By Chuck Strouse
By Scott Fishman
By Terrence McCoy
By Ryan Yousefi
By Ciara LaVelle, Kat Bein, Carolina Del Busto, and Liz Tracy
By Pepe Billete
By Ryan Yousefi
By Kyle Swenson
Why would a band called the Screaming Iguanas of Love change its name? Maybe to help us smokers fight for equal rights, the same rights granted to the offensive users of perfumes, colognes, deodorants, and other harmful products that are not banned in public places but should be. Maybe not. Melbourne's coolest trio is now known as the Nicoteens, with suitable spinoffs A the fan club becomes "The Smoking Section." The Nics are working on a new album, and using this slogan: "We want to pop your head off and sing down your neck."
Butthorn of the week: Miami drivers. Leave for a while and it really hits home. Low and slow is a better way to go.
The media circus: Out on one of the many highways slicing through northwestern South Carolina was a Baptist church (actually, anywhere you look in the Upstate, or for that matter the Low Country, there's a Baptist church) with a sign boasting this slogan: "Inspiration comes from working every day." Sort of the antithesis of Tom Waits's great lyric, "Girl I know that job you got leaves you so uninspired" or even the Skels' "If you get enough time off your goddamn job/To make your peace with yourself and God." Pardon the sacrilege, but seeing an American bald eagle in the wild, that's inspiring. Being with people you care about, being in places without people, being free of the sham and drudgery A those things are inspiring. It makes me wonder where is God's country.
Pet corner: And the blue laws A come on over but don't bring your Bud with you. Liquor stores cannot post any signs beyond a b-ball size and wordless red dot, and you can't buy a drink on Sunday to save your life. One day at this lake, far from the madding everything, with our lines in the water, my brother-in-law Kenny told me how he found this other lake on a large piece of private property. It was a Sunday morning, his day off, so he went to the landowner and asked permission to fish there. "Don't permit no fishing on a Sunday," the man told him sternly. Ol' Ken, now, he just shrugged it off and left, but in his mind was this thought: Fishing is how I commune with my God.