Nine Facts, One Falsehood (Part Two)

Slight return to an earlier post tonight. Nine of the statements below are facts. One of the statements below is false. Which is the lie?

  1. I earned my first paycheck as a journalist when I was 13 years old. I was hired to write the “Teen Corner” column for the Mitchel Field News, which was supposed to be sort of a social column for the teenagers on a military base. I was fired a few months later because I used my column to write reviews of Steely Dan and Jethro Tull records instead.
  2. On my home office desk (where I type now) I have: a pair of fuzzy dice, a Beavis and Butthead statue, a stuffed frog, a stuffed sloth, Chinese bells, and a Spongebob Squarepants lunchbox.
  3. I have a series of circular scars on my left leg and foot from dropping molten plastic on myself while burning a model airplane. The plastic burnt itself into the flesh, then hardened there and had to be pulled back out.
  4. I haven’t intentionally taken a nap since approximately 1987. I only seem to have enough “go to sleep” chemical to do it once a day, and if I fall asleep during the day, then I stay up all night. So I actively avoid falling asleep during the day.
  5. I never used sunscreen growing up, and in fact was a devotee of tanning oil, which gave me a beautiful mocha tone and (later) two rounds of skin cancer.
  6. When I graduated from the Naval Academy, I had to choose between a variety of staff corps position with schools in Colorado Spring, Norfolk and Athens, Georgia. I chose Athens (Supply Corps School) because my favorite band (Butthole Surfers) had recently relocated there from Austin. By the time I actually arrived in Athens, though, they had moved back to Texas.
  7. Peter Buck of R.E.M. publicly insulted my musical tastes in front of a bunch of giggling sycophants at the Wuxtry Record Store in Athens, Georgia (where he worked, before he was famous) when I appeared at the cash register carrying Einsturzende Neubauten and Fad Gadget records. I knew who he was, but I still said “Shut up, record clerk, and take my money.”
  8. Kim Deal got angry with me during an interview when I asked her about a side project that was actual her twin sister Kelley’s gig.
  9. I listen to Wings albums far more than I listen to the Beatles and John Lennon’s solo albums combined.
  10. I used to bite my nails, but now I keep emery boards at all of my desks, and as soon as the urge to nibble arises: FILE! FILE! FILE! As long as nails are smooth, there is no desire to nosh.

22 thoughts on “Nine Facts, One Falsehood (Part Two)

  1. I am going with #7. The part about Peter Buck insulting your choice in records is true. I don’t remember which records you were buying but I am guessing that part is also true, given how much you like Einsturzende Neubauten and the song they did with Fad Gadget, Collapsing New People. Your comment back to him does not sound like you though. You would have said something less in-your-face and more clever. Something he would not react to when you said it but would realize two days later what you really meant.

    • Ha!!!

      You are actually correct, though not for the reason you note . . . that was my desk set-up in my New York desk, not my Iowa desk. In Iowa, I have sort of a Steampunk thing going: I use a 19th Century bow-front desk with a fold-out desk-top, on which I have all of my technological goodies, speakers, mouse, screens, iPod chargers, etc.

      Well played, sir. Now get your mind out of the gutter!

    • Yep, there’s a lie. See the note below about #2 . . . you are remembering my New York desk, not my Iowa desk!

      The story in #7 happened. I walked up with my purchases, and Peter Buck looked at them and said “You don’t really LIKE this stuff, do you? You’re just buying it to be different or cool or something, right?”

      So I told him to shut up and take my money.

      Another time, we were at the Uptown Lounge, a live music venue. A couple of friends and I had gotten there very early to get the best booth to watch a show by Adrian Belew. The room got all packed, with most people having to stand.

      Then the club manager came over and told us we had to get up, because our booth was reserved. Who took it from us?

      Peter Buck.

  2. Hmmm. Another tough one. I’m going to go with 8, only because I recall you saying once that, although you never cared for the Pixies (another debate for another day), you felt you and Ms. Deal had a nice rapport during your interview. Although, maybe anger was part of what made it so good!

    • Nope, this one’s true. From the 1997 interview, after I asked Kim about what I thought was her collaboration with Kris Kristofferson . . .

      Kim makes no bones about how she feels when people confuse her with Kelley. “I hate that!” she spits. “I get pegged for a lot of shit that Kelley does. I did not do a record with Kris Kristofferson. I did not record with Sebastian Bach. I am the one who sang with Sonic Youth. I also produced Brainiac and Guided By Voices. I’m even the girl who was in the Pixies. You can’t believe how bad it can get some times: I mean, we did a show in Santa Clara with the current line-up and they wrote it up in the papers but they used an old picture of Jim and Kelley! That shit really gets on my nerves. The first time somebody asked me about doing a duet with Kris Kristofferson, I was like ‘Oh my God! Auuuggghhh! Owwwww!'” Deal descends into a fit of indecipherable distress noises, before tapering to silence. “Whatever. Just remember, if there’s a Deal on a tribute album, it’s gonna be Kelley!”

      She was legitimately pissed, but she didn’t cut me off, and the interview recovered from there, fortunately. Here’s the whole write-up:

  3. I going to go with 5. I hope its 5. If it isn’t 5, I am essentially calling your cancer scares lies, in which case I am a horrible human being, but I’m going to go with 5.

    • Whenever we get around to intentionally, consciously crossing paths at Vaudeville Mews or Salisbury House or some greasy breakfast joint or wherever, I will point out my cancer surgery scars for you. That one is real, though you are by no means a horrible person for questioning it. Punchline is: everybody wear your sunscreen, yo!!!!

      Glad to see you back in regular posting mode at Iowaves, by the by . . . for those who haven’t hot-linked it yet, see: . . . most of what I know about Iowa music, I learned from your blog, so I recommend it, highly, to readers local and national. Good writing, good critical analysis, good fun. Huttah!

      • You’re too kind. Glad to know all went well and that I’m not a monster. And as an Irishman, I pretty much bathe in spf 75.

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