Psychedelic Furs, Tucson, June 6, 2013

The Furs were fabulous last night.

Furs Ruled It

Tim and Richard Butler

The show was lovely by any measure; Richard surprised me by having a voice as sweet as an angel, and his brother Tim was looking every inch the casual rock star, with a tight beat, silver earrings, and very easy in his skin. He behaved exactly as you would wish he would, strutting around, coming up to the edge of the stage and singing for us, playing over our heads. The sound was just right; loud enough to be loud but not earplugs-loud.

Richard was a dream, full of joy, dancy, light on his feet. I don’t mind his voice rough (in fact I love it) but I’m sure it’s a good sign Richardwise that it’s so silky. (Perhaphs he quit smoking.) He had the look of a man who was completely present in the moment; comfortable, happy to be where he was. He turned 57 on Wednesday; another deep Gemini, alluring, complex.

I worried that it would be a light crowd… summer in Tucson, construction still going on downtown like a fever dream… but the place filled up, and people knew the music and sang along and the club was full of Hell Yeah.

Richard Butler is adorable
Richard, singing Into You Like A Train

I had a hilarious time before the show, narrowly avoiding getting taken into police custody.

I got to the Rialto stupid early, because I realized late in the day that I didn’t have a ticket. Whoops. So I showed up around 6:30 to get one, and I slipped into one of those sweet parking places in front of the Hotel Congress. The car looked so bright blue, so clean and small, just washed, jaunty in the best possible parking space of all Tucson spaces.

I hopped out, and stood on the street, waiting (naturally) to jaywalk. A police car pulled around the bend, and the handsome officer considerately stopped in traffic to allow me to break the law in front of him. I smiled, said to him through the open window, “Maybe not tonight,” and I skipped back up the block to cross at the light. Unbeknownst to me, he was in the process of identifying me as the woman he was out prowling for; a tall girl in a vintage blue and white spotted dress, dark sunglasses, and sandals.

I walked into the theater, got my ticket, and the last the handsome policeman saw of me was as I wicked across the street in a flash, and disappeared around the hotel. A boy next to me on the corner said, “I love your dress.”

The boy went into a tunnel, I went into Maynards to see if I had any friends there. I saw no one I knew, but my eyes met the eyes of a handsome older man at the bar; he looked jilted, impossibly wealthy, and I thought, I’m sorry for him that I cannot console him, and we smiled at each other, and I went out again (I walk quickly; you might miss me if you blink) and I slipped around the corner and into the Frenchish sort of market attached to the restaurant.

Joe Pagac at Maynards
a Joe Pagac mural in one of the windows at Maynards

I sidled through the aisles, trying not to look suspicious (for so many reasons) and completely unaware that there was a handsome policeman pursuing me.

I went back outside, skipped across the street between cars, through the east gates of the Hotel Congress, and ducked into the Cup Cafe, making an odd little loop through it, having a look back the way I’d come, into the courtyard. I was just seeing what was up, and if there were people I knew, or a photo I should take, but I must have looked rather like someone checking to see if she were being followed. People follow me, I follow them; it’s not the kind of thing I really care about, but I do try to notice. Not noticing an increasingly motivated policeman, tall and sleek in his dark blue uniform… this is astonishing.

I slipped out of the side entrance to the Cup, and into the semi-secret restroom in the depths of the hotel bar. After lurking in there for a while, checking my lipstick, I moved like a spotted shadow through the lobby, complimented the desk clerk on how impeccably stylish he looked, and then disappeared into the Club Congress, which was still waking up, blinking in the sunset. (I like to go in there and look at Daniel Martin Diaz’s stage.) I communed with the metalwork for a moment, and then slipped into an empty booth in the empty bar, red and silky, and little dust motes jumped up, and I watched them settle, and I texted Bill, looking furtive.


The bartender came in, and smiled at me quizzically, and  I said, “May I stay here for a minute?” He said sure, I made a few notes, and then when he ducked down to stock some stuff under the bar, I slipped out, saying, into the air behind me, goodbye, and I could tell with the back of the back of my head that as I disappeared, he stood up, looking around him, unsure if I had really been there in the first place.

I ducked out of a rather unexpected door at the front of the hotel, flicked through traffic, and as it turns out, the policeman, who was searching for me in the hotel, just saw the edge of my dress disappearing through the door of Hub. By the time he got across the street, I’d vanished into the dark bar, and although he looked in there for me, I had just bent down to pick up my ticket, which I’d dropped, and he was talking to the door staff about me, “Which way did she go?”  when I sauntered out of the bar, having seen not one human I knew in my entire loop of the top of downtown.

He was like, “My God! There you are! What is your name?”

I said, with a slow smile, “Kate McKinnon, what’s yours?” and he said, “May I trouble you for your ID?” and I said, “Are you the officer I declined to jaywalk in front of on the street?” and he said “Yes. Please show me your ID.” So I did, wondering if having illegal intentions was a crime, and he had to admit that I was not in fact the tall woman in the vintage dress that he was looking for, and he asked me why I made it so hard for him to catch me, and I said, “I had no idea you were behind me,” and he was incredulous. But we each had to admit that sadly, we had no business with the other, and he went out again to look for the other woman in the other dress, and I had a salad, and my reputation was, I’m sure, only enhanced by the situation. A waiter said, “He thought you were a fugitive.”

I like this as it all happened without me; the situation and my Secret Agent nature just happened to be a perfect fit; we made a small ephemeral film together, and then it was gone, leaving only the people who happened to see it saying, “What just happened?”

And then I went to see the show.

Richard and Tim Butler, Tucson

Tim Butler looks almost exactly like Bill in the photo above. I might have lost a bet on it. Below, you can see Mars Williams with his saxophone.

Furs in Tucson June 6 (2)

You know, John Dillinger was captured at the Hotel Congress, and I think that gives a kind of a flavor to almost being apprehended in front of it. Don’t you?

Hotel Congress, Tucson

13 thoughts on “Psychedelic Furs, Tucson, June 6, 2013

  1. “…and my reputation was, I’m sure, only enhanced by the situation. A waiter said, ‘He thought you were a fugitive.'” And then she was off, in the night, to get her Psychedelic Furs on.

  2. You weren’t HIS fugitive, but you are surely a fugitive from SOMETHING. Convention, perhaps?

Comments are closed.