TELL YOUR MOM I WOULD HAVE BEEN HAPPY TO PAY HER, HAD THE RIMJOB BEEN OF HIGHER QUALITY

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Phil Honolulu, Renaissance Man (Blogger, Columnist, Musician)

So I bought a hundred dollar junk shop guitar the other day. I saw it in the window at some dusty Korean shop that mostly sells ugly little tables and lamps with garish shades. I just decided to buy it impulsively. Later on I went to a music store where the very condescending asshole guitar guy got me to purchase:

1. long cable
2. short cable
3. tuner
4. little amp
5. some beginner's guitar book where I can learn how to play very simple public domain compositions
6. a bunch of strings

I laughed in his pierced face when he suggested a buy a little red doohickey that goes over the tuning pegs, and the springish thing you can squeeze to make your fingers stronger, but I still walked out of there feeling like I had purchased more than necessary. I'd like to say I bought the guitar so I could learn some basic stuff, to get more insight when I ridicule the output of bands, but that would be a lie. I just bought it impulsively and because it looks fun. I got home, tuned the guitar, plugged it into the little amp and fiddling away when I the person under me started whacking on my floor, probably with the broomstick she rides to work. She came up and told me I was being too noisy and mentioned that our leases (which I filed away in a drawer and haven't looked at in years) specify no 'electric instruments', followed by her screaming at me. I shut the door, drove down to Radio Shack, and bought an adapter so I plug my little ipod headphones into the giant headphone jack on the amp. Then I resumed playing.

Playing guitar sucks. Your fingertips hurt, and even if you are just playing on one or two strings it's a pain in the ass. My chords sounds like shit in a sleeping bag and it takes me a minute or two of intense concentration to try and finger one correctly. I'd like to find the guy that invented the 'F Chord' and kick him in the ass. As I imagine normally occurs, I tend to muffle things moreso then playing then smoothly. I wasn't expecting to plug in and immediately sound like Comets On Fire, but nothing I have done sounds even vaguely musical. I also feel really self conscious sitting down by myself playing a guitar. Something about the entire enterprise seems more masturbatory then productive. Nothing about this made me walk away with any greater respect for musicians though, so don't start getting that idea.

And oh yeah? 'Louie Louie' isn't easy to play. It's very difficult.

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