THE REAL JEFF MANN

I fled the ice and snow of upstate NY for sunny Arizona back in 1992 to follow my dreams. I write about rock ‘n’ roll, referee roller derby and enjoy reading, tattoos, movies, music, politics, social media, yoga, & travel.

My debut book “ALL IN: How To Become An Overnight Rock ‘n’ Roll Roadie Success In Just 20 Years” is OUT NOW! All about my 10 years traveling around the world as a roadie for touring rock bands like KISS, Alice Cooper, and Megadeth. Available on Amazon and Kindle. You can also satisfy your thirst for my wit and wisdom with my blog posts about current events, punk rock, politics & views on the world around us. From my own warped perspective, of course!



Buy the book and get more information at http://therealjeffmann.com/

FAVORITE BOOK: Changes frequently. Right now it’s A Confederacy Of Dunces.
And everything by Henry Rollins.
FAVORITE MUSIC: Bad Religion, Bad Brains, Badfinger, Badlands, pretty much
anything with the word “bad” in it.
FAVORITE FOOD: Anything from the
Bake & Destroy cook book.
FAVORITE WEB SITE: Twitter
WHERE I WANT TO VISIT: Phuket, Thailand;
Ha Long Bay, Vietnam;
Clevelend, Ohio;
Portland, Oregon.
WHERE I GREW UP: Syracuse, NY.
COMPANIES I’VE WORKED FOR: KISS, Alice Cooper, Megadeth, Tucson Roller Derby

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The Rock For President

Everybody’s talking about Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson lately so I figured I’d better hop up onto the bandwagon, too. Right up front, let’s get one thing out of the way. I’m a fan. A big fan. I wasn’t always one, however. I wasn’t very impressed when The Rock burst into the entertainment world wrestling in the WWF in the late 90’s. Maybe it was that awful, meme-worthy haircut. I was, however, a big pro wrestling fan, so I was pretty much forced to watch as the Rock climbed up the ladder of wrasslin’ success. He started to grow on me, slowly, over time, like a fungus, I suppose. I couldn’t deny his charisma and skills on the microphone. His authenticity and all-around good guy vibe won me over and now I proudly count myself as one of his many, many fans. How many? So many that there’s actually serious talk about him making a Presidential run in 2020! Crazy, right? Maybe not as crazy as you...

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TV sucks.

TV. I don’t watch much of the stuff anymore. This wasn’t always the case. As a kid growing up in the 1970’s I got to enjoy what truly has to be considered the Golden Age of television programming. I was there, perched on my parent’s sofa watching raptly as shows like “Happy Days”, “The Brady Bunch”, “Barney Miller”, “Mork & Mindy”, “Welcome Back Kotter” and “WKRP In Cincinnati” made pop culture history. I was there watching as Billy Crystal portrayed the first openly gay character in television history on “Soap” and, less awesomely, as John Ritter pretended to be gay on “Three’s Company” so he could cohabitate with Suzanne Sommers and Joyce DeWitt. I heard Archie Bunker make history of another sort as his flushing toilet shocked and outraged the more prudish viewers of “All In The Family” viewers across America. I guess it did seem kind of risque at the time. I saw “The White Shadow”...

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Tucson Food Trucks Kick Ass

In the past food trucks were considered a last resort, a place you’d go to get food only if there were no other options (there are always options, but more on that in another blog post). They were frequently referred to as “Roach Coaches” and were considered to be a great way to get food poisoning or a nice case of the runs. That has all changed, and I’m happy to say Tucson has some amazing examples of this up-and-coming dining sensation. While at one time most people wouldn’t dream of eating food cooked in the back of a truck, food trucks are now in high demand and serving up fresh, delicious, innovative meals. Tucson is lucky enough to have several that are making some amazing food and I’m going to tell you about a few of my favorites. I hope they will become your favorites as well! #supportlocal

Serial Grillers started as a food truck serving awe-inspiring overstuffed sandwiches...

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Can movies survive Netflix?

Movies. Everybody seems to love them. Moviegoers spend hundreds of millions of dollars to see them. Summer blockbusters are racking up record box office sales. But there is heavy competition for those dollars as a host of high-tech movie theatre alternatives are taking a big piece of those profits away. People are staying home more often thanks to the ready availability of streaming video services like Netflix and Hulu, high-resolution big screen TVs and high fidelity surround sound audio systems that allow viewers to recreate the big screen movie experience in their own homes. And they can watch in their underwear- no pants required in the privacy of your own living room! Can movie theatres survive in this brave new world? How do you beat “no pants”, anyway? Is it even possible?

Getting people off the couch, into some pants, and into a movie theatre is becoming increasingly...

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Welcome To The Suicide Belt

I’ve been thinking about death a lot lately. Maybe it’s all the Henry Rollins podcasts I’ve been listening to. Maybe it’s turning 52 a few weeks ago that’s got me getting so morbid. Maybe it’s having Donald Trump as President. I dunno. In any case, death and more specifically MY OWN death have been on my mind frequently than I’d care to admit. Particularly the potential wisdom of choosing one’s own demise.

The French existentialist philosopher Albert Camus wrote, “There is but one truly serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide. Judging whether life is or is not worth living amounts to answering the fundamental question of philosophy. All the rest… comes afterward.”

Creepy? Fuck, yes. Accurate? Pretty much. Humans are the only animal on the planet that chooses to intentionally end their own lives. We’re also the only animal on the planet with smartphones. Coincidence? I think...

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Is Buddhism a religion or a philosophy or WTF?

I’m not a very religious person. It wasn’t always that way for me. For many years I self-identified as a Christian. I was raised a Catholic and went through all the usual childhood rites that accompany such a status, Baptism, First Holy Communion, Confirmation, the whole enchilada. Looking back it wasn’t that bad. In fact, I probably owe my existence to the Catholic Church since I’m pretty sure I was what you’d call a “mistake”. When I came along in 1966 my parents already had three kids aged 17, 16 and 10. They were almost at the finish line, kids-wise. They could see the light at the end of the tunnel! Then along came me to screw the whole thing up. So thanks, Vatican, for ensuring that my folks didn’t just cancel their subscription to American Pregnancy Magazine.

My folks split up when I was a small child, and religion took a spot on the back burner for our family. Then, as a...

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Denim And Leather

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If it wasn’t for the British heavy metal band Saxon my lifelong dream would never have come true. I would never have played in a rock ‘n’ roll band. I would never have learned the ways of a rock ‘n’ roller. And I certainly never would have gone on to tour the world as a roadie for rock ‘n’ roll bands like KISS, Alice Cooper, and Megadeth.

Saxon impacted my life in two hugely significant ways; first, they were one of the first bands to open my eyes to the wider world of music outside of the mainstream FM rock stations I had been listening to. Like most kids in the late 70’s and early 80’s, I grew up listening to FM rock radio and watching MTV. And while I knew I liked the harder rock I was hearing, like AC/DC and Led Zeppelin, I longed for something even harder, even faster, even louder and heavier. I just didn’t know what that was at the time, or where to find it. Then came Saxon.

...

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I Give Zero F*cks

Warning: In case the title wasn’t a dead giveaway, there is a great deal of foul language in this blog post. NSFW and all that…
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I read a great book by a guy named Mark Manson. It’s called “The Subtle Art Of Not Giving A Fuck”. It’s sort of a foul-mouthed modern take on some time-honored Buddhist philosophies like detachment, the concept of “self” and the 4 Noble Truths. I enjoyed it, but the message didn’t really hit me until today. One of the concepts Manson talks about in the book is that everybody has to give a fuck about something. It’s just the way we are wired, I guess. Also, we have a finite number of fucks to give, and if we spend them giving a fuck about the wrong things- well, then we’re fucked. I agree with this idea. Speaking for myself, I have only so much mental energy, and if I am using that up on stupid shit, I won’t have any mental energy left for the things that are...

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1st Person

A friend asked me a question recently that kind of got me thinking. She asked me why I refer to my son as “my” son, instead of including my wife in the phrase and saying “our” son. I hadn’t realized I was doing this. But I think it stems from a habit I have been trying to get into regarding the way I speak.

One thing that I really pick up on is when people are giving advice and make statements like “YOU need to remember…” or “WE must always…”. To me, statements like that don’t carry much weight. Why do “we” need to do this? Do YOU do this? Maybe it’s nitpicking, but the words have meaning. If the idea being expressed is solid, why isn’t the speaker taking ownership of it? Is it a good idea for ME, but not for you? Has the speaker achieved some sort of exalted state of Nirvana or enlightenment where forward progress and self-improvement are no longer necessary?

The people who have had...

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How I Became A Right Wing Nut Job

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For much of my life, I was apolitical. Growing up, my father was a staunch Democrat. He worked in a steel mill and always told us that the Democrats were “looking out for the little guy”. This sounded good to me, as I considered myself a little guy, in the larger scheme of things. When I became old enough to vote I always voted a straight Democrat ticket because of my father. However, I only voted in presidential elections. The rest of the time I couldn’t really be bothered. I was, like I said, apolitical. But I did like to vote because you got a cool sticker, and it felt like the “right thing to do”. I didn’t read newspapers other than comics and sports, I didn’t watch the news on TV. I was out of the loop politically other than what I was exposed to through pop culture. Like punk rock songs or TV sitcoms.

This was my state of mind regarding politics until 2004. That year a lot...

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