The Older, newly arranged. Brandon Joyce.

New Years Eve. 2005.
The Khy-Bar is having a big blowout for the changeover. We are invited for some reason, and even given some funds (and a case of energy drinks) for our contribution to the evening’s bubbliness. It seems like a reasonable, win-win exchange. The question becomes: what should be the nature of our contribution?
As always, we have two major paths or strategies for transformation: the analytic and the synthetic. Originally, we wanted to blow the cash on Medieval-ish foam swords and costumes, resetting the whole affair in a fantasyscape larpland dorkfest. Probably with the Star Wars themesong filling the background. This is a fully synthetic approach which never even touches on the meanings and usual metaphors of New Years Eve; hardly analytic in any way. We change our minds though as the time nears; steering sharply again towards the analytic. Analytic is always cheaper and easier.

We go with the countdown: the centerpiece action of every New Years Eve, and thus about as analytic as it comes. Of course, we’re not counting down from ten. We’re counting down from 2006. One second for every year since the purported birth of the Christchild. 34 minutes of unbroken counting. Rich has eeked out a countdown animation, to project against the backwall and set pace to our screaming.
At tee-minus 33 minutes, we slip on the movie and begin squealing out the countdown through a crappy practice amp. The years tick off. Sweat traps the cigarette smoke in my clothes. We trade the microphone off. And environments within the bar begin to interfere.

Very few people besides us, I’d say, are enjoying the countdown. Actually, we’re not really enjoying the countdown either. Rarely is anything about enjoyment for us anyway. We’re losing our voices. People are irked… Sorry…The years keep regressing. World War Two… World War One… Les Madamoiselles D’Avignons… …The discovery of radium… the death of Dostoevski…
I get distracted, drink another fuelcell, while absently counting backwards. The deejay is openly threatening us.
The French Revolution…the English Revolution… the burning of Giordano Bruno… the Black Death… Saladin… Charlemagne… Constantine…
The years dwindle to a manageable sum. Others join in, some grudgingly. My voice is sandpapery and my throat feels like a spiny ocean creature that’s washed up on the beach.


Happy New Year!!!. A moment of unfulfillment.
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