Friday, August 25, 2006

Working for It

Fuck, what a couple of weeks its been. I'm exhausted.

It starts out well-enough, with a Pointed Sticks interview -- Bill Napier Hemy, Ian Tiles and I sit at the Templeton and talk about the Japan tour, ostensibly for this thing I'm doing for Razorcake, who have the first real taste of my Rob Wright/ Nomeansno interview online right now (I'm hoping I've found a home for the rest of it but it remains up in the air). So far it sounds okay, right? But then it turns out that my recording device craps out and I have to ask them to redo things over the phone. The same happens with a Winks interview -- I'd theorized that the problem with my digital recorder was that the Templeton was too loud, but NO, we record the Winks mostly in a quiet room with them talking right into the mike and it all basically just comes out as noise, even WORSE than the Pointed Sticks, and a whole bunch of it is lost, including Tyr singing one of their new songs, unaccompanied, into the mic. Ah, well. The Winks have high hopes about the upcoming article (and their move to Montreal) so they obligingly re-do the interview over the phone, with me using a tape recorder, but that turns out to be pretty fuckin' awful, too. The machine is nearly brand new, but for some reason, tho' it records MY voice just peachily, it introduces a ton of distortion onto the tape to anything I'm listening to, and if the speaker on the other end goes quiet for even a few seconds, a loud hissing sound results. Todd's voice is loud enough to be heard regardless, but Tyr is drowned out about 25% of the time by a static roar, making the whole process that much more challenging. I mean, this is a fuckin' BRAND NEW TAPE RECORDER, of the ancient shoebox variety, with a plug in feeding DIRECTLY into the internal mike; you'd figure given how long these fuckin' things have been around, they'd make them so they work, eh? Nope. It's like some sorta weird karmic retribution for having everything made in an overseas factory where workers are paid $1 a day, but, I mean, I DON'T OWN ANY SWEATSHOPS, so why should I collect the payback? (The rich assholes who run the sweatshops can afford to buy decent gear, too). At least I get the piece written -- it's not exactly what I'd hoped but it's finished and off to the Discorder, so that's one less stress out of the way.

As for the Pointed Sticks, once I think I've got my equipment SORT of squared away, Bill, Ian Tiles, and Sudden Death man Joe Keithley himself all talk for the tape, but I've just discovered a big chunk of THAT didn't record, either. There's a completely inexplicable ten-minute dropout from one of the interviews: because of the tape? Because of the phone? Because of the tape recorder? Because I have somehow offended God? Who knows, but at least I have enough to piece together SOMETHING. I just want to have done with it.

What else? I gotta vent some of this stuff because I feel toxic inside... The other day, I get to watch a really far gone homeless guy digging for discarded pizza in the trash can INSIDE a pizza by the slice place, a big bloody franchise one; the staff see him and do nothing, and he marches out munching some nice fresh garbage... I attempt to buy books at a thrift store, phoning my boss at the bookstore I work for to make sure he needs them, and the employee behind the counter doesn't know how to operate the phone. She tries several times to get a line out and can't. The next day, the waitress at this ramen place cannot figure out how to make change, when I ask her for $3.50 from a $20 bill; she doesn't understand the concept of "50 cents," and first gives me $3, then $5, making a mockery of my attempts to tip her. My apartment has mice. An XL shirt I buy at the Army and Navy is barely a Medium, and not just because with all the stress and improper sleep and eating I've been subjecting myself to, I've gained weight. A friend turns me on to a source for cheap flights, but we discover that in fact the people he's been dealing with are NOT on the level... Disorder, indifference, dishonesty and amateurism reign supreme in this bloody town. It makes me want to move, to go somewhere with a hatsize, somewhere where I will be loved... Whine. Having recently seen a provocative documentary on the topic (see my September film column in Discorder), I'm turning to the Unabomber Manifesto for consolation... It's scary how lucid it is.

The high point of the month, tho', remains a high point through it all. One afternoon, I call Corwood Industries about a Jandek article I'm writing. I go out, come back, and there's a voicemail from The Man Himself on my phone. See next month's Nerve Magazine for more on that...

At least I'm keeping busy.

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