Saturday, January 12, 2008

Simple desires

I'm getting ready to go to the Nob Hill Theatre, a little bit earlier than usual but not early enough that the theater clientele will be downstairs like that last time, that was a bit unnerving like I was supposed to turn a trick or something. I'm fixing the back of my hair so that the individual pieces are sticking out behind my ears so you can see them from the front, of course I'm wondering why I'm fixing my hair when no one will appreciate it anyway, but I always wonder that. Then I realize that I don't want to go to the Nob Hill Theatre, I hate the Nob Hill Theatre -- but I should go somewhere, my hands are a disaster and it's hard to do anything around here without my hands. I think of going to one of those ‘70s revival clubs, this is the one that started the trend and usually there isn't any smoke and at least the guys will be hotter than the Nob Hill Theatre. Now I'm really fixing my hair, but then I get all edgy and nervous because I can't decide, what if smoke filters in from outside or if someone's smoking in the back, that happened once.

Are the black beans irritating my digestion, or am I just getting nervous? Whatever it is means I have to shit three times -- this is nerves, it always happens. I mean it's always happens before I go out. Right now I wish I could call someone to go with me, but it's 1 a.m. and what if I need to leave right away anyway? I'm getting all self-conscious about the yellow sweater with blue shirt, I mean I'm bored of it -- so I change into the green sweater with pink shirt, that works better. I still can't decide whether I really want to go over there, but I put on my coat and two scarves because it's freezing and mittens and then I'm out the door and downstairs, literally shivering it's so cold, walking downhill towards the bar but maybe I'll just walk up to the door and keep going like I just happen to be wandering around on the drug-dealing block I mean I live on the drug dealing block too, just not that one. I'm trying to remember if this anxiety about going out ever went away, like what about when I went out four times a week -- it must’ve been better then, right?

I can't remember. I get to the door and there are a few people smoking outside, but what I didn't remember is that the door is actually sturdy and it closes tight, then there's even a curtain when you get inside and there’s Jacob, I forgot that Jacob did the door -- there's nothing like a hug right away to make me feel better. Then I'm inside and it's packed, I forgot that I actually like this bar -- the red lighting and the mirrors, everyone's more festive than I remembered and then I'm back at the dance floor, oh right the dance floor. I almost forgot about the dance floor, I take off my layers and put them at a table that says reserved -- who knew that they had reserved tables at an old-school Tenderloin gay bar, must be for some straight scenesters.

You know that I've always hated disco, but I guess it's something about how all these bars that cultivate sluttiness are invoking the ‘70s that makes it somehow more tolerable, at least once I'm there. Don't get me wrong – I’d take the layered knock-you-down swing song seduction of hard house or the broken twisted fuckedupness of experimental electro or the steady pounding of nonstop techno or preferably all of this together – or just any hint of this over disco any moment of my waking breaking beating heartache, but I guess I have to take what I can get. So there's disco, I'm on the dance floor but it's carpet -- it's hard to get into dancing on carpet but what's great is that it's so packed, I mean the dance floor at Aunt Charlie's is tiny so that's no surprise but wait -- I was trying this experiment of not mentioning the names of the bars where I'm going, just describing them, but forget about that for now I just said Aunt Charlie's.

I scan the whole crowd and no one’s smoking, the place still smells stuffy and like there was a fire somewhere but I can deal with that until, oh no -- the smoke machine. This one doesn't even bother making the smoke white or gray, it's brownish and I'm rushing to the back, into the bathroom where it's cooler and there's air. Which is kind of funny, because it's the bathroom, but I'll take air where ever I can get it. This is when I should leave, you know that.

Maybe you also know that I don't leave, that instead I go back on the dance floor once the synthetic smoke has dissipated but that just means that the poison has spread out, there's this hot guy cruising me but I can't tell if he's cruising me, and actually I don't find him that hot right now. Maybe it's the beer he's holding on the dance floor or maybe I can feel his nerves mixing with mine or maybe I'm not looking for sex just yes, the passion of dancing, body up against all these others until I’m screaming along to the words of the songs I don't know and I can tell some of these queens think I'm crazy, they always think I'm crazy and probably it's true, especially since they're drunk and I'm just -- well, crazy, I guess.

Anyway I get to the point when I'm loving it, even the sponginess of the soggy carpet dance floor, you can sink in a little bit. This DJ doesn't mix, just breaks the songs up, but I knew to expect that and when Grace Jones comes on at the end no way that's when I'm really screaming WARM yes warm yes yes warm LEATHERETTE and now the other crazy queens are screaming with me WARM and now the guy I was trying to cruise has stopped LEATHERETTE trying to get away from me, we’re actually playing dancing games until the bar’s closing WARM he wonders why we’re the last ones to walk out the door LEATHERETTE then outside in the maze of smokers some guy’s yelling at me that I'm dangerous, not because of my body because of my mind.

I'll take that. I go over to the guy I was cruising, it's his hair that first caught my attention -- spiky in the back pressed down in the front I guess not that different from mine in some ways except the back of his is more like a mohawk and he doesn't have curls. I like that I don't feel any fear, that's what dancing gives me I'm kissing this guy on the lips, then biting his neck then stepping back and he's asking me if his hair looks dry, maybe he means mine does. His does too, I mean it looks good and it looks dry, I'm biting the other side of his neck he likes that but he's already said something about how he'll see me soon, whether that means tomorrow or in six months I'm guessing he doesn't know I might know go out for six months he means he doesn't want to go home with me. I actually don't really want sex right now, I mean I’d take it if he offered, but I feel high enough really it's time to go home and wash the smoke machine off me try to take care of myself so that I don't fall into another three weeks of talkshow horror, this is what fibromyalgia looks like -- Oprah found the right doctor, though.

I was going to start by telling you how sad I feel today -- sinus sadness, not again! Not after the nightmare of last time was just abating. I want to say that I’d do anything just to avoid another sinus catastrophe. Except that I'm also tempted to go to that bar with a backroom that only happens once a month, that's tonight. Especially since right now I can't do anything with my hands -- I mean I've done too much today, can't do any more. My hands over someone's face neck back would feel different, different if it weren't for the smoke machine in that bar too, I already know about that one. Although it's on the ground floor, maybe it doesn't go into the basement, the basement where someone's usually smoking pot or trying to light a cigarette. No, I probably won't go there. I wish I lived in a different world, in a body where simple desires didn't take such a dramatic toll.

2 comments:

grantatee said...

i knew what bar you were talking about when you said the dance floor was carpet!

glad you got to dance a bit.

xoxo,
grant

mattilda bernstein sycamore said...

I know -- carpet, indeed!

I just wish I could down somewhere and not have it ruin my life, but maybe this time it will just be for a few days since it wasn't the really really really real smoke, right? Let's just hope for a few days...

Love --
mattilda