Friday, 21 March 2008


Joy Division's Atmosphere, while beautiful was never an easy listen and for me is forever linked with Rick Slater's suicide.

I know there are some people who knew Rick better than me and were more deeply affected by the absolute abruptness of his death. Yet listening to that song tonight I have been taken back to those days from long ago. I still remember that morning, sitting bored in my class looking out the window to the train line and wondering why the train had stopped where it had. When we were finally gathered and could feel the bad news in the chapel (because these kind of gatherings never happened if everything was normal) the worst thing was the sheer helpless fear that overtook me when I realised it had to be Rick before the headmaster said his name because his seat next to mine was empty.

I couldn't listen to Atmosphere for a long time after that and yet I had loved it as a song before that tragic event and I have always kept some Joy Division in my CD collection. Depending on where I am I have been able to listen to it or have needed to avoid it.

Last night was a second late night on the trot with some very good people, silliness abounded, we laughed and the beer flowed. We went and saw Hallam Foe at the cinema and retired to a bar for a good night. Today has been quiet and pleasant. Some food is being prepared as I type and I will write about it on Monday. So it was quite a surprise to be in such a good place and suddenly to find Atmosphere pop up randomnly on my iPod. It was a bittersweet tug that pulled me without hesitation into my own past. It may sound strange to say so but that it can do that is a very good thing.

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