Try to Set the Past on Fire

Jim_MorrisonWhen I was 14 years old, I was sitting in a parked 1970s GMC pickup truck in the back of my great-grandparents’ pasture—near the repurposed watering trough that housed goldfish—listening to the oldies station while taking a break from cutting back mesquite. And the DJ introduced “Light My Fire” by saying that the original was absurdly long, and no one thought it was a single until someone at the record company suggested cutting the lengthy instrumental break.

Not quite a decade later, I worked for the man who suggested that cut, presumably helping him write his memoirs but more accurately serving as an escort and drinking companion.

I don’t know what that story means, but I think about it a lot. What an odd factoid to have carried around for all those years. What a startling juxtaposition. There must be a meaning in there somewhere, but it’s buried too deep for me to excavate.

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One thought on “Try to Set the Past on Fire

  1. lambcannon says:

    I saw James James Morrison Morrison whateverthefuckdupree perform with his band of UCLA losers at the same hotel Reagan was shot at in November 1967 right after the release of Strange Days.

    He wore leather pants that had a good two inches of fat hanging over the belt, twitched like a mental patient and displayed a tiny vocal range, I think he thunk he was Howling Wolf.

    I was 13, and the girls in the audience creamed whatever passed for panties at the time. I decided I was a homosexual, that Jim Morrison looked like a very very ugly woman, and that Ray Manzarek looked like a spider. There was no bass player, and they were probably the shittiest band ever until The Screamers, of which I was a founding member in 1976.

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