Monday, January 07, 2008

Slam the Dance - Whomp the Garland

The glitter fest continues and I am growing sick of it all but there have been some good moments. One of the best was when a sassy coworker in Atlanta said to me, "Excuse my language but you whomped the hell out of that garland." It's nice to know that I can still whomp a garland when necessary.

Today I whomped the hell out of an upside down Christmas tree suspended from the ceiling. It required that I stare directly into the downward stream of glitter and sequins dispensed by fake white glitter pine that sheds freely.

At the top of a ten foot ladder, with glitter and other crap falling down on me, I remembered the first time I did something like that. It was around 1992 and I was in the Atlanta mart. The showroom manager there (who has become a second mother to me) said that she could not believe "...that a slam dancer could make something so pretty." Why was I known as a slam dancer? Not sure. Did I slam dance? Yes. But on any regular basis? No. Just when out seeing a band that prompted it. I guess I dressed the part. Black corduroy jeans, Comet Tavern shirt, brown and black flannel coat and doc martins (all of which are still in my closet btw) but that was fashion more than lifestyle.

Speaking of going out, I went out in the gayborhood this weekend. I ended up at the horrible dance place. Not the one that has the mix of straights and gays and where the average age is about 24. The other one. Around the corner. Where the average age is higher, the air is thicker with smoke, but the crowd does the same thing. They take off their shirts and they dance, dance, dance. I did not. Slam or otherwise. I just hate the music. I can't dance to music I hate. It renders immobility. And when the crowd let out a whoop for an ABBA song and I actually heard someone scream "It's ABBA!" I moaned. Why does anyone get excited for an ABBA song? Hasn't everyone on the planet had ample opportunity to hear, dance and sing to ABBA by now?

At that moment I could not decide:

1. Am I just too old and jaded for this scene?
2. Am I just too cynical for this scene?
3. Does this bar just especially suck?
4. Why can't I just come here and have fun with abandon like all the other revelers?
5. But then again, hasn't it always been this way for me?

As gay as I am, I have never liked the "gay dance bar" -- mostly because of the music-- but there were other reasons as well. And even though I am far too old to still be working out issues like this, I wonder, why did that scene never appeal to me? Couldn't I just put my musical taste aside for the evening and experience the energy of the place?

That certainly didn't work the time I tried the Black and Blue Ball in Montreal. Drugs were the only answer to make that experience enjoyable. It was so incredibly boring to me.

I still giggle when I hear thumbing bass from my neighbor upstairs as he prepares for an evening out. He'll play some sort of Beyonce remix. I was never that. I guess I was never really a slam dancer either.

The only question that is really important to me now is- after all these years, why haven't I found all the other gay men like me? I remember when I used to find them at "The Bar" in the East Village. But that place is now a roach invested Coyote Ugly wannabe. Where have they all gone?

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