Guest Post: Aaahhwkward

19 Aug

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Today’s guest post comes from Sommer Browning, a recent Denver transplant. We love Sommer because she is hilarious and the kind of lady who will give you the story below. We’ll let the story speak for itself. Follow her on Twitter @VagTalk. Trust us on this one.

The evening began sophisticatedly enough, a visit to a hip bar, to see a friend’s folk band play. Good intentions, support the arts and all that. Then drift, slightly whiskey drunk, toward a different kind of entertainment, down the street into douchebag territory, a round of karaoke. More whiskey, then back into the night, dulled, ready for anything now, which meant the black metal pouring from a bar around the corner. A motley crowd, but everyone properly dressed in black and paying strict attention to the talk-at-least-40-to-me musicians on stage. A flying V. A death metal growl. Hair long enough to stir toilet water when hunkering down. I was having a very good time.

There were two other females there, a pair of young girls in concert T-shirts. Barely, or not at all, 21. They were having a good time, too; rocking out, their stringy, not yet overly processed, hair clinging to their babyish, wrinkle-free, goddamn faces. These girls were me back in the day. No makeup, no pretense, young bundles of adrenaline, anger and misconceptions. I’m 13 years older than they are and we still have a lot in common. All night I watched them, huddling together before going out to smoke. Two young girls at a rock show full of guys have to make a fortress, albeit a delicate one. They glance together at a possibly handsome rocker in the corner, Do you think he’s hot? Kinda. The way they make their decisions in conference, I still do that.

Convinced, through the holiness of whiskey, I loved them and knew them, I approached them between bands. They sat in a booth, necks strained toward each other, their faces inches from the table top. Hi. And like the sparrow a moment before she collides into the kitchen window – Do you guys come here a lot? Is this a metal bar? – I felt every second of my 34 years.

There should be a long, pretentious and very scientific word for this temporal phenomenon. The length of one’s life collapsed into a second, dense as a black hole, as rude as getting cold-cocked. I think it’s the same science Billy Brown uses when he “spans time” with Layla in the photo booth in Buffalo 66, a few snapshots to stand in for years. But I had just set myself up, imagining myself as some sad, mascara stained Faye Dunaway (more Barfly than Chinatown). A: I’m a fucking old lady. B: there’s not enough whiskey to erase that fact. C: Only a fucking old lady would put it that way. It was some kind of circular, nostalgia trap. When I looked at these girls, I somehow remembered my body at 21 with the perspective and knowledge that comes with living 13 years longer. That combination of me never existed: at 21, I smoked weed all day and spoke in monosyllables. It never existed yet I had just been remembering it.

They were cute, graciously awkward. Oh, this is our first time here. Silence. Me smiling like a ventriloquist dummy. I’m visiting from Omaha, one of them offered and I accepted, graciously awkward, the normal, sophisticated, yet only way out. Oh! Well, have a great visit. See you around.


9 Responses to “Guest Post: Aaahhwkward”

  1. Sport August 19, 2010 at 10:02 am #

    I went to a couple concerts where the average age had to have been about 20. I remember seeing one boy rock out without abandon and I thought, yeah, I used to do that. Now I’d throw my back out. But he definitely made me feel connected with a person I once was and for that I felt a kinship with that kid. Awww tender.

  2. dulcedementia August 19, 2010 at 11:42 am #

    I do this, but in a slightly different way. When I see teens being awkward teens, I cringe from toes to head. I want to run up to them, grab their tiny shoulders, shake them and yell, “in 10 years you will look back at yourself now and you will want to crawl in a hole and hide. Stop now! For the sake of future you!”

    • cwashenberger August 20, 2010 at 8:52 am #

      Huh. I don’t know. I like being 34. Not that I don’t have a little nostalgia for 21 but I have no interest in reconnecting with the 21 year old me or anyone else who is 21, for that matter. In thinking about it, I remember my first club days at First Avenue in Minneapolis. I felt all weird and awkward and completely unable to figure out bar/club etiquette. Terrified, I suppose. Often though you would see people who were obviously older (likely not as old as I thought at the time but go with me here) and I always figured to be about 30. They had a way about them that I was impressed by. They managed themselves well, looked great, always knew what drink to order and fit in. They seemed older and much more cool than me.

      I like to think that I am that guy now. I drink whiskey and haven’t drank (dear god) a vodka sour in about 12 years. I can now afford to drink and look the way I want, which goes a long way. I recently had a conversation with Mama Monroe regarding how if I was able to talk to the 15 year old me, I would tell him that he will be fine. In a weird job/friend/social sort of way I really did become the guy I wanted to be. Not in the way I would have expected 18 years ago but I really like my life as a 34 year-old and don’t really have any need to revisit those old days.

      Just as a counter to my own argument, 50+ swingers are not cool. I am looking at you Ground Zero from 1997!

      • theVar August 20, 2010 at 9:53 am #

        We all have that 21 nostalgia. God knows I do, but my 30s are growing on me like well worn pair of Chucks. And, yes, that right drink is money.

    • theVar August 20, 2010 at 9:56 am #

      Dulce, you do know that shaking awkward teens can cause symptoms of jail time, large fines, and morning sickness.

  3. KH-M August 20, 2010 at 9:25 am #

    I’m newish to this site and I like it so far, but what’s up with the graphic? I like my women…12 years old. Ummm, sick. Is there something I’m missing here?

    • theVar August 20, 2010 at 9:43 am #

      KH-M, you didn’t miss anything. It accompanied the notion that these girls were probably underage and in a bar full of sleaze-balls. Hey, thanks for getting into the site and enjoying. We hope to hear more from you. Cheers!

      • KH-M August 20, 2010 at 10:27 am #

        Ohhhh, got ya. Thanks.


  1. Tweets that mention Guest Post: Aaahhwkward « Talk Thirty To Me -- - August 19, 2010

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Kevin Boulas, Corey Nagle and Corey Nagle, Talk Thirty To Me. Talk Thirty To Me said: Guest Post: Aaahhwkward : […]

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