I laugh. I’ve been laughing a lot lately. And by lately I mean for the past hour. Really happy ecstatic laughter. Cloud nine. It didn’t start out that way today though it did start out rather pleasantly. I followed Bill’s advice and arranged for a car service to pick me up in Bokeyland and drive me to the office.
So my morning routine hadn’t really changed except for not having to take the bus. A nice ride into the city at work at 7:30AM. Sweet. Would be nice to travel that way everyday but we know that ain’t gonna happen.
Puttered around the office doing this and that before I had to run off to the Waldorf Astoria for breakfast. Not warm bagels and too many bleary eyed people, quite a few hung over from the night before. I had a bagel, some coffee and split back to the office. Only a handful of people and they were all good people in the office. Nice.
Sat at the desk and surfed and fielded many phone calls which I translated and sent to various blackberries. It was hectic but manageable. A few times I had to leave the office, run to the Waldorf, run back to the office. It was ok by me, I’d have a smoke and play the Ipod, and at the end of each errand there would sometimes be food as a reward.
The afternoon was planned with Bowling in the Village followed by dinner at the Waldorf. A bus was rented and it’s too bad that Bill wasn’t driving it. That would’ve been nice but wasn’t to be. I got to the bowling alley, for some team building exercises. I don’t usually go for this type of thing, but since beer would be involved, I was game.
Very Homer Simpson no? To make things more Simpson-esque, our team was name Pin Pals which was the name of the team that Homer was on, sponsored by Mr. Burns. Out of six teams the Pin Pals finished third. Right smack dab in da middle. That was ok by me. Zen like wouldn’t you say?
Drinking Stella, drinking Heinekens, eating bowling alley food, chicken fingers and French fries. Even the ‘Minor Character’ made an appearance and though she participated in the team building exercises, she made it clear to thirty of her coworkers that she was not part of anyone’s team. She made it known by talking constantly on her cell phone, putting it in her pocket when it was her turn to throw a ball from between her legs, using two hands towards the pins which more than likely had a certain phallic appeal to her bowlegged self.
Of course, it was impossible to have a conversation without having to yell over the din of falling, crashing pins, and loud 1980’s rock music played very loud. A few people, myself included felt that there was probably no one on the other end of the line. Or she was calling a very bad bowling instructor.
She left as soon as possible after putting on her whorish stiletto boots and walking down the alley as if she was on a runway in Tehran. The rest of us, after bowling was finished, got on a bus that drove us back to the Waldorf. Christina and I went upstairs with Karen and Carla, two lovelies from the UK office who had their husbands waiting for them in their rooms.
Very handsome chaps I might add. It was beer beer beer all afternoon. More beer before dinner, beer during dinner, beer after dinner. And I went outside for a fag. Meaning cigarette, British slang love.
I was outside with some of the goodies from work having a smoke when I thought I saw Pete Shelley from the Buzzcocks. My coworkers went back in and I lingered. The guy I thought was Pete Shelley, turned and looked at me.
It was then that I asked him if he was Mick Jones. Mick Jones from the Clash. It was. I died. I screamed. I creamed. I called him Joe, as in Joe Strummer. Realizing my mistake I grab him by the shoulders and tell him I’m sorry I didn’t mean that. He smiled and said it happens all the time. I grab him and say loudly to him ‘I KNOW WHO YOU ARE!’
I try to prove that I am more than a casual fan and toss him a line from his band post-Clash, Big Audio Dynamite. He tells me where that line comes from, the line being, “The White man has left me here with nothing but the underworld and that is where I stand. Where do YOU stand?”
Mick Jones tells me it’s from ‘The Cotton Club’. I have my camera inside the restaurant and ask if he wait so I’d get a picture. I am gushing and noticeably thrilled to meet him. I’m sure I looked scary. Mick said no, sorry. In a hurry you know. That’s cool. I should’ve said it’s in the restaurant but I didn’t know what was going on. He started walking away and all I can say was ‘Keep up the good work’ which I thought was rather nice, meaning he’s still got some good work ahead of him
I walked through the Waldorf Astoria lobby saying quite loudly, ‘Holy Shit! Mick Jones!’. Said it a few times. I was clearly walking on air. Told a few coworkers about meeting Mick Jones from the Clash. No one knew who he was really. One person, Katja did. She’s a hipster like me from San Francisco. Mad cool even. She was excited and jealous.
I called up Rita and she was excited. We reminisced about seeing Big Audio Dynamite at Irving Plaza back in the day. I called up Miriam who was very excited and told me she was downloading Clash songs. She proved this by playing it over her cell phone to my cell phone.
Oh it was great. I had a car service bring me back to Bokeyland again. That’s not gonna happen again for a while. The driver let me smoke which was a big deal and earned him a 15-dollar tip courtesy of Wanker Banker. Hey it was sanctioned. They don’t like the tip, I’ll give them fifteen dollars back. I was still giddy from meeting Mick Jones and the driver noticed. He didn’t know who Mick Jones was but understood when I told him that I sometimes play guitar and this was meeting someone who was an influence and a hero to me. He asked if it was a dream come true and I said no not really since I had never dreamed I’d meet Mick or Paul or Topper. I would’ve loved to have met Joe Strummer but Joe passed away a few years ago before Christmas holiday.
I can’t believe I called Mick, Joe. He was cool about it though. I guess he’s comfortable with the fact that everything he does from now on will be judged by the work he did with the Clash, specifically the songs he wrote with Joe Strummer.
It’s about two hours later, and I’m still buzzing from it all. I told Bill and left a few voice mails for some friends and family. It will probably be Clash weekend for me, which is more than fine by me.
I told Mick that I had Big Audio Dynamite, or BAD, on my Ipod. I found out that they were a casualty of the Ipod breakdown a few weeks ago. I immediately added the first two BAD records to my Itunes legitimately. Paying tribute to Mick and the Clash, literally and figuratively.
I resolve not to leave the camera anywhere from now on, it would be good for visual documentation, but this document will have to do.
I forgot to buy a lottery ticket for the mega millions tonight. 200 million or something.
I think I won a different lottery. A karmic lottery perhaps.
Wow. Mick Fuckin Jones! Holy shit!