Friday 20 February 2009


There is another reason for turning the volume down on one of your facebook friends. It is because their status updates and comments and links and posts drive you crazy and you don't understand it but they make you feel tired, just to read them.

One such is a man I met in a garden in New York, on my last day in the city in 2003, until I returned almost four years later. He turned out to be my third cousin. Pretty remarkably closely related, his father and my grandmother were first cousins. This kind of detail matters to me, a lot. I have found a long-lost cousin in remarkable circumstances, in every place I have lived in, now.

My cousin in Denmark I had not met since we were both 2, in Limerick. I met him again when I performed at an arts festival in Denmark. As I left the stage, and the venue, he came running after me, shouting, "Lucy come back! It's your cousin, Brian!" He said I hadn't changed much since I was 2. He recognised me. Fucking Nora (Nora was the name of a grandaunt to both of us).

And this one in New York, we met in a garden, as I said, in the east village. He started talking to me, asking about where in Ireland I was from. His surname and my grandmother's were the same, and they came from the same place. That was an epiphany, a kinship made in the city, a sign to return. I have made some overtures toward contact, facebook being one of them. But he doesn't seem able to say hello. It is easier, I suppose, to click 'confirm' on a friend request in your inbox, from the safety of the distance of your familiar computer, than to meet the unknown yet blood related, in another human being.

He is a rocknroll musician and I think he is probably very lonely.

No comments:

Post a Comment