Forced to Look Ahead: Getting Back to Life in 2015

Recently, life has forced me to live in the present, enjoy the past, and completely postpone any thoughts, hopes or designs for the future. But all that is about to – supposed to – change. It’s exciting and terrifying.

In 2013, I spent 40 days and nights in hospitals, as well as a handful of months of full-time, “adult day care” in clinics. Through 2014, another 10 days and nights in hospital beds and innumerable clinic visits, I forgot what it was like to work and be productive, creative, and vital. My only saving grace was the energy I could put into my radio show: Cracked Machine on BFF.fm. Other than that, Doctor’s orders were to stay out of the work environment, stay out of crowds, avoid flying, and sit tight for life to start anew. I was grounded.

Despite some “hiccups”, 2015 looks to be the year I’m finally given my privileges back. Things are brewing and I am forced to look ahead:

  • I joined a gym and set up a physical trainer session for TOMORROW.
  • This week, I’m going to meet up with someone to see if we’re compatible to play music. Really, this is a test to see if I can shake off two years of rust and play bass at all like I used to.
  • I start a new job on January 21st – a job with the promise of upward mobility and personal growth.
  • I can’t stop thinking in jokes and stand-up comedy material, and need to find an outlet. For those who follow me on Twitter, I apologize already.
  • I’ve started to use a Jawbone UP24 to monitor and motivate myself to eat, sleep, and move in a healthy manor. A substitute for real discipline and inspiration, this wearable tech bit might just help pull me out of my slump.

Crabbing, fishing, camping, travelling, skiing, hiking… drawing, scuba diving, making ceramics, grilling, smoking meats, playing piano, writing words… There’s so much I want to do – so many things I’ve had to purposefully forget just to focus on surviving the last two years. And now the flood gates are barely cracking open, with me on the the other side. It’s impossible to deny the terror I feel that these hopes and ambitions I’ve already given wing to might up and disappear – that they might be taken away from me and I will be grounded once again.

People make resolutions around specific issues they have with their weight, behavior, careers, and aspirations. My needs reach broader than that – and I’ve never put stock in New Year’s resolutions. But I can say that I will be resolute in facing my fears of being grounded once again. I won’t stop in the name of fear, although it does haunt every step forward I will take. I will try to make the most of the opportunities afforded me. These are as close to resolutions I can muster.

It’s time to get back to life in 2015. The show is going to be great. The physical training is going to require much patience to get back to my former physical stature. Someone is going to laugh at my jokes or at me trying to tell them. Join me. Invite me. I’m looking forward now.

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SHOW ARCHIVE: My Last Wednesday!

I’m just gonna play my favorite songs, talk about Margaret Cho’s good deeds , and make a plea to CB Tarver and Matt Sweeney of Chavez to play more shows. I also spin a couple yarns about Polvo, Sebadoh, Unrest and other indie bands.

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SHOW ARCHIVE – CULTURE COLLIDE – Level & Tyson

I had a couple too many mezcals during the “Spirits of the World” Culture Collide San Francisco Creative Summit panel and… yadda yadda yadda… I invited Norwegian indie pop band Level & Tyson to come on to the show! Their debut album “Even Faster Still” is a fantastic display of skill and restraint – crafting melodic, layered choruses from quirky walls of guitar and synth. If this band and their album was being promoted in the United States, you’d already know about it.

Once in the studio, the band was as charming and disarming as their music. We talked about their impending trek down to LA. I begged them to stop in Big Sur, and taught them how to order at In n’ Out. We took some time to preview more of the bands playing Culture Collide: Nervous Nellie, Popstrangers, Gossling, The Oaths, Sleep Thieves, Monokino, and Clap Your Hands Say Yeah.

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SHOW ARCHIVE: DISCHORD RECORDS

My tribute to Dischord Records. I include bands from across their roster and the last three-plus decades! I tell stories about being grounded and missing some iconic bands! I announce a new Dick of the Week!

SHOW ARCHIVE – THE RENTALS’ MATT SHARP INTERVIEW

Matt Sharp, the brainchild and synth-savant behind The Rentals calls into the show for great discussion regarding his new album “Lost in Alphaville” (and it’s possible meanings), preparing to take the show on the road, and a myriad of other tangential subjects, including but not limited to the sexy, sultry voice of the automated conference call operator that made our interview possible!

The Rentals new album on Polyvinyl Records – “Lost in Alphaville” – is absolutely the high watermark of their recorded output, and based on Matt’s comments about the current group’s chemistry, I can’t help but be excited about their live show. The Rentals will play Slim’s in San Francisco on Monday 9/8.

LIVE SHOW

It’s very obvious, watching Matt Sharp on stage, that he loves what he does. In a way, I’m reminded of Bob Nastonivich from Pavement who once said something to the effect of “My job is to go out there and try to make people cheer for 90 minutes”. Matt Sharp’s energy reads much the same. Although he seems to take art and music seriously, it never seems like he takes HIMSELF too seriously. Humor was never too far away from nostalgia up on that stage as the band perused The Rental’s catalog, and everyone present was on board: fans, band, Matt. Most of the show he was flailing from Slim’s famous “stage poles” beckoning to the crowd to join in on every sing-a-long melody. He crawled the length of the stage, got into people’s faces, and draped his sweaty, enthusiastic frame across every band mate he could.

I think I grabbed some decent shots:

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SHOW ARCHIVE – White Reaper Interview

The guys from White Reaper call into the show and we have a bunch of fun talking about the Louisville (straightedge?) scene, their recent US tour, our shared love for Polyvinyl Records, and a whole lot more. It’s these types of moments that make radio worth while!

Also, I play a bunch of tunes per usual and it rocks.