Phil Collins Day 2012: The Confessional

Outside 60 Freeman St, in Greenpoint, Brooklyn.

Outside 60 Freeman St, in Greenpoint, Brooklyn.

A few Phil Collins faces on the door are all that let's you know you're in the right place.

A few Phil Collins faces on the door are all that let's you know you're in the right place.

Let's...

Go...

Inside...

The mask crafting area.

Due to technical difficulties with the recording, lights are still on.

"Step outside and come back in for the effect," Heather said.

This being the effect.

It seems like much distance between you and Phil.

But you cross that void...

Work up your courage...

And then push the button.

February 15, 2012

"You look a little like Phil Collins," the 20-something girl behind the table said. "The blue eyes..."

I don't doubt that being raised on prog rock, listening to years of prog rock, has shaped me. I thought it was more internalized, more hidden, but perhaps it extends to my appearance as well. I wouldn't disagree that Phil and I both share the blessing of having a perfectly spherical head.

Last year's Phil Collins Day had a parade attached to it. Confessing anything to what you hope will be Phil's eyes and ears was this year's pinnacle event, celebrated in a small, dimly lit confessional booth in a dark industrial art space. In that booth one could say anything to Phil, according to Heather, the incredibly pleasant organizer of the yearly event. Our collected confessions, tales and praise would be sent to Phil. These confessions could be anonymous, if you chose, to an extent. 

Anyone dropping by could use the availble photocopies of Phil's face, crayons, blueberries, scissors, spray paint or Exact-o knife to make and adorn a Phil Collins mask. Your mask could be a shield from the camera on the other side of the one-way mirror. You could tie that mask with twine around your head or glue it to a stick to hold in front of you. And there were two flavors of the face, wild, wincing Phil and stoic, twinkle-in-his-eye Phil.

But I didn't want to hide myself from Phil.

I don't want to talk to this highest-grossing pop superstar, this inspirational drummer, this legendary man who has been such a part of my life while wearing his face. No, I have so much love for Phil. I want him to know from whom it's coming. I have so much to share with Phil, so many stories, so much to complain about on that Tarzan soundtrack. This is my one chance to talk to him man-to-man. I've been waiting for this moment all my life.

 

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