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Mekons Tour Diary, Episode 2, Beached in Rehoboth

After 9 surprisingly well-attended and efficient shows, we are rewarded with a day off at the beach in Delaware. For the purposes of catching up with diary-keeping, it was of no use at all. Chronology escapes us and days off yield up sweet temptations while promoting indolence and lack of purpose.

We are staying with Steve Fallon, the former owner of Maxwell’s in Hoboken, where we began our American adventures back in 1986. He and Arnold are wonderful hosts, live near the beach and have a lovely Grecian-style pool with waterfalls, revolving massage jets and underwater disco lights! Just what the doctor ordered. No diary entries occur and the efforts of the last 10 exhausting days blur and recede, as our brains boil in the heat and humidity and large bottles of Dogfish Head’s syrupy Bitches Brew are drained enthusiastically.

We are invited to a magic show down the coast in Bethany by Hideout mixologist Michelle’s Mum Cheryl. It’s at a lovely little place called the Dickens Parlour Theater and is one of only 2 theaters dedicated to magic in the US. We are, of course, late and burst in while conjuring is in progress. Eric (AKA Rico) nearly walks straight onto the stage. How we laugh! Matt the magician does amazing things with ropes and giant playing cards, then invites Eric up onto the stage to buckle him into a straight jacket. What fun as Eric rummages around behind the poor chap’s rear end, deftly constricting his genital area with rough leather! We cheer him on….

Then it’s off for gin and tonics and a fruitless stressful search for late night crabs! How it takes 8 people to operate a Rehoboth Beach parking meter is a mystery, but we are reduced to babbling wrecks by this mundane task. Touring is hard and days off difficult, as hard-earned road discipline dissolves in waves of dozing and drinking. We are like the sailors of the Bounty who have dallied too long in Tahiti. GET IN THE VAN!

Highlights of our previous triumphant tour dates will follow in no sensible order….

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Jon Langford is a musician, painter and founding member of the Mekons. His most recent record is Here Be Monsters (Bloodshot).

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