I didn’t start drinking coffee until the mid 90’s, well before cell phones and their ability to make me think I’m Ansel motherfuckin Adams!, So you won’t get any pretty instagrammed filtered photographic evidence on this one, just my word ( and whatever stupid stock photos the suits at Junky throw in )
Bottom line : when you’re naked in the street all ya’ got is your word.
Anyway, I was in Boston on tour and one of the bands we were with kept going to Dunkin Donuts for coffee, I thought it was pretty funny that these guys were hammering coffee and donuts like three times a day, and they knew every exit where the pink and orange fix was lurking, It was pretty impressive. DD cups littered the bus, and the coffee flowed like kegged beer at frat party, I kept hearing “get me a regulah iced and a crullah!” – I had no clue.
It was August and balls hot ***. They said it was “wicked” hot, we laughed and said you mean “balls hot?”
My new pal Kenny suggested I get one, It was sweet, real sweet, my teeth hurt thinking about it now, but just one and I was hooked, I never gave it much thought, but we didn’t have Dunkin Donuts or their garbage littered highways out here in California, so when I got home I would have to find a suitable substitute, but meanwhile we’re in great supply clipping along the New England highways. We were in an old T van, at least that’s what they called it, it was something that one of the bands had purchased from an auction at the Boston Transit yard, we call them short busses*** Three bands and all the gear, farts, piss bottles and dick jokes we could muster, you know? they call it the good old days.
One day we pulled in to a dirt parking lot over looking a beach with shitty waves, somewhere on Cape Cod, there was about 13 of us in the bus and we piled out in standard fashion, smoking, drinking and being louder than necessary, I walked up to an old ass sea dog clutching the soggy end of a cigar between his thumb and forefinger, He had to be 70 if he was a day, I eagerly said hello and let him know we were from California, He immediately gave me the what for, “good for you! Now why don’t ya go home!” New England Sea Dogs hate tranny’s too, and I’m not talking about hot chicks with dongs, I’m talking transplants, tourists, travelers, In Santa Cruz they call em trannys, and I know his pain, so I tuck the tail and walk away. Later that night Kenny’s wife makes us an amazing dinner, we eat and drink, and throw up all over their beach house. Thanks Jen!
At some point we meet up with another band in Portsmouth New Hampshire and get introduced to what soon would become a life long friend, Al, he shows me around some, I meet his family and friends and we play a little club called the Elvis room. The kids go bananas, comparisons were made, New England vs San Francisco? – New England won hands down, the kids just go apeshit, at least they did back then.
“He goes over a few of the quirky bus things, I tell him I got it man! if it’s got wheels I can drive it! A few minutes later I have the damn thing wedged in the airport parking garage with the roof ripped off and a smashed windshield.”
So then it’s on to NYC for a show on the lower east side at Coney Island High, we’ve got a bit of time to kill and this is my first time to New York so we go explore, a ride on the subway might have been a not so smart idea, it felt like someone had a giant hair dryer blowing farts down the tunnel, cruddy, everywhere smelled like piss and shit, kinda like the Tenderloin back home, so we felt a familiar sort of comfort, outside the venue, a thirty something dude walked up on me quick, he must have weighed about 135 and was wearing a wetsuit, booties and all, he yelled at me “New Yorks’ most expensive call boy is straight man!” I said OK, and he kept walking.
Back to Boston for the Punk Olympics at the now legendary Rat – every notable Boston punk and hardcore band from the 90’s was there, it was about the most amazing show I have ever been to, at one point I thought the building was coming down, pure chaos. Everyone destroyed it, the bands, the crowd, the venue, it was perfection, a truly awesome way to end the tour, but by now everyone is sick, like real sick, fevers and puking just a mess, on the last day I tell Ken I can drive no problem, he has like a 105 fever and has been very cool to host us on the tour, so we load up and head out to Logan to catch our flight home, He goes over a few of the quirky bus things, I tell him I got it man! if it’s got wheels I can drive it! A few minutes later I have the damn thing wedged in the airport parking garage with the roof ripped off and a smashed windshield. Ouch, I’ve got fiberglass from the roof of the van peppered all over my forehead and a little bleeder. No one is really hurt, more shocked then anything, awkward moment: our flight leaves in 20 minutes, Sorry Ken we gotta go, he is cool, and lets me know he’ll take care of it and we can square up later, fortunately, they just got signed to a record deal and made enough money to get another van, so off we run to catch our flight.
“I’m wearing my new t-shirt I just picked up at Newbury Comics, black T-shirt with giant white letters : I’D RATHER BE MASTURBATING….man that was a long flight.”
At the flight gate I get the “what a creeper” look from the attendant, oh shit, am I bleeding more ?? – Nope. I look down and see that I’m wearing my new t-shirt I just picked up at Newbury Comics, black with giant white letters “I’D RATHER BE MASTURBATING”….man that was a long flight.
Fast forward 20 years and I have started a new job. Up the road a bit in San Francisco, it’s awesome, I work with a handful of young bearded types with single speed bicycles, little dogs, and bands, some call them hipsters, millennials, whatever, a rad group of people that are a shit ton of fun to work with, I find out that most of them drink third wave coffee, third wave? are you fucking kidding me?, Once again I had NO CLUE, it was explained to the old man. First wave = folgers, sanka, and the rest of the 7-11 dogshit, Second wave – Buck Bucks, Peets, the Coffee Bean and the other mall type shops Third Wave = 4 Barrel, Verve, Front and all the smaller artsy fartsy roasters with one off mom and pop shops, I laugh and make fun of what I don’t understand, just like any other ego based fear motivated creature would, and then I made the tragic mistake, I went with the crew for the 4 o’clock cup at Front, a little spot on the north side of Potrero Hill, woah. ROCKET. FUEL. I had to pull the car over on the way home, I thought the heart was exploding. Since MORE is my favorite flavor, I have now acquired my own cold brew set up at the house, and have gone full blown coffee dork.
I ran out this week and had to get a Peets, Hey Peet your coffee tastes like a bag of shit squeezed through a sweaty gym sock. Figure it out man!
So lets review….
– Dunkin Donuts started it off and probably contributed if not caused my diabetes,
– 7-11 carried the torch through the 90’s and lead me to Peet.
– Peet got kicked in the turkey neck when the third wave kids showed me the way.
– My brother in law reminded me that I said I prefer a fruitier roast to the sweeter chocolaty ones.
– I don’t work in acronyms – WHAT THE FUCK!?!?!? have I become?
– I get my fix in 5 lb bags now, sorry Peet your dead to me.
The intention was to roll out the coffee rant, so I went to the beginning, but when I get rolling sometimes the wheels fall off.
Don’t try this at home, you’re nobody. I’m somebody.
Faithfully yours – Gordan Liddy
*** Balls Hot
*** short bus