Wednesday, December 8, 2010

(part 221) THE MONSTER

“The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There’s also a negative side.”
- Hunter S Thompson

For me the monster was the music business and my involvement in it, or not, as the case may be. The continual up and down, as it related to making records and trying to do something with them, had finally done to me sober what it had done to me loaded.

It had trashed every dream and every desire I had ever had about being in the music business. I was broken inside like a clock. My main spring was damaged in a way that left me unwilling to reach out to anyone where music was concerned.

I didn't dare participate for fear of being sucked back into another attempt at success. The monster had kicked the shit out of me one too many times, and I saw clearly the wreckage of my life in bold technicolor terms.

Like a reluctant soldier, I admitted defeat and turned away from the battlefield of my dreams. I retreated, and wandered off into the land of isolation, the land of nobody.

I stopped talking about music and playing. I cursed my life and God for my abilities. I wished I had never written a single song or ever made a record, but mostly I cursed ever wanting to.

The young boy in Tucson, Arizona in the 50's, and his decision to be a star was now the cause of my despair rather than my salvation. I looked back in time at him, wishing in vain that he not follow his dream.

There was nothing and no one to turn to. No place of safety from the monster. It was out there lurking. It's minions were everywhere, spread out across the city.

A casual hello could lead to a conversation that once again might lure me into foolishness. A chance meeting in a coffee shop; the catalyst for further regret.

"I have to be careful from now on," I thought, "that little prick is still a child and doesn't know any better... even now."

I stayed here and there with different people from the program, but the sense of isolation was too deeply etched in my soul. I didn't believe anybody really understood or cared what had happened to me.

I tried a thousand times to explain to someone the damage that had been done, but their eyes always gave them away, always said clearly, "Get over it Bobby. Give yourself and everybody else a break, will you?"

I always left, I always had to. I could not do what they wanted, what they expected. I was trapped inside myself. I was in there, but no one could see me, hear me, or contact me.

I knew what was happening, but could not prevent it. Others saw my face and my body, and that's who they talked to, but way down inside that shell was me, screaming for help and finding none. Falling into myself like a collapsing building.

I stared out at life like a man in a cell. I kept to myself, occasionally making contact with the living for brief periods, only to retract again and lose myself in the dark aloneness of my existence.