Remembering Someone I’d Forgotten…

Where to begin? Well I guess it’s only natural to start with the band and their roots in music. According to Wikipedia, Linkin Park was originally founded by three high school friends: Mike Shinoda, Rob Bourdon, and Brad Delson. under the name “Xero”. Chester Bennington wasn’t added until later on,

Chester Bennington from “One Step Closer” music video

originally hailing from Arizona, this former lead singer of a post-grunge band called “Grey Daze”, would go on to join the band in late 1999.  With this new duo of almost polar opposite vocalist, the band changed their name from “Xero” to

Cover art of Linkin Park’s Debut Breakout Album “Hybrid Theory”

“Hybrid Theory” (which would later go on to be the title of their breakout album).  They’d release a self-titled EP (Hybrid Theory) and would eventually go on to change their name once again to what we now know them as, “Linkin Park”, which is a variation on the actual Lincoln Park in Santa Monica, California.


It was then, the band focused on their explosive album (their best in my opinion) and the final version of Hybrid Theory, a chaotic blend of guitar power chords over DJ Hahn cuts, with two unique vocalists whose styles would meld an everlasting impression on me all through my high school years. The devastating combo of Mike’s rhythmic flow, and hard hitting in your face lyrics, blended melodically with Chester’s beautiful range of angry roars that we now know could almost

Linkin Park Photo I had taped on my wall from Guitar World Magazine

be viewed as a cry for help. I still remember the day I bought their CD for $8 at “The Wall” music store in Greenbrier Mall located in Chesapeake, Virginia, and the feeling of anticipation of getting to play it when I got home, as my father didn’t have a CD player in his truck.

Me and My Linkin Park Singing Cousin (Left: Cousin, Right: Me)

I’ll cherish the long nights of playing this album and singing it with my cousin, and arguing over who gets to be Chester/Mike for each song, or that one time we sang “One Step Closer” at a Karaoke bar in a Richmond Hotel, before getting kicked out for being underage, we were only 15 at the time.  I’ll never forget the countless days of coming home from school, putting this album on heavy rotation, while throwing darts in my room, or pretending I was Chester himself, belting out those bone chilling, goosebump giving lyrics that impacted my heart and soul, maybe those tears I sometimes cried while singing weren’t mine, but his all along.  As I’m listening to the album while writing this, I get a warmth of a better time, when the biggest worry in my life was, would Stephanie say “Yes” if I asked her to a high school dance. I mean how could she say no, I had beautiful bleached blonde hair at the time.

Me in High School with Beautiful Bleached Blonde Hair.

She divisively said “NO!” Back to this album I went to deal with the frustrations of having to grow up and the angst of a teen who’s been rejected by his High School crush, at least my crush for that semester.  I’d go on to live my life up until this point, a point where Linkin Park was almost an after thought to me, until I was rattled with the news today that Chester Bennington had hung himself, letting his demons finally get to him, but in a twisted way rekindling my love for an album that once was a big part of my life.  It’s unfortunate however that it happened under these terms, but I guess life works in mysterious ways.


Unfortunately over the years the band has been viewed in society with a, “Nickelback” like quality, and if I’m being truly honest, I viewed them in this same light, as I stopped following their music career after the Meteora album. I’m not sure what came over me to write about this incident, or why I feel so upset over someone taking their life that I honestly hadn’t thought of in a long time, but “There’s only one thing you should know. I tried so hard and got so far, but in the end, it doesn’t even matter.”  Rest in Peace Chester Bennington, 1976-2017.

 

 

Has The Internet Gone Too Far?

Has the internet gone too far, or is it just getting started? I venture to ask this question as I’ve seen a growing rate of internet fopaux’s circling the world wide web in the recent years. The downfall occurred right around 2010, I noticed that social media was becoming more and more geared to driving this country apart and pointing out our differences rather than our similarities. I’ve always felt like this was a turn for the worst as we started attacking people for scrupulous reasons, like a white knight in a suit of rusty armor, that’s not as shiny as we thought. The so-called “PC movement” has embarked a pitchfork yielding witch-hunt of dire proportions, while constantly pointing out everyone else’s flaws hoping that no one will see our own. Since 2010 it appears that eman-475559_640veryone has chinks in their armor, but try to fill those gaps of self-loathing by constantly gazing to find the error in others, and this cycle of demoralizing people around you has caused an epidemic of self entitlement and an “I’m holier than thou” type mentality that is crippling this country. The internet plays a major role in this perpetual downfall of society, specifically social media, as it has given a vessel for people to express their opinions on a wide range of topics with little to no research or knowledge on said subject. What happened to the good ol’days when the only time you had to worry about the crazy idiot spewing nonsense was located at your local watering hole, and everyone knew “Ah, that’s just Willy, he’s crazy.” It was a simpler time when you could keep an eye on the village idiot, just feed him drinks until he either passed out and you got him a cab, or he crashed his car on the way home. Twitter and more specifically Facebook has been a launching ground for proprietary idiom’s with moronic tones and a subconscious racial foundation for opinions to be laid upon, thus perpetfacebook-76536_640uating the differences that separate us and make us unique. I feel that being an individual is not accepted in most cultures anymore and we need to either fall in line or get out of the way, because there is a change coming and if we don’t recognize now how we’ve been getting programmed for the past half decade, well, we might as well just stay tuned in to our regular scheduled program of Social Media. The internet sparks much controversy as it should, I mean it’s literally a living, breathing organism that’s man made, often tried to be controlled by the gatekeepers, but as stories and lore would tell us, eventually the created becomes too big for the creators, leading to a shift in power over that control. The world wide web is much like the Declaration of Independence, in that the founders never had the foresight to see how enormous of a monster they were creating, they simply did what they thought was best for the country at the time, not fulling grasping the idea of what might be. We have no way of knowing what the future holds, but I’ll tell you this, Social Media and the Internet will play a major part in the years to come, I’ll be sure to keep an eye out for you on our life away from our lives.

Fast Food, Fast Life….and Death.

mcdonalds-1340199_960_720Food, it makes the world go round, and sometimes people. Growing up with a love/hate relationship towards delicacies such as, hamburger helper and Stouffer’s lasagna, can drive a man to appreciate the finer things in life. Food has always weighed heavy on me, literally, from the Kings of Burger to the Mac’s of Big, I’ve always had a definitive love for fast food. This kinship of such developed at a young age, as me and my family tended to eat out a lot. We’d go out almost every weekend to restaurants varying from buffets like Golden Corral, to the more decadent and always fancy Outback (they bake their own croutons for crying out loud). In a world that’s constantly evolving and progressing, one thing stays true, that fast food is here to stay also. They contribute to the overwhelming population that craves those salty frozen beef patties and the golden fries tabstract-1238247_960_720hat appear to be covered in crack rocks disguised as salt. I’ve developed sort of an addiction to fast food and that has lead to me being the biggest I’ve ever been and it’s off-putting, but seems to be a quick and convenient fix to satisfy the dopamine levels in my brain. It’s like a constant battle of destroying serotonin in my blood, it’s like I love torturing myself at night with not getting a good nights sleep. These problems seem to arise, but for some reason I seem not to care, because that delicious processed frozen food that I know is literally killing me as I eat it, has taken control over french-fries-616115_960_720 my sense of rationality. With all the advancement in modern science, you’d think people wouldn’t keep subjecting themselves to these atrocities called “Fast Food”, but we seem to throw caution to the McGriddle and keep consuming these disease causing little biscuits of joy. I’m trying to learn to deal with my love for fast food, but It’s an uphill battle, and as history shows us, fat people don’t do hills well. Stay hungry my friends.

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We must stand up to putting the seat down!

man-1372508546k0a Are you constantly seeking the answer to that long, antiquated, yet still formidable question? I know fellas, “It’s hard out here for a Pimp” but amidst all the in’s and out’s of a relationship there still lies that yearning to know.  Why are we as males, required by some 11th Commandment to fulfill the duties of securing the toilet seat in the downward position? I might be tugging at some deep seeded personal issues (thanks Dad), but I feel we need to nip this issue in the bud.  After years and years of just obliging to the notion that it was my “Male duty” (after doing my duty), to put the seat back down and flush, whilst making sure there weren’t any microscopic droplets of excess fluids, it hit me.  Why am I required in a society that has been constantly progressing towards an equal opportunistic world, still bound by an unforeseen premeditated agreement, that after I splash and shake, I must also shimmy the seat back down? The frustration that resonates in my mind with this issue of the smallest significance, boggles my mind even more, thus leading to a never ending spiral of chaos and turmoil that (like this entry) is repetitive and keeps me asking why. I can deal with real problems of the everyday life, but this little task has always rang trivial to me in the bells of relationships.you-know

I can appreciate that it must be difficult to come home after a long day of work and sitting in traffic, only to have it feel like your male companion installed a bidet as you plunge down into the yellowy deep.  The only solace is knowing that you’re at home and not in a public place, treading in foreign waters like it’s the Cold War.  Even though we both know that once you gather yourself out of that porcelain abyss, World War III is about to begin, once you find the infidel who decided to unknowingly attack you from the rear.  As you’re pummeling him with banter and fists, try to keep in mind that him snickering, is just our way of relating to the situation; believe it or not, we’ve all been there doing the “hurry scurry” to the bathroom.  A number of times I’ve believed that I had the upper had on my bladder and we were going to make it home, only to find myself again on the side of the road doing a “tire check” while warming my ankle up on a cold winter’s night.  The frustration is there for both parties when the seat is not where it should be in relation to the sex of the party occupying the bathroom.  I’m not saying that I will stop abiding by this false rule of engagement, but I feel that the duty falls (he said duty again) within both parties of any relationship.  Therefore next time ladies should you find yourself submerged in a murky depth of injustice, please consider the alternative to a fit of rage and ex-lax in his morning protein shake, by taking some long deep breaths, inhaling some wine, and blasting Alanis Morissette whilst taking a much needed bath to clean up.