Wednesday night I played hooky from hockey (ugh) and hit the city for some delicious dinner and delicious rock (via Sloan) with my good friend Leo, his 19 year-old daughter Megan and her friend Mallory. His blog post today provides some of the comedy that occured pre-show. I guess I should restate that – from Leo’s perspective, the comedy part was only funny after everything turned out ok. A few years ago, it would have been funny for me all along, but with kids now, I admit to having some sympathy.

The highlights of the night can be summarized here:

  • First and foremost, conversation. Pre-show dinner used to be a way for me to fill up on solids before moving to excess liquids at the club. Oh, how things have changed. As it turned out, I enjoyed the dinner, the company and the conversation more than show. I can attribute this to my wife. Someday I’ll explain more, but in short, it’s all about the value of family, friends and relationships.
  • Having dinner with two 19-year old girls was, um, interesting. I don’t think this has happened to me since I was……19. But here’s the kicker: my faith in humanity was elevated a little bit when the topic of homophobes came up and both 19 year-olds couldn’t fathom why it was any big deal whether one was gay or straight. Now, I am not so naive to think that all 19 year-olds subscribe to this notion, but it was still enlightening and I do believe our emerging generations are getting further and further away from hatred and racism (example here from a post I wrote in 2004).
  • That said, Leo (who is in his forties) and myself, at 37, certainly felt odd dining with two youngsters like that (he probably felt a little less odd than I, given one of them was his daughter). I had to remark that people were probably thinking we were a couple of dirty old men. Or they thought we had hired escorts, to which Megan, Leo’s daughter, replied “great, you just called us high-class hookers.”
  • Greek beer. I forget the name. But the highlight here is that it wasn’t a highlight.
  • Oh, the show was good! I found myself wishing that the setlist was a little more spread out across more of their excellent catalog, but they’re still fun and they’re still so obnoxiously talented that it makes me sad they can’t seem to crack the nut in America.  Still, nothing from “Action Pact?”
  • Show highlight: Sloan pulling two people from the audience to sing lead during the encore. One of them was horrible, and the band knew it and stopped the song halfway through, but the other guy nailed “I Can Feel It.” Very enjoyable.