Rock Star of the Apocalypse - An Afterward: Tales of the New Earth Story - Chapter 2
Chapter 2: Just a Li’l Trucker
I was born in Arendtsville, PA, September 19th, 1970. Well, actually, I was born in Carlisle Hospital; my home was in Arendtsville. That’s what I meant. My mom was a hairdresser, but she preferred the term beautician, which is the technical term for a hairdresser. From what I could tell, she did a hell of a job, because some of those chicks needed some beatuifyin’. No fuckin’ lie; she took women who were a solid “three” and turned ‘em into at least a “five”. What I’m sayin’ is that my mom did a great job, and I loved her a lot, and she loved me and my brother. Kinda sad that she didn’t make it to “Landing Day”, but I ain’t too sure she wouldn’t have been over there in the City with the rest of those poor suckers. She was Christian as the day is long.
My dad was, and still is, a good man. He kept the roof over our heads, the food in our guts, the clothes on our backs, and the shoes on our fuckin’ feet. He was a trucker, if you paid real close attention to my last name, you’d know that. Legally changed it, along with the “G.D.” in ’93, and used some kind of crazy Scandinavian name rule… thing. I’m the son of a trucker, so I’m a Truckerson. Probably one of the best things I did, career-wise; the old last name sounded like I should be out sellin’ fuckin’ shoes, or something. Anyways, back to my dad. Like I said, he was a trucker, back in the day when we still had tons of trucks and cars and shit. But he wasn’t some kind of dumbass short-haul guy, though. Y’know; those guys who maybe did 25 miles a day. My dad was a fuckin’ CBA trucker. You name it, he hauled it where the fuck you wanted it. 700, 800, 1,500 miles? No biggie for my dad. He was my hero when I was growin’ up. Unfortunately, we parted ways a few years before “Landing Day”, and I just finally got reacquainted with him last year. He took the whole “not being chosen” thing really, really fuckin’ hard. The man was as devout as mom, but the crazy shit that caused “God” to choose his people for the City wasn’t in him. Don’t get me wrong, he ain’t shootin’ up the neighborhood or anything, but he’s definitely not the same guy he used to be. Still was good to see him, though.
I was the younger brother to a guy I thought would always have my back. We’d been through a lot together, growing up. Dude smacked a guy with a 2x4 when said guy was gonna beat the shit out of me, which I probably deserved. I was kind of an asshole, back in the day. Yep, he had my back. We were brothers, but we were also friends. We listened to music together, we partied together, we had the same friends. We even played some good music once, at a party, as a one-time gig. Good times. Needless to say, if one of us was around, chances were good that the other wasn’t too far away. Too fuckin’ bad for him though. He ain’t dead, but he may as well be. Fucker got taken in by the Blessed Families, which is pretty much the same as blowin’ your fuckin’ brains out. I’ll have more to say about that later.
So anyways, as I was growin’ up, there was usually some kind of music playin’ in the house. My mom used to watch different music shows on T.V., like The Lawrence Welk Show, Donnie and Marie, Barbara Mandrell and the Mandrell Sisters, stuff like that. Hell, she even got me watching Name That Tune, which I did pretty well at, thank you very much. My dad played lots of country-western music, and lots of early rock-and-roll. I mean early rock-and-roll, like rockabilly shit, which was pretty good, actually. Both of these styles of music had a large effect on my songwriting, my performing, and even the way I dress. I look like some kind of… Psychobilly cowboy, which is just fine with me. I always say if you’re gonna be a fuckin’ freak, let your freak flag fly!
The earliest I can remember actually singing in front of people was when my dad thought it would be a great idea for us to do the song of the week for church. Y’know, when one person or group does a nice little “la-la-la, praise the lord, god is good, la-la-la” kind of song. Kinda like sayin’, “Hey, look at us praising the lord almighty! Don’t you wish you could do this too? We are such great Christians!”. Least, that’s how I look at it now. Back then, I was doing my part to send God some love. My dad and mom could sing okay, and I’m no slouch, myself. Got money and fame and shit, so I guess I’m not bad. My brother, on the other hand, couldn’t carry a tune in a bucket. A bucket that was super-glued to his hand, and handcuffed to his fuckin’ wrist. I mean, wow, he was horrible. Not knockin’ the guy, as he was an awesome bassist, so he definitely had musical talent. But, back to the church performance, we sang “How Great Thou Art”, and we were doin’ pretty well, right up until the time my brother decides he’s been neglectin’ the Lord God by not singing loud enough. For about 20 seconds, his voice was about as loud as ours. Have I mentioned that it sounded like a fuckin’ foghorn that was down tuned to play death metal? Yeah, it was something like that. We got done, and the congregation gave us a polite little applause. Dad. Was fuckin’. Embarrassed. But, hell, it wasn’t like he could do anything about it. What’re you gonna do? Ground the kid for not being able to sing? So that ended the whole idea of us being one of those Christian family recording artists. Oh, yeah, I forgot; that was one of dad’s ideas. We were gonna be famous in the whole hymn-singing industry! Nope. Wasn’t gonna happen.
A couple of years after that, I started listening to music that reflected me at the time. It was angry. It was full of dark imagery. It was… the dreaded Heavy Metal! Oh, for fuck’s sake, not the dreaded Heavy Metal! By then, I’d changed my look from dorky little church boy to full-fledged head banger. I had the long, bleached blond hair. Denim jacket with band patches. Fuckin’ spikes all over the place. Funny side story; I unintentionally made the school district change the dress code to say “no spiked apparel”, or some shit, because I punched a dude in the face with one of my hand guards. No blood, but he had these little indentations on his cheek. Still glad I punched him. Hey, I can’t always be a barrel of sunshine. Maybe it was all the dreaded Heavy Metal. I dunno. But, back to the music at the time. I used to go to my room and blast Metallica, Grim Reaper, Megadeth, W.A.S.P., etc. It was my release. I did what most kids do, and lip synched the lyrics like I was the lead singer. How’s that for some ironic fuckin’ foreshadowing? So I’m up in my room, killing it like a rock star, when my dad comes in and starts yelling at me to “turn that shit down” and starts breaking my horn about my grades, my school discipline record (which read like a fuckin’ rap sheet), and just for being a scumbag in general. He then starts ripping into me for my hair, my music, and pretty much reading me the fuckin’ Riot Act for everything, short of accusing me of being in on the Reagan assassination attempt. That’s when he tore all the posters of my heroes down. Every last one. He walks out sayin’ I’ll never have any of this shit in my room again, and slams the door. I looked down at my Yngwie Malmsteen shirt, figured he couldn’t take my T’s, seeing as that was all I had to wear, and thought Goddamn, I’m a fuckin’ rebel.
My mom was worried about me, and said so… a lot. She was always trying to get me to tone it down a bit, maybe get a haircut. Date a nice girl, as opposed to my normal choice in female company. How’s that song go? Oh, yeah; I like my women a little on the trashy side. That’s how it went. But anyway, Mom always meant well, and she told me every day that she loved me. I think Mom was my biggest fan, even before I was ever famous. I even got her to throw the “devil’s horns” hand sign once. Hilarious!
Life was pretty sweet for me when I was a teenager. I was pretty ignorant back then, but baby, if ignorance was bliss, I was fuckin’ orgasmic for about five years. So yeah, I was pretty low-down. Fortunately, I had friends who understood that, because they were almost as bad as me. Should I have worried about my grades, my clothes, my hair, and all that? Hell yes, I should have, but being a dumbass was a blessing and a curse. If I would have knuckled down, I could’ve got into a good college, got a good job, had the wife and 1.5 kids, house with the fuckin’ picket fence. You know, the standard “American Dream” shit. But where would Dave God Damned Truckerson be? You know where? No fuckin’ where, that’s where. Hell, I’m still a dumbass, ignorant fucker. I’m happy, though, not caring about all the bad shit that’s out there, and you know there’s one metric ass-ton of that now.
The one constant in my teenage years, like I said before, was my brother. You know that imaginary line that people sometimes cross, and do something really stupid? Yeah, mine was way the hell out there, because my level of stupid things was fuckin’ leaps and bounds ahead of everyone else. My brother knew where my line was, though, and usually stopped me before I went right the hell over the cliff. I realized years later that the times I did some incredibly stupid shit was when he wasn’t there. Like the time I decided that I wanted to see my girlfriend, so I went to her house at about one in the morning, got her to open her second-story window for me, we did our thing, and had to pretty much jump out that window when her parents woke up… right down the fuckin’ hall. Had he been there for that, he probably would have said, “Dude, you’re kinda stupid. You’re gonna get caught. Let’s go find the guys and hang out.” I probably would’ve agreed, but still, it was good sex and all. Not sure if it was worth the sprained ankle, though.
My first band was durin’ high school. Well, I wouldn’t exactly call it a band; it was more like me, my brother, our mutual best friend, and some jackass hanger-on friend of ours, playing shitty covers in our friend’s basement. We didn’t have a drummer, so we just used a crappy Casio electric drum pad set, with the pre-set rhythms. Wow, that was horrible! Individually, we probably could have met success with other bands, but we decided to stay together, even though we should’ve been dragged out of the house, beaten up, and had our instruments set on fire. We were gonna make the fuckin’ big time, dude. We even had a name; Belle Hazard. See, ‘cause we were a hazard to the womens, with our sex appeal and amazin’ sound. The womens, they would never want to be leavin’ us alone. That was our dream, but I guess time and circumstances had other plans for us.