The T-Shirt Incident?
This weekend, I'll be in Minnesota for a funeral/party for my great grandma, who passed away Sunday at the age of 104. Yep, she was born in 1902. Lived in her own house until she was almost 96 years old, healthy as a whip. Spent the last several years with Alzheimers, in otherwise perfect health, but with a mind filled with a century of stories wasting away. She wrote it into her will that when she died, there was not to be a sad funeral, but a party to celebrate good times. So that's what will happen. We'll celebrate, and because she was one of the biggest Twins fans I ever knew (rarely missing a game on TV or radio for as long as I remember), taking in the Twins-Orioles game that night might be part of the party.
This will, of course, be the second weekend in a row I'll be in Minneapolis, having spent last weekend there at Vosstag 06, our weekend of guy-ness thrown in Cliff's honor last weekend. A stop by the Mall of America may be need to be in the plans this time around. There's a t-shirt I need to get, one I was talked out of buying last time.
Sunday in Minneapolis, I was digging through a shelf of T-shirts at a store in the Mall of America, when I kept getting harrassed by a dude who spoke minimal english. He kept pointing at me, and I nodded and all, but he persisted. Eventually I determined he thought I worked there, and his daughter had a question. I politely told him I did not, in fact, work there and moved on. Apparently wearing a t-shirt automatically means you work in a t-shirt store. You bet.
Anyway, then I moved on looking through a bunch of Guns N Roses t-shirts, and my buddy Cliff came over, saw the GNR shirts and said, "Don't waste your $20 dude, GNR is weak." Two minutes pass, and I pick out a shirt. He walks back over, and says "Have you talked yourself out of that huge mistake yet? Heh." When informed that no, I hadn't, he went looking for Continental to get help convincing me that a shirt with the Appetite For Destruction skull and cross bones was not cool. Utterly ridiculous. After walking over a third time, presumably to say Continental agreed this purchase was a bad choice, I figured the Awesome Meter was clouded and we left without buying anything.
45 minutes later, we're in another t-shirt store (because the Mall of America wouldn't be the Mall of America without having multple stores of the same thing) and they have the same GNR shirt for two dollars cheaper. I picked it up to buy it, and was again made fun of. I did not buy the shirt, convinced my judgment must have been clouded, as apparently my friends all thought it was a bad choice.
Later that night, I discovered this couldn't be further from the truth. Sitting at the Red Dragon, it was revealed that on the contrary, they all thought it kicked sufficient amounts of butt to warrant the $20 price. Cliff, who hates GNR anyway, was the only one talking me out of it, as it turned out. Dick said, "Whoa, Cliff didn't like the shirt? That should have been all you needed to know that it kicked ass. If he'd liked it, that's a different story!" Continental said the same thing, adding he'd never actually agreed I shouldn't buy it back in the store. And one of his old college buddies said "Don't believe the Vossome Meter -- believe the Awesome Meter!" This is where the Awesome Meter phrase came from -- I cannot take credit for that gem. Oh, I'll use it, but it ain't my invention. You're awesome, sir.
Now, Cliff's reasoning was that by wearing a GNR shirt, I was somehow endorsing the flaky Chinese Democracy era GNR, that I might as well wear a shirt with Buckethead on it. That if Axl Rose wasn't playing the charade of supposedly releasing a new CD, if the band was in fact defunct, it would be perfectly acceptible to wear the shirt. So a 1987 Appetite For Destruction shirt with skeleton head characitures of Slash, Izzy, Duff, Axl and random drummer guy nobody remembers somehow endorses Buckethead? Really?
Its not like it was a t-shirt with the infamous original Appetite for Destruction cover -- the Robert Williams illustration of the robot rape scene -- or something. It was the skeltonized band member tattoo illustration.
I should have bought that shirt. Looking on the internet, its sold out of every store I click to. Apparently Guns N Roses not only still kicks ass, their merchandise still sells. Despite what some people tell me.
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