March 6th, 2009

Even now, two weeks later, friends of mine are expressing to me their sympathy for LIGHTBAR, the way they might for a dead relative or pet.  People have asked me how I’m feeling, if I’m okay … call me dense but at first I thought they were offering to lift heavy objects for me.  I didn’t figure out until lately that people are worried about me personally.  But really, I’m fine.

The collapse of LIGHTBAR was somehow incredibly shocking and sad.  The most frequent text response I received was an N with twelve Os after it.  But sad as it was, it wasn’t so bad.  Nothing was damaged, nobody was hurt, no major financial loss was felt.  I happened to catch a bad cold right at the same time, but I feel fine now.  We missed out on three days of LIGHTBAR, but we had seven others under our collective belt.

LIGHTBAR 2009 totally exceeded all my expectations.  Everybody left smiling!  Night after night we had hundreds of visitors, but no fights, no vandalism, no pools of vomit.  Only good things.  All my far-fetched party ideas went off like well-timed fireworks.  Aside from all my friends I met dozens of great people in fabulous outfits, including many of my neighbors.

My neighbors!  OMG, they are awesome.  I received no complaints & no police visits, but I heard multiple rumors of them bragging about their proximity to LIGHTBAR in neighborhood bars.  I love my neighbors!

Whenever the dome filled up with people, the roof seemed to expand to Sistine Chapel size.  The space loved having the people in it.  The ennobling effect of architecture on full display.  I adored building it, using it, dancing in it, repairing it, explaining it.  Even tearing it down was not too bad.  Easy to make, easy to destroy.  Thank you uncle Bucky!

Volunteers poured out of the woodwork to help make this crazy dream come true:  Dome Team Alpha — that’s Phil, Danny and Meghan — put the roof on.  Clint lent me 100 lights, plus Brian to install them.  Gordon made the DMX go round.  Chet lent a kick-ass sound system.  Howie gave us central heating, and Phil, Shawn, Ben & others brought wood to burn.  Andy lent me a whole truckload of gear.  Va made red night red.  Matthew bartended in red and blue 3D, with Kim backing him up.  My brother Dave ran missions to the ice planet, and dressed funny just for me. DJ Dishmaster and Dr. Nono kept the people dancing.  Illion Maybe and Jack Eggers spread mystery and good cheer.  CHERVONA brought the noise!  Heather Libbey remote-controlled an evening of exotic literature using only her mind!  Kevin Wilson cleaned up like a mo-fo!  Craig patched the game gear together, donated also by Seth and Missy, and Brad Upchurch not only struggled against fate to realize the ill-fated planetarium, he also brought awesome screens and cables and projection for game night and movie night, and showed up to help whenever needed.  Ken brought the tableclothes, Katie brought the Sun, and all sorts of people brought their biggest, craziest lights.  My next-door neighbors, who bore the brunt of the party, were particularly and amazingly supportive and helpful.  And when it came time to pick apart the wreckage, I had Sysfail, Brad, Danny, Buffalo Dave, Brian and Brian on hand to help.

So three cheers for my awesome neighbors and excellent friends!  Thank you for making my LIGHTBAR so utterly grand!  You still look fabulous!  See you next year!


  1. heather reddy Says:

    i’m so sorry i missed lightbar — my sorry is totally selfish, though, and based in wishing i could have been there. it sounds like there were some great nights. i’m saddened i had to end up having 6 organs removed in the middle of it. it sounds spectacular! something about a dome is inspiring– of less puke, violence, mad neighbors and more enthusiasm, creativity, and ends to s.a.d.

    oh, & i didn’t change my name. i realized, i think, that it would require me to go to the dmv and change my passport and.. well.. changing my name was never a principled thing, but interacting as little with the dmv is a principled thing. thanks for the shout out! i hope my friends were dirty and violent.

  2. Marc Says:

    It was such an honor to be a part of this experience!

  3. Danny Norton Says:

    Thanks for all the thanks. Can’t wait until there’s a replacement Golden Greats gig. I guess the Community Alliance of Tenants mixer will do, and is the right speed for working with a new guitarslinger, but I’d love for our hat to be in the ring for World Naked Bike Ride 2009!

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