Last night, more or less on the spur of the moment, my band performed at an open mic at the Lakeshore House in Monson, Maine, a restaurant/bar so close to the edge of Lake Hebron that it looks like it might be in danger of falling in. To my surprise, the place was sardine-packed with people. It was so full that we had trouble getting our cases in through the door.
We were scheduled to play five songs, but then, as I'd already pointed out to the boys in the band, we'd have to leave because I had to go pick up my kid, who'd been away overnight at a Maine Junior Classical League Convention (aka Latin Camp, aka The Only High School Activity That Is Nerdier Than Math Team). But it was an open mic, right?, so someone else would be champing to perform, right? That's how it works at poetry open mics anyway.
What happened, though, is that we turned out to be a hit, and the sardine-crowd clapped and cheered and whistled and begged begged begged for more, and the owner offered us a paying gig, and the boys were smitten with performance glory, and I had to drag them away after ten songs and was almost late for the Latin Camp bus.
As I was adding wailing fiddle solos to Hendrix songs in front of a lot of happy people with beers, Tom was giving a successful and well-attended artist's talk at the Maine Media Workshops gallery in Rockport and Paul was gloating over his SAT scores and reliving the glory of placing first in a 13-school Latin poetry translation contest. In real life, Tom fears and despises public speaking, and Paul has never said a single word to me about Latin poetry. Everyone's night was very strange.