joe's diary

Wednesday, June 30, 2004

Folks,

Today on my ride in to work I got stuck behind a garbage truck. Dag.

This would have been fine if the guy driving the truck wasn't also a complete asshole. He would not let me pass on three or four different occasions. And it wasn't that he didn't see me, we made eye contact several times. It was more like "I hate my job and the only power I see myself having in the foreseeable future is to not let you get by me so you have to smell the detritus that I pick up all day long."

So, being the genius that I am I chose an alternate route to escape the truck. I turned off the road I was on and almost immediately ran into a ton of traffic caused by a stalled DPW truck. Good lord. Anyway, I made it around the truck, shot through the rest of my shortcut and rejoined my original route about two miles from where I turned off --- right behind the same garbage truck, which smelled like it had picked up thirty or forty rotten animal carcasses in the interim.

Sometimes you just can't win.

joe welsh  @  7:59 AM  |  link  |   0 comments

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Tuesday, June 29, 2004

People,

So we are back from our hopefully non-annual "40 hours in a car over three days" weekend of love, where we brought the rock to the denizens of Pennsylvania and Illinois. It was a good time, but I am one tired Honky Magoo.

Highlights:

-Pete and I played 16 games of Scrabble. Coming in at about an hour per game, that's a lot of trying to figure out where to play the X. The final outcome of the series was 9-7 in Pete's favor. Bastard.

-We met a woman in Hasrrisburg who asserted that she could easily kick my and/or Pete's ass in Scrabble. She was a very nice woman who was super enthusiastic about the band so I don't want this to come out wrong, but Linzi, Pete would beat you senseless like a little seal pup in the sights of an angry polar bear. I mean, he's a nationally ranked player for Christ's sake!

-We played with this dude in Chicago named Brent Hoodenpyle. He looks like a cross between Jeff Tweedy and Johnny Cash and sings songs that sound like they were written in 1950 Nashville. Rock.

-With the exception of a few ill-timed string breaks, the shows were pretty darn good. We saw a lot of old friends and met a bunch of new cool folks.

-We drove. A lot.

-We stopped at a rest stop in Indiana that had our favorite game of all time - "Big Buck Hunter." The point of the game is to hunt from a number of different blinds in a number of different places, bagging as many bucks as you can without accidentally shooting a doe. It sounds really dumb, but it's addictive as all hell. We played for two hours. The thing that's a riot about it is the fact that we are all complete city boys. We don't hunt. But after about thirty five seconds of playing this game we were all jumping around and shouting in southern accents "Look out for the doe! Look out for the doe! Shoot that sumnabitch!"

joe welsh  @  8:04 AM  |  link  |   0 comments

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Thursday, June 24, 2004

People,

So my good buddy KFOX from CDBaby (the best music store online by far - fair to artists and customers etc etc) sent this to me yesterday and it made me mad, so I thought I'd comment on it.

The Ant and the Grasshopper

OLD VERSION:

The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building
his house and laying up supplies for the winter.

The grasshopper thinks he's a fool and laughs and dances and plays
the summer away. Come winter, the ant is warm and well fed.

The grasshopper has no food or shelter, so he dies out in the cold.

MORAL OF THE STORY: Be responsible for yourself!

MODERN VERSION:

The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building
his house and laying up supplies for the winter.

The grasshopper thinks he's a fool and laughs and dances and plays
the summer away.

Come winter, the shivering grasshopper calls a press conference and
demands to know why the ant should be allowed to be warm and well fed
while others are cold and starving.

CBS, NBC, and ABC show up to provide pictures of the shivering
grasshopper next to a video of the ant in his comfortable home with a
table filled with food.

America is stunned by the sharp contrast. How can this be, that in a
country of such wealth, this poor grasshopper is allowed to suffer so?

Kermit the Frog appears on Oprah with the grasshopper, and everybody
cries when they sing, "It's Not Easy Being Green."

Jesse Jackson stages a demonstration in fron t of the ant's house
where the news stations film the group singing, "We shall overcome."

Jesse then has the group kneel down to pray to God for the grasshopper's sake.

Tom Daschle & John Kerry exclaim in an interview with Peter Jennings
that the ant has gotten rich off the back of the grasshopper, and
both call for an immediate tax hike on the ant to make him pay his
"fair share."

Finally, the EEOC drafts the "Economic Equity and Anti-Grasshopper
Act," retroactive to the beginning of the summer. The ant is fined
for failing to hire a proportionate number of green bugs and, having
nothing left to pay his retroactive taxes, his home is confiscated by
the government.

Hillary gets her old law firm to represent the grasshopper in a
defamation suit against the ant, and the case is tried before a panel
of federal judges that Bill appointed from a list of single-parent
welfare recipients.

The ant loses the case.

The story ends as we see the grasshopper finishing up the last bits
of the ant's food while the government house he is in, which just
happens to be the ant's old house, crumbles around him because he
doesn't maintain it.

The ant has disappeared in the snow.

The grasshopper is found dead in a drug related incident and the
house, now abandoned, is taken over by a gang of spiders who
terrorize the once peaceful neighborhood.

MORAL OF THE STORY: Vote Republican
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BULL. SHIT.

Joe's version of the story

There's an Ant and a Grasshopper. One day while out walking the Grasshopper discovers a huge and bountiful tree with enough leaves to feed all the ants and grasshoppers in the world for a very long time. So he goes back to the ant and reports what he found: "Ant, this is fantastic, let's go tell everyone and make sure we all get as many leaves as we need for winter." Needless to say, the Ant is not quite on board, and his little ant brain starts turning almost immediately, trying to think up ways to get all the leaves for himself.

Anyway, after telling everyone about his find, the Grasshopper goes back to the tree and starts collecting leaves for himself. After a while, he realizes that he has more leaves than he could ever use in one winter, so he gives the extra to grasshoppers and ants who can't get leaves for themselves. Everyone is happy.

Meanwhile, the Ant has hatched a diabolical plan. He's hired a bunch of ants and grasshoppers to go and collect leaves just for him. He's agreed to pay them 1/56 of a leaf for each hour they work, barely enough to live on. The grasshopper suggests a 1/2 leaf an hour living leaf wage, but he is quickly shouted down by other ants who want to get their own piece of the leaf action.

But why would some ants and grasshoppers take such a small amount of leaves to do such a big job? Well, these ants and grasshoppers have kind of rough lives and will take the work where they can get it. In fact, many of these insects come from families who used to be owned by the Ant's ancestors. And even though he doesn't own them now, he's done all he can in the past hundred years to make sure they don't get education, insect police protection, equal rights or the ability to drink from the same puddles or eat in the same rotten oak tree. Also, some of the ants and grasshoppers are from another ant hill down south and will work for next to nothing as long as they aren't reported to the Ant.N.S. The Ant in charge likes this. He likes this a lot and starts getting A LOT of leaves.

Eventually, the Grasshopper gets pissed and asks the Ant "Why are you doing this? There's enough for everyone, but you're making it impossible for so many of our fellow ants and grasshoppers to live." This, in turn pisses the Ant off and so he and his buddies impose a leaf tax on the very insects that they are exploiting, making themselves even more leaves and making their already poor workers even poorer. When asked about it by the insect news the Ant says "Oh, cry me a river. If they weren't so lazy and went to insect college then they could have anything they want." After the cameras are off, he eliminates Antfirmative Action programs from the budget.

Finally, the Ant has pushed too far. Everyone is pissed and wants the Ant to cut the shit. Many ants and grasshoppers have no leaves and winter is almost on them. They are afraid. The Head Ant is confused for a few days and doesn't know what to do. He doesn't want to give up his Ant-U-V or his huge anthill or, most importantly, his huge pile of leaves. Suddenly he has a GREAT idea.

"Fellow insects, I have grave news." (pointing) "That anthill over there poses an imminent danger to us. We could be eliminated by them at any time. They train terror ants, have weapons of ant destruction and must be stopped. We will invade." The Head Ant knows this isn't true and in a moment of self-awareness asks the Vice Ant what he thinks. "Well, I used to work a lot with that anthill, and even though they really aren't a threat to us, they have a lot of leaves over there, so I say go for it." It is decided.

During the invasion the Head Ant has another great idea. He frames it so that anyone who argues against any of his policies or his self-serving war is automatically a traitor to the insect colony. This is great because it sets up a society where no one can criticize anything for fear of being branded a terrible insect who doesn't appreciate that young insects are giving their lives for him in a war he didn't want. Very clever.

Eventually the insect colony becomes a really frustrating and scary place to live. There are Pro-Head Ant zealots everywhere and the insects are living in constant fear of being attacked by Ant-Qaida. Of course, this is how the Head-Ant wants it because he wants to be the Head-Ant as long as he can. Plus, with all the insects living in fear, they don't have the time or energy to be too pissed off about how they lost their insect jobs and are poorer than they've ever been.

Finally the Grasshopper, who fought in another senseless ant-war, has had enough. He steps up and says he wants to change the system. He calls the Head-Ant and his team a bunch of crooks, which is true. The Head-Ant, who dodged the aforementioned war calls the grasshopper (who was shot three times) a big pussy, which is not true. Dag. The Grasshopper promises to make things better. The Head Ant also promises to make things better, but in fact will keep them just as they are. The Head Ant is a pretty big anthole.

The end of this story hasn't been written, but the moral is simple: VOTE DEMOCRAT!

joe welsh  @  7:52 AM  |  link  |   0 comments

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Wednesday, June 23, 2004

People,

So, one of my personal goals this year is to stop being on such a hair-trigger when it comes to becoming irritated. I feel like I'm always annoyed or teetering on the bridge of being annoyed and folks, that just ain't healthy.

Anyway, in this battle sometimes I win and sometimes I lose. This morning I lost. I was riding the elevator at work and it was crowded. Although being jostled and having the contort myself in various uncomfortable ways pushed me to the edge of irritation peak, I remained cool and collected. However, when the elevator stopped at my floor this big fat lady would not let me by to get out. Now, I'm a reasonable guy, so at first I just made a couple throat clearing sounds, each one more condescending than the last. Nothing. Ok, now I was starting to get annoyed. Two more excuse me's were similarly ignored and be this point I was starting to think I was going to miss the door. Finally, I hit my exasperation limit and, in a moderately loud voice, announced "Could you puh-lease get out of my way? Jesus!"

Of course at this point the big fat lady finally turns and looks at me. She didn't hear me because she's deaf. Ouch. And as she turned to look at me I got the chance to see past her - just as a lady who had to be three-hundred and twenty two years old ambled out into the hallway. Damn.

You just can't win them all.

joe welsh  @  8:11 AM  |  link  |   0 comments

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Tuesday, June 22, 2004

People,

You know what's annoying as hell? Being limited in your activities by the limitations of your body. To me there's nothing worse than the feeling of knowing what you want to do, envisioning it in your head and then, in my case, because your physical self is a shambles of humanity, you just can't get it done.

This happens to me most when I'm trying to record music. Now, I'm pretty good at music in general. I play guitar reasonably well, I have a pretty good ear, ok rhythm etc. But there's a couple things I just plain suck at, the main one being singing. I mean, I can hold my own as a background harmonizer but that's only because when I'm in the background you can't hear all the wavers, constant retuning and horrifying lack of breath control. However, on a microphone you hear ALL of those things. Clearly.

Anyway, the point of all that is that last night I was working on a vocal piece on my little computer workstation. I usually don't write anything complicated for voices because of the aforementioned sucking, but last night I thought I'd give it a try. It was not pretty. After I did take after take I found myself arguing with the computer. "You know what I'm trying to do, you dick! Just fix it!" Of course the problem did not lie in the computer at all. The problem didn't even lie in my brain. I could hear the notes I wanted to sing in my head just fine, could feel the nerve impulses racing down to my throat, but my vocal cords just wouldn't cooperate.

In the end, it took me about two hours to record one minute of singing. If the Beatles had worked at that pace then Rubber Soul wouldn't be coming out until next October.

Arg.

joe welsh  @  8:09 AM  |  link  |   0 comments

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Monday, June 21, 2004

Folks,

To celebrate the impending summer as well as Ladyfriend Sarah's supremely ass-kicking performance on the MCAT (I mean, supremely ass-kicking) she and I packed up the old man's truck and went camping. Highlights:

- In the "wouldn't it be great to still be two" department - we watched this little boy (who we nicknamed Charlie Brown because of his blazing yellow shirt and black and yellow shorts) do the following; throw sand into the water for 45 minutes straight, run around screaming with a plastic hoe and rake for about thirty minutes and jump from the sand into the water over and over again for a good hour. People, that kid is a cheap date.

- LS and I had a Yahtzee tournament to end all Yahtzee tournaments. After the first day I was leading the series 6-3 and was pretty confident that I would prevail. However, a late surge in Yahtzees and large straights from the Ladyfriend sealed my fate on day 2. In the end she took the weekend, with eight games to my seven. Trust me though, I will get the bitch. (I kid)

- I read a Steven King book that scared the crap out of me. When you're essentially alone in the woods at night in the dark and everything around you is making weird noises it becomes pretty easy to start believing that some undead serial killer with a penchant for overweight mediocre guitar players with BO might be lurking anywhere. Fortunately, it wasn't the case.

- Cherry Pie Good Humour bars. Nuff said.

- I sat on my Hamburger, hot dog, cherry-pie eating ass for two days in the sun reading books and getting my ass beaten at Yahtzee. Shake a stick at that, I dare you.

Camping. Who knew?

joe welsh  @  7:59 AM  |  link  |   0 comments

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Friday, June 18, 2004

Folks,

Unfortunately I am swamped with work today and have limited time to give you your morning chuckle:

Q: Why did the astronaut break up with his girlfriend?




A: He needed more space.




Have a good weekend......

joe welsh  @  8:09 AM  |  link  |   0 comments

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Thursday, June 17, 2004

People,

Last night I was at a trivia night in a local pub. Forget that we kicked everyone's ass, forget that we knew the five coutries in the UN that have one syllable names, forget all that stuff. The thing I couldn't get over was a question about the Dred Scott and his lawsuit arguing for his freedom. I'm no historian and I certainly didn't know too much about this topic, but I couldn't believe that Dred Scott, a slave, sued his master for his right to be free and lost. But he didn't just lose in Podunk Alabama's Bait Shack and Courtroom - he lost in the Supreme Court of the United States of America on the basis that African Americans could never be citizens of the US and thus the Federal Government had no say in the slavery issue. Uh...what?

I mean, I always assumed that to slavemasters slavery was like Ben and Jerry's ice cream. I mean, I feel like they all knew deep down that it was bad for them and fattening for their souls, but it made life easier and everyone else was doing it so they prolly just got a big spoonful of New York Super Fudge Chunk, gained thirty pounds of moral turpitude and called it a day.

But this case brought the issue front and center on a national stage that was impossible to ignore. What a chance for America to show it's forward thinking ways and to set an example for the world, right?

Dred Scott: I, a human being, think it isn't right for another human being to OWN me and force me to do work with no benefit to myself
Supreme Court: Hmmmmmmmm
Dred Scott: I mean, I'm not really asking for much here, just the right to live on my own and not be....um...OWNED.
Supreme Court: Hmmmmmm
Dred Scott: I'm not a criminal, I work hard and I just want the chance to be able to succedd like anyone else in this country
Supreme Court: Hmmmm
Dred Scott: Um...fellas?
Supreme Court: Yeah, not so much.
Dred Scott: What?
Supreme Court: Yeah, we're not convinvced. We're the official moral conscience of this country and we demand you be owned. Pass the Phish Phood.

Dag.

joe welsh  @  8:15 AM  |  link  |   0 comments

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Wednesday, June 16, 2004

People,

Yesterday I went to the dentist. This is noteworthy because I hadn't been to the dentist in 10, count them, 10 years.

The first three or four years of dental avoidance basically resulted because I just didn't feel like going. I was in college, hungover all the time and I really was in no mood to be lectured by an uptight hygeinist. Why do they do that? (Is this thing on? I'll be here all week.)

Anyway, the next six years I spent avoiding the dental chair were about one thing and one thing only - abject terror. I figured that if I hadn't been in for a checkup in 4 years then I was definitely doomed to 73 root canals, seven tooth extractioncs and, quite possibly, a rectal probe.

And so I let myself go for ten years. Finally, after much nagging from, well, everyone I know, I made my way to the offices of Dr. Laura Collura D.M.D. They were surprisingly nice about the fact that I had been so negligent, but definitely looked at me as just so much fresh drill meat. However, in one of life's greater miracles it was found that I have nary a cavity. Not a one. This actually seemd to piss them off a little, as if I was flaunting the need for their profession. Oh well.

So I guess the lesson is that I just don't have to go to the dentist ever ever again. (kidding, sort of.)

joe welsh  @  7:58 AM  |  link  |   0 comments

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Tuesday, June 15, 2004

People,

Sorry for the late post, but I've been at the doctor's office getting all checked out.

I actually enjoy going to the doctor sometimes because the questions he feels obligated to ask me make me feel a lot cooler than I am. For instance, today when we were discussing bloodwork he asked if I would like to be vaccinated against Hepatitis B. I asked if it was necessary and he said that if I was engaged in sexual activity with multiple partners then it wouldn't be a bad idea. I am such a nerd that I like the fact that he thinks perhaps I could be engaged in sexual activity with multiple partners and thus he asked what he did instead of saying something like "I recommend an alternate vaccination for people like you who are obviously incredibly socially awkward and have an offputting smell. Of course it's just a saline solution because there's nothing to guard against, but I want you to think you're getting your money's worth."

I remain your healthy servant....

joe welsh  @  8:53 AM  |  link  |   0 comments

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Monday, June 14, 2004

People,

So yesterday, after a weekend chock full of rock (more about that later) Ladyfriend Sarah and I loaded up the rock bike (more about that later) and headed for the burbs to attend the birthday party of our five year old homeslice Emma.

Highlights:

- There was a very impressive candy spread at this shindig, and I fully elbowed many a five year old out of the way to get my fill of Skittles. However, I put too many in my mouth at once and I'm pretty sure one shot down into my lung leaving me coughing for hours.

- I ran half of the face painting table and drew a red and blue butterfly, some rainbows and some animal faces. Look out Keith Richards!

- At the arts and crafts table I struck up a conversation with Reid. He had a piece of paper and had written "Re" on it. He said "That's part of my name". I said "Cool, why don't you write the rest of it?" He said "I don't know what the other letters look like". Fair enough.

- Also at the arts and crafts table I had a chat with Cooper. "You stink at making stuff" he pointed out. "Oh yeah, go make me a barrel!" I countered. He didn't get it.

- When playing Simon Says with small children, avoid using terms like "left" and "right". It will only end in tears.

- We played Playstation 2 karaoke and I lost handily to LS. She sang "Don't Know Why" and got a perfect score. So then, a roomful of children (and adults) baited me by saying I couldn't tie her. And you know what? I couldn't. I was less than pleased.

- I was scolded at the dinner table by saying that I like to eat asparagus because it makes my pee smell terrible. This scolding was done by five year olds. So I guess it's official, I am less mature than kindegarteners.

- My pee smelled HORRIBLE. I was happy.

joe welsh  @  8:02 AM  |  link  |   0 comments

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Friday, June 11, 2004

Folks,

It was a late one last night in Worcester and it's another early one here in Cambridge. Arg.

Anywho, the show last night was really fun. We hadn't been on stage in over a month (which I think hasn't happened since I joined the band) and it felt good to get the old rock legs back. But I was tired, people. Really friggin tired and that came to severely bite me in the ass as the night progressed.

We played first, which in respect to the tiredness was a good thing. However, we were obligated to stay until closing, which in respect to the tiredness was bad. I ended up sitting at the bar gulping diet coke after diet coke and itching my bleary eyes. Rock.

Later Pete and I decided life would be better if we could split ourselves into two halves. One half would do the rocking, the other half would be able to go home and take a bath and sleep. Later the two halves would rejoin:

Dull Half: (checking watch) Where have you been? You look terrible.
Rock Half: Sorry dude, it was a rough night.
DH: Are you still drunk?
RH: Um...I think so....yeah, probably. yeah.
DH: Oh, well done. Very grown up.
RH: Dude, lay off. I got the Bud Mud and I need some sleep. Anywho, you ready to join up again?
DH: Um...I think I might give you a few hours.
RH: Oh, OK. Cool. You got any eggs?

joe welsh  @  8:18 AM  |  link  |   0 comments

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Thursday, June 10, 2004

People,

There are separate movements right now in the Senate and the House to put Ronald Reagan on the $10 bill. This is, in a word, stupid. But I don't think it's stupid just because he was an affable old man who just happened to be one of the worst presidents in the history of the United States. No, I think it's just dumb to put anyone who was recently alive on money.

Here's why - lots of people hate Reagan. He wasn't president that long ago and there are still plenty of people smarting from his escalation of the Cold War, the jobs they lost because of his shoddy economics and ENORMOUS defense budget (including the Star Wars missile defense(which was stupid)) and the friends they had who died because of his refusal to address the AIDS epidemic until 1987. In short, everyone needs to use $10 bills and they don't necessarily want to be looking at someone who ruined their lives.

That's why money features dead guys from long ago. I mean, who has a beef with (or even knows anything about) Alexander Hamilton? I mean, Aaron Burr was no huge fan, but he's been dead forever too. People want their money to feature men/women who through the benefit of history have become caricatures of real human beings.

However, if this movement to put Reagan on my money escalates I promise to start a countermovement whereby we lobby for Pauly Shore to be on the $50.

joe welsh  @  7:57 AM  |  link  |   0 comments

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Wednesday, June 09, 2004

People,

So, the summer seems to be officially upon us and that gives me one more thing to complain about. However, I will save that complaining for another day, today I would like to discuss the horrible animals of Somerville.

First up, Thaddeus Stinkbomb. Thaddeus is a skunk who lives in and around my backyard. There's also a hedgehog (by far the scariest animal in the world) but's he's never given me any crap so we'll forget about him for now. Anywho, TS doesn't seem to realize that he lives among humans and that he's going to see lots of them day in and day out. Whenever you catch him off guard he gets very cranky and throws a skunkfart at you. So basically, every time I head into my backyard at night I am in this wary state that is somewhere between abject terror and adrenalized vigilance. I've had to run away from him twice already this year and I worry that my luck may be running out.

Second, the most annoying birds in the history of the world. These birds live outside Ladyfriend Sarahs house and I wish I knew a bird hit man because I would put out the contract on them myself. Unlike other birds who do their annoying chirping and pooping in the day, these birds don't come out until midnight. Then they're like "oh, listen, it's so quiet out here, we should definitely fill up the space with REALLY LOUD tweeting" So they proceed to do this back and forth chirpathon that is not only annoying because of it's volume and duration but also because of it's content. One bird will squawk out a phrase and then the other will copy it. It's like listening to two kids playing the "Don't copy me" game on a REALLY long car ride. Except, unlike kids, you can't beat the birds up (kidding). This is my life at 1AM:

Bird 1: Twee-twe-twe-tweet
Bird 2: Twee-twe-te-teet
Bird 1: No, the end is twe-tweet
Bird 2: Oh, what did I do?
Bird 1: Te-teet
Bird 2: Oh, sorry about that
Bird 1: It's cool. You'll get it. Let's practice it three thousand more times.
Bird 2: Great!

Life is, of course, terrible.

joe welsh  @  8:00 AM  |  link  |   0 comments

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Tuesday, June 08, 2004

People,

We here in the Fooled By April camp have a very big weekend coming up and I am literally drunk with excitement (and peppermint schnapps). We have ungodly rocking shows on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, hitting the burgs of Worcester, NYC and good old Boston itself.

This is a good thing, because we haven't played together too much recently and we need a shot in the arm. In some ways a band is like a guitar. A good guitar will only stay a good guitar if it is played. If you just store it away for a few years it will slowly break itself and eventually will be unusable. To fully extend this metaphor, the past couple months of relative inaction have been like being stored away in a closet. The rock joints have all gotten stiff and need to be oiled, the neck is a little warped and the strings are having a hard time understanding each other.

But by saturday night we shall be the fearsome beast of rock you have all come to know and love. so we hope to see you.

joe welsh  @  8:02 AM  |  link  |   0 comments

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Monday, June 07, 2004

People,

So, last night I was sitting around with Brendo Frendo, Ladyfriend Sarah and Supermaura. BF and I came over to LS and SM's apartment to catch the season finale of the Sopranos, but got there early and ended up catching about a half hour of the Tony's.

I hate musical theater. Hate it. Hate hate hate hate it. I mean, I really don't like it. So, during one of the performances I made a nasty pained face.

Ladyfriend Sarah: Are you OK?
Me: No
LS: What's wrong?
Me: I think this woman has reached into my rectum and stolen one of my turds.
LS: You're an asshole. You're just showing off and ruining it for people like me and Maura who actually like this stuff

And of course she was right. I was exhibiting one of my least favorite behaviors in the world - the "I can't let anyone else believe anything I don't believe in without being horribly condescending and hateful about it" behavior.

I mean, this was a relatively mild case of ICLAEBAIDBIWBHCAHAI, but I was thinking about it this morning on my ride in after I saw the example of ICLAEBAIDBIWBHCAHAI I hate the most - the Darwin fish.

For those of you unfamiliar with the Darwin fish, here's how it works: some Christians put these metal fish decals on their cars to celebrate their faith with a symbol of one of Jesus's works. I have no problem with this. It's like someone wearing a Good Charlotte t-shirt. I believe Good Charlotte is terrible, just like I believe Jesus didn't die for my sins, but if it floats your boat and doesn't hurt me or my peeps then more power to you.

Anyway, a few years ago another decal started appearing. This one featured the same fish, but inside was written "Darwin". Now, I believe Darwin was on to something with that evolution stuff, but I hate the Darwin fish. I mean, how much of an asshole do you have to be to put that on your car? The only possible meaning of the Darwin fish is "hey christians, you guys are really really stupid, way stupider than me. How can you be so stupid, stupid dick?" It's an incredibly rude gesture and I feel embarassed every time I see one.

Anyway, I'm no poster boy for tolerance, but isn't life hard enough without rubbing each other's noses in shit all the time? In a word, dag.

joe welsh  @  8:14 AM  |  link  |   0 comments

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Thursday, June 03, 2004

People,

Well, Fooled By April had their first rehearsal in almost two months last night. We've been so busy touring and losing at the rumble and taking vacations and not wanting to be around each other that we hadn't been in the basement since April 19th. Dag.

Anywho, here were some highlights:

-Pete has a new phone with which to check fantasy baseball scores whilst we discuss songs, replacing the old phone he used to use to check fantasy baseball scores whilst we discuss songs.

-The phone also takes pictures but, being a camera, the pictures all kind of suck. Mine looks like I have two weird red horns growing out of my forehead and that I haven't washed in weeks. Only one of those is correct.

-We have new neighbors, and so we sought their permission before we played. They were very accomodating but, being college kids on summer vacation, they were also hammered, so we'll see how that works out.

-The aforementioned neighbors were deep frying Oreos in their hammertude. I kid you not.

-I've been having nasty allergy headaches and hoped that the sheer exuberance of playing with the band would ease the pain. It did not.

-We worked on a new song and I think it sounded pretty darn good.

-We had the first "it's summertime and that means Jordan plays with no shirt" experience. Ladies, tickets to the next rehearsal are $7 and can be bought at the door only.

I guess that's about it. It's time to get the rock and roll ball rolling again...

joe welsh  @  8:00 AM  |  link  |   0 comments

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Wednesday, June 02, 2004

People,

So yesterday I attended the films. I got out of work early and went to see the new documentary about Charles Bukowski.

It was kind of surreal, because I have been a Bukowski fan for years but had never heard him speak or seen any video footage of him before yesterday. He was both exactly as I imagined he would be and totally different. He had the profound ugliness that I always knew was there and he drank like a fish, but he also had this unexpectedly beautiful and gentle voice.

He was a complicated man and he made me think a lot about myself. Not that we're the same, but I think we are both sensitive and scared men who try to act tough. So it was strange to see something of a reflection of myself, and in many ways who I think I want to be, on screen and to think "this guy is a nice guy underneath, so why does he get loaded and act like such an asshole?"

Life is difficult and contradictory, summed up by the epitah on Bukowski's grave "Don't try". This is, of course, ridiculous because despite all his posturing he obviously tried very hard in his life but seemed to never think that he had succeeded, so it was easier to pretend he didn't care. I worry sometimes that that's exacly what I do but then I think that "Don't try" is possibly the last thing I want on my gravestone.

Anyway, this is my favorite Bukowski poem.

there's a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I'm too tough for him,
I say, stay in there, I'm not going
to let anybody see
you.

there's a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I pour whiskey on him and inhale
cigarette smoke
and the whores and the bartenders
and the grocery clerks
never know that
he's
in there.


there's a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I'm too tough for him,
I say,
stay down, do you want to mess
me up?
you want to screw up the
works?
you want to blow my book sales in
Europe?

there's a bluebird in my heart that
wants to get out
but I'm too clever, I only let him out
at night sometimes
when everybody's asleep.
I say, I know that you're there,
so don't be
sad.
then I put him back,
but he's singing a little
in there, I haven't quite let him
die
and we sleep together like
that
with our
secret pact
and it's nice enough to
make a man
weep, but I don't
weep, do
you?

joe welsh  @  7:56 AM  |  link  |   0 comments

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Tuesday, June 01, 2004

Day the last, Monday May 3, Washington D.C.

So, we woke up on this morning and trucked it to D.C. We were all tired and cranky and just about ready to not see each other for a good long while. It was a good thing that this was the last day of tour.

Anywho, we got to D.C. and everyone just split. I don't even know what the other fellas did because once that door slid open I was running like I had just made a prison break. Don't get me wrong, I love these goofballs, but I also like a little personal space and alone time - two things in very short supply on tour.

I hit Barnes and Noble and read some motorcycle magazines while frightening all the patrons with my bloodshot eyes, tangled hair, dirty clothes and whikkked stink. It ruled. Afterwards I went and had a nice Mexican dinner all by my onesome. All told, I got about two hours of nice alone time in before the show and I felt recharged as I headed back to the club.

The show itself was really good. The good people of out nation's capital turned out in force, we played well and the vibe was very loose and happy. I always like shows like that the best.

After the show Jordan signed some people's stomachs (not kidding) and we packed up. We got a few hours on the road towards home and crashed at a hotel. No hijinks, just sleep.

Tuesday we woke up early, had some coffee and worked our way back home in time to......lose horribly at the Rumble. Oh well, life is unfair.

Overall, it was a weird tour. The music was better than ever before, but the crazy stories were few and far between. It wasn't like it was all business, but it was certainly a lot of business. That said, it was nice in a lot of ways to treat touring like working at a cool job. We all cut way back on the drinking and partying, which resulted in a lot more efficiency and better moods in the morning. The only downside was that there weren't any situations that I would be afraid to tell my mom about. I honestly don't know which is better.

Oh, whoops, I forgot. One night Pete and Gordon double teamed a weird fluorescent sea turtle. So I guess it was crazy after all.

joe welsh  @  8:06 AM  |  link  |   0 comments

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