Tuesday, 24 February 2009

Happy birthday, Sean!

Cabein and I were talking last night about two things that became linked. One was about leaving a lasting message forever and thus discovering the trick of eternal life. We were also talking about eschewing new bands and trends for old favourites. We were talking about Sonic Youth’s ‘Daydream Nation’ album and how there’s never really a mood to stick it on for. You just have to do it. Cabein mentioned relistening to ‘Nevermind’ on loop in hope of the inevitable grunge resurgence, which clicked something in my mind. Occasionally, I take loved but unlistened-to CDs to second-hand shops and swap them for new things- sometimes I’ve heard an album so much I’ve discovered everything I need to about it so think someone else should discover and enjoy this, I don’t need to listen to it again, I’ve had my time with. This happened with ‘Nevermind’, which I now regret, because talking with Cabein I realised how much I needed to dip in. I remembered my tatty already-secondhand copy of ‘Nevermind’ and realised that someone somewhere owned a private moment of mine now, preserved in infinity. An ex-girlfriend gave me her copy of ‘Nevermind’- she bought it in the spirit of rebellion and subsequently hated it. She gave it to me. Before she did, she wrote a little note on it, a private joke between us to me on the front cover and signed it. It now exists forever on someone’s shelf somewhere as a private moment between two exes. One of the most heart-warming things about buying secondhand books is the chance that there’s a dedication in the front-cover, from a lover or dear one, something that says something about the gifter and the giftee. One of my favourite dedications was in a secondhand copy of ‘American Psycho’ that I bought from Barnados in Brixton.

I hear this book is the exact mix of anti-capitalism and excessive violence that you love so much.


Happy 16th birthday!

Love, grandma’

Everytime ‘American Pyscho’ catches my eye on my shelf, I wonder how Sean turned out after his 16th birthday. We are linked through the thinnest of strands but I feel like that private glimpse into his life has bonded us forever.

No comments: