Monday, May 09, 2005

Come to Kenya

I woke up with a huge hangover today. Cecilia and I had gone with some of her friends to see Prefuse 73 at the Bowery Ballroom, and I drank too much. I think I might have embarrassed Cecilia, because she left early by herself.

I found Thom Yorke was sitting on my couch in his Care Bears pajamas eating a bowl of Count Chocula.

"You look so tiiired, uuunhappy," he said in between spoonfuls.

"Yeah, yeah, it was a late night," I mumbled. When I went to make breakfast, I found an empty carton on the kitchen counter.

"God damn it, Thom!" I shouted. "You drank all the milk again!"

"Get off my caaase!" he replied, curtly.

Thom and I spent the morning watching Smurfs reruns. I was angry and confused. What had I said last night to Cecilia that had upset her?

Then I had an idea. I turned to Thom and said, "Let's go to the zoo."

He pointed upwards. "From a greeeeeat height."

"Bring an umbrella."

When I get depressed, the zoo always make me feel better. Because of the noreaster, it turned out to be practically empty. Thom was really into it. "Mooooonkey!" he announced, pointing. "Baboooooooooooon!"

Thom forced me to stop at the gift store. He bought a large box of Hot Tamales and a novelty baseball cap with plush tiger ears . He began to prowl rather than walk. "We have liooons and tiiiiiigers!" he declared before bounding off.

I wandered around by myself and ended up standing at the bison enclosure. "Why did I get drunk last night?" I asked them. "I like Cecilia. But I acted like an idiot. Is it because I found Thom Yorke dressed in a powder blue tuxedo in the bathroom passing out moist towelettes?"

One of the bison slapped at a fly with its tail. I shook my head. "I must be going crazy."

I stood quietly for a few minutes. It began to rain a bit harder. I could feel wetness seep through my jacket.

All of a sudden, Thom Yorke pounced on my back. "Aaaaaah! Puuuuuuuma!"

I laughed as I tried to fight him off. "Okay, okay, you can let go now! You got me!"

Thom looked very pleased with himself. He then noticed that I was soaking wet.

"Come on, raaaaaaain down," he said matter a factly as he opened up his umbrella.

We huddled together underneath it and walked quickly back towards the subway.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Old Devil Moon

I took Cecilia out again tonight. We agreed to meet at this Cajun restaurant in the East Village at nine. I promised not to be late this time.

I went home to get ready, but I couldn't find Thom Yorke anywhere. The only sign he had visited my apartment that day was the trail of Runts that ran from the couch to the fire escape. "Why aren't you here when I need you," I muttered.

I had trouble deciding what to wear and how to style my hair, and I ended up being twenty minutes late to the restaurant. Cecilia was smoking a cigarette out in front with an irritated look on her face.

"Do you always test your dates this way?" she quipped.

"Uh, yeah. I mean, no. I'm sorry."

We were seated at a booth along the wall. I tried making small talk, about work, but she looked bored. When our waiter came to take our order, I was relieved.

"Great, lets get some food," Cecilia said, with a similar look of relief. "What are your specials?"

Our waiter paused before replying: "Veggie Jambalaaaaaaaaaaya!"

My whole body tightened up in panic. Thom Yorke stood in front of our table. He was wearing torn acid wash jeans, a faded Dukes of Hazzard t-shirt, and aviator sunglasses. He had on a wig of long black dreadlocks. He looked like a hillbilly Rod Zombie.

I felt dizzy. How would I explain this to Cecilia? I had completely lied to her about being stalked by Thom Yorke.

Luckily, she seemed not to notice. "Mmmm, that sounds good," she said, "I'll have the jambalaya."

"Siiiiir?"

"Uh, give me the blackened fish."

"Big fiiiiiiish eat the liiiiiiitle one?" Thom asked.

"Uh, sure, the big one, the catfish special."

After Thom had disappeared into the kitchen, Cecilia burst into laughter. My face burnt with embarrassment. I was sure she had caught me in my lie.

"Wow," she said, "our waiter is crazy, huh?"

"What?"

"Our waiter. What's with that strange Creole falsetto? I love it, so much local color."

A busboy brought out our meal and we ate quietly. I kept scanning the back of the restaurant, looking anxiously for the dreadlocked Thom Yorke.

Cecilia sensed my nervousness. "Are you feeling alright, Paul? You seem distracted."

"Uh, its nothing."

Behind me, I heard an accordion break into an up tempo zydeco tune. I sighed. The last thing I needed tonight was a fucking accordion.

"Wow, Paul, look!" Cecilia exclaimed. "Our waiter is up on stage."

I spun around in my chair. Thom Yorke sat up on a little elevated platform, a cherry red accordion flapping back and forth between his hands. He began to sing.

"We having a dance on the ol' baaaaaaaaayoooooouuuu!"

People started clapping their hands. I turned to face Cecilia. She smiled and grabbed my hand.

"Lets dance!"

Monday, May 02, 2005

Cyrano de Yorke

I asked Cecilia out at work today. She seemed genuinely enthused, but then she asked the question I had been dreading. "You're not still being stalked by that Chris Martin guy are you?"

"Uh, no, actually, it was Thom Yorke," I replied, sheepishly. "But he doesn't come around much anymore."

We agreed to meet at nine at the Stone Park Cafe. I went home to get changed, and I found Thom Yorke in my bedroom closet eating handfulls of Poprocks.

"Nice dreeeeeam!" he shouted, holding out a pressed aqua shirt.

"No, Thom, I can't wear that, its too formal."

"Open your skuuuuuuuul?" he asked, handing me a ripped Pixies shirt.

"No, no, that’s too casual."

Eventually, we decided on rust colored t-shirt and a pair of jeans. Thom insisted on styling my hair. He was very fussy. He bit his lip as he worked, and the poprocks made him foam a bit in the mouth.

"Can I go yet, Thom? I'm going to be late."

"I sliiiiiiiiip away," he snapped. He shuffled off into the other room to watch MacGyver.

I ended up at the restaurant at nine thirty, a good half hour late. To my surprise, Cecilia was still there, standing in front of the restaurant. "Uh, hi there," I stammered, "Sorry I'm late."

"Its okay."

We stood apart from each other in silence. I struggled to think of something else to say. I could tell this wasn't going well.

Suddenly, from up above, I heard an angelic voice cry out. "Your craaaaaazy kitten smiiiiiiile!"

"What was that?" Cecelia asked.

"Uh well," I replied quickly, "I said I like your smile."

Although the sidewalk was dark, I could see Cecelia blush. "Well thanks. So lets go get something to eat before I collapse, okay?"

As we entered the restaurant, I looked up at the rooftops. They were empty.

He was gone.