February-March

Mike Nobody Van (Good Ship Venus)_195058
“The Good Ship Venus”

I am feeling a little better today.

My meds weren’t completely refilled this month.

I am totally out of Wellbutrin.

But, I still have some Prozac and Abilify left.

I gotta schedule an appointment to see my doctor when he is next available.

I have been meaning to find a new psychiatrist to take over my psychotropics.

But, I have been constantly broke, trying to dig myself out of an overdrafted hole with the bank for months.

Hopefully, I am far ahead enough that this will not be a problem next month.

I also hope to get some repairs done on the van.

It is rapidly falling apart and needs a lot of work.

If I can at least stop the oil and fluids from leaking, I will be more confident to drive it further.

Maybe I will even get busy on The Island of Misfit Noise Movie again, once my transportation is stabilized.

The frame is bent.

So, there is only so much that is worth putting into it.

Hopefully, I can make it last long enough until I can afford a halfway decent replacement.

I would prefer to find another Chevy van with 4×4 drive.

I am not sure if I will make any modifications to the current van or not.

I guess I could, and then just transfer them to another vehicle later.

I would like to install a high wattage inverter w/ two deep cycle batteries.

Enough power to run a refrigerator/freezer and other appliances.

I wanted to purchase a used ice cream truck for this reason.

But, it was sold before I could save up enough cash to buy it.

Ideally, I would like to prep my vehicle to be ready to live in full-time, if it really became necessary.

I have been watching a lot of vandwellers blogging on YouTube, chronicling their experiences of living nomadically.

There are lots of good tips and ideas on there.

Some are simply homeless, not by choice.

But, others have willfully chosen to live this way…for a variety of reasons.

Mostly, the cost of living is a factor.

Eric Jacobs, who lives in an RV with his cat Jax, makes me miss having a cat around.

Their travels also make me wish I was touring and playing out again.

Playing music has always been my main avenue of socializing.

I just don’t have many other interests or feel like going out anywhere for other reasons.

I guess this is why Ozzy Osbourne and other rockers never stayed retired for very long.

They don’t know how to do anything else.

I feel awkward being a solo artist, though.

I suppose that I have little choice left.

My social skills are shit and I never can keep a stable band together for very long.

Some music that I write is too complex to play alone.

It just sounds better with a real full band.

But, I guess that I can write other songs to play solo.

I am recording both, and other material that is just physically impossible to play live at all.

All of it is going into my cassette-zine, Thee Urban SpaceCat, along with my drawings, writings, and correspondences with pen friends.

I would like to publish a new issue at least every three or four months.

But, my finances are a limitation imposed on how often I could put it out there.

I am unsure when I can get it ready.

Hopefully, within the next few months.

I have tons of crap that I need to catch up on.

I need new shoes, prepping supplies, etc.

I gotta pay off my credit cards, repair the van, and other gear.

So, I am playing everything by ear, for now.

At minimum, I hope to have a live set prepared so that I can book a few shows.

Maybe it will help me to raise a little money so I can get my projects moving again.

We will see.

If anybody wants to write to me, ask questions, and maybe get your letter published in my zine my address should be there on the sidebar of my website MikeNobody.Com.

Later,

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No Budget

Russ Meyer

I like cheepnis.

Maybe it is growing up on a steady diet of bad movies and shitty TV shows.

We would go to the drive-in back when they had double features, triple features, all nighters, etc.

When home video tapes and cable TV became a thing, my mom got us to watch some the worst movies ever made.

So bad, they’re good… and went back around to being bad again.

Some of the films used on Mystery Science Theater 3000 are Shakespeare, by comparison.

I used to stay up late and try to watch midnight movies on TV, before cable came along.

Then, there was The Ghoul and Sir Graves Ghastly for cool weekend shows.

Ed Wood, Roger Corman, Herschell Gordon Lewis, John Waters, Lloyd Kaufman, Richard Kern, Nick Zedd, Russ Meyer, it’s all good.

Super Action Kung-Fu Power Rock & Roll!

beatles toon

In the 1990’s, there were a number of bands who styled themselves as cartoonish action heroes, complete with a theatrical image and fictional backstory (GWAR, Supernova, The Aquabats, The Cocktails, The Amino Acids, Man or Astroman?).

I am not sure if this is the legacy of KISS or The Monkees.

The nice thing about these groups is that they are fun, for starters, and make additional income for the artist through merchandising. I wrote about merchandising before. Yes, there is a dark side to avoid. But, there is also potential to have a lot of fun with it. Comic book culture thrives on it. Go to any comic-con and check out the mountains of stuff available for almost any property. I cannot help that the inner geek in me likes collecting things. I blame Star Trek and record collecting for getting me started on that.

Mog Stunt Team were one of these groups, and were also close friends of mine.

I liked their music and whole schtick. But, I always felt like they put most of their energy into an image and not their music. I believed that I could write better songs, for sure. Bassist / vocalist Kenny Mugwump must have sensed this on some level, because he often asked for my opinion about stuff and wanted my input. I regret that I never asked to join their group. But, I was a bit intimidated. These were old pros with management, years of experience in a number of bands, touring, getting signed to labels, etc. I was just this weird kid who hung around a lot and helped when they needed a favor.

I kinda forgot about these sort of groups for awhile, then realized that The Aquabats were still kicking, and had their own TV show for two seasons! Christ, how did I miss THAT? I did a little research and discovered that the lead Aquabat, Christian Jacobs, was a former 1980’s child actor. He tried making a go of The Aquabats band for a couple of years in the 1990’s, unsuccessfully. In 1998 they made a failed Aquabats TV pilot with Bobcat Goldthwait. In 1999, he tried pitching Yo Gabba Gabba! to the networks instead. After belatedly appearing on the internet for a few years, it was a big success. Afterward, he was asked what his next project would be. So, he simply dusted off his VHS recording of The Aquabats! Super Show! and tried that again 15 years after it was originally made. Ta-Dah!

Anyway, I thought it might be interesting to make The Island of Misfit Noise sort of like these groups. The IOMN movie certainly shares some of the same influences. I don’t want to wear costumes onstage or anything like that. But, I think that I could create different characters that we could make toys out of and stuff like that. Sorta like The Archies or Josie and The Pussycats. That could be fun.

As a kid growing up in the 1970’s-1980’s, I knew even then that most of the cartoons on TV were just half-hour commercials for toys. It was a little annoying, sometimes. I mean, c’mon, they made a TV show about a talking Rubik’s Cube! Really?! The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were one of these shows. Literally, the show was only made so they could make toys. But, damn if it wasn’t still a good show! I think the fact that they had already developed it as a successful comic book for a few years gave them the chance to flesh out the characters more.

Anyway, I still look forward to writing songs with anyone who wants to add them into this. Not sure what will come of it. But, we will see.