Big Friday Night

“You had a big night”, one of my friends said to me over lunch on the weekend, remarking that we’d corresponded a few times by messenger. “You were at The Bears, and then you were at Palms”, he said. I remember texting him about a song I’d heard at Harbour City Bears at Kinsela’s. It was an awesome remix of an old song by the Pet Shop Boys, later re-recorded and featured in the TV show, “It’s A Sin”.

So what time did you get home?”, he asked. At first, I was a little vague, but then I checked my phone.

The thing about mobile phones, these days, is you can check that stuff. Though some people feel quite creepy about all things Facebook, Google and Apple, and COVID sign-ins, your bank or supermarket track you much more than any of those things do. Every purchase you make builds adds to your profile. He drinks three bottles of milk each week, and far too much wine, is something that my supermarket and bank both know!

As well, there’s Google Maps on my Android Phone which has a timeline function, so you can know exactly when and where you leave somewhere. I think most people don’t know about this. But it’s something I regularly check, and correct where necessary. “No, I wasn’t at the pub at 8am”, I’ll often correct, “I was at the nearby bus-stop”.

And so, I checked my phone and it seems I got home at midnight, not 11pm, as I’d initially thought. The confusion was that I stood in line for an hour to get into Palms. “I was only there for an hour”, so that’s why I thought I’d arrived home at 11, not 12. In so many ways this was a lovely reminder of things past. 12.10 to be precise. “That’s not exactly the BIG NIGHT of our youth”, I told him. And we laughed.

The unnecessary inevitable long queue to get into Palms.

At lunch the other day we explained to other friends that Palms was a fun place to go. They play 80s/90s music, and there’s no sense of snobbishness about the place. “One minute they could be playing Madonna, the next it will be Cyndi Lauper”, my friend said. They’re located on Oxford Street, Darlinghurst, and the crowd is mostly gay men in their30s/40s/50s, along with female friends, who are there simply to enjoy the music and dance. There’s absolutely no sense this is a “pick up joint”. Regrettably!

On the dance floor at Palms.

It’s a no-frills joint that hasn’t had a makeover in a number of years, still relying on low-cost decorations like fairy lights. On Twitter, someone the other day someone joked the DJs have had twelve months of COVID to perfect the art of fading out songs and beat mixing, and they still haven’t managed that level of dance sophistication. “Are they still cash only?”, my friend asked. “No, they’re taking cards now”, I told him.

We’ve resolved to pay a visit sometime soon, with a Friday night at Bears (Kinselas) and Palms. Undoubtedly, I’ll blog about it sometime soon.

Author: James O'Brien

Born / Currently : Lismore / Widjabul Wia-Bal - Bundjalung Live : Sydney / Gadigal - Eora Also : Brisbane, Bourke, Renmark, Wagga, Perth Pronouns : He/him/his.

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