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With a catheter tube dangling from his leg and a tuft of darkened cedar chips occupying a portion of his "stage," the maniacally committed and meticulously prepared Aaron Hibbs broke the record for continuous hula-hooping at about 5:45p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 25, and I was there to see it. The record was an incomprehensible 72 hours, and the scene was one of the wackiest parties I've attended in a while, with the spirit of giddy probability infecting everyone there. Hibbs continued a few more hours before giving in to the needs of mere mortal beings. But the scent of human transcendence filled the room like micturate moistened kitty litter.

Shortly after the record-breaking moment passed, local music head and leader of the Black Swans Jerry DeCicca began performing in this dog-faced outfit for the celebratory gathering. Not pictured is the girl in a tutu who twirled around the room in accompaniment.

All that excitement worked up a thirst & an appetite, so I retreated downstairs to Tip Top Kitchen and Cocktails for an Old Penn Perfect Poison and blackened salmon dinner.

I returned to Tip Top two nights later to juice up (or down) my consciousness a bit with a few more bourbons shortly before the ecstatically transcendent Leonard Cohen show at the Palace Theater. That very, very special concert was similar to the show I mentioned here--i.e. a night filled with music exhibiting a rare mix of power, grace, darkness and beauty. Oh, yeah, and humor, too--I shouldn't forget the humor--Leonard never does.