Preacher, Choir

Some Guy With a Blog says:

I get it. I know why TED Talks are so popular. Why we watch them and share. We all fantasize about being that expert up there, giving our experiences and laying out the facts, as though the truth we bring forth is something everyone should hear, something everyone should take in.

We so want to be that person on that stage. And, to some extent, we carry on as though we are that person on that stage. Standing alone inside the red circle, our minutes counting down on a screen in front of us, we make our elevator pitch explaining our entire academic oeuvre to an audience who was not there during the hardest times of our research.

We want to be bringers of the holiest of light.

But nobody’s life is truly changed by a TED Talk, is it? At least, not those who didn’t already want it to be changed.

A lot of smart people out there; wise people. But not everybody with a strap-on mic is wise, no matter who vouches for them enough to give them stage time. So listen critically.

Austinversary 22

July 28, today, is my 22nd anniversary since moving to Austin. Twenty. Two. At the dumb, hopeful, stupid age of 28 I drove my broke ass to this town to sleep on a futon and have dreams. Now at 50 I sit my fat ass on my futon and wonder where my dreams got off to as every creative drive gathers dust in the closet of my collected hobbies.

Austin, what have you done to me (that I haven’t already done to myself)?

At this point, I wonder if I’ll ever press Eject and pop this tape out to play it in some other town elsewhere. I just don’t know, really, what options there are for old fucks like me other than to fade off to a flyover county and occupy a bar stool next to the swamp cooler at the end of a cinder-block box and read novels in the dim buzz of an animated beer sign, hoping no one calls my ticket number before it’s time.

Ah man. What has this place done to me.

SCROTUS

I have nothing good to say, not after today. I don’t want talking. No. More. Useless. Talking.

They hinted, leaked, and made rumors, but today it became true. The fed does not want to protect women. The fed does not want to take responsibility. The fed does not want to enforce the same rights across the land. Now it’s a states-rights issue. And that is morally and legally repugnant.

But the people paying the judges aren’t stopping there. They’re coming for me. They’re coming for you. They’re coming for everyone who deserves privacy and autonomy by natural law. They won’t stop there. Rowe was the next domino to fall, and it clears the way for every domino down the line to fall onto the table of states-rights. This country is now riddled with land mines.

And our national enemies are laughing with tears in their eyes as we crumble from “one nation, indivisible,” into 50 territories squabbling as we figure things out.

I’m tired of talking.

Gonna Be Alright

Late post, but after all these years, last week I saw Puscifer.

The aliens telling us everything will be alright.

I’m happy to report that it was an excellent show, despite having a nosebleed seat 5 rows from the back of the 2nd balcony. The sound in Bass Concert Hall was great, the staff was friendly, the seats were narrow like coach on a 737, and the view of the far back of the stage was limited due to angles, but otherwise it was great. And with my stupid eyeglass prescription, my experience actually improved once I put on my sunglasses.

The sticking point with the show was that the band, as well as the tour and venue managements, made goddamned sure that we all knew that cameras were not welcomed or allowed. Signage, ushers, bouncers, two PA announcements, hell, even a video with Maynard in MIB drag talking about SPAM being made from people who take pictures; it became abundantly clear.

I mean, it was kinda nice not seeing the glow of cellphones across the concert hall, and that we all were more engrossed with the experience than with the capturing of the experience, but still, there were a few things I would’ve loved to shoot. Oh well. At least they opened up the last song for photography. “You guys have been good,” beamed Maynard, “so this is the last song, and you guys can bring out your cameras.”

All-in-all, the vibe was light and funny, with Maynard’s humorous jive, the band’s funny costumes, and the choreography with Carina. There were actors in men-in-black costumes, alien costumes, and so on, and it kept the whole works from getting too serious. I don’t think Puscifer has ever been anything serious (except deep under the surface). Over the course of the show the vibe inched from paranoid delusion to ascendant and extra-terrestrial, to hopeful.

Tracklist was mostly from “Existential Reckoning”, the latest, but they did dig into older albums with songs like “Toma”, “Conditions of My Parole” (with lots of running around the stage), “The Remedy” which I really got into, and a handful of others with alternate mixes and takes that took my trained ear a bit to actually recognize (being confused is sometimes magical).

Several times I heard the word “trifecta” muttered around in the audience. That’s winning a horse race bet on win, place, and show, but in this case it’s people saying they’ve seen all of Maynard’s projects, from Tool, to A Perfect Circle, and now to Puscifer. I wish I myself could’ve said trifecta, but it was nice hearing other people bonding over a word. After 2 years of pandemic lockdown, any kind of enthusiastic society is welcome.

The show was also a great chance to hang out with my cousin Amanda and her cousin Christy from out of town. We caught up on family gossip and general bullshit. It’s always great to host family, which is a rarity even after living in Austin for 22 years.

To summarize, I had a super great time.

"Raise," he says, "raise your glass.
"Raise your glass to our
Our heterogeneity
Our remarkable resilience to calamity."

Everything will be alright.