“Dying in the Al Gore Suite,” Nick Weidenfeld, The Fader Issue 31

He told her to take him to the Hotel Vanderbilt; the same hotel Al Gore holed himself up in November of 2000. Three years earlier, the Vice President had traveled to Nashville to make his concession speech, but when questions concerning the Florida ballot arose, Gore waited. And waited. He stayed in his room for two weeks while camera crews from around the world lined West End Avenue, hoping to get a shot of the VP passing his hotel window.

That’s what Berman was thinking about when he approached the front desk. “Give me the Al Gore Suite,” he demanded. He must’ve been a sight in the lobby of Nashville’s nicest hotel, overdosing on crack and pills. But he was wearing a Brooks Brothers suit, and they gave him the room. Riding the elevator up to the eleventh floor, Berman laughed at the bellboy, “I want to die where the presidency died!” So he stumbled down the hall, opened the doors to the Al Gore suite, and did just that.

There’s a happy ending here, though: Berman survived.¬† He kept going.

“Silver Jew,” a documentary about Berman and his band traveling to Israel, made me cry.

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