Independence Dance


When I got to The Eagle tonight in Atlanta– Wait, first, I went to the movies with my buddies tonight before hitting the club to dance. It’s almost impossible to get four guys– wait, I don’t think that’s true. I hadn’t been to the movies in so long I just knew that there was nothing out that I had seen so I just told them to pick it and I’d meet them at the theatre. When I got there, they’d chosen Me and Earl and the Dying Girl. It didn’t occur to me that any of the movies I’d seen at Sundance Film Festival would be out in theatres. I liked the movie but, well, after all that’s happened lately, I wasn’t down for watching a movie about leukemia. So I watched Magic Mike XXL alone and met up with my buddies after. Channing Tatum is a very good dancer. (Like how I kept it positive there?)

Now, when I got to The Eagle (my friends dropped me off there) I walked in and walked around to survey the scene. I’d come to dance and although the dance floor was more than adequate, it was empty. I didn’t want to be the first guy out there (I mostly like to dance alone and never wait for a partner to have “permission” to dance) but if the kids had waited another couple songs before starting to get on out there and get to it, I would have been the first. As it was, I was one of the first five and I danced until just a few minutes ago. It’s only a quarter of four and I’m already in bed so, in comparison to Birmingham two weeks ago and Nashville last weekend, I’m actually calling it an early night. But my feet don’t feel like it. Neither to my lips and tongue. I ended up in this pack of about five hot guys for most of the night. It was very hot in the club and so none of us were wearing shirts. I’m pretty okay with my level of fitness (it can always be improved upon) but it did take a couple of deep breaths before I took mine off.–that is a lie. I was one of the first and I was happy to take my shirt of.  I’m a narcissist and an exhibitionist. I was also happy when the four other guys whipped theirs off too. Dancing for hours with muscled up, masculine, sexy, bearded, hairy-chested men is not a bad way to spend a Saturday night. There were even some brief breaks for conversation and, I’ll admit, a fair amount of making out among all of us. (Judge away, it’s my life and I’m finally going to live it.) Often through the night I just thought to myself, “You mean I could have been doing this for those seven years!?” Never too late.

When Jeremy the college professor decided it was time for him to go home, I walked him to his car. We had a nice visit and he talked about the death of his mother. He cried. I cried with him and told him I’d just lost mine too. He had a heart so big it glowed through his chest wall and shirt and when he said, “I know how you feel” (although that is an expression I usually don’t like) I really believed that he did. Two strangers. Dancing among our tribe for hours. Connecting. Sharing a common pain in the loss of our mothers, a common joy in having loved them so much. Kissing goodnight on the streets of Atlanta– a “God shot” if you ask me.

Several times today I had the impulse to call or text Mom. When I’m home, it’s easy to remember she’s not there. When I’m on the road, it’s easy to forget.

I miss you, Mom. Come to me in my dreams tonight, yeah?

See y’all tomorrow.

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