Sunday, June 17, 2007

Odd Encounter...

A few days ago, I was going into a sandwich shop and spotted an old acquaintance. He hadn't noticed me, and honestly, I would have been ok if he never did, but as i crept closer to the sandwich pickup spot, I passed within inches of his table, and our eyes met.

It was Matt, the saxophonist from my high school rock band PG13. Ok - it was 1984-1986. We loved INXS. We played half covers, half originals, and weren't half bad... but we did have a saxophonist, and he loved to play. He played on and over every single song we wrote - no matter if we were singing, a guitar solo, whatever, there was this honking going on at all times. And he was WAY more serious about "The Band" than any of the rest of us combined - he really wanted to go to the top.

He was also a very mean person in some ways: his screamed phone conversations with his mother during band practices were equal parts hilarious and chilling - we weren't sure if both would survive. He also had some very non-sequiteur expressions: Talking about a family that was "Old World", he said "Old world? Third world! Probably squeezing out babies right now". This was about a polish maestro and his son our good friend. Bizarre.

Things with Matt after the band got strange(r) - he got into fast motorcycles, went off to a music college, tried to get my mom to co-sign on a loan for a soprano saxophone. I saw him every few years after that - suddenly he was a bouncer at William's pub? I heard second hand that he had created a combination Bass and Sax, which made no sense, because during a sax solo, wouldn't you still need the bass going?

So now I see him again, and he's looking like a Gym Rat, with a shockingly young miss thang with a bare midriff, improbable chest, and "Diva" printed across her bum. He gives me a very mild "hey" and asks "so are you still doing that thing you were doing last time we met?" - possibly the most effective way of saying "I don't remember, nor do I care what your life is". So I said yes, gave him the 10 second update. He shared that he owns a Gym not far away... and that's it.

So we parted ways... in truth, we were never friends, just co-workers in a band, and without that context, there just isn't much to relate. I refused to ask the question "do you still do music". That feels like I'd be trying to connect, and this is a guy I don't need to connect with.

No big lesson here, and not a hilarious story - just an odd encounter with the past.

1 comment:

maman said...

Oh, I had forgotten his name. He was adopted and made much of the fact, imagined himself the spawn of IMPORTANT Colombians living quite by mistake a middle class life in MN. I was there when he made the "popping out" comment - it was the first time I heard it and like you I was shocked. Later, when I heard Pam in early marriage tell me she was going to pop out babies I thought "Hmmm, there's that phrase again. It must be what the young folk are saying these days." And it is. I've thought over the years that he was one of the things wrong with PG13 - as you say, he never ever let up on that sax.