Friday, April 06, 2007

Hot Pink Tiger Stripe Camoflage

Despite delays, vows, curses and swearing.

After a day of dire decisions.

Beyond the molasses-traffic and trebled commute.

The Sun was in the west, shining, but dive-bombing still toward the Coastal Range across the rolling wine-soaked valley. Fuzzy fields of hops streamed by as we slipped south toward Salem.

Mrs. G&T was already there, 7 months pregnant, and only sniffing Inog's office-scotch. Fred and Fred's friend were with me, as was the Monkey. The babysitter having had irreparable inability to divine North from South, she actually ended up in the State of Washington before sussing her error.

In a pinch, the dynamic-duo spawn-of-Inog agreed to Monkey-sit for a spell, and so, we went as one along the smooth-paved lanes of Interstate-5. Being the bad parent that you all suspect, I fed, with back-seated Fred's assistance, cereal bars to the Monkey for dinner on the road, washed down with a tankard of "purple juice."

Though the Oregon Department of Transportation resides in the bureaucratic heart of Salem, and though ODOT has had the single-handed responsibility to design and maintain each and every highway in the state, there is actually no easy or direct route from the freeway to the city center. Thus, we meandered, all-jiggly-wiggly and wonkey-cornered, until at once we found ourselves with rock-star-like parking. We were in Salem. We were at Lefty's.

I swapped out the Monky with Mama, sank swiftly into the Naugahyde booth, poured beer and looked around.

Typical Salem crowd: a few cowboys, a few students, and hordes of government cubicle grunts.

Now, when it comes to Inog and entertainment shin-diggery, I know what to expect. The never-ending pitchers of good ale and fine flying platters of spicy pie, thus, came as no surprise. Still and all, the simple dining pleasures, combined with the warm glow of the beautiful people who hover toward him was comfortable indeed.

Ryan and Mrs. Ryan arrived in fine form. The Queen of the Faeries flitted by with her beefcake beau in tow. Mrs. Inog made her way in as well, and sent our host scurrying to her side like a lost puppy. All met Fred. Connections were made.

Mrs G&T made her way back, the lights dimmed, and the band materialized on stage as if by dark Siberian voodoo.

Gruff Russian crooning wove wonderfully through the post-surf rockabilly. The bass-player played a red instrument roughly the size of a large clearly-visible traffic sign.

The new Keyboard player was a girl, of the sultry sexy variety. She wore leopard print, of the plastic variety. She made the keytar sexy, and the things she did with her accordion made the most-holy baby-Jesus weep. Well, OK, it gave him a boner first, then it made him weep.

The new guitar player was also a girl. She had pigtails. She looked like my ex-girlfriend, Tonya, from 1988.

The beer was strong and thick. It seeped into my veins, and pooled in my cognitive center. The rhythm was fluid and carried me away. The lyrics were witty and keen, propelling me with reckless enthusiasm. I joined the conga line. I bobbed. I hooted.

The big show, as usual, however, was Ryan. He is the show. He is a machine.

"One More song!" was chanted after the second set, and one more song we got, Ten Times! I felt compelled to buy things. So, a new "Better Than Sex"shirt and new Red Elvises CD made their way back to Portland with me.

The long dark ride home with Fred and Fred's friend was mostly quiet, punctuated occasionally with knowing grunts of "Whoo!" "Huh." and "Ugh." All was well, and all had a spectacularly memorable time. Thanks from the folks up here to Inog, the Faerie Queen, and the rest of the folks down there. The tiraras are beautiful.

I look forward to July. Oh, and, thanks for the watch.


  1. Glad you could make it.

    Friday night was more of the same, but in Hawaii.

    You should have come to that too.

  2. Never been to Hawaii...

  3. Oosje8:35 PM

    I'd pay good money to see you in a Conga line! Maybe that bottle of scotch I have promised on my next visit will buy me a dance show. I promise not to laugh (too much).

  4. Mrs. G&T8:47 PM

    I'm still not 100% sure that the keyboard player and guitarist weren't hired just to wiggle around and pretend like they knew what they were doing. Don't get me wrong, if they were a marketing ploy, it is a good and successful one they should stick with.

  5. Oh, the guitarist knew what she was doing. She could rip through the solos while mentally compiling a grocery list and was easily the best musician on the stage. Not to say she didn't know what she was doing with those tight red pants and the strapless top though. My friend did go home with her email address.

  6. Great to see you again, Brian. And now I know Fred.

    Red Elvises is a great band to dance to. The ten song encore almost wore me out.

  7. Mrs. G&T2:10 PM

    Go Fred's Friend!


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