Monday, 28 November 2011

An Encounter With Bono

This story I’m about to relay to you is completely true. It happened over 15 years ago in 1994 when I was just twelve years old and it involves my one and only ever encounter with Ireland’s smuggest rock star. Don’t worry, this isn’t one of those famous person anecdotes where I’m in a café eating soup and I hear a voice say “how’s the soup?” so I look up and lo and behold it’s Bono. After informing him that it’s nice, he orders it and on his way out turns to me and says “You were right, the soup was lovely, now catch,” and he throws two tickets to a U2 concert in my direction.
It’s nothing like that. Instead, it’s a rather chilling tale that reveals a dark, sinister side to Paul Hewson otherwise known as Bono; a nickname he acquired as a teenager because of his close resemblance to Napoleon Bonaparte. I assume this is the reason, I wasn’t bothered looking it up. Sure, see for yourself.  

Napoleon at the battle of Waterloo
Bono acting the eejit


My non-soup related tale regarding Bono happened in the city centre of Dublin. My mother and I were driving on the Southside of the Quays when all of a sudden traffic came to a standstill. For those not familiar with Dublin, the Southside Quays operates on a one way, two lane system; the right lane adjacent to the river Liffey and then the left lane next to the various pubs, shops and other business’ including Bono’s own hotel ‘The Clarence.’ The traffic problem was stemming from an obstruction in the left lane so myself and my Mam assumed this was due to an accident or perhaps road works. However, as we approached Wellington Quay, where Bono’s hotel is situated, it became all too clear what was causing the traffic jam. It was Bono.
He had decided to park his car in the middle of the road, exit his vehicle and have a chat with some guy. He had to be aware that what he was doing was creating major traffic congestion but he couldn’t have cared less. He just continued on talking, devoid of any consideration for his fellowman.

All because of Bono. (Picture does not represent actual event)

Now, I can hear you saying “So what? With all the wonderful music he’s given to the world, does it really matter that he held up traffic for just a few minutes?” First of all it was longer than just a few minutes and yes it does matter.

You counter argue that “Maybe Bono just made a mistake and thought he could park there, after all it was outside his own hotel.” Don’t be so naïve! Bono is many things but he’s no fool. I’m sure he’s aware of the fact that just because he owns a property, it doesn’t mean he has carte blanche over the public road directly outside it.

“Well what about all the amazing charity work he does, that should count for something?” you blurt with more than a hint of desperation in your voice at this stage. Okay I hold my hands up, Bono is a charitable man but let’s delve into what motivates his blatant altruistic behaviour. Could it be that Bono’s good deeds are carried out in order to distract us from a terrible, disturbing secret that he has managed to keep hidden throughout his illustrious career? Let’s go back again to 1994 and that incident on the Quays when Bono delayed my Mam and I as well as countless others. Perhaps there is more to it than meets the eye.

If you look at the above map you will note the close proximity off Wellington Quay and St. James’ hospital. I took the liberty of contacting the Central Statistics Office and found out the number of deaths that took place in Dublin in 1994. I then divided that number by 365 before camping out on the Southside Quays for 24 hours and counting the amount of ambulances that drive through with their sirens blaring en route to St James’ hospital. After that it was a simple matter of some long division and pure guess work which lead me to the conclusion that on that fateful day in 1994, 3 people died in the Bono traffic jam because they didn’t make it to the hospital on time.

Mad with power.
“Fair enough, you’ve provided us with enough proof that this definitely happened but it’s not like Bono meant for those people to die,” I hear you reply in defence of this damning evidence. You’re really beginning to get on my tits do you know that? I put it to you that Bono knew exactly what he was doing, that he took pleasure in it, that when he gazed upon the rows of cars, trucks, vans and sadly, ambulances, he thought to himself, ‘this may be my finest achievement.’ For you see, I believe Bono has an irrational hatred for anyone who is in need of immediate medical attention. Ambulances are his mortal enemy for they constantly thwart his plans and deliver these gravely ill people to hospital just in time for them to receive the urgent treatment they require.

I’m not just basing this theory on what happened in 1994. A woman I used to work with was in bed one night and was woken up by a siren. She peered out through the curtains of her bedroom window and saw an ambulance driving by. Suddenly a dark figure emerged from behind a bush and threw a stone at its windshield before scarpering. She said it was the way he ran that gave him away for every step he took was filled with an extreme sense of self satisfaction that only Bono could pull off. Also if we take various random letters from every song U2 have ever recorded, we can construct the sentence ‘I hate the sick.’ And what’s more, if we play the album ‘Joshua Tree’ backwards, it produces a most peculiar sound. We cannot say for certain that this isn’t the noise of Bono vandalising an ambulance so we’ll just have to assume that it is. 

Bono getting up to all sorts.
But what are the reasons for Bono’s virulent hatred? Did something occur in his past that could explain all of this? I went to the trouble of tracking down one of Bono’s cousins and sent him a letter explaining my story and put all these questions to him. It’s been over four months and he still hasn’t replied so that in itself speaks volumes. My theory, and this is simply based on the fact that I’m getting fed up of looking into this and can’t be arsed exploring other possibilities, is that Bono has a rare mental disorder that I myself have discovered whereby one develops an uncontrollable anger towards anybody in desperate need of medical attention. I’m hoping that this condition will make it into The Diagnostic And Statistical Manual Of Mental Disorders which provides the criteria for mental illnesses. If it does, I’ll name the disorder after Bono. It’s the least I can do. The fifth edition, the DSM-5, is due to be published in 2013 so fingers crossed. 

Please, don’t blame Bono for his actions. He can’t help it. He’s ill. If you want to blame him for something blame him for this rubbish poem that he wrote and read out on a documentary about Elvis. Or maybe you still don’t believe me. Maybe you’re clutching a copy of ‘Achtung Baby’ tears in your eyes, refusing to see the man for who he really is. In which case, I give up. You’re a lost cause. But what if you’re ever in the back of an ambulance, having had a heart attack or a stroke? The incessant bellowing of the siren a strange comfort as it unapologetically warns those who may be in the way that you need to get to hospital as soon as possible so your life can be spared and then all of a sudden the driver yells out “THERE’S SOMEONE BLOCKING US, HE HAS A STINK BOMB!” I don’t have to tell you who that someone with the stink bomb is . . . . . .It’s Bono.