Where do I begin? How about at the beginning? I’m a writer. Seems like a good place. I just finished an interview and reading with North Carolina Public Radio’s “The State of Things”. It was both a blast and a blur–Frank Stasio and the amazing folks at WUNC do an incredible job of making you feel comfortable and welcome. It was mostly the forming coherent thoughts that I had to muddle through. Still, I think I did okay for myself. The piece will run Wednesday, June 26. For those of you outside NC, you can listen via podcast or RSS feed by going to “The State of Things” page at wunc.org.
The appearance on TSOT (I get to call it that now that I’ve been a guest), is in anticipation of my reading/signing/Q&A at McIntyre’s Fine Books in Fearrington Village on Sunday, June 30th at 2PM. I hope to see lots of faces that afternoon, both familiar and new. Please come by. You can get more info about McIntyre’s at mcintyresbooks.com.
I hope the rest of my headline wasn’t misleading. The part about utter craziness mostly refers to intricacies of managing summer vacation with two kids when you’re trying to write a book. The dogs and cats living together is just because I love a good movie quote, but I can usually only remember that one and, “No more yanky my wanky, the Donger need food.”
Stay cool! xoxo
I will be putting my public school education to the test this Wednesday, with a reading from Bring Me Back at Flyleaf Books in Chapel Hill. I was always the kid who was called on in class to read aloud. No idea why, but I’m pretty good at it. (Five bucks says I just jinxed myself.) The festivities start at 7:30 and should run until about 8:30. There will be a Q&A and book signing as well (further demonstration of my talents–stay in school, kids!). To make it even more exciting, I’m bringing along a few bottles of Prosecco for those who care to toast with me. For further info, visit Flyleaf Books online.
Also, for anyone who missed it, David Menconi did a wonderful write-up on Bring Me Back in Sunday’s News & Observer. You can read the story here.
Rock on! xoxo
I spend a lot of time talking about Duran Duran wallpaper. People know this about me. I think it’s largely because when I was plastering my bedroom walls with images of Duran Duran and John Taylor, it didn’t occur to me that millions of girls before me had done it. Equally mind-boggling is that millions of girls after me surely did the same thing with the band or teen idol of their choice. What is it about evolution that drives adolescent females to such extremes of home decor? Nesting instinct? Hormones run amok? The teen idol poster printing industrial complex? Holly Gilliat brings a new one to the blog today–Kiss wallpaper, while joining us to celebrate the release of ‘Til St. Patrick’s Day (it’s awesome–go buy it!). Nesting…home decor…hormones…Gene Simmons. Excellent combo.
Hazelwood Central High, Florissant, MO, Class of ’90, Currently: Packaging Sales Rep by day; Author—whenever I can be!
Band and/or song that reminds you the most of high school: This is tough to narrow it down! There are so many…of course, hair bands (Bon Jovi, Kiss, Poison, Motley Crue), George Michael, The Bangles, Tone Loc, U2, Richard Marx.
Favorite piece of music memorabilia (poster, t-shirt, etc.) in high school: About midway through junior high, and with no decorating budget in sight, I decided to cover up my ragdoll wallpaper that I’d had since I was four—with posters of Kiss. I mean, every single inch. That lasted until I was about 16 and saved up some money to redecorate!
Band that you hated that everyone else at school seemed to love: This was the tail end of high school for me, and the beginning of boy bands—New Kids on the Block. I just didn’t get the allure, or the music.
Best show or concert you saw in high school: Don’t laugh. Really…don’t. It was probably Richard Marx at the Old Glory Amphitheatre at Six Flags in St. Louis. My friends Sherry, Craig and I even stormed the stage…I suppose hoping to get a chance to snag a lock of his big hair!
Best high school make-out song: Chris Isaac’s “Wicked Game.” Still puts me in the mood.
Today’s RNRHS comes from Antonio Angelo, a man who lives in infamy on Twitter. Sure, he has a “real name”, but I only know him as Antonio. The awesome thing about Antonio is that you always know where you stand with him because he will flat-out tell you. He and I disagree on oodles of things (yes, oodles) and yet we manage to be friends. I think it’s largely based on looking past the other person’s opinion and keeping the conversation to stupid stuff like pudding. Antonio has lots of awesome answers for us today, some of which are so sweet and sentimental that I was left speechless. Then there’s the Violent Femmes answer at the end, and all order in the world is restored.
Brad O’Neill aka Antonio Angelo
Dobson High School, Mesa, AZ, Class of ’91, currently: I am a software tester, unpublished writer, investor, basically just nuts.
Band and/or song that reminds you the most of high school: “Lady in Red” is the song that instantly brings me back to high school and reminds me of an awesome slow dance. Where for one shining moment I was with the girl that I thought would be forever.
Favorite piece of music memorabilia (poster, t-shirt, etc.) in high school: I wasn’t much into the current music at the time, it was just before grunge really took hold, something I could have been into. My school was into either Death metal or Hip Hop and neither suited me particularly well. The only memorabilia I ever bought was a Trooper poster from Iron Maiden and I just liked the picture and never really got into the music.
Best show or concert you saw in high school: I actually only attended two shows in High School. One was Peter, Paul and Mary which sing good songs but pissed me off politically by demanding an impeachment of our governor. I think I was the only one not standing up and clapping at their idiocy. And before that a Harry Chapin tribute concert which was absolutely amazing and introduced me to the first music I ever truly felt. I was born about 20 years too late for my musical tastes.
Best high school make-out song: “Add It Up” by the Violent femmes. If you don’t believe me grab an angst ridden teen (only do this if you are an angst ridden teen yourself or at least a teen of some kind. If you’re forty, it’s kind of creepy) and pop the song in the cassette player and you will be so in over your head in slobber, gropes and building sexual tension that your hair will be mussed, your clothes will be untucked, your back will be bruised from an inconvenient door handle and you will know what it is to want something everyone is telling you, you just shouldn’t have.
Follow @AntonioAngelo21 on Twitter if you know what’s good for you. You can download his short erotica story My Dear Isabella for free at Smashwords. He also has a story in the charity anthology Felt Tips, edited by Tiffany Reisz and featuring over 40 authors, including myself. It’s available on Amazon.
Today’s Rock ‘n’ Roll High School comes from totally rad blogger and writer Jenna Cosgrove. If you haven’t checked out the fresh and fun Pop Eighties blog, you need to get on the stick. Jenna is part crazy and part super generous, as she was willing to give me an entire week on Pop Eighties to spout off about the 80s one-hit-wonders that should have been more (The Plimsouls! Hello?), play guest VJ, and do a Q&A about Bring Me Back. A round of applause for Jenna! The other thing that makes her awesome is that her musical tastes are all over the map. Marilyn Manson and Take That! in one post, elated emails about Bruce Springsteen in my inbox. Jenna was even a user of posters as wallpaper in her youth. A woman after my own heart.
Aspley State High, Brisbane, Australia, Class of ’98, Currently: She Writes, Blogs, Plays on the Internet
Band and/or song that reminds you the most of high school: I can’t decide between two songs! The first is “Beautiful People” by Marilyn Manson, because I have so many memories of listening to it with my friends at parties, or in my room when I was being a brooding teenager. The other is about as opposite as you can get – “Barbie Girl” by Aqua. Not because I loved it, but because that song was EVERYWHERE when it came out. Even if I hear just a snippet of it, it’s SO 90s that it just takes me right back to school!
Favorite piece of music memorabilia (poster, t-shirt, etc.) in high school: I had that real typical fan-girl bedroom covered in posters, from about age 8 until I moved out of home at 17. And by covered, I mean PLASTERED – all the walls and even a couple on the ceiling! I’m going to count that as one big piece of memorabilia, because my posters were my life. Well, maybe not my life, but they were a big part of my identity.
Band that you hated that everyone else at school seemed to love: I was such an alterno chick in high school, and I was a lot less eclectic in what I would listen to than I am now! For some reason I really disliked R&B music (I listen to a lot of rap and R&B these days), which is what a lot of my classmates loved. In particular, Boyz II Men. I used to diss people for liking them and Mariah Carey, and then they teamed up and did a song together!
Saying that, despite my youthful elitism, I developed this thing for Take That when I was 14. Yes, the British boy band that brought us Robbie Williams! How I could be a scorning rocker while flipping out over the band’s stylized dance moves and matching costumes is one of life’s great mysteries!
Best show or concert you saw in high school: Definitely the Big Day Out, an epic music festival we have here in Oz. They’ve had the most massive names in rock and alternative music up on that stage – think Nirvana, Hole, Iggy and the Stooges, the Ramones, Rammstein, Primal Scream, Metallica, the Foo Fighters – the list goes on!
My favorite year was 1997, which had Soundgarden, the Offspring, The Prodigy, Supergrass and Patti Smith, amongst others. I haven’t been to one in years, but back in the day it was a great alternative festival with a darned good mosh pit!
Best high school make-out song: I probably have a very different idea of what makes a good make-out song than a lot of people! Nothing cheesy or romantic, for sure. The best one I can think of is “Common People” by Pulp. I would still make out to that now!