Tuesday, April 6, 2010

home=away=home

When I’m on tour I suffer a nameless anxiety that is pretty much all pervasive and is with me somewhere in the neighborhood of twenty hours a day. It involves various unfounded (and therefore unresolvable) worries that include, but are not limited to me finding myself in an extremely bad situation far from home, something terrible happening to my home and/or family while I’m gone, running into someone I really don’t like or for whatever reason really don’t want to see, playing horribly and letting people down, playing great but having a terrible show because of circumstances beyond my control, getting sick, not being able to get a decent night’s sleep, missing home, hating wherever I am, loving wherever I am and dreading having to leave, car accidents, plane crashes, general social situations where I’m forced to deal with some asshole until they turn me into an asshole and thereby confirm the rumor that I’m a total asshole, actually BEING a total asshole, no one showing up to the show, people showing up and then leaving before we play or while we’re playing, pissing off my only friends, having to deal with being pissed off at my only friends and on and on and on like this.

This anxiety pretty much starts first thing in the morning and goes all day until about twenty minutes before we go on stage. At that point, something kind of switches inside my head and I’ve got no worries. While I’m on stage, with very few exceptions, I’m having a great time and I find myself thinking ‘wow, this is the best thing in the world. I’m so fucking lucky to be out here, carefree, doing what I love.’ Then, I get off stage, and everything’s great. My mind switches back to regular mode, but I’m not anxiety stricken anymore. I’m stoked. My other brain did a good enough job on stage that my regular brain feels at ease and I get to go hang out with friends and fans or climb into a van or a bus or a hotel room or a train or whatever and just kind of drink or sleep or bullshit with people or whatever. I’ll drift off to sleep feeling pretty much like I do at home, namely at peace and totally comfortable.


Then, I’ll wake up and the whole thing will repeat. It’s a guarantee. I get to a point where I can’t wait to get home. But here’s the thing. Once I get home, I realize how stupid all the anxiety on tour is and I’m confronted with a whole new anxiety: the taxes aren’t done, the projects I’m working on have stalled in my absence and maybe they aren’t worth doing in the first place, I’m a deadbeat, I’m a fucking bartender and I can’t stand it, I’m about to have another child and I have NO FUCKING IDEA how I’m gonna deal with two of these screaming little crap factories, much less shepherd them through life so they don’t end up being depraved lunatics. I don’t make enough money, people hate my (record, band, attitude, blog, bloody mary, kid, wife, whatever), I’m dangerously out of touch with whatever it is that I’m supposed to be in touch with. I’m not going to be able to tour again for so long!

This one’s the most hilarious, because as I mentioned above, tour is pretty much non stop anxiety too. I guess that’s what happens. As you live longer and longer you just gather up bad past experiences and put them in your brain, look out for them approaching in your future and worry and try to guard the things you love from the various crap monsoons that rain down on everything and everyone. It’s the fear of everything that turns cool kids into worried old shitheads who find no humor in anything and no passion in adventure. It’s all just another way to wind up fucked. That’s what they’re thinking.

I can see it happening to me and my friends. I don’t think it’s something you can avoid. In the words of John Hughes, ‘you get old, your heart dies’.

Sheesh. That’s depressing, huh? Well, look. I woke up this morning and started firing off emergency panicked emails to everyone, and now I feel fine, but shit. I got home from the UK last night. It was such a fun tour. Every show was a blast. We made great new friends with a group of drunken Northern Irish dudes and we played some of my favorite shows we’ve ever played. You’d think that I could get one single day of peace in my brain before the worries about everything else kick in, right? Shit. Stupid worries. Stupid fucking all pervasive dumb fucking worries. Get out of here. Everything's cool. I don't need you around today.

That’s why god invented beer, I guess.

Okay, I gotta run to a meeting. Tomorrow, I’m gonna talk about nothing but felching and then defend some controversial subject and get you all riled up for no good reason. Does that sound good?

I’m real glad to be home. Loved the trip, but I missed my house, my routine and Mexican food. to paraphrase a very astute and handsome friend of mine: Fuck all these worries. They don’t mean a goddamned thing. Keep that in mind for the day, kay? There’s no way around it, everyone has them, even me, and I’m the coolest most totally radical guy on the planet, so relax, have a beer and enjoy the things you have while you have them, not in retrospect. That’s the lesson I’m teaching myself today, and with that, I’m off to look at some pornography.

Ta!

22 comments:

Rick said...

needed to hear that today, thanks man!

Steele said...

Brendan, Steele here. I wanted to know what you thought about all these shows on TV where it's all about feeding our fat faces with amounts of food that are ridiculous in size and low in nutritional value. Now I like to eat my fair share of bad shit but c'mon. I'm starting to see a trend in these shows where it's all about packing so much in that you would probably shit a cinderblock in your already loaded diaper before leaving the restaurants. It's awesome TV but I was wondering what that says about the American lifestyle. History channel naw, discovery nope, Man V Food FUCK YEAH!!! Glad you made it back in one piece guy. Cheers.

Scott said...

welcome back

STACEY MCCOOL said...

welcome back.

and, dude, it's the beer. seriously. have you ever done a sober tour? it'll be boring but anxiety free. almost guaranteed.

dustyfloors said...

Very wise.

j said...

"Fuck all these worries. They don’t mean a goddamned thing. Keep that in mind for the day, kay?"

How are you inside my head enough to know that I needed to read this entry and these lines today...

Thank you so much BK. Glad your back safe and sound...

Jorge said...

I have that same kind of anxiety before I go to a show or to any kind of social gathering (bar, party, restaurant i've never been to). Am I going to know anybody? Will I run out of things to talk to? Do we seat ourselves or wait to be seated? (totally retarded I know)

And yet, every time I go out, nothing catastrophic happens, I manage to keep my clothes on, I have a good time. I guess that's just anxiety. I need a valium the size of a football that I can just lick on occasion.

Robb said...

Ohh, pshhaw! man I'm pretty sure no one on the planet hates you; even those grouchy angsty suburban-revolution-core cliche guevara's from the other week. After much reflection I think I decided I prefer the acoustic rendetion of Redness on WP over the B&T version. Since I know you were wondering.

amanda.bree said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
amanda.bree said...

Don't worry too much about touring, just play a few shows in Chicago and we'll come to you! You get to play music AND you get to be at home. Sounds like a win-win to me.

TheEvilNarwhale said...

Also come back to play the fest. You can't be mad about going to see all your friends and a show you know will be packed and awesome.

Manny Los Gatos said...

This was the perfect type of introspective post to throw at some oldish guy on his birthday.

Harley said...

I'm glad everyone is so anxious that this blog becomes universally applicable. I needed to read this today too. You would've been a way cooler high school guidance counselor than Ms. Grabowski. Fuck that old cunt. She still lives with her mom.

Harley said...

On a side note, Detroit, what's up? Are coming to the murder mitten ever again?

Ryan said...

Great meeting you and Chris the other night, some of the best shows I've seen.

laurabm said...

I'm tipping you 75% from now on

Sean said...

... on a side note, The Riot Before's new leaked album is pretty sick, if I do say so myself.

Can any fans out there tell me if the singer used to be in a completely terrible band before his current one?

I remember seeing evidence of this somewhere... maybe?

opiexlii said...

wow, I've never read anyone describe the anxieties of everyday life in such a profound and hilarious way. This made my day.

nd said...

Sean - For your viewing pleasure (or not): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6VegeEfqEWw

Sean said...

HAHAHAHA this is the exact video I saw a while back!!!!

his dances makes me "lol" everytime

Karen Kitten Cupcake Sweet said...

hey beeks..
for some reason i had no anxiety today and therefore this post didnt apply to me. a lovely read all the same.

some words of encouragement:

i beeeeliiiieeeeebe in you! you can do it mang!

word verification: dealsio! fun!

socklessjon said...

My husband follows your chronicles and had me read this one in particular. You just described him in a nutshell!! Funny how age and experiences can fuck with your head. By the way he sang in a band and now has two crap factories(I prefer to call them my trophy's)

Love your writing!