Wednesday, March 14, 2018

That time Chicago made Rudy its bitch

A lot of you have asked what happened that made me want to drink during the tour.

Well, I didn't want to write about it because I didn't want to embarrass the band but, they're cool with me sharing so, here goes...

I wrecked the first bandwagon. Yep. My dumbass missed the clearance sign on a bridge and took out all three A/C units and the satellite dish.

How the fuck does that happen?

Because I am a dumbass who was too busy looking in a mirror to make sure my trailer didn't take out a sign while also watching traffic in the oncoming lane because most of the truck was in the oncoming lane.

I assumed the bridge was the same one I came into town under. I assumed wrong and ... boom, everything on the roof ended up on the street.

I got out of the truck and everything became sort of like a dream. I really did think, oh, I am going to wake up any minute. But I didn't.

Police were called, reports were made and debris picked up.

I limped the thing to Bowling Green, Indiana. Gutted, feeling like a complete fucking fuck up.

You're a fuck up and you'll always be a fuck up, he said. And I hear it again and know he was right.

They had a laugh and then dropped the bomb of cost on us. After insurance it is still going to be fucking expensive.

Take it out of my pay.


With all that going on we still had a show in Cleveland to get to. They were gracious enough to give us another van. If traffic was not too bad we could make it just in time for load in.

On the six hour drive I got pretty good and down on myself. Made up my mind to hit the bar in Cleveland.

Just one.

Right. Because that's how it works.

I kept feeling worse. All those voices in my head that scream at me when I'm drunk were actually getting pretty loud sober. I was going to drink. And not just one.

You're a fuck up and you'll always be a fuck up.

Then a song came on that stopped me in my tracks.

She asked if I had considered the prospect of living alone

If I drink, she goes away.

So I spent the next four hours playing Southeastern on repeat talking to I don't know who in my head and out loud.

Four hours later I was still sober and felt pretty certain I would be when my head hit the pillow.

It wasn't the worst day of my life. But it sucked enough I almost blew it.

In hindsight, cost aside, it is fucking hilarious. Dumbass.

And please, no fucking pity. It happened, it sucked, I'm over it.

So there, now you all know.

Titty sprinkles!

Monday, March 12, 2018

Dispatch from Jersey

It's been awhile.

Forgive me, I've been busy.

Mostly on the side of the road wondering what the fuck is gonna break next.

Where do I start?

Well, I am writing this from the lounge of a Freightliner repair shop in Lyndhurt, New Jersey. Let that be an indicator of the journey from the driver's seat.

But there has also been a lot of magic.

More magic than tragic, despite everything.

Music, obviously. Discovering that I have fallen in love with each member of the band as humans even more than I ever loved their music.

And I fucking love their music.

The people I get to see along the way.

The hole in my heart left by the people I missed.

The countless hugs, the coffee, the gifts, the love.

This conversation with my friend Colleen:

C: Do you know people in every city you guys stop in?
Me: Yes. And no, not all of them are because of music. 
C: You've lead a rich life.

And there it is. Despite everything, despite my recklessness, despite my fuck ups and foibles, despite my ability to upend everything in my life or, my deciding I want to be something completely different today than I was yesterday, I indeed lead a very rich life.

I am tired. I am Gross. Ready to go home to TGB.

I hit a 24 hour patch where I wanted to drink more than I have since getting sober. That was a bad day At the end of it, when those closest to me asked how I was the best I could give them was the truth: I am still sober and for today that is enough.

Listen boys and girls, if you want to go tour with your favorite band or artist do NOT think it is going to be all fun and rock-n-roll. It's fucking work. These people you see on stage fucking work their asses off just to do that thing you see. What you don't see is the grind; the blue collar of it all.

And the people on the periphery - the drivers, the merch people, the tour managers - they get their hands the dirtiest trying to keep the artists floating. I think those same people would say it's a privilege.

I can't imagine getting asked to drive for Skinny Lister ever again. God knows I thought I was gonna be put on a plane in Chicago. And fuck me if I don't hate this fucking bandwagon.

But. If they ask me on June 3rd, I will fucking be there.

No, I will not add any other bands. No, this is not some career path I want to venture down. I just... I dunno... dig this band of people.

Whatever. I need a shower.

Titty sprinkles!

Thursday, February 22, 2018

El Paso is in Texas, not New Mexico

My grandmother was born here.

Beyond that, I know nothing. But I think I may challenge Will Varley to a pool match later.

I am exhausted boys and girls. Last night was seemingly uphill the entire drive, rarely eclipsing 35 MPH. From San Antonio to El Paso.

Aside from soundcheck, I have not heard Skinny Lister on this tour.

That gets remedied tomorrow night in Phoenix. I get to introduce my baby brother to the band! And see some dear friends.

I am smiling big right now, Deb.

Remember when you were a kid and they told you that you could be whatever you want to be when you grow up? Well, I have managed to spend my adulthood being whatever I want to be.

I always wanted to be a Cameron Crow character and now I am. I like that.

Luis Guzman played me. All the way down to having a smoking hot blonde wife.

Roadies should never have been cancelled.

After Phoenix I get to go home to LA. I want to ask the band to play This City in LA. I've said before that they wrote that song about London but, as soon as I heard it it became about LA.

I need to go nap.

Titty sprinkles!

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Hi from San Antonio

I was sitting in a green room last night listening to the accordion being played. It was my favorite part of the tour.

Then I sat in on soundcheck. Just me, the merch girl and a small handful of HOB employees working on getting the sound right.

Here was a band working on the minutiae to get the sound exactly right for the rest of us. We see the end product. I got to witness the blue collar work of it  all. It was my favorite part of the tour.

My friend brought me peanut brittle. I got to squeeze her and her daughter. It was my favorite part of the tour.

I got to drive for six or so hours to the next venue. Not so much my favorite part of the tour.

I showered this afternoon and the accordion was playing again in the next room. Definitely my favorite part of this tour.

I'm liking this a lot more now that I am not alone on the road driving a big monstrosity.

I still miss my wife. More now actually. Because I want to tell her all the things.

Telling her makes this real. I love that.

I want that for you.

Titty sprinkles!

Monday, February 19, 2018

I'll be home before you know it then you'll be sick of me again

I miss my wife.

That's my first takeaway on this tour so far.

It's amazing to think I have become that guy who is fat and happy at home.

I used to love running away. Needed it. Stay in one place with the same people too long and I would get an itch to escape.

It wasn't anyone's fault. My entire life I was always running. I think my foray into comedy was just another attempt at it.

Now, I just want to get back home to my wife, my dogs, the beach.

I imagine that my mindset will change tonight once I pick up the band and we actually get to touring and making music magic. Yes, I know I am not making any of the actual magic but, I get to have a hand in helping. At the very least, I get a front row seat and all access pass.

Driving 55' +/- is not all fun and games. That itty bitty trailer is a fucking nightmare.

Beyond that, it's been an adventure. Lots of truck stops.

I have to say this.

Truckers, I apologize. I have often maligned you but, over the course of the last four days you have shown me a generosity of spirit and helped my dumbass more than I would like to admit. You are vastly underappreciated and I promise I will not forget just how much you've helped me. Repeatedly.

For all of my complaining, I am sitting in a VIP lounge at a Marriott in downtown Houston thanks to an amazing friend.

I have a feeling that in the coming months I am going to be touched time and by the kindness of people I call friends.

I will do these when I can. No promises.

Titty sprinkles!

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Isolation, revelation, let it go

I have a book. It arrived yesterday. It's called Sixteen. 

My friend Zoe wrote it.

I call her my friend because she is in possession of the most important bear I have ever held. I gave it to her when she was a small child because that bear was only ever meant to keep me company, not spend my life with me and when she came into my life it was obvious the bear needed her and she it.

It was a well loved bear before it ever ended up with me. Hand made and loved to the point it had lost its nose due to so many squeezes.

It needed someone who would love it that passionately.

If that doesn't make Zoe my friend then maybe this does: when she was two and I was visiting her family she implored me to play with her.

PLAY WIF ME! Over and over and over as she dragged me by the hand.

When a child says PLAY WIF ME you fucking get to playing!

I believe playing with someone makes them your friend so.. she is my friend.

I was thinking about all that as I perused her book last night. The dedication floored me. Tears.

Then I started reading the book itself.

It jolted me back to a time.

Two different times, actually.

First a funeral and a poem written by her uncle. A poem that I can see every day as I dribble because it is a part of the display on my desk. (Psst, look over there to the right panel and see if you can find it)

Her writing reminds me of her uncle's writing in that they both articulate things I never would have realized I needed said had they had not said them. Does that make sense?

I don't know I need their words until their words come into existence.

And secondly, her book jolted me back to my own time of being sixteen and the very real sense of losing myself as I am just starting to understand myself.

I am so looking forward to the rest of this book.

Yes, I just spent an entire dribble pimping out my friend's book.

No, I do not apologize.

Yes, she really is that talented.

Titty sprinkles!

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

First we gonna rock

I spent this morning scrolling through the last three years of Valentine dribbles.

I've been doing this shit for over three years now.

Fuck me.

Anyway, here's the thing that has changed: I don't hate Valentine's Day.

If you're one of the cool kids you know that hasn't always been the case.

Don't get me wrong, I don't get all overwrought with sentimentality or go out and buy diamonds. But I have been looking forward to today for longer than I care to admit.

Like Vegas and Christmas, Valentine's Day is better because of TGB.

She has ruined so many of the things I used to hate.

Tonight there will be pizza and Deadpool.

I cannot think of anything more romantical than that.

I'm sure TGB probably could.

Baby steps, baby.

Titty sprinkles!

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

That's what dreams are made of

When I was forced to watch the Winter Olympic Opening Ceremonies the other night I was reminded of the difference, and the greatness of my country.

Most other countries (not all) were rather homogeneous; almost all one thing.

Then the United States shows up with this fucking beautiful mish-mash of diversity. So many of our athletes look so very different from one another. That is the biggest difference and that reflects our truest greatness.

Yesterday as I watched Chloe Kim win gold like a fucking badass I was reminded of that greatness. A first generation Korean-American born to immigrants. And now she is a gold medal winner for her parents adopted country.

That's about as American as it gets.

We've never needed to make America great again because we've always been great.

As long as we remember that our greatness comes, in large part, from immigrants coming here and adding their piece to the beautiful mosaic that is America we will always be great.

Titty sprinkles!

Monday, February 12, 2018

If music didn't exist I'd be useless

My face hurts this morning. That's the price I pay for not taking my allergy drugs last night.

I leave Friday for the road.

I am a little nervous. There's always a fear that people won't like me, that I'll embarrass myself.

I know in my head that that is a very human experience but, in a different part of my head a voice is screaming, no dude, you really do suck and people merely tolerate you until they get sick of you. And they always get sick of you.

I wrote the above down not to garner your pity, or even your empathy. I wrote it down because I suspect - no, I know - that learning that I have that same doubt you have may surprise one or three of you. Hopefully, knowing it goes through my head will, in some small way, help you the next time it goes through yours.

It has helped me to know that people I admire are as riddled by self-doubt as I am.

Not that you admire me.

You shouldn't. I have fart contests with my dog whenever my wife is not around.

Titty sprinkles!

Sunday, February 11, 2018

The only difference between us

Hey, would you mind listening to some new tracks and gimme your feedback?

Not at all. 

Cool, thanks! 

So that's how I am spending this morning.

My critique in a nutshell: Concrete Blonde with chutzpah. Best played LOUD!

In other news...

Last night we went to see Jason Eady. TGB knows him from his from their time in the USAF together. Which is a coincidence because, I also fell in love with Bob Ross, who spent 20 years in the USAF, last night.

The bar played Bob Ross the entire night. I was fucking enthralled. He paints so fucking fast! First there's a nothing, then there's this majestic as fuck landscape!

Anyway, Jason Eady... remember when country music wasn't about pontoons and sexy tractors? Yeah, that's the time Eady's music takes you back to that time.

You ever meet someone and think, I feel like I've known you my whole life?

That's what Jason Eady's music feels like.

Just stop what you're doing and listen to this song. I promise, you will smile.

Also, how fucking cool is it that Val Kilmer reprised his role as Doc Holliday just to play drums?

Saturday, February 10, 2018

The one where Rudy tries to sound smart

Woke up thinking about private prisons and the US Constitution.

Someone has to have sued the US on the grounds of the unconstitutionality of slave so cheap it's practically free labor. I'm no Constitutional lawyer but, I think there are violations of at least two Amendments; the 13th and the 5th.

I dunno, maybe being imprisoned AND being forced to work as an indentured servant for a private corporation's profits are not two distinct things and only the 13th is being violated.

I need coffee.

If you're in school, you should do a research paper on the whole private prison/constitutionality thingy. You're much smarter than I can ever hope to be.

Seems Israel is at war with Syria now. Let's hope Dumbfuck-In-Chief doesn't interject himself and make it worse.

I wish I had Bob Ross abilities with writing.

Let's turn these words into little boobies and Ryan Reynold's abs.

Titty sprinkles!

Postscript, this was playing in my brain when I woke up. I actually thought to myself (in Stewie Griffin voice for whatever reason), am I dying? Then I laughed and got back to the prison thing.