At first, I thought that the dumbest I would see on the trip was the teenager on the boat tour who lifted up her fidget spinner in front of the Eiffel Tower for a picture. It was quite stupid, but it pales in comparison to meeting one the biggest blowhards in the world at our hostel the next night.
His greeting, "Hey, you guys speak English?... Great. Finally some nice people." should have been a dead giveaway. At first, I was ready to engage him on an informal level, but that dissipated quickly. He was obviously very stupid, evidenced by him asking us about, in order, Drake, Justin Bieber, and cold weather. He must developed an ulcer holding in questions about maple syrup.
He said that he liked the city, but found the people rude.
"You have to ask for the cheque four times."
He revealed his final douchebag form when he asked if we minded if he played some guitar. He pulled an acoustic guitar out from under a bed, told his friend that he had "written another verse" that day, and performed some "Dave"-esque bro-folk nonsense that didn't seem to be about anything in particular. He asked Rebecca and I what our favourite songs are so that he could play them, but we didn't give him an answer.
"Do you like The Strokes?"
"Do you like The Shins?"
"Do you like Vampire Weekend?"
"Oh, you don't haven't heard of them?"
(For the record, I like The Strokes)
He tried to play another song, but did a really bad job.
"I apologize, I'm a little drunk."
He was hoping that we would say "No, you're great." We didn't.
He complemented Rebecca's leg tattoo and he had one of his own.
"It's the word 'five', but we won't get into that now."
No, we won't.
His friend thought him having a tattoo was really cool. We figured that he only got it because he was 20 years old and away from his parents.
His friend could also play the song that was too hard for him to play.
"Do you like the Toronto Raptors?"
I said I did, but that I'm more of a Blue Jays fan. He said he liked hockey and it was a big part of his family.
I asked if he liked the Los Angeles Kings and he didn't know how they were. He thought the Jays were a hockey team. "They're baseball", his friend corrected him. The Maple Leafs are our hockey team, I said.
"Oh, The Maples..."
His friend asked if I liked Scott Pilgrim vs. The World.
"I love that movie."
"What a random question to ask."
"It's set in Toronto."
"Oh. I need to see that one again."
He started to talk at his friend about their band, Five Points. They were going to "take the next step" with it.
"What's your favourite Five Points song?"
"I don't know. It's hard to choose."
"Just pick your top three."
His friend to noodle while finger-picking. He told his friend that it would be good for a verse maybe.
"You always gotta put in a hook. I always put in a hook."
"I'm going to top the Billboard 100 one day."
We said that we were going to bed.
"No problem. We'll be up another 10, 20 minutes."
"I'm pretty blitzed. Just enough to sleep."
Becks and I got into one of the bunks and tried to make two people fitting into a single be work.
He started telling his friend about "his plan", about how they were about to take the next step with their band.
They were going to move to Los Angles to make it with their band. Them and Van. If they followed his plan, they would have no problem.
He knew they were bros for life. They would be the best man at each other's wedding . That's why he got his words tatted on his chest.
He had to know if his friend wanted to be the face of the band.
"Are you going to be the face or the songwriter?"
In the long run, he knew that he would be the face and would carry them to success.
With Five Points, he wanted to start a movement. They would headline festivals and people would know them.
"Can you imagine us walking out to a crowd of 10000 people?"
He started razzing his friend about his fashion sense, asking if, when they got famous, he would walk the red carpet in a baseball hat and hoodie.
"Like Odd Future and Tyler the Creator, say what you want, but they had a look."
I don't think that he knew that Odd Future all wore baseball caps and hoodies.
He wanted to give the band a logo and symbols, so that at festivals everyone would know them already.
They were both breaking up with their girlfriends to move to Los Angeles. It sounded like his friend did not want to break up with his, but was letting his friend force him to.
He kept bringing up that he would always speak his mind to his friend, even if he didn't like it. He wanted him to know that he still loved, but he would be honest about their music. He mostly meant that he would shit on his friend's ideas.
"You always have to have a plan. Like when we made a plan, we went on a wine tour and saw Notre Dame. When we didn't, we did nothing."
In their conversation, it came out that had not yet jammed together as a band. I found it funny that they were moving to one of the most expensive cities in the world with no jobs to make it as a band, not to mention the tattoo.
He spoke at his friend for about an hour after we went to bed. Eventually, his friend got up and said he was going to bed, but he actually just went next store and we could hear him on the next balcony talking to his roommates.