I am a frequent patron of Half Moon Bay’s M Coffee on Main Street. While it’s not the trendiest or classiest in coffee shops, it suits my needs quite well. Most notably, the other locals go there and they tend to be outspoken liberals who loudly voice their opinion on politics, business, functions and more recently the proposed parking meters downtown. I tend to sit quietly with my laptop, my tea and my ears to catch up on what the weekly newspaper won’t tell me. I am, after all, my mother’s daughter.
One of the things M Coffee does is a monthly open Mic Night for Poetry and Spoken Word. Spoken Word. The term makes me giggle cause I think, Is there something other than words when we speak? So, #89 made my list as a way to check it out.
But for whatever reason, the Third Thursday at M Coffee and the stars never aligned for me. So, I decided to google what would be available on one of my frequent trips back in to Sac/Davis. Turns out, LOTS. I opted for Open Mic Night at Luna’s Cafe on 16th street in Midtown Sac. It seemed promising.
In retrospect, I’m not sure what to think of my experience. I’ve heard Poetry and Spoken Word done before, but at church and maybe occasionally on TV. This was something else. And I would hate to use it as a generalization of an entire subculture of Urban Poets, but it was amazingly awful. I know of plenty of people who would take a screwdriver to their brain than go again to Luna’s Cafe the night I did…. and I loved it! It maybe a weird neurotic quirk of mine, but I take delight in finding myself in awfully bizarre and seemingly uncomfortable situations, cause there is nothing else you can do but laugh and then later use it as “This one time at a Poetry Reading I went to….”
Where do I start? I showed up on time as the “Featured Poet” was being introduced. A local Sacramento Resident who, in his 60 years, never ventured outside the 40 block radius that is downtown. He was the most boastful, humbled, immature radical I’ve ever come across. He talked of nothing but how humble he is…. and his poetry was nothing more than of the mind blowing and divine sex he has had. Picture an unattractive man screaming the words CUNT and COCK multiple times as he described his orgasms. This, coupled with his proud story of how he was banned from many other places because of his poetry. As if he were some trail blazer. Puh LEASE.
I inquired quietly to the waitress about Open Mic Night. She told me typically that there is one featured Poet and then everyone else can come in and sign up with the Host to also read. She told me this poet here use to be a regular years ago until he started scaring people away, so now they limit him to once a year or something. My lucky Night!! I could see what she meant because an hour in to it he was still on the stage and most of the small Cafe had cleared out. A. MAZE. ING. and sad.