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20 Nov

A Lot Has Happened…

Damn it’s been awhile since I’ve written a blog.

Let’s see, my last entry was immediately after I got *unfairly* deported from Jersey Island (UK, not US) during my crazy European adventure earlier this year, which by the way, caused a media shit storm for the customs office over there. I ended up on BBC news because of it. So funny. I’ve obviously had a ton of other stuff happen since then, but haven’t really had the time to sit down and write about it until tonight. Well folks, no more excuses. Here it is.

After I left Jersey (which was the very end of April), I travelled to other parts of Europe over the course of the next few months (Germany, Spain, France & Sicily) before I flew back to America on August 1st. I won’t go into detail about the rest of the trip (since I’ll be compiling video footage of it all into the next two episodes of Summer Channel TV) but I will say this…

Going to Europe was one of the best decisions I’ve *ever* made. Hands down.

It changed my life in so many wonderful and profound ways. How you ask? I’m gonna call on Henry Rollins to help explain:

“I beg young people to travel. If you don’t have a passport, get one. Take a summer, get a backpack and go to Delhi, go to Saigon, go to Bangkok, go to Kenya. Have your mind blown. Eat interesting food. Dig some interesting people. Have an adventure. Be careful. Come back and you’re going to see your country differently, you’re going to see your president differently, no matter who it is. Music, culture, food, water. Your showers will become shorter. You’re going to get a sense of what globalization looks like. It’s not what Tom Friedman writes about; I’m sorry. You’re going to see that global climate change is very real. And that for some people, their day consists of walking 12 miles for four buckets of water. And so there are lessons that you can’t get out of a book that are waiting for you at the other end of that flight. A lot of people—Americans and Europeans—come back and go, ohhhhh. And the light bulb goes on.”

That.

I cannot begin to tell you how thoroughly skewed my view of Americans is now. We live in a bubble, unaware of anyone or anything but ourselves. I was already mindful of some of the less admirable traits we possess as a country, before my trip, but now? Now, I have an entirely new perspective on the matter. Don’t get me wrong, I love the good ole USA, but after seeing how the rest of the world views us, well, let’s just say we have a LOT to think about. Mostly, how God damned wasteful we are. That, and how we gorge ourselves on shit food, become obese and then suffer self imposed diseases as a result. We’re arrogant. We’re close minded about a lot of things. We think we own the rest of the world and can do whatever the fuck we want. We can’t. People are tired of it. The rest of the world is laughing at us.

Now, I’m sure a lot of you could give a fat rat’s ass about what the rest of the world thinks, but you should consider this: America only makes up a small percentage of the entire world’s population. We’re *really* the minority. I could get into politics here, but I won’t. The point is, America is pretty ass backwards in a lot of ways. I’ll end it here.

Secondly, going to Europe helped me face some fears I had that needed confrontation, one of which was giving a fuck about what other people thought of me. I dunno why I let it bother me for so long, but other people’s (perceived) opinions of me had become crippling, both personally and musically. For some odd reason though, I seemed to have left that behind me and I’m not entirely sure why. Perhaps it was because I had to (rapidly) get used to the fact that Americans weren’t regarded so well over there and thusly grow a thicker skin in response. Or maybe it was because my priorities changed over the course of the trip and what I thought was important before became petty afterwards. Who knows. What I do know is that things are different now. Praise Jebus.

Then of course there was Burning Man, but that’s a whole blog of it’s own, which I’ll write about next… but, holy fuckballs. Wow.

After BM, I got my stuff out of storage in San Francisco, loaded it into a moving truck and drove back to my hometown, Albuquerque NM (where I’m living now). One of my best friends, John Beaver, made the trip with me. It took us two days. We stopped to see the Grand Canyon (neither of us had ever seen it) along with the nearby Flinstones theme park, the meteor crater and anything else that looked interesting along the way. I’m glad that we got to spend that time together. John got diagnosed with cancer a week later and has been battling it since. Ahhh life, you’re so random sometimes.

So yeah, Albuquerque.

I left ABQ in 1998 for Los Angeles, with my ex-partner in Deepsky. We moved away because both of us had the glaring realization that the band needed to be in the middle of the action in order for it to progress. At the time, Albuquerque didn’t have a whole lot to offer us in that way, so we bucked up, packed up and moved to the west coast with thin wallets and fat dreams. Those dreams panned out for us in the long run and the rest, of course, is history.

I’ve lived a few places over the last 15 years… LA, San Diego, San Francisco, Austin and now Europe. I could have moved anywhere else. I decided to come back to Albuquerque for several reasons. One, it’s my hometown. It feels comfy and cozy here. Some of my best friends in the world are still living here and that makes me happy. Secondly, now that I’m diving head first into my Summer Channel album and my book, I want to be in a place with the least amount of distractions. ABQ certainly fits the bill for that. Thirdly, rent is cheap. And look, if I need to go do something wild and crazy, I’ll get on a plane and go somewhere else. But not for a LONG while…

Being on the road for almost a year made me realize how much I missed being in one place – a comfortable and stable situation. As much as I love to travel, I *really* missed my bed, my friends, my studio… and my privacy. A lot of people confessed to me that they didn’t know how I was able to do it for so long (I even questioned it at times) but now that I’m home, I have so much more of an appreciation for being in one spot. I think it was exactly what I needed.

So what now?

My days consist solely of being healthy, getting super fit, writing and making music. I rarely go out, and I’m not looking to get in any kind of trouble. I don’t want a girlfriend and I barely even have the time to talk to chicks anyway. I’m taking everything I’ve learned in the last 20 years and putting into the most incredible album I’ve ever made. That’s all I care about right now, and that’s exactly what I’m going to do.

And that’s that. 🙂