Interview between Rivers Cuomo and Joe Matt
Joe Matt is an American comicbook artist and comedian. His work was heavily influential on Rivers Cuomo while Pinkerton was being written. Joe Matt is currently friends with Rivers' on MySpace and often posts jokes on his page. Joe Matt is listed on the map under the Pinkerton tray.
Interview between Rivers Cuomo and Joe Matt
Joe Matt, creator of Peepshow, and Rivers Cuomo of Weezer reveal their biggest influence
When the letter appeared in issue 10 of Peepshow,
Cake decided to get these two together to discuss each artist's influence on the other and how "the man behind the man" is often an influence outsideone's own genre. With Joe Matt fairly taking the role of interviewer, after two hours, this topic had been only marginally touched upon. After wadingthrough yards of tape on pornography, Howard Stern, sex, and the perils offame and confessional work, I chose the opening discourse and that slicewhich best exemplifies their differences anddistinct personalities.
And together they spoke on love:
I'm just itching to move, but nothing pulls me away. I would love to meetsome girl . . . I would move anywhere if I met a girl in another city. I cant think of any other reason to move.
Do you still have that girlfriend that you wrote about in the letter?
No I had a girlfriend for 11 months and she just dumped me a month ago onmy birthday. I havent seen her in almost two months now. One day, she just said, "Go away. I don't want to see you for a awhile." And I got a phone call a few weeks later saying it's all over. C'est la vie.
So...did you love her?
Yeah, I wasn't upset though. I kinda saw the futility in getting myselfall upset, so I just skipped over it. I was real lucky this time.
Yeah, I guess. That's what Chester [Brown of Underwater] says. Maturity or repression. I'm not sure.
I've avoided [being in love] for that last seven years. I had two really stupid loves at the end of my teen years. Than I moved to L.A. and I tried to become a rock star, and while you're doing that it's kind of cool not tohave a girlfriend, if you're out in bars every night promoting your shows and meeting people. So I was having fun. And then I actually became a rockstar and at that point really didn't need a girl friend.
How many girls have you slept with now?
Not as many as you might think. I think I'm still under forty. But almost all of those have been in the last two years.
You're living out the male fantasy is what you're doing.
I lost my virginity kind of late, at seventeen.
I was nineteen!
That's really late.
What does that make me? Chester was 22.
Wow. You guys are fucked up.
...on the moral issue:
You're all fucked up from having lots of hollow sex, Rivers.
It doesn't bother me [that I've slept with forty girls]. It doesn't seemlike a lot to me. If I'm in a new city every night and playing for thousands of girls every night. And I have sex with say thirty girls in two years, that's not a lot at all.
That's what one a month? one every three weeks?
Yeah, that's terrible.
I'm lucky if I have like once a year.
When we first became popular, I had a really hard time accepting this lifestyle. It kinda reminds me of that episode (of Peepshow) where you'rewith those two girls, and suddenly you find yourself incapable of taking advantage of the situation even though it's what you'd always dreamed of? That's kind of like what I was going through the first year of stardom. And then with the assistance of increased alcohol consumption....
So you've been with two girls now?
You stinking rock stars. I hate you.
I was just being confronted with the opportunity over and over again, and becoming frustrated with my inability to take advantage of it, I think finally I made a big breakthrough.
You think it was a breakthrough. It seems more like a double-edged sword. The curse of having your wishes fulfilled. I mean even in my comicwhen I am with those two girls, that situation was totally fictional. Itnever happened. I made it up because it seemed like a good thing to put in the story... a nice way to provide closure (to a Poor Bastard.) I threw it in because it seemed like such a downward spiral. I just seemed logicalsomehow. I regret it now because its one of the few fictional elements in my comics. It's a fantasy to be with two girls, but in reality, I don't think I'd be too interested. It would just be too weird. I don't know. How was it for you Rivers? Was it weird?
[I've had] two girls several times, and generally that is good becausethe girls are there just to have fun, there's no hang ups. The most I've been with is four and that was interesting and fun but the sex wasn't all that good.
What kind of girls are they are they just young and stupid? What is their motivation? Why are they doing it? It's just the fame factor right?
Well, I would hope there's other elements as well, for example, physical attraction or actual sexual desire or maybe just lust for life? But, I think the fact that I'm famous has something to do with it....
...on overcoming difficulty:
There was this one time in Japan that was really emotional for me because this is when I was first starting to figure all this stuff out about being really aggressive. I'd been in Japan for a week and every night there were ten or fifteen girls in my room and nothing happened because I wasn't confident enough to say "Let's have sex or get out of the room." So finally, at the end of my stay there I said, "Whoever wants to stay in the room has to take their clothes off and get on the bed."and most of them left but four of them stayed. It was a very difficult step for me to take but I hadto take it. It was the truth about what I wanted.
I could achieve all of my artist goals in my basement , but when go outthere and rock and try to meet girls, it's not really an artistic thing.
...on subconcious cultural evolution:
You're in a whole different world. You're actually having sex with thesegirls. I'm thirty-four and I've only slept with seven women and every time one gets added, I freak out. I hate the number growing. I try so hard tomake the number go backwards. Two or three were just for sex and werejust big regrets. I could have done with out them. I've been with a few girls now where I've just made out with them and been in bed with them an I won't go any further. I just don't want that number getting bigger.
It's all about the number, whether it a large number or a small number.
It's because I judge girls by that number as well. If they've been with too many, It colors my view of them.
Of course. I think the two sexes are very different. There shouldn't be one standard for both. Men and women are entirely different and for a woman to have sex with loads of guys is different. There's an evolutionary argument.
Here's Rivers hanging himself.
A woman can have say ten babies in her life. So for her to risk one of those opportunities on a meaningless fling, it's a much bigger risk than for a man who can have thousands of babies in his life.
What's the risk? That she's going to have a shitty baby?
The risk for her is that she's going to have a baby with someone who's not going to invest anything. But if he had thousands of babies, he's going for quantity over quality.
This baby thing is pretty irrelevant when everybody's using condoms every time.
Yeah, but in our subconscious mind and in the evolution of our culture,it's very relevant and that's what informs our standards.
...on making a departure (just a tidbit about their respective careers):
In my case it's even worse to be labeled repetitive. The reaction to my childhood story was just a lot of indifference, mostly, but I expected it. I didn't really care. I'm just so in love with the comic medium, it was fun for me to try something different and let the story breathe a bit more and try using a lot more silent panels and just letting the time go moment to moment. It was fun for me. I just wasn't very productive. I didn't work hard enough for those two years. This will be clear in my next storyline--my descent into pornography. I had nothing else to do [other than go into Fair Weather].It was fun for me. There are not as many eyes on me as there are on Rivers. I've got a few thousand eyes watching, and to me that's really small. I can deal with that. I just don't care.
I dont feel like I had a established a really strong tradition of whatI was about. I had put out on album which was already pretty diverse. And before that I had been doing all different styles of song writing so to methe jump to Pinkerton wasnt that big of a deal. Apparently it was more so for other people.
Are you prepared for the eventuality that your popularity could declineor maybe declining as were speaking?
I would prefer that my popularity only grew. Of course, I know, thats not going to happen.Ultimately Im going to fail and sink into obscurity like everyone else.