Arts DEVO’s 300th column

This … is … DEVO!

This … is … DEVO!

DEVO equation Let’s see here … take 208 Arts DEVOs, add 58 Arts DEVOtés, subtract two guest columnists, add another 37 Local Bastards (minus one fill-in host), carry the Energy Dome, solve for why, and the answer to your local-arts prayers is: column No. 300!

That’s right, somehow, the powers that be have given me 600 words of blabber space 300 times over—from the early cranky days of the short-lived Local Bastard experiment to the modern and highly sophisticated Arts DEVOté/Arts DEVO incarnations. No matter the name, the basic three-pronged approach has been the same:

1. Give a shout out to the cool, crazy or stupid local arts and music folks and the artsiness and noisemaking in which they have been engaged.

2. Point out the cool, crazy or stupid artsiness and noisemaking in which local arts and music folks are about to engage and encourage you to join them.

3. Write about the first thing that pops into my head. Which is usually clown art, puppy dogs, indie rock, bacon or sports.

Add up all those weeks and that’s nearly six years’ worth of columns. That makes me tired just to think about. I think I’ll take a break and dig up some random excerpts from the vault. I’ve earned it:

Local Bastard, March 31, 2005:

Hey Chico, is it me, or did you just get sexier? Let’s get this straight. There was porn, local porn, topping the KNVN 5 o’clock news last week. Right there, “exclusively” on Channel 24—I seen it. Pairs of silicone fun bags and blurred-out booties bounced through a cheering crowd into the Phi Kappa Tau frat house for a toga party and orgy. (Playboy! Chico’s back!) I’m not going to knock the frat boys for having sex with porn chicks … but guys, wear a jimmy, for crab’s sake!

Arts DEVOté, Aug. 10, 2006:

Art, thy name is mine: I should’ve been named Art. I totally would have called this column “Art on Art” or just “It’s Art!” My grandpa is an Art. … His son (my uncle) is Art. … And his son is Art. … I was the first born of my generation in my family, but since my mom wasn’t a dude, I (and every other guy I grew up with) got named after a movie with Argonauts.

Arts DEVO, July 30, 2009:

Chico is small and laid-back enough that no matter what your artistic aspirations are, there are always open doors (however small) for energetic art makers, and the college brings enough outside cultural influence to ensure that there will always be something new and always be a handful of people around to witness your art.

Arts DEVO, March 11, 2010:

Back in the ’90s, you couldn’t throw a Hacky Sack in Chico without knocking the bong off a jam band’s amplifier.

Arts DEVO, Aug. 19, 2010:

We have watered-down “douchebag” to the point where it’s being completely wasted on relatively innocuous frat boys, girls gone wild, emo kids and the Jersey Shore cast. It is such an awesome term too; we can’t let it lose its potency. We need to save all our vinegar for when conversation turns to the likes of Tea Partiers, Juggalos or Glenn Beck. (Now that I think about it, maybe we just need a stronger word for such extreme cases, one without the clean-and-fresh implications—something like “colostomy bag” or maybe just “shit sack”?)

Arts DEVO, March 31, 2011:

Yikes. 60-year-old me. What will that look like? Will I still be running my mouth off about smelly hippies, local art freaks and aging hipsters in a weekly newspaper column? Will my appendages make it through another two decades of pick-up basketball intact? Will I still want to be listening to Sonic Youth and Black Eyed Peas?

I have to do something. My cultural identity won’t allow me to get much older. I will not survive if I start being mistaken for someone’s dad at concerts. Someone get me some noni juice and a goat’s placenta … and unload a few vials of botox into my face, while you’re at it.