Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Somebody Spoke and I Went into a Dream....

By Pauly
New York City

I rolled the perfect joint. Sometimes I amaze myself. The last few before that were blah. I sat and let my mind wander as a Phish bootleg played at a medium level in the background.

The Joker posted something on our music blog about a link to a bunch of Phish bootlegs (audience recordings) from the summer of 1996. I downloaded a show from Duomo Square in Italy. They opened for Santana that summer in Europe and usually played one set. Carlos Santana would sometimes sit in with them. Obviously something happened to Phish after that summer and their encounters with Santana both onstage and off stage. The entire band elevated their playing. 1997 and 1998 stand out as some of the best years for that band's twenty plus year history. And 1996 was a stepping stone along the way.

I have been sick ever since I stepped off the plane at JFK, on a cold wet December day. Nicky caught the VegasFlu and I somehow managed to avoid getting sick... until now. The infestation got progressively worse over the weekend and hit me like a ton of bricks yesterday. I popped some cold medicine around Midnight and did my best to stay in bed for eight hours. I slept for about six (and five straight) which is a lot for me.

I felt better this morning and I woke up and got out of bed. I headed out into the old neighborhood to run errands. I had to buy stamps and the lines at the post office always irk me. The two women who work the windows are very sweet, patient, and tolerant. But it seems that whenever the line is the longest, one of them is on their scheduled break. Ah and the people who are in line with me are always the top ten most annoying and least patient individuals on the planet. Add the Christmas rush, and the post office was a zoo. Little kids ran amuck, much to the dismay of their sedated mothers or careless nannies. There were five strollers in there. Five white babies, and three brown nannies, two white mommies, and an old Russian pedophile with a cane who leered at them all.

After I survived the post office, I walked across the street and popped into see Vinny the barber. I didn't need a haircut, but I wanted to give him some shit. He was in the middle of cutting a client's hair. He stopped and walked over to shake my hand. Vinny the barber, who is in his early 60s, ran the NYC marathon a couple of months ago and had a photo of himself up on the wall.

"Vinny, I heard that the NY Racing Federation is disqualifying your results in the marathon this year for steroid abuse. It was all that HGH you were taking with Roger Clemens and Andy Pettite."

He laughed and said that Clemens was guilty and probably half the league was too.

I could not find ripe bananas this morning. The Korean grocery was out. One of the bodegas didn't have anything edible. And the supermarket had lots of green bananas. Swing and a miss, strike three. I bought skim milk and headed into the bagel store. The workers there are always swamped and probably don't get paid much. They get hassled by all the school kids or old Jewish ladies on a power trip. Anyway, they fuck up my order about one time in five. I always ask for extra butter and most of the time they don't do it. Sometimes, they give me cream cheese when I ask for butter. They give butter when I ask for cream cheese. They give me a plain bagel instead of cinnamon raisin. You get the picture. It's always something, but by the time I notice the error, it's too late and I'm home. Today they fucked up. I asked for an everything bagel with butter and I got cream cheese.

Despite the cold, after a two week layoff, I finally got back into the swing of writing in the mornings and editing in the afternoon. I cranked out two articles to cover my assignments for January while I'm away in Australia. I also completed my final article for the Swedes. I just have to tweak it a bit and then our project is complete. I started writing my column for Bluff and realized it was over 4,500 words and I still had another 1,000 or so to write. I decided to chop it up into two parts. I should be done with it later today. Although I set out to write one column, I got two in the process. Now I don't have to worry about any deadlines until the middle of February.

I have about 60 pages left in the 600 page Saturday Night Live book. I just read the section on Phil Hartman's murder and Chris Farley's OD. Both Farley and Belushi died when they were 33. So did Jesus. I outlived them all.

Skippy and Britt sent me a holiday card. Thanks buddy! Skippy sported a nice Hawaiian shirt. I only got two other Christmas cards... one from my broker in Boulder, CO and the other from an ex-girlfriend turned Jesus Freak. One just wants my money and the other thinks I'm a hedonistic sinner. I haven't figured out which one is which.

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