Thursday, October 19, 2006

One Day, A While Back...


...I found myself down in Venice Beach, on a school day, during school hours, with 3 friends. We made our way to the boardwalk, as seniors, not in charge of a phantom entitlement, but a self-indulged right to our time.

I was 17 then, so I don't recall too many of the details. I do remember the car that took us there; I do remember that Venice was almost entirely empty; and I do remember meeting a guy who wanted to sing to us for tips - I suppose.

The first, and only, song this guy sang to us on his broken down guitar.....escaped me for a few bars. It seemed familiar, and yet I just couldn't put my finger to it. And then I got it! Though still innocent to it's lyrics, it was a Bob Dylan. And then, out of my delirium, clearly it was that classic about homelessness.

Here was this this guy, apparently down on his luck on a relatively warm southern California winter's day in Venice Beach, singing to a few middle-class boys from Woodland Hills about the perils of being.....well, down on your luck.

Why did it have to be that song? Why not something romantic and gentle? I remember realizing what he was singing about, and then having to leave the scene immediately. And then I remember being out on Santa Monica Pier, and then I remember being back home, in a bean bag in my room, wondering why I was so happy and content from this day?

Trust me, it wasn't from the song. That song has stuck with me for almost 20 years....

1 comment:

Liquid Spirit said...

you know i have a similar memory of a guy just like that playing guitar on venice, but my reaction, while visceral, was a bit different. i wonder if it is the same episode.