June 27th, 2003


On The Side.

Above is a CD by a former coworker of mine, which you can now buy on Amazon.

Todd did a gig last Friday at Club Lingerie, but I wasn’t able to make it on account of my being at a birthday party, emptying a Belvedere bottle and telling a friend that she was fucking insane. But I’ve heard some of his stuff and it’s pretty good, if a bit too Caucasian for me. Sets off my Dave Matthews alarm, if you know what I mean.

He’d wanted to be a singer/songwriter for a long time and tried to pursue this goal in his off hours. Then he got a cushy job over at MTV, but continued to chase his musical calling on the side. After about a year, he decided to make dream chasing a fulltime job and left his cushy MTV post.

When I say “cushy,” I mean the guy was basically paid to eat and drink really expensive stuff, and go to free concerts. He was in the ad sales division, which meant one of his principal duties required him to wine and dine clients in order to get them to advertise on MTV.

Right when he started, “The Osbournes” became a runaway hit. So Todd didn’t have to wine and dine anybody, because the ad slots basically sold themselves. So the guy would just head out to the priciest restaurants in Santa Monica with his coworkers, and they’d spend the entire afternoon just wining and dining each other. Next thing you know it’d be dinnertime, so they’d figure “What the heck?” and just keep wining and dining ‘til closing. Another hard day at the office.

So you can imagine how stunned I was when I found out the lucky bastard de-lucky-fied himself and quit his job - if you can call it a job, because the word “job” usually implies labor. And if unbuckling your belt to accommodate the extra order of yellowtail sashimi can be defined as labor, then I guess it technically was a job.

But sometimes pursuing your life’s passion part-time just doesn’t cut it for some people. After all you’re allotted a certain amount of time on this planet, and for some, it’s a paltry amount. Why waste it playing it safe and slow? So they decide to take that huge risk and quit that steady source of cash and comfort. Rog did it to pursue acting. Geney Boy did it to pursue writing and directing. And finally so did Todd, to pursue Dave Matthews-ing.

As badly as I want to be a writer, I don’t know if I could do what Todd did. I mean my job is nowhere near as cushy as his, but I get five weeks of vacation, and my boss just gave me and my art director a healthy raise yesterday. Most importantly, neither of my parents work and both of my sisters are still in school, which means I’m the only one in the family with an income.

But each day I spend at the office is a day not spent pursuing my true aspiration. And that paltry sum of time gets even smaller. The disturbing part is sometimes I don’t feel that this is necessarily a bad thing.

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