When the City of Love was all out of Love
I made the worst mistake and went to Paris with a broken heart once.
It was terrible. I almost asked for french fries I was so distracted. I never got lost, which was the interesting thing, somehow I always knew where I was as long as I was in the old part of Paris. I never got lost in Berlin either. I could always find my way around the two cities. I ended up in weird neighborhoods though, since things change. Especially Berlin, Berlin didn’t make too much sense, but I kind of understood it. But old Paris, yes, I totally was fine wandering around with two suitcases and a broken heart. But the broken heart overwhelmed everything. Not even staring at Le Origin Sur Le Monde for half an hour made up for it. And when I did find a trans statue in the Louvre, some guy came up to me and complained all about trans people, IN FRENCH! And I knew he was bitching out trans bodies, and that pissed me off. At the Louvre, honestly! He was like the French version of the ugly American tourist! Anyway, I spent my whole time in Paris absorbing as much art as I could before I had to leave. I lived off of vendor baguettes. I was such a poor boy!
And every store I went into, the same song played! The same song, always! And it was “All By Myself.” Fucking hell, everywhere I went, even just to look at candy or something equally silly, this maudlin pop song would haunt me! I don’t even know why Europe likes that music. Preston noticed it too when he was there. It makes North America seem so bubblegum.
I stayed on Rue Des Comediens, where the first cup of coffee was served in Europe, actually. And I didn’t get to drink any absinthe, which is what I always try to do every time I travel. I honestly can’t say why, except I think it’s a shame it got corrupted and went off market. Real Absinthe is actually pretty safe, but it got all fucked up by the corporations. Anyway, yes, no absinthe for me. Someone has back engineered the original by the way. But I did always like this kind of bohemian Parisien lifestyle that used to exist. Because it was so decadent and artistic and free. And I think that was really the origin of the French resistance, was in the salons of Paris. Because men and women got together and talked about art, and feelings, and politics, and all their debate happened in a creative way.
I hope I can go to Paris without a broken heart some day, because I’m sure it would be different without that song playing all the time.