Friday was a strange night, by any standards. I went from sipping Chardonnay at the Symphony to knocking back vodka tonics at the Ogden Theatre during the Modern Drunkard Magazine convention. (A major wardrobe challenge, fo’ sho — I changed into spill-proof jeans in the ladies’ room at the Theater Cafe at DCPA before entering the dimly lit haze inside the Ogden.)

I started the evening at the Colorado Symphony to see famed French pianist Helene Grimaud. We were certainly on the younger end of the audience’s age spectrum, and more than one old-timer husband was seen nodding off throughout the performances. Not an easy thing to do during Stravinsky’s The Rites of Spring, but hey — they’ve been there, seen it, heard it all before, I’m sure.

Hubby and I enjoyed the performances and headed over to the Ogden for a huge change of scenery around 10 p.m.

Sadly the much-anticipated Modern Drunkard Magazine Convention 2005 was a huge flop.

The Ogden was maybe — maybe — half full during Marky Ramone’s set, and only two people signed up for the Modern Drunkard drinking contest that was supposed to be a three-round elimination starting with at least 16 good solid iron-bellied alkies. Alas, no takers could be roused from the only-slightly-hammered crowd. What a disappointment. Later, the crowd migrated over to the Lion’s Lair for the “after party” where more lackluster, half-assed imbibing continued at an infuriatingly normal pace.

Weren’t we recently named the “Drunkest City in America?” Where were the legendary drinkers of Denver? Did the $20 tickets keep them downing cheap drinks elsewhere? Was the “Modern Drunkard” label just too darn intimidating? Did they drink too much the night before? Were they already passed out from happy hour?

I don’t know the answers. But Denver definitely didn’t show up for our own party, that much is for sure.