Sunday, December 25, 2005

Let's Have A Frankenstein Christmas

1972 was a great year for Christmas. Not only did I get a Jesse James cowboy hat and cap guns, but I also got a Frankenstein model. I'm not sure why I got this, or even who bought it for me, but I was enthralled by it.

I was even more excited when I found that it glowed in the dark! Actually only his head and hands glowed, but that still made it cooler than a regular model. Boy was I happy. What kid wouldn't want a glowing Frankenstein looking down on them as they sleep?

Well, that would be me. Do you know how creepy it is to see a glowing monster head and hands on the other side of your bedroom? The damn thing scared me to death every night. My heart would pound and I'd be afraid to close my eyes in fear that if I did it would come to life and kill me. Yet I didn't want to look at it either...because then I might actually see it come to life and lumber over to kill me.

I solved the glowing killer monster model problem by putting it in my closet every night. Well, it solved part of the problem. I didn't have to see it, but I did fear the closet door bursting open and a glowing freak jumping over to my bed to kill me. Ahhhh good times.... I no longer have the model, which is sad except for the fact that I would still fear it - which may actually be sadder.

Monday, December 12, 2005

I'm Even Wearing Tartan Underwear

The Bay City Rollers were pretty cool. Well, not really, but I liked them. I never did understand all the girls wearing tartan though. Some of them had entire outfits made of tartan. I know it was what the Rollers wore. But it seemed like wearing high water bellbottom pants with tartan trim all over it was a good way to get beaten up and humiliated at school.

I never read this paperback. It was just too poorly written and incredibly trite. Yet I still have the book and don't plan on getting rid of it. I guess I still have a soft spot in my heart for Les, Woody, Alan, Eric, and Derek....even though they did wear all that tartan.

From Teen Idol to Old Balding Guy

My dad's aunt bought me this book when I was a teenager. I never did read it. It looked very light weight - like a really long article written for a teen magazine. But it did have some nice pictures of Leif in it. He was a really cute kid.

It must be hard for teen idols once they pass that cute phase and start blending in with everyone else on the street. You used to have a hundred thousand teenagers screaming just to touch your hair, and now you're going to have trouble picking up a drunken college girl at your local bar. How the heck do you cope with that?

Those Bears are Nothing But Bad News

I have never seen a Bad News Bears movie in it's entirity....and yet I still have this.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

The Danger of Rock Concerts in1979 and Why It’s Billy Joel’s Fault

My first concert was in 1979 seeing Billy Joel play a sold out show at the local Civic Center. Granted now I’d rather hit Joel in the head with a brick than see one of his shows, but as it was my first concert and I was a fan, I sang along and used my little 110 Instamatic camera to take photos.

Throughout the show, fans would run to the front of the stage, scream, dance, or lose themselves in a Pianoman style frenzy. Every time this happened, security would make them return to their seats. I was in the second section back on the floor and wanted some closer photos. So late in the show I asked security if I could go down front to take a few pictures and the nice security man said “sure, go ahead.”

As I sauntered down the aisle secure in the knowledge that I wasn’t an idiot who was going to be asked to leave, I felt pity for the poor fools who didn’t know enough to talk to security before blindly running towards the stage. I was standing in front of the stage taking a photo when all of a sudden I was hit from behind with a force so hard that my flashcube was knocked off the top of my cameraAs it bounced across the stage under Joel’s running feet, I was in a panic. Not only did I need that big square flashcube, but I was afraid he’d twist an ankle if his foot hit it. More importantly, I was in complete fear over who or what had hit me, and if I about to be attacked again. Had security gone insane? Had someone who’d been told to sit down taken their revenge out on a happy little kid taking photos? Was this what happened at a concert?

As I looked around, I discovered that the aisles were now clogged with people pressing against the stage. My stroll up to the front and lack of reaction by security had let the entire venue know that it was now okay for everyone to run to the foot of the stage. A wall of people had descended toward Billy Joel at warp speed, and for whatever unknown reason, they felt compelled to plowed into me. I was completely shell shocked and after taking another photo or two, went back to my seat.
For a couple of months, whenever I heard the song “Bigshot” (which was the song being performed when I was pummeled by the crowd), I would break into a cold sweat, my heart would hammer to get outside my ribcage, and I’d have an anxiety attack. Thanks ever so much, Mr. Only the Good Die Young…thanks for trying to kill me and giving an innocent young teen a heaping helping of transitory emotional scarring.

Look at Mr. Smugpants sitting on top of his piano. You know he was scoffing at me!! Oh the pain! The pain!! Damn him in all his rock star glory as he tramples young girls dreams and flashcubes, while he lives out his soft souled shoe rock star fantasies in the mansion and crashed car of his choice. Damn him all to hell!!....also that's the worst James Cagney imitation I've ever seen.

The Lack of Danger at Concerts in 1979 When Billy Joel is Not Present

In contrast to the psychological scarring from Mr. Billy “I’m the Entertainer, Damn It!” Joel, the Kinks concert was a joy. No trampling hordes of people, no flashcubes bouncing under rock stars feet, no post traumatic stress every time I hear one of their songs - what joy!
This was the first general admission concert I attended. Little did I realize that people who come late will muscle their way into the front row. I got pushed around a little, but managed to hold my own. My only complaint was a girl two people over from me who clapped with her big lobster hands two feet in front of her face, which meant they ended up in many of my photos.

Also as opposed to Billy “Taste My Trampling Horde” Joel, the only thing Ray Davies did was pour champagne over the audience down front. This only served to annoy me because when it dried, my camera, glasses, and clothes were sticky and I smelled like alcohol, which is bad for a fifteen year old who is being picked up after the show by her parents.