January 2003

**Disclaimer**

Let's be honest here. Last months Reprisal was not at all up to par. I knew that as I was writing it. It was OK, but by no means was it what I have come to expect from myself. I have spent some time trying to figure out why.

Here's what I have come up with...

I have heard from some people that what I have written in my Reprisals has affected them. I have heard that the Reprisals have made some people think. At the same time, I have allowed myself to believe that I should live up to that.

I have been wrong.

I write these for me. I write them for my own edification. No one else's. Period. I forgot that for a time. If anyone who reads these feels like my little rants have something valid to say, great. If not, great. There is only one person I have to answer to. That person is typing these words out.

So welcome back. Welcome to the essence of what these are supposed to be. These are reprisals. And from here on in, they will be exactly that.

Watch out, from here on in it gets real messy. Because that is the way that I have always wanted it. And really, it's mine anyway, so I can do what I please.

the revolution is coming

**Disclaimer**

The Inevitability of Death

There are choices people make. There are choices people make that affect you. The funny thing is that quite often you can see the choices coming. You can smell them. Like a funny odor in the car that you can't yet figure out where it's coming from, but you know that when you do, things are going to get unpleasant real fast.

The fun part is that you have no control over these choices. They are, after all, other people's choices, and as such they have every right to make whatever choice they please. But that doesn't mean that you don't get to deal with the fallout from whatever thermonuclear explosion that results when they make a particularly disastrous choice. Quite the opposite. In fact the closer you are to the epicenter, the more your chances of being liquefied increase.

Exponentially.

But, you don't really get much of a choice. You can only sit back, wait for the inevitable (because really, let's face it, certain things simply are...), and then sit back and watch the mushroom cloud crest over your back yard.

Me, I'm building myself a bomb shelter.

You see, while I have figured out that certain things you cannot change (light bulbs? Yes. Other people's choices? Not so much...) there are things that you can do to make the ensuing light show a little more colorful.

For example.

I have come to the conclusion that many of the people who spend their time in this search for self destruction don't really have the vaguest idea that they are running around splitting atoms up and letting the contents of Pandora's little hope chest loose. They just do it because hey, you get pretty lights. And really, shiny pretty things are what life is all about.

So it occurred to me one day as yet another display of atomic energy was unleashed in my very own back yard, turning my freshly sodden lawn to ash (I do have to pay for that you know...), that there must be some way to allow the precipitator of this nuclear fire to at least see exactly the carnage all these explosions and radiation and whatnot cause.

I no longer need to turn the lights on to see at night.

My plants are starting to mutate for god's sake. Just yesterday, a cactus I got only a couple of weeks ago asked me how my day was going.

It's a cactus.

This is not a good thing. At all.

So, I put some thought into the situation and came up with a suitably interesting way to deal with things.

At the next "event" (that's what smart people call them I'm told…), I held up a large mirror.

Interesting results I won't get into here, but I recommend it. Highly.

At the very least, you get the small degree of satisfaction that you showed the source of all the trouble exactly what they were not only doing to themselves, but to a nine mile surrounding area.

The explosions appear to have stopped, but some very kind men in white suits that covered their entire bodies have told me that I am not allowed to leave my property. Apparently I am under quarantine. Some concern about my mirrors and the effect they have increasing the frequency of said "events". Apparently seeing the damage wrought upsets things enough that there are usually many, many more detonations, not just in my back yard but everywhere. Until the authorities figure out a way to pass on the word of mirror use, I must stay locked away where no one can see me and I can't cause any trouble.

The nice thing about where they have locked me is that is almost a mile underground and well shielded. The only disadvantage is that between the explosions and the being all locked up, I was unable to get a Christmas present to someone I very much wanted them to have.

Oh well, perhaps that will turn out be one of those few things that are inevitable, but in a good way.

Regardless, I have now realized there is a new way of doing things.

And rest assured, the revolution is coming

So here we are, again, but I have forgotten to bring me...

And just when I thought I had everything figured out...

I had not expected this. Truth be told,

When I woke up this morning, I was expecting to have a cup of Irish Cream coffee, completely de-flavored with coffee and milk, and then be on my way with real events that would be worthy of describing. As I do every morning, I pulled the curtains back for a quick peek outside and saw a large stretch limo. At the same time as I saw the limo, somebody in the limo saw me. He came out from the car, walked up to my doorstep, and promptly began to ring my doorbell at such an excessive rate that I almost tripped down the stairs. I did answer the door.

I should not have. Manners have always gotten the better of me.

Now I am sitting in one of three chairs that are quite obviously designed for marketing appeal rather than ergonomics. There are loud and distracting lights and music that sound as if some yo-yo- with a casio keyboard from the seventies created them when he was watching either "Who Want's To Be A Millionaire", or John Tesh's latest effort.

There has just been a buzzer that has told me the game is about to start. My competitors look a little more nervous than even I do. I believe I know why.

You see, what was explained to us was simply this...

There are no rules, no defined boundaries. No set parameters or number of cards you can draw in a turn. This is largely because there are no cards in this game. There are no little silver shoes or cars. There are no physical stunts. There is no hanging out on some remote locale for a ridiculous period of time. There is no voting anyone off. There is only everything that you could never possibly see coming. They feel no need to explain the rules as "we already know them".

I still haven't the vaguest idea what the washed up Hollywood hack of a host is getting at. I openly admit that I cannot play this silly game. I have lately been attempting to learn Mah Jong, a game that can be described as anything but simple, but the game I am supposed to play very soon I haven't a clue about.

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*** Break For Commercial***

During the ad break, I find myself thinking about the absurdity of life, that I could possibly be in these circumstances.

It amazes me, that despite everything that I have seen in this short life of mine, that I am able to be surprised at almost every turn. You get to a point where you think that you have seen most of what life has to offer. Then you get to realize that you haven't the vaguest idea what you are talking about, and all the things that you thought were certain are completely uncertain and the only thing that you can count on is, well, other than sunrise and sunset, nothing itself. And even that often depends on the weather.

I had plans. So did a lot of other people. Plans, it would seem are not unlike the old "what happens when an unmovable object and an unstoppable object collide" question. I solved that one, I did. See, there is no such thing as an unmovable object, and there is no such thing as an unstoppable object, so when the two finally meet and prove each other wrong, they are both done for. My plans, and the plans that others seem to have had for me collided.

End result?

A whole lot of debris.

That's Ok though. If we didn't have pieces to try and pick up, there would be precious little for the cleaning. Everything would be immaculate and that would be boring. Terribly. Like Mr. Rogers 24/7. Don't get me wrong, as I child I loved Mr. Rogers. But imagine an eternity of it.

Zoinks.

A terrible thing that would be.

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*** Return From Commercial***

The lights are coming up now. Someone wearing a headset and whose purpose here I believe must be to act as some sort of floor director is waving madly at me. I assume that means I'm supposed to do something. Something like play the game. So I will play this silly game. I will walk headlong into what I'm fairly certain is trip to the bottom left corner of the board. As I find myself lacking a get out of jail free card I am also quite certain it will be quite a lengthy stay. There are, as I said, no cards in this game, so I'm afraid I may very well be S.O.L.

I'm all right with that.

It has been explained to me that you get the choice of playing the game, joining the audience, or going home with a consolation prize. Winning results in all sorts of things that mean nothing. Apparently no one has ever thought that winning might actually be worse than losing. All of the previous players that have actually won, have used their winnings to do nothing other than increase the banality of their already banal lives (Banal is, by the way, the word of the month...).

As for going into the Audience for some sort of second chance based on them picking a name out of a big rolling drum...

Umm...

Have you ever really seen the audience at any given game show?

If you look closely enough, you can almost see the family resemblance that decades of inbreeding have created. Given the choice between having my ass kicked at a game that I can't possibly understand or win, and being a part of a group of people that has grown so stagnant that any given over polluted river or lake would feel sympathy? I'll take the consolation prize that comes with the loss.

Because if you haven't noticed, more often than not, the consolation prize is the home version of the game.

Home versions have rulebooks.

And when I have practiced enough, I will then rule this little game.

And I will.

They have turned on the rapidly moving lights and casio theme music, so I think I have to go, but as I said, perhaps not, there are no rules after all.

The revolution IS coming...

And now it's time for the breakdown...

There have been a lot of changes recently. I'm not going to lie to you or create some wall of secrecy that doesn't really matter, because anyone that really thinks that they can keep a secret is deluding themselves. Period.

So here's the latest...

All is not well in paradise. Truth be told, paradise has received something of a viscous napalming in recent history. The band as it has been has collapsed. Apparently there has been a hidden dissent in the ranks. So it goes. The end result is that I am now rebuilding. I am told rebirth is a good thing. I am told many things. I am told that I should shop more. I am told that war is a good thing. I cannot control the warmongers. I cannot control the corporate machine. I can only control whether or not I choose to continue on this strange path that is music.

Wait for it...

I am a person that for whatever reason thrives on adversity. When someone says that I can't or shouldn't do something, that is, and always has been, the quickest and most efficient way to guarantee that I will do whatever is forbidden of me. So when people say to me that perhaps I should stop making music the way that I make it, that only provides fuel to the fire for me to keep going. When people suggest that I lack professionalism because I like to play a whole night for the audience rather than hide behind multiple sets with multiple breaks, that only makes me want to play straight through even more. When record companies that have expressed interest stop returning my e-mails, that only serves to provide me the drive to show them what they have missed.

It's a whole new era here.

Simply because I am now pissed off.

And I have realized some things. It is all good and well to have musicians that can play better than most playing for you...

But...

A musician who believes in what you are doing and whose first priority is the music and not the almighty dollar is worth far more. I have found a couple of those. They are playing with me now. They have the skills, and I have the blood.

You ain't seen nothing yet.

Buh

Buh

Buh

Baby...

I have had enough of people who have no business criticizing others feeling that I am some sort of easy target. This by no means suggests that I am about to engage in some sort of juvenile mud slinging. That's not how I do things. I will, however, prove all those that have spoken whatever they felt needed to be said terribly, terribly wrong.

Oh, and I will prove them wrong.

You see, now I'm angry. Now I'm pissed off. I haven't been really pissed off in a while.

Look out.

The revolution is coming...

Look out.

The pieces do fall into place given time...

A while back I was given a puzzle. I couldn't make much sense of it at the time. It had many pieces but little to no direction. There was no picture on the cover of the box. It looked like there was, but it was one of those things where you could tell that it was not quite printed as it was meant to be. Askew enough to ensure that anyone who used it as a road map would end up completely lost and nothing more.

I struggled with this puzzle for some time. I tried to make sense of it on my own. In all fairness, I did a reasonably good job. Flawed, but lacking the information that I was, I would like to think that I did fairly well.

I just got a new piece.

It fits.

Nicely.

And so the puzzle comes together. The insanity begins to explain itself. Not to say that I have any idea what the full picture is. Far from it. If there is one thing that I have learned, it is that you cannot predict anything. You can believe in something, but belief is a long way from fact.

But I would just like to say, to the one that might (hahaha as if) be listening... I know a little more of the truth now.

Sorry you aren't capable of accepting what you knew and kept hidden for so long...

The revolution is coming...

And it continues...

I just came in from my roof.

In the new place that I live in, I can stand on the roof. It is now 7:17 in the morning, There is plenty of traffic. One would think that people would notice a person standing on a roof at 7:17 in the morning. One would be wrong.

I like that though. I enjoy the anonymity. I can watch them, but they are to bored to look up.

While upon my roof, I came to the conclusion that I should set forth some New Years resolutions. This is what I have come up with...

1. I will now use my various ninja powers for only good and considerably less often for evil, more for just shit disturbing...

2. I will stop throwing from my car balloons filled with various putrid substances that are better off unnamed at teenagers who think they are hard core cast members from eight mile who think just because they wear a hoodie they are a suburban force to be reckoned with...

3. I will stop being mean to Dave "the Karaoke" King

4. I will continue my quest to find the perfect Cabana Girl for me (nate@natepike.com ladies, nate@natepike.com !!!)

5. Finally, I will continue my quest to conquer the world either with my genetically enhanced spider monkeys, or through music. One way or the other, this globe will be mine and all operations will be run from a tropical island whose name will remain anonymous.


The revolution is coming...Are you ready?