At the fancy desert resort, it was hard to gage what type of people really populate the Palm Desert area. From what I could see at the hotel, there were only vanilla, high-end tourists. We didn't really get to see the local flava until we decided to hit a neighboring bar.
Coincidentally, a couple we know from the OC was also staying at our lush resort because the mother in law -- let's call her Lady Meow -- lives directly across the street from the resort, and she was hosting Thanksgiving 2005. Lady Meow is pure Upstate NY Money that has retired in the Cali desert with her bump on the log husband. But we'll get back to her later. So, our friends, the couple, GMoney and LBoogie asked us to go to an adjacent hotel bar that is apparently HAPPENING. GMoney and LBoogie have been to this bar a few times and praised the awesomeness of the cover band, a local favorite. Husband and I were giddy. We are master people watchers and together we think we are the funniest commentators alive.
We got to the bar at 8:50, just before the band was to go on. The place was PACKED. People were nearly shoving to get tables and seats. I saw the easel holding the band's picture before entering. "The Art of Sax" it read. With a picture of these guys. Husband and I looked at each other with widened eyes thrilled about the great times that lie ahead. GMoney & LBoogie elbowed their way to an empty table and we let the Crowd Staring With Commentary begin! Oh, this crowd did not disappoint. The level of middle aged and older corniness was epic and euphoric. The vacationing OC'ites were definitely in the house. OC men wear Tommy Bahama shirts like their life depends on it. They thank god the day these were produced because it takes the guess work out of dressing themselves. It is Granimals for grown men. The OC women and the Palm Desert women merged with their style so I couldn't tell where one started and the other ended, but let's just say a lot of gold and surprisingly, the leather mini skirt is making a mad come back. A friend of GMoney's joined us at our table and he said, "My mom should be here later. She's classic Palm Desert." I said, "What's that?" He said, "You know, five boob jobs, platinum hair, dark leather skin. Lots o jewelry." I don't know what it was about the women at this place, but they were feeling S-E-X-Y. Like, on exactly their 50th birthday they knew they were the cat's pj's. They knew they could land most of the dudes in this joint. And no matter how much plastic surgery or make up or gold jewelry or hair shellac or orange tanning spray, that kind of confidence is hot. It was the aggressiveness that was a tad comedic.
The moment the Dave Koz wannabee placed the sax reed to his lips the crowd stampeded the parquet dance floor. Art O' Sax played all the wedding reception favorites: Celebration, Brick House, etc. etc. Husband and I were momentarily speechless because we didn't know where to start. Our heads swiveled from the slinky, strutting cougars to the stiff, money-dripping Tommy Bahamas. Dave Koz II, who seemed to be the leader of the band, wore a bright red satin button down, flowing and unbuttoned uncomfortably low. Not only was he the front man, but he seemed to be the band schmoozer and sales guy. He smiled exaggeratedly, danced onto the crowded dance floor with the sax, played bars to woman who swooned and flirted competitively. Women in their 60's shimmied in gold lamee shells with matching scrunchies and naughtiness in their eyes, and I thought, Rock On. Dave Koz had competition, however. The bassist of the band who wore a white straw hat over a gheri-curled pony tail and a white track suit with camouflaged sleeves was jockeying for popularity. We noticed that he had his own female following on his side of the room. And we realized that there must be a nightly Ass Off between the members of The Art Of Sax. Let's just say, the numbers must be big. These guys are raking in palm desert ass like it’s low-hanging fruit. We saw Koz wave coyly to someone across the dance floor just by wiggling four outstretched fingers. Sort of how Vince Vaughn did in the final scene of Swingers. "Oh, you want to play little baby games? I got your baby games. I'm gonna get more leathery ass than the base player tonight."
At one point I announced my theory that you can do the Robot to any song of any genre. The song playing at the moment of this announcement was We Are Family by Sister Sledge, an old favorite of mine. Husband said, "I dare you to hit the dance floor right now with the Palm Desert Crew and do the Robot." I stood and said, "That's no dare at all!" And we cruised to the dance floor next to a leopard-skin clad Eartha Kitt look-a-like. I looked at Husband sweetly and then did my best Robot complete with the dead-arm swing and some pop-lockin for good measure. Husband howled. Eartha Kitt grimaced and had her partner dance her away from us. Apparently Eartha can do swing dancing to any song from any genre.
Because it was so crowded, the tables and chairs were all crammed together. Squeezing through was a bit of an effort. As we all talked at the table, a woman in her mid 50's with a stretched face and an ash blonde bob tried to squeeze behind LBoogie. She faced GMoney as she did so and she took an extremely slow time getting by. She burned a hole in GMoney's face as she stared at him. She mouthed, "Excuse me," with the wickedest of smiles and GMoney flushed beet red. As soon as she left we fell out, shocked by the balls-out aggressiveness. We yelled, "GODDAMN! LBoogie, you better hang on to your man before he's cougar meat!"
P.S. This is all fun and games when it ain't yo man. Which brings me back to Lady Meow. We have met her many times before because she visits G & L regularly, especially on holidays. And it's a big, running joke that she is in love with my husband. It's not a joke; it's the glaring, desperate truth. I can't blame her. He's fine as hell. He's madly and manly confident in a way that drives me bananas. And Lady Meow too apparently. She is so flamboyant with him, flapping her arms about with her silk or cashmere sweater draped around her shoulders and her 24k gold bobbles glistening from her sagging earlobes. Her nose is carved a shade too thin, but her eyes are bright blue and sparkly, charming even which she turns on fiercely for Husband. The thing is she completely ignores my presence. She loves to reminisce about New York with him like it's an inside joke, like nobody but they have ever been to New York, and she never makes eye contact with me. She barely squeaks out a hello. It's all about kibitzing with Husband with the arm touching and the tousled laughing at every comment out of his mouth. I always think, Is this comical or should I knock a grandma the fuck out?
Lady Meow showed up at the Art O’ Sax bar that night not knowing we would be there. She spotted Husband from across the dance floor and said loudly, "OH, You're the only one I recognized!" as her son in law sat idly by, shrugging at me. LBoogie sat next Husband and Lady Meow was on the other side of LBoogie and when L hit the dance floor I whispered to Husband, "It's only a matter of time." Sure enough she scootched over one seat nuzzling up to Husband and told him AGAIN the story of how she went to the Final Fours tournament when Syracuse and Carmelo Anthony represented. I've tried to hop in the conversation once before because no one loves college basketball more than me, but she dismissed me in an old-fashioned way, seemingly saying, "Let me hear what the men folk have to say about this." Husband acts oblivious and humors her. Which I think is sweet and yet it irks me at the same time. I just completely ignore her now too and let her get her rocks off, but if she thinks I don’t have an eye on her Grand Cougar ways, ooo, then she don't know nothin 'bout me.