What me… serious?

Recently it has come to my attention that some readers of this column are actually taking it seriously. This concerns me, especially since in the last several columns I’ve been giving out “advice” for new bands. It troubles me to think that someone could be taking what I write here at face value and actually doing some of the things I recommend.

For example, suppose someone read my column last week and then hired a fiddle player based on the fact that he looked similar to the old one (I recommended this, it’s true). The fact that this new fiddle player could barely execute Bile Them Cabbage Down at a snail’s pace with lousy intonation was not a deterrent; the important thing being that he could be passed off as the previous fiddle player, thereby avoiding a new band photo. I would feel responsible.

I would feel just as bad if someone actually fired their mandolin player just because I listed: “Fire the mandolin player because he’s a nutbar and may have a criminal record” as one of the things that any new band needed to do. I probably don’t even know your mandolin player, and there’s at least a chance that he or she is a perfectly okay person (although who are we kidding?), and may be the musical cornerstone of your band. I know this may come as a disillusioning shock, but I was actually kidding about that and a lot of other things (even though, for some bands, using items in your refrigerator paired with a random adjective to come up with a band name is actually a decent idea. I stand by that one).

Therefore, to avoid any misunderstandings, I have consulted with friends and family, my minister, my legal team, a professional dietician, and a sports psychologist to come up with a thorough disclaimer to apply to all future columns written by me (herein described as “writer”) and published by Bluegrass Today (herein described as “Bluegrass Today”):

First, a disclaimer for the disclaimer:

The following disclaimer is not legally binding, and parts of it may make little or no sense.


Columns written by Chris Jones (writer) and published on Bluegrass Today’s “web site” (Bluegrass Today) may or may not contain factual information (and that’s on a good day). The percentage of statements in previously published columns by writer deemed by a panel of analysts** to be unequivocally true was 30-35% (with a margin of error of +/- 40%). Writer is under no obligation to match this percentage in future pieces published by Bluegrass Today. Any statements by writer that are taken literally and followed as “advice” may lead to career-crushing decisions, broken relationships, and relentless ridicule by peers. Readers with a history of poor judgement, and of following bad advice, should consult a doctor, psychologist, or affordable chiropractor prior to reading these columns. Readers experiencing nausea, dizziness decreased appetite, or a sudden urge to take an Irish step dancing class, should discontinue reading column. Writer will no take no responsibility for these results, although he may feel mildly guilty for several minutes, but then he’ll check the score of the Kentucky-Florida game, strum an E chord, and start singing “I Don’t Want Your Rambling Letters”, and all will be forgotten.

At least 75% of statistics cited by writer (including this one) are likely to be false or misleading, and were probably made up on the spot.

Writer reserves the write to raise and discuss serious issues in this column. Readers may take them seriously, but they’re under no obligation to, and really, why bother?

Some statements are merely intended as “jokes” with an intent to induce laughter. If readers don’t find them funny, writer is okay with that, but would prefer that they  cultivate a convincing fake laugh to be used in this situation.

Any statements made by writer that are deemed offensive were not intended that way, but that probably won’t make them any less offensive. Tough darts.

No peanuts were used, looked at, or even thought of by writer during the writing of any columns, although 2 Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups were eaten 10 days ago during a really mediocre movie. Writer washed hands thoroughly and tried to get a refund on the movie.

No animals or vegetables were, or will be, harmed in the writing of these columns, although some minerals may be verbally abused from time to time.

The above statements are completely unreliable, and are not enforceable under the laws of the State of Tennessee (which is a surprise, since they may be goofy enough to actually be laws of the State of Tennessee).

Force Majeure: Writer has never known what this means.

Load in time is 2:00 PM, with a sound check to commence promptly at 3:00. This means that sound check is at 5:00. Band will straggle in at 5:15.

Green room should contain an assortment of fresh fruit and vegetables, bottled water, coffee, tea, milk and/or cream, plus…oh let’s be serious: we’ll be happy just to get paid!

As always, if writer or any of his subcontractors are captured or killed, Bluegrass Today will disavow any knowledge of their actions. Bluegrass Today may do this even if they’re not captured or killed.

*Void in Alaska, Hawaii, New Jersey, and Nunavut

**2 members of writer’s band, writer’s cousin’s wife, and a piano tuner who just happened to be there at the time.

Next week: Border crossing advice for bands (see above disclaimer before reading), and fried pie nutritional analysis for dummies.