Thoughts On The Dead

Musings on the Most Ridiculous Band I Can't Stop Listening To

Tag: iowa

It’s An LA Story, And Then An IA Story

NO! I forbid this! I will not allow Thoughts on the Iron Maiden!

I just like this song, braj.

It’s subtle.

The soaring vocals! The submarine that isn’t clearly a model floating in a bathtub! The out-of-place occult references! The bangs!


Leapin’ lizards, the man’s bangs!

ENOUGH! This is ridiculous. Enthusiasts come here for Grateful Dead-related content, and there’s been none for weeks. You’ve just been regurgitating whatever you just watched on YouTube and threatening to expound at length on Hair Metal again.

Thoughts on the Guns is coming, and there’s nothing you can do to stop it.

At least recommend a show for the nice people.

Fine, but it’s gonna be an ’84.


7/4/84 from the Five Seasons Center in Cedar Rapids, IA, is a hoot of a kick of a nutslapper of a performance. Stranger opener? Yup, you betcha. Sterling yet flawed in the usual mid-80’s way H>S>F? Indeedy-do. One of the six Cumberlands of Power? By golly, sure. Date-appropriate Jack Straw? What band are we talking about? Of course they forgot to play it.

Or you could watch it if you’d like:

The Five Seasons Center is not associated with the Four Seasons hotel chain, nor does it refer to an assortment of spices; the name is the result of Cedar Rapids, IA, being somewhat less than the Mount Olympus of the advertising world. When New York City wanted a logo, it went to Madison Avenue and got the iconically-fonted I ♥ NY; for almost 50 years, the graphic has been slapped on as much bullshit as the Stealie. Texas needed a catchy slogan to keep folks from throwing taco wrappers and spent shotgun shells out the windows of their Cadillacs and pickup trucks, and so they went to an Austin firm that came up with this:

But the best Cedar Rapids could do was “The City of Five Seasons.” What is the fifth season, you ask? It’s Iowa, and it gets colder than Mussolini’s prostate in Iowa; perhaps the fifth season is some sort of super-winter. This could be corn-related, you think. Everything else in Iowa is corn-related, so maybe this is, too.  What about love? Is the fifth season like the fifth element? Enthusiasts, you would be wrong (and weird) to make any of these guesses. It’s so much stupider.

The fifth season, we are led to believe, is “the time to enjoy the other four seasons.” Which you’ll notice is just straight-up announcing that Cedar Rapids is boring. Hi, we’re Cedar Rapids, and the most exciting thing that happens here is that the ambient temperature rises and falls in a cyclical 12-month pattern. That’s what “five seasons” means.

These are the people we let choose Presidential nominees.

Facts About Iowa Without Research

  • Along with Oahu, appears in many crossword puzzles.
  • As does Ames, which is a city in Iowa.
  • Circles within circles, hombre.
  • Currently, one out of every seven individuals in Iowa is running for the Democratic nomination.
  • This is because Iowa has the first Presidential primary in the nation, and that is because Americans has a farmer fetish.
  • There is a sickness in our soul, and it wears overalls and gets up at four in the morning.
  • One day, we think, we’re gonna leave this stinking city.
  • Go back to nature.
  • Till the land.
  • Till the fuck out of the land, man.
  • But we’re not; none of us are ever going to do that because any amount of thought at all will reveal that farming is an incredibly shitty job.
  • It’s literally shitty.
  • Being a farmer means dealing with doody every single day.
  • And lifting heavy shit before dawn, and fixing tractor engines, and dealing with them damn bankers, and hiring seasonal labor, and keeping your daughter from fucking all these salesmen who keep getting flat tires in front of your house.
  • It’s dangerous, too.
  • Every piece of machinery on a farm wants to eat your arm.
  • I own no technology that is capable of amputating any of my limbs.
  • Maybe my teevee could fall on me.
  • That fucker’s heavy.
  • But there’s nothing in my home that would require me cutting my own leg off with my penknife to escape from.
  • I don’t even own a penknife.
  • Do not farm.
  • What was I talking about?
  • Iowa.
  • For fuck’s sake, why?
  • This post is–secretly, I guess–a recommendation for 8/10/82 at University of Iowa Field House.
  • Killer Stranger opener.
  • Killer, braj.
  • More about Iowa:
  • The primaries I mentioned?
  • They’re not primaries.
  • They’re caucuses.
  • What is the difference?
  • The spelling, for one thing.
  • And the pronunciation.
  • Just say you don’t know.
  • Caucuses are stupidly complicated: Iowans don’t stop by the local elementary school gym and fill out a ballot like normal humans; instead, they have this byzantine horse-trading party that takes place in private homes all over the state.
  • Enthusiasts, I like to think of myself as conversant with our country’s system of governance.
  • I could name the articles and amendments of the Constitution and only get three or four wrong.
  • I know how a bill becomes a law, and that’s without singing the song.
  • But I have no fucking idea how the Iowa caucus works.
  • Soon, one of the publications I enjoy will print an “explainer” article about them, and I will read that, and then I will immediately forget the information for another four years.
  • (If we’re still doing the democracy thing four years from now, obviously.)
  • And when you’re in Ceder Rapids, stop on by Barry Cootigan’s BBQ and Toenail Removal; 20% off if you mention TotD.