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Dear Scabby: How do I start a band?

Dear Scabby: My boyfriend won’t wear jeans. I like jeans. What do I do? -TIRED OF SWEATS

Dear Tired of Sweats: If we didn’t all live in a police state, I would recommend not wearing pants at all, but in my experience, you will be ticketed and strangers will throw things at you. Usually, I find the easiest way to change a man’s wardrobe is through flattery — it’s like the old proverb goes: tell a man his dick looks big in a potato sack and that man will start wearing potato sacks. I’m pretty sure that’s from Genesis. However, I sense that your problem is much more complicated and therefore requires something more extreme.

When my last boyfriend asked me if I wanted to go raw with him, I didn’t hesitate (I’m allergic to latex and coincidentally, all other condom materials.) Never in a million years could I have imagined he was talking about denim. Raw denim will have you walking with the gait of the tin man but the confidence of someone who has actual red blood cells in their body.

Through persuasion, coercion or sheer force, I need you to get your boyfriend into a pair of Japanese selvedge raw denim pants. He will tell you they are not his size, but if he doesn’t break at least one fingernail buttoning up those leg corsets, they’re still too big. Once he gets them on, he’s not getting them off, and if he does, he’ll be more than happy to start wearing regular jeans on a daily basis.

Dear Scabby: I’m a guitarist looking to form a band. However, where I live, there’s not much of a rock music scene and I’m having trouble finding people to join the band. What’s your advice? -BORED IN SUBURBIA


Dear Bored in Suburbia: Who says a band requires more than one member? Most people don’t know this, but The Clash was comprised solely of Don Letts. The rest of what you see onstage is a bunch of smoke and mirrors aided by elaborate costume changes. However, to make this one-man act a success, you’ll need to stop referring to yourself as a guitarist. You are a musician. Do you think Bob Dylan refers to himself as just a harmonicist? Or Tyler Perry as just Madea? Think bigger.

A long time ago I started a one-man band in Carytown called, Where’d Everybody Go? We had a few hit covers like Dio’s “Lonely Diver” and Queen’s “Nobody to Love” but eventually broke up due to creative differences (it didn’t help matters that I was sleeping with the drummer). This process isn’t for everyone, though. If time constraints or limited cognitive ability are making it too hard to learn multiple instruments at once, I have a backup plan…

Plan B is about finding band members but making it look organic and effortless, and when it comes to self-marketing, what better to consult than the modus operandi of cult leaders? Think Charles Manson and Jim Jones. Start by seeking out the destitute and directionless by hanging around bridges, railroad tracks, and your local guitar center and then offer them a place to stay. They won’t be able to say no to your calm voice and blank stare. Don’t believe me? That’s how I became the accordionist for Arcade Fire in 2004, and again in 2010.

Dear Scabby: How do I make someone like me? -NUMETALNINJA69

Dear NuMetalNinja69: I would start by changing your username to something a lot less detailed. Getting someone to like you is all about fostering a sense of mystery, and you’re not doing yourself any favors with NuMetalNinja69. From this alone, the person of your affection knows that you use hair gel, don’t get along with your step-dad, and that you may work as an assassin trained in ancient Japanese martial arts. It’s best we leave some things to the imagination. Keep the 69 part though, it’s very clever.

Being that I’m not some fancy, associates degree holding, public school counselor, I’m not qualified to delve into the psyche of human experience and tell you what people like, but I can tell you what they don’t like. Eating sushi on the bus always seems to rub people the wrong way, also physically rubbing people the wrong way isn’t a big hit. Ruining surprise parties, not disclosing that you have lice to the guy who cuts your hair in the park, and decaf coffee are all things that, in my experience, also sever ties.

In my honest opinion, you should just be yourself even if that means keeping your username and the whole tragic series of events that willed it into existence. If you’re struggling with the process of self-exploration, do some soul searching through meditation or reiki. If you’re really serious about gaining a deeper understanding of yourself, I recommend taking Ayahuasca but make sure to do it at a really loud party with a ton of strangers so no one will notice if you start to freak out.

Scabby is the self-proclaimed mother of the Richmond, VA hardcore scene (and also a number of illegitimate children who have been trying to get in touch with her via She came this close to getting her associates degree in psychology from an online program that was later shut down for reasons we cannot disclose due to an ongoing investigation. Born Gabby F., she started going by Scabby after an untreated bedbugs situation in her first squat made national news, and is assumed to be anywhere between 50 and 100 years old. She looks forward to answering your most pressing questions and encourages people to push each other mentally, emotionally, and literally. You can contact Scabby at [email protected].

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