Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Joe the Camera

It was Christmas morning 1978, and I was at the grandparents on my fathers side for this one, they were in my life even though he wasn’t, carrying the guilt that their deadbeat son was wishing away with alcohol somewhere in the midwest. I didn’t mind too much though, I got spoiled rotten for these abandonment issues. 
It was still dark when I woke up, and I was still young enough to hope to catch Santa eating the cookies I had left out the night before. I creaked down the spicy mustard colored carpet that lined the narrow and chilly hall, shuffling my Winnie the pooh footy pajamas, and waking up my grandparents. Fuck, Santa was gone, and didn’t even eat all the cookies… I wondered if he didn’t like them, and immediately started to worry about gifts being affected because of shitty Foodtown cookies.
Grandma sat at the kitchen table, lighting up a Marlboro Gold 100, while Grandpa brought me a present from under the tree in the living room. It was a small box wrapped in shiny gold paper, with a green and red plaid bow tied around it, I flipped open the tiny card taped to the box that said, “Open Me First!" 
I remember thinking how weird it was that the color of the wrapping paper and ribbon were an exact match to that shitty yellow rug and the plaid couch covered in plastic in the living room.
They watched me rip open the box, smiling nervously, Grandma looking over me with smoke rippling out of her nose like an old Italian dragon, while Grandpa patted his hands on his lap eagerly anticipating my reaction, while unknowingly dying of lung cancer.
I peeled away the gold paper like a Willie Wonka chocolate bar and saw the words “POLAROID” across the top of box. My eyes popped open like the sound of someone opening a can of Coke, and my mouth dropped so far that I almost got cigarette ashes on my tongue from the loaded ash tray on the kitchen table. 
The card on the inside said  "TO MY SON, LOVE DAD, I MISS YOU!!!” 

Finally… finally, finally, finally, I could tell my mother what I had been hoping all along, that she was wrong. I knew my Dad wasn’t a drunk, deadbeat, douchebag, sperm doning, loser, fuckface, while she worked two jobs and went to night school to give me a better life. I knew she was wrong about my dad! Maybe the child support checks she never received were just going to the wrong address?  Maybe he had the wrong number when he tried to call on my birthday every year… maybe…


I was more excited to get this shitty Polaroid camera from my father than I was about any gift I had ever gotten from anyone on any holiday ever before this.
I quickly changed out of my pajamas, and into my weird, brown, corduroy, church outfit. We took pictures to send to dad, wherever he might have been shoveling cow shit for beer money that month, and went to church. It was literally the best Christmas I had ever had.
It was now the summer after, and I had been wondering why he never called to say he got the pictures, or why I could never call him to thank him for my camera. My mom and I were walking through the mall and passed a shoe store, she started snickering and said, “Hey, you wanna see your father?"  and low and behold, there he was… in a cheap blazer, down on one knee, measuring some old man's foot,  just like Al Bundy. 
His face dropped when he turned his head and looked directly into my eyes. Mom rushed me out of the store, laughing the words she always had for him under her breath, I remember feeling empathy, anger, and embarrassment for him, this whole time I thought he was far away, but there he was. He had been in NJ all along.

I was well into my teens before I figured out that my grandparents had bought that camera themselves and signed my father's name on it.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

I stare at this blank fucking screen like I stare at my phone. I know it's in there, but it's not coming out, it hasn't in quite some time now... all that fear of failure or whatever people with alcoholism blame their laziness on seems to be happening to me again. I know I'm better than most of the bullshit out there, even though you're not supposed to say you're better. You're supposed to say you are no better or worse than any other person because that's what people say. Do people really feel that way? Because I think I'm better than a whole lotta mother fuckers, even though I feel like a scumbag loser most of the time. I know I can write a funnier show, give a better pitch from a podium, write a better song... but I don't. I lose constantly because of the cripple. Is it because I don't think I can? Am I masking all these insecurities with bravado mouth bullshit?

Fuck man... I just want to be 30 seconds of what I feel like my mom thinks I am. Twenty second troll jabs on Facebook feeding it like an asian hooker, but it goes away so fast now. I don't want to argue about shit I don't even care about on the internet, I don't want to post selfies and hope I get more than 200 likes so I can be fulfilled in my day. I want to wake up, take a deep breath, and just fucking go man... I see some of these fancy AA dudes hustling it all up, and I feel like I'm the only one that can see how full of shit they actually are. Then I go acting completely full of shit not even aiming for a prize. I'm surprised I haven't been shot dead yet for some of the dumb shit I've done.

I tend to get lost in my delusion quite often, believing that my life actually is what it looks like on Facebook. Thinking that I am adored and people should just give me free stuff just for being born...

Friday, April 1, 2016

Tour Guide (day ?)

I just had a dream that I forgot what I was dreaming about… I have been trying these natural sleeping pills to try and make up for the insomnia that the european drinking band we are sharing the bus with have been providing for me, and ll they do is give me weird dreams, in 15 minute intervals of drool time.
It’s weird, I used to be able to shoot an 8-ball of coke and go to Target. Now, if I drink 2 cups of coffee, I have to shut my phone off, and hide in the bathtub with the lights off. I guess my tolerance for downers has always been a little higher, but I’m not about to down a whole bottle of German valerian root, just to get some extra sleep. It’s all for vanity reasons anyway, I think much more artistically when I only get a couple of hours in, but I look like I’ve aged 15 years and went vegan. 
The cigarettes don’t help, even though I’ve got it down to roughly 2~3 a day (after show only), and I drink a ton of water, I’m just old enough to feel the effects so heavy, that I might as well be smoking a pack of Pall-Mall non-filter, washed down with 2 liter diet coke on the reg. 
I’ve never been able to really sleep on anything moving, it feels to out of control. Like if something were to happen, and I was sleeping, so, it just makes me not sleep… I also broke some serious wind in a rem drop one time on an airplane next to  really pretty person. The McDonald’s breakfast I had eaten in a moment of weakness, mixed with the cabin pressure at take off, and the coolness of the plastic window on my temple, had made a little “brrrffttt” that woke me up. I wasn’t sure if it had really happened or not, and then it hit me… then, it hit her. Probably the most embarrassing plane moment I’d ever had. My Grandmother taking me clothes shopping for 7th grade on a Saturday in my hang mall was less embarrassing than that.

So, I normally just stay up laying in my bunk till about 5 or 6am, dreaming about all the creative things I could be doing, while I stare at how many likes the picture of me and my cool face-maker is getting. Then pass out and sleep all day, till like 20 minutes before soundcheck. I swear I might as well be on heroin. 
The bunks are big, but they are a hard sleep, and the way I sleep in them really fucks my back up. Lifers will tell you that they would rather sleep in a bunk bus than a real bed… they're idiots who either don't have a real bed, or hate their wives. 

I slow pace it to the dressing room like Fred Sanford, with the back of my hand against my lower back, and my face wincing at the ceiling. I grumble over to whatever Terminator 2 Electric Boogaloo european coffee machine they have provided, and stand there for 20 minutes trying to figure out how to use it, until some weird over smiley dude comes over to help me. I thank him, and he nods 30 or 40 times walking away backwards. I get enough coffee in my system to feel the right amount of clammy, and anti-social, and  make my way to the bathroom that the opening band has completely destroyed with all their european rocking and rolling weirdness. I lay towels all over the floor, and spray all the dyed black hair resinating all over everything, into a rusty blackened drain, that seems to lead to the bowels of where old metal dudes go to die of no sleep. I also lay a towel inside the shower, because sometimes, it just feels that gross. its really not, but it just feels that way…
I wash the night befores shower off, brush the thick, staining, german, coffee off of my teeth, and douse myself in Agatha’s oils, leaving the bathroom cleaner than anyone had ever left it, and smelling like a head shop in Portland. I make one more cup of coffee (with no help this time), eat five rolls soaked in glorious freshly churned butter,  because the bread is always absolutely fucking amazing just about anywhere out here, and make my way to the stage to muddle through a song or two. 
I don’t really need soundcheck, it’s more for Tommy and Art to dial in their sounds and make sure their shit actually works. 
They have lots of pedals, and pads, and bleeps, and bips I don’t even have anything in my wedges, I’m so fucking deaf, It doesn't really matter anyway. I lay my phone on the top of a cabinet, because I’m still waiting for the love of my life to text me and tell me to come home. It’s never going to happen, but I wait anyway. Tommy and Art are incessantly noodling their instruments to the point where I want to scream, but I just sit there and wait for them to finish so nobody looks at me like I’m a fucking dickhead. They already look at em enough for it. I painfully smile as we start a song, it sounds tight, killer, loud, and we impress everyone on the floor. Now it’s finally time to go back to the dressing room to stare into luminous space television. man, that was a brutal 10 minutes of actual work…
As I feel myself getting dumber from super important Facebook opinions, I reach for that last cup of coffee… the one that always puts me over the edge. I know I shouldn’t have it, but, maybe this time, it will be different… nope. Not different. Everyone is against me now, or trying to kill me, or am I against them? No matter, I go back into my curtained off cave and stare at my phone, but she still hasn’t told me she wants me to come home. The pillows are always so weird on these busses, it’s never a bed pillow, more like an overly soft throw pillow, encased in a foot of extra fabric that you can never really put anywhere, the blanket is comfortable, but always and inch or two too short. The tempurpedic day bed mattress fits my body just enough to where I can almost roll over without crashing from a middle bunk drop to a hardwood death, so I lay in that one position until it’s time to quickly flip myself over with some quasi-Bruce Lee move, that’s most likely going to throw out my lower back again… I’m 45 years old, I pulled my left bicep a few days before we hit the road reaching for dryer sheets. No joke.

She finally text me, but it was just a few pictures of our son, our gorgeous son who I can’t stand to be away from for more than 12 hours… so these runs really hit me hard now, but hey, at least she’s texting me something.
I’m able to get a couple more hours sleep before the show, even though the bus door keeps opening and closing, and stupid heavy metal boots are clomping up and down the 7 stairs of the double decker, in thick Schwarzenegger whispers. I dream about stuff I can’t really comprehend. I’m on a plane, but it’s a boat, there’s a hot leprechaun in the seat next to me eating red vines, but he doesn’t speak english… Journey is playing over the talk box, and the TV on the back of my seat is playing an old Morton Downey Jr episode, but he’s screaming at the television in Dutch with smoke billowing out of his mouth. I soon wake up in a coffee sweat to realize that it’s just the singer of the opening band trying not to wake me up, but whispering right next to my fucking bunk. I huff through the curtain very passive aggressively, patting him on the shoulder as I gimp by, trying to straighten my body out from being in the truck stop coffin too long, and realize that he actually did me a favor because it’s almost show time. 
Yes, I blew another chance to see another amazing city. Art does that stuff all the time, goes out and looks at buildings and shit. Sometimes I’ll go with him, but for the most part, I’m just going to sit backstage in the same spot for hours and hours, knowing I’m totally annoying on the internet, but trying oh so hard not to be, and yell at this particular part of the country for not having Netflix yet, then hate myself for not knowing how to work the gnc or whatever the fuck I downloaded to get that stuff to work in every country I’m in… 

20 minutes to show, I pop my old man pre-work out shit, and stretch like that’s actually going to help anything. The way I act on stage is cool for a 24 year old shirtless dude with nipple piercings and shitty tribal tattoos, but not for this 45 year old man with chewed up pencil erasers for nipples and a bunch of cover ups, but I can’t help it. I know no other way…
The show goes over very well as it always does, and one more time I didn’t stroke out from banging my head like an idiot. I try to contain myself, but I just don’t have that off switch when I’m up there. If I’m into it, I go all in, If I’m not, I still go all in. 
I stumble off stage, dripping in bottled water, sweat, and ego. I sit on a wooden chair that doesn't really feel all the way put together, and dramatically put my head in my hands, running my fingers through this beaver dam I just turned my hair into. 
I look up, and there it is again… fucking pizza. Boxes upon boxes of weird, european pizza, which I reluctantly shove in my face because, well, because its just there…. it’s always pizza or kabob, bags of leaky hot cabbage and unidentifiable meat, soaking through a flour tortilla, ruining your stage pants. Neither of these things make for a very pleasant bus ride. I sit around all day, do like 20 push ups to make myself feel a little better about myself, then pound carbs and sugar like I was going to the fucking electric chair after midnight. 
There’s a reason I don’t take my shirt off anymore, you can ask anyone, I fucking love being shirtless… but the ripples have slowly turned into waves over the years, and I’m just sitting there wading through the chocolate and potatoes, hoping it all goes away without me having to do any actual work. Like this is just some kind of fat fluke, and has nothing to do with age or laziness. 

99% of the people that come to our shows, want to see Tommy, this is no big mystery, but he likes when we are at the merch booth with him. So I reluctantly go, to take pictures and sign shit, while drunk, sweaty, old men, tell me in the most broken of all english, that the first time they saw Prong was in 1991… they ALL say it. it’s actually quite phenomenal.
I usually last there about 15 minutes, smiling, thanking, and sweating. I sneak outside to the front, to smoke my celebratory cigarette, congratulating myself for not smoking all day. I sign a few more things out there, take a few more pictures, and head back in to shower. She still hasn’t asked me to come home, but that’s ok. I get through another day, with gratitude, patience, and a cynical manipulation of public opinion. 
Sweaty pants hang in the balance of love and hate, drying themselves, while soaking the concrete floor. Everyone has to soak a concrete floor once in a while in order to dry themselves out, its the nature of the beast. Maybe I’ll go to the back lounge and pound a Snickers bar while I watch Star Wars again, maybe I’ll go smoke one more cigarette with Marcel our driver, maybe I’ll lay in my bunk and stare at my phone until she tells me to come home, ending up luminously blind and crying. There’s a rack of paper cups on the back of the seat that have been driving me crazy for a few days now, maybe I’ll move them to a place where people can actually enjoy them, so they stop pissing me off…

Do I feel like a lucky mother fucker to be sitting in this truck stop somewhere off the autobahn at 8:46am with a broken back and a jones for machine spewed caffeine? In the immortal words of Cliff Burton, “Abso-muthafuckin-lutely.” 

I’ve had much worse jobs, in and out of this profession… it’s all a “Slave to the Grind” in one way or another      ;)

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Tour Guide (day 1)

Here I sit, next to a massive pile of garlic soaked asians boarding a plane for China. My headphones block my ears from the drone muttering of shuffling mutants stuffing their useless groan holes with overpriced piles of goop salt, washing it all down with gallon sized funnels of fascist Mountain Dew.
I steer away from my usual angry playlist for traffic in places like this, its much more dangerous when im not in a giant pile of metal, surging through the lame streets of Loa Angeles. I once witnessed my friend elbow a 12 year old girl for just standing in the center of the walk way looking at her phone, I felt bad, but fuck her.. she deserved it.
So for airport hikes, I usually find a folky, almost acoustic type playlist to ease my already simmering brain, because the Uber guy took the freeway instead of back roads. 

I woke up at dawn, went to Sa’s to pick up little man and drive him to school, gave him the longest hug and kiss goodbye, and went home to finish packing…  the length of a tour never mattered to me until I had my son. I couldn’t wait to get the fuck out of this shithole most of the time, and if I was on the road, I was getting paid, so the longer the better. Now, the thought of not being able to smell my sons breath for 3 weeks makes me absolutely insane. So much so, that I drove back to the school before I had to leave, to give him one more hug and kiss goodbye. I never really cried for a good reason before, today was definitely a good reason. This is that kind of love where you squeeze so hard you pop the fucking kids eyeballs out of his sockets. 

10 hours on a plane is not really that fun, but whatever. I haven’t been to europe in a while, so this will be a nice welcome back. The weather is starting to warm up a little, so we won’t be in the blisters of a German winter. No more black ice for me to get all Cliff Burton about. 
It’s bad enough that every time the plane takes off, or lands, I think I'm going to die in a violent, flame balling crash before we even get 500 feet off the ground… every time, no matter how much I fly, I think it's the last time i'm getting on a plane. hopefully i'll get really lucky and get a middle seat. 

To someone that hasn't been to Europe with their band, I definitely sound like a real douche, but to guys that have been there, they know exactly what I'm talking about. Yes, I am absolutely grateful for my life, but just like anything, after a while, it becomes a job, and with that job, comes hassles… I'm trying to stay positive these days, so I'm not going to get into it, but if I can't watch the 2nd season of Daredevil on this journey, I might just have to choke someone out with a donor kabob…
I promised myself i wasn't going to kill myself like I normally do on these runs. Doing nothing but jerking off, smoking cigarettes, chugging coffee, and staying up all night staring out the window, so I look 25 years older when I arrive back in the states.. normal sleep hours, only 2 cigarettes a night (aftershow), and running and push ups every day. We’ll see how long that lasts, if it even gets off the ground at all. 

6.5 hours left in flight, and stuck in the window seat.. better than the middle, but not as good as the aisle, my fidgety ass can’t handle not being able to get up when I want. It's not even about getting up, it's about knowing I can't that makes it a terrible experience. 
One time I was in a rehab, and all I wanted to do was play my fucking guitar. If I could play my guitar, that would make everything better… my fingers were actually aching to play it. I was writing song after song in my head, racks of lyrics would appear in black sharpe on the inside of my skull, and with every cursive letter that was stroked out, I would curse the poor, underpaid, technicians, with every vile, disturbing, thought, about getting loaded I could muster, until, they finally let my mother bring me my acoustic. 
I think I played it once for about 6 minutes, then it leaned against a portable toilet chair in the corner of the room for the remainder of my stay. The lyrics stopped appearing in my head, my fingers stopped aching, and I became deliberately stagnant. Then, when I got out of that rehab, I sold that guitar for a couple of bags of heroin…

I remember a lady there that had a massive crush on me, she was a soap opera star or something of the sort. She would throw notes into my room asking me to meet her in the bathroom after bed call, she would dramatically scream from the end of the women’s hallway when I would try to leave against medical advice. She would sit in the hallway outside my room and play the Tom Waits version of "Jersey Girl" on this little walkman type transistor. I would sit in my room and cry listening to the words... I wasn't in love with a Jersey girl, but I still got it. 

12:28pm London time. During our layover to Dussledorf from Heathrow, we got the news about the multiple terrorist attacks in Brussels this morning, which is 2 hours away from Dusseldorf, and also where we will be in 2 to 3 days…

Everyone is on high alert, talking about the attacks, reading about it on their phones, and keeping a close eye on all the people in heavy scarf attire. You cant help but be a tad racist in times like these… I find myself looking on the ground for children running with backpacks. People are smiling, and pretending not to be worried, but the fear is so thick in the air, I can barely breathe, and we can only pray that what happened to our dear friends in Paris, doesn't happen to us. I'm not really scared, it's more of an aware fear. You become so blindsidedly coddled in America, people talk about the ghettos and the rough neighborhoods they grew up in. I get that, people getting shot and mugged every once in a while, sounds totes scary. It's a whole different animal out here, the real ghetto, the real badlands… where you have to worry about your grandmother getting blown to bits on a bus with 26 children. I'd rather live in a neighborhood that kills for money and drugs, then one that kills for god and religion… it’s a much safer hang.

Ugh, take off's on smaller planes, so much worse than regular 707'sThere's a baby in first class screaming it's face off. I'd be pissed if I shelled out the extra 500 pounds for this flight, and it was ruined by a dirty diaper and an earache. 

Monday, March 14, 2016

Dear Los Angeles my dear...

The talentless hack of a server who has 100 head shots in the trunk of her car, and sits in AA every day complaining about her shitty boyfriend

The sober "artist"

That musician  with too much Ed Hardy shit in his hair, and a rockin Instagram...

The never ending parking lot of any street you turn down after 7am

The countless extras from the Walking Dead setting up tents on every freeway overpass in Los Angeles, and most of the side streets in Hollywood.

The constant flow of puzzled faces, garbed in Izod collars, khaki shorts and velcro sandals, taking pictures of the John Wayne star that some dreaded homeless guy wearing no pants took a shit on 3 days prior.

The broken stripper heel rest next to the peaceful sticky weave on the mustard stained curb, stuck with dried onion and the end of a bacon wrapped hot dog, that a rabid pigeon won't even give a second glance to...

Whatever... this is just some of the price you have to pay to live in the town that has given you everything right?  No matter how hard you try and sabotage yourself, people still let you live your dream and blah blah all that happy Hollywood horseshit...

I used to get so mad at people, I mean, people still make me completely irate, but it's more of a "screenshot to a group chat" kind of anger these days... which is far more full-filling than being angry alone. Loud cell phone guy at the Coffee Bean used to eat me up inside for days on end... until one day I realized, he probably isn't even talking to anyone, and I giggled pleasantly to myself. Instagram rocker guy posting all his fancy shit used to make me intolerable of the internet, and the state of music in general, until I realized how lonely and shallow he is, and that that stupid internet is all he has to make him feel wanted. Some of these realizations didn't just come to me, my burning bushes came with the help of some very dear friends...

Finding a group of friends that share a common interest in people bashing is one of the most therapeutic things that has ever happened to me. I'm in about 5 group chats, everyone we bash totally deserves it, and would probably commit suicide if found out. I'm sure I'm also in a bunch of group chats with various dicks that think I'm this or that, and that's fine with me. I used to get really bummed when I heard people didn't like me, or I heard someone was speaking ill of me. Then I realized that what I say or think about that person, is more than likely a million times worse than anything they would be thinking or saying about me, and 99% of the time, I am absolutely thanking fucking God I am not that person... ever. so, fuck them anyway.
My time is limited here, and I used to spend it in total fear that I wasn't this enough, or I wasn't that enough, until I got it all and... it still... wasn't... enough...

It wasn't until very recently that I started discovering what is actually really fucking important. Like, raising my son to be a gentle warrior.

That's it.
Raising a good human, that can help.
Not raising some fucking asshole that thinks a watch or a shirt makes him cool, or thinks that being healthy is ordering a chicken sandwich from a drive thru. I refuse be responsible for someone that shop at Wal-Mart in a rascal.... your fucking parents should be ashamed of themselves.

So, here I sit. 7:45am, about to wake up my son and get him ready for school, thinking about the love I lost, and the love I still have. Writing about assholes because I've been up since 5 drinking organic coffee from Whole Foods........ I don't know who I'm becoming, but I sure as fuck am glad I'm not the person I became.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Flashback Friday.

It was cold and drizzly outside. The roads were slick, and it was just cold enough to give them a light sheet of ice in certain places... you had to be careful taking the turns in the rain, the tire's on Jerry's car were a little worn, and you didn't want to end up sideswiping a telephone pole.

It was our first fall out of high school. Driving around listening to thrash cassettes, chainsmoking Marlboro reds, looking for weed, and trying to figure out what we were going to do with our lives was a daily occurance. The drops of rain that collected on the rim of the cracked window would try to extinguish my cigarette every time I ashed... the heat blared form the vents, while ice cold drizzle swiped the right side of my face. I would incessantly air drum until my arms were sore, or until we arrived at whatever lame destination we were headed to.
Hanging out at friend's houses who's parents were at work was getting old quick, we would sit there bored out of our minds, numbing heads with stoner fix. The fix just made us more bored, and we would start fantasizing about carreers, wives, and owning homes. We were of the 6% of our classes that didn't go to college, and decided that maybe we should fix that.

So with our new found lust for adulthood, we drove over to Bergen Tech. The local trade school, where dudes like us went to get a nice, american, blue collar carreer. The kind of place you could go and not have to worry about removing the dangling sword from your left ear.

We ended up taking the electrician course. They made great money, and didn't really have to lift heavy stuff... so we figured that would be a great job for a lazy pothead. What we didn't take into consideration, was the massive amount of shit you must learn, as to not electrocute yourself... it wasn't just about plugging the green wire into the green base. Not smoking a ton of weed before class might have helped us retain some of that information as well. I remember sitting in that class thinking, "holy shit I'm stupid."

I may have felt completely retarded, but at least I felt like I was doing something... and my Mom had lightened up off my back a little as well. I attended my first class, and things were looking good for the old young drunk. What I didn't tell anyone was that I had already made my decision to not go back... there was no fucking way I could party the way I did, and become successful at anything other than being a regular at a rehab. Jerry had convinced me to give it one more shot, so he picked me up in front of my house (it was still cold and drizzling), and we headed on our way. That morning we had no weed, and it was a fucking bummer. We searched the entire car for the tiniest roach, called all our friends, but it was dry as fuck. We stopped at the McDonald's drive-thru for some #1's with coke's, and got pulled over as soon as we pulled out of the parking lot.
New Jersey cops are notorious for being the biggest douchebags on the planet. Every bully jock from high school becomes one, and their tiny little penis' show, in the size of the tires on their personal vehicles, and the brut force they treat people smaller than them with... so these wannabe marines couldn't wait to drag 2 long hairs out of a car, in hopes of finding dead bodies and a brick of uncut heroin in the trunk. Unfortunately for them, all they found was Big Mac seeds on the seat... which they completely freaked out about, and threw us against the back of the car, spreading our legs apart, and frisking us. Did I mention that the McDonald's was right next to the trade school we were attending? And that it was break time, and every kid was out on the front lawn watching us get harrassed?
While we were laughing because the cops thought the seeds off the hamburger bun were drugs, and it just happened to be the first time in months we weren't stoned or carrying anything.. this mother fucking cop pulls a half joint out of nowhere!!  Holding that shit up like he found the mother load.

We were dumbfounded man... we searched that whole fucking car like 4 times that morning looking for anything to sweep into our lungs, and nothing. This mother fucker just tilts his glasses down, and boom.
Now they really have a reason to be assholes, and throw us in the back of the car. They threw us in the back of the car to write us a ticket, because it was just under whatever amount the drug free school zone law had marked for 100 years in federal prison or whatever bullshit that was, and that was all they could do... the entire school sure did get a kick out of watching us get searched and kicked around though. Neither of us ever went back after that day... and neither of us became electricians.
What we did do, was go to the record store and get the new Slayer...

Tuesday, August 6, 2013


I make four... but as soon as I sink my teeth into the first one, I know I need to throw in 2 more for back up... just in case I need to be a complete piece of shit for the rest of the day.
My son sleeps soundly on the floor in front of the numbing machine, that has obviously done it's job, and Disney danced my poor unsuspecting child right off to dreamland. I take this opportunity to gorge myself with as many White Castle hamburgers that I can pull out of the freezer at one time, and wash them down with the IBC cream soda staple...
This shit's been going on since I was a teenage drunk in New Jersey (way before the word alcoholism was invented). We would pick the least hammered person, pack into their car, and sit in the parking lot of White Castle on rt.17, with a giant white bag filled with these proccessed little heart attacks, and see who could eat the most sliders in one bumper sitting. I'm pretty sure that John Roth still holds the record to this day... that dude ate like 39 of those things in one shot.

6 sliders, 1 cream soda, and 50 push ups... that should make me feel better. I feel that the apple I had yesterday, will balance out this unhealthy lunch. I might walk on my hands around the baby while he's still sleeping for a little while as well... really shake it up.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

1996 pt.2

My shift was over, they let me cash my whopping $120 check in the store. I stood oustide holding my dirty white apron, waiting for my friend to pick me up. The store was at the bottom of the hill off the main blvd. that we used to cruise down every night when we were teenagers, looking for the heathenous hair sprayed whores that never became cheerleaders, sucking down wine coolers, snapping their gum, and blaring Poison out of their t-topped Iroc- z's...
 I had been strung out for so long, that sex with a girl sounded like a nice change of pace... it had been about 2 years since I was even interested in trying to get my dick hard. 

I was smelling the deli meat on my fingers while the sun set over the hill, realizing I should go back inside and wash my hands because I stunk like a genoa salami, when all of the sudden, I heard tires screeching over distorted guitars and triggered drums... the pace of my heart was raised about 4 measures, as Mike's blue pathfinder tilted it's way into the parking lot, racing towards me like he was going to barrel me into the white brick wall I was smoking against. He barely stopped the car as I flicked my cigarette into the dusk, and jumped in the passenger seat. We hugged it out, turned up the music, and headed back to his house to prime up for the evenings events. A slight wave of relief had come over me, these were the people I felt safe with, they knew me... I didn't have to pretend to be anyone else, I could just be my idiot self, and they were fine with it. 

Nothing completely insane happened that night. Not like AA said it would anyway... they had tried brainwashing me to believe that if I relapsed, I was going to lose an arm, or my Mother was going to get Cancer. I had heard so many horror stories about people drinking after a certain time sober, and killing a family in a car accident, or dying in a bar fight, or drinking and having a heartattack from smoking too much cocaine. I had been in some barfights, and smoked some coke, but I knew, I knew with all my heart, that I could just regress back into my teens, and it would be just like it was in 1988. We could pop the trunk, blare some under produced shitty metal, and try to take out the street lights with empty brown beer bottles... and that was exactly what happened. There was no heroin, no one died in a car wreck, it was just a good hang... I fucking knew I was right.

I remember popping the first beer back at Mike's house, followed immediately by a hit off a joint. The weight I had been carrying on my shoulders while sober, fell off rather quickly as the bubbles eased down my throat, and I coughed up the smoke. I let out a huge belch as my friends welcomed me back, there was no regret man... I was fucking home.

The next day I woke up rather late. It had been a while since I had partied like that, so we were up all night talking about the good old days while we chewed our faces off. I eventually went back to my aunt's house, and she didn't notice that anything different about me. I had gotten away with it! It really didn't matter anyway, I was going back to my old life in New Jersey. I was going to move into Mike's house, get a job driving a truck, and drink and do blow like a normal human being... I was done trying to be a rock star in LA, and there was no fucking way I was hanging out with all those old guido grandpa's  in AA, that were telling me working at a Pathmark was humbling, and a great start to a new life. I called my sponsor and told him that I had drank, but it was ok... I was fine. I thanked him for everything, and told him that I wouldn't be requiring his services any longer. Before we hung up he said, "see you soon kid." I was so offended by this, all that did was justify my feelings about the losers in AA and those judgemental douchebags even more. He had no fucking clue how I felt, or how I was going to run this from now on... mother fucker I got this, fuck that dude.

I was going to spend one more night at my Aunt's house, then move all my shit into Mike's and start over. I had convinced her that it was all going to work out, so she could tell my Mother and everyone else. Better it came from her than from me... everyone was so tired of hearing about how it was going to be different this time. Except me obviously. Right then the phone rang, it was for me. It was this dude Paul from AA. Older guy, balding, red moustache, kinda looked like a shitty version of an undercover cop. I was so over AA and the people in it by this time, that I almost hung up on him as soon as my aunt handed me the phone. I figured what the hell, let's laugh while this dude try and talks me into coming back to a meeting. 
In a shaking voice he asks me if what he heard was true, had I relapsed? Yes Paul, I am not in AA anymore I said, but I thanked him for calling and told him good luck with all his AA stuff. He was new in the program too with 90 days or something. 

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

1996 part one.

After losing a two year battle with Los Angeles, I found myself back in New Jersey...

It was the summer of 1996, and the lightning bugs were out in full affect. I had come back to the east coast with a full blown intravenous heroin habit, and had eventually landed myself on my Aunt's couch in Hasbrouck Heights. Where there was always a CB scanner flickering red lights, while the muttering of a truck drivers lonely voice would occasionally break through over some static, talking about a cop hiding in the weeds a few miles down the road.
There were bearskin rugs and statues of vikings resting on the greenish/yellow carpet that floored the entire house. It was my very first morning off heroin, and I came to curled up in the fetal position on the small, cold, leather couch in the den. Mtv news was on, and as my eyes focused a little and my gut gave a screaming need for a syringe, I was informed that the keyboard player for The Smashing Pumpkins had overdosed and died, as did the singer for Sublime, and Scott Weland was once again arrested for possession of heroin. This definitely didn't happen all in one day, but it felt like it did that morning.
My Aunt had called her Brother (my Father), who was sober, and pretty much non-existant in my life. All I remember is my Aunt asking me to hobble into the dining room to the big, wooden, viking like table, and my Father sitting there. He had been informed that I was on heroin, and to drive me to a detox. I don't remember the ride to the hospital, I don't remember the feelings involved... I just remember being dropped off at the Newark University Hospital, where the detox was on the AIDS ward. It's funny nowadays to listen to rich little douchebags whine about having to make their beds while staring into a sunset off a coast in Malibu. My first detox experience was much much different..
They didn't have the meds that they do now to control the virus, so there was just transvestite after transvestite, shuffling by my door, pushing a pole on wheels with a pissbag attatched to it, covered from head to toe in open sores, and about to drop dead any day.
I got dropped off on a Friday night, and since it was a county run facility in the murder capitol of the world, there was to be not a Dr. in sight until monday morning. So I laid on that ice cold, plastic bed for 48 hours straight... crying, puking, and shitting myself. I passed the time by snorting a few xanex that a tranny had slipped me, and writing a sexual inventory.
Monday had finally arrived, and since I was still young and spry, I had just about completed the detox, and convinced everyone there that I would be much better off back on that cold leather love seat in my Aunt's den... so my Aunt came and picked me up.

Arnie was my first sponsor. The minutes seemed like hours, as I stood in the parking lot of The Macaroni Grille on Rt.17 after a friday night meeting with my friends, them all telling me to, "just go up and ask him." I felt like I was asking the hottest chick in high school to the prom, I didn't know anything about being clean or sober, I didn't know he basically had to say yes, I didn't know anything except how to get high... and I was obviously even horrible at that. Arnie was exactly like Steve Martin's character in "My Blue Heaven" but with a George Hamilton tan. He even sounded just like him...
I finally got up the nerve to walk over to him, and the other 5 x-junky assholes with 25 years clean he was standing with, who laughed at all us newcomers every time we shared, and told us that they had spilled more out of the spoon then we ever shot into our veins. I asked Arnie in a semi-stutter if he would sponsor me, he just kinda winced at me, gave me his card, and said, "yeah kid, call me in the morning..." I literally felt like the hot chick said she would go to the dance with me, when I walked back over to my friends they all hugged me like I had just been jumped into some weird cult... and in a way I kind of just was.

So I started attending meetings on a regular basis, making friends, and gaining a little weight back. My Aunt was starting to trust me more, and calling my Mother with good reports. I had gotten a job in the deli section of the Pathmark just down the hill from my Aunt's house, and things were finally starting to look like they were going to be alright. I hadn't not been dopesick in a while, and it felt kind of amazing to wake up and not have my teeth be on fire.
At around 28 days or so, I had gotten my first paycheck. I had also run into one of my old drinking buddies from my youth at my deli counter. He was telling me how everyone missed me and wanted to see me, and that I should come hang out that night. It was a friday, and I knew what went on in my old town on a friday... these were the people I went to high school with, who didn't get all strung out on dope. Yeah they were fucked up, but they were all for the most part functioning alcoholics, do a bump on the weekend warrior types. I figured fuck it, I could handle one night of hanging with the old crew right? I mean... there sure as fuck wasn't going to be any dope around, and THAT was my problem... not drinking. I convinced my Aunt to let me go, and also said I would most likely be spending the night. I already knew I was going to get drunk, and I was fucking down for it. I had been strung out on dope for so long, that I missed just being a drunk idiot with my friends. I missed being the life of the party. The only problem, was that it wasn't 1986 anymore... and I had crossed a line I did not know existed.


Wednesday, October 3, 2012


I have always been bored with the business of it all. I would always rather be the one who deals with all the pleasures of life.
Deeming myself the “George Hamilton of punk rock,” and living a hammering lifestyle has put me on a less than permanent couch tour for most of my life. Occasional scraps of togetherness have been forced onto me by my occasional will to succeed, but for the most part I have lived off the generosity of my friends and family my entire existence. The days rage with handouts as I grift from womb to womb.
Most would call this a lonely soulless way to live, and to be completely honest, when I am actually awake and totally aware of my surroundings, it sucks so bad that I would rather eat a rusty razor blade sandwich on moldy bread, washed down with a Chlamydia milkshake, then have to sleep on one more of my friends couches, or ask for a ride to wherever I don’t even really want to be anyway.
 When I actually take a step back and look at the “stuff part” of my life, the materialistic section of it all, it makes it real easy to get depressed… but not enough to actually do something about it. I don’t have a license… take the bus. I don’t have an apartment because I’m “on the road a lot…” so I crash at friends houses and apartments. I have always been either a great starter but never ever finished anything really, either that or I just completely half ass a whole thing… complaining the entire time about nothing.
I could be on a leer jet with the Rolling Stones, getting my dick sucked by an 18 year old virgin, all while shooting non addictive speedballs with Keith Richards, as he shows me how to play “Moonlight mile” on the acoustic guitar that he is going to give me when he’s done… I would still find something to complain about, and by the way I only said 18 because it’s illegal to bang 16 year olds, but it would probably be more entertaining to show a 16 year old supermodel how to… fuck, I’m just gonna stop right there with that one before I start getting all Polanski.
“Oooh Jason… you’re soooo honest in your writing… we love you.”
 Go fuck yourself, this is the only thing that keeps me alive 80 percent of the time. I don’t write for you, I don’t write for anyone but myself. That’s why it’s so God damn repetitive.
Ok…. so I may not be on a private jet with the Rolling Stones, but…. I am on a huge 747 with Slipknot and Stone Sour, on our way back from Brazil, one band for which I played bass for 2 nights ago and rocked the fuck out of over 100,000 people. There isn’t an 18 year old girl blowing me, but let’s just say the girls like to travel in pairs down there, and just sit in your hotel lobby. The absolute true meaning of “shooting fish in a barrel….” and I’m sitting here complaining… see? I wasn’t fucking lying. 
I could take a million dollar scratch off ticket to Vegas and turn it into a coke dusted Ziploc bag and a sticky shot-glass covered in fruit-flies while driving Biz Markie’s Ferrari right into the back of a cop car with a family of four strapped to the hood. I actually won the $100 roll at the cee~lo game backstage before Slipknot went on last night, so with the 4 people with balls big enough to drop a bill on one or two dice rolls… I got my room service bill for the weekend handled.
Nothing fills the hole completely… Nothing. It’s just a temporary fix, but then again everything is a temporary fix. Nothing is forever.

If I got my head out my ass far enough to live comfortably, I think I might have a shot at being kind of happy. Definitely happier than I am or have been ever in my life. It’s like…. almost there.
I was on stage a few months ago in front of 60,000 people, feeling like a complete fraud. I wanted to blow my head off the entire time… so much for a dream come true fixing you right? So I come back to Los Angeles and start going to the place that I can get my “medicine” talking about my stupid whiney feelings and what not, and low and behold… playing in front of 100,000 a few months later and not wanting to blow my head off, at least not till the show was over. I totally enjoyed the show though, and didn’t feel like a total piece of shit till like 5 minutes after I got off stage…. Progress.
I’m flying over Venezuela as we speak (I type). I have a few hundred dollars in my pocket, and a few more in the bank. I just watched Arthur and cried like a little baby when Hobson died so I know there is a feeling in there somewhere… but none of it is enough. I will sit here thinking about how my back hurts and my neck is killing me, how I will never be an Arthur and fall in love with a Naomi, and how there is 3 hours and 45 minutes left of this 10.5 hour flight from a weekend people only dream of. The type of shit I used to watch on television when I was a kid, the type of shit I still watch on television today. Barstool dreaming becoming a reality isn’t enough for this little manboy. I need something bigger. I’ve had something bigger. I just refuse to accept that this Great Spirit actually exists most of the time, and that I am the same as all the rest of the whiney AA faggots. I tell everyone I am the same, but deep down I know I am different… and unfortunately, that will eventually kill me. It will kill me while I’m not even paying attention… because I’m rarely ever paying attention.
The Great Spirit is in the adrenaline… not the “jump out of a plane” adrenaline, the kind of adrenaline that gets you killed. Like stealing some shit from a store kind of adrenaline, fucking your friends wife kind of adrenaline, the kind of adrenaline that makes you feel so shitty… you don’t even want to be alive. Once you get to the other side of this behavior is when you can start enjoying the Great Spirit.

For guys like me…
The Great Spirit is the stink on a stripper pole, It’s finding a vein and hitting it on the first try,  it’s an all access backstage pass… My Great Spirit has been a mirage for years.