By Maya Miller of the Pack A.D.
VANCOUVER — You haven’t lived till you’ve ended up in a hot tub in the Hollywood Hills with a few college football scholarship meatheads from Texas who, somehow, somehow through the power of relation have been invited to stay in a mansion filled with questionably gay art porn and a view of the Valley which, somehow, somehow actually lowers the experience for everyone though no one’s talking about that at the time because mostly the focus is on the too-full cooler of lukewarm Bud Light which is some kind of mandatory sports guy yoke that anyone in their company must shoulder, while, mostly, mostly you’re thinking, “God, how long do I have to stay in this hot tub until I’m allowed to go to sleep?” in that one room where a mystery child stays, sometimes, but not this night.
What’s a good amount of time? Two tepid beers? Three? How long after they’ve enquired as to whether you’re a lesbian – after the obligatory “Me, man. You, woman,” advances fall flat – when is the polite time to excuse yourself to get the three and a half hours of sleep that was the only reason you even accepted the offer to “crash?”
The answer is two tepid beers and one lockable room door.
As with anything in life, it can be said that if you hadn’t have done it, well, then you’d never have known. Also, it could be said that if you decided not to, well, then you might have gotten more sleep and sleep, as we all know, is a much needed curative and rarely regretted.
Ah, sleep. Once a year, my Gramma and my Aunts (alternating) and Uncle (sometimes) would fly to Vancouver to visit. They brought American money and a burning desire to spend all their time in Chinatown. They got in late, of course. It’s only in movies that people get in at normal times and execute precious jewel heists. In real life everyone gets in late, in the dark, rumpled and stunned. Naturally, it was my bedtime. I was banished. For crying out loud, not even 11, and I was persecuted, chained to my room while my favourite people in my whole tiny, tiny world laughed and shifted chairs and heated up Supreme Tamales all the way from the frozen food section of some Chicago suburb. Near panicked for inclusion, I listened to their sounds, their breathing, and placed myself in the blank spaces. They couldn’t see me, but I was there and my Grade 5 adventures were told with an artistry as I mixed their drinks juuuuust right. At some point, sleep would actually happen and in the morning there were American gifts for me but never a stray tamale.
There are times in our lives when an event, a person, a party, a show, is more important than sleep. To miss it because of something so retrievable as sleep seems inconceivable. And at other points, you’re “that guy”- the reluctant participant in everyone else’s dream party, conscripted, forced, marched into someone else’s idea of fun, when all you want to do is, well, sleep.
On tour, every night is a celebration, an event, a party, a show and sometimes the best part of the party is when you climb into bed, close your eyes and surrender to the next day where you might just opt to be the life of the party.BC, beer, British Columbia, Maya Miller, Sleep, The Pack A.D., touring