Wednesday, January 26, 2011

American Grungefiti: The Shuffle Game

I'm going to spend thirty or forty minutes free-associating my life with whatever band comes up on shuffle:
Young Marble Giants - Their record, Colossal Youth, was out of print forever. 1998: This girl I briefly liked and pursued in college after we both played terrible pool against each other at a friend's party and seemed to hit it off had a copy of this record. I wanted it and kept bugging her to dub it for me. She lost interest in me after a few weeks and went from friendly to bored to hostile in record time. A friend who knew her since grade school told me, "Don't worry about it. She only likes dumb guys she can boss around." I was flattered I wasn't dumb but also dismayed that she thought I was dumb for a few weeks. In my defense, I was drunk when we met, and I play pool like a kid born with only the parts of his brain that understand Lucky Charms and spitting. She never dubbed this record for me, but I bought an import seven or eight years ago for a chunk of change. Then it was officially reissued and I felt like a sucker.
Lemonheads - There was a period where it was really uncool to like this band. Maybe that period is still happening, but they've sure aged better than a lot of their '90s peers who were supposed to be much cooler. Bettie Serveert, anyone? I think I first got into this band/"band" in my sophomore year of high school.
The Fiery Furnaces - One of my favorite recent bands that everyone seems to hate. I like to think it's because people are too lazy to invest time into complex, difficult music but I can also see how they would annoy you if you didn't share their sensibility. I like slippery bands that evolve and change and try crazy shit and aren't afraid to fail ambitiously and whose live show is not just a copy of the album. I've liked this band a lot since I first heard "Two Fat Feet" in whatever year it was. 2003? Who gives a shit? This decade was just one long year anyway.
Roxy Music - College again. I got Siren first, then got almost everything else over the course of the next 13 years. Ferry, Eno, Manzanera. This band is so ridiculous and overstuffed and bizarre and perfect. This band shouldn't work at all. They sound like a glam rock score to a wealthy European businessman's elegant attempt to describe what would happen if Caligula were in charge of Studio 54. I recommend the cover of Country Life to horny teens everywhere.
Turner Bros. - Unfairly obscure sibling soul group I first heard on WFMU seven or eight or nine years ago while working a shift as a proofreader for the Texas legislature. I quit that job so I could pursue bigger and better things, and I've had nothing but disaster and bad luck since. The message here is give up your hopes and dreams. Settle. Settle for less. You will be able to buy a house and pets and nice things and go on trips and not worry about money all the time if you just settle.
"You Belong To Me," The Honeys, from the compilation Pet Projects: The Brian Wilson Productions - Every version of this song reminds me of Steve Martin and Bernadette Peters doing it up ukulele-style in The Jerk. That sweet little scene always makes me feel okay, if only for those few minutes. Let's conclude with a moment from that film:
Father: Son, now that you're going out into the world, there's
something you should know. You see that?

Navin: Yeah.

Father: That's shit. And this is shinola.

Navin: Shit, shinola.

Father: Son, you're going to be all right.

Charlie Louvin R.I.P.

Monday, January 24, 2011

American Grungefiti: 1977-1990, Part 1

Maybe our personalities and interests are branded on our brains from the beginning. We don't change that much. I've always been a loner, obsessed with music and the written word, a lover of absurdity, full of a blinding hatred of sports, always feeling like I haven't been given the complete instructions about how to do anything, dismayed at my own cruel streak, put at ease by a good movie, bad at making good things happen for myself, lazy and ambitious, jealous and empathetic, naive and jaded, able to easily memorize trivia, slow at math, good at making friends but pretty terrible at instigating romantic relationships, too often stuck inside my own head, bored by sports fans, organized religion, and small talk, lover of foods high in saturated fat, easily discouraged by how rigged life can be, fascinated by other people but too hypercritical of their flaws, able to cultivate that sense of entitlement that comes from being the oldest child while despising any other sense of entitlement, a late bloomer who gets what I want but only after a long, long, long wait.
I've always loved music. My mother, a young mother with her first child, quickly learned to strap the headphones on me to calm me down, shut me up, get me to relax and nod off into sleep. My connection to music was intense, still is. I don't know why I connected with it so strongly. My parents weren't particularly avid music fans in the years I lived with them, though my mother was a huge Monkees fan as a young girl and she's had particular favorites throughout her life (Carole King, Bonnie Raitt, Lucinda Williams, Leonard Cohen (though I get the credit of introducing her to the last two)). My dad likes most music when it's playing but has no interest in buying albums, following any musician's career, or seeing live shows. It's something pleasant in the background for him. My mother spent more of her free time reading than listening to music, and my dad always went to the television. I remember my parents having a small collection of records and eight-tracks, though I think I played them more than they did. The only eight-tracks I remember were a Ringo Starr solo album and The Beatles' Magical Mystery Tour soundtrack, which was playing when the eight-track player went kaput, eating the tape and spitting it out onto the living room floor. A disappointing day for me. The vinyl consisted of a small, random assortment of the popular music of the era. I remember Rod Stewart, Roberta Flack, Anne Murray, and some K-Tel country and pop compilations. The three I listened to the most were the Beach Boys' Endless Summer compilation, Billy Joel's 52nd Street, and Chicago's first Greatest Hits album. I would sit on the floor, headphones on, listening to "25 or 6 to 4" over and over again while staring at the cover. I couldn't get enough of that cover (see above). Maybe that cover is a metaphor for my life. I try to make something happen, but it never quite reaches fruition, often being upended in a comedically tragic hijink that has the potential for whatever-the-fuck mirthmaking or a pavement-smushed corpse. I never once made it through Side 2.
My real musical education happened through top 40 radio, TBS's Night Tracks program, my mother's three brothers, my cousin Pat, my friend Clint and his older siblings Jason and Jenny, and my own insatiable curiosity. I sucked up everybody's particular tastes like a sponge, accounting for my (mostly) permanent catholic (little-c) taste (excepting 6th and 7th grades, when I was exclusively into metal). I lost the taste for big-C catholicity pretty early, but that's another story. Well, maybe not. Maybe I never connected with my Catholic upbringing because music was my religion. Once you hear Diamond Dave-era Van Halen, among many rocking others, the Stations of the Cross lacks a certain amount of pizzazz and blistering guitar pyrotechnics. Why confess to a priest about punching your brother when you could confess to killing a man while singing along to Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody"?
Speaking of "Bohemian Rhapsody," I once disappointed my entire 8th grade class by ruining an urban legend of a madman living in the abandoned old schoolhouse a mile outside of town. We were told by some high school kids that this madman had molested and murdered two children in the basement and left some demented ramblings on a blackboard. During a friend's birthday party, we climbed in a broken window with some flashlights and looked around. "There it is," someone shrieked. "There's the weird message on the blackboard." We read it, people's minds were blown, and then I ruined everything by pointing out the message's origins. "Dudes," I said, "Those are just the lyrics to a song by Queen. 'Bohemian Rhapsody'? Ever heard of it?" This was pre-Wayne's World. The few holdouts finally admitted defeat when the movie came out and made the song a hit again. Deep down, we all knew the story was bullshit anyway. If we truly believed some guy wanted to rape and murder us and was actually there in that abandoned schoolhouse, only, say, three of us would have climbed in that window. You know, those of us who enjoy madman murder/rapes. Later that night, we had to run from the cops, and I jumped a farmer's fence to hide and almost got kicked by a horse. I need a Freddie Mercury anthem about that, something in the vein of "Death on Two Legs" crossed with "Ogre Battle" with just a pinch of "In the Lap of the Gods ... Revisited." Maybe call it "Thunder Stallion (Horse of Pride)." Somebody exhume that man's corpse and clone him. We don't have enough Freddie Mercurys in this Sufjan Stevens age.
I'm running long and need to do other things before I go to bed, so I'll continue this discussion later. I'm going to write about each of those formative music-exposing entities I mentioned earlier and how they affected me as a child and maybe I'll make it to the 1990s, my original goal, in a couple years. Good night and, remember, if it's too loud, you're too fat. Wait, I got that mixed up. It's only rock and roll, but I want to make love to it, kill it, and eat it to make its unholy power live in me forever.

Friday, January 21, 2011

American Grungefiti Pt. 1 Afterword: Can't We All Just Grunge Along?

Now that we're all done groaning at my horrible puns, I need to address something that's bothered me since this afternoon. Part of what I'm trying to criticize in my A.V. Club-bashing is dismissive, knee-jerk snark and condescending hipster detachment, but I'm guilty of that same thing with the harsh way I criticized the guy I said I wouldn't bring up anymore. You know the guy, the guy who got the city editor job instead of me lo those many years ago during the electroclash era. My arch-nemesis. I wrote this a few days ago: "...fuck it, the guy sucks, he's a rude prick, a hack writer, and his shitty band irritated me by playing music in my general direction while I was waiting for Oneida to play." I say some harsh things about his writing later, and I stand by my opinion. That's the impression I get from his work, and I have a problem with it, just like I have a problem with other writers, musicians, TV show creators, etc., who use the same tone. But saying that he sucks and that he's a rude prick just wasn't very nice, and I'm a rude prick for saying things like that about a guy I don't know very well who shares more than a few of my mutual friends and friendly acquaintances. My impressions of him being a rude prick are six or seven years old and come from observing his condescending rudeness to some customers at the video store where he used to work and an anecdote about him being rude and dismissive to a friend of mine at a party. The rest of it comes from my own biases about indie scenesters and my jealousy of him getting a job that I was close to getting and really wanted. He gets paid to interview interesting people, while I barely get paid to take abuse from teenage assholes. So there you have it. My long-held grudge against him is part of the petty bitterness I tend to cultivate, which tends to smother my good qualities and keeps me from enjoying life and bettering myself. I'm carrying a lot of shit around in my head right now. A lot of it is my fault, a lot of it comes from the grim reaper drive-by shooting the holy living fuck out of my family tree, a lot of it comes from my parents deciding to turn my family into an insanity factory after years of stability when I really needed them not to do that, and a lot of it is the fault of those goddamn fat cats in Washington and their fat cat corporate buddies taking a giant shit on the economic well-being of the lower and middle classes, a giant shit we will never be able to clean up ever. But, yeah, most of it is my own damn fault. My therapist is going to put me on Prozac or Wellbutrin soon, so that I can clear these cobwebs out of my brain and think like a regular person again, but in the meantime, I need to relax and focus on getting out of this brainfog.
It's hard to do, though, when contemporary culture is so goddamn annoying. I feel connected to the art and culture of, say, the 1700s through the late 1990s, but this last decade, man, what the fuck? I feel so alienated from the present. That's not to say I haven't enjoyed giant steaming piles of this decade's music, movies, etc., but I just don't feel connected to my peers or contemporary culture. (I'm speaking generally here. I'm not talking about my friends.) This is a decade of overloaded content, lack of emotional and intellectual engagement, diffusion, marginalization, and detached, smug, condescending, self-referential to the point of exhaustion, excessive consumption. The fact that Seth McFarlane has three goddamn shows on the same night says a lot about what is happening to us. Whatever happened to real feeling and real thought? Whatever happened to getting your hands dirty instead of standing above it all, smirking like a goon? Why not read one of the classics instead of watching Carnosaur again? Why not watch Carnosaur and enjoy it for the dumb fun it is without spending hours of your life making fun of it in print?
See, it's hard to express any of this stuff without sounding like a goddamn schoolmarm. It's preachy. No one wants to hear "be better." But if you're a bright, clever person alive right now, you can be better. And I can stop feeling sorry for myself and being so damn petty and bitter about everything. I can be better. I am a sanctimonious schoolmarm preacher from soapbox town. Sorry, everybody.
I don't know. I feel like myself in my 3 a.m. music, literature, film, stand-up comedy, delicious food and drink imaginary fortress treehouse party bubble. Whenever I have to leave the bubble, I'm just a blank, unseasoned slab of raw meat. Prop meatboy in the corner. Put down some butcher paper and give him beers until he falls asleep. And wash your hands afterward.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

American Grungefiti aka Remembrance of Gruntrucks Past

When I was younger, I thought of my mom's brothers as kindred spirits of Dennis Hopper, Peter Fonda, and Jack Nicholson in Easy Rider. In these grown-up late nights full of hopelessness and anger, I consider their recent fandom of Glenn Beck, Sarah Palin, and Rush Limbaugh, and I sometimes think of them as the guys at the end of the movie, the rednecks in the pickup truck who shoot Fonda and Hopper to death on the side of the road. Memory and nostalgia are a funny thing, and so are the stories you hold onto because you want them to be true. The fact is, my uncles are none of these things, mostly. Is there really much difference between sanctimonious fame whore Sarah Palin playing "Sarah Palin" on TV, and much better human being Peter Fonda playing a sanctimonious hippie in "Easy Rider"? Both are fictional characters whose iconography we use to put a brand on a part of our public identity.
I liked to think of myself in high school as a cynical, rebellious, mysterious, misunderstood outsider who would one day show all those rednecks, jocks, and unrequited loves how special I was. I didn't realize how fundamentally ordinary those feelings were until I had some distance from those years. I was not special, at least not in that way. Lonely teenagers who like rock music are a dime a dozen and were a nickel a baker's dozen in the grunge era (statistic courtesy U.S. News and World Report's "Special Grunge Issue" of February 1992). I believed my story then, and that's fine. It got me through some shitty years that mostly just led to other shitty years, but what can you do? Complain? I started high school in September 1991, the month and year DGC released Nirvana's Nevermind. (Honestly, school started in late August, but sometimes you have to lie to tell the truth.) It set the tone for my next four years.
I've been thinking about 1990s music and my relationship with it after reading a series in the Onion A.V. Club recommended to me by a friend. This series, called "Whatever Happened to Alternative Nation?" and written by Steven Hyden, eerily parallels much of my 1990s relationship to music. I'll get into all that soon, but I probably need to get into something else first.
If you're one of the five people who reads my blogs and/or follows me on Twitter (what a pathetic opening to a sentence), then you probably need an explanation. You? Recommending some articles on the Onion A.V. Club site? But you hate those people. I don't hate those people. I just hate the way they write. It wasn't always that way. I used to read The Onion's website in its entirety every week from the mid-1990s to the early 2000s. I was also a fan of the A.V. Club, back when it was one well-researched, in-depth lengthy interview with an interesting person per week and a selection of decent book, film, and music reviews. As time went by and my life got busier, I stopped reading the A.V. Club and just skimmed The Onion. I didn't have a problem with the two sites, I just got out of the habit. In the mid-2000s, stuck in another miserable, dreary, boring job that used none of my skills and regularly stripped me of my dignity and self-respect, I discovered that the A.V. Club's local coverage was expanding to my city. This interesting factoid became a possible life-changer when the A.V. Club advertised a city editor position. I filled out the application and the writing samples and prayed to Satan, Elvis, Jesus, Baby Jesus, and Ted Knight to get me an interview. It worked. I survived the brutal culling and became one of seven people interviewed for the position.
My excitement, hopes, and dreams evaporated about thirty seconds into the interview, which took place in the lobby of a fancy hotel. I was interviewed by A.V. Club editor/writer Josh Modell, who also writes for Spin. He was a nice guy, we had a good email rapport, but the face-to-face interview just did not work. At all. I think I was the fourth or fifth person interviewed, and I felt like the decision had already been made. The interview was brief and perfunctory, I felt awkward trying to make a case for myself in a crowded hotel lobby, and I blew a couple of important questions disguised as small talk when I completely spaced on the last band I'd seen live, good local bands, and a decent restaurant near the hotel. I left feeling bad, though Modell said he'd follow up with a phone interview in a week. He didn't. He did write me a nice email a few weeks later letting me down gently, though, and promising to give my information to the guy who got the job so I could do some freelance work. In a ridiculous bit of irony, the guy who got the city editor job was a guy I pissed off several years ago when I made fun of his "electroclash" band and invited strangers to punch him in the face on this very blog. Was it my belated comeuppance for saying mean things about a stranger in a public forum? Probably, but fuck it, the guy sucks, he's a rude prick, a hack writer, and his shitty band irritated me by playing music in my general direction while I was waiting for Oneida to play.
So here we are. Of course, my history with the A.V. Club makes my criticisms of its product highly suspect. I know this. It could be misconstrued as the sour-grapes face-saving of a sad, bitter, tiny-spirited man. Here's the thing, though. After my extreme disappointment at not getting the job left me, I started reading the A.V. Club again. I had some immediate visceral reactions to its redesign, new focus, and new writing style. These were, in rough order: How do you find anything on this damn site? What's with all the stupid lists? Why are they writing like this? Wow, I really should have checked out the site before applying. I thought it had the same format as it did in 1999. I'm glad I didn't get this job. I'm glad they didn't hire me. I had no business even applying for this job. I didn't do my research and I screwed up the interview. Why is there so much content and yet not much content at all? Why do these people all write like each other?
Here are some specific problems I have with the A.V. Club and its house style. Just to get this out of the way and never bring the guy up again, the aforementioned city editor, recently promoted to the national A.V. Club, who doesn't like me or my comments about his former band very much, is a bad writer. He uses too many cliches and affects a smug tone that suggests he feels superior to his subject matter and his audience. Every sentence is a chance to drip more snark on something, even the stuff he purports to like. There is a failure to truly engage with the subject matter, the audience, and the dirty business of life itself. Everything is fodder for detached, hipster scorn. I know the word hipster gets thrown around so much now it barely has any meaning, but I feel it's appropriate here.
My problems with the rest of A.V. Club, while granting it a certain entertainment value and admitting that it's a fun site to visit when you need to kill ten minutes:
The meaningless Inventory lists. I like lists a lot, but most of these lists are just content for content's sake, so free of meaning and substance they act as little more than a laundry list of pop culture consumption. This has the effect of making everything the same, making everything just product for generating more content which creates a desire for more product to create more content. It has a deadening effect, a numbing of honest response, a junk-food gorge approach to cultural comment and criticism.
The faux-serious debates about shit that does not fucking matter at all. Read this and see if you can find anything worth saving. I couldn't.
The destructive way they write about meaningful art, music, literature, etc. in the exact same tone they write about pop culture trash, junk, and mediocrity. This is a fine line for me to walk. I find lots of artistic beauty and wild, throbbing, beating life in drive-in exploitation pictures, horror movies, pop music, profanity and obscenity, and lowbrow humor. But I make a case for it in my own awkward, personal way. And maybe that's all the A.V. Club is doing, too. I just can't relate, though, to a style that treats Don Quixote, Carl Dreyer, the Now That's What I Call Music series, and Snooki's ghost-written supermarket book as if they're all part of the same continuum and uses such a uniform house style to express it. Everything's disposable/of earth-shattering importance with these writers.
Content, content, content. So much content.
Examples of the house writing style that annoys me so much:
"When I interviewed B.J. Novak a while back I was a little surprised when he said watching Pulp Fiction made him want to be a writer. It was sweet and guileless and not at all hip. The hip response would be a lofty dissertation on how a triple-feature of Preston Sturges or Billy Wilder masterpieces instilled in him a fierce love for the written word. Then I realized that Tarantino made me want to be a writer as well. Pop-culture legend contends that only a few people saw The Sex Pistols play live in their early days or picked up Big Star’s debut when it first came out, but that everyone who did formed a band. But the Sex Pistols and Big Star were cult sensations. Tarantino, in sharp contrast, was a cult filmmaker who conquered the mainstream. He did more than that: He made the mainstream his bitch." -- Nathan Rabin, My Year of Flops Grindhouse review.
I could keep going, but I either made my point or didn't by now, and I can just keep making it or not making it.
Anyway, despite these criticisms, I'm really enjoying Steven Hyden's series about '90s alternative rock. Hyden's writing here comes across as more personal and thoughtful and more connected to actual human experience and emotion than the 12 people writing in one irritating voice style the A.V. Club has been driving into the ditch lately. I want to write about the parallels between Hyden's '90s experiences and mine, and I will do that in future posts. I plan on writing about my relationship with music at different times in my life, not just the '90s, but my reaction to Hyden's series of articles is a good place to start.
To get this thing started, here is every favorite band/artist I ever had:
Age 6: John Cafferty & the Beaver Brown Band (for their Eddie & the Cruisers soundtrack)
6-7: Michael Jackson
7-11: Van Halen
11-13: Guns N' Roses
13-14: Fishbone
14-18: Nirvana
18-21: Trying out many contenders, including Pavement, Guided By Voices, Neil Young, Dinosaur Jr, The Who, The Flying Burrito Brothers, Elvis Costello & The Attractions, The Afghan Whigs, Minutemen, The Stooges, and so on
21-23: Guided By Voices
24-present: Guided By Voices, Neil Young (tie)
Who will be next? Mantovani? Sufjan Stevens? The Capital Steps? No, I'm good. I think my favorites are locked in for life.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Tales from the ditch

I tried to start this post three different ways and none of it worked. I feel like shit. That's the only way to say it. I'm not happy. My weeks are falling into a regular routine. I'm unhappy Sunday afternoon through Thursday evening. I'm happy Thursday night through Sunday morning, with brief flashes of anxiety and portents of doom and gloom, but mostly happy. I'm not lazy. It's not about hating work, physical or mental work. I haven't had any work since before Christmas anyway. It's about the days where I own my time versus the days where I don't. Too much of my life is about waiting. I'm sick of waiting. I do things to change my life. I take active steps. I seek outside help. Maybe I should just accept that I may never have a job that means anything to me and figure out some way of keeping it from destroying me. Maybe that's not even why I feel bad so often. I don't know why. I think mediocrity makes me sad. My own. The world's. I get a lot of pleasure from eating a strip of bacon or from that moment one minute and 54 seconds into Big Star's "Daisy Glaze." I get pleasure from things like that. Those things seem more important than the other things that are supposed to be important. We, sorry for using the royal "we" here, have created such a baffling and unnecessary system of emotional bureaucracy in our interactions with each other and most of it destroys real pleasure. There are 7 billion of us, and I'm not even counting the dead ones. That is ridiculous. How many guys on TV analyzing football stats do we want? How are you doing? Fine. How about you? Can't complain. Working hard or hardly working? A little bit of both. I hear it might rain later this week. That's good, we could use the rain. We'll probably get it on the weekend. Seems like it always works out that way. How's your oldest? He's a lawyer. OH MY GOD THERE'S A SHORTAGE OF LAWYERS! OH MY GOD ONE THING WE NEED IS MORE LAWYERS THERE ARE NOT ENOUGH LAWYERS WE ARE EXPERIENCING A TERRIFYING LAWYER SCARCITY LEATHER COUCHES BOATS CABLE FLOORTILE MORTGAGES AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHH BLOOD EVERYWHERE BLOOD EVERYWHERE!
Thanks, everybody. I feel a little better now.

Thursday, January 06, 2011

I'm not dead

Feeling a little bit better today. Still have a lot of problems, but I didn't want to leave that last depressing post at the top of the page for very long.
Good things about the Xmas trip:
Long road trip with my wife and a kick-ass music playlist. Only got irritable twice (first one - sleepy, second one - hungry).
Seeing my mom and dad, most of my cousins, aunts, and uncles, and their 12 million babies and small children.
Getting serious love from my mom's cat.
Seeing my brother and sister-in-law. Watching Die Hard 1 and 2 with them and eating lots of stuff.
Playing some drums.
Seeing some good friends and friendly acquaintances I don't get to see much.
Attending a small gathering of friends that somehow turned into a faux-celebrity roast, complete with live microphone. Several of us performed impromptu stand-up routines, some acoustic music was played, stories were told, and then a dance party broke out. I seem to have one great spontaneous friend night every year at the holidays, and that is something to be happy about.

Please enjoy this photo of hot dogs.

Sunday, January 02, 2011

Rehearsals for Retirement 3: Depression is the Bandit

Not too interested in the claims I made in the last installment. Don't want to tell you about my problems. I'm really goddamn tired of being depressed, but the limbo (not the dance/beach activity, the other limbo) I'm stuck in will have to be endured until some volcano or admissions office or bow and arrow accident or latest useless employer decides to roll back the ball I tossed their way years or minutes ago. I'm having severe to moderate anxiety and the odd panic attack these recent weeks, though, so that's something. You'd think sorrow and anger would be enough, but I guess it was time to add a little spice. Eat a bowl of dicks, everybody. Goodnight for now. I'm going to refill my bourbon and move over to the movie blog. It seems the year ended (I learned this because I was in a car for a long time in order to hear a lot of small talk from people I don't see much anymore during some vague pagan/Christian/materialist ceremonial hybrid -- it's not all bad, I learned that someday I may have a leather couch and until that day I am human excrement*), and I may have to write a little wrap-up to keep my hands from stabbing my eyes with forks or shoving too much cheese in my mouthhole. I don't understand anything about anything anymore, except that it is not worth doing. Blah blah blah from every hole that can expel something, and remember, kids don't let kids have kids. Goodnight, jerks (said by me while looking into a mirror that faces another mirror).

*I am consumed by the darkness right now, but there were also good things. They will come back to me when I am feeling better.