I was reading an old issue of Mr. Peebody's Soiled Trousers And Other Delights and came across an eerie line. Published by Jay Koivu, Peebody's was a fun perzine that usually was in the form of daily journal entries. This issue documented Jay's life as he had moved once again to Los Angeles in 2001. The issue was published in May 2001 or so. In the entry dated April 14, Jay writes, "Why do I feel like something really bad is gonna happen before this year is over?"
Now, something really bad happens every day to somebody, or many somebodies, and Jay's thought is a very openended and general statement, but given that this issue was published in early 2001, a few months before September 11th, it's still eerie to read. I probably last read this issue shortly after it came out and didn't much note that line. Rereading the zine, and that line, in 2015, knowing what was coming later in 2001 made for a creepy experience.
Maybe Jay should become a tarot reader or something. On at least one occasion, his feeling about the future was on target.
A woman in Missouri is being forced to get rid of the front yard that she turned into a sandbox. Instead of being able to pursue her particular form of front yard happiness (no mowing and the local alley cats have no trouble finding a litter box), her community has decided that she must conform in what I suppose we can label lawn fascism. The woman apparently still plans to resist by putting asphalt over the sand. It's a good thing that she doesn't live in Ohio. America loves freedom and the individual except when it comes to the lawn apparently.
I always thought Cleveland Bologna was when someone tells me that next year The Browns are going to the Super Bowl, but apparently it actually is a form of meat. They like it thick-sliced around here. The next time that someone tells me that The Browns are going to the Super Bowl, I will point her or him to the deli counter.
I've been letting strawberries grow on my yard, and this year I am getting quite a crop! The strawberries are small but tasty. I usually just eat them straight from the plant. As the strawberries end, the blackberries should kick in. I have a yummy yard!
I have developed a mild fascination with America's nutty obsession with lawns. I came across the following article recently and got a chuckle out of it. If you don't want to click on the link, then I will recap it for you. Basically, a city wants to limit the amount of paving in a front yard because right now, gasp!, there is no law to prevent someone from paving the front yard and turning it into a parking lot. The hilarious justification is that someone could park enough cars in a driveway so that the view of an intersection could be blocked, which would affect safety.
Please note that the legislation is not therefore so narrowly crafted as to prohibit owners of corner lots from doing this, but affects everyone, even those living in the middle of a block with no intersection nearby. As a result, I suspect the legislation has more to do with some people not liking other people possibly chucking their lawns for more parking. It's a free country until it comes to the lawn. Then your pursuit of happiness must give way to your neighbor's fixation with the vegetation on your property. It will be interesting to see which American icon wins: the automobile or the lawn.
I have a poem called "September Sunflowers" on page 34 of the new issue of Inscape. You can find it here (28.2 MB PDF) or in print on the campus of Ursuline College. Unfortunately, the typesetting has to be very exact for this poem, and the Inscape version is off a bit. The correct version is in the above image, though you may need to click on it to make it legible.
I received a letter inviting me to become a booster for the Fraternal Order of Police of Ohio. For $20, I can get a sticker, which presumably I can slap on my car. I have seen cars with those stickers before. They are almost invariably being driven badly. Since I have been told that I drive like a grandmother (though I can drive Mad Max style when needed, such as in New York City), I doubt that I need a sticker to get me out of traffic violations, which presumably is the point of the sticker, though I suspect everyone involved would deny that. $20 is pretty cheap though for what might be a license to speed. It's certainly cheaper than a speeding ticket. It's still kind of creepy though.
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