Jimmy Griffin: gettin’ married
And then there was the conversation I had the other night with one of my favorite old slacker bandmates. I had just sparked up a chunk-o-chronic (medicinal!) and was watching one of those sexy-autopsy-cop shows with the sound off—they’re hideous, yet I can’t look away!—when the phone rang. It was H. He was drunkdriving home from a Bottle Rockets show in Chicago in the rain.
We chatted of this and that. Our old bass player is playing in a famous band now. Our other old bass player—“the one you made me fire”—is now in a band that isn’t famous but which miraculously doesn’t suck because said old bass player has finally stopped wearing khaki Dockers onstage. Our other other old bass player (known to readers of this blog as “Finn”) is playing in SXSW this year. H had fun teching for Son Volt in Albuquerque. H’s new project will be playing out in March (“project” is musician patois meaning “new band that probably won’t go anywhere because it’s a lot more fun to think this stuff up than to actually practice”).
“We’ll see what happens,” he said about the new band. “It’ll either be fucking awesome or a total disaster.”
“I don’t doubt it.”
“I wanted to call you before,” he said, “but I didn’t wanna talk about cancer.”
“I might be getting married next week.”
“Oh? How come?”
“Or next month. Maybe. I don’t know, I don’t know. I didn’t want to tell you. I knew what you’d—”
“Oh, fuck that.” My views on the bogosity of matrimony are well known, to the extent that my friends are afraid to tell me when they elect to conform to this patriarchal mandate. “When did this happen?”
“I’ve never been this close to gettin’ married, really.”
“What about,” I wondered, “that time you got married before?”
“Except for that time. Hey, you know who’s gettin’ married?”
“Uhhh. You?” I was sitting on the floor with my golden retriever puppy Bert’s butt in my lap, trying to work an unsightly mat out of his nether region. Bert, as yet intact, was eyeing the scissors with suspicion.
“Maybe. No. I mean, Jimmy Griffin!” Jimmy Griffin is a legendary glam rock guitarist of our acquaintance.
“Hey, didn’t you just say that you—”
“Can you believe Jimmy Griffin’s getting married? Can you believe that? He was always such a player!”
I tried to recollect whether I had ever considered Jimmy Griffin’s matrimonial prospects. “I don’t think I—”
“Did you ever think that guy would get married?”
“Hey, here’s a thought: screw Jimmy Griffin. Who have you never been closer to maybe or maybe not marrying next week or next month?” I required this information.
H never comes right out and says anything unless it has to do with an oderiferous bodily emanation emitted by him personally. It’s part of his charm.
“I’m sick of fucking around,” he said. Then told me how he’d quit drinking for a month. It was a good experiment, he said. He might try it again.
“Who are you marrying, goddammit?”
Eventually the name was divulged.
“She’s a sweet little thing,” H said. “She’s sexy.”
I snipped Bert’s mat, narrowly missing his you-know-what.
“I like her,” said H. He sounded kind of gurgly, or maybe it was the Illinois rain.
I looked up and observed that on the TV, as always, a pale, beautiful, female corpse was laid out on a slab.