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Monday, May 08, 2006

A fog in the brain

Hey you……..two barstools down……leering out of the corner of your cloudy eye….

Some people have what is known as a magnetic personality. Whether I have one in the classic sense is up for debate but it’s indisputable that I have a predilection for attracting the attention of the most misanthropic and maniacal yahoos that frequent whatever bar I happen to be in. It seemingly knows no boundaries or datelines this attraction of mine as I have been accosted with congenial insanity from asylum escapees in joints from Central America to South Central Los Angeles. It usually goes like this……….

I’m sitting at a bar happily minding my own business when the heebie jeebies start sending a shiver up my spine. When I’m in this state I’ll casually turn my (beautiful) head to and fro and do some recon on my surroundings. It never takes long to lock in on my inevitable companion. Crazy eyed at the bar with a purpose that if put towards humanitarian purpose could knock out global warming and the scourge of Mister Spock haircut sporting Emo bands in about fifteen minutes. As it is their energy is focused towards invading my space and scaring the holy crap out of me. Maybe it’s inherent to people that have been bartenders. Go to Little Italy in Springfield and ask Alex, (bartender extraordinaire), I’m sure he has stories that will curl your curliest of hairs.

Y’see across all racial, cultural and gender boundaries there is a look that is commonplace to the mildly insane and lonely. Part manic, part desperate, part despondent but all wholly motivated the leer gives them away every time. “I’m looking to talk and that feller down yonder has just the ear that I’m looking for.” I used to go into a shrug and tuck trying to insulate myself from the madness sure to come but as I have gotten more accepting to universal law I now just meet it head on. Who am I to change the inevitable? I’m awesome and all but some things are beyond the capacity of man to effect. So I shudder, I order another, and get ready for the onslaught to come.

They come at me with an innocuous opening of “I really want to kill something today” or “Damn you have nice hair, (at least with that one I know they have SOME grasp of reality), or, ““This is some crazy shit” which is when I know I’m really in deep. From there things quickly escalate as the commander of Starship Crazyass works to find our common ground. I never really have anything in common with them but that’s beyond the point. It’s not at all about my acceptance or agreement with their bullshit, rather it’s all about their Herculean focus on what’s on their addled and scary minds and I have been pegged as the conduit for their babbling. I’m powerless to blow them off so I take it all in and how many ever hours later and walk away simply saying, “Damn.”

But in a way I love them all because they provide me with the fodder for the songs and the jibber jabber that I write about. Sure it’s painful to have a guy with no teeth rub your back and talk about how Rage Against the Machine could have used a horn section but like getting a vasectomy the long-term benefit outweighs the momentary discomfort, (from what I hear). Did you know that feral hogs are a greater threat to our well being than nuclear warfare? No? That the singer of AC/DC was second cousins with Jimmy Swaggart and they’re both Nazis? Bank it. The lunatics know all the shit that most of us are too afraid to even consider and I guess it’s up to me to spread the word. So here I am. I’m still waiting for one of them to pick up the tab though I mean does being crazy have to preclude you from being polite?

My band is playing at the Black Cat on May 22nd. Come out and be insane, you’ll have plenty of company.


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