Stirring the pot, raising hell and rearing children in the Bay Area

The Band Played On

Posted on Aug 15, 2008 in Family and Friends, Family, Friends, Rants and Raves, Seasons |

Last night Thing 1 talked me into buying him a hotdog (guess the organic pistachios and flat fruit didn’t cut it.) at the Music in the Glen at WGE. As we were ordering, the old Kwanis Club man serving the food, began to collapse, his brain, you could see was being attacked — aneurysm? stroke? He fell to the ground right in front of me, shaking violently from the seizures that overcame him. I was horrified, frozen.

I couldn’t move back and I couldn’t move forward, I was trying to stay calm for the kids and people scurried to his side. A beer-filled EMT screaming at us to lie him down, people screaming into their cellphones to 911 operators trying to be heard over the live music. The man’s body just kept writhing, splattering salsa everywhere. I was saying over and over to myself, STOP SHAKING.

I looked down and the Things were both crying.

I sat down in the crowd to talk them through what they just saw. Thing 2 said she was crying because she didn’t know if the man was good enough to go to heaven. Thing 1, well, he said through his tears that he was crying because the man died before he could give him his hotdog and he was *really* hungry.

I wanted to laugh outloud. I’m not sure why. The absurdity? The truth that comes from children? The kids were truly let down: no music, no hotdogs, no stickers from the fire fighters. I wasn’t quite sure what to do. We said a quick prayer together and to hammer home the message, Thing 1 finished his prayer and asked if the hot dog man was dead could he go see the popcorn lady?

The ambulance pulled away, the music started again with the band leader saying, “I’m not sure if we have something in our playlist for this moment,” then began playing “I Get By With a Little Help from My Friends…”

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