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My first and last gossip column

Kevin Smith
Arizona Daily Wildcat
By Kevin Smith
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Thursday, April 29, 2004
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On the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, the tour manager for Southern rockers The Black Crowes was a little frantic.

Not only did he have to worry about assholes like me calling and asking if the band's Sept. 12 show at Centennial Hall was still on, he had members of the band he couldn't reach either still up in the air, grounded in some mystery town, or worse. Thankfully everyone was OK, but it made for a very eerie concert experience the following night.

Sept. 11 was definitely the strangest moment I had on campus, but it was not the strangest interview.

That honor goes to a certain surf guitar legend that recently headlined a holiday event downtown. I was told the man hated interviews, which is probably why the first question I asked was also my last. Off one question, Old Man River went on an hour-and-a-half rant to which my sole contributions were, "uh-huh," "yeah" and "oh, really?" Topics covered included "Why the white man sucks," "Why alcohol and drugs are bad" and how "awesome" he was on an ATV. I believe my original query was, "So how did you get started?"

Then there was this New York City underground rapper who was in the process of telling me he quit smoking weed because of his newborn while he was clearly (clearly) huffing and puffing the green dream over the telephone. I asked him what it was he was taking such extremely long and deep inhalations off of and he said a cigarette (that somehow lasted over 10 minutes.) At the interview's conclusion he said something like, "Yeah, so now that that's over, what do you really want to talk about?"

Readers may think writers at this section get to meet the celebrities and musicians we interview, and that is mostly false. It is almost always done over the telephone and sometimes in conjunction with other schools across America, letting you only ask a handful of questions to the "big names."

One of the stars of the "Jackass" MTV show and movie snapped at me a few years ago because I saw him on TV at the MTV Music Awards and was wondering a) what someone so counterculture was doing there, and b) if MTV made him go to the awards to promote his show. He said something like, "What?! No! Nobody makes me do anything! I was asked to go so I went!"

Clichˇs and stereotypes exist for a reason.

Upon phoning the guitarist for the current kings of New York City garage rock a year or so back, a very serious, greasy, and threatening sounding English fellow picked up and said something to the effect of, "You got 10 minutes with (blank) son, make it fucking quick. All rights?"

A very shady road manager for a veteran Omaha, Neb., hip-hop/reggae/rock band bitterly told a surrounding group of strangers at a Tucson strip club that because of the pesky efforts of Nirvana and the Beastie Boys, men in rock audiences are now unable to freely grope and fondle women in the crowd. He was visibly devastated by the turn of events, not just because said women now have a say in who gets to third base and when, but because it has led to an overall decline in the groupie dynamic and more of a "politically correct" atmosphere.

I've had a great and very interesting time writing for this paper and I really have nothing bad to say about it. Believe me, I would if I did.

Just enjoy what you have here. The UA campus is a virtual city of young people. Recognize that.

This rickety roller-coaster-cart of an experience has its ups and downs, but speeds along at the same pace nonetheless. You just have to enjoy and perspective every second of it because before you know it, your cart will be pulling into the station, the safety bar will be lifted and the next group of freshmen will begin their slow accession to the apex.

Click, click, click.

Kevin Smith says thank you, insists this is his real name, and is graduating, biaaaatch! He can be reached at

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