The Knights of the Auto Order Proudly Present: The Auto Body Estimate: Vol. II, #99, May 2010

Years ago when I saw a kid throwing a public tantrum or otherwise acting horribly, I rolled my eyes and silently blamed the parenting. Today when I see a kid fly off the handle, I think: "Thank God it's not one of mine -- this time."

The other day in the line at the drug store, my wife saw a boy, maybe three years old, completely losing his grip. "Die!" He yelled. "Die!"

"Well, that's a little dark," she thought, as she glanced at the other nearby moms who also had concern on their faces. But then the toddler's rant got more specific: "I wanna die! I wanna die!"

Even knowing that kids say the darnedest things, and that kids often don't know what the things they say mean, it chilled her to hear such a small guy shouting this. Even if he just picked it up from someone else at home it was a pretty heavy phrase to toss around. The expressions of the others waiting in line confirmed they were shocked too, until the boy's mom said: "Honey, I know you want a toy, but not today." Go figure -- a whole crowd of people delighted to discover that a kid is has problems with voiced dental plosives!

To find people who remember when Dean, Kent or I were three years old (chronologically, not pathologically) you'd have to go to Duluth: All three of us were born there. Perhaps in an effort to perform among people who've proven they can put up with our tantrums and expect us to garble our speech, the Auto Body Experience is heading to Duluth to play on Friday, June 4.

The venue, R. T. Quinlans Saloon, is located on Superior Street a block from where my dad ran a camera store in the 60s and 70s. The name of his place? Yoho Photo. Really. Seeing the name folks would come in expecting to be greeted by a guy who at least looked like he'd been to the Nikon factory. They were always surprised to find a fellow who looked a bit like the young Buddy Ebsen. (Yoho, our last name, is supposedly Pennsylvania Dutch, which means our ancestors were German but kept it on a need-to-know basis.)

Once, as a promotion for the store, my dad printed wooden yo-yos with "Yoho Photo" on the side. As a kid I often lay awake at night thinking about the possibilities these toys might afford. For example; "What if Yoko Ono married Sonny Bono,and she found one of them while eating a HoHo as she walked through Soho? It would become 'Yoko Ono Bono's Soho HoHo Yoho Photo Promo Yo-yo,' No? Oh." It was no great leap from there to penning Auto Body Experience lyrics.

Unfortunately, despite my day gig in a marketing department, the Auto Body Experience doesn't have a brilliant promotional campaign for the Duluth gig like free yo-yos. However, if you come hear us play I'll let you know where Becca and the boys and I will be hanging out in Duluth on Saturday: just in case you'd enjoy seeing a few Yoho yo-yos yelling things that make other parents cast concerned glances in our direction.

As for the gig itself, it should be big fun. Revered trumpeter and Sam the Eagle impersonator Tom Twiss is temporarily back from his secretive out-of-the-country work, so we'll have the full official band performing. We'll fine-tune our best material into one 90 minute set which we'll begin around 9 PM. Following us will likely be an excellent local ska band who shall remain nameless until we confirm they're actually willing to follow us. Plus, a healthy portion of the modest $5 cover charge goes to a worthy cause: gas money so we can all make it home from Duluth to vex our neighbors by relaxing in our yards without mowing the lawn.

If you live anywhere near Duluth, or are looking for an excuse to visit the world's furthest inland seaport, please join us!

Love, Scott Yoho, Grand Pooh Bah, The Knights of the Auto Order

Return the Estimate Index...