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

Read this first

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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Life Lessons

heart.jpgI have a terrible problem. Well, it’s not such a big problem for me, but mostly for the unfortunates who I come in close contact with. The problem is this: I absolutely love to stick my nose into other people’s business. I’ll come right out and say it - I am an utterly incorrigible solver of other people’s problems. I always have an answer, and I adore giving unsolicited advice. This situation is only exacerbated when the problem in question is the property of someone I love, such as, say, a spouse, or a child I have fathered. In those situations, I rush headlong into the fray, outline the best possible course of action, create an action plan to implement my prescribed course, including next steps and a timeline for future implementation. I then sit back and await grateful compliance.

Naturally, 99% of the time my unwanted advice is actively ignored or more frequently, violently

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Can The World Go On Without Me?

reaper tattoo.jpgI heard something last night that really got me thinking. A friend of mine sat next to an amazing woman on a recent plane trip. They started chatting and my friend found out this woman was dying of cancer. The dying woman was so full of courage, and facing her impending death so well that she even scheduled for birthday cards and birthday messages to be delivered to her loved ones after she died. Apparently, she arranged with friends to deliver these cards and messages at the appropriate times after her passing or something. I didn’t get all the details. I expect that filling out those cards as she was facing her own death was a powerful experience, and equally moving for the recipients. For the dying woman I think this was probably a great way to come to terms with her death, and express her feelings for her loved ones.

Then I started thinking about this from the other end, from the

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Loud Love

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I’m loud.

I talk loud, I play music loud, I referee roller derby loud. My volume knob is on ten most of the time. I play the drums. I pretty much just live life loudly. I like to do a lot of stuff, I have a million hobbies and projects going on at all times, I like to travel and have adventures. My favorite Soundgarden album is “Louder Than Love”… Do you see a pattern anywhere?

Volume is effective when being heard is important, as in the aforementioned roller derby referee scenario. But loud can also be misinterpreted in a number of unfavorable ways. Loud can look an awful lot like angry, for instance. Once I traveled up to Phoenix to referee a roller derby scrimmage for their junior league, the skaters were all younger players, between 10 and 16. Now, when I call a penalty, you know it. Because loud. Apparently, my volume level shook up a few of the kids because after a few minutes

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It seemed like a good idea at the time.

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I shaved in the car the other day. I’ve seen people do it in the movies all the time. You know what I’m talking about. The tough-as-nails rogue detective running an electric razor over his 5 o'clock shadow as he drives to a meeting with the Commissioner where he’ll surely get chewed out. The harried job applicant running late and frantically shaving as they speed to the interview. That kinda thing. I was running behind schedule myself and in a flash of inspiration grabbed my electric razor as I dashed to the car. Initially, it seemed to be working great. I wear a short beard, so all I was trying to do was knock back the stubble enough to keep from looking like a homeless person or worse yet, the Gorton’s fisherman. For those of you too young to remember who the fuck the Gorton’s fisherman was I’ve kindly put his picture at the top of this blog post. Good looking dude, but that beard!

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Freedom of speech is not a zero-sum game.

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I recently took a road trip to referee a roller derby event that took place on Veterans Day. The host league is located in a city with a large military base, and many of the team’s skaters and fans are active duty and retired military. They had been promoting the event as a salute to veterans, with an honor guard, presentation of colors and a guest singer for the national anthem prior to the start of the game.

Several skaters from the visiting team chose to take a knee during the singing of the national anthem. This sort of protest is becoming fairly commonplace at sporting events since the outcry over police violence against people of color in America, and even more so following the election of Donald Trump as president. While I didn’t notice it happening at the time, I was not surprised when I heard about it afterward. I myself continue to stand during the national anthem at this

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Is Donald Trump an embarrassment to the USA?

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I have been seeing a lot of posts on social media railing against Donald Trump and his embarrassing “un-presidential” actions. From tossing rolls of paper towels at Puerto Rican hurricane victims to his bilious rage-tweets attacking Gold-Star parents (and just about everyone else) the unusual actions of the 45th President of the United States have drawn the ire of his many, many opponents.

Is Donald Trump an embarrassment to the United States? To paraphrase another President who drew a lot of heat for his actions in the White House, it depends on what the meaning of the word “embarrassing” is. Trump supporters rallied around the reality TV star and real-estate mogul during his campaign because “he wasn’t politically correct” and “he speaks his mind”. To these people, Donald Trump’s actions since winning the White House are exactly what they wanted. Trump is certainly speaking his mind

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What hath Kaepernick wrought?

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If Colin Kaepernick wanted to raise awareness of racial injustice in the United States, well, he has certainly done so! In an effort to show support for people of color who are being oppressed in the United States, and to take a stand against police brutality, Kaepernick’s silent protest has gained momentum, with athletes from a variety of sports joining him by taking a knee or refusing to stand for the national anthem as it is played before games.

Needless to say, this issue has been polarizing. Many are outraged by this action, claiming that it disrespects the United States, demeans the Armed Forces, insults veterans and a host of other indignities. I’m not sure if these people understand what these players are really trying to do. These celebrities are using their position to protest injustice. A popular internet meme might say it best: Thinking NFL players are “protesting the flag”

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