Friday, February 24, 2012

Homeward Tennessee

Charlotte feels like a prison cell. I was hoping to leave tonight but I had a full set list of time to do before I was released and didn't feel much like driving afterwards. All day felt strange. It's been one of those apathetic days where all I want to do is stay away from everybody, lock myself away somewhere and not talk to anyone. I feel shy around everyone and answer questions with a timid smile and a nod. I had to play the show but I didn't feel much like performing. It went alright, I guess. It kind of felt more like an 8 hour work day than anything else. A half empty room and a cramped stage typically make for a decent show; but not tonight. Tonight felt stagnant. The room was smokey and the hipster elitists made every song feel like it was being broken down, inspected and thrown away. Nothing hit home. One couple sat, watching intently, while the rest of the room went on about their business as if I was a jukebox tucked away in a corner somewhere. I'd play my songs, they'd realize I stopped, half-way clap, and it would all start over. I wanted nothing more than for Rickey to run out of the corner, jump up on stage and play the show with me. Maybe then it wouldn't matter and we'd have fun anyway. I don't mind playing for small crowds. I love it. I'll play to a room. I'll play to anything. I'll play to nothing...just not tonight. Tonight I just want to leave. I wound up playing a short set and getting out early on good behavior. I wrapped up and left with some change from the door and a couple doughnuts from behind the bar. I just wanted to be alone. I wanted to shut everybody out. I got to some obscure place, pulled back the curtain on my truck and unpacked my guitar. My phone rang a couple times. I ignored it. I didn't want to talk to anybody. I could hear sirens in the distance; they served as the only reminder that there was anything at all beyond the black curtain that separated me from the rest of the world. Other than that it was just me. We're caught up with time now. I'm sitting here. Typing away on an out-dated cellphone and clutching this guitar like a life-ring in some kind of vast ocean of apathy. My doughnuts are gone. I can't stop coughing and eat coughdrops like candy. There are no sirens anymore. Everything is quiet. Utter silence. I'll probably be up awhile. I'm going home in the morning. Home - there's a term for you. I'm only going there so I can pack up and leave again. I'm happiest here - alone in some parking lot in some city I can't pronounce. I'm home right now. Home - I like that.

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