Another Side Of Keith Richards (He’s A Genius Inventor!)

When my cell phone rang in my bedroom a week ago Monday at 4:30 AM, I bolted up from the deepest sleep I’d been in since I don’t know when. Shit, I’d forgotten to leave the phone out of earshot! Double shit, the jolt was so dangerous I came this close to reaching the end of my Earthly days. Hallelujah though, my wife Sandy continued to sleep the sleep of babies. Grabbing the phone, I tiptoed out of the bedroom and down the stairs to the living room sofa.

“What the f*ck’s wrong with you, man?” I said to the caller. “Don’t you know what time it is here? It might be late morning in Ireland, but I don’t live in Ireland!”

Photo by Mark Seliger

“Calm down, bro,” said Keith Richards. “I forgot about the time difference, ya know? Gimme a break. And by the way, it’s good to hear ya voice.”

I put my hand over my heart. It still was beating like a big bass drum, but overall I felt alright. I put on a happy face and resumed the conversation.

“Keith-o, what’s happening? How are the rehearsals going?” He was in the Emerald Isle with the rest of The Rolling Stones, preparing for their latest tour. It opens next week in Dublin. And yeah, damn right that Keith and I are buds. You can learn a bit of the backstory by clicking here.

“Ah, man, I don’t know. I mean, the band’s still got it. We’re smokin’ hot, but I’m feelin’ blue. Sometimes I wonder if I made the right career choice. I mean, I like writin’ songs and playin’ on stage and all, but is that all there is to life? Neil, I shoulda been an inventor. I’ve got lots of great ideas. There’s one that I’ll call the Bravo Toilet if I decide to try and bring it to market. Did I ever tell ya about it? Here’s the deal: After ya finish doin’ your business — it don’t matter if it’s number one or number two — and push the flush handle, two big mechanical hands pop up from behind the tank and start applaudin’ real enthusiastically! And they don’t stop clappin’ till the tank has refilled. Not only that, a recorded voice keeps yellin’ ‘Bravo! Bravo! A magnificent performance!’ over and over. Ain’t that the coolest?”

I had to agree. Keith had a very brilliant idea there. I was more than impressed. “Yo, Keith,” I said, “this is a side of you I’ve never known about. What other genius notions have you been keeping secret from me?”

“Well, how about this one? Chewing gum, Neil. Its potential is almost untapped. Think about all the flavors of gum that nobody makes. Brussel sprouts, prunes, kale, quinoa. Oh, and I forgot to mention turnips and parsnips. I tell ya, the list goes on and on.”

“Keith, my man, your future is bright. Very bright. You’ve got more lightbulbs going off in your head than I have strands of hair on my head.” And that’s when a lightbulb went off inside my head for a change.

“Good buddy,” I said, ‘‘you need to turn your attention to finding the cure for baldness. Come up with that one and your legacy will be unmatched. You can do it, Keith, I’ve got total confidence in you.”

“Neil, after this tour is over, curing baldness will become the heaviest item on my plate. I’m gonna tackle that problem with laser intensity. You’ve got my word.”

“You rock, Keith-o! Listen, I’ve got to go. I’ve got to pay a visit to the little boys’ room. I wish I had a Bravo Toilet installed, because my impending dump is going to be majestic. But I have to ask you one more thing: I have a blogging buddy who lives in Scotland. Andrew Ferguson is his name. Andrew and his musical partner call themselves Tribute To Venus Carmichael. They play great songs that Venus composed over the years. Thing is, nobody knows where Venus herself is these days. She’s been performance-shy for forever. You remember Venus, don’t you? She was part of the L.A. music scene in the 70s.”

“Holy crap, Neil, I can’t believe that you’re bringing her up. Sure I remember her. We were an item for a nano-second back in those days. Gorgeous girl. Excellent songwriter. And you won’t believe this, but I’m pretty sure that I saw her in Manhattan last month. I was on my way to a recording studio — me and Mick were working up some new songs there — when I swear she walked right past me. I wouldn’t bet my life on it, but I think it was her.”

‘‘ ‘Venus, baby, it’s Keith,’ I said. ‘It’s fantastic to see ya again.’ But the girl didn’t give me a glance. What can ya say? Maybe it was Venus, maybe not. In any case I’d love to know what Venus’s been up to all these years.”

“Okay, Keith. I’m going to let Andrew know about this. And I wasn’t kidding about what I said a minute ago. Nature is calling me in a deep, powerful voice. See you, Keith-o. You can start applauding in a few minutes. And don’t forget to yell bravo. I’ll hear you from across the pond.”  

(Don’t be shy about adding your comments or about sharing this story. Sharing buttons are below.)

(P.S. Andrew Ferguson is real, as is the musical duo Tribute To Venus Carmichael. Is Venus Carmichael herself real? You’ll have to check out the TTVC website to find out. Is anything else about this story real? Well, the Stones begin their latest tour next week in Dublin. As for the rest . . . )

53 thoughts on “Another Side Of Keith Richards (He’s A Genius Inventor!)

  1. Alyson May 10, 2018 / 6:47 am

    I love your Keith Richards’ stories and this one is a belter. Although, when I first discovered your blog I had to read such stories several times, just to be sure….!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger May 10, 2018 / 9:23 am

      Glad you like them, Alyson. I have fun writing them. Who knows what the next KR story will be about.


  2. aladec May 10, 2018 / 7:08 am

    Nice. I have no doubt you saw the movie “Under the Influence.” Keith is a virtuoso on the guitar.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger May 10, 2018 / 9:24 am

      Hello there. No, I haven’t seen it. I know of it, though. One of these days I’ll check it out.
      Take care. Thanks for stopping by.


  3. greenpete58 May 10, 2018 / 8:05 am

    Always good to hear what Keef’s up to, from you, his mate. Me and Keef and Ozzie ‘ad a good chat over tea and crumpets recently about one of our favourite blokes, Stevie Marriott. Hope to post about it, soon. Till, then, I’m checkin’ out Andy Ferguson, since my daughter’s moving to Glasgow, and I need to learn how U.S. expats can get visas to escape the land of Trump. Cheers, Neil!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger May 10, 2018 / 9:26 am

      Morning, Pete. She has picked a good place to live in. I was in the Scottish Highlands for a week many years ago. Very beautiful. I’d like to go back.


    • andrewcferguson May 10, 2018 / 5:34 pm

      Pete, all Trump refugees are very welcome here. Apparently he’s due over himself shortly to check out his golf course investments, but has committee something of a faux pas (I mean, apart from all that Korea/Iran stuff) by banning our national soft drink, Irn Bru, from his hotels because it stains the carpets – see so we’re preparing a very special reception for him!

      Liked by 2 people

      • greenpete58 May 11, 2018 / 7:54 am

        Thanks, Andrew. My daughter and her husband are looking at Bearsden, outside Glasgow. They’ll be house-hunting there in late July or early August. I’m looking forward to visiting, not only to escape Trump Dump, but also to see my homeland (one of many). Regarding Irn Bru, I read the article. Cor blimey, Trump stains his skin and hair, and has permanently stained the U.S., so I don’t understand his concern about a drink. Cheers!

        Liked by 1 person

        • andrewcferguson May 14, 2018 / 10:23 am

          Nice one. Bearsden’s a very pleasant suburb of Glasgow – my sister lived for many years in nearby Milngavie (pronounced Mul – guy for reasons no one can fathom). Enjoy your trip!

          Liked by 1 person

  4. Laurie Graves May 10, 2018 / 9:28 am


    Liked by 2 people

  5. Still the Lucky Few May 10, 2018 / 10:23 am

    I love to hear all of the details about your relationship with Keith—he’s a doll (does anybody say that anymore?) And it’s such a relief to hear that he’s planning to apply his genius to curing baldness. I know lots of guys in my generation who would buy into that, given all of the bucks the Boomers have! So he would be rich in no time!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger May 10, 2018 / 11:56 am

      Diane, Keith can do it all!
      Thanks a lot for stopping by. Be seeing you —


  6. Pazlo May 10, 2018 / 12:59 pm

    I get everything about this post except the photo of the Shar Pei.


    Liked by 2 people

  7. northie May 10, 2018 / 2:18 pm

    I somehow managed to miss this earlier Thank you for a beguiling read. What is truth anyway? 😉

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger May 10, 2018 / 2:47 pm

      Hi, Northie. Good to hear from you. I’m glad you liked this story. You’re right about truth. It can be pretty flexible.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Isabelle May 10, 2018 / 2:25 pm

    For me the climax is no doubt the applauding and yelling. Thanks for a good laugh Neil, which can go on and on…Isabelle

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yeah, Another Blogger May 10, 2018 / 2:50 pm

      Laughter is good for the human spirit. That’s for sure. Always good to hear from you, Isabelle. Bye for now.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. andrewcferguson May 10, 2018 / 5:35 pm

    Thanks for the shout out, Neil. And we’re mighty relieved to hear Venus is back: she’d kind of disappeared off the radar for a bit there, but if Keef says…!

    Liked by 2 people

  10. andrewcferguson May 10, 2018 / 5:39 pm

    Reblogged this on Tribute to Venus Carmichael and commented:
    Just when we were starting to worry if Venus was still with us… here’s an unconfirmed report of her being spotted by no less a personage than Keith Richards!

    Liked by 2 people

  11. cincinnatibabyhead May 10, 2018 / 6:01 pm

    I’m gonna have to get me some of that there hair growing stuff. CB could use a little on top.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Ann Coleman May 10, 2018 / 7:17 pm

    Who knew Kieth Richards was also an inventor? And I rather like the idea of an applauding toilet!

    Liked by 2 people

  13. alhenry May 11, 2018 / 5:59 pm

    Well, Neil, I’m not a toilet, but I’ll applaud you for invention here. Fun and funny post.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. tanjabrittonwriter May 11, 2018 / 8:29 pm

    Whatever loquacity-enhancing substances you are taking, Neil, I would like some, too. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Linda Thornton May 12, 2018 / 12:32 pm

    Hi, Neil – From one collector of the humorous and the unconventional to another, your writing tickles us in just the right spot. Thanks for the smiles and keep writing!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Image Earth Travel May 12, 2018 / 4:34 pm

    Great story – had me reading right until the end!

    Many thanks for stopping by my Travel and Photography blog. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah, Another Blogger May 12, 2018 / 9:47 pm

      Hello there. Glad you liked this piece. Thanks a lot for stopping by. Take care —
      Neil S.


  17. Aunt Beulah May 14, 2018 / 4:29 pm

    I like it when you become whimsical, Neil, and spin us a fantasy. Thing is, your wrote Keith’s dialogue so well, I could hear him saying it. Cool.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah, Another Blogger May 14, 2018 / 6:16 pm

      Hey there, Janet. Thanks for the visit. It’s kind of amazing that the Stones are still together and touring. And still drawing big crowds! They play in Dublin in a few days.


  18. jeanleesworld May 16, 2018 / 10:38 pm

    LOL! I can only imagine how this conversation could look in person. A fun read, Sir!

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Jacqui Murray May 17, 2018 / 11:32 am

    I had to laugh–which may not have been your intention. Brussel Sprout’s flavored chewing gum? Hmm… Well, I may simply be small minded.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yeah, Another Blogger May 17, 2018 / 12:50 pm

      Hi Jacqui.
      Yup, I was hoping that the piece comes across as funny. So, I’m glad you laughed!
      See you —


  20. cath June 3, 2019 / 3:00 pm

    Looks like I missed this last year. Just tried to find Venus, and she seems to have gone missing again. What a fascinating woman.

    Liked by 1 person

Comments are closed.