Archive for March, 2005

  • Rob Spectre
  • 31
  • Mar
  • 05

Yesterday I woke up not to the usual sunshine, Star Wars posters, and small puddle of drool on my pillow that I normally do. Instead I had a throat that felt like I spent the previous evening dining on fiberglass and a half-used roll of toilet paper to cough into that I had apparently grabbed during the night. I am not normally one who takes off work for the paltry concerns of mortal man, but with a productive cough and a killer show in Connecticut on Friday, I thought it best to play it safe.

Safe in this case meant drinking two and a half gallons of orange juice and watching the new re-re-remastered versions of Empire and Jedi. It wasn’t so much that I really wanted to see the revisionist, Hayden Christensen digitally inserted new versions of my beloved childhood, so much as I needed greater evidence in my own going debate with Scottie about who is hotter, Queen Amidala or Princess Leia.

Scottie’s arguments are pretty compelling. Padme was elected, while all evidence indicates Leia was just born and as we all know, democracy can be pretty hot. Further, Leia only dressed like a fox when held captive by the Empire or Jabba the Hutt. Amidala, in stark comparison, brought her Sunday’s best even to a friggin’ god-forsaken desert.

However, my heart will always remain with Leia and I think there’s ample reason to be found for such in Chapters V and VI. For one, confidence is a big turn-on of mine and I can’t think of anything more confident than walking in front of Jabba the Hutt after blasting through two porky guards, demanding the fucker a bend me over price for a flea ridden Wookie, and then whipping out a goddamned thermal detonator at the first sign of disagreement. And *then*, when her ruse is discovered she waits for a brief moment of reprieve and then chokes the slob that is easily twenty times her weight with the leash that bound her. Nothing like the violent overthrow of repression mixed with hot S&M. Leia is a message of democracy we can all agree is superhot.

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  • Rob Spectre
  • 27
  • Mar
  • 05

Someone makes their home in Oklahoma while her head remains in Spain,
And someone deals drugs in North Dakota while his mother watches Jane,
Still someone jokes in California that he’d rather menstrate pain,

But in Boston the sun is shining and only noontime does it rain.

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  • Rob Spectre
  • 21
  • Mar
  • 05

Dear God, Newbury Comics and Hot Topic have got a bead on my ass. Totally hopeless in the face of their shrewd marketing droids, my bank account suffered a near lethal blow the other day on what was intended to be a routine visit to check out new comics and the new Street Dogs record. Both the comics and record sucked horribly, but from the corner of my eye I could see something that struck me right to the core of my being. Was that? Yes. It was a Nintendo controller on a shirt.

This shirt must be mine, I said. And, as is unfortunately the case, I listened. About 20 minutes and an embarrassing sum of money later, I walked out with like 15 T-shirts emblazoned with various brand marketing from my geekly past. “Sonic shirt?” Must have it. “Toad-ally?” Must have it. “Hey this shirt kinda looks like it has a ninja turtle on it…” Must have it.

I walked out a horrible shell of a man, soul carved out by an irresistable urge only to consume. My name is Rob. And I am a capitalistic whore.

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  • Rob Spectre
  • 16
  • Mar
  • 05

As the boys in The Charter North make their phone calls and check their email before they get ready for the blissful slumber that is my living room for, I’m definitely reminded of the majesty that can be rock and roll. It almost makes me forget that I dropped my pants in front of a whole crowd of people today.

I thought last week’s crash midsong on stage wrecking my back at Giza was going to be the least rockstar thing I ever did. Predictably I was incorrect. You see, it all started so innocently. When I woke up in the morning, I selected my finest Pogues shirt for the festivities of the week and, when confronted with the daily issue of how to get my pants in a firmly elevated position, chose the road less travelled by and selected my suspenders. They’re nifty, they’re original, but they are certainly not the method of integrity maintence one should select for pants that will later be rocked in.

Quickly into the set the suspenders had to go, and since the boys from Do It For Johnny and Idiots of America came out to catch the show, I ended up rocking off 10 or so pounds, creating kind of an emergency situation around my waistline. Throwing caution to the wind, I got up in the air with the rest of the room for Hey Gordon during the breakdown and not three chords in, my trousers dropped and the whole world saw my blaze orange Nintendo underroos.

Later back at my apartment I guess the guys in The Charter North were arguing over whether or not I did it on purpose. I was quick to assure them that 1) my hands were a little busy with guitar and can’t really depants and play at the same time and 2) I never drop my drawers on the first date.

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  • Rob Spectre
  • 15
  • Mar
  • 05

One of the beautiful things about Providence is the weird cultural events the city seems to attract, take for example the Borders over in Providence Place mall. For whatever reason, they had a show with They Might Be Dickbags.

Now, many people attest to my incredibly thorough obsession with They Might Be Giants. It’s unhealthy, and I know it. I went through many a roommate who finally became fed up with me discovering a new TMBG song and then promptly playing it over and over for the next three days. From the first record in 1985 to Miscellaneous T to even the poorly received Long Tall Weekend and the new children’s records, I have devoured everything they creatively produce faithfully and with great pleasure. I caught their live show with a bunch of dear friends and had a blast. I was expecting much the same at the far more intimate Borders, but what I did not expect was them to be dickbags.

The Johns, I’ve always been told, have a pretty large disdain for the majority of their fanbase, but I naively thought I might not be among them. After all, as TMBG fans go I’m a reasonably normal dude. I was not, for example, wearing a shirt signed from the 1987 Lincoln tour replete with yellow collar and glaring pits stains clearly indicating years and years of subsequent use. Nor was I toting a backpack full of TMBG merchandise accumulated over the years with multiple copies, denoting one for the bearer and three for the eBay. No, I just came to the show with my girl. We didn’t even show up as early. And *gasp* we actually lived in the same town. It wasn’t as though I was some gushing fanboy walking up to the pair. As a matter of fact, I thought Flansburgh might have recognized that, when he pointed me out and thanked me for coming to the show in the last song.

Well, following their advice, we went to grab some chow, an hour later came back, and as they were tearing down I politely asked John Linnell if I might interrupt his setlist to sign a couple CDs. He stated, “Huh, what?”

“I’m sorry to interrupt you, John. But I wonder if you could sign a couple CDs?”

“Uh. Sign stuff. Yeah, sure. Gimme everything you got.”

Hurriedly I handed over the CDs. After a brief period I asked if he could make out the children’s CD to Aurora, as it was a gift for T-dub’s daughter. He murmured some approval and, as I would discover later, deigned himself to scribble her name at the top. To bring a little levity to the situation, I interjected, “You know John, I’d like to personally thank you for giving me a letter grade higher in American History to eighteen…”

“Yes, yes, very funny. haha.” and turned around and walked away.

Oookay. Half of the band is dickbag. Let’s shoot for two!

Walking over to where Flansburgh was wrapping some cords.

“Hey, I don’t suppose you could…”

“Yeah yeah sure, what do you got?”

Mutely, I handed over the CDs. After he was finishing up the thoroughly half-assed job of signed the CDs, he asked, “Were you at the last one of these we did?”

I said, “No actually, the only time I ever saw you was in Lincoln, Nebraska.”

He was like, “Oh, the Sokol Underground?”

Eagerly (as though we were actually engaged in communication), I replied, “No, that’s in Omaha. It was the Royal Grove.”

He then remembered, “Oh yeah, the strip club.”

“Yup!”

“Oh yeah, that was like the worst show ever,” he stated in a reminiscently, matter-of-fact manner.

“Oh. yeah. Well, thanks for the show.”

And then we left.

I guess they’re rockstars and that’s the way they’ve been taught to behave. I guess maybe they were beat after a great big whole two and a half hours of intense work. Either way I know I was a bigger fan before that night than after, and I don’t suspect I’ll ever be that big a fan again. Maybe that was their intention.

But you can bet it won’t be something I ever do, if I end up rich and famous or not.

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