Friday, August 22, 2008

Tuesday is the New Thursday at the Middlesex Lounge

I was called out by my friends at Mash Ave, dj BC and Lenlow, for Bootie Night on Tuesday, August 12 at the Middlesex Lounge in Central Square. Their bootleg mashup hip-hop scene has been going for 3 or 4 years now, and has found a new monthly home in Central for the last six months.

It's been a while since I had ventured into Central Square and the Middlesex Lounge is on the far side, on Mass. Ave. a couple of blocks past Main Street towards MIT. The name Middlesex has always put me in mind of something you might have walked in on your parents doing when you were a kid - if you had regular parents, not mine. So it's the perfect name for a hip night spot.

Central Square has undergone another transition this summer. The angle intersection of Main Street and Mass. Ave. has been changed to impose a new plaza complete with outdoor tables and benches, flower boxes, and trees. Instead Main Street hooks left just before Mass. Ave. to intersect at a right angle. It's getting so you can't drive around Cambridge without swerving left and right to dodge all the street improvements.

The Middlesex Lounge sits discreetly across the street from the Asgard, with gauze covered windows to keep out the street. The walls are lined by comfortable benches, mounted on what look like hospital gurney wheels. The unisex bathrooms have progressed to the next logical step and are not even marked “bathroom” on the door. There is a bar and a kitchen and a big open space for dancing, which the Mash Ave. boys and their guest DJ got everyone doing.

We did slow down a bit to watch the women’s gymnastics at the Olympics in Beijing on the wide screen TVs. Someone asked, “Where are the Russians?” My remark, “recalled to the front in Georgia” seemed quite funny to me but not so much to the one woman present whose grandparents lived in Tbilisi. I believe the Russian women gymnasts actually finished fourth, but didn’t make the cut for much TV coverage. The Chinese women got the better of the American women on screen. On the dance floor, the gold went to the Indian women. I myself was awarded a 3 for technical difficulty and a 2 for artistic interpretation, but at least I completed the floor exercise without getting the red card for going out of bounds.

The next Bootie Night is Tuesday, September 9. Maybe I'll see you there.

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