Tuesday, October 28, 2008

A fabulous CTA experience for once

Last night I went to Schuba's with my one of my dearest friends from high school friend, Thea. We had dinner and hung out to see Office play. Office is one of my favorite bands and I swear I'm not just saying that because one of my other dearests from high school, Tom, is in the band and so is Thea's husband Justin. They are amazing and if you don't believe me, go listen to the songs on their myspace. My best friend Katie was supposed to go, too, but she got an icky stomach virus. Katie was also my ride. I tried to get Scott to go, but he had too much homework, so he dropped me off at the train and lo and behold, another CTA adventure was born! That is not surprising. Whenever you take the L outside of rush hour time (and even during rush hour on occasion!), you risk "interesting" encounters. Usually they aren't pleasant. You know, like witnessing public urination or masturbation or the like. But for once I had an enjoyable encounter!

Things were looking bright as soon as I got into the station because I decided to see if a fare card I'd found in a random pocket of my purse had any money on it. I thought at most it would have 2$, but as it turned out 10$! I skipped happily (okay, maybe not quite) up the escalator, but as soon as I got up to the train, "ding dong, doors closing!" The train wasn't pulling out of the station though. It was one of those mystery CTA moments where the train just sits there with the doors closed even though it's cold and there are passengers waiting to board...

So I headed to bench under the warming light. Four guys carrying red plastic cups had the same idea. One of them came right up to me and read my hat and said, "Hole. What's Hole?"

"The band. Hole."

"Hole's a band?"

"It's Courtney Love's band," his friend interjected. "How is Courtney doing?"

I said, "Um, hopefully putting out another album soon?"

"Yeah, it's been awhile," he said, but then the original guy I was talking to interrupted because he'd been looking at the buttons on my bag.

"Obama! What if I told you I love Sarah Palin?"

Before I can even answer, another one of the guys goes, "No, we don't! We're gay! We're Obama supporters."

Original guy goes, "What are the rest of your buttons?"

"Uh, bands..."

Another guy giddily exclaims, "Do you know where we're going? Madonna concert!"

"Cool, where is she playing?"

"United Center! We're drinking rum and diet coke, want some?" And a plastic cup is thrust at me. So I decided to drink from it. Probably pretty stupid. I mean I don't generally drink strange drinks from strange men, but these were nice gay men going to the Madonna concert who said, "Sit with us on the train! We'll protect you from the creeps. We're weird and drunk, but not creepy!" (yes they literally said all of that)... Okay, I still don't recommend doing what I did to anyone, but it was fun, dammit! I had a long train ride ahead of me and they made the first half of it interesting.

They didn't know what stop to get off at and the conductor actually called someone for them to find out which one (it was Med Center as I suspected). They were just that friendly and fun, she couldn't help but be charmed. I mean, seriously, they had red plastic cups on the train. You aren't supposed to have beverages period and um, what could be in those cups besides booze? But she just said, "Ain't no alcohol in those cups, right, honey?" to one of the guys and he replied, "Nope, just Diet Coke."

So until Med Center we talked about Madonna and Pink and good dental work (one guy was a dentist and he did all the other guys' teeth, which were quite perfect) and my book (one guy was a flight attendent so he reads a ton!) and we drank Rum and Diet Coke (don't worry, I only had like 4 sips). Definitely my most delightful train experience ever.

And I'm sure they enjoyed Madonna concert, but I was happy to be at the Office show. They were all dressed up and playing covers by dead rock stars starting with Roy Orbison and ending with Nirvana. One of my favorite bands playing songs by my favorite bands. And seeing Tom play Nirvana songs totally gave me high school flashbacks to the summer he was so obsessed with the first Foo Fighters album he learned to play the whole thing.

Yeah it was a good night and a good kick off to Halloween week.

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