DISTORTION / Dušan Dim Ljubljana, Slovenia (Slovakia, (Slovakia, if you’ you’re American president). GSM signal coverage: 100%. Cable television: 170 channels. A new millenium. A new shopping centre. A new fake song on MTV ... Is this really all there is? Piksi, 15, a single hair on his chin, chin, doesn't feel like it any more. A sound roared in his ears. Hot, dangerous & sharp. The sound of Ljubljana on fire. Fire, now!
Distortion is a coming-of-age novel about a fifteen year-old high school student, Piksi, killing time with a little help from his friends. On an incredibly boring afternoon he accidentally stumbles upon a dented box containing cassette tapes - things left behind by his long-lost brother. Piksi retreats into his room. After three days and three nights of non-stop listening to the tapes, he turns the cassette player off and puts on his All-Stars sneakers. Now he knows what he wants: his own wild, effective, simple band. A punk-rock band.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------SHORT FACTS Title Language Publisher Editor Year Pages
Distortion (orig. Distorzija) Slovenian Cankarjeva založba, Mladinska knjiga, Ljubljana Zdravko Duša 2005 317
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------AUTHOR Dušan Dim, b. 1972 www.dusandim.com email@example.com twitter: @Dusandim
PUBLISHER Mladinska knjiga, Založba, d.d. Slovenska 29 1000 Ljubljana www.mladinska.com Phone: +386 1 241 32 50
DISTORTION Sample fragment from the novel Fragment : Glue For Life Jimmy. Jimmy Hendrix was nothing
opened the balcony door and stepped
compared to the old man. He banged the
out. »Do you want me to throw it down?
case into the wall with such force that the
Is that what you want?«
foundation shook. He banged it several
Piksi screamed so loudly that he felt
times. Once, twice, three times, until the
pieces of his vocal cords in his stomach.
case flew out of his hands. Before it hit
the ground, he kicked it and the catch
The old man was standing on the
shattered like glass. Piksi's blood boiled.
balcony, one slipper short, a tuft of hair
He lunged at the old man but with a swift
covering his eyes. He was leaning on the
swing of his left arm the old man flung
guitar and looking down.
him back to the sofa. He tried again, but
»Leave it alone, we'll ta...ta...talk,« the
the old man pushed him back once more.
old lady said. She faced Piksi. »Vasja's
And for a good measure he kicked the
got nothing to do with this.«
case again with his right leg so the strings wailed in agony. »Vasja!« Piksi screamed. The old man lifted the case and threw
»No?« Piksi asked. »Hasn't he? Do you want us to pretend again that everything is all right in our family.« »Now it's really going to fly down,«
it to the ground. The parquet floor shut
said the old man. »You hear, you worm?
up. The blocks of wood spurted around.
You hear? No? You'll hear when it hits
Piksi rasped. »Wasn't Vasja enough?« The old man took the guitar out of the
the ground!« He grabbed the guitar and lifted it with
case. The strings sent a dead sound into
both hands above his head, then
the air. Then he swung and started
dropped it over his shoulders onto his
banging it against the wall. »There, you
back like a pickaxe.
»Enough,« the old lady was
»Vasja-a-a!« Piksi screamed out.
screaming, swallowing her tears. Her
The old man crossed the living room,
head was spinning as if she was a
his slipper got caught under the table and
lighthouse in the middle of the ocean.
slipped off his foot, but he didn't stop. He
Dim / Distortion – sample fragment/ 2
Piksi was shaking like he was standing naked in the middle of Siberia.
crack, crack, crack, cracking was coming from the kitchen.
He had a lump in his throat. Something was trickling from his chin onto his jacket.
The old man showed up again in the
»Smash it,« he said. »Smash it like
living room with a can of beer in one
you've always smashed everything. But
hand and a tube in the other. He didn't
nothing's gonna change. Vasja's not
even look at Piksi. He walked round the
coming back to this shit.«
old lady, put the can and the tube on the
The old man was standing on the
table and walked to the balcony. He
balcony with the guitar on his back,
sighed as he bent down to the guitar. He
leaning on the balcony railing with his left
picked up the broken thing, walked
arm, his head raised to the sky as if he
across the balcony, leaned over the
was counting the clouds. Then he
railing, checked something, straightened
straightened up, lifted the guitar above
up again and walked back across the
his head and swung it round. He turned it
living room. He sat down next to Piksi.
into a propeller. The strings hissed. The
He kept turning the guitar in his hands for
old man swung it around again. Another
a while then stood up again and sat
propeller. Then he bent forward, over the
down once more.
railing. He swung and the guitar disappeared.
He pushed the body of the guitar between his thighs, picked upe the tube
»No!« the old lady screamed.
and started squeezing. It oozed like
The old man kept leaning over the
mayonnaise on bread. He squeezed and
fence. He was panting, a tuft of his hair hanging down, while the old lady turned
squeezed. »It's the superglue from that
into a hysterical mess. She was
commercial. When it sets, it'll be stronger
screaming and banging her head against
than wood. Better than before.«
the table. Then the old man leaned back.
Piksi kept looking at his All Stars. He
»Will you stop?« he said.
heard the glue squelching and the old
He raised his right arm and then
man struggling to push the two parts
lowered the guitar onto the balcony floor.
against each other. Then the old man
The strings rang through the flat. He
disappeared again. He came back with a
stepped over it and disappeared into the
whole roll of insulating tape. It made a
kitchen without his slippers.
swishing sound as he wrapped it round
»Enough,« the old lady kept repeating like a toy parrot. »Enough.« She was
the guitar. He tore the tape with his teeth and put the guitar on the table. The black
picking up books from the floor while Dim / Distortion – sample fragment/ 3
tape was wrapped around its neck like a
moustache were gray. This wasn't the
bandage around a footballer's leg.
daddy he used to know.
»Have you got the wires?« the old man asked. Piksi was still looking at his All Stars. »You mean strings?«
»You're getting on my nerves,« the old man said. »Get out of here already.« Piksi picked up his guitar and swayed towards the door. Crack, something
»Strings, have you got them?«
sounded behind his back. For a second
Piksi gave a slight nod.
he thought that it had started again. But
The old man picked up the remote and
in the next moment he knew what the
threw it back on the table. He went over
sound was. It was unmistakable. The old
to the TV, turned it on and parked himself
back on the sofa. He made a long swig of
»Just so we're clear,« the old man
beer and lay still for a couple of minutes.
said after him. »If you skip just one more
Then he got up again, wandered into the
lesson, even the glue factory won't be
kitchen, there was a crack and he came
able to glue that guitar together again.
back to the living room with a new can in
Are we clear?«
his hand. »Well, what are you waiting for?« he
Piksi picked up what was left of the case by the wall and carried everything
asked. »Didn't you say you were going to
to his room. He took a pack of strings
from his drawer. He looked through the
Piksi was trying to guess what would
window. There was a cloud of smoke
happen next. What was the catch? Was
hanging above the low wall. He knew
he really going to fling it over the balcony
that Pejo was trapped inside it. Piksi
looked at him and touched the desk by
»Play?« Piksi asked.
mistake. Plonk, the guitar broke in two
»Quit sniveling,« the old man said.
again. That superglue wasn't as super as
»You've got your guitar. Go now and play the way you do.« At that moment, Piksi got the feeling
they said on TV after all. That was just a commercial. He straightened the neck and pushed
that he skipped ahead in time, years and
the body against it, but then both parts
years. The old man's eyes were tired and
fell apart again.
lines were cutting into the skin around them. They traced over his whole face.
Some things just can't be glued back together.
Cutting into his forehead, round the corners of his mouth. His hair was as thin
End of Fragment
as the leaves on a tree. The ends of his Dim / Distortion – sample fragment/ 4