Sunday, October 01, 2006

Think I'll go on a walkabout
Find out
What it's all about

Here is a ten second example of the power we have at our fingertips here at the Dude Abides...

We are accepting applications.

(Yes, for you stalker types, I am wearing a Tenacious D t-shirt. Because that's how I do.)

Take advantage while
You hang me out to dry
But I can't see you every night
For free



Lazy day for me.

Yesterday, I ran some errands and took care of some business.

That is, if you can count getting breakfast at the Stockyard, then going to Music Villa to buy a couple effects pedals, then going to the gym for a couple hours "running errands and taking care of business."

(Aside: The dudes down at Music Villa in Bozeman are superfriendly and helpful.

Some music stores I have been in *cough*Ward Bodt in Madison*cough* are populated by douchebags who would rather show off their amazing chops than help you find what you want.

Not the guys at Music Villa.

I told them I was enjoying my new toys- the les paul, the wah-wah- and that I wanted to buy some pedals, but that I didn't know shit from shinola, or even what I really wanted.

The dude grabbed a stool and a les paul, and sat me down in front of a marshall amp with, oh, about 30 pedals.

He said, "Try one at a time. Crank all the dials on that pedal all the way up, just to see how weird it can be, then dial it back. Take your time. Try them all. I will be back."

Every once in a while, he, or one of the other guys would wander past and ask me how it was going.

They would stop and tell me some of the intricacies of the pedal I was playing with, and how it was generally used.

As always, I left that place with a shit-eating grin on my face.

And a chorus pedal. And an adapter that will let us run the microphone through an amp. And some cords. And something called a flange pedal, because I feel a deep need to produce some music that sounds like it is being played underwater.

I was intimidated by the digital delay, but I know I will be back for it.)

After that, I went to the gym. I leisurely lifted weights for longer than I have in years. I apologized to my next door neighbor, a painter (artist, not house), for all the noisy racket that has been coming from my house recently. She was pretty cool about it.

Because I was still feeling pretty good, I ran on and elliptical thing for about an hour. ESPN Classic was showing something called Mike Tyson's Greatest Hits, Vol. 1, which consisted of about 11 fights from when he was 19, 20 and 21. They could fit the 11 fights into an hour because none of them went more than a round or two. It was pretty fascinating to watch.

So this is what it is like not really having anywhere to go at any particular time, nor anyone to answer to, except for the minimal needs of my four footed friends.


Speaking of which, I came home, showered, and loaded the dogs in my car and headed to the heavily-fortified Bells compound.

You didn't think I was going to buy all those wonderful toys and not play with them, did you?

I would actually like to thank Carp once again, profusely.

On his visit out here in May, he bought a drum kit and left it at Bells' house for our enjoyment.

It sort of pushed Shit Mitten (or Frezzing Giraffes or Saucy Jack or Jesus Hates the Yankees or The Courteous Vampires) to the next level.

See, we used to be just two guys on acoustic guitars, kind of like Tenacious D.

Nice and mellow.

Then, with the drums, I had to plug in my acoustic to Bells' amp to be heard.

Which meant I was singing myself hoarse.

Which somehow led to the les paul, the marshall amp, the microphone and the pedals.

When you look at it that way, it seems like a natural, sensible progression, like buying a Camry with airbags and putting on your seatbelt.

So, anyway, thanks, Carp.

Because we have a Fully Operational Battlestation here.

With many incarnations.

We can go with me on electric, singing & Bells on drums. (We do "Not For You," Pearl Jam, "Plush," "Sympathy for the Devil," "Fell On Black Days," by Soundgarden and some others this way.

(He is getting really, really good, by the way.)) (Lovin' the double parentheses.)

We can plug in my acoustic, singing, with Bells playing the kit with brushes. Works great for "Melissa," by the Allmans, "Steal My Kisses," by Ben Harper, "Last Kiss," by pearl jam, "Folsom Prison Blues," by some dude named Johnny Cash and "Hide Your Love Away," by a little known group from Liverpool.

Speaking of Johnny Cash... you haven't lived until you have walked up to a live, fully amplified microphone and said, as low as you can go, "Hello. I'm Johnny Cash."

I can take a turn at the kit (I am getting better and can lock down a beat, but I am no Bells), while Bells plays and sings--- He does a couple Uncle Tupelo songs wonderfully.

We can both plug in an electric and an acoustic & play together... "Dead Flowers," "Country Honk," both by the Stones, and "Times Like These," by the Foo Fighters.

We also did a few with just Bells playing guitar and me singing ("Jane Says," by Jane's Addiction, and "Wishlist," by Pearl Jam, which contains one of the better lyrics in "I wish I was the full moon shining off a Camaro's hood.") Those were kind of pretty, actually. If I may be so bold.

For a while, I was drumming, Bells was playing guitar, and we bent the microphone way low for Aden to sing.

He was having a ball.

And so did we.

We're almost fit for public consumption. Actually, we are fit for public consumption, if we stick to the songs we have down cold.

We are going to need some roadies.

And groupies.

We are currently accepting applications for both positions, as well as continued suggestions for a band name.

Oh, we are also currently accepting applications for hot female backup singers to shimmy and sing "Woo-Hoo!" during Sympathy for the Devil.

So, I left the compound at 9:30 or so.

And then I proceeded to do something I had not done since I was 19 years old.

I went to bed around midnight, and with the minor interruption of letting the dogs out and feeding them at 7 a.m., I slept until 11 a.m.

Seriously, no matter how late I have been up the night before, I don't think I have even slept past 9 in the last 10 years.

I got roughly 10 1/2 hours of sleep.

Which means I will be bright-eyed and bushy-tailed at 2 a.m., but hey, I slept til 11.

I walked the dogs around the neighborhood. When your dogs are 14 1/2 and 13, the walk isn't for exercise, it is for smells. Because, I have seen people in nursing homes using walkers that move faster than my dogs.

OK, it is for the smells, and, in Puck's case, the opportunity to proudly, and with great glee, pick up a weeks-old, dessicated corpse of a gopher and carry it around like it is filet mignon, and refusing to relinquish said prize until I threatened great bodily violence.

OK, I didn't go that far, but I did raise my voice, which constitutes Severe Discipline around here.

He is the equivalent of 100 years old.

How could I possibly get pissed at him for anything he does?

Later, he ate some dogshit.

I don't think it was his, but if it was, well, what am I gonna do?

I don't condone it, but I don't say much, because sometimes he cleans up around the house, like in the litterboxes, which saves me a little time.

After that, I rolled downtown, resisted the urge to stop by Music Villa, and tried to get breakfast.

12:30 is too late to get breakfast.

So, I had lunch.

I am a flexible guy.

Oh, at lunch, I saw this girl, Molly, who was embarassingly drunk on Friday night and decided to take a nap at that upscale tapas-and-wine place I wrote about. She wasn't too drunk to remember me, because she immediately flushed when I pointed at her and asked her how she felt on Saturday morning.

Then I wandered around downtown.

Went to the locally-owned, non-chain bookstore (Country Bookshelf) and dropped some money on a new Elmore Leonard novel, a Michael Connelley novel, a James Lee Burke novel, another copy of Naked Lunch, and another copy of Trainspotting.

Then I took my bounty across the street to the Leaf and Bean, drank coffee and read for a while.

When I was done with that, I laid on the couch, listened to Coltrane and read.

My cat laid on my chest.

I just got up to type this.

So, that was my weekend.