Observations / Shows

Turn to Midnight

Been feeling rushed and apart. Worked to death, but done in hours. Resigned and ready to turn in at midnight.

Scared to share this sleep with anyone. Scared to miss the time to work. My dog nestles into my knees at night and I still lack true camaraderie.

Going out is a heavy thing. I could always be working. I don’t deserve time off. Not now, when I’m barely making it happen with all the jobs I have.

Relaxation has been giving me panic. Nights of fun are for twentysomethings. No matter how much I work, there is always more to do. There is always something undone. I can’t even go to shows with impunity. I have too many unwritten words.

That’s how it was when I saw Kris, this time: so hard to remember what I was doing there. So hard not to be staring at a screen, conjuring writ. When life and job bleed together, how can leisure even happen?

I hate to admit it, but I had to be forced to go to the show. I had to be dragged. I had to be reminded of why I even live in LA. Kris Allen at the Hotel Café.

No longer young—I’m not. Everything has an urgency, now. Everything is only on a decade away. I hide in thought of fucking up anything. I hesitate to act for fear I might fall by the wayside. It’s the last straw of my hurried life. How am I allowed to pause, for this?

Ten o’clock should be turned back to when I knew what it meant. When I was seventeen and I still had an hour to contemplate math problems before night clocked me on the head and said, you are so young. You can be up at seven.

Kris, Cale, and Torres came onstage at ten.

Music would make it work. Please, please, make it work, I thought. Remind me.

Why have I given Kris Allen three separate show reviews on my otherwise once-a-month-if-I’m-lucky timed blog?

It’s simple, really, I realized at the Hotel Café last week. It’s simple: every Kris show has a different vibe, and serves to point out a different aspect of my life. This time, it was time.

I thought, I should be doing this; I should be doing that. But the harmonies came through solidly like a sheet of aluminum; the impromptu cover songs had all the energy of teenagers on a beach; the originals from THANK YOU CAMELLIA soared past any reservations I might have had. At first I thought, why does this introductory woman make me feel like a brick of cement? Because she was on stage, and I have been hiding. Because I haven’t been moving.

However forced the evening was, I finally remembered how to move. I remembered absorption.

That is why I’m here: to suck up something as gleefully honest as Kris Allen, someone as talented, someone who can belt out a Prince song on the head of pin and sound like the Vienna Boys’ Choir on a good day.

Because when he does that, I stop counting.

I’ve been working on a book for ten years. I’ve lived in Los Angeles for ten years. I haven’t been in school for ten years. I’ve been away from home for ten years. My sister has been dead for ten years.

Ten years seems like a long time. Now it’s just a source of measurement. Of obligation. Because I always count, count, count the minutes left. I am always waiting for more.

At the Hotel Café, jiving to Kris and Cale and Torres, when it turned to midnight, I didn’t even know what time it was, or what I was waiting for.

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5 thoughts on “Turn to Midnight

  1. So beautifully said! Kris Allen and his band take you on this extraordinary journey where you do forget about time. Sometimes Kris will perform for over 1 1/2 hrs and it seems like just minutes and you don’t want the show to end. His shows are so much fun and fresh. I have been to many, many of his shows and people ask me if I get tired of hearing the same show. Absolutely not, since he always changes it around and even changes his own songs. I must have listened to 15 different versions of his song “Monster” and it is different each time yet keeping the melody and lyrics. And his angelic voice and the ways he banters with his band mates and the crowd! WOW! I ill always be a die-hard Kris Allen fan and yes time does have a factor in my story. I am in the latter part of my life and sure hope I have many more years left to still be able to go to Kris Allen’s shows!

  2. wow. pure poetry. truly captures what so many hard-working single people like you are feeling. hope you can get some more regular breaks for your brain and your soul in the future. it will end up increasing your output when you do go back to your work. must keep the heart and soul fed, right?!

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