He’d played this often when I first got to know him, a few months earlier. Sprung from a sheltered upbringing impossibly innocent, and with a yearning for excitement, I suppose I was something of a mark.
I was so beguiled (and inebriated) I can’t actually remember what, if anything, was on the turntable, but I regret (amongst other things) that it wasn’t Breakfast or Song to the Siren.
Like a remnant of shrapnel, buried and forgotten, until years later, on an early train south, watching from the window a storm offshore and listening for the first time to You Are The Quarry. Morrissey sang Come Back to Camden as if he really meant it, against that big fake string arrangement, and I wondered if I’d ever wanted anyone so acutely. Admiring the great thunderclouds far out at sea, I remembered.
At the cinema that evening, I saw 2046, which spoke to me about the impossibility of substitution. In the days afterward, I realised that I’d spent years trying (and failing, of course) to recapture something of that intensity. In the days after that, I realised that I should have been alerted by his bloody awful taste in music.