Thursday, August 27, 2009

The Doobie Brothers 'Takin' It To The Streets'


It’s that time of year again. Go Triad magazine is once again letting folks decide who and what are the cream of the Triad crop. And they’ve brought back a category that had been taken out the last couple of years…

They brought back the “Best Blog” category, but they’re calling it the “Best Blogger”.

I won “Best Blog” the last year they had it on the ballot. It always filled me with pride knowing that I went out on top. I still have my two winner certificates from Go Triad that I have yet to frame. Since I don’t have an office, I just stuck them in a drawer.

Don’t get me wrong… I’m very proud of the award. I just don't have a prominent place to hang it where it can be seen by everyone.

I never campaigned for the award. Oh sure, I threw my hat into the ring by voting on my own blog, but I never asked anyone else to vote. I didn’t use the airwaves to promote myself over the radio, because it sure would look ridiculous to campaign for it and never making the cut.

I honestly didn’t expect much. I didn’t even expect an honorable mention. I was just trying to keep my writing as sharp as possible by exercising that skill.

I’m not trying to change the World or even my small little portion of it. I don’t write about “things that matter” and I tend to steer clear of political ramblings. I’ll leave that kind of “wheel grinding” to the people that truly care about it.

Me?

I just want to write. I do it for the aforementioned sharpness and for my own amusement. I see things just a little bit differently than the average person. And I sometimes use my blog to yell and scream at things. It’s a pressure release valve that keeps my head from exploding all over the living room or windshield of my truck.

I haven’t been keeping my blog up to date like I should. I lost my full-time job back in September and there’s been really nothing to write about. I have a part-time job, but I don’t get to mix it up with the outside World like I used to. It’s been difficult to find the motivation to write about experiences that I’m not having like I used to.

My television viewing has increased since losing that full-time job, but who wants to hear about Burn Notice and Rescue Me? Who wants to know that I’ve gotten so far behind on The Closer that I don’t care if I ever get caught up?

Yeah. I’m not feeling the love for The Closer this year. They killed off Brenda’s cat and replaced it with a talking teenage character thrown in to give her marriage a little conflict. Plus, I’m just not digging her methods. They seem devious and most of her cases would be thrown out of Court because of her lack of adherence to Constitutional Rights.

So you see exactly what I’m talking about, right?

Bottom line… If you’re going to vote on Go Triad’s “Best Of The Triad” poll, throw one my way. I’d appreciate it. Oh! You may even win one of the prizes!

I’m providing THIS LINK to take you to Go Triad’s website.



--Look for an update over the weekend about my Popped Peeps movement that took place nationwide (well that may be exaggerated) yesterday. There will be popped collar pictures of handsomely rugged men and one hot lady with a fashion kinky streak. The first Popped Collar Day was a moderate success.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Pretty Things 'Savage Eye'


Have you ever tried experimenting with bringing a style back?

I tried it the other day with very little success. People gave me the kind of looks reserved for men that relieve themselves on cages filled with kittens.

I saw Denis Leary rocking the look on an episode of Rescue Me and wondered to myself… “That’s a style that should come back. It’s totally working for Leary.”

Without planning anything, I slipped a golf shirt over my magnificent body the next day before going to work. And as fate would have it, the collar was standing upright. Children of the 80’s refer it as the “popped” collar.

During the 1980’s, the popped collar was everywhere. It was like skin at a nudist camp. And odd as it may seem, I never wore the popped collar back then.

So anyways, I left my collar popped that day and decided to follow the path that Mr. Leary was blazing.

As I waited at the stoplight at Horse Pen Creek Road and New Garden to get onto Bryan Boulevard, I noticed a woman smiling at me as she drove across my path through the intersection. Her eyes followed me until she passed by me. So I thought to myself… “She must be digging the popped collar.”

After all, it looked good on Leary and I was sure it looked good on me.

I got to work and no one paid any attention to my popped collar. So I decided to strut around the office like I just got off the set of Miami Vice to show off my daredevil style sensibilities.

No one wanted to take the bait, so I asked the ladies what they thought about my popped collar. And I’ll give you the abridged version… They didn’t care about my popped collar and they were happy that the style had died like Dustin Diamond’s career.

Will “Sports Boy” Tate (WLXN) walked into the office with his golf shirt and I said, “Hey man, pop that collar!”

“I will not,” Will replied.

“Come on, man,” I pleaded. “Don’t you want to bring back the popped collar?”

Will looked at me with his steely eyes and said, “I think not.”

As I understand things… Kids these days are all about vampires. They love that Twilight crap. So why aren’t they popping those collars?

Hell. If a popped collar was good enough for Dracula, the ultimate vampire, then it should be good for all those emo kids who love melodramatic bloodsuckers.

I know a high school kid that’s trying to bring back suspenders. Why?

I’m not sure.

He’s been wearing those goofy little hats, skinny jeans, and now he’s going all “Mork from Ork”.

So I just left a message on his mother’s answering machine trying to appeal to his trailblazing style resuscitation. Because I’m sure that if a high school kid gets it going, it will take off like a fire in Athens.

And this Wednesday, August 26th lets all rock the popped collar. Take a picture and post it on your Facebook or MySpace.

Lets rock it, beeotches!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Warren Zevon 'Sentimental Hygiene'


Have you ever seen Cheap Trick in concert?

If you haven’t, please be advised that you will need hearing protection. Take some ear plugs. If you didn’t have time to stop at Rite-Aid to purchase some, find some bathroom tissue before the lawn crowd deplete the supply for their own frivolous activities. Make sure to take any means necessary to find something to protect one of your five senses.

Cheap Trick are generally loud in concert.

I’ve heard them being to compared to other loud and sudden noises… One phrase I’m particularly fond of is Jeff Kay’s “louder than Cheap Trick”.

But this wasn’t the case last Friday night. I guess being low band on the totem pole meant that Rick Nielson wouldn’t be able to split the atom with a five neck guitar and a checkered amplifier.



I could hear more of the mix from the speakers directly in front of me than from the band just a few feet further away. I’ve been that close to Cheap Trick a few times and I wasn’t able hear my own thoughts even with ear plugs.

I was only interested in seeing Cheap Trick. I couldn’t care less about Poison and I have seen Def Leppard many times. No offense to age affected vocals of Joe Elliott, but I saw them when he could scream instead of sing.

I wanted to hear some of the new Cheap Trick songs performed live. I wanted to hear the classics. I wanted to hear which gem would be dusted off and thrown into set.

I wasn’t disappointed when I heard “Way Of The World” from the ‘Dream Police’ album. I sang along like it was 1979, baby.

Jamie also found out that she could lose another one of her 5 senses whenever Rick Nielsen wrist flicks a guitar pick into the audience. She was struck on the cheek with one when she was looking away from him. I told her that you could lose an ear and an eye at a Cheap Trick concert.

She was a little bummed when she couldn’t find the guitar pick that blindsided her. I reassured her that she would get a souvenir when Nielsen would toss handfuls of guitar picks into the audience.

We were fortunate to acquire four guitar picks and I gave one of them to the woman behind me that wasn’t so lucky.

Jamie also made eye contact with Robin Zander. That seemed to have made her day.

This was the first time Jamie had been that close for a large concert with bands that have sold millions of albums. We ventured back to the beer gardens and found people there that were like-minded. Jamie and I spoke with a few guys that loved Cheap Trick and Def Leppard, but they hated Poison. I said that it was like a big sandwich with “suck” right in the middle.

In hindsight, I wish I had added a slice of melted cheese on that “suck” patty.

Jamie and I ventured back to our second row seats so she could get the experience of flash pots firing off directly in front of her with Poison’s show. Our seats were so close that we could feel the heat from the flames flaring up from behind the row of their amplifiers.

Three songs into Poison’s set and Jamie’s good sense of taste and will to survive kicked in. She said that she had had enough. We found the car and made our way to Durham for a visit with Allyson.

For some reason, security weren’t allowing anyone with a cell phone to snap a picture. That’s why I only have the one picture from our perspective. Although I’m sure Clay Howard got some beautiful shots during Cheap Trick’s performance.

Stay tuned. More on that within a few days.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Brian Wilson 'Smile'


I don’t know what happened to me last week. I haven’t had any problems with my ears. Those jokers seemed to be just fine. There was the normal amount of earwax production. I heard the usual amount of rhetoric, sizzling gossip, and recipes for pizza ├ęclairs. And yet I didn’t hear two people telling me that my seats to last Friday night’s concert with Cheap Trick, Poison, and Def Leppard were located on the second row.

I got the tickets from a connected man “in the business” a few days before the concert.

I don’t really know what “in the business” means, but I hear people using it quite a bit. It sounds like lots of business suits are involved and I don’t want any part of that.

Anyway… The guy gave me the tickets and my eyes noticed that they weren’t on the lawn where anything goes.

The lawn seat is a one way ticket to four hours of heat and hell-raising. A place where men with inked road signs on their backs dance topless with the balance that only 90 proof can provide. It’s a place where a woman can smoke and drink 24 ounce cans of beer while wearing a novelty t-shirt proudly proclaiming that she has one in the oven. The lawn seat area is a place that not even Hank Williams Jr. wants to spend two minutes.

The tickets I had received had silver “VIP” stamped on it. My mind told me that the seats were in a good location. I immediately translated “VIP” into “beer wench”.

For me, there aren’t too many things more important than having someone fetch beers. Why should I be deprived of watching Poison perform “Talk Dirty To Me” while standing in a beer line?

Side note… All “beer wenches” should be women and gay men. No studly hunks. No cute looking snicker inducing dude. No young men named Stacy.

Women sell beer and men like beer. My girlfriend likes beer too, but isn’t going to want to see our server walk away as much as I will. There’s more money to be made with women servers.

Gay men don’t cause any “dude tude” flare-ups. Gay men that drink beer will also like to watch their server walk away regardless of that person’s sex…

To get back on thought… I looked at a seating chart to find the exact location of the seats. Since my mind had booked a flight on the beer wench express, I located where I thought our seats were. I thought it must have been in a box location where overpriced beer would be brought to me.

I told Jamie where I thought we were going to be seated for the concert.

She was the second person to tell me that our seats were located on second row. The “in the business” guy told me when I first got them.

But I don’t recall either one trying to explain that I was going to be up close and personal with Robin Zander and Rick Nielsen. I didn’t realize that I would actually run into my friend and “Checkered Nation” brother, Clay Howard and his wife Nicole.

My ears didn’t pickup on this fact. I was told twice and seemingly never heard a word. I must have had an experience with hysterical hearing loss. The excitement about the possibility of having a beer wench caused my hearing loss.

It also caused me to totally not be able to read their seating chart. I don’t understand how they have their seats arranged. It confuses me.

So this picture will give you an idea about how close to Cheap Trick Jamie and I were.



I will share the rest about our Cheap Trick adventures with an update tomorrow or Thursday.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Rolling Stones 'Tattoo You'


I tend to steer clear of political discussions. It’s because most of the time I’m simply not well informed.

What?!

A blogger that isn’t well informed about politics?!

I just don’t care enough to get informed and people are WAY too passionate about how they feel politically. You see, I’m a Libertarian that disagrees with most of the Democrats and I tend to find common ground with the Republicans. After all, I’m all about smaller Government, the Second Amendment, and drug legalization.

Yeah, I’m one of those people that most of the political passionate refer to as a “whacko”.

My parents were discussing the White House beer garden with our country’s head honcho, the second in command, Gates, and the cop who arrested him. My mother had the biggest reaction and I found myself laughing inside as she pontificated on the border of red-faced anger.

“What kind of President would publicly announce that he’s having people over for a beer to work things out?” she asked. “I’m sure some have had people over for drinks, but no one’s publicly thrown it out there. I think it’s wrong!”

I should add that she has very few warm and fuzzy feelings for our number one elected official.

My mother is a staunch Baptist woman which translates to “any alcohol is wrong”. She, like most Baptists, believes that their ideals are valid and everyone on the planet should adhere to them. She doesn’t understand or doesn’t want to believe that everyone is different. The idea that folks may be able to work out problems with a few adult beverages is like running a day care in a meth lab. To her, it’s just plain bad and no good can come from it. It looks disgraceful to the Nation that their President would openly invite combatants over for a barley pop to find common ground and hash things out.

Before walking around the neighborhood Friday morning with my neighbor Julie… The discussion came up with her husband Rick.

I didn’t see any of the footage nor did I hear about how it went on the news, so Rick filled me in. Obama and Biden didn’t touch their brews. Gates may have had a sip, but the working class cop drank like he was on spring break expecting a Girls Gone Wild filming session to fire up.

Why not?

You’re drinking with one of the most powerful people in the World and you know the Secret Service is going to get you home safely after a few too many stately brews. There’s no better agency to have for a designated driver.

“What’s next? A Budweiser truck parked out on the White House lawn?!” she added.

Hell, if a beer company wants to pony up a hefty amount of cash to add to the Nation’s coffers by taking advantage of such a situation… I’d let ‘em. That’s the Libertarian in me talking. It could repair a few bridges or build a few schools.

I don’t know what came of the White House beer garden meeting and quite frankly, I don’t really care. I believe the police officer did the right thing. Regardless of race, I don’t know if someone isn’t going to pull a gun on me when they go to retrieve something. That would be careless and a careless cop often ends up a dead cop.

I also understand a bit of Gates position. He knew that he was only trying to clear things up, but what he didn’t understand is that the cop deals with the same situation with different people of all colors. He has to treat everyone as a potential hostile until the dust clears.

The quick and simple point of the matter is that the cop wanted to keep breathing and return to his family alive. I’ve even had my own father pointing a gun in the bathroom I was in because he didn’t have all the information at the time. I followed his directions, answered his questions, and he put that weapon back in his holster. And the rest of the cops surrounding the neighborhood stood down.

Hey… It happens and I got a great story about the time someone didn’t get the joke with the outgoing message on the answering machine.

So let’s go get a beer!