As I mentioned on a previous blog I’m from Decatur, GA. A great town a stone’s throw east of Atlanta, GA. Decatur is the only town that I’ve ever known save the five years I spent chasing women and failing Dr. Brown’s Philosophy class at Georgia Southern University in Statesboro, GA. Decatur is a nice sized city; so big in fact that it’s like three different cities all rolled up in one.
There’s lily white Decatur; with its sidewalk cafes, $400,000 condos, and sunny demeanor. I went to elementary school and got my eclectic musical tastes from white Decatur. When I was a kid I went to sleepovers in white Decatur; in households where Mom didn’t have to work because Dad pulled in enough money for four or five Dads, where children got BMW’s for their 16th birthdays, and dogs named Belvedere romped in backyards with carpet soft green grass. Life is one big picnic in lily white Decatur.
Then there’s dark Decatur with its sketchy side streets, run down shacks and overall downtrodden attitude. I got my hood smarts and learned when to run and when to fight in this version of town. Mama works two jobs and if Daddy is around, he working two jobs too. You might get a hug and $20 on your 16th birthday from Grandma, your cousin that sells drugs around the way might slide you a hundred and that leather jacket if he didn’t get pinched by the cops that week. The pit bull, Chainsaw, that was in your dusty back yard a week ago got off his chain and terrorized the neighborhood for a week before you caught him and had to lock him in the basement. Life in dark Decatur is one big traffic jam.
And then there’s grey Decatur, that’s where I’m from, that’s where I hang, that’s where I was raised. The best of both worlds around this way, I can take a date to one of the sidewalk cafes and relax amongst the uppity and then retire to my house and listen to the helicopters fly nearby on their way to search for some fool over in dark Decatur. Things over my way are a mixed bag and that’s the way I like it, nothing is boring, no day is the same and there’s no telling what one might see over this way.
So the other night I was chillin’ at the house, bored actually, and decided to go out. Nothing fancy, just wanted to head to a spot and chill for a second, have a drink or two and then come on back home. A friend of mine put me on to a spot about 20 minutes away in, of course, Decatur. I’d never been so I figured I’d go over and check it out. This was a sports bar but on this particular night they were having a comedy night followed by a bikini contest; I get some laughs and I get to see some desperate females shake it up in bikinis for a $500 prize, SCORE! So I pay the $5 cover and settle up to a bar stool on the side of the “stage” about 15-20 feet from where the performers would be. I was just about finished with my Rum and Coke when the show’s MC came to the stage to get the party started. She was a barely funny chick that thought if she added an extra curse word in the sentence it would make it twice as funny, that strategy failed miserably. She does about 4-5 minutes of extremely unfunny ghetto humor and then called up the first comedian of the night; some dude I’d never heard of and who’s name I forgot as soon as I heard it. Here’s where the night picks up speed…
First of all, dude was short, somewhere between Chucky the evil doll from Child’s Play and your little sister’s Cabbage Patch Doll from the early 80’s…okay, he wasn’t that small but if he put on a pair of his Mama’s pumps he might have been 5’3. He was so short I thought for sure that his mic stand would have Fisher-Price on it, like it was his “My First Stand Up Comedy Kit” that he got last Christmas or something. He lowers the mic stand (of course) and grabs the mic and gives the obligatory “WHAT’S UP!!” to the audience, he got an answer from maybe 3 of the 30 or so people that was there. “I SAID, WHAT’S UP!” This time 7 or 8 folks returned the greeting so that he could get on with his act. Much like the host before him he was extremely UNFUNNY, I mean, dude wasn’t even remotely comical; every joke lamer than the last one. The crowd gathered started to talk amongst themselves until after a while no one was paying attention to dude at all.
So dude did what most stand up comedians do when people aren’t paying them any attention, he started targeting people in the audience. There was a table of about 6 people sitting about 5 feet off the stage, four ladies and two guys sitting there. I’d been looking over that way for a while because one of the chicks was just ridiculously fine and not looking that way had become an exercise in futility. I wasn’t staring at her but…never mind, I ain’t gonna lie, I was staring at her. So unfunny comedian dude starts in on one of the girls at the table and lobs several unfunny jabs at her…
“Girl, yo’ teeth so crooked…” “Girl, yo’ ______ stank so bad…” “Girl, yo’ weave so bad…”
What unfunny comedian person didn’t know is that “Girl” was sitting next to her man and her man didn’t think dude was funny at all. After the first few jokes the boyfriend spoke up:
“Hey man, you need to take that on somewhere. Leave my girl alone.” The tone was calm but it had a little kick behind it, in my neighborhood when somebody spoke in that tone there was usually an butt kicking behind it if you pressed the issue.
So unfunny comedian person pressed the issue…of course.
He let loose with about 2 or 3 more “stank” blasts and that’s when the boyfriend stood up. I couldn’t tell how tall dude was when he was sitting at the table but it was very obvious when he got up to take his jacket off. He was about 6’4 or so, good sized dude, about 195 pounds if I had to take a stab at his weight; obviously he’s dwarfing the dwarf holding the microphone. The other guy at the table and his girl stand as well in an effort to calm him down and they just about had him back at the table when the unfunny comedian dude just had to open his mouth one more time and say something to the effect of “you just in a bad mood because your girl don’t wash her ______…” or something like that.
*cue the Jerry Springer music*
The funniest thing about this ordeal to me was that the boyfriend didn’t rush the stage, he calmly walked up the two steps to the stage, stepped over to Lil’ Man and rather than punch him he did worse. He slapped Lil’ Man…hard. Everyone close your eyes and visualize the wingspan of a 27 or so year old 6 foot 4 inch Black man, now imagine that same man reaching back into yesterday and coming forward with the palm of his hand connecting SOLIDLY to the side of a 5 foot 2 inch man’s head! Worse than that, the comedian still had the microphone up towards his mouth so when he caught the palm to the cheek the sound of the slap was heard well enough that the people chillin in VIP came running to the front to see what the hell was going on.
Remember I’m sitting about 15 feet from the stage and I’m seeing all this happen but I can’t move because I’m in that shocked “That didn’t just happen” state. But nothing will snap you out of that shocked state like a microphone headed towards you. The impact from the slap to the head was so hard that it jarred the microphone out of his hand and now it was spinning through the air directly at me, you know those slow motion scenes that they show in the movies? Yeah, the microphone was spinning at me just like that. I’m 15 feet away and dude got slapped so hard that the mic flew across the club and landed at my feet causing feedback to squeal through the PA system. I figured this was as good a time as any to move away from the stage in case any other projectiles decided to come my way. I grabbed my coat from the back of the chair and moved to what I deemed a safe distance from the ongoing drama.
Security came running, tall dude’s friends on the stage trying to pull him off Lil Man, Lil Man’s crew (they were all regular sized, it wasn’t like circus music started and little people started pouring out of the back of the club) came rushing out to his aid and all the while I’m sitting there like, “this is really messing up the prospects of the bikini contest later.” I went and sat at the bar at the far side of the club and giggled about the whole thing with one of the bartenders. In about 2 to 3 minutes the stage was cleared and all the tables and chairs were back on four legs; the unfunny MC of the show said that the show would go on and after making some real funny jokes (it’s about time) about what had just happened, she asked the next comedian up on stage. Now because I am from Decatur I know how people are about going to the trunk of their cars and getting weapons so I thought it wise to pay my tab and point my car back towards my house before Lil’ Man came back and brought a little noise with him. I passed one of the girls that was competing in the bikini contest on the way out, she was hot, but I wasn’t staying, can’t catch a bullet on account of trying to see some girl from around the way drop it like it’s hot.
When I got to my car I saw Lil’ Man standing with about 3 other dudes, his face looked a little swollen, I tried not to chuckle as I drove past him on my way back to the house. Just another day in grey Decatur, I guess. Dorothy said it best when she said “there’s no place like home.”
~thanks for reading 🙂