Disco Disaster

Back in 1989, a friend took me to a night club called Studebaker’s, where there was loud music, swirling disco lights, and wandering eyes searching for the perfect date. I didn’t like it there.

Two years later, in an English class, I wrote a story about that experience.  I thought I had lost what I had written, but I just found it in an old box. Here it is (take it with a grain of salt)!
Back-in-1989
======================
Disco Disaster

Sweaty bodies jumped, wiggled, and hopped in excited frenzy on the crowded dance floor at Studebaker’s disco. Like oily sardines trying to escape from a tin can, they writhed in rhythm to the pounding beat. This peculiar dancing was either a new form of erotic aerobics or a procedure for the ritualistic bonding of desperate middle-aged singles. I wasn’t sure.

Hundreds of eyes searched hungrily around the room for the right victim; the atmosphere was charged with perverse anticipation. My heart sank when I realized that the overweight man at the adjacent table was staring at me, cigarette dangling precariously from his lips. His thinning black hair was plastered to his head; his mustache neatly trimmed. A few curling hairs were strategically pulled out of his open shirt, a testimonial to his hidden masculinity. He winked; I frowned.

Encouraged by my negative response, he decided to take further action. He stood up. The length and width of his entire body loomed before me, inviting inspection. It was worse than I imagined. Like an overblown basketball his stomach hung, concealing his belt and the upper portion of his voluminous black and white striped jeans.

“I’m sitting all alone,” he whined in a high-pitched complaining voice. He coughed several times, adjusted the ostentatious gold bracelet on his left wrist, and continued—
“My name is Eugene. I’m an Aquarius. That’s a water sign. I am fun-loving, creative, and spontaneous.”

The size and condition of his body verified the truth of his last statement. I imagined him waddling into his kitchen late at night, spontaneously consuming the creative contents of his well-stocked refrigerator.

Suddenly, someone bumped into him from behind. He lurched forward. I cringed in horror as Eugene’s shoulders touched mine. His white wine splashed onto my dress, trickling into my purse.

Eugene hadn’t planned on this, but he was prepared to use the incident to his advantage, creative as he was. “I am so sorry, ” he apologized. “I think it would be a good idea if we went up to my house. It isn’t far from here. You could throw your dress into the wash, and we could relax in my kidney-shaped spa for a while. It won’t be so loud there. We could talk.”

He raised one eyebrow and gestured towards the door with a sweep of his hand.
===========================
Oh No! The last page of my story is missing! I know that (in my original story) she told him to go away as kindly as she could, but I can’t remember the exact words that I used.

Oh well. This could be one of those stories with several alternate endings. I’ll have to think about it!

About Mary Strong-Spaid

You can find me any time wandering around in my own mind gathering thoughts.
This entry was posted in Alternate endings, Creative Writing, Humor, Relationships and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

42 Responses to Disco Disaster

  1. Oh my God, is Studebakers in SLC. If so, I’ve been there.

  2. Pierre Lagacé says:

    Aquarius is not a water sign…

  3. Pierre Lagacé says:

    Quite comical. I loved the description of the John Travolta look alike.

  4. Pierre Lagacé says:

    Don’t ask me why, but I love disco music. Used it in the 70s in my English as a second language class. The students were signing along.

  5. Pierre Lagacé says:

    1989? Was disco music “passé de mode” by 1989?

  6. Pierre Lagacé says:

    Get up and boogie… the song went…

  7. RoaringRed says:

    That sounds like a scene from a Molly Ringwald movie! I can just imagine it… 🙂

  8. Timothy Price says:

    I like that photo of you from long ago. You describe the disco scene so well. I started ballroom dance when I was 16 years old. Disco started to become popular a year or two after I had gotten to a really high level of dance, but I was well aware of the music before then. I had started playing in bands when I was 15, and I hated disco for various reasons, but in my dance world at the time I had to learn all the disco dances and even compete in disco competitions. Today I appreciate Disco a lot more then back then, and I preserve the vintage versions of the disco dances I learned in the 1970’s. But one of the many reasons I didn’t become a professional dancer back then is because I couldn’t deal with the disco, bar and dance hall environment you described so well. No matter how much you like the dance and the music, the bars and disco type places are full of the worst type of personalities trying to pick up on each other. Hungry eyes in search of victims is not what I consider fun.

    • I love music. I have been singing with different musical groups and on my own…for years.
      I wish I had taken dance…because, most of the time, I am not sure of where my feet are exactly.
      Like you, I was never interested in the hungry eyes or the feeling of desperation–watching people trying to pick up others after they had one too many drinks. Just like you, that did not and does not appeal to me at all. I lived in Hawaii at the time. I would have much rather gone down to the ocean, sat on a sea wall or some rocks, and listened to the melodic soundof the waves breathing in and out into the sand……

      • Timothy Price says:

        Even though you might think you can’t dance, a good leader can make you to look good dancing without you really knowing how to dance. I can’t sing worth beans, and can’t be lead to sound good. I tried taking voice lessons a long, long time ago. I think the poor teacher must have wondered what sins she or her forefathers had committed for her to end up with a student like me. It didn’t take long for me to figure out that I was hopeless when it came to singing.

  9. katelon says:

    Great story. Aquarius is actually an air sign, so this guy really was fully clueless. I never liked disco music and had never listened to it until I was living on the Navajo reservation in 1981, and the 3rd graders chose it as their graduation theme. Since the school only went to 3rd grade and some kids only went that far in school, they had graduations each year.

    The daughter of one of the other teachers taught the kids and I how to disco dance so we could dance as the entertainment part of their graduation. It was quite the scene. The baseball backstop was decorated with crepe paper flowers, the Navajo parents and elders were spread out on Navajo blankets in their Navajo traditional clothes, mutton stew and fry bread cooking in the back…..and there were the kids and I in the front, dancing to loud disco music 🙂

  10. Anonymous says:

    Love this story. It sounds incredibly familiar to those of us who were around during the disco era! You have amazing talent with both writing and singing. I am really going to miss you when you move.

  11. davidprosser says:

    I’d be willing to bet none of the alternate endings included going back to his house.
    xxx Huge Hugs xxx

  12. beeblu says:

    lol – so glad those days are long gone.

  13. Pierre Lagacé says:

    How that “Aquarius” went on with his life is something to ponder upon…

    • Yes it is! That was 27 years ago, so I wonder what he looks like now or if he is still in this world. Did he dance his way out of Disco and on into the Mosh Pit? Did he ever find the love of his life? Or did he simply become comfortable with being alone?
      There is most definitely a story here….

  14. Ewwwwww.Gross. Great story! How much of it is true? Sounds like a horrible time. I’m happy to say that in my teens I had some wonderful disco experiences, but then my boyfriend was one of the guys in the band, so I had “special status” and danced with the other band girlfriends. Loads of fun. I never went to a disco with old fat men. I give thanks that I was spared that.
    Alison

  15. Discos are the same the world over. This is exactly how I remembered the few I went to as a youngster. A perfect description.

  16. ken riddles says:

    excellent piece of descriptive prose… have a good day

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