Archive for the ‘night life’ Category


Big Words I Know By Heart Episode 48: ‘Certified’

March 3, 2018


Up until the show, Frank Pusateri was someone I’d travelled in the same circles with (even rubbed elbows with), but never officially met.  During my time writing bar reviews for Night Life Magazine (2000-2009), I’d been to more than my share of Night Life Music & Club Awards.  Simply put, it’s the biggest night in Buffalo for the local music community.  Everybody who’s anybody is under one roof.  This year it’s at The Cove on Thursday, March 8th.

Having just released a book (‘Only Gambling’) about a lucky streak on casino slot machines, Frank popped up on my radar again, so I took the opportunity to book him.  On top of that, he won an Emmy Award and he’s received 25 different Buffalo Music Awards including Top Pop Bassist three times in a row along with an induction into the Buffalo Music Hall Of Fame.  Frank’s written what happens to be a really entertaing read, and I told him as much.

This episode also marks the fourth time Night Life Publisher Ed Honeck has been on the show.  As I told Ed, he’s always welcome.  Between his plugs and Frank’s plugs, we had a tough time fitting them all in and even left some on the table (literally).  Check it out HERE:

Thanks to Frank, Ed and as always, producer Richard Wicka for housing my three ring circus.  Frank whipped up some great Bonus clips, so check those out further down this page.

Don’t adjust your set,



Big Words Video 48.1: ‘Only Gambling’ & 48.2: ‘Leaf In A Storm’

March 2, 2018


I normally ask an upcoming guest for ONE video clip to supplement the show.  Poor Frank got propositioned for two.  He’s promoting his new book ‘Only Gambling’, but I didn’t want to ignore his rich history on the Buffalo music scene.  So there you have it.  Frank’s homework was more complicated than guesting on the show!  He came through with flying colors, though.  Big Words Video 48.1 is a quick forward to Pusateri’s book complete with fancy graphics and a ticker-tape banner along the bottom read by the author.  You can get a taste for the stream-of-consciousness writing style in the book right HERE:

The flip side of the coin is an original song written & performed by Frank’s band Only Humen.  Check that one out right HERE:

A sincere thanks goes out to Only Frank for putting the time in to create two great clips.  A sincere thanks goes out to YOU when you FREE SUBSCRIBE to my YouTube Channel.  I may have said this before, but if you’re not subscribed, you’re missing more than half of what the show has to offer.  Find out what you’re missing by seeing the show in the order it was intended for, bonus clips and other additional SECRET content.

#BigWordsVideo returns in March!




Big Words I Know By Heart Episode 39: ‘Agrarian’

June 22, 2017


To be completely honest, this was an episode where I was relieved when it was over and done with.  It’s no fault of the band’s, but the Big Words Poltergeist reared it’s ugly head, we got off to a really rough start on the episode and the chemistry was all wrong.  The two main cameras that I rely on during the show were set on Demo Mode right out of the gate.  My co-host (who had a calm demeanor and would have been terrific paired with anyone else) didn’t really mesh with West Of The Mark.  West Of The Mark didn’t really mesh with me.  I’d rather not dissect and extrapolate what and how many things went wrong, but just about everything went wrong.  At the very least, we got some laughs in and nobody died.  See for yourself:

Thanks to West Of The Mark, Joe and producer Richard Wicka for getting me through this.  There’s a new episode rolling out next week and even by accident, it’s bound to go smoother than the one that preceded it.




Big Words Video 39.1: ‘My Church’ & 39.2: ‘Wagon Wheel’ w/West Of The Mark

June 8, 2017


After a lot of misunderstandings, miscommunications and technical difficulties, we filmed the Big Words Video Bonus clips with country supergroup West Of The Mark before the episode of the show as opposed to afterward.  The less said, the better.  They’re a great band and a great group of guys with amazing talent, so please don’t try to read between the lines here.  This is one of those cases where I feel as if the Bonus clips will hold up better over time than the episode itself, though.  Their harmonies are incredible, their timing as a band is really impressive, and to think that they’ve been playing together in one iteration or another for as long as I’ve been a professional writer is miraculous.

Their cover of ‘My Church’ was their pick.  ‘Wagon Wheel’ was a request for my son Benjamin, who loves the Darius Rucker version as well as the original recording by Old Crow Medicine Show.  I was shocked to find out that Bob Dylan co-wrote the song, and that I didn’t know that until I was crediting the clips.  You learn something new every year.  Please enjoy:


A big thanks goes out to West Of The Mark for lugging their equipment into the studio, lugging it out and then lugging it in again.  Thanks also to producer Richard Wicka for being patient with the show’s production in the summer when our friendship is strained and we only see each other on the way in and on the way out of each show.  Rich has a strict ‘No Drums, No Bass’ rule that I wasn’t aware of.  I’ll have to remember that the next time I’m crazy enough to shoehorn an entire band into a shoebox.

Do me a favor and SUBSCRIBE to the Channel already, will ya?  Nobody gets paid, we do this for Views.

#BigWordsVideo shall return this month….



Big Words I Know By Heart Episode 35: “Virtuoso”

March 3, 2017


John Valby really is a living legend.  More specifically, he’s a Clarence legend.  Growing up in Clarence, everyone either knew him, knew of him, or knew about him.  With over 40 albums and 40 years of wildly offensive songs, limericks and ditties, he’s not only talented and funny, but he perserveres.  I was a little worried about him last year when he came on the show, but this year, he had a spring in his step.  It sounds like his career and his life have hit a new crescendo.  As the only guest on the show who gets a return ticket every season, it was good to see him again, and the same goes for my old editor from Night Life magazine Ed Honeck.  There’s a lot of history with those two.  That sort of comfortable dynamic between the three of us made for another (I hope) entertaining episode.  See for yourself:

Thanks as always to producer Richard Wicka for being the glue that holds the show together, Ed for popping in with less than a week before he’s being pulled in 100 different directions for the Night Life Music & Club Awards, and last but not least Mr. Valby.  May your career reach dizzier heights in the next year, and may your health continue to stymy a host who’s no stranger to the dangers of excess.

#BigWordsVideo will return in a month with young adult author and molecular biologist (you read that right) Gaia Amman.  Do yourself a favor and SUBSCRIBE for bonus clips, alerts for new episodes and other additional content.



Big Words Video 34.1: Greg Lamberson-‘Fun Bags’

January 28, 2017


Coming hot off the heels of the runaway success of ‘Killer Rack’ and toiling away at post-production on ‘Johnny Gruesome’, I wasn’t sure what kind of Bonus clip guest Greg Lamberson cooked up.  He didn’t disappoint.  What follows is the musical sequence for the song ‘Fun Bags’ from the aforementioned ‘Killer Rack’ featuring Troma legend Lloyd Kauffman.  Fun fact: I interviewed Kauffman while he was on location in Buffalo for the movie ‘Poultrygeist’ for Night Life magazine way, way back in 2004 or 2005.  I’m pretty sure he’s still got the print interview on his web site, and if you can’t find it there, it’s still ricocheting around on Acid Logic.  At any rate, ROLL THAT CLIP!

Thanks again to Lamberson, Co Host Henry Gale and the frequently delightful Richard Wicka for producing our episode.  Oh yeah, and SUBSCRIBE to my channel on YouTube for more bonus clips, more bonus content and a lot of delectable secrets you won’t find any way else.

#BigWordsVideo shall return.  In two weeks.  With Taylor Made Jazz musician Van Taylor!

Seeya soon,



The Ballad Of Gregg Sansone (Uncut)

March 28, 2016


Author’s Note: This interview has been on a wild ride in the last ten years.  A shorter edit originally appeared in Buffalo Spree magazine, the longer format ran on Acid Logic and the version you’re about to read finally found its way into my fourth book If They Can’t Take A Joke (Authorhouse, 2007).  Gregg’s been a dear friend of mine for more than 15 years and with his 55th birthday approaching, I thought I’d revisit this interview.  

If you’ve participated in (or just enjoyed) the Buffalo music scene for the last six years, Gregg Sansone is a pervasive, melodic, keyboard-driven entity. The two-time Buffalo Music Award Winning Solo Artist Of The Year plays out at clubs, bars and other venues over 300 nights a year (when he’s in peak physical condition), and his cover shows run the gamut of Steve Winwood to Elton John to Stevie Wonder. Dabbling in rock, jazz, blues and classical standards, Sansone has become a local icon and a national underground phenomenon. I saw Gregg play (or channel, to be more accurate) Elton John covers at Route 66 in downtown Buffalo four years ago, and I’ve been a Sansonite ever since. His two and three hour shows are lousy with fans, electric in their intensity and craftsmanship, and brilliant to witness. I had the opportunity to sit down with Greg at my apartment in Lancaster while he was recovering from major back surgery (he had a disc removed).

TW: You haven’t had a drink since you were 15. Why is that, and do you find it surreal to play out at clubs and bars for the majority of the year in the company of people who are soused out of their minds?

GS: No. Alcoholism runs in my family. I’ve got a huge family. Eight boys and one girl. Some people put down meat and become vegetarians. I had the hindsight as a fifteen year old to say ‘You know, I’m addictive as hell. I have a real addictive personality. I’m just not going to do this. Otherwise, I think it could be a problem, and it just stuck through college and everything else. Like anything, I stuck with it and it developed and it’s been years and years. I have a blast (at the shows). People come up to me and say ‘Man, you were hammered because you were dancing on the bars!’ and I say, ‘No, but awesome, thanks man.’

TW: How does your strongly held belief in Buddhism inform your singing and songwriting?

GS: Songwriting and instrumental writing are different. They’re along a spiritual line, but my performances are an extension of what I believe in anyway about myself. Buddhism isn’t a religion as much as it is a philosophy. They didn’t invent being honest and they didn’t invent being good people, they just do it well. So you can apply it to any faith that you have and for me, it just helps me to not want to kill everybody. Or when someone is drunk and they fall into my keyboards and everything, now I don’t want to drag them into the parking lot. Before (Buddhism) I did.

TW: Do you think the era of disposable pop/porn performers like Britney Spears and Ricky Martin is nearing its end, or is it more of a popular music cycle?

GS: I think human nature is human nature, and within music, I’m no expert on anything. I’m just an Italian from Buffalo. Before them when Madonna got really popular, they produced people like Jody Watley, and-

TW: Rick Astley.

GS: People like that, that’s exactly right, but specifically female singers to sound like her (Madonna). Tiffany, Debbie Gibson, so it does go in cycles. I think the American people, we’re a disposable society. There’s a huge portion of the population that buys into that, and they just go into whatever’s popular. But there’s this undercurrent of people like us that-

TW: Observe?

GS: Observe and evaluate and say, ‘This is good, this doesn’t work for me, that’s kinda bullshit. I know that you love Elton John for instance, as do I. People like Elton John, Eric Clapton, Paul McCartney and even Madonna, and I’m not a Madonna fan, but she’s stood the test of time. They’re not a flash in the pan, and for good reason. If we didn’t have those people, it would be a sad, sad world with the boy bands, although Justin Timberlake has broken from that and has really made a name for himself. I mean, I don’t think he’s going anywhere.

TW: And Mark Wahlberg-

GS: Mark Wahlberg is kinda cool in the movies, though! When he was Marky Mark it was a different story.

TW: Your best one night stand story after a show:

GS: Um, my best one night stand story after a show-because I have one night stand stories during a show.

TW: That sounds like the better story.

Read the rest of this entry ?


Big Words Video @The 2014 Buffalo Night Life Music & Club Awards!

January 24, 2015

On Wednesday this week (January 21st), Night Life Publisher Ed Honeck celebrated his birthday.  The Buffalo Night Life Music & Club Awards also took place at The Cove in Depew, having been rescheduled due to the Winter Blast or whatever the hell you want to call it that took place last November.  Thanks entirely to Ed (and our long, long, very long history together), Big Words Video had the exclusive rights to the Music & Club Awards.  I was less than happy with the results.

The ceremony and the shows were fantastic.  The artists, performers and bands who volunteered their time so that we could interview them were great.  My co-host Timmy C. was on point as I expected him to be.  The lighting was deplorable, though.  This month I upgraded to a new camera for the new and improved Big Words One Man Mobile Unit (a term you might remember from the podcasting days of yore).  I didn’t get familiar or comfortable with the camera before we started shooting with it.  So in the final analysis, the blame rests on my shoulders.  What we’re left with here is a shoddy end product.  Clips 1-3 are passable by amateur video standards and 4 and 5 are just downright awful where lighting is concerned.

I spent the better part of a day uploading, tagging and scripting the clips and grappled with whether or not I should post them for the public at all and the decision I came to was this: post the videos warts and all.  Big Words Radio went through the same growing pains in 2008 so it shouldn’t have come as any surprise that I went through the same thing again.  I didn’t learn from history so I was doomed to repeat it, end of story.  I’ll do better next time, sound good?

Here’s your breakdown for the clips which were uploaded in chronological order:

Clip 1: Lana from Black Widow

Clip 2: Jack McArdle from 12 Pack Jack

Clip 3: Vid from Nerds Gone Wild

Clip 4: Busted Stuff

Clip 5: Tommy Z. & Damone Johnson

I owe a huge debt of thanks to Ed Honeck, all of the artists who participated and the staff and proprietors of The Cove for giving us free reign throughout the building.  If there’s one thing I realized at the awards it was that I’ve been out of the game for so long that I don’t recognize most (if any) of the newer players in the Buffalo music industry.  Black Widow is an institution.  Tommy Z. is an institution.  Busted Stuff just took home their 6th award in a row and I’ve loved 12 Pack Jack since the first time I saw them at Double D’s Queen City Grill some 7 years ago.  Get the picture?

Big Words Video will be back for the next ceremony for more clips, more guests and a better battle plan.  As for these five videos, please take the time to Like & Share as always.  If you really want to be my best friend, ‘Subscribe’ and keep yourself up to date with all things #BigWordsVideo.  And yes, we came for the buffet.


Big Words Video 5.5: Serenade

December 19, 2014

This was a really phenomenal Big Words Video Bonus compliments of Dave and Cynthia from Busted Stuff.  It’s no accident that they’ve won Best Rock Duo at the Buffalo Music & Club Awards for five years running.  They performed a live rendition of their original song ‘Pray To Rain’ from their album Bitter Cold that gave me goosebumps.

This is the first time I shot the bonus using YouTube’s Capture app. It allowed me to shoot in widescreen in 1080p and the upload time was much faster than what I’ve been accustomed to with iMovie.  Please take the time to Watch, Like and Share on YouTube.  A big thanks goes out to Busted Stuff for such a powerful performance!  Enjoy!


Big Words I Know By Heart Episode IV: ‘Pudding Pops and (You Guessed It) Michael Hund

November 26, 2014


Promotional shot for Big Words Video Episode IV by Richard Wicka.

Promotional shot for Big Words Video Episode IV by Richard Wicka.

Recording and producing these shows is entirely too much fun!

For Episode IV of Big Words Video I finally (after years of nagging him) got Night Life Publisher Ed Honeck into the studio.  If you locked the two of us into a room together for a weekend, we would still be talking when you opened the door on the following Monday.  Ed is a dear friend who helped me get my start in the world of Buffalo journalism way back in the year 2000 and we’ve been busy ever since.  A half an hour only gave us the opportunity to chip away at the tip of the iceberg when it comes to clubs, strip clubs, bars, bands, musicians, music awards, newspapers and the people who run them.  As a matter of fact, I think between myself, Ed and Big Words Video Producer Richard Wicka, we probably know (or have met) just about everyone in Buffalo.  Here is your synopsis:

Big Words I Know By Heart Episode IV: ‘Pudding Pops and (You Guessed It) Michael Hund

Tom spends the remainder of ‘Snow-vember’ (sans co-host) with Night Life Magazine publisher Ed Honeck to discuss the impending Music & Club Awards, musicians, strippers and something or other about a town called Ferguson.

As always, please take the time to ‘Like’ (on YouTube) and ‘Share’ the episode (on YouTube).

Thanks are (as always) in order to Richard Wicka and esteemed guest Ed Honeck.  The last minute no-show of my co-host didn’t slow us down one bit.  Award-winning band Busted Stuff are up on deck for Episode V in December!  Stay tuned, folks!


Big Words Video 4.5: Boobs Gone By

November 26, 2014

Synopsis: Tom and Night Life Publisher Ed Honeck expound on Thanksgiving Eve in Buffalo as well as a brief history of strip clubs.


A Fond Farewell To A Buffalo Broadcasting Legend

August 6, 2014

Brian Kahle

Just a quick note today for an old friend who was more than a ‘showbiz’ friend.

I just found out (from Ed Honeck at Night Life) that Buffalo broadcasting great Brian Kahle passed away last year.

I originally met Brian in Clarence in 2002 when he was going business to business for his own company, Magic Marketing.  He was smooth and friendly and he always had a natural smile on his face.  I followed up with him about some help promoting my first published book, Born Pissed.  We ‘took a lunch’ at the T.G.I.Fridays in Clarence.  He quoted me a price for a marketing package (it was too high for me, I’m cheap) and picked up the tab.

Somehow or another I wound up on his Night Life Radio show (probably because I wrote bar and exotic club reviews for Night Life) in 2003 in order to promote my second book, Zany Hijinx.  The radio station was housed next to Spot Coffee on Delaware and Chippewa.  While I was waiting to go on Brian’s show with my friend, former mayor Jimmy Griffin (who Brian mixed it up with on AM Buffalo) came walking out after a friendly interview with Brian.  Somehow they’d patched things up and they were on friendly terms again.  That’s just one example of how genuinely friendly Brian was.

Over the years we kept in touch.  Brian moved his radio show to WLVL in Lockport and I went on a number of times.  Any time I had a new book he was happy to let me come on and hawk it.  He always researched before his show, he was always professional and at his core he was a DECENT guy.  There’s a shortage of them in Buffalo journalism, broadcasting, hell, anywhere in Buffalo.  We’d talk before and after every show just to get caught up on our personal lives.  He launched a television show with Time Warner and was very successful with it.

Towards the end of Big Words Radio he agreed (without flinching) to come on as a guest on the show.  I fired away (like I always do) with my usual nonsense and he played right along.  He even told me later that he lost a date because of his association with the show.  He didn’t care.  You can hear the show at this address:

Brian Kahle was from the old school of broadcasting.  He did his research, he was what I think of as a class act, and he had the quality of being a NICE person.  You can’t fake that.  He and I often talked about how blurry the lines between journalism and advertising have become in newspapers, magazines and on the radio.  The media has devolved into a vehicle for their advertisers, printed solicitations for future advertisers, or attempts not to piss off people who just might advertise at some point.  He knew it and I knew it.  Traditional journalism has all but gone the way of the dodo, and Brian was one of the last guys who tried to toe the line.

I will genuinely miss him.  Buffalo has a little less integrity now that he’s gone.  And in terms of broadcasting, I hope that Buffalo will never forget his contribution, which was palpable.

Rest in peace, Brian.


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


‘Notorious’: The Big Words One Man Mobile Unit @The 2011 Buffalo Night Life Music Awards

December 10, 2011

For those of you who weren’t in on it (drum roll please), The Big Words Finale was an elaborate prank that took five months to prepare for.  The joke’s on you, Buffalo!  You didn’t think you’d get rid of me that easily, did you?  Contrary to my cries of woe before the ‘final episode’, new and improved stats on both web sites have revealed that Big Words Radio is tracking at over 3,000 downloads a month.  And for that I thank you from the bottom of my heart.  I had no idea there were so many of you with such a twisted sense of humor, so the show must go on!

Moving on then, co-host Minnick and myself set ourselves loose this week at Page’s Paradise Island for the 2011 Night Life Buffalo Music Awards.  The Big Words Poltergeist struck not once but repeatedly, as the batteries I charged before the show died, we lost a sizeable sound clip with Best Duo Act Busted Stuff and I had a number of headaches posting the show properly on Mevio.  Thankfully all the bugs have been worked out.  Here is your synopsis:

‘Notorious’: The Big Words One Man Mobile Unit @The 2011 Buffalo Night Life Music Awards

Tom and returning co-host/designated driver Kevin Minnick get tanked up during the VIP open bar at Page’s Paradise Island while rubbing elbows with Brian Kahle and his trusty new assistant Rebecca.  0-60 Scott brings the hammer down while The Blues Hounds bring the house down.  The boys find two fantastic new reasons to see Black Widow live, Tom receives an award of his own from Busted Stuff and Michael Hund from Widow Maker says hello.

-To hear the show along with all 100+ episodes including bonus clips, click your way over to:

-You can also subscribe to the show for free on ‘the iTunes’ by searching ‘Big Words Radio’ and clicking on the Comedy listing in Podcasts.

-This episode will also appear later next week at:

I’d like to thank all of the musicians as well as Brian Kahle for entertaining our questions with a good sense of humor.  I thought we were going to get kicked out last year so it was shocking that we amped up our obnoxiousness and were greeted with open arms.  Thanks are also in order to Ed Honeck from Night Life Magazine and Page’s Paradise Island for allowing us in the door and supplying us with emergency backup batteries.  Thank you also to Kevin Minnick for putting up with my abuse in a public setting for a return tour of duty.

There’s a very big year on the horizon for Big Words Radio.  Cartoonist Tony Millionaire will be coming on the show in January with Atomic Don and award winning musicians Strictly Hip, 100 Proof Justice and Widow Maker are all confirmed.  Dave and Cynthia from Busted Stuff are also discussing an intimate return visit.  Things will only get bigger and better as we continue onward and upward!

Stay tuned,

Tom Waters


Big Words Radio Episode 62: Auto Erotic Ass Pixelation (w/Brian Kahle)

June 13, 2011

On the playback, I felt that last night’s show with Brian Kahle couldn’t have been any more perfect.  Brian was charming, funny and well-spoken.  John Kindelan was funny, engaging when it was called for and well-spoken.  It was just the right blend of offensiveness, revealing answers and intelligent responses.  If every show was like this one, I’d do it a hell of a lot more often.  I made a conscious decision a year ago to devote one calendar year on the show to booking guests that I had an existing rapport with versus landing national celebrities and wound up somewhere in the middle.  The proof is in the pudding right here.  Here’s your synopsis for Episode 62:


Episode 62: Auto Erotic Ass-Pixelation

Tom settles in for a bucket of scotch while he trades industry stories with Buffalo icon Brian Kahle (Magic Marketing) and co-host John Kindelan (  The boys discuss mustaches, helipads and their enormous financial largesse.


To hear the show, click here:


You can also hear the new show (along with every previous episode and bonus clip) here:


I applaud Brian Kahle for his frank and candid discussion as well as his career as a whole.  For a Buffalonian, I couldn’t have any more respect for him as a person.  It was a genuine thrill to be in the same room with two of the biggest marketing influences of my lifetime (Brian and Richard Wicka).  Thanks to both for making this show happen.  Thanks are also in order to John Kindelan for taking the time out to co-host.  He did a bang-up job of rolling with the punches.

I’ve got some entertaining things planned for the next two shows that should prove to be fun for listeners.  You’ll find out more in July.

Thanks for tuning in,

Tom Waters


It Begins! Radio Appearances, Print Interviews & A Very Important Birthday…

March 21, 2011


There’s a lot of ground to cover this week, so I’ll try and hit all the bases.  This Wednesday, Mark McElligott and I will be high-tailing it out to Lockport to make an appearance on Kahle & Co. on 1340 AM (WLVL) at noon.  We’ll be talking about both our books with my longtime pal Brian Kahle.

ArtVoice has started taking ballots for their 2011 Best Of Buffalo Awards.  I’ve never really rallied the troops for this contest before, but with a new book literally right around the corner, there’s no such thing as bad publicity, so please take the time to log on and vote at:

If you’d be kind enough to vote for me for the Best Writer and Best Local Radio Personality, I’d be deeply grateful.  I cast some votes for my favorite bars, comic shops and local artists while I was there, too.

The Mockery Book launch is NEXT FRIDAY at 7 p.m. at Dee’s Firehouse in Depew with special musical guests One Hot Minute!  I really hope to see you out there so you can meet Kathy (one of the best bartenders in Buffalo), Dee and the rest of the gang!  First edition copies of Mockery will be available for the low, low price of $15, so show up on time because they’re going to go fast.

Interviews will be hitting Lancaster Source as well as The Lancaster Bee by the end of this week.  I’ve got a new My View bombshell hitting the Buffalo News either by the end of this month or the beginning of April.  This isn’t exactly a quiet week in terms of promotions, but this is the calm before the storm.  This is the last week of quiet private life (more or less) before a four month junket of readings, signings and book promotions for two books that are definitely going to do very well for Doubt It Publishing.

And finally, my dear friend Gregg Sansonne is celebrating his 50th birthday this Saturday at Griffin’s Irish Pub on 81 Abbott. Rd. in South Buffalo at 8 p.m.  Ten years ago I was starting off with Night Life magazine writing bar reviews when we ran into each other by dumb coincidence while he was starting out as a tremendously talented musician at Route 66 (now closed) downtown.  His performance bowled me over.  His piano playing and his vocals amazed me and they still do.  Please join me, my wife and the rest of Gregg’s friends for such a monumental milestone.  Gregg has been a wonderful person to a lot of people and it’ll be nice to share the occasion with him.

Have a great week and I hope to see you all soon,

Tom Waters


Big Words Radio Episodes 49 & 50: 2010 Buffalo Nightlife Music & Club Awards

December 10, 2010

Episode 50: ‘Night Life Music Awards pt.II’ or  ‘Mullets, Drooping Cleavage, Love Socks & Flaccid Roast Beef Platters’

            On Thursday, December 9th, Tom and co-host Minnick attended the 2010 Buffalo Night Life Music & Club Awards at Page’s Paradise Island in the technical Town of Depew, NY.  Tom talks with Ed Honeck (the publisher and sometimes editor of Night Life), Dave and Cynthia (from Busted Stuff), Tom’s Top 5 fantasy diva Lana (Black Widow), Gregg Sansonne, Frank Pussieteri (Only, Gregg Sansonne, professional audiovisual freelancer Chuck Eckert, and Dave Koestner (Night Life).  Minnick’s worthlessness as a contributing co-host worsens while Tom gets ‘the high hat’ treatment from bartenders and shrinking violets alike.  Bands Copperhead and Vince Vega rock it out in the background.

Episode 49: ‘Night Life Music Awards Pt.I’, or ‘Objects In Front Of Us May Be Larger Than They Appear’ or ‘Third Person, No Straw’ or ‘Balloons, Bottle Blondes & Ihmotep’

            The wacky antics continue as Tom speaks with Sam Gigas (Elmwood Lounge and King’s Court).  Tom and Minnick ogle barely legal boob action, Welcome Back Kotter hair and reptilians wearing bizarre hats of all shapes and sizes.  Gregg Sansonne and Ed Honeck dish a smidgeon more during buckets of gin & tonic, shit gets crazy and Tom plans an escape route before being detained for public drunkenness.  Margo, a Lockport ‘cougar’ relentlessly hits on Tom and Minnick and Video Pix gets a free plug.  Everyone keeps asking Tom for a card and he continues to demonstrate his unprofessionalism while shamelessly plugging his books.  The boys ignore the ceremonies, log on to ‘The Facebook’, check out shambling mummies with button hats and Tom shoves things in Minnick’s mouth.  Busted Stuff bust out a stellar rendition of Peter Gabriel’s ‘In Your Eyes’ and Tom rounds out the night in the top echelon with old time pal Ed Honeck. 
     Minnick and I had an absolute blast last night.  Thanks to Minnick (a much better co-host this time around), Ed Honeck and everyone who contributed their time and talents to the event.  To hear both shows in full audio, click on: 
    If you haven’t signed up yet, it only takes a minute to do so.  The iTunes site is down for the time being, so this is the only way you’ll be able to hear both shows until I post on Think Twice Radio next Friday.  
    Tom Waters    

2010 Buffalo Night Life Music and Club Awards

December 9, 2010

            I know it’s short notice, but I’m writing this morning to inform you of the 2010 Buffalo Night Life Music & Club Awards.  The event will take place this evening at Page’s Paradise Island on Transit Rd. in Depew at 7:30 p.m.  This is literally the one night out of the year where Buffalonians have the opportunity to see every great band and solo act in town under one roof.  Young ingénues, industry veterans, rock, blues, and country artists will all converge on the club to toast the best in the business.  A string of incredible acts will perform in rapid succession on the main stage and Night Life publisher Ed Honeck will hand out multiple awards to the most deserving recipients. 

            I haven’t gone since 2008, so I’m looking forward to touching base again with a lot of old friends of the radio show and beyond.  Gregg Sansonne, Michael Bly, Lenny Revell, Kevin McCarthy, Tommy Z, Black Widow, Busted Stuff, Widow Maker, Mick Hayes, Johnny James and scores of other multi-talented musicians who play out hundreds of times every year for our entertainment. 

            So if you’re not doing anything tonight (or even if you are), I’d strongly recommend that you ditch your plans and head on up to Page’s Paradise Island.  It’s one of the biggest events of the year every year and I’m certainly not going to miss it this time. 

See you there,

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update: S&S Launch Saturday, WYRK tomorrow, John Valby Thursday!

August 24, 2009

            It’s gonna be a busy week.

            Tomorrow morning, I’ll be driving downtown to talk to Clay and Dale at Country 106.5 FM (WYRK) to give away some books on the air and discuss the big Slapstick & Superego launch at Magruder’s this weekend.  If you’re listening in, I should be on some time after 8 a.m.      This Thursday, I’ll have the distinct pleasure of interviewing John ‘Dr. Dirty’ Valby at the Think Twice Radio studio for Episode 41 of The Big Words I Know By Heart Radio Hour.  Valby is a Buffalo music legend and I look forward to finding out what makes him tick over the course of the hour. 

            And this Saturday, the Slapstick & Superego book launch is finally hitting at Magruder’s in Lancaster from 6 p.m.-10 p.m.  After responding to your feedback from a questionnaire last spring and tailoring this launch to reader responses, I truly hope that there’s a record turnout for this event since this is my first booking at Magruder’s and I’d like it to be successful for both of us.  For those attending, the launch will take place on the second floor of the building.  Signed copies of the book will be available for $19.99, so bring your wallet and a sense of humor!  September looks like it may be too hectic for any readings or in-store promotions, so this will probably be your only chance to get the book before October!  Don’t miss out!

            Night Life Magazine drops this week with ‘Babes On A Plane’, a rant about, well, babies on planes from Slapstick & Superego. 

            That’s all I’ve got for today.  I hope to see you all this Saturday at Magruder’s and wish me luck tomorrow and Thursday!

            Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Episode 39 up, more copies of S & S en route…

June 23, 2009
After an amazing party/show anniversary on Saturday (and some serious editing on Sunday), Big Words Radio Episode 39 is now online.  Here’s your synopsis:

     Tom looks back on a wildly successful first year for The Big Words I Know By Heart Radio Hour by throwing a party. Former co-hosts reflect on their experience on the show, SoCo Mike commits a serious faux pax by using a vintage Robin The Boy Wonder glass for his cocktail, and special musical guest The Pheonix Resistance rock it out with an original composition (‘Neverending Grace’).
To hear Episode XXXIX, click on:
To subscribe to Big Words Radio on iTunes, log on, click on ‘Podcasts’ and search ‘Big Words Radio’.
    And the first batch of Slapstick & Superego came and went in rapid succession.  I’ve got another payload of first editions in transit as we speak and should have them in by Wednesday, so if you want one, speak now or forever hold your peace, because they’re going fast!  Early first impressions on the book have been overwhelmingly positive, and I’m looking forward to seeing what the general public thinks once they get their hands on the book late this summer. 
    As far as the yet-to-be-published episodes, I spent last week working on April Foolfest 2.  For a two and a half hour spoken word/music concert, there’s a lot of editing to be done.  Much like the new book, I’d rather take the time to get it right the first time than release an unfinished product, so keep your eyes peeled on the web site and hopefully I’ll be done with it some time this week. 
    And Night Life magazine hits the stands this week with ‘Docker Bums’, an essay about the increasing laziness of our modern world.  With limited access to my backlog, I’ve had to resort to some reprints until the computer crisis passes…
    And that’s all the news that’s fit to print this Monday.  Thanks to everybody who made the party such a huge hit, thanks to everyone who helped/participated on the radio show in the last year, and thanks to the new owners of Slapstick & Superego!  I’ll have your Quixote Wednesday Update for you in two more days…
    Tom Waters

Monday Big Words Update! Purgatorio

June 1, 2009

The last two months have been very frustrating.  It seems like every project I’ve been working on has gotten trapped in limbo and things aren’t progressing at a speed that I’m comfortable with or the timeline I was originally working with.
     After personally proof-reading my correction proof for Slapstick & Superego and submitting the typos and various errors that crop up with any manuscript, I uploaded the newest revision and ordered a copy of the revised book.  I got the new copy in the mail over the weekend and there are five NEW typos that cropped up and can’t be ignored.  I was hoping to have some copies of the new book on hand for the Big Words Radio Anniversary Party on June 20th, but it’s getting down to the wire and it’s not looking good at this point.  I can’t plan an official launch, I can’t schedule radio interviews, and I can’t really do much of anything in terms of promoting or scheduling the new book until the new book is DONE, so I’m stalled yet again and I’m not sure how long it will be before the book measures up to the standards I’m holding it to.  One way or the other, this new book is going to be perfect.  No typos, no mis-prints, no formatting hiccups.  As the third release from Doubt It Publishing, the presentation of the book needs to be as tight as the content within, so unfortunately, I’m going to wait patiently until the finished product is, well, finished.
     The entire month of April was spent designing the new Big Words Radio web site and moving each show over individually under a different format.  As a result of this, there are still six to seven hours worth of archived shows that I’d like to edit and post before planning/recording any new shows.  Potential guests are chomping at the bit and I’ve even talked a number of talented local and national artists about doing new shows, but I can’t set a date or start researching new shows until the old ones are up online.  And I can’t do that until we get our computer back from repairs.  The new motherboard for my PC was supposed to be in last Tuesday and it got delayed, so I have no f*&#ing access to the sound files that I’ve been anxious to work on since last week.  So any new radio shows are on hold for a bit longer.
     With a final deadline approaching for the Buffalo Anthology Project, Alycia Ripley and I agreed to block out some time in May and June to begin reviewing the final slate of submissions and start adding the accepted works.  While I’ve made some headway updating accepted authors and while I have access to the submissions that haven’t been accepted or rejected via email, again, I don’t have access to the anthology file itself because it’s on a hard drive that isn’t physically HERE right now.  So I get to wait that one out, too. 
     And after the fiasco at Mitchell’s Tavern this previous Friday (if you didn’t read about it yet, scroll down), my editor at the Buffalo News and I decided that we won’t be publishing the review because he doesn’t want to send a staff photographer to a bar where their reviewer and his friends got jumped without provocation while the employees watched outside (on camera) and did nothing to stop it.  
     I’ve got a lot more to discuss about the Mitchell’s Tavern fiasco, but it seems like the perfect topic to go into at length for a little something I like to call ‘Quixote Wednesday’.  All of us directly involved are truly livid about the incident, and from what you’ve all told me since posting, you’re not too pleased about it either.  I’ll start airing my grievences two days from now on the official site this Wednesday, so I’ll talk to you all then.
     And before I forget, part one of a brand new essay (‘Oral Technique’) hits the stands in Night Life magazine today.  It’s an article about the impending one year anniversary for the Big Words I Know By Heart Radio Hour that I wrote on my AOL email since I don’t have a word processing program on our loaner computer.  
     Color me frustrated,
     Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update!: The Last Fandango

April 27, 2009

After oversleeping on Saturday for a 7 pm reading at Caz Coffee Café (long nap), it was a relief to discover that Jeff Finlayson, Kyle Kaczmarzcak and Diane Meholick kicked one of the last two MOV shows off without me just fine. I felt like a dick for not showing up early like I normally do, but this is another sign that it’s time for a break. We had a great time and a great show and I’d like to personally thank everyone who came out for the reading. Due to my tardiness, the event was not recorded, so if you missed it, you won’t have an opportunity to hear it online at a later date. Sucks to be you.

I can’t help but take stock of the six month run that Jeff and I have had together traveling around as the MOV and on good days, I’m very grateful for the process we went through. On bad days, it seems like the agony of being in a rock band without the money or the groupies. All in all, it was a great concept and Jeff and I have become stronger friends as a result. A lot of new material has been written as a result of our constant feedback, reading the work out, and interacting with the public. A while back, I said that I regretted ever having a part in the inception of the Monsters. I spoke too soon.

Jeff is a very talented writer and he now has a new book (and a half) of new poems that he’s drummed up because of our tour. Instead of writing a mountain of new material, I’ve learned to spend more time editing and to elicit editorial wisdom from my peers, so my third collection of poems will be a tighter, more concise collection with less dreck and more concentrate. The MOV experience was like boot camp for us, in a way. We are hardened professionals now, and the thought of reading my poems in front of an audience is no longer horrifying and frightening. Jeff and I talked Saturday night after the show and he wants to continue the moniker. Because of the Slapstick launch in the summer (and a much-needed rest after fourteen months of writing and promoting), I won’t be continuing on after May. However, Jeff will. With any luck, other area poets will join him in the hopscotch-style readings we founded together with Carrie Gardner.

We’ve got one more reading in May at the Center For Inquiry with distinguished poetess Christina Wos Donnelly hosted by Perry Nicholas and I couldn’t think of a better way to round out the end of the junket. I try never to say never, but after that, I’m out for awhile. If any area poets are interested in joining Jeff in the non-locale-specific gauntlet, please feel free to email him directly at:

That’s all I’ve got for today. I’m pretty goddamned tired. Tired of promoting, tired of writing (after a year and change of it) and tired of putting my face and my name out there. It’s clearly time for a break. Some writers have the ego, the drive, or the tenacity to keep plugging, promoting and assuring others that their work is worth reading and I’m not one of them. In a semi-professional career spanning almost a decade where I’ve never promoted any one book for more than three months, I’m tapping out for a bit. I’ve had enough for now. I’m sick of myself, I’m sick of both poetry books, and I’m sick of leaving my house for another scheduled engagement. It takes a certain kind of person to continually tour the circuit and I don’t have that quality. At the heart of it, I’d always rather spend any night quietly at home with my wife or quietly out at a bar anonymously. I stopped doing any of this for ego reasons a long time ago. Even this is redundant.

Make it out to the Center For Inquiry on Wednesday, May 6th at 7 p.m. for the final reading for the original founding members (plus Christina) of the Monsters Of Verse. We’ll razzle, dazzle and amaze. Ten slots are also open for open readers.

As for everything else, all of the original episodes of Big Words Radio are almost complete. The process is time consuming and aggravating, but all 35 episodes should be done by week’s end. Expect a new episode next week. And the final installment of ‘Pronunciation’ (a lengthy essay on my wedding and everything surrounding it) hits the pages of Night Life magazine this week, so scoop it up for the final word.

In two more weeks, I can have my life back. I hope it still fits. I’ll talk to you all in two days for a new Quixote Wednesday Update,

Tom Waters


Monday Update! Five Minute Video Premiere/Happy Dyngus Day!

April 13, 2009

Dyngus Day is literally one of my favorite party nights of the year, and it’s one of the only times when you can hear so many great Buffalo Polka Bands, pig out on reasonably priced buffets (especially the smoked Polski Kielbasa), and use a water pistol in a bar without getting rolled. Because of this, this Monday Update will be especially brief since I’d like to get a nap in before the evening’s festivities commence.

Night Life hit’s the stands this week with Part II of ‘Pronunciation’, a new essay that covers the events before, during and after our marriage in September. It’s a serious essay (and a long one), but the pacing seems right and the piece flows well, not to mention that there was a lot of info to cover.

There was a MASSIVE new amount of content uploaded onto The Dirty Bomb in the last week (3 graphic novel reviews and a comic-related update having to do with Dean Haspiel and Harvey Pekar), so if you haven’t yet, scoot yourself over to and click on ‘The Dirty Bomb’ link on the home page. I’d give you a direct link, but WordPress has been an unconscionable pain in the ass lately with site links.

As far as other freelancing gigs go, the ArtVoice assignments keep chugging along. I wrapped up a sharp interview with CFI resident ghost hunter Joe Nickell last week that should be appearing soon. You can also feel free to check out ‘The Department Of Goofing Off’ in this month’s online issue of Acid Logic at and if you’d like to comment on the graphic novel reviews in a larger national forum, throw your two cents in over at comics

Aside from that, I don’t have a lot of news for you. There are a lot of radio shows under production right now, but none have popped yet. Check back for a heads up as soon as I get it. I’ll be appearing on Time Warner Cable public access for the next five weeks (as well as online for the next two years) with a segment for Think Twice’s ‘Five Minute Video Series’ (entitled ‘I Push People): Here’s the web site address and subscriber channel info straight from my producer, Richard Wicka:
(Adelphia cable subscribers can watch the Five Minute Video Series:
City of Buffalo: Fridays channel 20, 7:00 PM
Suburbs of Buffalo: Mondays channel 20, 10:30 PM)

With a mug made for radio, I’m not sure how I feel about the segment (I haven‘t even watched it yet), but I’ll try anything once.

That’s it for this week, folks. I’m twenty pages away from correcting every last bit of Slapstick & Superego, so we’re getting down to the very last of the pre-production snafus before rolling the book out some time in June or July. Have a safe and festive Dyngus Day and don’t forget to swing on back in two for Quixote Wednesday!

Doing shots every time the Pennsylvania Polka plays tonight,

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Tying Up Loose Ends…

April 6, 2009

After a long, strange trip for over six months with the Monsters Of Verse promotional junket, JR Finlayson and myself are in the final furlong and we can see the finish line for this particular race. We’ve got about four weeks of scheduled bookings and appearances and then we’re done. Part of me is relieved and the other part of me will miss sharing the experience (and some fantastic conversations) with so many other talented poets, writers, disc jockeys, musicians, graphic designers, cartoonists, etc. What’s so nice about this trip through the spanking machine is that we can all look back whenever we want by listening to the entire tour (or the better part of it) on the Monsters Of Verse site at I’ve been putting a lot of the tour to bed from a psychological standpoint in the last few weeks and even considered ’retiring’ both Breathing Room volumes to their rightful place on the shelf next to my other collections so that I can move on and focus on other projects. Four more weeks.

Our next official stop will be at Caz Coffee Café from 7-9 p.m. in South Buffalo on Saturday, April 25th . The lineup will include (but won’t be limited to) JR Finlayson, myself and Kyle Kaczmarzcak. From what my calendar says, this will be one of the final two engagements for MOV.

As for everything else, I’ve been quietly working on a volley of assignments for ArtVoice. If you nab a copy of this week’s issue on stands, you’ll find a small piece that I wrote about the Center For Inquiry and author William Lobdell’s book Losing My Religion in their In The Margins section. Once May rolls around, I should start knocking out assignments in rapid succession, but in the mean time, it’s been a matter of how much time I have in my week to devote to which project based on priority.

This week’s issue of Night Life kicks off the second week of the month with part one of ‘Pronunciation’, a brand new four part essay about our wedding and everything surrounding it within a six month window. It’s a more somber piece and it clocks in at around 6 pages, but the pacing seems warranted given how much information there was to disseminate.

And I’m almost done proof-reading the only copy of Slapstick & Superego on the face of this planet before forwarding the corrections off to VLR Designs. I originally wanted the book done by May and it appears as if I’m the one holding up the production slate right now. I’ve been looking at the presentation and appearance of this collection as the new template for all Doubt It Publishing book releases going forward, so we’re all putting a lot more perfectionism into this collection than any I’ve worked on to date.

Additionally, I’m unsure as to whether or not poke the scorpion with a sharp stick (my next poetry collection) feels finished at 100 pages or not. The Pre-Launch Questionaire sent out a few weeks ago worked wonders on what readers would like to see happen with Slapstick, so I may be ‘test-paneling’ responses for the ideal poetry collection according to readers likes and dislikes in the future as well. That collection, though, is at least six to seven months down the road.

Finally, I keep forgetting to thank Christopher Schobert from Buffalo Spree for his spectacular write-up/review/interview of Breathing Room Volume I: Free Verse in the December issue of Spree. Thanks, Chris. You did a stupendous job and quite a few friends brought it to my attention. There’s also another local write I wanted to thank and I had no idea the article came out until someone sent me a link about two months ago. Charity Vogel from the Buffalo News wrote a very nice blurb back in November regarding both Breathing Room collections and I just wanted to take the time to thank her for her efforts. You can still check out her write-up over at:


Many people don’t realize just how many complimentary copies go out (and have been going out) for every single collection released so far to almost every single newspaper, radio station and bookstore in town (for the last ten years) and how little many of these media outlets do to return the favor. Even a tiny paragraph on a slow news day can work wonders for a title. It’s always the same guilty parties, too, which is surprising and frustrating. In most cases, complimentary copies come out of my pocket. Ideally, it would be nice to see more write-ups, calendar listings and reviews in the future, but I’ll be exploring some new options and improved business practices with all Doubt It Publishing titles from here on out.

For the current poetry collections, a lot of the old guard has kindly relented and started taking notice in print, in bookstores (locally and nationally) and on the radio. Breathing Room I & II aided in improving the learning curve in terms of how to effectively market and sell a poetry collection. This summer, fall and winter, Slapstick & Superego will be a quantum leap. Mark my words, Buffalo, because the Doubt It Publishing name-branding will commence in about two to three more months.


Monday Big Words Update! Sansonne Benefit Aftermath/April Foolfest 2 THIS WEDNESDAY/Busted Stuff Deserves An Apology…

March 30, 2009

The Gregg Sansonne ‘We’ve Got Your Back’ Benefit at the Colonel Weber Post in Lackawanna yesterday was a huge, huge success! Well over 400 people bought tickets and came out in droves to support Gregg before his upcoming surgery fundraiser. Busted Stuff, The Mick Hayes Band, Only Humen (with a two song cameo from Michael Bly) and Black Widow rocked the crowd down to the foundations with an entire day of great music and multiple sponsors contributed their time, food, gift certificates and other goods and services in support of Gregg’s procedure. Thanks (personally) to Mazia’s Pizza in Clarence, Desiderio’s on Broadway, Salon On The Avenue in Lancaster, and Don’s Atomic Comics(!) in Depew for helping me to bring something to the table from my end of the benefit.

I also had a real blast emceeing the benefit! I did so well with the audience that one of the organizers (who runs a non-profit organization for kids) asked if I’d emcee for one of their events because she liked my quirky, irreverent hosting style. For my first time doing this sort of thing, I’m just glad I didn’t blow it. You can judge for yourself later this week, though, because the ENTIRE BENEFIT was recorded directly from their sound board for Think Twice Radio! If I can ever get a day or an evening off to visit the studio this week, I’ll be dropping off a boat load of new shows that are well overdue for Big Words Radio as well as the Monsters Of Verse Project site. I’ll keep you posted when they’re posted.

Moving on, April Foolfest 2 is going down THIS WEDNESDAY starting at 7 p.m. at Desiderio’s on Broadway. This Wednesday will be the 2 year anniversary of the original April Foolfest book launch for If They Can’t Take A Joke. Michael Bly performed and I popped the Big Question to Lindsay. Lindsay’s birthday is this week, we love Desiderio’s, Lenny Revell will be performing, and I’ll be reading selections from Slapstick & Superego. Not to mention the fact that the event is FREE! How many more reasons could you need to come out and have a great time? This show is going to be a knockout (we’ll be recording this one as well), so suit up, drive out and meet us at Desiderio’s on the corner of Broadway and Bowen!

The early questionaire responses have voted unanimously for a late summer book launch at Desiderio’s. I’ll be locking down a date this week, and factoring in all the responses, I’m going to shoot for an early August event on either a Thursday, Friday or Saturday evening. Once it’s confirmed, I’ll let you know.

A new issue of Night Life hit’s the stands today with Part Two of ‘A Preacher, A Rabbi & A Minister Walk Into A Bank…’ pt. 2 of 2, a religious lambast going all the way back to First Person, Last Straw. And finally, I’d like to thank Dave from the Buffalo super-duo Busted Stuff. A few years ago, we had a misunderstanding that I took public. Dave was enough of a gentleman to speak to me calmly and collectively about what happened and we shook hands and moved forward. In addition, the band sounded about 300% better than when I heard them two years prior when they played the benefit and they were pretty damned good to begin with. So thank you, Dave. I’m glad we could settle our differences and make some plans for the future. The up side of the reconciliation means that you can look forward to hearing Busted Stuff play on Big Words Radio some time down the road. It should be a hell of a show.

Talk to you all in two days on the official web site for the Quixote Wednesday Update,

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Slapstick & Superego Final Stages/April Foolfest 2 Next Week/Gregg Sansonne Benefit THIS SUNDAY!

March 24, 2009
While this is an exciting time, for many reasons that I can’t divulge, the next six months will be highly irregular. I’m happy to report that I’m currently in possession of the only copy of my next book on the planet and I’m re-reading it (a painful process for me) for typos.

Slapstick & Superego is so close to the finish line that I can taste it, and in many respects, it feels like the first actual book I’ve released. Instead of a resume or showcase-style format, this book was planned from start to finish as a rant collection. No interviews, no poems, no projects, just rants. It is the first concept book from start to finish, and I’m very proud of it. In addition, the introduction (by Alycia Ripley), the wraparound cover (by Ian Chrystal) and the interior layout (by Victoria Robinson) are all second to none. Early response has been through the roof, and the team effect is something I’ll be implementing as Doubt It Publishing moves onward and upward.

In the same regard (for reasons I can’t necessarily go into), I’ll be holding ONE event for the book in the next six months. Once I’m satisfied with the look of the collection, and once I’ve signed off on it, I’ll be holding a singular launch over the summer and then there won’t be any other events until November or later. After the Monsters Of Verse tour, this will be a serious change in the way I’ve done business for the previous six to eight months. Instead of promoting a few times a week, I’ll be plugging, interviewing, reviewing and doing radio spots for one event only and then disappearing into the woodwork until the holiday season.

In case you forgot, April Foolfest 2 is going down next week with musical guest Lenny Revell at Desiderio’s on Broadway at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, April 1st. In light of the fact that Slapstick arrived in my mail box early, not only will I be showing the editing proof off to anyone who wants to see it, but I’ll read a few rants from the book from 7-9 (along with selections from both Breathing Rooms) as well. If you want to see the book before summer comes around, next week will be the time to do it. Anyone who’s been to one of the book promotions at Desiderio’s knows that they’re an event to remember (and that they tend to run all the way up to last call), so if you’re free, make it out to a free evening of tirades and truly inspiring music by new pal Lenny Revell! Aside from the last few MOV events and the Slapstick launch, you won’t be seeing too many public appearances from ‘this guy’ until the holiday ads start running on television and in your local papers, so make a point of coming out!

And closer up on the map, I’ll be emceeing for dear friend Gregg Sansonne’s ‘We’ve Got Your Back’ benefit THIS SUNDAY! Gregg is undergoing some serious (and much needed) back surgery that will put him out of the local performing circuit for at least a few months. Gregg has been like a brother to me, and he played my wedding as a gift for Lindsay and me. If you have this Sunday open (from noon to six), pop on out to the Colonel Weber V.F.W. Post and fork over the measly twenty bucks to see Black Widow, Busted Stuff, Mick Hayes and Only Humen rock the joint out for the better part of the day. There will also be a Chinese Auction, games, raffles, food and a cash bar. I’ve never emceed before, so I hope I can round out the bill without screwing anything up.

Tickets will be available (in limited quantities) at the door, but if you want to secure some in advance, feel free to contact me via email

( or you can feel free to call Nicole (one of the organizers) at 341-4073. I can’t stress what a great friend Gregg has been to me and many others in the Buffalo music community over the years, so PLEASE come out and support my buddy in his time of need!



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:

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


Monday Big Words Update! Chasing My Own Deadline To The Finish…

February 23, 2009

Another grueling, exhausting weekend. We’re going to make this quick because I’m pressed for time (again).
In light of my impending Big Words radio interview this Wednesday with adult film star Alexis Amore, Night Life hits stands today with my original ‘Found In Translation’ Puma Swede Interview. Grab a copy on stands and don’t forget to tune in to the Think Twice site late Wednesday night or early Thursday to catch all the insanity.
After a lot of editing and producing work on four hours worth of material, there are FOUR (count ‘em) new Monsters Of Verse shows up online over on the Think Twice Monsters site. Here are your synopses for those:
2/15/09 Monsters Of Verse 10: FYE Transit
Local comic writer/artist Kyle Kaczmarzcak (The Red Eye, Pulp) attempts the unthinkable by promoting his work for eleven continuous hours with Tom beginning at FYE Transit. Poet JR Finlayson discusses the intensive therapy it took to recover from his ’08 press junket as a founding Monster Of Verse.
(Bonus Round included)
2/15/09 Monsters Of Verse 11: ‘Tom’s Atomic Poetry Kegger Cliff-Hanger! (pt.I)’
After spending the afternoon at FYE Transit, Kyle Kaczmarzcak continues to expose himself to Tom’s insanity as they take their show down the road to Don’s Atomic Comics in Depew for a free beer promotion. In the spirit of cross-marketing, Part II can be found over on Tom’s pod cast site, Big Words I Know By Heart (also on Think Twice). Arrow over for the surprisingly violent conclusion!.
2/15/09 Monsters Of Verse 12: Talking Leaves Elmwood
Poets Anne Foster and Josh Smith share a round table discussion with local novelist Diane Meholick and Tom Waters on a Sunday afternoon at Talking Leaves. For the first time in months, poems are recited for a pod cast show that was intended to have more readings than appearances. Irony!.2/15/09 Monsters Of Verse 13:    
2/20/09 Borders Books And Music in Orchard Park
Long time show biz friends Diane Meholick (Buffalo Stories, Painting Katherine) and Tom Waters schmooze their way through a Borders promotion by schlepping each other’s wares to unsuspecting Valentine’s Day book buyers and discussing the finer points of local and national folk music, among other things.
I also had the good fortune of recording one interview hour and one concert hour with national piano great Lenny Revell, who will be joining me on stage as part of the bill from 7 p.m. onward on Wednesday April 1st at Desiderio’s on Broadway for April Foolfest 2! This was the first time I’d ever met/heard Lenny play and he is without a doubt one of the most talented musicians in Buffalo, hands down. There’s a lot of post-production work to be done where his show is concerned, but I’ll let you all know the second it hit’s the web.
Don’t forget to check on back on Quixote Wednesday for some new information that will surprise and intrigue. This week’s curveball is a lot more shocking and unpredictable than anyone could have guessed! That’s all the time I have for today. Get caught up on all the radio shows by clicking your way over to:


Monday Big Words Update! A Boat Load Of New Shows On The Horizon…

February 16, 2009

This is going to be one of the shortest Monday Updates in recent memory as time is an issue today and not much has occurred…yet.

A new issue of Night Life magazine hit’s the stands today with ‘Barometric Pressure’, a very honest look at the nature and progress of my own bipolar disorder. I’m rarely this open with my readers (aside from the poetry books), so scoop it up if you want to catch a different side of me.

Borders last Friday was a great time with author Diane Meholick and we recorded the event for Monsters Of Verse pod casting purposes. Diane will be joining me again as a rotating guest Monster on Saturday, March 21st from 12-6 p.m. at the Karpeles Manuscript Museum for the 3rd annual Buffalo Small Press Book Fair. She’s a talented author and she was a joy to spend two hours with. You can catch our conversation soon on the Monsters Of Verse site on Think Twice Radio.

On Saturday, Lindsay, myself and ‘Luxurious Full Head Of Hair Michael’ recorded what will in all likelihood be the only episode of the ‘Large Verbiage We’ve Learned Through Rote Activity’ program. The Big Words format was completely reversed and after listening to the show with my buddy Ron, we were in stitches. Those unfamiliar with the previous 29 shows will have no goddamned idea what’s going on and will most likely turn the show off. Those of you who’ve heard some of the other shows will get what we’re doing and most likely piss yourselves laughing. The show isn’t up yet, but it will be very, very soon.

I spent Sunday editing and producing 6 hours worth of Big Words and Monsters shows and I’ll drop an update as soon as they’re all up. In total, there are 2 new Big Words shows and 4 Monsters pod casts going up THIS WEEK. That’s a lot of pod casting, folks.

That’s all I’ve got for you today. Stay tuned for more information this week and don’t forget to tune back in for your regularly scheduled Quixote Wednesday update! Take care and have a great week,

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Promotional Aftermath, Calendar Additions…

February 9, 2009

Somebody get the number of that Mack Truck!

This weekend was a killer in the positive and negative sense of the term. On Friday night, I had a bar review I conducted with the wife for the Buffalo News. On Saturday, myself, Kyle Kaczmarzcack and JR Finlayson promoted for eleven consecutive hours at FYE Transit and Don’s Atomic Comics for my fifth Tom’s Atomic Kegger. When Sunday rolled around, I had a two hour stint promoting both Breathing Room books with Anne Foster, Josh Smith an unexpected guest star author Diane Meholick and a rag-tag cast of characters. Whoosh! The weekend is gone.

The outlandishly good news is that we kicked ass and took names. Don and the rest of us had our best crowd ever for the kegger and I the Monsters Of Verse and myself had the best turnout I’d ever seen at Talking Leaves Elmwood. Many, many books were sold and distributed throughout the greater Buffalo region this weekend and here’s some spectacular news: As of Saturday, both Breathing Rooms hit the 100 copies sold mark and kept going! For such a short amount of time with only a month or so of promotions (what with the holiday break), this is astoundingly good news for the two little poetry collections that could.

Much like Elton John and ‘Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me’, one of his most popular singles, Breathing Room I and II continue to amaze me with how well they’ve been received. Readers LOVE these two books and I’m not sure how or why, but I certainly appreciate their patronage and the avalanche of praise I continue to receive regarding both collections. Who KNEW that poetry would be the genre that set me free from a publishing standpoint? I never would have guessed it in a million years, but let’s keep those copies moving!

To avoid making this a five page update, the new Night Life is out this week with a Big Words dose of ‘Chia Chick’, an old favorite about Valentine’s Day and relationships that I like to dust off for the holiday. It’s acerbic and readers really dig out, so scoop it up if you haven’t read it in my first book, Born Pissed!

Three new shows went up on Think Twice Radio over the weekend too, so if you haven’t had a chance, check ‘em out. This previous weekend’s promotional insanity was recorded and Rich Wicka and I should have those up online by the beginning of next week.

And finally, there have been a few great additions to the Event Calendar for the next three months. Some poets have been added and subtracted, but I’m hesitant to roll the whole calendar out again, so I’ll go over the bullet points.

-Author Diane Meholick (Buffalo Stories) and poet Josh Smith will be joining me THIS FRIDAY at Borders Books on McKinley Parkway from 7-9 p.m. We’ll all be selling and signing copies of our books in honor of Valentine’s Day. And we’ll be doing it because we’re greedy and we’re starving Buffalo Artists. So swing out, buy some books and say hello!

-On Sunday, March 21st, The Monsters Of Verse will be joining the festivities at their very own table at the 3rd Annual Buffalo Small Press Book Fair from 12-6. This prestigious hullabaloo is located at the Karpeles Manuscript Museum on Richmond Ave in Buffalo and it’s a great opportunity to meet the majority of Buffalo’s literati in one day under one roof.

-Last but not least, local musician Lenny Revell has agreed to perform an hour long set of his piano-based genius for April Foolfest 2 at Desiderio’s on Broadway on Wednesday, April 1st. I’ll be ranting from 7-8 p.m., Lenny Revell will be playing from 9-10 p.m., and I’m still working on a second musical act for 8-9 p.m.. Buffalo is rife with talented musicians and I want to find a good fit for Desi’s. I’m really looking forward to seeing Lenny perform and it’s an added bonus to an event that’s sure to be a blast!

I’ll cut myself off at the knees there. There’s a lot more to go over, but we’ll save it for Friday or Saturday. Talk to you all on Wednesday for Part II of the Quixote Wednesday mini-series,

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! More Sterlace Love…Another Turn Of The Glass…

December 30, 2008


I am so goddamned glad that this year is almost over that I can’t even express it in words. The last six months have been hell in a handcart and in my experience, life kicks me in the ass every seven years. This one’s almost over and the kharma chain had damned well better hit the soft reset, because one man can only handle so much on his plate (even when half of it might be his fault). Two more days and we’re on to the next twelve months. I couldn’t be more relieved…

On Christmas Day, I went to see The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button with my little brother and even though it was three hours, I can’t wait to see it again. While everything Fincher has directed since Alien 3 has been near-perfect, this film was light years different in terms of style from Zodiac, his last tour de force. There’s a reason why everyone is predicting that it will blow the doors off of The Dark Knight at the Oscars. Because it will. I’m calling it right now: Even though most of you know how near and dear Dark Knight is to my heart, Button has a much broader appeal and Fincher has been long-overdue for a handful of the most sought-after trophies in Hollywood. Believe it, because it’s going to happen. That, and Oscar is known for his short-term memory, dead Australian or no dead-Australian.

After the film, I tried something new for the radio show. Greg Sterlace and myself did an hour and a half follow-up show via telephone and I recorded snippets of our conversation at random. I was a bit crocked by the end of the program, but decided to include the baby and the bathwater. The results were pretty funny. Here’s your snyopsis(s?):

Episode 26: The Big Words Xmas/Chanakuh/Kwanza/Boxing Day Extravaganza Happy Fun Time Hour!
Tom slurs through the phone after seven drunken hours with his little brother and an opening day viewing of Benjamin Button to talk movies, the Jewish tradition of seeing movies on Christmas Day, and to discern (and re-discern) the reason why Greg Sterlace fled from Buffalo, the city that made him a worldwide icon.

And the bonus round:

Bonus Round: Wherein our humble host blacks out and somehow manages to keep attacking the Honorable Gregory Sterlace, his comely girlfriend Paula and any race, creed or color his pickled brain can lock on to for more than thirty seconds.

Check ‘em both out (along with the previous studio show with Greg and co-host Josh Smith) over at:



I know I promised to have both of Sucker Punch’s shows up by now, but I like to bookend multiple shows and my producer and I have been having some issues and learning curves with uploading items on Filezilla. I see no reason why they won’t be up by the end of this week and I’ll drop you all a line the second they’re up on the site for your listening pleasure. Sorry, Suckerpunch! I’d rather have both shows intact side by side than pop them up willy nilly. I hope you understand.

Aside from assignments and a part-time job that’s been hardening me up and chewing up some of the time I’ve grown accustomed to spending writing and freelancing, I’ll be working on punching up a Final Call For Submissions for the Just Buffalo Anthology that Alycia Ripley and myself have been toiling away on and setting on the back burner in turns. This will give us one calendar year to wrap it up and set it loose by the spring of 2010. It seems like a long ways away, but if next year is anything like this one, I won’t have five minutes of down time for the foreseeable future.

And finally (for now), the new issue of Night Life assaults your free paper stands in Buffalo and Canada today with my final column for 2008, entitled ‘The 7 Year Bitch: Good Riddance, 2008!. It basically explores the majority of the metaphysical bitch-slaps I’ve had to deal with while holding my sanity together this year. Again, thank god it’s almost over.

That’s all I have time for today. Without the benefit of a time machine or a stop watch that puts everything outside of my study dead in it’s tracks, this is the best I can do with what little recreational time I have. Talk to you all on Wednesday with some more great Quixote Wednesday scoop,

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! December Suprises…

December 22, 2008

After yesterday’s update, I don’t have a whole hell of a lot to get caught up on. There are no less than three new Big Words Radio shows in the pipeline, but time hasn’t been on my side lately and the file uploading process I have makes it infinitely easier to just drop the shows off at the studio when the weather and the roads permit. As for the roads and the weather, lake effect snow: what’s up with that? Since the wife and I are on lockdown due to Lancaster’s ‘State Of Emergency’ and the Driving Ban, perhaps I’ll try and volley a few shows Rich’s way.

This Wednesday (X-Mas Eve) marks my next in-studio date for recording the show with co-host Josh Smith. As for a guest, we’ve got our pick of the litter and I’m not entirely sure who’s going to be on until Wednesday rolls around because I have two people on deck for the guest chair and they’re both call-ins.

As for both Breathing Rooms, I’m taking a hiatus on promoting the new books in addition to the Monsters Of Verse. The holidays are hectic enough and there’s not much point in promoting anything in Buffalo in terms of in-store promotions this late in the winter. JR Finlayson, myself and our third rotating guest poets will kick back into high gear in February once the elements and the economy are off the ropes, if you know what I mean.

It seems like forever since I got a bar review into the Buffalo News, but, well, I’ve been busy and the News has been busy. You can expect a new Club Watch (or two) within the next week or two.

And a new Night Life presumably hit’s the stands today with the final installment of ‘5 Writers, 3 Musicians, A Director, A Teamster, A Painter, A Boxer and a Game Show Host: A Study In Biographical Pictures’, a critical essay on my 15 favorite biopics.

That’s all I’ve got for you today. Stay the hell at home, don’t panic, don’t find an excuse to leave the house to get milk or eggs or some such nonsense and chillax. The way I see it, this is nature’s way of telling us to get some rest and get caught up on things around the house. Thank god we’ve got whiskey, cigarettes, 800 movies, 2,000 comics and a few dozen video games. Who wants to play video games, though? Talk to you all on Christmas Eve with ‘Quixote Wednesday’,

Tom Waters


Big Words 2 Year Anniversary Party TONIGHT at Double D’s Queen City Grill @ 8 p.m.!

December 11, 2008

Okay, I can’t believe I neglected to blog this yet and it’s outlandishly short notice, but tonight marks the auspicious 2 Year Anniversary Party for a little column I like to call ‘Big Words I Know By Heart’.  The place?  Double D’s Queen City Grill at 1051 Sheridan Drive on the border of Tonawanda and Buffalo (2 blocks past Elmwood on the left across from a gas station).  The time?  8 p.m. to ?.  What can you expect when you show up?  Celebrity appearances, prize giveaways (books, CDs, t-shirts, movie passes, etc.), crazy stupid drink specials and food specials. 

     Also, due to a very sad event with 12 Pack Jack (my condolences, gentlemen), the Dr. Z Band will be performing from 8 p.m. to midnight!  Live blues, free swag, great food, good company!  What else do you need?

Seeya tonight at Double D’s!  Be there or rot in hell!


Monday Big Words Update! More More More!

November 18, 2008

Here’s some Monday ‘Talking Points’ for ya:

-‘Sawed Off Sam Walton’ rolls out hot today in the pages of Night Life magazine’s Big Words I Know By Heart print column, which we’re quickly approaching the 2 Year Anniversary Party for at Double D’s Queen City Grill on December 11th!

-I spent two solid hours and got two solid shows from Buffalo Music Awards Hall Of Famer and blues legend Tommy Z.  We talked about some of the American derivatives of the Blues, influences, modern pop, blues and R & B, Gnarls Barkley (?) and Tom was kind enough to intersperce our discussions with crazy licks, play-alongs to some of our favorite blues standards, and many other musical expositions at his multimillion dollar recording studio/compound in the country.  As soon as both shows are up, I will let you know.

-After the interview with ‘Z’, I rushed both shows out to the studio along with 2 Live Monsters Of Verse concerts from last Thursday (Chippewa) and yesterday (Desiderio’s on Broadway).  Thanks again to JR Finlayson, Carrie Gardner and my ‘la familia’ (sp?) at Desiderio’s for making every event we organize there a time to remember.  Again, when both shows are up, you’ll be the first to know right here!

-Wednesday (if all goes according to plan), I should be sitting down with Irish rock god Kevin McCarthy for a similar session or two right before (you guessed it), the Buffalo Music Awards!  By week’s end, the all three musical explorations with three of the most talented artists in ‘the business of show’ should be up on Think Twice Radio for your enjoyment!  I might have one (technically) two more aces in the hole, but I’m not going to count my chickens etc.  If you want a hint, though, they’re one of my favorite Buffalo Bands and they have something to do with a deadly spider.  Cross your fingers for me! 

That’s it for today.  I got all my assignments done over the weekend which brings me up to speed for a little R & R for the next day or two until the rest of the week takes me away with it.  And don’t forget, Monsters Of Verse at FYE Amherst this Saturday afternoon from 1-4 p.m.!


Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 101 on stands/CHS Workshop Tomorrow/Talking Leaves THIS Thursday!

November 4, 2008


The Monsters Of Verse are full steam ahead and this crazy rig isn’t going to let up until at least the beginning of May.  Once the calendar year closes, we’ll be investing a great deal of time and energy into booking additional events, new venues and bigger appearances from February through May.  For now, though, we’ve got plenty to keep our hands full with the events we’ve got and new engagements keep popping up without us even trying!

Moving on, Night Life magazine assaults the Buffalo/Toronto market today with a Big Words edition of ‘Unenjoyment’, a stoical look at how my life would play out after Gamestop wrongfully terminated me so that they could promote a total incompetent racist drug addict into one of their new stores in the Buffalo market.  Scoop up a copy while it’s hot!  If you were on the free newsletter list (which you can subscribe to by emailing with ‘subscribe’ in the subject heading), you got to see it first over three weeks ago.  If not, now’s your chance to read it in Night Life.  With 70,000 copies rolling off the presses every single week all over the Greater Buffalo/Niagara area, there are plenty of bars, restaurants and pizzerias where you can read all about it!

Tomorrow, I’ll be making a return trip to the hallowed halls of Clarence Central High School to teach my first writing workshop to the kids in the Poetry Club, the staff at Chrysalis, the on-site literary magazine (which has grown by leaps and bounds since I graduated in ’93), and a few other stragglers who got the exclusive invite from Ms. Foster and Kevin Starr.  You can hear the entire event some time later this week when it pops up on Think Twice Radio’s Monsters Of Verse site. 

This Thursday, the Monsters Of Verse kick off their second scheduled appearance/reading/signing at Talking Leaves on Main St. (near Bailey) at 6 p.m.   Jonathan (the owner proprietor of both locations) has been extremely supportive and helpful with all of my books for the last seven years, so bringing the crew out for another hoorah was a no brainer.  You can check out his listing/brief synopsis of the book over on Talking Leaves’ official site at:

Jr Finlayson, Carrie Gardner and myself will be reading selections from our newest poetry collections in fifteen minute blocks (so we have time to schmooze/hawk some books before the store closes at 8 pm sharp).  I don’t like to hold up employees at the locations where we have events scheduled near close, so please show up on time, bring plenty of friends (and cold hard cash!) and feel free to join us out afterwards!

I also pounded out two new graphic novel reviews for my editor Thom Young over at  One of the two should be going up this Wednesday, when they premiere their graphic novel reviews on the site.  I’ve been pretty negligent with them lately and I get neurotic when I’m not taking full advantage of every media stream I’m plugged into, so I’ll be focusing my creative efforts (with what diminishing free time I have) on getting a few more reviews backlogged for Mr. Young.

I’m not sure if there will be a new Big Words One Man Mobile Unit episodes this week, but we’ll see what happens.  This week is pretty hectic and I’m still reeling from my molar extraction.  I feel guilty for loafing even for a day or two, but some bed/couch rest wouldn’t be the worst idea in the world.  We’ll see what happens.  If Uncle Hal stiffs again (which is becoming an increasingly more common occurance lately), maybe I’ll set something up on Wednesday with somebody else. 

And DON’T FORGET TO VOTE MCCAIN/PALIN ON ELECTION DAY, Tuesday, November 4th!  The Republican party needs all the support we can muster, so make the time, hit the polls and make your voice heard!  Our nations economy and global stance for the next four years depend upon it.  Don’t let the Spendocrats win this one, even if our last contender turned into a bumbling moron.  Who knows, maybe W. can find gainful seasonal employment with the soulless jackasses currently running Gamestop into the ground?  He’s got half a brain, and that appears to be qualification enough lately….

Have a great week and see you out, about and in print in Buffalo!

Vote Republican!,

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Monsters Of Verse Podcast Site LIVE/Clarence Central High School Immenent…

October 27, 2008

Whelp, it was a productive weekend.

Aside from the Greg Sterlace Show appearance in full Joker makeup (which will be airing on Time Warner Cable on Weds. and Fri., check for more details), celebrating my 33rd birthday and performing as part of the prosiacal trifecta known as the Monsters Of Verse, Think Twice Radio got a new logo, a new show, and a new sheriff (or sheriffs) in town.  You can now find the inaugural Monsters Of Verse launch show (along with each successive show as they take place) up on it’s very own site over at:

As for the Calendar Of Events, JR Finlayson and Carrie Gardner have the week off from any scheduled appearances.  Lucky bastards.  No, just kidding.  Our next gig together will be on Thursday, November 6th at 7 pm at the illustrious Talking Leaves books.  All three of us will be reading, signing and hawking our wares, so stop on out and tell ’em Tom sentcha! 

As for yours truly, I’ve got Clarence Central High School on deck.  I’ll be going in at the crack of dawn tomorrow to talk straight with the kids about this ‘genre of poetry’ for their Poetry Club, AV English students, and any of the editors and contributors of their literary magazine (Chrysalis) who might have a passing interest in my nonsense.  On Wednesday, the real fun rolls around, as I’ll be getting a molar yanked out of my skull in the morning and then doing a radio show in-studio at Think Twice with Top Shelf comic book artist/writer all-around genius Jeff Brown.  If all goes well, my co-host will be SoCo Mike (not to be confused with Intentionally Bald Mike, although the two are friends).  On Friday, I’ve got the final Greg Sterlace show in Buffalo to attend and then I’m pretty sure I’m done for the week.  Aside from schmoozing, handing out free review copies and making five million phone calls.  Oh, and there’s the writing, too.  Whew!

A new Big Words I Know By Heart column drops today in Night Life magazine and my AOL is doing its thing because I can’t pull up the October columns that I sent out.  If memory serves, I’m dropping three or four poems from Breathing Room Vol. II: rhymes & relics like they’re hot. 

That should be everything for today, webslingers.  If I forgot something, I’m sure I’ll keep you posted throughout the week.  In the mean time, don’t get fired from your day job!  Cheers,

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 98 on Stands, UB Spectrum Interview/Profile Drops Today

October 14, 2008

Night Life magazine is dropping it like it’s hot today with a Big Words triple dose of Breathing Room Volume I: Free Verse.  Whether you like it or not, the rest of this month from here on out is going to be Night Life poetry month, as I’ll be giving out free samples of one of the fastest growing poetry collections in the last fifteen years. 

And after a protracted discussion at the hotel lounge bar at the Marriott Hotel with a young upstart journalist from UB’s on-campus paper (Spectrum), the new issue should be on stands (free as well) starting today.  Scoop it up if you’re a student or stop on campus for a copy! 

That’s all I’ve got for today.  Oh!  One more thing.  Fellow Monsters Of Verse Founder JR Finlayson now has his very own WordPress web site with a number of selections from his upcoming book, Afterfresh.  Read all about it (Wuxtry!) over at:

Pending legal cousel regarding my wrongful termination suit against my former employer has been occupying a lot of my time lately, so that’s all I’ve got for you.  I’ll be leaving town from this Thursday through next Wednesday, so I’ll see you all shortly before the big one two punch book(s) launch/Monsters Of Verse Inaugural reading on Saturday, October 25th (my 33rd birthday) at 7 pm!  Take it easy,

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 97 on stands/Breathing Room inflation/Episode XII: ‘The Honeymooners’ UP NOW!

October 6, 2008


Even though I was on honeymoon all last week at what turned out to be Snyder Beach in Irving, NY with my lovely bride (Mrs. Waters), I still got a lot done.  First order of business…

The new Night Life magazine assaults stands today with a month that’s almost completely devoted to poetry.  Except for this week.  This week you’ll find an ‘uncut’ and longer version of ‘My People’ in the Big Words I Know By Heart print column.  ‘My People’, in case you didn’t read it in the Buffalo News My View section, was a piece about inheriting a second family upon marriage.  Topical!

     And unfortunately, (my distributor and marketer for both Breathing Rooms) is implementing an at cost hike across the board for their goods and services.  This is the way the wind blows, and I apologize, but in order to clear a profit from Vol. II, I’ve adjusted the price to $14.95 for the paperback copy.  Again, sorry.  The book is still over 100 pages and from a competitive standpoint, that’s STILL not a bad price.  Check your local retailers and prove me wrong in the poetry market, kids. 

     And last but DEFINITELY not least, Lindsay Waters and myself recorded a knockout Big Words Radio One Man Mobile Unit show on location from the beautiful patio at Root Five in Hamburg during our honeymoon.  It’s very, very offensive and explicit, so if you’re one of those people who doesn’t ‘get it’ or if you can’t handle Don Rickles style comedy, don’t bother listening.  If you’ve got a broad sense of humor and you’re immune to political correctness, then by all means dive in with both feet at:

Think Episode IV (the ‘Auntie Linda’ episode) squared.  It’s brutal, but my wife gives it as good as she gets it.  And I am now the proud owner of a brand new, right off the production line model of a Roland Edirol portable professional grade digital recorder.  Yeah!  I’m planning on doing one podcast a week until I collapse or until my voice box disintegrates.  Doing the show is just too much fun to stop now, and it’s gathering some great momentum.

That’s all I’ve got today even though there’s a lot more in store.  A little bird told me yesterday that you can look for a nice sidebar on yours truly in the December print issue of Buffalo Spree magazine.  Get your subscriptions in now!  Talk to you later in the week,

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 95 on stands, Home Stretch!

September 23, 2008

     By this time next week, I won’t be a me anymore.  Legally, I’ll be a we.  In five days (and after almost four years), Lindsay and I are getting married this Saturday.  I want to thank everyone in advance for their generosity, their time and their friendship (whether blood related or otherwise).  The outpouring of help leading up to this wedding has been unexpected and is one of the few things that’s kept both of us from losing it altogther.  ‘Nuff said on that. 

     Now on to more good news: The first 20 copies of Breathing Room Volume I have sold out in a record six days.  I’ve got more on re-order and I’m hoping I’ll have them by Wednesday so that I can give away a comp copy to the boys from UB Generations, who will be interviewing me this Wednesday at a remote location in Amherst that I’ll be podcasting from.  What amazes me so far is that EVERY single person has read almost the entire book in one sitting and tells me that it’s the best book I’ve ever written.  It would be Ironic with a capital I if a book written as an homage to a dying art form actually made me financially independant as a writer once and forever.  All the capital from this point out is going right back into Volume I and Volume II and then after that it’s getting rolled into Slapstick & Superego, my final Print On Demand book with Authorhouse, which will be coming out in May. 

     Since Lindsay and I will be honeymooning in glorious Myrtle Beach next week, this will be my last Monday update for two weeks.  I’m going to try and take a digital recorder down with me for one podcast, but we’ll see what happens.  When I get back, I’ve got work, Monsters Of Verse related promotions and merchandising, radio interviews, public appearances and speaking engagements and oh, yeah, there’s my 33rd birthday to deal with at the end of October.   It’s going to be very busy for the better part of this year as well as fiscal year 2009.  This is a good thing.  As long as I’m busy, I don’t have an opportunity to allow myself to get depressed. 

     So far, ArtVoice, Buffalo Spree and both UB papers are on board for book reviews, interviews or profiles on Breathing Room by November.  I’ve been working really hard on getting the Buffalo News to commit, but I wouldn’t put that in the bank just yet.  After giving them a free copy of every book I’ve ever written and paying the postage (going all the way back to Soup To Nuts), I’ve gotten a one sentence review on ONE book.  Great.  After two years of giving them my soul, I really, really hope that they’ll take care of me on these two books.  We’ll see.

     And I have no idea which essay is running in Night Life this week.  With the computer issue earlier on, my ‘Sent’ mail is still spotty, so it’ll be a surprise to all of us as to which Big Words column runs.  I’ve got to send out all my columns for next month today, so I’m leaving you with that.   If you haven’t done so already, get off your ass and order Breathing Room Volume I: Free Verse.  You’ll be pleasantly surprised.  I can track individual orders too, so don’t think I can’t tell how many copies are going out the door.  Order a print copy or (I make more money on these and they’re cheaper) download a pdf copy to your computer instantaneously at:

     Not to play the guilt card, but as a newly married couple, we’ve got a house and children to start saving for.  Buy the book, read the book and enjoy it.  Do it.  NOW! 

     Seeya in two weeks, Monday Updaters!

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 94 on Stands, Big Words Radio Episode 10(!) up now!

September 16, 2008

     The rant you know and love is coming out swinging this week in Night Life’s Big Words I Know By Heart column with ‘When In Sloan’, the now-epic, no-holds barred slam on ‘Sloanheads’ that seems to be everyone’s favorite Opening Shot from Big Words Radio Episode II.  Scoop it up on stands all week!

     And in case you didn’t catch the news flash yesterday, Breathing Room Volume I: Free Verse is available RIGHT NOW!  At $15 with a money back guarantee, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t be racking up your credit and debit cards and starting your pre-ordering engines direct from my distributor at:

     Until I start seeing some orders placed, I’m just going to keep harping on it all over the web and in person, so get on there, grab a copy and enjoy the verbiage!  My initial 20 copy order is down to 15 in the span of two days, so you’re better off in the short run ordering from Lulu.  Volume II should and will be done by the first or second week of October.  Best case scenario, first week.

     I also spent four hours today lining up bookings for Breathing Room, myself and the other two Monsters Of Verse for the remainder of this calendar year at FYE, Talking Leaves, The Center For Inquiry and quite a few others.  The feelers are out and quite a few weekly, daily and campus newspapers will be conducting print interviews as well as book reviews for yours truly.  Since it’s a poetry book, I need total saturation if I’m going to give these two books a fighting chance, so expect to see and hear ‘this guy’ all around town and beyond starting October 25th. 

     And finally, we’ve reached Episode 10 (technically 11) of the Big Words Radio One Man Mobile Unit!  I recorded in sunny and fierce Las Vegas, Nevada last week and co-host Curt Kusckowski and myself blasted off on mob mentality convention crowds, implants, douche chips and a whole lot more.  The opening shot was ‘Bizarro Acrophobia’, a rant from Slapstick & Superego about the benefits of being a tall man versus going through life suffering from short guy syndrome.  Click away and dial it up on your Ipod over at:

     The-that’s-the-that’s-the-that’s all, folks.  I’ll be dropping the confirmed appearance/reading/signing dates for October, November and December up first over at my YourHub events site, then Evite, then Myspace and beyond later in the week.  Stay tuned.  Same bat time, same bat channel.  And remember, I firmly believe that whatever doesn’t kill you only makes you…stranger.  Sincerely,

Tom Waters


‘Escape From Bizarro World’ Lances Its Way Onto Comics Bulletin

August 21, 2008


     That’s right, my sphere of influence continues to spread like an open sore.  My new beloved editor at Comics Bulletin and myself have agreed to throw my graphic novel reviews up once a week until further notice.  I coudn’t think of a better venue for comic book opinions, and honestly, it’s refreshing to find an online site that’s more than ready and willing to take my reviews ‘as is’ without frequent retooling (lke Buffalo Rising, for example).  Check out the ‘Escape From Bizarro World’ review over at:

     And speaking of Buffalo Rising, ain’t it sad how few comments they’ve gotten in the last two, three and four weeks?  How very pathetic.  Either no one is reading or their own contributors aren’t signing in under their psuedonyms to chime in on their own work.  Boo hoo.  What is it going to take to have Elena Buscarino’s job, I wonder?  I’m not sure, so I’m just going to keep at it.  Now that we’ve learned that Newell is no longer in charge and that so and so and what’s his face are emptying their pockets trying to keep the ship afloat, I guess we’ll just have to dig deep and try harder, won’t we?  Or failing that, destroy someone else’s life with a minimum of effort.  It’s getting SO much easier, and it’s always been ever so much FUN!

     I just talked to my beloved editor (Ed Honeck) at Night Life today along with my longstanding contact at ArtVoice (Geoff Kelly) and all is right with the world.  It’s incredible just how much mud you can sling about one person behind the scenes as well as in front of.  It helps to have contacts, networking partners and so forth.  That’s neither here nor there, though.  I’ll just say that you can’t buy a stellar sphere of influence for destroying people, now can you?

     My Deepthroat connection is mute this week.  Perhaps he’s occupied, run out of good muck to rake, or just bored.  Time will tell.  I’m sure there are other platforms and crusades I can move on to, but I’m still waiting for word from Buffalo Rising that Elena Buscarino is dead/fired/insane/committed.  If anyone else has any good scoop, I’m all ears. 

    Keep me posted,

     Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 91 on stands/Heaven’s To Megahertz! Episodes 7 & 8 Up Online Now!

August 19, 2008

A busy, bustling seven days.  Four podcast episodes for Think Twice in seven days.  A score of poems, a few rants, some networking, some marketing, some booking work on the Monsters Of Verse gigs…I don’t know where to begin!  Whelp, how about the beginning?

These Monday updates are supposed to be about the Night Life Big Words I Know By Heart column, so let’s get back to that.  Week 91 assaults the newstands today with the third and final installment (conclusion) to ‘Alia Iacta Est’, the serialized print version of the Buffalo Rising jihad.  I’m still not done with them by a long shot, but I thought that print readers might want to be in the loop and it’s a good venue for talking even more trash.  Night Life’s got my back through and through, which is why I’m so loyal to them.  

     Saturday night, Carrie and Ron Gardner came over to our posh Lancaster bungalow to record podcast episodes 7 and 8 of the Big Words Radio One Man Mobile Unit!  The reason why I waited so long to post the Monday update today was due in large part to the fact that I was waiting for Rich to post episodes 7 and 8.  I appreciate his efforts and due to a seperate studio booking yesterday, we were unable to ‘put the tracks down’ in their entirety yesterday, so there was a two day delay in posting them up online.

     Episode 7 is an informal interview with Carrie and her ‘man candy’ Ron Gardner regarding her career, Ron’s music, composing, poetry and a lot of other uncomfortable topics.

    Episode 8 is an informal ‘concert’ we held in my dust-caked hell hole of a basement with a PA system and the third member of the Monsters Of Verse, JR Finlayson.  We were all very pleased with the results.

     Dial both of the new episodes up on your Ipods at the intraweb address provided:

     I’ll leave it at that.  Monday is supposed to be ‘date night’ with the wife and I’m cutting into it, so I’ll scoop you all with more of ‘the knowledge’ later in the week.  That’s all, folks!

Tom Waters


I Am Legion, For We Are Many: (Yet Even) More Correspondance Re: Buffalo Rising’s Wacky Antics

August 6, 2008

Far be it from me to beat a dead horse, but my longstanding readers get off on this kind of thing.  Enclosed are a few more words of wisdom from first time emailers and longtime readers.  Christina (a tremendously succesful magazine editor/writer in the Buffalo pipeline) writes with:


So sorry to hear about your treatment at Buffalo Rising.  That’s the problem with local papers: they forget they’re expecting you to give it away, that you’re doing them A FAVOR.  Now you’re supposed to put everything else aside and “rewrite endlessly” ’cause they can’t articulate clear guidelines from the outset?

You ARE a writer-to-kill-for, and we all deserve better treatment.  They’ll learn in time.

Christina continues in another email with:


After reading all this, my afterthought: Inexperience!

Elena sounds like a beginner trying to feel/fake her way through.  I now suspect she doesn’t have a clue how to be an editor or manager, let alone how to do so efficiently and effectively, least of all diplomatically.  She also evidently has no experience, or even idea, of how to treat volunteers, let alone volunteers who’ve long ago paid their dues and could be spending their time on paid opportunities. 

And my own personal Deepthroat (the informer who brought Nixon down) has been supplying me with a steady stream of intel that may or may not be substantiated.  He/she has emailed me with a lot more info, but I seem to be unable to access my email account on BRO’s site.  Here are some snippets from what this out of towner has been feeding me.  I can neither confirm nor deny their allegations/accusations:

Oh, my password is ok but I can’t post any longer. Even after a little back and forth between myself and…”Precious”. But I will admit that your flameout on the boards will incur her wrath. Big Deal. Do check your profile and password on Twitter, much potential for mischief there but if you’re writing for the web and receiving payment, she would be an idiot to fuck with you like that considering the legal implications. (BTW:she’s an idiot) Also, I received word that Newell no longer owns BRO and was locked out of their offices recently, that he has some weird relationship to BRO as a figurehead but that he’s otherwise no longer The Man. Got no other proof for you. Either way, note that BR is perpetually on the cusp of going under and that several departures, Christa Seychew chief among them bode poorly for their continued existence. ( one of the reasons you were invited to post with them was the fact that they couldn’t afford any regular contributors and now rely on “community contributors” ) I hope they get bought out by someone with better taste in editors and enough dough to replace their 1920’s era server. Check your mail, I’ll have some tasty tidbits from Elena.

This individual was kind enough to send me ten or eleven great emails, but ignored my advice to send them to my fan address.  Again, PLEASE re-send to:

A second email disclosed this:

Well, in a post last May, Elena actually said that she was a “harness child growing up in Chicago.” This was in the context of Mother’s Day reminisciences. The Newell thing was provided to me by none other than BuffaloPundit.  BTW, it was another Mother’s Day Post by Elena that got me whacked from BRO. Check it out, I said something about “Siciliane big hair” and I guess that was more than she could take. I didn’t even use my fallback line: “Che facia bruta!”. Thin skinned, that one.

Sicilian big hair!  That’s great! 

That’s all the muck that’s fit to rake for today.  I’ll be going to hash things out with my therapist this afternoon and then I’m off to Think Twice studios to wrap and upload the third historic podcast episode of Big Words Radio with Alex Robinson and my special guest co-host Michael Hilliard (or as Night Life bar review readers may remember him from back in the day, I.B.M. or Intentionally Bald Mike).  Expect to hear slide whistles, bicycle horns, Alex on maintaining a functional relationship/marriage when one or both parties have a creative bent, and, as always, your opening shot.  You won’t wanna miss this one.  I’m wound up and ready to let loose on everybody willing to listen!  The show should be up online by about ten pm eastern standard, so tune your dials in and click away at:

Meanwhile, the word of mouth on Big Words radio has been through the goddamned roof.  One of my work contacts has been telling all the guys on his route that they’re going to piss their pants laughing if they give the show a chance.  That’s promotion you can’t buy. 

BRO would do well to earn that kind of word-of-mouth instead of pissing in every young-upstart freelancer that winds up at their virtual doorstep.  And that number is dwindling down to a narrow few contributors.  In a few more weeks, they’ll be left with just Queenseyes (Newell), Buffalo Rising (Newell/Elena) and Elena Buscarino for contributors.  I can see how it would be difficult to re-tool other people’s material if you’re placing the fastest publication on your own work first and writing three quarters of the publication.  Life’s a bitch, ain’t it? 

And the site hits continue to soar into the stratosphere on the BRO YourHub posts.  We’re in the neighborhood of 3 or 400 individual post hits total on the campaign and yes, Night Life did get the first installment of (Alia Iacta Est: ‘The Die Is Cast’) into the print magazine.  Suck on that, Buffalo Rising!  Suck it long and suck it hard!  The title refers to Ceasar’s legendary remark during one of Rome’s epic battles, so I found it suitable for a war with a crazy bitch from the ass of the boot, so to speak. 

This armageddon is just getting started.  I’m not done with you by a long shot, E.  I haven’t heard peep from either of them since last Wednesday and don’t expect to.  And in the mean time, I’ve got so many personal appointments, free drinks and luncheons to take with all of the reputable newspapermen and women in the WNY area that I’m going to have to burn the midnight oil to keep slinging this much mud.  Whelp, I’ll get more than five hours of sleep a night when I’m dead.  I’ll see Buffalo Rising buried first, though, and I’m holding the motherfucking shovel.  Cheers,



Buscarino Redux

July 30, 2008

In a letter sent to a pal this morning:

Tom is the one who told me you were submitting the same stories to Nightlife too after I told you they had to be exclusive to us.  You had exactly one CD addressed to you, the one (name withheld) picked up.
It’s too bad you feel this way, and that Tom has waged a cyber war.  I frankly thought he had quit last week after he signed of with “for christ’s sake” when I told him his next story needed a Buffalo theme.  I have to tell you I shared your email with him on that subject too, by way of enforcing the fact that that’s who we are.  You understood the Buffalo aspect, but not the exclusive.  I had no idea you felt that because you weren’t being paid you had no obligation to adhere to that policy and again, it was Tom who pointed ut that things of yours that we posted were printer verbatim on Nightlife.
I’m frankly stymied by the inability of some to understand that we print only Buffalo-centered exclusives.  I was willing to go for the national theme with Tom, but was given the directive to add the outlets where the books and movies could be bought/rented/watched.  This made him angry obviously.
As for Alycia, I have no record of having corresponded with her.  Perhaps she was looking for a job rather than to submit.  We simply are not in a position to hire.
As for being denied, I was assigning things to Eli and interns as they came in.  On the occasions that yours showed up later, unannounced and unsolicited, of course theirs got put on line ahead of yours.  Maybe if you’d called or come in like I asked, this could have been cleared up.
So, Tom’s decided to bully and form what he sees as an army of soldiers.  You’d do best to ask what the crusade is about and why your commander in chief would be willing to throw you under the bus for the sake of his vendetta…a vendetta against simple BRO guidelines…oh, and me.  The big, bad editor.  Please.
    What a selfless martyr.  Give me a break.  I fired back to Newell with the following:
I had NO objections to mentioning local media outlets.  That is not the issue.  What I DID take umbrage with was the fact that Elena wanted me to re-write a fucking graphic novel review (the content, not the plug for area stores at the end), and put a Buffalo-centric spin on the content.  I played by the rules until she sunk to a different plateau of childishness.  You had better get that bitch back on the leash or things are going to get a lot uglier.  This is not a threat, it’s a declaration of intent.  Consider yourself warned. 
     I’m pretty sure I made myself abundantly clear yesterday when I posted this information everywhere I could think of online.  If this menopausal malcontent is looking for escalation, she’s going to get what she fucking well wishes for….

Monday Big Words Update! Week 88 on stands, ‘Editor’s Choice’?

July 29, 2008

     If all goes according to plan (which it hasn’t yet this month), ‘The Importance Of Being Neurotic’, my piece on the intrinsic value of psychotherapy, will hit stands in the pages of Night Life this week.  In the shuffle, I thought for some reason that it was running last week.  It didn’t.  ‘On Spec’ ran in the Big Words column instead.  Too much confusion.  All of this should be ironed out in time for next month, as I won’t be shuffling shows around like a game of, well, shuffleboard, going into August.

     The Pissed Off World Of Uncle Hal 60th episode has been postponed indefinitely.  Due to circumstances beyond both of our control, Hal is taking a break and sorting some other things out and I’ll leave it at that.  It pains me to see yet another friend going through a veritable monsoon of troubles that life is dishing out, but I’ll wait patiently on the sidelines and offer help when it’s asked for.  That’s all I can do at this point.  It’s been a tough summer for a lot of my friends, and it aggravates me that it has to happen all at once.  I’m sure there’s a soothing adage for all of this, but any advice eludes me for the time being.

     And finally, I’m not sure whether it’s a massive pyramid scheme of a scam right now, but I had two poems accepted on the notorious web site, ‘Poem For Lindsay’ and ‘On The Corner Of Average’.  The former (‘Poem For Lindsay’) was awarded with the partially prestigious ‘Poet’s Choice’ award.  Whether or not this carries any weight is beyond me, as these are circles I’m unfamiliar in traveling.  However, it’s always good to have more work up and around online.  You can view (and read) ‘Poem For Lindsay’ over on:

‘On The Corner Of Average’ can be found over at:

     This Wednesday, my celebrity interview with Uncle Hal had to be postponed, so in his place, I’ll be talking with Jay Desiderio from Desiderio’s on Broadway for the second installment of the Big Words I Know By Heart Radio Hour.  If you caught the first episode, you know that you’re not going to want to miss the second episode.  I’ve got a real corker of a rant (if you get the email newsletter, you just read it yesterday) for my opening shot, so grab a comfortable chair and a stiff drink and hop online later this week.   Tune on in late Wednesday night at:

     That’s all the news that’s fit to print for one day.  Talk to you sooner than you think,

Tom Waters


Not Ready To Make Nice!

July 23, 2008

     The good news is that I’ve finally got definitive proof that a)people are reading the Night Life Big Words print column and b)exotic dancers are indeed literate creatures. 

     If you read my earlier post on the site, you already know that Night Life accidentally ran my ‘Pharoah’s: 10, Madamoisselle’s: 5, Rick’s Tally Ho: Still 0 essay last week.  I really would have preferred that they didn’t, but there’s no use crying over spilled milk.

     Well I got on the horn today to speak with Christy about August’s slate of column submissions (since I accidentally re-sent ‘On Spec’), Dave Koestner told me about the can of worms that I opened up because of the Madamoisselle’s article.

     Apparently, the management at Alexander’s (an old haunt from my exotic club review days) in Tonawanda loved the column so much that they cut out three copies and posted them up on every wall in their club.  I guess ALL of the dancers were abuzz with talk about the article, which, while not antagonistic, was very tell-it-like-it-is about the rotten treatment myself and my guest got when we tried to get into Madam’s without paying a cover charge.

     I feel bad about the piece.  I truly do.  I also feel that if you say you’re going to do a favor for someone, then you damn well better do it.  It is what it is.  The damage is done and the die is cast.  Hopefully last week’s controversy (with Madam’s and BRO) is the last of it for awhile.  I’m a fat old man, and the energy and aggravation it requires to juggle so many quixotic quests wears on the soul. 

     On the other hand, though, I’m going back into Uncle Hal’s sunny Burbank studio this Friday afternoon to slap on my co-host hat and ring in his auspicious and milestone breaking 60th episode!  And you know that whenever the two of us meet up with a pair of microphones, someone’s feathers are going to get ruffled, if not everybody’s!  Wanna catch up on previous episodes?  Click over to:

     -and see what all the hub bub is about!  Episode 58 was a hoot and a half and I’m bringing the motherfucking heat this Friday!  Look for Episode 60 online (as well as Episode 2 of the Big Words I Know By Heart Radio Hour) towards the end of next week!


Monday Big Words Update! Week 83 (‘Kicked In The Monthly Mailbag’) Simulcast!

June 23, 2008

     I’m still riding high from yesterday’s Think Twice Radio show.  If you haven’t listened yet, click your butt over to:

-and click on my ugly mug for some really funny stuff.  Don and Ian made great guests and my buddy Ron and I were practically wetting our pants listening to the show last night during our weekly guy’s night.  Yet here it is a Monday again which means that the new print issue of Night Life magazine is hitting stands all around Buffalo and the lower Canadian regions with a Big Words installment of ‘Kicked In The Monthly Mailbag’, a severely tongue in cheek response to the fact that I begged, pleaded and cajoled for some letters or suggestions from readers and got ZERO responses.  Thanks a lot, folks.  Since I’m still aggravated about that, I’m going to run today’s column right here for you bastards as well.  Take a hint!  My ego needs constant care, feeding and nurturing, so send me some goddamned mail already!  The address (in the event that you haven’t been beaten over the head with it enough already) is: .  If you want to hear me read your letter on the Think Twice radio show, put ‘Radio Show mail’ in the subject heading.  If you want to see portions of your letter in print, write ‘Print Column’ in the heading.  After lowering my expectations and still getting let down on reader mail, I’m not expecting much.  Thanks for nothing. 

     So that’s all I’ve got.  If you haven’t been checking the site, last week was a busy one, so scroll down if you want to get caught up.  Seeya in the funny papers,

Tom ‘rain, sleet and snow’ Waters


  Kicked In The Monthly Mailbag
 Last month, I begged and pleaded with all of you to send me some mail so that I could see what you had to say.  I encouraged everyone who read this column to direct their comments, questions and suggestions to:  Here’s what I found in my email box.  I will try and answer each email respectfully and pleasantly:
 Michele Hanah writes in saying that I can ‘Expand my male organ with infinite inches running on the best therapeutics.’  Thanks for writing in Michele!  While I appreciate your suggestion, my male organ is doing just fine.  I don’t like to brag, but I sometimes knock furniture over with the length and girth of my male organ.  I’m not sure how you can guarantee infinite inches of measurement (as that’s scientifically impossible), but I guess I’ll never know, because I’m not going to buy your product.
 Adela Martinez writes to notify me that ’I am looking for a foreigner who will stand as the next of kin to MR.Ruben Martin. After processing the paper works that will reflect you as the next of kin to our late client you will henceforth become the new and sole beneficiary of the total funds.’  She also claims that I can stand to inherit ‘US$30,000,000.00’While this could be a lucrative proposition, Adela, I was really looking for something along the lines of feedback on my articles and rants that run in the pages of Night Life magazine.  I’m impressed that you found an outlet that distributes Night Life magazine in Berlin, Germany, and even I didn’t know that they had such a wide swath of newspaper distribution.  While I could find some good uses for ’US$30,000,000.00’, I highly doubt that you have those sort of funds to give me.  I could buy a lot of drinks for myself and a few for other people with a couple of million.  You’ll just have to find another rube for your ’Spanish Prisoner’ scam.
 Nanchang Kyber emailed me with a subject line that read ’You can achieve the whole world with Viagra Pro’, yet her email itself had this to say: Leaving the assistants to clean up and hide the wreckage of the alloy-resonance generator, he gathered all their lab notebooks “for security reasons,” and later destroyed them. The famed inventor liked Co think he was in control of his life.
“Or do you simply miss our fascinating company?” Juno inquired with an abrasive snort. “Perhaps you grew lonely after so much time by yourself.”
She grinned. Selim had taught them how to live by the most austere means, yet whenever they captured supplies from their enemies, the outlaws celebrated. Within an hour, the festivities would begin.’  While I consider myself something of an outlaw, I’m not sure how this is relevant to my recent rants on rules about women (‘Perpetual Estrogen’) and the value of silence (‘Quiet Time Or Else’!).  And while I consider myself a fairly intelligent person, I have no goddamned idea what an alloy-resonance generator is.  Thanks for writing in, though!
 So what have I learned from my repeated attempts to get a once-a-month mail column going?  Theory A)With the miracle of the internet, there are still idiots out there who think that some poor sap will fall for buying snake-oil boner fuel and get-rich-quick schemes.  Theory B)Nobody reads this goddamned column in Night Life magazine.  Theory C)There IS a readership for this column, but the readers are too goddamned lazy to interact with said author.  Theory D)There IS a readership for this column, but the readers are either too cheap or don’t have access to a computer, and therefore, the email capabilities offered by the World Wide Interweb.  Theory E)Don’t ask for readers to email you because it’s a waste of time.  Theory F)You’re reading this right now, and you have no idea what I’m talking about and I’m astonished that you’ve read this far. 
 I could go off on a blind rampage here and swear never to do a mail column again, but I never say never.  If you want to send me an email, great.  If not, then go fuck yourself.  I will say that I’m never going to beseech my readership to write in again but I will respond to any emails sent to me.  On to other matters.  A massive announcement!
 Starting in July, Big Words I Know By Heart will be expanding to the realm of a radio show.  I’ll be hosting my own pod cast under the same name online with special guests including Buffalo musicians, artists, writers, businessmen etc as well as reading some of my tirades in the hopes of reaching a larger audience.  My hope is that I can draw more people to the print column and draw the print column people to the pod cast radio show.  Look for the Big Words I Know By Heart radio show online starting next month on  And as always, you can find out more about my work by clicking on over to  Thanks for reading, damn you for not writing, and I’ll see you all next week in the pages of Night Life!
  Wondering if Buffalonians even know how to type,
   Tom ’disgruntled’ Waters  

Monday Big Words Simulcast! Shameless Promotional Whoring 2008 Edition on stands AND right here!

June 9, 2008


As I’m sure you know by now, we’re just SEVEN days away from the Monsters Of Verse concert at Desiderio’s next Monday.  I’m really glad that Carrie Gardner and I are finally going to have a chance to work together on a performance as we’ve been talking about it for almost four years now!  I can’t tell you how important this is to us, so if you can make the show, by all means, do it.  The new issue of Night Life is on stands with a Big Words edition of ‘Shameless Promotional Whoring 2008’.  In the interest of tipping the scales in our favor, I’m also going to publish the piece right here, right now.  Also, I’ll be going on vacation from this Wednesday until next Wednesday, so I won’t be anywhere near civilization until Monday.  Seeya at the show (hopefully),

Tom Waters

Shameless Promotional Whoring 2008 Edition: One Night Only!

Yeah, you read the headline right, one night only. As you may or may not know, I’m getting married this year, which means that my writing career is taking a back seat for fiscal year 2008. I don’t have the time, money, energy or inclination to launch a book this year. I’ve got a finished one, don’t get me wrong (it’s called Slapstick & Superego), and I’m halfway through the book after that, but you won’t be seeing my next book until some time in the spring of 2009. However, as of this publication date (June 9th), you and I are exactly ONE WEEK away from what will probably be the only public performance I’ll be doing this year. Next Monday (June 16th), I’ll be sharing the stage with renowned poet Carrie Gardner and Shaky Stage, a helluva great band who got their start out in Alden. Here’s the official release:

Carrie Gardner (renowned poet and author of Evil Is A Terrific, Rubbery Goblet) presents a FREE evening of unprecedented entertainment the likes of which Buffalo has never seen before with a reading from her breakout, runaway smash hit book, Evil Is A Terrific, Rubbery Goblet (Authorhouse). The evening will open with a reading from Carrie, a performance from the band Shaky Stage, and close out with a rant or two from local author, bar reviewer and area goofball Tom Waters. All three powerhouse acts will be schlepping and signing their wares (books, CDs, etc.) throughout the evening. Attendance is free and multiple book and CD purchases are strongly recommended. Drinks and phenomenal food will be available from the crack team of culinary masterminds at Desiderio’s on Broadway. Come thirsty, come hungry, and bring many wads of cash for all out consumption and the entertainment extravaganza of the decade, no, better yet, a lifetime! Do not miss this once in a lifetime experience! You’ll regret it for the rest of your life if you do!

If you’ve been to one of my readings before, you know by now that anything can happen and that a great time is had by all. If you haven’t picked up a copy of my last collection of rants, If They Can’t Take A Joke, then now is the perfect time because I’ll be selling and signing the last batch of first edition hardcovers for $20. Carrie will be selling her book for $10. I’m not really sure how much Shaky Stage will be selling their Cds for, but they last time I saw them play live, they were giving away free copies for crowd interaction. So #1, admission is free (and I know Night Life readers love free anything because they come out in droves for it and I‘ve seen it). #2, you’re getting three amazing acts in one night, #3, we’ll be giving away some free stuff and #4, this is the ONLY time I’ll be performing any of my rants on stage in Buffalo this year. What more reason do you need?

Round up your friends, your girlfriends, your pets, and your enemies and meet us out next week for some strong drink, great food and an evening of entertainment that you won’t soon forget. Who knows? Once the night is over, you may need acupuncture or deep psychotherapy to remove the memory from your brain bank. I guarantee you a great time. And if the Night Life troops can fill the bar, I’ll give away a signed hardcover to one of you wonderful swag-hounds.

I’ve been tinkering away on this column for almost two years now and I’m pretty pleased with the niche impact it’s had on reaching a new and unusual audience. And as a megalomaniac, it’s always nice to meet my readers up close and personal and get their two cents while they’re buying me shots. If it’s been your life’s dream to buy me a shot, now is your chance. I’ll be hanging out at the bar swilling Tullamore Dew and pitchers of Coors Light (or as they call it at Desiderio’s, ‘the tom waters special’) all night before I go up on stage, so if you want to hang out and have a great time, I’ll see you there. And after a few doubles of good Irish whiskey, I can’t be held responsible from a legal standpoint for my actions on stage.

So to summarize: next Monday, Desiderio’s, 8pm SHARP! Bring some cash, bring some friends and get ready to take part in the triple threat all out bash of the summer. Are you listening, Buffalo? I’ll see you next week. You might want to take off of work on Tuesday to recover. Make it out in record numbers and perhaps me and the gang at Night Life will do something special for the Big Words 2 year anniversary.

Seeya at Desi’s,

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! 2 Weeks to Monsters Of Verse/3 Weeks Until Big Words Radio!

June 2, 2008

     It’s really bizaare how these short forays back into creative activity gather their own momentum, isn’t it?  The new material continues throughout June in the pages of Night Life magazine with ‘The Great Recession’, one of my shorter pieces about the rise in gas prices and the effect it’s had on the economy which, unfortunately, was rejected as a My View submission at the Buffalo News.  You can’t win ’em all, and sometimes, they’ll reject pieces that were too similar to recently published works.  I don’t read the News every day, so perhaps someone beat me to the punch.  At any rate, I’m running the piece in the Big Words column because I think it makes some valid points and it’s a subject that everyone can relate to, and that all of us have been griping about for months.

     Moving on to other business, the Monsters Of Verse show at Desiderio’s in Lancaster (8 PM) is two weeks from today (Monday the 16th)!  Carrie Gardner, Shaky Stage and myself are starting to get really excited about the performance and Carrie and I have decided to make the rounds at the Center For Inquiry open literary reading this Wednesday at 7 pm to see some old faces, meet some fresh ones and promote the event to a demographic that’s perfect for it.    If you received an Evite or a Myspace event invite, please take the time to RSVP either way so that myself and the crack team at Desi’s have an idea of what sort of crowd to expect/prepare for.  I also mentioned during the middle of last week that Think Twice Radio will be sponsoring the event and recording the entire performance for future podcasting purposes, so if you show up, clap loudly and laugh heartily! 

     Also, now that I’ve agreed to take Think Twice up on their offer for my own radio hour, I’ve been putting the pieces together for the first three or four shows.  Guests have been booked, formulas have been employed, formats have been cobbled together and three weeks from yesterday (Sunday the 22nd), the Big Words I Know By Heart radio show will be born!  May god have mercy on us all.  I don’t want to let too much out of the bag too soon, but I’ve got some big plans for the show.  You won’t want to miss out on the first episode, I can guarantee you that. 

     And in case you missed it, I logged a rather extensive play-by-play on the David Fincher critique I’ve been laboring away on for the last year and a half.  If you’re a fan of the director (or just curious as to what the hell I’m talking about), scroll down to ‘Finding Fincher’. 

     And that’s all the news that’s fit to print this week.  Scoop up your copy of Night Life, fill out your dance card on Evite and Myspace Events, and count the days down until the Monsters Of Verse and the Big Words I Know By Heart radio hour.  A storm’s brewing over Buffalo, and some call it Hurricane Buy My Book!  Just kidding.  Talk to you next week (or sooner),

Tom Waters



Monday Big Words Update! Week 79 on stands/3 Weeks to the Monsters Of Verse/Think Twice Radio Gig Tomorrow!

May 26, 2008

Whelp, after a week of kicking back and freezing my ass of in Rushford and three days and two nights at Lindsay’s folks’ cabin in Angola, I can honestly say I’m rested and relaxed and ready to get back to the grind.  With no real promotional plan or upcoming book to promote, the engagements are piling back up anyway.  Gusto ran the Riley St. Station bar review on Friday and last Monday saw the conclusion to ‘Perpetual Estrogen’ in my Big Words I Know By Heart column in Night Life magazine.  Today, ‘Quiet Time Or Else’ hits the stands in the pages of Night Life magazine, a blind rant on the agitations of uncontrollable noise pollution.  Tomorrow (after a long delay dating back to last August), I’ll be hunkering down in the booth with poet, promotional wunderkind and music reviewer/interview Susan Marie for her show, ‘This is NOT the apple’ on Think Twice radio.  I’m not sure when it will be done with production and so forth, but keep checking over at: for details and I’ll throw up a post when I’m sure. 

     And after years of talking about it and originally missing a scheduled headline reading at the Center For Inquiry that we booked a year in advance, Carrie Gardner and myself with finally be sharing the stage together (along with the band Shaky Stage) at Desiderio’s on Broadway on Monday, June 16th at 8pm.  For all the details, scroll down to the previous post, but we’re three weeks away and this will in all likelihood be the ONLY time I’ll be performing on stage and signing the final batch of first edition hardcovers for If They Can’t Take A Joke at $20 a pop.   That night isn’t really about me, though.   The spotlight is on Carrie and Evil Is A Terrific, Rubbery Goblet, her phenomenal collection of very accessible and newby friendly poetry and prose which she’s selling for a cool $10.  I read it in one sitting, I’ve been a huge fan of her work since I interviewed her for ArtVoice back in 2004, and this is her first book of collected work.  If you can make it out that Monday and bring friends, do so.  And the gang at Desiderio’s have become (as I’m sure you know by now), dear, dear friends of mine.  I’ve reviewed a million bars for a million different papers over the years, but Desi’s is the only place where I hang my hat and I consider it a second home.  I’ve also come to know the band members for Shaky Stage and they’ve got some great songs and a rock-solid stage act in their own right.  We’re three weeks away.  Mark your calendar, rally up some people and make the trip.  You’ll be glad you did. 

That’s all I’ve got for today.  After being out of town on and off for so long, I’m chasing deadline on some new columns for Night Life for June, so I need to hammer out at least one more new piece for next month.  Have a fantastic Memorial Day and I’ll drop some more knowledge on you later in the week,

Tom Waters   



Monday Big Words Update! Week 77 on stands, seeya in two weeks!

May 12, 2008

This will be my last post for about two weeks, so soak it up!  I’m leaving for Rushford this Wednesday on vacation and thankfully, there’s no phones, no television, no computers and no aggravation!  Just some Bob Dylan, some fine cigars and a few tumblers of chilled straight Kentucky bourbon to ease my pickled head for the rest of the calendar year.

Anyhow, the new Big Words column assaults the newstands today in Night Life with part 1 of ‘Perpetual Estrogen’, a categorical look at the strange quirks and foibles that the entire female species have in common.  Pick it up because you’re gonna love it. 

I’m going to keep this update short because I’m noticing that I threw up three posts last week here and two or three over on the YourHub site.  If you haven’t yet, feel free to scroll down and get caught up.  And I just posted some pics up on my Myspace account for the wedding tuxedo fitting and afterbash that me and the boys went to over the weekend.  If you want a quick link to see how much weight I’ve lost so far for the big day, click on over to:

And I may be leaving town, but the print articles won’t be leaving with me.  ‘Perpetual Estrogen’ part two concludes next Monday in Night Life and you can bet your sweet bippy that a Club Watch review or two will appear in print while I’m gone.  So long for now, city dwellers, cause this country mouse is skipping town! 

Have a great week,

Tom Waters 


Acid Logic Update/Acid Logic Book Out!/Sneak Peak at ‘Perpetual Estrogen’!

May 9, 2008


This month’s outstanding issue of Acid Logic is up online with the final, completed version of the new fan favorite ‘Perpetual Estrogen’.  You can read it in it’s entirety by clicking over to:

     For a categorical essay that takes some pretty hard shots at the female species, responses from the opposite sex have been overwhelmingly positive because, as they tell me, ‘it’s all true!’.  The very same essay will be appearing in Night Life (in two parts) starting this Monday, so if you like it as much as my newsletter subscribers did, grab a copy for posterity’s sake and show it to all your friends!

     And speaking of posterity, Wil Forbis (the editor in chief and creator of the Acid Logic e-zine) has released his first book compiling ten years of his best work with Acid Logic!  He’s an unbelievably sharp writer in his own right, but he can describe the book better himself:

Folks, my new book, ‘Acid Logic: a Decade of Humorous Writing on Pop Culture, Trash Cinema and Rebel Music’ is now available from fine Internet booksellers, brick-and-mortar bookstores and the author himself! 
What is ‘Acid Logic’?  Why its 288 pages of humorous writing on film, music and the world we live in.  It’s celebrity profiles, feature writing, reviews, interviews and fiction. Look no further than the back cover blurb for more details! 
‘From the pages of, underground author Wil Forbis collects his most shocking and funniest material into one volume! Gasp at comic essays on the impending threat of cloning and the commodified brilliance of the blaxploitation film movement. Swoon over profiles of the entertainment industry’s most eccentric stars, from adult film auteur Doris Wishman to ninja actor Sho Kosugi to shock punk GG Allin. Thrill to interviews with cultural stalwarts like hard rock drummer Rikki Rockett, actor Curtis ‘Booger’ Armstrong and horror director Stuart Gordon. Squeal with delight at fiction ranging from the horrifying to the absurd. THE ACID LOGIC REVOLUTION HAS ARRIVED!!!’
But that’s not all!  Here’s what some fellow writers have to say about the book and my writing:
‘Wil is a cynic’s cynic, but in the depths of his filthy black heart he hasn’t forgotten how to love. Or how to write.’ 
Mike Daisey, monologuist (‘How Theater Failed America’) and author (’21 Dog Years: Doing Time @ ‘) 
‘Forbis has that rare thing, an open mind, with tons of random stuff flowing through it, and a crow’s eye for the glittering oddities of pop culture.’
John Richardson, author ‘My Father the Spy,’ ‘In the Little World’
‘It’s nice to see that not every talented young writer has forsaken webzines for blogs. Sure, he’s also blogging (quite entertainingly), but Wil Forbis also has a zine that looks very spiffy.’
 Daniel Radosh, author ‘Rapture Ready!: Adventures in the Parallel Universe of Christian Pop Culture,’ contributor ‘The New Yorker,’ ‘Playboy’ magazines.
‘If any sense is going to be made of a culture dominated by a violent movies, noisy music and silly TV shows, it’s going to come from guys like Wil Forbis who like violent movies, noisy music and silly TV shows.’ 
John Saleeby, contributor ‘National Lampoon,’ ‘Classic Rock’ magazines.
‘Whether it’s pop culture, music, or most terrifying of all to me, films, there’s one man out there ripping it all up.  Wil Forbis is the triple threat of the internet, and anyone who’s writing online should be watching their rearview mirror in white-knuckled panic for the lunatic generalissimo of the website no one wanted to know existed–Acid Logic.’
Steve Anderson, columnist ‘Reel Advice From the Video Store Guy’
To top it off, the cover and interior illustrations were lovingly rendered by acclaimed underground artist Wayno!
So how do you get yourself a copy?  You can order from Amazon by clicking the following link:

You can also order a copy direct from the publisher:
(Hint: it’s slightly cheaper from, unless you have Amazon prime or qualify for Amazon super saver shipping (orders of $25 or more.))
Barnes & Noble coming soon.
AND, if you’re in the Los Angeles area, or plan to be, hit me up directly and I can get you a copy of the book at the publisher price ($12) without any additional postage costs.  I’m not in this for the money, folks.  I just want to bring the joy of acid logic to your life.  Just reply to this e-mail, or e-mail or track me down in person etc.

                                                                                       -Wil Forbis

     As an editor, there is none better.  He’s put up with me for longer than any other editor I’ve worked with, and that’s a testament all to itself.  Believe me, I can tell you some stories.  I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy of the book and give it a thorough read through.  So show some support and buy a copy, damnit! 

     Oh, and lest I forget, the Irishman bar review hit Gusto today.  Grab a copy of The Buffalo News while it’s on stands!  Have a great weekend,

Tom Waters 




Monday Big Words Update! Week 76 on stands, happy Cinco De Mayo!

May 5, 2008

Doesn’t it just suck that all the great drinking holidays fell on a Monday this year?  This makes the third in a row that I didn’t go out for (St. Patty’s, Dyngus Day, and now this), which really chaps my ass.  Who wants to start their week off with a holiday hangover?  Ah well….

The new material rolls out in Night Life today with ‘Force Feedback’, a Night Life exclusive geared towards getting all of you deadbeats off your feet and onto you computers contributing to the column’s monthly mail bag.  Since launching the Big Words I Know By Heart column back in November of ’06, I’ve only gotten a handful of emails and comments from readers.  I want to find out who my readers are and what they have to say!  And if there’s anything (and I mean ANYTHING) that you’re curious about that I haven’t answered in a year and a half of rants, ask away!  I would really, really like to do a mail column at the end of June, so get off your ass and email me with any questions, comments and rants to:

In case you missed the mid-week update last Wednesday, Episode 58 of The Pissed Off World Of Uncle Hal is up and running with yours truly sitting in for a record-breaking seventh time as co-host.  Hal and I went completely off the reservation for two hours on local topics like Elliot Spitzer, the Chippewa bar bouncer beatdowns, Canadians and a great many national issues.  Listen in or download the new episode and vote on it at:

In the mean time, I’m counting down to my one week of vacation at Rushford Lake next Wednesday.  After I get back, I’ll be heading into the radio studio for Susan Marie’s ‘This Is Not An Apple’ program for a lengthy and candid interview on Tuesday, May 27th.  And for those of you who are looking for an update on the Buffalo anthology that Alycia Ripley and myself have been cobbling together, I threw a new post up over there, too.  Read all about it at:

That’s all I’ve got for you for today.  I’ve got a few good ideas that I’m going to try and hammer out tomorrow for June’s columns.  Keep reading, grab a Night Life and FOR THE LOVE OF GOD, SEND ME SOME EMAILS FOR THE MAILBAG COLUMN!  I don’t ask for much that often, so help a brother out here….

Have a great week!

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 75 on stands, Mailbag Questions needed!

April 28, 2008

This Monday marks the last of the recycled archival material.  This week’s issue of Night Life magazine hits the stands with the conclusion to ‘Prometheus Packs A Zippo’, a no-nonsense account of the year and a half leading up to the release of If They Can’t Take A Joke.  You can grab your free copy at most bars, clubs, and from what I’ve noticed lately, Eckhard stores. 

Next week is all about the new rants.  I’m starting off the month with ‘Force Feedback’, a Big Words print column exclusive IMPLORING all of you to contribute to the monthly mail column.  I’d still love to interact with my readers in a public forum, so do me a favor and if you haven’t before, send me ANY and ALL questions and comments to:  Email me with anything you want, but send that feedback out! 

Plans are also in the works for a public reading at one of my favorite venues some time in June, but I’m not going to blow the lid on that one until everything is finalized.  I’ll also be going into the Uncle Hal studios this week to mark my return to cringe radio, which is guaranteed to be a hoot and a half.  The new episode of the Pissed Off World of Uncle Hal should be up by the tail end of next week, so keep checking back at: 

That’s all I’ve got for you for this week.  June’s columns are half-way done and with a block of Club Watch reviews taken care of, I’m planning on knocking out the other two later in the week.  Again, do me a favor and get any questions you might have in to:  I’m not asking for lip service here.  Just shoot me a question, a comment, whatever you want and it’ll run in the late June print column.  Thanks,

Tom Waters 


Monday Big Words Update! Week 74 on stands, Think Twice Radio Gig Booked with Susan Marie

April 21, 2008

     The first stretch of the last of the recycled archival material rolls out today in Night Life with part one of ‘Prometheus Packs A Zippo’, an autobiographical tell-all that brings most readers up to the near-present day on where the rest of my life has gone.  Grab it while it’s on stands.

     I was a busy little bee this weekend, penning another new rant (‘Double Barrel Diplomacy’) about the Canadian Invasion in Buffalo, tinkering on a new blog for the YourHub site (‘Love Letter To Lancaster’) that I trimmed down to 600 words afterwards for a shot at a My View column and then covering Riley Street Station for an upcoming Gusto Club Watch bar review.  A very productive weekend, writing wise.  Since I’m going on vacation in about three weeks, I’m trying to get as many bar reviews in as I can so that there’s no lapse in my regularly scheduled publication frequency in Gusto.  The extra paychecks don’t hurt, either.  After my third bar review this Thursday, I’ll be posting pics from all three assignments up on the YourHub site for a sneak peak at the venues before they hit print publication.  That address (again) is:

     And last but not least, I’ll be doing a long overdue guest spot on Think Twice Radio with Susan Marie.  We were originally going to do an interview in July and it just got away from us, so I’ll be heading into the studio late in May.  The web site (for your curiosity/edification) is  From what she says, the site is up to something like 1,000 hits a day, so that’s some solid exposure.  I’m still beyond psyched about heading back to the Uncle Hal studios this Thursday, but Think Twice should be a hell of a lot of fun, too.  That’s all I’ve got for you for this week.  Make sure to hop on over to YourHub sometime on Friday afternoon.  Cheers,

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 73 on stands etc.

April 14, 2008

This week in Night Life magazine you’ll find the gripping, spine-tingling, teeth jarring (?) conclusion to ‘Why It’s A Good Idea Not To Taunt The Amish’, my look at the symptoms of a runaway throwaway society.  Scoop it up on stands today. 

And with three new columns down for May, I’ve only got one to go.  I’ve been brainstorming for the last few days, but I’m down for the count right now with either hay fever or a bug I picked up towards the end of last week.  Make sure to check YourHub later this week as I’ll be posting a new blog along with some adorable baby and kitten pictures in an effort to dispel the widely held notion that my life is nothing but whiskey swilling, beer guzzling debauchery.  5% of it involves kittens and babies, so you’ll get to see that side of me (if you dare!).  That’s all I’ve got for you today.  I’ll talk to you all in a few days,

Tom Waters 


Crass Menagerie (?) Back Under Construction!

April 12, 2008

This is probably confusing, but the book after the next book is back underway.  You might know that my next book, ‘Slapstick & Superego’ is complete.  For a multitude of reasons (most of them having to do with finances and time), I won’t be releasing it until sometime in the spring of 2009.  It’ll be the first collection I’ve ever released that’s comprised entirely of rants and essays.  No filler, no projects, no interviews, no fluff.  I’m really excited about it, and as a body of work, it’s the best collection I’ve written from front to back.  We’ll both just have to wait another twelve months or so to enjoy it together. 

     The book after that was tentatively titled ‘Crass Menagerie’.  I thought that was a pretty snappy name for a collection until I found out a few months ago that there was (or is) a band and a literary magazine by the same name.  I’m not sure how I sit with that.  This makes me think I should change the name, but I’ll mull it over.  After all, I’ve got a year plus to cogitate on that dilemna.  Anyway, I wrote my third new essay this week and it’s a corker.  The birth of a new trilogy (if not quadrilogy or cinco-ilogy and so on).  It’s called ‘Perpetual Estrogen’, and it’s a categorical essay about some universal truths among women.  It was a hell of a lot of fun to write and I stopped short at five rules because each rule chewed up a lot of space.  That leaves me with one more column to whip up for the month of May and 84 pages into ‘Crass Menagerie’.  Have I mentioned that it’s great to be writing again? 

Take a second and let me know what you think about the title dilemna.  Post me a comment on the site or drop me a line at:  I’m very conflicted about the situation…


The Block’s Finally Over!/Acid Logic Update

April 10, 2008

After almost eleven cursed months without so much as a coherent sentence on a blank page, I finally clawed my way out of the block today and wrote my first full length essay, ‘Quiet Time Or Else’.  It’s a little rough around the edges, but it usually takes me a few projects to get back into the groove.  It feels damned good just to flex the old cranial muscles again after the lights were out for so long, if that makes any sense.  I made a personal vow to muster up four new columns for next month’s slate of Night Life print articles and I intend on honoring it.  So in another two weeks, perhaps those of you on the bi-monthly newsletter list can get a sneak peak at some of the new stuff.  For those of you who’ve been on the list for the last few years, you know full well that when it rains, it pours.  Enough said on that topic for now.

And since we’re into a new month, Wil Forbis has whipped together a new issue of Acid Logic featuring ‘Underwear On The Outside Looking In’, one of my continuing takes on the world of comics.  Check it out by clicking over to:

That’s all I’ve got for today, but keeping tuning back for new content.  I’ll be snapping some pictures tonight and posting a new blog over on YourHub sometime tomorrow.  Thank christ this block is over.  The last few months it was really starting to wear on me.  Talk to you soon,

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 72 on stands, 20,000 hits and climbing!

April 7, 2008

A new Night Life assaults the stands today with a Big Words installment of ‘Why It’s A Good Idea Not To Taunt The Amish pt.1’, an old favorite of mine about technology and the trends of a throwaway society.  The piece originally appeared in my first book, Born Pissed.  For those of you who caught ‘Why It’s A Good Idea Not To Taunt Your Cuisinart’ when it appeared, you can see how it all started.

I’m also pleased to announce that the Big Words website just hit a new milestone this week.  As of yesterday (April 6th), the site hit 20,000 unique hits.  I think that’s pretty cool.  So for those of you who are visiting, keep coming back.  And for those of you who have been around since the beginning, thanks.  The traffic on this site has grown exponentially compared to my original site on Blogger, and for that, I’m grateful.  

I’d also like to pose a question to all of you who visit.  As the site continues to fill up with updates, I’m concerned about the space issue.  I’m nowhere close to running out of room, but I’m wondering if I should start going back and deleting out all the perfunctory updates that DON’T include any additional material/essays/poems etc.  What’s your take on that?  Feel free to post me a comment or drop me an email at:

I’m also going to try my damndest to write four new columns for next month’s block of Big Words print columns in Night Life for the first time in almost ten months.  Wish me luck!  That’s all I’ve got for you today.  I’ll talk to you all next Monday if not sooner. 


Tom Waters 


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! 


Monday Big Words Update! Week 68 on stands, ‘Creationism and The Quick Bang’ up on Acid Logic!

March 11, 2008

Here it is Monday again and a new issue of Night Life is upon us.  This week, I dug up ‘The Formaldehyde Tribe’ (from Zany Hijinx), an essay that questions the notion that it’s better to burn out than fade away and looks at some of the over-rated artists, musicians and writer’s who gained popularity because they died young instead of any degree of talent.

There’s also a new issue of Acid Logic up online for this month featuring ‘Creationism And The Quick Bang’, a foray into the evolution of the creative process.  Right now I don’t have much of any creative process to speak of, but if you want to check it out, click on over to:

I also spent last Thursday reviewing the Blue Lantern Lounge out in Elma for Gusto, so keep an eye out for that in the Buffalo News.  We had a truly unique evening in a swank atmosphere with some top notch rockabilly music from Wild One.  You can read all about it some time early in April.  That’s all I’ve got for you this week, so I’ll talk to you all next Monday.  Thanks,

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 67 on stands etc.

March 3, 2008

With no apparent end to this brutal and painful writer’s block, I had to comb through the archives again for March’s litany of Big Words columns.  This week, we’re travelling way back through time to 1998 with ‘How To Be A Slob’, a goofy look from my college years at the art of, well, being a slob.  Pick it up this week in your free copy of Night Life magazine! 


Tuesday Big Words Update! Week 63 on stands, Florida here I come!

February 5, 2008

Monday came and went this week, which means that there’s a new issue of Night Life magazine on stands with a brand new installment of ‘Big Words I Know By Heart’.  In honor of my trip to Frostproof, Florida (which I took around the exact same time last year) to visit my parents, Night Life will be publishing ‘St. Peter’s Waiting Room’, my travelog from the previous visit which was, until now, previously unpublished.  Clocking in at 13 pages, I’m splitting it up in four parts throughout the month.  I think you’ll enjoy it.  It’s an unabashed look at senior citizens, Super Wal Marts and good Southern food.  As I’ll be on vacation, I won’t be checking in next Monday, so I’ll speak to you all in about two weeks.  Scoop up a Night Life while it’s out! 


Monday Big Words Update! Week 59 on stands, ‘Mckinleys & Mad Hamburgers’ up on Acid Logic!

January 7, 2008

Now that we’re back on schedule (computer wise), the new issue of Night Life magazine hit stands today with a Big Words edition of ‘Deja Misconstrued pt.1’, a piece from my college days arguing over the supposed death of original ideas.  Scoop it up while you have the chance.  And a new issue of Acid Logic rolled out this morning with ‘Mckinleys & Mad Hamburgers’, my love/hate essay about what else: Buffalo.  Check that one out over at:

That’s all I’ve got for you this week.  I’ll catch you all next Monday, same bat time, same bat channel.  Thanks,

Tom Waters


Wednesday (?) Big Words Update…Week 58 on stands, technical difficulties

January 2, 2008

Unfortunately, a viral worm attacked my computer two weeks ago practically destroying my computer and erasing almost all of my recorded works.  Luckily, Lindsay’s brother was able to restore the computer to its original state and my essays and other assorted projects were saved.  I’m still working out some of the kinks in the system, so I was unable to log in to my own site last Monday for my regularly scheduled Night Life update.  And with no means to check my prior emails, I’m unsure as to which rants and essays ran last week or this week.  You’ve gotta love technology.  I will take this time, though, to wish you all a belated Merry Christmas and a happy New Year.  While my writer’s block continues, I feel that there’s a light approaching at the end of the tunnel.  With any luck, 2008 will bring a new surge of inspiration and a brand new batch of rants.  This upcoming Monday, we’ll resume our regular broadcasted updates.  Thanks for checking in and sorry for the unscheduled interruption,

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 55 on stands, ‘Butch & Tom’ up on Acid Logic!

December 11, 2007

This week’s Big Words I Know By Heart column marks my testament to early senility with ‘Zip Sliding Away’ (from next year’s Slapstick & Superego).  Grab a Night Life and find out how and why I manage to go days with my fly down!  Also, after a month long delay, a new issue of Acid Logic is up online with ‘Butch & Tom’ the essay about turning into my father.  Check it out over at: 


Monday Big Words ANNIVERSARY! Week 52 on stands!

November 20, 2007

I never thought the column would make it this far, but this week marks the one year anniversary of ‘Big Words I Know By Heart’ in Night Life magazine!  Happy anniversary to me!  This week’s column ‘Try Not To Think About Gun Toting Elephants’  (from If They Can’t Take A Joke) is sure to raise some eyebrows.  It’s a look at my views (extensively and using both barrels) on politics.  Part two hits the stands next week so grab the first installment this week! 


Monday Big Words Update! Week 50 on stands/’The Docker Bums’ right here!

November 6, 2007

With just two weeks away from the year anniversary of the column, this week’s issue of Night Life is running with ‘Food Stamp Feuds’ (from Zany Hijinx), a very old favorite from almost ten years ago about the categorical ridiculousness of talk shows.  With the lengthy nature of my blocks, I’m working on keeping the column stocked with fresh material for as long as I can until the muse strikes again.  And in case you missed it, here’s ‘Docker Bums’ (from First Person, Last Straw), a sound-off on the laziness of pre-sliced cheese cubes and other nonsensicals.  Have a great week and I’ll give you all a shout out next Monday,

Tom Waters

The Docker Bums

Now I’m not an American-basher by any means. Unlike Johnny Depp or any other notable celebrity who’s moved out of the country and passed judgment on the bulk of us, I don’t pick Western culture to shreds, but we’re starting to get really, really lazy. I realized this last week while I was in the frozen food section of a super store doing my grocery shopping and pondering the existence of precut cheese cubes. The fact that they were there bothered me greatly. There must be a market for precut cheese cubes. Is it really difficult to slice cheese into geometrically pleasing chunks? Is it time consuming? I don’t think so. And yet there must be a big market out there if the average consumer is willing to pay an extra buck fifty to get their cheese sliced in advance. It was a bit maddening, really. We’re getting lackadaisical here when we can’t cube our own cheese at home. We’re slacking. If this continues, the opposable digits we use to slice our own cheese will be replaced with a machine six or seven hundred years from now and our genetic process will weed said digits out of our DNA chain. I love cheese, I really do. That’s why it troubled me to see it prepackaged in the laziest fashion possible. I’ve even eaten pre-cubed cheese at other people’s houses. You may think that I’m running out of interesting things to write about, but bear with me. Microwave ovens have replaced regular ovens in a day to day cooking regimen. I’m almost completely and symbiotically dependent on my microwave. It was a sign of progress. Recently, I’ve gotten accustomed to my George Forman grill. Why heat up a hamburger on a pan when you’d just have to wash the pan and put it in the dishwasher? Now you can flash fry the thing, dump the grease bin, and move on with your life!

Some inventions are time savers and others just go to far, like peanut butter and jelly in one jar. That’s disgusting. Is it overly tedious to grab two jars out of a cupboard and mix it’s contents? Are people the world over collectively groaning because they can’t bear to grab a jar of peanut butter and a jar of jelly during one meal preparation? What’s become of us?

Maybe I never noticed it until I made steps to become self-reliant. Following this wheel of logic, we arrive at dishwasher cubes. I have little pumice sized stones that I drop into the reservoir for my washer. I used to use the powder stuff, but why bother now? It makes me weep to think about how much time it took to open the box, tilt the box of detergent towards the washer, and have to decide how much powder to put in. Now for a couple dollars more, I have a cube that I open up and drop in the washer. This is patently ridiculous.

Margarita mixes, bagged salads, and three step boxed casseroles. Making a drink is so time consuming, so why not just spend the extra five dollars and pour the whole thing out of one bottle? Who wants to go through the trouble of buying lettuce, carrots, and radishes when you can get it all in one bag with five hundred percent of your daily preservatives thrown in at no extra cost? Tired of going through the motions with your sheperd’s pie? We’ll do it for you! Dump the mix into a pan, add water and pre-cubed beef and you’ve got your very own beef stew! And it’s microwave friendly! I think we’re all sick of taking a can of soup out of the pantry, having to walk over to the can opener, open the damned thing, pour it into a bowl, and heat it. Now you just put a soup pod into the microwave, heat, eat, and throw it out! In another year, we’ll have soup pods that self destruct after they’re empty! It’ll save you the long trip to the garbage can.

I don’t think it’s all food either. Clip-on ties. Stain-guarded pants. The fashion disaster of skorts. If you don’t know how to tie a tie, ask someone to stick your head in a dishwasher and have them set it on “imbecile” for you. Tying a tie is not rocket science. Washing stains out of your khakis might be difficult, but is it that difficult? And skorts. At the risk of sounding like Jerry Seinfeild, it’s not a skirt, it’s not shorts! Don’t wear them, ever. I’m glad that fanny packs aren’t enjoying a heyday anywhere other than in Canada, so I’m hoping that skorts are over with as well.

It’s bad enough that people are too lazy to read book-sized books on a regular basis. We’d rather power-scan fifteen different running banners on a cable channel with a cute anchor woman feeding us factoids in a happy, non-threatening manner. We’d rather hop onto and catch up on world events in 2.5 minutes and sign off. Or read a blurb-filled magazine with happy looking pull quotes and pretty pictures. Enough is enough! How much lazier can we get?! This is out of control!

Western culture is turning into a Kubrick science fiction film. Maybe I like going through the routines and less time-saving motions of doing things for myself, but it’s good exercise. If we keep this shit up, people will be going terminally senile in their mid-30s because their minds are too goddamned idle. My grandfather used to wash his dishes by hand, if you can imagine such a thing. It was the one time out of the day that he had to think and turn the day’s events over in his head. There’s a Buddhist term for finding spiritual harmony in everyday functions and activities. I’m no Buddhist, but I like the concept. There are a million useless chores and tasks we go through everyday, but by injecting a little bit of joy into them, we elevate them to something more than mechanical boredom. Siddhana. That’s it. You’re not going to get that from Auto-opening your Pre-Sliced Monterey Jack Cubes and Insta-Melting them into your Turbo Soup and spilling them onto your stain guarded pants. For chrissakes.

this sign off powered by EssayWorks 7.1,

Tom “Generic Nickname” Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 49 on stands, Carrie Gardner’s book is out!

October 29, 2007

This Monday, I’m rounding out the month with ‘The Docker Bums’ (from If They Can’t Take A Joke), a Carlinesque look at how lazy our society is getting from the pre-sliced cheese cube to microwavable soup.  Make sure to check it out in this week’s issue of Night Life! 

Also, my buddy Carrie Gardner’s first book, ‘Evil Is A Terrific, Rubbery Goblet’ is now available at AuthorHouse.  I stand by my claim that she’s the best living poet I’ve ever read, so if you want a great read, grab yourself a copy over at:

Show some Buffalo support, Big Words fans!  I’ll talk to you all next week,

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 48 on stands/One to Grow On…

October 23, 2007

This week’s issue of Night Life features the thrilling conclusion to ‘Why It’s A Good Idea Not To Taunt Your Cuisinart’, the technophobic rant about how our household toys are getting too smart for their own good.  Grab an issue while you can!  And as of Thursday, I’ll be 32 (argh!).  I’m definitely feeling my age this year.  That’s all I’ve got for you today.  Have a great week,

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 47 on stands, War & Pizza right here!

October 15, 2007

With just five weeks left on the year long run for the ‘Big Words I Know By Heart’ column in Night Life magazine, I’m shocked and suprised that a)its stayed in print this long without Night Life or myself getting sued and b)that its developing a following.  It’s hard to believe that its already been almost a year since Big Words launched in print.  Today also happens to be my three year anniversary with Lindsay, and that’s even more shocking.  Happy anniversary, honey!  Time flies…

At any rate, this week’s issue of Night Life holds ‘Why It’s A Good Idea Not To Taunt Your Cuisinart’ (from Crass Menagerie), a sequel of sorts to ‘Why It’s A Good Idea Not To Taunt The Amish’ regarding how technology has gotten far smarter than I will ever be.  Scoop it up on stands this week!  And in case you missed it, here’s ‘War & Pizza’ in its entirety (from First Person, Last Straw).  That’s all I’ve got for you this week.  We’re five weeks away from my goal.  I’ll talk to you all next Monday,

Tom Waters 

War & Pizza

I move at the speed of light. I have the ability to infiltrate the most heavily guarded compounds in Buffalo and I leave without a trace. And I see everyday citizens when their guard is down the most. That’s right, I’m a pizza delivery guy. Two months ago I was going out of my mind with free time from my day job. Two days off in a row was too much unscheduled time in one block. And then I thought about how both of my brothers (at one time in their lives) worked at Mazia’s Pizza in the hollow. So I went to Mazia’s and asked Rob (one of the owners) if they were looking for any help. While filling out the application, I thought about how unqualified I was for the driver position. I’ve got a D.U.I., I’ve never had a job as a driver, I’ve got a terrible sense of direction, I didn’t know their delivery area that well and I haven’t worked in a restaurant since the age of fourteen. After nagging him for a week, he told me he might have something. I started the following day.

Like a super hero, every Friday I change discreetly at my office job and bolt out at five o’clock with my alternate identity. I have to wear this really embarrassing white t-shirt that says ‘got pizza?’ on the front that makes my gut look even bigger than it is. I would feel about the same wearing a shirt that says ‘got dignity?’ on it with a huge uncircumcised penis on the back, but rules are rules. When I get to the place I have to slap a mobile sign on my car and spit on the suction cups to keep the sign from detaching and flapping back and forth for the duration of my shift (which it does anyway). Rob told me about some seven dollar cigarette adaptor (that we rent at the beginning of the shift) that the driver’s use to light the sign at night but, since I’m cheap, I’ve never brought it up and haven’t used it yet. And then it’s go speed racer, go.

My job there reminds me of a game, Crazy Taxi. You tear ass over to one section of town to drop someone off breaking any traffic laws that get in the way, pick someone else up and tear ass to the other section of town. That’s what we do for six straight hours. Run and gun. My first day I went bounding out of the car with each order, sprinting up the steps to make sure that the person I was delivering to got their food as quickly and efficiently as possible. Now I could care less, because you never know how well or how poorly someone is going to tip. There are a few indicators, but you can never be too sure. Plus I’m not wet behind the ears anymore, and it no longer takes me forty five minutes to find the tough locales. Like any job you get better with practice, and it’s a tough old learning curve.

Nobody tells you that the Town Of Clarence (as well as the surrounding delivery area of Newstead, Akron, and Lancaster) has duplicate streets. And through trial and error you get to know your area. Roads that change names halfway through. Roads that seem to run from one end of New York State to the other. And neighborhoods that are so new that they aren’t on any existing map. I’ve been to places in my town that I never knew existed and I’ve lived here all my life. Akron’s fun too. No, actually, it’s a goddamned nightmare. It’s the local Indian reservation, and a lot of their streets have no signs, the houses have no numbers, and the majority of the roads are the width of a construction plank and haven’t been repaired since Custer’s Last Stand. Try maneuvering that catastrophe.

The deck is stacked against us to begin with, as a lot of orders aren’t ready on the busy days until twenty minutes to the hour mark. Some days I try to crank and make some money, which means you have to stomp on the gas and cut through the streets like butter, navigating the back roads and knowing where the traffic is going to be at one time of the day and most of all, not forgetting anything. There’s nothing worse than having to take a bottle of pop back to some bearded sasquatch who lives on the edge of civilization. And other days I tool along at my own pace, enjoy the view, and end up making some pretty good money anyway.

The view is gorgeous some times. I’ve seen women in bikinis soaping up their monster trucks on hot Saturday afternoons. I’ve seen car wrecks so preposterous that they look like a Dali painting. Once I saw a truck/horse trailer combo that ran straight into the side of a church. I’ve seen a lot of beautiful sunsets, sprawling countryside, and the vital signs of my community. Soccer games. Couples going for walks. Friends out on their porches sharing a cocktail. And the cursed, buggering bicyclists. Just once I’d like to watch one of those spandex shorted, penis helmet wearing fruits do a somersault off the grill of my Buick. The cyclists are a real nuisance on the back roads. They ride around on streets where they really shouldn’t be on their seven hundred dollar Italian twenty speeds and take up the entire street. That’s always something to look for ward to when I’m taking some bumpkin corner out in the middle of Timbuktu at seventy five miles an hour on two wheels.

In addition to this, the delivery driver has to deal with other people’s abhorrent driving habits. Either I smoke too many cigarettes and it’s affected my night vision so much that it appears as if everyone has their high beams on after dark, or the whole world has their high beams on after dark. About a year ago, car manufacturers changed the headlight glare to a blistering white arc. Add to this the fact that a third of the people on the roads drive sports utility vehicles and you get an oncoming rush of light that would shame the heads up display on the craft from Close Encounters Of The Third Kind. If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em. After nine o’clock, I put the high beams on and keep them on. At least they slow down and curse at me while I’m driving by, too.

There’s a rainbow of road kill that you could never imagine unless you drive for a living. I feel bad for truck drivers because they must see a veritable abbattoir during their travels. Squished possum, ground up squirrel, pureed woodchuck, abstract cat, and half a deer. There’s too many deer in this town, and they keep trying to do something about it, but they won’t go away. Fortunately, I have a semi automatic rifle to rectify the problem. Any creature that stands or stumbles into the middle of the road and stares at an object ten times heavier than them traveling at an alarming rate of speed directly at them is too stupid to live anyway. Problem is, I’m like my mom. I’ll instinctually stomp on the breaks or swerve if I see some innocent woodland creature because I can’t have it on my conscious. It’s not something that can be deprogrammed because it’s intuitive. Which is fantastic because after dark in some areas of Clarence the roads turn into a dress rehearsal for Dr. frigging Doolittle. Getting to know the roads takes perseverance and finesse. It’s very frustrating to jump through all these hoops to get a rotten tip.

The people in Akron are cheaper than my big brother. Actually, my big brother lives in Akron. I used to tip poorly when the pizza guy came to my door. I would round up and tip a buck. If I had to deliver to myself on a Friday, I’d kick my ass now. Like my co-worker Matt (Mazia’s resident veteran employee) says, “We don’t get anything near fifteen percent.” Some of the guys I’ve known employ some passive aggressive tactics, backing out in people’s lawns, running over water sprinklers that are built into the ground, and flat out telling people to their face what cheap pricks they are.

Thankfully, Mazias builds a trip charge into every order, so at the very least, you make half of that. I don’t really take it out on the customer, but I remember the names and I don’t go out of my way to get their order to them first thing either. One fellow told me that, upon receiving a gratuity of about eighty cents, he counted out the change from his pocket, gave it back, and said, “You need it more than I do, buddy.” That’s gotta hurt. Stingy McScrooge knows when he’s screwing you out of a tip, too. These people send their eight year old kids to the door. Then you know you’re getting nothing. The next time someone sends their child to meet me on the steps, I’m taking the kid with me and we’ll negotiate an appropriate tip later. When people pay by check, I know I’m shit out of luck. And when you walk up the steps of some dilapidated shack that looks like Navin Johnson’s homestead, don’t expect much.

It all evens out, though. Some people take care of you, and those are the people we’ll blow through traffic signs for and mow down a school of ducks crossing the street to get to. Plus the hot chicks. There are a few places in Spaulding Lake (one of the well to do sections of town) that the guys jump on to take. And generally, the more drunk or stoned the customer is, the better the tip.

Ninety five percent of the people I work with smoke pot daily. It’s the nature of the business, I guess. I smoked my own weight worth in my teens, so I’ve had my fill and a few beers do the job these days. One of the managers (I won’t say which), who looks like the straightest of the bunch told me that he won’t get out of bed in the morning unless he’s firing up a fat bowl. I figured going into the position that a few coworkers might partake of some cannabis from time to time (for medicinal reasons, of course), but almost everyone there smokes their gills out. Two of the drivers I work with do it on the job, too, which I think is funny. Back when I was a hippie, some ten years ago, all I wanted to do after a joint was listen to a John Lennon album and take a nap. To this day, whenever I listen to Plastic Ono Band I get sleepy. But I can’t imagine these kids toking out and then kicking in the afterburners getting an order out. Each to their own.

The individuals that make up the staff are varied but strange in a way I haven’t seen grouped so heavily before in a job setting. I’m used to being the token weird guy at any company I work for, and at Mazias, everybody’s weird. Rob (one of the owners) is the level headed marketing genius. He’s the p.r. man who puts signed celebrity photos up on the walls, goes to the charity functions and the town circle jerks, and he started the company web site. Tony, the other owner, is the work mule who started the business. He’s constantly making the pies, scrubbing the dishes, and doing whatever it takes to expedite orders and keep the place running like a well oiled machine.

Jason (one of the managers) is the psychotic figurehead who goes off on the gold brickers. Every job needs a ball busting tyrant to keep things in line, so I don’t dislike him for filling a needed archetype. Plus I stay out of his way and do my job. My little brother (who coincidentally got fired by Jason) is disgusted with my corporate mentality. I empathize for the bad guy whenever we watch movies and my reasoning always falls under “he’s just doing his job.” Darth Vader built a space station to blow up planets? He was just doing his job. Bugsy Siegel beats a man to death in order to reduce loss prevention? He was just doing his job. Jason is very good at what he does, and, well, he’s just doing his job.

Bryan is the wild card of the managing clique. You can tell the managers at Mazias from their blue t shirts. The grunts wear white shirts. Bryan makes unsettlingly astute homosexual jokes about him and myself while I’m there. He pinches my nipples with tongs and slaps my ass on occasion. It’s a bit scary at times, but I make my share of lewd, off color remarks, too. Big surprise, right?

Aaron (one of the cooks) is a gambling maniac. Aside from betting the ponies, he manages to place bets on games taking place on the television out in the dining room, bets on every sporting event (legal and illegal) from here to Zimbabwe, and takes a turn at many a game of chance.

On Monday nights a group of us set up a black jack table after work. A lot of the guys are real high stakes rollers. Hell, on Mondays, there’s constant gambling. Monday is Gamblers Anonymous night. Craps, black jack, twosies, roulette, cockfighting; it all takes place in the back. We keep the roosters in the freezer on the other nights of the week. These guys are maniacs, betting entire paychecks, their girlfriends, and staking human organs in order to stay in the game. I get ribbed on because I only play two dollars and walk away after that’s gone. When Aaron plays he gets a wet sheen of excited sweat on his forehead and displays symptoms that would make one think he was hopped up on a pound of cocaine. It’s a pure gambling rush. He rocks to and fro, darts his eyes wildly from person to person, and rubs his nose waiting for the next hit on the rotation. They’re very good, and that’s why I never play for more than two bucks.

The other Erin is the resident belladonna, and she knows it. She’s a striking blonde with deep blue eyes and a body that could stop the planetary alignment if she wished it. Obviously she was one of the first girls I offended there when I began my employment. After two shifts, she told me that she hoped “I got some incurable disease and died”. It took a week or two to get over that. But now we’re pals. I continue to make lewd and inappropriate remarks and she volleys them back without missing a beat. Working with a platoon of young men has made her very sharp insult and catcall-wise. It’s made all the girls sharp, for that matter. Stacy (one of the sub makers) goes on ass slapping sprees. Ass slapping seems to be a recurring theme in this piece, doesn’t it? The sexual harassment board would call in a SWAT team if they ever spent a day back in the kitchen. If they spent an hour in the back, they’d deploy tear gas.

Matt, one of the other drivers, is my pal. He’s been working at Mazias for so long that he could be their company mascot. He’s tall, a bit full figured, and he always has a beatific, yet dopey grin on his face. We work together on Mondays, and I really look forward to them. He’s a bright guy who goes to school and hasn’t really wished for much more out of a job (until he graduates) than the flexibility, the easy money, and the complacency that the job offers.

A lot of the employees are in content little ruts. I don’t plan on staying there for too long, but it’s a fun ride while it lasts. The money practically falls into your lap, you drive most of the time, and everyone gets along with everyone else. One person is in a psychotically bad mood for each shift, but that’s life. Plus the food is fantastic. After a hard day at my other job, I can come over to Mazias and within one or two hours, I’m in a great mood again. I love the job, and it’s been so long since I’ve worked somewhere where I was actually proactively nostalgic about leaving. There will always be a cubby hole in my heart (as well as the rest of the Waters’ boys) reserved for Mazias Pizzeria. Along with a ten speed bicycle bell somewhere under my wheel well.

Got game?

Tom ‘calzone for brains’ Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 46 on stands, ‘Best Laid Nervous Breakdowns’ Up on Acid Logic!

October 9, 2007

This Monday brings the conclusion to the two part epic ‘War & Pizza’ (from First Person, Last Straw) in this week’s issue of Night Life.  Scoop it up on stands while it’s out.  And since we’re in the beginning stretch of a new month, there’s a new edition of Acid Logic up online with ‘Best Laid Nervous Breakdowns’ (from Crass Menagerie), my ode to the insanity (for men) of wedding planning.  You can check that out by clicking over to:

 That’s all I’ve got for you this week, folks.  Enjoy and I’ll talk to you all next Monday!


Monday Big Words Update! Week 44 on stands, ‘Cherry Trees & White House Interns’ Up on Acid Logic

September 24, 2007

After two weeks, I’m finally back.  And since it’s Monday, that means that the new issue of Night Life is out with a Big Words edition of ‘Gameday Blues’ (from Slapstick & Superego), a now-classic rant about the scourge of armchair quarterbacks we have in Buffalo.  Grab a copy on stands if you haven’t seen it.  Also, the latest issue of Acid Logic is up online with ‘Cherry Trees And White House Interns’, a meditation on, well, honesty being the best policy.  You can check that one out by clicking over to:

As for the last two weeks, Night Life ran the conclusion to ‘Perpetual Money 3: Wingman Of The Year’ along with the unedited version of ‘Butch & Tom’.  I’ll leave you with the full version of ‘Perpetual Money 3’ for you enjoyment.  I’ll talk to you all next week,

Tom Waters

Perpetual Money III: Wingman Of The Year

Wingman (noun): One who selflessly finds and

secures prospective single women for his available

friends, family and other single loved ones.

It’s hard to believe, but it’s been nine years since I wrote (or more accurately, channeled) ‘Perpetual Money‘, my original manifesto on the rules of singles club dating (published in my first book, Born Pissed from America House). I still consider it the closest thing to personal perfection that I’ve ever written, and in terms of length, flow, humor and style I continue to try and top that single essay with mixed results. A year and a half later (or thereabouts), I wrote ‘Perpetual Money II: The Accidental Gigolo’ which included ten more commandments regarding club going, singles dating, and other detritus (published in my third book, First Person, Last Straw from Authorhouse).

I never thought I’d write another follow up, as the phase of lounge dating has come and gone in my life. I still go out to bars, but it’s for different reasons, and when I was actively trying to date women in clubs, eighty percent of the time they wanted nothing to do with me, or I was too shy to approach one off the cuff, so to speak. Well now we’ve got ourselves an epic trilogy, because it hit me like a ton of bricks this week: I’ve turned into something of a jewish matchmaker on the club circuit. Now that I’m in a committed relationship and I’m no longer a threat to my male peers or a prospect to damaged women, I still play a valuable and needed role in the club stratosphere: The Wingman. A guy who will go the extra mile for his emotionally crippled or socially retarded compatriots. A man who will dive into a group of beautiful, heavily made-up and utterly unattainable girls and talk up his friends while making friends with them at the same time.

I have officially evolved and I’m glad that I haven’t been weaned out of the discotheque gene pool for my status or age. At 31, I can still get my groove on, but I do so with my girlfriend, a small posse of well wishers, hangers-on and close friends, and (alarmingly and refreshingly enough) I pass out and make a gigantic psychotic scenes with less frequency. I’ve even taken up eating while drinking at the same time, which used to be a trick in bars as difficult if not more than patting your head and rubbing your belly at the same time. I am now considered something of a godfather to partying among my fellow drinkers, whether we’ve met or not, and writing bar and strip club reviews for the last five years hasn’t hurt. Every so often when we’re out slamming shots, buddying up to the staff, or just kicking back on a patio during the summer with Cosmopolitans and tall, foamy pints, I’ll see a girl or a group look over and whisper ’He writes bar reviews’. I’m touched by that. Getting back to the topic at hand, though…

To be a good wingman, you must be selfless, friendly, and very un-weird. The point is to get some ass for your friends on the front line, so you need to go in without fear and talk a line of bullshit better than Al Sharpton. You also have to know if your friends are capable of hooking up once they get past the protective bubble of hotness that scares them away from available women. So you’re dealing with a full year subscription of issues right there. In my experience, some people just can’t make things happen in bars, with or without assistance, so don’t put in the legwork if it’s being expended on a lost cause. Herein I’ll impart my final ten commandments on club dating in my role as a professional proxy for one night stands. Take copious notes and contact me in the quad office after three on Tuesdays and Thursdays during my office hours if you have any further questions.

Rule #22: Hot Women Are Not Difficult To Talk To: Once you can wrap your head around this one, you’re set. Hot girls are people, just like you and me. They put their crotchless panties and red leather hooker skirts on one leg at time just like anybody else before they go out, so once you truly accept that in your heart and your head, get past it. As a professional Wingman, I enjoy just waltzing up to a group or finding a central location along the bar and letting them lean over next to me to order shots (since I look harmless) and breaking the ice by asking what sort of fruity/difficult/flaming/sexual innuendo shot that they’re drinking for the evening. Sometimes I’ll take my friend’s money and buy them a round of drinks while playing said single guy up. It’s what I do. It’s a personal thrill to capture the attention of four drunken horny girls at the same time, but it goes no further than that. I could be a soulless and sociopathic degenerate by collecting phone numbers on the sly or making cheap hits for my own personal gain, but I don’t. I’m above that. I know when I’ve got a good thing going, so why compromise it? Most guys this late in a relationship are on terminal lockdown at home with their significant others clipping coupons and talking about what housewares they’re going to tandem shop for the next day at Target, so I don’t want to jeoprodize the amount and illusion of personal freedom I’m given. Which leads me to my next rule,

Rule #23: Know Your Limits: Pissing yourself, falling off the stool, drooling, lighting cocktail napkins on fire or punching out the cover band on stage while you’re enjoying a ’night out’ with the ball in chain are all frowned upon. While your primary goal as an amateur partier may or may not be hooking your bros up during the Brodeo TM,

you certainly shouldn’t mess up a good time and end up spending your weeknights at home with a security bracelet attached to your ankle looking at carpet swathes and talking about baby showers. Behave yourself, find out what you can get away with, and don’t go one inch past that crucial boundary. I get away with murder, so again, I am lucky. I’ve hiccupped through entire mix tapes sitting in the passenger seat on the ride home while shoveling burritos into my mouth and dumping them all over my jacket, but this is a once in a while sort of thing. I’ve passed out in the passenger seat and I have a bad habit of cleaning out my car on the ride home tossing my entire back seat out the side window at three in the morning on main highways, but this is also after far too many free shots and the incumbent excitement that accompanies being out with a large group of good friends and hangers on. When you start knocking over barstools ‘by accident’ or projectile vomiting onto your plate of appetizers, it’s time to scale back a bit and become a quick study in impulse control. If you’re not allowed out, you won’t be able to fulfill your civic duty as a Wingman.

Rule #24: Lie Frequently And Spectacularly About Your Friends: ‘He’s 29, he still lives at home and he works part time at a grocery store’ will not get a girl hot and bothered. ‘He’s 33, he hasn’t been in a relationship for over a decade, and he hates non-gun carrying liberals’ won’t work, either. You are responsible for aiding and abetting in getting your buddies laid. You’re off the market, they’re on, and they don’t have a clue, so this is where you come in. Odds are that things won’t turn into a long lasting and healthy union if they hook up so much as they will end up pressing ham against the rear windshield to the rock ballads of Poison at four in the morning with the motor running, so make some shit up! ‘My friend just got back from Iraq and he’s going back into bodybuilding after he donates his tour of duty money to the local orphanage.’ works, or for another example, ‘Drew is hung like a tire iron. He’s packing some heat down there and he sits that way because he doesn’t want to break any cartilage or muscle tissue in his massive and abnormally large member.’ will also garnish a certain degree of success.

Rule #25: Free Drinks Make The World Go Round: I’m no saint, and odds are that you aren’t either, so charge a going rate per lead. You need free drinks, the girls need free drinks, everyone needs free drinks. The worst thing that happens at the end of the night is a case of whiskey dick, and if you’re a Wingman, you’re in a committed relationship so the embarrassment phase of that is long gone and sometimes, even expected and appreciated after long bouts of sweaty, week long monkey sex. There’s a reason why they call it social lubricant: it greases the gears of getting to know new people and strengthens the bonds between old friends looking to wax nostalgic, so pour it on! Help yourself to three free pitchers from down the bar or slam three shots of buttery nipples if that’s what it takes. Women go through their whole goddamned lives drinking free shots so if you don’t convince your fellow drinkers to sport a round they will be instantly disqualified. I know this goes against what I said in the second installment of this series but I’ve learned better since then. Girls NEVER pay for drinks. It sucks, but it’s a fact of life so pry open that wallet and let the money fly. Open up the tab and there’s a good chance that someone else will be opening up your pants for you by the end of the night.

Rule #26: Make Friends With Your Bartender Or Waitress: Tip well and tip often. Tip over the top, off the cuff, make some bank shots and drop some fives on the bar at the first round so they remember you. I’ve got a home base for a bar now, but I still go out to other places and my time tested universal rule for tipping has never failed me. Be patient, introduce yourself, remember the bartenders name and ALWAYS tip five dollars on the first drink order and one to two on each additional. It’s a bartenders job (as well as a good Wingman’s) to facilitate tawdry and short lived relationships but if they don’t like you and you’re not taking care of them, you’ll get jack squat in return. If you buy the bartender shots, get to know them, and point out girls and ask about their eligibility for swinging from a portable wall mounted sex harness for your friend’s benefit, they will clue you in. Bartenders have a god-like power inside of a club: they pour the drinks. They dispense liquefied magic at their own time and pace in direct proportion to how much they do or do not like you. Don’t mess that up. In addition, they talk to everyone along the bar and away from the bar at some point in the evening, so they hold the key to a million sad stories, single proclamations and tawdry trysts. Invest a small amount of capital and the return in punani dollars will be above any publicly traded price on the stock market. That will be the first time I use the word punani in an essay. That was the last. I don’t even know if I spelled it right, but moving on…

Rule #27: It Doesn’t Hurt To Outsource: Time and again I’ve attempted to set friends up in the comfort and luxury of my own home and it always comes off as a matchmaking session. You don’t want to scare off either party, so invite them and twenty other people out for no reason whatsoever and watch the sparks fly. I enjoy the company and conversation of the opposite sex, and it’s no secret that I’m friends with a lot of young and eligible women. I’m also friends with a lot of single guys who make a decent living and retain a great sense of humor. Bring these worlds together and blammo!: coitus. Don’t bother orchestrating a hook-up at the house or apartment level unless it’s during a party and even then it’s risky. Take it on the road, find a bar and the rest is natural. If you know a place that doesn’t have a lot of single girls, invite some that you do know and see if things click. Besides, single girls are more comfortable if they have a friend guy in the vicinity as a security blanket. I never thought I’d be a heterosexual male with female friends in a club setting, but there you go, girlfriend. It’s your birthday. And we’re going to party like…it’s your birthday.

Rule #28 : Don’t Set Someone Up When They Don’t Want To Get Set Up: Some people prefer the crippling pain of blue testicles or they’d rather nurse their pain quietly out of a tall pint glass and wonder what it’s like to enjoy the company of the opposite sex. Odds are that if you have a friend who hasn’t gotten laid in nigh over a decade, they just might like the company of the same sex but they’re too repressed to realize it. If they’re not trying and they’re wrapped in a sea of neuroses so tightly that they’d rather you didn’t introduce them to a Czechoslovakian gymnast with an opposable pelvic bone, let it go. Some people can’t make it work in bars, others need the guidance and skilled craft of a Wingman, and some are nestled so deep into the closet that when they finally come out the ensuing force propelling them outward will be not unlike that of a NASA launch. Don’t make them any more uncomfortable by forcing them into confronting someone from the opposite sex or making friends with new, sexy and interesting people. Plus there are some men with mommy issues so ingrained into their upbringing that they should be strapping a nipple onto their drinks and meeting up with their own mother’s for late night trysts in seedy hotels. Enough said on that subject.

Rule #29: Separate The Herd And Find The Weak Link In The Chain: I used to think that every group had an ‘ugly friend’ and this is true but it’s not always easy to find in a lineup of say, college co-eds, a nurse’s after work party, or a small gathering of The Suicide Girls (meow). While they may all appear blindingly smokingly, I-need-to-unstuck-my-shirt-and-think-about-baseball-before-I-approach-the-chalkboard hot, one of them is the ugly girl of the pack on the inside. She’s the one with the inferiority complex who will work that much harder in bed for your buddy, so as a Wingman, you have to muster up the courage and the personal sacrifice and listen to determine which girl is getting ignored, cut off in conversation, and picked on. She’s the ugly duckling, whether she’s six feet tall with 36 D’s or not. Listen, Locate and Cross Pollinate. Take her aside and guide her towards the target. Don’t make sudden movements, or you’ll scare off the subject.

Rule #30: When Things Are Going Well, Get The Hell Out: If your intentions are true as a bona fide Wingman, get the hell out of there! When the two strike up a meaningful conversation and start trading information about their favorite music, comment interests and all that other miserable shit we all go through during the courting phase of a one night stand or long term death sentence, by all means, leave the premises! Don’t be a cock-block and evacuate immediately. Talk the guy up when he’s not on the scene, scale back once they foster their own conversation, and then go. I don’t care where you go, but you can’t stay here. It’s his intrinsic duty to call you with steamy details and meticulous notations the next day, so opt out and allow the magic to happen. You’ve just made a friend for life.

And lastly, Rule #31: The Object Is To Indoctrinate Your Single Friends So That They Can Be As Miserable As You Are 30% Of The Time: Single people are annoying with their unlimited personal freedom, financial who-gives-a-damn attitude and the spring in their step. What gives them the right? Dangle the cherry over their noses, let them frolic blissfully into the bear trap and POW!, it’s over. Now they too can enjoy the guilt trips, weight gain, neuroses, sleep instead of sex, theme nights, couples activities, housewares shopping trips to Target for shit that nobody needs anyways, sexual withholding, fights for the sake of breaking a silent pause or personal sense of peace and happiness, and so on. In the process of evolution, they are a threat and an anomaly. Single people should not be. So hook them up with somebody and take them off the market before they remind you what it’s like to be single and miserable instead of attached and miserable.

I am, of course, kidding. A little bit. I’m relieved that I don’t have to hit up the meat market five to seven times a week anymore. The pressure is off and now I can simply go out, enjoy some great food, the company of an eclectic mix of friends, and strong drink. If getting my friend’s laid in the process occurs at some point in the evening, then I have truly accomplished something wonderful in my lifetime. There is no greater gift than the gift of ass. I believe Charles Dickens said that. When I am awarded the Honorary Lifetime Achievement Award For Outstanding Excellence In The Field Of Wingmanship, I will accept it with a Brodeo TM handshake and the three fingered bowling ball high sign. This is what monogamous men in serious relationships do. It is your duty to god and country. Now get to it!

So ends our illustrious trilogy,

Tom ’lounge godfather’ Waters


Monday Big Words Update: Week 41 on stands, Perpetual Money 2 right here!

September 4, 2007

With Labor Day today, I’m not sure if Night Life hits stands today or tomorrow, but September marks the final installment of ‘Perpetual Money’, ‘Perpetual Money 3: Wingman Of The Year’ (from the upcoming collection, Crass Menagerie.  I won’t be able to update next week (or the week after) as I’ll be out of town, but I’ll drop a line on the last Monday of this month.  In the meantime, I’ll leave you with the full version of ‘Perpetual Money 2: The Accidental Gigolo’.  Enjoy!

Tom Waters



Perpetual Money II: The Accidental Gigolo

gigolo / jig-e-lo/ n, pl -los 1. : a man living on the earnings of a woman.

2. a professional dancing partner or male escort.

I’ve been clubbing for two and a half years now and I just can’t bring myself to stop. It’s flaky. I’m above it all. Why in the hell would I want to consort with the scum of the earth and the most vacuous of the airheads? Because a bar is one of the few places where, better or worse, you can walk in and leave the world behind you. You can be as sociable or as reclusive as you wish. There’s no other public environment like it (save the hand puppet brothel I went to in Ottawa five months ago). I broke my teeth in the lounge latitude and learned a few rules of dating. And now I’ve achieved tenure. I’m a fogey by techno standards. But old dogs learn new tricks and sometimes they keep their wits about them.

Once I was a fool, I was petrified…okay, I’m not going to start that old tune. But once I was a young protege, learning by riding the coat-tails of others. In the span of two years, I’ve gained my p.h.d in booty calls, last calls, and beer balls. After you’ve mastered the first ten rules, you’ll still need guidance in the ways of club dating. And if that’s what the good lord put me here for, then damnit, I’ll help you progress further. Here’s the next ten commandments for chasing shots and chasing women. Learn them, live by them, and follow them to the letter! And don’t say I never gave you anything, you ingrates!Rule #11: Adhere To The Rule of Three Bars, Plus One or Thirty
It’s all well and fine and grand and good to have your one favorite bar. Just don’t staple your ass to the stool and petrify yourself there, is all. The discerning club person should go to at least three businesses a night, starting at around nine o’clock. You can mix and match the order in which you attend, but this is the order that works for me:

1. The old stand-by-A place you’ve been to millions of times where you’re juiced in with the bartender and you can get cheap pitchers and reasonable shots. The night will last a lot longer if you don’t piss away a twenty spot on your first two bottles of ale. Trust me.

2. The new place that everybody’s talking about-Clubs are very fickle. Sometimes the place that has go go cages, laser light shows and the heppest dj in town on Friday has tumbleweeds on Saturday. So check the place out for the first time after you’ve got your gameface on, and if it’s cool, you can convert it to bar one. If there’s some balding hairy man polishing the glasses and talking to himself behind the bar when you come in, at least you can say you went to your stand-by and the night wasn’t a total waste.

3. The come-down-This is generally some armpit of a dive of a gin mill. Either that or a strip club. The place to hit at the end of the night when you’re fighting back dealing with the fact that you have to go to work in the morning and you want to hang onto the night for just a little bit longer. Where you can dump a handful of quarters onto the bar and pay for your last drink of the night. Or, in the case of the strip club, where you can max the last ten dollars of your credit card on an ice water plus tip and sort of come to your senses. In either case, a good way to reflect on the events of the evening and put them into some sort of cohesive order.

Rule #12: Never, I Repeat NEVER Buy A Drink For A Girl You’re Not With
If you don’t know her, don’t bother. Talk to her by all means and make sure she doesn’t have an adam’s apple the size of a baseball. Make up a great opening statement. But don’t waste your time and money on some stranger. Some women go throughout their lives without buying a drink. This is wrong. They go out and grift every hard-working, well-intentioned, over-sexed schmuck at every bar in town into bankrolling their propensity for fruity, mouth-wash flavored concoctions. Best case scenario? You get lucky, but if the girl likes you it would’ve happened anyway. Worst case scenario? It accelerates the entire dating process and if you haven’t had a chance to properly represent yourself, they’re gone like a cool breeze. Once I bought a vodka and cranberry for a beautiful Russian college student, took it as a green light, and sat down with her and the rest of the firing squad. After three minutes, she coquettishly whispered “we’ll be right back.” The ten girls proceeded to the polar opposite of the dance floor and never returned. Harsh. Don’t let it happen.

Rule #14: Look Bored No Matter Where You Are
It makes you look experienced and it gives the impression that you lead an adventurous lifestyle. If Roman candles are shooting out of a nineteen year old’s ass in the seat next to you, look the other way and yawn. When Marti-Gras breaks out at the neighborhood watering hole and there are twenty five foot people on stilts wearing masks along with midgets and college chicks dropping trou’ left and right, slowly leaf through your fashion magazine. If Elvis appears and gives a spot-on performance with a talking dog and he proceeds to buy drinks for the whole bar, get up and wander to the bathroom looking slightly pissed and grouchy. And so forth. Perfect a lackluster, world-weary, jesus-there’s- got-to-be-some-place-better-than-this-one look. It’s just plain cool. Let nothing take you by surprise.

Rule #15: Wallpaper Your Heart With Rejections
Much like the publishing adage, it helps to get set up and shot down. You need to develop a reptile-like thick skin. Fly solo; make a kamikaze run into a fleet of beach blonde heartbreakers knowing that there’s an 80% chance that you’ll get your ass handed to you. You have to be scaly in a cosmos of lounge lizards. The more women who laugh in your face, stomp you in the grapes, and toss shots of 151 into your retinas, the better. Practice makes perfect, and with each prospect you can refine your mojo.

Rule #16: Find A Hot Spot For Every Day Of The Week
The place that’s a virtual Valhalla on Friday could be drowning in sad sacks and maniacs. Stake a few places out every night of the week (and for those with no dedication to the power of perseverance, it doesn’t have to be all in the same week) , and find the secret bungalows of boogie down. Ferret out the speakeasys, the hidden gold mines, and homes away from home. Then, after you’ve found their magic night, go back on that night, frequently. Get to be friends with the staff. Tip very well. The industry standard is two dollars on the first drink and one dollar each additional order. If you do that, the bartenders will treat you like somebody important and you’ll get free shit down the road. And we all like free shit. Anybody can find a cool place to go to on a saturday but only the singles maestro can offer up the knack for divining a great place on a wednsday at four p.m. (or four a.m., for that matter).

Rule 17: Be At Home Wherever You Are
Looking great, feeling great, and projecting an air of charm and self-comfort are all great means for snaring the heart of some blonde bombshell. If you’re at home where you are, then you won’t be as anxious or fretful and blow the fantastic vibe that you’re putting out. What the hell! Lay down and take a nap in one of the booths at a club. I’ve done it before with my shirt untucked and my gut hanging out (unfortunately, pictures were taken and distributed throughout Western New York). Take your socks off where you’re sitting and inspect your feet for corns! Walk into the back kitchen and pull a pickle out of the jar and eat it with the refrigerator door open. Take a newspaper into the bathroom. If you’re relaxed, that’s half the battle. Pop a Xanax if you feel the need. Breathing exercises help, or the company of friends. And wearing the pair of jeans that frame your ass perfectly while retaining their comfort and fashion level don’t hurt either.

Rule 18: Talk To A Girl As If It’s A Given That You Want To Go Spelunking In Her Pants
Be honest. You’re not there for manicure advice. You don’t want to discuss the latest relationship feature in the current issue of “Cosmo” and you’re not comparing baking recipes. You’re out at the bar, you’ve approached the girl in question, and you’re sole intention is: getting some. So don’t even discuss it. She knows it, you know it, the whole damn bar knows it. That’s why everybody else is there, too (except for the degenerate in the corner drooling over his QuickDraw ticket and muttering obscenities to himself). Go beyond it. And go straight for the kill. The phone number, the prolonged groping next to the car at the end of the night, or, if you’re lucky, the hot tub at home with the room mate who just happens to be a repressed sexual therapist. Hell, I can dream.

Rule 19: It Never Hurts To Have A Prop
They make great ice-breakers and they arouse curiosity, suspicion, and interest in outside parties. It doesn’t have to be over the top, either. A copy of Esquire, perhaps. If they see something in there that they like they’ll peer over and start talking. If you’re in a pub, take a little chess set. Geeky, but what the hell, maybe you think Daria is hot (if you could splice Daria’s, Janene Garafolo’s, and Bjork’s genes, you’d have the perfect woman as far as I see it). A Gameboy. A pool cue. Old prosthetic limbs. Improvise. Nobody likes to be alone at a bar so we’re all dying for human contact, just to talk to somebody else, ANYBODY else, so we look for a reason to approach a total stranger. Meet them halfway and set your pet porpoise on the stool next to you and make him perform parlor tricks.

Rule 20: Embrace Chaos; You’ve Got Better Odds
I know this armpit of a shit-hole of a bowery bar in Buffalo that all the guys go to. It’s always packed….with a plethora of testicles. Why bother? They’ve got two girls in the whole joint and one of them is there with her obnoxious salesman boyfriend who is going bald at the speed of sound and is obviously ten years older than her. And the other one you wouldn’t want to touch without a protective bubble because she’s had every guy in the bar other than you and looks it. They say you can tell how many guys a girl has been with from the rings around her neck. But I digress. Go to the zoos, the raves, and the techno blowouts hosted by Dj PopinFresh 2000. Even if it’s not your cup of tea, put up with it for a night and see how much better you do as far as picking somebody up. Who would you rather go to work on, the one girl at the pathetic bowery bar or try a few pickup lines on any one of the three hundred girls in chaps and jeans that would require a spot welder to remove line dancing at the honky tonk palladium? Play the percentages, boyo!

I’ll give you one more to grow on because I know you’re trying your best out there and war is hell, so use it wisely!

Rule 21: Eavesdrop, Then Butt In
This doesn’t work in big clubs but if a place is relatively quiet, listen in to your neighbors on the rail. They’re talking in public, it’s no crime if your ear happens to pick up the conversation about how the co-worker broke up with her boyfriend of five years because he cheated on her with the fry girl from Wendy’s and she’s out pounding the pavement for intimate revenge! Listen in, horn in. Interject. Throw in your two cents and see how quickly they open up for a second or third opinion. And then you’re on the ground running. Plus it’s a good way to deduce what their status is. Single, married, divorced, or part of a small Middle Eastern harem.

Well, that’s about it. It took me twenty four solid months of harrowing and selfless research to offer up this cavalcade of advice for you, so use it! Just don’t mack on somebody I’m working over if you see me out, buddy, or I may have to break a tablet or two over your peroxide frosted, over-moussed fat head! Feed a man a fish and he’ll eat for a day, teach a man how to purchase prophylactics and he’ll fish forevermore. It’s tough out there, but you can be the ringmaster of your own destiny if you play your cards right. Have fun and don’t forget your jimmy cap. If there’s one thing I’ve learned it’s that after you work up the nerve to approach someone, it’s all down hill. And if you can pull it off once, you can do it a million times. Some of us don’t find our mates in college, or at work, or in massage parlors. And we have a lot more fun doing it. And if you crash in burn? At least you copped a buzz, saw your favorite bartender, and you were and the company of friends.

By Tom “the warts have gone away, can I buy you a drink?” Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 39 on stands, ‘Perpetual Money’ right here!

August 21, 2007

A new Night Life is upon us today with a Big Words installment of ‘Perpetual Money 2: The Accidental Gigolo’ pt. 1 (from First Person, Last Straw).  Now that I’ve put a few of the smaller pieces into the print column, I thought it might be nice to split up some of the larger essays and see how readers reacted.  And since the first rant has come and gone, I figured I’d reprint ‘Perpetual Money’ (I) here for your enjoyment.   So go grab a Night Life! 

Perpetual Money (pt. I)

Money \’mun-e\ n, pl 1. : something (as metal currency)
accepted as a medium of exchange 2. :wealth reckoned
in monetary terms 3. :the art of being insatiable without

Believe it or not, up until a month ago, I had never trolled the collective chum nets of the evening singles scene. Not once had I sat on a barstool during last call as the sun peeked up from the horizon and prospective special friends, peg-legged and otherwise, suddenly looked more interesting to each other while some wretched Bob Seger song played on a beer-stained jukebox. For two years, I was alone, by choice most of the time, and was certain I knew desperation. A month ago, I received a formal instruction in despair by every lay person (now that pun wasn’t my fault, dammit!) in the field. This probably doesn’t sound that alarming, unless you take into account that I’m a stout lad of 24. This is my journey from daylight into darkness back into daylight and then to, oh screw it, here’s what happened.My prior dating philosophy consisted of waiting for nubile young coquettes raining from the sky to fall into my peripheral field of vision and, by nature of proximity, in desperate and sweet, sweet love with your’s truly. Not the most effective method. Less effective is a better description. Dead right worthless is perfect. Now certain boys and certain men have the innate gift of picking up anyone, anytime, anywhere, be it a supermodel at a yard sale or the much sought after girl-next-door in the grains and nuts section of your local convenience store. It goes without saying that I am not this certain type of boy and/or man. It goes without saying that most men aren’t, and most men wish that this sort of person would perish viciously in a freak soda machine explosion. Some people play it wholesome, and try their damnedest (bless their hearts!) to find love and its common denominators in haunts without alcohol, such as a library, a church service, or the occasional cross stitching club for straight men in their early twenties. However, I hate libraries, and most of the women who frequent bookstores are, at the risk of sounding uppity, a bit on the homely side. Secondly, being that I pay worship to the pagan deity of retail every Sunday, I don’t have the opportunity to get in on any pious action that may go on thereabouts. And lastly, my stubby, hairy fingers just aren’t conducive to any macramé related activities. Conventional means of dating just weren’t going to work, so it was clearly time for last-ditch efforts. This is the point where I was dragged, kicking, screaming (and generally biting anyone that got within a mile radius), out of my happy pocket of seclusion and into the dismal and poor lighting of the lounge lizard stratosphere. I am neither an extroverted nor zany person in the presence of strangers, so the club life was always an option and a lifestyle that was looked down upon. How foolish it is to despise something one knows nothing about when you can research and divulge each revolting tentacle for it’s singular foulness (in addition to the overlying revulsion). Like this Greek dude who descended into the Underworld to bring his true love back from the dead, I wandered down into the very gutters of the velvet rope and escaped with something far more valuable: validated parking.

Being that I have led, for the most part, a sheltered and suburban life, city and inner city conduct was never my field of expertise. This isn’t a very good thing, either, as most panhandlers and run of the mill raving lunatics tend to prey on, and gravitate towards, people without this field of expertise. I’m not sure if it’s because I have a face that’s misleadingly kind looking, gullible, or naive, but the homeless home right in on me. Within five feet of leaving my car, some poor, ruddy vagrant will pop out of nowhere and begin with a cockamamie tale of woe so far-fetched that I can’t help but reward his flair for creativity with the 38 and a half cents that the story was contrived for: “Yo, man, my grandma got crushed in the steam press at the laundromat and I ain’t got no case quarter to take a rickshaw to go see her at the hospital in Baltimore. You got a case quarter? You gotta cigarette? Wanna buy twenty kilos of heroin?” No thank you. I suppose this sort of obstacle comes with the territory.

Awful techno music is another necessary evil of clubbing that has to be tolerated, as there is no alternative. On one evening, I heard the original version, house-trance remix, and 12″ extended vinyl of a song that I think was called “Smack My Bitch Up” at every club we frequented. That’s part of the charm of going out and dating, though; you go somewhere where you don’t want to be so you can pretend that you’re having fun and not looking to meet anyone in a place that’s too loud, disgusting, and crowded to talk to someone even if you did make an acquaintance! A daisy chain of inevitable logic!

And then there were the Gothic, or ‘Goth’ people. They make up the ruling majority of the actual dancing type clubs. Goth people practice a system of ethics and beliefs that would make the Mormon code look cohesive. They dress in black to convey their spiritual numbness and/or angst at their parents. Ditto for nose, nipple, eyebrow, and prostate piercing. Some of them either pretend, or legitimately believe that they’re vampires. I wasn’t aware that vampires were typically five foot men with skin problems and lipstick, or three hundred pound girls with pewter crosses and hairy arms, but…fair enough. The musical collective prefers rancid techno with men screaming through speaker distortion about serial killing and other such nastiness that makes them, by virtue of listening, feel nasty. I don’t plan on turning into a Goth person any time soon. It sounds too exhausting. Plus even I can’t pretend to be that angry all the time.

Every club, lounge, and dive had it’s own charm, or prepackaged lack thereof. In club-speak, ambience is a term that’s synonymous with ‘shit-hole that a lot of interesting people for some unexplained reason keep going to’. At one of the darker clubs, the toilet was little more than an open hole in the ground sheathed in darkness, where one stood in a voluntarily unidentified puddle (I wasn’t about to investigate) and tried to aim for the desired target. The place had great ambience though, because a lot of lesbians danced and groped each other there, which, admittedly, does not bode successful odds for the single male, but is entertaining regardless. Plus it made up for the outlandish cover charge.

Every woman at every bar had a special tantalizing feature that stuck to the roof of my mind like so much mnemonic peanut butter, whether it was an interesting back pack with copulating children’s show mascots, a nose ring bigger than any you’d ever see this side of a toreador, or in some cases just an ass that left my eyes out of their sockets and my tongue along the rail of the bar. It’s a fascinating atmosphere,with it’s own ethics and a corresponding band of acolytes who go faithfully into the night, without fail, until they find that fake someone who hits home with the little fake person inside of them.

Certain days had themes attached to them in the club utopia. At one bar, on Tuesday nights, only Englebert Humperdink cover bands graced the small plywood handicapped ramp that doubled as a stage. Some bars designated Sunday as Sexually Conflicted Day, where closet gays, asexuals, and the occasional Eunuch were allowed to get out, get down, and get dirty with each other, no one, or their catheter, respectively. And I’m certain it’s widely known that Thursday is the day when people the world over place sponge candy in their underclothes and somersault the length of the bar onto a pool table full of Vienna sausages, but I was never privy to these things before. Just like I was never privy to dancing.

(Audible and extended sigh of disgust) I will never dance, even for the sake of finding action. No Bump and Grind, Slam Dance, Macarena, or other pasta-related dervish. There are some men who dance, and enjoy dancing, and these men are known to be gay. I myself am not gay. If I were gay, maybe I’d enjoy dancing, but gayness simply isn’t in my genetic encoding. It’s sort of tragic how women love to dance, are always looking for guys who want to dance with them, and have no alternative other than gay men. Sometimes drunken men dance, or desperate men, and you can still see how uncomfortable they are with their sense of coordination, self-consciousness, and overall burgeoning embarrassment regarding the fact that they’re dancing badly. If I could make it to the bathroom without tripping over a level surface, or get on and off of a barstool without catching my jacket on a nail on a post that’s three feet behind me and ripping the lining out onto the floor much to the amusement of my friends and any other strangers who aren’t blind to wild, stunted spectacles, perhaps I would venture it, but I can’t, so I don’t. I did the twist once at the age of 13, when I didn’t know any better, and the original videocassette, as well as any copies, were destroyed tragically in a freak gyro copter crash some years ago. One of the other things I learned was not to trust a straight man who dances well, as he is a professional, and therefore he is trouble.

There are lifer’s on every notch of the gender rainbow in clubs, and you can spot them by following these guidelines: If you meet someone who’s hair is glazed, greased, or so perfect that they look like they should be endorsing a product while they’re talking to you, that’s a good sign. If a woman is playing tiddly winks with a handful of diaphragms and an empty margarita glass, this is also a good sign. Persons who don’t have a general air of shame and self-disappointment are almost always cold-blooded, no-nonsense, hit-and-run swingers. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it depends on your designated prey. Do you want a disease or a drink? A one night stand, four month relationship, or an interlude in the alleyway next to Bob the Hobo? It’s an unforgiving meat market, and there are many different cuts of beef hanging from hooks in sub zero temperatures wearing nylons and pumps. You just have to know how to grade your beef. Fortunately, I lean towards the Upton Sinclair school of evaluation, as opposed to the Tijuana State Board of Excellence in Iguana Remainders.

That’s not fair, though. One thing that I learned among many is that in life, there are diamonds in the dust, and the club scene is no different. The other things? Perhaps a roster is in order. Thomas’ Rules Of Lounge Order, as it were. Relegated by the order in which they were discovered. Take note, and if it sounds silly, or outlandish, remember the source, and bear in mind that much pain and hardship was incurred for the sake of this invaluable scoopage I am imparting to you for the low introductory price of, well, free.

Rule#1: Bring A Decoy
This works on multiple levels. Not only do you not feel pitiful and shunned by the opposite sex, but you’re gaining valuable information from the enemy lines while in their midst like Diane Fossey taking rectal temperatures from the inhabitants of the chimpanzee house of a city zoo. This is a crucial, crucial rule. Aside from learning how to speak with the fairer sex without stuttering, mumbling, blushing, and spilling food and assorted drink on, you appear wanted in front of actual targets. Women at heart are lovely and sweet and all of those things, but women, when dealing with other women in the realm of dating, are vicious vindictive psychotics who would put John Wayne Gacy to shame. If they see that you’re with someone who’s having fun with you, their natural instinct is to go and ruin whatever jubilation said girl is having. The decoy actually gets something out of it too, as men are testosterone fueled atom bombs who will stop at nothing, including hitting on someone else’s ‘girlfriend’ to strike it rich. But this is, of course, an irrelevant and unimportant side effect that makes you look more sensitive than you, in reality, actually are. This rule is a keeper.

Rule#2: Nothing Ever Happens On A Monday
This was obtained the hard way, and anyone with a brain in their head would have figured it out without unnecessary shadenfraude. Since bar folk and their ilk are perpetually in motion, it’s patently obvious that after a wild Friday, a bombastic Saturday, and an Interesting Hat Sunday, Monday would be a good day for all around recovery and subsequent rehydration. One also has to factor in the possibility of the general after-parties that those in the know go to after their dive of choice shuts down at the legally enforced dawn hour(s).

Rule#3: Recognize A Good Thing When You Have It
When you’re clearly on the road to pleasant chemistry (not including a drink with a quirky umbrella that changes colors every five minutes), follow it up and ride it out. Please see the attached.

Rule#3a: Don’t Blow A Good Thing
With the exception of men whose first names are John and last names are Travolta, you are not the universal swinger. Trading up is frowned upon in the bar malaise, and should never be performed in the same night, at the same club. It’s conceptually impossible to make someone feel as if they’re the only person in the room and make lascivious gestures and eye winks to someone across the room at the same time. This is just plain rude, and I for one am disgusted at anyone who would do such a thing. Other than me, anyhow. Actually, I’m still riding a stationary shame cycle from my incident

Rule#4: The Harder You Try To Score, The More Bleak Your Odds Become
In a space age futuristic world full of more aphrodisiacs than people who have a use for them, it is my firm belief that confidence is, and always will be, the greatest hook with women. Desperately grappling for intimacy after the witching hour with anyone who happens to stumble or get sick next to you is not an example of confidence, but rather a dead end exercise in futility. This operates under the same universal principles as Rule 3 and its footnote: If things are going well, put some effort into the catch. If nothing’s happening by 4 a.m., odds are nothing’s gonna happen. Best to cut your losses, fold, and drive home with some dignity rather than a second cousin to Ilsaa the Bearded. Unless, of course, you’re into that sort of thing.

Rule#5: Travel In Packs, Preferably of Well-Wishers and Hangers-On
It’s murder out there, and one needs as many tricks as are humanly possible to gain the hometown advantage. In place, or addition to a reliable decoy an entourage adds to your personal star status and proves that you’re admired and adored by many. What we’re trying to avoid here is going somewhere completely by yourself and going out on a limb for someone only to get shot down horrifically by not only the intended princess but her two slightly heavy and overly giggly friends as well. Women always travel in packs, and so should you. One more time: Women always travel in packs. You see them marching like a battalion in malls, on the streets, and even to the bathroom in groups of 20, so bring some reinforcements. If you’re lucky, your friends will recognize when you’re interested in someone and help to build you up as the wonderful mystery that you most certainly aren’t.

Rule #6 Perfect a Look
As in comedy, and also with dating, one must have a schtick. You can’t open with something that’s outlandishly out on a limb and expect consistent results, so it’s best to flagellate with a routine that works. This sounds cliche’, but it doesn’t have to be, and when in Rome, be the fake toga wearing bastard that you can’t stand. Or in this case, the Plebeian who says he ‘enjoys Dave Matthews for his political impact on the 21st century, as well as his ingenious world beat innovation’. The horror of it all. I feel dirty just writing that. Before I lose track, make sure to have a look. Lounge chicks usually go for a certain type, so it’s best not to confuse. There are many options and looks to choose from, up to and including four! You can be the leather clad bad boy who’s an embarrassment to the girl’s parents, whom she’s trying to punish for spoiling her all of her life. Or perhaps you’re more the sensitive Charlie Brown-pullover wearing new age man with a buzz cut and penny loafers of indeterminate color? This works on gold diggers. But then of course you can be the strikingly individualistic beret/beanie/handlebar mustache sporting, tortured misunderstood artist for whom life is painful and creation is bliss (translation: college chicks). If these sound like too much of a stretch, you can just be an asshole with a sizable wad of cash, which is not too shockingly the house special of the day any day at any bar in any town.

Rule #7 People Who Slur Are Not Anywhere Near as Charming as They Perceive Themselves to Be
Circling back to the confidence game of all confidence games, if you want someone to feel uniquely desired after, the last thing to do is funnel a few liters of absinthe and deliver your soliloquy from the heap of cigarette butts and ground cheese doodles at the floor of the bar. Women like to feel needed, not lusted after by virtue of their biological bits and pieces. It’s best in dating to stay on top of your game, which basically means that you shouldn’t phonetically skip every other vowel in a given sentence while forming a basin of drool out of one side of your mouth. People who are drunk to the point of unconsciousness are more liable to get a ride home in a white van with big blue lights and a stomach pump rather than in the Lamborghini of some blonde viking. Utter inebriation is an agenda in bars, but shouldn’t be mixed with dating, ever. Aside from a complete lack of charm, drunken people have a tendency to pretend that it’s their conscience that has taken a vacation when in fact and in most cases, it’s simply their sense of balance and/or bowel control.

Rule #8 If You Don’t Have an Ugly Friend With You, You’re The Ugly Friend
Fetching females collect them like so many beat-up plastic barrettes under a vanity chest, and will look at you and your surrounding friends in the same manner. If the majority of your friends look suave and dapper, it’s best to hang out with them on off nights and make an acquaintance with someone who has a growth on their neck, supplemental nostril, or similar deformity that will draw more attention to your own beauty. Granted, inner beauty may be important, but who are we kidding? If women were drawn to boys with flippers, we’d be sanding off our forearms right now.

Rule #9 The Sensitive Male Schtick Stopped Working About Five Years Ago
Now that everyone has the hang of it, the knack to understanding ‘where she’s coming from’ and how you ‘know how tough it must be to find your individuality in a male dominated world’ in addition to the way you ‘have psychological water retention that makes you feel psychically bloated in a succinctly feminine manner’, nobody cares. As a man, pretending to be responsive to other’s needs is about as current as wearing platform shoes and a tie wider than Marlon Brando. It’s a fake out to our natural instinct, namely conquering and plundering. You know it, they know it, and there’s no use trying to dress up your approach by limpening your wrist and discussing the crying jags you had while watching a Sandra Bullock movie. Masculinity is in, thank God, because we’re not very good at anything else.

Rule #10 Lie About Your Job, Even If You Have A Good Job (And You Probably Don’t)
That’s right, I’m an analyst for one of the city’s largest subsidiary brokerages. I handle off-shore accounts when I’m not cramming for my LSAT’s. You may not believe this, but I’m an advisor for one of the lesser Popes, it’s not really a big thing. You get the picture. Just as decoys reinforce the fact that you can behave yourself in the presence of the opposite sex, a fake job can be save you from a raving psychopath, as well as reel in the abundantly plastic persons you may be in the mood for. Leprechauns are easier to spot than anything vaguely truthful in the small talk that sifts through the air in a crowded club, so why should you be any different? After all, perhaps you actually did have some government stealth jet experience in a former life and you’re simply getting in touch with that.

By Tom “Valentino to the Impaired” Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 38 on stands/’Form Of A Spoon’ up on Acid Logic!

August 13, 2007

     Night Life magazine hits the stands today with part two of the original ‘Perpetual Money’ (from my first book, Born Pissed), my opus to dating rules on the club scene.  Make sure to grab a copy if you’re local, as it remains an all time favorite for me as well as fans. 

     And on the online front, Wil Forbis rolled out a new issue of Acid Logic towards the end of last week and decided to run ‘Form Of A Spoon’ (from Crass Menagerie) which covers the strange psychosexual upheavals I’ve gone through in the intermediate stages of my long term relationship.   Check it out over at:

 That’s all I’ve got for you this week, so grab a Night Life and I’ll check in with all of you next Monday!

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 37 on stands/back to back Perpetual Money(s)!

August 7, 2007

     Monday’s upon us again, which can only mean one thing: a new issue of Night Life magazine!  And with the block underway, I decided to reach way back into the archives for two old favorites for August: Perpetual Money (from Born Pissed) and Perpetual Money 2: The Accidental Gigolo (from First Person, Last Straw).  I split the twenty commandments to singles club dating into two parters, respectively, so they’ll be paced out throughout the next four weeks to round out the rest of the summer.  I’ve always felt that the original Perpetual Money was the closest thing to perfection that I’ve ever achieved in my writing career (in terms of style, length, and composition), so I thought I’d give the rest of Buffalo (and our friends in Canada) a chance to see for themselves.  So go grab a copy!

     It also came to my attention today that the new print issue of Metromania including ‘epitaph’, a poem I wrote for the upcoming Breathing Room project.  You can download a pdf version of the current issue at:

That’s all I’ve got for you this week.   In the mean time, I’ve been trying to beat this brutal humidity and weather out the rest of the summer.  Have a good one,

Tom Waters



Monday Big Words Update! Week 33 on stands, Week 32 right here!

July 9, 2007

Whelp, the new issue of Night Life is on stands today with a Big Words I Know By Heart edition of ‘Mama, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Into Fat Gamers’, a meditation on the difference between gaming enthusiasts and out and out geeks.  Grab it this week for free on stands if you get a chance.  It definitely leans harder on the side of ranting than constructive argument, but initial responses were pretty positive.  And if you missed it last week, here’s a re-run of ‘Alert & Erect’, a breakdown of my morning routine be it on my days off or my days on.  Both essays are fresh out of ‘Crass Menagerie’, the collection I’m currently tooling around with.  Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got some gaming to do….Seeya next week,

Tom Waters

Alert & Erect

My morning routine has changed by leaps and bounds since my days as a teenager. Maybe it depends on the jobs I’ve had, but I’ve gone from getting up ten minutes before my ride to sleeping in until noon to popping out of bed at seven in the morning an hour before my alarm even goes off. I’ve heard stories about men’s internal clocks freezing on a certain time for the rest of their lives and I hope for my sake that mine doesn’t pre-set to six am. The bladder is a harsh mistress, though, and its tough to argue with urinal pressure that startles you out of a deep sleep. That’s how it happens. The days of shambling off to the bathroom in the dark to pee before collapsing directly back onto a rem cycle are over. Nowadays, once I’m up, I’m up. My old man used to get up at five a.m. and keep going. I am definitely my father’s son.

A lot of it depends on the season, too. In the fall, I’m an early riser. I tend to be a bit more manic when the leaves are turning and school is starting back up for the kids. My creativity levels spike and I hop out of bed ready to take on the world before the sun comes up. Toward the back half of the winter, I start hibernating, getting eight, ten and sometimes twelve hours of sleep not including one and two hour naps after work. In the summer, I level out and average eight hours a night, which is the recommended daily dose. I get enough rest, but its on a yearly timetable.

I strive to streamline my morning activities before leaving for work. If I can get out of bed and be out the door and on the clock within forty five minutes, I’m a happy camper. That’s my miracle mile. After lumbering out of bed, I have to talk the Big Man down from the ledge while brushing my teeth, so to speak. The British refer to this syndrome as morning glory, and if you’re a woman, you have no idea what I’m talking about right now. It’s god’s joke that your biological peak happens when you have no time or inclination to do anything with it and furthermore, when you have a full bladder. The last thing I need in the morning is to walk around at half mast when I’m starting the coffee maker and getting dressed, but there we have it. So after brushing my teeth, talking the Big Man down and taking a leak, I start up the coffee maker. If the coffee isn’t prepped from the night before, I’m going to have a bad day.

Once the coffee is percolating away, I lay right back down on the couch with a fresh mouth and light up a smoke. Some people find this disgusting, but I find them disgusting and its hard to break routine. If it’s a day off, I try and let my mind form and drift so I can lock onto a topic to write about since I write best in the morning. I’ll also turn on CNN and keep it on for two or three hours to try and encapsulate a week’s worth of national news in an attempt to feel connected to the world. If it’s a work day, I try and rest a little bit longer before I have to spring into action. In the winter, when the cat is at the apartment, I have to angle my body on the couch since he likes to hog my spot, which aggravates me to no end. I may have to put down a ‘Reserved For’ sign when I’m not reclining on the couch to avoid this issue. We’ve got two goddamned couches, so there’s no reason why he can’t set up shop on the other one. I know he does it to get my goat and so far it works.

After a cigarette, I pop into the study to get changed into my work clothes or turn the computer on and check my email, depending on how much time I have. Normal people have dozens of pairs of pants and shirts pressed, folded, pleated, ironed and starched for the work week whereas I have two pairs of pants and four or five shirts that I end up digging out of the laundry basket from the day before. If I can get away with wearing the same pair of khakis five consecutive days in a row, I will, barring any large geographic food stains, in which case I opt out for the second pair of pants. If it’s a day off, I’ll just plop down into the computer chair, cycle through my email and then boot up the word processor and start writing. It took a few years to start this habit, but its best to create when the mind is a blank slate and hasn’t been contaminated with a day’s worth of stressors, confrontations and activities.

After getting changed, I lumber back to the bathroom to fix the hair. If I was a morning person, I’d get up a half hour earlier and shower because my hair is never easier to set than when I hop out of the bath tub. I’m more of a bath guy, though, and baths aren’t conducive to waking up, so I end up applying toxic quantities of gel and hair spray to get my head under control for an eight or nine hour day. If I’ve got a hangover, this is the time where I start gobbling ibuprophren, vitamins and tonics to resuscitate my weathered and battered body.

At this point, I fill a coffee thermos, make a complete disaster area out of the breakfast nook near the stove, and fill two liter bottles of filtered water. I’m a thirsty man so I need plenty of fluids, and the water offsets the dehydrating properties of the coffee. I dump an ungodly amount of sugar and cream into my coffee, and I’m not at my most coordinated ten minutes after getting out of bed, so this is a recipe for disaster. By the time I leave the house, the kitchen counter is lousy with powders and preservatives, but I can’t be bothered to clean it up and the white linoleum ends up getting fossilized with spilled coffee and trace amounts of sugar. Once my drinks are thrown into a plastic grocery bag, I sit in the beat up green chair near the door, tie my shoes, throw on my coat, grab my keys, center my brain and head out the door.

Music is key to the morning mood, so once I plop into the car seat and buckle up, I have to make the crucial decision as to whether or not I should listen to droll drive time morning shows, classic rock or two of the five cassettes I’ve been listening to for the last ten years. If I opt for the morning radio shows I end up getting disgusted with the inane blather the hosts drudge up and end up changing the channel in disgust. If I listen to a music station I end up hearing a song I can’t stand and change the channel in disgust. Nine times out of ten I go with the cassettes. I spark up my second smoke of the morning, turn the volume on the music up to maximum decibels to aid in the waking process, and head out of the driveway. I had a cd player with any number of mix cds but its on the fritz and I really need to get it fixed.

No matter what time I get up (unless its on the weekend), my drive time commute is fucked. There are no two ways about it. I could get up at four in the morning and I still wouldn’t arrive to work until eight am, which frustrates me beyond description. Commuters from five different boroughs bottleneck through the street that I take thinking that by avoiding the main road parallel to mine is faster. They’re wrong. I’ve spent years trying to find a faster commute and it doesn’t exist, so I take a fatalist approach and suffer in gridlock along with the rest of the morning zombies. This is where the music comes in. If the cars moving, I can belt it out at the top of my lungs and it distracts me from the mind numbing aggravation of throwing hours of my life away sitting in a car doing nothing. This only stalls the spleen venting rage, though, as I completely lose my mind by the time I get onto the expressway and start swearing at people in my car, digging my fingers into the steering wheel, and lane changing at will to find the faster lane that doesn’t exist between the hours of seven and nine in the morning. There is no excuse whatsoever to drive anything under ten miles over the speed limit in the morning. The sooner I get to work, the sooner I can go home, so people cost me valuable quality time sitting on my ass, napping, or achieving something worthwhile in the evening.

I used to get a second cup of coffee from a drive through en route, but this got to be expensive and time consuming. I used to stop at a convenient store to grab soda and snacks for the afternoon, but this was also time consuming. Nowadays, I pack a thermos and go to the store after I punch in, which saves me a good half an hour on the way to work.

On average, it takes me forty five minutes from the time I wake up to the time I get to work in the morning. On a really bad day, it takes an hour and fifteen minutes. There is no time to look at an accident on a drive time commute, and people who slow down and bottleneck gum up the entire proceedings. It’s a chain reaction, and when one person slows down to see what’s left of some jag-off’s demolished heap, everyone slows down. Kinetic energy slows down to a crawl, and I can’t stand driving five miles an hour in three lanes that should be going sixty five. If someone can’t drive safely and quickly on the expressway, we should be able to drive over their body passing by. That’s just good manners. One accident can make three hundred people late, and there’s no reason why everybody can’t at least go the speed limit. I’ve said my peace on that subject.

By the time I get to work, the first cup of coffee is drained and I’ve had three to five cigarettes. For all intents and purposes, I’m awake and alert. After I get punched in and set up for the day, I head to the bank and get my soda and chips after making small talk with the cashier. Then I go into the bank and crack wise with the tellers about my girlfriend, or what’s going on with my writing. I really like being a guy who goes to the bank and makes small talk in the morning. There’s just something about it that appeals to me. In my free time, I wouldn’t be caught dead inside of a bank, but it makes me feel responsible and important during work hours.

When I’m sixty five, odds are that I’ll roll out of bed at seven or eight in the morning with a raging hard on with no hope of going back to sleep. This is a sad fact of life. When I’ve got nowhere to go and nobody to report to, something will have died inside of me. Guys strive to beat their personal best record during drive time, and once that’s gone, the real senility will set in. Who knows; maybe I’ll roll pennies and drive them in to the bank across town every day just to have some semblance of belonging. I’ve come to enjoy being a morning person despite my instincts because you can get a lot more done with your day when you get out of bed before noon. Lord knows that I wouldn’t be able to swear at complete strangers, smoke a quarter pack of cigarettes or drink a gallon of coffee if I didn’t.

Tom and tar in the morning on WKBUTT,

Tom ‘veiny’ Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 32 on Stands/Week 31 right here!

July 2, 2007

     Monday finds us all again, which can mean only one thing: A new issue of Night Life magazine with a brand new ‘Big Words I Know By Heart’ column!  I was incorrect when I wrote in yesterday’s post that ‘Mama, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Into Fat Gamers’ went in this week.  After checking my records, it appears as if ‘Alert & Erect’ (regarding my morning routine) popped in today.  So pick it up on stands!  I’m also going to enclose last week’s column, ‘Feedback Distortion’ for your enjoyment.  So enjoy it, goddamnit!  And happy fourth of July!  Sincerely,

Tom Waters

Feedback Distortion

I can always tell when I piece of mine has been published in The Buffalo News from the incoming responses I get via email, snail mail, or over the phone. I prefer to vent in print because it’s a sane, rational means of conveying my feelings without ranting in the street, calling people at random, or standing up on tables in restaurants and yelling at other patrons. It’s a good way to get grievances and gripes out my system. This is why it boggles my mind that readers find it acceptable to hunt me down in the phone book or send postcards to my home. Well I’m telling you for the first and last time, our correspondence is a one way street. I am a hermit. I am a recluse. I prefer, in any given situation, to be left alone so that I may go about my business.

A small cross section of the population has no sense of humor, and they think that my treatises on modern day living are to be taken at face value. If you have no sense of humor, stop reading right now before you hurt yourself. Some people in this town really should take their medication before they get up in the morning, dial a phone or operate heavy machinery before they hurt themselves. Some insane woman left a message on my answering machine at nine in the morning regarding a weight gain rant that I wrote in The News. I goofed that everyone who said they had thyroid problems was faking it, and she went on at length about how I was a horrible person and that her husband had a diagnosed problem and lost some weight. This is comedy, lady. People get hurt. If you can’t take a joke, you know what you can do. Just yesterday, a man called my house wondering what the definition of ’tryptophan coma’ meant. I didn’t realize that writing humorous essays obligated me to stand by on the phone for people who are too lazy to walk to their dictionary or surf the internet for term definitions. I appreciate that you read my work but I would prefer that you buy my books if you want to learn more or figure things out for yourself.

Writers by definition are altruistic introverts. We try to change the world from a distance. We would rather hide behind the curtain and wait for the response than go up on the firing line and take questions and answers. The only time I surface as a moving target is during my whirlwind book promotions and then you are free to show up and ask as many stupid questions as you want (providing that you buy ten copies of each book).

Postcards, on the other hand, are not a bad means of interacting with me. Getting a polite note from an older woman about how she agrees with everything I say and that I say it better than her makes the world go round. I appreciate that, and time permitted, I will respond to that. If you want to bother me with your rebuttals, your two cents, or your insane blather, I would prefer that you direct it to my email address:

Nine times out of ten I have the best intentions when I’m ranting or making jokes at some demographic’s expense. If you can’t figure that out, maybe you should apply for a permit before you read any printed column anywhere for your own good. If I come off as pompous or conceited, then I apologize. If I sound that way, it’s only because I know in my heart that I’m better than you, and always will be. Just kidding. Thanks for reading, Buffalo. Aggravations and all, you make my world go round.

Dumbing it down so that everyone can figure it out,

Tom ’do not call list’ Waters


Acid Logic Update! ‘Mama, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Into Fat Gamers’…

July 1, 2007

The July issue of Acid Logic is up online and editor in chief Wil Forbis has deemed ‘Mamas, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Into Fat Gamers’ (from Crass Menagerie ) fit to run in this month’s issue.  Much like ‘Underwear On The Outside Looking In’ (which looked at the dichotomy between comic enthusiasts and out and out geeks), ‘Mama’ explores the key differences between people who play video games versus gamer geeks who truly need to get out of the house and do something else for awhile.  After re-reading it, I feel like it could use a bit of editing, but it holds up as a free form rant.  Check it out over at:

Coincidentially, the same piece will also be running in Night Life magazine tomorrow, so this column is getting around.  Like a record.  You know what I mean.  Wil ‘Forbis The Mighty’ took last month off and ran a ‘best of’ issue due to a hand injury (that he assures me wasn’t from self-entertainment activities), so I hope he’s mending quickly.    


Monday Big Words Update! Week 31 on stands/Rooftop Appearance Available via podcast!

June 25, 2007

Okay then!

This week’s issue of Night Life magazine is out with a Big Words installment of ‘A Vacation From My Problems!’, a rant about the angst of returning from, well, vacation.  With all the vacations and social engagements I’ve had in the last month, I haven’t had a whole lot of free time to write any new columns, so odds are that I’ll be running a few unseen classics for July, so keep your eyes peeled.

Also, Lisa Forrest (the founder of the Rooftop Poetry Club) informs me that my April appearance/reading at Buffalo State College is now available via the miracle of podcast on their web site.  If you want to give it a listen, click over to:

Do me a favor and ignore the photo.  For some reason, it looks like I’m wearing lipstick in that picture.  It must’ve been the Diet Cherry Vanilla Dr. Pepper. 

Also, don’t forget that I’ll be reading and signing books this Saturday at 7pm at the Caz Coffee Cafe on Abbot Rd. in South Buffalo along with Carrie Spadter and Susan Marie.  We had so much fun last time there that we decided to schedule another event once the weather was nicer.  Stop on out, buy ten books and hear some rants!  That’s all I’ve got for today.  Stay tuned for more updates!  Thanks,

Tom Waters 


Monday Big Words Update! Week 30 on Stands/Minneapolis Interview Podcast Up!

June 18, 2007

Has it been 30 columns already?  Wow.  Well, that just sailed by.  I guess we’re over the hump with my year-goal on the Big Words I Know By Heart print column, so don’t forget to grab this week’s Night Life featuring ‘Feedback Distortion’, a diatribe about the twisted sort of comments from twisted people that I get from my print articles.  It pertained mostly to the Buffalo News My View columns that have run over the years (they rejected ‘Feedback’, most likely because it was pretty nasty), but I’ve gotten some humdingers from all publications and all walks of life. 

I’m also pleased to announce that the interview Gary Holdsteady conducted with me for Independant stream is now up online.  He asked some pretty insightful and challenging questions based on his feelings about ‘If They Can’t Take A Joke’ as well as some questions that listeners emailed in from the Minneapolis area and beyond and I, in turn, tried to answer them honestly and truthfully without being overly schmaltzy.  It was fairly candid, and I’m curious to see how his listeners respond because I was more open than goofy for the duration of the podcast.  Big thanks go out to Gary for tracking me down and not only asking the hard hitting questions but quoting the new book as well.  As someone who interviews people himself, it was nice for a change to see that the person interviewing me did their homework.  Give it a listen yourself and post your own comments at:

Gary informed me that it will be a two parter, so if you have any questions for me, you can email them in to him via the Independant Stream site.

And lastly, I’ve got some great pics from my weekend in Angola that I’ll be posting up on the YourHub site on Wednesday or thereabouts.  I’ve got a direct link on the bottom left along with a lot of other picture-oriented posts.  That’s all I’ve got for you today, web slingers.  Get your Night Life, boot up the podcast and take a ride! 


Monday Big Words Update! Week 29 on stands/Collectible Show Aftermath

June 11, 2007

Here it is a Monday again which means that the new issue of Night Life is out with ‘Underwear On The Outside Looking In’, a piece on the world of comics and the difference between comic book enthusiasts and out and out comic geeks.  The difference couldn’t have been any more stark in contrast after running a table for my book yesterday at the Collectible Convention at the Millenium Hotel.  Unfortunately, the Allentown Art Festival cut in to a lot of our traffic, but it was good promotion for the book and I got to meet a lot of readers that I wouldn’t normally run into on a daily basis.  Many thanks to John Kindelan for supplying me with a table for the event.  This week’s column is sure to ruffle some feathers in that sub-culture, so beware of anyone brandishing an asthma inhaler or a Monty Python themed t-shirt!     

And if you haven’t yet, make sure to tune in to the Uncle Hal show!  Episode 35 was a real corker and listeners of the show ate it up!   Click on over to:

and find out what all the fuss is about!  That’s all I’ve got for today, but rest assured that I’ll drop you all a line later in the week.  I’ve got an interview in the works with Gary Holdsteady (who runs a popular podcast out of Minneapolis) and hopefully we can coordinate our schedules some time on Wednesday… 


Monday Big Words Update! Week 28 on stands, ‘Wife Beaters & Rollerbladers’ Right Here!

June 4, 2007

You should know the drill by now: Night Life is out today with the latest Big Words I Know By Heart column, ‘Zero Tolerance’ (regarding my eroding immune system).  Make sure to grab yourself a copy this week or you won’t have any idea what ‘the good AIDS’ is.  And since I was so fond of last week’s column, ‘Wife Beaters & Rollerbladers’ (a categorical essay about the rules of summer), I’m running it again here for your enjoyment.  So enjoy it already!  If all goes well this week, I’ll be in Uncle Hal studios on Weds. and make a boatload of cash at the Buffalo News Collectible Show on Sunday.  In the meantime, work has me pretty busy the next two days, so I’ll post later in the week.  Cheers,

Tom Waters

Wife-Beaters & Rollerbladers

Hopefully, by the time you’re reading this, summer will be here, so I’m going to provide some safe, sensible tips for the season. Summer can be a wonderful time to enjoy the nice weather (while we have it), catch some rays and get some exercise, but it’s a good idea to follow a few guidelines so that all of us can enjoy this wonderful season. So here goes:

1. Don’t Mow Your Lawn Before Eight am: Sure, you’re 87 years old and death awaits in every corner of your household, but let those of us with some life left in our bones get our beauty sleep. Mowing the lawn is one of the five million reasons to get out and enjoy the nice weather but you don’t have to wake up the whole neighborhood doing so. A lot of grown ups get up around eight o’clock, so you can start then. If you don’t want to piss off the age bracket most likely to egg your house while you’re sleeping at night, wait until eleven am. Death will still be waiting for you if you get back into the house after two. Trust me on this one.

2. If You’re Twenty Pounds Overweight Or More, Conceal Your Skin: You may think that it’s a big booty world where you can look skanky and superfine at 175 pounds, but you’d be wrong with that line of thinking. Don’t wear a cut-off shirt if you have a baker’s dozen full of rolls on that gut. Don’t ride on your lawn tractor with a white t-shirt if you have man boobs. Don’t jog with your shirt off if you look like an upright and corpulent walrus. Don’t do it. The body is a beautiful and miraculous creation, but not your body. No one wants to see it. Drop some pounds and then you can lose the shirt or start wearing attire from Hot Topic. If you can balance a takeout tray on your ass, you shouldn’t be wearing short shorts. 3. Keep An Eye On Your Kids Or Pay Someone To Watch Them For You: Contrary to popular belief, dumping your litter off at the mall is not a form of babysitting. Letting them sit in front of the television all summer is one of the reasons why we have so many fat preteens in the first place. Spend a little time with the lifelong commitment you shat out and/or force them to get some exercise in the back yard. They can even take their Ipod with them when they’re playing kick ball! Drop them in the pool and walk away if you want to as long as they’re not in a public place bothering me. Trust me, they’ll get even more exercise if I kick their ass into the next zip code and they have to walk back for being obnoxious in a mall, restaurant or any other place of business. Police your litter. Your parents probably did the same for you, so don’t set them loose on the world until they’re old enough to behave themselves, which doesn’t happen until around 26, by my last study.

4. If You Go To The Beach, Don’t Be A Pain In The Ass: This list includes using the beach like a garbage can, fat chicks wearing swimsuits, fat guys ogling women, or packs of wild children acting like jackasses. The beach encompasses the prior three rules and more. I have to share the beach with you so don’t make me run you out on a rail with tar and feathers. Mind your own business, clean up after yourself and act like a person. With practice, you could be a person, so there’s some motivation right there. And for Christ’s sake, put some deodorant on before you leave the house. It gets hot out there on the sand, so you’re going to sweat more than usual. I don’t want to mistake your body scent downwind for a fish that’s been dead for a fortnight.

5. Get The Hell Off The Road When You’re Bicycling/ Jogging/ Rollerblading: Make no mistake, if you’re in the middle of the street, I will run your ass down. I have no objection to prying your brains off the hood of my car if you’re exercising on side streets. There are side walks in town. Use them. Sidewalks should be wide enough for most of you and if they aren’t you shouldn’t be walking at a brisk pace to the ice cream stand in the first place. If you’re on a skateboard, I may go up on the sidewalk just to hit you anyway. And now that I think of it, skateboarding hasn’t been cool since 1985, so don’t use them. That should be a rule.

6. Skateboarding Hasn’t Been Cool Since 1985, So Why Are You On One? See former sentence. You’re not Tony Hawk and I know that you’re 13 and Emo, but nobody gives a shit about your attitude or the pathetic piece of plywood between your legs. Give it up. This isn’t Jackass and it’s not Extreme Sports. Build a skate park in your back yard or I’ll run you down with my car. Start an impromptu awful trick session somewhere besides a plaza parking lot and you just might be able to retain the use of your legs for the rest of your life.

7. If You Have A Great Rack, Jog More Often: This rule is pro feminist and self explanatory. Hot women are the reason that jogging was invented, and it keeps our city beautiful. Jog early, often, and slowly. If you see a guy driving with one hand, that’s definitely not me. Seriously, though, thank god for hot women in the summer. They offset all the other idiots. If you’re a lipstick lesbian, feel free to jog with your life partner in six inch spikes. The world thanks you.

8. If You’re A Landscaper, Drop The Attitude: I’ve covered this territory before and I’ll cover it again until it’s corrected. You make ten dollars an hour to mow incontinent, old peoples’ lawns. That’s not a career. You are a lawn jockey. You may grow your hair out like Sammy Hagar and wear cutoff jeans but this does not make you cool. Get your rusty, pathetic trailer hitch off the side streets because you don’t need it for three push mowers. Piling them onto a trailer and slapping a decal on the side of said trailer doesn’t make you an international corporation, end of story. Stick them in the trunk and throw some baling wire around the back of it. That, or stick a weed wacker up your ass. I can’t stand mom and pop landscapers. The money they charge for the work they don’t do is criminal.

9. Cool It With The Road Construction: It’s the middle of the summer and pretty much everybody on the planet is out on the road, so it’s probably not the best idea in the world to start ripping up five lanes, don’tcha think? Maybe it’s better on your arthritis to stand around picking your ass when the weather is nicer, but that stipulation doesn’t go along with my tax dollars. Use some goddamned common sense. Summer time is not the time for road construction of any kind. Unless a major road way disappears into a parallel dimension, there’s no reason to start road work.

10. Stop Charging Seventeen Dollars For Fried Dough And Maybe I’ll Show Up: I’m talking to you, Six Flags Darien Lake as well as you, Erie County Fair a.k.a. America’s Fair. And let’s not forget the Italian Festival, Thursdays In The Square, The Allentown Art Festival and any other festival in Buffalo. Stop raping people with your ridiculous cover charges and overpriced concessions and maybe the fudged numbers they print in the paper will be closer to the truth. Does anyone believe that 58 million people went to the Allentown Art Festival last year? Maybe 50 people spent 58 million dollars by buying one flat eight ounce cup of pop and a hot dog each, but not 58 million people. Event prices for fairs, concerts, and festivals have become so criminal that guys like me don’t even bother anymore, so drop the prices and you’ll make up the money with real attendance instead of the fictional kind.

I’ll stop at ten before I offend anyone. Above all else, get some exercise, be safe and enjoy the nice weather. And stay off the road! And my grass! Act like a person! Damn whippersnappers.

Taking my shirt off indoors,

Tom ‘pale to sunburned in 3.3 seconds’ Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 27 on stands (?), Uncle Hal this Wednesday!

May 29, 2007

Happy Memorial Day!

Lindsay and I just got back from spending the holiday at her parent’s cottage on Lake Erie and it was a perfect day!  I wanted to stay longer, but I had to get back and punch up the bar review that we covered Saturday for Gregario’s Gator Pub in Alden, not to mention the usual Monday update.  And with a new month around the corner, I wanted to make sure I got my Night Life columns in on time…

Since it’s a holiday Monday, the new issue of Night Life may or may not be on stands today (but definitely by tomorrow at the latest, distribution wise) with ‘Wife Beaters & Rollerbladers’, a categorical rant on how people should behave during the summer without pissing me off.  I spent last week punching up two new columns for the print edition of Big Words and I’m throwing two other previously unpublished rants in for the month of June.  The list is as follows: ‘Zero Tolerance’ (about my eroding immune system) is going in for week one, ‘Underwear On The Outside Looking In’ (about the difference between comic book geeks and people who simply enjoy comics) is going in for week two, ‘Feedback Distortion’ (regarding reader feedback) hits on week three and ‘A Vacation From My Problems!’ (about what a pain in the ass it is to come home from vacation) is arriving on week four to round out the month.  If you haven’t been picking up Night Life, then you’re already behind the curve.  Don’t miss out on the new stuff because it’s hitting Night Life first! 

And after offending nearly everyone on the planet during my co-hosting spot on Episode 29 of The Pissed Off World Of Uncle Hal, I’ll be going back into the studio after almost two months to take another crack at getting us both lynched!  To listen to any of the archives (or to hear the new episode when it hits this Friday or next Monday), click on over to:

That’s all I’ve got for today.  I hope you all enjoyed your holiday and I’ll see you in the funny papers,

Tom Waters 


Monday Big Words Update on Weds! Week 26 on Stands, Week 25 Right Here!

May 23, 2007

I just flew in from Rushford Lake and boy are my arms tired.  Am I right folks?  Sorry for the tardiness of the update, but I was out of town this Monday and nowhere near a computer, so here’s your Monday Big Words update on a Wednesday.  The Night Life column that hit two days ago (‘Lucky Charms! Now With More Bell Peppers!’) is an ode to summer grilling, so scoop it up!  You might actually learn something.  As for last week’s meditation on Sabres/American Idol saturation in Buffalo Bars (‘Change Of Season’), I’m running it again right here for your enjoyment/aggravation.  That’s all I’ve got for you this week.  I literally JUST got back into town a half hour ago, so I’ve got a lot of catching up to do and it seems as if every publication I work for forgot that I was leaving, so I need to touch base with all of them too.  I’ll repost soon enough,

Tom Waters

Change Of Season

As a bar reviewer, and someone who spends an unhealthy amount of time in bars in general, I’m prone to the television viewing whims of the average Buffalonian. Unfortunately, I have to put up with the crowd that shows up during Sabres games along with the mind numbing stupidity of American Idol. Now I’m middle of the road where hockey is concerned. It’s not football, so I don’t hate it, and it’s not heavyweight boxing, so I don’t love it with an all consuming passion. Hockey is just there for me. If I’m in a bar, I’ll get into the game, and that’s the only time I’m interested. This sets me apart from the die-hard, face painting, chest pounding hockey superfans as well as newly arriving recruits to the bandwagon, which is at maximum capacity this year. This goes to show you how free thinking and fickle the average Buffalonian is.

And I get that it’s wonderful that we might win the Stanley Cup, and that a solid sports team brings the community together. I get that, so don’t try it on me. It’s good for business, it’s great for the bars, etc., etc. But as someone who admits to not being a traditional hockey fan, the bandwagon phenomenon puzzles me. I went to two bars in one night last week and both bars were stuffed to the gills with overzealous maniacs screaming their heads off in triumph at the Sabres’ feats of derring-do. Where were all these people when the season started? If they’re all really big fans from way back in the day, how come I’ve never seen them out in such large numbers before? That’s my issue.

How can you call yourself a Super Fan if you only show up when the team is doing well? That doesn’t seem terribly supportive to me. I see the same mob mentality in reverse during Bills seasons. Everyone is a monstrously huge Bills fan at the beginning of the season and eventually, the Bills screw it up again and the public stops watching, turns of their radios and they go out shopping wearing Bills gear. I’m an all or nothing sort of guy, so this confuses me. You’re either all in or all out as far as I’m concerned.

The other thing that I don’t get is how you can support a concept that’s constantly changing. Supporting a team this season has nothing to do with the team you supported fifteen years ago other than the name. The players and coaches are constantly changing. I try and reason it out by telling myself that it’s like the gladiators from the Roman era. The Bills and the Sabres are Buffalo’s champions. They represent us in battle against all adversaries and hopefully, they honor our town name. Or something like that. I’ve got a lot of friends who are season ticket holders to both and the bandwagoneers piss them off, too, because they drive up the cost of their tickets. These people actually get behind the teams through thick and thin and they get stuck with the tab. I guess I’ll never understand the on-again off-again fanaticism that sweeps through this town during sports seasons. If anything, it’s taught me to appreciate hockey a little bit when I’m in a bar. Those of you who aren’t real fans just look like posers to me (and real Sabres enthusiasts), though.

As for American Idol, it’s frigging horrible. Between football, hockey, and American Idol, I don’t know which season is more unbearable in terms of length. They all run too goddamned long. I keep thinking that American Idol will be over soon and it keeps coming on! I frequent a certain bar in Lancaster every Tuesday for karaoke and they have a group of die-hards who show up just to watch American Idol and take notes. I sit as far away from the three or four televisions as possible and try to ignore it by making small talk or looking at the Quick Draw machine. I won’t give in to this show. Somebody must be watching it locally and nationally because it gets monster ratings, but I don’t get it. If I wanted to watch a group of talent less idiots going out of their wear to dress hip, I’d visit a college campus. It seems hypocritical that I enjoy karaoke and despise American Idol, but the DJ doesn’t interview each karaoke contestant as if their opinion was a)valued and b)important before and after each song. The key difference with karaoke is that we all realize we’re awful. That’s the beauty of karaoke. You get drunk, you sing badly. That’s how it works.

They’re all idiots, if you ask me. Sanjaya, Kelly Clarkson, Ruben Studdard, all of them. The fact that we live in a world where these average boneheads get record deals and actually milk a few years out of losing on the show makes me furious. The posers and outcasts who audition on American Idol are ten times worse than any Sabres bandwagon, and there’s something about the guy with the golf cap from this season that makes me want to punch him in the head. Dress like a person! All the contestants go to extra lengths to look super hip. Throw on some slacks, fer chrissakes! Lose the trendy hat before it gets knocked off of your head with a two by four! Damnit! The blood pressure medication is not working as well as I’d hoped.

And pretty soon I’ve got the mind-numbing boredom of baseball season to look forward to. Baseball season lasts literally forever. I think there’s a month out of every year where baseball is not running and I’m enjoying that month. I went to a Bisons game once for a bachelor party and thank god there was alcohol because nothing happened on the field and the game went on for the entire day. I would rather watch table tennis than baseball. It’s more interesting. Maybe it’s America’s favorite pastime but it bores the shit out of me. Give me basketball or boxing any day of the week. With basketball, you can tell where the ball is at all times, and boxing is just pure sport. Heavyweight boxing is all payoff and no down time and that’s what I love about it. Baseball is the opposite of boxing: It goes on forever and barely anything happens. It’s a dying sport.

Perhaps this isn’t the best time to announce that I’ve taken a position with a local paper covering sports. Kidding. Whenever I write about the Bills or the Sabres, people get pissed off, but I really couldn’t care less. I’ll call it a truce when you leave the game to the people who really like it instead of people who just latch on to it at the last minute when the team is making our town look good. And if you enjoy American Idol, you don’t deserve an opinion, because you’re an idiot. Do us both a favor and take your own life now before you reproduce another genetically flawed moron. After all, they could grow up and start playing baseball.

All I’m asking is that you give those of us who aren’t number one fans of any of the above a television of our own to watch during peak poser season. Not everyone in this town is a football, hockey, baseball or American Idol fan. Some of us think independently year round and support our pastimes consistently instead of infrequently. Just give me one quiet corner in any bar with bad prime time television or any HBO original show. Any of them. Those are some seasons I can get behind. ’Curb Your Enthusiasm’s sixth season is right around the corner. It’s not too late to subscribe. Call now! My shots of whiskey (and your tips) could be depending on it.

Out of the crease,

Tom ’hat trick’ Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 25 on Stands, ‘Fishing For Solutions’ Right Here!

May 15, 2007

The new issue of Night Life is out on stands today with ‘Change Of Season’, a brand new Big Words I Know By Heart column about what it’s like to be a non-hockey/American Idol fan in Buffalo right now (in the event that there’s someone out there in Buffalo who hasn’t hopped on the bandwagon at this point).  Go scoop it up if you dare because this one is guaranteed to piss people off for one reason or another.  And since I only wrote it for Buffalo, I’m reprinting last week’s Bass Pro column (‘Fishing For Solutions’) below since I haven’t reprinted something for awhile.

I also found out over the weekend that another one of my poems (‘Someone Should Cry For Tracy Zullo’) was accepted at The Flask Review, an online web zine of some kind or another.  Once it’s up, I’ll throw up a link. 

It’s hard to believe, but we’re a week away from the half-way point on the Big Words print column.  I’m aiming for 52 consecutive columns and after that, we’ll see.  The column seems to be taking root with the community by tiny leaps and bounds and if it keeps gathering momentum, then I’ll keep committing to it.  What does this mean for you?  Go out and grab a copy!  Tell your friends about it!  Spread the word!  There’s no better publicity than word of mouth, so get the word out. 

That’s all I’ve got for this week.  I’m going on vacation from the 17th to the 22nd, so if there’s an update next week, it won’t be on a Monday.  I’m going to Rushford Lake where I won’t be near phones, computers, or any of the trappings of technology (on purpose), so I’ll update when I get a chance.  Have a great week and buy my books!

Tom Waters

Fishing For Solutions

Raise your hand if you’re stupid enough to think that Bass Pro is going to resurrect downtown Buffalo. Anyone? I didn’t think so. I don’t know whether to blame the local media or the political PR machine, but it seems like every year or two, there’s some great salvation that comes trotting into town only to dash our hopes against the rocks. Buffalo needs more than a quick fix or a multimillion dollar national chain. And honestly, how many people in the suburbs and surrounding towns are going to drive into the heart of the city or the harbor district to get goddamned fishing lures? Not many. Two years ago it was the idea of plunking a casino down in the middle of Buffalo. That hasn’t happened yet. Ten years ago, it was the Angelica film center from out of town. They lasted about a year and a half and the building got rescued by Dipson Theaters, a local outfit. Fifteen years ago, it was the Empire State Brewing Company. To the best of my knowledge, they packed it in and left town a long time ago. Are you seeing a pattern here? If they dropped a free vending machine that spit out gold bullion in the middle of downtown Buffalo, maybe we’d have an economic turnaround.

The big hot button business this time is Bass Pro, though, and I predict that it’ll be about as successful as the other financial endeavors. In the first act, a big faceless corporation gets lured into Buffalo by a sweet siren song of big profits, tax breaks and prime real estate. In the second act, the company realizes that they’ve made a horrible mistake. In the third act, they leave town in the middle of the night like gypsies and we’re left with another vacant building in the middle of a black hole. Rinse and repeat.

Two or three years from now, every paper in town will be claiming that fill in the blank will revive business revenue for Buffalo and reverse the economic depression we’ve been enjoying for the last thirty or forty years. Whatever it may be, that probably won’t work either. The city needs more than a cosmetic band aid to fix the financial ruin that’s hanging over all of us. Real, lasting jobs (preferably unionized). With auto plants going belly up left and right all over town, we could use some more factories. Give some of those companies out of town the old song and dance and hopefully they’ll a)believe us and b)stay for longer than two or three years. History is just going to keep repeating itself unless we change up our game and try something different.

All of our universities help, but they’re making our students just smart enough to realize that there are no real jobs in town so that they get the hell out of Buffalo and expatriate to another state with lower taxes and better opportunities. Solve that little Sudoku puzzle and we might have a shot at being a boom town again. Students aren’t going to get a six year degree so that they can deal blackjack at the new casino or sell rods and reels, for chrissakes. Sure, Bass Pro is going to create some new jobs, but what’s the quality level? There’s a lot of disparity in this town with class and income and minimum wage retail positions don’t help a whole hell of a lot. Create some real jobs. Find lasting companies. It’s that simple.

Talk to any old codger on a bar stool and they’ll cite just how many mistakes this town has made and when. I’ll be one of them in another thirty years. I’m relatively young and I’m not leaving, but I’m in the minority. A lot of my friends have moved out of town for better jobs, better pay and better opportunities. Most of them stayed and tried to hack it out, but they gave up after they realized that there are more people than there are jobs for the majority of the fields that we train and school for.

I’m neither pro nor anti-casino. I like gambling occasionally and sure it’s going to create more alcoholism and gambling addiction, but who cares? Better that the addicts dump money on this side of the border than in Canada, that’s what I say. It’s not as if downtown Buffalo is full of boy scouts after dark as it is. Addicts are addicts, and providing a venue for them to get their fix doesn’t turn non-addictive personalities into addictive personalities. A casino might help whether it’s in my back yard or not, and it just might bring some high rollers in from out of town. I’m part Indian, and we’ve been getting screwed since time immemorial by the white man, so give the full blooded Indians some deep tax breaks and some of the land that they got swindled out of. Fine by me.

The town has been going around and around and around with this argument since the back half of the last century, and odds are that we’ll continue to have this argument well into the next century. Buffalo used to be a thriving metropolis at the beginning of the 20th century and it’s been on a slow, steady decline ever since. Drum up some real, lasting solutions with long term, committed businesses and maybe the town won’t come off like a sinking ship with a bunch of degreed rats hopping overboard at the drop of a hat. Denial won’t solve it, base pay jobs won’t cure it, and one out of town fishing company certainly isn’t going to. Try a little harder, and then I might believe the pitch instead of the money that’s going into pockets that are a lot deeper than mine. Fill in the blank isn’t going to save Buffalo. Figure it out.

Reinforcing my rod (and reel)

Tom ‘ass pro’ Waters


Monday Big Words Update: Week 24 On Stands/Tonawanda Public Library This Thursday

May 7, 2007

There’s a new issue of Night Life rolling out today with ‘Fishing For Solutions’ another brand spanking new rant about the Bass Pro debate written specifically for the Big Words I Know By Heart print column.  Since it’s a painfully local issue, I won’t be reprinting it in the next book, so scoop it up! 

I went to the Buffalo Raceway this weekend and punched up a possible review for the Buffalo News, so I’m crossing my fingers on that one.  I’ve got my first review assignment for them this Wednesday, so it looks like my efforts aren’t going unnoticed.  The News has been great to me so far, and hopefully these Club Watch reviews will be a stepping stone to some other assignments down the road when I have more time to write them…

I’ll also be doing a reading at the Tonawanda Public Library (on old Delaware Rd. or what have you) this Thursday at 7 pm, so try and make it out if you have the time.  This is my last appearance until June, and I couldn’t be happier.  I am frigging exhausted, plus I’m throwing a party and going on vacation next week, so that’s going to take some gumption.  This Wednesday will be the first real day I’ve had off in about six months, so I’m looking forward to sitting on my ass and doing absolutely nothing.  I’m not even going to leave the house.  I’m serious.   

So if you want to see where I weigh in on the Bass Pro issue, grab a copy of Night Life this week!  On stands and completely free!


5 New Big Words Print Columns!

April 29, 2007

     Anybody who’s been on the bimontly email newsletter list for awhile (which you can subscribe to for free by emailing with ‘subscribe’ in the subject heading) should know how neurotic I am about giving away all my good material.  Well, I’ve been getting neurotic about giving away too much of my backlog for free in the weekly Big Words I Know By Heart print column in Night Life.  So what was my solution this week?  I’m going to tell you what  my solution was this week if you’ll just gimme a second. 

In the span of a week, I wrote five BRAND SPANKING NEW COLUMNS that will be debuting in the print edition of Night Life magazine.  Next week, I’m running ‘The Best Laid Nervous Breakdowns’ (regarding the insanity of wedding planning).  For the first week of May, I’m going with a commentary about the Bass Pro debate (‘Fishing For Solutions’).  By the second week of May, I wrote a commentary about the Sabres bandwagon (‘Change Of Season’).  For the third week, I’m rolling out a rant about grilling (‘Lucky Charms: Now With More Bell Peppers!’) and for the final week of May I’m running ten commandments about summertime (‘Wife Beaters & Rollerbladers’).  So if you want to read them, get out there and grab a copy of Night Life every week!  You can catch ’em there first!  I’ll reprint the Buffalo-centric columns here, but that’ll be after they run in Night Life.  And this is my idea of Rest & Relaxation after a month of promoting…


Alma Mater: Buffalo State Aftermath

April 26, 2007

     I was having a terrible day yesterday until I actually did my reading at Buffalo State for the Rooftop Poetry Club.  Traffic was horrendous, some old person took ten minutes to use the ATM machine, just a rotten day.  I popped over to the Buffalo Spree offices for the first time and got to meet Elizabeth Licata (the editor in chief) and drop off a comp copy of the book for review purposes.

Then I got to Buff State and the Visitor parking section was chock full, so I had to risk parking a mile away and possibly getting a ticket (which I didn’t, thank god).  The turnout was not spectacular, but we had a tight knit group of students and poets who showed up during miserable weather and I read a brand new piece (‘The Best Laid Nervous Breakdown’) that I wrote this week about how brutal wedding planning is.  It’ll be going into the Night Life print column this Monday, so you don’t want to miss out on the new issue.  It felt nice to be back on campus for the first time in three years and to feel like I belonged on some level.  I wish that the Club was around when I attended as a student, and I plan on popping back in for their other events after all the book promotions are over.  Many thanks to Lisa Forrest for setting up the event and Sarah Reis for splitting the bill with me.  I truly enjoyed my time there yesterday and once the podcast is up on their site, I’ll pop a link up here. 

     Afterwards, I realized that my Club W appearance downtown is next Thursday, so instead of staying home (which I wanted to do more than anything), I went out.  First I hit the Green Buffalo to hang out with some of the gang from Salon On The Avenue (where I get my hair cut) and then I popped over to the Hidden Shamrock.  Both places were mobbed with Sabres bandwagoneers.  Where were all these fans five months ago?  Sports posers fascinate me.  So I had a few doubles of whiskey, a few frosty Guinnesses, and a few Bud Lights before Michael Bly showed up.  I gave Mike some posters for the event (which I’d been meaning to do, but haven’t had the time) and attempted to chat with him, but he was getting talked up by some fans.  My buddy Brendan showed up (late) and we shared one more Guinness until I begged off early at 10:30. 

     I’ve got about two more weeks of promotions and then I’m taking a break for the rest of May.  I am dog tired from all these promotions and out of my mind for scheduling so many so close together.  I’m still working on setting up some spots for June, but they’re not going to be as intensive and all encompassing as the rest of this month has been.  I realized this Monday that I’d really like to have more free time to a)enjoy and b)write some new material.  Crass Menagerie is at the 70 page mark and I’m starting to get nuerotic about running too much of my backlog in the print column.   


Monday Big Words Update! Week 22 on Stands/Buffalo State this Weds./Sansone interview in the new Buffalo Spree!

April 23, 2007

There’s still a whole lot going on this month and here it is Monday again, which can mean only one thing: that there’s a new Big Words print column in Night Life magazine.   We’re up to Week 22 on my weekly humor column and I threw a real gem in this week, ‘Bad Coverage’, my blind rant against people who use cell phones in public.  Scoop up the latest issue of Night Life if you want to read it, because it’s another rant from Crass Menagerie, which won’t be out in book form until 2009! 

Also, I’ll be appearing at Buffalo State College this Wednesday (two days from now) for the Rooftop Poetry Club at the Butler Library in Room 310 at 4pm.  The event is open to the public (as well as students and faculty), so feel free to attend.  I’m looking forward to setting foot back on Buff State soil for the first time in almost two years, and it will be fun to find out what the students today make of me. 

 I also got early reports today that Buffalo Spree subscribers have received the May issue with my ‘Ballad Of Gregg Sansone’ interview edit.  The May issue should be in bookstores within the next two weeks, so keep your eyes peeled for that one.  This is my first published article with Buffalo Spree and I’m very proud and excited to be freelancing for them on a regular basis.  It’s a slick, well edited magazine and I look forward to contributing my talents on an ongoing basis.

That’s all I’ve got for today.  I’ll post more throughout the week.  In the mean time, I just discovered that there’s a fifth Monday in April, so I need to either whip up a new column or throw a previously unpublished essay in for next week’s Big Words edition exclusively in Night Life magazine!  Sayonara for now,

Tom Waters


Monday Big Words Update! Week 21 on Stands/Caz Coffee Aftermath/WYRK tomorrow!

April 17, 2007

Long day, long week, no energy.  Sorry to be tardy to the party on the Monday update, but I left work and left straightaway for the Caz Coffee Cafe in South Buffalo for a reading/book signing along with featured reader Carrie Spadter and readers Susan Marie and Charles Forness.  We had a phenomenal time, the coffee was great, the crowd was decent, and I sold a pretty decent amount of books for an appearance that took place in awful weather during a Sabres playoff game.  I am definitely going back there in about two months to do another reading when the weather is nicer and the Sabres are done winning that cup!

Since it’s Monday, you should know by now that a new issue of Night Life is on stands with a new print edition of Big Words I Know By Heart.  This week I decided to run ‘Babes On A Plane’, a recent fan favorite that I wrote after my trip back from Florida.  It’s a bit scathing, but readers love when I get worked up, so I went with it. 

I just got home and it’s after ten o’clock, so I’m going to leave it at that.  If you’re driving in to work tomorrow around 8:30 AM (or if you have the day off), I’ll be appearing on the WYRK morning show on 106.5 FM with Clay and Dale!  I love the station and I’m a huge fan of Clay and Dale’s, so I’m looking forward to mixing it up with them and I’ll even be donating copies of the new book for an on air giveaway, so if you want a free copy of the book, tune in!  Talk to you soon,

Tom Waters


Monday Update! Week 20 on Stands/Happy Dyngus Day!

April 9, 2007

Whelp, now that I’ve survived the volley of promotions over the weekend as well as Easter, I’ve decided to counter my crippling exhaustion by going out drinking for Dyngus Day, one of my favorite drinking holidays of the year!  I made a vow this year to make it out for St. Patrick’s, Dyngus Day and Cinco De Mayo, and goddamnit, I’m going to do it!  Since I need a pre-party nap, I’m going to make this Monday update brief.  The new issue of Night Life is on stands with ‘On Being A Large, Land Based Mammal’, my essay from If They Can’t Take A Joke about being a fat man.  As for other things, I’m planning on being on Brian Kahle’s radio show Wednesday at 12:30 on 1340 AM and I’m going into the studio the same day to co-host for ‘The Pissed Off World Of Uncle Hal’ pod cast.  That’s all I’ve got for you, now.  I’ll write more when I have time and I’ve rested up.  Happy Dyngus Day! 


Monday Big Words Update! Week 20 on Stands/Desiderio’s Launch/Engagement Party a Smashing Success!

April 2, 2007

 Holey moley, was last night fun!

Thank you SO MUCH to everybody who came out to attend the official April Fool’s launch for ‘If They Can’t Take A Joke’ along with my surprise proposal/engagement to longtime live-in girlfriend Lindsay.  It’s Lindsay’s birthday on April 3rd, I’d been planning the entire debacle for six months along with everyone in her family (who was in on it and kind enough to keep it a secret) and it came off swimmingly.  After opening the evening at Desi’s with ‘8 Simple Rules For Doing Something With Your Life’ (the unemployment rant) and then following with ‘Speak Now Or When You Get Around To It’ (an essay from the new book about the pros and cons of marriage, fittingly), I brought Lindsay up on stage and popped the question.  Then we left the stage and Michael Bly (who had been practicing the song for weeks at my request) played a moving rendition of ‘I Can’t Keep This From You’, our Elton John song from Peachtree Road (a song we listened to when we started dating). 

The next hour and a half was a blur as people congratulated the both of us and then everyone descended on the book table to purchase their own signed copies of If They Can’t Take A Joke, Clean Up After Me I’m Irish, and my remaining copies of First Person, Last Straw.   A great many people bought me a congratulatory shot of Tullamore Dew whiskey (my favorite at Desiderio’s), and after Michael Bly’s fantastic set, Lana and Hund took the stage.  They rocked the place out in their award winning style and wrapped up the whole soiree around ten thirty.  Bly along with Lana and Hund raked in some pretty good money donation wise from the concert goers, so I thank you for that, too.  Lindsay and I finally relaxed after the show wound down and then my friend Becky asked if I’d read again, so beer in hand, I went back up and read some material that wasn’t necessarily suitable for all ages: ‘Babes On A Plane’ (from next year’s Slapstick & Superego) and ‘Bad Coverage’ (a cell phone rant I wrote for ’09’s Crass Menagerie). 

We wound down at the bar and had some pints of Guiness with Jay Desiderio, Matt, Doug, Allie and the rest of the staff at Desi’s while we packed our stuff up, put the chairs up and closed the doors on the best book launch I’ve ever had.  Once we got home, Lindsay started flipping out (in a good way) and we watched the new episode of Reno 911, ate some leftover chicken wings from the buffet (thanks, new mom in law!) and turned in for the night.

I don’t know if I can top the launch with the rest of the promotions, but I’m certainly going to be a lot happier going forward.  Next stop is on Thursday at the Clarence Center Coffee Co. at 7pm on the corner of Goodrich and Clarence Center Rd.  I’ll be doing an hour long reading (providing that there’s a sizable crowd) followed by a book signing and a few of their delicious cafe mochas. 

And there’s a new Big Words print column in Night Life today.  In honor of yesterday’s events, I submitted ‘Speak Now Or When You Get Around To It’ for those who were unable to make the launch and the proposal.  Now that the secret is out (and it was most certainly NOT an April Fool’s joke), I can breath a sigh of relief and get on with the show.  Many thanks also to Trina (a fan of the print column who I met last week who showed for the launch) and Chuck Sankey (a fellow YourHub humor columnist who’s pretty funny in his own right who showed up at the launch and bought some books). 

Big thanks go out to Michael Bly and Lana and Hund for volunteering to play at the launch.  They’re music was a perfect complement to the event, I think they made a lot of new fans, and Lindsay and I will remember April 1st, 2007 for the rest of our lives.  Thanks also go out to Jay and Bobby Desiderio and the entire staff of Desiderio’s for being like a third family to us in the last six months.  The restaurant has become like a home to us, and we rarely if ever miss a Tuesday for karoake, irish whiskey and great company.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart.  And thanks also to all of you who showed up last night.  You’ve ALL got an invite to the wedding!  I promise that I won’t be shilling a book during that occassion.  The only reason I timed the proposal yesterday was because the book launch was a perfect reason for both sides of Lindsay’s family to show up without her getting suspicious.  That, and I was a nervous wreck all day yesterday and she just chalked it up to pre-show jitters.  What a great year it’s been and we’re only into the fourth month!

I’ll be posting pictures from yesterday’s bash on my YourHub site, so click over there if you want to relive the magic…

Try and make it out to Clarence on Thursday, grab the new print edition of Night Life and I’ll update soon,

Tom Waters     


Monday Big Words Update! Week 19 on Stands (and RIGHT HERE!) 6 Days Until Launch at Desiderio’s!

March 26, 2007

Now things are starting to get exciting!

We’re only six days away from the official launch for my fourth (or fifth if you count Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish) book, If They Can’t Take A Joke: Confrontational Humor For The Casual Bibliophile!  If you live in Buffalo, I want to see you at Desiderio’s this Sunday, April Fool’s Day at 7 pm, sharp!  I caught Lana and Hund last Friday at Desiderio’s during one of their shows and they are a lock.  Michael Bly (who will also be performing Sunday) is a lock.  And you know I’m gonna be there.  The entire event is free (although I’m asking humbly that you throw a couple bucks in a jar for the musical guests), so what reason do you have not to miss the triple threat of 2007? 

I was also informed today that If They Can’t Take A Joke is now available on not only my publisher’s web site (where it’s two dollars cheaper for the trade paperback and the hardcover) at but also on Amazon, Barnes and Noble’s web site, Border’s web site, and pretty much everyone else’s web site.  It’s looking like I won’t have the hardcover edition available in time for the launch, so if you want a copy of the book in the dust jacket hardcover, you’ll get it faster if you order NOW!  So click on over to authorhouse’s site and buy the damned thing!

That’s all the plugging I’ve got today.  Well, not really.  Since it’s Monday, there’s a new print issue of the Big Words column in Night Life magazine on stands today with the second installment of ‘Shameless Promotional Whoring’.  I’m enclosing it here for your enjoyment since it’s also about Sunday’s event.  I’ll talk to you all in a week (after the initial hoopla),

Tom Waters

Shameless Promotional Whoring Pt.II

Now that we’ve all gotten our drink and our snack and our party on from St. Patty’s at The Hidden Shamrock, you should all be well into third gear for the really big book launch! Are you guys ready for an all out, no holds barred literary BASH? Well I hope so. There are great things in store for this Sunday, kids. Great things indeed. Because this Sunday, April 1st, I’m kicking off my First Annual April Foolfest at Desiderio’s on Broadway and Bowen in the town of Lancaster. I know Lancaster knows how to rock the party that rocks the body, but what about the rest of you, Buffalo? Are you man enough to man up and be part of the bash of the decade? Show me your best! This Sunday (starting at 7pm) I’ll be kicking off the official launch of my new humor collection, If They Can’t Take A Joke: Confrontational Humor For The Casual Bibliophile. It’s about two hundred pages of scathing, confrontational rants and celebrity interviews featuring author Bret Easton Ellis, comic writers Mike Carey, Brian Azzarello and Brian K. Vaughn along with some local writers, artists and musicians. You know what? I’ll just run the publicity blurb right here instead of trying to paraphrase:

Critically lauded Buffalo humor writer Tom Waters sharpens his craft with essays to razor precision in his fourth published collection of wickedly subversive and laugh out loud rants, essays, and celebrity interviews. The author reloads his calculated wit on topics like babies, pornography, restaurants, relationships, driving, wrestling, coffee addiction, weight gain, psychotherapy, writers portrayed in film, the eroding laziness of our culture, drive-thrus, cooking, republicans, and the agony of shopping for clothes with women. The collection also reprints some of Tom’s most popular celebrity interviews with author Bret Easton Ellis, comic legends Mike Carey and Brian Azzarello and cult film director Lloyd Kaufman.

Waters has enjoyed a rabid cult following among his fans and continues to shock, amuse, and offend with his no-nonsense brand of confrontational rants. Compared as a cross between Andy Rooney, Dennis Miller and Denis Leary, his angst-fueled nonfiction endures as a legacy to the Y generation, an amusing threat to baby boomers, and an inspiration to angry young men the world over. His books and articles have appeared in over four countries and have thus far sold thousands of copies. He’s performed his work on the radio, on stage, and in print for almost twenty years, garnering an award for humor from Columbia University and finding publication in The Buffalo News, ArtVoice, Night Life Magazine, Acid Logic, Film Fax, Too Much Coffee Man Magazine, and The Circle, among others. His last collection, First Person, Last Straw, was described as ’a jolting read’ (Anthony Violanti, Buffalo News) and ’a book that gives as much as it takes from you’ (Brian Bogucki, ArtVoice).

Should I up the ante a little bit more, Buffalo? Just say the word. All right then. I’m not going to be the only person on stage this Sunday, because I’m bringing TWO musical acts with me! Local legend Michael Bly will be performing along with Lana and Hund! How’s that for entertainment? And to top it all off, we’re doing this gig for free! I am asking for donations at the door, though, as all three acts are volunteering their time and their talents to help me promote the new book, for which I am very grateful, so please drop a few bucks in the jar at the door so that these musicians don’t go home empty handed. I’d like to take a moment to personally thank Michael Bly and Lana and Hund for saying yes from the word go. It means the world to me. I’m going to read a few select pieces to start the night off and then I’m going to let the musical guests do what they do best, which is rock your f-ing socks off! This is going to be one hell of a party, and if all goes well, we’ll be doing it again next year, same bat time, same bat channel, same bat bar.

I’ll also be promoting all over the place this month for the book, so don’t forget to check my events either on my official site (the web address just below my fat black and white head up there), my site (Big Buffalo I Know By Heart), or Don’t think I’m not running listings in ArtVoice and the Buffalo News Gusto as well, because I’ll have the events up there, too. April is going to be one phenomenal month, Buffalo. Why don’t you join me? I’ll see ALL of you this Sunday at 7 pm at Desiderio’s. I wouldn’t miss it for the world, and there are still a few surprises I’m saving for the launch. Let’s have some laughs, sell some books, slam some shots and rock out Lancaster!

Replacing the battery in my spinning bowtie,

Tom ‘buy my goddamned book!’ Waters


Final March/April Calendar Of Events for ‘If They Can’t Take A Joke: Confrontational Humor For The Casual Bibliophile’ by Tom Waters

March 23, 2007

March/April Book Promotions for Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish: A Cheap Degenerate’s Guide To Buffalo Bars and If They Can’t Take A Joke: Confrontational Humor For The Casual Bibliophile by Tom Waters

Note: These are the final dates and details for March and April.  I’ll include the May listings as we get closer to the actual month.   

Saturday, March 31st, 12pm-6pm: Buffalo Small Press Book Fair at Karpeles Manuscript Library Museum, 453 Porter Avenue in Buffalo.  Buy If They Can’t Take A Joke: Confrontational Humor For The Casual Bibliophile by Tom Waters a day before the official launch!

Sunday, April 1st, 7pm-12am: First Annual April Foolfest at Desiderio’s on Broadway and Bowen in Lancaster.  Offical launch for If They Can’t Take A Joke: Confrontational Humor For The Casual Bibliophile by Tom Waters in hard cover and soft cover.  Reading and signing followed by musical acts Michael Bly and Lana and Hund.  Admission is free, donations accepted at the door for musical guests.

Thursday, April 5th, 7pm-9pm: Book reading and signing for If They Can’t Take A Joke by Tom Waters at the Clarence Center Coffee Co.  (corner of Clarence Center Rd. and Goodrich in Clarence Center). 

Saturday, April 7th, 12pm-4pm: Book signing for If They Can’t Take A Joke by Tom Waters at F.Y.E Hamburg.  Located in the Mckinley Mall plaza in the town of Hamburg. 

Saturday, April 7th, 7pm-11pm: Tom’s Atomic Kegger 2!  Book signing and free beer all night for everyone who purchases a copy of If They Can’t Take A Joke by Tom Waters.  20% all comics, toys and collectibles at Don’s Atomic Comics, Transit Rd. in Depew in the Red Wings Shoes/Burgandy Room plaza.  Must be 21 or older to receive free beer.

Saturday, April 14th, 12pm-4pm: Book signing for If They Can’t Take A Joke by Tom Waters at F.Y.E Amherst.  Located on Transit and Wherle in the town of Lancaster.

Monday, April 16th, 7 pm: Reading and signing for If They Can’t Take A Joke with local poet Carrie Spadter at Caz Coffee Café, Orchard Park. 

Wednesday, April 18th.  7 pm.  Reading, signing and author Q & A for If They Can’t Take A Joke by Tom Waters at the Lancaster Public Library.  Located on Broadway near Central Avenue in the town of Lancaster.  

Sunday, April 22nd, 2pm-4pm.  Book signing for If They Can’t Take A Joke by Tom Waters at Talking Leaves Elmwood.  Located on Elmwood Ave. past Forest in the city of Buffalo.

Wednesday, April 25th, 4pm-5pm.  Book reading, signing and author Q&A session for If They Can’t Take A Joke by Tom Waters for the Rooftop Poetry Club at Buffalo State College.  Located in the campus library ‘on the rooftop’ at Buffalo State College, Elmwood Ave., Buffalo.     


Monday Big Words Update! Week 18 on Stands, ‘If They Can’t Take A Joke’ in my hands!!!!

March 19, 2007

So the ‘Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish’ promotion came and went and was a smashing success and now we’re rounding the final stretch to the big launch of ‘If They Can’t Take A Joke’ in 13 DAYS!  We are now less than two weeks away from the bash at Desiderio’s on Broadway on April Fool’s Day and I’m pumped!  Authorhouse just sent me one of my comp copies of the book today and it’s the best looking book yet from an aesthetic standpoint.  At 271 pages and $18, it’s also the best value of any book I’ve ever released, so soak up all that Watersy goodness!  Spread it on!  You can buy a copy (or 15 copies, for that matter) right this second at:  

The new issue of Night Life is on stands today with ‘Portrait Of Health’, a little ditty (from next year’s ‘Slapstick & Superego’) about how reprehensible my eating, drinking and exercise habits are.  I won’t be reprinting that one here.  I will, however, be simultaneously running next week’s column the same day it hits stands, as next week’s column comprises Part Two of my ‘Shameless Promotional Whoring’ series, of which I’m sure there will be more.  And speaking of promotional whoring, I’ll be sitting down with the good folks at 97 Rock to talk about going onto their morning show to promote the new book in April.  I’ll keep this post brief as I’m still recovering from Saturday’s festivities and I’d like to read the book through in one shot to see how it holds up as a body of work.  I think you’re going to be really, really impressed, Buffalo!  Talk to you soon,

Tom Waters 


‘Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish’ Aftermath!

March 18, 2007

Jill, one of the best bartenders at 'The Rock'!

Jill balancing perhaps her fourth tray of green shots during St. Patrick’s Day at Hidden Shamrock.

     The Hidden Shamrock was a mob scene yesterday, and I don’t think we could’ve packed in any more people if we wanted to. Aside from my promotion for the book ‘Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish: A Cheap Degenerate’s Guide To Buffalo Bars’, they had traditional Irish folk dancing as well as five dollar pitchers of green beer (which they ran out of around eleven o’clock. There had to be at least two hundred and fifty people at the Shamrock yesterday, and since I committed to appearing there from six pm to twelve am on St. Patrick’s Day, I drank from….six pm until about eleven thirty. Ten years ago, I was a bit more spry when it came to marathon drinking, but yesterday, I did my best to pace myself, and sold a payload of books in the process. Michael Bly popped in and did some shots to show some support for the book (even though he had his own gig at Kodiak Jack’s in Elma) and fellow pal and author Alycia Ripley popped in towards the end to buy a copy of the book. It wasa rousing, drunken, foot stomping, whiskey swilling good time. Many thanks to Tom, Kevin, Jill, Kindra and everyone else at The Hidden Shamrock. We’ll have to do something again next year. It was good practice for the real book launch on April Fool’s Day with ‘If They Can’t Take A Joke’. If you missed yesterday, then you definitely don’t want to miss April Fool’s at Desiderio’s on Broadway! Seeya in two weeks,
Tom Waters


Validation! Buffalo News Gusto Club Watch Review Today!

March 16, 2007

After six weeks (due to some editing concerns and a steady backlog of other reviews), my first bar review premiered in The Buffalo News Gusto today on Mazariello’s in Lancaster/Depew.  As I’ve said before, my bar reviews from this point on are the property of The Buffalo News, so I will be unable to reprint them anywhere (in books, on this site, anywhere), so spend the fifty cents and pick one up.  This is a huge milestone for me and I’m really happy to be taking assignments from the News on a regular basis moving forward.  It’s a dream to work for them as a Union staff writer at some point down the road, and this is one small step towards that goal.  After five years of writing bar reviews for Night Life, I’ve finally hit the big time and all this hard work is beginning to pay off.  Those of you who’ve been along for the ride since around 2000 will see this as no surprise, but for many Buffalo readers, this will be the first time they’ve ever read anything of mine.  This can only mean great things for the new book(s) as we approach the launch(es).  Oh, and don’t forget, I’ll be at the Hidden Shamrock TOMORROW from 6-12 selling and signing copies of Clean Up After Me, I’m Irish: A Cheap Degenerate’s Guide To Buffalo Bars!  Be there or be square, and if I seem standoffish, it’s only because I’m shy, so walk up, introduce yourself, buy a book and have a drink with me!