Sunday, August 9, 2020

drinkdrankdrunk: "Peel" by Mark Justice

Jim sat around, eating an orange.  He thought softly of an oil lamp burning, the thin smoke discoloring some greasy wood mantle while slowly licking his fingers, his short, sticky fingers.  That sour sensation of the taste of skin and orange delighted him, and he continued licking until his tongue was numb.  The numbness was good, and while Jim thought of spice and tea and rum somewhere warm and wet, he sucked his index finger to a red throb.


The throb on his tongue gave him the taste for another orange.  He rolled back from his cross-legged way and felt for the net of oranges.  Deftly, he grabbed a rather large one and rolled back to his sitting.  That was good, to be sitting, he thought, and with his finger still throbbing, cut into the orange. 


Jim slowly peeled a small section back, and was caught in a rapture of the smell and juicy mist.  He grabbed some salt, sprinkled some on the peel, and ate it.  The bitter and salt crashed in his mouth until he moaned.  He began to cut again with his white plastic serrated-edged knife, with a quick draw, there was a clean cut, and a sharp jab of pain in the throbbing finger.

 
Excited by the sensation, Jim quickly pulled the orange peel.  The mist spurted, with a tinge of blood, onto his face.  Jim smeared the sticky red all over his face then licked his fingers, carefully sucking the cut index.  His mouth leaped in excitement at the taste, a flash of cold to his stomach, heart quicken in his chest, the taste, the salt taste!

 
Jim dropped the orange and licked at his finger.  The open wound, drawn vertically, was slowly pouring the great taste away.  He began to play with the wound, fascinated at this mouth on his finger, mimicking words to music in his head, a song that had just been played by the instrument on the floor.
 

There was a pain, real sharp and stingy, the more Jim pulled the flaps of skin open.  What a sensation!  This wasn’t tea or sand or oil lamps; this was orange!
 

There was a sudden tear in the skin, down his finger to the second knuckle.  The blood began to wash down his hand and arm and collect between his legs. 


Jim gleefully smiled, brought the knife up to his finger and dug down along the cut, drawing it into his palm.  Slowly he rolled back the edges of his skin-peel, the gap widening each time his tongue caressed it.  The hot salt and juicy flesh bubbled in Jim’s brain. 


He couldn’t stop at the hand, good night, no!  There was so much more to unravel.  The knife slowly dug its way down his arm, stopping at the soft inbend just opposite the elbow.

 
The glorious red blood flowed evenly down both halves of Jim’s split skin.  He began dragging his finger along the flap, in galloping triplets.  It began to curl into itself and roll back.  That pain was unbearable, and Jim managed a smile.  He worked the gallop all along the freshly cut furrow until one side was rolled.  With a yellow smile, he began to pull. 


The tearing sounds of the separating flesh were pleasing, and the squirting of the blood all so delightfully for Jim.  He continued tugging, and stopped as he held in his left hand the skin of his right, which was a glittering red, and Jim sucked air for the intensity.  Looking at the still dripping skin, he picked up the knife, and contemplated his left arm…



Jim sat, happily, as he looked at the pile of hide at his knee. His red arms glistened, but not as bright as his legs, or his stomach, or his chest. 


The breath in his chest was slow and deliberate, so he could observe the new blood flows with every inhale. What sharp, piercing ecstasy! 


Jim thought for just a moment, and while looking at his flesh, picked up the salt. 

 

Mark Justice is the author of Gauge Black:  Hell's Revenge.  Check it out for more pulpy goodness!  That one's a Western.  Obviously, this Website does not recommend self-cannibalism, but it does recommend reading more Mark Justice.  I am pleased to run on his work on drinkdrankdrunk!

Monday, August 3, 2020

Facemask Follies

So it seems the politicians, public health officials, and even the general public just will not let the COVID-19 panic pass.  The latest hysteria is the mandatory wearing of facemasks among the entire population (at least, most people have learned that lockdowns don't work; they do not stop the virus; they just create more problems--for a nice overview on the stupidity of lockdowns, please check out Heather Mac Donald's "Four Months Of Unprecedented Malfeasance").  Unfortunately, mandatory facemasking is just as dumb as the lockdowns.  Those of you who think facemasks are the solution, please have an open mind and keep reading.

First of all, facemasks apparently do not stop the spread of the virus.  I know this goes contrary to the heavy propaganda push about wearing them from politicians, public health officials, and the general public, but it appears to be true.   Let's start with the World Health Organization.  Their most recent publication about facemasks is "Advice on the use of masks in the context of COVID-19" updated on 5 June 2020, which is an interesting overview on masks in a variety of settings.  For health care workers treating COVID-19 patients, WHO clearly recommends the wearing of facemasks.  However, given how many healthcare workers wore masks and still died from the disease, one does wonder if they are as effective as WHO hopes.

Moving on to the issue at hand, it gets worse.  Even WHO admits that there is no evidence suggesting that masking an entire population will be helpful:  "At present, there is no direct evidence (from studies on COVID-19 and in healthy people in the community) on the effectiveness of universal masking of healthy people in the community to prevent infection with respiratory viruses, including COVID-19."

Of course, the absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.  Universal masking could work; we just don't know yet.  However, such a pronounced change in social behavior needs some evidence before it's adopted.  The politicians such as the governor of Ohio USA who have mandated facemasks did so without evidence (mine, in the picture above, says "Resign DeWine" if you're curious--he can compel me to wear one, but he can't compel me to like it).

Even a politician with some horsesense (DeWine also was dumb enough to push for the Iraq War because of the weapons of mass destruction lies, so one expects him to make idiotic decisions; the only ones dumber than him are the Ohio voters who keep electing the moron so he can continue to make more dumb decisions to make their lives worse) such as Bernie Sanders is pushing universal facemasking.  Despite giving up on his presidential run, Sanders continues to send out fundraising emails (Why?  I have no idea.  You will have to ask him.  Maybe he's hoping the Democrats will figure out Joe Biden is senile and turn back to him at the last minute).  In a recent one, he wrote, "The science is clear: Wearing a mask is the best way to protect ourselves from the coronavirus and save lives, and the widespread use of masks will get Americans back to work sooner and reunite families who have stayed apart."  Since the research I was finding while researching mandatory facemasking was suggesting quite the opposite, I emailed Sanders asking if he could point me to that "clear science".

He did not reply, but he did send me four more fundraising emails.

I unsubscribed.  

Well, maybe he didn't get back to me because there is no clear science.  While I did find the occasional study that suggested facemasks might be good for sick people to wear, I found more often stuff that stated that facemasks were more or less useless overall such as this:  ("A cloth mask or face covering does very little to prevent the emission or inhalation of small particles.").

And this: ("In pooled analysis, we found no significant reduction in influenza transmission with the use of face masks").

And this:  ("Viruses, including the coronavirus that scientists believe may be the cause of SARS, are so tiny that they can easily pass through such barriers.").

And this:  ("[B]oth surgical and cotton masks seem to be ineffective in preventing the dissemination of SARS–CoV-2 from the coughs of patients with COVID-19 to the environment and external mask surface").

That last link raises another interesting issue.  If you click on it, you don't go to the actual study; instead, you go to an article about the study.

This is because the study has disappeared.  It was retracted by the authors.  Parsing the retraction carefully, it looks as if the authors wanted to correct whatever mistake they made, but the editors said no.

Maybe their mistake was simply going against the groupthink tide.  One bizarre sideline of researching this issue was how much of the research tended to disappear.  A study by a retired dentist from 2016 about how facemasks don't work in dentistry?

Poof!  Gone!  You can find it mentioned by Peter Hitchens in this article, but if you go to where it was posted, you find this:  "“Why Face Masks Don’t Work: A Revealing Review” by John Hardie, BDS, MSc, PhD, FRCDC, it has been removed. The content was published in 2016 and is no longer relevant in our current climate."  However, you can still find it if you know where to look.  Take that URL from the link and go to one of the links in my link section that takes you to websites from the past.  I can't tell you more because I don't want it to disappear even more so, but you can find it if you want to.  Fortunately, the retired dentist has kept writing.  You can see what he thinks about COVID-19 here (while you're there, you might as well read "Should You Wear A Mask?  What Does The Science Say?").

I even experienced some of the Orwellian memory hole censorship personally on NextDoor.Com.  Some well-meaning moron had slapped up a quick post called "Wear A Mask!" and the thread exploded like no thread that I had ever seen on there.  Most folks were pro-mask and not just for themselves; they wanted you to wear a mask as well.  In fact, if you didn't, they thought you were a horrible person who was trying to kill them.

The fear that the politicians and public health officials have whipped up about the virus goes beyond even the considerable fear whipped up by the politicians during the War On Terror.  Back then, we were supposed to be afraid of terrorists; now, apparently, we're supposed to be afraid of one another.  For those of us old-fashioned Americans who believe along with FDR that "the only thing we have to fear is fear itself—nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance", this is particularly annoying.

These folks couldn't be reasoned with.  I would cite the WHO report, and they would tell me I was citing "junk science".  One poster claimed that New York USA had mandatory facemasking and that's why they were doing better than we were in Ohio USA.  But when I looked up the per capita death rate on the CDC website, New York was so bad they had it divided into the city and the state, and they both were in the top ten in the USA with the City being #1 by itself (Ohio was 27th or something at the time, with something like 1/10th of the per capita deaths of NY overall).  When I pointed this out, they carried on as if they lived in some alternate reality where Ohio had the larger death rate.  It was like people thought they had a right to their own facts, not just their own opinions.

The people on my "side" per se and resistant to mandatory facemasking were an interesting bunch as well.  Most seemed to believe in various conspiracy theories about the virus.  I get the conspiracy theory appeal.  Even when they're daft, they still reassure people that someone somewhere, even if they're evil, knows what they are doing, and life is not as chaotic as it seems.

There is a comfort in that because otherwise the truth appears to be that we are just led by morons who have no idea what they are doing.

Eventually, NextDoor.Com just deleted the whole thread.  Maybe someone complained, or maybe they didn't want to offend the State Of Ohio, who was one of their main advertisers (reminding us all to "Wear A Mask!" among other things).  I tried contacting them to find out, but there seemed no way to reach them.  Since I wasn't down with censorship, I just deleted my account.

The censorship and groupthink is definitely creepy.  To add more creepiness on top, my home county made headlines for establishing a snitch line where people could inform on those not wearing masks.  I am sure this is in a fine tradition of fascism.  Maybe the Nazis had such a snitch line in Amsterdam and that's how poor Anne Frank got caught.  Either way, it's annoying to pay taxes to these people and they won't even provide basic services because they're terrified of the virus (for example, closing most of the county buildings to the public), but they'll waste tax money on a snitch line about something that does nothing to help the situation.

My county is corruptly run by Dems while Ohio is corruptly run by Repubs, but when it comes to mandatory facemasking, they're in agreement.  They love citizens being muzzled.  Not only is it a nice symbol of a voiceless public, but it makes the politicians able to pretend that their failed lockdown policies weren't to blame for failing to stop the virus and then creating an economic disaster (a gift that may keep on giving), it was the public not wearing masks that is to blame.

In truth, the virus isn't going to be stopped.  It's going to run its course.  All the politicians and public health officials on power trips and the population that supports the nonsense they slop out can do is make more problems on top of the annoying virus.  Some countries such as The Netherlands and Sweden have somewhat recognized this.

Sadly, if you watch the network news and read a lot of the panic porn articles online, you probably are too terrified to critically think enough to recognize that the true way forward is to return to normality as quickly as possible (indeed, we never should have panicked in the first place).  Strangely enough, the voices of reason currently seem to be all coming from right wing nutjobs, which makes things even more terrifying.  I suppose, like a stopped clock, they are right once in a while (in the stopped clock's case, twice a day; in the right-wingers' case maybe only on this issue).  So, if you need an alternate to the mainstream media hysteria, check out Justin Hart and Alex Berenson for some counterweights.  Just like Trump, when liberals and progressives push nonsense, it just makes them harder to believe the next time, even if they're right.  So, please, people who are otherwise semi-reasonable, stop pushing for mandatory facemasking and other strategies that will do little or nothing to stop the virus.  Start pushing for a return to normalcy and away from hysteria over a nasty variation of the common cold.  There are almost 8 billion human beings, more than ever in history; this virus is not going to make a dent in that number overall.  Politicians and public health officials cannot conquer death; they can make a mess of life though. 

In 1984, Orwell wrote "If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face — forever."  Even old George couldn't imagine that we would be so dumb that the face would be wearing a facemask.

1984's a better book overall, but it isn't as funny as Edna's Employment Agency, and, let's face it, if you made it through that post about how crazy Americans have gotten panicking over a virus, then you need a laugh.

Sunday, July 26, 2020

drinkdrankdrunk: "Miss Texas" by The Midnight Rider

while we’re on the subject of outlaw students, I guess I should break down the life/times of my all-time favorite advisee…..veronica was born in texas, is long/lean and weighs roughly 99 lbs…..she looks like a heroin chick and for all I know, she is one…..she looks like the kind of girl that a biker couldn’t keep satisfied for long (if you smell what the rock is cooking)…..that’s not to say veronica isn’t sexy-as-fuck, but i don’t think my stubby/little turtle could do the job….for most of the time that I’ve known veronica, she’s had a long-haired, survivalist boyfriend that looks like a professional wrestler….the dude is actually prettier than professional wrestler, edge, but I think that’s what I’m gonna call him……veronica’s edge is 6’4” with rippling muscles and tattoos covering roughly 75% of his body…..edge is something of a gun nut/aficionado and I’ve never seen him when he wasn’t packing heat (including my office and inside the local walmart)…..is he a drug dealer?----well, yeah……are there 100 plus guns in his house including assault rifles?-----I would guess over 200, but I’ve only seen 10-12 pistols plus hand grenades and an ak-47 (and that was at a cookout at his parents’ house)….and I don’t know much about the edge’s politics, but let’s just say that he’s not a fan of the government…..i don’t necessarily have one specific story for veronica, but I’ll try to do a random sketch….veronica graduated with a 4.0 and should have been the valedictorian, but the cashpoint powers-that-be didn’t want to present her with the award at graduation because she had gotten a d.u.i the week before…..she also got felony possession of a firearm because she was driving her boyfriend’s truck and there was a pistol in the glove compartment (he was too drunk to drive and having a gun in your vehicle when you’re drunk is a felony in illinois)….the shitty thing is that some member of the liberal arts faculty (my money is on swede hansen) sent a poison pen letter to the vice president arguing that “a felon doesn’t represents the values of cashpoint university” (and half of our students are felons from chicago who pay their tuition using government grants)……since I was veronica’s adviser, my boss called me into his office and asked if I thought she deserved the award-----I responded that she had the highest g.p.a. and dean bell ultimately decided to put it to a vote of the graduation committee…..veronica won and the committee decided (perhaps sarcastically) that I should present the award to her at graduation----and right before I went onstage to give the speech, the fucking lesbian nun took me aside and whispered in my ear to “act normal”……the second veronica story that I wanted to tell has to do with a halloween party/bonfire that her boyfriend’s parents have thrown every october for the last 27 years……the first time I went, I slept in my car in the front lawn----and when I woke up, there was a dude passed out in a tent to my left and a dude passed out on the grass to my right….the party served as a drug/arms dealer convention as fun-loving criminals from 3 states made their way to goose lake……when I first arrived I asked the edge if he thought the police might show and he responded: “no dude, the police around here are scared of us because they know we’ll fucking shoot them if they come on our property”…..the compound itself was divided into three sections; 1) the small/main house, 2) the old people’s barn and 3) the young people’s barn…..i don’t really know what the main house was like because I was never allowed inside (I think that honor was reserved for the family and their giant/guard dogs)…..i was prolly 45-years-old at the time, so I generally split my time between the 2 barns……the old people’s barn was full of fat/crazy uncles hitting one-hitters and talking about other people’s wives’ titties…..the edge’s obese mother held court in the center of the space----pouring white russians and loudly proclaiming that she’d rather eat food than give her husband blow jobs (note: this wasn’t just at the first party I attended----it was at every party that I attended)….in between the 2 barns, there was a firepit…..there was a band the first year, fire dancers the second and fireworks the third (it seemed the family had blown a good portion of their savings on court dates that year)…..to make up for the fact that there were only fireworks that year, several partygoers went to their trucks and returned with an assortment of firearms (including an assault weapon) which they would fire indiscriminately into the air…..my favorite moment at the firepit occurred when a random dude sobered up after passing out on the ground only to discover that people were laughing at him for pissing his pants…..after screaming at us and challenging everyone within earshot to a fight, the dude dragged a couch out of one of the barns and proceeded to drag it into the middle of the bonfire…..then, as the flames licked at his bare feet, the dude jumped on top of the couch and again challenged everyone at the party to a fight…..i honestly believe 90% of the people at that party could have beaten his ass (on top of the raging bonfire), but the crowd seemed to view him as comic relief and ultimately just let him scream it out…….i don’t really know how to describe the young peoples’ barn other than to say that IT WAS THE KIND OF PLACE WHERE OFF-DUTY STRIPPERS WENT TO UNWIND AFTER THEIR SHIFT…..it was halloween too, so sluts in fishnet stockings were doing lines off of every available flat surface…..99-lb veronica was dressed as a saloon girl and wearing a corset that was so tight that it made her tits appear larger than her head……as soon as the edge saw me, he put me in a bear hug and within 30 seconds, I was doing lines of adderol off a table next to a dead cow’s skull (that was being used as a decoration)……the walls of the barn were painted black and were covered with dayglow graffiti featured demons/devils/faceless cowboys fucking big-breasted barbie dolls----it was like the space had been decorated by hank 3……veronica introduced me to one of her friends (a stripper from davenport) as her professor and for the rest of the evening, the chick (whose name I don’t remember) followed me from barn-to-barn rubbing up against me and sitting in my lap…..she was 19/blonde/covered with piercings and I knew after the first 30 seconds that she would have fucked me…..at the ending of the evening she asked where I lived (i.e. she wanted a “ride” home), but I made up an excuse…..and you might ask why a fat/lonely/45-year-old professor (who hadn’t been laid in 3 years) would turn down an 19-year-old stripper?-----well, ultimately I think it was the picture of her 4-year-old son……that and the fact that I got the feeling that if she knew where I lived, she’d come back over christmas break with her boyfriend and steal everything that wasn’t nailed down…..i guess I could have fucked her in my car, but I think part of the fun for the stripper is fantasizing about the john’s life/house/money…..i still have a picture of her sitting in my lap and sometimes I beat my meat on the toilet seat thinking about what it would have been like…..i heard the edge fucked her a few weeks later and that led to veronica fucking the edge’s best friend in the edge’s bed to get revenge…..as the night progressed, I would eavesdrop as partygoers in the young peoples’ barn discussed their brushes with the law----most had spent a night or two in jail for minor drug offenses, but there others who had done hard time----I was obviously intrigued, but also couldn’t run the risk of appearing to be too much of a groupie…..one dude had defended his girlfriend’s honor by caving another dude’s head in with a tire iron (and it turns out the first guy’s girlfriend had been cheating on him and the victim had been telling the truth)…..one dude had broken into a walmart at night to steal electronics and another had run out of a pharmacy with a handful of oxycodone…..there was a redneck girl who had broken another girl’s nose in a fist fight and a hillbilly who had spent 2 nights in jail for (repeatedly) hunting squirrels out of season in some rural wisconsin county…..if there were 42 people in that barn on that particular night, I would guesstimate that all 42 (both male and female) had spent at least one night in jail as part of their criminal careers……perhaps you’d like to know what happened to veronica after she graduated in the fall of 2014…..i don’t know the particulars, but she eventually broke up with the edge….there was a major car accident in which the edge was under-the-influence----the car was totaled and when the edge finally woke up from his medically-induced coma, the police were there to arrest him…..veronica went to trial for her earlier drunk driving/weapons charge and the judge sentenced her to drunk driving school (among other punishments)……while at drunk driving school, veronica met the owner of a construction company (who, as luck would have it, received his d.u.i. on the same night)…..they hit it off and before the weekend was over, the dude offered veronica a job as his administrative assistant in iowa city…..did he want to fuck her?----I’m sure he did……do all the construction workers at that job site want to fuck her?---I’m sure they do…..i’ll conclude with a snippet from the letter of recommendation that I wrote for veronica after her graduation: “In our personal conversations, Veronica has shown herself to be a kind and generous individual. She is a person of utmost integrity, one who is self-reflective, hardworking and modest. I believe Veronica is a wonderful representative of the ideals that [Cashpoint] represents and I would certainly give her my highest recommendation.”

The Midnight Rider prefers to remain mysterious.  You could visit his website, but he won't say where it is.  You could read his books, but he won't say what they are.  You could email him, but I'm pretty sure spam@gofuckyourself.gov is not a real email address.  In a world where everyone is repping their Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, sex tapes, line of clothing, new microbrew, and overall brand, I find that refreshing.  I am happy to have the Rider ride on drinkdrankdrunk.

Sunday, July 19, 2020

Lawn Letter

I wrote a letter recently thanking a local newspaper writer for pointing out the dangers of lawn chemicals.  The newspaper published it, which was nice of them.  Once again, please don't poison yourselves and the rest of us just because you have a fetish for a certain way your yard can look.  Please learn instead to enjoy clover, dandelions, and the rest of stuff that grows in a yard beyond grass.

OK, you can tear out Canadian thistles.  I hate them also.  But do it manually.

To be fair, they have some benefits, as does poison ivy (birds like the berries), but they can both grow somewhere else other than my yard.

Sunday, July 12, 2020

drinkdrankdrunk: "Write About What You Know" by Victor Schwartzman

Sidney wrote poetry, short stories, novels and screenplays.  He decided to write something original, and started with the basics by writing a list of fundamental plots:

--Man achieves goal

--Woman in danger rescued (old)/Woman in danger rescues herself (new)

--Two people achieve romance despite obstacles

Sidney was surprised the list was so short.

But for the past three thousand years, the stories of all literature, plays and films boiled down to those three plots.  Everything else was a twist.

Sidney realized that if he could create a new plot, his fame and success would be unimaginable.  Two weeks later, the notebook screen remained blank.   He could not come up with a new fourth plot.  Worse, every twist he thought of had already been done.

Then it took an ugly turn when his friends suggested he follow the writer’s Golden Rule:  write about what you know.  To write original, start with what is original about you.

His deliberations eventually grew quite uncomfortable as he tried to think of what was original about his work, his thoughts, himself.  Days flowed by.  Ultimately, Sidney concluded there was nothing original about him.

He was not religious but prayed to God for an answer.  To Sidney’s surprise, God replied.

“I understand your concerns, my child.  Rest assured, it is not you that is not original.  It is your entire world.

“Millennia ago, I created the Earth.  Then, I created a copy.  Your planet is the copy.  I knew copies never turn out as well as the original, but I had hopes.

“The original Earth is fine.  Never been a war and there are colonies on Mars.  Your Earth, I’ve thought more than once of shutting it down.”

“Why haven’t you?”

“Still curious, my child.”

“Can you help me?”

“It would ruin the experiment.  Oh, one more thing.  When you die here, there is no Heaven or Hell.  You’re just dead.”

Then God left.

It was very quiet.

Sidney now understood his entire world, his whole life, was God‘s disappointing experiment. 

Sidney looked at the blank monitor.

Write about what you know.

With the knowledge life was meaningless, Sidney wrote a self-help book.

It was quickly published and sold millions.

When he sat down to write the sequel, Sidney wondered:  How can I make this original?

Victor Schwartzman is a Canadian writer with whom I used to be in the Underground Literary Alliance.  I am quite happy that he is still writing and willing to share some of his work on drinkdrankdrunk!

Sunday, July 5, 2020

New Song!: "The Whistleblower Takes Up Harmonica"



Woo-boy!  It's a tough time politically right now.  I may be the only one who feels like this (and maybe not), but it seems like everyone else has gone nuts.  The Left seem to think we can all survive hiding in our houses for months on end from a virus (um, that will just bring even more problems when the economy and other things collapse as a result) while the Right think the Left are all killers because they don't join them in gargling bleach or whatever else Trump goes on about.  What's been so disappointing is to see so many supposed freethinkers fall in line and stop thinking critically and just follow the party line of their tribe.  For example, if you think Andrew Cuomo's declaration that his COVID-19 orders would all be worth it if they saved even one life is inspiring, then you need to think a bit about what he would do if anyone ever approached him about preventing auto accident deaths (the answer is he would shut down the roads--does that make sense to you?  Do you think we could survive very long as a society that way?).  Meanwhile, people like me, seemingly rare, just try to carry on, don't panic, and still have a bit of fun (note:  we're all going to die anyway; have a good time before you go).  At this point, it's gotten so confusing that matters of right and wrong and heroism are all garbled.  Years ago, Michael Jordan was a hero for playing a game while sick.  Now he'd be viewed as a creep endangering others (it apparently was food poisoning so facemaskers can still cheer him).  Good grief!  Well, now he joins Edward Snowden in the grey no person's land.  Snowden and other whistleblowers actually take human rights seriously, yet we live in a country where he's still wanted for treason, so he has to be sheltered in what's basically a dictatorship.  It's so depressing that I can imagine many people just say forget it when it comes to do the right thing and just fall into line with whatever other people are doing, pretending to themselves that it is the right thing (and 9 out of 10 times, it still ain't hard to figure out what the real right thing is).  If you think walking around the supermarket looking like you are about to perform surgery is a-ok, then go on with your bad self, but don't try to convince me that it's doing anything much beyond making you feel better about a situation that you have little control over (and if you don't believe me, then maybe you'll believe the World Health Organization, who wrote, "Many countries have recommended the use of fabric masks/face coverings for the general public. At the present time, the widespread use of masks by healthy people in the community setting is not yet supported by high quality or direct scientific evidence and there are potential benefits and harms to consider (see below).").  This song is for anyone who does the right thing anyway even when everyone else is headed in the wrong direction ("It's totally safe to go back in that burning building.  Get back to work!").  Your anti-social behavior may save yourself or even us all.  Authority figures and the masses are not always wrong, but they are definitely not always right.  Think for yourself.  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.

The supermarket is awash in fear
And I'm just trying to buy some groceries
Everybody's wearing a mask
Looks like they're going to be robbing the place
But they're looking at me like I'm the criminal
Because I don't have anything on my face
Joseph Goebbels would be amazed
At how quickly people today fall into line
All an authority figure needs to do is scare them a little
And they never even bother to use their minds

The whistleblower is taking up harmonica
Because there's nobody to blow a whistle to
Still plenty of people to blow a whistle on though
What's a poor whistleblower to do?
Do the right thing, and you're the one they'll send to jail
Say everything you said was just fake news
Meanwhile nobody else really gives a shit
It's enough to give a whistleblower the blues

My Bilderberg invitation must have gotten lost in the mail
That's OK; I never wanted to rule the world
I just wish people would stop taking of pictures of themselves
Long enough to realize that freedom is more than just a flag unfurled
Underneath all the corporate and government propaganda
It's hard to know what's true
But my bullshit detector is still working
And I got it pointed at you 

Written June 2020
Recorded June 2020


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Tuesday, June 30, 2020

drinkdrankdrunk: "Excerpt From American MaleWhore In Tokyo" by Rowen Boozewell

"Cool.  Fill this out and we'll see what we can do."  Gutter placed a sheet of paper on the table.  It was a short but relatively standard work application. 

Box entered some personal information then came to a box asking what seemed to him to be his requirements to the club.  Not having seen a question like this in his job interview experience, he wondered what would make sense in this case.

A tolerance of foreigners?  STD tests for all customers?  A steady supply of rufees?

Not knowing how to say "rufees" in Japanese, he opted for a chance.  Lame, yes, but the type of BS he believes potential employers generally want to hear.

The next box was, 'Your Message to the Manager.'

As heavy drinking is part of the job, I'm assuming there is a lenient attitude towards urine-related incidents but nevertheless I would like to graciously thank you in advance for your tolerance and understanding should I stand at the top of the entrance stairs and rain yellow on folks gathered below.  And the like.

But again taking the ingratiating route (known commonly as the pussy route), Box went with, I would just be so thrilled to work at a club as classy and fun as Cirrus--which I'm certain makes dreams come true on a nightly basis--that I would without a doubt be the hardest working host Shinjuku has ever seen.

The final box was, 'Host Name Candidates,' and the following instructions were printed to the side.

Please write down potential host names that you would like to be called.  The more you can think of the better.  If nothing comes to mind, just enter things you like.

Not feeling any need to hold back in this category, Box scribbled down the following names:

Lake;
Shintaro;
Bareback;
Lodestar;
Vivian Ward;
Ziggy the Dryhumper; and
finally, 
Jesus Jr., Little Jesus

Rowen Boozewell is the author of American MaleWhore In Tokyo:  The Great White Host, a memoir/novel about John Box's experiences being a host in a Tokyo nightclub.  Or maybe John Box wrote it using the nom de plume of Rowen Boozewell.  Beats me.  Anyway, I like it, and I am happy to feature this excerpt from the book on drinkdrankdrunk!  You can find more John Box, Rowen Boozewell, or whomever the hell he is at pearlsbeforeswine68.com

Sunday, June 21, 2020

Afterword for The Slush Pile Strikes Back! by Frank Walsh


The recently released Underground Literary Alliance anthology received a nice review from one of the contributors, Tom Hendricks.  Also, Frank Walsh kindly wrote an afterword for it.  It is below:

"Its not a coincidence that once was that, neither a serial in a one of a kind series that, trending accidents, matters, nor likewise the former ULA lteraryrevolution dot com crash side swiping CBGBs or Columbia University on Harlem’s broken back post-Miller Theater public free-the- beats event horizon, for even the NYPD officers summoned for against us by the U guffawed and gainsaid with our literate guerilla theater demonstration outside the academic wrought black iron main gates, right up against the hoods, where still probably unreal estate big bank vultures satanic Mills Theaters broadside north Broadway (and really, the very same entities were found to be bulldozing for redevelopment Israeli and Palestinian working class hoods coincidentally),post- perhaps post-post Modern dried out literal neoliberal arts PHDs and snarky a-creative writing workshop MFA money mill hacks, bury the last cool pop remains of Ginsberg and our beaten up, now privatized, “HOWL”; but a synchronicity, presently that’s It.
Is meant to have said, that of gutter presses way back in the French Revolutionary underground linotypes, Payne, say, the old printer’s devil, in deep, along with unborn Buchner awaiting his part swathed in a miasma of neo-Kantian star dust, seeding. from apposite times, the far off red glare of the yet to arrive crude Akirema the Fewed, uncannily so, unless believed in by both sides that swallow from the purple goblet Kool-Aid TV commercials burst through a Wall Street even if unconscious. As if forty years could actually feel like one Summer day long or else, its meant to say that at least a week and a half before us, this past Memorial Day hollow day, when and where a Minneapolis—of all place mats-- police-state Thugee thug with little help from friend goons, committed to a publically recorded assassination, successfully of resident citizen GF, an authentic, already hard way seasoned advanced guard front had begun to push up—societally, mass culturally --- from the Aut, raving punk poet, and personal Zeen small-press movements--out of a seemingly current fallow sub-underground into a lightning lit revolutionary Open Field, synchronicity or not.
“’De Sade liberated from the Bastille in 1789, Baudelaire on the barricades in 1848, Courbet tearing down the Vendôme Column in 1870—French political history is distinguished by a series of glorious and legendary moments which serve to celebrate the convergence of popular revolution with art in revolt.’” And recently at most two late daguerreotype or early photographs recently dug up show Arthur Rimbaud in a Paris irregular uniform toting a long rifle La Commune, 1871 at attention upon the dais of the broke up Vendome Column. In the Imperialist, neo-colonialist, World Wars/Revolutions, industrial workers of the world union 20th century, “’… avant-garde artistic movements took up the banner of revolution consciously and enduringly. The political career of André Breton and the surrealists began with their manifestoes against the Moroccan war (the ‘Riff’ war) in 1925 and persisted through to the Manifesto of the 121, which Breton signed in 1960, shortly before his death, denouncing the Algerian war and justifying resistance. May 1968, when student/youth and the French workers nearly pulled off a popular Revolution: “’… the same emblematic role was enacted once again by the militants of the Situationist International. … ancestry of both Cobra and Lettrism can be traced back to the international Surrealist movement {or in our AFTERWORD bastardized basket case in point, the break down of the mamby pamby, post and post post Mod, academic deconstructualist, bourgeois snarky vapid populist mainstream literature and art hooked to a corrupt capitalist cronyismatic MIC publishing, distribution, and promotion corporate monopolized gangstar racket right here and now }, whose break-up after the war {or prey tell 911 in the same year the ULA was begot } led to a proliferation of new splinter groups and an accompanying surge of new experimentation and position-taking. The si { which was just what the ULA and its shifting meta-cooperative qualities was able to keep in motion for 8 or 9 years }”’…it brought together again many of the dispersed threads which signaled the decay and eventual decomposition of surrealism. In many ways, its project was that of re-launching surrealism on a new foundation {but again in this slice of this era, beginning social cultural “permanent revolutionary” resurgence in practicum, is just that…}… stripped of some of its elements (emphasis on the unconscious, quasi-mystical and occultist thinking, cult of irrationalism) and enhanced by others,{…likewise…} within the framework { for example: this THE SLUSH PILE STRIKES BACK! dedicated to Steve Kostecke, the NEW POP LIT project/hep hyperzeens, the one and only MUSEUMOF POETRY, the POETSUNIONUS so called, are up and running on the barricades }”’… of cultural revolution.’”
[take NOTE]: the reconditioned quotes in this Afterwords segment are by Peter Wollen, @Peter Wollen
One’s as well as that of the Afterwords prioritized intention is to point out that each and every writer, poet, essayist is a person and not yr usual individualist as the readers will discover in the act, for themselves. Besides that, though the readers should in fact infer as much, every part and parcel of this Afterwords is infused with the contention that Contemporary Modernism, but in a mondo gonzo kind of manner that is best represented by the late great Hunter Thompson, is alive and still going on in a contemporaneous way so that way is the quality world wide permanent social cultural revolution as Trotsky and Breton in 1938 manifests it in the quote below:
"True art, which is not content to play variations on ready-made models but rather insists on expressing the inner needs of man and of mankind in its time—true art is unable not to be revolutionary, not to aspire to a complete and radical reconstruction of society."

Check out the anthology here!

Tuesday, June 16, 2020

The Underground Literary Alliance Anthology!

After 15 years, it's finally out!  Hooray!  Appropriately enough, it is released on a literary holiday:  Bloomsday (the day Ulysses by James Joyce is set on)!  It is The Underground Literary Anthology anthology!  Work started on it in 2005 by Steve Kostecke, and I finished it this year.  It is a good read, and you can download the epub version here, and the pdf version here.  You can also see a preview (actually, it's the whole dang thing!) at the bottom of this post.  It is free to download and share.  Please post/send it wherever you want.





Sunday, June 14, 2020

drinkdrankdrunk: "Late Fees" by Mark Justice

It’s not even ten o’clock yet, and they’re out there already, faces pressed against the front window, eyes staring dumbly inside.  Hell no, I’m not going to open yet, fuckers!  It’s not ten o’clock!

Look at them, hands running up and down the glass, groaning.  I can hear them groaning, for God’s sake, groaning, and for what?  It’s Tuesday, fucking New Release day.  No matter what the hell it’s like outside, they’re out there.  Every Tuesday, it’s the same thing.  They shamble up to the door, pull on the handle a few times, then fumble back.  Honest to God, they look bewildered, all bouncing off one another, like dumbass drunken bastards.

What?  Showing me your watch and pointing to it isn’t going to make me open the door one minute before I have to.  I don’t care if you freeze your assess off.  Can’t you see?  Four minutes until ten?  Hello, you dumb sons of bitches, get a fucking clue here.  Groan all you want.  Stand still or rock back and forth.  I don’t give a shit because we’re not open.

You mean you’re telling me that you have to be here the minute we open to get your copy of Titanic II: Jack’s Still Dead or Cookie Monster Eats Fuckin’ Big Bird?  You think some other bastard’s going to get it before you do, dumbass? Just look at ‘em.  Yeah, I see you brought your tape back.  Thanks.  Do you see the fucking return slot in the fucking window?  Yeah, just put it in there, retard.

God damn these dead fuckers already because it’s almost ten, and I’m going to fucking let them have it when I open the fucking door.  Oh yeah, they’re getting all excited when I come to the front door and jingle the keys.  They all look at them with their glassy eyes and gaping maws.  Dead already, and they don’t even know it, dumbasses.

I fumble the keys a little before I put the master key in the lock.  The look of anticipation on their faces is priceless.  There’s a fucker born every minute, and I’m going to rent some dumbass movie to all of them.  Oh, the key’s in the sweet spot.  I turn it, unlock the front door, slip back inside quickly and stand behind the counter.  They struggle to get the door open all the way then spill in like entrails from a gutted deer.

There they go, wandering around, looking stupidly at the monitors.  Hey, dipshits, the movies are on the shelves.  Over here, they’re arranged alphabetically, not that any of you dumbfucks would care.  Yeah, that’s right. Just take a movie off the shelf and put it anywhere you damn well feel like it.  Nice.  Thanks, tard, but how about putting it back where you fucking found it?  Is that too fucking much to ask?

What the hell are you doing standing under the monitors?  Reaching up isn’t going make the movie come to life or VHS tapes or DVDs to pour out.  What, think this is Vegas or something, pull the handle, hit three cherries, and a tape or two will pop out at you?  Or maybe you’re just mesmerized by all the bright lights and movement.  Ooh, that’s right, dumbfucks.  Worship at the video altar.  At least it keeps them occupied for a while so that I can get some work done.

I see them wander between the rows of movies, jerking their heads up and down, trying to find something that interests them in their own stupid way, I guess.  Hey, hey, fuckass!  See that?  What does it say?  It says “Western,” ‘cause that’s where the John Fucking Wayne movies are.  What the hell are you doing trying to drop off your copy of Thelma and Louise II: Tagged and Bagged there?  If you don’t want the fucking tape, put it where you got it.  Is that some kind of muscle twitch, or did you really give me the finger?  Are you giving me shit today, on New Release day?  I can fix that, you know.  See this?  This is your hand.  See this?  This is your finger.  See this?  This is my mouth.  See this?  This is me putting your fucking finger in my fucking mouth and biting it the fuck off.  Oh, don’t cry now, dumbshit.  That’s what you get.

If you’re going to be this way, then fine.  I’m tired of your blubbering.  How’s this?  How about I just rip your wrist open?  You like that, fucker?  Stop making a scene.  Okay, you’re asking for it.  Your jugular’s a little tough and rubbery, but I just bite right through all of that.  Ahh, there it comes.  See, stupid fuck?  This is your blood.  You’re a fucking geyser, all over my clean floor.  Look at what you’re doing to my shelves!  You’re going to have to pay for that.  Now you’re a mess, and I’m chewing on your trachea, tough like beef jerky.  What do you have to say to that one, eh?  Don’t mess with the fucking Duke.  Just a few more mouthfuls of your gurgling throat then I really have to get back to work.

Cleanup on aisle five.  Yeah, like that’s going to happen here.  It’s murder getting good help.  It’s a fucking video store, for Christ’s sake, and you just can’t get anyone decent to work any more.  I’m here all the time.  Who else is going to put up with all of this shit?

Aw, Jesus.  Yeah, yeah, I see that it’s a fucking mess, so stay the fuck away from Westerns until it’s cleaned.  Are you seriously such a fucking retard, or is today just your lucky day?  Want to go lick one of the windows, or maybe you’d just like to lick the floor.  I didn’t think so.  Yeah, go ahead, stumble back, wide-eyed, all grimacing.  Yeah, you’re really scary.  Ooh, you make me want to piss myself. Yeah, get the fuck away, numbnuts.

Holy fuck.  That smell.  God, the same time every Tuesday.  There’s only one guy who smells like he’s been vomiting up someone else’s shit.  It’s got to be some kind of rancid cologne or something like rotting anal seepage.  No one alive would wear that shit if he really knew what it smelled like.  What the fuck is your problem with the smell?  You’re a bloated bag of pus, and you’re leaking all over my cunting store.

Here he comes, wobbling up to the counter, greasy black hair falling around his head in loose and dirty ringlets.  Nice suit, dickwad.  Going to get buried in that?  Let me guess.  You want to know if we have any Indian porn.  You ask the same fucking question every week.  What is it with you and fucking Indian porn?  Is it the dot?  You want to fuck that dot or something?  Yeah, you know, we do have something today.  Come with me and bring your greasy vomit-shit smell with you.  Let’s go to the Tank.

Ahh, the Spank Tank, the Sticky Room, the Eww Room.  Here you go, you sick fuck.  How about New Delhi First-Time DPs?  Yeah, you like that?  Like that fucking dot, don’t you?  How do you like this, then?  How about if I just grab your head like a melon and drive my thumbs into your fucking forehead and make a dot for you?  Like that?  You screaming because you like it?  I’m tired of playing with you, so one final squeeze.  Love that crunch.  Look at your face. You’re nothing but a smelly pile of gooey brain and broken bone, nice big bloody dot in the middle of your forehead.  Maybe some sick fuck will want to fuck you now, huh, you scat-smelling piece of shit?  It’s not enough that I’ve got you sick fucks jizzin’ all over the cover boxes back here.  Now, I’ve got to clean your shitty mess up, too.

I lick my thumbs.  Fuck!  Your rancid cologne’s stinking up my fucking hands! Goddamn it all to hell.  I can’t bring my fingers to my mouth to lick them clean without tasting your shit-vomit smell.  You fucking better not ruin my lunch, you worthless bastard.

Back to the counter.  What the fuck are you bitching about?  You’ve been waiting for thirty seconds without anyone to help you?  Sorry for your fucking inconvenience, but do you see anyone else working here?  Well do you, honey? Tell you what.  You want that fucking movie?  Fine.  No charge for this one, okay, since you had to wait half a goddamn minute.  Let me just slide it through and demagnetize it for you.  Come on around to the side of the counter.  Here, take the movie.  Right in your gut.  Let me just punch your free movie right into your fucking guts, honey, right up to my elbow.  Hey, can you feel my hand sticking out of your back?  Go ahead, gasp.  Cough and choke that warm blood right into my mouth.  Gurgle yourself into me.  Nothing like a little bloody snowballin’, eh, honey?

Aw, shit.  The tape case is too damn slippery because of all of your blood.  You made me drop it, you clumsy whore.  Well, pick it up.  If you’re going to twitch like that, you’re not going to able to hold onto it, you know.  Fine, fucking fine. Let me help you.  How about if I grab onto your spine and just yank it out for you, right out your fucking stomach.  Yeah, that’s it.  See?  This is your spine in my hand, honey.  Is this the nerve that makes you twitch?  Is this it?  What?  You don’t you want your movie?  Doesn’t matter.  You’re just a messy meat locker on my freshly mopped floor.  Thanks for fucking nothing.

I’ll just suck on your spine for a little treat.  Goddamn, it’s just like sucking a little Bayou crawdad head, the warm juices like a burst boil, right into my mouth.  Hey, I can floss, too, with your severed nerves.  Nice little snack.

Now look at this.  Some dumbass little kid running around my goddamn store all by herself.  Where’s your fucking mom, shit-for-brains?  Oh, I see her, over in the corner wall, looking at new releases, not knowing where the fuck her little shit kid is.  Nice parenting.  You think she’s safe, your little girl, with all of these Tuesday morning freaks in here?  Hey, you want to actually keep track of your child, you fucking twat?  She’s running around, little Suzy Pigtails, running into my fucking displays and knocking my fucking movies off the shelves.  Who’s going to put them back into order again, you, you fucking retard?

Little Suzy Pigtails, I see you.  You smell like bile and cotton candy.  You’re skipping through my store, arms out and flailing, screaming.  Is this your fucking house?  You think you can just run around my store and do whatever you fucking want?  Here’s to good parenting.  Are you watching what happens now, Mommy Pigtails?

Come on, Suzy.  Let me show you all of the fun movies we have in our kiddie kartoon section.  Yeah, you like that?  You like fucking Barney Shoots Smack? Turn your fucking head around, bitch, and look at the mess you made?  I’ll twist your fucking head around.  See the fucking mess?  Who’s going to have to pick that up?  You?  Hell no, not you.  It’s me.  I get the goddamn shit job of cleaning up your goddamn shit mess!  What, my hands grabbing your pigtails too tightly? Screaming for Mommy?  Fine.  This’ll shut you up, you cunting bitch.  Just using your pigtails to hold your head still, my dear.

You like history?  Let’s pretend you’re JFK, and my cock is Oswald’s Magic Bullet.  Right here in your mouth.  Take it.  All of it.  Fucking JFK, shot in the fucking head.  Ramming your little mouth with my magic bullet.  Back and to the left.  Back and to the left.  Gagging and crying for Mommy only makes it sweeter in the end, and here it is, the head shot.  Pow.  The back of your head explodes with my bloody magic cock bullet pushing out your bloody, splintered skull and ruined brain with that sucking sound that gets me every time.  Back and to the left.  Back and to the left.  Now look at that shelf.  You fucking suck.

Hope you don’t mind my tearing out some of that silk hair of yours as I pull myself out and twist your fucking head off.  Just like a frightened little jackrabbit, there, your heart beating so quickly.  First the twist, then a few popping spurts, then up from your neck comes the red gush, the fucking money shot.  Look what you did to my display!  You fucking ruined my display!  Do you see this?  Do you?  How about this, then?  How about I hold your head up, eyes wide, mouth spasming, and I’ll just carry your head around like a lantern and show you your mess.  See the fucking mess you made?  Can you see with your dead eyes wide open where the fucking movies belong on the shelves, you little head, or do I need to put a candle in you and let the love of Jesus shine through your eyes?  Here’s where Fred Fuckstone: Slaterock Bitch goes, and put Babe 3: BLT right there.  Do you get it now, you fucking pigtail lantern?  I think I’ll save you for dessert.  Who doesn’t like cotton candy?

Oh, I can hear Mommy now.  Oh, Suzy Pigtails, where are you?  Here she is.  Just follow the waving lantern.  Look familiar?  Oh, the screams.  God, you’re so annoying with that high pitch screaming.  Whose fault is this?  Is this good parenting?  See?  This is why shouldn’t leave your children unattended.  This is why you should make fucking sure they’re by your side every fucking minute. Next time, get a Goddamn leash on the little fuckers!  You take the stump, but I’m keeping my lantern.  No trade-backs!

What, don’t you want the stump?  Fine.  How about this, then?  I’m tired of you screaming shit at me.  If you’re not going to be an adult and assume some of the responsibility for letting your daughter ruin my fucking store, then how about this?  How about I just dive headlong into your stomach and tear into it?  Nice abs.  You work out?  Shut the fuck up and stop screaming!  Ahh, okay, the sweetbreads.  You could make a mean batch of haggis with what’s in here.  You taste like undercooked pork.  Sheesh.  What did you have for breakfast?  Coffee and toast?  Is that all?  That’s not an ample breakfast, you know.  Where’s the fucking protein?  What?  Nothing to say?  Cat got your tongue?  At least you’ve shut the fuck up.

Jesus Christ.  Look at this Goddamn place!  You dumbasses have fucked up my whole store!  I hate New Release Tuesday.  It’s not even lunchtime yet, and the whole store looks like a fucking slaughterhouse.  I get so sick of the same shit every fucking Tuesday.  I’m just beat.  Tired.  Dead.

Mark Justice is the author of Gauge Black:  Hell's Revenge.  Check it out for more pulpy goodness!  That one's a Western.  Obviously, this Website does not recommend going into zombie video rental stores or clerks being this disgruntled, but it does recommend reading more Mark Justice.  I am pleased to run on his work on drinkdrankdrunk!

Sunday, June 7, 2020

Last Call For The Underground Literary Alliance Anthology!

The Underground Literary Alliance anthology that I am finishing up for Steve Kostecke is done.  30 ULAers are in it, so it will feature the writing of a nice chunk of the group.  It's scheduled to be released on Bloomsday, fitting for a literary anthology.  The delay is to allow a straggler or two to still stumble in and be included.  It will first be distributed to the contributors and those who helped with the project.  Since the pdf and epub anthology is free, they can send/post it anywhere they want.  After that, I will announce it on my email list.  It will be announced on this here blog probably on the next post I do after the release.  In the meantime, it is last call for anyone who wants in the anthology.  I can probably squeeze someone in up to the last minute, earlier in the day on Bloomsday.  After that, since the free time I had which enabled me to do the project is now gone, I am pulling the trigger on the book release that evening, barring any unforeseen catastrophe that is, and moving on to other projects.

So, if you are Doug Bassett, Eric "Jelly Boy The Clown" Broomfield, Matthew Broomfield, Tim Hall, Cynthia Ruth Lewis, Marissa Ranello, Christopher Robin, Phillip Routh, Pat Simonelli, The Urban Hermitt, or Ranger Rita Webb, then please get in touch, as I would like to include a selection by you in the anthology, but I have either been unsuccessful in reaching you or you have not responded yet to my messages (yes, everyone has been contacted or at least attempted to be contacted through multiple avenues at this point).

If you are Yul Tolbert, please approve your proof--I really like your piece but need the final signoff from you to include it.

If you are Leah Smith and Frank Walsh, please get me the pieces which you are writing especially for the anthology.  I appreciate the extra effort.

If you are J.D. Finch, Michael Jackman, or Chris (Zee) Zappone, then please reconsider and agree to be in the anthology.

If you are the next of kin or estate executor for George Balgobin, Joe Pachinko, and Joseph Verrilli, please give permission to include their work.

It is last call.  This ship is sailing.  Anything else is icing on the cake for the book, as it is pretty solid as is, but I would ideally like to include everyone who was involved in the group.  If I forgot anyone, then please get in touch, but I believe everyone else is already in (even Frank Walsh has a poem in already--he's just writing a special bonus as well).

I hope a couple of more writers squeak in before the door closes . . .

As for readers, it is almost here, after 15 years, but if you need something to read in the meantime, then my latest novel is available here.

Monday, June 1, 2020

drinkdrankdrunk: "Women Of Color" by The Midnight Rider

per the cashpoint faculty handbook, one of my responsibilities as a faculty member was “institutional service”……I was therefore obliged to do committee work and serve as both academic and club adviser for at least one student organization…over the years, I served as the faculty adviser for the fine arts club, the anime club and the gamers club……in general, my duties included charging pizza to the school credit card and playing board games with fat/acne-scarred coeds…..by the fall of 2015, cashpoint was in free fall and the powers-that-be began laying off any faculty/staff member that wasn’t absolutely essential and that included the fat/loud woman who had been the adviser for the women of color……at the time, I was teaching african-american lit and 2 of the students asked me after class if I would serve as their adviser for the remainder of the school year…..it seems that every year, the cashpoint women of color went to a conference at the university of illinois and with no adviser, they wouldn’t be allowed to go……no doubt, I realize that I’m a kool fucker, but I’m neither african-american nor female…..they really wanted to go though and I had nothing better to do that weekend, so I accepted and filled out the paper work to become their adviser…..i would have to drive the school van 5 hours to champaign, supervise the girls at a hotel and chaperone them at the 2-day conference (knowing full well that I would be the only white male in attendance)……was I intimidated?----nah dude, I thought it would make for a helluva story if I lived to tell the tale….in years past, the club had 20-25 members, but in 2015, their numbers had dwindled to 8……the shady state women of color also like to fight amongst themselves, so by the time I made the hotel reservations, the number of girls attending the conference was down to 4…..after an argument (over who was fucking a track star), it was down to 2 (and it was against shady state protocol for a faculty member to ride with just one student lest they be tempted to fuck)…..the two remaining students were 1) president latonya (who was in my business writing class) and secretary dionna (who was in african-american lit)….i didn’t know much about latonya (other than she seemed quiet/studious, but dionna was a character (who seemingly went days without bathing and who carried an oversized, stuffed teddy bear with her wherever she went)……dionna didn’t know her father and her mother passed away when she was only 15……she had been living with her older sister in chicago, but over summer break her sister informed dionna that she could no longer afford to support her…..when the school year ended, dionna knew that she would be homeless…..although I don’t have time to do the story justice, I noticed that when I went to pick up the school van that it was cashpoint #8 (the one that the school’s married former head of facilities had bought to drive his student-mistress out in the country for a little “afternoon delight”)…..the dude’s wife found out and forced him to take another job in massachusetts, but within 6 months, his born-again brazilian whore had moved there as well….forgive me for not going into more details, but the story I’m telling is ultimately even more bizarre…..i was afraid to carry weed with me on a school trip in the school van, so I erred on the side of stocking my overnight bag with odorless vodka and pain pills….i drove 79 mph in a 65 mph zone and didn’t wear my seat belt and the girls were just happy to be going to their conference…..i don’t remember much that was said, although I do remember dionna constantly teasing me that I had “black blood” (and since my mother’s maiden name is madison and she’s from louisa and has brown skin, I’ve considered that president james madison was having sex with his slaves)……we were late arriving in champaign and had to immediately drive to the conference (as opposed to dropping our bags off at the hotel/allowing me to pound a few more slugs of vodka)…..we were late for the speaker (a black beauty product mogul) as well and that brought 100 stares as the only white man in the room walked to his seat escorted by 2 white-trashed sisters…..i have no memory of what the speaker said, but I do remember that the black chicks in the room could be divided into two categories: 1) fashionistas wearing $1000 (tight) pant suits and 2) homegirls wearing the same (walmart) spanky pants that they wore every other day of the week….i think word of my presence preceded me and most of the women in attendance were polite and some even thanked me for serving as the girls’ surrogate adviser…..after the speaker finished, I took the girls (and one of their pregnant friends) to a burger place near our hotel---and I generally don’t speak on the subject of racism, but I could feel the hatred emanating off the table full-of-cops when I walked into the restaurant….we charged wings, pizza and beer to shady state, but I was the only one who drank…..the next day entailed a full slate of conference presentations with titles like “protecting the temple” (vaginal hygiene) and “boss, queen and everything in between” in the student union…..one speaker implied that I was an “oppressor” from the stage, but I eventually made friends with her ugandan hit woman and we wound up discussing astrology…..at one point, I even mindlessly repeated a mantra about being a strong/black woman……there was a trivia question at lunch with the winner to receive a year’s worth of beauty supplies from the previous night’s speaker-----I knew that the first black congresswoman was shirley chisolm before the rest of the room googled it, but I kept my mouth shut and let some bougie black chick win the prize….once the conference was over, the cashpoint girls wanted to go the local mall, so I decided to check out a local bar that mike mousse (the dean of the business college had recommended)----and this is where the story really takes off…..the bar was packed with hot sorority girls and there were several frat dudes there wearing phi delta theta (my fraternity) sweatshirts……I gave the secret sign and the motherfucking party was on…..pledge master gabe had 2 of the pledges drive the school van back to my hotel and I wound up in the middle of a fraternity party at the university of illinois (and I’m 48-years-old)…..i can’t say that I got laid, but I must have done bong hits in 12 different rooms and even did a keg stand in the fraternity kitchen…..hot coeds were sitting in my lap and posing for pictures…..and you might think being in a frat sucks, but I tell you it’s like a golden pass to another universe….i didn’t know any of these kids, but they immediately accepted me as one of their own…..around 1am, the same 2 pledges drove me back to the hotel…..i had them make a pit stop at their fav pizza place where I charged 4 large pizzas to cashpoint (2 for the phi delt pledges and 2 for the women of color)……I was drunk-as-shit, but I walked down to the girls’ room to deliver the pizzas…..they were in their pajamas and doing homework, but they damn skippy appreciated the fact that their old/fat/white adviser was kool enough to bring them pizza at 1am…..the last event of the weekend was a chicken n’ waffle luncheon at the illinois women of color’s clubhouse the following afternoon----I took 4-5 dumps in the hour that we were there, but i refrained from vomiting until we reached a gas station bathroom on the way home…..it was a good trip….i woke up the next morning before and changed my facebook profile picture to one of me in a suit with roughly 75 black women from the midwest women of color conference---when I returned home that afternoon, my friend, gipper had messaged me a one word question/comment….it read: “brazzers?”

The Midnight Rider prefers to remain mysterious.  You could visit his website, but he won't say where it is.  You could read his books, but he won't say what they are.  You could email him, but I'm pretty sure spam@gofuckyourself.gov is not a real email address.  In a world where everyone is repping their Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, sex tapes, line of clothing, new microbrew, and overall brand, I find that refreshing.  I am happy to have the Rider ride on drinkdrankdrunk.

Monday, May 25, 2020

Governors' Names On Highway Signs Update

Over the past decade, I've commented several times on a pet peeve of mine, which is politicians sticking their names on highway and other road signs paid by taxpayers (see the following posts:  2014A, 2014B, 2014C, 2014D, 2014E, 2018A, 2018B, and 2018C).  Basically, the politicians are trying to get free political advertising at taxpayer expense.  I suspect no motorist really cares whom the mayor of a city is or the governor of a state is, and if any of them do care, it certainly isn't worth the expense of the sign (for states, sticking a governor's name on a sign can run to thousands of dollars).  This should be an easy fix, right?

Nope.  Politicians keep doing this.  And if they don't, some gal or guy in the highway department or whatnot who wishes to suck up to her or his new boss does.  I had a small hope that Ohio USA would take the opportunity to not to do so when a new governor took office in 2019, but, nope, they did it again.  This time, they just made new highway signs overall at greater expense (possibly to camouflage the costs of putting on the new governor's and lieutenant governor's names since they didn't make new overlay signs just for that).  Unfortunately, at some point, someone will have to paint over those names when the officeholders change or they'll be back to the overlay signs, so nothing really changed.  Also, unfortunately, though Pennsylvania still has a good I-80 sign at the spot I typically pass, I did spot a turnpike sign with the governor's name on it last year.

All these politicians obsessed with quarantines ought to quarantine these type of highway signs.  A plain welcome to wherever sign will suffice.  We don't need to know whom the governor is.  Of course, given the disastrous decisions many of these governors have made overreacting to COVID-19, they may regret having their names up on these signs.

After all, some irate folks who have had their lives destroyed by the lockdowns may follow Elon Musk's advice about tarring and feathering the politicians who panicked about the virus and use the signs as a reminder of whom exactly to boil the oil for.

If the continued existence of these highway signs depress you as well, cheer up with my latest novel!

Sunday, May 17, 2020

drinkdrankdrunk: "The Secret Of Great Art" by Victor Schwartzman

Melvin loved re-watching movies, rereading books, looking again at paintings.  Every time he revisited certain works he found something new.  It was not the pleasure of experiencing favorites again, but there was, in a select few artworks, something always new.   

How could he always see something new?  Was he stupid?  This did not happen elsewhere.  He thought of his colleagues, family and friends:  although there were surprises; it was nothing new.

Art was complex, full of details and rhythms and inner meanings even the artist did not always understand.  That explained why he always saw something new, because it was so complex.

Or did it?

Melvin figured that the artists themselves should be able to say why some of their work always seeing something new.  So he did research, reading about artists throughout the ages.  The standard response was, “I don’t have a clue.”

Some said they wished they knew what they’d pulled off in certain works--so they could do it again.  But for both artist and audience it was a mystery.

Eventually, Melvin concluded that certain unique works were alive.

He saw something new each time because there was something new each time.  The art was alive and, like any living thing, regularly changing.

He approached paintings in museums (he needed originals; copies were useless) and talked to them.  They never responded and the guards would take him away.  It was the same with movies or books.

Melvin could only observe.  Once, Bogart winked at him.

Eventually he was forced to accept that the communication was one way.  A select few pieces of art were alive, perfect examples of their kind, unique, and therefore were constantly changing.

They existed for themselves.

It was then Melvin had a final realization:  for true art, audience was irrelevant.

He wondered in what other ways he was irrelevant.

Turned out, most everything.

Victor Schwartzman is a Canadian writer with whom I used to be in the Underground Literary Alliance.  I am quite happy that he is still writing and willing to share some of his work on drinkdrankdrunk!

Sunday, May 10, 2020

Going Weekly Again

It's been fun posting daily for the past few weeks, but my free time is winding up, and I need to use what remains to make hay while the sun shines on the Underground Literary Alliance anthology.  It was fun to relive the days of 2008-2010 when I was serializing Blog Love Omega Glee (most of which I had to delete when the novel was published as a whole because of a short-lived exclusivity agreement with Amazon) and 2012-2013 when I tried post daily for a few months for a lark, but the blog is settling back into its usual more or less weekly rhythm.  I hope the more frequent posts helped amuse you during this strange period when many people were marooned at home.  With luck, things will continue to get better, and we won't be having our tax dollars sent on stupid signs like the one in the picture ever again.  See you in a week or so!

If you need something to read in the meantime, then my latest novel is available here.

Saturday, May 9, 2020

Let's Not Use Herbicides In City Parks, Eh?

The other day I was in the city park in Westlake, Ohio USA, and I noticed that the grass was a little too green.  Where were the dandelions?  Then the smell hit.  It was that awful lawn chemicals smell.  I found confirmation a few minutes later when I found one of those signs warning kids and animals to keep off (kids and animals, of course, being very dedicated sign readers).  I really wish cities would stop putting these herbicides on parks.  It's certainly not healthy.  Fortunately, a number of cities have made positive steps and done away with pesticides such as these lawn chemicals.  It makes me appreciate University Heights, Ohio USA, where I used to live, quite a bit because in their parks wildflowers grew, and it was quite pretty.  I also knew it was quite safe for my child to play there since children are especially vulnerable to the hazardous effects of these chemicals.  Obviously, I am going to have to contact the city and hope that I can persuade them that dandelions are preferable to pediatric cancer.

If you need something more cheerful to read than a report on how pesticides harm human health, then please read my latest novel.

Friday, May 8, 2020

What Wred's Reading: Don Quixote

You know a novel is good when it's four centuries old and still makes me laugh out loud.  I've read Don Quixote many times, often because I had to teach it, and it still makes me laugh.  It's baggy, but keep plowing on through and you will soon hit some deadpan or slapstick.  When the characters are vomiting on one another, you know you're reading the classics equivalent of a stupid Hollywood comedy, but it also digs a bit deeper into philosophical issues, which is why it has lasted so long.

This translation is a good one, but I've read a few different ones, and as long as the humor is conveyed I have no deep feelings one way or another about one translation being superior to another.  But this hardcover edition is a nice one.  I bought it at a point when I was trying to get really nice editions of books I liked.  A flooded basement (it's a long story about how the books ended up there) soon cured me of Rare Book Collector Disease, and a few moves since then have caused me to shed most of my belongings because I was tired of lugging so much stuff around (it's a slow process, so I still have many things to shed).  It's an irony that one spends half of one's life acquiring things, and the next half shedding them.  If you're sensible that is, some people hang onto a lifetime's accumulation of stuff, just so their relatives can hurriedly chuck most of it in a dumpster after their death--that's a little too irresponsible for my tastes.  I've had to clean out some dead people's houses; it's a big pain, and work that should be done slowly and joyfully by the owner/collector soon becomes a mindnumbing race to the end by others.  Of course, I've benefited from that as well.  I think I got an awesome reggae cd box set from a dead person's garage sale for $3 (of course, I sent it on its way after I was done enjoying it to another new owner), and I am sure that some dumpster diving treasures came from similar situations.

Anyway, if you think classics are boring, then give DQ a try.  It's a hoot!

If you want to read a newer humorous book, then please read my latest novel!