His name was Gummo.
He is also known as Sweet Gumster, Fierce Warrior, The International Pop Star, Mr. Withers, Buddy, and Bubblegum Gangster (there was a theme song- thank you Sam and Julie). Those of you who knew him marveled at his ferocity. At his good looks. Many of our New York City friends received bites or leg attacks from him. Many were scared of him until they got to know him and realized he was just testing them. Many mice did not survive his gaze.
When we moved to Kansas in 2012, he mellowed a little. He got sweeter. Not as much biting and he had his own lazy boy chair right next to Matt’s Dad Harry. He also had a lot of things to explore – the backyard, and grass, and birds, and closets, and stairs and little corners full of musty, dusty things. He loved it.He was still the center of attention at parties or dinners….sitting in the middle of the room and looking handsome. He was always so handsome!
The past few months he’d been seriously declining. He was 17 years old…and I guess I thought he’d get really old with us. I was forgetting he was like 90 in cat years. It wasn’t easy for Matt and I to realize that he wasn’t getting better, but worse. He just wasn’t eating, or moving that much – he was weak and in a lot of pain. The past week he’s hardly moved from behind the couch.
He was suffering a lot….we knew we had to take him to the vet. Yesterday he died peacefully with us holding him. The shock of this is pretty intense.
Those of you who knew him know how much a part of our family he was. He was my muse at different times. I went through a couple years of just drawing Gummo. We put him on the cover of a Schwervon! record. There were so many good moments of him lying on my belly or Matt’s lap, or how he always liked his head held, or how he’d wake us up at 4am by rustling paper or jumping on us because he was hungry.
Thank you for being in our lives.
We loved and love you with all of our hearts.
You ever have one of those weeks that felt like a year? I think we just had one. After a steamy Pittsburgh show we headed back to NYC for a couple of nights that pretty much ran the full gamut of emotions for us.
The first NY show was at The Bell House opening for The Vaselines. Frances sang her backing vocal on Truth Teller for the first time ever, live, and we got to meet Michael Azerrad who wrote one of my favorite band bio books of all time: This Band Could Be Your Life. The night was pretty magical. Check out some pics from the show here: http://www.brooklynvegan.com/archives/2012/0/the_vaselines_a_1.html
The next night we cut loose at the BTP in Bushwick. It was really fun to share a bill again with our NYC scene buddies Phoebe Kreutz + Kung Fu Crimewave. Also nice to see Dan Penta’s new duo project with Brian Speaker. It was heartwarming to see some old familiar faces and a few new ones as well. Thanks to everyone who represented and a special thanks to Sammy at Scapegrace for the crash pad and The Purple Organ for hosting the lovely Labor Day Weekend gathering. It was hard for Nan and I to leave our ny friends this time around…but really great to have such good catch up time with them.
With our friend batteries thoroughly charged, our next stop was the Paradise Lost House in New Brunswick, NJ. Greg from the band A Fucking Elephant was nice enough to hook us up with this cool basement venue. It was a pretty early show due to noise ordinances. The first band, Bodega Satellite super rocked it in a very Sebadohish way. Following that were the Timid Roosevelts who kind of reminded me of a bit of throw back to the late 80’s, 4AD dream pop, a la Cocteau Twins with some nice DIY temperament. They had fun T-shirts too. And closing up the night were some nice tight fresh sounds from locals Zero For Conduct (enjoyed their CD very much in the car today). All the elements a great house show should have, minus the puke in the bathtub!
Next stop was DC where we got our asses thoroughly washed by some of the heaviest rain I’d seen in a long time. This put a slight damper (ouch) on the show, so to speak. But our soggy spirits prevailed with a nice triple bill that included locals Southern Problems and Brooklyn dream pop trio Shy Hunters. We had a day off in DC for Labor day so we thought we’d drop by B&M’s place for brunch. They didn’t have to bring out the police escort for us.
And just because no Schwervon! blog post would feel complete without a cute picture of a cat…here’s a shot of Pants. He belongs to our friend, Sarah, who was nice enough to let us crash at her place for 2 days in DC. She left early for her med school class today, and we discovered that our shoes were missing. Due to the heavy rains a couple nights ago, we left them outside her apartment in the hallway. They were Nan’s favorite boots and my new “show shoes”. We left a note asking for whoever took them to return them and were feeling pretty crappy about the whole thing when we got a knock on the door and a very nice maintenance man said “These are your shoes? Don’t leave them in the hall… I thought they were trash!” Ok then, thank you guardian shoe angels. Now we can go tear it up in Harrisonburg, VA!!!
WE’RE IN THE HOME STRETCH FOLKS! COME ON OUT & GET SCHOOLED
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Tagged cats, cocteau twins, crash pad, DC, labor day weekend, Michael Azerrad, New Brunswick, new brunswick nj, NYC, Pittsburgh, rain, Schwervon!, shoes, The Bell House, travel, Truth Teller, vacation, Vaselines