First, the connections. See, I know this rock star, totally cool guy who sings, plays the synth, guitar, everything. He's in a band that has ladies screaming and their husbands not minding. And he plays gigs where the special guests get in because their names are on a list at the door.
Which is the connection. I went to his band's gig on Friday night, at Cedar Street Courtyard in downtown Austin. So there we are, my wife and four other friends, and I stroll up to the bouncers and suddenly wonder, "How do I play this?" Because being on the list is cool, at least it is for me, because the only lists I'm familiar with these days are for shopping, witnesses, exhibits and probably a lot of people's sh*t lists. So what's the cool approach?
"Hey guys, we should be on the list."
But what if The List is metaphorical? Or what if there's more than one List? Like people who've been banned for life from the place. . .
"We're friends of the band."
Like no one's tried that approach before. Lame.
"Hey, Johnny said he'd put us on some kind of list . . ."
Johnny who? They'd probably know him, almost certainly, but even if they did then we're back to the list. . . which list did he put us on? What if they think Johnny Knuckles put us on the club's Sh*t List?
So in the end I'm dithering and the guy asks me for five bucks to get in. Behind me is my wife, always a few notches cooler than me, who says calmly, while pointing to the stage, "Hey there's Johnny," before turning to the bouncer, "we're on the list, I think."
He checked, we were. Had a nice drink with my friend, Johnny-The-Rock-Star before he played with his awesome band, SKYROCKET. Here's a pic:
(Left to right: Me; Johnny; fellow ADA Efrain De La Fuente (possibly the greatest prosecutor in Texas); and former APD Cold Case Detective Tom Walsh.)
Anyway, my point is that when we're out of our normal routine, life can be uncomfortable. But being out late (I have kids, it never happens) and at a place like that reminded me of how I used to test myself, drop myself into weird and potentially dangerous situations precisely in order to see what it was like, to see how I'd react. I don't do that any more, certainly not the dangerous part. And I don't mind, I don't miss it.
Or I don't notice not missing it. I suppose we grow up and get older, and usually without realizing it. The circle around our lives shrinks and what used to be pretty normal becomes exciting. Places where we're in charge, experienced, the boss, become like a safety zone so while I'm Mr. Cool in front of a jury, it was fun to widen the circle, just a little. I met Johnny through a recent case, regular readers will know which one, and as a result two people who are the same age but who move in very different circles have become friends. I think that's the coolest thing of all.
Apart from being on the list. That was cool.
(N.B. Due to the length of this nonsensical ramble, the "coincidences" part of this post will be erected in a few days.)