There have been times when I've bemoaned evolution. The day I came back from the dentist with two less teeth, a mouthful of gauze, loopy on pain meds for instance. Or when I've lost my glasses and aimlessly ram my shin into Zach's kick drum in some hotel which smelled not so vaguely of old people, cigarettes, and turned milk. But then, on the other hand, there are fireflies. See, we don't have these in California. We have mosquitos and horseflies and other varieties of uninteresting insect life, but nothing so cool as a beetle with a glowing ass. Wikipedia tells me that fireflies taste hideous and that ancient Chinese folks used to trap them in bottles and use them as lanterns. I can't see how the novelty of these things could possibly wear off. I mean, I said that about pogs too, but this is a whole different story.
So, on our one true day off, with nothing to do and nowhere to go, I forgot to pull the blinds and woke up this morning at the inhuman hour of 8:30. And with no fireflies to stare at with the wonder of some pachouli-smelling acidhead, I've decided to sit down at a real computer with my coffee and Rice Krispies and get back to the post I started last night when I was too blotto to realize "pomerka" wasn't a real word. Those contents have been obliterated for the sake of your sanity and my dignity.
When we last left off, I was thumb-typing in a corporate crab shack during happy hour, marveling at the unfunny attempts at humor on the shirts of unfortunate waiters. "Got Crabs?" said the front. "We do," said the back. And no one laughed. That was in Nashville, where Zach got his tattoo, which, parenthetically, is looking better each day now that the redness and scabs are slowly dissapearing, but I neglected to mention one last exploit in Tennessee. While wandering Broadway in search of food or free country music (we found only the former), we happened upon Sun Records, or a shell of what was once Sun Records, the label which once boasted Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Nashville's private Jesus, Elvis. What that building is now is a borderline bogus assortment of monogrammed keychains, shoddy acoustic guitars, and cheesy shot glasses, but, if you manage to wander past the aforementioned lameness, there's a booth in the back where you can record songs for $25. Inbetween a girl covering some country song I can't remember and a newlywed belting out an admirable karioke of that Cash song with the line "I shot a man in Reno once; just to watch him die," Peter did a number. We borrowed the soundman's guitar, which was probably sold at Walmart and made by Burmese orphans, but, you know, you can't look a gift horse in the mouth. When everyone else wakes up, I'll figure out a way to share it. I remember it sounding pretty good, but I was hungry and my stomach was eating my brain.
After Nashville, we returned to Cincinnatti but not to Skyline chili, although, admittedly, I was too hard on them when I moaned about the place originally. The chili was actually rather tasty. The problem was, you just can't put chili on spaghetti and cover it with oyster crackers and cheap cheddar cheese. It's just not polite. It's like playing Black Sabbath at your wedding: a good ingredient, but sorely misplaced. Unless, of course, Anton LaVey is presiding. Then, you know: go right ahead.
But I digress. Cincinnatti was, how can I put this...not my personal favorite. I could ennumerate the problems, but that's just bland. I will say an old SF friend, Ali, showed up, which was mysterious, mindblowing, and lovely. She said she enjoyed the show, as did her friends, and that's good enough for me, as she's seen plenty. It's just hard to enjoy yourself when the guitar amp sounds like a swarm of angry bees and the bass amp like microwave popcorn. Ah, well. Screw fidelity. It was fun anyhow.
The other wonderful thing about Cincinnatti was that our Fresno-friends Rademacher actually left the sound guy $20 to buy us each a glass of whiskey and, amazingly enough, the gentleman was nice enough to remember it. It was touching, even if that sounds sappy. I love them Rademachers, even more than I used to. (The moral: I can be bribed).
One long, rainy drive, we were in North Carolina, the Talk's hometown. A few folks who played and watched in Cleveland were there, a town where, as the bass player from the Sammies says "you either like Heavy Metal or Lebron James." I'm not sure if that's true, but it's funny. The venue (the Tremont Music Center) sounded superb and we played out any weird mojo that remained from Cinci, whether real or imagined. It was fun to see the Talk in their element too, especially since I got to see their singer get wedgied, which I hadn't witnessed since I was waiting in line for tetherball in third grade. The wedgie is a lost art. Like the foxtrot. I say we bring it back.
Now, we're relaxing in Dave's Dad's house in North Carolina, trying to ignore the fact that one of their dogs has flatulence that smells like the corpse of a small rodent. We're going to take it easy, play some piano and some banjo and some pool before we do four straight, starting tomorrow night. Then, my own bed. No more spongey/herpes-infected hotel blankets. I'm giddy just thinking about it.