Friday, June 23, 2006
Phil.

The show was intense.

We got there and were looking for parking, when this hairy biker-lookin' dude leaned into the car and greeted Yaakov warmly.
Yaakov met SO many people he used to know - he's 7 years older than me, and had a lot more time on the Dead scene. "Park in the garage and save yourself 20 bucks!" crowed biker-dude.

While we were on line, more people came to kiss and hug Yaakov
. I couldn't help but laugh at the incongruity. Yaakov with his big beard, tzitsis, and black hat, being hugged by all these hairy, hippie men. Several times I had to beg off from getting wookiee-hugged, which they all graciously understood.

There were other frum people at the show, a couple whom we knew. Tons of Yidden in general, always a Dead standard. It seemed everywhere I turned, I was looking into another Jewish face. Many people came up to greet Yaakov with a "Shalom Aleichem," which reminded me of something the Rebbe said: when a Jew sees a beard and tzitsis, something is aroused in him.

Anyway, they opened with "Passenger," and the show was pretty tight. The band was great and Phil was looking healthy. The highlight of the first set was "Bertha," one of the musicians was playing pedal steel. It gave the song a country-ish twang, a nice twist.

One thing I haven't experienced in a long time is pot. Everybody was lighting up everywhere, smiling and offering to their neighbors. The guy next to us was smoking the biggest joint I've ever seen. All I could think of was, "Man, my sheitl is going to stink!" I also thought of the Alter Rebbe, and I realized I was standing in a pit of self-indulgence. Rav Plony flashed into my mind...what would he think if he saw us here?

Second set opened with St. Stephen, which oddly segued into "Slipknot!" Of course I was excited, because "Slipknot" usually goes into "Franklin's Tower." I literally groaned and wrung my hands at them when they played "Shakedown Street," instead. Don't get me wrong, it's a great tune - but I love "Franklin's Tower" and was sorely disappointed when they didn't play it. About midway throught the second set I couldn't stand anymore. We had been standing for about 2 hours and my legs felt like jello. There were some benches by the soundboard, and I plopped myself down next to another pregnant woman. We got a good laugh. Once I was away from our original place - front and center - I realized how much better I could breathe. I didn't realize how intense the pot was until I got out of it.

Of course, "m'shaneh makom, m'shaneh mazal" - "change your place and change your luck." In our new location, there was a crazed amazon woman. Twice she almost trampled me with her manic flailing. She was obviously very drunk. Yaakov noticed her fussing with her nose alot, and mentioned there might be a little cocaine happening, too. Once she even started talking to me. "You wouldn't date your sister's ex-boyfriend, wouldja?" "No, I wouldn't" - which is certainly true since I have no sisters. Then she offered me some vodka (she musta known I was a Lubavitcher).

On the way home I was having some serious contractions - strong and regular. We got home and they continued for about 2 hours. I said, "If this is early labor, we're both going to need some sleep. Let's just go to bed and see where it leads."

It went nowhere.


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