Thursday, April 15, 2010

Judy Plume: Are You There, Amsterdam? It's Me, Volcano.

Further explanation of my crystal-clear text message pictured above seems utterly superfluous, but (sigh) I suppose I should be making up for the blogging slack caused by my recent malaise.

As I wrote earlier today, I was supposed to be headed to Amsterdam tonight for a gig at Melkweg (which means "Milkyway" in Dutch, unless the club is filled with pinda, or peanuts, in which case it's called "Schnickersh"). Berlin has an amazing transit system, so as is my custom, I took the M2 tram to the S42 train to the TXL bus stop, where I spotted an agitated "Pinnwand" standing around in his neo-Lederhosen:

The bus was actually late, and I was so taken with his exotic pants and gold-plated tag that I invited him to split a cab with me to Tegel Airport. After I told the cab driver my airline, Herr Plaidpants informed me that Amsterdam had recently joined the rapidly-growing list of destinations with canceled flights resulting from an ash plume originating from a volcano in Iceland.

Tempted as I was to leap out of the speeding taxi to avoid having to pay my share of the fare, my ruthless professionalism compelled me to remain seated and continue on to the airport. Rushing up to the check-in area, I was advised by a KLM agent that mine would indeed be the last flight out, so I checked my record bag and raced through security faster than magma streams down a fucking trip-ruining volcano in Iceland, only to find this at the gate:

I realized I was not going to make my gig. In an effort to lift my spirits, I thought of a silver lining to the volcanic ash-cloud that was my canceled flight: I would be home for my usual Friday custom (as of last week) of grilled Makreleleiste im Brot sandwiches in the park with my friend and musical collaborator (to protect his privacy, let's just call him "Darshan"). I excitedly texted him regarding my newfound availability, and he immediately replied with a terse message indicating his own non-availability. It was then that I realized he was probably cheating on me again with his new best friend from Naples:

I trudged back through security to reclaim my bags. However, I discovered all wasn't lost (well, besides my income for the week and my dignity) when I heard a loud meowing. I must confess a fondness for pussy, so off I went in search of the mellifluous feline. I finally found a couple standing near a cat carrier, and after bending over to view its noisy inhabitant, I straightened up for the following exchange:

Me: Ah. I heard the cat, but couldn't see him.
Woman: You heard him, but he cannot hear you.
Man (to woman): Oh, don't tell!

At this point, I began searching for clues that the woman was, in fact, a man. She sounded like a German Bowzer. Her voice was so deep and masculine, I couldn't fathom any other possibility.

Me: The cat is deaf?
"Woman:" Yes. He is the white cat with blue eyes.

I was still recovering from Bowser's Bergmanesque non sequitur when the man (who had a voice like, say, Enya) busted out with this:

Man: The cat is deaf, but can hear lower noises, so he gets along best with the peoples who are having a low voice.

At this point, I involuntarily looked at the "woman" and made one of those snorts that occur when one stifles a laugh with one's sinuses. Sensing a growing tension among us, I quickly bid them adieu and collected my record bag.

Walking out of the terminal towards the bus, I realized the missed flight and gig was not such a big deal. Touring is about meeting new people and seeing new places, and while the volcano kept me in grounded in Berlin instead of at my gig in Amsterdam, I at least got to meet a few new terrifying, Teutonic freaks people. Plus, tomorrow I'll get to eat grilled mackerel - albeit alone, but still better than having to eat these things (and potentially next to this guy).

1 comment:

  1. Hmmm. That picture of Darshan. His little friend looks like a very young and jovial Hitler still working off his babyfat.