Monday night was a pivotal moment in the life of our family.

Malcolm and Ian, with their own sets of friends, went to the same concert at the Trocadero in Philadelphia.  The headlining band was The New Pornographers.  Despite the harshness of the name, their music is lyrical and melodic and often quite beautiful.

Although I’m a fan of the band, clearly I would not be welcome to attend this show.  Malcolm and his friends, who had been in the city for Go Skate Day since noon, sweatily stowed their skateboards and other gear in the car when I dropped off Ian and Jessica.  Then they all joined the line, and I drove off.

My mission:  to find a comfy movie theatre, frosty with air conditioning, and watch a nice long movie, one full of chilly scenes of snow.  First choice was Winter’s Bone, but then I ended up choosing Girl with a Dragon Tattoo, because it was nearly 3 hours long and set in wintry Sweden.  I bought a box of Milk Duds and a bottle of water, staked out a great seat in the middle of the theatre, and began eavesdropping on my neighbors.

Just as the young doctor at the end of the aisle was getting to the climax of his story about a bitchy woman named Patricia and half-price sushi on Sunday, two gay guys sat down right behind me and started talking about how one was moving into a new apartment.  The talk centered on painting, spackling and fuse boxes.  I started wondering exactly why I had assumed gayness.  For one, without ever looking at them, I could tell they were sitting side by side in an uncrowded theater.  Straight guys would leave at least one seat open between them. 

Also?  Vocal delivery was rushed and went up at the end of each sentence?  And one of them said, of the painting and spackling, “This gives me a chance to practice my man skills. ”  I smiled to myself.

When the feature film began, I opened the box of Milk Duds, my dinner.  Popping the first one in my mouth and biting down, I thought “Hey, what’s this foreign object?  I’ m going to have to save this and sue the company.”  No.  It was a crown off a back molar.  So much for my dairy-based dinner.

I recommend the movie, by the way.  And thank heavens the nerve of my molar was not exposed, so no pain is involved.  Things could be worse:  here’s another Milk Dud-related  disaster story.

Driving back to the Troc to pick up the teeangers, I found the 4 younger guys all outside.  Having grown bored with the concert and fed up with the overcrowded conditions, they left early.  They piled in the car and we waited.  And waited.  And after waiting 30 minutes for Ian and Jessica,  finally, I went up to the security guys at the door.  Looking every inch the middle aged suburban mom that I am, I asked what time the concert would be over.  Throwing me a pitying glance, they assured me that 11 PM was the end time.  I wanted to defensively explain that I wasn’t asking for myself, it was for the sake of all the teenagers in the car who were desperately tired and hot, but no, I tried to walk away silently, with some dignity intact.

At 11:05 I called Ian to say “Hey, the concert’s over, crowds of people are walking past, we’re all ready to leave, where are you?”  He yelled back happily, “We’re trying to meet the band!”  I yelled back unhappily, “NOOOOOOO!  Not fair when a bunch of other people are ready to go.  Get to the car NOW.”

Happily, he did then show up with Jessica.  As we drove off, Ian reported that a middle-aged dad standing in front of him at the show had started swaying – but not in time to the music.  He keeled over into a faint and was dragged away by security.

Touching my Milk-Dud-damaged tooth with my tongue, I felt the swooning dad’s pain.  Aging is not for the faint of heart.

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