It’s been quite some time since I’ve put thoughts in brain to digits onto keyboard, but I thought right now would be a good time to do so.
What a past few months it has been. Lots and lots of changes have gone on in my life. What’s new right? It seems that every time I post something I’m saying it. But it’s really true. There is always something new happening in my life.
The most recent update to my life is concerning the rest of it. To make a bit more sense of that, this past week I took the one giant step I was needing to take to get myself really financially stable. The moment that I had been waiting for for 5 years finally passed and not a moment too soon. Man, what a 5 years it has been. Now that I get to take a look at Facebook posts from years past, I get to see just how much things have really changed. Sure I used Timehop for a minute, but it got just too crazy to keep up with. At least with facebook’s version of it I can see all that I’ve posted there in a little better of an organized fashion. Anyway, I say all of that to say that I’ve been looking back lately and I’ve been reminded of what my life used to be like 5,4,3,2, and 1 year ago. Some things have stayed the same, some have changed. I’ve been embarrassed over some of the things I’ve posted and wondered to myself “For f’s sake, man. Why did you let (insert various women’s names here) walk all over you like that? What an idiot!”… A lot! Nothing changed there! LOL.
One of the more interesting posts just happened 4 years and 4 days ago. It was that day, July 19, 2011 that I nearly took my own life. Can you believe that shit? My life got so fucking bad 4 years ago that I nearly said “fuck it! I’m out!” while visiting the place I love the most outside of El Paso, Las Vegas. There was a lot that was pent up in my life, as at that point 31 years of disappointment had finally gotten to me. I was up in my hotel room talking myself out of it telling myself that everything was ok, that all I needed was to get back downstairs, grab a beer at a bar, try to enjoy people around me, and loosen up. I tried just that, but it really didn’t work. I was just done. I wanted to cash out but I just didn’t have the means to do it in a quick and painless fashion, so I didn’t. I did, however, manage to hang out in town another day then made my way to Phoenix for a scheduled stop to see my beloved Diamondbacks play a game. Again there, I tried to put a smile on to trick myself into being happy. It kinda didn’t work too well. I was posting cryptic stuff all over social media but nobody was really getting it. Hell, one of my friends kinda even busted my balls telling me to go see Steel Panther in Vegas to cheer up. Little did they know that I was so close to just ending it all.
Anyway, I got back home, opened up to some people, talked to my doctor, and ended up getting the help that I needed to start my journey back from the brink of self-destruction. It’s been a helluva road, I’ll tell you. There have been so many people that have come and gone in my life since then. People whom I’ve loved so dearly have just… faded away. What ever happened to them? Sometimes I wonder if it’s something I did or if it was just life getting in the way. Maybe it was the subtle changes that I’ve made that has pushed them away. I know I’m not the same person I was 4 years ago. Not at all, actually. 4 years ago I was coming out of a very very dark place in my life. So much had gone wrong, I’d willfully done horrible things, and I was for all intents and purposes broken. I know different people use different things to get themselves right, but my cocktail of choice was a mixture of friends, booze, baby Jesus, and music. Funny. Those are the 4 things that dominate my life now to this day. LOL.
I really don’t know what I would do without my friends. I love each and every one of them and I try to tell them every chance I get when we depart each other’s presence. Again, some of my friends and I have lost touch and I’m just as much to blame because of my lack of texting/calling on the phone, and others we’ve just drifted apart. I hope everybody that I’ve spent time with talking to in one fashion or another or have spent time with knows that I love them.
Music is the other thing that I’d like to touch on in this little manifesto of mine. Music… it’s the one constant thing that has dominated my life since the beginning of it. I was surrounded by so many different genres of music ranging from rock n’ roll, to r&b / soul, to rancheras, to Tejano, to country, to jazz, and even Latin jazz music and lots of others in between when I was growing up that I am all over the map when it comes to music today. That doesn’t even include the stuff that I stumbled upon myself in my youth, like when I was 6 and I turned on the radio to hear Motley Crue’s “Girls, Girls, Girls” blasting from my stereo in my room in early 1987, or Guns n’ Roses’ “Welcome to the Jungle” a year later when Appetite for Destruction took off in ’88. I was all into hair/glam/whatever you want to call it metal when I was a kid. Ratt, Poison, Bon Jovi, Motley Crue, Guns, Skid Row, I added them all to my list of music that I heard in addition to all of the stuff that my dad had me hearing that I mentioned above. It was around then that I started to kinda gravitate towards percussion. I’d take whatever I could find for drumsticks and use my couch as my drumset pretending that I was one of those dudes I’d be watching on Headbanger’s Ball rocking the crowds. I’d turn the radio on in the living room and just drum away. I knew then that music and drumming were going to be a part of my life from then on out. Sure enough, a few years later things became official as I aced my way into being chosen to play percussion in 6th grade and I really haven’t looked back since. Being in band while in school opened my eyes up to even more jazz music and thankfully classical music as well. I learned my craft (albeit half ass when it came to mallet percussion because nobody really taught me that it was more of a “here’s a keyboard in your music book with where the notes are, you figure it out) and that allowed me to branch out into the crazy musical forest that I created in my dome today.
Since I was too poor to afford a drumset until I was well into my late 20s, I never had the chance to really join a band. When I did get one though, holy smokes, I poured all of my influences into my playing style. I just love playing music so much. It’s the one thing, aside from being right with baby Jesus and going to Mass while in a state of grace, that makes me truly feel alive. It’s hard for me to describe the euphoria I get when I get the chance to play my favorite songs with the band when we do get the chance to play. When the guys call out to play the 3 or 4 songs that really get me going… man… what a feeling I get to know that I’m playing music that I absolutely love with 4 other assholes whom I’d die for if it came down to it. It’s funny too. Each time we sit down and bullshit around and the topic comes up it always amazes me at how we are as a band. There is some small common bonds music wise, like we were all band dorks, like some of the same bands, but our main interests are all different. The music we make, though, damn. Most kinda are being nice saying it sounds good, but to play it, to come up with it from the jams we have is just badass. I love that feeling. There’s nothing else like it.
That’s why a lot of the times now, I get a little bummed out when I can’t just send out an e-mail blast to these kids and say “hey guys! Let’s fucking play this Friday night!” It’s not the same with Taters stuck in North Texas like he is. What’s worse, and the thing that got me thinking about this a few weeks back, is not being able to record any new songs that we’ve come up with since we put our songs on wax 4 years ago. Hell, we’ve even talked about but never actually gotten around to doing the act of re-recording the album because we play the songs so much better now. I have my baby, my beautiful Tama Silverstar, and as of earlier this year a Tama double bass pedal which adds a new dynamic to the songs that I always envisioned (and still try to work on), We have Barium in the band now too which adds a new dynamic, and Gonzo got a kick ass axe too. Man, what these songs would sound like now if we re-recorded them. ALL BALLS I say, but of course it’s because these songs are my kids. Haha. Not only that, but the newer songs we’ve written since then… I’d love to hear those recorded professionally as well.
What got me on this whole kick too was the Foo Fighters doc series on HBO, Sonic Highways. If you haven’t seen them, take some time out and watch these episodes. They are fucking amazing. Seeing them remind me of why it is that I love music so much. The places that the band went to record their newest album hit on music that I love. Everything from Motown, punk, country, blues, gospel, everything… I keep watching these episodes saying to myself, “YES!!! I LOVE THESE GUYS TOO! OMG! Dave LISTENS TO THAT BAND?! HEARD THAT BAND?! WOW!!! FUCK YES!!!” Then they show them recording the song that pertains to that episode and I sink. I wish so badly that that was me in there laying down tracks with my friends. With this band that has come to be. Searchlight Needles, the band that died a while back, or so we thought, but just refuses to fucking die. That has to count for something right? It has to mean that my little wish of us recording again, jamming again, gigging again will happen. I’d like to hope so. I can’t let that dream die. For the meantime, though, I’ll just set my drumset up, plug in my earbuds, and play along to the music that gets me going.
You know, that’s the problem. I have too many musical tastes. Hell, if I were to play with anybody else aside from Searchlight Needles (and that’s NOT to say that I plan to), I’d have to be in a band that would play everything from Steel Panther, Metallica, Pantera, George Strait, Toby Keith, The Misfits, The Beatles, other rock artists from the 50s, 60s, 70s, and 80s, various pop music, BLUES music, various Tejano artists, Los Lonely Boys, various funk artists, and some jazz too. There’s not one genre of music that I want to be tied down to to play. I want to play it all, but I know I can’t. Hahaha! So that’s why I would just rather play alone along to music being piped in on my headphones if I’m not playing with the guys.
So anyway, I shut up about music to talk about the other part of my life that is changing… finally! Spaceballs 2: The Search for More Money. I’ve finally gotten to the point in my life where I’m getting this pirate ship of mine afloat again. It only took those 5 years I mentioned in the beginning of this novel, but holy smokes, that light at the end of this long-as-fuck tunnel that I’ve been in is starting to become more than just a pinhead of light. It’s getting brighter and brighter each passing day and now I really have to sit myself down and get realistic with the goals I have set for myself for the next year. There has to be a shitload of discipline in every aspect of my life that I’ve let just slip by. For example, Operation Twink? Yeah, that shit got put on hold a while back. My love of beer and Whataburger kinda messed that up. I was doing so well, too. I lost 40 fucking pounds and was at my lowest weight since I was a teenager, BUT one little “this won’t hurt” turned into another, then another, then another, and before I knew it I was back to square one. All of that hard work… those countless hours spent pouring sweat and tears into my towel while working my ass off on the arc trainer all of those times… for nothing. I just let it go away… like a fucking idiot. That started to change in earnest this week. Hell, as a matter of fact, I did a full hour on the arc trainer just yesterday to keep under my calorie limit. I’m getting that hardcore “you gotta get your shit together” mentality back and God knows I need it. The other thing is my spending. I really have kinda spent a lot of money on bullshit lately and I know that I need to stop. It’s just a matter of putting thought into action. I need to if I’m going to get myself really free and clear of my debt. If I do dedicate myself to it, this holding pattern I’ve been on for the past 17 years will finally come to an end. I can’t believe I basically wasted 17 years of my life. What the fuck was I thinking? Obviously nothing good, but still! Like the popular saying goes… better late than never. That’s what it’s going to be. Hey, 35 years old is still relatively young, right?
Now if I could only get other things in my life that need fixing in order. Whew. That’s another story for another day.