Sunday, April 09, 2006

Random Journeys in Art

Random Journeys in Art

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Mad Swiping Second Savers!!!!

I’m an observer, the guy you don’t think is looking at you over his newspaper at the bus stop, the one you don’t think is listening to your conversation with Jim or Carol or Mark or Whomever as you wait in line at the grocery store. I have a keen, articulate sense of my surroundings, animalistic. Studying, scrutinizing and unmitigated in my calculated attention should the element of my focus compel me. Such things could be very minute to the average viewer but become magnified when looked upon at various mental angles. Sometimes the very mundane can be very, very intriguing.

Today the observer’s eyes fall upon the little plastic cards that oh so briskly couple with debit machine. Money in. Money out. Whoosha. I watched as a young woman, who obviously took great care and time in the bathroom that morning to look so beamingly presentable (the hint of Herbal Essence in the air, the Oil of Olay twice a day skin hue), swiped her VISA card repeatedly through the machine. This was done in succession at least 5 times before her receipt popped up a mere 6 seconds later. "Your machine is slow," she told the clerk, signed a scribble and left.

The mind recoils...

6 seconds. . .

slow. . .

Have we become so dependent on the swift, quick, brisk and rapid pace of this modern existence that a mere 6 seconds is considered a burden? Our Internet is High Speed. A page loading in 15 seconds means surly the modem is not functioning at its full capacity. Instant lines for movie tickets, bus tickets and even borrowing books from the library. Why, we don’t need human interaction when we have a little plastic card. ONLY 3 MINUTES, ONLY 2 MINUTES, ONLY 1 MINUTE, READY IN SECONDS packages in the grocery aisle. Letters do not need to be mailed and stamped. Email and it’s a second away. No need to wait to call as I can do it right now, here, on my cell phone. Watch TV any time on your phone too, why not. Heck, we don't need to write entire words now. We have Net Slang. LOL! Well, yes, we really are not laughing but we can convey such. BRB. Okay, I'm back! We need our Big Mac in 3 seconds please and, well, we don’t want to go inside so we’ll use the drive through. Fast. Quick. Easy. And the men they get impatient in the bank lines. And the woman grumble as the bus is a minute late. But at home we have Minute Rice!

I began to recall other times I have witnessed this mad swiping phenomenon. Some folks should have acquired carpal tunnel at the rate they were whooshing their card. They simply cannot wait those precious six seconds. What do you do in six seconds anyway?

A test: In six seconds I can
-Type "This above all things to thine own self..." (partial Shakespeare)
-Eat an Oreo
-Run a brush twice through my hair
-Erase an email
-Walk 6 paces and make it to my answering machine
-Spin my computer chair around 3 times
-Take a small drink of milk

Six seconds...

What a funny strange race of monkeys with clothes we are. We can sit through 30 minutes of trailers and Aztec commercials in the more theater and we can wait through the commercial break to find who has been voted off the island but give us slow debit machines and we transform into mad swiping second savers!

I move slow. I’m meticulous. So much of today’s lifestyle moves against this leisurely pace. The lucidity of this nature isn’t grasped. The torrential waters of this modern existence slams onward and while they tell you you can sink or swim they don’t give you the option to find a small island beach and wait for the waves to pass, the storm to clear and the seas to once again become calm.

Oh, such a warm relaxing island beach free from the speed shackles of Earth 2006. To feel the ocean lap my toes and the wind brush my hair and not a fucking cell phone in sight.

I think I’ll take six seconds to dream.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Discovering Hank

Megs introduced me to Hank. Her and I would search old bookstores in Toronto for Bukowski with little fortune found on shelves. Lots of Burgess, though. Balding shop keeps would cough out, usually behind a magazine or coffee stained newspaper, that when Hank comes in he leaves quickly. Trains passing through. And then one day Megs found Notes From a Dirty Old Man. This was a good book search day. I hadn’t really read any Bukowski at that point, only flippantly flirted with him at the library, picking up a poetry book and taking a few glances before placing it down to continue my hunt for Hemmingway, Thompson or whomever happened to be my focus that month. This was at a time when I was reading quite a bit, not like now when it is harder to focus. I guess there was more distraction in my life back then to escape from in literature. Maybe I need more chaos now. Who knows? Anyway, so I borrowed her Notes From a Dirty Old Man and I think I read it all in one night. It was nothing like I had read before. Everything was so ugly and in your face blunt and underneath all that grim were the guts of beauty. Shit on a Monet and it’s still beautiful art underneath and this was Bukowski. Face of scars, drunk and lonely. Classical music on the radio and some desperate shell of a woman asleep on the floor. Grease and flies. Bukowski. Next was Tales of Ordinary Madness and then anything the library had. I must have read 20 Bukowski books that summer. I couldn’t afford them so I got them from the library, usually 5 at a time. My breaks at work would be spent reading Hank. In the park. On the subway. There was Bukowski. Though I was so far removed from anything going on in the stories (save for some bouts with poverty, although nothing to the extent of flophouses and park benches) I could relate, find small stones in his work that I could grab onto. I found myself glamorizing and fantasizing. There was some kind of freedom in the Bukowski existence where nothing you own is yours but a pen and a paper. I would look around my small collection of things in my room as anchors. What if I sold it all and set out on the road? Some dark room with 5 year old vomit stains on the floor and some Mozart on a dying radio was all I needed. Everything else was distraction. These were wonderful night thoughts as Mozart played on CD from my $700 stereo. I even tried to write like him once; a story called Stinky Puppy. Megs choose the title. And when I finally left Toronto and escaped into the unknown world wilderness, uncertain and scared, every place I stopped at would have me looking for Hank in libraries or bookstores. I never found him in bookstores. His train had left again carrying with it a gang of drunken hobos singing Cumberland Gap. But the libraries had him and it was always a great feeling when I found something I had yet to read. What would I find in these pages? There is nothing new at the library now and I still can’t afford Hank. The poorest son of a bitch has become so fucking costly. Black Sparrow Press went under and his books were off the market for two years. They are back now with higher price tags. I haven’t read any new Hank in a year but I still think about him a lot. I brought some net girl once to see a documentary about him and she never spoke to me again. Makes me laugh now, that poor girl, jaw dropped as Hank reads some of his work on his 12th bottle of whatever is in that bottle. And I think now how people like Hank and Pekar and Kerouac and even Holden Caufield are the people I seem to respect the most, the drifters and drunks and characters that populate early Waits songs. And nights, still, from my apartment after a day at work I hear the pianist next door playing some Chopin and for a few moments I drift into fantasies of dark, lonesome rooms, third glass of whiskey, a salty kiss from a blonde who’s name I’ll never know, a stained pad of paper and a pen losing ink, a desk in a corner by a window looking out onto the streets below and me, disheveled and disdainful, writing it all down.

* * *

Stinky Puppy
So, Alice threw him out again. Same old same old. Shit. Shit. Shit. He’d been boozin‘, she says. She’d been floozin‘, he says. And the snake eats its tail, yummy yummy, and the same old
piece of repeating mess starts again. Oh yeah, and that goddamned stinky puppy.
"You big ol’ bitch," he yells at her. "I got six bucks in my underwear drawer! That’s mine, you whore!" Curious heads peak around curtains. "And that box of bran muffins behind the TV is mine. I have to be regular, slut!" Curious eyes peer through blinds. "And the fucking gin TOO!!!" And he continues to yell and curse and shake his fist at the screen door with the hole torn in it from when she put his head through it last spring -wow-oh-wow, that was a doozer! He’d been meaning to repair it because the ‘sqeeters kept getting in and sucking out his precious DNA. SLURRRP!
He stumbles drunk over the damn dead puppy and falls on his rump. PLOP! BANGO! One of his teeth falls out. Just like that, one of his teeth falls out, plop into the muck and drying dog shit he calls a lawn. He picks it up, the tooth, not the lawn, and examines it, turns it around some in his hand, shakes it like dice. He examines this piece of him that is no more like a forensic pig would an important piece o’ ev-eye-dunce. The rotting tooth, yellow and caked with the ketchup he’d spatter all over his breakfast eggs --or was that blood???-- just the way he liked it. He knew it’d be coming out soon. Yup yup yup. She kept telling him to go and see the dentist. She says "Fa’ Christ sakes you lazy slugo, go and see the dentist before your whole head rots off!" and he says that a) your whole head can’t rot off because of a single rotten tooth now where’s your sense of logic, woman? and b)‘cause he got fired from the shoe store gig for mouthin’ off to the assistant manager, the ASS manager --an obese waste of space, greasy haired, cross eyed, reeking of fresh cow stank in the sun, puss dripping pimple faced, living breathing walking vomit bag of a kid fucking 20 years younger then him!!!-- but, LIE ALERT, he’d really been canned because he was caught giving the old Bang-bang-she-walla-walla to Cancer Casey.
Oh yeah, that was a day boy-howdy!
Cancer Casey had been coming into the store ever since he hit the scene six months ago, at least once a week or so. The boss man said she was one of those costumers he calls Looky-loo-loos, the kind that comes on in, spends hours in the place, tries on every goddamned shoe her baby blues fall upon and never ever ever buys. Pisses him off to no end, or so he says.
At any rate, Cancer Casey had discovered she had some kind of terminal cancer six months ago, he didn’t remember what kind, fuck it, and that she had something like a year to live, maybe a month, he didn’t remember, fuck that too. Anyway, she had this plan, she told him one day as he laced her up into a knee high pair of size 5 lace up platform boots, the kind the strippers wear with flames all up the side and some sexy shit like that. She wasn’t a stripper but said she liked looking good and, hot damn, did she look good in that boot. Anyway, her plan was to fuck every man that knew who painted some painting called The Birth Of Venus before she finally croaked. She’d been some art student, or something, fucked if he remembers, and that was her favorite painting or something.
So what he does is tells her to hold on. Christola, she had a smoking little body. Tight all over.
So tight you could see her bones just waiting to bust out. It wasn’t until after the whole mess that he realized that could have been because of the cancer. Anyway, he walks over to the phone and calls up information and asks "Hey, where did I leave my smokes? What, you don’t know? You’re information, ain’t ya! Ha ha ho ho ho. Hey, don’t get soar, huh, just joshin’ ya’. What’s the numberino to the local art gallery, huh?" and then he hangs up and calls the gallery and ask some schmuck on the other end, some cock sucking queer by the sound of it, who painted this thing called The Birth Of Venus and the fucking ass pounding fag says like he was the biggest stupidest piece of filth alive for not knowing who painted this rag, he says "Sando Botticelli". "Thanks sport," he says and saunters on back to old Cancer sitting there with her one boot, Cancer who wouldn’t be around this time next year unless that bastard Jesus came on down and placed a hand on her pretty little head and said "HEALED!". He walks up to her, smiles a little and says something like: "What was that question again, little missy?" and she tells him again and he stops, pretending to think about ‘er some, you know, sly like, real coy and shit, and finally he says: "Isn’t that Santo Botticelli?" "Sando," she corrects him. "Yeah, that’s the guy. Good old Sando. His work is so intriguing."
And with that he takes her into the back, turns her around so that her face digs right into a Converse box, and slams the old meat into her hard. She starts to holler a little and he needs none of that so he stuffs a baby Nike shoe into her yap and keeps on a poundin‘, given her a light little slap on the rump to let her know he means bid’ness. But she keeps a hollerin’ so he stuffs the other baby shoe into her yarb. You think it’d work, right? But this bitch has some pepper so he has to stuff a slipper in there too. Well, by the time he was ready to paint a little Birth Of Venus of his own on her ass with his cock goop and around the time that punk assistant manager wanders on in she has three slippers, two baby shoes, a sandal and a size 8 steal toe hiking boot crammed into her yap and it STILL didn’t shut her up!
Christ, he didn’t even get to finish. Now how do you like that?
And now he’s in the fucking muck, half naked except for a dirty, crusty towel stained with whateverthefuck wrapped around his waist, all wet, hair matted with drying shampoo, out on the lawn as the bastard neighbors gawk and glare and think "drunk again, I’ll bet". Yup, booted out for the fifth time that month (and they were only two freakin‘ weeks in), sitting next to the damn dead stinking mutt that caused this whole rinse wash repeat mess. Christ, damn mutt.
This new journey into fresh insanity began two weeks ago when bitch brought home this rotty pup she’d found in some ditch near the dollar store. He’d been whining and crying and some shit, shivering and cold, she said, and slobbering all over itself. Thin as...well, thin as old Cancer Casey he supposed. Maybe this mutt had the same thing she had, but he didn’t think so. Fucking reeking thing.
So she brings this thing home saying how sad and pitiful it looked, you know, laying the whole guilt ridden speal on him and he whatevered and ya ya yad and waved his hand and didn’t give three shits because Charlie had given him six hits of acid that night and he’d dropped two to watch the nightly news. Shit like watching George W’s head contort and twist and shape into a strange beaked demon bird with honey glazed donut eyes amused him to no end.
Ya ya ya. So, she keeps the mutt and calls him something like Chachie after her first schoolgirl crush. Fuck, that sickened him thinking of her sticking her little fingy in her cooze dribbling all over some Scot Biao pullout in the Teen Beat mag she hid between her mattress and box-spring. Yack yack yackity yack and don’t forget to don’t talk back!
So, he tries to ignore this thing, you know, but oh how the fucking thing would bark when he put on Beethoven. He didn’t know if the rot loved it or hated it but it annoyed the shit out of him. You see, he was just getting back to writing again after a long stint of limbo-la-la-land where nothing was coming and he didn’t really care to find where it’d run off to and then he thought of writing a story ‘bout ol’ Cancer but, instead of Casey, he called her Candy part because if the thing got published before Cancer kicked the bucket he didn’t want to get sued. He hated cops and courts and lawyers more then anything on this earth, even more then the fucking French and, yeah, even more then the fags. Hell, he’d be so bold as to say that he hated pigs and lawyers and courts more then a fucking French Fag, two of them even, joined at the fucking ass like a pair of queer Siamese twins and some shit. The other part was because he was listen to Lou Reed on the ra-did-e-oh at the time, getting the groove, head full of the nicey-nice weedy-weed and singing along like:
Candy came from out on the island,In the backroom she was everybody's darling,But she never lost her headEven when she was given headShe said, hey baby, take a walk on the wild sideShe said, hey babe, take a walk on the wild sideAnd the colored girls go, doo doo doo, doo ...
And he even began to make up his own lyrics, talented fuck that he was:
Cancer Candy came into the shoe store
In the backroom she was my lil' shoe whore
Stuff a Nike in her yap
Ask ‘er "Hey, how’d ya’ like that?"
I say, hey babe, talk a walk on the wild side
And then the idea started to slowly come in from left field, like a sucker punch thrown by a drunk, nearly making it but missing by a few inches. He downed his gin, took another puff the Magic Dragon, and then it came to him, tidal wave, WOOOOOSHHHH and he ran to his "Writing Room", the Lion’s Den, he called it, and unearthed his old typewriter from a pile of unfinished manuscripts, dead end ideas, cigarette butts, beer stained notes, various skin mags, an apple core and a banana peal, now melded together like some strange mutant fruit hybrid, and other various pieces of filth. Not even waiting to set it up on the desk he sat there in the corner and started to write again.
His old habit of putting on LVB when he was getting into the writing groove came back to him and he dug the albums out of their closet hibernation and soon was lost in the zone, writing things like "She eyed the businessman across the street with a look reserved for men in the front row at a strip club or a vegetarian flirting with the idea of cheating a little while watching some guy scarf down a juicy piece of steak, pretending not to be so fixated and looking away should you happen to meet their eyes" or lines like "The business man was so tanned he looked like a piece of overcooked bacon. When he walked you could almost hear him sizzle" all the while Ludwig Van’s Eroica Symphony boomed out off the record and into his zone where the words flowed again, where Cancer Candy stalked businessmen through the autumn streets of New York and where all was right with the shit stinking world. And then that goddamned howling mutt. Zap! WHOOOSH! The zone faded away and there he was, back in filth of the Lion’s Den, the bitch playing some loud as hell fucking Celin Dion to drown out LVB and the pup in the doorway howling away:
A bright wall of red! Hot! Thick rage! And he hammered down on the typewriter keys, pounding out words like:
So he slams the door but the mutt is still a hollering. He turns LVB up loud enough to crack the dump’s foundation but the mutt is still a hollerin’. Christ, he thinks, it’s even worse then Cancer. He even starts thinking of going on down to the shoe store, wandering on into the back and grabbing a box or 20 of various foot apparel to force feed one by one down Chachie’s yap! Hell, he’d even kick that bastard of an assistant manager in the nuts on the way just for kicks. Yeah, sounds like a world fucking class vacation into the heart of Fucksville.
But, Christ almighty, he knew if he so much as laid one greasy hair on that mutt Alice’d start a cryin’ and tossing his shit onto the lawn again, hell maybe even the cops’d come by, fuck the entire Humaine Society S.W.A.T. team would swarm his house, snap the animal beater into the white coats and, blabber blabber blabber, take him away to the ol’ rubber room. Maybe that wasn’t so bad, huh?
So, instead, he goes into the kitchen, real slow like, slithering almost, past the mountain beast plopped like the worlds biggest bitching marshmallow, cramming handfuls of Cracker-Jack into her mouth --she loved that shit, fuck prizes were all over the house. Her collection. Madness. Anyway, he goes into the fridge and digs deep behind the milk not safe enough for human consumption by about seven weeks (yucko!) and the dried up lettuce, indigestible meats and soft rotting fruit to find the Dog.E Treats she kept for the thing. Shit, things weren’t half bad once you got around the thought of it, you know. He figured that was how everything in life was, not so bad once you got around the thought of it. He’d munchy munchy a few of them when the weed hunger kicked in and it was the only edible junk in the wreak.
So he calls over like: "Chachie, hey hey hey you little fucking shit factory. Come on, boy. Wa wa, fucking, wa!" and the thing peaks its slobbering garb around the corner, unsure like he was some evil dog catcher, net concealed nicely behind waiting to snatch him off to the pound where’d they cut off his sack and perform the dog version of capital punishment should no one claim him. Picky! Picky! ZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzz.
But it finally comes to snatch the thing out of his hand, hungry as a horse, probably living off of garbage and cat meat for weeks, so thin and lanky, shitty runt, and not used to prime dollar store dog food such as this. Hell, fuck it, he took a bite, stomach grumble grumble grumble, tasty yum yums.
Dog yaps then and he doesn’t need this so he says: "Alright, fuck, settle down. I was only showin’ you it’s not poison and some shit, alright?" and he leads ol’ Chachie Wachie down into the basement, leaves him the entire box for the day, and races up the stairs to SLAM, BAM, BREATH!
Now he’s back in the zone, Beethoven’s piano sonatas getting him all mellow like and the puffy of the good weed makes him feel all Zen and shit. Hell, he could spend the rest of his days like this. So into the night he hammers down on the keys, Candy walking the beat looking for a few good lays to meet her day quota, bada-bam-bam yeah yeah yeah that’s the stuff right there, uh huh! and he’s got the grove going, the zone surrounds him, high walls, nothing’s getting in this time, not if him and LVB have anything to say about it. So the sonatas turn into the 9th and the 9th into a violin concerto or two and then maybe the Pastoral for a lark (you had to be in the mood for that one) and the he’s into early morn, sun coming up freeways cars and trucks, and she’s dead to the world, lost in her Scott Baio dreams, maybe, her corpse like state induced by a Cracker-Jack coma. Hell, was that rigormortis? Ha ha ha.
Wiffy whiff, and he smells like rotten eggs and decaying moose carcass so he thinks it’s shower time and then off to bed where he’ll have a few dreams of his own, huh? Maybe of that cute 17-year-old strawberry blond who works down at the beer store. Man oh man would he like to pop it to her rotten. And the water comes down on him, hot rain, wash away this shit and wash away that shit. It’s days like these where you wish showers lasted lifetimes and you didn’t care what kind of shriveled creature you resembled when you stepped out but you could stay in that waterfall heaven for years and years lost in peaceful thoughts of the girls you’ll never know and the forbidden love you’ll never have.
But, oh no. Oh, fuck no. Not for him. No way, uh-uh. Hell, that’d be too easy.
BANGAO! BANGO! BANGO! hammering on the door. Screaming, oh her piercing wail like six cats in heat with 80-octave range. Shit, and Miss Beer Store’s lacey bra was just about to come off.
Off goes the water and he steps out, naked, dripping, angry, throws open the door and hollers: "What the hell is it, huh? Can a man get any peace around--"
And then she smacks him one good, right across the chops. His head snaps back. Shampoo flies off and spatters the wall. SPPLLLLATTT! And then she starts pounding on his chest, nice little rhythm, so he grabs her hard but not too hard, never leave marks papa said, and shook her some.
"Have you gone mad, woman? What kind of crazy beast has processed you today? Fucking demon, get out of there and give me back my wife so I can smack some sense into her for letting you penetrate her so deeply."
"Bastard! You bastard!"
"Yes, yes...we’ve heard this tale before, haven’t we?"
"You killed him, you bastard!"
Slob dribbling from her nose.
"I did what now? Listen, can this wait."
"AHHHHHH," huge wail, fuck China could hear that one and say ‘what the hell was that?’ and she goes for another shot, closed fist this time, and he managers to be ready enough this time for it to only catch him on the shoulder. Yowza! Christ she was heated. He hadn’t seen her this bad since their wedding night when he suggested a menage-a-quatre with him, her, her sister and her sister’s hot little 16 year old piece of fine choppy. Oh, yum.
So he grabs her again, shake shake shake: "Settle down, woman. Christ-o-la, what the hell?" and all he wanted was a nice little hit o’acid and forget this whole mess but she thunders down the hall, grabbing the pictures off the wall and throwing them back at him. He narrowly misses getting decapitated by a photograph of his father. Thunder thunder, boom boom, crash smash. What a fucking scene, huh? Fuck, jail was better then this most days. As he followed her he started devising a plan to kidnap and sodomize the girl behind the cash at the beer store, make her call him daddy and shit, something so horrible that he’d get put away for a long while this time and it was when she stopped at the basement door that he realized, shit, shit on a stick!
And the hot wave smell of shit hit him hard, knocking him back, forcing him to briefly become Jewish and utter an "Oi vey!" and, my god, what could have made such a stench like 17 elephant had taken 17 shits all at the same time.
So he pears down in the basement, fist clenched over his nose and, yup, the pup is not moving an inch
and lying in a pool of rank filth. Oh the putrid stink! How could such a smell come from something so feeble. But what had done the deed? Did his soul sneak out of him while he was away in the zone to murder this heinous creature? Was he one of those schizos with a dog-killing personality and didn’t know it? Shit, he was insane! It finally happened. All these years and now he was nutso and, worse, a murd-diddly-urd-ler! Christ!
Shocked by his apparent crime he staggered back into the wall, hand on his chest.
"You goddamned bastard," she said, peering at him with a new kind of rage, "you put him down there, didn’t you? You crushed his little skull with that fucking piece of useless shit, didn’t you, just to spite me, didn’t you? I always hated that fucking thing."
What was she talking about.
This wasn’t quite registering.
He was contemplating his sanity.
And he got up the strength to look again and, my god, my god dog gone god, did he start to laugh. He couldn’t help it. It started out as a little giggle, a spurt even, and then out it came --guffaw guffaw guffaw. He couldn’t stop even if he was trying. Tears came to his eyes. Gush gush gush. His sides would snap soon. Oh, that was rich. That was too funny. And she looks at him like he was mad, taking a step back. This was new.
Lying next to the dead reeking mutt was his old bust of Beethoven smashed into little bitty pieces save for ol’ Ludwig Van’s smug mug. He’d had that thing since he was, well, fucked if he could remember, but he kept it on the tele’viz’eon until it finally drove her so insane that she made him toss it into the basement with the rest of his junk, as she so lovingly called it. So, there it sat on top of a few boxes of whateverthefuck and crates of whothehellcaresanymore until the mutt came along. He figured it must have tried to attack the thing it hated so, tear old LVB to pieces in a murderous rage but, stupid thing, slammed into the boxes and shit just so that it brought Ludwig Van down, baby and all, to crush it’s skull. CRASH! THUD! DEAD!
And, my oh my, how funny that was. So many nights of howling and yapping, bark bark yap yap AAAHHHHOOOOOOWWWWLLL, over the symphonies and sonatas and concertos and finally old LVB had had enough of that shit and decided to take matters into his own head. The killer struck swift. It only took a second. Chachie was no more.
Hardy-har-har, he laughed.
"Shut up you hateful animal!" she shouted.
Yar-yar-he he he, he laughed.
"I’ll kill you, you beast. I’ll kill you!!!"
Ho ho ho! Ha ha h-
And that was when the grill hit him hard, bouncing off his chin and clattering to the floor. Oh the bitch, stooping to tactics so low as to toss an innocent purchased on TV grill at him.
"I didn’t kill that fucking mutt but I fuckin’ well should have --JESUSSSS!!!"
The blender smashed into the wall beside him.
"Alice, Christ, that’s perfectly good kitchen supplies!"
He dodged the toaster oven.
The coffee maker caught him in the kneecap.
"Alice, you mad woman! You crazy little whore!!!"
As she came around the corner he swore she had the refrigerator in her hand. Insane female! "You have to burry it in the backyard. We have to give it a proper Christian burial." Fuck she hadn’t been to church since her baptism.
"Jesus, you want to cart that smelly shit out in the yard then, by all means, go right ahead. You have my blessing but fucked if I’m doing it."
SMASH! Something spattered him. Glass cut at his face. What the hell?
SMASH! again.
Jesus Christ, she was destroying the gin!
And that was the fucking straw that broke the fucking camels fucking back.
His eyes bugged out of his head like a cartoon character that’d just seen one hot mama. BOOOOIIIINNNG! His face turned seven shades of crimson. "You want that thing outside? Huh? On the lawn? Huh? You want a proper fucking Christian burial."
And with that he was down in the basement, deep into the reeking shit. Fuck, what had this mutt done. Oh the stink...oh the new kind of vile stench. Sweeping in a breath of that repulsive air, nauseating, he scoops the filthy mutt in both hands and lifts it out of the shit and piss and blood and brains, all of that rank painting his skin --fuck and he just got out of the damn shower-- and he thundered upstairs with the thing, down the hall passed where she stood, jaw dropped, aghast as he threw open the front door, threw open the fucking hole punched screen door and tossed the goddamn stinky mutt out onto the front lawn.
"There," he said, turning to her. "You happy now? Where’s my acid?"
"Bastard!!!! You drunk BASSSSTTTARD!!!" and she came at him with the microwave. "GET OUT!!! GET OW-OW-OW-OWWWWWTTTTTT!!!" and before she could toss that sucker he stumbled out onto the lawn, tripped over that damn mutt, cursed her name and her floozin’ and she yelled something about his boozin’ and we go round and round and round in the circle game.
And there he sat in the fresh mud from last night’s rain, half-naked, caked in shit and whoknowswhatelse next to that goddamned stinky puppy. Christ, how pathetic it looked there, lying how it landed, paws out as if trying to defend itself from death or something. Man oh man, he’ll never live this one down. Fucking thing. He wanted to kick the fucker but didn’t have the energy too. Fucking stinking thing. Where did you come from, he thought? Why were you sent here to torment my life, damn demon. "Nevermore, huh?"
And, Christ, he thinks, maybe the mutt was tossed out too, huh, just like him, by a no good fucking drunk dope fiend who beat the living shit out of it every night. Maybe the fucking thing actually liked Beethoven, you know, singing along and shit. Christ, what horrors did this foul smelling creature have to endure before finally meeting its end in his basement? And, would you know it, he started to feel sorry for the mutt, get all misty and shit. Look at how small it was. How fucking thin it was. Sickly thing.
And he sighed. He sighed the sigh of a man that had been through a weeks worth of hell in the span of 15 minutes and he stood up, brushed his dripping hair out of his face, rubbed some stinging shampoo out of his eyes, and stumbled back to the door to hear Alice crying on the other side, worlds away.
"Baby, honey, Jesus I’m sorry baby. I, well, Christ, I don’t know but I’m sorry. I get...come on, open up." Nothing. More sniffles. "Honey, listen, we’ll bury ol’ Chachie nice, huh? Right in the backyard and everything. Hell, you can even say a few words if you want for the thing. Whatya’say?" Nothing. "Listen, I’ll even make a little coffin for him, huh, with the wood in the ga’rage, huh, something nice and all, hell you can even design it if you like, paint it even. Just for ol’ Chach, huh?"
And the door opens a little and she looks at him through the hole his head once made in the screen, tear stained face, mascara running, and with a look enough to break the hardest of men’s hearts she squeaks a little whisper: "Really?"
And he looks away because he hates seeing her this way and says "Yeah, sure, sure. I promise, baby, so come on."
So she opens the door and it is almost like they may embrace or something but it’s not like that anymore and so she turns away and hobbles down the hall and he turns away and picks the stinking mutt off the lawn and carries it into the house as, somewhere across town, Cancer Casey dies in the arms of some 20 year old art student who, the night before, had the best fucking lay of his young life

Saturday, February 18, 2006


***Reading old poems of mine....trying to get back in the mindset to write again. Maybe I need a date with Dickenson***

I was the only man
reading Bukowski on Sparks Street
sipping my Irish Cream
and gazing at the mountainous cleavage
of some big juicy
hulked over a park bench
as though she
owned it
as though she knew
what she was showing
to all the Joes
and Harrys
in shop doorways
waiting for wives
at pay phones
in office windows
just walking
(just glancing)
or, like me, just sitting
at a café table
the only man reading
Bukowski on Sparks Street
watching her
give those Joes
and Harrys
a little slice of heaven
on their lunch hour
the only man reading
Bukowski on Sparks Street
with a ticket for
Herbie Hancock in my pocket
my café table and Irish Cream
and the Angel of the Lunch Break
showing off her tits
for the pleasure of all
and who, just who, was I
to deny her?

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Valentine's Day With Satan

Monday, February 13, 2006

The Mystery of the Red Dawn

Been working these words over trying to turn them into something for the last few weeks. Some songs just keep battling against being born:

The political pythons are starting to coil
Cinderella is selling off her tears for oil
The desert dunes are digesting the sandstorms
The numbers are falling off all of the blackboards
Colleges crumble and students are silent
Their pockets picked by suit wearing serpents
Suicides, slack jawed, jumbled and jaded
Wanderers confused with their freedom that’s faded
Where Queens become Jacks and Kings become pawns
Losing themselves within the mystery
The mystery of
The mystery of
the red dawn

Clocks running backwards have nothing but time
Polonious lied and Ophellia’s just fine
Cordellia sells me an old rusted peace pin
Ray’s radio confirms that reading’s now sin
Hamlet recites some new Robert Frost
As Hansel leaves Gretle to forever be lost
Alone, bewildered, force fed we swallow
Now all of the trees I knock on are hollow
They cry battered leaves on suburbian lawns
Losing but one to the mystery
The mystery of
The mystery of
the red dawn

The Raven he questions the glitter we paint
While logos and symbols become legends and saints
Marx kneels down to worship his bronze plastic card
Zealots burn gold arches out in my front yard
The Hunter now pouring drinks for Bukowski
As the barmaid adjusts the letters upon the marquee

Ali tells Forman that all fights are fixed
Vincent awakens to find his colors unmixed
Every joke that is written has the same punchline
Every poem placed to page must have the rhyme
All books ever written must have the same ending
HAL must now consent to all letters worth sending
Alice forgets and Wonderland fades
Ideas were last taken in the final crusades
And the seeds of the creative will now have to respawn
on the borders of the mystery
the mystery of
the mystery of
the red dawn

A bit of a Dylan Desolation Row vibe going, I admit.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Forgotten Coffee Cups

Whereas a cup of diner coffee unearthed the notion to paint, it was another coffee cup that aroused thoughts of photography. This one was empty.

Walking to work each day I come across various litter. The flotsam and jetsam of the rat race which, in our fast and instant microwave burrito times, seldom finds a moment to seek out a garbage can.

These coffee cups are wounded forgotten lovers. Once adored, needed and now tossed away. This theme of "garbage" alone in the dirt gave thoughts to people one might find in a Bukowski poem. Ugly in their beauty. Unwanted but still there. The garbage of the world still battling to somehow reside in an society that wants no part of it.
Like beggars, we walk by these coffee cup warriors of the streets. These are the crying lovers in stained bed sheets hiding from the light. These are the silent old men at silent old bar stools nursing round 6.

I want to continue this theme.

Cohen placed it much butter then I could.

These are the Beautiful Losers.

Earth Died Screaming

Earth Died Screaming / / Acrylic on Canvass


Somewhere between two towers crumbling into dust and a cup of coffee last December my creativity decided to take a vacation. Maybe it needed to see the Lighthouse of Alexandria, rage through the Andromeda in an ocean of nebulas and pulsars, dive into the Atlantic seeking the bones of dead ships where old captains thought of the breasts of their loved ones. Maybe it needed a tan and took off to Malibu. Maybe it went to Paris or maybe it hid under the bed. Maybe it followed Kerouac and Guthrie or maybe it got a Big Mac jones. Maybe it wandered into the words of Bukowski. Maybe it got lost in an acid trip or maybe it found Thereau and nestled next to him in a tree. Maybe it went to the opera or could have been a inside the piano of Tom Waits. Maybe...maybe...

...and while my creativity was away I dug myself into a trench of paying bills, rent, retail jobs, lousy love affairs, unfinished coffees, over long arguments, night walks, telephone conversation, internet dating sites, emails, morning toast and eggs, greasy diners and newspaper classifieds.

Things looked to be settling into a nice groove there in the trench and the mind blurs out everything and tries to fade into normalcy and becomes the curmudgeon of modern existence.

But, knocky, knocky. Over a cup of coffee last December a thought to take up painting came. Cup paused at lips. Hot steam rising. Ignored. Painting, yeah, and maybe some photography again and, who knows, ya sap, maybe you'll write again!

And the old routine tired the battle the creative mind. One on one. Steel Cage challenge. Only on Pay Per View. But when things seemed grim and dim for our good friend the creative mind our humble hero had an ace to pull from his ragged sleeve. The card said: "Post it on the internet for everybody to read." "The internet," I replied, "What is this strange thing?"

And one click later, in hopes an audience shall bring forth motivation, we shuffle our way into the beginnings.

* * *

Two paintings here, my first and third. One might deduce my outlook towards the future and/or current society is rather grim. arguments there, kiddies! Yesterday a gent at the photo mat, seeing the above photo of Earth Died Screaming on my camera, asked me how much I was willing to sell it for. I stuttered out something that resembled "It's one of my first works and I am not selling" and left wondering if, Christ,. maybe I'm not so bad at this painting thing. Take that Boteccelli!

The Nuclear Curtain was actually a mistake...what is underneth, anyway. I was trying to do abstract squares and, like a honry teenager, I fired too soon and my paints ran dribbling. Angry, I tossed a bunch of colors on a canvass, took a fork and a brillo pad to it and began working something out. You know, there might even be some dish soap in there. Might that be a painting first?

The Nuclear Curtain / / Acrylic on Canvass