I’ve been away from reading/commenting on blogs because last week some nice guy out in L.A. bought a copy of the Thunder Road chapbook I made and was so smitten with the book and the story behind it, that he did a great write-up for Backstreets.com, the all-Bruce Springsteen, all-the-time fan website. He even skewed one of Nick Hornby’s book titles for the article headline and linked Springsteen’s cameo from the film adaptation of Hornby’s High Fidelity. Oh, that’s clever!
The piece is so compelling and so well-written that it resulted in a tsunami of orders. I’m a one-man fulfillment center so I’ve spent the last five or six nights hold-up in my basement packing and shipping books. Here’s the article. Just scroll down a bit. The books are now sold-out, which was never a guarantee, so thanks, Jon. I’ve also had to spend time refunding money that keeps pouring in. People are disappointed. Additionally, I was contacted by a DJ from E Street Radio on Sirius Satellite who was going to play Thunder Road and then do a story on the book to try and move copies, but that’s no longer necessary. I’d also like to publically thank Mrs. Wife for taking all 200 packages to the post office for me. Do you think that was easy?
Backstreets.com is a huge, influential website. They linked my blog post that tells the story of how the book was made and my stats went through the roof. My usual puny 50-70 hits per day ballooned to about 300 per day since last week. Many orders included congratulations and messages of admiration which, for an egomaniac like me, couldn’t be more satisfying. I keep re-reading them over and over. It’s like pushing a lever and getting a peanut M&M.
Last week, Mrs. Wife impulse-purchased a pair of deeply discounted tickets to see Janet Jackson. I’m not a huge Janet Jackson fan but it certainly beat the hell out of another fruitless scroll through Netflix. It was an outdoor venue and the concert sold so poorly that everyone who had a lawn seat was given a seat inside the pavilion. The back parking lot, where we usually get stuck, was completely empty. Not one car! Hence, the discounted tix, I suppose.
I’m going to go out on a limb and say that about 70% of the concert was lip-synced. But I don’t fault Ms. Jackson. The show is so intensely choreographed that I decided it’s not meant to be a concert of just singing. It’s about the dancing and visuals, too. And you can’t put on that kind of show and still sing live. It’s just not possible! Especially at 45 years old.
Her want to please the audience seemed genuine to me. To turn around and say, oh, for shame, she lip-syncs, would be in poor form and belittle her efforts. She was working her ass off. What more do you want? So I will grant her a pass, where many others would cry foul.
There was a mini-tribute to Michael Jackson, which left me unexpectedly sad. A photo montage that featured the two of them since their childhood was played on a screen behind her while she sang. It dawned on me that although he was an oddity, he was also her brother. And he died tragically. She lost her big bother, whom she obviously loved. Do you have siblings? Can you imagine watching one of them die in the manner he did? I was so blue.