Punch! or The Night I Went Hungry

Saturday night I had tickets to the Punch Brothers concert in Ogden. Two precious slips of paper I kept track of for months. There were times when I was not sure where my wedding ring or my daughter was, but I always knew where those tickets were. Let's just say I was excited.

It was quite a night on the town. My skirt was a little short and my lipstick a little red. Riley looked, I will just say it, delicious. My Mr. Husband in his levi's just tight enough and tie just smart enough. The show was at the Peery Egyptian Theater, a gem from the 1920's wedged between empty buildings. It's exterior is all color, art deco, and heiroglyphs. We got to the theater hungry, an hour and a half before showtime. There were ten people in line. Riley seemed to think that meant we had time to get dinner. Cute. I knew it meant we were ten people later to the line than I hoped to be. I may have said, "Riley, we can ALWAYS eat. We can't always be 11th in line." Annoying, right? But the sweetie jumped right into line. Happily.

I pretended I couldn't hear both of our stomachs rumbling while we waited.

The inside of the theater is almost as fabulous as the outside. Gilded kitsch. The Peery Theater is one of only a handful of deco era theaters that still maintain an atmospheric ceiling. Their promotion of this is enthusiastic and extensive. And I quote, "with the flick of a switch, a daytime sky magically turns to nighttime, replete with twinkling stars." Sounds like the dining room in Harry Potter. The lights dimmed and the stars did twinkle. All four of them. I am sure it was very impressive in 1924.

The Punch Brothers took the stage and my heart. It is a group of five string instrument rock stars, representing the best of the fiddle, guitar, bass, banjo and one sleek little mandolin. Nattily dressed purveyors of a bluegrass/jazz/classical fusion that makes you want to dance, sing and create. Create anything! A story, a sonnet, a moment. The music worked its way into me until I felt that maybe I was made of the notes, maybe life is a symphony and maybe I am a composer. Riley and I kept turning to one another, smiling in amazement. What a lovely thing, a world in which noise can be bent and held and controlled until a song, rich and lasting, emerges. What a lucky thing that we get to be a part of it...together.
The show ended and we left happy and starving. Apparently, one can't "ALWAYS eat", as I so naively proclaimed. At least not in Utah. There is no such thing as a restaurant opened after ten between Ogden and Provo. Not even Chick-Fil-A.
The night that inspired also left me with a rumbling, hungry question. The same world that produced Chris Thile and his Bach playing mandolin cannot produce a local late night burger or carnitas taco. How is this blasphemy possible and how long can it stand?