The Second Thing to Go

Last Weekend.Guitar

Mike Pearce and I get together for beers. We haven’t seen each other in fifteen years. He brings his girlfriend, who I have not met.

He makes a comment – something about ‘Are you now or have you ever been’. I acknowledge the McCarthy reference but he shakes his head. I suddenly realize he’s making a sly reference to a song I wrote back in the day called ‘The Enemy Within’. I’m touched. It’s really REALLY nice when people remember something you’ve created so many years later.

Mike starts to tell a story about something that happened thirty years ago, in the early ‘80s.

“Do you remember that time that you and Paul (Another friend of ours) came over to my apartment in Tustin? We were jamming in the living room – recording on my little four-track with two microphones in stereo.”

We never jammed that much, unless we were playing a party. So this is starting to ring a bell. And we NEVER recorded anything, except for…

Mike turns to his girlfriend, who is ten years our junior. ““Do you know that Beatles song? Do you know how ‘Back in the U.S.S.R.’ starts? You know, with the jet flying through in stereo.”

She knows.

He looks back at me. “I hit the record button, and just as the tape starts rolling, a motorcycle started coming down the street outside.”
It’s coming back to me now.

“We counted off and started playing the intro as the motorcycle approached. Then it passed and faded as we went into the verse.”
It’s a great memory. I haven’t thought of that in many years. The coincidence of the motorcycle’s passing at that precise moment speaks to me as an artist.

I ask him:

“Do you mean that apartment in Tustin where you and I lived?”

He stops. His face goes blank.

His girlfriend looks at him and laughs.

“On Walnut. At Redhill. The Briarwood Apartments.”

“Oh my God!” he exclaims. “I totally forgot that we lived together.”

For a year. So much for HIS memory.

But he remembered the lyrics to a song I wrote.

I say forgive and forget.