cameron crowe



now playing: marshall tucker band, “runnin’ like the wind”



i’m thrilled to say that cameron has joined the ranks of those of us who post our thoughts online nowadays…(i hate the word blog almost as much as the term bloggers – it’s just a strange sounding word. jayda has the word moist, i have the word blog.)

here’s a sample…and some reaffirmation as to why i think cameron crowe is just the shit:


August 7, 2004:

Scottsbluff, Nebraska.

This is the sequence we’ve nicknamed Drivin’ and Cryin’. It involves Orlando as Drew being hit by a wave of emotion he didn’t expect. Here on the Nebraska flatlands, the emotion catches up with him. He laughs and cries, and in the middle of nowhere, he gets hit by a freight train of feelings. In one of my conversations with Orlando when he was making the Ridley Scott movie he’d mentioned casually, “I’m not sure I can cry on demand.” I put it out of my mind at the time. Today, I’m wondering if it will be a problem, or at least something that we spend a lot of time working out under that huge sweltering sky.

Speaking of the sky. It’s really beyond words, this Nebraska sky. Music sounds different here. Everything feels different here because the bigness and the spaciousness naturally fills you with thought, and a sense of where you fit in the big picture.

Listening to the radio on the way in, a local station is right on the money. “Tuesday’s Gone” by Lynyrd Skynyrd is playing, and I’m not sure I’ve ever loved the song more than I do on this day. Driving down the stretch of road to the Scottsbluff Airport base-camp where we’ll start to tow the car and film Orlando’s big sequence — trying to forget that it’s a huge moment in the movie and we’ve got to get it right and what if we don’t… The feeling of the song just washes all that other stuff away. “Tuesday’s Gone” sets a bar for authenticity and raw honesty for the whole day… and I can’t help but let some old feelings wash over me. Van Zant was one of the first artists I’d met as a young journalist who really believed, and read and rooted for my writing… I wrote about him a lot, knew him well, and we pay him tribute in the movie. When the song is over, the disc jockey announces that Lacy Van Zant, Ronnie’s father, had passed away recently. That’s big news. Ronnie talked about Lacy a lot, was deeply influenced by the dad who ironically outlived his powerful and poetic son. It’s a lot to think about and remember. There is a lot going on here in Nebraska, it’s in the air. It’s in the 2000-mile stare in the eyes of most of the crew as I arrive on the set at just after seven AM. Woody and Herb Ault and John Toll will still be rigging the car and camera for some time. It’s already hot, and that big sky beckons, so I decide to take a walk.


i can’t wait to see this movie.

forgiveness…or the lack thereof



now playing: counting crows, “sullivan street”


it feels like a good day for introspective music.

it’s nice outside, from what i can see – i haven’t gone to lunch yet (i usually don’t until well past what’s considered the norm), but in walking past the one part of my building that actually does have windows, i can see that the sun is shining.

this morning, when i got out of my van, i happened to notice as i was walking around to the other side to remove a computer – that i could see my breath! i couldn’t believe it.

i also drove all the way home from philadelphia on sunday night with the window up and didn’t come close to breaking a sweat.

i guess this means, as beth recently pointed out, that summer has “packed up and vacated” for the season.

i won’t pretend i’m sad to see it go.

this is my favorite time of year – the leaves start to litter the walkways, the air takes on a chill…and there’s a palpable sense of melancholy in the air. the days get shorter, the sweaters and blankets come out.

it’s always been a reflective time for me…i don’t know why any of this could be considered a reason to make this my favorite time of year – there’s nothing about that that’s sensible, from a traditional standpoint…but that’s the way it is.

i’ve thought a lot about what happened yesterday, and my general attitude towards the kid who was part of that whole mess…and a couple of people have brought my capacity for forgiveness into question. and that’s fine – i don’t mind being called on something like that – in fact, i welcome it, if you have a valid point to argue.

for better or worse, i suppose that’s true – i think that i probably do have a limited capacity for forgiveness. when i’m wronged by someone, that never really goes away. i may put it aside, let bygones be bygones, not think about it on a regular basis – but it doesn’t really go away. if someone does something hurtful to me (on purpose, mind you…i can put accidents or regretful things aside, unless they become habitual), then it goes into the database. and if you prove yourself to be a repeat offender, chances are pretty good that i’ll end up freezing you out eventually.

now, it should be said that i know other people who do the same thing who carry themselves completely differently – people who harbor grudges and ill will that goes back years, in some cases…i’m generally not like that. i won’t hate you or plot your demise if you end up in this category…i just won’t offer you opportunity after opportunity to continue to wrong me. you can go your way, i’ll go mine, we’ll agree to disagree (or at least I will), and that’ll be it. i won’t bristle at the mention of your name, nor will i recount the story of how badly you screwed me over…i’ll just make sure that you won’t have the chance to do it again.

my rationale for this is that there are too many wonderful people in this world with whose company my time would be better spent than to harbor a relationship of any kind with someone who ends up on the other side of this particular fence. it’s not about grudges or punishing anyone or anything of that nature…it’s just about surrounding myself with genuinely good people.

now, there is one exception to this…i do have a friend with whom i’ve ended up at odds with a number of times and we’ve always managed to put our crap behind us and move on. i’ve known him since before he had facial hair, and we have a lot of water under the bridge – we’ve been at bitter odds several times during our friendship, but we always seem to reconcile ourselves to an understanding after a while. the fact that we always seem to be able to do that, though, is probably more of a testament to the petty nature of the stuff that seems to come between us than to anything else. all of our scraps have been over pretty trivial stuff.

and, chances are, if the kid down the street demonstrated a sincere humility in the face of what happened yesterday, i might actually be willing to put it behind me…

…but i might be just as willing not to.

speaking of long-time friends – terry sturgis, if you’re reading this, i promise that very soon i will sit down and write that long “what i’ve been up to all this time” email that i told you i’d send you when you hunted me down on the ‘net. if you’ve been reading here lately, i’m sure you understand why that hasn’t happened yet, but it will.

and, friends – if you’re reading this and thinking to yourself, “man – i haven’t heard from tom in a while…i wonder if – ”

don’t. i still love you. promise.

kick ’em when they’re up…kick ’em when they’re down…



now playing: red sox-orioles on


i just don’t understand this whole business. i know there’s a curse in place and all, but why can’t the red sox play decent ball in september? what is it with this whole “september slide” business?

they’re handing a game to the lowly orioles as we speak, even as the yankees are losing to toronto, if you can believe that.

they were completely outgunned during the series at yankee stadium this weekend, and they seem to be insisting on further proving their inferiority to the bronx bombers by exposing their naked buttocks to baltimore, who are currently 24 games back in the AL east.

ah, well. i’m on my way home, finally – my work here is done.

the more things change, the more people stay the same.



now playing: super seventies internet radio


so it’s after midnight, and another weekend is officially over.
i took everyone out to dinner when i got back from philadelphia tonight – the nik everett group had their first unofficial gig today at a club in philadelphia called finegan’s wake in the northern liberties section of town (we were thinkin’ about you, mitch), and it went off, for the most part, without a hitch…there was a strange low-frequency rumbling that perpetuated pretty much the entire set, but it was a large room with a large PA (which is to say, it was a loud set), and the vocals could’ve used some attention from the soundman in terms of their placement in the mix…but, considering it was a benefit, it wasn’t bad for free help.

but – the gig has come and gone, everyone has been returned to the place where they shall sleep for the night, and i’m taking in the final few quiet moments before the insanity of yet another week sets in.

before i left today, i took jayda and her (for all practical purposes) stepsister chelsea to the mall. jayda wanted to get her fingernails done (she’s such a teenager now), and i told her that i’d take her if she’d get in touch with her mom and make sure that she could retrieve her from the mall and bring her home with her or drop her off back here. the gig ran over (multi-band bills always do), so i called the house a little before seven to see who was or wasn’t here, and talked to jayda…she told me that dylan was still here, and that chelsea had returned here with her.

all very good – she asked where i was and how long it’d be before i got back, and i proceeded home.

it was a nice night for the drive – the roads were more littered than i’d have preferred with people with no agenda – nowhere to go and perfectly content to force their lack of agenda on those who wanted to actually be somewhere by driving below the speed limit in the left lane, oblivious to the volkswagen van defying the laws of physics by flying into their rear view mirror at an allegedly impossible speed. i had a couple of instances where i had to do some pretty deft maneuvering to slip out from behind what i like to call “bingo rangers” (folks of a usually elderly nature who – in my fantasy of who they are – travel the nations’ highways with their cataract-friendly sunglasses on, driving insanely slow in the left lane on their way to the next bingo hall).

but, i got home and jayda and chelsea were sitting on the front porch and something was obviously wrong. it turns out that there was something of an altercation – not a physical one, but essentially an exchange of “you got a problem?” type verbage with some punks across the street. apparently, the girls were on the front porch, listening to music through the front window, and these kids yelled “nigger” out the window of one of the upper floors of the house across the street. jayda looked at chelsea and they confirmed that they heard what they heard.

now, i don’t remember the exact details of what was said to whom and in what order the events that took place actually happened…jayda recounted the whole thing to me, but that was the one incident that i remember very clearly. there were other things (them shining flashlights across the street, stupid shit like that…

a few things to point out, as background: chelsea is, in fact, black – jayda’s mother is currently involved in a mixed-race relationship. also, there were three kids involved in this little game, and one of them was mike – garrison’s brother…one of the kids who lives two houses away. mike and garrison have been inside our house, we’ve made them welcome here, we’ve allowed them to hang out on the porch with the kids well past when i would usually allow anyone on the porch on a weeknight…i’m extremely conscious of noise, and don’t want to be the neighborhood asshole whos’ constantly raising a ruckus. as such, i typically don’t condone anything like that. in fact, if the truth be told…were i to have been here, i probably wouldn’t have allowed them to be on the porch pumping music out through the window. no, not probably – it wouldn’t have happened, period. i live in this neighborhood because i don’t want to hear what the neighbors are listening to, and i’ll assume, for the sake of argument, that they probably live here for similar reasons.

but that doesn’t give anyone license to be an asshole. “could you please turn that down?” and “nigger!” come from two entirely different motivations.

so i found out about this when i got home….and, just as i was being briefed by the girls on the front porch, the three jackasses come dragging themselves across the street to the sidewalk in front of our house, trailed by mike’s mother, heather, and her boyfriend, vinnie.

“sorry”, he says.

“sorry? you’re sorry? sorry don’t get it…you should get your ass kicked,” i said to him right in front of his parents. “what is it that gives you the right to say that to somebody, man? do you really think that’s ok?” then heather chimed in, and she waslivid. she apologized profusely, repeated that she didn’t raise her children to be that disrespectful, she couldn’t imagine what he was thinking, so on and so forth…and i could tell that she was both humiliated and shamed by what he’d done. i told her that this wasn’t about her at all, and i knew that she wouldn’t stand for something like this…and that there were no hard feelings between us. we all stood on the lawn and chatted for a while before we left for dinner and to take chelsea home, and all is well between the parents involved.

but mike can kiss my ass. he won’t be in this house again, and i don’t have anything to say to him. i don’t care how sorry he is. i don’t care if he’s just a kid. i don’t care if it was his friends who said it and he was basically the ollie north of the whole caper.

if you’re the kind of person who can be swayed by another human being to act like that towards someone who’s been nothing but hospitable to you, then i have no room for you in my life. i’d rather fill it with people who have enough sense to think for themselves and who know the difference between a joke and a slur…among other things.

is this where i live, though? have i moved into a nicer neighborhood, really?

i know that by the standards of the world as a whole, this is probably a pretty trivial incident….but what the fuck? i mean, is this never gonna go away? are we doomed to our own ignorance as a race?

i told the girls tonight at dinner that in another half dozen generations or so, as mixed-race becomes more commonplace, that a time might eventually come when the race pools are so convoluted that no one will be able to tell anyone apart from one another….i suppose that this could be a real possibility, but it’ll take a lot longer than that. and if we all survive as an entity that long, i’m sure we’ll have come up with plenty of other reasons to hate each other by then.

it’s one of the things we’re good at.

suburban dwelling, part one



now playing: john madden and…that other guy


how to tell that you’ve moved to the suburbs, item #4589-a:

the song blasting from the car stereo that passes you as you’re arriving home from work at 9:15pm isn’t the latest spanish reggae smash, or the new dance mix by dj arson, or any of the myriad macarena soundalikes that crawl the streets over the bridge and far away…

no – instead, it’s “hello” by lionel richie.

sometimes, truth really is stranger than fiction.

goin’ out with ashley simpson



now playing: dan fogelberg, “illinois”


moby posted this on his journal some time back, and i think it bears repeating:

you know what politics is/are like in the united states?

it’s like pop-music and/or dating.

example a: pop-music.

republicans are like ashley simpson, and democrats are like radiohead. radiohead fans will forever be mystified as to why someone would buy an ashley simpson cd, but ashley simpson’s handlers/managers understand what the lowest common denominator are looking for and they give it to them. radiohead fans think ‘that disposable pop music is terrible, and someday people will see the error of their ways and buy radiohead cd’s instead of ashley simpson cd’s’, meanwhile ashley simpson and her managers are selling millions of records.

example b: dating.

democrats are the bright, conscientious, responsible guy in the corner of the party and republicans are the loud, boastful, arrogant guy in the middle of the room. the bright guy in the corner thinks ‘that loud guy in the middle of the room is a jerk and eventually everyone will see him for what he is’, but the loud guy goes home with the hot girl and the bright guy in the corner goes home alone.

my point?

yes, radiohead are better than ashley simpson.

and yes, the bright, interesting guy in the corner is better than the loud jerk in the middle of the room.

but ashley simpson and the loud jerk in the middle of the room know what people want, and that’s why they(and the republicans)are winning.

democrats are nuanced and complicated and republicans are simple and sound-bitey.

people want bright shiny simplicity, not dark obscure complexity.

the democrats put their trust in people’s better instincts whereas the republicans put their trust in people’s basest instincts.
and that’s why the republicans are winning, because they’re not governed by ideals, they’re governed by results. the republicans want to win no matter what, whereas the democrats want to win because the public will, hopefully, recognize the primacy of their ideas.

and that’s why democrats are the step-child party. that’s why democrats are the avis to the republicans hertz. that’s why democrats are the runners up. because the republicans know how to sell and they know how to win.

of course my hope is that the democrats will learn from the republicans and learn how to win.

but too often it seems that democrats take the ‘high road’ when the noble and effective thing would be to join the battle in the trenches.

republicans are dirty, and will stop at nothing to win. we saw in 2000 that when democrats take the ‘high road’ that they lose.
so that’s the choice, democrats: take the ‘high road’ and lose, or learn how to compete in the real world and run the risk of winning…

bill clinton did it, and he won.

al gore didn’t do it, and he lost.

i hope that john kerry learns from bill clinton…


oooooh, that smell…



now playing: harry potter (via audiobook)


nothing caps off a 14 hour workday like coming home to the smell of an electrical fire.

it’s a nasty-assed smell…and it smacks you in the face pretty hard the second you come across it.

i came home with dylan at around 9:15 or so, after spending over two hours sitting at dave walton’s house, trying in vain to coax the onboard USB adapter into talking to dave’s new printer. oddly, the one thing that i thought would present a challenge – trying to read the mind of dave’s other PC-literate friend who’d set up his cable modem and wireless router – turned out to be a piece of cake. he didn’t bother to change any of the default settings, so it detected everything right away, and his PC was on the ‘net in no time.

it was the printer – the thing that was supposed to be a no-brainer – that turned out to drive me to the edge of insanity.

now the plan (as it existed in its initial, naive form) was to pick up the kids (done), drop jayda off at a friends’ house (done), and then go back to dave’s house to drop off the PC and install everything and get his printer and internet connection squared away (herein lies the rub).

dylan came along – after all, we weren’t going to be there long – and waited more patiently than any kid should have to while i did battle with a stubborn-assed NTKERN.VXD file that refused to load the USB root hub driver…and, as such, couldn’t talk to the printer.

i tried EVERYTHING. i uninstalled and reinstalled it in device manager, i abided by the micro$oft sanctioned solution, and renamed the three specified driver files to *.old, and then used system file checker (yeah, it was a win98 machine) to extract fresh copies from the disk…i downloaded the chipset drivers from the motherboard manufacturers’ site, just in case…none of this worked. i had the dreaded yellow exclamation point staring back at me after every restart.

what was supposed to take roughly half an hour, after which time we’d bolt from daves’ house, stop at home and pick up a guitar for rehearsal and dash to darryl’s house for band practice. then, when practice was over, we’d pick jayda up and i’d drop the kids back at the house while i went to work and finished the end-of-day formalities (stopping long enough to toss a load of laundry into the washer, which would be finished by the time i got back from work, in time to throw it into the dryer, thus sparing me from the need to dip into my emergency stash…and waddle off to work on “tightey whitey friday”).

well, nothing in my life ever goes as planned…as i seem to have occasion to say all too often.

dylan patiently sat as i rebooted, reinstalled, deleted, rebooted again…until 8:45 or so. dave walked in just as we were leaving, and i told he and his wife what had happened, in terms of the printers’ inability to talk with a USB port that refused any and all drivers thrown at it…and we bolted after jayda, unable at this point to even make a half-hearted effort to salvage a band rehearsal (which will earn me points with the boys, i’m sure.)

(now it should be mentioned that this is two rehearsals i’ve missed within the space of a week, for two separate bands…why the fuck does anyone call me at all anymore?)

anyway, after getting back to the house with the kids, the smell filled the whole downstairs of the house.

i don’t freak out easily, but i was freaked out.

the thing that got to me was that i couldn’t pinpoint the source of the smell…it was definitely coming from the kitchen, and it started right after starting the dishwasher, so that had to be it, right? well, ok…but there was no outward evidence that it came from there, and we were all having a hard time figuring out where the smell was most intense…and i had resigned myself at this point to the fact that it had to be some kind of wiring behind the drywall, and i was on the phone to the kids’ mom, telling her that i was bringing them back to her house for the night, as i didn’t want them sleeping in this house until i knew what the deal was.

SO – i dropped them off at their moms’, and went back to work to finish end of day…that took me past midnight – totalling my workday out at sixteen hours, all together.

it’s now 1:30 in the morning, and my tightey-whitey bailout load of laundry is spinning beneath my feet in the basement…

…and people wonder occasionally why i sleep until nearly noon on weekends sometimes.

dylan and i were talking on the way back from daves’, and dylan said, “whatever happened to your plan to do freelance computer stuff and sell guitars on eBay?”

and i had to say – in my head, anyway – that i didn’t realize he was paying attention quite so closely.

but i told him that right now, it feels more secure from where i sit to be able to work during the day and have that job available to me and then take on the work after-hours so i could have the financial security to be able to do things for them…and that maybe after they were out of school and established, then it might be time for me to scale back. but right now, i’m really enjoying being able to provide for them and to make sure that they don’t want for anything.

another interesting dylan moment from the evening…we went into daves’ study to begin working on his computer, and there’s a picture of dave and lilliane on dave’s desk…now dylan met dave as he was walking out of a chinese restaurant that we were walking into many moons ago, and to the best of my knowledge, i can’t remember any other time that dylan’s had occasion to bump into dave for any reason.

but we walked in there and dylan saw the picture and said, “that’s the guy we met at the chinese restaurant that time….”

people who don’t have kids just don’t understand how that feels, man.

my kids kick ass.

years since we were born



now playing: counting crows, “a murder of one”



“…are you happy when you’re sleeping?
does he keep you safe and warm?
does he tell you when you’re sorry?
does he tell you when you’re wrong?

i’ve been watching you for hours
it’s been years since we were born
we were perfect when we started
i’ve been wondering where you’ve gone…”


i just needed a break. really.

i turned off the news for the weekend – no reports of destruction in florida or the murder of hundreds of children in Beslan or wolf blitzers’ smarmy mug on CNN (how can you expect a man who literally owes his career to an overdose of “face time” during desert storm to be impartial in a political discussion that features an identical war as its centerpiece?)…

so i essentially took the weekend off from the outside world.

wendy skipped town for the weekend to go to maine, so it was the kids and i. me n’ the kids. just the three of us.

and ya know, the interesting thing is that it seems like we did a lot of stuff, but as i sit here now – first day back at work – it doesn’t feel like much for three days. i took the kids clothes shopping, for one thing…and that felt good. that’s something that’s typically been hijacked by their mom in years past, but this year, i just took them for stuff, no questions asked. i feel like (by now, anyway) they should be the best judges of what they will or won’t wear, and as long as it fit and didn’t look as though they’d only be able to wear it for half an hour before they outgrew it, we got it.

i have no idea at this point how much money we spent. i didn’t spend any money i didn’t have, but i’m sure the final figures aren’t in yet. i would estimate at this point that it was around $350 or so…but that bought a LOT of clothes, man. my daughter is a bargain hound, and she knew almost by instinct exactly where to go and what she could buy at specific stores.

…and dylan really, really, really wanted the network adapter for his PS2 – so i struck a deal with him. do the lawn work for the remaining days of the year and it’s yours. i was surprised that he agreed to it, but he did. and on sunday, dylan was outside mowing the grass. if i’d had time, i was going to dig in with him and do the weeds around the edge of the house, but i decided to wait on that until i could get some input as to what i’m allowed to destroy and what should be staying.

(i have a third degree black thumb…i don’t know a weed from a tomato plant, an azalea from a marigold, none of that. in fact, at the last house, i would have preferred that the whole back yard have been paved. it was one of those typical row-home back yards, but it resembled a very, very large grave – curved like the top of a pound cake. yeah, the whole thing. and i’m happy to do my part with the yard work, but i lean towards the overzealous – if it’s not in the “to be mowed” category, i’ll rip it the hell out and scatter mulch over the hole.)

i did hit one rough patch with jayda, when i said something that i really had no business saying – at least not the way i said it.

on sunday, she wanted to hang out with her friend marissa, which i was only too happy to be a party to…originally, marissa was coming to our house, but her friend javier called and the two of them decided they wanted to go to his house. OK, no problem – dylan and i were going to pick up his new desk and the new box springs for the full-sized beds upstairs anyway.

so i asked where he lived, and she then asked him where he lived…i knew he lived in mt. penn, but that’s all i knew.

well, apparently this kid didn’t know how to tell her to get there. he ended up telling her to go to the wendy’s on perkiomen avenue (the main thoroughfare through mt. penn) and he’d meet her there.

i was astonished…”how old is this kid?” i asked her. “sixteen”, she said.

i said, incredulously, “you mean to tell me this kid is sixteen and he can’t tell you where the hell he lives?!???”

without getting into too much detail, let’s just say that i said some things that could be construed as an insult to his intelligence.

and i don’t regret anything i said about him, because – as far as i’m concerned – if you get to be that age and you don’t know where you live, you don’t have a leg to stand on to argue the other side of that coin.

further, as it turns out…the kid lives right on perkiomen avenue…the main drag in mount penn.

i’m sorry, man, but you gotta be pretty damn thick…

but anyway, like i said…i don’t really feel bad about what i said about him, but i did say some things that i think she found personally insulting, and that wasn’t my intention at all. thankfully, it became water under the bridge in pretty quick fashion, but i do have to be aware of my words and try to be a little more thoughtful of their effect.

where the kids are concerned, anyway.

it’s probably wrong that i still have no remorse about what i said about this javier kid, but it’s the truth. and i feel like i probably have a bead on jayda’s motivation…because i’ve had a tendency in similar directions, in my life. i always had a tendency to “take in strays” (as blake would say) – to consult with the underdogs. in a lot of ways, there was a sense of purpose in aligning myself with the “strays”, so to speak…in a lot of ways, they were a lot more interesting, from a character standpoint. they spoke to my antiestablishment sense, and being part of that rung of the food chain gave me something to rail against.

now, though, as the protective parent, i have a hard time sympathizing with any kind of bond with a sixteen year old kid who can’t tell you how to get to their house that’s six houses away from the fast-food restaurant they asked you to meet them at.

i guess it could be said that being a parent has sharpened my protective genes, and that i make what could be outwardly safer choices for my children than i would make for myself.

did i mention that dylan’s new desk rocks? he says that it reminds him of the swimming pool. if you could see a picture of it, you’d understand why.

now, though, i have to finish his bed and get him off the futon and into his real bed…then the house will be in order.

well, i’m also gonna reinstall windows on both of the kids’ (and my own) computers and get our network in order. i’m gonna put another PC in the studio that’s going to act as a file server, as well. yep, user directories and the whole nine yards.

i’m such a geek.

anyway, now that i’m back, i guess i have some catching up to do. stand by….

from the permanent records newsletter



now playing: dan fogelberg, “dancing shoes”

“necessity is the mother fucker of invention.”

adam brodsky, songwriter – author of “fuck you and the sport utility vehicle you rode in on”, “jesus owes me fifty bucks”, “clap you fuckers clap”, and “the girl i like is a diesel dyke”

i was gonna take off the fogelberg earlier, but i know adam would be honored to have his name mentioned in the same post, so there be it.

of warren zevon



now playing: dan fogelberg and tim weisberg, “paris nocturne”



came in early this morning, involuntarily…as today is my first day of school. the kids started back yesterday, but this morning was my first day to take them to the bus stop…so i had a very relaxing drive in to work, as i had no reason whatsoever to be in a hurry.

i’m remembering a t-shirt i saw once….”it sure makes for a long day at work when you show up on time.”

amen, brother.

so i came in and sat down and went through my usual morning internet stops….it seems that one of a handful of my most recent set of favorite reads, spencer, went on a caffeine binge that tossed him into (in his words) a five hour “nauseated haze”…he bought a six pack of jolt at a bargain price and drank all of them in a two hour window. (for those who read labels, that’s 720mg of caffeine in what could be called one shot.)

as i was sitting here chuckling at his misfortune, i remembered an interview that jackson browne gave bill flanagan for the late, great musician magazine, where he told a story about warren zevon‘s experience with herbal tea…amazingly, i found a snippet of it on the internet:


JB: “Zevon tole me that he’d had this sort of conniption fit at the airport…I think it was because of a herbal remedy given to him by a Chinese doctor friend of mine and David Lindley’s.  Chinese medicine – we’re talking very sophisticated drugs made with herbs. You’re supposed to drink half a cup of this tea, get under the covers and sweat it out. Well Warren of course , says “If half a cup will make you better…” So he drinks cup after cup of this stuff. Then he’s going to get on a plane and go to New York! He has a seizure!

So as he’s going down, and the medics are putting that thing in your mouth that keeps you from swallowing your tongue, he says, “my last thought was, ‘Oh, God, please don’t let me die and have Jackson write a song about me!’

I had just come from crying my eyes out with Paul Barerre and Billy Payne at the Lowell George memorial concert – I left there and went up to Warren’s house and he said that to me.

Just for that I will definitely write a song about Warren.”

BF: whether he dies or not?

JB: “especially if he dies.”


so be careful, huggy bear…i may have to write a song about you.