Friday, October 1, 2010


Image from the Cowboy Junkies show

My underpants are on inside out. It's not a big thing of course, they work just fine either way but I think their inside-outedness is indicative of other things. It's fall now and the mornings are a bit darker so looking for the tag on your black underpants is a challenge. Underpants barely even have tags these days, it is the fashion now for companies to print this telltale information directly onto the fabric which makes finding it tricky if you don't have your glasses on yet.

September has come and gone, Pearl is back at school, I am back in my routine, rising in the dark, fumbling. We've been working like maniacs on our rental renovation so the issue of whether my underpants are on correctly is a super low priority, it's not as if I put them on on the outside of my pants where the drywall guy might notice and be concerned. No one noticed them at the Cowboy Junkies concert I went to on Thursday with a dear old friend who has recently relocated here from California. We talked about the band at intermission, the 25yrs they have been together and what it might feel like to perform the same songs over and over, needing to please a loyal audience who hasn't bought one of your records since The Trinity Sessions. I thought about what it meant to be a practicing artist for a similar number of years, striving for new avenues of expression. The show was good, understated, the music emotive and dark red in hue.

Mike sits facing Margo who moves the most of the five of them but still not so much. Her head bobbing forward hiding her face but revealing the top of her head, exposing her light roots, she is over 50 now. They're his words she is giving life to, not her own. She talks about their website and the new records they are working on, a tribute to Vic Chestnut among them. Art and commerce at play as always. I wept a little for the past when I first heard this Canadian brother sister act.

When I woke up the next morning for a second, I forgot I had been to the show as I have become so used to my normal routine of being at home night after night. Waking in the morning putting on black underwear beneath yesterday's clothes in a dark room, going through my day and laying myself back down at night in the same black room. I remember that I look forward to the sameness of it, maybe the Junkies feel the same way as they play the first chords of Misguided Angel. Like slipping into a dark familiar space, knowing what to expect each time.

Occasionally there is some tiny shift, a little bit of inspiration or lightheartedness in the moment. Something out of place that causes you to stop and think. I laughed out loud at the absurdity of my inside-out underpants, as I did at the surprise sight of a woman, passed out at the concert, lying down on a bench in the mezzanine of the plush Mt Baker Theater with her too short skirt riding a little too high on her ample thigh. Sweet.

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