May 31, 2023

Veepin’ The Faith

There are good days, and there are bad days, and there are horrible days, and there are great days.

Veepin' The Faith

I was on my way into work this week and went to get gas, and was pleased to find that the price had dropped fourteen cents in the last week to $3.99 a gallon, and then I found a Jackson in my pants pocket that I didn’t know was there, and then about noon that day, Ted Stevens was walloped with seven indictments. That was a good day.

Two weeks before, I found a nasty scratch on my bumper, and the project that I had due to our client was screwed up eight ways from Sunday, and Comcast–vicious bastards that they are–jacked my bill again and notified me that my balance was past-due and my account was due to be cut-off–because they’d jacked my bill again. Also, I went to what I thought was the cheap gas station and didn’t notice until I was filling up that I was paying $4.21 a gallon. That was a bad day.

I remember one day some years back when I was managing the Oregon/SW Washington distribution center for a cookie and muffin distribution center. I had a Customer Service Representative who had a lunatic husband who had accused me of taking sexual advantage of his wife on a pallet of convection ovens in our warehouse. I hadn’t, but it didn’t matter  to him, and he threatened to “beat your ass around this warehouse until you confess that you’ve been fucking my wife here.” Again, I hadn’t, and I didn’t confess, and he eventually left.

Then one day the next week I got a phone call from one of my drivers at 5:00 AM telling me that the Customer Service Rep’s husband was standing outside the loading dock, chain-smoking, and holding a dufflebag that looked like it was holding rifles, and asking where I was. He was gone by the time I got there, two hours early, though I wondered when I was driving into work prematurely after that call, “So, is this the day that I get murdered?” We waited it out the rest of the day, though, to see if he showed up. Oh, and also, he was a former Marine sniper who had been dishonorably discharged for conduct issues. And my desk was sitting right in front of two 10′ x 12′ plate glass windows across the street from a meadow with overgrown stands of wheat that could comfortably accomodate a dishonorably-discharged Marine sniper. That was a horrible day.

Not like today, though. Today was a great day. I woke up about 5:00 AM. And then again at 5:10 AM. And 5:20 AM. Lather, rinse, repeat. I had to be on the radio at 7:00 AM, and my churning stomach reminded me why I’d set my alarm for 5:00 AM.

But I was there for a greater purpose, and one that superseded whatever impact my obligations had on my lower intestinal tract. I made it to Portland’s Air America affiliate, 620 KPOJ, by 6:45 AM when I had to phone in from outdoors to be let in.

I was let in and waited for a spell before I was greeted by KPOJ’s AM drive-time helmsman, Carl Wolfson. Carl is a button collector non pareil. I brought with me a bag of buttons I recently retrieved from my estranged wife’s house. I had gone down into the filthy basement of my rental house the previous evening and unearthed a treasure trove of campaign buttons, mostly from the 1972 election cycle. The one that caught his eye and sparked his interest, though, was a button from Oregon’s current governor Ted Kulongoski from his 1980 Senatorial campaign against Republican incumbent Bob Packwood.

That was a fabulous note on which to start our interview.

So, on that note, we started the interview. Everything went swell, and Carl went above and beyond the call pimping our book Veeps: Profiles In Insignificance, and our website where the book is available for pre-sale,

I left there and headed for my day job. The place is on a time lock, and I’m still a contractor, so I don’t have any Early Entry Privileges. I dutifully waited with my soda and my out-of-state newspaper until one of the carded ones arrived to let me follow their wake in.

It sucks to be at such a humbling place at 42 years old. But I was okay with that.

Because I had only a few minutes before I got to my computer, where I was pleasantly satisfied to discover that I did, indeed, have my first national/international byline on

I don’t know what the industry parlance is for such an achievement, but in my Googling and in my inquiries into the appropriate newsgroups and chatrooms, the phrase, “that’s one big motherfucker” kept coming up, for whatever that’s worth. So, that was reassuring.

So there I am. I’m not making any money yet, but we have a fabulous book about to come out, and a movie following our escapades to boot. Laugh if you will at our pathetic selves right now, but you’ll be laughing with us when we’re violating the red carpets with our threadbare, mud-encrusted Rockports. They might invite us to The Show, but it won’t be until that moment that they realize that’s how we roll up in Vantucky.

Read my article here.

Listen to my KPOJ interview with Carl Wolfson here.