Phases (of Brilliance)


“Put me on a toasted bagel,” as my Dad would say. I think my uncle says that, too. But, don’t quote me. It’s a family thing.

I’m on a roll lately. Not literally, though. Not like a sandwich roll.

I tend to ramble on. Have you been paying attention?

Bear in mind, I don’t need sympathy “likes.” I only need genuine support.

So, go ahead and “like” this post, but only if it appeals to you.

Know What I Mean, Jellybean?

I saw Iron Chic on Saturday night, but you already knew that.

They played “Elm Street.” I got footage of that one. Do you want to watch it? The setlist was fairly predictable. They played the hits, like “Cutesy Monster Man,” “Black Friday,” and “My Best Friend (Is a Nihilist),” amongst a handful of other infectious cuts. Truth be told, a lot of the songs just went “In One Ear,” and out the other.

The show was at Thee Parkside, but everyone says “The Parkside,” so it really just sounds like “Thuh Parkside” in dialogue.

The food is good at Thee Parkside. I had the Carne Asada tater tots. We ate at a picnic table. We sat on a park bench of sorts. Last time I was at Thee Parkside, I had the Reuben and a side salad.

Off With Their Heads (OWTH) were on the bill, too. It was a double-headlining gig. It was only $19.50 when all was said and done. No joke.

Actually, this is all a joke. It’s supposed to be funny. Iron Chic poke fun at these topics, don’t you know? OWTH comment on the absurdities of life, too. In the end, it’s just dark comedy.

They’re merely comedians. They’re just actors. They’re musicians, too. They’re multi-talented. It’s performance art at its best. They help us cope with the uncertainty, the mundane, the regularities, and the abnormalities of daily life.

These are the days of our lives, folks. Iron Chic and OWTH provide the soundtrack.

Iron Chic and OWTH delve into our existence, our purpose, our successes, our shortcomings, our strengths, our weaknesses, our afflictions, and thus, our addictions.

Still, “We’re not quite sure what being human means.”

Yup, this was a “True Miserable Experience.”

To you, it probably “Sounds Like A Pretty Brutal Murder.”

And, at the end of the day, Iron Chic are the modern-day version of Gin Blossoms. Try and digest that one.

And, for once, try to “Focus On Your Own Family.”

And, help me out here, because “Goddamnit, I’m falling apart.”

Believe me, you don’t want any of this. Unless, maybe, you do?

Everyone outside the venue, myself included, was suffering from existential dread. They were smoking cigarettes. They talked about what they do, and where they eat brunch on Sundays. And they talked about gentrification, and which high school they attended, and which publications for whom they write.

Yeah, it’s just one big joke. We’re all comedians. All my friends are fucking comedians. We think we’re on top of the world, but we’re actually going down with the ship.

And, “I feel like this every single night.”

I don’t know what I’m supposed to do.”

The line for the restroom was too long at Thee Parkside. I had to go back to The Yankee. The Connecticut Yankee – that is — which is a watering hole just kitty-corner (i.e. diagonal) from Thee Parkside.

But, maybe, that’s “TMI” (i.e. too much information).

Now, it’s Sunday, and “I think I’m having a heart attack,” kind of like George Costanza in “The Heart Attack.” It’s the eighth episode of the second season. What a week. Who can live like this? And, I have an appointment with the real world at 3pm PST.

And, I can’t stop listening to Iron Chic. And, I won’t stop listening to OWTH.

Again, this is supposed to be funny. It’s all one big joke. Let loose, would ya?

I watched Up In Smoke last weekend. And, if you weren’t aware, every Cheech and Chong film is the same. You can dive in at any moment. And, you’ll laugh until you cry.

The same thing happens when you listen to Iron Chic and OWTH.

And, I stopped smoking pot last night. It was about an hour after the show. I got home and I laughed myself to sleep.

I considered watching Falling Down with Michael Douglas, but I wasn’t in desolation. So, I opted to watch Black Sheep with Chris Farley and David Spade.

And, I’d like to mention that “I keep falling down because I never listen. I never listen.”

Are you the black sheep of your family, too?

It turns out that “I’m outta my mind and I’m outta your sight.”

And, this is not meant to be a drill. I’m just telling you how it is.

I wear rock ‘n’ roll – inscribed t-shirts, and “Nothing will ever change.

Oy vey.

You need more Iron Chic in your life. You’d be a happier person. And you need to cut out that negativity. You must listen to OWTH.

Iron Chic most likely procured their name via The Iron Sheik, which just so happens to be a former WWF World Heavyweight Champion (circa 1983). He eventually relinquished the crown to some guy named Hulk Hogan. Who would’ve thought?

And, on Saturday evening, Ryan Young – the frontman of OWTH – praised Iron Chic’s greatness. Then, he imitated The Iron Sheik as he flung a red t-shirt over his head. Who would’ve thought?

And, towards the end of the OWTH set, I wondered, “Should I hail another Uber or ‘Start Walking?’” How would I get home?

And, “I Just Want You To Know” that I’m so sick and tired of talking to people. I’d rather write. And, I’d rather listen to others.

I met Steven outside of Thee Parkside. I have an Uncle Steve, as well, but that’s not an integral part of this story.

Turns out, Steven and I attended the same high school. But I’m 5 years older than he, and he doesn’t know of Gin Blossoms. Steven was there with Cheyenne – yes, like the capital of Wyoming. But she’s a Californian.

I crossed paths with another character named Alex. He likes RVIVR. But, I don’t know much about RVIVR.

I ran into another fellow named Tim. We connected because we both own three-letter given names. Turns out, he attended FEST 16, too. We talked about The Dopamines, in addition to Banner Pilot, Iron Chic, and OWTH.

Oh, and I encountered another Ian outside after the show. I can’t remember what his story was, though.

And, I hung out with my friends John and Jess intermittently. We talked about The Bronx and Mariachi El Bronx. It’s the same group of individuals, just different genres at play. The Bronx is hardcore punk, while Mariachi El Bronx is mariachi music. It’s not meant to be ironic, either.

On Saturday, I claimed, “Bad Religion preach. That’s their shtick.” They’re one of my favorite bands.

Meanwhile, John said, “The Lawrence Arms are incomparable.” I only know Oh! Calcutta!, so I can’t really expand on this topic of discussion.

Rest assured, I am seeing Joyce Manor on Wednesday at The UC Theatre in Berkeley. It’ll be pretty emotional. If you’ve never heard them before, you should check them out. I would listen to this song. After all, “This Song Is A Mess But So Am I.”

Then, I work on Thanksgiving Day. But, I’m aiming to “Get A Life” after the holidays.

I’m seeing Pennywise on Saturday, December 2 in Sacramento. I’ll have some drinks, eat some good food, and then I’ll see the original “It” band.

I’ll see my niece, too. Her name is Collette. Collette is 18 months old. Collette calls me “Uncle.” Collette is cooler than your niece.

Then, I’ll probably write about my experience and insert relevant punk rock tunes to help nurture my thoughts in a subtle fashion. That’s basically the foundation of “My Episodes.”

So it goes.

I met a girl in my Uber Pool on Saturday. She told me that her life was a drag. She was headed to the Castro. I was on my way to Potrero Hill. I told her that I go through “Phases of Brilliance.”

Our driver’s name was Sam, which just so happens to be another 3-letter first name. Sam had the heat cranked up. I cracked my window to get some fresh air. But, alas, it was “[His] house, [his] rules, [his] heated [Uber] swimming pool.”

And, if this has been a waste of your time, well then, I’m sorry. I’m just enjoying my life. I’m not your therapist.

So, “Seek Advice Elsewhere.”

I only really listen to In Desolation and Home. I don’t know From the Bottom or Hospitals that well. But, really, who wants to listen to a record called Hospitals? That sounds so depressing.

And, I typically listen to Not Like This and The Constant One. However, on Friday afternoon, I dug into the Shitty Rambo EP, just for “Shits [‘n’] Giggles.”

And maybe, just maybe, You Can’t Stay Here is a stepping-stone towards something more mature, as evidenced by “Invisible Ink.” And maybe, just maybe, in 20 years, we’ll be talking about You Can’t Stay Here.

And, maybe, just maybe, this phase will end. Indeed, it has ended. Reason being, I’m out of material.

Fuck This, I’m Out.”


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