Hey welcome to another week. As time whips past our chapped noses at the dizzying speed of one second per second and all of us just kind of piss in the wind while we try to find our bearings, make no mistake, when this bullshit finally slows down enough for any of us to really be able to notice what’s going on, it’s only gonna be to poetically illustrate how much we’ve blown it. “Holy shit!” you’ll say! “I’m forty two, my tits are saggy and I never saw paris when I was still fuckable. What the fuck happened?”
“Motherfucker! I’m fat and bald now, and I never made it out to LA to give that whole acting thing a go.” Or “Jesus fucking Christ! I’m gay and I’ve been closing my eyes and imagining Ashton Kutcher carrying a kielbasa in his mouth while I bang women (eew) for the last fifteen years! Do you know how many dicks I could have packed into myself in fifteen years? Christ.”
Christ, indeed. This is sort of inevitable. Well rounded lives take a lot of work, and if you’re anything like most of us, you’ve probably got one aspect that you really kick ass at (you’ve got a nice job and some money OR you’re truly happy in your hobbies, OR you’ve got a spiritual connection to animals or some shit, or whatever) some other aspects that just sort of come along for the ride effortlessly (you’re fastidious, or you have a circle of friends, or you just happen to be good looking so you get laid a lot) and then you’ve probably got a passion for relaxing every now and then, and that’s where the other part of your life (you know the one) comes into play. It’s atrophied. Your relationship with your daughter is in the shitter, you’re unemployable beyond being a barista, you’re fat as shit and it’s unhealthy, you haven’t been laid since the Clinton administration, you feel like your life is a soulless exercise in doing work for someone else and there’s no time for your own pursuits, or, again, whatever.
Make no mistake, everyone’s life is like this, man. It’s hard. It’s like exercising. You can have some sweet traps, but maybe you neglect your glutes, bro. Most people don’t have the time or the discipline to spend six hours a day in the gym and as a result, their toned arms are somewhat undermined by their fat ass, but hey! Toned arms are still something, right? And such is life. So, there’s a problem area here and there. Whatever man, we’re human beings. The only people on this world who have it all figured out are the most reprehensible shits on the planet. It’s that uncertainty and festering stink of potential failure that keeps you interesting. Without that, you’re puff daddy, and you know what people get when they approach puff daddy at a party? A big long speech about how puff daddy has it all figured out. sweet.
When I got my wisdom teeth pulled (go back to the entry from a few days ago entitled ‘brush yo toof’ if you need a recap) I bought the album “Buzz” by the band Fifteen as a way to pass the time, since for the first few days I couldn’t really do shit but lay there. I had never heard them before and picked up the record based on a recommendation from my friend Rob Kellenberger. Without being dramatic, let me say that there have been exactly three times in my life that I’ve put on records and just absolutely been blown away to the point that everything I thought about art and music changed. The first one was No Control by Bad Religion, the second one was How to Clean Everything by Propaghandi and then, finally, Buzz by Fifteen.
Suddenly, even the punk rock that I had previously thought was cool seemed square and dorky in comparison. These dudes did not give a FUCK, man. They played through PRACTICE AMPS! They were filthy, they had terrible sounding records, they were sloppy, the dude couldn’t sing, and they didn’t give a shit at ALL because they were passionate and the songs were great. They didn’t play to sold out rooms of three thousand people like Bad Religion or NoFx, they were playing in fucking kitchens of Moose Lodges to twenty kids who were practically crying because what this totally batshit crazy guy was barking was exactly what they were feeling and trying to say. It was a HUGE moment for me, honestly. One that would eventually lead to me quitting the band I was in, which suddenly, I no longer thought was cool, starting another band, and then starting yet another band. I still think that record is pretty great, although I’m not a fan of Fifteen’s whole catalog but one of the big BIG revelations from that moment is still sitting here with me, fifteen years later.
That day, I decided I didn’t want to be in a big band, I wanted to be in an IMPORTANT band. A band that made kids cry and get the words tattooed on themselves, and if we played for three hundred kids a night, that was perfect and if we just skated by under the radar, we’d always be awesome and that would be the best.
Well, hey! Check it out! Got my wish. And you know what? I really, really really wish I would have aimed a little higher. Not that I have any regrets regarding my band, but I didn’t realize the harsh reality of Peter Panning around the world for ten years back when I was deciding exactly how I wanted my life to go. Now I’m 32 with a kid and I’m noticing that tattoos on fans and two hundred fifty kids in Buffalo is cool, is GREAT, but it doesn’t exactly make for a cost effective way for me to live. I mean, I make a little money and that’s amazing. Living off art is the greatest feeling in the world, but I can’t live like a teenager forever. That sounds nice, but when you actually SEE an old guy cruising around the bars like a twenty one year old, living with roommates in some shitty whitewashed apartment, he just looks disgusting and deluded. I have some friends who never had a moment like I did with my Fifteen record and they play music for a living and they’re huge and some of them are still great at it, and some of them are terrible at it now…None of that matters. They’re able to do it for now, but they won’t be able to do it forever. And when THEY’RE done, fuck…they’re gonna be forty, maybe. Nice. You know how fucking TERRIBLE that would have to be? “Oh, I used to play to two thousand kids a day and ride around on a tourbus, now I’m an unpaid intern here at Expedia. Oh, and I’m forty. Wanna do some shots?” NO, dude! NO one wants to do shots with the forty year old intern, no matter who he used to play bass for. It’s gnarly.
Okay, so, this is reflective of my earlier point about all our lives being uneven, right? You all get the connection? Good. I’m going to the gym. I gotta work on my dick muscles.