Saturday, June 25, 2011

The Doorman’s Diary: 6.24-25.11

My parking spot in front of the jazz club was taken up by a pair of Harleys. The riders, a pair of middle-age guys out for a warm-evening ride, were bellied up to the bar. They were chatting with the bartender and one of them was a reminiscer. I know a couple of reminiscers but generally choose not to hang out with them since there is little original thought when their monologues begin with “Do you remember when…” or “I’ll never forget when…” The reminiscing ilk tend to remember inane details rather than anything of historical significance. Such was the Harley reminiscer. He remembered a building that stood across the street where a now vacant lot stands. The building apparently burned down when he was in high school and a school friend’s uncle worked in the building. Although we asked what the uncle did, what kind of business was there, how big the building was, was it an old building, any idea of the cause of the fire, etc. etc., we only learned that the uncle had a lisp and was meanly called Snakey because words with “s” were difficult to pronounce. We were getting all sorts of amusingly-told stories about Snakey and the embarrassing situations he was in but nothing about the building or what the area was like 30 years ago. I welcomed the quartet launching into a raucous version of Coltrane’s “Softly as in a Morning Sunrise,” which pretty much cut off the Snakey stories. The club began to fill in. The band played a number of swing jazz tunes and were into “Mercy, Mercy, Mercy,” coming close to the end of their first set before the Harley guys decided to ride off into the night. I wonder if anything of note took place that night to create a story worth reminiscing?

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