Q: When was the last time you stayed awake for 24 hours?
A: On the way back from a gig in the Hamptons in October 2007. The van my friend and I were driving broke down at 1AM about an hour and 45 minutes outside of New York. I used my AAA card and we waited on the shoulder of the highway until a guy showed up in a tow truck (he was originally from one of the boroughs.) All three of us rode in the front until we got to a gas station at some forgotten intersection on Long Island that looked like Mississippi. We left the van there (permanently, as it turned out), and took all the equipment with us in a cab — neck of the upright bass sticking out the window — to an LIRR station, just in time to see the train leave. A man appeared, a janitor drinking beer out of a bag, and proposed we share a cab for 20 miles to another LIRR station.
The cab took the freeway and the windows were open to accommodate the neck of the bass. We froze our asses off, but the janitor didn’t barf. Got to the station and hauled our equipment up the stairs in several trips, dress shoes clicking, and sat down to watch racoons scavenge the rails, listened to the janitor as he pointed to his old high school visible from the train platform, and then watched him disappear into to the Long Island night for more beer. The train arrived and, miraculously, so did the now deeply drunk janitor. We got our equipment — a drum set, double bass and amplifier — onto the train as the doors were shutting and finally rolled in to Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn at 7AM, still in our suits and ties. One more haul up the stairs to Flatbush Avenue, one more cab ride and I was back in my apartment. I had spent everything I earned that night. I ate breakfast.
- Join Tomahawk and New York’s best improv teams on Fri, Nov. 6, 2009 @ 8PM at The Sage Theater in Times Square (711 Seventh Ave, 2F) for 24-consecutive hours of improv. (Facebook invite | Tomahawk tumblr)
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