Good drummers are a dime a dozen

(I have about 500 stories in my draft file. Most are unfinished or just ideas, but occasionally I find something that I just never posted, like this. It’s a few years old.)

I knew I was a lousy drummer the day I popped myself in the eye with my left hand stick. I never lost a beat, however. Nor an eye. I was also never able to quite figure out how I’d done it. But it was punk rock, so no big deal.

I feel a story coming on. My drumming career. I mean good drummers are a dime a dozen, but the true fuck ups are something special.

My favorite drumming injury was when I noticed the crash stand, a big heavy thing, hadn’t been tightened properly and when I reached over to adjust it and the whole thing slipped and tore out a big chunk of my index finger. Blood everywhere. My wife ran up, duct taped my fingers together and I was ready to go before the guitarist was finished tuning.

I hear duct tape is good for severed limbs too.

At some point stuff like this stopped happening. No more injuries. No more screwball pratfalls. I had learned to play. And I got bored. Nothing went wrong anymore. You set up, sat down, played, got up, tore down. No fights, no riots, no naked dudes falling into my kit or naked chicks running across the stage. No crazy bouncers or outraged club owners. No demented mountain men threatening to kill me. No onstage joints laced with PCP. No police. No nothing but nice, safe rock’n’roll. It became tedious. At some point in a drummer’s life he’s cramming his bass drum into the trunk of his car and thinking why am I doing this? The real drummers know why, they’re real drummers. The amateurs know there has to be a better way of not making a living.

So I took up writing. There’s no money in it either, but at least I don’t have to lug a drum kit around.

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