Posted By bl pawelek - 25th March 2012
In ten words (no more, no less), describe Code for Failure?
RB: Dysfunction, excess, women, booze, sex, drugs, youth,
Promotion – With a concussion, what album would have put you in a ditch instead of getting home safely?
RB: Pretty much anything instrumental probably would have made me fall asleep at that point. I’ve had four or five concussions now, and and I’ve probably done things I shouldn’t have with each. Including driving. But a guy’s got to get home. Something loud that I can focus on by singing along to helps.
Tell me about his parallel-life when he graduated college?
RB: Sadly, he was probably destined to have a similar job. Though instead of pumping gas he’d probably have jumped straight into construction (which came later for him anyway). And construction would have meant better money which would have resulted in more booze and drugs. A construction job would have come with a different breed of females, too. Debauchery would be a part of his life either way. Without getting back into college as a goal to shoot for, it might have been a bleak few years before he found his way into something else. But you never know.
Sorry, real gas question …. Why the 9/10ths at the end of the price?
RB: You know, that’s still a mystery to me. I’ve never understood. But then again, I don’t understand why things are always priced with 99 cents instead of whole numbers. Even numbers make more sense to me, but that’s the compulsiveness speaking.
Dreams – What other things get under your skin with this kind of job?
RB: Just the monotony, you know? You’re doing the same thing day in and day out. With writing you’re always writing something new, with design work it’s always a new project, but in the everyday jobs, the blue collar stuff it’s vital work, work that someone has to do, but it’s always the same thing. It’s something that I still battle with, and probably will for a long time.
Night Off – What is the one Dead Milkmen song you should listen to softly?
RB: “Takin’ Retards to the Zoo” when you’re at work (which I DID NOT DO at work a few weeks ago), “Punk Rock Girl,” because it’s like a prayer of young punk rock men, and “Tugena” if you want it to sound mildly decent.
Names – Well, do you have a child named Pirate yet?
RB: I do, but we decided to name him Lincoln. It’d be a lie if I said we didn’t consider Pirate for probably longer than we should have.
Code Twelve – What are some other codes involving people?
RB: I don’t think I realized when I wrote the book (too far back to have a clear memory), but I recently found it funny how the title comes from the narrator seeing pumping gas as code for failure, while independently from that there’s the code system used with the oil change service. In real life the code system was probably a more frequent undercurrent to my days. Back when I was in a band we had a song called Code Twelve, too, so it was clearly something that amused me. I don’t think that answered your question at all.
Drugged – so how was that day of sleep?
RB: As someone who hasn’t and doesn’t get enough sleep in life, there are few things that are as amazing as getting a mass amount of sleep any way you can get it. I’ve had a few instances in life where I got to sleep for more than twelve hours, either artificially or after days of not sleeping at all, and as disorienting as it is to wake up after that, it’s a feeling that can’t be replicated on 4-6 hours of sleep.
Gotta know – what was the worst thing ever at the station?
RB: Honestly I can’t remember if this is in the book or not, there was an instance where a woman decided to blockade the store (literally, blocking the pumps with her car and then sitting in the doorway) because I wouldn’t sell her a carton of cigarettes, calling the cops on someone when you know they’re just reacting poorly to a shitty day sucks, but I had no other choice.
How does the Code for Success begin?
RB: That’s a good question, and one I’m still trying to figure out. The first step is definitely marrying a beautiful and kind woman who believes in you more than you believe in yourself. I’ve got that down. As for occupational success I’m still fumbling for a fit, but I have to believe it’ll happen. For the sake of my sanity.
In ten words (no more, no less), describe your next project?
RB: Many things poetic and/or fictional, hopefully finding publishers soon.