[The one and only Henry Rollins contributes a weekly column and far-reaching reportage to the music section of the LA Weekly. Look for your weekly Henry Rollins fix right here on West Coast Sound every week and make sure to tune in to Henry's KCRW radio show every Saturday evening, or online, or as a podcast, or however else you decided to listen to the most eclectic DJ on LA's airwaves.
Well now. This is it. The first missive of 2011. I do hope the last several days were good and safe.
Not that you need my opinion on anything but I think that 2011 is going to be interesting to say the least and perhaps not at all bad. For those of you not all that enchanted with the prospect of some very my-way-or-the-highway types holding sway in the House, I urge you not to lose heart. If you look at your history, whenever change came to America, there was an adverse reaction.
If you think that it was all smiles when president Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act of 1964 into law, you're wrong. There were millions of people who resisted that momentous signing with everything they had. To this day, there are still many out there pining for the good old days of American apartheid.
Change comes slowly to the America. There is always a considerable reaction to even the smallest move. The mid term elections show that discomfort. A loss is a loss but some things changed nonetheless and as watered down as some of those bills were, they were substantial changes.
When you consider the obstacles thrown in the way of changing the way America does business and what got done in spite of those roadblocks, I think some asses got kicked and some names got took. Was it enough? Is it ever?
January makes me frisky. Even though I am fifty, or damn close, I feel like a forty-something when I think of what is possible in 2011.
I am not the one to have resolutions for a new year but I do make a lot of plans early on. I try to have the year booked pretty solid by February so when other things come up, I can say yes to them and be overbooked, overextended, behind schedule over budget and under slept at all times. I think I get the best out what's left of my crackling synapses this way.
Every year, I try to up the ante. The year that just ended was one hundred and forty three shows, visits to China, Senegal, Mali, Ireland, Scotland, England, Denmark, Sweden, Belgium, Holland, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Hungary, Czech, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, North Korea, Mongolia, Tibet, Nepal, Bhutan, Vietnam, Uganda and Sudan. A couple of documentaries shot and two books completed. I reckon it was a pretty good year. I learned a lot and met some amazing people.
We have to keep pushing forward in 2011. More truth, more answers, better care of the country's least fortunate. I think we are going to whip the ass off of 2010. There will be some setbacks and a healthy bit of frustration but I think it's going to be great because we're going to make it so.
Next week, things will be heating up in Sudan as the South gets ready to vote for their freedom from the North. Keep your eyes on that one. The vote is on the ninth day of January and the results may bring some chaos to that already troubled region. Hopefully the American media will not turn the proverbial blind eye to it. Even if they do, we won't.