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xmag.com : April 2004 : I Love Las Vegas

April kicks ass? Well, she kicked mine!

Richard Meltzer says rock'n'roll is a fight waiting to happen. I say, "Hey, I said that!" Richard Meltzer says what's a nice girl like me want to be hanging out at rock shows for? I say, "Nice girl?"

You all seem to have me pegged as a "nice" midwestern preacher's daughter walking on the wild side. Well, I am, but preacher's daughters are notorious rabble-rousers, ya know. And just cuz I'm "smart" and got this little giggly high-pitched Marilyn voice doesn't mean that inside I'm not Mike fucking Tyson. Geez.

I got beat up again. That's, what, five times in five months? Yup. Officer Friendly calls me his little punching bag friend. Hippie stripper says I'm just trying to be closer to an abusive ex-boyfriend. I say people just keep pissing me off!

This time I wound up in the emergency room. Drove myself there in lieu of seeing the Melvins post-Mudhoney to get my lip stitched up and my grossly swollen face x-rayed. Some smelly little skater chick beat the crap out of me when I asked her sternly to stop pushing her ass into my hip bone over and over again. Folks say I should learn how to street fight, but I don't hit chicks. Ever. Ex-boyfriends I'll work over now and then, but never chicks.

So I've been rockin' this black eye for ten days now. It is really, REALLY black. The lid is ash black like superfab smoky eyeliner and the rest is purple. Blondie says, "It looks like Mac! It's gorgeous!" Most people say nothing. You can tell they really want to ask, but I act as if nothing is horribly wrong with my face and they respond in kind. Until I walk down lower west Burnside.

"Holy shit gurl you betta find that motha-fuckah and kick his motha-fuckin' ass! Gurl!"

The bums all wanna know how I got it. Usually I like to say, "I got beat up by a CHICK!!!" Like how-humiliating-is-that? Mexicans do drive-bys and point out the obvious: "Wow you got knocked out!" The yuppies turn and stare. I think they want me to cover it up. But why should I? I got nothing to hide. Hiding a black eye indicates someone inflicted humiliation on you. Not me! I was, uh, proud, sorta. Especially when I heard that it was MUDHONEY who got the rumor mill churning, telling Mike H. that I kicked the crap out of HER. Plus it really is quite lovely. The purple brings out the green in my eyes, and looks spectacular if I wear a little lavender sweater. I wear pigtails often, and folks say I look like a Jim Goad cover girl. One night I wore a prom dress and classy boots and a silky black bob wig. And a black eye. I'm having a motherfucking blast. I'm gonna miss it when it's gone. It's a great conversation starter, too, and Lord knows I love a great conversation.

At work all I have to do is put industrial strength foundation on the bottom (that Revlon Color-Stay shit is like plastic) and then match my left eye to my right with various purple and black shadows. If I feel I need to impress a regular with my Mike Tyson-ness, I point out that one eye is naturally TOTALLY FUCKED. The girls call me Scarface and Bruiser and I blush like I'm twelve.

Maybe this is taking my tomboy thing too far. I always dreamed of winning the Heisman Trophy, not the trophy husband. This bruiser Viva was always just under my skin. You can see her now, melting down the right side of my face.

Of course violence is Not Cool and if someone you love is beating the shit out of you it eviscerates you and never ever heals. But I don't love this little skater tramp--whose name, by the way, is April--and rock'n'roll is a fight waiting to happen. I haven't been in a rock'n'roll fight since Zen Guerrilla in 1998. Feels like an auspicious time to announce the return to the stage this month of Portland's bruiser band par excellence, COCO COBRA & THE KILLERS, playing with the supergreat Electric Six on 4/27 at Dante's.

You wanna fight?







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