Holy cow, here it is Saturday again and I still haven’t told you about last Saturday night. OMG, I had so much fun! My old friend Kevin Bacon (not that Kevin Bacon) was playing in a band at Shifty’s, my new favorite dive bar, on West Sahara not too far from Palace Station. I remember doing a comedy set there a few years ago and I hadn’t been in the place since, but I’ll certainly be going back, and soon.
I got there shortly after 9:00 and the music had already started. Monk and Mazz are the main guys in the band, and I cannot tell you how wonderful it was to hear acoustic music. We don’t get to hear covers of Donovan’s “Colours” (Yellow is the color of my true love’s hair…) very often here in Vegas—I was in heaven! They reminded me of the type of music my son-in-law’s band, Red Haired Strangers, plays. So nice.
The first and second sets were totally acoustic, and then the guys plugged in and we were treated to a rockin’ blues jam session. In addition to interesting dive bar characters, Shifty’s was full of local musicians who rotated onto the stage to showcase what they’re made of. The music was amazing and that was the first I’d ever seen Kevin play. What a fabulous guitar player—so talented! Seriously, I was impressed.
Kevin and I go way back, starting in fifth grade or so in School #16, and we went all through Hackett Junior High and Albany High School together. I remember I was in study hall with him back in seventh grade. Because we were seated alphabetically, Kevin sat next to this kid Michael Bergman, who had the unfortunate nickname “Egghead,” I guess because of the shape of his head, but his friends called him “Egg” for short. So the knee-slapper of the 1969-1970 school year was that “Bacon and Egg” sat together during study hall. Hysterical, huh? I mean, what were the chances? Yikes. I see a post about the cruelty of children coming up in the near future.
Anyway, I last saw Kevin and his wife, Ann, at our 20-year reunion, which was 14 years ago. We recently reconnected through I think it was Classmates.com. Neither of us knew the other was here in Vegas, so that was a great surprise. Ann was there, too, last Saturday night—what a doll she is. They’ve been married for almost 23 years, and it was wonderful to see a couple so loving and compatible and obviously still enjoying each other after such a long time. Well, I say it was wonderful, but this was just days after Lori and Russ’ 20th anniversary lovefest and part of me was like, Jesus Christ, doesn’t it figure I have to be around these model couples right when I’m going through my own nasty breakup. That’s okay, though. I’m happy for them. Really. I'm not just saying that.
In high school Kevin was a nice, nice guy, very open and friendly, and that’s the same person I was reunited with last Saturday. And you know what was really cool? Being around somebody here in Las Vegas with whom I have a sense of history, somebody who knew me way back when. I am incredibly blessed to have a million friends here, but they know me only as smart-mouthed, middle-aged Linda Lou. Kevin knew me as shy and skinny Linda Haber. Fortunately, he said I look almost exactly the same (Almost? What do you mean, almost?), but I wonder if he thought I’d changed much personality-wise. Probably not—I haven’t really matured at all in the past few decades and I still have those annoying cheerleader tendencies.
Man, time goes by.
So this afternoon I’m going to spend some quality time at the race and sports book in Green Valley Ranch; it’s Travers day at Saratoga Racetrack, and the sports book is the next best thing to being there. Better in some ways—no crowds, free drinks, and no lines in the ladies room. Tonight there's more fun on the schedule. Kat Ray is a local performer who graciously opens her house and backyard once a month between May and August for a “Kat Bash.” The ex-boyfriend and I went to the last two—remember his guest blog when he wrote this account? How things change. I’ll be going solo tonight, but you know me, I make friends easily.
But if I do nothing else this weekend, I will finally, finally send the files of my book to the printer in California. It's about time.