m from little old Hoquiam, and I like visiting a lot.”
If I’m out during nightlife, I get hit on, yeah. I think I get hit on because I am a content and happy city-goer. I like talking to strangers. More than that, I love going to music (especially Ralph’s), and I love eating food in the city, and I love the summer night and what it’s doing to my mood, and I love that I took Jasmine out to lunch and the spa and we had a wonderful time – even if her plans to watch a show were derailed. I am ecstatically happy for a free night while my kids are out with other grownups – my daughter with my mother, my son home having pizza and recording music with a friend of Ralph’s. I am happy, but also the world seems spinning so fast it might throw me off entirely, at least where my children and my paths have momentarily diverged.
Redbird Fever‘s set was a good one; I was touched by the friends who came, many from a 1 or 2 hour drive away, and the unexpected and pleasant surprise of Ralph’s old bandmate I hadn’t seen in nine or so years.
Small town; good times.