The Gathering of the Hermits – a rare and wondrous event – was scheduled for today at 3:00 at an undisclosable location. I got there at 2:30 and ate a club sandwich and drank a Guinness while waiting for the other eleven hermits.
Then I read my book for awhile and glanced at my watch periodically. Around 3:15 it occurred to me that I shouldn’t be surprised if none of the hermits showed up, being as how they’re hermits and all.
But then one of them came shuffling in and then another and another, lifting their eyes out of their collars just long enough to glance furtively around the room and locate the Gathering.
The hermits ordered beers gruffly and sat in semi-companionable silence for awhile, waiting for the liquor to loosen their tongues. There was throat-clearing and grunting all round, and then gradually, gradually, the conversation began. Some of their voices were rusty from disuse.
A few pints later I noticed some of the hermits had progressed to full sentences, and I even caught one or two of them interrupting each other. That’s not something you see every day.
At some point someone – I forget who – observed that all five hermits had blue eyes.
“The Gathering of the Blue-Eyed Hermits,” said Lux.
I said that would be a very good name for a band, and that’s how it happened: the hermits decided to start a band called The Blue-Eyed Hermits.
“What kind of music will we play?” asked Windy.
We kicked this around for a bit and decided to be eclectic, since we had to accommodate the musical tastes of all the hermits. The Blue-Eyed Hermits will be playing some jazz, some blues, a little country, a little doo-wop, a little hip-hop, a little bee-bop, a little Baroque.
Next, everybody chose their instruments. Theor will play keyboards and be the lead male vocalist. Lux will play tambourine and harmonica and be the lead female singer. DJ “I’ll be in your band but I’m not really a hermit” Sarcastro will play the turntables. Windy will play the recorder (which is enjoying a renaissance) and clarinet and sax (so he won’t be a laughingstock for playing the recorder). As for me, I’ll be sizzling on the zither.
Some time later the only Black hermit – Cagey Green – showed up very late and we noted with dismay that he doesn’t have blue eyes. He said he’d wear blue shades and play guitar. Some of us thought blue contacts might be better but Cagey said no. We compromised because what kind of band doesn’t need a guitarist? Besides, Cagey’s a real musician and that might come in handy too.
There was a bit of an issue around where we would practice and when. Theor’s the only one with a garage and he says it’s full of his stuff and he’d rather it be full of his stuff than full of people. We all nodded. If we had garages, we’d feel the same way.
Then we realized we didn’t really want to practice much anyway, since that would require getting together regularly. But what kind of band doesn’t practice? We resolved this dilemma by agreeing to get webcams. We’ll mostly just practice alone, and then get together online and do a kind of fusion/improv sort of thing.
Lux says she’s not getting a webcam though – something about her social and technological boundaries. I wonder how Herman’s Hermits managed, before the Internet.
Then all of the hermits ordered french fries and the waitress brought a wheelbarrow full of french fries to our table and we all dug in.
After the french fries I came home and googled zither. It doesn’t look too hard.