Sunday, A Day of Reflection.
Yesterday evening was spent in a flurry of excitement and preparation, as I transformed myself from the Mare-Ingenii that you all know and make fun of, into the Queen of Funny Business herself, Ms. Lucille Ball.
Oh, Inner Cuteness, I release thee...
We made a compact little group - me as Lucy, and my sister Teacher, who garbed herself as Aqua-Fem, a super-hero of her own invention. Sleyefox, who came as a porn star... er... Naughty Schoolgirl, and her sister The Gangster. The Boxer and her boyfriend, The Lady.
The Phoenix was the locale of the evening, a large and cavernous danceteria that is situated away from the club district, and welcomes freaks and geeks of the moderate nature. That is, Serious Weirdos have their own clubs, just as Eurotrash and it's followings go where the base is heavier than the makeup.
But for those who can never decide between the pleather pantsuit, the denim mini, or the khakis from Dockers; for those on both sides of the tunnel named Twenties; hell, even for those who listen to Neil Diamond, Donna Summers, Pulp and Madonna all on the same day, The Phoenix is for them.
It's got the Main Room, which plays all the alternative stuff, and has a stage full of nubile dancing girls wearing brief swatches of PVC, and not much else. It's also home to The Parlour, a smaller chamber with plush seating, pool tables, and a dance floor where you can shake it to everything retro.
I used to go to The Phoenix all the time. Semi-regular weekends and out of the blue weeknights used to find us there, ready to see, be seen, dance until we were drenched, drink too much, and do the usual scan of possible pickups. Sometimes we were successful, sometimes not. Teacher and her boyfriend, Conspiracy Theorist, met at The Phoenix one summer night, five years ago.
As years went on, more locales were discovered, and I developed two distinct and separate passions. On some nights, I needed smaller, sophisticated settings with well-dressed patrons and barkeeps who know better than to serve me a bruised martini. Alternatively, tiny pseudo-Irish pubs crammed full of dark ales, dark wood floors, and smoky alcoholics satisfied the evenings that I just wanted to crawl into a pair of jeans and feel like I was at home, without actually having to stay there.
The Phoenix had a touch of both, but simply not enough of either.
But it always threw a hell of a Halloween party; the one place in the city where it was guaranteed that Everybody Dressed Up. And oh the costumes... one year, a guy wrapped himself up like a Christmas papered box, and attached a tag that read, "To Women. From God." Another year, it was two guys dressed as Bert and Ernie that caught my fancy. Last year, an amazing proliferation of angels and pimps filled the place. The year before, 15 Darth Mauls. Last night's honourable mention goes to the two guys that came as Jay and Silent Bob. You gotta love that!
And so The Phoenix became our Halloween tradition. Ignored for the rest of the year, but the highlight of our autumns. Pure, unadulterated fun.
Just like last night. But not. I mean, last night was... fun... but it wasn't exhilarating. It wasn't the orgy of sights and sounds and alternate personas that it used to be.
So, I think that The Phoenix is over for me. It's not that I'm too old, because God knows, last night, I was in the bottom half of the age quotient. And it's not that I'm too tired, because it's a known fact when I don't want to, I don't have to sleep.
No, I think that next year, I'll give the old Phoenix a miss, just because it's done. You know? Too much of a good thing? Maybe. I guess the ties of some traditions just aren't as strong as I thought.
Mind you, I was thinking of dressing as Ethel Mertz next year. Where the hell am I going to go?
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