Monday, July 20, 2009

Wrong b/w In Sympathy


I finally figured out what my problem is: to write, I need to read. I had that long dry spell from posting, because I hadn't been reading. Well, I read a little. I finally finished that book I bought in Paris last January, at Shakespeare and Company. I bought Paul Auster's New York Trilogy only because it was affordable and had great graphics, because the store is pricey- great, but pricey, and I have to read before bed. I really liked the book, and took my sweet time reading it.
Then life gets in the way, and takes up a lot of my psychic energy, and head space, and there's only so much to go around.
So now, because I want to get back writing, I'm reading two books: Kafka's The Castle, and Touching From a Distance by Deborah Curtis, both of which amaze and transport me instantly into their worlds, so I pass that along to you...

Michael, or Lady My Kill, as we used to call him, used to show up at the most annoying times. Either early in the hung over mornings, chain smoking and eating up our kitchen, or just as we were about to go out, killing the voyeuristic mood we liked to lapse into. By 'we' I mean Scot and I.
My Kill's was the threat that we used on each other to motivate out the door: If we don't leave now, Lady My Kill will show up, and you know what that means!
That meant loud, grating acid trips. If he was on acid, which was usally all the time, he wanted your attention, and to scream in your face. Scot and I are pretty mellow guys, and have very high pain thresholds, unless we were drunk, so his presence was a little much sometimes. A lot much, often, actually. At first we tried to scare him away, by lying to him and saying we were going to church before we went out, or the police station (he was on acid after all) and when that didn't work, we'd lay around in our underwear, trying to act weird.
Alas, nothing scared him, and even though we told him his behavior was difficult, and to call before he came over, which he did for a while, we eventually accepted his presence, for I think we were the only stable people in his life.
He did have a pretty funny Boy George story:
Hey hey Brian Brian Brian!!! Did it tell you I saw George on a bridge one night in Paris, and I screamed at the top on my lungs HEY BOY GEORGE, YOU'RE A FUCKING BITCH!!!
Which he then did, in my apartment, for effect, I suppose.
What did he do? I asked.
Nothing. He said.
I looked at him and thought It must suck to be famous.
Lady My Kill got his act together a few years later, and started taking the right kind of drugs, you know, the prescribed kind, and went to hair school. (There are a lot of kids out there who went to hair school when they made the decision to do something constructive with their lives, and I can't help but feel a little responsible for that. Did I look like I was having my cake and eating it too? You be the judge...)

As I told you earlier, I met Renee just as Scot was getting ready to move away from Chicago. He said he was leaving because he didn't make enough at Medusa's to live off of, and didn't get enough support from his friends, but I think it must have been more than that. Chris, his on again, off again, was back in the picture.
Chris and I hit it off well, and we subconsciously, and consciously, fed each other's self-destructive habits. Watching two people you love live so destructively crushes your soul after awhile, especially when they claim to' just be having fun'.
Scot never did the things Chris and I did, but I do remember us having many pep talks with him, after that confession, about giving a good job interview, and believing in himself, because he was (and is) so incredibly talented artistically.
I know! But I can't talk to people! Why can't I talk to people! He would answer in frustration.
Because you're an artist, Scot. You don't tell, you show. Show people how great you are. I said.
Looking back, it took special people to see his abilities, and many did (I think his Medusa's job was a two day gig that lasted a year: they quickly saw his talent.) His biggest mentor was Nunzio, but when he died and Orbit closed, it hit Scot hard, and it took him awhile to recover.
Chris and I let him go with our blessings; we let him go where he needed to go. I wish we could have given him more, but we barely gave anything to ourselves as it was.
Chris moved into our dining room, and then into Scot's room after he left. It was a cold and deary day as we packed up his moving truck. Chris and I hoped he'd change his mind, but as he drove away, our apartment, and our lives never felt so empty.

Scot, in our Sheridan Road apartment, Chicago, 1990


In Sympathy

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