FRIDAY: I’M GOING TO BE INTERVIEWED ON TV ABOUT MY BOOK, HUSKER DU: THE NOISE POP PIONEERS WHO LAUNCHED MODERN ROCK
Hey SXSW attendees! Lost? Suffering from exposure to the elements? Contracted by Guinness Book to find a new record-holder in the “Highest Concentration of the Noise “Um” or Accidental Profanity Within 60-seconds of Speech” category? You’re in luck! I’ll be doing a book signing/Q&A/presentation at 2:00PM in the convention center. Please see link for more info.
For those of you prone to vacationing in Austin TX this time of year, I’ll be doing a book signing/Q&A (1) and possibly some monologue action (it’s the writing and practicing part that’s proving elusive) for AN ENTIRE HOUR (2:00PM – 3:00PM) on Friday, March 18 Twenty-Eleven at the SXSW Convention Center Bookstore. Each time I think about my last visit to SXSW in 2008, I get a severe case of the idiot shivers, so I should be showing extreme diligence re: avoiding a similar fate for this trip, though the Not Doing Shit-to-Extreme Diligence meter is not exactly pinned to the right at the moment. Here are some pertinent links:
Exactly 163 hours later, on the morning of Friday March 25th at 9:00AM, I’ll be interviewed on WREG Channel 3’s “Live At Nine” program. My segment should last around 7 minutes, marking the third time on television.
My inaugural run came around the age of 12 months. Acting opposite my mother in a local advertisement for the also-local (& long defunct) grocery store chain known as Pic-Pac, mom (playing herself) pushes a cart down an aisle and selects a brand of nationally-known brand of paper towel that, once handled, seemed to induce uncontrollable squeezing. This action seems to cue the disembodied voice of god – a trick used in 2 out of 3 food or home product advertisements – or a store manager or Pic Pac corporate employee or person scraping by on local spot voiceover work, who then encourages mom to try Spill Holocaust or Fuck-A-Buncha-Mess or whatever Pic Pac was calling its brand of paper-towel. The selling point seemed to be comparable squeeze-friendliness, to which my mom replies “we’ll let the expert determine this!” or something similar, and the ad ends with me delivering a pro-Pic Pac verdict via squeeze-prompted giggling and smiling and other generally-gleeful noises. For the record, I was never an “expert” in this field.
Almost three decades later, I donned a surgical mask, cap, scrubs, and stethoscope in a commercial for my friend’s used car lot, where I also happened to be employed at the time. As my boss spoke in English and Spanish (we had a lot of Latino customers), I appeared in a muted quarter-screen window, placing the stethoscope to the tires, air-filter covers, and engine blocks of the more presentable automobiles that were then in stock. Underneath the window, it read “The Car Doctor Is In” which didn’t make any sense….it wasn’t as if we had an actual mascot or planned to start having one.
I narrowly escaped being on camera after I changed the car lot’s sign to read….
“Suicidal? Most of our cars will fit in a closed garage!”
….and news crews showed up within a few hours due to complaints from rush hour motorists. I seem to remember one of the newsmen asking, “But right before Thanksgiving?!?!” and my boss being a good sport….maybe even enjoying the attention. The segment ended with my boss climbing the ladder and changing the sign to read, “National Used Car Museum: Now Open!” (also my creation).
But back to the issues at hand: I’ll be promoting my book on “Live At Nine”, specifically the signing/Q&A/monologue that is scheduled at Davis Kidd Booksellers for the next day: Saturday, March 26th at 1:00PM.
- I am opposed to the idea of reading from my book, despite the fact that these things are usually referred to as ‘readings’ and I have to catch myself so that I don’t use that term in conversation with others. I’ve never understood why authoring a book automatically promoted someone to the level of public speaker, nor have I ever seen the slightest possibility of entertainment or enjoyment re: this tradition. Books should be processed/absorbed on a personal level and the relationship needs to remain limited to reader and text. I’m about as likely to read from my own book at a public event as I am to throw on fake blood, torn clothes and makeup so as to impersonate a zombie during outdoor gatherings. During conversation, bring up your participation in a zombie walk, and I will dismiss myself mid-sentence. We have no intellectual, social, or comedic meeting ground. Another disclaimer: Approach me while wearing a fake mustache, and watch me rip it off, throw it to the ground where it will become the target of my spittle…until I switch to your shoes. The unoriginality one must encounter upon leaving the house or taking a cursory stroll online is eerily akin to what might be found in the the skit and written comedy of decades past (National Lampoon, SNL, etc)…..back when it was funny but still a fair distance from reality.