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December 10, 2006
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Deily A "Textbook Case Of Panic."

Having passed "denial" and "anger," Ben reportedly stuck squarely in "bargaining."

Let's make a deal: Deily "negotiates" with reality. (UPI)

PORTLAND--As the 2007 Varsity Drag tour draws closer, local advertising professional and "musician" Ben Deily is reportedly experiencing a series of mental states similar to those delineated by Elisabeth Kübler-Ross in her seminal 1969 book On Death and Dying.

"The guy is looking pretty shell-shocked these days," admitted a coworker, who agreed to be interviewed on condition of anonymity. "I'm hearing far more than the usual level of whimpering."

Classic book a guide to gutless Deily.

Kübler-Ross, an influential psychiatrist, describes the five stages involved in coming to terms with "often overwhelming realities" as being: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.

Mr. Deily--who has described the upcoming tour plans as "unfolding with the grim inevitability of Greek tragedy"--is reportedly grappling with an avalanche of anxieties, doubts and insecurities as he prepares to leave his "comfortable nipple of the corporate teat" and embark on a month-long tour including stops in the UK, France, Spain, Germany and Austria.

According to friends and colleagues, Deily's early denial regarding the tour ("This is NOT happening...") has recently morphed--after bursts of anger and irritability--into his current state of seemingly intractable "bargaining."

"OK, fine, so we're GOING, I understand that," muttered the addled former Lemonheads founder, rocking in a fetal position on the floor of his office. "BUT...I mean...if a buncha shows get cancelled, we won't have to go, right? And I mean, if the airline loses my guitar, well, that would just make the whole thing impossible, right? RIGHT?"

Local psychotherapist Jeffrey Andler theorizes that--despite Deily's apparent fear of logistical challenges--more likely the aging rocker is experiencing "deep-seated anxiety about the expectations of fans overseas."

"I mean, look at the history here. Eighteen-odd years ago, Ben bailed out of a Lemonheads European tour to attend an international symposium on William Butler Yeats. Now he's come full circle, taking time off from his 'serious' work to complete a...a rock & roll pilgrimage of sorts."

"This is going to take him WAY outside of his comfort zone. A certain amount of anxiety is normal, and to be expected."

"Of course," added Andler, "THIS level of hysteria is a little excessive. Embarrassing, almost. I mean, for cripes sake, Deily, cowboy up and get ahold of yourself."

"Now I understand why all those 'rock star'-types take drugs all the time," Deily observed glumly, glancing over an itinerary including dozens of European cities. "This is stressful as hell. What if I lose my travelers' cheques? What if we get lost, or get stuck in one of those big traffic circle-things?"

"I mean, we've all seen National Lampoon's European Vacation. These things can and do happen, right?"

As of press time, the Varsity Drag tour is scheduled to begin in Frankfurt, Germany on Friday January 19th. Band management confirmed that Deily "will be in attendance, even if it's at gunpoint."

Denial, anger, bargaining: many moods, all childish. (AP)

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