• How do you like your Towser?

    Set 9 2009, 19h21

    May I present, the chronology of the great, the legendary and the mildly handsome... Pete Townshend!

    High Numbers at the Railway

    Pete as a teen, fresh from playing with Roger Daltrey's band the High Numbers (later becoming the Who), which had also included school friend John Entwistle. This is most likely from the "Birdman" photo sessions that first iconized young Towser. Still firmly planted in the blues, Pete had yet to get into the psychedelic minglings he would produce throughout most of the decade. "My Generation" was only the tip of the submerged iceberg...

    Pretty Cocky Pete

    Straight from the Monterey Pop Festival in California, Pete asks the camera what's up. Having just made their first successful appearance in America at the aforementioned festival, Pete and the Who had much to be confident about. Now if they could only get that bloody hit single to move about...

    Odorono Oddball

    From the sessions for The Who Sell Out, Pete's eulogy of pirate radio and 60s melody rock. The giant deodorant stick actually has its own song on the album called "Odorono" about a singer who blows her chances of getting a record deal because she didn't use Odorono. Odd, I know. Pretty sure this is the only shirtless picture of Pete out there. Note medallion, signifying spiritual outcry from LSD overload. Meher Baba, watch out!

    Windmilling Rock God

    Tommy. Live at Leeds. Who's Next. An amazing three-year, three-album run from young Towser. Here, Pete sports the famous boiler suit, his anti-statement to the passing fashions of other musicians, whilst abusing that SG. Peter Dennis Blandford Townshend has become the voice of his generation with anthems like "Won't Get Fooled Again" and "Baba O'Riley".

    The Chap Behind the Curtain

    How I've always envisioned the inner workings of Towser's mind...

    The Who's Last Stand

    Back from an almost two-year hiatus, Towser is jacked to be back on stage with the likes of the Ox and the Loon. Most likely taken from the "real" Who's last time on stage together at Kilburn in '78, Pete is angrily demonstrating to the young punks how to put on a rock show. Poses, jumps and power sildes galore!

    Can We Forget the 80s?

    Seriously, can we?

    Pete & the Ponytail

    From the Who's '89 comeback tour, Pete somehow decided a wraparound ponytail was a great decision. I don't know which was worse, the tight hair pull or the twenty-six other people on stage at all times, making noise.

    Appropriately Warped

    As they say, the nose knows best. And what better nose to know than Uncle Pete's?

    The Geezer Can Rock

    Carrying on the Who's legacy with pal Roger, Pete seems very happy these days. He revels in both the silliness and honesty of the Who's heyday, and knows what the fans want when they come to see WHO 2. With a full-theater production of Quadrophenia debuting this summer, a Daltrey solo tour in full swing, an acoustic double-album from Pete and partner Rachel Fuller called In the Attic With Pete Townshend and Friends and confirmation from Pete himself that there will be a new Who album within the next two years, there are still plenty of reasons for fans to join together. Slim, shaded and smirking, Old Man Towser proves he's still got what it takes to drive the Magic Bus.
  • Well I'm back! Yes u'm back! Baaa-AAA-HHAAA-AACKK!!!!

    Mai 24 2009, 2h50

    Haven't done one of these for awhile. Life, as they say, has gotten in the way. I went full-time at work, got a new girlfriend and got caught up in things like books and movies. Anyway, here are ten random things that are on my mind:

    10. I'm going to be twenty years old in seven days. I'm having a hard time coming to grips with this. On the one hand, I know very well that "me at twenty" will be exactly the same as "me at nineteen"; I pretty much know what lies ahead. It's the past I'm leaving behind that now bothers me.

    My teen years are gone. Just like that. Yesterday I'd just turned sixteen and went down to Guitar Center and bought a used Fender Squire for ninety bucks. Bought it right off the little stand and was overjoyed when the guy behind the counter gave me a handful of free plastic picks. Now I'm turning twenty, and I can't help but feel that my teen years went rather unfulfilled. There were no long nights out partying (I hate parties), no run-ins with the law (I play by the rules), no Prom Night pictures or Homecoming memories (I never went to either one)... in short, I'm sad about leaving behind an unremarkable decade of my life. I can only hope that my twenties will be much more fulfilling.

    9. The Answer's new album, Everyday Demons, was pretty well worth the wait, in my opinion. Though it's not as good as their debut album Rise (especially the two-disc edition), The Answer managed to avoid that sophomore slump album that plagues a lot of new bands. "Demon Eyes" and "On and On" are obviously the two single-worthy songs on the album. Other songs like "Too Far Gone", "Walkin' Mat" and "Dead of the Night" fatten out the album with some nice old-school rock tunes. Then there are the ballads, "Pride" and "Comfort Zone", that show these Irish boys have dynamic writing abilities.

    But above all the other things Everyday Demons does, it announces Cormac Neeson as the Golden God of my generation. The dude's voice is simply amazing, with that high Percy-esque range and the Rod Steward-like whiskey rasp to it. I saw The Answer opened for AC/DC back in November when they toured the States and yes, Cormac Neeson holds up in concert just as well. He's got a weird twitching move that he does, but he definitely controls the mic and his vocals with seemingly effortless precision.

    Paul Mahon's guitar work was about what I expected it to be: not too much different from the first album, though there's a few riffs that are a bit "muddier", so to say. But the crunch of Rise is still there, and the face-smacking solos are still all over the place. In short, Everyday Demons keeps the Answer going in the right direction, and establishes them as one of the leaders of the NWOCRB.

    8. The what??.. The NWOCRB... New Wave of Classic Rock Bands. This is a term I'm trying to get going. There is a trend in rock music right now of bands emerging who not only pay homage to the classic bands of yesteryear, but play in their style as well. The leaders of the NWOCRB are starting to become familiar names by now: The Answer, Airbourne, Stone Gods, Jet, Joe Bonamassa, Wolfmother, StoneRider, Whitestarr, Heaven's Basement... the list goes on. You could include bands that have already broken up like The Darkness and Roadstar, too. If you consider the 80s to be classic, throw in bands like Endeverafter and Sister Sin...

    Here's to the NWOCRB!!! \m/>.<\m/

    7. So far, I've only got two concerts on my schedule this year. I'm going with a group of people from work to see Def Leppard, Poison and Cheap Trick on July 15th. That will be an outdoor concert for which we have lawn seats.

    Then, of course, there's Metallica again, on September 15th. The first time I saw them this past November was easily the best concert experience I've ever had. Easily. I know I'll be getting the same experience again later this year and I can't wait!

    Might be going to Cruefest in August, too. I want to see Motley Crue, of course, and my girlfriend wants to see Theory of a Deadman, one of the opening acts. I almost saw them one time; they were the headliner when I saw Airbourne but I didn't stay to see them after Airbourne blew the walls of the club half-way across town.

    6. Today, for the first time ever, I played on an actual drumkit. My dad and I went to my friend Don's graduation party today, and Don's dad let me get on his drumkit down in the basement. He'd heard that I only played the drums whenever I played Rock Band or Guitar Hero so he told me to try out his kit. Surprisingly, I was able to sit right down on the stool and get straight into a rhythm. My skills from playing the four pads and one pedal on my Rock Band kit transferred over very nicely to an actual kit.

    I now know what it feels like to play the actual drums. Unlike the Rock Band kit, you get a little bounce-back when you hit the real drums, which is nice. The bass pedals weren't as hard to do as I thought they'd be, and the cymbals were louder than I expected. He had a blue Pearl kit with various Sabian and Zildjian cymbals. I was hesitant to hit the drumheads really hard, but he told me to just wail on them so I did. Awesome feeling!

    If I had any spare room in my apartment or my parents' house I'd get a kit, but I really don't have anywhere to put one. Guess I'll wait 'til me and my girlfriend get our own house, lol. She's gonna love that.

    5. Bands I've started listening to lately: Thin Lizzy, Nickelback, John Lee Hooker, Cake. Lizzy is one of those classic bands that's somehow avoided me for the longest time. Phil Lynott is a DARN GOOD songwriter, and Lizzy's got some horribly overlooked anthems.

    I'm a sucker for Nickelback. "Photograph" and "Rockstar" get me every time. This is the genius of Nickelback's (and particularly Chad Kroeger's) songwriting: every song makes me go, "Hey! That's me!" Their new album Dark Horse is pretty good; Mutt Lange (of AC/DC and Def Leppard fame) produced it and did a pretty good job. It's full of radio-ready anthems, much like Back in Black and Hysteria.

    Johnny Lee Hookah. What can I say? I loves me some blues...

    CAKE write some funky, catchy, danceable rock songs. I guess you could say their one of my guilty pleasures, though I don't feel too guilty about admitting it...

    4. I feel this deserves its own topic:

    Link to trailer for Madden 2010, FEATURING AIRBOURNE'S NEW SONG "HEADS ARE GONNA ROLL"

    Let the heads roll!!!!!! \m/>.<\m/

    3. *Holds up shield to block body*
    *Flips down faceguard on helmet*
    *Crouches in defensive position*
    *Braces for onslaught of flaming internet arrows*

    ... I've been listening to Dane Cook... and I like it....

    2. As mentioned earlier, I've got a new girlfriend. For anybody who remembers (see: 'nobody'), I spent most of last summer in a state of depression after my first girlfriend refused to see me but also refused to let me go. For anybody who cares (see: 'no one'), she ultimately left me for dead without so much as a good-bye or "thanks for the memories." But I quickly got over it once I started dating my new girlfriend, Amber, in mid-December.

    Amber is my boss's daughter (and my roommate's sister), so I've been developing a second family lately, so to say. Amber and I went to the Metallica concert back in November (she pulled us right up to the rail; thanks to her, I was mere feet away from Metallica!!) We flirted with the idea of dating for about three months before she finally just grabbed me and kissed me (literally!) We've been dating for five months now and all is well. She's twenty-three (four years older than me) but that hasn't been a problem at all.

    Interesting side note: The first night I stayed over at her house (Christmas night), I awoke the next morning to find my car broken into and my wallet gone. Yep, that was my last Christmas gift: a jolly ol' robbery! We joked about it being a bad omen for us, but it wasn't. We're still happy, and we're going to see Metallica together again this coming September. I like to think that that first Metallica concert is what truly brought us together :)

    1. For anybody who remembers (see: 'not a single soul'), I have finished my first draft of my novel Tran Zam. In case you don't know, Tran Zam is about a group of guys who work at a fast food restaurant and decide to start a rock and roll band one summer. It's partly a diatribe on the fast food industry, but it's largely about disaffected youth finding salvation in good ol' rock and roll.

    The guys in Tran Zam basically spend the entire summer before their first term at college traveling around, playing as many shows as possible between shifts at the fast food joint. They play cover songs of bands like The Who and AC/DC. There is no grand plot or anything, more or less just a documentation of a young traveling band, teenage love and the grind of working in fast food.

    Of course there are allusions to rock bands all over the place (I'm a rock and roll fanatic!) as well as some pretty intense, epic arguments (see: 'Peart vs. Moon vs. Bonham'). The Tran Zam boys get into some Spinal Tap moments along the way, too (see: '"I didn't mean to make the entire front row bleed!"') All of it leading up to the cliched Battle of the Bands that could set them on a road to superstardom! It's a work in progress...

    Tran Zam is:
    Brian Belford
    - lead guitar, sandwich assembler
    Jeff Barton - bass guitar, grill cook
    Shayne McGinnis - drums, drive-thru order taker
    Dakota Jones - lead vocals, unemployed

    (Here's a drawing that my friend from work, Casey Thomas, drew for me. It's his awesome pencil sketch of what I have in mind for the front cover of Tran Zam. It's Brian doing a Pete Townshend windmill while fireworks go off on the end of his guitar, like Ace Frehley used to do.)

  • Prizoner - the greatest band that never was!

    Set 28 2008, 0h01

    I have now seen Prizoner three times and I feel the need to write a journal about them. Let me start out with a little background info for you: Prizoner was formed in my hometown of Cincinnati, Ohio back in 1980. As they started playing the local bars around Cincinnati, they slowly became an underground favorite and gained a devoted following (my dad was part of this following, seeing them numerous times at a bar called Never On Sunday.) They played mostly covers of bands like AC/DC and Aerosmith. By the time Prizoner finally started getting some attention from the major labels, the 80s metal scene was beginning to fade out. And when Prizoner finally released their debut album Young & Rejected, the Seattle grunge movement had already taken over. In short, Prizoner showed up just as the party ended. And though they were dead throughout the mid-90s, they reformed about ten years ago and have been rocking Cincinnati ever since.

    Take my word when I say these guys are the real deal. They're not some white-collar burnouts who didn't have what it takes to make it in rock and roll. They're not some poser band that never had any talent. And they're definitely NOT a bunch of 80s has-beens looking to scratch some money off fame they never had. Prizoner are, quite possibly, the best band that nobody has ever heard of. And I mean NOBODY. At the moment, they have 16 listeners on Last.fm. That's right, SIXTEEN listeners. They deserve much better than that. These guys sound so tight live, so practiced and polished that you think you're watching some megastar band playing a one-off gig at a local club. But these local clubs and bars are the best Prizoner can get nowadays, and it's really quite a shame; these guys would have been huge had they hit the national scene about six or seven years earlier. As it stands, their biggest gigs have been opening for the likes of Quiet Riot, Anthrax, The Ramones and Ratt.

    Prizoner has had as many lineup changes as Spinal Tap, though they have a few core guys who have always kept the band going. They play with two different lineups as of right now. They have their "present day" lineup and they have their "Rezurrected" lineup, which is the lineup from the early 80s. The lead guitarist and bassist remain the same in each lineup; only the drummer and singer change. Somehow, they're able to make this work. The only thing I can think of is that all the guys in the band get along very well and there are no big egos involved.

    Tim Keyes is the wiry lead guitarist who started the band, and man is this guy smooth. My dad said it best when he said Tim glides over his guitar. He makes it look so easy, like it's no big deal to shred ear-bleeding solos during every song. His playing style is largely influenced by guys like Angus Young and Joe Perry, as he primarily plays with three fingers and loves power chord riffs. He also sings on a few songs (mostly their Brian Johnson-era AC/DC covers) and he's got a really screechy voice that is very reminicent of Brian Johnson. Tim is probably the closest thing Cincinnati has to a guitar hero.

    Greg Anderson took over the lead vocals in 1984 and handles the singing on both of Prizoner's official albums. This guy has got some range, and I mean like Bruce Dickinson stuff (he killed "Run to the Hills" the first time I saw them.) Greg is kind of hyperactive, always talking faster than you can hear and cracking jokes at the audience. It's very easy to tell he still loves what he's doing, even if it's playing to a crowd of fifty people outside a Harley-Davidson store. This guy should have been shrieking in stadiums for the past twenty years, he had that kind of potential.

    Russell Jinkens was the original frontman and plays with Prizoner from time to time nowadays (he replaces Greg when the "Rezurrected" lineup plays.) He differs from Greg in that he plays rhythm guitar, too, allowing Tim to shred more freely. His voice is a little bit more rough and worn than Greg's, more suited for the Aerosmith stuff. Scott McCroby is the bass player who's been there since the beginning (alongside Tim) and he plays in both lineups of the band. Johnny Harmon works as both the drummer for the present-day lineup and as the mixing board guy for the "Rezurrected" lineup.

    As I said before, I have now seen Prizoner three times. All three shows have been free admission (one show required a donation to a charity to get in, but that doesn't count!) and have been held outdoors. I've seen them twice outside a Harley-Davidson motorcycle shop during the day (they attract a lot of biker gangs!) and the other time I saw them was at night on the dock of a yacht club. The first two times I saw the present-day lineup and most recently I saw the "Rezurrected" lineup. And all three times they sounded great!

    What I love about Prizoner is that they play deep album cuts of bands like AC/DC and Aerosmith (I've noticed that these two bands are their biggest influences.) I was taken completely by surprise when they busted out "What's Next to the Moon" by AC/DC and "Big Ten Inch Record" by Aerosmith. Other notable performances included "Sin City", "Have a Drink on Me" and "Big Balls" by AC/DC, "Run to the Hills" by Iron Maiden, "Kickstart My Heart" by Motley Crue, "Wang Dang Sweet Poontang" by Ted Nugent, "Godzilla" by Blue Oyster Cult, "The Green Manalishi" by Judas Priest and "White Knuckle Ride", an original Prizoner song.

    And here's something really cool: you can download both of Prizoner's studio albums FOR FREE from their official website! Just go to www.prizoner.com, click on "Downloads" and you can get their Young & Rejected and Voodoo albums as mp3s. If you want to hear their best songs first, might I recommend "Voodoo", "When It Rains It Pours", "Emotional Explosion" and "White Knuckle Ride". The rest of the albums are solid 80s rock, with hints of AC/DC, Aerosmith and NWOBHM bands all over the place. There's even a Brady Bunch tribute on the song "Brady Mosh" and a hilarious redneck parody on "Trailer Park Dude"! You can also check out videos of them in their heyday in the Videos section (awesome version of AC/DC's "Riff Raff" on there!)

    So this is my pitch for Prizoner. If you're looking for a new band to get into that has been around for a while and has some good original songs, give Prizoner a try! Lord knows they deserve way more than 16 listeners!
  • Gave it a chance, but I still hate the new Last.fm!!!

    Ago 24 2008, 23h40

    When the Apocaly- I mean, the new site layout for Last.fm was revealed, I collectively groaned along with 90% of the other Last.fm users. We all know how much of a backfire there was with the new layout, and I told myself that I would give it a few months to "break in", so to say. Well, after giving the new Last.fm time to grow on me, I have to say.... I STILL HATE IT!!!

    Since the overhaul, the noticeable changes in my Last.fm activity are that I:

    1. No longer visit the site every day
    2. Check out other users' profiles less often
    3. Leave fewer shouts in shoutboxes
    4. NEVER visit my groups
    5. Obsess over my charts less
    6. Write fewer journal entries (this is my first in a month and a half!)

    Surely these are things that Last.fm would rather not have happen. It wasn't a conscious change in my habits; these are just things I've noticed happening over the past few months. Last.fm used to be my favorite website, bar none; now it just seems like an overblown "social networking" site with a slight focus on musical taste.

    Anyway, to better illustrate my point, let's take a scroll down my user profile:

    Screenshot #1: Top of the Page

    My BIGGEST complaint with the new Last.fm layout is all the "WHITE SPACE"!!! This is Basic Web Site Designing 101... don't have copious amounts of BLANK SPACE on your webpage (especially at the top of users' pages that they see every time they visit the site!) I've circled all the WHITE SPACE here in this first screen shot. As you can see, the web wizards at Last.fm have left the most crucial parts of the page BLANK: the left edge, the middle and the right edge. This leaves only 2/5 of the page displaying actual content, content which the viewer's eye isn't immediately drawn to.

    I've also shown my dislike for the non-optional media player that is embedded at the top of my profile. I've never once used it, I never plan to use it and for some reason, Last.fm doesn't have an option to not have it! They've already BLANKED sixty percent of the page, now they're slapping a media player that takes forever to load at the top of your page, and there's not a single thing you can do about it!

    I also can't stand the positioning of the avatar. The avatar should always be in the upper left corner, like a postage stamp or something; it anchors the entire page. As you can see, the avatar falls within that tiny 1/5 area of content, where it looks lost and out of place.

    And the recent tracks! I liked the old style where, if you were on a listening spree with a certain artist, you could clearly see it on your recent tracks. For example, if you'd been listening to Metallica for seven hours straight, your recent tracks would read "Metallica" ten times over, straight down in a line. Now, the song title is somehow more important than the artist, and the elapsed time since you listened to the song is seven miles to the right. I just don't get it.

    Screenshot #2: Repetitve Info Dump

    Scrolling down my profile a little bit, we see that BLANK SPACE is still hogging both sides of the screen. It just looks so cold and barren, doesn't it? Like it could be put to better use or just extracted from the page all together! Anyway, my complaint here should be apparent. There are two sections stacked on top of each other here: "My Library" and "Top Artists". And here's the problem: THEY SHOW THE EXACT SAME INFO!!! The only difference is that one has unnecessary artist pictures while the other has a sideways bar graph. Calling Department of Redundancy Department! We have a Level One offense on Brad's Last.fm page!

    Screenshot #3: Middle of the Page

    We've scrolled about half-way down my profile page now, and the abyss is still lurking on both sides of the page. As you can see here, my 12-year-old internet stalker can now keep running tabs of EVERYTHING I do on Last.fm. Do you ever wake up wondering how long it's been since I left Metallica a shout? Wonder no more, Last.fm has just the creepy activity log for you!

    Screenshot #4: O, Shoutbox, Where Art Thou?

    As usual, BLANK SPACE flanks either side of the screen. And here is what drives me absolutely nuts about the new layout: the shoutbox is all the way down at the bottom of the page! The second-most active part of the profile (after the Recent Tracks) is shoved all the way down at the bottom of the page! All of the static information that hardly ever changes gets a prime spot at the top of the page, but the part where there is actual human-to-human contact on a daily basis is buried way down below. I loved how it was before, where the shoutbox was easily accessible and didn't take up too much of the page. Now it just looks like a elongated bulletin board.

    And this is probably just my own personal preference, but I liked having the Journals higher up on the page as well. I used to always post new journals at least once a week, so I liked people to be able to see my new journals fairly easily. Now they have to scroll 4/5 of the way down the page to where they're crammed into a little box in the right column.

    Screenshot #5: The Bottom of the Page

    Now we arrive at the bottom of the screen, which doesn't need to be the flashiest part of the page but my god, did it have to be this bad? First of all, the BLANK SPACE here is just apalling! Not only is HALF of the page BLANK, but it incorporates every shade of gray known to man! That's just flat out ugly and unappealing. Seriously, it looks like the practice pages we used to make in my 10th grade computer class where everything was text-based.

    And if you can't read it, the circled part says, "Look, Ma, No Last.fm!"

    How appropriate... ;)

  • My Michelle Poem

    Jul 14 2008, 7h22

    So the basic idea was for Michelle (Prestine-girl) and I to write a poem about each other, in each others' styles, as though we were the other person. So while Michelle attempts to write five stanzas of inane babble that sound really smart, here is my attempt to speak in Michelle's voice! I hope I've done her justice...

  • Blue Moon Poem

    Jul 14 2008, 4h24

    Yep, another one. I forced myself to NOT write a love poem this time, seeing as that seems to be the only subject I can write about these days! This poem is more open-ended, as it's mostly about my outlook on my life as it is right now. There are two distinct voices: the lost little boy and the man on a mission. These are the two personalities I'm struggling with on a daily basis right now.

    Inspirations: The Real Me by The Who

  • Puzzle of Life (poem)

    Jul 10 2008, 3h49

    I'm takin' another crack at this poetry thing. I seem to feel better after posting these things, especially after I get encouraging comments back from readers. This particular poem isn't specifically written to one person, though I do have an idea of who'd I'd like it to be for. It's basically written for the girl who I'm going to fall in love with next. As of right now, I'm outta love. But I know there is a girl somewhere who's waiting for me. This is dedicated to her... the girl I've never met...

    Inspirations: Don't Cry by Guns N' Roses... The Seeker by The Who

  • Livin' the Blues (another poem)

    Jun 29 2008, 18h01

    Yeah I wrote another one. Writing poems is addicting; once you write one, you wanna write ten more just to get everything out! Anyway, here's another attempt to convey emotion (or whatever it is that poems are meant to do). I had a little inspiration from two English brothers while writing this one.

    Inspirations: Wonderwall and Champagne Supernova, both by Oasis

  • Highways & Real Men (two poems to sum up my life right now)

    Jun 28 2008, 22h16

    So yeah, I haven't written anything in this journal in over a month. The truth is, I haven't had much to say in the past month or so. I wrote these two poems (WHAT, POEMS?! ABOUT FEELINGS AND STUPID STUFF LIKE THAT!??!) to try and explain how I've felt for the past month and a half. I've been singin' the blues, to say the least. Love got me down, as they say. Both of the poems are inspired by a specific song. And yes, that is me in the pictures.

    Before I get to the poems, I have to thank Michelle (who some of you may know as Prestine-girl) for indirectly giving me the inspiration for this idea. I borrowed her idea of putting the words and pictures together, which I find to have very strong imagery. So thank you Michelle!

    Inspiration: I Am The Highway by Audioslave

    Inspiration: Real Man by Back Door Slam

  • Life, Love and Metallica

    Mai 18 2008, 19h15

    It's funny how life works sometimes. Just when you think you're on top of the world and everything's perfect, something brings you crashing back down to reality. And just when everything seems lost and hopeless, you find a light in the dark that gives you strength and pulls you back up. Now, those might seem like dramatic statements for the journal I'm about to write, but I feel they're appropriate. So to begin this entry, let me give a little back story on the parties involved:

    My girlfriend and I have been together since October of 2005 (about two and a half years now). I met Andrea (whom I've always referred to as 'Andi') online through our blogs, so this has been a long-distance thing for the vast majority of the time (we've met in person twenty times or so). Like all teenagers who are madly in love, we were sure we would spend the rest of our lives together, no questions asked. But our relationship has been thrown a fierce curveball; Andi is graduating high school in a week, and she wants us to take a break this summer and see other people. And even though she wants us to cut back for awhile, she strongly maintains that we will be together after this summer. Now, I was not a fan of this at all, but I have agreed to go along with it. I truly believe we are the best match for each other and I believe she will ultimately come back to me of her own accord.

    Now the other party involved in this little life story: Metallica. Metallica and I have been partners in crime since February of 2005 (just over three years). For the first few years of my "relationship" with Metallica, I was in a total obsession, and I thought there was no band that could come close to them. I won't go over this whole story again here, so if you want to read about my fanaticism with Metallica, go back and read my journal titled "The Truth About Me and Metallica". As I've stated in previous entries, Metallica and I have grown apart over the last year. I said I needed to take a break from Metallica, hoping that the absence would ultimately make our "bond" stronger.

    By now you may be seeing the parallels in these two stories. These are two relationships that I've held close to my heart for the past three years, and as it stood just a few days ago, they were both at a standstill. And I was scared to death that I'd never get either of them back to the way they used to be. Now, obviously if I had to pick one, I would undoubtedly pick Andi's love over Metallica's music. Please don't think that these two relationships are on equal ground, because they're not. But the similarities between them at this point in my life can not be ignored.

    With me and Andi, she is the one who needed the break. With me and Metallica, I am the one who needed the break. Luckily for me, my break with Metallica came long before Andi's break with me. I have come full circle with Metallica on this, as I am now listening to them again and enjoying their music like I did two years ago. So I know that this "taking a break" technique can ultimately work. But here's where these two stories really intertwine with each other...

    Ever since Andi and I started our little hiatus about a week ago, I've been down. I haven't eaten a full meal all week, I haven't slept more than four solid hours and I haven't been responsive to people trying to talk to me. Now, I knew this was how the first few days were going to be, so I've been able to pull myself through it without doing something drastic (like calling it quits).

    But as I've been adjusting to this scaled-back relationship, I've been looking for something to lean on. Andi used to be my rock; she was the one person I could always count on to be there for me. And not that she still wouldn't help me out in a heartbeat, but seeing as this whole thing involves her, I can't really call upon her as an outside party to confide in. So I've been searching for something or someone familiar, something or someone that I know I can trust, that can take me back and remind me of the better times. Well, today I found that familiar something.

    Yep, you guessed it: Metallica. Even though I haven't paid them much attention in the last year, when I really needed something to latch on to for support, Metallica was right there for me. And as I sit here now listening to Metallica's entire catalogue, I'm recalling all of my life memories that I have connected to their music. I'm reminded of why I loved Metallica in the first place. I understand why they were so special to me, and I'm so glad that I was able to fall back on them, even after "taking a break" from them.

    After seeing how I came back to Metallica in my time of need, my belief that Andi will come back to me has only been strengthened. When I went back to Metallica, I knew I had a sure thing that I could rely on. Likewise, I trust that Andi knows she has a sure thing in me; I have never cheated on her, I have never abused her in any way and I have only ever been fully loyal and committed to loving her. That's not to say she owes it to me to come back, but I honestly believe we belong together and I hope she reaches the same conclusion. But only time will tell.

    It's funny how life works sometimes, isn't it?

    (Warning: Any disrespectful comments towards my girlfriend will be deleted, as they are ignorant and unnecessary.)