Last week, Thought Catalog published an essay of mine on growing up punk in suburban Detroit. It’s a personal piece about high school, the 1980s, skating, and, mostly, the shitty hardcore band I was in. We did, however, have a great name: Moral Decay. Anyway, here it is.
Like thousands of other basement bands across the country at the time, we spent our days skateboarding, building launch ramps in our driveways, and working up new ways to express our dissatisfaction with the world. Plenty of stuff pissed us off. This was 1986, after all, the high Reagan era. The U.S. was always invading some country I had never heard of, and the threat of nuclear war seemed very real. I wasn’t happy at home, either: I didn’t get along with my parents, and they didn’t get along with each other. Plus, I lived in the suburbs of Detroit, which even then had a feral, end-of-days feel. That year, there were nearly 400 arsons in a three-day period. I remember sitting in front of the TV on Halloween night, watching the city burn. [ ... ]