The Small Rock

The Mike Doughty show last night was brilliant, just him and a guitar. He developed an immediate rapport with the audience – to the point where people sometimes laughed just because some part of a song was particularly perfect. At one point after a song, he said “I really have to pee,” surrendered his guitar to an audience member, and booked it to the bathroom. He boiled some Soul Coughing hits down to their perfect essential core (His voice is all he needs for these things), played some songs from Skittish, and some new ones. The show was truly inspiring.

Walking home, an older couple slowed down next to me in a white Taurus and asked “Do you know how to find Five? We’re trying to get to the airport.” I gave them some directions and started walking again. They drove timidly to the next block, alongside the bus tunnel entrance and pulled over again. I back-tracked and crouched down beside the passenger side window. They were a bit frazzled from driving around in circles. I clarified my directions again and told them they just needed to follow them, drive confidently, and they’d be on the freeway soon enough. They still weren’t quite sure about something. The woman on the passenger side moved her head a little, I thought she might have been recoiling from my beer breath. I saw that they were anxious about taking advice from some kid walking through downtown Seattle at 1:30 in the morning with messy hair and no jacket. They thanked me and I said, “Good luck.”

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