Italians

(email, 2009 or so)

The wine flowed, all delicious Italian varieties. I just asked for something red and then something else red and then—I had three—something red again. They were all tasty. The guy read me the name off the bottle each time but I had forgotten it by the time I nodded “oh”.

The hors d’oevres were the best I’ve ever had and the little waiter guys with the trays kept bringing them on. Got stuffed on little mouthfuls. Trout caviar is delicious. We snuck away from the schmoozing and wandered about the grounds, very nice, very unassuming. You weren’t supposed to know who was inside doing whatever things rock stars do that they don’t want known. There’s a secret entrance for the Madonnas and the like. Bars everywhere, pool side, on both sides of the lobby, everywhere you looked there were people sitting with drinks and chatting their heavy significant chats or giggling as champagne tickled their noses. There was a singer I had heard on the event’s website who really intrigued me, a soul sort of thing, and as I had mentioned it to the publicist. Suddenly she, her producer, and some unidentified others were ushered into my august presence. We had a nice chat. Turns out she was the evening’s entertainment and I was very impressed. They were thrilled and whispered about it in Italian. I was talked into attending the fancy concert at the Fonda on Saturday where she’ll be performing with half a dozen other Italian acts. Full band this time. The backstage will have gourmet Italian grub and wine, they emphasized. Bring your dear wife. I wasn’t sure if I was open that night and hemmed and hawed a bit and said yes (one always hems and haws a bit). The publicist restrained a squeal and the Italians smiled and whispered among themselves. The singer, thank god, speaks fluent English, well, is in fact an American raised in Italy so I guess she got on the bill on a technicality. Afterward the hotel manager overheard that I was from the LA Weekly and I was snatched away to join a tour of the hotel’s recording studio beneath the pool. Very nice.  Madonna had just been there. Joe Perry that very day. His amp was there. We weren’t allowed to touch it. After the Italians wandered back up to the bar left we stayed a bit and talked studio business and recording techniques and music stuff.  They were thrilled to have a real live LA Weekly guy in their studio. I mean, there were a couple other journalists at the party, actually, there, all from tiny little monthly rags, none of whom were on the tour. I mean puhleez……

Alas the end of the night was drawing nigh, and I had to scurry off to my beautiful Buick Lucerne before it turned into a pumpkin and me into an office worker again.

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