August 14, 2002: DALLAS, TX: THE LAST BREEDERS SHOW OF THIS TOUR

Look at those two goofballs over on the right holding the beers - José and Richard from the Breeders.

The Breeders stood in front of Jim tonight when we played. We razzed them from the stage. I made fun of their t-shirts - I was wearing a tiny, tiny Breeders t-shirt, one of those girly baby tees that is too tight and too short so my belly button shows. "Kim! What the Fuck! What the hell kind of t-shirts are these, they show my belly button! I hate that!" and she yells back, "Awww, it looks cute" or something like that. We asked them some more trivia questions from the stage. When Imperial Teen came up on stage, the Breeders went up and sang half of their songs with them. We even got to come up and clap during their clappy song - Kelley and I clapped each others' hands on that one. It's probably the first time I've ever been on the stage with another band - except that one night we tackled Steel Pole Bath Tub at the end of that tour.

When the Breeders went on, they dedicated their entire set to us and Imperial Teen. Kelley wore a Imperial Teen t-shirt with a Poster Children sticker on the sleeve. They mentioned they were waiting for all of us to run up on the stage and somehow get them back for what they'd done to i-Teen on the stage, but I know no one wanted to go up on stage with them. Who would want to be up there and miss hearing them as an audience member?

In fact, for their encore, they notified all of us that we were to go up onstage and sing the "I DON'T CARE ABOUT YOU" FEAR song - and I LOVE that song, I had hoped they were going to play it. But I wasn't so sure that I wanted to be on the stage when they played it - I wanted to enjoy it from the audiences point of view! But then I realized it would be a chance to witness the song from on the stage, where it was being played, and shit, I got up there with the rest of Imperial Teen and yelled. "I DON'T CARE ABOUT YOU!!! FUCK YOU!!!!" right into the microphone. So AWESOME! And then I stage dived off the stage, first time ever in my life. I sailed above the crowd, right next to Will from Imperial Teen - his first time too! That was fun! And then Wolfie pulled me back onstage and rescued me from the crowd.

THERE AREN'T ENOUGH WORDS

I got the feeling on the last day that everyone had such a good time with everyone else that we couldn't even hug each other enough. There weren't enough words, at least in my case, to express to both bands how much I love them, and how great a time I had. I kept waiting for something to happen that would allow me to pour out even more admiration and happiness to them, but there were no more places to pour. It was just a very happy ending to a very happy tour. Maybe we'll get to tour with them again. At least I hope they all come through Champaign one day. I just want to see them all again.

Imperial Teen - they are AWESOME. Buy their records at http://www.mergerecords.com.

Matt (our drummer) and Richard (Breeders guitarist). I don't know who the other guy is in the background.

WOLF! Stage manager of the Breeders.


DRIVE HOME

Motel 6, our home. Jim is sitting quietly next to the pool wearing dark sunglasses, looking like a member of the Velvet Underground, and probably working on his scrapbook. Man, if I could only get a hold of that thing. It probably is museum-quality.


I AM A MATHEMATICIAN

Sunset and The Law

The drive home was perfectly uneventful except that I am a complete fucking idiot and got pulled over by the cops in Arkansas. Let me tell you something - the speedometer on the van doesn't work. We have no idea how fast we are going, at any time. Sometimes the speedometer says 10mph, other times it says 70. It just gets stuck somewhere and doesn't change until the van turns off. It's some kind of electrical problem that is going to cost more than it seems like it should cost to fix it, so we haven't fixed it yet.

What is your velocity?

You can kind of tell how fast you're going on the road just by seeing how fast the ground goes past you. If it's a certain shade of grey, you're going the right speed. You can also judge by other cars; if you're behind grandpa's pickup truck that has a bunch of hay in it, you're going around 50mph. If you're passing a huge shiny new pickup with huge tires and tinted windows, you're probably going too fast. My method for figuring out how fast I'm going is to only pass two cars every 30 minutes. That way I know I'm not going too fast. I am a mathematician.

So I'm dead tired, and Matt keeps offering to drive for me, but I'm stubborn and don't want anyone else to drive, because I haven't driven yet on the way back. I'm falling-asleep-tired, that's how tired I am, driving through these terrible concrete construction areas, thinking about Elvis, because I'm 20 miles away from Memphis on the Candle-light Vigil Night of Elvis's Death Weekend. I'm thinking about Elvis and falling asleep and listening to the Breeders on my iPod. And I lost count of the cars I passed; probably passed 3 cars; I was going too fast, and there was a cop.

So the cop pulled me over, but there were tons of orange construction thingys on the right side of the road with "ROAD CLOSED" signs, so, me being a left-hander, I threw down the iPod and drove myself over to the median on the left, right before the road switched over to a 2-lane highway for god knows how long. I pulled over and when the policeman came to the window, I smiled and said, "I'm sorry - I thought I was going 70" - pointed to the speedometer and it said "70." That was lucky, that it had stopped on 70. "The speedometer is apparently broken," I told the policeman. He was a huge, black guy with a nice smile. He tapped on the speedometer and said, "yes, it does appear to be broken." "I'm sorry, " I said politely. He asked if I had any other tickets (I don't) and went back to his truck. When he returned, he had written me a warning and said not to speed anymore. I thanked him profusely.

Then I proceeded to not be able to drive the van out of the mud in the median. We spent a good hour trying to pull the damn van out of the mud and it just got more and more stuck deeper into the mud. This, during one of the most beautiful sunsets I've ever seen in my life.

We tried everything. Matt ran across the highway which was almost non-stop trucks driving 80mph, crossing over into the left-side of the 2-lane highway for construction, pulling sandbags from the orange construction signs. We kept piling them under the tires, and the tires just got deeper and deeper into the mud. The policeman just stood by silently and watched us. It was terrible. Then we started pulling out pillows from the van and sticking them in the mud under the tires, but nothing helped. It was so depressing.

Now the sun had set, and we were getting eaten alive by mosquitos. None of us had brought insect repellent. The policeman told us there were no reported cases of West Nile nearby, but I was terrified. We finally had the policeman call the local tow-truck who had to come from a half-mile away and charge us $100 to pull the van about 5 feet forward, out of the mud puddle. This guy got $100 for about 5 minutes of work. He probably got more money than the policeman got. The policeman probably should have gotten a cut.

While we waited, Rick and Jim stood outside in the swamp, testing West Nile Fate. If you want to know who is the smartest out of all of us, it's Matt. He got right into the van and stayed there. I got about 20 bites and went in. Rick and Jim stood outside in the swamp, like dolts in the mud, until I screamed at them to get in the van. And actually, I think Jim still stayed outside. I'll never understand why. And it will be my fault if they die of the West Nile Virus.

5 minutes after the Tow Truck Highway Robbery Specialist came to pull us out of the mud, we were on dry ground. Our shoes were covered with mud, and no one talked in the van for a while. I know - and the guys know - that I am madder at myself than any of the rest of them are. None of them could possibly be as mad at me as I was. I think that's really nice of them. I learned this from Rick a long time ago, actually. When something terrible is happening, like the van is stuck in the mud, and it's my fault, he doesn't really get too mad at me. He doesn't get too mad at me when I cause an accident to happen. My family is the opposite; they'd be yelling and screaming. Rick's family must be pretty tolerant.

 


Epilogue.

Me and Kelley Deal

I want to take this woman home with me and take away any kind of sorrow that ever happened to her.

Hell. I want to do that for everyone.

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