One night in about 1989, my roommate Peter and I decided to go catch a band.
We lived in the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco, and, very Haight-ish of us, we went to see a re-formed Big Brother and the Holding Company, playing at a club in North Beach. Also Haight-ish of us, we MAY have gotten a little baked on something, well, baked, though I cannot say for sure. I don’t remember, as they say.
At some point during a band break, Peter and I started doing these weird face/hand charades. Who knows how the idea came up. So, I did, maybe a dog walking like in a hand shadow. Peter did a fishface with hand gills. We went back and forth, each “charade” being a little more complicated. Wanting to challenge the moment, I decided to get a little more abstract.
I took my right hand and placed it up, palm down.
I took my left hand and placed it down, in a fist.
My right hand started moving in a downward gesture, while my index and middle finger simultanously. The right hand moved until it “hit” the left hand. My right hand then flicked my left thumb and started making a repeated tossing gesture towards my “open” left fist. My right index finger then popped my left thumb down to make a closed fist, and my left fist began to rotate in a clockwise motion around. My right hand then moved back up, with cycling index finger and middle finger, up to its initial upper, palm down resting place.
The left hand, which had been moving clockwise all this time, suddenly stops. My right hand did a little shrug, then proceded to cycle/go down again. Again, the right hand hit the left fist, flicked up the left thumb, poked around inside the open fist of the left hand, flicked down the left thumb, at which the left fist started rotating clockwise again. The right hand then rose back up with cycling fingers to take a resting place on top with an open palm.
This last step was repeated about four more times, with the “shrug” getting a little longer and stronger each time.
I looked at Peter, he got a weird look on his face and said “Oh! It is when you are doing laundry in the downstairs laundry room, and each time you get back upstairs the washing machine gets stuck and you have to go back down, even though you just settled into eating dinner or doing a project, because you have to re-arrange the sheets and towels to get the washing machine balanced again, but it keeps getting unbalanced each time you go upstairs and it gets more and more annoying each time!” My jaw dropped. And how Haight-ish of us, to be so tuned-in to each other’s thing. Uncanny!
So, I present for your approval, today’s icon:
Thanks, Peter, for the inspiration!