I was at work and I thought about how PJ Harvey was playing New York soon. I decided to look it up. To my surprise, she was performing tonight! I decided that if it wasn’t sold out, that I would go. I looked it up, and I saw that there were still tickets. I thought about how important her music has been to me over many years. I realized that if I didn’t go, later at night, I would regret it. I went for it, I bought a ticket. After work, I took a cab to Terminal 5 where she was playing. I liked the idea of just spontaneously going to a show, and not trying to get someone to go with me. When I got there, I immediately got a drink, and PJ had already started. I realized pretty quickly that there wouldn’t be good options to be able to see well. I found a spot directly in the back, that I could actually see a bit. PJ looked incredible. Her band looked and sounded great too. I was frustrated with how badly constructed the venue was, but I wasn’t discouraged. I had been there before. I had been in the sound booth once, thanks to my friend doing sound for a show. But this night, I was on my own. I made it up to the third level. I was able to see enough to cry when PJ sang To Bring You My Love. I had two more drinks throughout the show. I was so glad that I was there. I ran into two friends that jumped in a cab with me after the show, and headed downtown to another friend’s club night. When we got there, it wasn’t too crazy yet. We had some drinks, and started to dance a bit. My friends stayed a bit, but left after an hour. I went in the back where they show a hitchcock movie, the theme of the night. There was a younger girl barely dressed in leather dancing. I’ll call her Marisa. I started to dance with her. She seemed like Madonna in her early 20’s. Another girl gestured to me, and I sat next to her. We started talking. I’ll call her Jessica. I did a bump off of her finger. She and some other girls started to leave. She said to come with her. We went to another bar. I ended up with four young party girls. When we got to the other bar, all it took was one girl talking to the door guy, and we went right in. We danced more, but then the bar said that everyone had to leave. When we got outside, some guy approached my friend with the barely leather on. Next thing I knew he was trying to get her into a car with some other guys. I said, this isn’t a good idea, she needs to go home. I got her out of the car. The guy came back to me and said that the other guy liked me, “liked me”, we should all go to their place in Brooklyn. I said, no they need to get home. We got across the street and I looked at Marisa, and I said, don’t get into cars with strange men! We hugged and she said, yes I don’t know why I would even do that. I said, I got you, I’m your brother in the city, I got you. I’ll always get your back. The other girl said, I will get her home. Then Jessica said, how will I get home. I said, I got you. We got in a cab, and we drove to her place. We did a few more bumps in the cab. I liked her, and the conversation was great. I saw her out, and then told the cab to bring me to my address. As we were driving back, the moon was incredibly bright, and for some reason I thought about my mom, and I cried a little. When I got home, the cab driver looked at me and said, that girl was smart. I could tell by the way that she talked to you. And I said, yeah I’m glad that she got home. Now I’m finishing this writing, and sitting next to my cat, and I need to try to go to sleep.
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I think about the possibilities of having a clone sometimes when I’m at work. It’s kind of jerky, because I believe that people enjoy talking to me. Lately I haven’t thought about the possibilities of a clone when at work. Ive been learning how to adjust my attitude and perspective. I truly enjoy interacting with people. Once you can take charge of yourself, it all falls into place. You dictate the terms, the pace, the energy, and before you know it, people are manageable. The cloning revisited me as I made a drink tonight. I imagined my clone hanging out in my room sitting with our cat. It’s already “our.” The clone is interesting and absolutely terrifying. Would my clone want the same whiskey drink I’m making? Of course it would, yes? If I were to be cloned right now, in my understanding, the clone would be just like me up until “now.” In my brain, this clone would look identical to me, tattoos, injures, scars, and all. Same memories of family, of jobs, of relationships, of all my life experience. In this moment where I’m making two of the same drinks, and I’m about to bring them into “our” room, I wonder in full terror, “will I find new relationships?” The clone’s brain is taking in the movie differently? The taste of the drink is different? Is this just making love to myself? The whole idea of finding someone…..opposites attract…etc. The idea that someone is out there. Someone works for you. And how MANY failures of attempting a life with someone….so many….Or maybe it’s the running with the devil life….one day at a time, don’t get too close, don’t call this love. But what if you could just be with your clone? Are we wearing suits tonight? Are we wearing tight black things? Instead of looking in the mirror or being introspective, you just say to your clone, “That was fucked up.” The clone responds…..not how you want it to!! Or does it?? Because the fantasy is someone that just simply agrees. But it just won’t work out on any level. The whole idea is to be pushed to grow, to better yourself, to learn more about yourself through experiencing life with another person!! But what if you love yourself so much? What if you could do everything with yourself? Why beat off again? When you ask yourself a question, you answer back. If someone fucks with you, you have your other version waiting to get your back. The idea is endless. If you want to be with someone else, or alone, your clone simply hangs back. What individual person acts like this and it’s okay? When I go away, the clone stays and works and takes care of the cat and …….when I’m home, the clone keeps me company. So sad and strange. So in all reality, it’s all well and good to be alone when you are. If writing this scares me, I can’t imagine how much my actual clone would scare me.
He sat by the water. He didn’t feel really great, but he was very happy about his outfit. The black vinyl worked well with the suit. It was cool now at night. It was calm. The movement of the water was perfect. The moon was out and not shy. The clouds shimmered in the sky. He loved when this happened. Most of his life was filled with covering a darkness in loud clubs. The only light offered dancing off disco balls. The lasers were cool. And he lived for the fog. It washed over him. His shame was overpowering. It was at that moment interrupting his usual conflicted cycle that the wolf approached him. The wolf was dressed well as usual.
“Tonight I made you a gin and tonic.”
The words slowly dribbled out simply, “I haven’t had one in a while.”
“I know you favor Jameson on the rocks. But tonight, I want you to feel something else.” The wolf still stayed at a slight distance. He saw in the moonlight that the wolf had especially slicked his hair. It was somewhat breath taking, perhaps chilling.
He spoke after a minute as the wolf elegantly handed the drink towards him. “Thank you.”
After another minute, “Thank you for meeting me again. They said there was no hope for me.”
The wolf smirks, “They? Don’t you mean you?”
“Well, I’m just fucked, right?”
He starts to grin to himself. The wolf knows. He can’t persuade the wolf to lean to his game. Yet he tries again, this time with slightly more confidence.
“Why do you put up with me?”
The wolf says, “You invited me.” The wolf retrieves a crumpled bible from his dinner jacket.
“Do you remember this?”
He looks at it and he begins to crumble inside. It is the bible that his father gave him.
“Don’t run away. You know how you feel about it. It was a book of instructions, yes? A book that you were told to memorize. An experience that troubled you. And it has stunted you.”
He looks in earnest. “My drink is nearly dry.”
The wolf leans to the left, the moonlight devastatingly beautiful caressing his perfectly slicked hair. He sits back up with a new drink in his hand.
“This time the whiskey, my good friend.” He takes the drink and looks back at the water.
The wolf speaks sincerely, “It is time now. Your time.”
“Of course. Did you think that someone else was going to do it all for you?”
He stammered, “I am so thankful for your visits!”
“I am a wolf. I am dressed to kill. And with the right amount of time, I will kill what is draining your heart every day. But you need to follow my instructions, and you most certainly can’t stray from your cause. If you want to be great, you must be great. Your goal is not to get by, but to thrive. Stop looking down.”
He is looking at his dress shoes. They are perfectly worn. They look amazing with the black dress pants. Better than usual. He is so glad that he thought to mix it up with a vinyl top.
The wolf stands. “I can’t always be here! You must be able to do this yourself!!”
He falls inside. “I need you.”
“not anymore. It is time. You know what you must do. You can be as purposeful as your sense of fashion.”
He stands and looks to his left. The wolf is gone. The only hairs on his body, on his forearms, stand suddenly. The wind moves through the trees. He plants his feet. The ground trembles. His back itches. It burns. He feels weak. His eyes bounce around in his eye sockets. His ears wiggle. His teeth chatter. The ground around him moans. His suit jacket feels tight. His vinyl top is stretching. It is thrilling and painful all at once. The two powerful stems rip out of his back. The water in front of him gets smaller. He is moving further and further away. He sees himself as a boy playing piano. He is on a drumset. He is being made fun of. He is been celebrated. He is killing his demons one at a time. They cry out, “you must cherish us! We keep you warm!” The piano notes echo with the most beautiful reverb. The music plays as he fades.
His alarm goes off. He is in Manhattan. It is hot. It is another day. His eyes feel heavy. He puts on his running clothes. Cut off grey tights with black vinyl shorts. He does his stretches. He begins to run.
“Sometimes I need to be alone. I need to visit the wolf. I need to process. I don’t want to need.”
“I used to love speaking with him about the music he was playing. It’s just not the same experience anymore.” Says Marcy who dances at the exquisite dance company next door. On the other hand, Randy who scoops out bagels on 13th st has something nicer to say.
You married him at a castle. You had Siouxsie hair at church. Your boy looked like Robert Smith. I used to look for you. It was 1988. I had long hair. I was trying to be a metal head. And then I saw Edward Scissorhands in the theater. And my heart was shattered. And then when I saw the two of you it mattered more. You shaved your head for the wedding. My dad was besides himself. I thought you were amazing. I can see your beautiful pale skin now. You wore a black wedding dress. It was the late 80’s. I grew my red Mohawk that hung to the side. I got called faggot everyday at school. You told me that you liked my hair. I’ve never forgotten. It meant everything to me. At school the punk girl with the hair in her face threw an upside down cross in my locker. I didn’t know how to love her. I hated church. I wanted to be driven around in a muscle car on fire. I hated sports. I hated everyone. I used to look for you at church. You said that you liked my punk hair. I’ve played and played drums. My mother told me the crushing news. You died of cancer. I think of you all the time. I can’t stop thinking of you. At first when I found out, it just went to some dark place that I used for information that was darkly vital. But I’ve never forgotten you. Your black wedding dress. Your gothness. So beautiful. I’ve been to Europe. I’ve toured the U.S. I think of you. I told you that I liked Peter Murphy too. I felt embarrassed. My kick drum was part of his “deep” tour. I kick the shit out of my kick drum. I make em all dance. Do you notice? Maybe you’re dancing somewhere. Just like heaven. I miss you.
My mom was strict about my piano lessons. I remember the smooth slippery piano bench. I remember that I couldn’t sit still. Her persistent strong command from cheerful to demanding. It was a homework assignment to me. A lesson after school that I struggled through. I tried to pay attention. I wanted to respond to my own demands of plastic characters answering to my own small wishes. When I was 11, the school music program came after me. Definitely not for my unanswered piano playing. Because I hid whenever I could. I spoke only when I had to. See, there was a world in my head that was far more interesting. I quickly learned that I had a disarming smile, which worked for just about most any situations. Maybe it was my dad’s big band and jazz records playing through the last working dusty speaker in the kitchen that I preferred over bible teachings. Maybe it was Alex Van Halen kicking off Hot For Teacher. When I sheepishly approached my dad for his much needed parent signature to allow me to obtain a pair of drum sticks and a practice pad, I was ready to be turned away. My dad also continually joked about having many other sons to have his own baseball team. God forbid that I wanted to play a wind instrument. I already knew how to count time thanks to my mom, but learning how to hold the sticks was my first challenge. At that time my sunday school teacher was this really cool guy who had played in a lot of prog rock bands. He started teaching me how to play a kit. I remember that he had a huge mirror near the kit, he explained that it was for checking out his form. I never forgot that. He taught me how to play a lot of Rush songs, which really put me ahead in the drum department. I remember one guy in marching band who insisted on playing a drumkit in his socks. I knew even then that it was just for show. Fast forward to me playing drums in Europe in my dress shows…… anyways, they wanted me to play drums for the church. Can you imagine anything more uninteresting? This is NOT WHAT KEITH MOON WOULD DO. Groan. and groan again. I met the odd balls in the church, the skate boarders, the free thinkers, the smarty pants, the handsome boyz. I had my first band, and I had no idea how to play all these drums, but play is what I did. I took no prisoners, and I never looked back. So many stories to tell. I leave you with the origin. How a young hell boy leapt from the furnace of hell. How a young hell boy said, fuck it, I’ve got a better idea. And Rich Freitas said, “are you going to lay all of these drums?” It was a good question. and play them, I did. Or so I thought. East Village, NY, I bombarded you in ’97. I think that it’s been a good thing, yes? So, I miss my mom and her intense teachings. She always wondered if the performances were effected by all of the smoking and madness of the late 90’s in New York. I still do it, mom. I am forever thankful for your teachings. Perhaps part of my drum madness presents part of you, I can only hope.
My subconscious seems to want me to fail. (or is it the other way?!) I have demons. I put myself in solitary confinement. The voices say that I must stay. I feed myself through the slit of the door. My fellow prisoners swim through my veins, swift messengers of impending doom. Heart, be aware. Don’t leave me. My imagination is powerful. I can build a whole city in minutes. I can decimate mountains with my much needed joy. I can walk out of this prison just as easily as when I built it. Perspective, don’t leave me. When I get out of solitary confinement I am charming, and I know it. Being charming means a lot of things. It puts a glow around me. This didn’t come from your belief in a higher power. It means that before I ask, I receive. On my end, I seem to lose my grip on whatever I try to give. But I’m not afraid to look at the dirt inside me. I am not dirty based on your belief in a higher power. I work hard. I will die on the job. I’m not done until my work reflects the greatest parts of my character. I am good at what I want to be good at. That’s why when you’re famous your boyfriends and girlfriends will tear you apart in their memoirs for all to read. As if I could be that important! These demons sure are convincing. The one that got away. The many ones. Every person that I’ve been with came with a great story. Everything was interesting, burning, and tormenting. Love and hate mail. If I believe that I will fail, then I sure will. Run to the phone, run away from the phone, the link to your lost love………(WAIT!! THIS WORLD IS DIFFERENT WITHOUT YOU. PLEASE DON’T LEAVE! tears, etc)…….there are phones rarely now but small devices that do everything and nothing to remind you of everything and nothing. I am okay with not fitting anywhere. I do not fit at the holiday dinner table with paper cut out loved ones. But you’ll keep asking questions. And I’ll wonder why you put up with him or her. But to the ones that are true (whatever that is), I say carry on, mofos.