For a few hours, Durham will be music's hottest spot.

"Say, did y'all ever get that cloning thing fixed?"

I never found out, because the scientist at the University of Utah's Health Sciences department never called back after I left a message explaining why I was calling.

Here's why I was calling:

By some accursed twist of fate, Todd Rundgren and Smokey Robinson will both be performing in Durham on April 29, within a mile of each other at the same time. I simply wanted to find out if I could get an emergency clone job so I could see both shows.

Nothing weird about that, right?

Upon first hearing that these for-real pop music icons were going to be in Durham at the same time, I thought "Great! For a couple of hours, Durham will be the music capital of the world. Oh happy day!"

That was my first thought.

My second thought was - Nah, better not say.

My third thought was "How could the fates be so cruel as to schedule two of my favorite songwriters a half-mile from each other at the same time? Smokey will be performing at the Durham Performing Arts Center while Rundgren will be at the Carolina Theatre.

Turns out it wasn't fate, but the schedule-makers.