Singin' In The Rain
Rain or Shine.
Maybe I'm just highly optimistic--or actively in denial--but I've never given much thought to the fine print of say, a Newport Jazz Festival ticket. I mean, I guess it could rain. But that would never happen in my reality where the sun is reflecting off the crystal blue waters of the bay--as well as the asphalt, my husband Andre's sunglasses and my can of iced tea, with live jazz providing the soundtrack in real time, to my death by heatstroke.
So you'd think that I'd be psyched about this year's predicted monsoon conditions. No worries about sunscreen re-application. No concerns about rehydration. Nah. Not so much. Being soaked for eight hours seems like it comes with its own set of challenges. I was actually resigned to take the financial hit and maybe sleep all day, until André innocently said, "Before I became a responsible adult, I would have never considered not going."
First part: completely true. We are responsible adults. Very responsible. Our mortgage and bills are paid on time and in full. We go to work. We work hard. We do not cheat on our taxes, each other or even our diets. It was the second part that, well, made my skin crawl; the implication that, somehow, all of these adult responsibilities, and the pious maturity that is supposed to come with them, were preventing us from heading over to the wild side--in this case, singin' in the rain.
The last time I was frivolously caught in a downpour at an outdoor stage was in the early '90's at Rocky Point. It was a Fourth of July celebration with headliners John Cafferty and the Beaver Brown Band. My date: my brother Rob. Were we prepared for the elements? You bettcha, because he didn't go anywhere without his volunteer fireman's jacket in the backseat of his Jeep.
You know, in case of emergency.
And indeed, this was. Not exactly standard issue, but after the show, I took off my wet clothes (discreetly) and wore the flannel-lined coat home. Naturally, Rob was hungry, so brother (now shirtless) and sister (now buckled into twenty pounds of flame-resistant goodness) hit the Burger King drive-through. This remains one of my all time favorite memories, from the visuals alone. And know what? I didn't give one thought as to what would happen if we got into a accident.
So, what's different now, besides the addition of a couple of years? Outside of the lack of firegear at our disposal, nada. Sure, André and I could subscribe to those popular, age-related guidelines and expiration dates that put a whole lot of unnecessary restrictions on life, and only make people feel depressed, washed-up and way past their prime, but that's not how we roll.
Too responsible to dance in the rain? Never. And if you can do it in a bright blue vinyl poncho, from the tenth row as Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue close out the weekend, even better.