Woke up from a deep dream about eating pancakes with Simon, RT's sound guy. Rolled out of bed and donned my black beret (can't afford a tam), and checked up on my RT record collection (nestled snuggly between Sandy Denny and Dick Dale) on vinyl and practiced memorizing liner notes to 'Hand of Kindness'. Then moved over to my RT albums on compact disc (forty one, if you allow for 'Bones of All Men') and dusted each off with a cashmere cloth until it sparkled in the sunlight. Time for breakfast...mug of Formosa Oolong tea and a farm-fresh slice of whole wheat toast. Then back looking over my Richard Thompson 8-track collection of 'Henry the Human Fly'' and early Fairport releases. Cranked up my 8 track car player and drove around and around the house listening to "The Angels Have Taken My Racehorse Away" and "Time Will Show the Wiser". Next, I picked up my Lowden guitar and tried, oh how I tried, to play "The Poor Ditching Boy" while watching 'Across A Crowded Room' video. Next I drove to a middle school in town and tried to convince the principal into booking Richard Thompson for closing exercises for grade eight students. The principal said he would "think about it". Then I cruised past 'Toad's Place' in New Haven, site of a few Thompson concerts and badgered the booking agent about RT. She said she would "think about it". Next I went into Cutler's Record Shop and started talking to customers about "Action-Packed" and how they really should buy this NOW! After being kicked out of the store, and got out my guitar and began strumming "Dimming of the Day" to a few Yale students who promised me that they would buy "Action-Packed" if I would just stop. Back at home I read a few posts from this list about car bombs and cats, and took a nap. Feeling refreshed, I cranked up my portable CD player with "Small Town Romance" and walked through the streets. Tried to skateboard at the park, but my thoughts were on Richard Thompson's new collection of children's songs. Thought of Flip and Pam and Paul and Steve and Jeff and Mike and Evan and Don and Nancy and Chris and Scott and Jolly Hangman and Miranda and Dee and Deb and Richard (all kinds) and everyone else. Borrowed a kid's laptop at the park and re-read the List posting for May 27 and printed it out to add to my collection. Thought about Thor in Iceland and Marcello in Uraguay and how difficult it must be when you're a RT fan in a farway place with a good chance that RT will never come to your cafe or pub...EVER! Cried lonely tears in front of uncaring skateboarding teens. Pointed out my RT 'Mock Tudor' t-shirt and asked if they would like to go see RT next time he played Seymour, Connecticut. More laughter. Bought myself a Dairy Queen soft-serve and stared off into the emptiness of cruel existence. Put on The GPs and immediately felt better as Richard's guitar riffed out "Saturday Rolling Around". Got back home and looked over the last nine years of RT List Posts and tried to catalog topics, but got stuck on the "F's" with Froom. Too many off-topic posts, alas. Kicked around a soccer ball and tried archery ( just what Richard likes to do in his spare time) to vent my disappointment. Tried playing Scrabble with myself, but I lost. Went back to my stereo and listened to all Thompson songs about motorbikes and lovable eccentrics. Tried calling Donnie Graves at Indy 500, but he wasn't picking up his cell phone. Attempted to watch the Indy 500 but fell asleep after the 37th lap. Called my PBS station to plead for a showing of Paul Kovit's "It All Comes Round Again'...station manager said he would "...think about it". Listened to Richard Thompson playing "Surfin' USA"and then The Beach Boys' version. Thompson wins! Put on "Crawl Back" and felt all gloomy. Got another Dairy Queen (again) and it did the trick. Now I'm organizing my Richard Thompson compact discs by color...blue on top and yellow on the bottom. Full day indeed. Fell asleep dreaming about my idea for Thompsonpalooza (check my old postings for details) and how neat it would be to work as a roadie for RT on World Tour 2002! I can sell t-shirts, lug amplifiers, and keep those hardcore RT fans away from RT after the show. Geesh...don't those people have a life???
I seemed to be in some semblance of my real jobs (I was proofreading an ad for a bunch of musicians and marking four different, and incorrect, spellings of "The Nields") when I was called into an urgent meeting. I went into a conference room where "Crawl Back Under My Stone" was playing in the background. Whoever was chairing the meeting was saying something about "you know this guy"--I had the idea that the people in the meeting were all working to promote Richard's music in some capacity. (I remember thinking we were some East Coast outpost of Capitol Records.)
I was having some kind of a problem getting a seat in the conference room; every time I put my notebook on a table, someone else would shove in and grab my space, to the point where my chair kept ending up in the very middle of the room. I didn't like this one bit--didn't want to be in the center.
The meeting chair was scribbling lyrics on the blackboard and reciting them as he scribbled: "you....don't...have....to...stand....next...to...me...." etc. When he finished--by which time I think I'd actually gotten to sit down and wasn't in the exact center of the room, though I was entangled in a large hooded fleece jacket--couldn't get it over my head--he said, "So I want to present a possibility to you: Is it possible that we just don't like this guy very much?"
At which point, of freakin' course, my clock-radio went off.
What does it mean? I mean, I (and anyone who knows me) can think of lots of things it might mean about me (please share these offlist, if at all!), but might it mean anything about perceptions of Richard within the industry--people not being sure how to promote him, people working for him who don't really get what he's doing?
(For my part, I think it means I need to drink less Australian Shiraz at bedtime.)
My blood ran cold a second there, as I recently also had a Wonderful dream featuring himself. No, I'm not going to describe it, most of you will be relieved to know, tho I'll say it wasn't one I'd be embarrassed to describe to my very proper auntie...
Louise, in Chicago
(btw, I don't think I drank anything special before sleeping)