Saturday, July 13, 2024

My friend who went to rehab and I just saw for the first time in years in real life was the coach of a major international soccer team. They’d won a place in the Euro finals, but their top two players were injured, or unavailable for some other reason. I sat with him to talk. He asked me if I spoke German. “Nur ein bisschen,” I replied. And we exchanged a few words in German and that was the end.

Friday, February 10, 2023

I was going to the Super Bowl, and it was at the Link. I was late but someone held up three fingers to the crowd coming in. I understood that to mean the Eagles were up by a field goal. When I got to my seat I saw that the score was actually 4-2. I went to get a beer. The vendor was way high up in the stands. A woman was serving and a few fans milled around. I was wearing my Harold Carmichael jersey and a jacket. The jacket was kind of falling off my shoulders. The woman looked at me and said I should put my jacket more on. “Did she just call me a moron?” I asked the people around me. They sort of laughed. When I returned to my seat we were losing 12-4. We had the ball near the goal line but we fumbled. We kept trying to pick it up but player after player let it slip through his hands or out from under his body. M. R. and C. W. were at the game. I saw them in a section below me. I could hear them talking about how they needed to place a bet for their rich friend. I tried to text M. I kept trying to press the correct keys on my phone but it was impossible.

Wednesday, February 01, 2023

I hung out with Jerry Garcia at some house with people I knew milling around, a kind of communal place of the type we all used to live in. He made a reference to the Kinks at one point and I tried to engage him about them, saying they really were great, weren’t they? He responded distractedly, and I felt foolish. I was afraid I was boring him. I wondered whether he might like to play some tunes on guitars, wondered in fact whether that’s the only thing he might want to do. I never did get around to asking him.

Tuesday, January 31, 2023

There was a school bus waiting and Jimmy Page was the driver. You could optionally purchase a Led Zeppelin CD box set before climbing aboard but I declined. There weren’t many people there yet. I sat in the first row on the other side from Jimmy. I wasn’t quite myself. I settled in with my right foot resting on the sloping front of the wheel well and thought to myself what a pleasure it is to sit in this type of bus and put your foot on the wheel well. Jimmy sat lackadaisically, his knee up against the big steering wheel, waiting for the bus to fill up. He had long blond hair and seemed young.

Thursday, October 13, 2022

Toward the end of the party my foot began to bleed. The cut must have come from stepping on glass. It didn’t seem too bad. A few crimson streaks on the bathroom floor. I tried to wipe them all with toilet paper but I couldn’t quite do it. It was an indoor-outside party. Someone playfully jumped on my back and hung on around my neck for a while. I bounced up and down like you would for a little kid. I didn’t know this person. Someone else complained that they’d bought a new “spec version” of a MacBook. It was alright except it kept playing country music and it was driving them mad. “No fucking way!” I exclaimed. “There has got to be a setting for that!”

Sunday, August 28, 2022

I went to a concert on the afternoon of a workday but my boss was there too so it seemed OK. It was a pop act in a big coliseum, a female star. I sat in a great section that had been reserved by the agency. At intermission a group of New Orleans all stars took the stage, led by Dr. John. He launched into a slow “Friend of the Devil” with a shuffling New Orleans beat. It was remarkable how well suited the song was to it. There was another musician acting as the emcee and lead singer but before the first verse he walked into the crowd asking for volunteers to sing it. I wanted to but hesitated a moment. What if I couldn’t remember the words? I thought them through in my mind, I lit out of Reno, everything. But by then he’d chosen someone right beside me. I regretted not being more confident. The person did a so-so job, I was sure I would’ve done better. Then the emcee sang a great, powerful gospel tune.

Sunday, August 07, 2022

S., J., and I traveled back in time to see a Grateful Dead show I had gone to as a teenager. As we entered the auditorium I knew my younger self was there somewhere sitting with my friend Bill. I worried that if I encountered myself my entire life would change, Back to the Future style, and Jackie might not be born.