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Sunday, July 27, 2008

Would You Like Some Pants?

Where does the time go? The weekend passed as the weekends in Nordeast Minneapolis do – surrounded by friends, events, outdoor grilling. And laundry. The inevitable and omnipresent laundry.

But what is play without work?

Vinnie is back in town, this time for good. Jen’s husband of almost a year now, Vinnie is a recent addition to the US of A, an immigrant from the London area. His grasp of English is really quite good, and we expect great things from him. Welcome, Vin, ya wanker!

I love hanging out with Jen and Vin. They’re one of those couples that make you feel smarter. That, and Vin says things like “How are you, my love?” and “Can I get you another beer?” Lovely.

And it was a good weekend for strange questions. Like this one from Kathy: “Would you like some pants, hon?”

I don’t think I’ve been asked that before. I’ve been asked about where I got my pants, I’ve been asked to remove my pants, but I don’t think I’ve ever had the host of a get-together ask me if I’d like a pair of pants.

Now that’s how you know you’ve been to a party!

But it’s not like there wasn’t a reason for the question. After spending a couple hours at Dusty’s, a local well with live music, cheap beer, and no cover, we went back to Kurt and Kathy’s house – where I promptly sat in a chair on their deck that had not had the contents of an earlier downpour removed. In other words, I sat, in my cream-colored shorts, in a small pond. I leapt up, of course, but the damage had been done. I was soaked from the knees to half-way up my back. This produced a lot of laughter, my own included, but I am still plotting revenge, Kurt. I am still plotting my revenge.

Saturday afternoon included a hunt for Dolly G. Squeakers (formerly of the Humane Society Squeakers) whom we believed had gotten outdoors. Brian and I searched for her for almost two hours. I was walking through the park near our house looking for her and calling “heeeeeere, kitty kitty kitty kitty”, when a woman on a park bench asked me another strange question: “Are you looking for a cat?”

“Yes,” I said, “Have you seen her?”

“No,” she said, “I was just wondering.”

I had to give her one of those looks, of course. The Stink Eye, I like to call it. You were wondering why I was calling “heeeeeeere kitty kitty kitty kitty”? Did you think it was because I was looking for a dog?

After two hours of frantic searching, kitty-kitty-kittying in the park, up and down the alleys, and describing our little delinquent to neighbors, Dolly G. was found asleep under a bed. The little bugger was under a bed, despite having been called for over and over again in the house (where any good cat search starts). Here I’d been picturing her wandering the streets, muttering to herself in that toothless way she has, being hit up by street kitties for bus fare. She will go without kibble for this one!

Saturday was also the 3rd Annual Bearded Lady Motorcycle Rally, held just outside of the 331 (corner of 13th and University). I got up there late and was surprised to recognize so many people. I saw John first, of course, as he must be, like, 8 feet tall. OK, maybe not 8, but six and a half, surely. John, Lisa, Kurt, Kathy, Kurt (The Other Kurt, aka The Other White Meat), Jean, Amy, Connie, Mike, Paul, Jen and Vin. Le Cirque Rouge burlesque show was performing on a tented stage in the 331 parking lot – which made for a lot of screeching brakes on University. You have to wonder what the drivers-by thought, glancing casually to the right, to the left, to the woman wearing tiny panties and the bright red star-shaped pasties over her nipples as she shimmies across the stage... SCREEEEEEEECH! We heard it more than once, which, of course, is very funny – especially if you’ve been drinking, which, of course, we had. Anyway, if you’ve never seen Le Cirque Rouge, and you like adorable, gradually-mostly-naked chicks with surprisingly accomplished singing voices, you need to go. They sing, they dance, and host Amy Buchanan is both cute and funny. The 3D show and strip (and yes, it requires those red-eye/green-eye 3D glasses that they pass out) at the end of the show is a hoot. I recommend that you get as close to the stage as you can. Jen, Amy, and I, sitting on the warm tar of the parking lot, dodged spiders, balls, and a nylon stocking which actually appeared to come at us and get hung up on our heads. We hollered, we howled, we called out for more.

Sometimes the audience is almost as much a part of the show as the show itself.

Walking home, we found a perfect spot outside the Ritz Theatre to watch the fireworks from the Aquatennial, which was just finishing up downtown. The bikes – Harleys, Indians, Vespas, every kind of bike I can think of and many I can’t – lined 13th Street, and we stood with their owners, all of us watching the fireworks. There was applause at the end.

From there, back to Kurt and Kathy’s deck where there was ice-cold beer and random liquor (previous party leftovers). Amy’s Jeff and my Brian joined us and we ended the night with a three-hour party on the deck. As usual, the discussions were lively: low-blood pressure, Top Gear, Guitar Hero, the Fannie Mae rescue, P-funk and the rightful place of Bootsie Collins in the ranking of bass players, Prince’s last concert, our recommended timetable to pull out of Iraq, and the merits of cocktail wienies versus barbequed meatballs.

I’m pretty sure we solved many of the world’s problems last night. I just hope someone wrote it down this time.

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