Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Poem: "In The Land Of The White Van Men"

In the land of the white van men
the servant quarters of a rich town
where railcars rattle back doors
drowning out the interstate
engines start at any time
items are strapped on roofs
and loaded in opened van doors

hot water tanks
draft inducers
pipes
tools
drywall sheets
boards
multimeters
paint
cleaning supplies
gutters
ladders
car parts
cables
shingles
animal traps
cement blocks
lawnmowers
chemicals
cigarettes
paperwork
conspiracy theories
losing lottery tickets
remnants of past lunches
bruised hearts
faded dreams
broken homes

Hope gets dropped
during the load-in
left behind
run over in the driveway

For the only thing
that a white van man
cannot fix
is his life

11 January 2016

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Poem: "Voicemail Purgatory"

When I finally quit that job
I remembered the day when I was stuck in traffic
I phoned work to let them know that I was late
Not that anyone there much cared
They were all late too usually
No one was there
So I pressed the buttons randomly while driving and hoped for the best
Since the company's voicemail system was a mess
If not calling anyone directly
Then it was nearly random
Not so much voicemail hell as voicemail purgatory
But still close to impossible to navigate
Especially while driving
That's how I got the dead man's voicemail
It was still up
It was strange to hear his voice again
He died of cancer
I met him only once or twice before that
He was an asshole
Who had cancer of the asshole
But since he had cancer
I let the first asshole part slide
Why he showed up to work once or twice
Just to sit in his office for an hour or two
I never could figure
He looked like a zombie wearing a Cleveland Indians hat
Maybe he wanted the money rolling in still
Or just wanted to check on his commissions
Which kept on coming in while he was out sick
I was always impressed that he could make a grand a week while not showing up for work
Then again, maybe he had to show up just to keep his health insurance
The company was cheap
When I gave my two weeks' notice
They yanked my remaining vacation days
So the rich kid who ran the company he inherited from dad got to eat three vacation days of mine
Which were hard-earned
Each one the product a month of no absenteeism
Poof!  They vanished, so I had to work every day of the last two weeks or not get paid
I chose not getting paid and quit right then
I should have just used my days before and then just quit on them without notice
That should be my final lesson to be taught never to do the right thing
Since the right things are usually written by the rich and for their benefit
Not yours or mine
Unless you're rich
In which case
Stop reading this poem and fuck off
Unless you are going to give me some money
But back to the dead man
I didn't leave a voicemail
Since he would never hear it anyway
But if I did
I would have told him
That I was glad that I planned on leaving the company
Before I was a dead man myself
It made me sad
To think of how he lived
No vacation really, just the same one day off earned a month same as me
The same shit everyday
And not good shit
Supposedly, he was a cool guy
But every story they told me about him
Made him sound like an asshole
So the assholism probably can't be blamed on cancer
And I use asshole in the whole
No Asshole Rule business philosophy way
No offense to anyone's asshole including mine
Which are all very hard-working and beloved
I am sure
Personally I prefer the term "Shitbrain"
If you're going to insult someone
And speaking of that, the asshole left behind
A lot of shit in his office
His family came in and cleared out most of it
It seemed like junk
He worked there for decades and that was all his working life added up to?
Some unanswered voicemails and office detritus
My coworkers divvied up and threw out what the family didn't take
I changed my voicemail before I left
Telling people that I would never receive their messages since I had quit
I don't know if anyone leaves messages for me
I don't care, since, frankly, most of the clientele
Were jerks--apologies for the nastiness
But this is poetry so there's not time for bullshit
Especially corporate bullshit about how much the client is loved
Just time for the truth
I find it interesting that people still left messages for the dead man
Sometimes his coworkers forgot to check his messages for days on end.
The callers might wonder why he doesn't call back
But I know why
He's fucking dead, and
The things we leave behind
Can at times be still ahead of others.

7 April 2016

Sunday, January 27, 2019

Song: "One By One"


Back to basics for this demo.  After years of having fun with weird instruments, improvised percussion, and multiple tracks (check it out here), I wanted to go back to simpler demos.  This is the first one.  I should definitely get a pop filter, but, hey, it's a demo.  This song is about ghosting.  Really, this stuff is much more fun and cheaper than therapy.  The lyrics are below.  It's the same deal as always.  If you like a song, then feel free to cover it if you're in a band or whatnot.  I love to hear covers of my songs, so please let me know about your version.  If you start making money, then send me a check/we can work out a deal.  Similarly, if you want to use a song for your Youtube video or whatnot, then just let me know.  It's usually fine by me unless it's a commercial product or whatnot (and then it's likely fine as well--I just want my cut).  Find out first though.  Write me at wredfright ATATAT yahoo DOTT com.

One by one, they will pass from your life.
Some will say goodbye. Most will not.
Some you will watch go. Others will disappear overnight.
And it will be a mystery as to why.

One by one by one by one by one by one by one by one,
until there is one.

From time to time, you might think of one, and you might even smile.
But if you ever saw them again, you wouldn't call them friend.
You might even pretend that you had never seen one another before.
Give them what they deserve and nothing more.

People change, and you change also.
What would you say anyway?
Perhaps just one thing more: "Get out!"
And that's my foot on your ass, don't let it hit the door.

Written January 2019
Recorded January 2019

Friday, January 25, 2019

New Wred Fright Album?

I had a lot of fun making noisy demos over the past decade, but I think I'm starting to lean more towards going back to the basic guitar and vocals for demos. For fun, I collected all the noisy ones and made a sort of album of them on Soundcloud. It is interesting to listen to them all together!  For some reason, the embedded code will occasionally try to play the tracks in reverse order, so you may need to click through to Soundcloud to start from Track 1 if you want to experience the "album" as intended, but you can listen to it in whatever direction you want to!

Monday, January 21, 2019

New Song!: "No Place To Do It"

This one is a teenage tale of woe about sexual frustration. It drives the singer of the song so mad that he eventually turns to arson.  Tsk, tsk.  The weird instrument this time is a toy guitar. This one is extra noisy to finish out the demos where I liked stacking tracks. Why not? I think I'm moving back to simpler demos with just guitar and vocals, but I certainly had fun with these noisy demos. You can check out the MP3 here. Really, this stuff is much more fun and cheaper than therapy. The lyrics are below. It's the same deal as always. If you like a song, then feel free to cover it if you're in a band or whatnot. I love to hear covers of my songs, so please let me know about your version. If you start making money, then send me a check/we can work out a deal. Similarly, if you want to use a song for your Youtube video or whatnot, then just let me know. It's usually fine by me unless it's a commercial product or whatnot (and then it's likely fine as well--I just want my cut). Find out first though. Write me at wredfright ATATAT yahoo DOTT com.

I was fucking in the bushes, and I got poison ivy.
No place, no place to do it.
Even the cheapest motel room still costs too much money.
There's always a cop knocking on the car window.
She doesn't want to do it at her place because she thinks her kid might hear us.

I got no place, no place to do it.
And soon, I will have nobody to do it with.

I can't bring her home because Mom & Dad hate her.
The librarian already caught us in the library.
She thinks public restrooms are just too dirty.
At a friend's place, there's always a camera around.

I suggested the graveyard, but she said it's too dead there.
Then she said "I have a solution. It's called a new boyfriend."
"You see I met this guy who's got his own apartment."
At least he did until I burned that building down.

They got no place, no place to do it.
And soon they'll have nobody to do it with.
I got no place, no place to do it.
But that's OK, I got nobody to do it with.

Written November 2018
Recorded November 2018

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Razorcake Review Redux

I finally saw the print version of Mike Fournier's review in Razorcake of Frequently Asked Questions About Being Dead and greatly enjoyed the headline excerpt from the review:  "Any work that contains talking stacks of pancakes and penises is absurd, almost by default--but the absurdity works on multiple levels."  Hilarious!  Thanks again to Mike and Razorcake!

Friday, December 21, 2018

I Hope That You Have A Cool Yule!

And from the longest night of the year, I bid you a cool Yule!  In 2018, this site pumped my latest novel, presented a few new songs, had The Thirsty Bear and Hungry Snake make an appearance, announced some new readings and publications, featured some videos of my old bands, and showcased some miscellaneous news and nonsense.  For 2019, I have lined up some poems, another new song, more videos of my old bands, and some other fun.  I will see you then!