Keep on Keepin’ on by Lance Manion is Yareah Magazine proposal for this Sunday. A sharp short story about our realities and dreams. Have a nice day!
Another night, another hard lesson in the politics of psychology.
Or was it the other way around?
His fingers raw from a long set, Jim picked his bass back up and trotted out on the stage for an encore.
Jim, or Jimbot (short for Jim Bottom … a moniker many bass players pick up), was all supply side during business hours.
But nobody ever got laid singing a song about fiscal responsibility.
Nothing good rhymes with budget or deficit.
So he stared out at the crowd and searched for the evening’s conquest. He knew that his window of opportunity was about to open in “1 … 2 … 3 … 4”.
“Rockin’ In The Free World” by Neil Young.
The word opportunity has many different connotations.
From the opening line he was attacking the man. Pointing fingers. Assigning blame. The size of his balls grew like the Grinch’s heart on Christmas morning.
But there’s a warnin’ sign
On the road ahead
“That’s right” he thought to himself … “Come to papa.”
The warning sign ahead might be the national debt or the mortgage crisis or any number of other economic troubles that waited at the doorstep of the concert hall like so many hellhounds but as he stood posturing amidst the light and the smoke he knew that this crowd had no interest in such things.
What they wanted was red meat and Jim was just the man to give it to them.
His balls threatened to push the monitors into the pit.
There’s one more kid
That will never go to school
Never get to fall in love,
Never get to be cool.
His empathy was so obvious that girls who normally wouldn’t give him the time of day swooned if they so much as made eye contact with him.
Girls who had no idea about his investment portfolio or job prospects or anything else about him for that matter.
He marched around the stage as the guitar screamed out all the deficiencies of our society and the crowd became galvanized against all those who were responsible. The cold-hearted monsters who kept things as they were.
And at that moment every female’s panties would melt at the slightest touch of his machine gun hand.
We got a thousand points of light
For the homeless man
We got a kinder, gentler,
Machine gun hand
And what’s funny is that for those few minutes Jimbot believed it. Every word. He was caught up in the swirling horseshit of being both the messenger and the message.
Fuck the man!
There is somebody to blame.
There are easy answers.
He was pointing the way.
Got a man of the people,
Says keep hope alive
Got fuel to burn,
Got roads to drive.
He shouted the chorus again and again. Until he was hoarse.
He didn’t want the song to end.
Once the feedback died down and after the inevitable blowjob in the dressing room everything would come back into focus.
Back to reality.
Back to educated men in expensive suits sitting in board rooms scattered across the country making decisions. Buying and selling.
Rockin’ in the free world.