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Monday, 8 December - link

third shot, corner table

London still, but no trip to Paris (not even for a free night at the Hotel Costes). I had a mission there, cram reams of DVDs from GetDigital onto a single iPod for a client with expansive musical taste. But my business is writing and my latest article is late.

regardingLast night I was backed into a corner of the corner table at Ciro's Pizza Pamadoro by three well-to-do Iraqi Kurds chain smoking and shoveling fried mushrooms down their gullets. We had been crouched under celebrity photos surrounded by merriment and social upsell for hours before the place was taken over by Arab music. Taken over I say because Jobim only caused one lady to rise to her feet, to the seat of her chair, to the top of the table dancing, hips swinging, white and black striped top recognizable reflected in the eyes of nearly every man in this dark basement.

It was wild and frenzied, but entirely concentrated on this one bold lass. It was the Arabic music that called more than half the crowd to its feet. Maybe laballing music "arabic" is about as useful as saying someone is from "africa" - arabic and african are broad categories. Either way, the Kurds at our table knew the words and the most excited among them thought we did too - I looked into his eyes and as he gestured up with his hands, I sang along - "a ba ba ba ba ba ba!" and it turns out I did know something. Two tables over a man in a blue buttoned-down shirt was handed a drum and he kept rapid time. The people waiting on the stairs emptied into the club. All was swinging hips and upraised hands - things were verging on hosanna in excelsis.

Our bottle of Port had been miraculously drained, though the Kurds wouldn't touch the stuff. They were drinking exclusively sweet creamy shots, something called a B-52. I turned down my third and turned to the door. Back to the keyboard!

Posted on 8 December 2003 : 16:50 (TrackBack)
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Justin's Links, by Justin Hall.