IT SHOULD BE LIKE A HALF AN HOUR VOLUME 11

“Would you welcome now, to the midnight special, the fabulous Bee Gees!”

“Nights on Broadway” is one of those wonderful “stalker” songs from the 60s and 70s. If you’ve ever been stalked, it isn’t even remotely funny, so, ignore my rude post, and I apologize. And, in the 50s, 60s, and 70s (not all of which I was alive for), and probably many decades previously, stalking was A-ok. It was how a young man professed his obsessional love for HIS woman. Got it? It was okay; nobody thought anything of it beyond, “Why is she being so cruel to the one who truly loves her?” I’ll tell you why, now, as a grownup, in hindsight, it’s because of the stalking.

Yes, yes, okay.

But, this is a freaking great song! And so just ignore the stalker bits and take the words with a grain of salt.

Robin reminds me of Neville Longbottom, and he dances about as well as I would expect Neville Longbottom to dance, but as Jamal says in this video, he isn’t using anything artificial to get himself to those high notes, and neither is Maurice.

Maurice is, IMHO the cutest Bee Gee, which of course does not count their absolutely scrummy younger bother who was not in the group, Andy Gibb. Whatever genetics were doing in that family, they got it perfect with Andy, but Andy, sadly, did not survive Rock & Roll.

I love, BTW, watching Jamal watch the Be Gees. Jamal’s kinda scrummy too, easy-on-the-eyes, and he’s adorable watching music he hasn’t heard before.

I’m just trying to keep the whole “stalker vibe” going you know.

And I just have to wax poetic about the harmony going on here. The Bee Gees usually have three layers of vocal going on, which makes sense. And I really enjoy singing along to this one and jumping from branch to branch, level to level. I’ve become a mezzo in my old age, but once I get warmed up, I can still hit those Maurice high notes. “Oh yeah yeah. Yeah!”

Because of those levels, it’s a song most singers can sing along to. You just find your range. It’s there.

I love the idea, too, of blaming the behavior, the “out of control” on the nights on Broadway. I have had those moments, more when I was younger I admit, where I was so pumped up and excited (nothing to do with booze or other substances, this pumped-up must come from your own endorphins), that I felt sure that something magical was going to happen, or that, if I did something reckless, like grab someone and kiss them, it would not be my fault.

I actually did grab someone and kiss them once. Adrian Smith (I think it was Smith) had gone to Paris with me and a bunch of other kids in 9th or 10th grade. In Paris I was many things that I really enjoyed: I was proficient in the language (at the time) with a good accent; I was free of my f-ing parents; I was free of my “boring weirdo nerd” status in high school; and I was, for the first fucking time in my life, autonomous, because my French teacher was a delightfully absentee landlord. I went wherever I wanted in Paris, and my friends followed because I was the best at French, reading maps, navigating subways, and asking for directions, and I also had a lot of ideas about where we should go.

Getting on the plane to go home was like walking to the gallows for me. It was like I had finally been able to breathe, and the universe was insisting I get back in the damn box. I could have cried my heart out the whole flight home, surrounded by other kids who had had enough, and could not wait to get back to Mom and Dad. I failed, I knew it, when that plane took off, because I could not, the whole time I was in Paris, come up with a plan to escape the school trip and stay in France. It was, I think, my first time realizing I could get out of my co-dependent family situation, but I didn’t have the smarts to figure out how I would: get work, get a place to live, avoid the authorities, and, most of all, hide from the long arm of my mother. As good as I was at all those other things, I was hopeless at saving myself. In fact, I think I’ve only just got there now, in my old, mezzo-soprano fucking age. *sigh*

When we got off of the plane in Philly, the parents of all of us were there, and mine were in my face. They wanted me to be soooo excited to see them. They wanted me to be more interested in them than anything else. And my mother wanted me to tell her every detail of the trip, because I wasn’t allowed to have private adventures.

At some point, feeling like my life had ended and I’d never be free again, I came upon fellow student and traveler, Adrian. He stopped to say something to me, and I walked up to him, slid my hands up his cheeks and into his hair, and pulled his face to mine, and laid one on him, just like in the movies. Just like you would expect a person to do in Paris, of course. Just like that guy in that photo from when the war is over, and he just kisses that nurse, and she just has to take it, accept it, give in to it, because it’s all beyond anyone’s control, but it is loose and reckless in a forgivable and not at all stalkery sort of way.

Yes it is.

And you can blame it all, on the nights on Broadway.

When you’re “singing them love songs, singing them straight to the heart songs.”

I wonder where Adrian is today. I certainly wasn’t in love with him, but he was a very nice guy, and I was in love with the me who could just lay a guy out with a kiss. I wonder if that girl’s still in here somewhere.

Ultimately I think what I did with all the co-dependence and control was to find a way to live with it. A therapist once told me that we’re all in a rubber fence with our families, and maybe even a rubber cage is better to say. We can never be free. Not all the way. And some don’t have families they need to be free of, and others do. And those that do probably learn to live inside the lines, a bit of a shrunken life, or they escape in some other way, which could be substances, and was for my brother, and I am glad, as boring a human as I may be, that substances was never where I went to pop the top on the cage. If someone keeps yelling at you, and you just walk away, well, you’ve pretty much taken the weapon away. But, I don’t think you can go back. I don’t think you can accept the cage sometimes and ignore it others. I think, in all honesty, I finally just realized the cage was a construct, like the Matrix, that I no longer needed to believe in.

Or maybe I just got swept up by the “Nights on Broadway.”

May you not stalk or be stalked, but may you have a little romance with yourself, and if you get a little tipsy on love, may you be able to blame it all on the “Nights on Broadway.”

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