Too Much Funeral, Not Enough Wedding

Well, the Boban Markovic concert went swimmingly into that last night. Very little rain and a massive turnout set up a cool evening, but the band (doubtless influenced by the perpetual wankery at the Prague mayor‘s office) threw us all the notorious limp-wristed curve ball, playing a bunch of operatic stuff better suited to a poncy concert hall than to an outdoor show where 90% of the crowd was carrying cans of beer and screaming for Kalashnikov. I got there early, having been released from Gattaca at the appointed hour, and set up camp near a lamppost in the center of the square. As the crowd descended, I realized that riding my bike might have been a bad idea.

When the concert was prefaced by a series of self-congratulatory Prague officials, intent on getting the most political milage out of the event as possible, I knew it was gonna get weirder. One of them touted the great support that the city of Prague had given their Serbian compatriots during the Yugoslav civil war. What the HELL was he talking about, history buffs? Sorry, but Serbia was nearly universally reviled at the time, especially by the Czech government, who had their exploratory noses rammed up NATO’s greased anus. The only “assistance” I can think of is the kind permission the city of Prague gave the wealthy residents and gangsters of that area to come and settle here with their tinted Mercedes’ and penchant for arms dealing. I suppose the Serb gangsters, with their “quirky” sense of humor and excellent restaurants, added a great deal more to the city than the deluge of miserable, gold-encrusted Russian and Israeli thugs who rolled in about the same time, but still, that hardly qualifies as war-time support now, does it?

Sure enough, once the music started the crowd couldn’t stand still. Like banded lobsters in a tank in some dismal suburban restaurant, they crawled all over each other in a frantic search for the perfect spot that must be “right over there”. Aside from the forbidden city in Beijing, I’ve never experienced such blatant disregard for personal space. Of course, my bike became an official stumbling block, eliciting curses and complaints from the increasingly alarming stream of crustaceans. “Ty vole” was commonly heard, giving way to the inevitable “jses normalni?” You can’t win with these people, honestly. Pick a place and sit still. Enjoy the music, Honza, not your teenage girlfriend’s dopey shrill squawk and the comforting glow of your stupid mobile phone.

Exasperated, I heaved the bike up over my head and plowed out to the back of the tank, where I met Mikko and we went for beer. The U Kata pub is a right dirty little shithole, but they pour a mean Pilsner. Mikko’s new ride is as smooth as it looks. Powdercoated here in Prague and assembled from bits and pieces from around the world, it’s a real beauty. I especially dig the built-in lock mounted on the seat stays. Money.

Even more exciting, there are “other” fixie riders in Prague, it’s official! Mikko says he was stopped up in Vinohrady by some American guys in a car who said they are riders. Sunday is the Critical Mass ride and the dark lord of complaint is gathering all fixies to him. Soon he will have enough to cover all of Prague in a second hipness…

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~ by themicah on September 18, 2009.

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