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Death in three acts

(For the ones interested in my photos - I decided to spare you the effort of reading the entire "story", so let me tell you that the important news are in the last paragraph)

Time: Thursday, February 9th, 2012
Place: Basement near boiler-house in local Art Centre, called "Mordor"

What would you think about while walking through a narrow, dark and dirty corridor, looking exactly like dozens you've passed minutes ago in the underground of an old building, remembering the very begginings of the twentieth century, far away from anyone that could hear you?

Certainly not about making music, right?

Well, the aforementioned corridor is the way me and my band walk almost every week to a place we call extravagantly our "auditorium". While it's commonly called "Mordor".

Corridors leading there can be pretty creepy. It's easy to lose your way, because the only things that differs one from another are mostly old furniture. So to get to Mordor you have to go two floors downstaires, go through the room with old children's paintings, turn left to the room with plywood, pass this one (don't turn right, because you'll get into janitor's office) and another one with a huge wardrobe and a bunch of banners next to it, still go ahead - don't turn neither left nor right, unless you want to find a storehouse or a coal reserves - until you find yourself in a small room with destroyed piano. Now this is the important part. You have to turn left and go down a narrow, dirty, dark and creepy-looking corridor. At the end of it there is our destination - Mordor. Because if you keep going straigh ahead you'll get into a true maze of corridors and rooms - you'll be in a boiler-house. And story tells no one, except the janitor, has ever left this place in one piece... Ok, I'm just kidding. But seriously, it's really easy to get lost there (happened to me). It took me almost 2 weeks to remember which way was the right one (because the earlier you start going the wrong way the more possibilities of wrong turns you have, because every wrong corridor has at least two places in which you can keep getting lost).

But we're in Mordor, not in the spooky boiler-house. My band's rehearsal room is one of a kind. Walls and ceiling are covered with pieces of styrofoam (probably to soundproof this part of basement and make in more a 'music room'), but they don't fit each other. The result of this are parts of walls in all the colors you can imagine appearing here and there. It would look even kind of funny and artistic (if you eye it thouroughly and meticulously) if not the old rusted pipes connecting the entire Art Centre with the boiler-house. What is more, to say this room has a floor would be a huge overstatement. "Floor" in this case is some uneven, lumpy concrete surface with some metal poles, which origin I do not want to know, partially sunken, partially sticking out of it. Fortunately, it's mostly covered with carpets (dusty and incredibly colorful, just like walls, of course) but as you walk you can clearly feel everything under your feet. And I won't even mention all the broken light switches with cables everywhere around it, as well as I won't mention the onimpresent spiderwerbs.

I guess these are the main reason why everyone call this place "Mordor".

It's also as small as if designes for goblins or dwarfs and still someone somehow managed to fit there 2 drum kits, 3 amplifiers and 2 microphones with columns. Everytime I'm deeply amazed how was this possible (magic, for sure...).

But to the death part... I should've probably mentioned it at the beggining so no one (as if someone is reading this, haha, naive me) would have to go through the foregoing lame description to find out now that this story does not include any kind of mysterious murder, slaugher or anything. But this information is here, so deal with it.

Here, death is metaphorical. It relates to my physical and mental condition during and after experiencing a busy week full of music.

So my dying begun pretty innocently at Thursday late evening at rehearsal. The next day we had a gig to play - it was a last-minute decision, which explains why our rehearsal started almost in the middle of the night. So this tme, excluding stomachache after laughing so hard with my friends we couldn't stood straigh and had to lie down on those dirty carpets, dying consisted only being really tired and completely unprepared for school the next day.

Time: Friday, February 10th, 2012
Place: Gym in my high school

Fortunately, the next day we didn't have an opportunity (what a pity...) to attend most of our classes because of the gig we were about to play in the school's gym. The elections for the school's president were coming and this was our way to support our candidate (whowon the elections, btw. Anyone ever try to deny the power of music). And to make the last day before the winter break a little bit more 'loose'.

As I have already mentioned, we were playing in the gym. Well, our school is not very big, it's rather average when it comes to the number of students attending it, but our gym is claustrophobical small. So the students were divided into two big groups and we had to play for each one. Yeah, two gigs, 1,5h long each.

Now another thing worth mentioning is that our band is pretty brisk and lively. Especially me and our singer. I like flipping and spinning my guitar in every possible way, she likes simply jumping around the stage. Also we both love headbanging and we know how to use our long hair (as I heard, my blood-red a bit longer than shoulder-lenght hair appear quite spectacular sometimes, when I'm 'really into the song'. Not that I was bragging or something...). Sometimes our bassist also shows some interest in 'stage appearance and behaviour' and when he does the entire city is shaking. He's 6.4 ft so for example when he jumps off of the amplifier and flies almost above the whole stage... Just wow. So imagine us in front of our friends who made the whole audience very... involved into the show (you know, jumping, dancing, singing with us, these kind of things). Well, I must say with unhidden pride that we did our best. Twice. And who in such atmosphere would notice growing tiredness, aching muscles or small wounds on fingers caused by new strings? Certainly not me. I had the time for this later.

Time: Saturday/Sunday, February 11th/12th, 2012
Place: Main stage and backstage in the Art Centre

But seems like I have forgotten about one small thing - the Music Marathon (MM) organised by the Art Centre the day after our gig. The Marathon lasting 25 hours (yes, 25 not 24. 24 was last year). In which I decided to participate and - what is more - to play for at least 20 hours. Nice goal, huh?

So anyone knows Cortez The Killer by Neil Young? Again on the top of my "Most hated songs" list. That's because this is the song all the musicians were playing non stop during the MM. Very easy, but with a huge potential when it comes to improvising solos or playing unconventional for this songs instruments.

Last year this song was also chosen and I played it for 8 hours. Not very impressive but considering the fact that I had dislocated my right elbow 4 days before the MM I think it's a nice result. But this year I promised myself it wil be much, much better. I promised myself to play for at least 20 hours.

So on Saturday, February 11th, 2:30 PM I was standing in the main hall of the Art Centre waiting to sign up. And 25 hours later I left this place with a headache, backache, wristache, left-shoulderache, abrasion on the same shoulder caused by a guitar strap, bruise on the right side of my body on the ribs (turned out holding a guitar on your knees and leaning on its side while sitting on an amp can leave some unpleasant effects), pain in my legs (since I was sitting for an hour then standind for an hour, then sitting again and so on for 25h), smashed fingertips, painful eyes after a completely sleepless night and with a huge grin on my face, because I achieved not only what I wanted but even a bit more - because after adding everything up it turned out that I played for 21 hours.

So, basically, after these 3 days, I’m dead. To be more precise, I’m exhausted, achy, stiff, bruised and with butchered fingertips. And I’m slightly deaf too right now (or more then slightly, because I’ve just discovered that my hairdryer suddenly sounds like a quiet, innocent purr of a new-born kitten… Seems like sitting on an amp between two other, bigger than mine, wasn’t such a good idea after all…). So I can’t imagine myself doing anything else than lying in bed and reading/writing for the next two or three days.

But the reason I am mentioning all these things is (besides to entertain) to inform that the next skater photos that were supposed to be posted on Friday will be posted next week. That’s because my swollen, occasionally bleeding and… bruised? (hope not, because it would be at least… hmm… weird?) fingertips need some time to recover (probably only a day or two) after the Music Marathon. In these circumstances, since 50% of my digits are smashed, I’m able to use almost only my right hand (which also has some bleeding scratches after the Friday gig, but not as annoying as those new on my left hand) and believe me, typing with only one hand is pretty wearing. And frustrating. So as soon as my both hands are in shape again I will post pictures taken at the Marathon, as well as the next parts of the “Skateboarding is not a crime” photo document.