Wednesday, April 30, 2008

A Letter (Not The Letter, that cool song by the Box Tops and also Joe Cocker)

Where do I begin? A lot of things have angered me greatly today. First, I don't work at the radio station anymore (the only place I feel at home at school...well, anywhere really). Second, the people who dig the station, like, really care and know it, also did not get the General Manager position.

I'm worried. Will everything change? We're all...well, we're all freaks really. All of us listen to different things and dress differently, kind of strangely. Somehow we all fit together though. It's pretty cool actually.

I mean, I look around everywhere else and it's all sameness. Everyone strives for this ideal, this stereotype of cool. But to me, to us, it's striving to be a douchbag or a asshole. Whatever. We don't fit into this "Bro Culture" that everyone is so into. I don't want to go into describing all the details. If you go to NMSU or live in the area, you know what I'm talking about. If you don't, I suggest you look around at the people around you in class, at the store, at the movies. Listen to the way they speak, their jokes, their slang. Watch how they interact with each other, body language and all. Watch their style of dress. It's blandly the same. Monotonous. A dizzyingly pop culture vanilla-ness which permeates everything. And they want it. They crave it. They MUST be the same. It is comfortable. It is easy. Don't think. Do what the crowd does. "Ah, bro, do you remember that Dane Cook joke! It was so funny! Seriously, my bros and I laughed until beer came out our noses!" Just look at them. Doesn't it make you sick? Why makes one force their mind to close and simply join in?

I would like to think they're afraid. It's hard to be different. I know. You never know where you fit. We tend to seek out groups to give us a sense of belonging. I don't think anyone is above this. I know, I'm certainly not. But the big, major groups are too limited in their personality. There is no room for individuality. And that is what I fear KRUX will become.

Do we need another Rocket, Power 102, Hit FM or KLAQ? I say with conviction, "NO!" Refuse to be force fed your opinion! Strike out on your own and be different! I don't have the time, the patience or the will to point out the flaws in the music played on these mindless stations. Just know there is better stuff out there! Justin Timberlake? No, no, no. Otis Redding! Comtemporary emo? No, no, no. Fugazi! Today's pop "punk?" No, no, no. Buzzcocks! And there's tons of more. I don't know every band. It'd be impossible. But, the cool thing about KRUX is we each have a specialty or a few where we know everything. Just click on the KRUX page and message one of the top friends. I'm sure they'd be happy to suggest some stuff. Well, I haven't asked them, but they probably will. I certainly will. That's why I got into this!

That was a lot longer than I thought it'd be. Let's seeeeeeeeeeee... Oh yeah, earlier in the day I was in a class where the lecture was on the destruction of the Spanish armada. It was really interesting, especially the amount of mistakes and unlucky things that happened to the Spanish leading up to the destruction (a funny thing happened on the way to overthrow the English crown...). However, there was this one point the instructor emphasised. He said, "If Drake had not destroyed those barrels, we might be speaking Spanish today." He said it matter-of-factly. And it was true. If Spain had been able to win, they would have remained the major power at the time and controled the New World (Jamestown was founded on the land Spain gave up three years after Spain sued for peace after losing). So he says this and the girl behind me says, disgustedly, "Ew." She was grossed out at the thought of speaking Spanish! Like it'd make her less of a person!

Now, I don't speak Spanish. I define myself as Spanish, not Mexican, but I don't speak it. But if I grew up speaking Spanish I would have absolutely have NO problem with it. If I grew up speaking French, Japanese, German (maybe not German, it's kind of ugly...), Italian (which is awesome because I would get SO much more out of the Godfather movies) or any other language, it would be fine. Why would it matter? I wanted to turn around and ask her what her problem is! Or slap her (I couldn't hit a girl). Or something! Anything! What's your problem you stupid...ah!...RACIST! There, I said it! What else could it be? It's just a damn language!

Anyway, my head doesn't hurt, but I feel pretty numb. I wish I did drugs or drank because I should so be doing either or both right now. But alas, I refuse to. Like an idiot. I'm left with thinking. Playing things over in my head. Scenario. Scenario. Scenario. The only thing I care about at this stupid school has been taken away. I think I've reached my peak at a few months into my 23rd year of existance. Wow. That ended quickly. In conclusion, I would like to say, from the bottom of my heart, "I'm sorry," to the people who also care about this small, seemingly insignificant radio station nestled in a valley where a town of less than 100,000 people reside. I let you guys down by messing up stupid things that could have easily been done correctly. Things I could have and would have done correctly if I had been given another shot. Or a chance. I don't want to be shot. Not anymore (I've calmed down a bit). Now what? Where do we go from here?

J.D. "your fearful leader" Benavidez

P.S. Wasn't there, at one time, a thing that let you put what you were listening to while writing? I don't see it. But I'm listening to Soft Machine. The record is called "Vols. 1 & 2."

P.S.S. I got to sing "Gloria" at the station today with Archives. Actually, I yelled it. Poorly. I've always wanted to be singer in a rock 'n' roll band (Do doo do do do do doo do do do dooo. It's hard to describe. But that should sound like the part in the Moody Blues song "I'm Just a Singer (In a Rock 'n' Roll Band)." Just listen to the song and sing along to that part. It'll make sense). Eh. I'm not much of a rock 'n' roll singer.

P.S.S.S. I don't expect this to change anyone's mind or anything. If you agree with me, you'll agree with me. If you don't, you'll think I'm bitter and jealous. I would just like to say for the record that I am not jealous. I just wish people had more respect for themselves than to not question anything. Oh well. That won't work either. Anyway, it's not like I've ever changed anyone's life. I don't expect to start now. I'm just so very, very tired of it all and I don't know what else to do. Something as futile as a MySpace blog is lazy and pointless. And worthless. Chalk it up to my narcissism.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

There has to be a better place than this, right?

I should probably write about SXSW before I forget everything. Pretty much I spent time watching real cool garage bands play. I don't know a lot about new music, but I just found a band I liked, went early and heard similarly awesome bands.

My favorite band was the Black Hollies. They were all decked out in suits with frilly things and boots (presentation is very important). Basically, they looked like they should have been playing in 1967 England. Most importantly they sounded the part. Their drummer was a madman (Keith Moon style). People were dancing. It was great. I saw them twice and bought some cool stuff.

The second best performance I saw was tied between the Downbeat 5 and Magic Christian. The Downbeat 5 are a three-piece who play real basic rock 'n' roll. After their set I overheard an older gentleman describing it as, "A-B, A-B, Chuck Berry. That's all you need to do." During one of their songs I thought the packed in crowd would riot because of all the dancing! I'm not kidding either. Somebody could've been trampled. (On a side note, everywhere I went I was packed into a small space with a bunch of people and little security. Shouldn't terrorists target SXSW? I would if I was them. It would be so easy and make people terrified which, I believe, is their job. Terrorists are bad at what they do and should probably just give up.)

Magic Christian followed them. I thought that would have to be terrible. The Downbeat 5 had been so good. But Magic Christian stood up to the plate. Apparently, the lead guitar player was in the Flamin' Groovies and the drummer played in Blondie. The lead singer looked kinda like Mickey Dolenz (of the Monkees). They wore these skinny vertically striped, black and white pants. That and their Beatle hair made it a sight to see. Lots of people did see too because there was a window in the place that the band was in front of. A whole bunch of people stopped during their set outside that window. They were a weird looking bunch playing incredible music. During their cover of a Beatles' song (I can't remember which one because I was so wasted, okay, maybe not), everyone was singing, well, really yelling, at the top of their lungs every word. It was a lot of fun.

Let's see. I won't write any more, but I did also see (in order of how much I liked their performance): X, The Kills, The Night Marchers, Sons & Daughters, Paul Collins Beat, Coliseum and a bunch of others that I need to look up (I wrote this stuff down somewhere...). Almost every band I saw was really good (except Moby, who still sucks, and Chromeo, which is music that for the life of me I can't understand why anyone would like).

But other than the bands, I really did not like SXSW. By that I mean the people who were soooooo cool. Way to cool for me. In fact, I didn't talk to anyone but the servers at the restaurants (like Bonnie at IHOP where I ate about fourty times because it was next the the hotel...and because she was pretty, which never hurts). People are pretty stupid. I thought it was just this area, but no. I wish I could just stop watching the way people act with each other. It's sort of getting annoying.

Anyway, I also recently cut ties with people who are close to me, I guess (it's not like I've told them, I'm just keeping my distance). And now I don't have any reason to be here. So now I'm trying to decide what I should do next. I thought maybe grad school would be a good idea, but when I wake up in the morning and think about the way things have turned out, I pretty much want to just go back to sleep. Some people you think you're on the level with and then, poof, nope! Disappointing. Very disappointing.

I want to move to a place where I can get a job and there are cool bands coming through (to keep my mind off of the stupid people I have to deal with). Then I can just wait until retirement and come back to New Mexico (I'm thinking Santa Fe), buying NFL Sunday Ticket and never seeing anyone except when I have to buy food. Then again, I could grow my own food...nah, that's too much work. Plus I don't like killing things, but I love meat. I'll let other people kill animals for me. You know, do my part to keep the economy moving. U.S.A! U.S.A! U.S.A! U...S...A!

Oh man! I can't wait to get old! And hey! At least my music will never desert or disappoint me. Also, I can get whatever installment of NFL Head Coach for whatever version of the Playstation is out then and never have to interact with people to have fun! And I'll have a hiking trail close by (I'll live just outside Santa Fe, like where my grandparents used to live), so that should be way fun! Man, things will be looking up fourty years from now!

Fourty years plus one: