Archive for the ‘Clean Up After Me I’m Irish’ Category

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Big Words I Know By Heart Episode II: BJs Off TheTable

September 25, 2014

Whew!

Another new episode of Big Words Video is in the can.  I was a little under the weather (having battled a cold for the last two weeks), but the results are pretty damned funny.  Guest Kyle Kaczmarczyk and co-host Jenny O were a mismatched pair made in broadcasting heaven.  I’m not really sure how or why the show wound up in Black and White (that wasn’t intentional), but we’ll chalk that up to the Big Words Poltergeist.  Methinks that producer Richard Wicka may have done it on purpose in preproduction.

Here’s your synopsis:

Tom hunkers down with New York Times bestselling writer/artist Kyle Kaczmarczyk  (Fubar, Igor: Occult Detective, The Misadventures Of Silent Boy) about adolescent bathing, prenups, The New New 52 and other shameful joys.  Co-host Jenny O. shows concern about being dropped from Facebook.

Please watch the newest episode here:

PLEASE take the time to click on the link, watch the show, ‘Like’ the show and Share with your friends as early and often as possible.  Word of mouth is everything.

Thanks are in order to Kyle, Jenny and producer Richard Wicka for a great ‘webisode’.  I’ll be back on the attack in a month with an unexpected guest and an ‘interesting’ co-host!

Thanks!

Tom

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A Fond Farewell To Club Watch

February 20, 2012

As of today, I will no longer be writing Club Watch reviews for The Buffalo News.  After a great deal of soul searching and months of talking it over with my wife, we’ve both come to the conclusion that it’s time to move on.  As a writer, I’ve reached an age where I’ve started closing some doors behind me in order to go forward into more challenging directions.

Back in 2001, I fell into the hobby by accident.  I approached Jeff Miers (the editor of Buffalo Beat at the time) about doing a weekly column.  He suggested that I start a bar review section for their alternative weekly and (after accepting), he titled it ‘Boozin’ In The Buff’.  After four or five weeks of reviews, Buffalo Beat got bought out and turned into Blue Dog Press, which also went the way of the dodo.

In 2002 I spent three months researching strip clubs in the U.S. and Canada and wrote ‘A Fistful Of Loonies’, one large, exhaustive expose’ about the lifestyle, the sociology behind it and how the entire microcosm worked.  I pitched it to Ed Honeck (the editor of Night Life magazine) and he ran it in four sections.  You can still read the essay in my first book, Born Pissed.  Once all four parts had run their course, I came to Ed and said, ‘What now?’

For the next five years I was Night Life’s point man for bar and exotic club reviews.  I settled into a gonzo style of reporting where I focused on two things: how cheap the drinks were and how hot the women were.  In many reviews I spent more time writing about what sort of drunken insanity my friends and I had gotten into than the bars themselves.  I got to interview a lot of prominent adult film stars including Mary Carey, Puma Swede and Regan Anthony.

By the time 2007 rolled around Lindsay and I were living together in Lancaster.  Covering exotic clubs was getting old and thanks to a different campaign by the Buffalo News (YourHub, a social network that came and went), I was introduced to Brian Connolly, who was the editor of the Club Watch section at the time.  I sent out some sample reviews and he gave me the green light to start covering assignments.  I drove to the publishing offices for Night Life magazine downtown to break the news to Ed and pitched him on a weekly column (‘Big Words I Know By Heart’).  He understood and accepted the column, so for quite a few years I was on double duty writing the weekly column for Night Life and Club Watch reviews for The News.  Since the Club Watch format was a more stringent style of who, what, when, where and why reporting, I took a lot of the funniest Night Life reviews and published Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish: A Cheap Degenerate’s Guide To Buffalo Bars.  You can still find that book behind a lot of bars in Buffalo as well as online.

So now, after five years of freelancing with The Buffalo News, it’s time to say goodbye.  While I’ll never say never, I could use a long break.  I don’t ever want to reach a point with any of my writing where an assignment feels like a chore, or I feel like I’m phoning an assignment in for a paycheck or writing on autopilot.  Ten years is a long time to write in any format, and I’m sure you know by now that I’ve got a lot of other plates spinning.

Since 2001 I’ve written for The Buffalo News, ArtVoice, Acid Logic, Buffalo Beat, Buffalo Spree, Buffalo Rising, Boy’s Night Out, Alt Press, The Worldwide Freelancer and a score of other dailies, weeklies and online ‘zines.  I’ve accomplished everything I set out to do and prided myself on getting my assignments in well before deadline where print newspapers were concerned.  For the foreseeable future I’d like to focus more on my books, my publishing house and my radio show.  I’d also just like to sit down on a bar stool for the reasons I fell in love with Buffalo bars in the first place: cheap drinks, great ambience and some of the best conversation in the region.

Thanks for all the memories, Buffalo.

Tom Waters

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Monday Big Words Update! Updated March-May Calendar, Two MORE Big Words Episodes With Lenny Revell!

March 2, 2009

Monday Big Words Update! Updated Mar-May Calendar, 2 MORE Big Words Shows!

First off, grab your copy of Night Life this week if you want a print version of the very well received ‘Thoughts On The Flight 3407 Crash’ essay that you all saw here FIRST online! There’s a whole block of new columns rolling out this month and they’re all popping into Night Life magazine, so grab ‘em while you can.

Moving on, if you haven’t heard the historic interview with adult film starlette Alexis Amore on Episode 32 of Big Words Radio, don’t waste another second and click over now! I’m also pleased to announce that there are two NEW episodes up in addition to Alexis’ show featuring an interview hour and a fully loaded hour and a half concert episode with national piano wunderkind Lenny Revell! Here’s your synopsi!:

2/20/09 Episode 34
Tom and Lenny meet each other for the first time, forge a heterosexual ‘bromance’ regarding their love for the music of Elton John (vs. Billy Joel), and discuss the predominance (as well as their mutual disgust) of the ’97 Rock Mentality’ on the Buffalo Music Scene.
2/20/09 Episode 33a: Piano Man
National virtuoso Lenny Revell regales Tom and his fans with a number of brilliant renditions while Tom’s brain goes on tilt due to one glass of Knob Creek and a full work day.

Click over and enjoy all the podcasty goodness over at:

Thinktwiceradio.com

Lenny was a pleasure to interview and surprisingly much better than I expected him to be on the keys (and he came highly recommended, mind you). Thanks again are in order to Lenny for rocking it out even after a full work day. Give it a listen and then buckle up and mark your calendar for April Foolfest 2 at Desiderio’s on Broadway when Lenny and I will be splitting the bill starting at 7 pm with an evening of comedy, great music, potent beverages and spectacular cuisine along with Suckerpunch’s Dan Labowski.

And (since the calendar should max out your attention span for the remainder of this post, here is the newly updated Event Calendar for the next three months. Please note the addition of two very important and very exciting bookings (Brennan’s Bowery Bar on St. Patty’s Eve and Milligan’s Pub on St. Patrick’s Day). I’ll be taking a time out from Breathing Room I and II to hawk a few dozen copies of Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish: A Cheap Degenerate’s Guide To Buffalo Bars, so if you want to buy a signed copy from me in person (or just buy an Irishman a drink on or near our favorite holiday), Brennan’s and Milligan’s will be the time to do so!

There’s a lot more to cover, but I’ll pop a few posts in throughout the week. Don’t forget to check back on Quixote Wednesday for the latest crusade! Thanks,

Tom Waters

Monsters Of Verse/Breathing Room Bookings March Through May 2009

Saturday, March 14th, 6:30 P.M., Chow Chocolat (731 Main St., 843-4388), Monsters Of Verse featuring poet Josh Smith

Sunday, March 15th, 2 p.m., Big Words Studio Date with Guest Sara Jay (adult film star); co-hosts Intentionally Bald Mike and Alie

Monday, March 16th, Brennan’s Bowery Bar, 5 p.m.-8p.m., St. Patrick’s Eve signing for Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish: A Cheap Degenerate’s Guide To Buffalo Bars

Tuesday, March 17th, Milligan’s Pub, 4 p.m.-8 p.m., St. Patrick’s Day signing for Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish: A Cheap Degenerate’s Guide To Buffalo Bars

Saturday, March 21st, Buffalo Small Press Book Fair, Karpeles Manuscript Museum, Buffalo, 12-6 pm, (Monsters Of Verse, setup begins at 10 am), special guest author Diane Meholick (Buffalo Stories)

Sunday, March 29th, 12-6 p.m., Gregg Sansonne Benefit, Colon John Weber VFW Post, 2909 South Park Ave, Lackawanna, 823-9605 (Tom Waters hosting, tickets are $20)

Wednesday, April 1st, 8 p.m., ‘April Foolfest 2!’, Desiderio’s on Broadway (5827 Broadway, 683-7767), Tom only with Special Musical Guests Lenny Revell and Dan Labowski.

Saturday, April 25th, Caz Coffee Café (688 Abbott Rd., 825-7806), 7-9 p.m., Reading (Monsters Of Verse with poet Susan Marie and artist/writer Kyle Kaczmarczyk)

Wednesday, May 6th, 7 pm, Center For Inquiry (3965 Rensch Rd., 636-4869), Monsters Of Verse w/3rd poet Christina Wos Donnelly)

Wednesday, May 13th, 7 PM, Big Words Studio Date, celebrity guest TBD

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Sunday Newsletter Update: Radio Episodes 8.5 & 9 Up!

August 31, 2008

 

Yep,
    I wanted to write sooner.  I wanted to get the last episode up sooner, but it wasn’t meant to be.  Rich (my producer) had to go in for some medical tests and everything came up rosy.  If there’s one thing the two of us have in common, it’s our love for a holistic lifestyle.  Right.
    Life has just been insanely busy lately.  I’ve been wanting to write more comic reviews, but I haven’t had time.  A week and a half ago, I had a Gusto assignment at Hennessey’s Pub out in Alden.  Last Saturday was my bachelor party, which I decided to make a podcast out of.  That turned into episode 8.5 (since I spent more time partying than recording, it was only a half an hour).  On Sunday (amidst a shit storm of aggravation), I wrote three poems.  Then I got lost somewhere on the 279 and ended up sleeping in my car.  This is why I hate large highways. 
    On Monday (after explaining to my wife, her parents and a few other people that the ‘reports of my death were greatly exaggerated’), I met up with ArtVoice Managing Editor Geoff Kelly at Mulligan’s Brick Bar downtown to record on location.  We had a knockout show and for some reason on a Monday afternoon at a bar on Allen there were six people who were unfamiliar with the term ‘inside voices’.  The podcast turned out great regardless. 
    Tuesday was my night at Desi’s.  On Wednesday, I returned to Buff State to chime in and sit in to enjoy Lisa Forrest’s Rooftop Poetry Club get together.  It was therapy that was well needed.  Weds. night I had a quiet night in with the wife.  That was well needed too.
    Thursday I was at work all day for the most part.  Friday was more work and another quiet night in with the wife. 
    Yesterday I had an assignment for ArtVoice that I had to be vague about.  I’ll just say that if you’re a true Elton John fan, you might be familiar with a certain reverse psuedonym that’s going to be popping up soon in their pages. 
    Check out the podcasts, though.  You can find both over at:
 
http://www.thinktwiceradio.com/tom-waters/tom-waters.html
 
Episode 8.5 Tag Line
 
Tom commemorates his bachelor party with the drunkest podcast yet, strange boobs in the face, Mighty Taco, and projectile vomiting.
 
Episode 9 Tag Line:    
    
Tom sits down and pounds out the magic with Buffalo Wonder Boy and ArtVoice’s Managing Editor in Chief Geoff Kelly. Mayhem ensues, stout is purchased on Jamie Moses’ corporate credit card.card.
 
    The two Breathing Room poetry books STILL aren’t done.  I am now a month over my personal deadline for them and the first volume had better be finished come next week or somebody is going to be in hot water.  My layout person is still working on them and I don’t understand how the pdf can be so difficult when I knocked out Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish in a weekend.  I guess we’ll see what next week brings.  Volume I should be ready for order by the second week of September.  I’ll be in Las Vegas that week for work. 
    I think that’s just about everything.  I’m about three weeks away from my wedding and the majority of my immediate families (and friends, for that matter) hate my guts or think I’ve lost my mind altogether or both.  These things will happen.  In September, the Buffalo News will be running an essay I wrote about my new in-laws in their ‘My View’ section.  That makes my second accepted submission for the year and they allow three per person, so I’ll have to whip something else up as soon as ‘Our People’ runs.   
     Things are really starting to come together career-wise.  Word of mouth on something or other (or perhaps ALL of it) is hitting the ground running and I’d like to think that the money should be around the corner.  Geoff Kelly and I were talking about career goals, aspirations and objectives on Monday and I told him my conclusion was that ultimately, I wanted to keep busy.  Writing is a compulsive therapy for me now.  It’s something I’m going to do no matter what.  I’m knocking on wood here, because every time I say something like that, I block up for eight to twelve months.  There’s still too much to be done.  And I don’t give a shit about recognition anymore, inclusion, or critical fanfare.  I want to make money.  I want to provide for my new three unit family.  I want to be able to leave my job in two to five years so that I can do this full time.  I’m ready.  The steps are in place.  All I have to do now is keep at it.
    I’ll drop you a line again when I have a chance.  Take care of yourselves, Big Words readers.  Seeya on the flip side.
 
    Tom Waters
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Monday Big Words Update! Week 69 on stands/Happy St. Patty’s!

March 17, 2008

Whelp, this year I’m sitting St. Patrick’s day out.  Monday isn’t exactly the best day of the week to get rip roaring drunk and we’re planning on heading back to Desiderio’s tomorrow for a long-awaited return.  After the six-hour marathon last year at the Hidden Shamrock promoting Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish (which you can still buy from the link on this site, hint hint), I could use a quiet St. Patrick’s.  At any rate, the new issue of Night Life is out today with a Big Words installment of ‘The Joy Of Banana Bread’, an ode to food that I wrote a few years back from Zany Hijinx.  Grab a copy while you can! 

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FYE Williamsville Aftermath/3 Days In A Row

April 15, 2007

Saturday was a good day.  I got to visit my parents (they just returned from Florida) for all of a half hour in the morning and then I had to shoot up to FYE on Transit and Wherle for their in store promotion.  After missing Katie (the promotional manager) on the phone for the last six to eight weeks and not having any of my messages passed along, she wasn’t sure what to make of me.  We set up a table near the front with a nice array of books new and old and I got down to it a little bit before noon.  I met a nice older couple who drove all the way from Lockport (after hearing my appearance on Brian Kahle’s show on Tuesday) to pick up a copy of the book.  Boyd, the husband, was a collector of rare books and a former nudist.  He looked like a sweet old man who could be anybody’s grandfather, so I was worried that the new book might offend him before he dropped that bombshell.  Then another pleasant older man from Clarence who’s a practicing magician stopped at the table and grabbed a hardcover.  We swapped stories about vaudeville and the ancient order of magicians.  Older folks don’t necessarily fit my demographic, but perhaps my demographic is evolving, which is nice to know. 

Paulie, the brother of one of my buddies from high school, stopped up with his girlfriend and bought a copy of the bar book.  A Clarence mom who was working on her autobiography shot the breeze with me for awhile about writing and then came back with her two daughters to pick up a hardcover.  It was a steady day leading up to four o’clock and I wanted to make one more sale to round out the afternoon, but it looked like it wasn’t going to happen.  There was a good hour and a half where I just acted like a goofball to grab customer’s attention, playing with my slide whistle, my butterfly yo yo, and scampering around on the sales floor by wheeling my chair across the tiles.  Then, as I was packing up, a man came forward with his wife or girlfriend and said ‘Confrontational humor, eh?  Sounds a lot like me!’  He turned out to be a lawyer who commanded a paralegal firm.  He scooped up a hardcover at the last minute.  I was happy.  I didn’t sell as many books as I did a week prior at the FYE in Hamburg, but I sold a lot more copies of the new book, and they were all hardcovers, so I made the same amount of money! 

I got home and there was a fat check from the Buffalo News for two of my Gusto Club Watch reviews.  I had no idea what they paid for them (and it doesn’t really matter to be honest, because I’m happy to be writing for them), but they pay pretty well!  I can make some pretty good money this year if I keep up my assignments with them.  Then I crashed out and delegated the rest of the evening to some r&r with friends watching the BBC ‘The Office’ boxed set that I picked up after my stint at FYE.  I’ve never seen the show, but it’s pretty damned funny. 

This upcoming week, I’ve gotta push for the burn, because I’ve got three or four big appearances three days in the row.  If I can make it through this week, the rest will be downhill.  On Monday, I’ll be appearing with legendary local poet Carrie Spadter at the Caz Coffee Cafe in South Buffalo at 7pm.  Then I’m up early Tuesday morning for an interview with Clay and Dale on Country 106.5 FM WYRK at 8:30 am.  After that interview, I’m doing a phone interview with Scott Leffler for his Dialog show on 1340 AM at 11 am.  If I’ve got any gas left in the tank on Tuesday, I’m going to pop over to the Uncle Hal studios for a bit to celebrate the Pissed Off World Of Uncle Hal’s 30th episode.  Wednesday night at 7pm, I’m speaking at the Lancaster Public Library for a reading/Q&A combo.  It’s a busy week, so I’m forcing myself to relax so that I’ve got the energy to make it through. 

I’m amazed at how well the new book has been doing and it feels like the momentum from all of the other ones is kicking in.  FYE asked me to make a second pass some time in June.  The Buffalo News informed me that their review of the book should be going in within the next month.  This all goes to show you that if you stick around long enough and keep hammering away at what you believe in, people can’t help but take you seriously eventually.  I look at all of this as PR in the bank for the next humor collection, which is by far the best collection I’ve ever written.  For now I’m focusing on talking up If They Can’t Take A Joke, though, which is no slouch by any means. 

I wanted to throw some pictures up, but my camera is still on the fritz and I couldn’t figure out how to use my parents’ memory stick from their digital camera.  I’ll have to show you another time.  Talk to you tomorrow during the regular Monday update,

Tom Waters   

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FYE & Don’s Atomic Comics: Long Day, Big Success!

April 8, 2007

Today was grueling, but overwhelmingly positive!  I woke up at eight (because I’m neurotic like that when I have a big day ahead), left the house at ten thirty for the FYE Hamburg book promotion and got there a half hour early.  Store Manager Greg Baumgartner had a swank leather chair and a cherry spot right in the front of the store set up along with some great signage and posters for the book advertising the event.  I was a little frustrated to find out that there was an afternoon Sabres game (I don’t follow hockey unless I’m in a bar), but I brought my A game regardless and talked up last minute Easter shoppers regardless.  After settling in to my spot early and merchandising my books for maximum visibility, I talked up the random people who got sucked in by the book cover and started racking up some sales.  I met a nice woman with a family who lived in Toronto and wrote erotica.  She and her husband bought three copies of Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish.  I met another nice woman from Binghamton who bought a hardcover copy of If They Can’t Take A Joke for her husband, who loved humor collections.  I ran into a friend I haven’t seen in years who scooped up one of the remaining copies of First Person, Last Straw.  And there were others.  Four hours came and went and I racked up over a hundred dollars in commissions, which isn’t too shabby.  The afternoon was a total success, and for big box store promotions, I would rather meet total strangers and get to know them so that they can read the book and tell their friends in other towns and countries than run into existing fans.  I was really pleased.  I can’t thank Greg and the staff at FYE enough for their support and their genuine hard work that went into making the in store promotion such a huge success.  The store will be ordering additional copies of the book once it hits Ingram as well as Baker and Taylor, so I’m going to try and stop back for another event in either late May or June.

After going home and recharging the batteries by sacking out for a half and hour, Lindsay and I took cans back and I invested some of my royalties towards picking up beer for the Tom’s Atomic Kegger 2 promotion at Don’s Atomic Comics in Lancaster.  Three cases of beer and two eight packs of Guinness, to be precise.  It’s a tax deduction, so I didn’t sweat the expense.  I got a receipt and headed out to Don’s before seven pm.  Friends, fans, and thirsty patrons started shambling in after seven o’clock and began racking up the book sales.  Some of my fans picked up some comics at the store for the first time and a lot of Don’s fans plunked down their hard earned cash for various copies of the book.  We all had beer.  And more beer.  Don, Ian, Brad and I cracked jokes, played lude and lascivious music and talked a lot of smack among each other.  I got to meet John Kindelen (sp?), another contributor for the YourHub project.  I’ve read his work and I knew he was a big comic fan, so it was nice to know that he shopped at Don’s as well.  Don kept track of the book sales.  By the end of the night, I made over three hundred dollars in sales on the new book along with the previous two.  I turned around and dropped a hundred or more on a new Batman limited edition sculpture and some comics.  We closed shop a little before twelve and agreed that this was the best Don’s Atomic promotion we’ve ever had for one of my books.  Don, Ian, and the rest of the crew at Don’s Atomic are like family to me and this is why I try to run a promo at Don’s shop every time I’ve got a book out.  Thanks again, guys.  For all the ribbing we inflict, it means a lot to me.

I don’t know if it’s the book cover, the momentum or the all around effort, but the new book is really taking off.  I’ve honestly sold more books in a week than I did in a month with the last collection.  Maybe I’m just due.  Don tells me it’s my best book yet.  Whatever it is, it’s reassuring that I don’t have to worry as much about recouping costs and I can focus more on bringing new readers into the fold while keeping my original base of fans happy at the same time.  I may not enjoy actively promoting year round, but it’s a comfort to schedule the bulk of my events with longstanding contacts that I have an ongoing relationship with.  It makes things a lot easier and I know what I’m getting. 

If the coming weeks are as succesful as this one, then the next book will be paid for before I start hashing out the details.  It’s already written, but I don’t even want to think about it right now.   All I can think about is the vacation I’m taking in May, the month of sleep I’m going to desperately need after this is over with, and the mountain of comics that I’m looking forward to having the time to read.  In the mean time, Happy Easter to everyone who isn’t working in the morning.   Mainly, people who aren’t me. 

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