The Batmobile Vs. The Wicked Stang
By George Tabb
This past Monday, I gave Jeffrey Hyman The Lifetime Achievement award from Heeb Magazine at The Jewish Museum here in New York City. While I thought the the place didn’t feel right, seeing as it was also a holocaust museum, and right across the street from Ground Zero, I kept sorta tight lipped, for me, and gave Jeff’s mom the award.
As she and I walked off the stage to lots of applause, she said, “George, I can feel Joey here!”
I looked at her face and her smile was so big I almost cried. I missed him as well, so I told her “I miss Jeff, too!”
“Joey,” she told me as she put her soft hand on my shoulder, “he liked to be called Joey”.
I corrected myself and then started to tell her how happy he and his band had made me over the years. Then I felt him there, too.
So I told her this tiny vignette involving her son’s band. While it didn’t directly talk about him, it had that over all feeling of fun, carelessness, and everything great that was and will always be Joey Ramone.
"Play THE SONG, man," my high school pal, Scott Peterson, says to me as I gun the motor of my Datsun 510 station wagon. As I do, the orange car with the blue Batman logo on the hood begins to shake.
"George," Scott says, "if you ain’t gonna play it, I’m gonna pop in a different tape. Maybe Billy Joel."
I ease off the gas and push the fast-forward button on the Archer tape deck to find THE SONG. As I do, the eject button falls off. Cheap Radio Shack piece of shit. But at least The Ramones tape of "Road To Ruin" is in the deck, with The Dead Boys’ "Young, Loud, & Snotty" on the other side. If I was gonna have to listen to the same songs over and over, this was the right cassette.
As I search for THE SONG, I notice that Mike Gibson’s 1967 Mustang is pulling way ahead of us as we all are making our way about thirty miles south of Tallahassee, to a sink hole that Scott promises will have naked chicks sunbathing around it.
Actually, it may have been west of Tallahassee. Or East. I don’t know. Or care.
Finally, I find THE SONG, and crank it up. The Ramones "Bad Brain" begins. "I used to be an A student/I never used to complain/I used to be a truant/But I’m still the same/Bad bad brain."
As we sing along, banging our heads on the windshield, Scott takes out a joint and lights it up.
"Dude," he says to me from behind his wire-frame glasses and seventies mustache, "we are gonna get SO laid."
I nod my head, singing along with The Ramones, knowing damn well that none of us were gonna get any pussy. The only pussy that ANY of us got lately was the one that Mike Gibson ran over with his wicked stang.
"It went like ‘meow’, than made this splashing sound", Mike had told me a few days earlier, while doing bong hits during my break at Publix Supermarket as a bag boy.
After taking a couple of drags of the joint, I noticed that Mike Gibson had pulled way ahead of us. And since he, or his passenger, David Williams, didn’t know exactly where the sink hole was, I’d better catch up. Only Scott knew where it was for sure.
So, as Bad Bad Brain cranks out, I gun the motor again, and when I hit about ninety miles per hour or so, I catch up to the White Stang.
"Pull up next to them," Scott tells me as we make our way down the deserted highway. It’s about three in the afternoon and only about a hundred and ten degrees. I do.
"Hey dudes," yells Scott to Mike and David through his passenger window to Mike’s driver’s window.
Mike raises his hand up and waves. Then smiles from behind his mirrored sunglasses. I turn down my Radio Shack piece of shit and hear The Dead Boys blasting from The Stang. The guy has good taste. I also see that the car is so filled with pot smoke that David is hard to see in the passenger’s seat.
"The sink hole is about ten miles ahead," Scott yells to the guys as my car struggles to keep up with them.
"Uh huh," says Mike, as David passes him a huge bong, and then takes a big hit.
"Try this," says Scott, as he holds his joint out the window to give to Mike. At ninety miles an hour.
Of course the thing flies away.
"Fuck," says Scott, "that was some good shit. Hawaiian Gold!"
"We must have more pot," I yell at Scott as The Wicked Stang pulls head of my Datsun 510 station wagon.
"Sorry dude," says Scott.
I tell him I’m gonna pull up next to those guys again, and for him to ask for the bong.
As I do, my car begins to get the shakes again. I clutch the steering wheel tightly, and listen as Scott yells to Mike and David.
"Dudes," says Scott, "pass the bong!"
"Okay," says David.
"Fuck that," says Mike, "first ya gotta catch us!"
With that Mike Gibson guns the motor of his Wicked Stang, and the next thing I knew they were about a quarter of a mile ahead of us.
"Catch-up," says Scott.
"Duh," I say.
I gun the motor of my Batmobile as Scott fiddles with the rewind button. Finally he finds the beginning of "Bad Brain" and we sing along once more as we try to catch up to Mike and David.
First we get to about a hundred miles per hour.
Then a hundred and five.
"I don’t think she’s gonna make it, Captain," I say to Scott in my best Scottish voice as the steering wheel begins to shake violently.
"Go faster," was his reply.
So I gunned it harder. Now we’re going a hundred and ten and the car feels like one of those machines fat people used to to shake off those excess pounds.
"We’re almost there," yells Scott. He has to yell because the wind is so loud.
Finally the Datsun 510 Wagon hits its peak at one hundred twenty, and we pull up next to Mike and David.
Mike looks down at his speedometer, then at me.
"Pretty slick, Tabb," he says, as he pulls so close to my car that suddenly the wind stops howling outside of my passenger side.
The next thing I know he passes Scott the bong. Scott lights up the bowl and takes a hit. He then tells me to take one. At a hundred and twenty miles an hour.
"Are you fucking nuts," I ask him as I clutch the steering wheel for dear life. But as I do, I notice it’s not shaking anymore.
"It’s not shaking anymore," I exclaim.
"You’ve reached Warp Speed," yells David from the other car.
"Cool," I say.
"So you gonna do a hit?" Scott asks as he holds the bong in his lap.
"Sure," I say, and tell Scott to hold the wheel as I take the bong from him, light it up, and take a puff.
"This tastes like shit!", I yell as I exhale some of the worst stank weed I’ve ever had.
"I harvested it this morning from my cowfield," says David.
"Give it back," says Mike as we continue down the deserted highway at a hundred and twenty.
"First ya gotta catch me," I say, then hit the gas pedal as hard as I can with my right foot.
Then we heard that "Whumping" sound.
An hour and a half later, while waiting for the tow truck in the hot Florida sun, Scott asked to hear "Bad Brain" again. And I played it for him. Again.
Take My Life, Please.
ock, Knoxville stylee, boyee! Also got Chris’s cd of his band, The Dirty Works. Way Rad!
5. Does the PSP rock or what?