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Me and E

Posted by on January 17, 2003

Editor’s Note, written on August 28, 2008: This entry is a made-up story about meeting Elliott Smith. It definitely never happened. Please also note that I wrote this entry long before he died, so what looks like kind of a callous lie now was just a normal daydream back then. I understand some folks are pissed about the “sellout” comment, and I apologize if I’ve offended anyone. Elliott Smith was and is my favorite singer and I intended no disrespect to him then, and I intend no disrespect to his memory now. Thanks for reading and/or linking to me and have a great day.

Yesterday I met Elliott Smith. He was standing in line in front of me at Safeway where I was waiting to pay for my apples and the good couscous you can’t get at Cala Foods. Despite having spent the last three years idly stalking him and despite owning all his albums and despite that my walls are covered with his concert posters and I have his static-cling colorform thing on my car, I almost didn’t talk to him. That’s how shy I am.

But anyway I did talk to him as it turns out. I said “You’re Elliott Smith.”

He turned around and I was cute and he said “Yeah,” in a terrified kind of way.

I said, “You stole my friend’s film.” This is true. When Maggie saw him at Amoeba in SF which was right after Either/Or came out, she had her picture taken with him (he was still unfamous enough to where you could do that) and then handed him her camera for whatever Maggie reason. Then he sort of wandered off with it. A few minutes later he came back and returned the camera, but when she went home her film was gone. So I told him this story. “I understand why you’d do it,” I said, “because if there were 24 strangers in the world with a picture of me, I would want 24 pictures of a stranger. To get even.”

He was kind of entertained by this, in the way that indie rock boys (even sellout Dreamworks-label indie rock boys) are only ever “kind of” anything, but he denied stealing her film. (It is very possible that Maggie actually forgot to put film in the camera in the first place.)

That was pretty much it. He walked me home and we talked and all. To be honest, he’s not that interesting. Or maybe we were both just too shy to say much. But at least now I am in a position to say that the new album will almost definitely for sure be out sometime soon.

Best exchange of the evening:

HIM: Not too many stars around here.

ME: Yeah, I miss that.

HIM: I used to just stare at the stars all night, just sit outside and like write songs all night and then when I wrote one I’d play it like eight times, or just a part of it over and over. Just to sort of get to know it? I guess?

ME: Sounds nice.

HIM: Yeah, but I lived in this total shithole and I had, like, a hundred neighbors and by, like, two in the morning they’d just all be screaming out the windows at me, “SHUT THE FUCK UP!” You know and stuff like that.

ME: Uh oh.

HIM: Yeah, plus I was taking a lot of, like, amphetamines and different shit. So I would yell back at them but for some reason I only would yell in rhymes.

ME: Like what?

HIM: Like, um, they’d say “shut the fuck up!” and I’d say “sew the duck up.”

ME: . . .

HIM: I wasn’t totally coherent or anything. I usually had to rewrite the lyrics to most of the songs the next day with a hangover.

ME: That explains why they’re so depressing.

HIM: Yeah, I guess…

14 Responses to Me and E

  1. michele

    FUCKING RAD!!!

    IS THIS STORY TRUE?

  2. sean

    plucking mad!

    miss history’s blue?

  3. maggie

    i didn’t hand him my camera after the picture. i handed the bodyguard man next to him the camera before the picture, and then they disappeared behind this door. when they came back the bodyguard took the picture of us…and you know the rest.

  4. allen

    ducking fad!

    make kris sorry, do.

    i loved your story doll. i promise not to tell michele you’re fibbing, she probably doesn’t know you that well. in our latest aim conversation, elliott filled in this part:

    es: one night, i noticed that the moon kind of looked like a sickle-cell.

    kl: is that why you wrote the line, ‘the moon is a sickle-cell?’

    es: [shrugs] huh? [blinks]

    remind me to tell you about that time i had a threesome with bjork and tori amos.

  5. jason

    I can’t believe I bought that story! Especially since I knew he shops at Cala.

  6. tracy

    LIAR!!!!!

    Good one though.

    I’ll have to tell you the time when I hung out with Meg Ryan. See the thing is? My story is TRUE!!!

  7. elliott

    actually i shop at Good Life Grocery in Bernal Heights.

  8. erica

    hey mr. smith, that’s MY grocery store. stay out, buddy.

  9. sean

    More Elliott AIM conversation:

    Stoppard19 (Sean): Does the moon really look like a breaking light bulb when you’re high on amphetamines?

    BtwnBars69 (Elliott): Um, uh, not really. (Pause)

    Stoppard19: (Pause)

    BtwnBars69: (Sigh) It pretty much still looks like a sickle cell.

    Stoppard19: Kiss me.

  10. jason

    Still more Elliot conversation…

    Smith’s high school biology teacher:

    …while on the other hand, most cases of Tay- Sachs and Sickle Cell Anemia still show up only in very specific ethnic groups. You’ll notice, students, that a sickle cell is strikingly reminiscent of a crescent moon.

    Smith:

    May I be excused? I think I’m coming down with a case of poetic inspiration!

    Later, in his room…

    Smith: “Your love is like a needle in a

    thousand hay stacks,

    It’s like a disease, you know, like

    Tay-Sachs.”

  11. sean

    p.s. to allen:

    would you have a threesome with bjork, if the third member of the party was not tori amos, but rather einar of the sugarcubes?

    bear in mind, she’s 38, and he’s sick for toys.

  12. kati

    Oh lord, it’s all so funny…

    But I am a gullible sucka! If the story *had* been true, I would have applauded Kristen’s bravery in striking up conversation despite shy star-struckedness. If it ever really happens, man, you’ve got some crazy chatting to live up to.

  13. allen

    p.p.s. to sean:

    38 eh? i’ll happily supply the extra 31.

    i would have a threesome with bjork and X, the algebraic kind, sick for toys or not, well well well.

    i lied, it wasn’t a threesome. it was more of a foursome, as the piano tuner ‘suddenly dropped by’ to ‘make sure tori’s parts were in order’ and to ‘have sex with her and us’.

    suddenly it was 5 when tricky dropped by to ‘check bjork’s hidden place’ and to ‘have lewd completely-undeserved-tricky-sex with her’.

    finally, it ended up as a 6-some, when kristen walked in. it *was* her apartment after all.

  14. sean

    For as long as I’ve known Kristen, she has lied constantly. And everyone has always believed her. The first example of this came when she had convinced many of my classmates that “subtle” had a distinct and separate meaning from the “word” pronounced “SUB-tle.”

    In the intervening 12 or so years, no one at all has wised up. Everyone still totally buys it when Gene “proposes” to her in a restaurant, or when she and Elliott Smith go grocery shopping, or when “Dark Side of the Moon” and “The Wizard of Oz” totally line up, or when Custer gives the Indians smallpox-infested blankets.

    Kristen, I salute you for your immortal run of successful chicanery. Of course, I do hope you’re familiar with the parable of the Girl Who Cried Indie Rock Semi-Star. It ends tragically, with much loss of cheese.

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