(click the picture above for the high definition video - but also click YouTube for me!)
YouTube link added 12.22.07
11:44 PM, Friday, April 27th, 2007:
So that's what 1988 was like. I had forgotten in all these years.
So is it a blessing or a curse? I guarantee you no "professional" CBS correspondent would be hanging out with the 13 year olds playing videogames until one of their dads drove them home. Just the thought of that is ludicrous. But it's me. It's not that I'm obscenely immature, it's just that I relate to everyone. When I hung out with the parents (some of whom were literally months older than me) I had no problem relating to them - and when I was with the guys it was no effort whatsoever to be a kid again. So much so that they thought it was perfectly acceptable to give me a titty twister while I was playing guitar hero (not on tape unfortunately) and I had some choices to make....
I mean if this ever happened to you as an adult...can you imagine? Anyone in their 20s/30s go grab your friend's niple and twist as hard as you can and see what happens. But of course - they're 13. I could not return the favor or do anything physical...but I was not about to pull the boring adult: "OK guys, we're getting a little too rough now". So I had to be a bit smarter than a 13 year old. I went into the bathroom and filled two cups with toilet water (clean mind you, but still toilet water) and unfortunately Josh (said twister) decides to hide underneath the sink in the bar area which means he has zero room to move. The rest of the group had no trouble telling me exactly where he was and this kid got doused, not once - but twice, in the face, curled up in this cabinet with ice cold toilet water. I'm still laughing as I type this in what may be the funniest moment I've ever had as a 13 year old. 20 years late, yes, but at that moment I was 13 again. I believe I will call him "TW" from now on.

So anyway, today was the big day - all the shots of the school, interviews with friends, teachers, the boys having lunch. I was so jonesin' for some 7th grade food but I was overruled. Apparently that would look unprofessional. If Jim only knew... The day continued with the mayor giving them a plaque declaring April 27th "Crooked X Day" in Coweta... then taping their rehearsal and a formal interview with the band and some of the parents... needless to say we got about 3 or 4 hours of footage today. It's a 3 minute piece. A piece that I'm not editing. :-)

Boomer's mother rented Guitar Hero 2 for us so I had to stay around for that. Unfortunately we couldn't get the cheat codes to work to open up the later songs on expert so we had no way of really "competing" on anything, but needless to say - I kinda whooped on 'em. It's so funny to me because it's the biggest loser move in the world to take pride in beating a band that rocks THIS hard...at a guitar VIDEOGAME. I fully expected Forrest to grab his REAL guitar and just wail in my face while I sat there with my stupid fisher-price guitar with 5 big colorful buttons on it.
Anyway, everyone has been so welcoming. It really is wondeful for me to go back east to any small town in this country because it's home to me. Granted Coweta, and even Tulsa where my hotel was at, is smaller than where I grew up in Columbus - but it's a lot closer to home than LA is. Wide open spaces, people with regular jobs, people that say "pop". It was completely relaxing for me to be in that atmosphere and I have to wonder if I'll ever have the opportunity to spend several months at a time in the country. I still see that as being possible, but only temporarily I"m afraid. Eventually I'm still always drawn to the big cities and the entertainment industries...but that lifestye I left behind holds a place in my heart. Time will tell.
So tomorrow is the big concert at the historic "Cain's Ballroom". Been around for over 80 years. Every legendary rock group has played there and later in June Crooked X will be there again opening for Ted Nugent. Are these kids on a roller coaster ride or what. Then Sunday they fly to LA to meet with their multi-media managers on the Sunset Strip? Crazy.
I'll bring my still camera tomorrow and grab some shots so you know who's who. It's about time for a big 'ol picture entry...