she knows i’m right. she just needs a sign.
we’re up in the studio. mo is painting something randomly to avoid a project with a looming deadline. she’s supposed to paint an homage to a famous person who influenced her life and passed away.
for mo, that person is curt cobain.
she once explained it to me this way: think of you and lennon. that’s me and cobain. oh.
mo was in seattle when nirvana was born. she loved cobain because he was from aberdeen, a modest washington town. it was like they had the same roots. she loved his music, but also the idea that a normal guy from a little town she drove through a lot could succeed. a hopeful thought for an artist. mo is also kicking around frida and georgia o’keeffe, but i’m thinking cobain is the one who really resonates with her.
she isn’t sure she wants to do it. she has a great concept going with a guitar, but she isn’t feeling it. we kick around some ideas and she reluctantly thinks maybe. i’m thinking, come on, it’s cobain. you HAVE to. she says maybe, carrying the guitar out of the studio to stare at from home for a while. clearly, she’s undecided. i’m having my doubts.
we walk out of the studio, down the alley and come out next to the bar next door. they have speakers outside that play a constant mix of sports and bad country music.
as we step onto the sidewalk, curt’s distinctive riff for “smells like teen spirit” comes blaring into the night.
we lean back against the k space wall and listen. that angst and passion. reliving the first time to hear it, knowing hair bands were done and this was the sound you’d hear for another year or decade or lifetime. it’s one of those moments you could never plan, and that you could never forget.
i found it hard, it’s hard to find
oh well, whatever, never mind
the last chord fades and segues into a song about dogs in pickups with whiskey bottles. we look at each other and shake our heads, still slightly skeptical that this happened at all.
she knew i was right. she just needed a sign.
we get in the car and drive home.
life is funny …