I Hate Los Angeles, I Love Audrina

Sorry everyone. I have missed two Mondays in a row.

The first Monday I didn’t post because after three years of not being in Los Angeles, I went back to be at one of my best friend’s wedding. The second Monday I missed was because I actually wrote a long post about the wedding, but my friend is a very private person that ended up deleting  almost 1,000 words describe a lot of shenanigans.

In reality, I’ve felt like posting other days that weren’t Monday, but instead of just doing it, I decided to wait, forgetting everything I wanted to say. Though my friend’s wedding was awesome and I had such a blast with him, his new wife and his family, I won’t mention that much.

Instead I’ll talk about how much I loathe LA. The city is gigantic and you can’t really do anything if you don’t have a car. It takes you hours to get anywhere and it is not enjoyable to walk around. It still has the douchey celebrity vibe that it had when I left and not much has changed. I actually had made more friends from LA living in Tijuana than when I was living over there….

I also couldn’t enjoy LA much because my roommate smashed my iPad, I had almost not money to my name and I had articles on hold (one that got rejected as the wedding ceremony was going on). But at least a few others got published and since getting back from LA I’ve been getting work done, waiting on other articles to get published and finally writing on my blog. Two of my latest articles have been featured as most popular stories on the website, the other two are about food which I still need to polish and get better.

prints

There are a bunch of celebrities that were awesome to me and were a pleasure to shoot. But one that I miss and I always had the fantasy that maybe we would hook up (I know, silly me) was Audrina Patridge (from the Hills, so not really a celebrity…). Anytime she was flying in or out of LAX, no matter if it was really early or late, I would show up to shoot her. Not only that, when I was not working at the airport, her neighborhood was where I would hang out a lot to increase my chances on seeing her.

On May 7th, 2009, I was hanging outside her house (another photographer was there as well). She came out on her Mercedes Benz, rolled down her window by my car and told me she was going all the way home to run errands and nothing interesting was going to happen. The other photographer approached me and asked me what was going on and I told him, we both decided to follow her (though I wish it was my exclusive). Turns out she did do a bunch of boring errands, but the sheer white dress she wore was completely worth following her for 2 hours+ all the way to Yorba Linda, CA.

may 7 2009
may 7 2009 bro may 7 2009 br

I saw her a bunch of times outside of LAX, but no pictures survive on my hard drive. Instead, I have a lot of pictures of her looking gorgeous at the airport.

Audrina had a tendency of flying out one day and coming back the next. These are from her departing on March 7, 2009 and coming back on March 8.

 – I asked her to show me the tattoo on her neck and told me what it meant.

These other ones are from July 19 and 20, 2010. Looking back at the pictures, she looks amazing and I miss having a flirtatious thing with her, even if it was only one-sided.
july 19 2010 2 july 19 2010 bye july 19 2010 july 20 2010 smile july 20 2010 wind july 20 2010

This was on February 13, 2011 and probably the last time I saw her.

february 13 2011
So I took the opportunity of taking my picture with her. Don’t we make a great couple?! (Though we both look like shit in this pic)

Here are a few of her pictures that made it to online blogs and what not. I also remember a bunch of pictures in magazines and stuff, especially in Australia. For some reason, Australians, just like me, love Audrina.
5-8-09 Audrina E! 5-8-09 Audrina GG Audrina E! 3-9-09 Audrina GG 3-7-09 Audrina Patride GG 3-9-09
And still to this day, I keep a picture of her. It is taped on my balcony window, promptly displayed for the whole world to see, though I have the picture because she refused to sign it to an autographer friend so he gave me the pic for free.
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Crazy Ass Weekend + The Douchiest of Douches = Javier Bardem

This is getting posted on Monday right before midnight, at least I am complying with my deadline.

Week three of my friend Drew visiting from college. Time went fast and I barely worked, but we did a lot of partying. This past weekend was one of the craziest I had. Friday was Noisefest in Tijuana and also the band King Llama came down from LA to play Moustache bar (my favorite band of the weekend) and stayed at my place. My roommate’s band with Haydee (this time named Aloha Taylor, the name changes to a newscaster every performance) did a good job of opening the noise galore, followed by the drummer of my band with his alternative noise project Apisdafry. Other notable acts of the fest were Pure Shit and Ghost Magnet Roach Motel, who I saw at All My Friends Festival the previous year. In my review I called them weird to be weird and noise just to make noise. I still agree with this statement, but this time they had two moving platforms that united where the concert venue. It was very interesting visibly, but audibly was still painful after a few minutes that my head buzzed the whole night until the next morning.

On Saturday me and Drew went to this year’s AMF2015, it’s sixth edition. I previewed all the bands a week before going and none caught my attention. I felt basically the same way throughout the fest though I was really trying to enjoy everything. So I did what everyone does at a festival like this and took some drugs. Instead of loosing me up and making myself have a good time, I locked my brain in a shell and all I could think of was work. The only thing that was in my mind was talking shit about the show. But in reality, there can be no complains. The people of Tj just ask for way too much and the fest got overhyped. Yes, many bands were subpar and the sound did a lot of mistakes. But for the price of admission and every thing that was done, there can be no shit talking. I sent an article about it to the San Diego Reader already and I have low expectations about it, but still hoping it will get published.
 2015-06-20 18.47.46-1– Me and Drew at AMF 2015
I got published twice this past week, the one that was on hold about my friend David and the other about Bresca, a restaurant in Tj. Another article got rejected and I sent two more than I am waiting to see if I get published or not. At least the one that I had on hold was fairly popular and it got shared quite a bit. Tony Tee, who I mentioned on the previous entry, posted on his Facebook that it was one of the best articles summarizing the recent wave of violence in Tijuana. I asked Tony but his favorite celebrity, but instead he asked for the douchiest, which according to him, is Russell Crowe. However, I have no memories of Russell, but I do of one celebrity that did the douchiest move ever.
It was on March 5,2010 and I had Penelope Cruz arriving in American Airlines (her real name is Penelope Sanchez). It was around 1 pm and I was working solo. I spotted Penelope walking in the departing section with her boyfriend of the time (now husband), Javier Bardem. The limo was waiting outside, but their helper saw me waiting for them, that they suddenly turned around (which meant they were going downstairs to arrivals).

mar 5 2010 – I spotted them from far away.

As I was running down, my boss called me, “Javier Bardem is arriving right now,” he said. “I know!” I yelled back and hung up the phone. I saw Penelope and Javier now on the downstairs, but again they turned around and went upstairs. We played the cat and mouse game for like 20 minutes when once again I saw them on the arrival level (upstairs). Suddenly, they took a left that was unknown to me. I got up to the bridge to spot the car and I saw it waiting by the elevator almost by the other terminal.

I ran nearby where the car was located and then I saw them coming out of these double doors I never saw before. I started shooting long lens, keeping my distance, at least 20 feet away. As they walked towards the car I was nothing but nice to the couple. “Welcome to LA, you guys are awesome.” Things like that I shouted in Spanish while I snapped pictures. As they closer to the car and I was running out of space, I switched to my flash and short lens.

MAT_5990 MAT_5995 MAT_6001 – You can clearly see that Penelope was smiling but Javier barely looked up.

Snapped some more pictures while remaining courteous. Penelope went to my right (her left) towards the street to get to the passenger seat behind the driver. Javier walked on the sidewalk to get the opposite side of the limo. As he was entering the car, he turned around.

MAT_2323 – The flash shot.

I thought he stopped to greet me and thank me for keeping my distance (which had happened with several other celebrities). But instead he said “eres basura!” And proceeded to spit on my eye.
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I was in shock. I didn’t know what to do. I yelled back that I was just working to pay my student loans, that I am a musician and not the trash he said I was. The helper was in shock as well. Penelope seemed to be angry at what he did. I tried to spit back, but took too long that the car was already gone.
I called my boss and told him what happened. He told me I could sue for an attack with a biological weapon. After all he spat on my face and hit me right in the eye. Other airport workers saw the action and took my side. But the car was far gone and the police usually take the celebrity’s side. I asked for airport recording footage, but the camera had miss the action. Defeated and with saliva on my face (despite washing it off a lot, it still felt like it was there), I stopped working for the day.

I saw Javier a couple more times after, but it was never a one on one, so he behave decently after that. I don’t remember seeing Penelope again.

This pictures of Javier were taken on August 8th, 2010 in the United terminal. They are nothing special, just like him.
8 8 10 8 8 101

On Hold and The Douchiness of Kanye West

So… things aren’t going as great as they should be. Since I quit my job, I haven’t been published and no tours have happened (many emails, several cancellations). But everyone keeps posting “follow your dream” bullshit things on social media. We are supposedly a generation that does whatever we feel like and make a living out of it. Which means I am doing the right thing and I should not worry about money. I have many ideas in mind, but the process is slow. I have sent three stories and they are all on hold. Wish they could just reject me or publish right away, instead of just waiting forever.

My college friend, Drew, is still visiting (for two more weeks). This weekend we are going to All My Friends 6th Edition. Not really excited for the line-up, but the fest should be a blast. The location is perfect, the food will be great and I’ll be doing some work. If you are in Los Angeles or San Diego, my competition and good friend, Tony Tee, has a tour package on his website Algo Bien. If you have seen the Anthony Bourdain episode in Tijuana, Tony is the chubby mustachio tour guide that takes Bourdain through Tijuana’s nightlife.

Around minute 9 to see Tony Tee. I recommend the whole episode, though it is a lot of Baja and not much of TJ. And Tijuana has changed a lot since that tour. So you can either go on Algo Bien with Tony Tee or you come with me on a Tijuana Adventure, I don’t care how you do it, this city is amazing!

Anyway, Señor Antonio Ley, I nominate you to pick up next Monday’s celebrity. This week, my friend Drew chose Kanye West. I really thought I wrote about him before, my encounters with him were bizarre. I really don’t give two shits about his music. I know people love him for his beats or what not and I can say that I accidentally listen to his songs at a bar or something and didn’t think ill of his music. But I have never on purpose played a Kanye West song for my own listening pleasure (my friend James from Michigan loves him…)

My first story about Kanye involves my brother and my very early days as a paparazzo. It was probably my second week in Los Angeles in the summer of 2007 when I accompanied my brother to LAX because Kanye was on the list. My brother have heard that Kanye was a dick and that it was better just to not be seen. We were waiting at the bottom of Terminal 5 at LAX (Delta flights), when my brother spotted Kanye. He made me turn around so I could hide the camera, so I never took a look at Kanye. My brother said he was accompanied by two super slutty girls and they were going to baggage (with no assistants or help).

Then I saw Chance frolicking around LAX. This is 2007 and my college roommates loved shitty reality TV (I’m looking at you Daven). I am referring to fucking Chance from the fucking reality show “I Love New York,” the spin-off of VH1’s “Flavor of Love.” For no reason I yelled, “What about Chance?!” and he responded “WHADDUP WHITE BOYYYYYYYY!”

My brother was all nervous trying to be super sneaky to take pictures of Kanye when I finally look at who he was taking pictures of. It was none other than Chance’s brother, Real. MY FUCKING BROTHER CONFUSE KANYE WEST WITH REAL! This is not the first time my brother confused celebrities, he once thought Jason Schwartzman was Justin Long and interviewed him about his Mac commercials….

Some quick research informed me that Real died earlier this year. I never got pictures of him and I am sure my brother deleted the ones he got when he thought it was Kanye.

real_lg

On my hard drive, I only have one folder of Kanye, though I saw him more than 5 times. He was always a douche, even attacking one of my best friends from Los Angeles on 9/11 (2008), smashing his camera. I quit my job before he started dating Kim (or around that time), so I am glad I was not there for the whole North West baby and shit. His pictures were virtually worthless before he started dating Kim, sometimes I would ignore the tip that Kanye was in the airport. Many times I didn’t never bothered to take his picture, much less save them on my hard drive, except this one time that my friend Kat followed me for a day for a college assignment.

This one time, Kanye was nice, way too nice. He was so nice, that it was weird and felt completely fake. Of course it happened after his 9/11 incident, so he had to play it cool at the airport. These pictures were taken on March 10th, 2009 outside Terminal 2 (Air France flight I believe). He kept telling us to take picture of his shoes and then stood there awkwardly….The first picture is by Kat, you can see me taken the other pics on the left of the frame.

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Tijuana Adventure with College Housemate, Poker, Maybe Feature Story and Alanis Morissette

Oops. I missed the Monday deadline. But hey, I was in San Diego all day enjoying the day and I wrote the blog post in my ipad. I just wasn’t home to publish it (and edit photos). Here it is:

It’s been only a week since I quit my job. I should be working all day in my computer, writing articles, updating my webpage and creating ads for my tour company, Tijuana Adventure. But in reality I have been doing nothing except playing Diablo III and partying. But it has only been one week and I actually turned in an article. It got accepted, but now I am playing the waiting game to see if I get featured in a different section of the paper, and hopefully get paid more, since I wrote around 2,000 words.

My friend and housemate on senior year of college, Andrew, is visiting Tj for a little adventure of his own. This has been my perfect excuse to do nothing but eat delicious food and drink craft beer all day. Andrew just spend the last year of his life teaching English at a college in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. A world completely different to what I have ever known that I wish I could experience it just so I can write about it. All of Drew’s stories are interesting to say the least. A country with no alcohol or drugs, a king who rules like the feudal ages, lashes and jail time if you commit a crime… Living in Saudi for a year would be a challenge. With his anecdotes I come to the conclusion that Saudis are just self-entitled rich kids that do whatever they want in their country.
The second night that Drew was here, we had a poker game back home. My roommate Chad, wrote a cover story about some poker players living in Mexico. This inspired poker nights at my place, the latest I ended up winning (buy in is $3 USD so it’s not like I won a lot). Of course during poker we have beers and music.

2015-05-21 10.52.31 2015-05-27 22.00.50-1Chad has had an Alanis Morissette kick lately, that we listen to her albums when we play. So in her honor, and for Chad, here are my best pics of Alanis, who was always the sweetest person to talk to or photograph. Always radiant and very kind, even though I was a hated paparazzo.July 17, 2009. The first time I saw Alanis Morisette, but my memory has faded and I really don’t remember this day. I saw her a lot….

August 21, 2009. Don’t have much memory of this day either. I am sure I was by myself and she was nice.

 

February 5th, 2010. Again, don’t remember this day. But rainy days make for awesome pictures. Again it seems that I was completely alone and she was obviously again, super nice.

Februar 5 2010 february 5 2010

August 31, 2010. Kinda remember this day, but my pictures were shitty, which means I was by myself again? Not sure… It wasn’t until she was pregnant that her picture worth went way up. Hollywood and celebrity gossip love pregnant stories and babies…

August 31 2010

October 4th, 2010. It was the other photographer I worked with, Justin, who told me that Alanis was a complete sweetheart. Before that I just thought she was nice, but I didn’t bother her much. I have no idea who the dude that got her pregnant was, but here he is happily walking hand in hand.

october 4 2010 2 october 4 2010 3 October 4 2010

November 3rd, 2010. Holy shit. I googled who the dude was while the pictures uploaded. Apparently he is a rapper named Mario “Souleye” Treadway and her current husband. She went from Dave Coulier, to Ryan Reynolds to this dude. Talk about an upgrade for him. Their daughter is Ever Imre Morisette-Treadway.

November 3 2010

November 15th, 2010. This is the last picture that I have of Alanis and her rapper husband.  As you can see, she was a happy pregnant celebrity that did not mind the cameras. And obviously we were super nice to her.
November 15 2010

I also saved a bunch of screen caps that blogs posted. Radaronline used to pay $25 or around there per picture, they probably pay shit now. People.com paid very well, anywhere between $100-300 for online picture. If it went to the mag, it was always over $1,000. People Mag was like the cream of the crop back in the day.

Alanis Morissette Radar Alanis Morissette PEREZ Alanis Morisette RADAR Alanis Morisette People

New post every Monday! Today = Adam Levine

OHHHHH Yeaahhhhh!! I quit my job!

It has been a really fast and weird year. My new years resolution to write more went nowhere, but like almost every year, I get shaken up more over my birthday than new years. I am almost thirty now (I turned 29 on May 16th). For that reason, I decided to quit the part-time job. It was an awesome job with great people where I didn’t have to do anything challenging. It was a job I should have been doing during college or after graduation, not at the age of almost thirty. I will miss the job, as well as the steady paycheck, but I am convinced that I can make my living writing and giving tours.

Sport Zone, where I used to work in San Diego

Sport Zone, where I used to work in San Diego

I am doing full-time freelance writing again. And to push myself into doing it more, every Monday I will be posting here in my own blog. My target is also to write more for the San Diego Reader and to get a cover before July. After a year and a half of writing for them, I am being included into the special issues (almost monthly). I have been published on the food section as well (Feast!) which opens the possibilities to more writing.

Tacotopia! Special issue about tacos!

Tacotopia! Special issue about tacos!

Reader travel section

Reader travel section

For more of my articles on the Reader, click here!

I also intent to have way more Tijuana Adventures. I have been having a couple of them every month and the popularity of my tours grows. I plan to have a tour every Saturday from 2-8 pm for $40 to four different breweries and two Baja-Med food stops. The tour includes a flight of beers on each brewery or a full pour. More details about that soon.

Random Tj adventure

Random Tj adventure

Exactly one year ago, I was freelance writing and organizing the Tijuana Rumble Fest, one of the toughest things I have done in my life. I am glad to say that this year, TRF will happen again (on a different date, obviously). However, I will no longer take a huge roll like I did last year, this time, I am spectating and helping with little things.

And a bit about my personal life…

I spent most of the year dating a gorgeous girl, but we were rarely together. I had the audacity to break-up with the prettiest girl I have ever dated. So I am single again….

My ex-girlfriend was in love with Adam Levine, so in her honor, here are my encounters with the singer/judge.

The first two are from March 15, 2009 from what I can tell from the file, because I do not remember that day at all. He arrived American Airlines and they snuck him through the elevator to the arrivals floor where a limousine was waiting.

Adam Levine arrives with a cup of Java Adam Levine arrives with a cup of Java

This other set is from September 8th, 2009 and I remember how it happened. Adam had a departure (probably to JFK) at 3:00 pm, so I arrived at 1 pm to wait for him. As I approached American Airlines first class, I spotted a really cute looking girl sitting by where I usually sat (it was a perfect spot to see celebrities coming out of their limos). I sit nearby with my cameras hidden as I am awed by her beauty. I find the courage to say something… and she tells me she is a model and she is waiting for someone. I also tell her that I am waiting for someone, so we sat next to each other for a couple of minutes without exchanging any more words.

A limo approaches and Adam comes out. The girl next to me stands up excitedly and runs over to him. I thought she was a fan or something, but no, she hugs him and kisses on the lips. It was Adam’s girlfriend, Angela Bellotte….
Adam Levine and his girlfriend departAdam Levine and his girlfriend depart Adam Levine and his girlfriend depart Adam Levine and his girlfriend depart

I have been avoiding my computer…

New years resolution was a fail. The idea was to write more than ever before, but I have been avoiding my computer like if it wasn’t working. I was going to post more frequently in this blog and on Tijuana Adventure about all the tours I’ve been having. At least the San Diego Reader keeps publishing me, but I have barely sent articles. Only 7 so far this year, but it could easily be way more. I actually got paid for not getting published, so it would have been 8 (editor mistake left me out of print, but still got paid). I also got in the special edition for music and I have been included in more special issues in the future. So some stuff has been accomplished.

I am not writing as much as I used too though. I have plenty of ideas but then I do nothing. Having a regular job is a blessing and a curse. I really want to quit to go back to full time writing, but last year I suffered financially because of it. So a steady paycheck keeps me afloat, but it also keeps me satisfied with not doing much. I don’t plan to be on retail much longer though, new jobs seem to be coming my way and Tj Adventure is growing.

In fact, I have had a lot of TJ adventures this year already and I get emails on the regular. Unfortunately, many emails end up just being inquiries or last minute cancellations. That is why I am going to start a new tour every Saturday from 2 pm to 8 pm. More details about this on my other webpage soon.

Classical guitar has been abandoned for now. I actually got a gig for Valentine’s day, but I wussed out from lack of practice and proper equipment. The upside of this is that I have been practicing with my band [DONKICHOW] way more and we already played a few gigs. Here’s a video of a gig on March 6th:

I uhhh… got too drunk, ended up passing out and missing the rest of the show.

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I missed one of my favorite bands [100 Onces] despite my friends trying to wake me up.  I also missed Vostok from Mexicali and Sociedad Secreta del Vació. :(

It would be so nice to go back to photography as well, but with no equipment, it is going to be a while until I can actually get photography gigs. In the mean time, here are some pictures of Senator John McCain.

MAT_1405 MAT_1417 MAT_1437

Why John McCain? Why not!

To be honest, I have not followed any celebrity news whatsoever. Not sure who is popular anymore. I also got lazy and do not want to plug in my hard drives. I just quickly opened a folder and the John McCain pictures came up.

The pictures were taken on February 1st of 2010.

There you have it. John McCain is another person I saw in my days as a paparazzo. If you are wondering if I saw your favorite celebrity, just ask me and I will post the pictures.

Hopefully I’ll write more again soon.

My Entire Adult Life I have been in Magazines and Blogs: 2014 Year Summary.

2015 is around the corner. My thirties are coming up soon. And I am still wondering what I am doing with my life.

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That’s what my life looked like on February 2011, a few months before quitting my job. That was the last month I had LAX duty and after that I relinquished to freelance street status. I checked many online magazines and blogs daily to find my pictures and screen cap it. Then I would check every publication to find it on print and would buy the magazine. I stopped doing this after a while unless it was a major print.

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The pile on the right are all tabloid magazines with printed pictures that I took. The one on top has my Lindsay Lohan cover from Hawaii.

The pile on the left is the San Diego Reader who has been publishing my articles as a stringer for a little bit over a year now. (profile: http://www.sandiegoreader.com/staff/matthew-suarez/)

I never really thought I would make my living off of magazines.

Facebook tried to summarize my year in a single post. It was nothing like what I remember 2014 being. So much shit happened this last year. Though it was a rough year, I am optimistic about 2015.

– In the beginning of the year I was really excited about being a published writer that I was writing about anything. I even got published in Spanish for the news blog – B1mas4 (a non-paying gig). I also did a bit of ghost writing. I was a bit heartbroken, working a lot was a great distraction.

– In March, I moved out of my apartment in downtown Tijuana to another apartment in downtown TJ (and I love this place)

– In April I got my cat who is sitting on my lap right now. Mr. Andmew Meowricio Pollock Bisholino II:

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– In May, I was one of the three main organizers for a music festival, the Tijuana Rumble Fest. It was one of the toughest and most stressful things that I have done in my life. Also, my nephew was born…
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…and now he is gigantic!

– In June and July I did nothing but watch the World Cup. Got a little money from getting published and also from giving tours with Tijuana Adventure. I met people from the UK, Australia, France, Nigeria, Hong Kong, Japan, Scotland, Israel, Canada, and of course, plenty people from all over the USA.

– In August I kept meeting people from around the world, but living as a freelance writer got a little bit harder when the SanDiegoRed told me they could not pay me anymore (SanDiegoRed is a news blog based in Tijuana that also published me).

– In September I got a job in the USA in retail at a soccer shop in San Diego. It is my first regular job since college. I have to cross the border 4 or 5 times a week to get to Sport Zone. So far, I have enjoyed working there and it has given me a better understanding of border living.

– The highlight of October was that my college roommate came to visit for his own TJ Adventure. We learned that we cannot drink as much as we did in college, but holy fuck did we have fun. He recorded this video of some Tijuana biker crashing on Halloween night.

– In November, I didn’t shave.

– December is now and it is almost gone. So much has happened that my paparazzo days are almost forgotten, but then I receive a letter from an actor “with a big following on Instagram…”

actor pap

…He has 120k, so that is plenty, I only have 258 :( but who is counting?

It helps looking back, just not the way Facebook presented it to me. Reviewing my past just help me decide what to do in the future. Maybe I can do this once a week and actually post on my blog on a regular basis. After all, I pay around $20 a year to keep this site, might as well juice it. There is no one editing me and most people that read me are clicking on that same reddit IamA.

Music has been a bit left behind, but a couple of shows with my band Donkichow did happen. Classical guitar is going to be a bit ignored while I concentrate on writing more math-rock songs because playing live is the fucking best.

For those who read, thanks, I do appreciate it.

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