House Party!


“I haven’t been to a good house party in years,” my friend hollered in my ear as we were dancing in the living room.


Yeah, it’s been a little while since I have been out and up until 2 a.m. shaking my thing on the floor.

“Have you been dancing this whole time?!”  He asked me with a touch of incredulity.

I nodded, smiled, grinned actually, “once I start, it’s hard to stop, especially if the music is good.

And the music was fan-fucking-tastic.

I saw people dancing who I have never seen dance.

The dj got us all going and it was just an extraordinary night.

A night to remind myself how important it is to dance, to sing, to jump around the room with dear darling friends.

“What are you doing for New Years?” She asked as we segued into another set of shake your ass harder.

“Fuck.” I said, “I am working.”

“They better be paying you like $700 to work!” She said, “please tell me you are getting a good rate, you so deserve to.”

“I am, they are taking care of me, I am bummed though, I didn’t know you would be in town.”

My friend is a busy, busy, busy doctor and it is rare that we get to see each other.

But when we do, it is just the best.

We made plans to do brunch on New Years Day.

My overnight gig will be in the Castro and she’s got a place on Market and Church, perfect meeting of the minds, maybe a little Cafe Flore action, I know they will be open, then we were thinking we might hit Breakfast of Champions or perhaps the End Up.

But definitely do some dancing.

We also made tentative plans with another friend to do a night at the End Up in February.


Yeah, that’s right, I am turning 41 next week and I still am making plans to go to the End Up.

God damn I love San Francisco.

And it really was one of the best, if not the best, house parties I have been to in the city.

All I had to drink was some apple juice and a cup of melted ice.

No party favors.

No extracurricular visits to the bathroom.

Just me dancing my heart out in the middle of the mashed room full of friends, old and new, from all walks of my life, Burning Man, nannying, people in my life that mean so much.

“We have to do this again soon, like, soon,” she said to me with a fierce hug.

The mom of one of my little charges, who was dressed like the best unintended Cindy Lou Who of them all with her little white tights with the red snowflakes that became stripes right at the top of the knees.

She held my hand and walked me into the front room where the Christmas tree was (this was before the dj, to some lovely live music that was being sweetly sung in the living room), she pointed out the star at the top of the tree.

“Up,” she said in a high sloughing voice that I only heard in my heart, it bypassed my ears and landed flat in the middle of my heart, and raised her arms.

I lifted her up and she touched the star at the top of the tree and giggled.


A chorus of onlookers behind us.

“You have such a beautiful little girl,” one man said to me.

“She’s not my daughter, but I love her very much, I used to be her nanny,” I smiled.

There is no discomfort in me when someone thinks that one of the children I work with is actually my own child, that means I am doing my job well.

I don’t want to be that nanny that I see in the park, corralled up in a huddle around a bench with the babies all strapped into the strollers while they sit and eat and talk on the phone.

I want to be the nanny that the child talks about and wants to see and hugs and tells secrets too, and remembers the books we read.

I did a full on from memory interpretation of Jez Albourough’s “Hug” with her in my lap.

Of course, it’s not a difficult book to remember.

There are only three words in the book.




But it’s all in the reading.

“You really should go into early child hood development,” my dear doctor friend said to me, “you are just amazing with children, they really respond to you.”

I don’t know what that is and I don’t take it as a talent, it’s just a given.

A gift, I suppose.

And I don’t know what to do with it, but you know, I like that idea.

“You should look into what it would take to open your own pre-school,” she continued.


I don’t know.

But yeah, there have been times when I have thought about teaching.

And yes, I know I am good with kids.

I just don’t have any clue how that translates to career.

Anyway, that is another thought, another blog.

I danced.

It was good.

I met people.

I met Julian from France.

“You speak French!” He gushed, “really well!”

Well, I don’t know about that, but that was super flattering to hear, especially from a native-born Frenchman who teaches at the Lycee Francaise.

I met Ryan from Chicago.

A PE teacher who teaches at six different high schools in the city.

I met Andrew who is a waiter in the Mission.

I danced with guys and gals and made new friends.

And discovered people I hadn’t seen in a long time and found out we had mutual friends there and elsewhere.

It was such a sustaining feeling.

And good god damn was the dancing just what I needed.

“I need to go,” my friend said as the clock crept towards midnight.

“Me too,” I said was I contemplated the long bike ride home.

The holiday house party was at 30th and Church.

It was about a six-mile ride home.

But I just had to dance to one more song and the next thing you know, it’s 2 a.m. and the neighbors are saying, “turn it down,” and now, it really is time to go home.

I got a blog to write.

Dontcha know.

The writing which began in my head as I flew down Lincoln Avenue in the middle of the road smelling what heaven must smell like.

At least my version of heaven.

The evergreen resin so strong and pungent, I knew unconsciously that the sap must have started moving with the warmer weather today and then when the fog began to roll in and the air-cooled off, how it sung through the air, cold in my nose, replete with pine, the soul of the woods leading me down to the sea.

The rush of the air the only thing I heard until I stopped and got off my bicycle in front of the house, then, I heard the soft bell of a fog horn starting up and the breath in my lungs spooled out in front of me making its own fog and I looked up at the moon so bright in the sky, ringed with fairy light and I thanked God that I get to live here.

That I get to dance here.

That I am really truly home.

Getting to have my own private house party by the blue lights of my Christmas tree.



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