This time of year, the gaps at the beginning and end of the day are hemmed in by darkness. I plug a headlight and taillight into a USB port, and pull on an extra layer of something, knowing the fall is unpredictable. The wind blows harder and sharper than it does in summer. And there’s no sun to chase, just the feeling of the air rushing across your face and a laser focus on the ground flying by in that single cone of light.
The Night Moves, as nearly as I can tell from the lyrics, are sex, is sex. Not sure how to put that, grammatically. They are sex? It is sex? Pronouns are important, but maybe not in this case. Some of the moves must be foreplay, others are clearly fiveplay. There’s the backseat of a Chevy, a drive-in, the woods, other sorts of location-based, classic American aphrodisia.
Wait, what is the plural of aphrodisiac? Sorry. My editorial queries are killing the mood.
There is something intoxicating, something dangerous and forbidden, about flying along in the darkness. Maybe you’re alone. That’s ok. No shame in that. Really, we need to move past feelings of shame vis a vis the night moves. Or maybe you’re with a group. OK. Hold up. My bad. Now I can see that the blurring of the metaphors here was a poor choice.
So right, like I was saying, it’s exhilarating to ride in the dark. The cool air heightens your awareness. Terrain you’ve covered a thousand times is suddenly new again. I’m prone to sudden fits of laughter at the improbability of it all, the audacity of the moment. My senses are piqued and overwhelmed at the same time.
Hang on. Hang on. If you watch that video, linked above, it’s got Matt LeBlanc and Daphne Zuniga in it. But that album was released in 1976 when LeBlanc was 9 and Zuniga was 14. That’s a little creepy. No. It’s a lot creepy. Am I over-thinking this? I probably am. The video was made in 1994.
Every song written in the ’70s was about sex, I guess. I just did a brief survey, randomly selecting 20 songs from the Billboard charts during that decade. All about sex. “Night Moves” turns out to be pretty tame by the standards of the day.
I mean, ok. There was no internet yet.
So it’s dark and we’re riding bikes and that’s great. We feel like we’re getting one over on the sun. We’re doing our thing even though we’re not supposed to be doing our thing. I’m humming this song, “Night Moves” under my breath. It’s written in C, which is not really in my range, mostly cause I don’t have a range, but if you came close enough to hear and strained you might be able to tell what the song was, and the moment, the one where we’re out there in the dark, pedaling our bikes around, would be more soulful and more poignant, and maybe even a little sexy, although I’ll be honest with you. I’m not really in the mood anymore.
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