Prelude to a Lick – Column

Prelude to a Lick

by Scott Hefflon
illustration by Jef Taylor (who evidently hasn’t seen me since high school)

“Just because I suck/Don’t mean you’re off the hook.” This month’s quote comes from ALL’s “Self-Righteous.” (What’s funny is we would’ve self-righteously copy-edited that line, had it not been a quote.) But anyway, that quote works perfectly with what happened this month. Yeah, so despite my delusions to the contrary, I found out that I’m human after all. I got wicked sick (it’s a Boston thing, kid), and “the team” had to save my ass as I sat sniffing and sniveling beneath a blanket, hacking up lung chunks and excuses. Poor planning is an understatement, dear readers. It’s rather hard to be the detail-oriented (that’s a nice way of saying anal-retentive pain-in-the-ass) man-with-a-plan who everyone looks to for direction, when you’re so doped up (legally) that your brain feels like a couch cushion. It’s hard to respect your fearless leader when he’s got snot dripping down his face. I had to cut down to a pack-and-a-half a day. I had to drink tea, not industrial strength coffee (shameless plug). All we had was this herbal stuff. Try to be hardcore, 24/7, while sipping a sissy beverage with a silent letter or two. Point is, if this issue is, shall we say, “softer” then you’re used to, that’s the reason.

This issue could be sub-titled “The Animal Issue.” For some reason, we have a frog on the cover, a bee in the center, a dog in an illustration, a pet focus in another story, and at least three bands referencing animals. Maybe lots of people just happened to have animals on the brain this month, or perhaps my affection for my kitties has unconsciously affected my editorial decisions. To clear the air; these kitties keep me from tearing out what’s left of my hair when writers and artists miss deadlines, advertisers forget to mail their ads or, oops, have to pull them at the 11th hour, or a trillion other nagging headaches that come with the job. Another sub-title of this issue could be, “Look at all the good, big bands that have come out with a new record.” For some reason, this issue (especially the cover) has mostly “dependably alternative” bands listed. Maybe next month we’ll spend pages on bands you’ll never hear of again. Wouldn’t that be fun.

And the soap opera continues. More writers and artists getting their panties in a bunch over some kind of “disagreement” and slamming the door on the way out. (I don’t have the heart to tell them the springs are broken and the door would slam anyway.) Arguing with an artist is like wrestling a polar bear. If I still looked like the drawing this month, I might be able to hold my own with the bear, but I’d still lose out to the artist.

On a more pleasant note, one freelancer earned his Lollipop stripes this month by drinking entirely too much Jägermeister (for him, at least), ranting nonsensically about “the meaning of life,” and spending the night in a puddle of his own vomit on my bathroom floor. Now he’s an official Lollipop staffer. Welcome, Brian.

In closing, we finally set up the Lollipop Live Line for your listening enlightenment. Check out the where and when, as well as listening to song clips of some of the cool bands coming to town in the next month or so. We all miss good shows ’cause we didn’t know the band was coming, or we didn’t recognize the name. Here’s one more way to figure out what you want to do with your time.

Finally, if you’re looking for a summer internship or just something to do this summer besides flip burgers, send in something that kinda looks like a resume. If you’re looking for money, go flip burgers. But if you’re into music and want to get a little hands-on experience before getting that job at Time-Warner, this might be fun. Anything’s possible.

We’re also always on the lookout for wild artists and writers (preferably who understand the word “deadline”) to bring their voice to the magazine. Sometimes it takes me a while to actually respond, but what have you got to lose? If you’re working professionally at this stuff, why not write/draw something that your boss wouldn’t touch. We have a ten foot pole and love to use it.

Lick me.