If after many years you fail, kick something breakable.

Amanda dug up another four tapes. After spending more than two hundred bucks having her whole collection transferred, I’m no closer to having that Papa Ghostface footage I’ve been chasing than I was a little less than twenty years ago when I started chasing it. I would bet anything it isn’t lost or dead, but buried somewhere in a garage or at the bottom of a box of random things, waiting to be rediscovered in the next century when human cloning is all the rage and no one knows which generation of themselves they are anymore.

There is one last hope. It’s the longest of long shots, but I know a second video recording exists — or used to exist — of the same live performance I thought we’d unearth somewhere on one of Amanda’s tapes. I know because I sat in a classroom a month or two after it was filmed and watched it. I just don’t know who made the tape.

I do know who might be able to answer that question. As unlikely as it is that they would remember who was manning the camera seventeen years ago, and as even-more-unlikely as it is that the tape is sitting around waiting for me to find it with its head crowned by a halo of heavenly light, it’s worth a try.

I have a realistic view of the situation. I’m pretty sure all of this has been for nothing. I just don’t want to give up until I’ve exhausted every possibility.

Like I said before, I did end up getting my hands on some great archival material. So it hasn’t really been a pointless effort. It’s just that the footage I want most of all continues to elude me, as if the whole thing is a sick little cosmic joke designed to make me swear even more than I usually do.

What else is new? The remastering thing keeps moving along, sort of. 121 songs done now. 67 left to do. If I really dig in, I can probably have it all done inside of a few weeks. It’d be nice to get that taken care of so I can devote all my brainpower to this album I’m supposed to be finishing.

Here, for no real reason, is a little song that was filmed ten years ago at the old house and then never recorded or revisited. I miss that shirt. It kept getting rattier and rattier, until by 2011 I don’t think the sleeves existed anymore. Check out my dresser mirror reflecting all those empty water bottles lined up like soldiers on a bookshelf.

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