?

Log in

No account? Create an account

Previous Entry | Next Entry

Piano man

You may remember the story of the 'Piano Man', who was found wandering in the rain in Kent in April. He was taken to Medway Maritime Hospital, and although unable or unwilling to speak or write words, he did draw a picture of a grand piano, and played fluently upon the hospital's chapel piano when taken to it by staff.

The story has very much dropped out of the news, but it stuck in my mind enough to make me wonder what had become of this man, and do a bit of Googling today to try to find out. I rather assumed there would have been a happy resolution by now, even if the press hadn't bothered to report it, since a full two months have passed since he was found.

Sadly, however, there has not. I found a series of press statements about him made by Kent and Medway NHS since he was brought into their care, and statement 10 reveals that, as of yesterday, his identity had still not been established, despite 200 possible names being supplied by the public. He is still being cared for by the hospital, still unnamed, still not communicating by any means other than music.

I don't know whether my interest in him is real compassion or mere curiosity. But communicating in words is such a fundamental part of being human that it is hard not to feel frustrated for someone who has locked themselves out from doing so, and to long to help them to reintegrate themselves into the great human conversation. And his ability to communicate through the piano of course only throws his linguistic silence into sharper relief, making it all the more unbearable that he does not speak, because it hints (probably misleadingly) that he would say fine and profound things if he did. I know there are many people in the world much worse off than him, but his story touches me strangely. I hope he finds himself soon.

Comments

( 18 comments — Leave a comment )
aellia
Jun. 23rd, 2005 02:31 pm (UTC)
Thank you for that..I was wondering,too.
aellia
Jun. 23rd, 2005 02:32 pm (UTC)
His face looks oddly familiar to me..as if I've seen him before..may have done,as I live in Kent
strange_complex
Jun. 23rd, 2005 02:49 pm (UTC)
Yes, I suppose that makes it reasonably likely that you have. I was staring at the picture, trying to recognise him, but I really don't think I've ever seen him anywhere.
rosamicula
Jun. 23rd, 2005 08:21 pm (UTC)
I am glad I am not the only one bewitched by this story.
strange_complex
Jun. 23rd, 2005 08:38 pm (UTC)
In a novel, the story would sound fantastical. But this is real life, and hence far less plausible.

Actually, it struck me that the similarity between the name he's been given and your LJ pseudonyms makes him sound as though he must be one of your cast-off ex-lovers. You didn't dump a piano-player on the Kentish coast, did you? ;)
rosamicula
Jun. 23rd, 2005 09:17 pm (UTC)
Oh how I wish he was! I have terribly romantic fantasies about him - he's so pretty too.
ditzy_pole
Jun. 24th, 2005 11:47 am (UTC)
I think most of us girls have fantasies about him! There is something about him that I can't quite put my finger on...
rosamicula
Jun. 26th, 2005 01:40 pm (UTC)
Usually just being tall, slender and from Eastern Europe is enough for me.... Factor in mysterious and talented and silent and I'm completely lost.

dizty_pole eh? :))
ditzy_pole
Jun. 26th, 2005 05:31 pm (UTC)
Well one thing I can grant Eastern European men is that they know how to make a girl feel on top of the world! (at least the ones that haven't migrated to the West and been spoiled by it)...

And yes in my circle of friends I am indeed the 'token Eastern European mad bint' :o) Since I am the only one (that I am aware of) I feel it necessary to carry on the stereotype of vodka drinking :o) But in my defence once you had a taste of cherry liquer vodka you won't be wanting to put it down... ;o)
rosamicula
Jun. 26th, 2005 08:48 pm (UTC)
Mmm vodka. Double mmm Cherry vodka.

Got any lovely Eastern European men you can introduce me to?

I may have to friend you, just in case.
ditzy_pole
Jun. 26th, 2005 09:46 pm (UTC)
The cherry vodka works best when you have a supply of dark chocolate (even Lindt's 70% cocoa will do) for the dipping and cherries to bite on after the shot, although judging by how I am today I might've slightly overdone it...

I might know one or two men ;o) Actually I'm heading over there for August to expand my horizons (and to get cheap fags and booze)... So if I find any worthy ones I shall happily pass them your way, hence why I am friending you back :o)

rosamicula
Jun. 26th, 2005 10:31 pm (UTC)
Bless you darling!

I am trying to persuade a friend to go to Poland with me for a weekend in August actually - I'm just hoping the men are as cheap as the fags and the booze....
ditzy_pole
Jun. 26th, 2005 10:42 pm (UTC)
Oh I wouldn't go for the 'cheap' option if I were you - when abroad, regardless of setting, a gal should/deserves to be wined and dined to her hearts content! :o) There are quite a few men out there... I was lucky in that within a couple of days I acquired a nice boy that was willing to bend over backwards for me... Not that it's something I make a habit of...
syrcleoftrees
Jun. 23rd, 2005 09:04 pm (UTC)
hmmm,I cannot see him,the links do not work for me,SURPRISE
You know there have been times in my life I have found the human voice to be unbearable. I go off and live in the woods,(the cabin).For months at the time.I am thinking of doing this soon,about the piano man,I think he may have had such an expirence,like he was abducted by aliens and just dropped off there?Or,he has gone bust and wantd to play,eat,and be cared for ,so he is just being this way to eat,play piano,be taken care of.Seriously,there was this lady found in New Orleans about ten years ago,and last I heard she is still unknown as to who she is.I do not know if she can play piano.Sad,story,I do wonder and will for a long time about him,as I have about the lady. HT05
ditzy_pole
Jun. 24th, 2005 11:46 am (UTC)
I have been fascinated by this story too.

This is just a slightly more descriptive version of the original article.
http://edition.cnn.com/2005/WORLD/europe/05/29/uk.pianoman/

In the Metro paper a couple of weeks ago they had an article stating that this was a hoax - they claimed that it was a band member or someone of the sorts trying to get publicity to regain his failing career. Funnily enough the story was quickly dismissed!
strange_complex
Jun. 24th, 2005 11:56 am (UTC)
Ooh, thanks for the link. I didn't know about the labels from his clothes having been cut out when they found him. That's very strange, and makes me worry that someone had done something horrible to him and then deliberately tried to wipe out his identity. Urgh. :(
ditzy_pole
Jun. 26th, 2005 05:33 pm (UTC)
I just sincerely hope that the media won't one day get bored of this story and move on to something else like they usually do :o( I wouldn't be a happy bunny if they did!
hellywelly_
Jul. 28th, 2005 06:33 pm (UTC)
I still think about him, and worry for him in case the people who removed his means of identification ever catch up with him again.

i also read that for a while he wasn't ALLOWED a piano in his room. Shocking inhumanity to a man whose only means of communication it is.
( 18 comments — Leave a comment )

Latest Month

October 2018
S M T W T F S
 123456
78910111213
14151617181920
21222324252627
28293031   

Tags

Powered by LiveJournal.com
Designed by chasethestars