Reasoning with Madness
"This is a barbaric yawp, and it will be sounded over the roofs of the world."
Finally got around to watching The Big Short over the weekend...my god.
First off, it's an incredible movie to begin with. But it also explained, in very clear, very understandable and sometimes very comical terms, what the fuck happened to America from 2005 to 2008 when the entire global economy collapsed. And it exposes who did it (spoiler: big banks) and how (spoiler: handing out toxic mortgage loans at variable interest rates to anyone with hands) and the fact that these bankster criminals were bailed out by taxpayers and not only went unpunished, but were given fucking BONUSES for doing it...it's unreal.
This was like a nuclear bomb going off in the financial world that hit every single one of us, across the country and even the planet. From the Wall Street traders who were on the front lines of the blast who lost huge, to the homeowners who ended up homeless, to the myriad industries that were shattered finally years later in the 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th waves of the blast, the entire nation and the world was damaged from this catastrophe that could have been avoided.
And it will happen again. The next bubble? Water. It's already happening.
The events that took place in this movie are why Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump are the people's choice for president and why Clinton and Cruz are the party's choice. If you haven't seen this movie, you must. It's a chilling wake up call that we should all understand.
Over 27,000 people attended the Sanders rally in New York. 1300 attended the Clinton rally. Yet this headline says they both held "huge" rallies. Interesting choice of words. Also interesting because this was not a fluke situation. These number disparities have been happening nonstop since the beginning, yet Clinton still maintains some magical monster lead in delegate counts. No matter who you plan to vote for, if you plan to even participate in this election at all, it's pretty clear that to even the average person that the election process in America is corrupt. And it has been since at least 2000. Bought and paid for by high-powered, well-connected industry and party tycoons who could give two shits for the American people and seek only to maintain and increase their own power, wealth and influence. And it's pretty clear which candidate they want in the big house.
Today marks the second anniversary of We Have Guns' final show, which took place at the WOW Hall three years ago today. The reason I post this now on my website, is because I have an update.
It's not really breaking news, as the update happened earlier last year when I lost my gig at KFLY. My great friend and band mate Tobby Lugo, that you will read about below, reached out to me with an online olive branch of sorts and we settled our beef. We put the damage behind us. We are friends again. We have hung out many times over the past year, despite him moving north to Portland. We even went to the Scorpions and Queensryche in Seattle late last year and next month we will be joining up again (along with Issa Koberstein and James Smith of We Have Guns) to go see Iron Maiden in Tacoma. It's a trip because I never thought that would ever happen. Especially when I wrote the following, two years ago regarding the last show We Have Guns ever played.
Life is a wild ride, and more often than not, it runs in directions that you would never expect. Sometimes for the bad, but sometimes for the good. And in this case, it was for the good. Never discount the people in your life that matter to you. No matter how bad it gets, no matter what goes down or how insane the fallout was, fresh starts and new horizons are completely possible. I must give credit to my man Tobby, as it was his decision to reach out to me. I was still not strong enough. But I'm glad he did. I'm glad we are friends again. It means more than words. So for that, I applaud his choice and makes the following account, which still resonates deeply with me, all the more profound...
One year ago the band I was in for six years played our last show ever. It wasn't a farewell show. It wasn't a celebration. It wasn't intentional. It just wasn't planned that way. But deep down, there were clear signs it might be the last. I performed, as always, with every piece of my soul. Blood, sweat, tears, screaming banshee wails and feedback seas, whiplash thrash and heavenly wails...My brothers-in-arms played with everything they had too. That was how we approached everything. No holds-barred, take-no-prisoners, play like it's your last day alive. We stomped the terra heavy. We left marks. We never played weak. Even our practices were full of thunder and fury. This was our church, our sacred union with the Other. Music can be a conduit for the Divine and this band always sought our truths through our songs. We had fun, but we always took it deadly serious.
After that show, we took a break. A very long, much needed break. We had worn ourselves thin, playing festivals and shows nonstop, years on end, city to city, town to town, sometimes to howling masses, sometimes to meager groups of pool playing drunks, always with full force. All while trying to live a life outside of it. 2-6 nights a week playing at sound-breaking volume, all while working 45-50 hours during the daylight, and juggling second and third gigs making ends meet to take care of myself and my family. All of us were pushing ourselves too hard, too far, something eventually had to give. You don't run an engine at full RPMs without something blowing up. And it did. Between me and our guitarist and my best friend. We are both hard-headed, alpha bulls in China shop types when it comes to our stance on things. As I've been told by quite a handful of people now, we were very much a "Lennon-McCartney, Axl-Slash" type of duo. So that temporary growing break eventually became permanent, after a nasty encounter I probably enticed, unintentionally, over something so petty it's not even worth mentioning. I lost a best friend, a brother, a fellow bandmate, and ultimately the band due to this petty squabble. I still struggle with that moment. It still plays out in my head like an assassination.
But it was building over time. While I regret that it all collapsed the way it did, and I was ripped from the fold, I can't say it would be any different if that day never happened. It seemed inevitable. Things had been mounting for some time. Pressure, stress, hardships, differences, inner turmoil and some things which I will probably never fully even understand. The fracture came much earlier than my "firing", even before that final show we played. Some people are finished long before they decide to walk away. And sometimes ending something is impossible without a reason. There must be a clear scapegoat, a sacrificial lamb, and I was the perfect beast for it. But I won't point fingers at anyone, play the blame game, hurl insults. But I know it couldn't have happened without my role in it. I know what I said. How I handled it all. I could have played it better. But I never thought it would result in the total collapse of a band and a friendship, but it did. And that's the part I truly regret. Had I known the final stand was a few throw away comments away, I would have remained silent. As they say, hindsight is 20/20, right? I have learned to bite my tongue more than I used to though. It gets me in trouble more than I care to admit.
Despite that dark painful moment, I still look back on the era of the Guns with fondness. We had six amazing years together. We recorded two EPs, a killer Beastie Boys cover of Paul Revere, a ridiculous TV commercial, learned some ninja viral marketing and used all forms of the media as our lapdogs to get our gospel out, taking cues from one Jim Rose, who literally wrote the handbook and taught us everything we knew. And finally, the most important aspect of our output...we made a full length album which took us from Eugene to San Francisco in a blizzard in the winter with a broken axl, a showdown with Berkeley cops at 1 am, and a near gang fight with an amateur producer, which ended with us fleeing California on 2 hours of sleep at 5am to get home before it got Real Ugly...That crazed mission sealed the bond of the Brethren. I knew then that we were destined for something Epic. We were just getting started at that point. We eventually finished the album at Central Node in Eugene, where we spent more time finishing than anything I've ever created. That album...man...it was a two or three year labor of love. I am still very, very proud of it. We took so much time producing it, tweaking it, making it as perfect as we could. It meant everything to us. It had to be perfect. And we managed to get over 30 bands, friends and fans on that album for the gang chants and party sections, as we strived to build and unify the local scene. And we did. For awhile...
We went from playing house parties and dive bars all over Oregon to sharing the stage with Hell Yeah, Chimaira, Hed PE and many more. We played and recorded many live shows, even playing an acoustic set for our CD release at the local record store in town, which terrified me but ultimately worked out just fine. We were a force to be reckoned with. What started as a fun side project blossomed into one of the most powerful bands I've ever had the honor to be in. I learned much about myself and my brothers. This band helped me address the darkness I carry within me, the darkness that befell upon my family and my life, it got me through some of the most agonizing and painful experiences I've ever lived through. There were more than one occasion when these guys literally saved my life. That band was a heavy metal life raft at a time when I needed one. The universe aligned. The songs that we wrote...barbaric yawps of catharsis, anthems of the fallen, warnings to a blind sheep mass of the dangers of apathy and laziness, and of course, songs about zombies, aliens and partying the woes away until blackout. Every lyric I wrote was a truth. Every song we wrote was a part of all of us and it still is.
When I look back a year after our last performance it is with fondness, sadness and longing. We had 8 or 9 songs in the works for a second album that will probably never see the light of day, at least with me doing the vocals. It's tough to swallow, but it's the truth. I know deep down that the five lions of Voltron will probably never form that giant beast again, but that's OK. I'm finding peace with it all as best I can. There are days that pass without much fanfare, and then there are days when I feel the phantom limb twitching and I check the clock to see if it's almost practice time. But I can't do anything to scratch that itch. It will probably always linger. But we all keep living. We all keep going. That's all we can do.
I look toward the horizon these days for the next mission and I don't know what it will be or what kind of band I'll start or join or whether I'll even do it again. I don't really even know what kind of music I even want to play anymore. Starting over gets harder each time. And with that last run, it's going to be difficult, if not impossible to beat. I still don't have the strength to get back up on a stage or behind a mic or hold a guitar like I used to. Those six years meant everything to me. And it still does. But it is over now. It is a memory. And it will stay with me forever.
"Underneath the Veil, there is no Hell, There's only one understanding that, we are all finite, full of wrong and right, and everything you do will always come back to you, when you see us around, when we walk these grounds of any city or town across this planet know we are a pack of wolves, a crew of starving fools, with nothing more to give than a trip down your...Way down the rabbit hole...you'll find a memory of full-scale meltdown...there's no one there to protect you from the demons...no heroes, no gods, no fathers, no Brethren."
Long Live We Have Guns.
There are certain days in history that people never forget. We remember everything about what we were doing when it happened. These days that live in infamy. The Attack on Pearl Harbor. The Moon Landing. The Assassination of JFK. 9/11.
30 years ago today was another one of these moments in history, frozen forever. Seven astronauts, including a school teacher, died as The Challenger Space Shuttle exploded upon liftoff from one of the most prominent space missions since Apollo went to the moon. Millions watched across the nation and gasped in horror as it became clear that something...has gone horribly, horribly wrong.
I was in the 4th grade, watching it live on the TV that was wheeled into class. Living in Florida, we usually didn't watch all of these space shuttle flights as they were pretty common. I was always more excited when the shuttles were returning home. You always knew the astronauts had come back to earth because the classic sonic boom would hit as the shuttle would come back into the atmosphere, shaking everything in it's wake...houses, the ground, trees, it was like a bomb going off right next to you. The force of the sonic boom was tremendous. Sometimes you would get 2 or 3 waves in a row. And after you checked your pants, you knew "the astronauts were back." As a star wars/trek/space nerd, I loved it. I'll never forget the trips to Cape Canaveral as a kid. Back then, it seemed most of us wanted to be an astronaut.
But for many, all that changed 30 years ago today. As we all know now, this flight was different. The Challenger launch was going to be shown to students across the country. It was a massive event. They had Christa McAuliffe, a school teacher, on board who was going to teach the very first lesson from space. My parents still have the original lesson copy that she was going to teach. I found it in deep storage a few years ago and was blown away it even existed, let alone in my parent's storage sheds.
Of course, as we all know now, that never happened. I remember seeing it explode, and I knew immediately what happened. Some of the kids were crying, but most of us were just in shock. There was a silence in the room. We all knew what just happened. But our 4th grade minds weren't fully prepared for what it all meant as we watched that V-shaped cloud form in the sky just after the explosion. I had hoped they didn't all die, even though I was sure they just did, and of course later we learned that they did. I remember our teacher simply turning the TV off and tried to explain it, tried to write it off, before just moving on. I think she let us all go to recess to "play it off". It seemed most kids were over it by the end of the day. But it was a heavy reality check for me. That even the astronauts can die. All day long, I just remember wanting to go home to watch the news to see what happened, to see if they were OK. I needed to know more. How did it happen? Why? Didn't they check everything? I needed to know everything. I needed peace of mind. I was consumed by this tragedy. Of course, we didn't have the internet then so information was hard to come by, especially for an 8 year old.
Eventually though, I found peace with it all. I remember some grown up telling me that any time we are trying to test the limits of our reality, any time we are pushing the boundaries of our curiosity, there was always the possibility of failure. And that's what happened here. Human kind doesn't always get it right. Sometimes we make mistakes. Sometimes we fail. And sometimes people are willing to sacrifice everything, including their own lives, to take humanity further than it has ever gone before. From that point of view, I realized that instead of a tragedy, this was a lesson. Be brave and push yourself farther than you're comfortable with. Be willing to sacrifice for the greater good. Explore as much as possible. Never stop being curious. These great space explorers, who never got a chance to finish the mission taught me more than all the astronauts combined. We tend to learn not from triumph, but tragedy. We evolve only after we fall. The seven astronauts who died on this day were some of the bravest people who ever lived. And that we should all remember their bravery, their ultimate sacrifice, and try to embrace that type of existence every single day that we are blessed to be alive. We should all be willing to test the limits of our reality to learn as much as we possibly can. Because the only limits are the ones we impose upon ourselves.
#challenger #spaceshuttle #heroes
As anyone who might know me can tell you, I'm a pretty big fan of Frank Zappa. So it was pretty exciting to learn that a new documentary called, "Eat That Question" just blew away the crowd at Sundance Film Festival. Here's hoping this will make it to the local independent movie theater in town...or Netflix. I'm not too picky...
Sometimes going off the path on YouTube, you stumble upon jewels like this...some incredible guitar playing right here.
After a heavy, seemingly sustained period of great loss on this plane, some guiding thoughts heading into the weekend:
“Goodbyes are only for those who love with their eyes. Because for those who love with heart and soul there is no such thing as separation.”
"Don't grieve. Anything you lose comes round in another form."
“Be grateful for whoever comes, because each has been sent as a guide from beyond.”
"Don't be satisfied with stories, how things have gone with others. Unfold your own myth."
"My soul is from elsewhere, I'm sure of that, and I intend to end up there."
"This Ain't Rock n Roll! This is Genocide!" -David Bowie, Diamond Dogs
I was just coming to grips with the death of Lemmy Kilmister and Scott Weiland...only to be awakened this morning by my girlfriend saying, "I've got some bad news. David Bowie has died." What a sad way to start the day.
I had no idea he was even sick. Apparently, he was battling cancer and keeping it very private. Just days after his own birthday release of his final album Black Star...and I must say, when you re-watch his last videos, he knew. Lazarus is a haunting image of Bowie on his death bed, and Black Star is remarkably profound tribute to the Starman...If you haven't seen the videos, I've got them below.
My friend Dillon Flyn wrote some of the most profound words on David Bowie I've read so far:
"The western cultural canon is a religion and pop stars are its gods. They are avatars of the glorious heights of human potential and shadowy reflections of our basest animal excesses.
Pry away the image and the persona and I'm sure you'll find that the pop star is also a living and breathing person with a family and weaknesses, but that is totally irrelevant. These men and women belong to us: the strangers who worship at the altar of their legend.
Bowie was a howitzer launched at the establishment on behalf of the sexually confused and the unapologetic and the weirdo and the weakling. We live today in a world that bears his indelible mark."
If there's one thing I've learned from David Bowie, it's this: Don't be Afraid of trying something new.
Get out of your comfortable little bubble. Be a freak. Be weird. Be unique. Be yourself. Never give one flying fuck about whether or not it will ruffle some dullard's feathers. They need to be shaken clean from time to time anyway.
And for you artistic souls out there, push yourself past every limitation you have set upon yourself. They only exist in your mind anyway. Be a magical freakish electric maniac each and every day and know that you are doing the right thing. Damn the naysayers. Always.
Here's a playlist of some of my favorites...and Bowie's final videos.
A pick me up. From Tom Waits and Charles Bukowski. Of all people...
This year everything came full circle.
I've returned to the place I started, metaphorically and literally. I live on the same street I started my adult life on. Curses were lifted, ghosts dissolved, monsters banished.
My family, while still in fragments in some ways, is putting all of it back together, piece by tiny piece. It will be a long road, certainly, but we are now headed in the right direction, I think.
Old friends I haven't heard from in lifetimes came back into my world. I meditated. I studied. I breathed. I wrote and created. I was released from a long dark cycle that started many many moons ago.
I am aware of the synchronicities that guide us all and I have been paying attention to the subtle clues, these road maps from the Universe, to where I go next. To some extent, I'm still trying to figure it out. I have a broad idea of what my future looks like and it is of my own design. I will limit the impact of those who seek to harm me. I refuse to have any more enemies. No more discord. We are all together in this game. There is no Other.
When I listen to the songs of my soul, of the man I was at the start of this long road, I know I became another person I never imagined. Good and bad. I see it all so clearly now.
The Road has led me back home. And now there are new adventures on the horizon. Like driving in the dark, I can't really see anything more than the lights in front of me, but that's all I need right now. I am following the signs of the Universe and the song that lives within me to get where I am going. I am prepared for The Glory of Whatever Comes Next.
I will make no silly predictions or resolutions or promises I can't uphold. All I know is I will keep going forward, not backwards like I've done so many times, foolishly living in a past that was long gone. I know where I've been, I know the man I was and who I want to be and I will do my best, every day, to let my Soul be my guide.
I will battle fear and anger and hate and let love, compassion and joy be my allies now. I've been on the Dark Side of the Moon for a long time now and I'm finally coming back from that place. I've learned much in my recent hermetic solitude. Life has many destinations, but it is the Journey that is more important.
What we think, what we act on, what we make of this world comes from within. We are tiny, seething, roaming miracles, every one of us. I refuse to take that for granted.
I will move into this New Year with Peace in my Soul. I have cast out those old bitter demons, perhaps once and for all. I have done much, in retrospect, in the face of horror, wretched abuses of power, crippling depression, bold corruption and nightmarish illusions. I may still struggle, but I will not give up.
Thoughts lead to actions that lead to our destiny, which was always and forever will be, completely up to us. If it seems impossible, it's only because you decided it was.
Happy New Year.
Well. I guess Lemmy Kilmister from Motorhead was human after all....At the age of 70 years old, Lemmy has left the building.
I never got to meet him personally, but I've had my fair share of Lemmy Moments, of which I'll share below.
I am proud to have been a part of programming 101.5 KFLY at one point in my life...it was the ONLY station in the city, maybe even the state, hell, maybe the whole northwest that had Motorhead in rotation.
Not just Ace of Spades, but Killed By Death, Overkill, White Line Fever, Orgasmatron, Rock Out, Born to Lose and many live cuts. Sticking with this "against the grain" philosophy and against all traditional programming theory, I plugged their single, Heartbreaker, from the Aftershock album into power rotation a couple years ago which helped Motorhead hit the top of the radio charts for the first time in their history.
Thanks to John Perrone who got the band to send a ton of Motorhead gear that we gave away and Lemmy sent thanks by way of station liners...they were easily two of my favorite liners I ever received.
Enjoy. RIP #KFLY and #Lemmy, who both died of rocking out til the bitter, violent end in the same strange year.
One of the craziest nights of my journalism career was at the 2nd Annual Revolver Golden Gods Awards in LA a few years back which I covered for KFLY. In addition to having Ronnie James Dio throw us the horns from the stage, I got to witness a brilliant super group of Lemmy, Slash and Dave Grohl take the stage for a brief set. It was incredible. Here's a few pics from that night...
Like most who heard of the tragic death of Scott Weiland, frontman from the Stone Temple Pilots and Velvet Revolver, I was pretty crushed, but not surprised, given his addictions he battled throughout his life. And while I was openly critical of him at many times for his behavior throughout the years, I was always a fan of many of his contributions musically, especially STP and VR. The Stone Temple Pilots were a significant force of my teenage years, when I was just starting my journey into rock n roll myself.
At first they seemed like a copy cat of Alice in Chains and Pearl Jam, at least on that first album, "Core". The first time I heard "Sex Type Thing" on the radio, I thought it was a new Alice in Chains song. Despite the derivative nature, it was still a great record, start to finish. After that, they stomped out and grooved right into their own clever, glammy sound over the course of four more rock solid albums, each with that STP-sound but every one, seething with their own vibe. I remember learning several of their songs on guitar over the years, mainly to understand the weird chords and tunings they used, but also because I loved their songs. They were simple but super fun and catchy. I will always be a sucker for headbobbing grooves, of which the Pilots had many of...
Then came Velvet Revolver, which at least at first, seemed a bit weird and a little contrived...the name clearly playing off both Stone Temple (Velvet) and Guns N Roses (Revolver). I was skeptical, considering I was a HUGE GnR fan, and I worried it would be ruined by changing the chemistry...without Axl, it just didn't seem right. But I was wrong. Each listen of both their albums grew on me more with each listen and still do today. They became a staple in the rock radio world that I inhabited, because the songs were very well-written and had everything you could ask for in a rock band.
The one and only time I'd ever got to see Scott Weiland in any of his bands was the day I saw him and the Wildabouts at Rock on the Range this past summer. I was hoping to interview him that day, as he was scheduled to be there.
As far as I remember, though, he never appeared in the press tent when he was scheduled to, or at all. But then again, that was a pretty common thing with many of the bands as it got so hectic in there at times that it was hard to even understand what was going on or who was there at any given time, unless it was a super big name. In such a case it became silent as everyone took notice of their arrival, which surely would have happened if Scott walked in that day.
But I got to watch some of his set from side stage. I remember thinking he sounded pretty good, but he seemed out of it, shaky and fucked up on stage. He looked almost confused and disconnected and not that into it, like a scared, lost little kid. It was sad, looking back.
Soon after he took the stage, an enormous rain storm blew in and soaked him to the bone. Just as soon as the set ended, so did the rain. In the back of my mind I thought to myself briefly, "That's the Gods telling him to get clean."
RIP Scott Weiland.
You gave us some great tunes over the years.
I'm sorry the demons got the best of you. Here's to hoping that you are indeed, finally, resting in peace.
I admit, I believe in a world where peaceful resolve is always possible. That a middle ground always exists no matter your stance against one's enemies. But the more I read and understand the depths and beliefs of Daesh (or ISIS), the more I sadly realize that there is no middle ground with them.
Their religious beliefs are deeply extremist, violent and insane to a free thinking person and almost impossible to fathom. It is true, they do not reflect the average Muslim, so much so that even Al Qaida disowns them.
But it's starting to really dawn on me that who we are dealing with, no matter how they came to be or how they rose to power, are not reasonable in any regard.
They cannot be reasoned with. They want to initiate the Apocalypse. And they will operate relentlessly until they succeed. And we must not cater to their tactics.
The Atlantic published a rather in-depth and profound look at the rise of ISIS (Or Daesh as I call them), what they want and how we can stop them.
"I woke this morning deeply disturbed by the news from Paris, but more amazed by the attention it received on social media. I understand Paris is a beloved and familiar space for a lot of people, but it troubled me that Beirut, a city my father grew up in, had received so little attention after the horrific bombings two days earlier. It also troubled me that Baghdad, a place I have absolutely no connection with, received even less attention after the senseless bombing that took place there last week. Worst of all, I found the understanding of the refugee crisis skewed and simplistic. If you've been following the journeys of the people leaving their homes around the world right now, perhaps you'll understand why the words Syrian Refugee Crisis are just as devastating as Pray For Paris. It's time to pray for humanity. It is time to make all places beloved. It's time to pray for the world." - Karuna Ezara Parikh
This Veteran's Day, I first want to express my unending thanks to all the men and women who have served in the military past, present and future. Especially the veterans who were drafted, against their will, to fight a war they didn't want to fight, who died and killed against their will in past wars like Vietnam.
But what I really want to say is, “I'm sorry.” I'm sorry for the public backlash of the past generation for their protests against you, stepping off planes to crowds of angry chants and “baby killer” signs. Looking back, it's clear to me that that behavior was misguided and shameful. We should never protest the soldier coming home from a hellish nightmare that will never be fully understood, as if they were to blame for it. They didn't start the war, the politicians did. I'm sorry for that ugly reaction by people who thought they were doing the right thing with their protests, even though I was not even born yet.
For all the current soldiers who volunteered for duty to protect us from an Evil we didn't understand yet, only to be taken advantage of by corrupt, millionaire politicians in Washington, as we slowly learn what the current wars are really about. I'm sorry. The bait and switch that was used on a terrified people, under deceitful terms, who took advantage of your patriotism so that they could profit off you. I'm sorry. That they were and are willing to send you to die to make more money. I'm sorry. All the while not giving you the resources, the armor, the ammo you needed fighting their war, nor the support and rehabilitation you needed when you came home. I'm sorry. That they send you to war zones while they stay here, protecting their own sons and daughters from going to war. I'm sorry.
I'm sorry they lied to us all, and especially, to you.
I'm sorry for the horrors you have witnessed. I can't imagine them. I'm sorry for the damage you have endured, both physically, mentally and emotionally, fighting and killing other people who have no other choice but to fight and kill you back. I'm sorry for the Veteran's services that are severely lacking in our country when you return to a “normal” life. I'm ashamed of our politician's willing gusto to send you to war, but leave you for dead when you return home.
I'm sorry to the wives who have lost their husbands. To the husbands who have lost their wives. To the fathers who have lost sons and daughters and to the children who have lost their parents. To the cousins and uncles and aunts who never came home. On days like this, I am simply reminded of how many friends and family I have who have been scarred or killed by war. I'm sorry.
Like my Uncle Dan, who came home from Vietnam only to get a hellish cancer shortly after his return from his direct exposure to the Agent Orange his own military used against the enemy. I was just a kid when you died. I don't remember any parade in your name. I don't remember any celebration or anything like that. All I remember is your big bellow-y laugh and your massive gentle presence that's no longer here. I still look at that picture when you were still here with us all, your bald hulking presence profoundly missing from our lives to this day. I'm sorry for what happened to you, Uncle Dan. I miss you.
I'm sorry for the pain and sorrow we all feel knowing one of our own is somewhere else across the globe, maybe hunkered down in some death trap, trying to escape a firefight that might just finish them off for good. For the soldiers who come home mangled, amputated or in a flag-draped coffin, I'm so sorry.
And ultimately, I'm sorry that we as a species haven't evolved enough to understand that War is a Hellish Answer to anything, and maybe one day, we will understand this and we will find new methods for our disagreements and we will no longer fight any wars, ever again. All Wars are Civil Wars. We are all brothers and sisters. There is no They, there is no Other. There is only Us. We are One.
To anyone who has worn the uniform, especially those who have seen the Face of War, I salute you today.
You are a Hero to me.
And I'm so very sorry.
2001 was a heavy year. First that awful day in September, then two months later, almost to the day, we lost Ken Kesey, one of the greatest American authors of our time - A Philosopher, Poet, Artist and Shaman...he tilted the paradigm of America on it's head and helped change society for the better, at least for a little while, with his crazy gang, that bus and all his writing...
Ken Kesey was an inspiration to many, including me, who ran after my dream of being some sort of writer, going through the Journalism school that Ken himself went through and later taught at...
Ken Kesey, you were one of the greats. I wish I could have shaken your hand to thank you for your inspiration.
RIP Ken. Sept 17, 1935- November 10, 2001.
If you've known or been an addict in any regard, Alternet has reported on some very profound information. The way we address addiction in America really needs a new approach. I'm willing to bet that virtually all of us know someone who needs help with some form of addiction and the first step is knowing where it comes from.
"When we look at addicts, if we are honest – and I feel it too, even though I have loved many addicts in my life – it’s hard to keep out voices of moral judgement. We look at somebody who is chronically using alcohol or drugs, and we say with a shake of the head: “Well, I wouldn’t do that.” By the end of my journey, I had realized that makes as much sense as looking at somebody who has had their legs amputated after a car crash and saying: “Cutting off your legs is weird. I would never do that.” Addicts have been in car crashes of the soul. This also means addicts have to think about themselves differently."
Got a message from a diehard listener of KFLY a couple days ago, and I've re-read it a few times now. Keeps my head in the game. And hopefully he won't mind me sharing this, because it meant the fucking world to me. And some of you may appreciate it too....
Now that the dust has settled I just wanted to thank you for everything you did while on the airwaves. Still every morning I think of my routine and still get disappointed that the standard ass show is no longer. It's a feeling one feels when a family dog is put down. Everyday you think of all the good times you had with your k-9 companion and how you want to go play with it but can't. Please excuse my grammer and sentence structure I know your a stickler for proper punctuation. Anyhow it sucks, it fucking sucks that some ass gape would pull the plug on such talent as your self and the rest of the crew. Your dont give a shit attitude always made me laugh when I was down. You always found a way to put some primus on at just the right time to make my day better. January 2nd 2013 you were giving away Vince Neil's book. I was caller 9 "is this Andy....?" You would always say. You asked what was up or new or how things have been. It was cool you kept track of your throbbits. I don't remember what you said to me when I told you I was headed to detox and hanging up my whisky hat. It didn't matter what you said it had confidence behind it and that gave me reassurance for my questionable decision at the time. I almost didn't get out of the car when I found out I couldn't listen to a radio while in rehab. No radio and no whisky meant for some fucked times. I used both to help me through my troubles. When it was over I still had my radio to keep me focused on the long term agenda. One day I'll never forget is when you were filling in for Marcus and were at master controls with Drew from 2-6. Somehow knudtson was talking to your bass player about how I got fired for listening to the donkey show at work and it got back to the station. "He doesn't even wear a shirt just pants and carries around an axe" was how you described me when you setup the story. It was great. When you guys invited me down after our conversation about getting terminated I was stoked. Always a top 5 bucket list item was to see the other side of the studio. I still have the caps from the bud lights you guys gave me while we were there. That was the highlight of my year. I always could relate to something you had said on a similar subject during your rants between songs. You deserve the best for your future endeavors. You show great dedication to your work and are great at what you do. The ideal job would be hosting the same show but show would be all requests like the noon hour was. Let's be honest the same 3 days Grace song gets old when you hear it 7 times in 6 hrs. Long story short I hope you land your dream job and it involves a radio. When you went to rock on the range it was awesome to have an insider's view on all the happenings. You painted a very colorful picture with your all your updates. Lets hope that happens in the future for you. And lastly I sure as hell hope that evil empire framed picture is hanging somewhere in your house and not in suite 350. I'm a firm believer in what goes around comes around, so whatever diclicker is responsible for this situation I hope they get it good real good. I really appreciate what you did for us throbbits and myself on a personal level. Hell I'm using the phone you gave me for having the craziest ex bitch in town to write this. That T-Mobile worst breakup story landed me this device. I spent an evening in the pit at a primus show on light duty with a bulged and herniated disk in my neck because of you. I got to take my daughter to the fire cracker bull ride which she loved. I got a book I still need to finish one of these years when I get a spare minute. The list goes on and on. Thank you again for all you've done. GDYSOB !!!
"The experience is so overwhelming and so alien. It's just hard for anyone to describe. You're just boom! Shot to the middle of everything for 15 minutes. Constantly changing geometric patterns. Jokers with jesters' hats on, all giving me the finger. I've had psychedelic trips where my own sanity was slippery. It's so titanic that any words I use to describe it are just noise. It's a fucking billion roller coasters, plus aliens. It is whatever it is. I don't know what it is. A chemical gateway to another dimension? A portal of souls you can tap into? I don't see any negative to it. And it's so fucked up that we don't have the freedom to experiment with it legally, because there are lessons to be learned that are just not getting learned. You know what you figure out in the middle of a trip? That all these assumptions and preconceived notions of who you are, they're all bullshit. You're just an organism who is trying to find normalcy by repeating patterns." - Joe Rogan speaking about DMT in the latest issue of Rolling Stone
Whatever you thought about the debates or the candidates, what is clear is that there is a noticeable and observable bias in the reporting of said debate (and virtually every single piece of content) by the host of the event.
Every single poll I saw today...every single one...showed Bernie Sanders as the winner. Including CNN. I have a lot of time these days to watch this bullshit unfold and I'm sitting here looking at CNN STILL declaring Clinton "dominating".
Gee. I wonder why....corporate controlled agenda based propaganda.
All of them. Cnn. Msnbc. Fox news. It's not information. Its press releases. Its propaganda. Its bullshit. End of story.
Change the channel. Think for yourself.
Read a book for god sake. Learn something.
Only you can stop the madness.
One conscious moment at a time.
Who Am I?
I am Ahab.