In Russia we have a saying which goes kinda: “If you want God to laugh - tell hime about your plans”.
So in June I planned to go to the US to be at my friends’ wedding. Of course, I had the Greater Boston on my mind. And we planned to meet with Anthony.
“UNE!! I plan to be much stronger in June, able to drive my car again, go places with other people in them, visit the hospital far less frequently, and be well into building some (muscle smile here) lost muscle…..and, of course, hang out with you (Pauly, Ron, Nivi, Nicolas and the of the of our friends) whom I’ve been sorely missing. Sending my hopeful heart to Russia with love, xAntoniox”
That never happened. I came to Boston late at night because of terrible flight delays (never expected US domestic flights are so fucked up actually, huh). That was the night when we learnt that Anthony doesn’t have much time actually. Amanda and Neil headed back to the US from England at the speed of sound and light. All the closest people took a constant watch at the hospital. So I never met him again. Obviously I was not a closest friend to him, though our short acquaintance influenced me deeply and gifted me with another person whom I am proud and humbled to call friend.
I got a message about Anthony leaving us all here when I was boarding airplane to go home to Moscow, Russia. All the week I spent in Boston I tried to be of use, I tried to comfort and support nice people I met and fell in love with during my first visit (when I actually did meet Anthony). Pauly, Ron and Nivi. I do love you, seriously, I hope we will meet under some merrier circumstances in some not so distant future.
I met Anthony Martignetti once, it was a year ago. A year and a week to be precise, it was 14th of November. Days before that day were full of Art of Asking activities, it is a book Amanda Palmer wrote about life, dearth, love, hate, art and stuff. It is good, I tell you. But this is another topic. So Amanda just left Boston and went to a book tour.
Pauly and Nivi helped to arrange my meeting with Anthony. I felt like I am going to throw up because I was over-full with excitement and fear that I won’t be able to say anything - maybe not smart, but at least something not dumb.
We started talking from time to time via twitter and later whatsup somewhere in 2013. After Amanda explained to the world things about Anthony as the reason she cancels the tour. I wrote a blog review of the Beloved Demons. Good for me, I could get the e-book, shipping to Russian is sometimes a tricky thing.
Maybe it was me getting older or maybe Anthony used right words and images, and I read them at the right time, but his tales of demons and lunatics based on his own life got me deeply. I might say that before I was more a person of fiction, I considered non-fiction kind of boring thing. Not anymore, for sure. I realised that any fiction is actually a kinda costumed non-fiction. Level of this costume fanciness might be different, but still something that happened to you or not happened you re-work inside of your brains or soul and voi la - you have song, novel, poem, self-help quide, whatever.
Ah, yes, we also had a plan of a photoshoot. Anthony liked my works and wanted me to make portraits of him. We were not sure if it is going to be possible because he had this whole in his head - of medical reason. Who would want to be photographed this way? So plus to my excitement I was also nervous. Will we be making it? Or not? And if yes, will I be able to see through the sickness to his soul to make right pictures? It seems that I might achieved something, if one of the pictures from that sitting is a poster to the Memorial Evening which will be held today in Lexington. If people think it's Anthony's kind of picture and they chose it, so it means I nailed it.
So it was wonderful day. We did make pictures. We talked and asked each other questions. Anthony smiled. I even did a small special voice over with Russian accent for one of the stories. Anthony liked my Russian accent which is funny because of course I am shy of it.
We decided to make another session when I come back to the US in June. I did come back. But the second meeting was didn't happen.
My one and only meeting with Anthony Martignetti is a beautiful gem I hold close to my heart. I keep thinking if we could be friends if there was more time. I keep thinking that those people who were close to him for longer time and have more of those memory gems are extremely lucky.
I will come back to Boston, hopefully many times. This place weirdly gives me peace. It’s like a retreat secret garden.
I am thankful to Anthony for that.
Today I sent love and prays to those who gather in Lexington for a Anthony’s memorial/tribute evening.
sorry for typos, with love,