Friday, June 18, 2010


If I built me an Iron Man suit would it make me less sensitive?
I'm too sensitive! Wayyyy too sensitive!
Like an exposed wound.
I can feel emotional jabs in my heart.
Case in point, I left a show early the other week that I performed at, not wanting to face anyone. I thought that I had bombed. From the stage one cannot see the crowd, makes one feel insular, a disconnect. I get home and realise, "Oh! They were laughing!" I see some people a week later, "We were laughing!" And if they weren't? So? Just another night. An experience. I need me some thicker skin.I do good work, I've paid my dues (I even have a tag on my shoe that Balogh gave which says exactly that).
Another case in point, I put in my dayplanner that the old New Pornographers were coming to town on Tuesday. Tho I'd done plenty of stuff with them, I actually hadn't seen them perform live for eight years, maybe not since Canned Hamm hosted that one show they did where I wound up getting the most vile pair of panties thrown at me onstage. As The NPers played on, I paraded around with that pair on my head oblivious to the fact that the owner maybe should have gone to the doctor.
Day of their show, day turns to nite, I putter about my apartment, no response. My pal Paul calls me from backstage, hands the phone to Dan and they're about to go on and all I can do is whine, "I wanted to see you all! I put it in my dayplanner!" Then I go to bed feeling forgotten. Yesterday, I find out that they were all wondering where I was, why was I not hanging with them? Welllll, I was at home thinking that they didn't care about me, that I didn't matter to them no more, self-pity self-pity, etcetera, etcetera...Crossed wires, if only they thought to put my name at the door, hmmm, maybe it was.
I still wished I'd been there, hang out and catch up, apparently it was a great show.

I try my best to forge forward but I can get reflective, some folks I have known forever, too much has happened to ever let go, there's a bond. Do I miss Vancouver? I miss many of those people, many scattered; living in Toronto now, I do get to see quite a few folks.

A book was sent to me. Confessions Of A Local Celebrity by Mike Soret. Great title and a great looking book. Funny read, funny music book, first hand tales of reaching for the top and not getting there. Well, his band was called The Molestics. We were also in a band together called Zarathruster in 1991 and July Fourth Toilet played many shows with The Molestics. This book is ascerbic and honest and he just doesn't care who he may offend cuz he's done. Do I agree with everything he says about me in it? No. But it's not my book. it's his book. But reading these mentions of me felt like a weird time capsule, a sorta "Oh yeah, that was me in the 90s."
He writes, "Rob Dayton, who had a band called July Fourth Toilet and who was as legendary for being broke-ass as for his drinking..." and "He's made a career of being a caricature of himself..." Etc etc..
Caricature? No, it's called being iconic, darling. That's why my personal style is in perpetual mothballs. Ha!
He does have some truth to that. Those two quotes go hand-in-hand. Ahh, this book is simply a reminder of why I had to stop the booze! I certainly feel more nuanced today, even though back then there'd be soul baring- is soul baring a characteristic of caricature? I know what he means and it makes sense, many nights of stumbling shenanigans can make for some broad brush strokes! At one point I took to calling myself The Grand Wizzard of Debauchery which never caught on with anyone but me.
He also says some very nice things about me in his book but that's irrelevant to this blog post.
I was quite entertained by that lil tome and anyone who has any interest in the bottom rungs of show biz had best give it a read! Pure honesty! Worst thing about it? He keeps calling me Rob in it. Rob? I don't steal, I give.


HDWF said...

Hilarious read, blunt honest and carefree. You are both a giver of light and a caster of shadows my friend.

Stacy said...

Great post Robert.
A sentence worth a whole other stream of focus -> It's interesting how many 'friends' you lose once you quit drinking.

Robert Dayton, Junior said...

Bless ya both! Bless ya!
Stacy, I have to say, I was rather fortunate, many of my friends stuck by me and supported me when I stopped, it was no secret when I was drinking, not only was I verrrry social with it, I wrote about it in my columns to excess (these columns even sadly encouraged one fella I met to drink, when I met him just once a couple years back he was trying to stop, I hope this fella is okay, I feel great guilt) and performed onstage in the middle of black-outs! What's amazing is that even with all that I already had an assortment of friends that didn't drink! They must have had a lot of patience with me!