April 17, 2007
Coffee Messiah Slain

Greetings from Seattle. City of grunge, black coffee, dirty sex and heroin. I hung around the docks and the Houses of the Holy. Joe, coffee, cup of mud. The nastiest coffee house I found here last time (Coffee Messiah) is no more. The caffeinated Black Jesus on the wall is no longer hanging, neither are the junkies and the freaks. Another Starbucks casualty. Too bad ... I liked that place. It was real. Long live independent coffee houses! At my lowest Low, during the early phases of this CD, I hung out there in the early mourn and would write songs or just brood. My goal was to write a new song each day, scrawled on the front page of the Seattle Times (to see the date). Sometimes the pierced and tattooed crowd would look over my shoulder, but I always felt safe. The Messiah was with me ...

Peace, -Todd

Posted by calico at 01:41 AM
The White Coats Of Oregon

Somewhere in Oregon ...

On that dreamy 2 day train up the coast, a beautiful 32 hour ride. Well, she's running late, so more like a 38 special. I'm down in the snack lounge, drinking coffee and making new friends. It's me, a professor from Maine, a couple of old ladies, and their 9 year old kid. Suddenly, as if in an Orwell short story, two guys walk in with long white coats on, and FDA hats ...

Mild shock to all. The 9 year old kid asks innocently, "Who are you guys? What does FDA mean?" Food And Drug Administration, they reply cooly. I should have said right away, "I'll have both!" (Thought of that later ...) What came out of my mouth in a kind of cartoon voice was, "Oh, shit- the White Coats are coming to get us!" To which everybody laughed, and it sort of lightened up the mood. The only way I could address it right at that moment was with humour. The 2 FDA guys laughed, too. But it was, in fact, serious. I mean, in essence the kid was right - who ARE these guys? They looked like the Gestapo, who used to pose as Red Cross Inspectors. I didn't see anyone get ON the train in a white coat (down to their ankles). Did they smuggle them on board in a suitcase?? What were they looking for?

They snooped around for a minute or two. The Head Coat was smiling and chatting (gentleman le Strange) with the old ladies, while jr. Assistant Junior had a deliberate eye on my Hunter S. Thompson book (a generous gift from Kid Santa Barbara a few days ago) and my rugged green backpack. I smiled a cartoon smile, but said to him with wolf eyes that "my song files are in this backpack, Junior, and I WILL rip your head off if need be." After they politely left, the Professor shook his head and said, "First they threw that student off the train and the cops came, (quite disturbing) just because he had a weird hairdoo and was playing the guitar, and now this!" "Yeah," I said, "but he was a bad guitar player ..." Heh heh. They hauled him away. The Professor continued, "What is this country coming to?"

One of the ladies whispered to me that if I would be so kind to explain it to her kid (while she took a break from it all) she would buy me a beer and a sandwich. I agreed. I explained to him (as one would with a child) what the FDA is. I also told him all about Pink Floyd.

So ... what IS this country coming to?
What's going on here? Think.
Peace, -Todd

Posted by calico at 12:56 AM
April 11, 2007
Long Journey To Grunge Heaven

Hi all! I'm about to hop on the train from Santa Barbara bound for Seattle. Zip up the coast all the way to Grunge Heaven. Takes about a day and a half. I'm lookin' California, and feeling Minnesota. My goals? Drink coffee, meet new friends, stare out the window of the train, make music. To hear and feel life like an underground film. Peace, -Todd

Posted by calico at 05:16 PM
April 08, 2007
Santa Barbara, Here I Come!

Happy Easter! I'm taking a short trip tonight with a madcap bunny from Cali on the back of a motorcycle from snobby (sorry, smoggy) LA to smoggy (oh, sorry - snobby) Santa Barbara. Let the journey begin. This is for the Santa Barbara Kid!

Possible options for tonight:

Option #1 - We meet in Camarillo 'round mignight and hop on the chopper, zip up the coast, swim in the ocean at dawn and write poems about dolphins (wink, wink). Problem with this option: Not enought time to drink.

Option #2 - I show up EARLY at your parents' house (on my best behaviour) and wow them with stories of our travels in Europe. We tell them (gently) all about how we popped your hitch-hiking cherry, and smooth them into the idea of giving you money for the next trip. Then we borrow (steal) their car, and gloss over the fact that you (we) don't have proper insurance. Or we just simply straight-out lie. Problem with this option: I become the bad guy for teaching you how to hitch-hike, and I have to wear a tie ...

Option #3 - We hitch-hike.

(I see no problems with this option.)

Option #4 - We take the train. This allows us to drink in peace, not endangering the lives of others, and we can still write poems. We can deal with (make fun of) sourpuss ticket-takers who are in love with their own authority, and get to our destination (assuming we DO have a ticket) at a reasonable (burp) hour. We wouldn't have to deal with the California Highway Patrol or parents. Problem with this option: We can't go as fast as we want to ...

Let me know what you think! I've arranged some gin and tonic for our trip. Peace, -Todd

Posted by calico at 01:52 PM
April 03, 2007
Haunting Strings and Other Marvelous Things

Hi everybooty. Back in LA! Of all the new songs, think I like "I, Energy" the best. (See link right.) Beautiful cello, soaring melodies. (And my voice is ok, too.) Dig it! Peace, -Todd

Posted by calico at 12:45 PM
April 02, 2007
I'm Durst-y

Greetings from Bush-y Land. I'm at the airport in Florida. Talkin' about music, and a lady just told me that she's the mom of Fred Durst from the band Limp Bizkit. Is it true? If so, you rock Mrs. D! Thoughts on this, readers?? Should I get them to be our opening band? Peace, -Todd

Posted by calico at 03:41 PM