Frequently Asked Stupid Questions



Dear Toasters: Why "Toast"? Why not "Muffins"?

Well, a "toast" is what you do when you lift a glass in praise.... no, that's not right. Wait, I've got it: we're the "toast of the town" and.... no, that's a lie, too. Let's see... "T-O-A-S-T" is the first letter of the first name of all the guys in the band, except we have six members, and no one's name starts with "O" or "A"....

Actually, "toast" is what you do with old and stale things. Besides, we wouldn't be able to decide what kind of muffin we wanted to be.

Dear Toasters: How come you guys look like you're having so much fun on stage?

We're not. Actually, we're really serious musician types. You see, it's not really us up there; those are clever, computer animated facsimiles you're watching. You have Industrial Light & Magic to thank for the grins on our faces, and the laughter is just an extra soundtrack.

Dear Toasters: I swear I remember you guys playing around town ages ago in Bluestone Ivory, Haymarket Riot, and (okay, I'll admit it) the Heywoods, but I don't recognize any of you. Why is that?

We had hair back then. We were skinnier, too. And thank you very much for reminding us of what we've lost and gained.

Dear Toasters: Why do you guys always place the drummer at the far end of the band? I thought drummers were supposed to be in the middle.

Have you ever smelled a drummer after two sets? This way we can always make sure he's downwind of the rest of the band. Besides, Tom says it's easier to sneak over to the bar between songs that way.

Of course, lately, we've put Tom back in the middle. That way, we can make sure that he doesn't escape.

Dear Toasters: I recall that you Bluestone Ivory alumni used to have a band house in North College Hill. When is Toast going to get a band house?

Tam Bone would hasten to tell you that Haymarket also had a band house; however, theirs didn't feature carpet squares on the walls and ceilings. As to the Toast band house -- we have Tom Steele scouting Indian Hill for one now, and we can get a whole bunch of square carpet samples if we get to Buddy's Carpet by Wednesday night. We wonder how "The Hill" is going to like hearing us practice at all hours of the night...

Dear Toasters: I've actually read some of Sleigh's books, and I'm telling you -- he's got to be a little strange.

That's not a question -- it's a statement, so we assume you're comfortable with your conclusion. So are we. Of course, you're actually reading the books, so we figure you must be more than a little strange, too.

Dear Toasters: Why don't you guys play a few of your songs backward?

We tried doing that once, but it had a negative effect -- we ended up looking like this:


Dear Toasters: Why does Tom Steele always sing with the eyes closed?

That's a pretty easy one. You'll have noticed that Sleigh always has a music stand in front of him, because at his advanced age, remembering the words to all those songs is beyond his mental capacity. Tom Steele's taken another route -- he has the words to the songs he sings micro-engraved on the back of his eyelids. When he closes his eyes, he can see the words in the glare of the famous Toast light show.

Dear Toasters: When is Tom Steele going to sing a song by Bobbie Fischer, and when is he going to pay me back that money he owes me from 1981?

Hey! It's not fair to try and sneak two questions in at once. We'll let it slide this time, but you'd better not do it again. First of all, Bobbie Fischer's too busy playing chess to write any tunes. As to the money, Tom claims that the statute of limitations for a 1981 debt ran out in 1996. Money? What money?

Mary Lou Baker responds to this, too: "Hey, maybe the Bobbie Fischer in question isn't actually the Chess Master, but, the song master (my brother-in-law). And so, why don't you do any songs by Bobby Fisher? He's brilliant! And, since I'm sitting here listening to the acclaimed Tom Steele album EDBS, I'm wondering how I can find the other one?

We really do remember Bobby Fischer! He's an incredible talent! We wonder if he still has hair!? Regarding finding Tom's can only get 'em in boxes of Breeeeze detergent! And if you recognize that rather obscure commercial reference, you're old enough to stick with the turntable enjoying the authentic scratchy 1981 sounds of EDBS!

Dear Toasters: Is there any truth to the rumor that Dale is setting you guys up to be the house band at Western Bowl?

Well, we all know that Dale "Gutter Ball" Lewis is a true bowling fanatic, and actually has the entire run of "King of TV Bowling" on videotape, going all the way back to the 1970s. As for Western Bowl, Rick refuses to take his Hammond B3 Hernia Special down those steps, so we can't be the house band. However, Dale's got us a nice deal on bowling shirts for the band.

Dear Toasters: What's with Rick's new hairstyle?

Rick has hair?

Dear Toasters: Why are you so tall?

Wow. Now that really qualifies as a stupid question, since no one in the band is more than six foot, unless Steve is wearing those 3" platform disco heels he's used to wear back in the '70s. I'm guessing this is a typo, and you really meant to ask "Why are you so Tull?" We're so Tull because SG can play the flute better than Ian Anderson, and "Thick As A Brick" is a good answer to the question "How's the intelligence level in Toast?"

Dear Toasters: In looking at your calendar, I noticed that you're playing on a couple "Frudays." What's a Fruday, and where does it fall in the week?

There are no mistakes; there is only improvisation. "Fruday" is a jazz way of spelling Friday. And I'll bet you thought it was a typo. Hah!

Dear Toasters: If you were a tree, what kind of tree would you be?

If we were a Bush, we might be president. Now there's a scary thought, almost as scary as actually having Bush as president.

But you asked about trees, didn't you? If we were trees, we'd be the offspring of a Beech tree. That would make us six sons of beeches.

Dear Toasters: Is someone who follows the band known as a Toaster, too?

Someone who follows this band is known as a fool. Luckily for us, there's lots of 'em! Actually, we call the hardy group of wonderful and enthusiastic folks who regularly show up at our gigs "friends."

Dear Toasters: Why doesn't Tom Steele play his trombone anymore?

Unfortunately, you've touched on a sensitive aspect of Tom's life. Actually he's had years of therapy to get over the curse of a recurring trombone nightmare. In the dream he is marching in a half time show in the Moeller High School Marching Band (under the direction of Rick "with hair" Hagee), forgets his steps, turns the wrong way and impales Gerry Faust, killing the beloved coach instantly. This, of course negates any hopes of a National Championship for the football team and causes an unsightly cut in Tom's upper lip. It's a sad, sad story because, the way Tom tells it, "I could blow like Tommy- freekin'- Dorsey". When asked, Rick "without hair" Hagee, didn't remember Tom's trombone chops quite so glowingly, but considered the marching incident "entirely possible"!

Dear Toasters: One time at Band Camp... no just kidding... Anyway, my question is 'why have all of you gotten so short?' I remember in the 1970's you were all like at least 5'9 since that is the height all men say they are along with other things like 'the first time I had sex I was 12...'

We never said we had sex at 12. In fact, none of us has had sex yet, and our entire bodies atrophied in revolt. Hence, our compact look.

Dear Toasters: Why is toast easy to burn?

An interesting question. Now, if you're referring to the toast on which you put butter, the answer's quite easy -- you either have a broken toaster, or you have it set too high.

However, if you're referring to Toast-The-Band, well, it's a little more devious. First, you have to examine what you mean by burn. With "Toast," the bread burns when it's "overdone." Other things burn, too: for instance, you burn matches, but when you do that, you first have to "light" them. Your car burns gas... and what's important there is the "octane" that you use. You can burn CDs, too... and if you play them too loud, you'll go "deaf." You can even burn bridges, but then you can no longer go "over" to the other side.

So... we have the important words "Toast," "Overdone," "Light," "Octane," "Deaf," and "Over." If you take the first letter of each word, you have: T, O, L, O, D, O. Now, "Tolodo" doesn't sound like a real word (unless you're thinking of a city in northern Ohio), but if you unscramble it, you get the phrase: "Too Old."

And that's why Toast is so easy to burn.

Dear Toasters: Hey, how come some of you guys are missing moustaches lately?

Those weren't moustaches. We Toasters are so old that we hardly move anymore, and a couple caterpillars had taken up residence under the noses of Rick and Dale. Recently, they completed the transformation into butterflies and flew away -- hence the new 'bare' look.

God knows what the heck's taken up residence on Sleigh's face, though... Maybe a nest of bag worms.


what in gods name were you guys thinking. You guys are just a bunch of amateurs and you have the autrocity to take our band name. And how the hell can you make a song about coffee and tea. you pull another stunt like that and ill rip off your rinkley [expletive deleted] and break your hip you little [expletive deleted]. we will keep in touch you fat [expletive deleted].  sincerely yours, YOU SUCK

Dear Sparky --

Thank you for your recent submission to the Toast School of Punctuation and Grammar.  Here is your corrected manuscript....  The teacher's comments are in yellow.

what [Always capitalize the first word in a sentence.] in gods [There should be an apostrophe before the "s" to denote the possessive.  In addition, it's common usage to capitalize the name God as it's considered a proper name, such as "Sparky."] name were you guys ["You guys" is rather too casual.  Consider deleting the "guys" as "you" can be both singular or plural, and reads better in this case.] thinking. [Use a question mark rather than a period as this is an interrogative, not a statement.]  You guys [Repetition of " you guys" -- see previous note, as again "you" is acceptable by itself] are just [Consider deleting "just," as it dilutes the effect of the insult] a bunch of amateurs and you have the autrocity ["Atrocity' -- misspelled, by the way -- is a "shockingly cruel and violent act." Toast's musicianship may be bad but calling it violent and cruel is excessive.  You probably mean "audacity" -- we'll leave it to you to look up the definition.] to take [A 'generic' and bland verb; consider a more visceral one.  Perhaps "steal" or some other synonym?] our band name. [This should be "band's" as the band possesses the name. Except you don't. Again, you need further research. Toast is trademarked (TM) by this band and has been for a few years now. It would appear that you have stolen the name...] And how [in] the hell can you make [Imprecise.  Consider "compose" or "create."] a song about coffee and tea. [You need additional research here (and a question mark instead of that period, as you're asking another question..).  Toast did not compose this song.  In fact, it's older than any of us, and we're all pretty old.] you [Capitalize-- first word of the sentence!] pull another stunt like that [Imprecise.  It isn't clear if you're referring to the band name or the coffee and tea song or both.]  and ill [to be "ill" is to be sick, which Toast may well be in one sense.  But we think you mean the contraction "I'll".] rip off your rinkley [Misspelled: "wrinkly." More properly, it should be "wrinkled." To be anatomically correct, it's the scrotal sac containing the testes that is wrinkled and not the testes themselves.] (expletive deleted) [Use of the vernacular here is acceptable under some circumstances, but we've excised it...] and break your hip [If you're referring to all the band members, this should be "hips.," If you're instead referring to a particular band member, you should probably use his name to avoid confusion.] you little (expletive deleted). [Can't tell if this is a sentence fragment or a dependent clause from the last sentence.  If the former, use an initial capital letter and a period after and install a verb. If the latter, it needs a comma beforehand.  Also, this would indicate that you are indeed referring to several band members in the "hip" reference.  Toast is pleased that you feel we're hip, but we're not certain why you feel that the band members of Toast are small felines.] we [Needs a capital "W" since it's the beginning of another sentence.] will keep in touch [place a comma here] you fat (expletive deleted).  [The adjective is indeed fitting, although it doesn't agree with the use of "little" a moment before. How can one be both "little" and "fat?" The noun again shows a lack of research, as none of the band members of Toast were born out of wedlock.] sincerely ["Sincerely" should be capitalized] yours, YOU SUCK [Since this is where the signature goes, it would indicate that "You Suck" is your name. We'll refrain from comment.]

Dear Toasters: Why don't you guys do rap songs? That would be grand.

Actually, if someone would pay us a grand, we would do a rap song. Anyone who comes to this group with a grand can have any song they'd like; we'd even do country. Heck, we'd even do Billy Joel's Italian Restaurant.

Dear Toasters: Is it true that Tom Steele used to be in a band called The Cinemaettes?

Tom replies: That wasn't us! 

When we started out (back in the early '50's) we knew the Cinemaettes but we were called the Raisenettes.  Eventually we worked as the Beaconettes, then the Baconbits, the Brokenbutts and the Drippydicks (during the Nixon years we were the Trickydicks).  We took on a trumpet player and became the suckyducks.  We killed the trumpet player and became the happysaps. Then we were on the run, uh, I mean, on the ROAD for a little while.  We made our triumphant return to the Queen City (after we'd had time to grow beards and mustaches) at the Beacon Hill Cinema in the center of that thriving metropolis Deer Park under the name of Enema jets!

...which is probably why he mistook us for the Cinemaettes!     

Dear Toasters, I noticed that some of you have full heads of hair while others.......well let's just say the hair is conspicuously absent. How do you manage to play such wonderful music when you have such striking differences? The world could learn alot from TOAST.

We're not bald; we're "hair-challenged." And we're joining the Whig Party in the next election.

Actually, being hair-challenged has a beneficial effect on our music. You see, as we play, the sounds bounce and echo much more effectively from our shiny skulls, so well that we don't even need to add reverb. If we had hair, that wouldn't happen.

Scott Schoppel asks: Dear Toasters, Why is there a crescent moon on an outhouse and why not a different shape?

Well, we can certainly tell you why there's a vent of some sort, given the lovely aroma of the few outhouses we've visited... But gee, that one really stumped us, so we hit the internet. According to several sites, way back when most people couldn't read (we think that was 1950 or so), the men's outhouse was identified by a star, and the women's outhouse by a moon. But the guys found that it was just as easy to water the nearest bush or tree, and so their outhouses fell into disrepair, while the ladies took better care of theirs, and so eventually the crescent moon became the only standard symbol on an outhouse.

Actually, we think it's because a crescent is easier to draw or carve than a star. And frankly, we're just happy to have indoor plumbing.

Dear Toasters, Have you ever communicated with "the toast band" from Pittsburgh? They are a nice bunch of fellows. Check 'em out at

Wow, yet another Toast band... They do appear to be a nice bunch of guys, near as we can tell, and about our age, too, though overall they have more hair, which makes us jealous. We've put up a link to them on our ToastLinks page, for those who wanna check 'em out!

John C. asks: How does a rock star become a 6th grade boys' baskeball coach?.

Philosophical Tom says: You like music! They share a certain rhythm, a beat.....the melding of talents, minds and bodies, using scripts that change and evolve with each passage......sweaty participants of all shapes, sizes, colors and creeds working in concert as a team......the mood - in constant flux and flow.....the common language "drive", "pass", "play", "balls", "shut up - you a**hole" (and probably hundreds of other phrases that I can't think of). Instilling these foundations in young men was always my dream, my goal, my calling. My life was a total void before I was able to instill in these impressionable youngsters the Zen-like commonality of music and hoops!

Honest Tom says: They didn't have enough coaches.!

Jeannine E. asks: Do home pregnancy tests work on cats?.

Wow. Have to admit we boggled a bit at that one. The good news is yes, they work on cats. The bad news is that first you have to get close enough to a peeing cat to use them. Phew! The worst news is that, like dogs, cats only see in black and white, and thus can't read the results.

Of course, you wouldn't need the home pregnancy test is you could get tom cats to use those little tiny condoms...

The Miethers ask: Why are there interstates in Hawaii?

What, you mean you've never taken the I-8 to H-3 bridge from San Diego to Hawaii?

Actually, only the island of Oahu has interstate highways. It's not that you pass through political states while in Hawaii, but that you pass through various states of mind as you drive around the island, from "Oh my, that's beautiful!" to "Omigod, I want to live here!" to "It's going to take a decade to pay off my credit card bills from this vacation!" to "I really should have used the SPF-40 sun block!"

This one was directed to Tom “Mr Realtor President, Sir!” Steele: How come you guys never play any dates in New Jersey?  There's a lot of "prime" real estate up here you could scope out!?

Tom answers:  We’d actually like to do that, but unfortunately we don’t speak the language.

Steve adds:  New Jersey is one of the forty-seven states (and two provinces) that currently ban Toast from performing.