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Let me preface this post by saying that I like Weezer as much as the next guy, which means that I have either purchased or downloaded every album and listen to the green one regularly. Weezer's music is good; it's hook-y and pop-y and nice for my ears to eat. So the question I’m posing is, at what point did Rivers Cuomo become the creepiest guy in the world? In the beginning, part of the band's appeal was that they helped coin the term “nerd rock.” Here was a guy, like you, who lived in his garage playing Dungeons and Dragons and getting his heart broken by the cool girls. Not like me, of course, but like you. That was his thing. He did a video with The Muppets, and Happy Days, and dogs. You can’t get much more likable, right? I mean without doing a video with, say, Santa Claus and Jesus shooting off bottle rockets. As far as my personal Rivers experiences go, the first time I realized he was a little off was when I read a pretty lengthy interview he did with Rolling Stone (worth the read), in which it was revealed that he occasionally did wacky things like get depressed and lock himself in a tiny apartment with all the walls painted black and nothing but a sleeping bag, a microwave, and a bunch of frozen burritos. Or that he and the band didn’t really get along because he won’t let them write any of the songs on the albums and docks their studio pay if they don’t play to his exact specifications. There was other crazy stuff in there, but I can’t remember it all, so I’ll just say he also likes to have lobsters pinch his nipples all the time on the tour bus, and they have to have a special lobster tank with them when they go on tours. Then came his widely-publicized vow of celibacy, which is kind of redundant if he’s truly the nerd he claims to be. Hell, I could’ve knocked that vow out many times over by now without even trying. In fact, I’d say you’ve got to be kind of a ladies man if it makes press when you don't have sex. Then my friend told me he was on a Buddhist retreat and saw Rivers there, but that Rivers wouldn’t talk because he’d taken a vow of silence for the duration. Then he grew this mustache. So at that point, my mental image of the man is getting fairly “out there,” but when I see Weezer at Coachella, I still imagine going backstage and playing Xbox with him, so I can’t be too wierded out. Then this happens. Rivers Cuomo has a Youtube channel dedicated to collaboratively writing a song with his fans, and as cool as that sounds, it's not. It’s horrifying. His rambling, run-on sentences, huge lapses in cognizance and wild, rolling eyes will forever haunt my Youtube viewing history. For me, this was it. The official point at which Rivers Cuomo lost all “cool nerdy outcast” status and became that weird guy who stands outside the grocery store and does gun fingers at people as they exit. Watch them at your own peril. And please, someone, tell me there’s a joke here that I’m not getting.
When not blogging for Cracked, Michael practices the opening of "My Name is Jonas" on achoustic guitar as head writer and co-founder of Those Aren't Muskets!
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