Sunday, November 06, 2016

A Year Ago Today

Someone once said to me how The Bay Area needed to stop "holding on" to the old Murder In The Front Row days and we needed to "move on" and "get over it".  Yes, they were historic times, but that was then and this is now, and we're living in the past blah blah.  For the record, this person was not from The Bay Area.

All I can say is for me personally I am not "holding on" to those days; THEY are holding on to ME.  Over the years many things and events have happened to me as a direct result of those old Murder In The Front Row days.  I am not religious, but there is a karma / mojo thing out there.  Here's an example that happened exactly one year ago today:

At the end of October last year I received a layoff notice from a business I had been a part of for almost 10 years.  Shit happens, things were changing.  I got it and I understood the reasons... but it did not lesson the feeling of dread of "What the fuck am I going to do now??"  I've been through layoffs before and they are never easy but somehow I've always found myself landing somewhere.  The last time I was laid off I literally didn't work for a year and that memory weighed on my mind.. because how often can lightning strike?  I am not a "career" person and I've never followed any kind of defined or traditional career path.  However, sometimes the Metal Godz work in mysterious ways.

Randomly, and only a few days after my layoff notice, an old acquaintance posted something on his social media.  I had met this guy a few years before when we met about possibly doing a collaboration between his company and bands who were clients of my old company.  Unfortunately, nothing panned out but we stayed in touch over the years.

His post was about how he had found a bunch of old Punk and Metal fanzines at a local flea market and one of them caught my eye and pulled me straight back to the Murder In The Front Row days. One of the 'zines he found was a 1986 issue of the legendary San Francisco 'zine Metal Mania done by my old friend Ron Quintana.  I had contributed to Metal Mania and I have all of the issues except one... and that one issue was part of this flea market find!  The issue is Ron's tribute issue to Cliff Burton after he passed away.  Only 500 copies were xeroxed and stapled together back in those sad days after Cliff was gone.

The copy even had a Record Vault price tag on it!

Anyway, long story short, I sent my acquaintance a message and asked if he could possibly scan or copy that Metal Mania for me.  However, in true old school fashion he offered to give it to me!  WOW, right?!  No ego.  No greed.  Old school.   Also, one thing led to another and I mentioned my current job situation, which I really didn't think anything more about at the time.

Fast forward and it had only been 16 days since I received my layoff notice and I was invited to the office of my old acquaintance for lunch and (as far as I knew) to pick up the old copy of Metal Mania.  We went across the street to a place to eat and I was prepared to have a mellow conversation catching up about things... but instead the conversation was about how he wanted to bring me on board with his company.  They didn't have a specific role yet but they could work with me to figure something out.


The gist of the conversation was that he believed shit happens for a reason.  My recent layoff, him finding that old issue of Metal Mania, and me contacting him about it felt like something was aligning.  His company was about to start growing due to new partnerships and he needed to ramp up his office staff with professional and qualified humans.  It was a fucking amazing lunch and one of those moments where my life literally changed unexpectedly.

Long story short, it took a few months for the company to be in a position to formally offer me a position.  However, in that time I was able to consult for a certain band on their webstore and I basically worked for them for a month at their Marin County HQ.  This was surreal in a full circle way and it was ironic running into The Frontman at the office and talking about Venom in front of his other employees.

Which brings me to today and it being exactly 365 days since that fateful lunch in San Francisco.  I now find myself working for an old Skate Punk and his company Super7 and our office feels like a secret club house instead of a traditional workplace.  I feel part of a gang and we're taking on the world... and we are in many ways.. and it's about to go next level for us in a good way. 

As I said earlier, shit happens.  Sometimes shit happens for a reason.. and sometimes things that were put into motion 30 years ago involving bands and a local music scene can still affect my life in a very real time, modern way.. and that's exactly what happened a year ago today.  It's almost like the ghosts from the Murder In The Front Row days are looking out for me.. which is comforting in a Metal way.

Bonded by Blood!