Dragostea in epoca printului | Michael Gonzales

In august 1982, cu doua luni inainte de lansarea operei electrice pop-soul prin Prince 1999 , cel mai bun prieten al meu Jerry Rodriguez si cu mine am urmarit clipul de performanta al primului single al albumului auto-intitulat, atunci cand a jucat pe ecranul video de 30 de metri la locul nostru de noapte preferat, Ritz. Imbracata intr-un costum vintage intunecat si adidasi albi, eram un student in varsta de nouasprezece ani la Long Island University, care petrecea mai mult timp ratacind cluburi intunecate decat studiau. Dupa ce am devenit baieti, Jerry si cu mine vom lua trenul D in oras din apartamentul sau din Brooklyn, unde, de obicei, ajungem la Ritz cu taxa de acoperire de cinci dolari, sistemul de sunet care arunca urechile si bauturile ieftine.

Buzz pe ceaiuri cu gheata din Long Island, miscarile mele de dans sacadat s-au oprit brusc cand am auzit coardele tastaturii bubuind. Intorcandu-ma, m-am uitat cu uimire la spectacolul proiectat pe ecran. Purtand un palton purpuriu curgator si cizme cu toc inalt, Prince semana cu un futurist Dr. Strange pas cu pas in timp si spatiu, pentru a ne avertiza simpli muritori ai apocalipsei viitoare care se va intampla in 1999. matrimoniale mures reghin „Eram dreamin” cand am scris asta, iarta daca ma rataceste, canta el, dar cand m-am trezit azi-dimineata, as fi putut sa jur ca a fost ziua judecatii.

In urmatoarele cateva minute, trantind sonic, dand din cap spre socul viitor care se inlatura prin difuzoare. Pe plan muzical, Prince a facut o melodie care a fost, cel putin pentru mine, cel mai bun single new wave si cel mai bun funk al acelui an. Liric, a ras in fata lui Armageddon in timp ce isi agita fundul pana in zori. Pe masura ce lumea era ravnita de anihilarea nucleara, Prince tocmai incepea petrecerea.

Cand in 1999 a fost lansat definitiv in octombrie, am cumparat albumul la Disc-O-Mat in centrul orasului si am abandonat scoala pentru restul zilei. Mergand inapoi acasa la Harlem, am cumparat un sac de negru chucky si m-am retras in dormitor pentru restul zilei. matrimoniale barbatii Dupa ce am alunecat manecile lucioase pentru poza (pe una arata un Bowie negru, in timp ce pe celalalt era o poza semi-nuda a lui Prince in pat, cu vopsele in acuarela si o pagina goala), iar pentru restul zilei, am facut cu ochiul si a jucat recorduri.

De la petrecerea de deschidere de la zero si vocea robotica a lui Dumnezeu declarand: „Nu va faceti griji, nu va voi rani, vreau doar sa ma distrez” la balada mocnitoare „International Lover” care inchide over-an-ul. – O experienta fonica lunga, albumul a fost profetic („1999”), hedonistic („Sa pretindem ca suntem casatoriti”), spiritual („gratuit”), sexy („Red Red Corvette”) si sinistru („Something” in apa ”) si vizionare colectiva.

Pana in ziua de azi, 1999 ramane albumul meu personal preferat Prince, castigand peste Purple Rain sau Sign O ‘the Times . 1999 m-a dus de la simpla fandom la cea mai profunda dragoste pentru om si pentru arta sa. Un muzician inversunat care se ridica constant, facandu-ma sa „ia in considerare misterul maretiei umane”, asa cum scria Ralph Ellison. Dupa ce am auzit 1999 , nu as intalni nicio femeie care nu era cu Prince. matrimoniale braila publi 24

In timp ce albumul canta din nou si din nou, m-am intins pe patul cu foi albastre studiind arta albumului bizarro. Aruncand o privire la frapanta purpurie pentru ceea ce se simtea pentru totdeauna. Numele printului si titlul albumului au fost zguduite intr-o cruditate in stil graffiti, care seamana cu desenele de baie ale baietilor si ciudatenia desenelor desenate ale lui Pedro Bell pentru albumele P-Funk. Pietrat din buruieni, ochii mei rosii au revenit constant la titlul 1999.

Jucand un joc prostesc cu mine insumi, am calculat ca in 1999 aveam treizeci si sase de ani, ceea ce pentru eu, in varsta de nouasprezece ani, parea stravechi, prafuit ca un vechi disc. Daca as avea acces la o bila de cristal, ce as vedea exact in viitorul meu? As fi un romancier celebru care discuta cu Dick Cavett pe PBS? As fi casatorit cu prietena mea de la colegiu Denise si as trai in Long Island cu copiii nostri de badass? Sau cine stie, poate ca Prince era pe niste rahaturi Nostradamus si cerul avea sa devina purpuriu, urmat de distrugere.

In adevaratul 1999, in timp ce planeta nu a pierit in acel an, pentru mine si lumea mica pe care am locuit-o, totul s-a oprit la 3 august, la doua luni dupa treizeci si sasea mea zi de nastere, cand calaream in in spatele ambulantei cu prietena mea de lunga vreme Lesley Pitts. agentii matrimoniale iasi Intinsa pe o gura, a fost dusa din apartamentul nostru de la etajul intai din Chelsea, pe strada 22, pana la Spitalul St. Vincent, dupa ce s-a plans de o durere de cap si de lipsa respiratiei. Aplecandu-ma peste ea, am mormait ceva linistitor.

Cititoare in mai multe feluri, Lesley era fana a surorilor sarcastice literare (Dorothy Parker, Fran Lebowitz) si din ziua in care ne-am intalnit nu a fost niciodata una care sa-si muste limba. Privindu-ma, mi-a spus: „Stii ca asta nu e corect, nu?”

“Despre ce vorbesti?”

– Ei bine, tu esti cel care ii place sa stea toata noaptea si sa faca droguri, de ce sunt eu cel care sta in spatele unei ambulante pe moarte? Lesley era publicist, o profesie care duce adesea la exagerare. In cei opt ani in care am fost impreuna, auzisem mai mult de cateva exagerari si m-am gandit ca speculatiile ei despre moarte erau pur si simplu altele.

Cu cateva ore inainte, am fi fost in dormitor de rezerva pe care am folosit ca un birou, ceea ce face ca pe niste adolescenti excitat in timp ce ascultati un avans de viitoare Me’shell Ndegeocello lui Bitter album. paturi matrimoniale second hand iasi Cu cateva ore inainte, ea m-a sarutat salbatic, nebuneste, si apoi m-a intrebat daca am vreo intentie, dupa toti acesti ani impreuna, sa ma casatoreasca vreodata cu ea. – Bineinteles, am spus, stiind ca aceasta a fost raspunsul corect.

Lesley era cu trei ani mai tanara decat mine. Cand am inceput sa ne intalnim cu opt ani inainte, ea s-a opus sa se casatoreasca, sa aiba copii, sa ia metroul si sa locuiasca in Brooklyn, dar oamenii se schimba si la fel isi fac nevoile. Cu cateva ore inainte, faceam planuri pentru viitor.

„Nu mori”, am spus ca si cum as sti ceva. Nu stiam nimic. saituri de matrimoniale cu numere de telefon

*

In august 1991, intr-o dupa-amiaza de vara diferita, Lesley si cu mine ne-am intalnit din intamplare cand partenerul meu de atunci scris Havelock Nelson si cu mine am parasit o intalnire la Random House, a carei divizie de carti muzicale Harmony publica publicatia noastra Bring the Noise: A Guide to Muzica rap si cultura hip-hop . Desi termenul de „scriitor hip-hop” nu era inca folosit, atat Havelock cat si eu am scris despre muzica rap pentru diverse publicatii. In timp ce cartea noastra a fost programata pentru lansare trei luni mai tarziu, intalnirea a fost sa vorbim despre petrecerea de carte Random House a refuzat sa plateasca.

Dupa aceea, am coborat pe Lexington Avenue, transpirat prin camasile noastre cu buton in jos si mormaind despre ieftinitatea corporatiilor. Intrucat amandoi aveam nevoie de undeva cu aer conditionat pentru a ne racori cateva ore, am decis sa ne indreptam spre Set to Run, ale carui birouri se aflau la treizeci si unu de zgarie-nori de pe strada 42, vizavi de cladirea Chrysler. Firma de publicitate s-a ocupat de presa pentru majoritatea marcilor importante, inclusiv Def Jam, Delicious Vinyl si Tommy Boy.

Angajand in mare parte femei cu personalitate inteligenta si frumoasa si misto ca naiba, de obicei aveau muzica noua direct din studioul care infrunta in birouri. matrimoniale femei singure din dambovita Daca aveti noroc, s-ar putea sa vedeti Q-Tip in lift, KRS-1 racorind in sala de conferinte sau Chuck D intalnirea cu publicistul sau. Am intrat din greseala in biroul lui Lesley cand m-am oprit sa vorbesc cu o alta tanara al carei birou era alaturi.

In vizitele anterioare, spatiul era ocupat de o femeie cruda de care abia imi amintesc, dar in acea zi particulara cand am aruncat o privire inauntru, am observat cea mai frumoasa fata din lume, o femeie cu piele plina de caramel, cu parul cret si un zambet maiestuos pe care l-a stralucit coyly cand m-a prins fix. Dupa ce am crescut din timiditatea mea cu ani inainte, am mers cu indrazneala in fata biroului ei si m-am prezentat. Aerul parfumat din jurul biroului ei trecea in timp ce admiram soarele care reflecta cerceii din metal.

“I know your name from the press list,” she said, her voice strong and lipstick perfect. “I’m Lesley Pitts. matrimoniale deva 24 ” After shaking hands, she explained that she’d just started at STR a few months before. “I’m working with 3rd Bass and a new group called Downtown Science.” Opening her desk drawer, Lesley found the advance cassettes for both projects and handed them to me along with her business card. But, instead of leaving, I pulled up a chair and Lesley pulled out a Newport; we both smoked the same brand. She offered me the pack and when I opened it, I noticed one of the cigarettes was turned upside down.

“What’s that all about?” I wondered.

“That’s the lucky cigarette,” Lesley answered. pubi24 matrimoniale

“What’s so lucky about it?”

“I haven’t figured that out yet,” she said and we both laughed. In the midst of our conversation, Lesley told me about growing up in Irvington, New Jersey and partying at the infamous Club Zanzibar in the ’80s. “Did they play a lot of Prince there?” I asked, and Lesley laughed. “They played some; hell, it was the ’80s, everybody was playing Prince.”

I asked, “So what’s your favorite Prince song?”

Looking up as though realizing she was being challenged, Lesley replied, “I love Prince’s music, but I suppose, at least for today, I’ll say my favorite is ‘How Come U Don’t Call Me Anymore?’ Do you know that one?”

“Of course I know,” I said, “it’s the B-side of ‘1999.’”

“Yeah, but do you know the Stephanie Mills version?” Now it was my turn to laugh, because obviously my Prince test was being put back on me.

“I never owned it, but I used to play it in a jukebox at a bar uptown. matrimoniale serioase constanta

“I guess that’s good enough,” she replied. Jesus, I thought, not only was she fine as peach wine, but she knows about Prince B-sides and the people that covered them. Minutes later, when it was time for me to leave, I told her I’d be happy to interview her clients Downtown Science and would call her the following day.

“Well, they’re opening for 3rd Bass at the Beacon next week. Maybe you can come.”

I called her the next day and the next day and the day after that until the night of the show. Lesley giving me one ticket for the concert seemed kind of strange, but when she instructed me to meet her afterwards, I realized her intentions. matrimoniale femei alba iulia After the show, I waited a little over an hour on the police-and-b-boy crowded street for Lesley to finally emerge from the exit. Although she was only 5’ 4 her provocative olive green Charles Jourdan pumps gave her another few inches.

“Do you want to go have a drink or dinner?” she asked. Looking at my watch, it was quarter to twelve.

“Wherever we go we have to get there before midnight or else I’ll turn into a cockroach,” I said, though to this day I don’t know why.

“If you turn into a cockroach, do you still make Kafka references after midnight?” It was at that moment that I knew I was in love.

Two days later, on a Sunday evening, I went to her Brooklyn studio apartment in Fort Greene for dinner. matrimoniale fetesti femei As Al Green sang in the background, we talked a lot about books (Flannery O’Connor and Katherine Dunn were her favorites) and writing. Much later, I’d discover that, before becoming a publicist, she too once dreamt of being a writer or editor, and would constantly preach to me from the bible of Strunk & White. That night, the sky exploded and a heavy (purple) rain fell for hours. “You don’t have to leave if you don’t want to,” she said as the drops splashed against her window. Taking it slow, we pulled each other close for the first time and fucked until the dawn. While I hadn’t had a serious girlfriend in two years, I had a feeling that was about to change.

The following week, I somehow broke my foot in a drunken tequila shot accident at my favorite bar, Night Birds. matrimoniale barbati constanta Returning from the hospital with crutches and a cast covering my leg, Lesley looked at me and shook her head. “I’ll never get rid of you now,” she said and laughed.



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*

With Lesley working as a music publicist and me as a music journalist, we had more than our share of CDs and cassettes in the crib. Although our tastes varied, we always agreed on the genius of Prince, whom we played often. The following October, when we moved to Chelsea, Prince’s Love Symbol album came out. Although we hadn’t bought beds yet, we slept on the floor making love as “Damn U” played on repeat through the night.

The apartment was small and dark, but we both loved living in the middle of Manhattan. anunturi matrimoniale telefonic bucuresti That first year, Lesley and I bonded over a mutual love of films, cartoons (especially The Simpsons), books, restaurants, vacations, and cocktails. Lesley, whose daddy was a hard-drinking barber from Newark, might’ve held her liquor better, but we both had a tendency to party a little too hard in those early years. After watching a Thin Man series on TCM, we christened ourselves Nick and Nora; as in the movies, it was me (Nick) that was usually the drunk one.

On July 14, 1994, Prince played a benefit concert at the Palladium seven days after Lesley’s twenty-eighth birthday. Her friend Karen Lee, who was Prince’s publicist, got us tickets. After the superb show, Karen somehow found us in the crowd and offered to take us into the Michael Todd Room upstairs where the after-party was happening.

“Would you like to meet him?” Karen asked. site uri matrimoniale gratuite During that period, Prince had replaced his name with a symbol and even his employees didn’t call him Prince.

“Of course,” Lesley and I both screamed; later I would compare our crazy fan behavior with the girls we see losing their minds in those Beatles newsreels. The wait seemed to take forever as we stood outside the VIP area, where we could see him sitting next to his friends Lenny Kravitz and Vernon Reid, both of whom had joined him on stage to perform “Mary Don’t You Weep” and “None Of Your Business.”

Finally, Karen escorted him over. Prince was dressed in flowing white Versace and sucking on a red lollipop. Lesley, who was beaming, put her hands together and bowed. Prince took the sucker out of his mouth and started cracking up as we all did. matrimoniale sex botosani Later on I asked her, “What was up with your praying hands?”

“Oh be quiet, I didn’t even know what I was doing.”

I wish I could say our relationship was always as magical as that night. Lesley was a wonderful woman who encouraged and often edited my work, but I was in my early thirties and coming into my own as a writer, publishing steadily in the pages of The Source, Vibe, and XXL while believing the myth that in order to be a great scribe, one had to drink to excess, be as selfish as possible, and only live by your own rules, which usually involved partying in Harlem bars, sniffing bad coke, and fucking around as though it was my right. Too much Bukowski can be a bad thing.

While Lesley was home becoming more domestic, cooking elaborate meals and redecorating with fervor, I was running the streets believing that the debauchery would soon transform me into a literary genius. Lesley, who had a tongue that was sharp as a razor, argued with me, screamed at me, locked me out, and, sometimes I’m sure, cried herself to sleep worrying about my trifling ass.

“I guess you know me well, I don’t like winter, but I seem to get a kick out of doing you cold,” Prince once sang on the aptly named “Strange Relationship. anunturi matrimoniale odorheiu secuiesc

During this time, Lesley worked at various labels including Jive, LaFace, and Loose Cannon (among her clients were TLC, R. Kelly, Toni Braxton, and Buju Banton), but in 1997, she formed her own company. After debating about the name, (“Maybe I should call it Pig Fuck,” she said snidely) the company was called No Screaming Media. One afternoon, not long after setting up shop, Lesley called me excited from her SoHo office. “You’ll never guess who I’m going to do press for?” Somehow with three guesses, I still failed.

“Wrong. Prince. matrimoniale bisexuale I’m going to be working with Prince.”

Having been released from his Warner Brothers contract, Prince formed NPG Records, which released his new project as well as discs by Chaka Khan and Larry Graham. Lesley put together their press junkets, television appearances, and, when Prince was in New York City, various after-party gigs when Prince and the band often played through the night.

One such event was at Tramp’s in September of ’98, when Prince played a late-night gig after his Madison Square Garden concert. Having skipped the concert, I’d gone to a party instead and arrived at the club already intoxicated. Lesley, standing at the door with her clipboard, took one look at me and said tersely, “Go home.” The next day she told me it was over between us. anunturi matrimoniale odorheiul secuiesc “I can’t take anymore,” she said, staring at me in a weird way.

“Why are you looking at me so strangely?”

“Because you just get stranger and stranger every day.”

Although I have no recollection of getting up from my chair, I do remember falling to my knees, crying like a baby, and begging her to forgive me. Remaining silent, Lesley walked toward the door and glared at me coldly. “The only way I’ll stay with you is if you go to therapy,” she said. “And don’t just say ‘yes’ and not do it. If you don’t have a therapist by Friday, I’m gone. situri de matrimoniale serioase

*

Thankfully, Lesley stayed and 1999 was shaping up to be our best year together. I’d stopped most of my wicked ways and was waking up early every Monday morning to walk to the therapist’s office in Greenwich Village. For Valentine’s Day, we spent the weekend at a blaxploitation convention in Sleepy Hollow, hanging out with Fred Williamson and Antonio Fargas. In the spring, we went to a charming bed-and-breakfast on the Jersey Shore, and, for her thirty-third birthday, I took her on an old school disco cruise where B. T. Express performed.

Twenty-seven days later, after being rushed to the back of the hospital where the doctors were examining her, Lesley sat up a little and said, “Michael, do me a favor. matrimoniale femei de la tara -suceava Take my cell phone outside and call Miguel and tell him I won’t be able to make it to dinner.”

“What?”

“You heard me. Do it now.” Following directions, I went outside and made the call. Three minutes later, I walked back into the lobby as a short African-American priest walked toward me. He stood in front of me, glared in my eyes and said, “She didn’t make it.”

“I think you have the wrong person,” I replied. anunţuri matrimoniale gratuite

With his cold priest fingers, he grabbed my hand. “I’m sorry, she didn’t make it.”

Lesley was right, and had sent me outside so I wouldn’t have to watch her die. Even in her last breath, she was thinking about me. A shiver went through my body as they led me to the room where her body lay after a pulmonary aneurysm.

The next few days was a slow-motion bad dream of funeral arrangements, dealing with her mother’s anger, looking for a new apartment, and trying not to throw myself in front of a zooming subway. The world felt as though it were made of quicksand. anunturi de iasi matrimoniale At home alone, I played a lot of Mary J. Blige and Prince, and even put a few of the lyrics to “The Beautiful Ones” on her funeral program.

A few weeks later I got a call from writer Quincy Troupe, who was editing a publication called Code. Apparently, it was decided that the December 1999 issue would have Prince on the cover.

“We want you to go down to Paisley Park Studios and interview him.”

“No thank you,” I replied. I’m sure he was surprised. intercer matrimoniale adventiste

“Actually, they requested you.”

“For real?” A few days later, I was on a plane headed to Minnesota.

I arrived at Paisley Park by cab; outside, it was raining. After waiting for a half-hour, Prince not only blessed me with a personal tour of the facility, but he also gave me a ninety-minute interview. Talking to Prince wasn’t easy since he often talked in parables to press. However, when I inquired about the meaning behind “1999,” his answer was clear.

“I just kept having these dreams that something terrible was going to happen and the world might be a little scary. matrimoniale seniori ” Remaining silent, I nodded in recognition. Although neither of us mentioned Lesley, I felt as though Prince was speaking to me about her in his own coded language.

Sudden death can be haunting. Damn near twenty years after Lesley’s passing, I still think about her every day: hearing her reassuring voice and hearty laughter, remembering her quick wit and ready sarcasm, listening to her discerning advice and constantly playing soul music. There are still days when I just lay on the couch staring at the ceiling, but on most I’m at my desk writing with the creative confidence she instilled in me. Not long ago, I was talking to her old friend Sheila Jamison. She listened quietly as I rambled about ancient bad boyfriend guilt and the things I did wrong when Lesley was alive. Sheila looked at me and shook her head. “She loved you, Michael, and she knew that you loved her and that’s all that matters.”