Chapter 2

THE PARANORMAL

 

- In that big underground station where so many people were coming and going I understood how awful it is to be alone in the world.

- Didn’t your angel intuition warn you about him?

- He obviously had positive qualities otherwise I wouldn’t have liked him, but the truth is that we barely knew each other. He was not a friend whom I could rely on in times of trouble because he was weak; and because I was living dreamily I was getting alarmingly down and becoming a burden for him. I lived off superstar music videos and their beautiful interviews. It was like someone wanting to learn about love by watching romantic movies. I didn´t know anything about dealing with people inside the music business and bands, managing their expectations etc. But my intuition warned me about my guitarist.

- How did your intuition warn you?

- In August, when everything was rosy, there were warnings. I refused to believe them because I didn’t know what to do with the truth. The first warning came when I met him for the first time and he picked me up at the hotel. A strange intuition told me that I couldn’t count on him. I felt a desolate and dreary solitude. A more serious warning came about 3 days after our first rehearsal. In the morning I had gone to get my beloved packs of pre cooked food at the supermarket. As I was returning to the hotel, I started thinking about how much I liked the open mic guitarist guy and how lucky I’d been to find him, what a good friend I’d found and how fantastic it all was! At that very moment, I swear by my life, something invisible and solid formed in front of me causing me to fall, head first. My hands glided across the concrete like a skateboard and my face almost hit the ground. One of two bags I was carrying fell out of my hands causing food, fruit and water to scattered all over the concrete. I looked at my bloody skinned palms in astonishment because I knew that that had been a serious warning. "Something very wrong is going to happen between the guitarist and I" – I thought incredulously. A couple behind, noticing that I wasn’t reacting, gathered everything that was scattered on the street and repeatedly asked me if I was ok. I grabbed the heavy bags with my sore bloody hands and thanked them for their help. "My fantastic friend is going to let me fall" - this was the warning. On the last day of the open mic, again while thinking about him, my hair dryer broke down. Translation: the warmth of our friendship will be damaged!

- Was my sweet angel also warned about the bands?

- Yes. On the morning I was driving to the airport for my December 7th performance I had a car accident. Luckily, it was not fatal because the shoulder was wide. Had the accident happened a little further ahead, I would have crashed into the rails and suffered significant damage. Translation: that day I would have an accident with my band but this would save me from further damage later on such as spending all my money, enduring the psychological impacts of the situations with the open mic guitarist, constant worries about getting new performances, among other things. I don’t know what the outcome would have been. Regarding the band from March: on the eve of my departure to London, as I got in my car to go home for dinner the steering started making loud noises which continued throughout the night and during my drive to the airport. Translation: the direction I would take in my life that day would start making noise and point me in another direction. You see, I was warned.

- You and the paranormal. Don’t you think these are just coincidences?

- So many? You think all these are coincidences? Do you think that mere chance has a chance of occurring systematically?! Being casual is the opposite of systematic.

- You’re my little angel...

- Going back to the moment when I’d arrived in London and he didn’t answer his phone...I left him a message on his voice-mail asking where he was. Minutes later I decided to make one last attempt. He finally answered and told me he was at a friend’s house.

- Yeah…

- I understood that he would not be taking me to a club like he’d promised on the last night at the open mic. He added that he had just spoken with his drummer friend about my arrival. I was surprised because being that I had no band, what would I do with a drummer? But at the same time I thought it would be enlightening to meet another musician. I ask him what time we could all meet the next day. He dragged his voice and said that he didn’t know and that I should call him the next day around lunch time. It was the first time in two months that I heard his voice. I never talked with him over the phone, it was always by typing. He was different. His tone was more firm and confident. His voice had a more masculine tone, like he had swallowed a hormone cocktail. I replied, "Thank you!"

- You are very polite! I would reply: “Screw you!”

- I head to my hotel. "SCREW all this!" I complain. I don’t know if I was referring to the situation I’d just experienced or if I was referring to the fact that I’d be eating chickpeas out of a can again, just as I had on my first day in London in August to stave off hunger.

- You’re even funny when you’re dramatic!

- At the hotel they didn’t give me the same beloved room I’d had in the summer, as I’d requested. They put me on another floor. I didn’t like the room. It was 8 p.m. It was already dark. I wanted to move to try to free some of the anger I was feeling, but I kept hitting the walls of my claustrophobic room like an encaged animal ready to bite down on the metal bars. I was in despair. I called my friend the tarologist. The predictions he’d made in September were getting me into trouble, just like my belief in the Brazilian fortune teller regarding the singer in chapter 4 years earlier had gotten me into trouble. 

- What did I tell you about fortune tellers? Even if they do predict something, you’re the one who has to make the decisions and live with the consequences of them! If you make the wrong decision because of these people, you’re the one that suffers! You have to accept the blame. Those people harm your spirit more than they help it. If the predictions are too good, overconfidence leads to idiotic actions. If the prediction is bad, it leads you to despair and to not fight for what you want. You can’t be so gullible! What did you ask this tarot tarot guy in September? Did you ask about the open mic guitarist?

- Yes. First, he told me to be careful with illusions, to make sure the intentions of the guitarist were good. Then he said that the guitarist would have strong feelings for me but that there would be a lot of annoying things and complications to deal with. He said they would be very strong feelings and that such intensity was unusual since he was much younger than me; but at the same time the tarologist said that my partner in life would be an older man. Then something about love coming from music and that the open mic guitarist would play an important role in the formation of the band. About my concern to guarantee the musicians payment, he said that the cards revealed a cash return. He also said he saw travels delayed and a lot of emotional exhaustion. He added that he saw water. I replied that I loved water: the shower and pool. He told me to use this medium to relax because I would need it a lot given the emotional toll that awaited me. I asked him just one last question: What were my future band musicians like? Were they loyal? Cause I didn’t want to waste time with reformulating bands. He said that the cards I had removed were "knights" representing men who go on crusades, so the musicians of the future group would be people of integrity. 

- What a story...Did your friend, the tarologist charge you for the consultation?

- Yes. He’s more like an ex-work colleague than a friend.

- Another one who’s friends with no one. You called him and what did he say about your situation?

- He said something that can basically be applied to any situation! He said, “Things are simply not how you’d like them to be. Worrying doesn’t resolve anything!”

- Nice!  Humans have been transforming things into how they want things to be for centuries: the wheel, the car, the internet, the phone, we went to the moon! They weren’t satisfied with what they had and explored the unknown and apparently impossible. Tell that guy to get a life!

- The tarologist was in a hurry because he had two little ones in the car. I could hear the children chattering. He seemed to want to get home as quickly as possible. It seemed like he was actually the one with the problems! Then, I called the musician's recording studio. I was amazed at how quickly he answered the phone because he is always so busy in the studio. I told him I was in London and how my friend the guitarist, whom he had recommended and whom we’d both praised, was basically missing. He couldn’t believe it. “You’re where? In London?! Doing what?!” I told him that I had the intention of forming a band. And I thought that in reality my mind was all messed up, that I could not see farther than the walls in my room and my real intentions never included feeling as miserable and lonely as I was feeling. In regards to my absent friend he said, “What can I tell you? Human beings! They do these things! Abandon! They contradict themselves.” I had no one else to call to talk to. 

- How about me?

- You’re too far...I checked how much money I had on my phone. I still had plenty of money and since so many people say dialogue is the solution to understanding I decided to call my “absent friend”. At that very moment, there was a problem and I could no longer connect to anyone. The line had gone down for several hours. My cellphone’s satellite connection simply didn’t function. At the time I thought it was simply a coincidence, but later I came to verify that under extreme stress I’d caused the phone to breakdown and other electric equipment also. I don´t know how I do it…

- There you go again with the paranormal…

- Here is a short list of successive breakdowns after my return to Portugal following this last trip to London. I arrived quite disturbed. The car: the windows didn’t function, the car heater broke down, the fuel door jammed, the radiator had water leakage and I had oil leaks in the engine. The lamp of my room blew immediately after I turned on the switch, my sewing machine which I was using to mend some clothes broke down after five minutes and the phone line which permits internet access broke down also. I was going nuts with so many break downs especially this last one. “How would I be able to know what that bastard guitar player was doing in London if I couldn’t get on the social network?!” I also had arguments and misunderstandings with people whom I didn’t even know. Either in a grocery store queue when paying or at a red light, just because I’d honked for the car ahead of me to go when the light changed. “Screw all of this! I must be projecting bad vibes into the Universe and am being haunted by them” I thought.

- Stop being foolish! Did things go that bad in London this time around?

- In that hotel room the only thing functioning properly was the microwave. I was not functioning right. I couldn’t rationalize. I spent endless hours standing near my bed in that tiny room walking back and forth. I would throw my hands up and practically punch the walls because I couldn’t understand where my life was heading. I felt terrible. Completely naked, I got in the shower. The shower head was stuck to the ceiling, there was no water closet and the water was falling directly on the cement floor of the bathroom which was slightly concave. There was no shower curtain which caused water to splash all over the bathroom wetting the towels immediately. The floor would get wet, the toilet paper that was on top of the lavatory would get wet, I would get splashed with cold water, which remained cold even after 7 minutes. I was trembling cold - unable to take a hot shower to relax and scream: “SCREW ALL OF THIS!!” Then, I thought about how many people were worse off than me, hungry and homeless. I put on my pajamas. Because I was cold, I put on three pairs of pajamas. My cell phone was dead. I connected it to charge it, but the plug kept falling out of the wall socket. It was 10 p.m. and I didn’t know what to do to kill the time. I was starving. When I was preparing myself to eat my chickpeas, I started to have strong stomach pangs, I almost vomited and started recalling the meals I’d had in August on the bathroom floor.

- What?! You ate on the bathroom floor?

- My room was carpeted and because the meals had sauces, I would have easily dirtied the carpet.

- Wasn’t there a table in your room?!

- Yes, there was, but the mini-fridge, the electric coffee maker, the microwave, a mug and a glass were on it. The remaining space was tiny so, I opted to open the bathroom door, sit on the carpeted floor and place the meals, my drink and fruit on napkins on the tiled bathroom floor without having to worry about space. The carpeted floor ended where the bathroom began. I hadn’t realized how lonely I’d felt in August until I was trying to eat this can of chickpeas. This can in front of me made me remember everything.

- My little angel...

- At 11 p.m. I was still unable to make phone calls. The line was still dead. Suddenly, I told myself to place new online ads, but this time saying I was looking to hire musicians, just like I’d said in the open mic ad. This would imply a strong economic effort: I would have to pay four musicians, a rehearsal room, the hotel, the flight and in Portugal: the studio musician’s monthly fee and other costs like clothing, transport, food, light bill, internet bill, etc. My monthly salary would not cover it all and so I’d have to go into my savings. I wanted to have a band! At 1 a.m. I sent a message to the drummer and the open mic guitarist telling them that I didn’t want their services for free, but that I wanted to hire them!

- Did they accept your proposal or did they refused because they understood that you were already too economically burdened?

- The next day, when we meet, they both accepted.

- How did you feel when you woke up the next day?

- I woke up at 6 a.m. with a headache. I couldn’t fall asleep again and my pastime from that moment (and for several hours) was to remain in bed with my eyes focused on the ceiling trying to keep them open as long as possible. Then, I’d look at my watch to see how much time had passed. First, only three minutes had passed. Then, 12 minutes, and so on. I looked at my watch and it was now almost noon. I called the guitarist, as planned. No one answered. For the first time I called the drummer. He answered the phone, and I could tell he was eating. He apologized and said that he was having breakfast. He was kind and attentive. He asked me how things were going with me and if I wanted him and his friend to come by the hotel. I replied that I needed to get out of my room and that we could meet somewhere in the center of town. He asked what time and I said that it depended on everyone’s availability. I asked him to kindly contact my friend the guitarist being that I wasn’t able to get through. After 15 minutes the drummer called back and told me to meet at the “Tottenham Court Road” underground station at 4 p.m.

- Can I give you my opinion about your friend the open mic guitarist?

- You might as well not tire yourself with that because the only thing he (and the others) deserves is my sincere thanks. I don’t want to hold grudges. Our “enemies” do what our friends cannot: teach us big lessons which will permit future victories. I don´t care what they or others think about me. Do you know what that palm reader (father of that girl who had her ass on the toilet when her ex-husband came over) said to me once? “Don’t worry about what people may think about you. When we die, what’s left? Others have the task of getting rid of us quickly by burying us in the ground. Everybody laments our death, but the next day life goes on and a short time later, most are having sex, eating and drinking and we, the dead, hardly remembered.”

- Yes…it seems so. How did the meeting between you all go?

- I was the first to arrive. I had brought cigarettes from Portugal for the guitarist. I look around, but don’t see him anywhere. The next moment, he’s standing next to me. He says that I’d seen him but was pretending I didn’t. I retort that actually I hadn’t seen him and hand him the cigarettes. He speaks normally and doesn’t even apologize, so I turn my back to him. Offended, he does the same.

- This guy...is amusing. Do you like people like this?

- His back is turned as we wait for the drummer and he turns his head once in a while looking at me as if it was the first time he saw me. He seems emotional because he’s blinking a lot and he usually doesn’t blink at all. Finally the drummer shows up and we go see a rehearsal space which he’d mentioned nearby. We come upon a long wall full of ads of musicians offering their services. We check out the space and then go to a coffee shop. We talk. The drummer asks how many concerts I have scheduled. I reply, “One.” My open mic friend who had been incredibly modest in August was now incredibly egotistical and gets offended easily. He is somewhat arrogant and very spiteful. Here’s an example: The drummer asked me about possible rehearsal dates in London and I give them to him. They want less rehearsals and the days are reduced, but there is one day that the drummer says he absolutely can’t make it. I pity this and say that I like to feel the presence of the drums and the guitarist immediately says that he can’t make it either and the rehearsal is cancelled! It’s a good thing too because that morning when I woke up I had a flat tire. Near the car was a nail which had caused the flat.

- You are really a lucky angel…

- I tell the drummer that although I sing, I also have a compulsion for writing and smiling, I pat my open mic friend on the back because as I had maintained regular contact with him over email during these last two months, he can confirm my compulsion. This pat on the back makes my open mic friend smile. I start paying more attention to him because I had been making an effort to ignore him ever since I’d seen him that day. He says that I should write lyrics and sell them, that I could probably make money that way. “Bullshit! Sell to who?! If you only knew about my life...I tried that with the British singer from chapter 3,” I thought. My open mic friend thought a lot about money; economic security was important to him. In August he told me that he would have loved to have gotten a degree in Economics in the University in his home town but that the math exams which were required for entry made him re-think his options and he ended up opting for music in London.

- Interesting…

- I tell the drummer that my compulsion to write is so strong that in my songs I work more on the lyrics than on the melodies. I smile and say that I should probably take a break from music and write a book. My open mic friend replies, “Why don’t you? You could make money!” Again, he mentions the money. He seemed very laid-back. Having come from his friend’s house the previous day he only carried a book bag with him. In August he always carried two guitars.

- Sex makes your self-confidence, self-esteem, mood and wickedness go up. Now he was playing guitar between his legs! Wicked: you alone in your return to London.

- Leaving me alone let me focus on getting a band. After an hour we left the coffee shop. It started to rain lightly. I took off my coat and put it over my head. I walk straight on. The drummer, originally from France, was speaking French with the guitarist, possibly exchanging names for a second guitarist for the band. The guitarist provided me with a brief summary of their conversation – they spoke so fast that it was hard to understand them. My French is rudimentary. My open mic friend told me to put on my coat so as not to get sick. I was wearing tight light denim jeans and a cotton top which came to my waist. “Put on your coat or you’ll catch a flu!”

- Did you catch a flu?

- I didn´t put my coat on and I didn´t catch any flu! Soon after, the drummer says his goodbyes to us because he has got something to do. The guitarist and I head to the closest underground station together. He asked me if I liked the drummer, twice. This reminded me of a time when I noticed a little jealousy in him at a fabulous Friday night open mic in Westminster. The promoter was great and the public was awesome! The song “Destiny” was a success! When I sang the part that goes, “Destiny, pay me some good holidays!” The public shouted, “That’s right!” The promoter had a quick two-minute chat with me. After our performance, the guitarist said that I would end up marrying the promoter and in the following days said that I should call him up. I had to ask if his attitude with the promoter had to do with love.

- Don’t trust jealous guys! They’re cheaters, that’s why they’re so suspicious: They think everybody is like them. That’s my opinion. What next, did you talk?

- Our underground ride was short; we got off at the next station heading to different destinations. I tell him that I’m not going to write him anymore, that it wasn’t worth it being that he never sent me an email. He says that I couldn’t resist the impulse to write him.

- His ego was really large!…

- I tell him that he’s wrong and add that he’ll always have a spot in my heart because he was the first musician whom I performed live with, besides the fact that I had liked him. Do you know something? I think I’m going to transcribe our phone conversation in the gym where I work out. There’s a really big, warm room there. The parking lot (although covered) is starting to get cold at night and I can no longer write there.

- I agree with you about leaving that parking spot and move to a better place.

- Back to London: We are saying goodbye. I give him a handshake and he says emphatically, “See you in a month.” As our hands release, I keep my palm pressed to his for milliseconds. He notices and looks at my hand. I prepare myself to turn and leave and he opens his arms wide for me to hug him.  I had to struggle to break free from the hug. From that point on, neither he nor I knew that we’d never return to that point because we would end up colliding constantly. There would never be another hug. Destiny was going to trip me with one sentence that sprang out of my mouth after the December 7th performance. What I call a trip, destiny calls a plan. I tried to change destiny, but its plan is unalterable.

- There she goes with her esotericisms again…Destiny!

- I’m going to read you one more of the poems that I excluded from chapter five!

- Great! Is it a strange one? I love when they are really bizarre poems!

- The poem is entitled “Puff”: “Look ahead, The tall trees grow crooked because of the wind; The cars circle and go around roundabouts; Buses are reversing in order to park; I looked to my left and saw a sign for ice cream; It’s been there since the summer; It’s winter; I see grass, mountains and on a path 26 illuminated glowing posts; High voltage posts between the crooked trees and the mountain; Christmas stars decorate the window in front of me; Outside it starts to get dark; A golden bow tied to a post in a bar; Soon it will be Christmas; I’m sitting on a puff! The new year will be here soon! Is it going to be a good year?”

- That poem isn’t bizarre; it’s difficult to interpret! What do the crooked trees, the cars, the roundabouts, the buses reversing, the high voltage posts, the Christmas stars, the golden bow, the 26 illuminated posts symbolize? And while we’re at it, what does the puff you’re sitting on symbolize? And the poster with the ice cream on it?!

- If I wanted to look for the symbolism I’m sure I’d find it, but the poem explains exactly what I lived through when I went to the sport complex to swim as I sat in the waiting room where I plan to transcribe our conversation!

- I never know when a poem is a poem or when it’s real...I want an erotic poem!

- Let me see if I can find what you’re looking for...maybe this one is more your style. It’s called “Signs, facts, logic and conclusions”.

- I like the title…

- “You kiss me. My heart beats strong and I become flushed. I feel a strong muscular pressure between my legs. It hurts. Blood flows and beats rhythmically almost like a second heart. I think I’m excited.”

- That poem isn’t erotic. It’s porn! I love it! Where are the signs, facts, logic and conclusions?

- They are in the title and in the head of each person who reads this poem…

- You’re funny... Let’s go back to London: He gives you a hug in the underground station you say your goodbyes and then?

- Then I get to the hotel, really pissed off. It was 7 p.m. and I was pissed because my open mic friend didn’t stick around to chat with me for a bit. He remained silent! He’d answer me with the same question I’d asked. For example, if I asked him, “How’s your job teaching music in schools going? Are you liking it?” He’d say, “Yes...How about you? How’s your job?” That was our entire conversation. He hardly spoke to me at all.

- After what he did the previous day, what did you expect? He was silent because he felt bad with himself and was hiding something from you. Where did he go?

- I don’t know because he’d hide. We were just friends, not lovers, so he didn’t owe me any fidelity. He owed me friendship. It was Saturday so I assume he probably had private lessons because on August afternoons, that was the case. I didn’t ask him.

- He left you alone. Sweetie: don’t give up on your music dream! If at once you don’t succeed, try, try again.

- I thought my life was useless. I was angry with the shower head in the hotel bathroom. I was angry at London, at my open mic friend. I was angry and I had to bother someone. I sent him a text message thanking him for introducing me to the drummer and say that’s he’s not as amusing and full of life like he used to be. Did you know that in August I noticed that he was a little hypochondriac? He poses like typical guitarists and screams like death metal, but...

- But he, like most guys, wants a girlfriend to empty his balls and to be a mother to him, right angel?

- I returned to Portugal on Sunday morning. In the afternoon the drummer told me that they’d found another guitarist and a bass player: two friends of theirs. Announcing that I was hiring musicians seemed to do the trick. I finally had a band! From that moment on, I communicated with the drummer for anything that I needed. I asked him to have the band make the recording (even if only a very rudimentary one) of the version that they’d perform on stage for me to become familiarized with it and so I could practice at home. I asked the open mic guitarist to do the arrangements and told him that I would pay him for them. That was the only time I wrote him. Approximately twenty days later, at about 10 p.m. I had a terrible feeling joined by a sudden physical discomfort and seemed to hear my guitarist talking in my mind. He sounded extremely angry muttering in a vengeful tone. At 1 p.m. the next day I get an email from him  saying that he didn’t have time for me because he was too busy teaching and giving private lessons. He also said that he’d started working on other music projects of several other bands and that he couldn’t remain in my band after the December 7th performance. He told me that he was going to meet the drummer that night to make the rock arrangements for pop songs like “Moonlight” and that he’d find a replacement guitarist for me.

- Do you think he was feeling ignored because you hadn’t written to him since your last time in London and because you were only communicating with the drummer?

- Yes, I think so. After what he did to me in London, I couldn´t write him anymore because I started to feel seriously stabbed in the back by him! He never wrote to me after the open mic and when he did, it was the email that I just told you about! I was freaking out! He was hurting me and kept on hurting me all the way until the end. And the funny thing is that I´m sure that in his mind, in his version of things, maybe I was the one that was hurting his feelings. Can you believe it?

- This world would be marvelous if people´s crazy minds weren´t so fucked up. Reality doesn´t exist only the perceptions of each one´s mind. I have a remark to make: if he wasn’t able to find you a guitarist when you needed one, was he telling you now that he could find you one?! What did you reply to your open mic friend?

- I spent all the money I had on my phone sending him text messages. The first messages were nice and said how much I appreciated his presence. Then, they start to get scornful saying how I would be famous with our without him. In the end, the messages got aggressive saying that I was going to exceed all of the bands that he plays, or will play with in terms of box office and that I did not need his help for anything not even to find a new guitarist.

- You probably wanted him to stay...

- I did. I should have kept calm and understood that he was just trying to blackmail me psychologically to assure himself that I wanted him around because he sent me a text message immediately saying that he was still responsible for the musical arrangements after I’d told him he could leave.

- You two were measuring each other’s power over one another and hurting each other...

- It was almost the end of November. Soon, I was going to head to London for rehearsals and I still hadn’t heard any of their live stage versions of the songs for the live performance on December 7th! I insisted once more with the drummer and with my friend the blackmailer to get the band together because I needed the versions to rehearse. Before this, I suggested they eat a lot because they were going to sweat a lot. I wanted the versions recorded with blazing intensity! My friend the blackmailer, having arrived from another performance with his rock band in Sweden, sent me three empty text messages as a reply about the eating and sweating thing.

- What did they mean?

- Who knows...Maybe that he was laughing!

- How was your return to London?

- Stressful. I got to London on November 24th, a Saturday, and went to the rehearsal space at 2 p.m. I was going to return to Portugal 3 hours and 40 minutes later! They had a limited schedule, and so did I.

- Whoa! What a VIP band…limited schedule.

- The drummer was still a student and was in his second year of his studies. The guitarists were both recent graduates who were teaching. I don’t know about the bass player because he didn’t show up. They were going to record the stage versions of the six songs as I’d requested. I left there with three songs only because in the fourth song: “Times”, the drummer wasn’t able to grasp the beat. My friend the guitarist even tried going up to him on his guitar to try to help him…he knew the song well because of our open mic performances. Still, the drummer quit because he was getting pissed off.

- Couldn’t they have recorded the instrumental version without your presence?! You had to go to London?!

- Seems like it. It was the only way to get them together. In the rehearsal room I was fixated on the drummer. The open mic guitarist who had avoided looking at me as if he were offended by something, started to place himself between me and the drummer, blocking my view. Once in a while my open mic friend would look at me. I wasn’t actually fixated on the drummer, I was simply thinking about how I was going to sing that version of their instrumental if I didn’t know how to identify the parts in which I had to sing. They didn´t seem at all like my songs – the ones I once knew so well. I was so used to the CD version. The rehearsal ended. The open mic guitarist left the studio quickly and I went after him because I didn’t know how to get back to the underground station alone. I ask him if he minded my company. He retorted saying that he did mind a little bit. I walked a little behind him. He walked, head held high, facing forward but turning his eyes totally to the right to try to see me in his peripheral vision. I noticed this, approached him, patted him on the arm for him to look at me and asked him what the heck was going on and why he was so angry with me.

- I was just about to ask you the same question. Why was he angry with you?

- He spoke quietly with gritted teeth: “After the December 7th concert, never contact me again.” I thought, “Screw this! The drama continues!” We get to the “Oxford Circus” underground station. He asks me why I’d sent him all those messages telling him to go fuck himself. I told him that I wasn’t referring to him, but to the entire band! I wanted the stage versions, I’d waited a long time for them and because I didn´t get them I had to fly to London for them! Of course, I was mad with the entire band and with him! Look, I don’t know why he got offended – most of my messages were accompanied by a smile! He threatens to leave the band again and was offended with me…Nice!

- You’re fun…

- In a text message before I left for London I added, “You fucked up my life. Does it feel good? I hope you liked fucking me over!” He sent me a text message.

- What did it say?

- “Ahaaaaaa yes Tigerrrrrrrrr!” Written in Portuguese!

- That’s the most successful song you have on the social networks and was even on the radio! How did he know?

- He must have gone and searched my name on “Google”. Back at the Oxford Circus station…we still have a ways to walk to get to our respective platforms. Instead of playing cool after he’d told me never to contact him again after our performance, I started to blackmail him and argue as we walked. “You want to leave the band?! Go! You only want to perform on December 7th?! Great! You’re aggressive! LEAVE!” I walked, full of rage and shouting! I look over at him. His eyes become red and filled with water. He must have been surprised by this happening so quickly that he closed his mouth and grinned. A woman in front of us looked back to see who was shouting. “I am! I’m Latin! We express our feelings even if we are in a tunnel full of silent people!”, I thought as I looked at her with rage. I looked at my adored guitarist and gritted my teeth in hate. He imitates me and smiles.

- He’s good at being amusing...and you are too.

- When the time comes for us to part he says (with his hands in his pockets) “No hug.” “You refuse to hug me?! How idiotic,” I thought with rage.  We part. I walked away. Around me I saw a crowd of people, like ants in multiple parallel rows. I lost sight of him and I got lost in those tunnels. After a few moments, I do not know how I’m next to him again. I see him from behind. He was looking at the tube map to find out what line he had to catch and was listening to music on his headphones. He hadn’t seen me and felt something like a psychological earthquake at the strong pat I gave him on the back: "You’re crazy! Stop it!” I think he thought I had follow him.

- I just think that you were looking for and needed to maintain his support… psychological dependence…

- I know I have dependency problems and for this not to be so noticeable, my first few weeks back in Portugal after the open mic, I made up a blond friend who was a black belt in karate and who owned a big motorcycle which we used to ride to the beach! I made her a lesbian who was in love with me.

 

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