Yo, this is the Swingin' Utters
“Chick rules. She’s really good, I don’t know if you’ve ever spoken to her, but she’s really cool.”
Not, yet. (Hopefully, one day. -Brian)
“Yeah, she’s great.”

I just read about her in the new Probe, the ‘zine.
“Oh Really, What did they say about her?”

The guy used to go out with her.
“Oh, really the guy that runs it?”

Yeah, They were having problems and stuff.
“Guy that runs what?”

Probe, the ‘zine.
“So, anyways like as far as that, if your in a band and you start making money - it’s gonna go back into the punk scene if your a punk band, you can’t help it. It’s not like Fat is gonna give us some money and we’re going to take cuts out of our own personal money and like donate it to some punks.”

You don’t want to starve or anything.
“Yeah, we don’t want to starve. As it is now, two of us don’t have houses. It’s totally a pain in the ass. San Francisco is as expensive as shit.”
“Zillions of bills every month...”
“So, we’re barely cutting even.”

What do you think everyone could do to help this world from being so fucked up?
“Vote. It seems like everything is going decent today.”
“Be nice to people.”
“I guess so, there’s not really one thing you can do. Don’t do fucked up stuff. Don’t like throw a bunch of toxic waste in the ocean, and don’t kill people.”
“Leave the elephants alone.”
“Get out of your house and do shit. Like alot of kids now are just sticking around their computers and not even going outside.”
“Live, figure it out.”
“Burn all the computers [Burn the computers? Then how can people see this wonderful interview on the internet?! -Andy].”
“Use your mind, you have to do it kind of at a community level. Like we couldn’t start naming... It’d take days to write down all the different organizations, they can work for and help with a little bit of their spare time. Usually that shit is offered at most schools. Unless, you’re totally blind to it, it’s pretty easy to do stuff for Amnesty International and organizations along that same vain. They usually have people at the schools working. I know every school in DC where I grew up you could work there easy. If you have a brain there’s plenty of shit you can do, unless your just totally lazy.”
“Which goes back to the just sitting around and watching TV thing. Just be fucking motivated, and take a interested in what the world is doing. Do something which you think is cool.”
“Just being aware, is a huge start. Just being aware of what is going on, is a major start. So many people are just fucking totally out of it.”
“Then you would know what to do.”
“And kill old people, bomb the government. (laugh)”

Do you guys help out with the San Francisco chapter of Food Not Bombs, when you have a chance?
“I don’t really have a chance ever, I’m a pretty busy guy. We’ve played some shows that were benefits for them. So, I guess.”
“As a band we’ve tried to do stuff. We always offer the band as a option to any of these organizations. We’ll play and help on benefits. On a personal level, we barely have that much time.”
“And Fat donates money to them, too...”
“We’ll do whatever to help draw attention to their organization... But, as far as like, man we’re on the road all the time. We try to stay on the road as much as we possible. Most of the year, we’re playing. When we get home, it doesn’t allow us too much free time just to chill out and let these people be with their wives or their girlfriends.”
“When I get home, I have to find a job and work and up until recently finish my Master’s degree. It doesn’t leave too much, time...”
“But I think, you know by doing benefits and by the label that we’re on and selling more records and then donating money to these organizations, we’re doing alot more then probably ninety percent of San Francisco is.”

What are your thoughts on the punk scenes big unity problem and how do you think we could solve it? I hear theres alot of bands, that don’t play with each other and stuff and fights with different groups.
“I think, That’s always happened, and it’s always going to happen, because people disagree and people don’t like certain things that other people do. There’s not a god damn fucking thing, you can do, unless you want to change the world. It’s the way people are, there are always going to be problems in any sort of scene, anywhere, period.”
“Alot of punk rock when I was young was just about getting fucked up and fucking shit up and that’s all <laugh>. Alot of those kids are just going to go do the same thing, and that’s what a big part of punk rock is, so they should just fucking go out and have a good time.”
“You’re gonna fucking encounter assholes, and asshole bands, and asshole promoters and assholes fans or whatever.”

Assholes, period, yeah.
“So, fuck them, I mean, fuck ‘em. If they are going to be assholes.”
“Obviously the punk scene now is more unified now than it has been in a long time. Alot bigger shows, alot more bands. It’s alot easier to tour as a band.”
“It’s on a bigger level.”
“We remember this shit from the mid 80’s and late 80’s when we met and even the early 90’s for that matter. It’s alot bigger now, it’s alot more organized now. Alot less Nazis, alot less problems at shows. I remember going to shows and there were fights galore. Totally violent shows. Now, shows are fucking mellow as shit. Every now and then you get a show that goes crazy, but alot of these shows the kids just chill.”
“Don’t be scared to dance.”

What do you think of punks who think they’re hot shit and think they’re better then everyone else?
“Anyone who thinks they are better then anyone else, is bullshit. I don’t care, if they’re punk or their fucking politician, or work at Safeway or whatever, that’s a just a lame attitude. I don’t care if they’re punk or whatever.”
“That’s just the fault of their personality, it doesn’t matter what you look like.”
“They’ll learn some day. They’re probably just kind of young and...”
“Yeah, Stupid. And, they’ll wise up when someone kicks their ass or something.”

What are your thoughts on Clinical Depression? The reason I’m asking this is because, I’ve had it for ten years, and I’ve never been happy. But, always wish I could be one day, personally I think happiness is the most important thing in this world.
“My father was a Manic Depressive and he was hospitalized a couple times. I think it sucks, to have to go through that, but I don’t know what you can do.”
“I tell you, I was depressed all summer long, like bad. It made me get Vertigo. I was totally out of it. I suffered from all those symptoms like Panic Disorder and all that shit this summer for the first time in my life. You know, it’s all symptomatic of like your health and what you are doing with your life, I think. Personally, for me at least this is what it was... I read some books on it, and alot of people tie it in to your physical condition. You really should try and get into some kind of shape. I was just drinking and smoking all not doing shit all summer long. I’m not overweight, but I was just letting myself deteriorate physically all summer. I spent everynight at the bar, my days were miserable. The only time I felt good was when I was drunk, because I wasn’t in reality anymore. A big part of it, was just we had too much time off. If you’re not busy and you have too much time on your hands that’s a bad thing for one. You really need to just get yourself out and about, and get busy, and whatever it is you gotta do. When, I’m busy with the band and we’re on the road, I feel fine.”
“Even if you don’t have much to do at the time, go walk around or something.”
“Or exercise. With the band, we’re forced to exercise atleast an hour a night, we’re moving around. We’re doing cardiovascular type shit. That’s a huge part. If you are in good strong physical condition your body can handle situations alot better, then you can if you’re in a weak situation. In a weak physical condition any little thing can totally upset you and throw you off balance. But, if you are physically strong it helps you be mentally strong. Because, it ties into all that fucking Zen shit. It’s an eastern philosophy. Mind and Body, sound and body. It just makes sense. The biggest problem with the US is everyone is fucking overweight. They don’t do shit.”
“Just earn things, have them, you have something, you’re happy. Instead of taking care of yourself, first.”
“Everyone eats totally badly. Just fatty foods, and shit.”
“Eatting at McDonalds everyday, Cokes and shit.”
“Try and eat right, try and stay physically in shape.”
“I think that is a major step in the right direction.”
“You’ll feel better about yourself for one, you’ll know your in good shape. Know your in good condition. Then you’ll be mentally stronger. And, then get busy, find something you like to do.”
“...And just do it.”
“But, that sure as hell helped me, I was at the point where I thought I needed medication. I took medication, I took lerazipan. Which is what they gave Wesley Willis [chuckle] for schizophrenia. It makes you ttotally high, you don’t care. ‘Fuck, I’ll jump out of an airplane.’ But, that’s not a good way to be, who wants to be doped up on drugs constantly.”

Personally, I’ve taken it for two years, and it’s fucked up my body. I know a guy, who’s had the same problem...
“You’re taking Lorazipam?”

No, not that. I’ve taken a whole bunch of shit. Like, Prozac, Paxil, Lithium. I’ve taken everything.
“Yeah, they offered me all of that shit. And, I just said, I wanted something that was kind of like just wimpy. But, fuck you know, I hated to even have to admit I had to even deal with... It wasn’t as much as admitting it. It was having to get drugs to try and make myself feel better. I was really worried, my major fear over the summer was about flying. All of a sudden I got afraid to fly for no reason. And, it all ties into all that shit. Once, I did it I was fine.”
“You were thinking too much.”
“Yeah, I was thinking too much. Basically, I was letting my mind get out of control and just letting it spend all it’s time wandering and coming up with of all these crazy scenarios and situations that weren’t happening.”
“It’s all about that Long Island crap that triggered everything.”
“Yeah, Basically if you sit around and watch the news you’ll go insane. Just because the world sucks. You gotta get out and do something, that will make you feel happy and make other people feel good and Blah, blah, blah... And, being in a band is a great way to do it.”

This is not really a question but, oh well. Have you ever heard of Asperger’s Syndrome? Basically, it’s a form of Autism. I’m asking, because, I have it and it really sucks. One of the main symptoms is not being able to talk. I’m talking right now, but it’s kind of different. Don’t ask me why, It just is. [Not sure why. -Brian] But, I never talk to anyone, and it really sucks. I’m not able to communicate or whatever.
“I’m familiar with Autism, but I’ve never heard of that specific...”

It’s very rare.
“Crazy, yeah.”

Like, I goto my friends house like everynight [Well, I did a while back, but... -Brian] and I don’t say a word.
“Can’t you write and stuff?”

I only write for my ‘zine, that’s the only way I can write.
“You don’t write letters?”

No, I don’t. If I talk to people on the phone, if I meet someone right. After maybe a week or two, I don’t talk right, so we kind of get bored of each other, kind of. I kind of pull away, and we stop being friends and stuff. So, I’m scared of talking to people to, even trying. Because, I’ll just lose friends. I’ve lost friends like that and stuff. If a person doesn’t talk to you, right. When, a person is a friend you want the person to talk to you, right. When the person doesn’t talk to when you call them up all the time and stuff, you just pull away and start getting non-friendlier and you don’t talk anymore.
“So, it’s not just talking right? It’s a lack of communication on any level.

You don’t want to like write to them, and you don’t want to like...
I can’t do that at all.
“Mutes, they can’t talk to people either.”
I’m a like a mute. I’m like a mute.
“But, they can maintain friendships through other means, like sign language and writing.”

I can’t even do that.
“Oh, so it’s you can’t communicate.”

I can’t communicate at all, what-so-ever.
[Awestruck] There must be some kind of help you can get for it. I don’t know what, maybe there isn’t. I don’t know. That sucks.”

I’ve been trying for years, so I don’t know. I’ve never talked to anyone at all.
“So far so good. This is pretty good.”

It lasts for a bit, then it’s gone.
“I can’t tell.”

Just like at the start when I know someone, right. I talk for maybe a half hour or so, all of a sudden after that. It’s gone. And, then I never talk again. Sometimes, I never talk at all. I can’t even say Hi. I can’t even say anything at all. It’s like, what the hell, just talk, you know.
“Weird. It’s like you can’t even force any words to come out of your mouth. [Exactly. -Brian] You want to mentally...”

You want to mentally, but you can’t.
“It just doesn’t do it.”
It just doesn’t work.
“Wow, that’s crazy.”
It totally sucks, it sucks so bad.
“It does suck.”

You want friends, but you can’t get them because you don’t talk, and you can’t keep friends because you don’t talk.
“You know what. I don’t know shit about computers, but... Maybe, there is other people that have that shit out there. And, there are groups you can join, where people can tell you what they’ve done to overcome it. I don’t know. That is my only suggestion. That’s one of the advantages for computers is for people who have social problems as far as like communicating with other people it seems to be an easy way for people that are shy to communicate with each other. So, that’s cool on that level. Thanks for one, I mean interviews is these fanzines are what help bands out bigtime, so thank you.”

Any last comments?
“Good luck with your, what’s it called?”

Agree to Disagree.
“The magazine.”
“Good luck, with your magazine and good luck with your...”
[Right now, we all are chatting at once, trying to get our last comments in, and we keep interrupting each other because we’re all terribly confused. -Brian]
“Good luck with everything.”
[Thanks, Swingin’ Utters. Good luck, with your band, and with your future, and I hope everything goes, A-Ok. You guys are some of the coolest guys on this planet, and you have definetly made a change in my life, and I’m sure of others as well. -Brian]


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