Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Singing in the New Year 2014

picture by J. Fava
The Family Stone
About five years ago we shared New Year’s Eve with friends at home, splurging on shrimp and other expensive and/or forbidden foods, drinking wine and enjoying each other’s company, eager to ring in the New Year together.

Except it did not end that way.

We all conked out before watching the Times Square ball slowly descend.

So after that failed attempt, we vowed to go out on New Year’s. We figured if we were out and about there was a much better chance of actually staying awake until midnight.

We celebrated New Year’s Eve numerous times years ago, actually decades ago, carousing into the early morning hours.

But things change, and today there are obstacles to repeating earlier escapades. Our bodies slowly begin curling into a comfortable sleeping position as darkness descends. Dinner is usually consumed closer to the early bird menu hour than late night special time. We cannot hold our alcohol as well as we could decades ago. Loud, boisterous crowds give us headaches. DJs and today’s bar scene is unfamiliar, even alien to us. There are more reasons, but I will not bore you…

The dilemma is expressed in the following algebraic equation:

Determining New Year’s Eve Bedtime = [(current age - current usual bedtime) / 12 (the midnight hour)] X 2.

The equation is based on the theory that the older we get the earlier we retire and the more difficult it becomes to stay awake until midnight.

It was my job to figure out this year’s New Year’s Eve activities. I procrastinated, something I am very good at, but finally got around to the task a couple of days before the event.

The evening began with a short walk and early dinner at a moderately priced Italian restaurant. Our municipality is dry and the restaurant BYOB. We brought along a bottle of red and a bottle of white wine and sat in the restaurant’s side area (usually the casual dining/pizza section), ordering from the regular menu. The formal side of the restaurant offered a special (read: more expensive) holiday menu.

After dinner we walked across the street and caught the bus for a short ride to the location of our evening’s entertainment. We opted for a seventy cent bus ride (senior citizen price!) because we were drinking, the parking garage would cost a lot of money, and it would take a long time exiting the garage after midnight.

An hour and a half concert by The Family Stone (previously Sly and the Family Stone, but Sly no longer fronts the band) highlighted our evening. The band’s hits include Higher!, Dance to the Music, and Everyday People.

I ordered the tickets online (ticketmaster), initially surprised tickets were still available two days before the event.

Printing the tickets at home, the four seats read orchestra row A. It seemed like the tickets would be front row, but I could not believe we would get such good seats two days before the event.

But we did. We were literally within spitting distance of the stage.

The funk rock band, with three original band members and four additional performers, dates from the 60s. The audience, admittedly on the mature side of life, knew the songs, sang along, and danced at every opportunity. We had no choice – we were in the front row. When the band sang Stand up! Stand up! how could we not set an example and jump up and dance!?

I have no idea how we managed such great seats. The only reason I could think of was immediately before ordering someone turned the four tickets in.

I want to thank Ticketmaster for four fab tickets. I realize it was fate – karma – just plain luck, but thank you anyway!

picture by J. Fava
The band, the stage, and me
We danced 2013 away and welcomed 2014,
a new year full of possibilities.

Happy New Year, Everyone!

May 2014 be a year of good health,
good times, happiness,
and only minor difficulties. 


  1. I am awed that you figured out the actual equation! Happy New Year! (Did you in fact make it to midnight?)

  2. Sounds like you had a good time, and overcame the challenge of your own equation . . . which predicted I would go to bed at 9 p.m. I surpassed it too. B and I managed to stay awake till 10:30!

  3. Well, I didn't even get close. If I have a little more wine that usual, it makes it impossible to stay up! I did see the ball drop in New York, though, since that was at 9:00pm here! :-)

  4. Is that really you? Hope you feel well today. I haven't been dancing in 30 years My husband never liked it and nothings changed as he grew older. These days I confine my moves to the pool where I don't feel the pain at the time. As for alcohol, I seldom have any. Dianne