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"U2 were in that position where we were really big and no matter what we did, it was wrong." — Larry, on PopMart

Dear BAE Volume 4: Tripping, Squicking and Billions of Views

Dear BaE

Welcome to our little advice column! You really can ask us (almost) anything, but please note: Dear BaE is written by members of the AtU2 staff, for entertainment purposes only. Neither Bono nor Edge are involved in any way except as they exist in our tiny little brains. No Bonos or Edges were harmed during the creation of this column. Enjoy!


Dear Fake The Edge,

When do you plan on trying to find out the secret of the universe again? [Three laughter emojis follow.]

Fort Lee, NJ


Fake Edge: Oh my goodness, Kristina.

Fake Bono: Your goodness has nothing to do with this, The Edge.

Fake Edge: Well, it does a little bit. You see, Kristina is referring to my one, singular, solitary experience with a hallucinogenic drug, which of course happened back in the 90s.

Fake Bono: Yes, there was only just that one experience in the 90s. Edge would never have done anything like that in any other decade. The 90s were a nonstop carnival of excess. Imagine Fellini’s Satyricon starring the cast of The Benny Hill Show. We were absolute madmen for precisely ten years—no more, no less.

Fake Edge: Yes. Sadly, it’s all true. But I’m a grandpa now, albeit a very young and sprightly one, so I would prefer not to discuss controlled substances, or accidentally encourage the use of controlled substances, or even mention a mushroom pizza in passing. On the other hand, if I didn’t tell the story about the one time I almost discovered the secret of the universe, I would never be free of the myth that I am a complete goody-two-shoes. I mean, rock ’n’ roll guitarists can’t be angels. We have to have at least a little bit of…

Fake Bono: …edge?

Fake Edge: Yes?

Fake Bono: Never mind. But Edge is right, Kristina. He’s always been pure as the driven snow, hasn’t he? He looks like butter wouldn’t melt in his mouth.

Fake Edge: What a strange expression that is. LittleMarbleAngel.jpg

Fake Bono: Nevertheless, it’s true. Larry may have looked like a cute punk kid, but you always looked like a little marble angel.

Fake Edge: You used to say “alabaster.”

Fake Bono: I changed my mind. It’s marble. From Carrara, obviously. 

Fake Edge: Thanks, mate. Anyway, here’s a quick recap of the Secrets of the Universe story: It was the 90s. A guy gave me some magic mushrooms. I ate them. Nothing really happened. So I ate some more. Bad idea! But ultimately, after much crawling on all fours and becoming lost in the patterns of the carpet, I discovered the secret of the universe* and mumbled it into a handheld recording device. Woke up the next day like, “Hey you guys, I think I discovered the secret of the universe!” But alas, I could not remember the secret. And it turned out I had been holding the recorder upside-down, so when I played it back, all I heard was something like, “cranberry sauce.”

Fake Bono: And that, dear Kristina, is what we call an anti-climax.

Fake Edge: Must there always be a climax?

Fake Bono: In the literary sense? Probably. But to actually address Kristina’s question, are you ever gonna try to find the secret of the universe again, The Edge?

Fake Edge: If the secret of the universe can be found in a glass of sauvignon blanc from Pessac-Léognan, I’m down. But for now, I’ll continue the important work of compressing myself down to a soundwave. Have you seen my screwdriver?




Dear BaE,

Like most people, my husband and I are watching more TV and movies than usual during quarantine. I am a sensitive viewer. Certain scenes (anything involving the electric chair, for example) require me to cover my eyes or leave the room so I won’t have nightmares about them later. What subject matter, if any, do you find unbearable?

Fort Lee, NJ


Fake Bono: Oh, sweet Rose, you empathetic soul. Call me old-fashioned, but the amount of violence on television these days is staggering. My children and wife mock me for this, but I too must leave the room at the slightest hint of torture, human rights violations, medieval executions and so on.

Fake Edge: Can confirm. Years ago, you stormed out of Misery. Remember that? You required aftercare in the form of Macallan M whiskey.

Fake Bono: She was going to smash his ankles with a giant hammer and then burn them…? How can anyone be expected to endure that kind of savagery?

Fake Edge: I wanted to see the end of the movie, but fine.

Fake Bono: All right, mister. What disturbs you?

Fake Edge: Let’s see. Cruelty to animals and children.

Fake Bono: Yes. Unacceptable.

Fake Edge: Second-hand embarrassment. Gratuitous vomiting.

Fake Bono: I’ve had it with both of those, too.

Fake Edge: I also have real problems with math geniuses who work as janitors at MIT, guys with amnesia pursued by assassins, underachievers who go to dangerous extremes to make the lifestyles of wealthy glamour boys their own, botanists who are stranded on Mars for over a year—

Fake Bono: Now, wait a minute.

Fake Edge: Do you miss him?

Fake Bono: Your low-key hostility drove Matt Damon away. I know it. 

Fake Edge: I apologize. I’m happy to be back in Dublin.

Fake Bono: You’re where you belong, Edge.

Fake Edge: You’re right. I always feel a sense of imbalance when the four of us are scattered about the globe.

Fake Bono: Life finally makes sense again.

Fake Edge: Sort of, anyway.

Fake Bono: Oh! I thought of another thing that makes me have to leave the room: whenever my daughter is in a movie or TV show, and she’s involved in a love scene beyond, let’s say, a PG. And now I’m afraid I’ll be leaving the room a lot every Sunday night at 9:00, when my gifted daughter Eve Hewson stars as Anna Wetherell in The Luminaries on BBC One.

Fake Edge: Now that you mention it, I find it hard to watch Eve in scenes like that, too.

Fake Bono: It’s because she’s like a niece or a sort of daughter to you.

Fake Edge: Well, there’s that, but let’s face facts, Bono. More than the rest of your children, Eve is your clone.

Fake Bono: The resemblance is indeed striking.

Fake Edge: Eve’s an excellent actress, and we’re all so proud of her, but I don’t think you quite get it. Put yourself in my shoes. I’m watching a younger version of you—you in 1987, for example—except you’re a woman, and you’re a prostitute, and you’re having sex on some New Zealand beach. That’s some intense visual information for me to digest. It’s creepy.

Fake Bono: Is that what it is, Edge?

Fake Edge: That’s the word I’m going with.

Fake Bono: Fair enough. Well. Here’s my tip, Rose. Except for my daughter’s show, television is clearly a trash fire, so you should join us on the radio: U2 X-Radio. Perhaps you’ve heard of it? No violence, embarrassment, vomiting or sex...unless you want to count my voice.

Fake Edge: You love trotting out that heady, late-night deejay voice of yours, don’t you?

Fake Bono: Oh, Edge. I am living my best life.




Dear BaE,

I think this would make an excellent topic of discussion for you two: #OneToABillion

—Valerie @U2Partygirl5 on Twitter,
Fort Lee, NJ


Fake Edge: …And?

Fake Bono: Your voice is exquisite and mollifying, Edge.

Fake Edge: Thank you.

Fake Bono: Okay, Valerie, this seems like something we could get behind. Go watch “One,” everyone.

Fake Edge: Which “One”?

Fake Bono: “One.”

Fake Edge: But which one of our “One”s? We have three “One”s.

Fake Bono: Of course. Surely she must mean every “One”…?

Fake Edge: One billion views for each one of the “One”s, then.

Fake Bono: Get on it, people: I fully expect three billion views! Then watch my daughter’s show, and you can spend the remainder of your day listening to U2 X-Radio.

Fake Edge: We realize there is some repetition in the radio programming, so don’t feel like you have to listen to it for 24 hours—

Fake Bono: How else are they going to memorize it, Edge?

Anyway, that’s it for now, U2 fans—all of you who remember lying in bed / with your covers pulled up over your head / radio playin' so no one can see. We need change, we need it fast! And to paraphrase **Sam 10, speak the truth from your heart and you will never be shaken. We love you!


*Ultimate Guitar Secrets of the Universe, dudes 

**Bongolese for “Psalm”


Do you have a burning question for Fake Bono and Fake Edge? Follow them on Twitter (DearBAEatu2) and ask! They are capable of answering questions about U2, questions related to U2 and questions that have nothing to do with U2 at all.

Note: Fake Bono and Fake Edge are not real. They are two people pretending to be them. They cannot put you in touch with U2. They cannot help you with your music career, and they have no plans to come to Brazil anytime soon.


© Dednoting/Renegado, @U2 2020