In our efforts to become as relevant as, say, the San Diego Film Critics Society, we've decided that -- despite our previous protestations to the contrary -- we do need a stinkin' year-end awards spectacular. We've done our best to avoid shooting fish in a barrel, so don't expect any cracks about Fred Durst male pattern baldness, Eminem or Al Jolson -- but feel free to mix and match those into your own awards! The First Annual Weirdos follow:
The Bring Back Don Johnson Award: Carlos Santana, who branched out into haberdashery with the help of J.C. Penney. The grizzled guitarist slapped his name on a line of togs that, unlike fellow Summer of Love-r Jerry Garcia, he did not design himself.
The Doing Dad Proud Award: Ziggy Marley, who announced that he was going to launch a new career selling marijuana -- in the form of a health snack called the Hemp Bar -- which has a lot less kick than those brownies we remember from our high school days.
The Better Than Cats Award: Burkard Deist, a German playwright who announced plans to write a musical based on the life of the great Austrian composer Johann Holzel -- best known for his timeless composition "Rock Me Amadeus." We're hoping . . .
The Run, Run Rudolph Award: Who else but Chuck Berry, who decided to file a lawsuit against Santa himself -- Santa B. Good, that is. Berry went after a toy company for marketing a rock & roll rendition of Kris Kringle bearing a striking resemblance to the rock pioneer. For his next trick, Chuck will take on the Tooth Berry?
The Most Sensible Career Change Award: L7 drummer Dee Plakas, who raffled off an evening in her company to one "lucky" fan. In an official statement, Plakas says she and her bandmates decided "We're not being hypocritical about rock & roll anymore. Rock & roll is prostitution." Now that's what we call truth in advertising.
The Most Likely to Turn You Into a Vegetable Award: The music of Meat Loaf, which a study at Britain's Sussex University found to be the single best aural stimulant to encourage plant growth, followed closely by a Rachmaninoff piano concerto.
The Good Will Towards (Some) Men Award: Ted Nugent, who cemented the fandom of America's six John Rocker fans by telling a Houston audience that non-English speakers should "get the fuck out of America" if they didn't want to learn the language that he's spent so many years mastering.
The Getting Steamed Award: Keith Richards, who turned up the heat on Hard Rock Café management for an ad that noted the boite was "proud to feature fried items: Chicken, onions, Keith Richards." The burgermeisters killed the ad, but stopped short of offering to pick up Keef's bar tab.
The Greatest Australian Heroes Award: Teen grunge-mongers Silverchair, who presumably have done enough for mankind to merit immortalization on a postage stamp in their native land. What do you expect from a country founded by criminals?
The Parents Just Don't Understand Award: Debbie Mathers Briggs, who embarrassed her sweet and loving son Marshall by bringing the noise on a rap record. Vanilla Em was not, shall we say, amused.