duct tape and red dawn: what's in your box?
by Michele Christopher
Emergency boxes! We all need a little help! We all need some kind of fish knife or handgun to push us on. Get thru another day of the fall of the world. Since I never had a Doomsday Box, Michele has me on this one. But, I did have an Emergency Box, and we aren't talking about the one toothed hooker down the street who would do you for some food stamps. This is real stuff. Michele's is the end of the world. Mine is just what we needed to do. Have fun reading these and if you have one, feel free to tell us what's in yours. Cause after all, we all are preparing for the bomb.
Ready? Here we go.
This was a hard one to do. I have no idea why Michele came up with this idea. Or maybe I came up with the idea. I think I did. Damn it. Where did this come from? It's been a long day and Wendy's fries are waiting for me when i finish this. I already was forced to do something I didn't really want to do today so I'm kinda tired. Imagine someone knocking on your door while you are totally naked and sitting on your sofa. Getting up and looking for clothes. Telling them to hold on while they crashed on your sofa. Lighting a cigar and sitting in this crappy swivel chair. Ash, inhale, scratch balls, ash. Then I had to go out and help some poor kid. No rest for the wicked.
Meh. It's what I do.
Yes, I put my pants on. Or shorts. It's fucking 110 out. Gimmie a break.
So that being said, I guess I came up with the idea. Some people have Emergency Boxes for END OF THE WORLD type stuff, some people have them for other needs. No matter what, you always had to have one. Something to keep useless crap in or something that could fight off zombies when the world was coming down. I have found in life that you can tell a lot from someone's tackle box of the unknown. Just open it and you know where they are going. My dad has guns and Bands Aids in his. That's it. A handgun and Band-Aids. See that's whats cool about him.
He just wants to kill people and protect his boo boo from germs.
Mainline cool, baby.
But what was in mine? I'll be the first to admit it has been many years since I have had one of these. Why would I need one? Fuck, my orange juice expired last week and my house smells like wet dog so as you can tell, I'm not prepared for some kind of end of the world scenario. If something like that happens, I'll probably be drinking a shake at McDonald's asking why the sky turned a firery red at the same time thinking to myself that this life wasn't so bad. At least I'm gonna dive in the balls at "Playland" today. Maybe. Cause I'd assume if we were all gonna die, the minimum wage workers at McDonalds would ignore that god damn maximum height rule for one fucking day and let me in. I mean it is the end of the world. Let me eat my fries in the comfort of stinky, foot smelling balls without having to go to a gay sex club.
Man, I want some fries right now. And some mustard.
In my box was band stuff. Things we took on tour.. A box filled with some of the strangest things you could ever think of. Well, not to alot of you, but to some people. It got us thru alot. Bright red and filled with treasures from the sea.
Open it up and look what's inside.
The top tier of the box was nothing but screws. We never used any of them, but hey, you gotta have screws. Kinda like Hee-Haw needed the donkey, we needed the screws. Don't ask me why. We never used them. There were washers in there too. Once again, don't ask me why the fuck they were in there. They just were. In the shelf next to the washers were pills. I assume they were aspirin but I never asked. I just took. So I might have been wacked on some ludes when I walked on stage while thinking I was just getting over my headache.
But in the bottom of the box were seven things that were essential to life on the road. Seven things. A tack gun. Duct tape. A soldering iron. Wire. WD-40. Super Glue, and the thing that would always be needed, MEDICAL TAPE!
"Medical tape! I need Medical tape!"
God, I hated that call. Someone was bleeding, usually the drummer, blowing out his thumb or what ever the fuck hurt that week. Throw him the roll between songs and let him tape himself up. Stupid drummers are such pussies. It's just a little blood. Get over it and drink another beer. We only have another twenty minutes and my leg is red from holding your riser in place cause you forgot to bring carpet. So don't yell at me.
We used the Super Glue for my hands. Well, my thumb. Filled in holes that were worn into my thumbs. It happens, and Super Glue fills it up. Now, I'm lucky enough to have big callouses on them, but really, where were they when i needed them? Like I need a tough thumb when I sit on a computer? Like typing this stuff out makes my hands bleed? Fuck, talk about too little too late.
The tack gun was for anytime we had to play an emergency show. Flyers. Place, post, tack, move on. It happens. When you sleep at band's houses they tend to hook you really fast. Like today. You have to play in 8 hours. We got you a show. Grab the tack and hit Kinko's. Let's get this done. Place, post and tack. Move on. We needed that in there.
The iron and the wire are pretty obvious. Sometimes shit breaks and you gotta fix it. Put on your best "Tweak" face and pull that pickup out. Unscrew it from the back and yank those wires out. Figure out what's wrong and light a cigarette. Melt those connections back together and lets keep moving. The show's not gonna stop and really, people get tired of you asking to use their equipment.
The duct tape was always there.We had rolls of it around. You always needed duct tape. From fixing the car to fixing an amp to fixing to someone's knee, you always needed it. It held up set lists and held down risers. It tied cords into guitars and cords into amps. It was the rock of the set. It always got a little gooey at the end, but it always served its purpose. The "Gray Genie" always worked. Just rub its roll and make a wish.
The WD-40 was only used when we were drunk and wanted to light shit on fire.
Hey, we were bored. - T
Here’s your tip of the day: a person with OCD tendencies and anxiety issues should never be allowed to pack an emergency box.
When my kids were little I decided to make an emergency supply box for the car. See, I read this story about this couple who were stranded in their car in a snowstorm and they..well, I’m not sure what happened. I think they froze to death. Or they had to eat each other. Maybe I’m mixing it up with Donner Party. But I know the story made me think about having provisions in the car. Just in case. This was summer, so it wasn’t in case of snow. Just in case we, you know, rolled down a ravine and couldn’t get out for days. Even though there are no ravines here. Well, there was bound to be some kind of emergency which would call for a box of supplies and damn it, I was going to be ready for it. Name your emergency, I’ve got it covered.
I started out with a small tackle box. Spider-Man band-aids. A bottle of liquid children’s Tylenol. Expired two months ago. Some sunscreen. Hmm...what else could I throw in there? See, I was in one of my moods. I don’t know what you call it, just a phase I go through sometimes where I feel like I need to prepare for Armageddon or something. It’s like hoarding, but with a sense of panic. It’s why I shop at Costco and why I have 75 rolls of toilet paper at all times.
So, packing the emergency box. Sing the doom song. Pack the box. Baby wipes. Some juice boxes. Crackers. Cookies. Bottled water. We’re gonna need a bigger box. I find one of those rubbermaid containers and empty the tackle box into that. Search through the house for stuff to throw in the box. An Ace bandage. Some kind of ointment. Oh wait. Not that ointment. I don’t think I’m going to worry about yeast infections when we are stuck in a ravine. In a snowstorm. With some kind of monsters bearing down on us. That’s what the Ace Bandage is for, by the way. So I can wrap one of my kids up like a mummy and send him out there when the monsters come down the ravine to eat us. Just say “I come in peace,” sweetie. They’ll think you are one of them. And then the last thing I’ll hear is a bunch of people screeching “gabba gabba, one of us!” and our rescue mission is fucked.
Anyhow. A blanket. No, two blankets. Some books. I’ll need to keep them calm while the aliens are attacking. Flashlight. Batteries. Duct tape. A butter knife. A 1978 autographed Ron Guidry baseball card. Hey, it was with the books. It stays. Maybe whoever rescues us will be some mean spirited jackhole who demands payment. No, you can’t have my daughter in exchange for my freedom. But Ron Guidry? Cy Young winner, dude. Take this card as a token of my gratitude. See, I’m always thinking ahead.
By the time I finished packing the box, it overflowed enough to fill most of the back storage area of the car. But that was cool, because I knew that if something happened on our way to McDonald’s that night, if we were attacked by warplanes or zombies or the wrath of god in the form of a freak ice storm during the .5 drive to McD’s, I was gonna be prepared. Suck it, boy scouts.
That sounded bad.
I unpacked the box when I sold the car a few years later. We had never touched it. Not once. No ravines, no wrath of God. I didn’t even bother going through the shit, just dumped everything except Ron Guidry in the garbage. The juice boxes had kind of exploded and leaked all over the blankets and the crackers disintegrated and the Tylenol had fermented, I’m sure. But don’t think the point here is that I wasted my time and energy on this. No way, man. I drove around Long Island with total peace of mind, knowing I was ready for anything. Maybe other people worried about the Monster Squad jumping them at a traffic light or giant balls of hail raining down on them and trapping them in their vehicles. Not me. Because I knew that while we waited for Tom Cruise or Bruce Willis or whoever to come rescue us, we’d have animal crackers and apple juice and Goodnight Moon.
Fast forward. This is recent. I won’t say how recent. You don’t need to know. You just need to know the basic facts and they are that a) there is somewhere in my house an emergency box and b) it was made with zombies in mind.
Yes, I have prepared for zombies.
I think I might have mentioned this before, but I am prepared to assimilate in the event of zombie infestation. I really don’t mind becoming one of them. But, I will try to hide for a while, in the hopes that the troops will come in and wipe out the zombies before I have to sacrifice myself to them.
Like I said, I shop at Costco. I’ve got enough food staples, toilet paper and tampons to last for a while. But I decided I would pack an emergency box. Just in case. Ok, it’s not really just for zombies. It’s for a deathly Category “Fuck you” hurricane. A massive tidal wave approaching. Meteors. Smallpox. The Blob. Lex Luthor. A twelve day blizzard. The Russians. Don't trust those guys. You may think the cold war ended, but they are still carrying a grudge. I worry about these things. It’s what I do. I lay awake at night and think about tsunamis and earthquakes and things that never happen here and a voice in my head, a voice that sounds like God imitating Elvis, says “never say never. Mwahahaha.”
So I decided to pack a box. Just a small tackle box. No juice boxes. No crackers.
One bottle of Jack Daniels
See, I’m getting better. I’m learning. You don’t deal with Armageddon emergencies with cookies and blankets. Fuck that. You just make it so you pass out until it’s over. You saw Red Dawn. I don't want to end up pissing in radiators when the Russians come for us. Your best bet is to just be curled up in a fetal position in your closet, sucked deep into a self induced coma.
If and when you wake up and you are feeling a bit bloodied and craving your neighbor’s brains, don’t freak out. You kinda won the Armageddon jackpot there. - M