The Road Show
Iss was throwing words like blasé, repertoire, and avant garde around like crusty old girl scout cookies; spattering uptown jive and right-wing fancy talk all over the stained interior of the wagon, while Sports Dude drooled on and on about some water polo franchise in Canada. It was a ridiculous fucking scene and so was the whole trip. I think we were somewhere around Arkansas when my last remaining shreds of sanity wilted under the lunacy of it all. CmcD was the straw that broke the camel’s toe. His constant busting off caps out the window as we cruised down the highway ruffled my feathers to begin with, but when he presented a design of the latest invention he drew up, I simply lost it.
“Fuck you it’s a brilliant idea!” CmcD defensive as a mother ostrich with a threatened pile of eggs.
“I’m sorry, I just don’t want to hear about your stupid Shit, Shower, and Shave machine. I don’t think anybody wants to!”
“I do,” the Sports Dude gasped with enthusiasm from the back. CmcD turned and flashed him a thumbs up and a smile.
“Jesus man, couldn’t you at least find a pencil, did you have to use a crayon?”
Iss optimistically murmuring in the background to the Dude, “I hear they have a real laissez faire government policy in Canada.”
“Matter of fact I can’t listen to another fucking word out of any of your mouths. (Crumpling up the SSS machine plans and tossing them out the window) I don’t know why I came along for this one, you sorry bunch of fucking weirdoes.”
I was fired up, the wag came to a screeching halt. As they ripped away I was hailed with beer cans and jockstraps. There I was, alone, desperate, side of the highway, just my guitar and a bad attitude. So like any other rag-assin’, red blooded, wannabe rock star I rambled down the road to the nearest whiskey shack I could find.
Eventually I came across the Double Deuce. A bright blue neon sign incessantly saturated its dusty parking lot with a seedy glow. At the door I was questioned by a man named Dalton.
“Hey man, you with the band?”
“Umm... Yes I am.” I was hoping to at the very least avoid the cover charge, but the familiarity of the situation spawned a hint of apprehension in my mind.
“Alright cool, go head in. They’re already playing.”
But I didn’t think I’d be rushed up to the stage upon entering the rowdy biker pit. Dalton escorted me to the chicken wire setup from where the band wailed forgotten backwood tunes.
Well my scam didn’t go very far; as soon as I approached the wire booze net, they immediately called me out as an impostor and shook me down. I was shambled and shunned with three choices remaining:
(A) I could pose a final, dazzling, dance routine on the bar prior to my deposition, hoping for merciful reprieve (inspired by Pee Wee’s genius).
(B) Convince them to let me play a few songs and try to win them over with some Flava Tribe and Innkeeper’s Daughter classics.
Or, (C) Pop open my guitar case arsenal and reel around raining hell inside the musty den of sin, with a righteous wrath.
Being that I can’t dance a lick and it would probably upset people to watch me convulse and shimmy erratically upon the bar, I had to rule that option out. So I quickly dropped to the floor and flipped open my case. Everyone took a step back, but, as I had forgotten to fill my guitar case with automatic weapons that particular morning, all I came back up with was my faithful six string ax. Before anyone could stop me I trilled through my catalog of songs, ending the set with 'Mike Came Home with a Mullet'. The final chord detonated and swirled amidst blank stares and dropped slack-jaws. I played my heart out and I was waiting for a response. An eerie silence drifted through the air, the bar was in a complete state of shock, reminiscent of a 1955 Marty McFly and the Starlighters. It wasn’t looking good for ol’ Mallo. Then much to my surprise, a bottle was flung right at my head. It smashed hard with wild green shards shattering off the side of my face.
When I came to I was in the back lot buck naked, hog tied and ready to be sliced and served like apple pie. In the bed of a rusty pickup, my vision blurry, I could see a confederate flag whipping in the wind off the radio antenna and some angry men circling around; they were talking with more gravel in their voices than they were standing on. Then there was a high pitch scream that chilled my spine to the core; the next thing I know I was plucked from the truck and swiftly carried off on horseback by a long haired gentleman, who was yowling like a bareback banshee.
“They were fixin’ to tar n’ feather ya.”
“ Dalton. Who ya think? That dude hates yankees, and you must be crazier ‘n hell, singin’ a song bout mullets round ‘ere. You’re really lucky I was at the Deuce.”
“Who the hell are you?”
“I’m Shits In Woods, I threw the bottle at ya, it’s a pleasure to meet ya, Wyles.”
“How do you know who I am, and why the fuck did you throw a bottle at me?”
“We know of your tribe here, your message has spread throughout Native American nations all over the country. ‘No Reservations’ speaks to our people’s strife, we sure appreciate your sympathy for our struggle. Sorry ‘bout the bottle. At the Deuce you throw bottles at the band if you like what they play, and also, if you don’t, but I threw it in sheer admiration, only there’s usually some chicken wire to catch the glass, guess you weren’t behind it.”
We came upon a campsite: tents, blankets, smoldering fire pits, sad eyed dogs, and little children.
“Why do you live out here like this?”
“We’re boycotting Indian reservations. We’re all going to march on D.C., it’s sort of a nationwide migration. So far we’ve all been scattered around the country like this.” He paused dramatically; and looked straight into my eyes with a sharp heat.
“We need someone to lead us.”
Please feel free to express any and all memories or stories concerning Wyles at the 1 Tuff Message Board.