wrecking bathrooms in 8 states

There's nothing worse than being so tired you can't sleep.

That's me, right here, tonight.

Sleep, lately, has been my friend. Sort of. Because I've been sleeping very weird hours.

Even for me.

I've been really sick.

Like "don't remember days" sick.

I have memories of pieces of days. Things that happened are like photographs in my brain, but as for memories? Well ...

I was that sick.

I haven't really told anyone because I hate being 'that guy' ... but if you've called, emailed, texted, wondered, worried or wondered if you were on my shit list ... trust me, you were not on the shit list.

I was on the shit list.


So if you have called, emailed, texted, or wondered where I've been, my bed, my couch and my toilet are the three main places since arriving home on Friday.

Basically, lemme start at the beginning of it.

July 12th ... we're getting ready to go see Aaron Tashjian of Swig Tooth do a solo acoustic show at Bernie's and I have a bit of rumble in my bowel. I thought it was gas.

It wasn't.

So I get cleaned up and change clothes and chew a couple of pepto tablets.

No big deal. I have had diarrhea before. And I'm not feeling ill, no fever, no chills, no stomach ache, nothing but some cramps and bloating. No biggie. Maybe it was something I ate.

Thursday, the 13th ... still rumbling. Still more pepto. Still no effect. It's still there.

Friday, the 14th ... still rumbling. Still more pepto. Still no effect. It's still there. Kara asks if I want to go to Chicago ... I'm still having no other symptoms, so we go. She'd ask me all the time ... I'd tell her I was feeling fine. And I was. Really.

Saturday, the 15th ... I'm in Chicago ... still rumbling. Still more pepto. Still no effect. It's still there.

Sunday, the 16th ... Milwaukee ... switch to Immodium ... still rumbling. Still no effect. It's still there.

Monday, the 17th ... Driving to St. Louis ... more Immodium ... still rumbling. Still no effect. It's still there.

Tuesday, the 18th ... in St. Louis ... yet more Immodium ... still rumbling. Still no effect.

Now I'm a bit concerned. I'm sucking down Gatorade like it's nobody's business to keep hydrated.

My appetite is gone but I'm trying to eat. Trying. And seeing whatever it is, a few hours later, undigested. Just flushed through my system.

Which fascinates me in that gross way we're all fascinated by our bodies (quit lying, we all have that "Damn, didn't realize my body could do that" thing)

And I'm still fascinated by this whole diarrhea thing, because I STILL have zero symptoms, other than wrecking bathrooms across the midwest.

Still no stomachache, no chills. no fever, nothing. Just lots of rumbles and the runs.

Wednesday the 19th ... Memphis, Nashville ... now I'm starting to feel a bit run down. Still have diarrhea. I'm thinking dysentery at this point. Really.

Thursday the 20th ... the gig is up. Kara is totally aware of how pasty I look, how much Gatorade I'm drinking and how little I'm eating.

She makes the call we're done, without seeing Sun Studios. Without seeing really anything in Nashville but Ernest Tubb's, another record store and the Hard Rock.

We leave.

About 30 minutes into this trip I realize I'm in no shape to drive. She takes over.

I don't remember the drive home. Luckily, I wasn't driving.

I don't remember anything about Nashville other than pieces of places we were in.

I don't remember driving home from her house after we got back.

I do remember calling CD101 to bitch about them playing some shitty hip hop song they're trying to pass off as alternative ... and being called "close minded" ... repeatedly and loudly ... by the shitty DJ for telling him that whatever he was playing was pretty much status quo on all R&B/Top40 radio stations.

Remember when CD101 used to be good? Me too.

I do remember going to the doctor on Friday and having him tell me that diahhrea for 10 days is a very very very bad thing. They recommend seeking professional help after 48 hours. Lesson learned.

Then they gave me a home chemistry kit to collect my own samples.

Lemme tell ya ... you haven't lived until you've sat your ass on a toilet with a plastic bowl between you and the water and had to aim your entirely liquid shit into a bowl ... then had to take that plastic bowl and redistribute said contents into four beakers and a specimen cup.

That, my friends, is among the most foul things I've ever done.

Which is why I'm glad I did it at the doctor's office.

And I got some wondrous medicine that is slowly killing whatever bacterial infection I have. The results of the tests basically said no parasite, which having seen Alien one too many times, is always a good thing.

I also got another medicine that makes me see double. Which is kind of cool, but kind of scary, too.

But it got rid of the diarrhea on the second day of taking it. So that's a total of 12 days I hope to never relive again.

It's called Lomox for those who are asking.

It makes staying awake tough.

It says "will cause drowsiness."

It says "will cause blurred vision."

And it does.

Because when you see double, and then things get blurry, and you, say, fall asleep without warning ... driving is really not recommended.

So I've been staying home a lot.

Kara toted me around Saturday to a few things. I'm sure I wasn't the greatest company. I'll have to ask what we did. I do remember a birthday party and cops (because I can't think of the plural of sheriff right now), but we stopped somewhere there were lots of black cars with stars on them.

And I have not been online much, because two of everything on the internet is hard to take.

Or reading.

Or watching TV.

Two reasons - first, I canceled my cable ... because why pay $45 for something I watch less than 2 hours a week?

And besides, I can watch the Colbert "Word" segment on Motherload at Comedy Central.

And second, because I'm (we're) going to be gone most of next month on a fabulous 19 day, 25-state, three-nation driving adventure.

No, you can't come.

Anyway ...

Today was the first day I actually felt like I was getting better. Like I was human again. And I really felt like doing something - anything - other than sleeping. Then when I was done with that, I wanted to sleep.

And couldn't.

Because I'm apparently too tired too sleep.

Which is why I started writing this in the first place.


That lizard tells the truth

I just saved a bunch of money by switching my car insurance to geico.



No, It wasn't the kool-aid

Bless me Father, for I have sinned.

My sin: I've never given Elvis Aaron Presley his due.


In fact, when the Elvis stamp was introduced, I was a newspaper reporter at the time. I wrote a column stating how it was a big deal about nothing for people of my generation. I remember saying the only Elvis's I knew were Grbac and Costello, a never-was NFL QB and the guy who wrote "(What's So Funny 'Bout) Peace Love and Understanding" ... one of the greatest songs ever written and recorded. Because after all, there is one thing I wanna know ... what's so funny about peace love and understanding?

Anyway ... the column continued with me commenting on the fact the only Elvis Presley I knew was a bloated, sweaty, jump-suit wearing guy who had a lip problem ... and that women screamed over and kissed pictures of for reasons that were unapparent to the seven- or eight-year-old me in the mid-70's. And the main reason I vowed to never use the stamp had something to do with realizing, after putting in the envelope, I had licked the backside of Elvis.

And that was all true.

I was born in 1968, the year of Elvis's Comeback Special. I've never watched it. Or listened to it. I hear it's magic.

My mom raised me musically on Jim Croce, Cat Stevens, America, John Denver, Harry Chapin ... cats like that. And as I grew and matured, I embraced all sorts of music ... from classical to hardcore punk, from Alabama to ZZ Top. And no matter who I was listening to, or what I was reading, I'd hear (what I considered to be old) people talking about how Elvis started it all. I heard about how he was the King.

And I turned my ears, my head and my heart away from that.

Because all I could see was the Elvis I knew ... that mid 70's pre-death, bloated, sweaty Elvis.

Later in life when I worked for an oldies radio station, we had Elvis weekends. I hated them. Those were the only weekends I took comfort in the fact I worked mainly when the church shows or nationally syndicated shows were run. I had to run the board for such great classics as the 70's rock show "Reelin' In The Years" and "Car Talk" and the HBA Show on Saturday ... Sunday was even better (where's the HTML tag for sarcasm? Still not approved? Damn) ... live church worship services mixed with the crazy Catholic church's reciting of the Ava Maria. In English. And Polish. And Italian. And a few other languages I didn't recognize. For 28 consecutive minutes. That's thrilling radio right there kids. Then an one hour of music ... that hour was usually my 70's showcase of shit I wanted to hear. I am the DJ. I am what I play. I had believers believin' me. Then it was time for Dr. James Dobson. Oh yeah. Then John came in with his goofy hats and ugly girlfriends to smoke away the evening with other church services.

And yes, for that hour, I was a bad DJ ... I did not follow Lee B. Jolly's rotation wheel. And if I could help it, I'd play stuff I brought from home ... it fit the format (maybe) ... or what I could scavange from the bins ... the happening stuff.

But I never, ever played Elvis.

There, or in my real musically-indulged life.


And went well out of my way to avoid Elvis, entirely. Since coming to Columbus, I've managed to avoid both Elvis-A-Thon's ... despite the fact bands I love and respect were playing. I didn't go because they were playing Elvis music.

Because, as I've readily admitted ... I never gave the man his respect, or realized and recognized his place in music.

I never saw the young, handsome, humble, gifted singer who turned the country, and the world, on to rock and roll.

I never saw the man who changed music. Television. Radio.

I never saw the man who then gave it all up to serve his country when drafted without ever attempting to get out of the then-mandatory military service.

I never saw the man who gave away his money to help the less fortunate in his community, gave benefit shows and cared so little about awards bestowed on him he only went to one awards show, ever, and that was as one of the 10 most outstanding young men in America given by the JC's.

Until Wednesday.

Because on Wednesday, Kara and I went to Graceland.

A place I never had a desire to go. And I told her that.

Why did I change my mind?

Well ... we were in Memphis. On the way from St. Louis to Nashville to Columbus after taking in all five shows of Aaron Tashjian's midwest solo acoustic tour.

And because several friends recommended that I go ... people with opinions that matter to me ... so I bit the bullet, so to speak.

Yes, it's gaudy. Yes, it's tacky. But yes, it was the 70's. Loud colors and shag carpeting ruled.

But here's my confession: It was an amazing eye-opening experience for me.

Forget the commercialism of the whole get up. Yes, there is Elvis everything for sale. So what. Good for you, Elvis Presley Enterprises. Keep the cash flowing.

I'm talking about the tour. The house. The history.

From the first thing I saw in the mansion ... his solitary piano ... sitting there, waiting for him to come back ...

... to the last thing I saw at the mansion ... his final resting place ...

my eyes were opened ... my prejudices thrown away ... my respect rightly given ... and my reverence extended, as it should have been all along. That's what's great about life ... you can learn more about people, and ultimately, that changes your opinion of them. It appears I've changed a few of mine this week.


Playing Tourist in St. Louis

So on Monday we drove to St. Louis from Milwaukee with nothing to view but corn, soybeans, silos and cell towers.

Tuesday, however, we did the tourist thing in St. Louis.

That means the Gateway Arch.

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630 feet tall. 630 feet wide. 190 acres of land. And a shitload of stainless steel.

And a four-minute ride to the top gives you the ability to look down on the rest of the Gateway Park ...
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The City of St. Louis, including the old courthouse

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And Busch Stadium ... home to the St. Louis Cardinals.

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And parts of Illinois ...

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And then we took a riverboat tour of the area ...

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so we've now been on two of the three main bodies of water that surround this country ... in June we were whale watching in the Atlantic Ocean, in July we took a riverboat cruise on the Mississippi River ... and in August we plan on whale watching on the Pacific Ocean.

And we ended Tuesday as we ended Sunday, Saturday, Thursday and Wednesday of last week ... getting our faces rocked off by the genius that is Aaron Tashjian.

Don't believe me? Come witness Aaron with Swig Tooth in Cincinnati on August 3rd, Columbus on August 4th (with the X-Rated Cowboys) and in Cleveland on August 5th.

As for us, we're bidding farewell to Illinois and Missouri tomorrow, heading to Graceland, Memphis, Tennessee (thanks Paul Simon) and Nashville, and if we can't find any good music to listen to we're planning on going to see Drew Hastings, cause he's a funny motherfucker.

We'll be back in Columbus sometime late Thursday and rocking out on Friday to the X-Rated Cowboys at the Short North.

Next update ... well, when I can ;-) ... Video blog of the Arch coming in a bit.

Video Blog - St. Louis Arch

Today's video blog: Our visit to the St. Louis Arch.

Blog recorded July 18, 2006. Camera by Kara ;-)


Dispatch from the Road

UPDATE: In a hotel outside of St. Louis. In Rollins fashion, here's a dispatch from the road:

Monday, July 17th, 2006. 1:30 p.m.

Ben Lee is on the radio.

Kara is driving.

I'm not feeling well. I'm sitting in the passenger seat for the second or third time. Third time. Maybe the fourth. Fuck it. Who knows, really? Lets just say I'm riding shotgun in my car, which, as anyone will tell you, is weird in and amongst itself. And its a really hard to be a passenger for me most of the time. Not with Kara. As long as we don't get stuck in crazy accident traffic again. I told her, jokingly, if that happens again she's done behind the wheel. I know it wasn't her fault, or anything that could have been prevented. That's why its a joke.

She knows when I say things like that I'm joking. She's figured me out.

But my inability to ride, normally, is the reason I'm typing. Thankfully Mrs. Archer taught me how to type without looking back in tenth grade so I don't have to worry about car sickness or anything like that.

Typos ... yes.

But the funny thing about Mrs. Archer she totally looked like Olive Oil from the Popeye cartoons.

The funny thing about motion sickness its the same neural pathways that epilepsy travels on. That's why its not a true sickness, per se, that allows you to feel better after you vomit. Its a mental thing from your brain trying to compensate for the movements that your eye is making to keep things on a level playing field. That's why some people can sit in the front and not get sick, while others have troubles in all directions. Me, I can ride or fly and read, write, etc. without much of an issue, but I cant go around in circles.

Anyway as you can probably guess, this is a stream of thought blog from Eric.

Wisconsin is flat. And then very very hilly. And then flat again. And always green. And populated with farms, silos and cell towers. With the occasional roadside attraction Apple Pie backed in a Paper Bag. Big giant plastic cows that highlight the famous Wisconsin cheese. And Hi-Lo Drive. That's interesting.

Kara is driving and I'm sitting here thinking about how sometimes I feel things aren't going anywhere with her because there's no set destination in the plans. We have discussed the future in the extent that she's going to be in grad school for the next five to seven years ... and for me, really, I'm up in the air. I love Columbus. I want to stay in Columbus. And she's a big reason why ... because Columbus is the only place I've felt like home . and I question what we're going to do in our future together when she's in grad school.

Then I wonder about things ... and realize I have no idea where things are supposed to be after six months, or go after six months. I look at my past relationships and realize that they aren't the place to look for answers.

I never know.

I love her. I do know that. And isn't that enough, really? So many things are going to change in the next two months ... we're going out west to spend 3 weeks together in the car ... then she starts school and I start the job hunt. All three of those are huge unknowns ... and therefore so many things are unknown. So why wonder? Why worry?

Because there are so many things that I think I handle wrong.

Imagine that. Me, fucking something up. Yeah, its a stretch, but go with it for a minute.

I do make mistakes.

Often times huge ugly ones.

But in the past six weeks, there have been two big things that still don't sit right with me. Two big issues where I don't think I did anything wrong yet hurt her in the process.

Yeah, there are a couple of things that were absolutely wrong, and I have no problem owning up to them, discussing them, and moving forward. And we've done that.

Yet with these two situations, I'm made out to look like the asshole by others involved, and I still don't think I did anything wrong, at all.

And me being me, the introspective one, I spend a lot of time in my head going over these things and in both situations, I still don't think I did anything wrong.

And both issues where blown way out of proportion by the other parties involved yet it hurt Kara, which wasn't the intent, and that makes me feel like an asshole for even being involved in a situation that could be taken the wrong way.

I do know I cant imagine not being with her. She's wonderful, whether were just hanging out or flying down the highway. And she's fun. I don't have to worry about what I say to her because she knows what I mean in the way that I mean it. That's rare with me. And like me, she's spontaneous. She's always up for whatever crazy road trip I can dream up. Hey, lets drive 9 hours to see a band we've seen dozens of times play in a different city. Her response: OK. And we do.

Or this trip: lets go see Aaron from Swig Tooth do his solo acoustic show in Columbus. Hey, that rocked. Lets go to Morgantown the next night. Hey, that was awesome. So lets keep going Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Louis. And we do. And when its over on Tuesday we will have seen all five shows on this mini-tour. That's pretty fucking cool. And some other cool shit. Like at the Guitar Bar in Milwaukee on Sunday, when were the only people there other than his roommate and his roommates parents and four or five drunks at the bar. Three of whom left during the show.

Oh, yeah, and an old man with a cooler. And when he left, Aaron said, I hope that cooler works out for you.

But Aaron played. Maybe just for us, maybe for Justin, maybe for Justin's parents. Probably, just for himself, because that's what he does.

It reminded me a lot of a great Harry Chapin song called "There Only Was One Choice."

There Only Was One Choice
by Harry Chapin

There's a kid out on my corner, hear him strumming like a fool
Shivering in his dungarees, but still he's going to school
His cheeks are made of peach fuzz, his hopes may be the same
But he's signed up as a soldier out to play the music game

There are fake patches on his jacket, he's used bleach to fade his jeans
With a brand new stay pressed shirt and some creased and wrinkled dreams
His face a blemish garden, but his eyes are virgin clear
His voice is Chicken Little's but he's hearing Paul Revere

When he catches himself giggling he forces up a sneer
Though he'd rather have a milk shake he keeps forcing down the beer
Just another folkie late in coming down the pike
Riding his guitar he left kid brother with his bike

And he's got Guthrie running in his bones
He's the hobo kid who's left his home
And his Beatles records and the Rolling Stones
This boy is staying acoustic.
There's Seeger singing in his heart
He hopes his songs will somehow start
To heal the cracks that split apart
America gone plastic

And now there's Dylan dripping from his mouth
He's hitching himself way down south
To learn a little black and blues
From old street men who paid their dues
'Cause they knew they had nothing to lose
They knew it
So they just got to it

With cracked old Gibsons and red clay shoes
Playing 1-4-5 chords like good news
And cursed with skin that calls for blood
They put their face and feet in mud
But oh they learned the music from way down there
The real ones learn it somewhere

Strum your guitar -- sing it kid
Just write about your feelings -- not the things you never did
Inexperience -- it once had cursed me
But your youth is no handicap -- it's what makes you thirsty

You know you can hear your footsteps as you're kicking up the dust
And the rustling in the shadows tells you secrets you can trust
The capturing of whispers is the way to write a song
It's when you get to microphones the music can go wrong

You can't see the audience with spotlights in your eyes
Your feet can't feel the highway from where the Lear jet flies
When you glide in silent splendor in your padded limousines
Only you are crying there behind the silver screen
Now you battle dragons -- but they'll all turn into frogs
When you grab the wheel of fortune -- you get caught up in the cog

First your art turns into craft -- then the yahoos start to laugh
Then you'll hear the jackals howl 'cause they love to watch the fall
They're the lost ones out there feeding on the wounded and the bleeding
They always are the first to see the cracks upon the walls

Yes I read it in the New York Times
That was on the stands today
It said that dreams were out of fashion
We'll hear no more empty promises
There'll be no more wasted passions
To clutter up our play

It really was a good sign
The words went on to say
It shows that we are growing up
In oh so many healthy ways
And I told myself this is
Exactly where I'm at
But I don't much like thinking about that

Good dreams don't come cheap
You've got to pay for them
If you just dream when you're asleep
There is no way for them
to come alive
to survive

It's not enough to listen -- it's not enough to see
When the hurricane is coming on it's not enough to flee
It's not enough to be in love -- we hide behind that word
It's not enough to be alive when your future's been deferred

What I've run through my body, what I've run through my mind
My breath's the only rhythm -- and the tempo is my time
My enemy is hopelessness -- my ally honest doubt
The answer is a question that I never will find out

Is music propaganda -- should I boogie, Rock and Roll
Or just an early warning system hitched up to my soul
Am I observer or participant or huckster of belief
Making too much of a life so mercifully brief?

So I stride down sunny streets and the band plays back my song
They're applauding at my shadow long after I am gone
Should I hold this wistful notion that the journey is worthwhile
Or tiptoe cross the chasm with a song and a smile

Well I got up this morning -- I don't need to know no more
It evaporated nightmares that had boiled the night before
With every new day's dawning my kid climbs in my bed
And tells the cynics of the board room your language is dead

And as I wander with my music through the jungles of despair
My kid will learn guitar and find his street corner somewhere
There he'll make the silence listen to the dream behind the voice
And show his minstrel Hamlet daddy that there only was one choice

Strum your guitar -- sing it kid
Just write about your feelings -- not the things you never did
Inexperience -- it once had cursed me
But your youth is no handicap -- it's what makes you thirsty, hey kid


Video Blog - 'express lane' ?

So here's my first video blog.

Not sure why I never thought about doing a video blog before.

I have all the cool tools to do it.

And the skill and knowledge to use those tools.

But for some reason, I never did.

Until now.

So here it is.

Word of warning: If you're on dialup, I don't recommend trying to watch this.

It's only a minute in length, but I'm on my old laptop that doesn't have the cool editing software, so it's a 38mb QuickTime file.


Those of you with fat pipes, enjoy!

Song of the Day

Greetings from St. Louis. Well, Collinsville, Illinois, the foothills of St. Louis.

St. Louis.

Gateway to the West.

That's where we are today.

We're going to the Arch. We're taking a cruise on the Mississippi.

And we're ending the day getting our face rocked off by the closing show of the Aaron Tashjian solo acoustic tour.

Because that's how we roll.

Speaking of rolling ... a few days ago I rolled out some venom with a David Ford song attached ... so I figured I should balance that post with a happy one from David Ford that I could dedicate to someone, also.

So, with that in mind ... here's today's song ... Kara and I dedicate this one to our friend Michelle who needs a smile:

David Ford
If You Only

If you only knew,

Just how we feel about you,
You couldn't hurt like you do.

And if you only knew,
How everybody loves you,
You wouldn't feel so alone.

Well everybody's looking,
Oh what must they be thinking?
Oh what must they be thinking?

And every glance, and every shrug and gesture,
It has another meaning,
Oh what must they be thinking?
Well I know what i think..

That If You Only Knew,
Just how we feel about you,
You couldn't hurt like you do.

And if you only knew,
How everybody loves you,
You wouldn't feel so alone.

On every tongue a whisper,
Oh I know what they're saying,
Yeah I know what they're saying,

Do you see that face, it says "you have no right to be"...
Oh what must they be thinking?
Oh what must they be thinking?
Well i know what i think...

If you only knew,
Just how we feel about you,
You couldn't hurt like you do.

And if you only knew,
How good it is to see you,
You wouldn't feel so alone...

And on one day,
You may find that you're no different,
But 'til that day,
We see you waste your days away.

But if you only knew,
Just how we feel about you,
You couldn't hurt like you do.

And if you only knew,
Just how good it feels to see you,
You wouldn't feel so alone...

Don't you feel so all alone.


On the road again

WeAreThatFuckingCool, Inc., is at it again.

With our Mark Nye-penned philosophy of "Why The FUCK not?"

So greetings, again, from Chicago.

North West style.

Like O'Hare Airport Area.

To feed into, bring out and destroy Kara's fear of large, low-flying aircraft.

By putting her in the midst of the world's second busiest airport.

Cause I'm that fucking evil sometimes.

(That's a joke. Unless you listen to what some people would tell you. Then everything I do has an ulterior motive behind it. ANYWAY ...)

Aaron Tashjian is continuing his one man one guitar face-rocking midwest tour. Five cities, seven days.

And we decided ... why the fuck not go to all five shows.

Originally we were going to see four of the five shows ... Columbus (Wednesday, July 12), Morgantown (Thursday, July 13), Chicago (Saturday, July 15) and St. Louis (Tuesday, July 18). Then we kicked it about after hanging with Aaron for a bit at the kick-ass Tim Easton show in Columbus (Friday, July 14) and decided to hang out in the FREAKING FUCKING HOT MIDWEST for a few days ... predictions are hot and sunny and UPPER 90's all week ... because the face rocking is worth it. Even though the gas is about $3.39 a gallon here. So we're kicking in Chicago on Sunday, then driving up to Milwaukee to the Guitar Bar for Sunday's show, driving back through the long state called the IL on Monday to stay outside of St. Louis, then visiting the Gateway Arch on Tuesday before getting our faces rocked off on the final Aaron Solo Acoustic date in July.

Then we're heading to Graceland.

And Nashville.

And guess who we're going to see perform in Nashville? Another great Ohioan ... Drew Hastings.

Because that's how we roll.

But let's get back to the reason we're here: Aaron's Acoustic Stylings.

And how on Saturday, at Lilly's, He rocked the joint. As usual.

And I think we rocked his world a bit when we walked in the door with a hearty "FUCK YES."

I think he was quite surprised to see us.

I KNOW he was surprised to see the Swig Tooth shirts we made with some kick-ass iron-on transfers we found at Best Buy.

Because we're that cool. Or dorky.

But regardless of which side of that fence we're on, we did have one person at the show in Chicago give us her email address and wants us to make her a shirt like Kara's cool tanktop with the new hot Swig Tooth logo (designed by, well, me.)

And the Chicago crowd was in full coolness at Lilly's ... Justin from Semi-Precious Weapons (a Chicago native) was there ... with a host of friends, and a couple of other Ohioans were present as well ... friends and former classmates of Aaron.

(For the record ... Aaron is a graduate of New Albany High School and was a performer with the Columbus Jazz Orchestra. And he got the fuck out of Ohio after realizing that, for the most part, there are three types of music fans in Columbus:

  1. The Cool Dude (or Hip Chick) who goes to be seen in their latest cool kid wear, stands there, talks and could give two shits about the music
  2. the introverts go out to listen to music and stare at their shoes,
  3. the extroverts go out to listen to music and stare at other people's shoes)

Anyway ... tomorrow we're off to Milwaukee ... which, to quote Alice Cooper, "it's pronounced 'mill-e-wah-que' which is Algonquin for 'the good land'."

Party on, Garth.


Fuck you both, sideways

No time, energy or desire to really say what's on my mind.

And far too much venom to spew in two directions.

So I'll leave it to a great wordsmith like David Ford.

If you wanna hear this one, go here and check out a great fan page by Wilka, click on the downloads, then the MP3's ... and you'll get a taste of the genius that is David.

Then buy his album.

It fucking rocks in ways that sad bastard Englishmen can only rock.

But since nobody ever listens to me (or asks my reasons for doing things ... instead they dig deep in their own fucked up world and make shit up and convince themselves, and others, that their word is the gospel and fuck up someone else's world for a week, over something that is easily answered with a phone call.) do what you want.

And if you're so vain and you probably think this song is about you, odds are you're both right. Fuck you very much.

Anyway ...

David Ford
"I Don't Care What You Call Me"

I never made time
You never made much sense
We never stood a chance
If we're honest

You were not the first
And I won't be the last
But if it makes it better
Well you can call me what you will

Get home late
No one's here
Pace around the house
And sit in my chair

And if you think of me
It doesn't mean a thing
So why don't you just tell me what you really think again?

I don't care what you call me
Oh I
I don't care what you call me
No I
I don't care what you call me
'Cos it won't hurt any more

I know I let you down
And Christ you let me know
Every time and time again

Just another afternoon
Get drunk and disappear
So call me what you will

Rain it on down
What else can you throw at me?
I haven't heard before

And tear me on down
I am unforgivable
So why don't you just tell me what you really think again

I don't care what you call me
Oh I
I don't care what you call me
Oh I
I don't care what you call me
'Cos it won't hurt any more

Rain it on down
What else can you throw at me?
I haven't heard before

And tear me on down
I am unforgivable
So why don't you just tell me what you really think again

Scream me on down
I am so forgettable
Yes I know

Shoot me on down
Don't you think this isn't killing me
So why don't you just tell me what you really think again

I don't care what you call me
Oh I
I don't care what you call me
No I
I don't care what you call me
'Cos it won't hurt any more


Those who write on walls

Entertain me greatly. Keep up the good work, boys.

Found two great examples. Here's the first:

In the bathroom at 1-2-3 Pleasant Street in Morgantown, WV.

Also from 1-2-3 Pleasant Street in Morgantown, WV


Leading horses to water

I've been kinda busy lately.

After the Kennywood trip, Kara, Cammi and I went to Niagara Falls for a couple of days, enjoying the (ahem) find Canadian hospitality.

Or, at least, their toffee.

And their whales.

Beluga whales, to be more precise.


Anyway, since then I've been sequestered in front of my computer at home (big shock, eh?) but oddly enough ... and get ready for this, I'm not surfing porn. (And no, not because I've seen it all. I'm actually being productive. And shit.)

I've updated my
photo galleries
on my website.

I've been studying for another certification test.

I finally got around to digitizing the video of
Swig Tooth
at ComFest.

And mastering it to DVD.

And it fucking rocks.

I'm giving
and Mark the first two copies for their review and approval ... so don't ask, it's not really available yet. If ever. It's their call ... it's their material. I'm just the guy who captured their magic on video.

And if you weren't there to see it, that's your loss.


Cause, as I said, it fucking rocked.

Speaking of the genius that is Aaron Tashjian ... he's doing a solo acoustic tour that's touching down in Columbus on Wednesday at Bernie's Distillery at 9.

I've seen Aaron do his solo acoustic stuff. I could watch and listen to him all day.


So join us (us being me and Kara) tomorrow at Bernie's.

Or Thursday in Morgantown, W.Va.

Or Friday as we rock out with Aaron at the
Tim Easton
/ Spikedrivers show at Little Brothers.

Or not.

Like everything, in life, whether you see Aaron, or us, or anyone at all, is your choice.

I can only tell you where to find good music. I can't make you listen. Or hear it.


Weekend wrapup

Well, quickly, because it's 3:40 a.m.

Chicago - had a blast.

Taste of Chicago - Super.
Chicago Institute of Art - Super.
Taste of Chicago (again) - Super (again).
Martyr's - amazing sound.
Semi-Precious Weapons - Awesome band.

The looks on the faces of the band members when they realized our insane asses drove 6 hours to see them play Chicago - totally worth the drive.

Pictures and detailed descriptions upcoming.

But now - I'm tired. And I'm going to Kennywood with my daughter today (like after I sleep for 4 hours I'm gonna drive 3.5 to play all day).

Ain't life grand?


Zero miles to Chicago

Because we're on the 13th floor of the Hilton Chicago.

Yep ... WeAreThatFuckingCool, Inc., is once again in full effect.

Windy City Style.


No. Why the fuck not.


See, this guy we know who plays in this band we like, with this other guy, and this guy and this guy ... was asked to fill in for another guy and play bass with this other band.

And we were supposed to see them in Cincinnati last Sunday after Comfest ... but the venue had some water and power problems so the show was cancelled.

So we were out of luck.

Until we looked at the schedule, and remembered, that we could leave Columbus at 7 and be in Chicago by Midnight thanks to the fine motorists on I-65 (Yeah, we're still alive on I-65, thanks Joe & Colin!) who routinely drive 80 in Indiana (probably because there's nothing to see that's not flat and/or green) and the time change.

So we're here, in Chicago, to see Semi-Precious Weapons (again) ... only this time with Mark Fucking Nye on bass.

That's why we came.

It just so happens that "Taste of Chicago" is this weekend, so we're here, at the Hilton, on South Michigan Avenue, which happens to be directly across from Grant Park, where Taste of Chicago is. So we can get up, get breakfast, and walk across the street to Taste of Chicago for a while before heading up to Martyr's for Precious, Chest Rockwell, Dan and Mark at 6:45.

Then we're heading home ... Kara has to work Sunday at 4 p.m. ... I start my month on the bench ... employed but not having to go to work ... by hanging out with my daughter all week ... but first I have to go get her, and make a pit stop at the Blossom Music Center for the Cleveland Symphony Orchestra's "Salute to America" with patriotic music and fireworks.

Because that's what she wants to do.

We'll have pictures and updates later.

WeAreThatFuckingCool, Inc - OUT.