moving: chapter six (the birthday)

So I’ve hit an important milestone — my first birthday in Massachusetts.  And I spent it… alone.

Unfortunately, Alexander has to be back in Bloomington to address some family stuff, so I’ve been left to my own devices since Wednesday (and trying my best to eat more than just macaroni salad from the grocery store..).

It’s not even a big deal, really, since I typically hate even acknowledging my birthday, much less celebrating it.  I mean, hell, last year was the “big three-oh” and all I did was stay home, watch a movie, and order pizza.  Granted, it was Mother Bear’s pizza, which is always a celebration… damn, I miss that place…

Anyway, even though I don’t really like treating my birthday as anything special — I mean, really, what’s the point? — I did sort of get the feeling that if I just stayed cooped up in the apartment… all night… with just the cats for company… I’d probably just end up maudlin and depressed.  And I basically used up a lifetime’s worth of “maudlin” junior year of college.  So that was out.

So I took a risk and looked up the various clubs and things that exist in the city and picked out what looked like a classy-enough joint called Club Café.  They’ve got a cute little space called the Napoleon room that features live music on a nightly basis, with last Friday night being one of my favorite creations of all time — an open-mic night!

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They’re a couple of swells… Leslie Anderson and Jonathan Tomaselli,
being their adorable, talented selves in the Napoleon Room at Club Café.

Not that I was going to get up and sing or anything.  I have a strict three-drink minimum when it comes to singing in public.  And my budget didn’t really allow for that number of cocktails.  Plus, the lobster-mac’n’cheese I had for an entree (and it was just the half order!) left me on the verge of exploding out of my khakis.  Not conducive to onstage performance…

But let’s be serious, I only have so much self-control against the magic pull of a microphone.

So, as the evening drew ever closer to the departure of the last train to Stoughton (I do live in the suburbs, after all), I decided to get the hell over myself and asked the pianist if he could do Case of You, that heart-aching masterpiece by the Canadian goddess Joni Mitchell.

It wasn’t my best work.  I mean, I haven’t sung in months, I’m just not in shape.  Thank god it’s a song that doesn’t require too many long, sustained phrases.

But I sang it (making, I suppose, my semi-official Boston debut), shook the hosts’ hands and rushed out to catch my train.  I was home by 11.30 and settled in for a couple more drinks and a couple hours of quality YouTube time.  It was a lovely night.

Now I just need to get around to answering all those Facebook birthday messages…