Standing Engagement
Joanne Faires
If I hear one more debate over Ziggy Stardust versus Thin White Duke vs Spider from Mars, I'm stepping out of line. I swear it's not this blizzard.  I'm dressed in layers with warm waterproof boots. It's not the endless Fame riff I hear thumping in the background – that's a catchy tune. It's these morons with their discussion. These blokes can't fathom the depth of the lyrics, the hooks, the social implications, and the signature fashion that will probably have Bowie on the cover of every magazine the day he shuffles off this earth to Mars or beyond.
 
I'm sticking to the rules I promised to adhere to as a professional line-stander. Rule 1 – stand in line. Rule 2. Keep standing. Rule 3. Don’t leave. You get the drift, and believe me; drifts are piling up as the snow falls. I'm paid a decent wage, but it takes discipline to do this right. January 2004 in Illinois is harsh. This Bowie concert is word-of-mouth driven. He's doing a tune-up for big gigs, so first come first serve seating. I got here at noon, number ten in line for a 10 pm show.
 
Worst lines are for boy bands. Best lines are new restaurants. I'd like to move to New York – Broadway big time.
 
"Doors open now. Stay in line. We'll get you seated and the show starts immediately."
 
7 pm. It’s too late to call my boss. Guess I lose wages, but I hear Bowie up close.
 
Let's dance.


First published: May 2016
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