Wednesday, June 18, 2014


Animals: Umm… I don’t think I saw shit.

"I’m lousy at picking names. Just ask my daughter Fart Sock.” – Obviously this is from Chuck.

"Even my own pecker makes me sick sometimes. Who would want that?"

 Get yer pre-moistened flip-flops here!"

Cruising Chubby’s Gentlemen’s Club – Actual billboard.

Jeffrey Dahmer says tattoo’s taste better – Actual bumper sticker.

SIARPC: Turnips and Cootch

The drive to Minneapolis was rainy and Wisconsin passed in a cheeseless blur. About the time we were entering Minneapolis I got hit with heartburn bad enough to choke a horse. I thought I’d packed two bottles of off-brand Pepcid but managed neither. Tums wasn’t touching it so when we got to the hotel I paid $6 for a tiny bottle of Pepto, which I drank out of all night like a drunk sneaking sips in the church basement. A big windy lightning storm blew through foiling our plans for Indian food so we ended up eating at the Hotel. We spent most of the meal trying to figure out what was in John’s soup. It was supposed to be Beef and Barley but seemed to have clams in it. I wanted to die.

Now we were supposed to play at the legendary First Avenue where Prince filmed parts of “Purple Rain,” but they cancelled our show when something better came along. In a way they did us a favor because we’re not big enough to play that room. In another way it put Rene’ (our booker/touring manager) in a bind because this was a Saturday night and you can’t give up a weekend night on tour. She once again saved the day by finding us a spot to play at the Driftwood Char Bar.

Now I just want to say that everyone at the Char Bar was sweet and accommodating to us. I have no complaints. That said it was as if David Lynch had directed Fargo in there. Sometimes I respond strongly to buildings and as soon as I walked in I wanted to get out. I felt like hell and the thought of spending several hours before the show there freaked me out a little. My dear friend Paul had shown up and accompanied me in the rain to a wine bar  a half mile away where I got a grip on myself. Dark wood is ever so soothing. When I got back the band was a mess. Maybe a hot mess, I don’t know, I’ve never understood the distinction. Lisa was exhausted and cranky, Chuck refused to load-in in the rain, Joe had a free-floating anger thing going on, I was sick and crazy, and well John seemed fine. It was an oddly shaped stage so I had to play on the floor while the rest of the band was on stage. Not a big deal. Here’s where the lovely thing happened though. As soon as we started playing you could see everyone, one by one relax. As the show went on we began smiling, jokes started happening, and we ended up playing really well I think. The audience danced and sang along. It was the best part of the day. Still, only the second day of the tour and we were already three weeks worth of crazy. Goodness.

Anyway, back to the surreal thing. I can’t give any specific examples but even though everyone was sweet, every conversation was odd, like from another plane odd. Upon reflection it was as if we’d wandered into an enclave of recently cloned inter-dimensional star travelers who were still assimilating human culture. And I really hope I'm not being insulting here, because that is not my intent, I’m just trying to describe how it felt to me on that particular night. I talked to a guy from one of the opening bands and he said shrugging, and without prompting, “I’ve played there once a month for seven years. It’s a neighborhood bar. It is what it is.”

Tomorrow St. Paul:

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