The Next Seattle

The Next Seattle: Chapter 19

The longest band name…

The late-afternoon daylight once again streamed through the window of my hotel room. I sat upon the bed in my boxer shorts, my hair wet from a recent shower, and read a flyer for tonight’s show at Seattle. First up was a performance art duo called ‘Pliable Concrete.’ The accompanying photograph featured a young man and woman carrying elephant tusks and cans of spray paint. Next, was a band of apparently hygienically handicapped young men with greasy hair named ‘Watermelon.’ And the headliners of the evening were a band named ‘We-Are-Endeavoring-To-Make-The-Name-Of-This-Band- The-Longest-Name-Of-Any-Band-That-Has-Yet-Given-Voice-To-A- Tune-On-The-Face-Of-This-Earth-So-Help-Me-God-Amen.’

It was looking to be a fine evening at the club.

I laid the flyer down on the bed and thought again about just why I was bothering to go to the club. I had put in enough time to give the proper appearance to my assignment. I could hop on one of those commuter planes at any minute, sail out of Terre Haute, and never have to think about the place again for the rest of my miserable life.

“Why don’t you?” I asked myself aloud. There was no response from the empty room, but I thought that I had a fairly good idea as to what that response would be if it should come. The simple fact of the matter was that I kind of wanted to stay here. In fact, for some strange reason, I could picture myself sticking around here for quite a while. I was beginning to make some friends, which is something that hasn’t happened in years. And, for some reason that I couldn’t quite comprehend, I liked Terre Haute, Indiana.

I looked up at my reflection in the mirror above the dresser. “Are you on drugs?” I asked my reflection. My reflection did not answer, but it was fairly obvious by the clarity of the reflected eyes that drugs had nothing to do with my current condition. Nothing to do with it whatsoever. Instead, after a life of detachment, I was

discovering that there was just something about these people and this place.

And in my situation, that was a dangerous thing.