DJ Badger:  The News and the Journal

Entry One Hundred Twenty-Eight.
Friday, 2010.09.17, 9:55 AM CST.

"World in My Eyes" and a few memories of TU.
Current Mood:  Nostalgic again.
Current Scent:  None, aside from a bit of workout sweat from early this morning.

I've really wanted to post more new updates over the last month.  Obviously, I've failed in that endeavour.  My household has been through a lot in recent times, and I've unfortunately gotten a lot better acquainted with my old friend, clinical depression.

I have "wanted" to write more updates... but I haven't felt mentally "able" to.  For those who have been looking forward to one...  I'm sorry.


Today, I want to post about a few more memories, mainly revolving arond a Depeche Mode song, "World in My Eyes," which was released in the UK 20 years ago today.

By the time that "World in My Eyes" was released, I had been collecting Depeche Mode's music for almost three years... and I'd been a fairly obsessive collector of their work for about two years, having discovered the glory of imported vinyl only two years before.  It was the final of four very strong singles ("Personal Jesus," "Enjoy the Silence," "Policy of Truth," and "World in My Eyes") from Depeche Mode's best-selling album, Violator.

I had been a fan of "World in My Eyes" for several months, having first heard it as the opening track of Violator in March of 1990.  The initial 12" single release (which I promptly picked up on September 18th, when it arrived at Mohawk Music) included Francois Kervorkian's impressive Oil Tank Mix of "WiME," along with two of the best and most memorable B-sides that Depeche Mode ever produced:  "Sea of Sin" (Sensoria) and "Happiest Girl" (Kiss-A-Mix).

I specifically remember that when I brought the single back to my dorm room at Tulsa University, I found that there was a major defect:  The label had been pressed onto the record in the wrong spot on one side, so the paper of the label actually extended out into the path of the record grooves, thus rendering a large portion of the song unplayable!  I returned it to Mohawk, who luckily still had another copy.

As far as Depeche Mode singles go, it's not quite one of my favourites (like "Never Let Me Down Again," "Stripped," and "Walking in My Shoes"), but it's definitely a song I'd rank very highly.  I've always found it a good, solid track, and it's fairly recognizable by many non-DM fans as well, which is good from a DJ playability standpoint.


The song, as well as its B-sides, always remind me of a special time of my life:  My first semester in college.  I had only been attending Tulsa University for a little over a month when "World in My Eyes" was released.  I lived in a dorm building called the Twin Towers, in room B of Suite 211.  My room was decorated in a psychotic, obsessive amount (seriously) of Depeche Mode posters and memorabilia.  It was crazy.  Someday, perhaps, I'll post pictures.

I was the sole valedictorian of my class in high school, but college knocked me on my butt and smacked some reality into me.  I immediately found myself struggling through classes that semester - especially Calculus I and Honors Epics.

It was right around the same time that I discovered Critic's Choice Video - a little independent video store on Harvard, at which I rented such gems as the bizarre 1989 remake of "Dr. Caligari" and the old Nastassja Kinski flick, "To the Devil A Daughter."  Little did I know that in about four and a half years, after meeting DJ TMJ, it would become my regular hangout.

But, I digress...  I still remember that first semester very well, and one particularly clear set of memories happened right around the time of the "World in My Eyes" release.  I was sitting in the Twin Towers computer lab one evening, working on some Pascal programming for class... when in walked a young lady, looking like a cross between Andie McDowell and Annabella Sciorra.  She was accompanying a tall fellow with a jacket and scarf that made it fairly clear that he was most likely a big "Doctor Who" fan.

At the time, I was still very socially awkward... and I was stunned when, having noticed my "Music for the Masses" tour shirt, she asked if I had seen Depeche Mode in concert.  I explained that I had, but not during the "Masses" tour... rather, earlier in 1990, during the "World Violation" tour.

We discussed Depeche Mode at length, and I summoned up the nerve to ask her out.  She agreed, and soon after (the next night, perhaps?), we had an unusual date, attending an on-campus lecture on censorship by Nat Hentoff, and a visit to the Metro Diner for a couple of malts.

We were somewhat romantically involved for a bit, but (as I explained to her) I had a girlfriend who had moved to Dallas for the time being, and while we'd agreed that it was okay to see other people, we also had agreed to not do anything "too serious."  That particular "romantic" span between my TU companion and I lasted about two weeks.

(As it turned out, my girlfriend in Dallas decided that "not too serious" included losing her virginity to somebody else while she was down there... but, of course, I didn't know that at the time.)

My TU companion and I discussed a lot of things... like her upbringing abroad in Saudi Arabia and Switzerland and, of course, our mutual admiration of Depeche Mode's work.  It was an interesting friendship... one that was intermittently revisited, taking a few odd twists and turns, over the course of three years.  In the fall of 1993, due to circumstances I don't really want to discuss at this time, I chose to discontinue the friendship.

I picked up "World in My Eyes" on the night of our first date... or perhaps the night immediately after.  Regretfully, I cannot remember, but I know that they were only separated by one or two days at the most.  To this day, every time I think of the "World in My Eyes" single - and especially those B-sides, "Happiest Girl" and "Sea of Sin" - I think of that specific point in my life, way back in Twin West.

I know what a lot of you are probably wondering - "Whatever happened to the TU girl?"  Well, I'm not sure.  The last time I heard from her, she had moved to Germany with her brother, and she had finally been able to see Depeche Mode live for her first time, during their spectacular "Devotional" tour.

To my knowledge, she doesn't know anything about this website, and will probably never see this post.  We have not communicated in almost seventeen years, and odds are that we never will.  I remember her with fondness, but I also know that if anything serious had developed between us, she would have torn me apart.

Wherever she is, I hope that life is treating her well.

More later...



[2013-09-28 - Pssssssst...  There's been an update to that TU story.  See blog update 171 for details.]