For the second consecutive week in a row, Writers Club (#4) was held at Jonathan’s family restaurant on the edge of Shinjuku. I showed up twenty minutes early, so I decided to go to a nearby park to do some writing beforehand. Five minutes before we were supposed to meet, I left the park to get there on time but ended up getting horribly lost for twenty minutes… During that time, I stumbled upon a river somewhere in the middle of Shinjuku, which I will probably never be able to find again.
By the time I got back to Jonathan’s, the real John was sitting by the sign waiting while looking at girls. I said hello and asked him how his farewell party went the night before since John was going to leave the next day (because he hadn’t been able to find a job before his visa would expire). He said it was fun, but things got a bit intense when a friend mentioned that his yogis- all three of them- said that within a month there would be another big quake, but this time it would be in Tokyo (supposedly, ten days before March 11th, they had also predicted the one in Miyagi)... Normally gossip like that wouldn’t have bothered me, but recently the aftershocks were getting bigger and more frequent, and the other day, I got two emails… one from a friend asking me if I still had his flashlight because he wanted to have it back in case of another big quake, and then later that evening, I got basically the exact same email from my mom asking me if I owned one in case of an emergency, which, after reading both, left me rather disturbed… I wondered if they knew something I didn’t (including the yogis) because I stopped following the news a long time ago... Anyways after Cameron finally showed up, we entered Jonathan’s and all ended up ordering the exact same thing we had the week before- mine was hamburger over black curry.
During the “meeting,” John mentioned how he had written a script while he was at film school back in the day and that someone famous basically had stolen the whole thing and made it into a mainstream movie, which ended up making lots of money and you undoubtedly have seen before (I promised him not to say the title...). That was about thirteen years ago, but obviously it was still eating at him and without a doubt changed his attitude on life for the worse. “But what can you do?” he said since there was no longer any physical proof. Cameron then responded with something quite beautiful, which goes: “That’s why I love hip hop! Hip hop teaches you to go to war. Art doesn’t,” which, if you think about it, is true. Anyways it broke our hearts watching John, who is usually so cheerful and funny, still beaten up by something that happened more than 12 years ago, and even more so when he said that he had finally accepted his fate, which was: he would be working shit jobs for the rest of his life while he did art on the side…
Cameron Back From The Restroom
After our meal, John changed the subject and mentioned how his Japanese girlfriend and him had both drawn each other naked the night before… and then the question-of-the-day was yet again brought up by him for the third consecutive week in a row when he asked us:
“If you could only have one, which drawing would you keep if you were going back home for good: the drawing of your girlfriend nude that you had done or the one of you by your girlfriend?”John left by himself the next morning for England. He will be sorely missed.