Things we do for love.
I have caught barf in my hands, told a sick snotty nosed kid with a bruised face she was beautiful and sat through tortuous hours of dance recitals all for love. This weekend I spent 3 ½ hours at a reggae concert because love usually requires sacrifice.
See the thing with reggae is you should be in the mood for it- if you know what I mean. Picture yourself on the beach in Jamaica, spleef in one hand, rum in the other. Young Jamaican rubbing your feet. The sun is warm, the surf pounds the clean white sandy beach, the music starts and you can imagine nothing else more perfect.
But say you have been up since 4am, experiencing back and shoulder pain, of which the doctor has given you meds, of which you can’t take because you want to drink beer at a pool party later, and they make you tired. So you tough it out, get up and do household things, go to the pool party, get somewhat smashed, then change clothes and drive to the city hours early. You drink more beer and stare at faux Jamaicans– a few white ones, even, and wonder if you’re the oldest palest non dreadlocked one there. The concert starts with an opening band that pretty much sucks. They have a weird set, which like a Thomas Wolfe novel, goes on too long and has like three false endings, as if someone back stage is telling them—no, we’re not ready yet.
The only saving grace is that there is beer for sale in the theater, but you are so full now you can’t drink anymore beer, and the bathrooms seem really far away and god you’d give anything for a cup of coffee, but that would make everyone realize how old you really are.
And when the lights finally dim again after the set change and you realize you’ve been up 17 hours and could pretty much take a nap right now, you stand up to wake up and think, “Hey, these guys are pretty good.” You even recognize one or two songs from an old CD deep in your dresser drawer. And you stay standing and rocking and shouting and clapping because your spouse has memories with this band and it’s important to him and love is making sacrifices and those small pinch bruises you gave yourself to stay awake will fade in due time.