Sunday, December 9, 2012

Telenovela du Jour

Jaye Beldo
Sunday, December 2, 2012

The orange haired Flamenco dancer swirled about-some Country and Western song blasting on the jukebox.  I knew there wasn’t a chance when she zipped through her pics on her camera across the street at the restaurant and I got a summary life montage in about a minute or so. Cathedrals in Barcelona, Mexican desert, Fabio looking guys playing guitars near tropical fountains and the one she had shot of me barely able to muster a smile, with what appeared to be some wan hued greasepaint on my face. I couldn’t synch with her svelte moves and stepped on her toes quite a few times, thinking of what to do with my father’s cremains all the while.

It was the usual deformed lot at the bar. I made some comment to a friend about a chemical spill that surely must have occurred in the town so many years ago and he told me it was meth and I couldn’t argue that. The pink hair, rotted grey teeth, moth eaten Metallica t-shirts and heads that sprung out from shoulders like side show dolls celebrating their own planned obsolescence still stick in my mind.

The chica’s hermanas  also alienated me with their drinking and laughter, although I admired their defiance of America’s collective depression. They made a mockery of it –clapping out some sophisticated rhythms not apparent in the Merle Haggard they were dancing to. As they were closing in to complete their Iberian sarabande, I went out into the downpour, crossed the dark street to the Excursion, climbed in the back and picked wood ticks off of the dog we had to rescue because his legs and hips were too stiff and he couldn’t walk back up to the top of the mountain after following us down earlier in the day.  He promptly ate the blood filled things while I continued to comb through his fur with my fingers and rip out more.

Back at the restaurant I tried out my Spanish soap opera monologue I’d been rehearsing for weeks on the trio. Amping up the dramatic effect wasn’t enough apparently-I was told I needed to be even more exaggerated in my delivery. But the applause received made the extra effort worthwhile and hugs and kisses ensued. One of the lovely ladies tried to convince me that I’m a ‘being of light’ and shouldn't kill myself as I had confessed in my rudimentary Spanish while clutching my heart, nearly falling out of my chair.  It could have been some subtle irony that got lost in her own stagecraft attempts to assuage me, but there was some genuine warmth which made me even more abstracted though and I only wanted to walk the five or six miles in the dark, back to the foot of the mountain and ascend in the rain and risk falling into the raging river we surveyed on motorcycles earlier in the day.  It really didn't matter. She would be off to Columbia in a few days and some ayahuasca experimentation in the jungle  with ‘Jivaro’ Indians  she told me–way out of my league from what I gathered on the dance floor as well as from the tentative squeeze of her hand when I tried to hold it under the table during dinner.

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