Saturday, September 13, 2014


Lincoln Center was sponsoring Silent Disco at Gantry State Park in Long Island City this weekend, a free event. I went by myself. There were 2 DJs and you could switch between them on the headphones that were given to you as you entered the dance floor (in exchange for your license.) The green light on the headphones represented one DJ and the blue light represented the other. It was a bit awkward because there were very few green headphones lit up. The "popular" blue DJ was of course playing familiar pop songs. The green DJ was playing old school soul. I felt bad for the green DJ and kept my headphones green for awhile out of solidarity for the cool music he was playing, but eventually I succumbed too and switched to blue. It was just more fun to be in sync with the crowd.

I took a break to get a coffee at the nearby cafe called COFFEED. I sat down at a table outside and went on FB. I was in the middle of responding to a post by Lisa Carver, about Neil Young taking up with Daryl Hanna a month after he filed for divorce from Pegi. Her post was the first I heard of it and moreover she was for it. I didn't want to judge, but couldn't quite let it go either. I mean Neil's marriage and family life was kind of heroic to me, even though I know better than to have rock star heroes. What made me feel slimed was seeing him take up with a younger movie star version of Pegi. "Only love will break your heart."

As I was responding on FB a group of 3 people came up and asked if they could sit at my table. I said sure. They said, do you want some friends? I said, yeah, I can always use more friends. There were two female med students and the boyfriend of one of the girls. The guy, Jonathon, asked me what I was doing and I told him about the Neil Young post and it sparked a scintillating discussion. Pretty soon we were talking about other things. At one point Jonathon was telling a story about doing ex-pat stand-up comedy in Korea, and began to recreate his routine which had me laughing out loud. Suddenly behind him, the outline of a giant 19th century clipper ship was moving in a stately manner down the East River. It was surreal. I told Jonathon I was sorry to interrupt his terrific story, but he had to see the ship. He turned around and we all looked at it for a moment in awed silence.

I asked the three if they were there for the silent disco. They said no, but they had noticed it and were going to check it out. Jonathon said, I know a guy who runs one of these companies. I asked him which one and he said, SilentClubbing. I said, this IS SilentClubbing. He said, Oh wow, I've gotta go say hi. So he leaves and I talk with the two women, Christine and Abby. They somehow got me telling them the plot of a new book I'm writing, Jack Jumps Off The Beanstalk. It was terrific to suddenly have interested listeners.

Jonathon came back and said he had introduced the owner of SilentClubbing to the owner of COFFEED, and they talked about doing the silent disco at Gantry State Park every Friday night, with Jonathon getting a 10% cut ($500). What a mover and shaker.

Then we all 4 went out dancing and had a great time. At one point Jonathon and his girlfriend Christine got a lot of people to switch over to the RED channel, which had NOTHING on it, but they were dancing like fools as if it was the best of the 3 channels. It was a good joke and a bit of a coup. I tried to join, for the fun of it, but I missed the music too much and quickly went back to blue.

My new friends Jonathon Christine and Abby.

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