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White Line Fever

“And I took one last ride by your house, and saw you sitting there inside,
Thought about our love, and all those things, that seemed to make it die,
Well baby out of all them other girls, you’re still the best that I’ve ever seen,
But I just sit there idling, wondering when everything,
Got so fucked up, got so turned around,” – from “White Line Fever” by Blacklist Royals (Blacklist Royals)

 

Christian “Kimbo” Marshall wondered if anyone besides his band mates could tell a sort of death was near.

They had just hopped on the small but legendary stage at The Horseshoe for The Something’s Coming secret show. Fifteen years on, they were still Toronto’s favourite punk sons, whatever that meant anymore.

He strummed the guitar anchored around his thin and inked neck, and looked out at the rammed back room. Kimbo remembered being one of those kids, sweaty with anticipation at seeing a favourite band and ready to get wetter with the rest of the crowd.

From behind the drums, Ben yelled ‘ready’ and Yuriana – she preferred Yuri for short – and Max, the other members of The Something’s Coming, yelled ‘ya’. With the affirmation, Kimbo assaulted the strings with his thin pick and tore through the opening thrash of “Day Train”. While his mind should have been on those expectant faces in front of him and giving them “the best goddamned show they had ever seen”, as he was once quoted as saying, it was on the conversation he’d had with the three assholes facing his back.

“Are you fucking serious?” he yelled while he faced the living room wall of Ben’s Admiral Rd. mansion. His eyes shot to some snooty painting for fear he would lash out at anyone in his view. It wouldn’t be the first time they had physically confronted each other, but this time it was four against Kimbo and he knew his anger would only be met with solemn shakes of their heads.

“It just makes sense man. Like we’ve got other shit we want – ” Ben cut off with  a shake of Yuri’s head.

Kimbo turned when Ben stopped and looked at Yuri herself.

“Chris…it’s the last tour…that’s it. No discussion, no anything. Maybe in a few years we can pick it back up, but for now, we’re done,” she said.

Her words were calm, measured, and direct. They pierced Kimbo like needle sharp daggers, imperceptible at first, yet devastating when he realized how deep they had cut.

What the fuck am I supposed to do now? he thought.

He spread his arms wide and said, “What the fuck am I supposed to do now?”

Kimbo looked at each of Ben, Yuri, Max, and then at Roger the band’s manager. Their silence did little to sway him.

“Fuck. This!” he shouted, followed by stomping out of the room. Continue reading

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