Thursday, February 23, 2006

At the Phil Lesh show last night, right up near the stage, a tall, twenty-something guy fell right over. He went completely limp and collapsed backwards onto the floor, and lay sprawled and perfectly still as the music floated and hung above. Someone immediately knelt by his side and made gestures of attending. Others waved their arms in the air in wild crisscrossing patterns, as though signaling an oncoming train. We formed a solemn little pocket of concern in the midst of the dark crowd of thousands of drunk, stoned Deadheads.

Then the guy got up. He stood up, but I mean right away – not coming to his feet groggily or in the least unsteadily but becoming vertical like someone just blew reveille. He stood right up the same way he fell down. His friends, onlookers – gazed into his eyes with wonder and a fair amount of worry. He was taken by the arm. Asked questions. He looked around a little puzzled, the way anyone would be if they were suddenly and inexplicably the center of concern. He seemed like, What?

Then two security guards approached, not urgently but purposeful. They looked at him for a couple of seconds and led him away, and he went placidly, betraying only a trace of perplexed dismay.