By John Saleeby
The other day I heard Johnny Cash's recording of The Beatles' "In My Life" and it was so bad I sat down outside a Springsteen concert, poured ten gallons of gas on myself, and lit a match - Worst twenty one bucks I ever spent in my life! But a few spins of the first Van Halen album and The Power Of Positive Prozac later I'm all better. And when something really chaps my ass and I'm not sure why I know I've got something to write about and then we will all learn a little bit about ourselves. Like that time I wrote about what a crummy show "Cosby" was and we all found out that racism is BAD.
Johnny Cash Music is Country Music and most of these people flappin' their gums about Johnny Cash don't want to have any more to do with Country Music than they do the inside of a dog that's been hit by a car and left on the side of the road for three days. Not that I can blame 'em. I only like Country Music as much as I like the inside of a pig that's been hit by a car and left on the side of the road for a few hours - I can take it or leave it. Honestly, I'll just come right out and tell you that I hate Country music. Well, "hate" is kind of strong, I only "hate" Country Music when I'm forced to actually listen to the crap, if I'm listening to something like "Toys In the Attic" by Aerosmith or "A Night At The Opera" by Queen and you ask me what I think of Country Music I'll probably tell you something like "Ah, COUNTRY - The heartfelt expression of the Rural American Spirit! The sound of happy Blue Collar America exulting in the Simple Pleasures of Home, Family, and Community! Country, yes - COUNTRY!!". But ask me what I think about Country Music when they're playing a Toby Keith video on TV or some other damn fool in a cowboy hat is on the radio (I can tell when they're wearing a cowboy hat even when they're on the radio, it's my very own Super Power. Not worth anybody making a comic book about me but I bet all the girls I've had were better looking than any girls Harvey Pekar ever had) and I'll just tell you "Aw, man - Country Music SUCKS!! Leave me alone so I can put on BET to look at the black girls and beat off!" If there are people who think Country Music is great and they love Johnny Cash because he was a great country musician, fine, I can respect that. I'll still write jokes in Acid Logic about how stupid they are and how they wouldn't know good music if it kicked in the front door and boned their wife on the dining room table right there in front of the kids on Christmas morning, but I have all the respect for them in the world. Hey, next time you guys need a hand with anything, just give me a call, I'll be right over. Yeah, I check my answering machine every six or eight months, you might have to wait until after the zombies break into the house and you're locked up in the basement but I'll be right over with the Sheriff and the hound dogs and shit. Yeah.
But what really pisses me off is when people I know damn well don't like Country Music get all loud and lollapalooza about how much they LOVE Johnny Cash. This offends me on so many levels that if this were "Star Trek" Vulcans would be playing chess. Hearing a twenty-seven year old American in 2005 talk about Johnny Cash couldn't be more inappropriate than a pit bull singing "A Boy Named Sue". It just reminds me of the night some kid who was tripping on acid tried to explain Einstein's Theory Of Relativity to me by clapping his hands. Get outta here with that Johnny Cash bullshit! The last CD you bought was some nonsense like Fifty Cent or Nine Inch Nails and nobody wants to hear about it. You've just got a coupla Johnny Cash CDs right there in front of the collection to make yourself look RESPECTABLE, like some Christian with a plastic Jesus on the dashboard of his car or a gay guy wearing a red ribbon. Do gay guys still walk around with those damn red ribbons? Why not? Oh, they all died. Ha ha ha. A little joke for all of us with plastic Jesuses on the dashboards of our cars! That's how much I care about you twats thinking I'm a "Good Person".
People in America have always been so full of themselves you could turn 'em inside out and never know the difference but ever since 9-11 everybody's been so sanctomonious I just may have to look up how to spell "sanctomonious". (ED: That's not it, as MS WORD informs me.) All these advertisements with supermarket butchers and soda jerks all posing together with their arms crossed and chins up in the air like they're the crew of the Enola Gay just back from dropping the bomb on Hiroshima and we're gonna give em a ticker tape parade straight up Beyonce Knowles' asshole. The World Trade Center got knocked down and people are carrying like they survived The Stand. And even if they did they'd be in Las Vegas with the Devil and the only people in Colorado with the little old black lady would be other little old black ladies. Why is everybody acting so NOBLE all of a sudden? Does anybody still believe that crap about how America after 9-11 is the same as America after Pearl Harbor? Did America after Pearl Harbor have a multibillion dollar porn industry? We aren't even as spiritual as Japan after Pearl Harbor.
The Bottom Line is that Johnny Cash is TOO GOOD for America in 2005. We're a bunch of slobs - We're pigs! And let's leave poor ol' Johnny Cash out of it. Britney Spears, Motley Crue, all those horrible, shitty people on MTV and VH1 - These are the perfect representatives of American Culture today. You want to go back to The Old Days for a Nostalgic soundtrack to your no class lifestyle - Those martini assholes with that greasy Frank Sinatra Vegas trip are right on target. And once we start talking about that there's not much else to say but "Fuck you!"
Not that Johnny Cash ever went around talking like that. Johnny Cash was a nice guy, a good person. When Johnny Cash wrote a book he wrote a book about the life of an Old Testament Prophet. When Dave Navarro, Tommy Lee, or that jack ass lead singer from The Red Hot Chili Peppers write a book it's about shooting up a boatload of heroin and a lot of hoo ha that's only interesting to people stupid enough to have shot up a boatload of heroin. I'm not an authority on whatever Old Testament Prophet Cash wrote about but I'm pretty sure he wasn't a heroin addict. And now that I've told you that I'm sure you lost whatever interest you might have had in going out to find Johnny Cash's book about him.
What would happen to a nice guy, a good person who would attempt to make a career as a singer-songwriter in today's music industry? He'd be ripped apart like a biker at the end of "Dawn Of The Dead". The original, I mean. In the remake the nice guy, the good person was actually the hero which is why everybody's big complaint with that movie was that the hero was a "pussy". That and the running zombies. And the sex scene with the evil funny guy and the hot chick who got chopped up by the chainsaw at the end was too brief. Oh, did I go off subject? I'm sorry, zombie movies with lots of killing and shooting and tearing people up and eating them just seems so much more appropriate for people today than Johnny Cash. Yeah, maybe I should do the usual John Saleeby Acid Logic thing and do a little comedy routine for you about Johnny Cash coming back from the Dead and eating Tommy Lee and the shithead from The Red Hot Chili Peppers.
Yeah, I'll write that first thing in the morning.
Look! Lee Anne Rimes is on CMT! God, I'd like to fuck her!