Saturday, May 23, 2015

“Kill me ‘cause I’m Bri-ish.”


Claudette was an African American girl with a shaved head who hung out on the hardcore scene. I saw her face in the Bad Brains 1982 video that has had me captivated for days now and was reminded of her. She used to hang out with Leon and Lisa (I think that was her name. I think she got pregnant and went away. I am not sure) in their dark overcoats  and plaid pants and boots with a bottle of beer in hand. In New York you used to be allowed to drink on the street if your beer was in a paper bag. I was not friends with them but I saw them everywhere. Claudette had amphetamine eyes, lined in black pencil with dilated pupils almost like a Margaret Keene painting. She had great working class clothes, flannels and trousers and stylish old man items that I do not know where she got them from. I remember her having an affected fake british accent for a spell. We were all teenagers trying on different personalities and such, figuring it out. Who could resist hearing an X-Ray Spex record and not want an accent like Poly Styrene? Leon and Claudette and Lisa were inseparable, always laughing , clowning, having fun, not taking very much serious. One day someone gave Claudette shit about her accent and I will never forget her glancing at them with disgust, as if anyone could stop her from having fun and saying “Kill me ‘cause I’m Bri-ish.” Accent intact as she walked away. I loved people watching all the misfits who found eachother and who reinvented them selves in our beautiful scene.

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