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[march 1, 2002]
so much has happened in the past two days! the concert in cologne was GREAT! i think i will write more about it in more detail tomorrow, i'm just too tired now. it's 11:30 at night and i have just returned from rehearsal. we tried 'first day love' and it worked pretty well. also 'space walk' is getting better and better. i reduced some guitar parts in 'a tree, a rock, a cloud' which gave the song more variation which it needs as long as there's no second guitarist. we also did 'in liverpool' and it worked amazingly well considering that we haven't played it in two years! it sounded great. reiner did some virtuous bass lines at the end which pushed the melody along!

anyway, i'm all tired now. i only slept for a couple of hours last night and today i worked all day on the new cover for c/c:c.

got a parcel from paula. more about this tomorrow. when we were driving back home this morning (we spent the short night at tara's parents who live near by cologne) cedric mentioned that he did not believe the story behind eve. he thinks that i've made it all up. he said there were errors in the plot that i invented or something like that. very strange! got to ask him about that some more.

see you tomorrow.

[march 2, 2002]
more bad dreams tonight. but then sun was out when i woke up and that helped chasing them away. i'm sitting at my desk now singing along to 'devotion' by the indigo girls and sorting my mail 'just let one day move into two i'm losing everything except for you i will you sing of devotion that's what i should do!!' if the weather will stay this clear i will go for a long walk again this afternoon. maybe i'll ask nadine to join me.

but now about that SUZANNE VEGA concert: i arrived at the venue just in time to be the sixth in the row that was slowly growing. shortly after that cedric and tara arrived as well as vlad and wojtek (two fellow undertoads). they opened at seven and we got a great place right in front of the stage. as a matter of fact i think these were the best places in the entire hall! shortly before eight o'clock someone entered the stage and took one of the guitars to tune it. it was a roadie and i thought: 'wouldn't it be funny if this were bob hillman. i would probably get a mid-life crisis right on the spot' because the guy on stage looked just a little older then me, perhaps 32 or 33 and of course my big dream is to open for suzanne, actually this would be the final aim in my life and imagining that somebody as old as me had managed this really reminded me again of all the things i have not yet achieved in my life (and - let's be honest - there ain't much chance to achieve them some day). and from his name i supposed that bob would be about 50 or so. anyway, an announcer (i think it was the german tour manager) entered the stage and introduced bob hillman. who was even younger than me! 'great' i thought 'i HATE you!' he plugged in his acoustic guitar and started playing, but the amp didn't work. he looked a little startled and then unplugged the guitar, walked to the front of the stage and stood there as if he were about to stage-dive. and then he started singing the complete first song without amp and without microphone. and i though that this was one of the most courageous things i have ever seen! because i expected the crowd to go angry every moment: first you have to listen to a stupid opening act and then you can't really understand what he's playing there. i thought they would start shouting 'stop it!' or 'get off the stage!' but they didn't. they got very quiet and they listened attentively. and this is how bob hillman turned my hate for him into infinite admiration and i thought 'no wonder that HE is standing there and not me...'

after bob suzanne and the band entered the stage. she looked great! they opened with 'marlene on the wall' and then went on to play for two hours. i can't recall the entire set list, but it included 'gypsy', 'small blue thing', 'left of center', 'the queen & the soldier', 'in liverpool', 'blood makes noise', 'penitent', 'maggie may', 'solitaire', 'luka', 'tom's diner', 'when heroes go down', 'last year's trouble', 'priscilla', 'widow's walk', 'harbor song', 'solitude standing', 'calypso' and 'soap and water'. the sound was FANTASTIC! although they were just four musicians and suzanne didn't play guitar on some of the songs it sounded as if there were six people standing there. Mike was great! he did a bass solo on 'calypso' that took my breath away. you could hear every nuance: the guitar was transparent and clear, the drums were very 'tight' and the bass gave it the underlying structure. i think you could spent an entire concert just listening to mike's bass parts! the whole band played together very, very well. it was a compact and powerful sound. especially on 'solitude standing' and 'widow's walk' which *rocked*. the audience was very enthusiastic and when they were doing the first encore suzanne asked: 'so you wanna hear another song. a new one or an old one?' somebody yelled 'an old one', and suzanne said 'hm' and i took all my courage and shouted 'soap & water!!!' 'soap & water' she said and looked into my direction 'well, that's a new one! but we'll do this as well'  and then they played 'calypso' and after that she said 'this next song is called 'soap & water' and we're playing it by request...' and it was just great! a great great great great great song! the other personal highlight for me was 'harbor song'. suzanne started to play it on the guitar and she did it in the old 'acoustic' style doing the picking she used when she was on the acoustic tour with mike. but then suddenly the whole band set in with the arrangement as they're playing it on the cd and it made me go weak in my knees. it was SUBLIME!

after the show vlad, wojtek, cedric, tara and me went backstage with glynn (who was very nice as usual) and who once again managed to made us feel like guests instead of like the annoying fans that we really were. suzanne came out and we sat down at a long table. i was sitting just 6 feet away from her and she said: 'so you asked for 'soap & water'...' and she even knew who i was, she even knew my name which made my heart - remember, that broken heart, that torn heart, that shredded heart - bloom and glow with a strange fire. we were talking about video shots and september 11 and ruby's way to cope with it. and then cedric got his copy of 'the passionate eye' signed and when suzanne asked how to spell his name he told how he once met john cale and how surprised he was that john knew how to spell it. that was when suzanne told another john cale anecdote: mike had been playing in his band but after a concert when john killed a chicken on stage he left it the next day. ten years later suzanne was opening for john in paris and when john and mike met for the first time after ten years backstage the first thing john said to him was: 'i cut your balls off!'. 'he didn't even say: Hi Mike, i cut your balls off!' suzanne said laughingly - 'and he did!' Mike added and i thought to myself: here i am, a third class songwriter and fourth class literary critic sitting next to suzanne vega who is telling anecdotes and joking like we would know each other for years and it just feels GREAT!!

although the band was tired and had to make all the way to munich the other day they were all very, very nice and friendly and made us feel welcome. suzanne signed a card for me saying: 'To Philipp! after all this time!'. when we left i gave her the note that i had written [it was somethiong i did not want to post to the tow so i wrote it down shortly before the show] and she said that she still has my cd [sisv] and that she will get back to me as soon as her lawyer would have looked into it. we shook hands and i think i said something like: 'thank you! for everything' and i was glad that i had written down a couple of these things that i could not say that moment or had no words to say or felt ashamed to say.

when we left i felt signified and dignified. it was a PERFECT night! and i was very happy that i could share all this with tara & cedric. i think they had a lot of fun as well and they were deeply impressed by meeting and talking to suzanne. sigh. i wish i was bob hillman.
 
 
the teddy from paula
when i returned on friday afternoon a parcel from paula had arrived. a few weeks ago she wrote to me that she was getting rid of things she don't need/use/want anymore so i asked her to send something weird or peculiar or absurd or essential or trashy or beautiful that she stumbles over to me. and she did. so yesterday i got a t-shirt from 'yankton college' and a teddy bear. when you shake it gently you can hear small chimes inside its belly that are ringing softly and it reminded me of the - and now follows a really pathetic story, so if you want to keep me in mind as a cool, stylish and hip person you should not read on here - well, it reminded me of the teddy that i once made for xxxx when we just got to know each other. i made it myself: cut out the fabric and filled it with cotton. and for a heart i inserted a small box containing a piece of paper and a small object. and whenever you shook the teddy gently you could hear something clicking inside its chest. well, i will not tell you what the paper says or what the object is because it would take the fun out of putting secret messages into self made teddys, wouldn't it? so the only way to know what's inside the heart is to cut its skin, peal away the stuffing and break the box. and here we have a very nice metaphor for my situation, haven't we. because someone HAS cut my skin and HAS pealed away the flesh layer after layer and finally HAS broken the box and out stumble all these words.

later
i've just come back from a long walk with nadine. we went through the woods and the weather was perfect: a clear sky and a setting sun that turned the trees and the leaves into gold. we had a tea in the small café in the park and returned much later than we had planned.

so today paula wrote to tell me the stories behind the gifts:

the bear was given to me by my first girlfriend. so it's a bit tainted for me. but the best part is the chimes in its belly. the t-shirt is from a college in yankton (yankton college!) that went bankrupt in 1984 and was bought by the federal government and is now the site of a prison. i thought you would appreciate the irony. it's a sad story because i was in the 8th grade at the time and my two best friends' parents both worked at the college, and when it closed my friends moved away. but now there's a prison in the middle of town! you can't beat that!
she also wrote that they had a power failure while she was watching a movie and guess which one: 'tress lounge' with steve buscemi, one of my all time favorite films! this is getting really creepy. sometimes i think i might have a split personality and i'm writing all those emails myself.

i've just finished writing another long mail to eve which i had been looking forward to all day. i recorded a cd for her with a couple of new nerve bible songs and in return she'll send me a cd with tracks of which i only know one so far: 'wise up' by aimee mann.

[march 3, 2002]
i've just come back from another 2 hour walk through the woods, which was chilly but good. tried to walk faster than the evil thoughts that kept keeping up with me so i simply turned the md up to full volume: david munyon on repeat: 'one step at a time | keep your eyes on the road | on the road' which i did.
Subject: moon
Date: Sun, 03 Mar 2002 02:04:01 +0100
From: Schwagmeier <cornfield@xxxxx.de>
To: ph@xxxxxxxxxx.com

"if you want to write a song about the moon
walk along the craters of the afternoon
when the shadows are deep
and the light is alien
and gravity leaps like a knife off the pavement
and you want to write a song about the moon
you want to write a spiritual tune
then nah nah nah
presto
song about the moon
if you want to write a song about the heart
think about the moon before you start
because the heart will howl
like a dog in the moonlight
and the heart can explode
like a pistol on a June night
so if you want to write a song about the heart
and its ever-longing for a counterpart
write a song about the moon
the laughing boy
he laughed so hard
he fell down from his place
the laughing girl
she laughed so hard
the tears rolled down her face
hey songwriter
if you want to write a song about
a face
think about a photograph
that you really can't remember
but you can't erase
wash your hands in dreams and lightning
cut off your hair
and whatever is frightening
if you want to write a song
about a face
if you want to write a song about
the human race
write a song about the moon
if you want to write a song about the moon
you want to write a spiritual tune
then do it
write a song about the moon."

(Paul Simon)

eve sent aimee mann's 'magnolia' today which i am listening to right now while my body temperature is slowly climbing up to normal again. actually tonight we wanted to have a small concert that tara got from me for her birthday [me doing a couple of vega/cohen songs], but then work intervened and now we have postponed it till next weekend.
xxxx will never leave philipp. signed: xxxx
just found this note at the bottom of a drawer. i should consult daniel - maybe i can sue her for a million bucks? wrote back to eve and while doing so had a bad fit of memory. it had snowed yesterday night - and we both have been realizing this and stopped in our 'routine' the same time. eve when she came out of the movie theater and me when i was closing the mail to her. and it made me think of a world covered with snow that you see glistening in the moon light when you open the window still drunk on the smell of skin and hair... 'it's not going to stop | it's not going to stop | it's not going to stop | til you wise up'. good night.
[march 4, 2002]
i'm on the train to cologne. wise up' on repeat. greta great song! great strings! after i sent the letter to eve last night first the anger rose again and then the sadness crashed down. 'well, if you want to have great love you've got to have great anger'. i want to write songs. i want to write songs. i want to write songs and i don't know why i'm not doing so. maybe because i fear the work of ordering all thse these words. writing the journal is so easy. you simply add word to words and you don't care about their relation - the same with ideas. 'if music could only bring peace i'd only be a musician' okay, here's the plan for the next two days: today thomas and i will finally finish the blueprints. i had it all wrapped up and ready to send off thursday afternoon and i was just going to mail it to the publishers when the phone rang - it was thomas and he brought to my attention that we did not provide the names of the people who have contributed articles to the book on the cover - which actually seems to be quite a good thing to do. so we had to change the cover that we will redesign today. tomorrow blaine and i are going to prepare the seminar which will start in april. 30 students have signed up already and we might end up with twice as much - which scares the shit out of me. also blaine asked me to tell him some basic things about html and maybe we'll also find the time to play a couple of songs together. i forgot to mention that thomas called on saturday for no reason but to ask how the concert was, which i thought was very nice of him. 'when i tried to make it more it was always less'

i feel like i'm getting ill. my skin hurts and i'm cold, can't concentrate. yesterday i decided that i will NEVER EVER get in a situation in which i might be seeing|hearing|smelling her or him or her|him. never ever in my life. period. that's why i'm so hesitant to play at tara & cedric's housewarming party. because it's all so complicated now. it means that i would have to come even at the risk of an unwanted encouter and that's not what i will be doing. when nadine asked me on saturday if i wanted to join her shopping in town & i said 'no' because i avoid going into town on saturdays since it is 'her' day she said: 'jesus, philipp - don't you think that this is stupid?' but it isn't. it's about emotional survival. there have been only very few things in my life that i have been this certain about than the descision not to face her|him again.

later
it's done! i've just mailed the blueprints and the master cd for chaos/control:complexity!! it's half past five already and i'm sitting in the office listening to...'wise up'. when thomas came in a couple of minutes ago he suddenly stopped talking, listened and said:'what's this? i've heard this song before.' and when i told him that it was a soundtrack for the movie 'magnolia' he remembered and went on to tell me that the movie was actually quite good. so eve and thomas seem to have some common grounds there...'it's not | what you thought | when you first began it | you've got what you want | but you can hardly stand it though by now you know | it's not going to stop | it's not going to stop | it's not going to stop | til you wise up' well, i don't know about you but *i* sure know a couple of people whom i would record this...
[march 6, 2002]
sometimes there's no denial that i'm a fucking genius! well, not really me, but paula & suzanne. but i brought them together. paula read for me a mail that she had sent to the undertow a couple of months ago called 'ramblings on days of open hand'. and i took that recording and combined it with music from suzanne's 'days of open hand'. i sampled the beginning of pilgrimage and looped it and merged it with the beginning of 'rusted pipe'. AND IT WORKS PERFECTLY!! it sounds great! i added some distorted guitar from 'pilgrimage' and a second of suzanne's backing vocals and there you go: vega goes steve reich and paula reads her beautiful prose poem to it! i've made an mp3 and you can listen to it here: ramblings.mp3 (3.2MB|4min30). 'my heart ticks inside me like rain'

i had breakfast with nadine today at noon. then we tried to build together a corner-shelf for my kitchen that i got from her brother - and although i am used to building together furniture (i'm an ikea pro!) we did not manage it because that bloody thing lived! it moved on it's own and it was vicious and hostile and would just not fit together. and if it did it wasn't for long. anyway, we added a coupe of screws and now it's more or less stable leaning against the kitchen wall. until it breaks together.

wrote more letters to eve. cedric still doesn't believe that she exist. well, he thinks that she exist but he thinks that i've made the whole she-answered-to-my-ad-thing up using somebody from my nerve bible-'past'. we discussed this in length yesterday night on the phone and i'm having so much fun with the whole story!

yesterday blaine and i started preparing the seminar for next semester but we didn't come very far. instead we argued over george michael and lenny kravitz! sometimes i just stop believing in his common sense. i mean: lenny kravitz! getoutofhere!

when i was sitting on the train back home i realized that i did not have a pen. boy, those were long three hours!

later
i've just listened to the full version of 'pilgrimage' - this is definitely the most powerful song ever written! it opens the skin. it makes you die a little.
[march 7, 2002]
jesus! more weird dreams about him and me. we were fighting. i was winning. but it did not mean anything, it had no consequences. woke up and was glad to have paula's teddy (am i pathetic otr what?) - it smells so well.

when i was shopping yesterday i bought everything to make a nice fresh salad in the evening but then i thought that it might be nice to have a hot meal (which i did not have in 5 or six days) because it was so cold and windy and rainy outside so i bought a tin of soup, which is quite comfortable because you won't have a lot of work and the only things you need is an oven and a pot. or so i thought. because when i got hungry yesterday night and wanted to heat the soup i turned on the oven and i got out a pot but i realized that there's one more thing that you need and that i did not own: a tin opener. and it was the same old feeling again. you're right in front of it but still you just can't reach it. just like the last few months of our relation. what a pity metaphor! but with a tin it's different than with you. because i thought if it won't open voluntarily i will go for violence: and i got out the screwdriver and the hammer and in a long and difficult surgery i managed to open the tin. of course by that time i wasn't even hungry anymore...

paula gave her okay to post the link for 'ramblings' to the undertow, which i did just a couple of minutes ago. i wonder whether there will be any reactions.

boy - what a rotten day! i can't concentrate and i could lie in bed and eat all day! can't remember when i last was in such a sluffy mood. wonder whether eve will write back tonight.

[march 8, 2002]
the sun is shining brightly against the rows of houses across the street. i'm listening to brian kennedy, haven't done so in a long, long time. he opened for suzanne on the 'tour of open hand' back in 1990. i'm looking forward to rehearsal tonight. had weird dreams again, this time staring her.
much later
rehearsal went very well tonight! although i was waiting at the rehearsal room at 7 already and then realized that we actually wanted to meet at 8. and i totaly lost it during 'a tree, a rock, a cloud' - i did not know what to sing or which chord to play anymore and i had a sort of laughing flash. 'space walk' and 'first day love' are growing. we're playing it better and better each time. i want gigs! and i wonder whether rehearsing only once per week is enough. but right now i don't see how we could meet more often. i should also start working on new material. there are all those chord patterns that i still have and so many words and images that have piled up during the last months. if i only had a little more self discipline!

today on my way to rehearsal i put a couple of suzyv cd-copies that eve does not have yet into her mailbox - and walking by her house made me feel like a 16 year old - you know: excitment, butterflies and increased heart rate [he he! i can hear cedric in front of his pc going: 'yeah, right!!'].

[march 9, 2002]
i'm seriously concerned about my lack of motivation! spent the whole day doing unimportant stuff except writing to eve. i went to my sister today to use her washing machine. we went shopping then and she drove me and my laundry home - which i thought was exceptionally nice of her. she also provided me with two bottles of champagne, of which one is empty now :o)

i don't know if you've been aware of it but today is BLAINE DAY! what the hell is BLAINE DAY? you might ask yourself! well, i thought it might be a good idea to say a little more about the people 'involved' in this project and i thought i start with blaine:

so blaine is a colleague of mine. he is also working in the english department of cologne university, although he's working for a different professor and is primarily concerned with gender|queer studies. one day thomas [i just realize that it's hard to explain to you who blaine is without having had a THOMAS DAY before...anyway, thomas is my boss] yelled across the corridor: 'philipp, come here!' and, obedient as i am, i followed his voice and ended up in the office of the gender studies people:
the cover of blaine's (aka 'plural') cd
thomas was standing in the middle of the room and blaine and two other people were sitting there and there was music playing. 'here, you've got to meet blaine!' thomas said 'he's also making music!' he explained, turned around and left the room. so i was standing there with these three people that i did not know and i had no clue what to say and i just thought: 'THANKS THOMAS!' so they played a song that blaine had written and recorded and i liked it very much. so somehow blaine and i started talking about making music and it was all right talking to him, i somehow felt at ease communicating with him, although i did not know him at all. which doesn't happen very often. so over the next week we talked more, exchanged cds and after two or three weeks already we almost met daily when i was in cologne to have a coffee and talk|gossip|complain|brag about our bosses. and although we actually have quite a different taste in music and in most other aspects of life we somehow seem to have known each other for a very long time. there was an instant familiarity among us which helped develop a very open friendship in a couple of months. it is really, really unusual for me to bond with somebody as fast as it happened with blaine. so next semester we're going to do a seminar together and we also have started to play|sing together. although i think that i still should have some influence on his musical taste. he is more into 'danceable stuff' instead of into singer|songwriters, which sometimes i just can't understand and|or accept. we have realized that we share a lot of worries and sorrows and problems with having a job that actually demands full time devotion while feeling that there is something ELSE that we want to do: writing, music or simply LIVING. anyway, without blaine i'd be lost on cologne. by the way, he does not really look like he does on the cover of his cd. when thomas saw the cover he was reminded of a doll that his daughter has: it's a male barbie doll that is a dj: he has little headphones and little records and two turn-tables. so one day he gave blaine that doll as a present and it is sitting on his desk now [see the photo in the 'us' section].

so actually i've known blaine only for a very short time. this - and the fact that it is already pretty late - will let me call it a day now. a BLAINE DAY!

[march 10, 2002]
it's a w|w|w|w-day today: work, write, walk and wenjoy yourself. when i was stepping into the shower just a minute ago and the hot water was running down my back i realized that my shoulder was hurting. and on closer examination i discovered three long and bloody scratches on my left, and one long scratch on my right lower shoulder. and i just cannot remember when or how this has happened! it's like i had slept on a sharp piece of broken glass. hm, very strange. apparently i'm not only just writing emails to myself when i'm asleep...

i've just returned from another sunday [and it is!] walk in the woods. song of the day: laurie anderson: 'muddy river'. splendid idea to clean and polish my boots yesterday! anyway it was quite nice although there's way too much room for letting your mind wander out there. so luckily i had company (amy and emily, suzanne, david and paula were with me) and could control evil thoughts and ideas when it was necessary most of the time.

later
it's been a beautiful evening: clear blue sky and unlimited bright sunshine. it's gotten dark now, only a small light lining at the horizon is left and it slowly turns from a light blue into pitch dark. there are no stars. i don't know where they are. are they in your eyes? i don't know your eyes. anymore. yet. song of the moment: 'The smartest people in the world had gathered in Los Angeles | to analyze our love affair and finally unscramble us | and we sat among our photographs examined every one | and in the end we compromised and met the morning sun | maybe I think too much | they say the left side of the brain dominates the right | and the right side has to labor through the long and speechless night | and in the night my father came to me | and held me to his chest | he said: there's not much more that you can do, go get some rest | and i said: yeah, maybe I think too much...' how can an entire year be one long and speechless night? but it can. it can. it can. there are too many memories here, way too many memories that shouldn't be here. i'm missing eve. i don't know what i'm writing.
[march 11, 2002]
boy, you should think that i must know better with almost 30 than to empty a whole bottle of champagne on my own. it
knocked me off the chair yesterday night [quite literally] and my tongue went all numb plus i wrote an embarrassing letter to eve. now i've got a headache and when i stepped out of the door and into the sunlight this morning, the rays went right through my eyes to fry my brain.

i was in town this morning because i sent off a cd to fatima and i bought some aspirin. also i had promised paula to send her a photo of me wearing the yankton-college shirt she has sent me. the photos turned out to be okay and you can click here if you want to see them.

met one of xxxx's friends but we gracefully overlooked each other and passed without notice. so now i'm going to have a late breakfast [it's almost one already] and then it's hollow earth time again.

okay what am i going to do? go for a walk or work? go for a walk or work? on the one hand it's just beautiful outside on the other i HAVE to do something. on the one hand i could use the exercise, on the other i know that i will have a bad conscience tonight if i haven't done anything AGAIN. sigh. i think i just sit here and ponder the problem until the sun has gone and i'm too tired to work. i'm listening to joni mitchell, 'man from mars' - i always thought about rob when i listened to it. 'the silence is so full of sounds | you're in them all | i hear you in the water and the wiring in the walls | man from mars | this time you went too far'. the letter to paula with the photos is lying on my desk, waiting to be sent away. i've just called nadine and wanted to ask her whether she wanted to join me on my walk but she's not home. you know what? i'm going for a short walk, put the letter in the mailbox and then work. sounds like a plan, doesn't it. gee, i'm glad i have so many IMPORTANT and highly INTERESTING things to report about!

so i'm back. was sitting in the park and started a mail to paula. your voice as natural as the noise from the birds or the sound of the water fountain, the words grip deep into my mind with long, strong roots, they flower and bloom and i can smell them, kept alive by your soft breathing in between syllables that is so close in my ear as if you were sitting next to me. and it makes me ache from longing. there's a girl in sioux city who offers cartoonish prayers for free. and sometimes when i'm falling, flying or tumblin' in turmoil i say: wow! so this is what she means. 'i crack up every so often'. the warm air moves over my face like water, warm water: how i have longed for it for such a long time. your voice comes from where the water is warm. find me, please oh find me.

anyway, now it's hollow earth time and later that night i think i'm gonna rehears a couple of songs. last night i thought of making

AARRGHH! the university's mail server is driving me crazy! it's making me aggressive! nothing EVER works!! it's always screwed up!! anyway, blaine called just a minute ago and he said that i should add a sentence or two to what i've written on BLAINE DAY: he said that i should clarify the sentence: 'by the way, he [blaine] does not really look like he does on the cover of his cd.' so what i meant is not that he is not as attractive or cool|good-looking as on the cover [quite the contrary] but that he is looking much more FRIENDLY. he might add a couple of sentences on lenny kravitz himself ;-)

[march 12, 2002]
dreamless sleep! finally! joni michtell starts the day with 'urge for going' and now 'chelsea morning'. here's the plan for today: doing the washing up, making a cup of tea, hollow earthing, simultaneously thinking about a couple of tracks that i could put on a cd for eve. 'don't it always seem to go that you don't now what you've got til it's gone...' that must be the happiest song about environmental pollution and death that i have ever sang along to. i guess i'll have to have a THOMAS DAY day soon. he called yesterday night.
Subject: Rectification
Date: Tue, 12 Mar 2002 12:52:34 +0100
From: blaine <blaine@uni-koeln.de>
To: ph@entropic-empire.com

Not that I'm paranoid or anything (no, No, NO!), but there are a few things I would like to add to the 'musical taste' controversy, because people could be misled by your silly twists of facts: I am heavily into singer/songwriter music. What else would you call Scritti Politti, Prefab Sprout, Neil Finn, Wendy & Lisa, K. D. Lang and George Michael (80s overdose admitted)? And yes, although his name wouldn't be found on my All Time Favourite musicians list, I have some time for Mr. Kravitz who every now and then manages to come up with a good tune, riff, harmony and what have you.
    I think the problem here is that I'm not as funkophobic as my dear friend. On the contrary, I love a good beat and at times this can add quality and physicality to an already good tune.

     Yours sincerely,
      Blaine

i had almost tricked myself. i had - for some reason, may it be self-protection or dementia - assumed that her birthday was on march 17. but i've just talked to cedric on the phone and he said 'well, we don't have time on friday for obvious reasons...' and i remembered (?) that it is the 15th, not the 17th and wow, it was the same roller coaster feeling again that you have in your stomach when you've reached the top, the peak and then you fall straight down and you close your eyes but this only intensifies the sickness and the feeling of free falling down down down and the idea that i will not be there, the idea that it will be him by her side to celebrate her birthday, it makes it so official, it makes it much realer, it makes it more painful, like nothing had ever happened, like i had never been there, replaced, no room in her life when there's hardly room left for her in my life as well 'these tombs of brown fields connections are made and changed ten years ago i felt beaten down ten days ago i felt beaten down i feel the damage inflicted in my body' why did i not succeed in 'writing something so beautiful it will make you ache from longing' i did not succeed i wish i had paula's voice i wish i had his body 'i want my body to be a page write on me maybe some things are never meant to be found' not being part anymore 'it's a part of living' why can one fucking day gain so much significance it's ridiculous, it's funny actually i had met him for the first time exactly one year ago, on her last birthday, when i realized that there was something wrong in how he moved, how he looked jesus! i wish i had known then i wish i had known how long the end would be i still don't i still don't i still don't 'believe it yet let me cut myself out of the book MY HEART TICKS INSIDE ME LIKE RAIN. I DON'T KNOW HOW TO MOVE IN LIGHT' why can't i end this finally now with my heart halfway drawn towards another person?
Subject: heavens, don't be such a wimp!
Date: Tue, 12 Mar 2002 20:52:34 +0100
From: ph@entropic-empire.com
To: ph@entropic-empire.com

Hey Phil!

While surfing I came across your web site by accident. At first I was quite intrigued by your online journal, but the further I read the more angry I became. Today's entry really made me mad! Don't be such a wimp! Stop whining about how bad you feel and how lonely you are and stop all that pointless rambling!! Christ! Pull yourself together for God's sake! Don't be so fucking pathetic! Where's your dignity? Do you think you're the only one whose bloody relationship broke down! WE are NOT making such a fucking big deal out of it! Grow up, man!!

Philipp

[march 13, 2002]
boy was i mad when i got the mail quoted above! i thought who on earth does this guy think he is taking to me like that! but eventually i calmed down and i realized that my anger is rooted in the fact that deep within i know that he's probably right. and besides this is a free country and i have invited people to comment so i shouldn't really be surprised by the reactions but be grateful that *some*body is reading this.

cedric will visit today and we will work on the hollow earth. i think i should have an hollow earth day because by now you might really wonder what it is all about. but then it's too good to give away and so you might have to wait until the book has been published ;-)

song of the day: morrissey, 'lost'

so if i see you and i tell you how i've watched you
i'm
just
lost
so if i see you and i tell you i've watched you don't make fun of me later cause
i'm
just
lost
later
it's 11 at night, cedric and i have worked all afternoon and evening sorting pictures and organizing material. this morning i have been listening to eve's voice until noon: she has sent a tape with the recording of a short story that she had read for me. she has a very, a very nice voice: calm and warm. not unlike anne sexton, a bit younger though. unfortunately i forgot to play it to cedric. it might have convinced him that she realy exists. tomorrow my sister will visit and she'll take a couple of pictures of me [i've left them all with xxxx] so maybe i can finally put another photo in the 'us' section - one that looks more like me ;o)

my eyes ache from staring onto the screen all day, i think i'm gonna go to bed now. sleep well and thanks for reading! see you tomorrow...

[march 14, 2002]
blast! my life is getting far more complex than i can handle! this morning there were two letters in the mail: one with two cds of suzanne's cologne concert! great stuff! and a second with an offer for a flat in cologne. 44qm, two rooms, two underground stations from where blaine lives, 242 euros - which is ridiculously low for a flat in cologne! it sounds PERFECT! it's just that i don't WANT to move to cologne any more. i've got my nice flat here. i've got the band here. and most important: i don't want to give up that growing friendship [or whatever it will turn out to be] with eve. i've just been talking to blaine on the phone and he was totally amazed: 'but WHY haven't you MET her yet? you're living in the same city!' but i could explain to him that things are sort of problematic, that i want to be sure that i don't do anything just out of hurt and sadness and thus also hurt eve's feelings. and that we actually enjoy this sort of slow and gradual getting closer. and that we are 'slow' sort of people and need time and want to take all the time that's needed. and now what should i do? it's getting all so complicated. move to cologne? i would finally be out of xxxx's neighborhood. i wouldn't have to travel all week. i could spent more time with blaine. but then i wouldn't see cedric and tara this often. and if i did i would have to travel, which sort of annihilates the first reason for moving to cologne. the same with the band. but then i must really be on the guard that this won't affect the expectations i have regarding the friendship to eve. beacuse because i don't want to end up in a situation in which i think: 'this BETTER turns out to be PERFECT because for this i skipped the flat in cologne!' i don't want this sort of pressure!

by the way, blaine seemed to be glad that i did not commented on the fact that he backed off from going to see that concert of suzanne at the last minute. boy if he knew what he has missed! i don't think that lenny kravitz could ever deliver such a great live performance! i think i'm gonna copy the taping of the concert for him so he will be REALLY sorry that he wasn't there! he he!

just talked to cedric on the phone - and when i enumerated the reasons for staying in bielefeld i mentioned that xxxx won't probably live two blocks away in our old flat forever and he said: 'are you interested in information about this?' and i just said 'no' but then knew that she probably plans to move, god knows where to, maybe she'll live in a flat on her own, maybe she'll live with him - either way i hated myself instantly again for allowing the pain to board my train of thoughts again. jesus! i should really get an xxxx-filter, could come in handy on saturday night. because that birthday will of course be on march 17, as i originally had thought [well, it would have been too good to be true if i REALLY had already forgotten the date] and just as last year they will party from saturday to sunday.

i think i also finally and more or less involuntarily convinced cedric of the existence of eve. because i discussed the advantages and disadvantages of moving to cologne and of course the biggest 'disadvantage' is eve and i played that tape to him over the phone - and words failed him for a moment ;-) just yesterday i think i 'convinced' him of the opposite when i remarked: well, strike out the g in vega and replace it with the v and what do you get?

later
updated my photo in the 'us' section. my sister took a couple of pictures of me today and most of them turned out to be like 'gee-who-is-that-guy-with-the-round-head-and-the-helmet-for-hairs?'. one was more or less alright and i sent it to eve. wonder whether she will continue writing now...?

right now i'm listening to the live version of 'harbor song'. listening to the cologne concert makes me ache so much so much for playing - it sounds so great, the songs are just great and mike's bass is breathtaking, and the drums are so transparent and, well there just aren't enough words to describe the beauty of the sound that these four people are creating and i long to be part of a sound again as well. compared to those songs, our nerve bible sessions sound really, really rough and amateurish!

i dreamed you were a rich girl and that i had no place to go and this is exactly the feeling that acompanies me tonight, that shares this room and the whole apartment, that is waiting in my bed and that has slipped under to covers that i had no place to go i came to you to see if you would take me in and will you even when my words won't make sense anymore, even when the writing fails, even when they are not new to you anymore when they are nothing but a buzzing that you have gotten used to, that you have become tired of? through golden curtains you told me you'd let me know well you drink for ten and you smoke for twenty and you do, don't you? you do again and your fickle heart will never be true and it never will, won't it. it never will ever but still i feel the wind in from the harbor that's when i know the longing for you, that's when i know the old longing for you i wonder whether this new longing is an old longing, i fear that the new longing will turn into the old longing, the old longing for something that i keep losing again and again i saw you in my mind's eye you were layed out on your final day whenever i hear this verse i have to think about rob and about his funeral and  how i stood in line to see that handsome face once more but they had closed to coffin so we stood there in one long line in front of it and instead of seeing him once more i was only staring at the pattern of the wood had been so dear to me i kissed you as you lay and the only thing left to do was to touch the cold, polished wood that was shining like the body of a guitar you were so dear to me i kissed you as you lay now whenever i do travel if to england portugal or spain as i do walk by the shipyards and the harbor i smell the salt and the bay rum of your ghost again i'm missing you, you have so many faces, you have so little faces, one that was covered with wood, one that i haven't seen for so many months that i can hardly remember it, one that i've never seen at all and one in which i hope to find all three again i know the salt and the bay rum and YOU BESIDE ME AGAIN

[march 15, 2002]
i've been sorting images all day long. from one folder to the other, grouping, categorizing, renaming, window-pop-up-coding. my eyes are aching now - but it's worth it ;o) - it will be a great book with a great cd-rom! went shopping at noon and bought some chips and prosecco for sunday night, just in case tara will escape the evil plannings of prof r. and i will finally 'complete' the present and do the 'concert'. i don't know what else to write. there is no end to fear. today i am estra-gone. tomorrow vladimir. it's not much of a day today. silver lining: letter from|to eve.

it's one in the morning. nadine came over tonight, and we talked, which was nice. tried to explain the concept of discoursive bodies and the mirror stage. failed miserably. it's ridiculous that i call myself a literary critic. it's pathetic [and i REALLY mean this - this is not some pitty fishing for compliments. i know where i'm standing, i do!] now i'm wide awake, even though i got up quite early this morning. i feel like writing something beautiful, something precious, something that will make you drop everything you're doing right now and make you come to me instantly. but i don't know what and i don't know how. i'm not paula, i'm not suzanne, i'm not even him who has found a way to your heart so easily, what did i do wrong? why did i lose that love of yours? what is it? i will never be able to let you anywhere near me again. i will never ever give you a chance again to hurt me as much as you did. it knocked me off my feet. it almost made me lose my mind. and this is meant literally. it almost cracked me up completely. because - and this hasn't happened before - there were times when i did not have words for the pain anymore. i only had pain for the pain then, and these moments REALLY scared me. i don't want to feel anything like that ever again. it i forgot to send congratulations and i did not even signed that letter [*]. no - i haven't forgotten. but i prefer not to think about it. i hope you understand this. please leave me! please! leave me finally! please i want to be free again. for a time without tears, for days without aching, for other arms, for eyes that are not tired of me, for a love that is mutual for somebody who stays with me stays with me stays with me! PLEASE leave me!! but you're doing it again. this very minute, this very moment as i try to wash you from my face and from my mouth and from my fingers. but there's no way to reach that scar on my heart. paula?

[march 16, 2002]
[*] got a letter yesterday from my former landlord which said that i have to write another notice singed by me AND xxxx since we both signed the contract. so i put a signed notice [and an explanation for her] in her mailbox yesterday that she can send to them in case she wants to move out. great tracks to listen to on repeat for more than two hours: leonard cohen 'boogie street' | aimee mann 'wise up' | indigo girls 'letter to eve' | peter gabriel & anne sexton 'mercy street' | track no. 10 from that kid loco cd that nadine gave me the other night.

didn't get enough sleep. i have packed my suitcases and bags and i'm going underground now! chasing some deros! see ya!

whoe! somebody's having great fun with me! yesterday night nadine and i started to argue about when i did that gig in the 'Fachhochschule'. i knew it must have been 1994 or 1995 so i said that i could check my old diaries, which i just did while i was making a cup of tea. and when i opened one from 1994/95 there was a small piece of paper pasted on one side. and it read: "gruppe 47, oliver mingers, henriettenstrasse..." and boy i have never in my life closed a book as fast as i did then! oh bad is this? he's even in my past.

the weather is beautiful: it's sunny and spring like. went for another 2 hour walk in the woods listening to selected songs from the cologne concert. thought a lot about eve. thought a lot in general. except for the thoughts about eve it did not make me happy.

just had a surprise call from reiner. he asked for the recordings of the new songs that we have been taping last rehearsal because - and i had almost already forgotten this! - we are planning to tape a demo on good friday, and the songs we've selected are: 'space walk', 'first day love', 'estragon' and either 'more life' oder 'moving'. ten minutes later i had a surprise visit from daniel who spent the week in bochum on some law-school. we talked about the recording the demo and he said that it's time to update the nerve bible pages of entropic empire, which i just did. so i added a small pop up window and i think we should create a completely new design for the pages.

i'll have dinner now, rehears the set for tomorrow and then i'll write to eve and paula. looking forward to that all day. thought a lot about eve. i've finally found a scan of that one photo of me that i like. i think i'm going to attach it - i don't really look like me but it's quite reassuring to know that when the light is right, and the focus is right, and there's a black|white film in the camera and i cover half of my face with my hand and you press the button of the shutter just at the right moment when i do NOT look like a total jerk the result might be a photo of somebody who looks slightly 'attractive' [the latter term used very broadly here].

just talked to nadine on the phone. she has read the online journal today for the very first time. she verbally shook her head in wonder about so much apparent strangeness: 'just WHY exactly do you do this? it's so...self reflective!' she said i was a too 'heady' sort of person and couldn't understand why i haven't met eve yet. also she asked me to change her name, which i just did. so from now on she'll be nadine. and i won't tell her where i got that name from :o)

[march 17, 2002]
it's just any beautiful, sunny and ordinary sunday. cedric & tara will visit today and spent the afternoon|evening with me which i think is exceptionally thoughtful and kind of them.

last night i started to write a mail to paula. then i delted it. then i started again and deleted it. when i woke up she had written a short and rather desperate mail.

later
it's 22:52, cedric & tara just left. i've emptied almost a whole bottle of prosecco on my own. they did not mention her or yesterday night with a single word and i was glad they didn't. it's good to know people whom you are proud to know.
[march 18, 2002]
woke in the middle of the night from scary dreams about arguing with a friend of hers, took a while to slow the heart rate down, woke again early this morning with headaches from the drinks last night. or the pizza. hard to say. we ordered three pizzas and they were pretty tasty but very greasy. this morning when i was doing the washing up i compared the grease spots on the paper boxes that they were delived in: tara's was the smallest, then came mine and cedric's was the biggest. who could have predicted!
Subject: Chamber music
Date: Sun, 17 Mar 2002 23:52:13 +0100
From: Schwagmeier <cornfield@xxxxx.de>
To: ph@entropic-empire.com

Dear You!

Just wanted to tell you how much Tara and I enjoyed the evening/night with you: What a beautiful and delicate 'Kammerkonzert' that was!!! You must be a wizzard or a magician: With the left hand moving so quietly and elegantly and that right one doing tricks that escape my eyes .... Such a pure beauty you are able to create, nearly unbelievable! And your voice in these times: either an old castle's cold hall or sword, a sharp-edged knife that easily finds what it wants to kill ... I have to admit that I have rarely been more impressed by your singing (& you know that I have seen many gigs of yours ...). You have hands of raining water!

Nighty night!
Yours
CEDRIC

worked all day on one bloody image/roll-over button index page for the hollow earth. eventually it worked and it looks quite nice. unless thomas finds anything that we still have to change. in which case i will have to do it all over again. from the questionaire that blaine sent the other week i got the idea to create a sort of questionaire for anybody who is visiting here and who feels like answering stupid questions. you can find it here. when i went to bring reiner a cd with the recordings we did last rehearsal i passed that church two blocks away where i|we used to live until two months ago. they are restoring the belfry so it was covered by a scaffolding and tarp which underlined it's tall, slim outlines that grew high into the blue sky. and i had to think about 'in liverpool' which i hereby declare to be song of the day:  'and the boy in the belfry | he's crazy | he's throwing himself | down from the top of the tower | like a hunchback in heaven | he's ringing the bells in the church | for the last half an hour | and it sounds like he's missing | something or someone that he knows | he can't have now | and if HE isn't | I CERTAINLY AM'

it's 21:27, the rain is drumming onto the streets in hard and endless strings, the water is rushing through the drains, gurgling and foaming. my small room is filled with the smell of candles and the light is very warm and very golden. paul simon is singing and how can you have such a brilliant idea as to use the sound of some sheep's bleating in your song. it's so sad. like a child's cry. 'and they sat among our photographs, examined every one' i wish i had met you already. i wish i had met you today, two persons are merging, i don't know what i'm feeling. there has been a quiet aching in my heart for you all day long. it is growing. it seems to grow with the music and still i can't do anything about it, i wouldn't stand it without the music here, it would be so quite in my flat, it would be so quiet. without your laughter which i don't know anymore. without the sound of you breathing in my ear as you hold me in your arms, i don't know what to do anymore i don't know what to do. 'the arc of a love affair | waiting to be restored | and tell me why | why won't you love for who i am | where i am?' and while i'm writing this you do the same, somewhere across the city, 'filled with warmth and light' and i know that whatever will happen you are the better, the unknown reason to cry for. my throat is burning, hurting from all the sharp memories i've swallowed. i don't want to ache any longer. i don't want to long any longer. i don't want to swallow any longer. i'm missing the image i've made of you. the chimes are clinging softly and muffled. they are close. they are far away. like you are. standing waist high in the middle of an endless corn field with your mouth torn open, screaming against a sky. i'm holding on to everything i have of you: words, voice, an image. a clinging substitute body, distributed by toys 'r' us, made in china. welcome to love land.

[march 19, 2002]
tiresome sleep with bad dreams featuring the usual suspects. gray morning. gray thoughts. bright sounds: eve's voice mixed with that kid loco track. 'ist das die geschichte, die ich erzählen will? ich bin nicht sicher. nicht wirklich sicher.' i'm here. where are you?
later
i'm fixing dinner [some fish dish with rice] and the oven is humming like a helicopter. cedric sent the introduction to his thesis over this morning and asked me to proofread it. sounded pretty convincing. talked to thomas on the phone today and mentioned that i won't be moving to cologne. i also told him about the reasons. about all of them. i didn't tell him the whole story behind eve, only that i'm starting to getting to know somebody. gee, if he knew that we haven't even met he would have joked like there was no tomorrow...

all day long the wind came in from the harbor. i've been listening to william orbit's interpretation of 'adagio for strings' when i went for a small walk by the shipyards and the harbor before it got dark. i smelled the salt and the bay rum.

[march 20, 2002]
Subject: Surprise, surprise!
Date: Wed, 20 Mar 2002 02:25:28 +0100
From: Schwagmeier <cornfield@xxxxx.de>
To: ph@entropic-empire.com

It might surprise you, but tonight I'm smelling the salt and the bay rum, too.
Can this be possible whilst listening to Fun Lovin' Criminals?
Is it 'allowed'?
...
"Ich kann's Ihnen leider nich' sagen ..."

Always yours,
CEDRIC.
 

Subject: By the way:
Date: Wed, 20 Mar 2002 02:35:46 +0100
From: Schwagmeier <cornfield@xxxxx.de>
To: ph@entropic-empire.com

Bought the new Patti Smith-Boxed-Set, today!

[march 21, 2002]
it's 9:17 in the morning, i'm sitting in my small apartment in cologne, heavy headed and waiting to go to the hairdresser. yesterday night blaine and i went to sirka's birthday party, which was quite nice. she and her friend have SUCH a great flat! 'altbau' with old wooden boards on the floor and the walls painted in warm, yellow-red-brownish colors! sirka's friend was cooking a meal which was very cedric-ish, except that it was a vegetarian dish. we left at one in the morning and it was really a nice evening. which was good because the day had been rather bad:

when i came to work thomas stood in the doorway of blaine's office and when saw me coming down the floor he said: 'the DFG has canceled out research project.' now maybe i should explain this: fundings for my job will expire in august and actually thomas had planned to get money for a research project on hypermedia that i should be working on then. and it would have secured my job for the next two years. the project would have been financed be the german research foundation. but they put us down! so this was really a blow because it means that quite practically i will lose my job in august.

now i wasn't really surprised because i was aware that there was a chance that they might decide against financing the project, but still i somehow felt freaked out. losing my fiancé, my home and my job within four months is really something i am not prepared for.

'fear is what i feel at the slow unraveling of me' the indigo girls are singing and I'm heading of now, I'll write more when i'm at the office.

later
i'm back in bielefeld already and it's night now. the ride back on the train wasn't that good. too many freakish thoughts. maybe more about that later. anyway yesterday thomas came into my office and he said: 'we've got to talk...' and what he had to say made me tremble inside because he said that he would try to find a way to secure my job and that i should not worry and then he tried to explain to me how he might rearrange the money that is available to keep me on the job but i couldn't really follow because i was so overwhelmed by a feeling of gratitude and the impression that i don't deserve all this attention and all his hard trying to secure MY future when he could get people that are much better than i am, much more devoted, much more well-read and better prepared and hard working for their careers and on their dissertations. i owe very, very much to him. and when i started to tell him how thankful i was i realized that i could hardly speak because i was so close to crying. and that's why tomorrow will be an internationalTHOMAS DAY! so you can look forward to this!

eve wrote a couple of worried mails when she heard about the research project being rejected. i wrote back to her tonight and started a mail to paula on the train:

paula -
i'm on the train, it's almost 7 and the sun is setting in the west in a big, red ball, coloring the clouds and the landscape that i'm passing through. it makes me think about you and i wonder whether you are okay. i wish i were with you. i wish i were with anybody. i could cry. the landscapes are surreal, emotional, under water and without sound. the live version of 'harbor song' comes on and the light outside is fading line by line, chord by chord, breath by breath that suzanne takes. i'm missing her as well. from all the projections and virtual persons in my life (including xxxx) she might be the biggest fiction. paula, i got an email from xxxx today and it only had one sentence: 'please call the university: mrs. mahkert (106-6253).' apparently it was just someone who had tried to reach me via my old number and xxxx wanted to let me know that i have to call back. and still it cracked me up. and although there's hardly any room for 'personal' interpretation in that short, matter of fact mail, it cracked me up. because i saw the time she sent it and it said: 00:05 and i thought about why she was up so late when she's supposed to work the other day and with whom she is staying so late at night and where is it that she just might have come from. it's so sick!
the colors in the sky are sublime. i wish *i* could create anything *this* beautiful in fading. i feel like i'm turning gray. like leaking. like losing my outlines. like melting into a warm pool of water. i'm so tired. tired of holding all the loose ends together. tired of keeping track. of untangling the strings. i want to curl up into a small blue thing and do whatever small, blue things do: just lie there, very quiet, very peaceful, very self-contained. but i'm not: i'm leaking all over. my skin is more of a net than anything else, unable to be a protection, unable to provide a structure...
i'm trying to get some sleep now! see you tomorrow on THOMAS DAY! and please: if you haven't filled out the questionaire yet feel free to do so! just click on talk-back in the menu! good night!
[march 22, 2002]
i've just come back from rehearsal. we have played the songs that we'll be recording next week and it went pretty well. but the important thing - of course - is that today is THOMAS DAY! so today you can learn more about you favorite online journal star! all his private secrets, his hidden feelings, his true self! here we go:

i met thomas for the first time when i was studying at bielefeld university. he was coming from aachen and he gave literature courses that sounded quite interesting. so i went to this course 'introduction to poststructuralism' and i remember the very first session when he gave us a two hour overview on the most important post|structuralist ideas and theories: from saussure to lacan and lyotard and derrida and barthes and foucault and baudrillard and deleuze and guattari. it was so intense and interesting and challenged all that i had thought about language, signs, texts and the world so much, that my legs were literally shaking when i left to room. i was so excited! one day i went to his office hours because i had questions concerning a term paper that i wanted to write and he asked me whether the course was too confusing and if one could actually follow his train of thoughts at all. and i don't know for which reason - because usually i'm not someone who's sort of 'confessing' something like this - but i told him that all this was so exciting to me that my legs were shaking in that first session. i still believe that this was the reason why he asked me a couple of weeks later to work for him. he was doing an introductory course and he needed two students who would help him prepare things and do tutorials. when he asked me i felt very unsure at first - i couldn't imagine myself standing in front to people explaining something that i hardly understood myself. but this was also the time when i and xxxx got together and she encouraged me to do it and so i said yes.

i did not know the other student that thomas had chosen. but when i mentioned his name to xxxx she said: 'well, i know him! he's a friend of tara' [who was|is one of xxxx's best friends]. and that's how i got to know cedric and tara. cedric and i became friends and we worked for thomas for a year, doing tutorials and other stuff and the three of us got along together very well. but then in 1998 thomas changed the university because he got a better job in hannover. still cedric and i had contact with him because we were still working on some projects together. and then in january 2000, shortly before i was doing my ma exam thomas called one day. and he said that he would become chair holder for american studies at cologne university and he asked me whether i would want to work for him there after i had finished my exams. i was so amazed - because i really hadn't expected an offer like that- that i did not know what to say. i had not thought a lot about what i would do after my exams. i somehow felt like doing my dissertation but i wasn't sure and whenever xxxx and i were talking about that i changed the subject and repressed the worries and the fear.

so i wasn't sure whether i should take his offer because it meant moving to cologne and we had just moved and renovated our new flat but xxxx said that i HAD to accept, that i would hate myself if i did not. and of course she was right. i mean it's ridiculous that i hesitated a single second because it was a once in a lifetime offer that other people would have killed me for! so since april 2000 i'm working for thomas in cologne. i kept living in bielefeld, just had a small room in cologne where i stayed two nights a week. there's nothing much to say about the job except that it's the best, the most interesting, the most challenging job you could think of. it's great. i know that i'm still not happy, and this is something that really troubles me because thomas has done more for me than i could ever make up for and i always feel like disappointing him because my carreer ambitions aren't that clearly developed and i do too many things that distract me [the band, the homepage, etc] so i will never be a literary critic who is as brilliant as he is. but then he's super human. i don't think i know anyone who is working as much as he does. i don't think that he is sleeping. ever. i think he just keeps on working 24 hours a day. it's really, really scary because besides working all the time he also has a wife and two daughters and he is always the first to know about the newest movies, musical trends and mtv videos.

so this is the story how i met thomas and why i'm working for him. we were talking on the phone today and suddenly we were talking about eve and he asked whether i was going to meet her today and i thought for a moment and then told him that we actually don't really know each other yet except through mails - which sort of amused him very much, not as much as i had expected, though. he made a couple of funny remarks and finally said that i and eve could move onto the same HOMEpage then and that we could sort of have a public relationship or something and i don't think that he realized how close to the truth he was this very moment. because of course he does not know anything about this online journal! :o) so much for THOMAS DAY!

[march 23, 2002]
uh! intense bad dremas dreams. woke up by hearing myself mutter: 'no! no! no!', my bret breath going fast and irregulary.

this noon i went for another walk since the sun was shining and it looked like spring outside. it didn't feel like it, though, because it was pretty cold. still i took the md player and when i crossed the park to walk up to the woods i listened to 'it makes me wonder' and while i was walking past the pond with both my hands buried deep within the pockets of my jeans the sun appeared from behind a cloud and warmed my face and suddenly the music became so intense that my hands could feel the goose-flesh crawling up my thighs through the lining of the pockets. music that matters.

eve wrote. she asked me whether i wanted to come to her place next tuesday. actually i had thought that our first meeting would be at some 'neutral' place, such as a bar or a pub. the obvious choice would have been a restaurant downtown that's called 'all about eve'. however we decided on meeting at her house to cook something together. we haven't worked out a menu yet but we both have insited on desert - and we have not meant it as suggestive as it sounds here! well, at least i haven't...

when i wrote [<= yeah! don't *you* wish!!] read the last pages of 'less than zero' by bret easton ellis [a novel we'll discuss in our course next semester which already starts in three weeks! shudder! we have over 50 registrations so far!] i must have closed my eyes and fallen asleep instantly. woke up an hour later after uneasy dreams and now my head feels like filled with lead. and if he isn't, i certainly am.

later
it's a quater past midnight, i've just come back from another walk through the park, and although i was wearing my winter coat and a scarf the cold crept in through the sleeves and snuggled up to me like a lost lover. the night is clear and a crescent moon was shining and all the stars were there except for you and while i was walking past the old and bare trees i remembered how we had been lying there on the grass in the sun this summer (and was it before or after our last holidays when we were in denmark where she took that photo of me, that one photo, the only photo that shows how i really look like: mouth covered, eyes wide open?) and we had been translating that sylvia plath poem for him and when i passed that same spot tonight i thought what an idiot i had been and kept biting my tongue so hard that i not only felt my lead head but could taste it, and the flavor dissovled in my mouth like a drop of ink dissolves in a glass of water. it was all quiet, hardly a car was driving by and when i was standing by the pond and saw the moon and the stars being mirrored in the water that looked like black ink and without a ground i thought about the closing lines of the mail that i had sent to paula shortly before i went outside:
paula, i hope you are okay. it's such a pity that you're in iowa. i'd really like to get drunk with you tonight and sing along to some suzyv songs or just keep on rambling about our fucked up lives. and when we're really pissed we could go outside and throw snowballs at each other. if there were snow. if we had some beers. if we were together.

[march 24, 2002]

talk about a jump start into the day! - the ringing of the phone woke me up at 10:30 [i've no idea why i still was sleeping then] and it was thomas and boy! was i awake quickly! i've just updated the 'answer' section of the questionaire [have YOU answered it already?] and now i'll be compiling a philip glass cd for eve. talk to you later...
later

The day with its cares and perplexities is ended and the night is now upon us. The night should be a time of peace and tranquility, a time to relax and be calm. We have need of a soothing story to banish the disturbing thoughts of the day, to set at rest our troubled minds, and put at ease our ruffled spirits.

And what sort of story shall we hear? Ah, it will be a familiar story, a story that is so very, very old, and yet it is so new. It is the old, old story of love.

Two lovers sat on a park bench, with their bodies touching each other, holding hands in the moonlight.

There was silence between them. So profound was their love for each other, they needed no words to express it. And so they sat in silence, on a park bench, with their bodies touching, holding hands in the moonlight.

Finally she spoke. "Do you love me, John?" she asked. "You know I love you, darling," he replied. "I love you more than tongue can tell. You are the light of my life, my sun, moon and stars. You are my everything. Without you I have no reason for being."

Again there was silence as the two lovers sat on a park bench, their bodies touching, holding hands in the moonlight. Once more she spoke. "How much do you love me, John?" she asked. He answered: "How much do I love you? Count the stars in the sky. Measure the waters of the oceans with a teaspoon. Number the grains of sand on the sea shore. Impossible, you say?"

"Yes and it is just as impossible for me to say how much I love you."

"My love for you is higher than the heavens, deeper than Hades, and broader than the earth. It has no limits, no bounds. Everything must have an ending except my love for you."

There was more of silence as the two lovers sat on a park bench with their bodies touching, holding hands in the moonlight.

Once more her voice was heard. "Kiss me, John," she implored. And leaning over, he pressed his lips warmly to hers in fervent osculation.

[Samuel M. Johnson: 'Lovers on a Park Bench']

life sucks.
[march 26, 2002]
sorry, no entry yesterday. i was with cedric and tara in herford and stayed the night. and since somebody complaint that there aren't enough images i have scanned a postcard from herford:
it's 9 am, i'm on my way back from herford to bielefeld. i've spent the night at cedric & tara's which was fun. i hadn't seen tara for quite some time because she was in tübingen where she's got a new job at the university (or, to say it more frankly, where she's making the hell of a career!) the sun is shining, the tress and bushes are starting to bloom and spring is in the air like the opening chords of 'i'll never be your maggie may'. last night i've emptied a whole bottle of champagne on my own. i hope this isn't going to become a habit. and actually it wasn't planned. but when i was standing in the corridor of cedric's house i sort of had these flashbacks of that last day, that sunday in december when i saw xxxx for the last time and she hugged me good-bye for ever and said: 'i will think of you a lot in the next days' and then she went to him and stayed there ever since. cedric & tara had a big, brown paper bag that xxxx gave them with all the things that i had forgotten when i moved out of our apartment in january. and on top of it was that small wooden box. and inside it was an even smaller, heartshaped box made of cardboard & fabric and in it was that small chime she gave me when we came together. 'whenever you need me you can ring the bell, and then i'll be there' she had said and to find that chime in the box in the other box on top of the brown bag with all the stuff yesterday night almost made me send it back to her with a note that read: 'screw you! verarschen kann ich mich selber!' but i didn't. i bought a bottle of champagne instead.

when i got back from herford i went shopping and then i wanted to return that drama script that nadine is working on back to her because she needed it today. so i went walking to her house and then i though: i might as well go for a small round in the park. and when i was in the park i thought: i might as well walk up the hill. and when i was up on the hill i thought: i might as well walk through the woods. and so i ended up doing the usual round again and while i was walking i kept wondering whether all this wandering around is the attempt to walk AWAY from or TOWARDS something. i really don't know. here's the rough confusing and distressing order of emotions that i had|ve when i think about the blue box and the heartshaped boy box and the chime inside of it: hurt (sharp and short), anger (a couple of seconds), hurt (a couple of seconds), humiliation mixed with anger which turns to humiliation mixed with hurt, disappointment (a minute or so), solitude, solitude, solitude (for very long), anger with myself because i keep thinking and thinking and thinking, discouragement, the wish to be able to be happy when she is, bitterness (some seconds), happiness that i'm finally rid of a person who did all this to me (very short), pain that i've finally lost the person who did all this to me, the wish to erase the last five years, and eventually the idea to buy a bottle of champagne.

tonight i will go over to eve's place and we will finally get to know each other - unless something unexpected happens, like that i *really* have just invented her ;o). i'm wearing paula's yellow|orange yankton t-shirt: firstly because it matches the blue sweater very well and second because it might bring me luck. we'll see. sunday night eve sent over a photo of herself. in the picture i have of you you're standing all alone, on your own in a gray room, with gray walls, and the frameless mirror is like a window, standing on the floor and leaning against the wall unevenly. your figure reflected and the reflection caught in the camera you're holding in your hand, arm pressed against your body to keep it from trembling that short moment when you take a picture of an image of you: already framed, already mirror reverse, already leaning against the wall unevenly. giving away nothing about your eyes, nothing about your lips, nothing about your neck, nothing about you. except for a blurred reflection and since i can't really recognize anything on it i can see everything: how you think about which clothes would make a nice contrast on the black&white film, the way you brush that strand of hair behind your ear, the way you hold your breath, the way you straighten your shoulders and try to look earnest but friendly. cedric & tara were quite impressed by the photo as well. tomorrow i'll be off to cologne again, meeting thomas and blaine. right now cheralee dillon is singing: 'give me more line. give me more line. i've got to find heaven. i've got to find...'

[march 28, 2002]
it was a turbulent day in cologne yesterday and i did not manage to update the journal. meeting eve was very, very nice. we had a great eve:ning (sorry, couldn't resist!) and we talked until half past one in the morning and i missed the last tram. she has a great flat! high ceilings, very art nouveau, 70qm and very, very cheap! i think we both felt very comfortable and we basically continued our conversation in 'realtime' as pleasently as in the mails. hope to see her again at the end of the week.

today is another hollow earth day: i will start editing the articles, meaning that i will do the unifying line make-up etc. so we can send the articles that bernd has translated to the respective authors for authorization.

later
tonight we're going to prepare everything for recording the demo tomorrow. i'm pretty excited about it and i hope that the sound will be okay. we need a relaxed drum sound for 'space walk'. also we need to play 'first day love' a couple of times to get a feel for the parts and to work out some contrasts. i've put new strings on my guitar to get the best sound out of it - last week reiner mentioned something about a 'taylor' guitar they're selling (he's working in a guitar shop) and which must sound fantastic. he said that i wouldn't want to play any other guitar again once i have tried out the taylor. unfortunately it costs 2000 euros. so if YOU might have some money left and really want to light up my day you know what to do! and if you don't have any money left but still want to brighten up my day than you can fill out the questionaire [click on 'talk back'].
[march 29, 2002]
the day is almost over. i've just talked to eve on the phone and we will meet on monday :o)

i've spent all morning wiping the floor and picking up the apartment, windows wide open and joni mitchell's 'coming from the cold' on repeat. today was the very first day of spring it seemed. it was warmer than inside and the air was filled with all these things the air is filled with when it is spring. so it was the perfect day to lock yourself in a rehearsal room for four hours and record a couple of songs. which we did. it went pretty well, i think. tomorrow i will add the vocals and then the new demo will be ready. i think the sound is very different from the old nerve bible style.

it's 23:47 now and i'm tired. still i wish eve and i had not talked on the phone but in person and i catch myself wondering what it would be like if she were here right now. maybe BECAUSE i am tired. i think she is somebody that i can be tired with.

[march 30, 2002]
i've spent all day adding the vocals to the instrumental parts - but it's not a good day to do so. it's one of those days when i'm not pleased by anything i do: right now i'm listening to the mixed versions of the songs on the stereo and i have made out a thousand false notes in the vocals so far. seems like i have to do it all over again. also, i have crap headphones! so i don't get the 'original' sound when i'm mixing the tracks. i ahve have to put them on a cd first before i can really see whether the voice is too loud or the bass too dominant. plus my guitar sounds horrible: it's way too high and not warm enough. anyway, i'm too tired to do all the vocals all over again today, so it will have to wait until tomorrow or monday or tuesday.

went for a long walk in the evening. it was quite nice today again, although not as sunny as yesterday - but the smell was the same. the smell of spring. i'm not sure whether i like it. am i ready for spring yet? i think i did a bad mistake when i went to meet eve. because i was really, really careful not to see her as a second xxxx but as a first eve, i did not want to compare them. and still i think i had hoped to find that feeling of familiarity, of closeness, of intimacy, of all that had been grown in five years of relationship with xxxx, to find these same feelings with eve. which i of course did not. it's stupid to think that i could find this anywhere again. even if xxxx would stand in front of the door now the feelings would have been lost forever and something new would have to start. 'and what i've lost | won't come back.' the same with eve. i can't just continue where the relationship with xxxx broke down. i have to start from the beginning again. maybe that was what i was so afraid of: to start something new, to build it up from the scratch, the have faith and patience until the feeling of intimacy and closeness will move into my heart again. does this make sense?

so on an abstract level i DID expect eve to be like xxxx. well, i hope it has been the first and the last time. we will meet on monday, and i'm very much looking forward to that.

[march 31, 2002 - easter sunday]
i went for a long walk today again. when i came back from my parents i had a mail from paula, and even though i had just spent the morning with my parents in the house that i had grown up in, her words gave me a much deeper sense of familiarity and comfort than i had felt all morning. i changed and put on some light clothes because it was quite warm today, and i decided for paula's yankton college t-shirt. and when i was pulling it over my head and i felt the fabric falling on my skin softly it soothed me, it was like coming home. when i was walking through the park i wore it almsot almost with pride, like a medal: shoulders straight, head high and the bright orange must have shone through the entire park. it gave me self esteem. it dignified me. it held together the pieces of a broken heart.

while walking i listened to an old md and on it was a song from the cd blaine compiled for me to prove that he IS interested in singer/songwriters and not just in funky dance music. it was a song by dunkan sheik and in one of my last attempts to save the relationship with xxxx back in november i tried to write down what i think has gone wrong and how i think that she must be feeling about me and i used that song to do it, because i thought that this was the way she was feeling: being barely able to breathe and having the wish to break out. but hwne when i was listening to it for the first time in months today i realized with amazement that it is NOT her voice, that this is not HER point of view, BUT MY VERY OWN!! THAT IT IS ABOUT ME; THAT IT IS WHAT *I* AM FEELING!! and i almost started to sing along to it aloud...

I know what youíre doing, I see it all to clear | I only taste the saline when I kiss away your tears | You really had me going, wishing on a star | But the black holes that surround you are heavier by far | I believed in your confusion, you were so completely torn | Well it must have been that yesterday was the day that I was born | Thereís not much to examine, thereís nothing left to hide | You really canít be serious if you have to ask me why | I say good-bye... | ĎCause I am barely breathing | And I canít find the air | I donít know who Iím kidding | Imagining you care | And I could stand here waiting | A fool for another day | But I donít suppose itís worth the price, worth the price | The price that I would pay | Everyone keeps asking, whatís it all about? | I used to be so certain and I canít figure out | What is this attraction? I only feel the pain | Thereís nothing left to reason and only you to blame | Will it ever change? | Iíve come to find | I may never know | Your changing mind | Is it friend or foe? | I rise above | Or sink below | With every time | You come and go | Please donít come and go | ĎCause I am barely breathing | And I canít find the air | I donít know who Iím kidding | Imagining you care | And I could stand here waiting | A fool for another day | But I donít suppose itís worth the price, worth the price | The price that I would pay | But Iím thinking it over anyway...
and for some reason the song gave me strength, if only for a couple of minutes. maybe because i felt that this was some sort of reappropriation of all the songs that i have lost to her, the songs that she took with her when she went.

in the meantime it's gotten dark and the air outside is thick with the smell of the easter fires that have been burned all over town today. the air inside however is filled with the deep, deep voice of leonard mumbling 'boogie street'. for the 23rd time tonight. so tomorrow eve and i will meet. what will happen? will we still like each other? will we discuss quantum theory? will she stay the whole evening? there's a cliffhanger for you! so make sure to check back in april! and for god's sake!: fill out that questionnaire!! see ya!