Mark It Eight

I have abided for about 6 years now. I’ve never been to London. Or to France. But I saw the Queen in her damned undies last night.

Chicago’s Lebowskifest was kicked off at the Portage Theatre on Friday night to a massive audience of achievers who braved the subzero winds to pay homage to our hero, The Dude, in his robed and jellied glory.

Attendees were treated to The Steepwater Band, a pretty decent, pure rock-n-roll band, a Creedence Tribute Band, who, according to one proud achiever, featured a lead singer that was “more Fogerty than Fogerty”, and a screening in which 500 people simultaneously screamed such spirited dialogue gems at the screen as: “This is what happens when you fuck a stranger in the ass!”; “They’re gonna kill that pooorrr woman!”; and “You got a date Wednesday, baby!”

There was nothing like it. I have experienced many subcultural activities from LaJolla to Pismo (which have also involved costumes and audience participation) but none so near and dear to my heart. As a fragile pacifist, TBL has been a movie that I return to biweekly to keep my mind limber and perpetuate the hope that, ultimately, nothing is fucked, everyone might abide someday, try not to scam anybody, and really tie the planet together. There was a great vibe at the screening, some costumes (got a great photo of the Pope shitting in the woods – and don’t be fatuous – not literally); a Busby Berkley bowling pin dancer; and some Maudes. There was a lot of ins, lot of outs, lot of strands to keep in ‘ole Duder’s head here. Caucasians and oat sodas flowed, fest-goers mingled as if they were about to get ejected from a garden party, and I called attention to the fact that someone had left a beverage in the last stall in the women’s bathroom. In all, our pre-bowling evening of the fest was a valued experience and I felt privy to the new shit.

Saturday, the Fest continued at Waveland Bowl on Western, our achievers’ home turf where our opponents are usually push-overs and most people probably still jerk off manually, given the 1980-era neon decor. Joint-achiever bowling ensued, and our small group of achievers tumbled on over to lane 11, where no one flashed a piece, but where a good friend from my old dance quintet (garbed in her dirty undies) was rollin’ with Jackie Treehorn and the Van Nuys abuttment, among others. Yours truly and spouse were dressed as The Royal We (You Know, The Editorial?) and The Man In The Black Pajamas respectively. Costumes, mean $6 Caucasians, trivia contests, and tons of dude photo opportunities made this truly, a natural zesty enterprise.

Where else can a nihilist bowl with the fucking toe (with nail polish) in harmony?

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