Tonight, I drank more beer than I usually do (and ate a veggie burger) at Portland Craft with some friends, some good friends, and now I'm sitting up in bed on my laptop writing this post listening to old tunes and new tunes and drinking water because I need to study tomorrow because I need to to do well in stats because I need to get into school because I feel like school is the right thing to get into.
When I went to a show a few weeks ago (and shows are not things that I usually go to), I went to a show at The Imperial, which is almost right on the corner of Main and Hastings, and the performer, my favourite performer, my favourite musician, the only person I'd really pay money to go see strum a guitar or any old thing and sing a bunch of stuff, said I hear Vancouver is one of the best places to live in the world, and everyone cheered. I didn't know what to do. I looked at my friend, and she said "That's actually such a political statement," laughing awkwardly. We were awkward then.
Because it is political. There were people with no jackets, no homes, shit shoes, and scratchy voices like they had a cold but there they were with no jacket, no home, shit shoes, and a scratchy voice talking to someone else who maybe also had no jacket, no home, and shit shoes, and all this as I walked past on my way to see this mightily talented woman strum a guitar and sing a bunch of stuff.
You can't just come here, perform at The Imperial, and leave. Or you can. Did you know that there are statues of men in what looks like old Chinese wartime armour high up on the walls of The Imperial? Is that stylized, or permanent in some culturally formative way? What is The Imperial? What is it doing at Main and Hastings? The statues are what stood out to me most, after the glorious woman who walked right past me, mere feet away from me, with her blonde hair and ornate little white shirt, long skirt, odd confidence, and then the statues all in a row, equidistant from each other, stood on either side of the place, both walls, just looking at one another like nothing, and silent.
There is something about the way that certain music sounds at night, when it's dark, that makes it resonant in ways that it cannot be in the daytime. That is how it seemed to be with Laura on that night at The Imperial at almost Main and Hastings, except probably no one really knew what time of day it was or whether or not it was dark outside, but there we all were in our awkward huddle at this venue which confused everyone and left us all in our relaxation and ultimately, shock, when she brushed past us to get to the stage because why wouldn't she just be backstage to begin with? But she brushed past us.
Sometimes I feel as though things brush past me and I realize their effect long after the departure of their stroke. My friends, my good friends tonight, were just sitting with me and talking at a table like there was nothing much to do about it (which there wasn't), but there must have been, I think, because I feel much more comforted, or checked, or challenged, or tougher and more ready for love and battle at the same time than I feel on other nights, which is what the best friends must ready you for, probably.