Plastic Surgery Disasters

In my teen years, I was searching for a band to identify with. I was at the age when - for a guy - that was an important thing to do. I lived in a coastal petroleum industry town, which was depressing in and of itself, but moreso because we were a backwater musically. The only two stores were a mall chain store and the local head shop.

Anyway, I had somehow settled on Journey (I think it was because of the cool design of their logo). KISS had faded into their first foray without makeup by this time. I was at the mall chain store trying to find a new album to listen to. Being a cheap youngster, I surfed the bargain bin for tapes. One of the tapes in the bargain bin was the Dead Kennedys' "Plastic Surgery Disasters." It was far afield from Journey, true, but I thought "hey, why not give it a chance."

So when I get to the counter, the clerk tells me that the album wasn't *supposed* to be in the bargain bin, but I pay full price anyway ($7.99?) and get in the car for the ride home. From the opening strains of "Government Flu" through the waning moments of "Moon Over Marin" I was hooked. Even today, looking at the playlist, I can hear the lyrics in my head.

"I am the owl/ I seek out the fowl/ Wipe them away/ keep america free / for clean livin' folks like me." - I Am the Owl

And thus was a young kid swept away from a life spent listening to shallow pop music and over the edge into punk oblivion ... Today, I don't agree with anything Jello Biafra says about politics (although he's spot on about MTV), but there's a weird sort of respect for the work he did with the DKs.