Last night I insisted, nay demanded, that my friends meet me at Burlington’s most hyped resto, the Bluebird Tavern and Gastropub, for a little spot of supper. A little spot is about all we got, so I’m glad they didn’t come expecting a meal.
Let’s back up a tick. Whenever I read about anything that is crazy hyped, my palms start to sweat and my ears get fiery red. I think I just get a little uncomfortable at the idea that something is too cool for school. And, because I am a so-called journalist, my bee-ess alarm starts jangling in my head. I ask myself, why are people getting all hot and bothered about this? So of course, I had to employ that question when everyone started drooling over the Bluebird Tavern months before it even opened. Yesterday, I figured I’d get to the bottom of it. Just call me Nancy Drew.
Few things make me as sad as lost items. Perhaps sad isn’t exactly the right word. Choked up maybe. Losing an umbrella is obviously not nearly as wrenching as say, the plight of lepers in developing countries or the conscription of child soldiers in war-torn parts of Africa. But when I see lost mittens, abandoned bikes, the occasional shoe without a mate, something tugs at my heartstrings. My frayed, black heartstrings.
This is why Dawn O’Connell’s homemade flyer, which ended up on my porch last night, is really making me bummed. The notice is simple – the word “MISSING” is printed in handwritten capital letters over the photo of her cat, Cody. Underneath the cat’s photo is Dawn’s contact info. It’s amazing that in an age of digital overkill that something as simple as a handmade, photocopied flyer can be so effective and poignant. The flyer has spurred me to action. I want to find Dawn’s cat, not so that I can be the hero, though that would be an added bonus, but so that Dawn can rest easy knowing that Cody is safe and sound mewing around the house, playing with cat toys and getting stoned on catnip.
This is a photo of Cody, the wayward indoor house cat.
You would think that by the end of a 12-day festival of music, dance, theater and culture celebrating Sam D. Champ’s little canoe trip 400 years ago that this kid wouldn’t have anything left in the tank. Oh, how wrong you would be. While some people might have felt they have been entertained to within an inch of their lives over these last two weeks(my editrix, for one), I feel like I could go on for weeks, months even.
Truthfully, I couldn’t really go on much longer, which is good, since I have run out of underwear and there are fruit flies hovering over my dirty dishes. I blame Jay Craven, the impresario behind the festivities, for my slovenliness of the past two weeks. Of course, all good things must come to an end, including the waterfront festival, which rolled to a stop last night with the final presentation of “Aurelia’s Oratorio,” a dreamlike opus of whimsy and elan that felt like being stuck headfirst in a champagne flute full of effervescence. Or so said the event guidebook. Or so I paraphrased it.
This is what being French looks like.
I imagine Jay Craven is breathing a very heavy sigh of relief today. Last night, the first show of the Queen City Concert Series — Philadelphia’s proud hip-hop purveyors The Roots — went off with nary a hitch. The weather cooperated, the talent put on a great show, and most concert-goers managed to keep it together. No one teetered into the lake and no major brawls erupted. And thank golly for that. I didn’t want to have to use my fearsome karate moves on any jerks who got out of line, and I sure as heck didn’t want to go diving into the lake to pull out some hapless drunk.
But seriously, the whole event was pretty seamless. The venue, with the stage facing the lake, allowed people to celebrate Champlain (the lake, not the dude) in their own way — by dancing badly lakeside while belting out hip-hop lyrics. Well, at least that’s what I was doing.
Disclaimer: For my entire life, I have refused to wait in line to get into a club or bar, no matter how hot the venue. I don’t care if Jesus himself was cutting a rug inside, I ain’t waiting outside. I would rather swallow a jar full of bees than wait in a line outside a club. That’s how much I don’t want to wait.
So last night I waited in line outside of Lift, a club by cRAIG mITCHELL. Without a doubt, this had to be the most anticipated club opening in Burlington since… um, I don’t know what. Let’s just say that Lift is the Bluebird Tavern of clubs- there’s a huge amount of hype surrounding it. Warranted or not, people wanted to get in here.
Let’s back up a bit. Lift, for those of you who aren’t dedicated club kids, is a new venture started by turntablist of some renown, Craig Mitchell, who used to spin the decks in Burlington a few years ago before he became rich and famous and left the Green Mountains. The club is occupying the space left vacant by the former Second Floor, the college ghetto of clubs. People who pay attention to the downtown Burlington scene have been waiting for something to happen to that space. And now something has.
Today, I saw the most extraordinary sight. I wish I had my camera with me so I could have taken a picture. Surely, no one will believe what I’m about to write.
In the middle of the afternoon, as I drove along Main Street in Burlington, I saw someone feeding quarters into a payphone. Yes, a payphone. One of those telephones with a cord that require the user insert quarters in order to make a call. They are often covered in bad graffiti, fossilized chewing gum and dried spit.
This is what the past looks like.