Copyright 2003 Linda Marcas - All Rights Reserved

Crank's Corner

                           Final Alert: Better Red Than Dead

    Are you bored, listless, fighting the blahs?  Does one week blend into
another, and does it seem that the weeks have more Mondays than
Saturdays?  Despair not, because you still have time to get advance tickets
for the Red Elvises, Your Favorite Band, who will be playing at JR's on
North Main St. this coming Monday night, Oct. 6, 2003, at 8pm.  Finally, a
Monday to look forward to!
    I almost forgot to write this column, because we've been so busy
sprucing up the Red Room with all the posters, autographed drum heads,
nice shoes, and other Red-related stuff we've collected since we first put the
room together a couple years ago.  Decisions, decisions; would this look best
on the north wall, or should we hang it above the refrigerator?  Ron has
framed the best posters, and I've finally collected most of the smaller papers
into a scrapbook, instead of shuffling them around in stacks, planning to do
it all "later."  Dusting, vacuuming, bringing the keg of Ron's home-brewed
"Triple Habanero Elvis Red" beer upstairs and installing it in the fridge
(once you've heard the Red Elvises song "A Kegga Beer and Potato Chips,"
you'll understand how important that was), details, details, details.  Our "to
do" list never seems to get shorter, no matter how many things we cross off,
because we keep thinking of more things that still need to be done before the
    As though I weren't already in enough of a tizzy, last week one of my
back teeth lost a fight with a breadstick; an old filling fractured and fell out,
leaving me with an abject fear of the intense pain I knew could soon result.  I
know I should go to the dentist twice a year, like normal, sensible,
responsible people do, but knowing what I should do is, of course, no
guarantee that I will do it.  I hadn't been to a dentist in over five years, and I
was dreading what they might find, and what it would cost.  Well, this time I
dodged the bullet; they repaired the broken filling, fixed another old filling
that was worn out and ready to fail, and cleaned my teeth.  Despite being the
coffee and cigarette poster girl that I am, I had no new cavities, and my
gums are in good shape.  This was a pleasant surprise, because I'd been
fearing the worst.  They didn't even scold me much for my errant ways, so, if
you've been avoiding the dentist, too, maybe you should just go and get it
over with instead of lying awake nights and fretting about it.
    I am, however, somewhat irked by the fact that I'm getting old enough
to worry about things like gum disease, and that the rock musicians I've been
listening to for years are suddenly starting to drop like flies, from things like
heart attacks and cancer, while in their mid-fifties.  I'll be 49 next month,
and that sort of news makes me feel really, really old.  It was different when
rockers used to die in their twenties and early thirties from things like drug
overdoses and drunk driving; it was sad and a waste of talent, but didn't
seem to have much to do with me, personally.  Now that they're dying of
"natural causes," it all seems more real and frightening and depressing,
because I know I could be next.
    That might be part of the reason that my mid-life hobby (obsession?)
is being a fan and promoter of a bunch of Russian rockers whose fans can
get close enough for an autograph after a live show in a club, rather than of
some arena-rock band that I'll never get closer to than 500 yards.  I've seen
what these guys eat for breakfast, lunch, and dinner; I know how much
exercise they get, and they all seem pretty healthy to me.  When Ron went
on the road with them, he came back slimmer and in better shape than he'd
been for years before.  They'll probably be around for a long time to come,
playing fun music and making me happy instead of starring in the obituary
segment of Entertainment Tonight and making me depressed.
    In order to keep on rocking, though, the Red Elvises need to be able to
make a living at it.  As Oleg has said, "Russians are no longer Communists;
we're capitalists now, so we do accept your money!"  This is your final alert
to save two bucks and get an advance ticket for the show, available at JR's,
at Cyber Solutions, or by calling (419) 257-9019.  If you don't want to make
an early commitment, tickets at the door will be only $10.  There's
something happening, on a Monday night in North Baltimore!  You can get
some exercise without going to the gym, because, as the song says, "This
Music's Wasted if You Don't Dance."  So, instead of feeling old, blah, bored
and blue, come out for some Rokenrol and feel like you're twenty again.
Take advantage of this golden opportunity to be better "Red" than dead.

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