Monthly Archives: October 2007

Our Latest Epic

Advertisements

Safety In Numbness

Residing where we do in such a close proximity to local bastions of higher learning we are rewarded with a plethora of musical performances to choose from. Every band worth it’s chord progression, and many not, visit the area to gather the youth fan base.

That doesn’t stop our old asses from appearing at these events so, after scanning page after page of options, we decide on a performance, purchase our tickets and putt on over to the arena.

I don’t know when the last time you went to a large scale rock and roll show but, let me tell you, airport security should be so thorough. I’ve been poked, prodded, paddled and restrained more times than an S&M stewardess.

Because my lovely lady friend likes to enjoy her shows sans encumberment, it is my task to shove her belongings into my pockets. It’s not much, keys, cards, the occasional marmoset. Boy, do I get some looks when they pull out the occasional suspicious item.

While waiting for my turn to make a new friend I’m watching him explain to the gentleman in front of me that, for the third time, he cannot enter the building with either his lighter (which I’m against being on the banned list but only because it forces fans to show their appreciation by flicking their cellphones and holding them aloft. I’m sure the cellphone battery lobby is behind this banning) or his cigarettes. I catch the security guys eyes and he gives me that, ‘All this and minimum wage’ look.

When I get to the head of the line my arms are already akimbo. It’s good to approach as if you’ve got nothing in the world to hide. Makes the marmosets appearance all that much more enjoyable in my experience.

The guy is giving my tit a little tap when, suddenly, he stops. He looks me in the eye and I give him the biggest, most innocent smile I have. It’s not much (it’s been said it only makes me look like a cornered badger) but it calms the guy enough to continue his task.

I knew the only reason he didn’t stop and roll me is because of my demeanor. I could tell by his expression he was battling back and forth. One side of him, seeing I was the most compliant customer of the evening, wanted to gloss over whatever it was he found suspicious in my jacket. But the other side, still not very aggressively, felt he had a job to do. So he finished patting me down, takes one step back, looks me in the eye and says,

“You know I have to ask what’s in your pocket.”

My smile turns into a laugh as I say,

“It’s a tampon! Wanna see?”

I wasn’t lying and he was satisfied to take my word for it.

We get to our seats, well, not seats really. It was a general admission show and although we had reserved spots closer to the stage, due to proximity, we decided to stand next to the beer wagon. An excellent choice, if anyone cares for my opinion.

But don’t think we used our burgeoning friendship with the beertenders to give us special service. I’d get into line to wait my turn. The only problem was not missing the show (a rousing good rock and roll show. I’m not mentioning the bands name because they’re not paying me. You see, I’m working on (Dunkin’ Donuts!) expanding my (Heineken!) product placement revenue (Got Milk?). But I will say their name in no way rhymes with spelunking), the problem is in lines like this people feel the need to speak. And this was no different.

I’m standing behind a guy who was rockin’ out so hard he had to inform me of that fact. I nodded informing him of my understanding. He looks at my girlfriend who is making sure I don’t forget the reason I’m standing in the beer line by pointing at her quickly disappearing beverage.

“That your wife?” Because I don’t want to get into a long conversation about dating lineage I usually answer yes to this question. “How do you get away with not wearing a wedding ring? My wife would kill me.”

“I have a hobby where wearing a ring would make it dangerous.” I reach the front of the line, place my order with Bob, who places them in front of my girlfriend, when the rocker asks what my hobby was.

“Cheating on my wife.”

After the show it’s still early so we decide to get closer to home and have a night cap at a local establishment. We’re sitting at a table in the middle of the room when a group of people enter.

Now, I don’t know where you live nor do I care because, no matter how nice you are to me, I’m not going to help paint your house. But, where I live we have things called renaissance fairs (I’m sure they’re everywhere because awkward people need love they feel they can only get by dressing as wretches from the 1500’s and catcalling scantily clad wenches who still snub them. But in the vernacular of the 1500’s!).

I mention this because a few of them enter the bar. Forgetting they entered a time machine (Ford Super Duty!) that whisked them to the present day (Make the present pleasant with Right Guard Sport!) they are quite taken aback when the doorman not only asked them to doff their stylish chapeau’s but to leave their larger weapons at the door (JB Sash & Door!).

This didn’t stop them from swaggering in (not because they’re tough. Their wardrobe was beginning to chaff) and regaling all and sundry with tales of yawn, I mean, yore.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy for anyone who’s found an outlet from their weary work-a-day doldrums. But I don’t feel I should be regaled with a rousing version of ‘Why Doth Not My Goose’ with Elizabethan phrasing and 50 Cent dance moves.

Even after I said to one rather loud and fragrant lad,

“In sooth, thy dank cavernous tooth-hole consumes all truth and reason thy vile canker-blossom’d countenance curdles milk and sours beer.”

Translation: “You’ve got a big mouth and you’re ugly.”

He would not sally aroint (away).

One guy (notice how even around like-minded people guys like this still end up in bars alone?) was rather calm, considering. He explained a few nuances of the life, focusing mainly upon it’s weaponry. Okay, it’s all he talked about. I just didn’t want you to feel I was in any danger.

Have you ever met someone who knows way too much about something that has no usefulness in real life (such as my encyclopedic knowledge of the TV show, “Turn-On”)? I’d have to put this guy squarely in that corner. He’d probably still be talking about swords, daggers, armor, helmets, chainmail, war clubs, flails, maces, helms, and wenches (I don’t know why, but wenches always seem to come up in conversation) if we didn’t hear this phrase ring throughout the land,

“Last call. Get the fuck out you sodden lunatics.”

We polish off our grog and exit. The bad part is so did Ren Boy. Even worse? He was parked in front of us. I’m talking to my girlfriend as we’re getting in the truck when I get a tap on the shoulder.

“I wanted to show you this.” Says the gentleman to whom we’d been recently conversing. The this in question he was eager to show us was a six foot long, thirty pound sword.

I’m aware of the specifications of said item because, while the guy was swinging it to and fro in front of my face during his Danse Macabre, he was reciting the pertinent facts.

We’re standing there while other, obviously brighter, people cut a wide swath around this guy. We were even warned by one of the reners when, for the first time all evening, he broke character and said,

“Fucking guy’s fucking crazy.”

While these words of wisdom are bouncing heedlessly over my head I hear,

Beep. Beep.

“Hey, Chris!”

I turn my head then quickly back and forth between the sword swinger and the guy who called my name. Who, in an attempt at full disclosure, is a cop. In cop clothes. In a cop car. With a cop gun.

“How’s it going?” He asks.

“How’s it going? You don’t see any clues as to my current situation?”

I turn and, undaunted, the sword guy is still waving and lunging. Equally undaunted is the officer of the law. Not being an agent of law enforcement I felt I should ask.

“Is this an activity you often see on the streets of this city?”

The cop looks at the guy then back at me with a shrug.

“Nope. First time. But I figured whatever was going on you could handle it.” He looks forward and sees he has a green light. “Hope to see you again real soon.” He says driving off into a night of serving. I don’t see any protecting in his future.

What could I have done in my life to make a lawman, who is also a friend, witness a sword wielding lunatic and do nothing? For the record, for members of law enforcement and those who just want to be helpful, if you see anyone swinging anything vaguely menacing anywhere near my general head and shoulders area, grab a video camera (Sony DNW-9WS – The Pros Choice!).

If I’m going to get beheaded someone had better be getting paid.

WDIE

As you know, we at Bound & Gags are always on the lookout for unique ways to annoy and amuse. Mostly annoy, we admit,  but we were always told when you’re good at something it’s probably someone else doing it.

Over the years we’ve attempted many businesses but, sadly, the ones that didn’t flame out in a blaze of gory, had us appearing almost monthly on 20/20. No, it wasn’t Dateline! Yes, I’m sure.

But it doesn’t stop us! Which not only says quite a bit about us but also our out of control egos. Often heard during one of our staff meetings is the battle cry,

“We can’t fail again, can we?”

Let me tell you, if those words don’t stir the assembled into a frenzy of delusion, well then, many of us must have upped our medication that day.

Obviously, our HMOs were a NOGO on the day we sunk our considerable life savings (almost triple digits!) and started what had been a personal dream of mine since I was a child. Oh, I remember it as if it were eighty or ninety years ago.

I wanted to own a radio station!

Or a G.I. Joe with a kung fu grip.

I’m really going to have to start taking notes because now, we at Bound and Gags are the proud owner of a radio station with, from what our team of radio consultant/marketing/programming experts say, is the format of the future.

So, without further ado, join us as we unveil, our next auditory delusion: WDIE!

WDIE

Yes, ladies and gentlemen, let us say here that, in the time it’s taken you to read this introduction, WDIE is already off the air.

Turns out radio experts know as much about radio as I do. Which leads me to believe I wanted the G.I. Joe.

So, because our business is in tatters, why not ask for help from the real (and also free) experts! Radio listeners!

What songs do you think should be on the WDIE playlist? We’re talking a song the next time you hear you’ll not only take a hostage it’ll make the news because it’ll be the idiot who wrote the song.

Don’t think they have to be old songs, trust me, the next time I hear that fucking song in the iPud commercial, 1234 by Feist, I’m using the countdown to signal my firing squad.

So let’s have it! What songs should be banned from the airwaves (of WDIE – we know we can’t alter the radio landscape. We’re not that delusional! What do you think we are? Radio consultants?) forever? Just jot down your list in the comments section and we’ll start stopping those tunes.

Oh, and don’t think we don’t have rules. We do. One. And it only applies to one person. Harv? Yeah, Harv, you. The rule is for you.

You cannot pick a song from Peab.

Sorry, I don’t make the rules.

One of the radio consultants did.

More Proof

As if you’d need more reasons, I’m here to give you reason 1,000,006 why I’m going to hell.

I run into a christian lady I know. She doesn’t preach, recruit or otherwise bother me, she has a sense of humor and is easy to get along with. When I saw her this time she was a little wound up so I asked what was up. She said she’d been listening to the passion of the christ soundtrack.

“I didn’t even know they had one,” I say. “But it was a big movie so I’m not surprised.” She tells me it’s very powerful. I tell her that may be true but I didn’t think I’d like it.

“I don’t think I’d like to listen to an hour of, ‘Oww! Stop. That hurts! Hit me one more time and I’m telling my father! Why don’t you carry the cross if you think it’s so easy? I said stop hitting me!'”

Famous Last Words

There’s a tenant who’s all new agey, always trying to get me to put a positive twist on my writing. I know she reads the crap because she sends an email after each one telling me how it could have been handled with more compassion, humanity, you know, all those things that would make it boring as hell.

She’s asks if I’ve ever written about my family and I tell her I rarely write about my actual life. I write in a persona that inhabits a world where I’m sitting under the idiot tree and Newton’s theory crashes down upon me with unrelenting regularity.

I find it best if I don’t consider that part of my real life.

But she presses a little and told me sepia tingled tales of her idyllic childhood in I Don’t Fucking Believe It Land because, well, I didn’t. Sure, I’ve heard urban myths about romping through fields, mom and dad holding your hands and swinging you up and down gleefully, but I remember life more like an 60’s era Bill Cosby skit.

Kids racing down the street because one of our friends was getting smacked around by his father. And we didn’t want to miss a single whack!

We only had three channels so we’d capture our entertainment wherever we could. And, unlike today, we couldn’t just pop on over to you tube to catch a beat down. No! We had to sit curbside until one of our peers got caught doing something they shouldn’t have done. The good thing is, being a bunch of irresponsible reprobates, we never had to sit curbside for long.

I’ve watched dozens of videos on the internet and, trust me, it’s never as fulfilling as when it’s someone you know. The thrill that comes from knowing he knew you were there and then, when his father is tired so kicks him out of the house, running up to him and slapping him on his welt engorged back, ah, now them’s some childhood memories.

But this woman knew, somewhere in the fetid recesses of my beaten and bloodied brain, there were memories of flowers and kisses, hugs and ice cream. So I gave in. I smiled and told her the last words I ever heard my grandfather utter. She told me often the last words of a loved one were the most fulfilling. I nodded and said,

“There he was, a man who was never anything but nice to me, sitting in his favorite chair, the one he always sat in, telling me the tale I’d heard many times about the gun he took off an enemy in W W the big one, who looked at me that one last time and said,

‘You’re wrong! It’s not loaded.'”

The sad part is I know she’ll come back for another try.

After she reads this.