I got some shit to say. And I'm lazy.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

A Little (Come) Pick Me Up

Anyone who has been around me lately (god bless you all) knows that I have been mired in the proverbial shit. This always seems to happen after a show goes down, and as good as the last year was for me work-wise, the come down has been just the opposite. Six straight months of work has equaled three months of abject poopiness. I would like to think that this is the only reason for my miasma, but I know it's only part of a larger truth: I feel stuck. Stuck in a rut like muther fuckin' Jabba the -...well, you get the idea. I keep desperately holding out for some sign, some mongoose in the cane fields magic (thank you, Junot Diaz) that will help me see the light at the end of the - . You know what I mean.

Anyhow, that little something may have happened today. In retrospect I am amazed I didn't flat out crap my pants or spill my beverage, man. Today is Tuesday, and if anyone knows anything about my monkey job, they know that Tuesdays bite the big culo in the sky. I am often asked the same three questions ad nauseam as I sit a lame duck at the info desk in the lobby of the museum, telling people over and over and over that we are closed. At a certain point in the day I always start to lose it and will make up excuses as to why the museum's closed. To wit:

'I would like two times for the museum, please.' (said in arrogant French undertones)

"The museums is closed today and every Tuesday." (said with utter indifference and glazed over smile, trying to both do my job and read ESPN.com at the same time.)

'No! But for why?!?' (arrogant French undertones mixed with genuine disbelief, as if to say, Did they not get the memo we would be visiting today?)

"Because today's the day we clean the andirons and pick up the dry cleaning. Also it's bingo." (said with sly nod as if to indicate 'Sucks to be you. Quell bummer.')

At this point they leave, sometimes in disgust, other times in genuine confusion and disbelief. They are but one of literally hundreds, if not thousands, who wonder in to the space even though there are huge signs everywhere, in ten languages no less, espousing the very same information I just delivered to them. It must be that personal touch that they're after.


Today the visitors were really tickling my nuts, to borrow a phrase from The Wire. I had had it. At one point I decided to start keeping track of how many times someone said 'SHIT!' when they found out we were closed. As my luck would have it, the person who said it the twelfth time just happened to be one of my favoritest favorites ever.

There's no way to ever put too fine a point on what Ryan Adams' music means to me. When I was breaking up with someone in the summer of 2001(the girl I moved here with, 7 years ago,Jesus!) Whiskeytown's 'Pneumonia' was the soundtrack to my misery and heat wave. Post 9/11, 'Gold' became my good luck charm. 'Demolition' was in heavy rotation when I met L. 'Rock 'N ROLL' and 'Love Is Hell' perfectly described all the good and bad of that very-good-not-really-very-bad, closest thing I've ever had to a blessed union was. 'Cold Roses' signified a trip(to Texas, natch) with changes on the horizon(double album!) and 'Jacksonville City Nights' was again, another soundtrack of sorts, to my most broken of hearts when everything fell apart. '29' we won't talk about, much like the period I was going through right after the end. And last year's 'Easy Tiger'? Well, as I told my roomie and fellow rambler when it came out last summer, "Sounds like ole' duder's getting older, kinda like us." So yeah,like I said, brother be all up in the heavy rotation in these parts.

So when this gawky, bespectacled-Robert-Smith-hair-having, maroon velvet jacket wearing, dressed-like-the-fifth-member-of-The-Smiths-motherfucker strode up to me and asked if he could get in, I got a little weird. Luckily I was with the Baron, who wouldn't know Ryan Adams from John Adams, so he said in his Pittsburghian, half-deaf, slow burn lilt, "We're closed."

'SHIT!' said Mr. Adams.

Luckily I had time to suss out the situation, and the stakes involved. (O if only I were so smart in pleasure/business, actually business situations, re:readings and their after parties!) I had my big guns ready.

"You know you're the 12Th person that's said that today after we told them the museum was closed." (score one for the tdawg.)

'Shit! Shit! Shit! Shit! There, that's like four extra shits. That should bring it up to 16.'

This guy was good.

He then did what they all do, asked if he could get in anyway.(Musician or no, this is always done in some sort of sly and flirtatious way, as if to imply, "Oh come on, it's just little old me! Whose gonna find out? I'll be your best friend!") When I told him I could personally escort him into the galleries because, he was, and I quote myself here, "My fucking favorite musician", he laughed, said 'Right on', and we exchanged a dap. Dude's really tiny, but he's got HUGE hands. That would explain the guitar playing, for sure.

So we talked a few more minutes, mostly about museum exhibitions and the like, and at one point I had to show him that the reason he wasn't getting his member calendar every month was because his membership had lapsed. Seven months ago. It was priceless, in a good way. During all of this, The Baron was confused as to why I was being so helpful and not my terse perfunctory self. As I showed Ryan were to go to remedy his membership lapse and where else he could visit, the Baron leaned over and asked, "Who is that?"

To which I smiled, laughed and said, 'That, Baron, is the mother fucking man.'

I won't say it's a big deal, in the way that all of my friends are getting married and making babies is a big deal, or the way some of these same friends are starting to see their careers take off is a really big deal, because at the end of it all, I'm still the schmuck stuck holding out for what is increasingly seeming like a whole lotta nothing. But I will say this. It was something I needed. Really and truly. For whatever reason, it felt like a sign. Like it was supposed to happen, and lift me out of this, this something not so pleasant.

Like the mongoose apparition appearing to the de Leon clan time and again in 'The Brief Wondrous Life Of Oscar Wao', Ryan Adams appeared from thin air, and helped my shit get settled, if only for a minute. It meant a lot.

Now where's that mother fucking box set you been talking about?


Blogger carrie and/or john said...

your hot little boyfriend story aside (which I still think you and baron concocted in a semi-delusional state of ennui) the problem with the M*M* is that it is NOT in fact closed on Tuedsays. The doors are open and there are total cabrons in disguise as museum employees abusing all the poor confused ESL visiotrs. masochism at its finest.

p.s. ask baron about your doppleganger we met at Landmark last week. paydirt, mo-fo. paydirt.


7:34 AM

Blogger Adam said...

Great story! I've been derpressed too the last 6-8 months. Nothing new going up, rejection after rejection. Stuck. I'm starting to come unstuck, I hope.

Hang in there. Let's hang out soon.


8:31 AM

Blogger la Ketch said...

so cool!

1:54 PM


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