Monthly Archives: December 2018

Tex

I’m working the hotel bar, it’s around 6, older man with plastic white cowboy hat, white suit coat, and blue tie comes in, sits down.  He’s got a drink already from the free bar, and a large to-go carton, with God knows what in it.  He sits down at the end of the bar, and gruffly says, “What’s the football game on now?”  I say, “Clemson.”  He says, “Can you turn up the volume?”  I say, “Sure.”

I turn up the volume, go back to being bored.  When the free bar is open from 5:30-7:30, nobody is drinking at my bar, as you can imagine.  So it can get really slow.  

I spend my time observing this odd gentleman.

He gets on his flip-phone, starts having a lonnnng conversation.  I hear bits and pieces.  He talks a lot about the St. James Bible.  “Yes, you need to look it up in the St. James Bible!”  He’s got a glasses case in front of him, that says, “Johnny Cash” in a Sharpie scrawl.  Why it says Johnny Cash, I can only guess.

After about 45 minutes on the phone, he gets up, leaves for the bathroom.  

My manager comes out of nowhere.  “Just a heads up…there will be two cops coming in soon to have a conversation with Tex.  I guess he was bothering some of the guests, and they complained.  They checked on him, and I guess he has a bunch of warrants out for his arrest.”

Nice!  Things just got interesting.

After a couple minutes, I see the two cops roll in.  One of them is Asian, one is a white guy.  They look official.  They got the cop swagger.

Tex walks back a minute later, unaware of what’s about to go down.

Asian cop says, “Hey, sir, can we have a word?”

He stops, stands at the host stand, confidently.  He looks about 70, with obviously colored dark black hair.  This guy is a character.

I can’t hear what the cops say, but Tex starts going into a huge monologue.  I hear, “I’ve got 50 dollars in my wallet RIGHT NOW.  I was supposed to get a discount from my friend Carl.”

So…not actually a guest at the hotel.  Interesting.  Snuck in for the free drinks and food.  Bold.

I look over at where he was sitting.  He’s got a bunch of crap there.  His white plastic hat sits there lonely.

White cop, who’s been holding back, approaches Tex, says, “Could I see your I.D.?”

Tex fishes it out of his thick, warn wallet, hands it to him.

Asian cops says, “So…are you living here now?”

He takes a long pause, then says, “Yeah.  I am now!”

White cop comes back with I.D., says politely, “Do you mind if we walk you to the front?”

Tex says, “Yeah.  I just need to get my stuff.”

He walks back to the bar, says to me, “You mind if I leave some of this here?”

I say, knowing the inside scoop, “You should probably take it with you.”

He grabs his stuff, his plastic cowboy hat, his ragged bag, walks out, leaving the to-go container behind.

It’s quiet for a moment, everybody’s gone, I grab the to-go container, look in.  It’s a disgusting smorgasbord of finger foods, and appetizers.  But it looks like he shook the whole thing, so it looks like something you’d feed to a pig.

I toss the thing, the guy’s not coming back.  I resume my position at the bar, glance up to the TV, vaguely interested in the score of the game.

-Clint

 

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Merry Christmas 2018

I wake up on Christmas, out of smokes.  I throw on my sweats, stocking cap, try to find something that’s open.  There’s a convenience store on High Street, I drive that way.

I go in, get some smokes, say Merry Christmas to the clerk, leave.

As I’m pulling out, I see a co-worker from the hotel, getting out of his car.  I roll down my window.  What’s up, my man!  He comes up to the car, says hello.  I say, what are you up to today?  You having dinner with the family?  He says, no…this is a tough time for me.  I don’t have any family.  Just a sister, and she doesn’t live here.  

That just breaks my heart.

Couple hours later, I’m in the car, driving to Cedar Rapids, to be with my family.  I think of him, and all those that don’t have family to be with on Christmas.  I feel extra lucky.  I’m not a HUGE fan of Christmas, but try to be a trooper about it.  But I do know that I would be super depressed if I wasn’t able to spend it with my family.  

So here’s to those who don’t have family to spend with on Christmas.  I feel for you.  And to those that do, take a moment out of your day to appreciate the gift of having a family to spend the day with, and think good thoughts for those that are less fortunate. 

Merry Christmas 2018.  God bless.

-Clint

 

How To Make Your Dance Card Full

I’m chatting with a buddy over a cigar today, he’s a single guy, and we get to talking about the dating scene. He alluded to me that he’s temporarily “given up” due to the burden of rejection. 

I think it’s really simple, and can be compared to sales. At one point in my life, I was selling onsite training to companies over the phone. I was given “leads,” but it was basically a telemarketing job. From that job, I learned an important lesson. If you make 30 calls in a day, you’re going to get two hot leads. But if you make 60 calls, you might get five leads. And so on. The more calls, the more chances at a sale. 

And it’s the same thing with the dating life. The more you attempt, the better chance you have to succeed. I know the rejection is tough, but a lot of it is timing. You may have had a chance, but they just got into a relationship.  If you just keep on “making those calls,” and NOT take the rejection personally, soon you will be flush with love, and as my friend Daniel W says, your dance card will be full.

-Clint

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Matt McCuum Gig Log

Gig Log #6:  D’Jais, New Jersey

I got a really crazy call from my manager.  I thought he was joking at first.  Amy Adams wants to meet you.  What?  The actor?  Yeah, she’s in New Jersey shooting, and was wondering if you’d be free in the afternoon before your gig at D’Jais.  Well…I was planning on finding a laundromat to clean my clothes, but I suppose that can wait an extra day.  I still have one clean pair of underwear!!!

Clint says, she wants to meet at Grounds For Sculpture, at the big Marilyn.  Say noon.  I say, I’ll be there!

Sure enough, it’s 11:57, I find the damn towering Marilyn, the classic pose with her dress billowing, and there she is.  Amy Adams.  This IS a weird life I live.  I mean…have you seen Arrival?  Nocturnal Animals?  She has got to be one of the top actors working today.  I’ve always been impressed with her work, and also, it’s not tough looking at her.

Matt!

She puts out her hand.  I shake it.

Amy Adams!  What an HONOR!!!

She smiles a million-dollar movie star smile.

I say, how big is that thing you think?

She looks up, then back at me, says,

That’s what she said.

Oh this is gonna be a fun day.

We start walking around the grounds.  I did a little bit of internet research on the place.  There’s over 800 sculptures on the grounds!  What a magnificent place.  And such a cool person to share it with.

I say, I’ve decided I want on my gravestone to say, Matt McCuum.  Born 1972-blank, then underneath it, it says,

“That’s What She Said.”

How AWESOME would it be if someone were to be randomly walking by, and see that.  It’d be sure to put a smile on their face, don’t you think, Amy?

She says, I’d smile.

I’m gonna do it.

We walk on.  I say, mind if I smoke?

She says, with a twinkle, yes!  I do.  It’s bad for you, Matt!

I light up.  I know, I know.  All good things in life are bad for you.

She says, you got one for me?

Absolutely!

I get out a Marlboro Light 72 for her, and my lighter that says, CHILL OUT.

We stop, she puts the cigarette between her lips, I light it.

It’s an unusually beautiful day for December.  No wind, it doesn’t blow out the flame when I light it.

It lights, she takes a drag, exhales.

She says, my character I’m working on right now smokes.  So…fuck it.

Hey, you’re just getting into character, that’s all.

She smiles.  Right.

I say, what’s your character name?

She says, Ashley.

Hm.  You could pass as an Ashley.

She says, I hope so.

What’s your character like, if you don’t mind me asking.  

She says, I don’t.  I’m an art dealer, with a focus on sculpture.  There’s a murder.  Blah, blah, blah.  

I say, so perfect place to be!  A sculpture park.

Yeah, I thought I’d multi-task.

I say, wait a minute…  Was this all a ruse to bring me here and MURDER ME?!?

She says, well…you already have your epitaph picked out.

I say, THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID!!!!!

-Matt

(For more info about Matt, go to mccuum.com, or visit Matt’s FB page)

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A Book Doesn’t Run Out Of Batteries

I’m serving tables at the hotel restaurant, I approach a table, there’s a woman, sitting at the table, reading a book.

A real book.  With a cover, and pages, and a lick of the finger to turn the page.

I say, I love when I see someone reading a real book.

She sets it down for a moment, gestures to her laptop, and says,

It doesn’t run out of batteries!

-Clint

 

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Matt McCuum Gig Log

Hey folks, I promised I’d keep posting Matt’s Gig Log, so here it is.  I spoke with him today, and he was a little bit hungover.  It doesn’t take much for Matt, he’s kind of a lightweight.  I guess him and Rufus hit the town, drinking fruity mimosas until the wee hours.

-Clint

Gig Log #5:  The Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh

I arrived at the Andy Warhol Museum about three hours early.  I wanted enough time to go floor-by-floor, painting-by-painting.  Warhol by far is my favorite artist.  I don’t think he can be topped.  He didn’t just revolutionize art, he was himself a REVELATION.  Some people I think are not really people but true aliens.  He was one.  Michael Jackson was another.  I saw Michael in concert when I was a kid back in ’86.  That dude wasn’t human.

I’m on the third floor, looking at Warhol’s take on the last supper, and up walks an old friend of mine, Rufus Wainwright.  When I lived out in LA back in the day, he was best friends with my roommate, so he’d be over the house all the time.  Super hilarious dude, and of course, way talented.  I remember, before his first album came out, he played me a demo of five songs, and it was some of the best shit I’ve ever heard.  Actually, better I believe than the versions on the album.  They always ruin the intimacy of it when you get a song in the studio.  That’s why I record my music myself, here it is, like it or not.

Rufus!  

Ohhh shit, it’s Matt McCuuuuuum.

(We give each other a hug).

Dude!  How’s life being a big rock star?!?

He says, Fabulous.

Hey, do you remember that time I dressed you for that gig?  You wore my leather jacket.

Yes, Matt.  I remember…  What are you doing here?  Don’t you live in Kansas, or somewhere like that?

Yeah…Iowa.  Same thing.

Yeaaaah.

I’m playing later on here.

Oh, nice, Matt.

Can you stick around, see the show?

You’re doing like a rap thing, right?

Yeah.

Mmmm.  Not my cup of tea.

Oh you asshole.  Big Rufus now.

Sorry, Matt, I got a gig later.  At a little bit bigger venue.

I say, you always were a cocky bastard.

He says, how late’s your show go?  

Uh…it’s an early one.  10pm, something like that.

Well, why don’t you come over, see me.  I’ll put you on the Guest List.

Hmmm.  Will you play April Fools?

Yes, Matt.  For you I’ll play April Fools.

-Matt McCuum

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