Sam. Yeah, man. What is it?
He keeps smiling.
That gets another laugh out of him.
SAM DAMMIT WHAT IS SO F***ING IMPORTANT!
He stops laughing at me after I throw a pillow at him. Mom has these huge pillows, and they HURT to get hit with if you throw em hard enough. We break into a wrestling match on the floor for a minute, and after a bit of a struggle I pin him. I guess size really is everything. I celebrate a little mentally, because while I might be taller than sam, he has at least ten pounds on me, and he's all muscle. Score: Me: 12, Sam: 54 and his score is growing all the time. And yeah, we still act like we're 12 even though we're both out of high school now.
Alright, alright, I'll tell you. But I'm surprised you don't know already. I really thought you would have found out before me.
I just glare at him. Sometimes I pretend I have heat vision, and that Sam is some kind of flammable/meltable substance. This daydream happens a lot with Sam. He's a good friend, but he can be a royal pain in the ass, and he knows it too. So right about now, Sam is either a pile of those little green army men, or he is a large puddle of shit on my neighbor's porch. That old bastard needs to get over himself just because he's the oldest man alive doesn't mean he owns the neighborhood, and if he doesn't like my friends and me having practices here, then he should probably just move to a home. He really should be dead by now anyway
Jack. Jackie. Jack-off.
I snap out of my little daydream and realize that Sam actually really was going to start telling me what the hell he got here so early to talk about. And of course, the doorbell rings. Hang on, man. I gotta get that.
Sam jumps to his feet. I got it dude, no worries. No worries, he says. Last time he answered the door for me, it was a couple of Jehovah's Witnesses. For fifteen whole minutes Sam talked to them about a faith he no interest in, and gave them the names of 4 of our friends that he thought they should visit like he was on their side or something, helping them spread the good news. He decided it would be funny to close the interview by asking them for money. I guess he thought pretending that he was my brother and that our parents usually don't feed us, and that they lock us in the basement would be a really funny idea. It took me another ten minutes to convince them that he wasn't my brother, that I ate fine, and that a phone call to the Child Protection Agency really wasn't necessary.
I open the door, and there stood Father Time himself, about to keel over from the look of it. Or maybe that was just wishful thinking on my part. Mumble mumble mumble. I'm sorry, Mr. Johnson, what was that? Mumble mumble damn kids MUMBLE. Oh good, yeah, slur your words again, just a little louder. That always makes it way easier to understand. One more time please? I said, you damn kids better not be practicing tonight. I'm having a bingo night with my friends, and I swear that I will call the cops if I hear anything at all from you. Got it, sonny?
Oh, I understand sir. Completely.
I said good, goddammit! You kids these days, no respect. It's like I'm not even speaking English.
I close the door and of course Sam starts laughing. 'It's like I'm not even speaking English' Yeah, well, he wasn't. I had no idea what the all the mumbles were
I pull out the acoustic guitar and start strumming a D minor, moving to a suspended C, just playing around with the sound and looking for the next chord to fit my mood. After another 3 minutes I give up and start playing the intro to Walk This Way before I realize something is missing. Sam's kit. Usually he whines about having to carry it between his house and mine, so typically he ends up leaving most of it here. And today, it's not here. There are no cymbals, no kick drum, no snare, toms, nothing. This is not good, because I didn't see it in his car either, and a drum kit is sort of noticeable.
Sam. Yeah bro? Where's your kit? Haha. That's part of the news dude
Yeah. So what? Are you gonna tell me at some point?
Yeah, alright. I got an electric kit this last week for my birthday, dude, so now I have two!
This is apparently not as exciting for me as it should have been, because Sam looks at me like he was expecting some kind of reaction. Or at least something other than a non-reaction, which is what he got.
Well? I dunno, dude. It's cool, I just always thought they were not rock. Not us. Like, it's cool for other bands, but we've always been a no-bullshit, no-gimmicks kind of band, ya know? We don't do costumes, or masks, uniforms, nothing.
Yeah, well, I'm not gonna use JUST the electric one. It'll be more for practices, and mebbe some extra cool sounds live at gigs. Which reminds me
Doorbell again. Are you f***ing kidding me? I already promised to keep quiet tonight, what more could you want? Sam beats me to the door this time; this can't possibly end well. He opens the door, and I get lucky: it's just our bass player, Kyle.
Sup, guys. Wow, you're here early Sam. I know, right? I had to tell Jack about Yeah, right, right. The kit too?
This has gone far enough. Kyle knows and I don't? What the hell? Kyle is usually stoned out of his mind. I mean, I can't blame him; we don't use him like Flea or anything, so he can afford to be totally baked out of his skull and still play just fine.
Were you gentlemen going to actually tell me what is so exciting at some point, or hey! No, Kyle, my pizza! Bad Kyle! No! I don't care if you have the munchies. I have brownies in the kitchen, you can have those. Kyle drifts out of the room like some homeless drunk or something, stumbling everywhere and giggling to himself the whole time. Damn, how did he even drive here? Sam grins.
Alright, Jack, here it is. Since the guy who's writing this story about us also reads the other columns on UG, he's writing in this big battle-of-the-bands contest in the next couple of installments here, and I think we should enter it.
How do you know that's what the writer has in mind? Because he just wrote that last part. Ok, well, I dunno man. I just don't know. We don't even have a decent following. Who would be there to see us?
That's what this is all about dude we MAKE a following. The whole f***ing county's gonna be there, and maybe some more people besides. This is our shot!
And I think, We might be able to.. but are we ready? .No.