Friday, February 1, 2008

Gold Fever

I got a call from my former fiancé, Guyon (GK4) this morning.

“I’m worried about Matthew,” he said. (Matthew is Slim.)

When GK4 says that, it’s cause for concern.

It seems (I had not yet checked my email) that Slim had sent everyone on his email list (including, apparently, all my friends and exes) a series of charts plotting the gold market, accompanied by a long, rambling, apocalyptic text. (It began, “It is 4 am on Wednesday, January 30th, 2008.”)

As I mentioned a few days ago, Slim has been, as he put it “bitten by the gold bug – and it’s given me brain fever!”

I knew of course that for the past week, he’d been doing nothing but studying charts and watching the stock market; not going to work; not eating or sleeping; and wearing suits and ties all the time. I’d been receiving increasingly erratic and grandiose calls and texts at all hours.

Last night I went to see Buckingham play Cross-Pollination at Pianos along with Mirah and Lily. We had a swell time but when I checked my phone afterwards I found I’d missed 8 texts and 4 calls from Slim, all of them exhorting me urgently to call him.

“You have to meet me in Chinatown immediately,” he said.

I did, as I was nearby – well, I ate a bowl of pasta at Le French Diner first. He was at a loft space on Franklin Street where some friends of his were hard at work editing a music video. Slim needed to use their computers, he explained, and also get their expertise on how to get a media campaign in motion. They seemed wary and vaguely irritated, but allowed him to stay for the next three hours. I tried to leave, but he panicked.

“Matt,” I said sternly, “madness in a vacuum is merely madness. Madness imposed upon others is tyranny.”

Then he started talking in a very paranoid fashion about being followed and bugged as a result of his findings, as well as getting a Ph.D from University of Chicago – I don’t know which I found more alarming.

By the time we left, at 2 am – I alternately slept and read a book of Slim’s called The Lure of Gold -- I was getting scared. When we paid the cab driver, Slim said,

“Give me five back. No, make it seven – it’s not worth anything anyway.”

He then went somewhere in Greenpoint and laid down some guitar parts on some track, and didn’t show up until eight a.m. He says his music has never been better.

I wish I knew what to do. Besides confiscating all his amphetamines, I mean.

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