The Fix

     I’m going to rail on about drugs for a moment here. Drugs are a vastly interesting field of observation. I’ve done a reasonable amount of drugs in my short years and the main thing I’ve learned is that most people get high – on something. More people than not smoke, drink, snort, eat, parachute, mainline and generally take, drugs. In fact, I find more conviction for drugs in the people who do the legal ones. The drinkers love themselves a beer; they crack a cold one after work or they make a quick mixie in the mid-afternoon. They find some way, every day, to fill a container with alcohol and take the edge off. Smokers undergo the same cycle, albeit a bit faster. Smokers wake up, hock the crusted fumes from the depths of their lungs and plop the square between the lips. All in the first five minutes of the day. They have their morning smoke just to make sure there is no chance they will suck a full breath of air this day. Now the seal is broken, they must smoke to survive. Every hour or so, every 30 minutes for the heavy, they must go to their designated area and light one up – maybe even spit out a catchphrase before they do. Something like “Hey, smoke ’em if you got ’em.” That way the wheezy murmurs of the smoking gaggle sound more like bugles celebrating the arrival of royalty. The smokers try to sing with the bugles but all the high notes sound like wet cardboard in a blender so they force a chuckle and go back to smoking. Can’t quite deny that sense of community in a smoking area though. It’s very similar to the community of snobs who discuss frivolous options for their caffeinated beverages. This level of use or abuse has the most addicts in denial.

     The next echelon of drugs is stuff like pot, mushrooms, vicodin, DXM, illegal drugs that any random person can acquire with little effort. These are the ‘dopers’. The people who champion this level of drug use are the high-ons and burn-outs, the Bill & Ted types, the people who seem high whether they are or not. The people here, are the dudes in drug-rugs, dread-locked, choker-chained, pukka-wearing, long-boarding, Coachella-endorsing, craft-making, tapestry-caped, a-religious, open-minded, Bob Dylan-obsessed, Greenpeace folk. Most of political backing for legalization of drugs happens in this chunk of the user-spectrum – primarily due to the young, active nature of the people involved.

     Then we get to the tippity-toppity pointed peak of chemical perversion: Hard drugs. This is the level where people get null and void. This is where you find the appallingly normal people, who play up center-field with the masses and not left-field with the wackos, who do one drug, a lot. This is the level with the addicts and the successful, the extreme cases of drug use. There are people at this level who can’t be deterred by normal barriers, people who can still hold a conversation while they’re soaked with urine and people who can run businesses, higher than a satellite. The economic elite, and the homeless pretty much dominate this whole spectrum. Naturally, you have your middle-class casual hard drug binger but they always have an in with one of the extremes. There are actually a surprising amount of parents in this category, lots of people from the previous generation who have had a ‘fling’ with heroin or cocaine. They didn’t smoke crack but they did rock up their coke and smoke it…but it was before the ‘crack thing’ – or whatever. My mom said she had a ‘fling’ with angel dust. That generation was the Dazed and Confused one though, so it’s not all that strange they’ve gotten themselves into a few escapades with high-octane chemicals.

      There is a morbid clarity that comes with these people. They can see one face of the world so clearly, like a clairvoyant sees the future of a falling rock, yet they have all the complexity of mediocrity that dilutes their speck of enlightenment into a form of neurotic genius that ends up being more of an affliction than a blessing. People here are like were-gods. They seem like complete turds until that stroke of authenticity comes around again and they lay a universal truth down on you like a blast of heat after walking out of an air-conditioned building. There are a lot of musicians up here who suck as people, but wail as sonic oracles prophesying the path that endless beauty will take on its why back to the blackness of forever.

     So buy the ticket and take the ride but don’t forget to look around and realize, that it is just a ride.

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Post-Life Punk Rock

Well, shit. I have a cacophony of half-baked ideas for articles that will probably never make it passed the mental cutting-room floor – Or as I call it, the conceptual slaughterhouse. Within the conceptual slaughterhouse is a room at the center of the compound where the dismembered ideas use the vestiges of their unholy energies to fuse mis-matched limbs together like some kind of Franken-thought. That’s a bit flat for a fusion of incredible horror – How about we call it a Frankenberry-Thought? All in agreement? Good.

These Frankenberry-Thoughts are half alive and completely engulfed in lunacy. Most of the time they gnaw on the chains they aren’t connected to with their purplish-green gums. Leave them alone, they’re confused. Eventually, enough of them will realize their cohort’s chains taste like ass compared to their own shackles. With this realization, they will mobilize a combined effort to bust the walls out of my brain-prison like the corpses in Herbert West: Re-animator. Once freed (This is the hypothetical part) the Frankeberry-Thoughts will presumably form a haphazard punk band and attempt covers of NOFX covering Bad Religion covering The Clash…because Punk Rock is all about keeping traditions alive. After a small time in squalid poverty playing free shows to kids with absurd hair-dos, they find a spectral talent scout from Epitaph records and hit the big time as the world’s first Post-Life Punk Rock band.

After a few successful tours through the area in World of Warcraft where the Undead people live (or…decay?) and a special appearance in Eric Powell’s The Goon, the demonic force that Glenn Danzig utilized for his career with The Misfits confronted the Frankenberry-Thoughts. Danzig attempted to use his favored technique: The Flaming Studded-Bracelet Punch – but the Frankenberry-Thoughts had one more trick up their sleeve. The dreaded concept album. It was their only hope. The Frankenberry-Thoughts began to use obscure chords and ludicrous melodies to form 13-minute songs about confusing metaphors which obliterated the attention span of Danzig. Now restless, Danzig attempted to displace his discomfort with a cigarette but he kept pacing in his listlessness. The Frankenberry-Thoughts knew he was going to crack but Danzig would make them work for it.

Once the crescendo of the Frankenberry-Thoughts’ opus collided with the spectral temporal membranes of Danzig, he couldn’t take it. His cigarette was gone, his patience was eroded, his balls were itchy, and he couldn’t tie his shoes. Danzig saw his defeat coming. He swore to defile the groupies of the Frankenberry-Thoughts one day but to his dismay, the Frankeberry-Thoughts spent too much time in the Misfit Dimension to continue their tour and Epitaph dropped them from the label. Drowning in obscurity, the Frankenberry-Thoughts moved back into my head like a freight-train lobotomy. They set their axes down (the drummer literally had an ax) and went back to their gnawing only now they returned with the knowledge of occult punk-demons and a disillusionment involving the Undead Music Industry.