Was 6 o'clock
On the Swatch watch
No time to kill
Got a date
Can't be late
Those boys are gonna do me!
That sounded a lil "trainish." As in they ran a... Not what I mean.
The doors opened at 6.
Me & Benetton Boo arrived at 1 of the
New Edition--& all their spin offs-are my Temptations.
As I said. The doors opened at 6. Of course nobody was hittin' the stage at 6, but it was important to get there early so that we could stake out our real estate close to the stage. As the DJ spun his way from the 90's up to present day I danced like I had been plugged back into my lifeline. The 90's were the musical shit!! At 1 point I was doin' the most & paying attention the least & we got pushed back a “row” by some die-hards wearing concert 'nalia & eau de bologna en mayo. It suddenly got all deli-rific & a little sickening, which only further incensed me & made me state out loud in front of these Brazen Bologna Broads that we had to pay closer attention cuz “I don't know how they got here.” 1 of them spotted a girlfriend & had clear designs on inviting her up front with them, til she caught the Try It side eye I was lobbing directly in her face. I don't play 'bout my BBD (aka Bill, Bab, Deboe out of the mouth of my disrespectful grandmother).
An hour & a half in, the DJ was still giving me fevah but not, as we discovered, because he was good. He just had the right music. Some songs should not have gotten full run—a crowd killer when we've been standing around waiting for what seemed like EVER for the show to start. My guess was we'd be in limbo for up to 3 hours, but I forgot to check the actual start time. After an eternity had passed & the DJ had us “Allaway Turned Up”, he got traded for the cat who would actually be the DJ for the show. I cared so little about who was on the
BOOM SHAKALACKA!! It was the 1, the Chief Rocka!!
Benetton Boo & I had been tryna figure out who was going to be the opening act, such as it was. I'm not sure part of 1 song counts as an opening act, but it was right in line with the nostalgia theme so I bounced along with the crowd cuz I just couldn't he'p mahself. The Chief Rocka backed up as I caught a glimpse of Ricky Bell's stunna shades comin' down the steps. It was officially ON!!
Bell Biv DeVoe, BBD if ya nasty, finally took to the stage. I thought back to the 1st time I ever saw those fools on TV or an album cover & had to laugh. Ricky's features didn't work so well on the face of a young boy, but he's matured nicely & they finally fit his face as a man. Mike looks like he's a lot more committed to mealtime than the rest, much fuller in the face & chest but not as out of shape as he was a few years back. Gawd Body...you owe me $5. Please & thank you. & then there was Ronnie. I used to get clowned HARD for being in love with Ronnie 1st, & then Ralph. It was his nose that people just couldn't get past. It was a little piggly wiggly but I loved him just the same. I've always rooted for the underdog. As time went on, it was Ronnie who never failed me, givin' up the choreo like it was his life's mission to dance for breath. They'll all be doing the same choreography, in true boy band fashion, but Ronnie was usually the only 1 dancing. Not true. Ralph danced too—as did Bobby—but we'll just focus on the 3 in BBD. Back to Ronnie. This dude hasn't aged since the NE Heartbreak album. & as Mike breathed heavily, & sweat a lil more than the others, thru the choreography, Ronnie was all over the stage, having a ball. What did I love the most? That even in all their mature take on the 3 dudes in the same outfit—a lowkey but decent tribute to Levis in the Twenny10 & leather (a performance staple) & the color black—Ronnie still rocks his signature fitted cap. I typically am OVER the fitted, but for some reason, Ronnie can do no wrong in my eyes & it sat a top his head at the perfect Negroidian lean. White boys are not so good at this gravity defying cap placement.
BBD did their hits & toyed with our emotions, doing “Candy Girl & Mr. Telephone Man.” They spoke of a 6-man reunion of NE in the summer of TwennyLeben & managed to cancel any plans I had of being out of the country for the summer. Sad, right? After the NE interlude, the fellas jumped back in to their own hits & ALL the original choreography. & I was right with them. But this is where the night took a turn for the worst for me--& didn't admit it to myself til later.
Prior to the show starting, during the 90's mix from the tired DJ, I was givin' up the dance ghost. I was so comfortable & having so much fun that it didn't require a cocktail from the bar or girlfriends to egg me on; & I did it all in front of Benetton Boo. That was the part that amazed me most. No reservations. Anyway, I had my moments of give-it-upness on the dance flo' where I shocked a few folks around me confused by the age I must have appeared versus the age I should've been in order to even know these dances & the words to ALL'a songs. I had made 2 dance buddies in the process & we made a pact before the show started to bumrush the “stage” & give up the choreo with the fellas. We all but pinky swore. So, the part of the show where BBD called for dancers from the audience& they started choosing chicks from the front. These were the ladies positioned in the front in all their liquid-legging glory *coughs*packaged predictability*chokes* & their fresh from the salon hair & tall boots. The ladies to my right & left, & Benetton Boo behind me are pointing at me, pushing me forward, & shouting “CHOOSE HER!” I've mentioned before my disdain for groupies & their documented behaviors. So, when I KNEW it should've been me on stage I simply raised my hand like the rest, as though my short self could actually be seen. I eventually, with encouragement made me way just behind the front & was blocked by a tall chick with tall hair. 6 women wound up on stage & I wound up at the stage. Ronnie informed them what part of the choreography they were gon' have to handle. Now, I'm sizing these chicks up & knew before the music started that NONE of them had a clue either what choreo or how to execute any of it cuz they couldn't do it when it was out. I didn't deflate here, still just glad to be close enough to see that Ronnie's skin is still beautifully flawless. The music starts & it may as well have been a stage full of white women. Not 1 step remembered or understood. I cried inside for us all—them for being so hype about being next to BBD on stage that they missed the part about having to dance in front of a crowd & me for not busting thru the crowd to claim my rightful place on stage as a true Stan for BBD & a waiver of the Nostalgia Glow Stick, still well versed in the dance moves of my youth.
& then it was over.
Benetton Boo called me out with, “You know you shoulda been on the stage, right?” Yeah. I know. I went up to coat check to grab thee coat & found BBD sitting in the “VIP” with a line of pressed out chicks waiting to take pictures & autographs. The sight of them in that ridiculous roped off section in this particular venue made me shed an invisible tear for them. I deserved to take a flick with them but couldn't stomach standing in line with chicks whose dreams are to be the next Basketball Wives or Football Wives, or—as my girl so comically put it on Facebook yesterday—Kickball Wives. I decided to leave quickly with my dignity, my crushed dreams, & my nostalgic high.
It was a damn good night!! & for those of you who shat upon the idea of BBD in concert this many years later...poo poo on you. You missed a GREAT show!!
Watch me move (on ya dance flo!).
Post Script-thanks Che! You were right!!
*dances off singing*
All I know
When I'm with you
You make me feel so good thru & thru
Sharing the treat below because the white girl in the video is doing the MOST as the black girls waste valuable time pretending to be sexy. Last night...I wanted to BE the is white girl. But better.