My sense of fairness and interest in personal preservation keeps gnawing at me though, and I feel the need to re-visit the great night we had at the Ohio Theater (the "palace"?) in downtown Cleveland, always and forever a "Toddtown".
I live in the South now, but am born and bred a Buckeye, so coming home to see a show is always a multi-sensory brain bath. The day was gorgeous, the people so sincere (and by that I mean sincerely Blunt, which I miss like I miss a decent damn pizza). The guy who drove my shuttle from the airport was so reminiscent of my dad-----the way he said "Oh! I din' know Taaaahd Run-grin wuz in town" made me teary eyed in the cab of his van...sorry, Mike... Baaahb--whoever you were...it was a good kinda cry.
Our hotel was within walking distance to the theater and I was lucky to spend time with old and new friends who gathered there pre-show with stories, pictures and lots of positive energy. I got to know Ron, Jan and Nancy a tiny bit better and demand even more of that next fall, ok?
While traveling to and from rooms (Mike B : the martini bar you set up was above and beyond. The tiny, all-natural tiki style swizzle stix were totally "with a twist"), I noticed right away that there was a "leather convention" happening in the hotel at the same time...
Upon arrival, it appeared that said convention was--- a trade show, perhaps? I imagined gum smacking, good-smelling brunettes from Jersey showing off full length, calf-tastic coats and guys with pinkie rings and too-loud voices trying to impress them with pants they will buy but never wear unless Bon Jovi is in town.
I was mildly curious at choosing this season and economy for leather sales, but in Texas we torture cows year-round, so who am I to judge?
As the evening progressed however, large, ominous, bright yellow signs appeared on the stairs stating that only adults would be allowed to attend the evenings leather activities and that one might expect to be filmed during these events. The group sponsoring this party was called "C.L.A.W." and if I'd had a laptop and a minute, I'd have Googled it right then--however, I just opened my eyes wider, took in the people on most of my elevator rides and decided that perhaps the acronym might stand for "Certain Looks Are Wild", "Celebrating Like Apocalyptic Werewolves" or more clearly: "Can't Lust After Women".
Again, no judgy white wig wearing going on here, but the swell of shirtless, hairy, hyper-macho men in leather vests with leather hats and big belts/buckles around their skin tight jeans, their facial jewelry and tattoos mildly fascinating even this girl, who now lives in a recognized den of alternative lifestyles, to find on a sunny Thursday afternoon in downtown Cleveland.
Not many things would've kept me from the C.L.A.W. celebrations if this had been just a normal night, but we had an Arena show to attend (remember? this is a concert review-pay attention, people!! I DID take time out to buy a whip!).
And the show kicked ass, of course. The theater is beautiful no matter what it's called and we had SUCH a great time. The accidental omission of Open My Eyes early on made for a great encore later. Dancing to that song is one of life's absolute commandments for me.
The highlight of the night, though was when Todd name checked the old Richfield Coliseum- asking us all to "pretend we were back there--"
We are always "Back There" to some degree when listening to TR.. the building, long demolished, was an ugly cement monolith of supremely good memories- we left so much of our DNA in the parking lot alone, it's probably as haunted as a ancient Indian burial ground. Those ghosts are still milling about, wearing feather roach clips, satin Buzzard jackets,earth shoes and lotsa Love's Baby Soft perfume.
Someone up front got carried away in a reverie of emotion at one point and began to grope Todd's trousers. Now, I don't believe those pants are actual animal skin, nor do I think the offender was an angry PETA protester, but it mattered not and the over-zealous one was eventually ejected. As we filed out of the venue much later, happy and humming, I could only hope that the woman who got bounced had made her way to the C.L.A.W. parties up the street...
until next time,