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Journal Entry from Band Days Past

I was going through my notes on my iPhone and found the only journal entry I made at the start of our 5-week tour through Canada/U.S.. I thought it interesting. Enjoy.

“April 12, 2013

“If you want an illustrious career in rock n’ roll, I suggest you think about it…” Greg Dean (on the KMFDM Beat By Beat Tour 1995).

I just want to say about that quote above: Our trip is most likely not as crazy as some bands’, but touring in a band is not like a road trip with your friends or family, and it’s not really like camping except for some things you bring with you. We don’t have a crew, and playing is merely 10% of our job. The rest is lugging/hooking up our gear, driving long hours (and battling the elements), being paranoid about security, taking extra care in maintaining our health, and eating not as wholesome as we’d like.

Day 1 of the Short Circuit Tour (excluding the Toronto show, cause we didn’t actually leave until the following Thursday).. 

Drive was alright. Chals got one of those fancy “GoPro” cameras to document our journey. I swear they use those in the Canada’s Worst Driver tv-show.

Anyways, the 8-hr drive seemed short. The quaint size of Sault Ste. Marie reminded me of certain areas of Regina, and Moose Jaw, SK. It’s bigger than I thought, since the last time we travelled through (at night) back in late-fall 2009.

We get to the venue ’round 5:45pm and eventually meet the promoter. Nice guy. Fed us, bought us drinks. As the night rolls along after soundcheck and we’re playing the “hurry up and wait” game, I’m starting to get super tired. I’ve been up since 4:30am and by 11pm I was ready to crash. I was given an energy drink and after finally playing I gained a second wind.

A nice couple invited us to their house to sleep and shower. I had especially taken advantage of the shower.

Unfortunately the crazy snow storm from southern Ontario had caught up with us, and the next morning had us a little weary. On our way out of the city, a snowy steep hill stopping us from progressing as we halted half way up, and causing us to “jack-knife” the trailer trying to back up DOWN the hill. Chals warned on-coming traffic, as us dudes pushed the fully packed heavy trailer SIDEWAYS to get straight, disconnect from the van, then swing around to aim down the hill, then painstakingly re-attach to the van without getting run over by our own trailer.

After finding an alternate route, we hit up Timmy’s and fill up on gas. Then it’s continuing on the seemingly perilous mid-April winter journey to Thunder Bay.

I hope there’s enough lightning in Thunder Bay to zap this snow into hell.”


Dear Iceman Video Games,

  
I’m terribly sorry to hear the bad news that you must close your Queen St. West location, here in Toronto.
I usually don’t care about stores, but your store tickled me the right way.

Way back in 2014 my old bass player and I were putting up posters along Queen for what would be our final show in Toronto, and he mentioned Iceman. The next week I checked it out and was delighted to see the amount of retro video games that were available for reasonable prices.

After a couple of friends bought a Retron 5, I too bought one, but wanted to get it at Iceman. This kick-started my collection of games from my youth that I rented but never owned. I even bought games I always wanted to try as a kid! I even saw my brother’s fav game for N64 called “Mystical Ninja” and I bought it, a used N64, and Starfox 64, so he could experience it again. My nephew even got to experience it as well.

Your trading policy pleased me, as you guys gave a fair trade value for store credit, and never made me feel I was an idiot for bringing them in.

Despite my pre-order of Mass Effect: Andromeda coming out after you close, I was told that you guys would mail my copy to me when it came in. This is great news!

Anyways, terrible to see you guys go, and I hope your employees find a new jobs promptly. It’s going to be hard to find another retro game store that I will bother to make the 45min-1hr trip for again.

Best of luck to everyone! 😀

-George

 

 


Summertime In The Void 2: Float Harder

The yellow planet, with two moons.

The yellow planet, with two moons.

It’s times like these when I wish I was a visual artist.

My second float at Float Toronto, was a 2 hour session, thanks to their 11pm appointments that go until their 1AM close schedule. I’m not sure if I was hungry or what (I hadn’t eaten since 5pm), but I came in with a slight stomach pain, and it became so unbearable that I ended up having to come out of the tank, coincidentally, a couple of minutes before my time was up. There was a point where when I was floating I could feel my veins just throb. It was really weird, but interesting.

Coming into it, I felt like I already knew the score. I said aloud in the tank, “Alright, let’s see some shit!”. I relaxed my body, breathed slowly, and concentrated on my thoughts. I started trying to peel the layers of the random ‘ghosting’ my eyes produced while getting used to the darkness. There was a point where I could get almost complete darkness, and I could almost see the starry night sky.

Then I saw this:

Electricity?

Electricity?

Layers of black translucent wires, with cascading colours of electricity flowing through them. They didn’t seem like giant walls, just as if I was looking through a very small area, peeking at them.

Another scene I saw was a yellow planet, with a desert horizon, one mesa at the right, and two moons. See the top image of my terrible drawing of it. This appeared for a couple of seconds.

At this point, I must say that these things I’ve seen are not things I made up as I went. I didn’t create these things by thinking about them. They just came to me.

Now, the most vivid was a sequence of alien races. I think I saw a sequence of 5 different races. One race looked sinister, looked right back at me, and was going to consume me. It had red eyes, and a grin with sharp teeth. I saw a friendly looking face, with giant ears, and a big nose, who looked like a humbled old man. The most astounding vision was of a small group of indigo blue aliens, broad shouldered, and what looked like wooden-textured skin. They wore technologically advanced shoulder/chest mounts, and stood proud underneath a beautiful night sky!

Do these things exist in this universe? In another? Or merely in my universe of creativity, and imagination?

Being in the tank for 2 hours, yielded only maybe 2 minutes of these collected visions for me. I’m not sure how time works in these moments of visions, but I could only imagine being a person of spiritual/meditative strength could garner much more concentration with these kinds of images.

Other than the mind trips, coming out of the tank feels great. I had to get up for 6:30AM the next morning, and after coming home and getting to bed at 2:30AM, the 4 hours were not a burden on my body.

You guys, I’m seriously loving this floating thing. I got one more float session left (with the package I got), but its going to have to wait until after this tour with The Rabid Whole. Too much stuff to do these next 2 weeks, but if I can, I’ll see if I can squeeze it in before we go.

Thanks for reading these. It just felt natural for me.

Boom.

-G


Summertime In The Void: Myself in an Isolation Tank

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Last night I had the pleasure of visiting Toronto’s brand new isolation tank-spa (is that the right term?), called Float Toronto. I won’t bore anyone with the tech, but if you’re curious to know exactly what “floating” is, just check it out on Wikipedia. This was my first float I’ve ever done, and was really looking forward to it for the last couple of months.

Once I got showered up, and dimmed the room’s light, I got in.

It took me a few minutes to get relaxed, and ricochet myself off the edges of the tank enough so I was perfectly centered, and not touching anything. It feels great to float in really shallow water, thanks to the epsom salts.

I played with closing my eyes for a bit to see the difference of the darkness vs. my eyes closed, and there was none. You know how when you close your eyes and you see the ghosting of everything you’ve been looking at? Well, I just stared at them, and breathed really slow. After whatever amount of time of doing that, I saw an orange-chromed alien space ship with multi-coloured lights, which also looked like an orange slice (because the panels on the ship looked like sections of an orange). I saw this for what seemed like a split second, and then all the ghosting in my eyes slowly turned into a dark grey shape. This shape revealed itself as flower petals, that I was witnessing from the inside. I watched these petals bloom outward, as I watched dark grey spores float upward, away from me. Then a short time later, I’m pretty sure I fell asleep for the rest of the float. I forget the dream, but I only remember seeing my brother when we were just kids (like 7 or 8 yrs. old), this is something I’ve never remembered dreaming of before. I woke up to the sound of music, which Float Toronto uses to let people know it’s the end of the session. The music I didn’t like, until I realized sometime after it reminded me of the title screen music from the first Mass Effect game.

Waking up felt sort of strange. I knew I was asleep but when I opened my eyes it was still dark. I got up, and awkwardly opened the door. Stepping out of the tank was like when you see those guys in Sci-Fi movies come out of their stasis pods, and are all like “ughhh…fuuuuuck”. I say this because even with the very dimmed lights in the room, I felt pretty sensitive. I blindly made my 3-step motion to the shower for a good post-float scrub down, and started getting used to gravity, and light again.

After leaving the spa, I looked at Queen St. W. with fresh eyes, and the environment seemed new again. I put on some Com Truise in my ears, and started to groove on the beats, thinking about what I saw and dreamed about, and made notes so I wouldn’t forget. On the bus I quickly became annoyed at all the noise going on. I felt like it was all unnecessary, and everyone should just shut-up. I got home safe, and was thinking about how I should tell my lady the crazy stuff I saw.

I must say this was a great experience, and made me appreciate true peace and quiet, with no gravity pulling me down. It was a natural high, and soaking in the water left my skin on my butt nice and soft. Yeah. That’s right.

I want to thank Float Toronto for being super nice, and accommodating. I’m looking forward to my next 2 floats!

Boom.

-G


Image

Artists Flipping Me The Bird (2013).

These pictures were taken during the first leg of the “Built To Fuck, Born To Tour”, ending at COLD WAVES II. The Rabid Whole providing direct support for BILE, back in September 2013. It was a very memorable time, especially in Chicago. I got to meet some new people, and get some of my friends in on this. I thought I’d post these on here instead on leaving them on facebook, hoping they’d reach a wider audience. -G


All the way from Brazil!

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I got an awesome email from a fan of my band The Rabid Whole. His name is Marcos, and he made his own TRW t-shirt, and has seen my blog, and decided to send me a pic of himself. Pretty cool, eh? I think so.

On a side note, I’m coming back to my regular blogging schedule, very soon!

Boom.

-G


Bathroom 063

OK. So, Bathrooms 62, 63, and 64 are a trilogy, I realize, since I'm wearing the same thing in all three. Because of the colours, I'm reminded of Orange, and Cream. YUM!

Because of the colours, I’m reminded of Orange, and Cream. YUM!