Writing Challenges

What About The Music?

The marquis was lit and showed that a live band was playing tonight, so we pulled into the lot and parked.

“Ever heard of these guys?”
“Nope. But the lot looks pretty full. Maybe that’s a good sign.”

Cover bands. Hit or miss.

We ordered some pints and found a standing spot near the stage. We talked for awhile, about life and music and tried to guess what the band would play. In order to survive, cover bands have to play crowd pleasers. I put my money on Mustang Sally because they always play that song. I hate Mustang Sally.

“What’s wrong with it?”
“I was in more than one cover band that played it. We played it a million times and now it’s forever ruined for me. I never did like it though.”
“There are worse songs.”
“Name one.”
“I can’t think of any but I’ll know it when I hear it.”

The band came on and started to prove their worth. They were sort of like a white James Brown meets the Stones, and they were pulling it off. We listened to the band for awhile and then moved to a booth away from the speakers so we could actually hear each other. It was a small bar, so it didn’t help much. The band kept ramping up and filled the air with heart pounding bass-lines.

We talked. Well, she mostly talked while I nodded. My ear kept getting drawn to the beat. I looked at her and focused while making futile attempts at reading her lips. Instead I found that I was mainly just staring at the ring through her pierced septum. It flickered with the changing colors of the stage lights.

“Are you even listening to me?”
“Sure I am.”
“Then what did I just say?”
“Something about getting a new car and…”
“I was talking Italian!”
“Yeah, ‘Oops’ is right. I wanted to see if you were listening.”
“I can’t help it. The band is good but they’re very loud.”
“They are.”
“What about your car?”
“I said, THEY ARE!”
“Cool. Me too.”

We ordered another round and listened to the band and continued to misunderstand what the other was saying. Sweet musical oblivion. It’s better that a loud band be good, than to have a very loud band that sucks.

When we’d finally had enough we made our way to the door. We walked to the car in the frigid night, our breath forming misty clouds in the cold air. I looked over and saw that an icicle was starting to form on her septum ring. A snotcicle, if you will.

“Does that happen often when it gets cold?”
“Does what happen?”
“Forget it. Kleenex?”


Seriously, is this challenge over yet? Go see what everyone else wrote but you probably already did by now. I know. I’m late. Again.

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  • Snotcicle. 😀 I’ll never get that image out of my head now. Also, note to self: probably best not to get that piercing after all…

    I like this post a lot, this is exactly what happens when I try to talk to someone while listening to a live band. I’m completely useless. Great work, Mike. 🙂

  • We’ve been in a restaurant where we were seated at a small table and still had to lean across and shout in each others’ ears to be heard so I sympathize with the communication issues. You described it perfectly.

  • Great story MIke.

  • “her septum ring. A snotcicle, if you will.”


    But so well written… because it DID make me TOTALLY EWWWWWWW!

  • But what about her car?

  • Hey Mike! I feel for you; I struggle to hear well in Starbucks sometimes. Indigo

  • What the hell? No Mustang Sally? Ripoff.

  • Great story Mike. Really enjoyed it. Brought back memories. Oh, and You Light Up My Life was much worse than Mustang Sally.

  • Thanks, and I’ve hoping that snotcicle becomes THE word of 2013. It just might.

  • It’s the worst when that happens, especially in a restaurant. You kind of expect it in a bar though.

  • Thanks man.

  • You know, Stephen King once said, “when in doubt, go for the gross out.” 🙂

  • Me too!

  • Personally, I blame the years of listening to Heavy Metal.

  • Nope, and hopefully no Mustang Sally ever again 😉

  • I 100% agree, but if a cover band ever attempted You Light Up My Life, I’m sure beer bottles would be thrown.

  • KZ

    Might this be the same “Nosering girl” from your earlier “Friendship” post? Anyhow, this was a fun one, Mike. Great little piece of writing.


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