Gut Rumbles
 

December 24, 2003

christmas eve

One of the most astonishing nights of my life occurred when I was playing guitar for a living and was booked on Christmas Eve at a bar on River Street. I thought the place would be empty all night and the boss would close up early. That's not what happened.

The place was PACKED, all night long. About 11:30 that night, the realization dawned on me that these people had nowhere else to go for Christmas. The crowd wasn't noisy and drunk. It was subdued and really into listening to me play. "Eleanore Rigby" flashed through my mind, but I didn't play that song. I was looking at enough lonely people from the stage without reminding them about it.

Instead, I started playing Christmas carols.

I don't know why I did that, but it seemed like a good idea at the time. I started with "Silent Night" and the next thing I know, the entire barroom is singing along with me. We did "White Christmas," "Oh, Holy Night" and "We Three Kings." I finished my gig for the night with "Jingle Bells." Everybody in the bar sang along with every song. I brought the house down.

That night, I felt sorry for those people, because I had family waiting for me and a place to go on Christmas Eve. They didn't. Tonight, I know why they were there and why they liked what I played for them.

Christmas Eve is one empty night when you have nowhere to go.

Comments

Door is always open for you here.

Everyone you have touched through this blog will be with you tonight.

Merry Christmas Acidman.

Posted by: Angie on December 24, 2003 05:09 PM

Just how many have you touched anyway??

(Sorry, couldn't resist.)

That was a beautiful post, Rob. I haven't asked, and now I'm curious. How long have you been an atheist? I have a feeling it's not really you. But we can debate later.

Merry Christmas, Rob.

Posted by: Key on December 24, 2003 05:14 PM

Christmas Eve is one empty night when you have nowhere to go.

Word. It's vodka time.

Posted by: Allah on December 24, 2003 05:58 PM

Acidman,
You ain't alone. A bunch of people are reading you and commenting. A Christmas eve conversation with friends. I don't comment here much, but I read you every day just to see what's whuppin. Hell, I'd send you some of the best home made cookies in the world, but by the time I got around to packing them, they'd all be gone (taste test, you know). So just relax, stay on track, and have a Merry Cyber Christmas.

An idea just struck me as I was about to send this post this comment - take your guitar and go around singing Christmas carols to your neighbors... Yeh, I know. It's corny, but what the heck....

Posted by: oldgeek on December 24, 2003 05:58 PM

Hugs to you, Rob!

Posted by: Robin on December 24, 2003 06:01 PM

There's always someplace to go. (From a happy single gal who's headed out, solo, to a super cool craft bazaar where there are live bands and a full bar!)

Posted by: dragonfly jenny on December 24, 2003 06:07 PM

Congratulations, Dragonfly Jenny, you have better sense than those of us who have been hurt by loved ones, or ones that could have been loved.

Posted by: Ms Anna on December 24, 2003 08:08 PM

Yep, I think we've all been there once or twice. It rather sucks to be alone when it seems everyone else in the world isn't.

Ah well, that's what scotch is for.

Posted by: Mr. Lion on December 24, 2003 08:10 PM

Mr. Lion,

Franzia White Zinfedel, 100% Russian Vodka, the best of scotches, etc., etc.

Yep, we're staying home and getting even more depressed by adding alcohol to the brain's deepest "wish we could forget thoughts."

Hope we can find our true friends tomorrow. I've decided not to ever spend another Christmas Eve alone. Make that New Year's Eve, also. That's another bitch of a holiday for me. The Ghosts of Christmases Past and the Ghosts of New Year's Eves Past can be a bitch.

Posted by: Ms Anna on December 24, 2003 08:38 PM

Good on you. Merry Christmas.

Posted by: mark on December 24, 2003 09:18 PM

Hey Anna, I ain't sayin I ain't been hurt! (Like, has anybody NOT?) Just that I'm happy deep down.

Posted by: dragonfly jenny on December 24, 2003 09:29 PM

Rob,

From the time I was 14, I never really had anywhere to be on Christmas eve.

I can remember (Okay, think I remember, because I was in a drunken stupor) eight Christmas eves (and days) because I had nothing and no one. No family, people I imagined were my friends and mere aquaintances.

If I had been in that bar the night you were playing I probably would have been reduced to a sobbing idiot. You'll probably never know the affect you had on those people.

Deep down, I think you are man worthy of great redemption and praise.

Posted by: Commander Will on December 24, 2003 09:33 PM

Hi...Im just surfed in and want to say hello!
Regards George


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