Friday, November 7, 2008

Don’t Let Your Kids Grow Up To Be Musicians (part 2 of ∞)

October 31st – Helloween

So you want to be a musician? Are you sure?
Yes, aspiring musicians, this gig was hell musically, frustrating sexually and a transportation nightmare. The cracked pavement of our crumbling streets that I was forced to traverse was a metaphor signaling the barbarians are at the gates.

The Journey
It only took 75 minutes to get to the gig due to the fact that I got off at an exit a mile north of where I should have. Why you ask? Because my mind was overwhelmed by the disdain I have for Chicago expressways (an oxymoron) so I wanted out, like a guy that just got married, as soon as possible. An unsafe U-turn into on-coming traffic and I was back on the Snailway towards the most horrific excuse for a street in Chicago – Addison.
The gig was a few miles east of the exit, across the street from the greatest architectural abomination of the modern era – Wrigley Field. Unfortunately, every street going east from Addison to Irving Park, was infested with four-wheeled metallic insects. Single file they moved along at a pace that the Slowey turtles would have approved of to a final destination that would leave them unfulfilled, despairing of something better for their lives. Those Olympic walkers who look like drunk Emus when they move could have gotten to my destination quicker. The last few miles took as long to get through as the first twenty did. If “it’s the journey, not the destination” is true then we’re all screwed.

The Destination
This gig was epic in its lack of musicianship (we played like four kids from the short bus given random instruments and asked to “entertain” the social worker without tripping on the drool coming out of our ill-shaped mouths and liquifying the floor but alas we failed.) and for an amount of amazing long legs from the female of the species that I haven’t seen since the last Victoria’s Secret network special. There were at least 19 women wearing nurse outfits. I’m not talking about those hideous, acutely non-sexual scrubs that they really wear. I’m talking about this:

Porn Nurse – the only kind of nurse I want. I was praying to the Gods for some kind of disease. Nothing fatal, maybe a curable bout of leprosy or some kind of mutant shingles. Anything…please God I beg you. But then you come back to Earth (the horror!) and realize a real nurse would be middle-aged with pockmarked skin, a bad case of halitosis and weighing a significant amount more than the woman in the picture.

The Search For Sleep
I got home at 4 a.m. Why did you get home at 4 a.m. Mr. Disencouragement when the gig ended at 1:30 a.m.? Well because after a show you have to summon your inner teamster and breakdown and load gear into various cars and talk to people milling about afterwards, especially if they are wearing a nurse outfit. But the main reason is that the Snailway at 3 a.m. was down to one lane so it was like driving in rush hour traffic during a work week. I had to get off the Snailway and take side roads home. I don’t remember the particulars but I do remember stop lights turning red along the route for no reason. There weren’t cars coming the other way. It’s 3 a.m. after all. Then of course I got stopped by a freight train in Des Plaines. These blockades tend to anger a tired half asleep musician on his way home. I was so hungry by the time I made it to the promised land I seriously considered giving up vegetarianism and finding an all-night burger joint.

Suffer for your art kids!

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