Bootleg City: The Mayoral Race Is Heating Up!

It’s hard not to get paranoid when you’re an elected official.

First there was the August catnapping that turned out not to be a catnapping. (Cats who take naps don’t make me paranoid, hence the use of the compound word. Nevertheless, they’re always watching. Don’t forget that.) But then came September’s disastrous outdoor screening of The Wizard of Oz and those particularly potent poppies planted purposely in front of the screen.

You could chalk that one up to garden-variety stupidity on my part since I’m the one who ordered the poppies, but let the records and tapes and whatnot show that I’ve never tried to hide that stupidity from my constituents, nor have I ever been smart enough to know where to hide it in the first place. But what if the poppies were switched out by one of my opponents in the upcoming mayoral race to make me look bad?

What if it was a dirty trick played by David Byrne, the talking head who impresses everyone with his inhumanly broad shoulders and worldly knowledge of worldly music? (Remind me to throw some money the anti-birthers’ way so they can do a background check.) Or what if Bob Marley‘s trying to take my job from beyond the grave? If former attorney general John Ashcroft could lose a Senate seat to a nonbreather in 2000, what chance would I have in a town like Bootleg City against a pro-marijuana candidate? The man even has a self-penned campaign song called “Legalize It.” (Check yo’ self before you check my facts, Marley fans.)

Or what if it was Matt Wardlaw, the upstart candidate who entered the race this week? Isn’t it an odd coincidence that he’s the one who provides me with new bootlegs week after week? None of these “donations” were really for “the people,” were they, Citizen Wardlaw? I think this guy’s trying to sabotage my campaign so voters will give me the boot on November 3! Just take a look at the compilation he sent me this week — it’s volume three of Y100 Sonic Sessions, taken from live-in-the-studio recordings made for WPLY 100.3 FM in Philadelphia in 1999.

I mean, for the love of Christ 2.0, a.k.a. Scott Stapp, Creed’s on this thing! Creed! The first band in rock history to actually be sued for sucking! Art is subjective, but apparently some fans at Creed’s concert in Rosemont, Illinois, on December 29, 2002, decided, “Nope, nothing subjective about this. Tonight’s performance just flat-out suuuuuuucks. And now you’re going to pay for it, Creed.”

Why are you dropping this A-bomb on me, Matt? What did I ever do to you? Look, if you want to play rough, we can play rough. But let me warn you, sir — if you have any Sanford or McGreevey or Letterman-type skeletons in your closet, you’d better bring them out now, because my team will find them. And if there are any Polanski-type skeletons in there, you might as well leave town immediately. For the next 30 days the gloves are off, Mr. Rock and Roll Hall of Shame! (Matt’s from Cleveland. He’ll never recover from that attack.)

I Alone (Live)
Malibu (Hole)
Kickin’ My Heart Around (The Black Crowes)
So Pure (Alanis Morissette)
Ana’s Song (Open Fire) (Silverchair)
Only Happy When It Rains (Garbage)
Our House (Madness)
Concertina (Tori Amos)
The Way (Fastball)
Kind & Generous (Natalie Merchant)
What’s This Life For (Creed)
All for You (Sister Hazel)
Someone’s Daughter (Beth Orton)
Don’t Drink the Water (Dave Matthews)

Robert Cass
Robert Cass lives in Chicago. For Popdose he's written the series Sugar Water, Bootleg City, and Box Office Flashback and spearheaded the collaborative series 'Face Time with Jeff Giles and Mike Heyliger.