Dallas, TX, 30th September 2014
In the afternoon of the show I hook up with old friends the Kresses who in a replay of 1986 have come down from Little Rock, Arkansas to see me. We have a lovely lunch in Deep Ellum and swap tales of death, disease and the absurdity of life as their three charming kids suffer us incredibly politely. They are very widely travelled people and their stories are fascinating. This puts me in what I can only describe as a good mood, a state of existence I am barely familiar with. They have brought me gifts, one of which is a mini photo album from ’88 when they were backpacking through Europe where we all look like fucking babies. It’s shocking. I actually don’t recognise myself. Fuck me – what happened to THAT guy?
I find myself actually relaxing by the pool before showtime. I have even removed my boots. This is all too weird. I’m perilously close to having a good time. The pool is on a deck on the ninth floor and Dallas rush hour traffics coughs out its effluent all around below. It feels like a scene from Point Blank, all CinemaScope panoramas and hard angles with a generous helping of 1960s beige. I have brought my James Ellroy tome but it remains unopened as I obsessively dab at my greasy screen. All of Christendom is filtered through this tiny window, the knowledge of the world, images from space, live streams from a not-so-distant war.
Dusk falls on Dallas like unloosened velvet. The streetcars down on Pacific Avenue clang with a gentle peal as flocks of starlings mass in the trees emitting high-pitched protest, hysterical until the sun sinks, then suddenly silent. All the thundering city surrounds my lofty perch. Night arrives with its creeping fatigue and I ready myself for a show.