Just Can’t Fight this Feeling Anymore

I’m listening to REO Speedwagon this morning. That’s not unusual as I am a big fan of the Hi Infidelity album. But, I’m not writing this to praise the arena rock songwriting skills of Kevin Cronin. Instead, it’s to share a moment from my childhood that relates to REO Speedwagon.

First, I guess I should figure out how old I was. Hold on… OK, since Hi Infidelity was released in 1980, I’ll say I was either eight or nine-years-old. Anyway, the memory is this:

I am walking down the street, on my way to the store. I’m probably going to pick up a pack of candy cigarettes, but how in the hell am I supposed to remember that?

As I’m walking, I see that Doug Dixon and his henchman, whose name I did not know, are hanging around by a tree close to the store, smoking real cigarettes. I’m not too happy about this, as Doug Dixon is a high school kid that was the town bad guy,. A “hood,” if you will.  I wasn’t looking forward to any kind of interaction. So, I keep walking, head down.

“Hey you,” says the henchman who, with his dirty blond hair, looked a lot like a Pretty in Pink era James Spader. Except, instead of wearing a linen suit, he is wearing jeans with holes in the knees and a white concert jersey with black sleeves.

Shit. Just what I need.


“Come over here,” says the henchman.

Although I’m not happy about it I walk over, not knowing what’s about to happen. Are they going to beat me up? Get me high? Cut holes in my jeans? I have no idea.

“Where are you going?

“To the store.”

“Oh yeah? Do you know who you’re fucking with?”

“What do you mean,” I ask, part of me confused as to what he’s talking about while the other part is hoping I’m not about to get pummeled.

“Do you know who I am?”

“I’ve seen you around,” I say, thinking he wants to feel like a local legend.

“No, you don’t know me,” the henchman sneers. “And you don’t want to mess with me. You know why?”

I just stand there, not knowing what to say.

“Do you know who this,” he says, as he points to his rock jersey that clearly says REO Speedwagon.

“Yeah, it’s a band.”

“No, it’s a fucking gang. I’m in a fucking gang.”

With that, the henchman turns around and starts talking to Doug Dixon and I walk away. To this day, I have no idea what in the world he was talking about. It’s not like his shirt said Motorhead. Had it said that, I could at least get behind the idea that he was in a gang of really mean Motorhead fans. But REO Speedwagon? As much as I enjoy their cheese-encrusted arena ballads, I can’t imagine a group of teenagers sitting around getting pumped up while listening to “Keep on Loving You.” “Man, I’m gonna kick your ass foreverrrrrrrrrr.”

I don’t know what ever happened to the henchman. Doug Dixon ended up, big surprise, dropping out of high school, knocking up the town slut and eventually became a mechanic. At least that’s what I heard from a friend who, heard it from a friend who, heard it from a another…


Emmy Nominations – The Wire Gets Shafted Again

I don’t know why this makes me so angry. I really don’t. I’m smart enough to know awards are not all that important. But right now I’m so pissed off I want to slap someone. Why, you ask? Because the 2008 Emmy Nominations just came out and The Wire wasn’t nominated for anything. One of the most well written and critically-acclaimed shows of all time wasn’t nominated for anything. I love Mad Men and Dexter, so I’m glad those shows were nominated, but c’mon!! Nothing for The Wire? At LEAST David Simon should have gotten a nomination for his writing. Also, anyone who thinks the lack of Emmy nominations for The Wire has nothing to do with race is out of their mind. I’m not saying it’s all about race, but if the show featured an all white cast, I imagine the Emmys would have filled up David Simon’s office by now. Oh fuck it. This is stupid. Nothing is going to change. The Wire is gone and it’s still one of the best dramas ever made. No awards needed.

UPDATED: Well, looks like I was wrong and David Simon and Ed Burns did get a writing nomination. At least that’s better than nothing.

Embracing Narcissism

OK, I obviously never blog. Why? Because I have moments of, “does anyone really care about any of this?” and I stop. I struggle with trying to make the blog general enough as to not seem narcissistic. But, you know what? I am ready to embrace my narcissism. I’m ready to use this space for whatever the hell I want to and not care if it’s more personal than not. No one really reads it anyway and the people that do read it probably know me, so what’s wrong with being personal?

Just as long as I don’t start “twittering.” People that do that drive me crazy. I love myself plenty, but I KNOW that no one cares to follow the play-by-play of my day, in excruciatingly boring detail.

Tony Jenkins is Twittering: “Drinking Coffee”

Tony Jenkins is Twittering: “Going to go shower, then head to work.”

Tony Jenkins is Twittering: “Driving to work”

Tony Jenkins is Twittering: “In a meeting.”

Twitter me this: Who really gives a shit?

Anyway, I’m going to start blogging more. At least I think I am. I’m pretty certain I’ve said something like this before.

UPDATE: I was sucked in. So, follow me damn you!