Dancing With The Devil ch. 13 - U2 Feedback

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Old 02-04-2011, 05:30 PM   #1
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Dancing With The Devil ch. 13

Part 13, but nothing unlucky's happening... Meh.
Here. I made this whole story up. But I kinda wish I was Marieke...

“How did you become a U2 fan, Marieke?”
The sights outside the window flash past- buildings, cars, a few trees. I settle myself a little better in the sticky bus seat and uncross my legs. Eric’s face is expectant, his smile open and warm. I bend my head over the English phrasebook I retrieved from my suitcase and flip the pages for help in getting my meaning across.
“I was 17 years and I Will Follow was on the radio a lot.”
“ You liked it?” His body is facing the aisle, turned away from the man sharing his seat. Apparently none of the other Zoo TV crew wanted to sit beside me, the hot Dutch woman. Whatever, it’s kind of nice being alone for the ride. At least I get the window seat- and Eric’s completely occupied with me.
“I loved it!” I exclaim, answering his query. “I love Boy. It’s a favorite.”
“Is it your favoriteU2 album?”
Shaking my head at the interrogation, I lower my head and locate a few more words. The bouncing of the bus is giving me a bit of a headache, and reading is definitely not helping me out. Sigh.
“Achtung Baby is fantastic!” He laughs, and I’m pleased at my correct usage of the word. “But I liked War first. My favorite is New Year’s Day.”
“That’s a good one,” Eric says, and the guy next to him sighs. I can practically read his mind- why don’t you just sit next to her? “So what about-“
I stop Eric by holding up my hand. He responds to the gesture by quieting, just like Lina. I giggle inwardly and tell him, “What about you?”
“What about me?” His voice falls a bit. “There’s nothing to say about me. What do you want to know?”
It takes me a while, but I finally ask “How long were you working for U2?”
Eric exhales and leans back, almost bumping into his seat partner. The latter glares and goes back to reading his book- an action I can’t fathom the reasons behind. My headache is really killing me.
“I was following the band during Lovetown, even though I wasn’t a fan. I was actually a radio DJ.” He laughs, face reddening as he glances sideways to gauge my reaction. I nod- “Go on…?”
“Well. I had some kind of music experience- if you can call it that- and the U2 organization hired me for Zoo TV. I’ve been working on every single leg so far. It’s going to be exciting to see where this all ends up.”
“Where did you live?” I ask him, curious about these American places.
“Miami. I was there when the tour began. I saw the opening night.” I bite my tongue, a wave of jealousy sweeping over me.
“Marieke, you have no idea what you’re in for. Zoo TV is the craziest tour I’ve ever heard of.” His face brightens. “You’re going to love working behind the scenes.”
Well, it’s never right to make assumptions of me, but I bet Eric’s got his spot on. Who wouldn’t love working on tour? I scoot back to the window and press my forehead against the cool glass, closing my eyes. The joggling of the scenes outdoors turns to black, and I zone out again. A few more moments of rest might take the headache away.
“Marieke?”
“Shh…”
***
Jagged half-dreams invade my waking moment, and I flip around with squinty eyes to find Eric bending over me.
“Hey. Wake up, sleepy,” he greets me.
“Mmmrghuuhph.”
His eyes are teasing as he leans closer to murmur in my ear. “It’s lunchtime.”
I sit up reluctantly, expecting to find the bus parked in a lot. Instead, to my disappointment we are… still moving. The numbed aching in my head begins to come throbbing back.
“Why?” I ask simply, inadvertantly reaching out and latching onto Eric’s arm.
He laughs awkwardly when I won’t let go. “Why what?”
“Still… moving,” I sigh, and release my grip. My ponytail’s gotten all out of wack. It’s easier to just pull the elastic out and let the strands of hair waft over my face.
Eric crashes back down, changing from half-standing to sitting heavily. He watches me closely as I try to fix my hair up, untangling it.
“Where does food come from?”
“Um, you’re really tired, aren’t you?” is his reply. That snaps the fuzzy-headedness out of me. “No, I’m not!” What could I have said wrong?. “Where does the food come from?”
“We’re not stopping to go to a restaurant,” Eric says. “We need to get to Oviedo, and it takes… let’s see, seven, maybe nine hours on the average bus. So there’s not going to be any stopping.” He hands me a plastic bag.
I open it. The sandwich inside is tomato- and leaking. I make a face and bite into it unhappily. Eric stares at me. “It’s okay, isn’t it? I tried my best. Do you not like tomato…?”
“No,” I stop him. “It’s good.” He doesn’t quite seem convinced, so I give him a wide-eyed, cheesy smile and munch on the sandwich. This gets a laugh from Eric and settles him enough to eat his own, packed in his bag.I smile and go back to gazing out the window.
A guy sitting at the front of the bus interrupts my mind. “Hey, nice hips,” he calls, obviously directed to me. I bristle- he can’t even get a good view of them when I’m sitting down! However, I have gotten that remark before, along with nastier ones about other assets, and I reply calmly, “Fuck off,” in perfect English.
Eric is openmouthed while the first man guffaws. “Your girlfriend has mouth, eh, Eric?” Either this man is drunk or he’s just being a jerk for no reason. I glare.
“Shut up.” Eric looks over at me and asks, “Where did you learn to say that?”
“I don’t know,” I respond, seeing Lina muttering the F word in English all over the place in my mind’s eye.
He looks wary. “Well, try not to say it again.”
I nod, knowing that’s not a promise.
“Eric? There are no girl jobs on Zoo TV?”
“Hm?” He looks at me. “Why would you think that? I’ll get you a job, I promise.”
“Because there are no girls here,” I say, sweeping my hand around to indicate the bus.
Eric starts, then realizes I’m right. It can’t just be a coincidence that I got stuck with all the men.
“Marieke…” He breathes deeply. “They’re not going to turn you down. I won’t let them.”
I stare deeply at him, and then turn my back to check the view outside. We’re in a city, but it’s hard to tell if we’ve reached Spain or if we’re still in Portugal.
“What time is it?”
Eric checks. “Three… I mean, fifteen-thirty-three.”
Seven hours from now… That’s 20:33 tonight. Nine hours… that’s 24:33.
It’s gonna be a long trip.
***
The landscape of Portugal rushes past, beauty lying behind warm glass. The sun striking through the windows is soaked into his black coat, the leather drinking it in hungrily. He flexes his arm and feels a whisper of heat. Removing the garment reveals a sleeveless shirt beneath.
Adam is sitting in the seat next to Edge. The two men are conversing. Larry is asleep in the front seat. Bono’s tired too, but he doesn’t want to stop writing. A breakthrough might come…
His jumbled words on the paper etch out a vivid scene, the spring day captured well in half-sentences and random notes. Sometimes there’s nothing to do to speed up the writing process but describe your surroundings. An important message could leap out, tying the lyrics together neatly. But this hasn’t been working for Bono today.
Out the window buildings are in view along the highway, and a billboard blasts him with its declaration- COLGATE TOOTHPASTE: WE’VE GOT THAT RING OF CONFIDENCE! Idly Bono writes the slogan down. It is crying for a place in his mind- but he certainly won’t fall into the trap and buy the product. He of all people should by all rights be the least likely to take the beguiling bait.
The scene was all laid out in his mind and months later, it remains prominent. Bono takes another casual glance out the window and imagines the city at night, lights blazing and sidewalks heavy with people. He sees the cars with their blinding headlights that could trap, freeze, and strike a person down if they aren’t careful. In the midst of all this, there are the ads. Billboards rising everywhere, signs posted in windows, Times Square multiplied by one hundred. It’s the perfect Utopian, Zooropian city- but it can’t describe itself.
Bono’s job for these past months has been to bring this city to life on paper, paper that would become audio tracks and finally a finished collection. But the scene hasn’t appeared quite the way Bono expected. Among the many tracks he’s working on, the song he’s called Zooropa for lack of a better title is the trickiest one to write. No sound can quite match what he sees in his head.
Then there’s that track that won’t fit anywhere. Bono refers to it as “babble,” a song that was born from soundcheck recordings. He’s not even aware it has lyrics. The sound is interesting, and he wants to toy with it, but there’s no place available for such an ambient piece. There’s nothing to be done with Babble, and yet he can’t let it go.
Bono’s about to call over to Edge, to join in on the conversation happening a few seats in front of him. Before he does, though, a slight thought moves across his mind. The band has come a long way since the 80’s- instead of writing about the American heartland, they are turning to the European metropolis. It’s a bit of a shock sometimes to see how far U2 has developed- able to write about polar opposites, and write it well. Well… of course that doesn’t mean it’s easy. Bono jumps into Edge’s conversation, and the thought is broken.
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Old 02-04-2011, 07:04 PM   #2
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ZOOROPA! I love that song. Yay!

Eric. I knew it. He is very very much getting Marieke in trouble.

I'm impatient for the next chapter already
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Old 02-05-2011, 07:08 AM   #3
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Yes, I love Zooropa too. I realized I'm writing about a time when they were actually working on an album... pretty cool...
Eric means well, but something's just not clicking.
Wow! I've already written the next chapter... but I want to write some more chapters so I'll be ahead of myself.
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Old 02-05-2011, 01:57 PM   #4
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Heheh yay! I was just reading about that part of U2 by U2...gosh, you chose a busy time for them.

Yep. I noticed it was pretty funny.

Yay! Ok. I'll wait
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adam, bono, bus, edge, larry, tour, tour crew, u2, zoo tv

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