i try to avoid the past but half of my thoughts are about the past.
i try to live in the now but i cant help but try to predict the future.
when i go to chicago i love love love it but when i come back home i love it even more.
the kids love me and i love them but if i never have any thatd be fine with me but if i ever had some im sure id be an incredible dad or the worst of all because i would keep it real with them and say things like
life isnt fair dont ever think it is.
i wouldnt tell them shit about santa claus id point to the portrait over the fireplace of a black Jesus and id say its that guy’s birthday coming up and we should do stuff for OTHER people instead of asking for a barbie dream house. its not even your birthday! how do you think you should get a bunch of stuff and chop down a tree and leave cookies out for reindeers we live in Hollywood, how many reindeers you see here baby?
but then id probably buy them the biggest barbie dream house of all and sign it, happy my birthday – jesus.
my cats missed me. they came running to me when i got home last night. they were all hey man thought you croaked or something.
xbi texted me while i was on the FlyAway bus asking how the Feel No Pain remedy worked on my arms and hands and i dont wanna tell them that it totally worked but they know.
lord knows, they know.
today is bill murrays birthday and i dont know what to do about it. drink without a shirt? walk down Hollywood Blvd. and just congratulate everyone I pass?
he had the best advice about being rich and famous, he said if thats what you really want to do, just be rich. and then be super generous to everyone without telling them youre rich. no one has to know. he said that would cover most of what you get out of being famous.
and the best is you avoid the people who just want you cuz yr famous.
guess bill screwed that part up.
do you know something that i love today?
i love that Ryan Adams covered Taylor Swift’s entire album, 1989, which was pretty terrible, but a band called Father John Misty covered Adams’ cover of Blank Space in the style of Lou Reed.
THIS is a record I want.
I’d buy a damn record player just to play it if it only came on vinyl.
i also love that i have today off so i can do my laundry and read the bible and order thai and maybe take a nap with the window open and the fan blowing
knowing that Jay Cutler wont lose the game for the Bears next Sunday or probably the Sunday after that
and the Cubs are peaking at exactly the right time.
they look adorable. they are adorable. their little voices. their weird ability to seem reasonable and human-like.
they know the sunglasses are upside down but they dont care. and you laugh and they laugh and even the wind and the sun and the trees laugh.
but then you take them to a red lobster on a saturday evening and omg.
they cry and wander and scream and destroy their food without eating any. and cry and annoy other diners and cry and crawl under the table and stand on their chair like Look At Me!
and loudly discuss religion AND politics.
then when you arent watching they defund planned parenthood as if it wouldnt affect countless women,
many of whom are poor
and without a lobby in DC.
but theyre cute
AS IF CUTE HAS SOME VALUE!
what is cute? why do we like it? are we foolish enough to think that it’s a reflection of US? why does cute matter? did cute get us to the moon? did cute cure polio? can cute help you sweep the Cardinals in September and help you avoid that super scary one-game wildcard playoff?
will cute get you into heaven or heal your back or stop a bullet?
if anything cute just gets us in trouble. it makes us believe in butterflies rainbows and unicorns. it makes us think that happily ever after really is a thing.
it makes us believe that yes yes yes instead of omg are you out of your mind?
the bible isnt cute. Jesus wasnt cute. freakin John the Baptist seemed like a looney toon with a hairshirt(!) and michaelangelo sculpted Moses with horns on his head.
friend of the busblog, heather the rabbit havrilesky aka ask polly got a great letter this week and responded to it in the perfect way.
someone wrote to her and said that shes a freelance writer and shes done ok but some of her friends have done better and she hasnt really gotten over the hump yet and oprah hasnt shined her light on her yet and well “Should I Just Give Up on My Writing?“.
and heather, writing in new york magazine answered perfect and said YES FOOL! (jk) but the one little minor thing she left out of her otherwise sparkling incredible response was the lesson of charles bukowski.
americas greatest poet WAS NOT DOING OK when he was 50. he wasnt living in silver lake, he wasnt living with a spouse who supported him emotionally, he wasnt any freelance writer, he was struggling, he was living in east hollywood working for the post office. he hated the post office. he was drunk. he was ugly. he was overweight. he had anger issues. he smoked. he gambled. he got in fights. he won zero fights. he was being rejected over and over and over.
but he kept writing. sometimes for money. sometimes because he was a horny middle aged man and some sex papers would let him write out his bizarre fantasies for beer money. but he kept writing.
it wasn’t UNTIL he was 50 that a rich, visionary publisher from santa barbara discovered bukowski and said dude whatever the post office is paying you i’ll pay you just write and i’ll split the royalties with you.
the lesson of bukowski is keep doing what you love. who cares that your friends are on tv or writing for new york magazine or married or have a house or two houses or three houses. or fourteen wives. or all their hair or the hair of fourteen sheep dogs.
keep doing what you love.
or if for some reason youve never gotten around to start doing what you love: start. because. thats why. start! some people never get the chance to start. they fool around with fireworks and their hands get blowed off. or they get involved in a dead end job or a super sexy woman and their lives get destroyed.
the lesson of bukowski is motor through all of that. we have so many hours in the day. surely there are a few of them where you could stop watching tv or stop reading books or stop sleeping and sleeping and sleeping and you will get off your ass and express yourself, madonna. surely there is an ounce of courage that you can squeeze out into the juice glass of life and share.
surely you know that your friends are wonderful but they are not you and you have a unique story to tell that is all yours and no one elses and only you can deliver it. and if you dont tell it no one will, which is a lie, actually someone will but, spoiler alert: they will fuck it up royally.
so you better write it down and quickly.
the lesson of bukowski is god bless oprah but she’s dunzo and theres no one else whos gonna save your soul except jewel and shes happily married to a rodeo cowboy so you better work rupaul.
that is what i learned from bukowski and i never would have learned it if he had given up on writing and just did his post office gig and drank and whined that he didnt have hella twitter followers. so you write your damn deal and f the haters in ur head.
but the best was when the skies darkened like the smoke monster in Lost.
perfectly nice gray got covered with a thick phalanx of fuck you black.
it was a tremendous parade of doom.
and unlike when that happens in LA, here in Illinois it paid off: it poured.
the thunder bellowed and the lightning struck trees and billy goats and volkswagons and corn fields.
my mom told me to get away from the windows but what are the gonna do, shatter and scar my pretty face?
the indians didnt run from the plate glass every time the angry gods raged.
we were headed to ginos east pizza, the finest in the land, but first we needed to stop at the drug store for iphone cables and rum. dicks were outta both. so walmart it was.
but mom had a better idea, lets speed back home asap and wait.
i really wanna uber a lot more than i currently do so i can buy her a new car but she likes her crossover SUV and today i realized why: weather. theres actual weather here and it’s nice to have big wheels to go through the puddles and potholes and snow and the fallen.
i wanted her to have an electric compact car or something but shes right, you need an actual vehicle in these parts. something that can take a punch. but something that will fit in your garage too. she chose well a decade ago and i hope to get her into a safe and sound vehicle soon, but right now shes cool, which is good because my hands and arms are appreciating this rest from eight hours of tap tap tap and three hours of driving.
coming back home once a year helps me gain a bit of perspective, as do apps like Time Hop and Facebook’s newish On This Day.
it helps me realize how fortunate i have been in the 108 years since ive been stumbling around this crust and i want to say thank you to my mom, my friends, all of the nice people behind the scenes at McDonalds and in tv networks.
youve all given me such a rich life where pretty girls kiss my cheek and big companies fill my bank accounts.
one of the humbling things about living in the Information Age is your really see how other people live and some are riding high and some are having a tough time just going to school. yesterday i saw a picture of a dad with blood covering his face running through the streets with his little kid and then i saw a copy of a letter from that school in Texas who arrested the young Muslim kid for building a clock to impress his teacher and the teacher thought it was a bomb.
theres been drama in my life too but nothing like that. in many ways i am just a dude who grew up in the suburbs who got called nigger a few times but big whoop, i was able to literally kick the asses later of those who bullied me and then moved on with my life.
no seriously one day at school i saw one of the kids bending over to get books out of his locker an i kicked him as hard as i could and ran out to an awaiting school bus.
rarely are we afforded such opportunities in life, but sometimes i feel like i have been able to get those more than others. and i am grateful.
for example once in college i was fired and later banned by the editor in chief of my school paper and a few months later was awarded a trophy for the best arts editor in california. how am i not to believe that there are angels looking out for me?
likewise yesterday after this kid was arrested and suspended for building a freaking clock the president of the usa invited him to the white house and twitter offered him an internship.
with so many sad stories swirling around, it’s so nice to see that sometimes evil doesnt prevail, flaming lips, and i am a witness to that first hand.
if you know me by now you know im remarkably predictable. i am extremely loyal to the people and things that i love. and if i love you im gonna love you forever and ever, through hell and high water. AC/DC has been in my top ten favorite bands since i first heard “dirty deeds” sneering through my junior high school radio.
so when bob, my friend i’ve known since kindegarden, wrote me to tell me that AC/DC was playing at Wrigley Field, the holiest place i’ve ever been to, i said oh thats nice. he then asked if i wanted a ticket and i hesitated because i had just seen them at Coachella and it was good, but how many times do you have to see them in a year?
the answer is: as many times as they play Wrigley Field, dummy.
so i flew in monday, took a train out of the burbs on tuesday and as i got near the park i texted Bob who was pre-partying with our friend Rick and asked where should i meet you guys.
and bob said, at the corner of clark and addison in front of the Ernie Banks statue
and it was on.
the weather was perfect, none of us had ever looked more handsome. the Cubs were in first place (practically) an angus was about play some of our favorite tunes for us.
rick reminded me that his first concert was with me, my sister, and her friend Nikki – ac/dc’s for those about to rock at the rosemont horizon. and he hadnt seen them since! say what? i had seen them maybe 4-5 other times. maybe more.
and i must say, im super glad Bob motivated and got tickets because this was the best show id seen them do since my first one, Back in Black where my mom just dropped me off alone at the Rosemont, I sat in the 14th row and my soul was saved by rock n roll.
this show, everyone was telling me, was the hottest ticket in chicago. scalpers were getting 2x and 3x the face value. bob joked that we were up in the nosebleeds, but Wrigley is so small that even that was fine. and whats best is the beer vendors are allowed to walk around and serve you at your seats. so when you wanna pee you just pee in the cup and give it back to them. recycling!
jk, you pee on the sox fans.
almost everyone had AC/DC shirts. almost everyone was singing to all of the songs.
almost everyone was drinking a beer out of a cup that said Cubs.
almost everyone was way in to it in a way that i havent seen in a VERY long time in LA.
i mean, 30,000 people totally cheering and singing during the opening tune “Rock Or Bust” the title track off their latest album – which is their 15th studio record
and they were into it
but when it comes to Angus’s guitar solo they cheered even louder.
and it’s not like he’s Miles Davis up there,
for the most part he sticks to the solo you’ve heard on the record.
he might miss a note or two or pluck a string a little early
BUT THATS FINE WITH US WE LOVE WHAT HE DOES
so we buy the tshirts and the records and the concert tickets
and the light up devil horns
and we sing along to the nonsense that doesnt mean anything deep
because when it comes right down to it we’re not all that super fucking deep neither.
turn that shit up!
there was one beautiful exception: Let There Be Rock was insane. Heres a small excerpt
and it was loud. even in the nosebleeds. even across Wrigleyville, home of yuppies and old schoolers who demanded that the show be over at 10pm. fine with us. the concert started early and ended right on time to canons and fireworks.
so thats the good news. the bad news was we could see the hologram of Brian perfectly fine (pictured to the right of the center beer), but the Angus hologram was only working sporadically.
speaking of beers. they had to hide the Old Style! Obama!
someone told me that Budweiser has something to do with it. either the Cubs cut a deal with the beer giant or they lost a bet or something but no vendor could walk around with Old Styles and if you went to the beer stand you had to ASK for it and when you did they cracked open a can and spit in the cup first.
RULES IS RULES they said.
but you know what, Old Style at Wrigley WITH spit is still better than Budweiser out of the tap anywhere. so i happily accepted it and tipped generously.
with that said WHAT THE FUCK WRIGLEY FIELD, does no one stand by their man any more?
afterwards we spilled out into the streets – which were closed to cars and made our way into a nearby bar that let us in free and inside was an AC/DC cover band that played pretty much all the other songs that AC/DC didn’t play at Wrigley and weirdly that was incredibly fun too!
and we met some drunk girls and… Ronnie Woo Woo!
did i mention that everyone had AC/DC shirts and jerseys and baseball gear and drones and homemade clocks ALL with Angus or AC/DC on them? incredible. Chicago I LOVE YOU!
fist of all how many bands can pull out MONSTER hits as song #4 and #10 on the set list and their biggest tune as #12 of a 20-song show? it’s almost as if theyre showing off. it’s almost as if theyre saying oh yeah, well how about this.
only Nirvana buried “Teen Spirit” in weird places in their set list, far as i recall. but everyone else saves the best for last or starts the show with it but usually keeps it for the end because they dont want people running for the exits.
why would you ever want to leave one of the best shows of your life?
born and raised off the 99 in visalia, ramie earned a scholarship at kansas due to her incredible vocal talents.
only problem it was for opera and she didnt wanna sing the same dumb songs her whole life.
so she switched over to dance and got a scholarship off that no sweat.
ever since, ramie has danced and danced. she even started a troupe out here where everyone dresses a like and then flash mobs certain clubs and everyone is happier and the dj and the dj
and the dj.
we met at the los angeles times where it seems like i knew a whole lot more people than i remember.
ramie was this sparkle of color and light in an otherwise drab palate.
often we’d talk about something she had written for metromix or brandx and then id go off to my duties.
she told me recently that she remembered i was always passing her desk going to lunch with this one or that one and she wondered why i never asked her to lunch.
which made me wonder, yeah why didnt i ask her to lunch?
probably because deep down im very shy and that job was a dream job and i didnt wanna screw it up in any way so for the most part i bit my tongue about things and for damn sure i wasnt taking any one to lunch unless it was purely to improve a blog.
but that was then and this is now and somehow the fates aligned and we had some tacos the other day and then i said hey wanna see a movie and she said no its too hot out.
when youre a million years old like i am that makes sense.
then i got a text from the xbi saying no one was gonna use their seats for the b52s and i said hey wanna