Sunday, June 28, 2009

'Get out the map'

I ended up getting wet at both ends of this afternoon and one was way more fun than the other. The first was joyous but ultimately frustrating. The second was just a pain in the ass.

Sunday was the 40th anniversary of the Stonewall riots in Greenwich Village, so today's Gay Pride parade took on a special significance.

I planned to go up to midtown or somewhere where people might be on their way home from the festivities. Hopefully they’d be in a good frame of mind and might put their hands in their pockets.

But first, I wanted to watch the USA play Brazil in the final of the Confederations Cup, so I went to my usual haunt in Brooklyn where about 150 people were crowded round the TV sets. My first soaking came when the US took an unexpected 2-0 lead. As Landon Donovan slotted home, the guy standing behind me launched his pint skywards and we all had a celebratory shower.

The big upset wasn’t to be, though, as the US let their advantage slip and Brazil came back to win. After a terrific performance by the US against Spain in the semi-final, beating Brazil was just a step too far. But they had a great tournament and saved Bob Bradley's job ahead of next year's World Cup. And hey, this was Brazil.

After the game - where there may have been as many sweaty manhugs as at the the parade - I rode up to Houston Street and then walked from there to 2nd Avenue, where it looked like a lot more partygoers were getting onto the Subway to come home.

I got a few smiles and nods and one or two admiring looks, likely because of the t-shirt I was wearing, and I got into a conversation with a guy who told me his son had been pestering him to buy him a guitar, but he didn’t want to because “it probably won’t last”.

Trust me, sir. It's always worth it.

Alas, though, among the folks who came onto the platform clutching beads and waving rainbow flags, their generosity was probably as exhausted as they were. Not a single penny in the case for an hour’s playing.

And I knew it was time to go home after the second liquid incident of the day.

A young woman came and sat next to me, and took out a bottle of San Pellegrino or some such overpriced poser water. It had obviously been in her pocket as she’d danced the day away, since when she opened it, it sprayed everywhere around her, but mostly over my guitar case and lyric book.

Not so much as a “sorry”, let alone a quarter in the case out of embarrassment.

So forgive me if I channel my inner Perez Hilton and just say ‘if you’re reading this: bad form, beeeatch.

Today’s Songlist:

Wheel Of Heartbreak – Paul Brady
Lovers In A Dangerous Time – Bruce Cockburn
Queen Jane Approximately – Bob Dylan
You Can’t Always Get What You Want – Rolling Stones
Kiss That Counted – Catie Curtis
The Times They Are A-Changin’ – Bob Dylan
Drift Away – Dobie Gray
100 Miles – Catie Curtis
Keep It Loose, Keep It Tight – Amos Lee
Bad Karma – Warren Zevon
If I Had A Rocket Launcher – Bruce Cockburn
People Look Around – Catie Curtis
Not Dark Yet – Bob Dylan
Peace Love And Understanding – Elvis Costello

And finally, something worth celebrating...

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