Thoughts On The Dead

Musings on the Most Ridiculous Band I Can't Stop Listening To

Give Me Strength

It’s called the crook of your elbow because it steals from you. Time, money, other people’s stuff they took their eyes off: it’s an equal opportunity pilferer.

The alternative is better, I suppose. In the grand scheme of things. Taking the long view. The grand tour of humanity and its bullshit and grandeur and isn’t that on display for free (well, you’re supposed to drop a buck in the hat) at any number of Meetings. Your apartment gets clean, but you have to hang around church basements. The same broken upright piano in every one.

No one’s my age (whatever age I am is the age everyone else is supposed to be): just old men, aged and wrinkled and scarred around the eyes and knuckles from those times at the bar they started discussing politics. Ankles swollen and slopping over supermarket special sneakers.

Or too young: boys whose ratty Irish beards don’t connect to their patchy Puerto Rican mustaches. They try to look cool: that still matters to them. Adorable.

The girls are babies in long sleeves and too much foundation over the holes they picked in their face. Legs bobbing, with skinny arms and lazy pot-bellies. They all smoke menthols; the screens of their phones are all cracked.

The answers are in the book: the Big Book and it’s an awful book. I dismiss it for the same reason I do the Bible, the Torah, the Koran: how can the Truth reveal itself through such shitty writing? For a tome dedicated to abstention, it sure is a sleeping pill. Not one joke in the whole thing.

Nothing that isn’t funny can be true.

And, of course, God. He’s there, perhaps for the free coffee and off-brand cookies. Maybe for the ego-boost: He does seem to enjoy being praised. God seems like a toddler in the middle of toilet training.

You don’t have to believe in God, of course. (You do. You totally fucking do.) Anything can be your Higher Power. Someone, years ago, suggested I take Mother Nature as my Higher Power, but I grew up in Jersey and live in Florida now: spend a night outdoors in either place and see how much nature has your best interests at heart. Nature takes the form of tiger sharks and pollen and venereal disease.

I never trusted any entity bigger than myself: the government spies on me, steals my money, and frowns upon taking my dick out at Foot Locker; science is incomprehensible; Oprah won’t return my calls.

For a brief moment, I considered making the Dead my Higher Power and then I started giggling and all the junkies gave me the side-eye.

Another thing I can’t take seriously. Another joke in the long stretch of make-em-ups. After 20 minutes in which the word “spirituality” was repeated so often it started to lose all meaning (as if it had any to begin with,) I slid one ear-bud in and quietly listened to a Europe ’72 Dark Star, except then Bobby slammed them into Sugar Mags and I started doing my hips-and-nips shimmy and that is, apparently, not allowed.

Afterwards, I hit the gym, because I hadn’t had enough cult-like behavior, obsession, and status games.

What’s worse: wearing your faith on your sleeve, or wearing those toe-shoes on your feet?


  1. Kidd, after attending 1,000’s of these same meetings and sadly, far fewer Dead shows, you summed it up pretty well. You call it like you see it and I like that!

  2. It took me a while, but I finally realized that this is not Kidd Candalerio’s blog. I have no idea why I thought it was in the first place? Carry on.

  3. BTW, speaking of higher powers, I was in a meeting in North Miami once and a guy shared that the deer head on the hood of his truck was his higher power. When he started seeing two deer heads, he knew that he wasn’t on good spiritual ground and might have to start working his program a little better.

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