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Entry date: 1-23-2024 – Tuna Fish Sandwiches are Gross – Letters to My Friends

Dear Friends,


I despise albacore tuna. There, I said it. It’s disgusting. I don’t understand why people might like to mix it with mayo and put it on bread. It’s the worst. If you offer me a tuna sandwich, I will turn it down. I’d have to be sofa king hungry to eat Tuna.


For some reason, I woke up thinking about stupid tuna fish. I didn’t watch any tuna related TV last night. I haven’t thought about one for years, but for whatever reason, it just popped up on the old brain radar today.


The weird thing is, though, that I like tuna in other forms. Sushi, hell yes. A nice tuna steak, I’m in. Tuna in a can and we’re fighting. It’s just that simple.


Every decade or so, I used to try it. I’d think to myself, “Why don’t you like a nice tuna sandwich? You like sushi. You love fish. Salmon is your friend…try it again.” Then I take a bite and gag. Tuna sandwiches are gross.


Enough tuna talk.




Don’t open the can.

It’s a trap.

You’ll gag.


Fuck that guy Michael Keaton played

In Night Shift.

Don’t feed the tuna mayo to make it easier.

Forget the combination exists.


Tuna poems are lame.




Yesterday I would have liked to have killed the Cocaine Baby. We got a new student and the Cocaine Baby really likes to be a helper.


I said, “Can you be good Cocaine Baby today and show new blood around?”


He nodded an enthusiastic “yes” and I introduced them. After the library, though, we went to music class. My kids don’t really care for the music teacher. I don’t know why. He’s a good dude and super knowledgeable on music. I feel like I would like his class, but they don’t.


When I got there to pick them up at the end, the music teacher showed me a list of students who were disrespectful and Cocaine Baby is at the top of the list. This is not a new thing, but I thought maybe since CB was supposed to be in charge of helping the new blood get used to things, CB would be good.



In fact, Cocaine Baby apparently dropped a loud F bomb when the music teacher refused to play a certain song during class. I’m so curious what song it was, but either way, school is no place for 10-year-olds dropping F bombs. Some of my students are actually offended by it and if I can’t drop one, then no one else should drop them either.


Hopefully today is a better day for Cocaine Baby because at this point, recess will just be a distant memory.




One of the really good things that comes from playing music with a variety of people is how much cool stuff you get turned onto by your fellow musicians. Many of the records I will write about this year were shared with me by people who I have shared stages at one point or another. This Apparatus Must Be Earthed by Shallow North Dakota is one such record.


In the later 90s, Shane from Hillbilly either gave me this record or played it for me and I went (probably to Eastside Records) and bought it. Heavy and serious and fun in all the right places. This music really moves.


Shallow North Dakota are a Canadian band (I like a lot of them Canada bands) and sadly, did not get to see them live. The drummer/singer died a couple years ago of cancer, so that ship has sailed across the rainbow bridge. It would have been rad to get to see this crop of songs live.


Admittedly, this is the only record of theirs I have. It scratches a certain itch so perfectly that I’ve always been reluctant to get anything else by them. That’s probably just me being dumb, but I do stupid shit like that when it comes to artists all the time. If they have one record that I really adore, I will shun unknown parts of their discography to avoid being disappointed or, I guess, having their sound tainted in my ears.


This Apparatus Must Be Earthed is a grinder. It will grind you down and put you into submission. The pace never lets up from top to bottom, although the title track gives you a tiny break in the pummeling with five minutes of the most laidback yet bombastic noise. It’s like one of those pudding cups with double flavors. The anticipation for the next bite is huge. What will come next?


“The Lubber” is what comes next, and the song is a scorcher for about 15 seconds and then it gives you another dose of laidback bombastica before kicking back in with even more attitude. It’s like agitate, rinse, agitate, rinse, and repeat.


 If you are looking to a go to song on this one, it’s probably track two, “Greenhorn,” but “Speed King” gives it a run for its money. The furious riffage in “Speed King” is something that all fans of the heavy, noisy type music should check out. It will give you a chub.


While Shallow North Dakota will probably be forgotten by a few more people each year, it’s good to know that there will be fans of this type of thing who get hipped to a record like This Apparatus Must Be Earthed here and there from time to time. It will be new to them and maybe it will even inspire some dudes or dudettes to crank up their amps and attitudes and make a ruckus of their own. “Old Type Writer,” for example, makes a good template for how to fuse punk rock, heavy sludge, and a healthy release of anger. Turn it up!




See you tomorrow.

Oldest and youngest when they were both much younger. We even had carpet back then.

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