You will buy this scarf at the big rug-shop at the corner of Waterlooplein – buy or maybe steal, or let’s say inadvertently forget to pay for it, though the gain will be poor, for it will merely be a cheap cotton scarf worth a few Euros, sporting the most cliché cannabis leaf pattern – white on black. It will not be intended to fulfill any aesthetical purpose of make any statement though, but only to contain the sweat exuded from your skull while training at the dance studio in Koestraat or jogging in Vondelpark – you’ll become a heavy sweater after gaining age and weight. 
Still, the cannabis leaves being so small and stylized that they can pass for Japanese peacock crests, this summary garment will be somehow reminiscent of a Japanese scarf offered years before by a dear friend who probably will never know how precious this gift has been, and to be lost later in a Jazz festival in the north of France, forgotten in someone’s car and promised to be returned – that will never happen. Used as a sport headband, this Waterlooplein scarf will be frequently washed and rapidly lose its black taint, turning to an almost elegant mouse gray… 

 Years later when you cannot train at all anymore because of various accumulated pains and diseases, this scarf will still be used while mountain hiking, soaked with more sweat but also protecting your skull from sun and wind; unfolded it will be large enough to sometimes wrap your baby, hold an injured arm in a sling, pack stuff or be used by your girlfriend as a sarong… After ten years it will still be in a pocket of your backpack for it will always have its use, until you’ll start wearing it again regularly – seemingly piraty-style, but actually inspired by the way Keith Richard will wear his Fedora in the 2000s – under your Berlin-era bowler hat, when you’ll finally acquire one after dreaming of it for 20 years. 
When you’ll move from Berlin to Vienna you’ll figure out that the horse-carriage drivers that promenade tourists around Vienna as part of a delinquent rehabilitation program all wear bowler hats, and the one you will painfully purchase – it will not be easy to find one that looks authentically British and not slyly Mittel-European – will not be cool at all anymore (you will still wear it when visiting other cities though). Fortunately you’ll be able to quickly shift to a low flat-top hat – renamed Dead Man Hat after Johnny Depp made it famous again in Jim Jarmush’s movie – still with this old scarf under it – you’ll have one for only 25 quids from a UK online store. That will be around this time that Adam Ant will make his last come back, sometimes wearing a flat hat topping a scarf, but mostly a big cocked hat with high feathers – and he will still be mostly ignored in Continental Europe… 

At some point you will start looking for new scarves with richer patterns and more precise dimensions – you will even buy from Etsy.com a designer waxprint bandana with a hand-printed Anonymous / Guy Fawke / V for Vendetta face on it, to be worn indifferently at a fashion show or a street riot – this is Berlin after all -, but you will almost never wear it…


You will keep this thick glass vase she’ll offer you for many years, as it will trigger your love for fresh cut flowers and be the first of your collection. It will have the shape of a double cone sharing the same base, one around 20 centimetres high, the other inverted and just 2, preventing it to sit flat and making it oscillate at the slightest touch. It will be possible to put a flower straight in it since one side can keep strictly vertical, but will be at its best with a long curved stem leaning out of its inclined narrow opening and the flower as far as possible from the vase. She’ll know it and leave the vase in your apartment with one white Freesia alba in it – and it will be the best flower for it ever since after.

You’ll meet her twice – the first time in Serbian Vojvodina where she’ll accompany her talented and inspired dancer of a boyfriend or husband, who will give there a butoh dance workshop to which you’ll attend. It will be an intense episode in your life, shared with dear friends, full of joys and dramas, flamboyant Serbian girls and traumatized Croatian guys expunging the recent Yugoslavian wars with avant-garde dance and plenty of booze, Gypsy musicians, cinnamon cappuccinos, an attempt to swim to the Hungarian border across a perfectly rectangular lake, early cybercafés where from you’ll send your first love e-mails, etc… The camp will be incredibly dusty – actually the ground will be made of mere dust - and the sanitary conditions rudimentary, and you’ll remember the colour of her dance training clothes turning into the colour of the soil – when the Serbian girls will always manage to clean up and refresh their make-up (as they did when Belgrade was bombed by NATO they’ll say) – as she’ll dance and train indifferent to the dirt.

You’ll befriend the boyfriend or husband and the next time he’ll come to Europe – he’s Japanese but lives in California -, he will ask you to play the music for a series of dance solos in France, Belgium and the Netherlands. You’ll prepare a set with the support of a residence at STEIM in Amsterdam and it will be your first computer music composition, including ambient samples from the Serbian butoh camp and live silicone-string Ashbory bass (a young local guy will see the French show and ask you to re-record the piece to release it on his French-Japanese micro-label as a limited edition CDR). The dancer will come together with her and you’ll lend them your small apartment in the core of the old city – the locally famous gentrified medieval Place aux Oignons – while you’ll sleep at your girlfriend’s. You’ll be of course blasé about your hometown and never really look at it, but while you’ll be rehearsing in the courtyard of a 13th century hospital where the show will happen, she’ll be walking around the area, highly enjoying its strange mix of Spanish-Flemish Baroque and Imperial eclectic neo-classicism – and she’ll be surprised by your lack of enthusiasm… She’ll also explore the local shops in which you’ll never set foot and buy this vase and this flower for you, and you’ll never know if she’s a tasteful well-educated woman, a good reader of your soul, or just lucky.
You’ll stick to this one vase and one kind of flowers for years, it will follow you while you drift across Europe, until you’ll buy a new one when settled in Berlin, where you’ll acquire furniture and objects for the first time of your life. It will be an even more minimalist cylinder of thick glass for one straight flower – Freesia alba is not so common is Berlin and the slanted cone vase will stay empty more often than you’ll want. A wide carafe for bigger flower arrangements will follow, then three small olive oil flacons from your favourite Mediterranean restaurant on Dieffenbachstraße. You’ll stick to single white flowers as much as possible, sometimes a simple white tulip will soothe your soul, sometimes a nymphea with delicate shades of pink floating in a glass bowl will fill you with joy, sometimes a gladiola, a calla lily or a amaryllis will enlighten you for a few minutes.

You’ll hear about her that she’s from a big bohemian family in California and her sister married a renowned musician, sometimes you’ll think a little bit shamefully of her as one of the two degrees between you and Salman Rushdie – one of your favourite writers –, an idle thought typical of the post-fame era. Also you will have promised to the Serbian girls that one day you’ll visit them in Belgrade and this time you will suspend your vow of sobriety and empty a couple bottles of Slivovitz with them – but you’ll never go.


You will buy these construction site shoes with square steel toe, padded ankle protection and Kevlar soles in a working clothes shop on Harlemerdijke and pay the equivalent of 100€ for them – it will be more than what you’ll use to put in shoes at the time but considering the many years you’ll use them they’ll end up being quite cheap. You’ll have kept a taste for square steel toe boots since you‘ll have bought a second hand pair in a French military shop that you’ll have nicknamed your ‘aircraft carrier technician boots’ and also kept longer that they’ll be realistically wearable. You’ll also enjoy Doc Martens-style shoes – you’ll owe and wear 20 eyelet boots – but they are too round, too light and too thin compared to real protection boots, they‘ll always make you feel like jogging – you’ll also enjoy colourful sneakers a lot, though this will come later.

The money for the shoes will come from a composition you’ll make for a dance and music piece that will alas remain unachieved – the music that will keep unheard on a computer hard-drive will stay for you the best you’ll ever compose, beautiful, complex, naïve, lively, ambitious… You’ll spend months on it, gathering first a huge database of desirable music references and analyzing every second of it, without any experience or method but a confident feeling of creative drive, to create something new, exciting and emotional (you’ll have to admit that it sounds like a perfect plan to fail). Still you’ll compose on your eMac one hour of music for piano, voices, drums and electronics – having the voice parts played by digital flutes and using drum loops from Garageband –, and you’ll regret all you life never having heard these songs performed live by real musicians. Later you’ll play the piano parts to skilled pianists who will assure you that they are mostly playable – though some parts might require the removal of a few notes since they couldn’t grow extra fingers –, but you’ll never find production money to pay someone to record it.
When you‘ll bring the music to the first working sessions in the Amsterdamse Theaterschool, the reaction of your partners will be unexpectedly disappointing – they will be dear friends, if not more, with whom you’ll be used to work, whose talent and dedication you trust, but though you brought them the project – a re-tale of L’Eve Future of Villiers-de-l’Isle-Adam from the perspective of the 4 female characters, it won’t be you the director, nor the carrier of the project, and you’ll might have screwed up your part: they’ll say that this music is just far too difficult to be performed on stage.
Well it won’t be told and understood so reasonably at the time and it will stir quite a quarrel, leading you to step out and demand to be paid for all your work, while retaining the ownership of the music. And since at the time you’ll have developed a sharp disgust of banks and institutions, you’ll have the habit to claim your right as a musician to be paid cash and right away after any performance (something coming from American jazz-club musicians who would pocket their fee at the break of a gig, having proved that they showed up and were in condition to play, but before the owner of the club had time to run away with the content of the cashbox), so you’ll be the only one to be easily paid and walk away with an envelope of banknotes a few days after the cancellation, when the others will have to struggle with the producer and restart the project from scratch – it will take over one year to resurface as a downsized object theatre video…

Anyway you will feel a little bit embarrassed but in your rights with this money and go buy the shoes you’ll have noticed in this shop right away – and also a new USB keyboard and a USB stereo microphone to keep working on that music, something that will not really happen, but other music will. And pay the bills. The shoes will be perfect as much with straight leather trousers than with baggy skate pants or a suit or a kilt – all kind of clothes you’ll like to wear –, they’ll make you feel comfortable, protected and grounded, good walkers even if heavy at the end of a long day… They’ll be professionally re-dyed and resoled a few times and they’ll stay in condition a long time after looking over-distressed, but they’ll have a big flaw all along: the eyelets will always break laces very easily and they’ll need replacement every few weeks – over the years it will be a lot load of laces! No matter what you’ll try, after a few days you’ll start making knots with ragged bits of laces until they are too short and entangled to deal with, then you’ll wait a few more days and cut them away and pick in the lace box for fresh ones… For years.


One day you’ll find yourself hooked on painkillers. Not heavy prescription drugs turning you into a floating junky, with nevertheless a tiny drop of self-destructive romanticism saving you from complete lameness, but blunt fucking headache pills: aspirin plus ibuprofen plus caffeine. You’ll be forced to swallow at least one every night to avoid waking up from an excruciating headache keeping you in bed all day long in complete darkness and silence, so one every night, or 2 if there is already a trace of pain or just tension in the back of your neck when bedtime comes – this to avoid having to take 8 the next day – 2 every 4 hours – if it’s failed… You’ll never know if by doing so you’ll fuck up your liver, screw your precious intestinal flora or increase your blood pressure and provoke the brain stroke that will kill you, but it’s not as if you’ll ever have the choice, and none of the numerous medics you’ll consult about it will be able to give a clear answer (the pharmacist at the corner of Kottbusserdam and Planufer will warn you about them each time you’ll buy some, the one further down will let you buy 4 boxes at a time – that’s where you’ll go).

You won’t remember how and when the headaches started – still you’ll know that in your intoxication years, you’ll have regularly suffered from headaches that you’ll attribute to the recurrent processing of alcohol through your metabolism, and learn how to wash down a ibuprofen pill with a big glass of iced Coke before going to bed when drunk – that at some point will happen very often. More than it won’t. So maybe it will have started already by then but like many other things in your life it will be happily numbed by a crazy ongoing whirl of partying, boozing, dancing, polyamouring; conjuring a incredible energy that also helped studying, working, reading books, conjecturing about art and politics, painting, shooting films, playing music, writing poems; launching endless new projects with performances, videos, new bands playing new musical styles, writing in magazines, organizing festivals; roaming northeastern Europe to see as many museums, exhibitions, performances, concerts and improbable films as possible, festivaling, clubbing, raving, testing new drugs, demoing; taking classes in Paris, teaching art in small cities all over Northern France, graduating in visual arts then start again in cinema studies, then finally joining a high-tech art school, flirting with local politicians to be funded, hanging with the hip crowd, sometimes doing any job or just begging for food until the next paycheck – and that will be before you’ll even enter the dance world…
When you’ll decide to refocus your energy into butoh dance and resolve to quit alcohol to restore your health and self-discipline, you’ll forget about these early headaches, but soon your damaged spine will start to interfere… You will have been badly crushed by a car back in school and though your right leg will take most of the hit and will have to be carefully re-constructed and reeducated over a long and painful process, your whole body will stay shaken and unsettled for good: your pelvic bone will keep slightly askew, your dorsal vertebrae will pop out of place regularly, your neck will stay stiff, your damaged nerves will remain insensitive… Intensive dance training and strict diet will cope with that for a few more years, but for some accidents once in a while, but little by little you’ll have to reduce the training, you’ll regain the kilos you lost out of mere motivation and the deep joy of dancing, then exceed your comfort mass, and the headaches will take over until they’ll become central in your life.
For instance you’ll have organized a complex cinema concert project for a festival back in your hometown, together with friends and colleagues of that cinema and cultural studies magazine for which you’ll work for many years. It will require to create and perform a soundtrack for a soviet mute black and white movie – it will be Abram Room’s 1929 The Ghost that Never Returns – and you will be asked to sound electro – whatever that means. You’ll love the challenge and decide to combine minimal rhythmical computer music with improvised noise parts on a Theremin – THE original electronic music instrument, released by Lev Theremin in Soviet Union a couple of years before the film…. It will be a long process, starting with finding a suitable film in the catalogues of Soviet movies available in France, then negotiating the rights, obtaining an exclusive video of it and illegally digitalizing it to work on the computer music parts, buying a Theremin and learning how to use it, solving the problem of the absence of subtitles (you’ll even have to proof-check the translation from Russian yourself – the only time ever your knowledge of the language will have a concrete application)…
You’ll ask one of your favourite music collaborators – who is also an electronicist and an improviser, on top of being a good friend, a fine gentleman and an avid cross-border Museums expedition partner – to join for the show; and after a few months of hard work, you’ll take the train (you’ll be living in Paris then) with all your material the day before, have a nice evening with friends and go to sleep in a flat someone will lend you, but when you and your heavy suitcase will reach the top floor of the house, an incredible pain will shatter your spine into pieces, rush into your neck, explode in your head an leave you paralyzed on all four, crying and vomiting. And you will have forgotten your pills. The concert will start at 11:00 pm the next evening, you are expected to supervise the complete technical installation on location in the morning, do the sound-check and a couple of runs in the afternoon, socialize with the officials at some point, be in charge…

You’ll make it in the end, though when you’ll show up in the morning pale and mute like the ghost of the movie, you won’t believe you’ll do anything good that day. What will save you will be a benevolent and charming crew-member who will accept to step out of her job for a couple of hours to slowly and softly massage your neck with the tip of her fingers, using only the weight of your hanging head according to osteopathic techniques – plus swallowing a few fistfuls of headache pills. That will be the closest you’ll ever behave like a diva before a show. You’ll never let yourself short of pills ever again.


You will fall in love with a guitar out of the ordinary, hanging behind the counter of your hometown favourite music shop. It will be mistakenly introduced to you as a Cobra model by Ovation (a company famous for their trademark carbon fiber roundback acoustic guitars), being part of their solid body series of the mid 1970s. It will be actually the Breadwinner model with its unique and characteristic shape – often referred to as ‘shark fin’ or ‘battle axe’, both being pointlessly and juvenilely too aggressive to describe and render its perfect ergonomic design. You will go to this shop regularly for many years and buy most of your early musical instruments there, quite often spontaneously – though you’ll almost never try one instrument there since you’ll never feel the urge to learn how to play Stairway to Heaven – and you’ll start to notice a strange dismantled body laying on the workbench behind the desk or hanging on the wall, always in a different stage of restoration – it will be in the small shop with just 2 or 3 cool guys doing everything, before it expands and relocates in a bigger building with ateliers, rehearsal rooms and a big crew.
Cobra will not sound as a bad name for this guitar and you will use it for many years – it will happen in a pre-internet time and for a couple of decades you will limit your involvement into guitars to practice on the few models you’ll gather mostly by chance (later turning into a complete geektarist will be a major strike in your life – and this guitar will much likely have been the seed of it). Without ever reading any kind of guitar magazines or books, without hanging with a guitarists community in rehearsal studios or music shops exchanging information, you’ll know nothing about this guitar but how good it plays, sounds, looks, feels.
People who will often come to you after a concert to ask about it – or even ask to play a few notes on it – won’t fill you with condescending pride, but really get on your nerves: guitarists don’t want to hand over their instruments to strangers, ever, ever, ever! When you’ll join the experimental music scene it will blur your reputation for most people, for they’ll often mistake its ergonomic design for a heavy metal look à la Kiss – they won’t notice that it’s loaded with versatile and subtle splitcoil mini-humbuckers and that the high armrest spontaneously puts the guitar in the most classic and comfortable position – nothing a poser would ever enjoy… Well, for a long time you won’t know that either. OK, and you being dressed mostly in black leather in that time won’t help (experimental musicians are expected to sport no more specific looks than greasy hair).

To buy your first serious instruments you’ll borrow money from a bank, a classic student loan split in 2 – half will be spent right away to get a Rickenbacker 620 white limited edition, a Peterson 620 amp and a nylon string Ovation, plus gear; the other half will pay for the rent and the university tuitions. You’ll get your first teaching job at 20 – some of your high-school students will be older than you, but you won’t tell – and teach 10 years until the money is reimbursed totally, then you’ll never get a regular job again, and you’ll never borrow money from a bank again. Six months after this investment, you’ll see the Breadwinner finally renovated and for sale in your music shop – the very same where you signed your first big check – and your eyes will pop out of your head. You’ll claim that the guitar is yours, though you don’t have the first cent to pay for it. The day after you’ll go back to the shop and boldly propose to the shop-owner to give you the guitar and you’ll swear that you’ll pay for it within 3 months. As a total Grand Seigneur and Protector of the Arts, he’ll laughingly accept and you’ll bring this baby home. The next 3 months you will do anything to get the money – it will be before Christmas and you’ll mostly paint ugly holiday decorations on shop windows on every evening and weekend on top of your teaching job, and restrain your food to a mere survival rate – you’ll also develop a vicious shoplifting technique – exclusively for food – that you will always keep for yourself.
Then the Breadwinner will be rightfully yours: it will win you a little bit of bread, but not so much, for you’ll never be so good at earning money anyhow, and you’ll have many adventures with it. One day your flat will be robbed, they’ll take your original Schott buffalo leather motorbike jacket and your Yves Saint-Laurent suit (a gift from your mother), your stereo and all your CDs when they were still luxury items (including your first digital edition of P.I.L’s metal box), but they’ll miss the guitars stored under the sofa… You’ll sleep amongst homeless people on the Breadwinner case in front of the Shinjuku railway station the day before going back home from Japan, because you’ll be so broke that not only you cannot take the cheapest hotel room for the night, but you can’t even pay for a locker room big enough for it! You’ll play all kinds of music on it, insert metal plates between the strings and hammer them with a rod and feed the sound to loopers and samplers via extreme distortions for your ultra noise projects, or you’ll scratch the strings with the tip of your nail in your minimalist phases, and even play songs on it at some point!

For many years you won’t even know that the most famous user of the Ovation Breadwinner – amongst others including Marc Bolan, Steve Marriot, and the guitarists of the Wailers and Abba – will stay Robert Smith when he’ll shortly join the Banshees – the ultimate post-punk band and the soundtrack of your adolescence! It’s not at fault of being documented, since it will appear on the Nocturne concert video – you will see it only 20 years later, though you’ll have listened avidly to the album… You’ll be more aware of these kind of things later, and you’ll be happy to learn that Kim Gordon uses a Musima Eterna – another of your special guitars – on the Free Kitten first album you’ll enjoy so much, or see Devi Ever demoing her fuzz-boxes on a Fender Jaguar Special HH on her YouTube channel.


Your first significant guitar effect pedal will be a MXR Blue Box. Before that you’ll just have basic standards of your time, good no-nonsense stuff that will stay on your pedalboard for ever – a Boss Turbo Overdrive (still Prince’s reference pedal), a DOD Digital Delay, an Aria Flanger, all it will take to create heavily effected layers of guitars in the mid-1980s (you will never turn into a shoegazer though, as noise impro will take over). The Blue Box is a classic double octaver down fuzz – the signal it creates by duplicating a guitar sound two octaves lower just cannot be coped with by the electronics of the guitar or an amplifier, the result being noisy, glitchy and cool, like a vomiting pinball on acid. It’s been around forever, but nobody really uses it, for it is quite uncontrollable. You won’t purchase this pedal at first, someone will spontaneously lend it to you, as something that might fit to what you will seem to be looking for.

She will be an art student that you’ll meet first at the university the second time you’ll try to turn your academic studies into a negotiable art teacher diploma and a lifetime state employee status – fortunately you will fail at that and keep to more adventurous paths (you will strangely rocket in modern art history and theory but be irremediably disqualified in practice even if you’ll be an exposed artist by then and for many years – just unfitting…) She will be younger, belong to other circles, but shine with simple beauty and shyness, where ordinary art students machismo and extravaganza rule – you’ll be a master at that yourself, won’t you? You’ll have a serious crush on her, but you’ll have a crushable personality all your life and keep it to yourself.
Later you’ll start to see her in your inner circles, a new regular in a house at the centre of your social life, shared by beautiful people that will be your best friends for a significant lapse of your life (one day they‘ll be too far away but by then you’ll have admitted that friendship like love have their cycles, they bloom and fade – and you’ll be the one who left first), a bunch of promising architecture students, musicians, art lovers and partygoers. She will be different by then, you will feel that her obvious and attractive fragility already had her into trouble; she will be in an affair with one of the boys, or 2, you won’t know everything and won’t remember the details. It will always be nice to be around her even if it’ll hurt to see her always on the way of being more and more damaged.
She will tell you about this old Blue Box she has (it’s so vintage that it doesn’t even have the name printed on it) – she’ll be into music at some point but nothing steady – and kindly bring it to you one day, telling you to keep it as long as you’ll want and to do something good with it. You’ll do your best and it will become a key effect for your sound for a while (it will be before your digital multi-effects phase). When you’ll be in an improvisation big band and invited to play a solo, the density and radicality of its sound, even confronted to 30 other wild musicians, will amaze you each time. That will be also the only effect used to record the title song of your first narrative short movie, emulating a chaotic video game sound on top of a hectic drumline – one of your favourite recordings ever.

A few years later, when you’ll be so used to it that you’ll have forgotten that it still doesn’t belong to you, she will suddenly ask you if you would buy it right away, or give it back, for she will need the money urgently. You will have lost touch with her at the time, you will have heard that she often sleeps in her car and busks in southern France or something. She will pass by your house with a guy you never met before, she will be puffy, have a broken front tooth, giggle all the time and reek of chemicals – the smell exhaled by a faux tortoise shell Fender pick freshly shaved after strumming with it for a while (that will prevent you from using a Fender pick ever again).
You won’t be able to give her money knowing that it would be spent on drugs right away, so you’ll let her go with her pedal, with a sour feeling in your heart, for your own cowardice and helplessness, the doomed gem she used to be, and a little bit for the crazy magic music of the Blue Box. You’ll buy a new one years later, when you come back to analogic pedals, that will be your first choice. You’ll play it next for that crazy performance in the glass-hall of the Wurtenbergerischer Kunstverein in Stuttgart, your Epiphone Thunderbird Pro plugged in it for the biggest electro-bass sound ever.


For you’ll always have hypersensitive eyes, all your life you’ll be wearing shades each time you’ll reach to daylight, whatever the weather – that will gain you a reputation as a poser and an arrogant snob. That might be true, though the chain of causality there wouldn’t be so linear that it would always be put in your discredit. Since you’ll give up quickly the prescription tainted glasses you’ll be supposed to hang from your early ovoid vision frames (you’ll turn short-sighted at 14), too easy to lose or to break, you’ll spend your life hunting for the next cool pair of shades you’ll inevitably need after having broken or lost the previous one… According to the time, location and your economical situation, it will be either an agreeable ritual of slightly vain yet pragmatic consummation, or a real pain in the ass. It will never be possible to keep these shades more than a few months, so an expensive model will be forever out of question, but cheap ones would be damageable because of the fragility of your sinuses, and unlikely to fit, because of the unusual shape of the base of your nose… You’ll always wonder if there are other people out there who ever put so much time and energy into purchasing sunglasses, but you and Lux Interior!

Each time you’ll see the Cramps on stage – and you’ll try to do that as much as possible –, you’ll feel that Lux’s famous monologue about wearing shades after dark will be personally addressed to you – it would usually include a line about how it’s not enough to be real cool and that you also have to wear them in museums… That you’ll do, also in class sometimes, as much as a student than as a teacher, when an allergy fit will inflame your eyes to the edge of crying blood (people if front of you will hate you for this, however you’ll apologise for your condition, and they’ll tell about your alleged vampire fetish too – but they’ll ask you to put them back when you’ll show them your purulent eyes), also in brightly lit supermarkets (immediately spotted and followed by a security agent for some reason), on stage to face the spotlights and still be able to see something while playing music, or dancing…
You’ll often claim and brilliantly demonstrate that the Cramps were not a rock band but a conceptual art enterprise camouflaged as a rock band, staging expanded media performances largely exceeding the regular elements of the theoretical performing sphere and conjuring up different layers of reality. You’ll put in favour of your demonstration that in any Cramps concert, there is always a smaller crowd of slightly more aged audience, wearing Maos better than regular death rock / psychobilly regalia and carefully keeping away from the mosh pit – they would be the real audience (you’ll be in the mosh pit, for you’ll always want to belong everywhere and never chose a side, and your steel-toe aircraft carrier technician boots will be meant for this). The last time you’ll see the Cramps, they’ll be at the acme of their art. They’ll gather an ‘audience’ – actually a key element of the show – of otherwise incompatible rock tribes and start with pissing them off with a quite bad opening band, before a too long break.
Then they’ll launch an impeccable one-hour set of fierce classics bringing the people to utter frenzy, until Lux starts to dismantle the unusually big amp walls, piles them in the middle on the stage, ties them up with the very long cables of the many microphones that happen to be there, hanging them in front of the speakers and causing a huge feedback sonic hurricane that covers the band that stops playing but keeps miming – and the audience will be so excited that you’ll all keep dancing lengthily to the pure mayhem in an ultimate informal cathartic experience (you’ll love the mosh pit and the mosh pit will love you, and it will cause you some trouble, like that morning when you’ll come to class to realise that you can’t speak to your students, since you’ll have a broken jaw after Iggy Pop’s concert the previous night, and you’ll be too high to notice before, ending up at the hospital a little bit too late).

You’ll have eye surgery when your short-sightedness will stabilise around 30, not that it will improve much your condition, but it will preserve you from the uncomfortable use of glasses or contact lenses. You’ll chose the cheaper option and use blades instead of laser, and you’ll bring your photo camera to ask the nurse it she would take photos of what you’ll like to believe will be the re-enactment of Bunuel’s Un Chien Andalou’s eye slicing scene. She’ll refuse, but while you’ll feel the pressure of the surgeon’s blade on your eyeball as you look at it piercing your cornea – you’ll opt for local anaesthesia –, you’ll be innerly singing Debaser by Pixies.
When Lux Interior will die, you’ll know that you’ve entered the Age of Orphanhood.