The Night Club Singer Or How I Started Hitchhiking

December 1, 2008

I wake up in a white room. It looks like a hotel but everything’s so clean-cut that it could be a dentists waiting lounge. I lay awake for a while and things slowly come back. I don’t even have to turn around to figure she’s gone. There’s not a sound in the room. Not even the hissing of a breath. I stand up, take three steps and find myself in a small triangular box of mirrors. There’s a toilet but no shower. No towels either. A small window with yellow curtains is looking out to the street and on the bedside table lays a paper bag of instant coffee and some teas, but no cup and I can’t be bothered to search it out. I put on my clothes, fix myself up, drink all the water I can store in me and stagger down the narrow hallway. It looks and smells like the inside of a ferry I once took to Norway.

On the way out, the receptionist gives me a cold look. I vaguely remember him giving me all sorts of shit for wanting to rent a single room, when we were obviously two. In the end I had to pay for a double room with the last money I had. I’m broke. No money for food, coffee, a newspaper or even a bus ticket. To top things off I see that my right shoe has almost broken in two and as I curse to the God that has clearly abandoned me, rain starts kissing my forehead, dropping from a gang of black, concrete clouds.

I reach into the pocket of my jeans, get out a white piece of chalk, bend over and write on the sidewalk

I AM A NIGHT CLUB SINGER, NOT A BREAKFAST ANNOUNCER.
I AM A NIGHT CLUB SINGER, NOT A BREAKFAST ANNOUNCER.
I AM A NIGHT CLUB SINGER, NOT A BREAKFAST ANNOUNCER.

over and over and over again, as if struck by some kind of gentle, repetitive madness. As my writings reach the the middle of the street like a long crackling manuscript, I look up and see seven or eight cars in line; a polyphonic choir of honky-tonk, country steel automobile singers. I stand up, swagger back to the sidewalk, put out my thumb and hope for the best.

At least now, I have their attention.

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