Part 8 – The Sandbox Politics
While many people feel the biggest threat to the United States is China’s low wages, Al-Quaeda’s underwear bombs or special interests some would disagree and say that our internal political differences are the thing most likely to bring our country to its knees.
I would argue that the band Ockym’s Razyr is a microcosm of our great nation whose biggest problem is not competition for gigs, bad reviews or opinionated girlfriends, but rather their own inability to get along.
Since firing founding bass player Matt Vance and bringing Harold Busch in to replace him there has been more infighting that musicmaking in the camp. It hasn’t helped things that Vanessa Hill has dumped drummer Josh Randall and kicked him out of her home leaving the band without a suitable rehearsal space. They’re now crammed into the one stall garage on the side of Adam Gillis and Paul Ode’s triplex. That’s where we’re sitting on this Thursday evening after practice discussing the next move.
“I’m sick of trying to show him the riffs,” Paul complains. “He should know the songs already.”
“He should already know what you’re trying to teach him?” Adam asks. Paul has been complaining about the new bass player since he was brought on board. Though most of the teaching is being done by his co-guitarist Hal Levatine, Paul is only ever happy when complaining about a fellow musician.
“I just think he should be learning the tunes a little faster it all.”
“Give him time,” Josh Randall says. The three of them are hanging out morenow that they’re all living together. Josh has been sleeping on the couch for the past week and shows no intentions of moving on. And of course they’re joined by Nora Tomason, Gillis’ omnipresent girlfriend. “He’s coming along well.”
What no one in the room knows is that they’ve all been secretly plotting to have the others fired. Paul is working to build a coalition against Harold. Adam wants to build one against Josh and Josh is working to build one against Paul. Fortunately for the group, Hal doesn’t participate very well in the ongoing politics and Harold is too new to have been fully accepted. All that they’re really accomplishing by their scheming is to drive a wedge down the center of their already precarious unity.
“I’m just sick of him saying he wants to write new songs instead of learning the old ones.”
“You were like that when you got here,” Josh says.
“No I wasn’t!”
“Yes you were,” Nora says. “That’s why none of the songs off the first album are in the setlist anymore.”
“Nora, why don’t you go choke on your own false sense of superiority,” Paul suggests as he lights another cigarette.
“Okay,” Adam says. “That’s enough of this for me. Let’s sleep on things and see how we feel about the situation in the morning.”
Adam departs quietly but Nora gives Paul the finger as she leaves. Josh cracks open another beer. “Why don’t you guys just screw and get it over with?”
“Fuck you, Josh.”
If you enjoyed this post you may also enjoy: Part 3