They make the days seem rather less grey. Although I do wonder how appropriate it is that I find certain things funny.
The one that popped into my head just as I opened my browser to begin writing, was the sort of thing that generally pops into my head: a song. Ne Me Quitte Pas, that old French classic that should probably provoke more serious emotions than a sentimental “teehee”. Really, it’s a very sad song and the story behind its inspiration is even more so.
But I have a rather odd personal relationship with this song. I just typed a really bad joke in keeping with that crappy rhetoric, but that’s one of the many functions of the Backspace key. Anywho, when I was about 20 or so, I saw a lot of performances of the Cirque du Soleil show Varekai. It was an intensely bizarre period of my life that can be painful to recall (mostly because of embarrassment), but this part is actually kind of cool.
Seating got a bit weird in some of my trips to the show, thanks to eBay tickets and other things, so one of those shows, I spent sitting with a French couple instead of the person with whom I had actually gone to the show. I don’t remember the lady at all, but then, the man was the one I was sitting next to, so that explains that. There’s also the fact that this story is really about this guy.
In Varekai, one of the clowns’ sequences is a silly lip-synch of Ne Me Quitte Pas, wherein the man “singing” is fighting a hopeless battle to actually stand in his own spotlight. The spotlight’s antics are ultimately revealed to be due to the clown’s mischievous assistant/sidekick character. Maybe it’s not comedy gold, but it’s hard not to get caught up in every part of Varekai when you’re there. Maybe it’s a live performance thing, I don’t know.
Anyway, before I digress further, back to that French guy I sat next to. I have been in a foreign country and been the spot of unexpected familiarity for someone else before. (huh, that person was French too… My French isn’t even very good.) It’s one of the nicest emotions I’ve witnessed. In this case, the song started playing, and this guy just lit up like a jewellery display case. We’d been chatting, so it wasn’t weird for him to turn to me and say something, but he was practically speechless. His reaction was just beautiful. “Hey, I know this song! OMG listen, it’s this whole thing, do you even know?”
It’s been years, I don’t remember what he really said, but that’s the gist, really.
Then, to crown this euphoric moment that I had been most generously invited to share, he sang along. The entire song, just beaming like someone had let him on the stage.
There are some interesting people in the world. I wonder what he’s up to now.