Dateline: 1961. Kennedy is president, the U.S. breaks diplomatic ties
with Cuba and the Berlin Wall is being erected...the "Cold War"
has begun. The Yankees win the World Series, Patsy Cline releases "Crazy"
and Ty Cobb and Chico Marx are laid to rest. The Federal debt is 292.6 billion
dollars, a first class postage stamp costs four cents, and I'm born seven
years after my older brother Terry, and almost two years to the day before
my younger brother Glenn.
There's always been music in my life. From the time I could talk, I
sang along with that big black Philco radio in the pantry. There were times
as a kid I couldn't remember what I had for lunch; but I knew all the words
to Ball of Confusion and Incense and Peppermints. If my mom didn't have
the radio on, she was playing records. By the time I was 8, my older brother
Terry was playing drums in what would become some of Rochester's hottest
bands, and would go on to be a successful studio musician.
I always collected something as a kid. Rocks, marbles, hockey cards,
beer cans, Rat Fink stuff. My father was a collector, and I inherited that
freakish "gotta save stuff" gene.
The Rat Fink stuff, and Ed Roth (the creator of Rat Fink, as well as more
than a dozen bizarre, abstract show cars and motorcycles) stuff never went
away. I've been collecting those model kits, gumball machine rings, comics
and decals since I was 12 years old. (That's nearly 35 years worth of collecting!).
Even early on, I found myself really paying attention to the world around
me, the sounds, the sights, the spectacular and the mundane...and wanting
to document it. I've enjoyed writing, both as a personal fullfilment thing
as well to entertain and inform others; and I've been fortunate to be able
to write for some of the sign and automotive graphics trades finest magazines.
I've written ad copy for over 20 yeas, publish a few online blogs and am
actually working on my first book, a collection of road stories and ...