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!

Thursday, May 7, 2020

Heavy Drinking In The DC Graphic Design Department In 1999?

So I've been rereading some old books I own since the public library has been closed for a couple of months now due to the COVID-19 panic (will taxpayers get a refund on their property and other taxes used to pay for services they didn't get during this period?  Ha!  Ha!  Ha!  I can hear the idiot politicians who created this mess laughing now).  Anyway, one of these books was a collection of Golden Age Flash comics.

My advice:  Read them one day at a time, and they are charming in their goofy Golden Age comic way.  Don't read them all in a row or the plot holes, stereotypical gangster villains, lack of continuity or even basic storytelling common sense, and ridiculous endings will annoy you.

One odd thing I noticed this time through (which will be the last time through unless I am reading them to a child, at 50, the things one dreamed of reading as a 5-year-old aren't too satisfying, though it was nice to make the inner 5-year-old happy) was that the back cover has a Hawkman cover on it among the four Flash Comics covers (pictured above).

What?

I know Hawkman was in Flash Comics, and he and The Flash generally alternated covers after the first few issues, but the graphic designer couldn't find a 4th Flash cover out of the bunch?  Admittedly, the Hawkman covers (generally by Sheldon Moldoff) are cool, but save them for the Hawkman collection.  There were 4 unused covers with The Flash that could have been used instead.  I don't know if DC fixed this issue on later printings, but they should have.  It looks like they let the book go out of print anyway.  With luck, when they bring it back, the Hawkman cover will be replaced with a Flash one.

Maybe the production department was drinking heavily that day . . .

If you also need something new to read, then please check out my latest novel!  It just came out this year, 80 years after Flash Comics #1!

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

drinkdrankdrunk: "The Fan" by Mark Justice

Sweat.  Herod sat on the weary recliner; its coarse texture moist with his sweat. His bare back and arms were glossy with it.  A trickle at Herod’s upper lip, and his tongue lashed out to snatch up the drop.  The room moved as though hellish heat waves passed.

With his back to the room’s open window, Herod watched the still shadows cast by the shutters.  The choked air that limboed through the room was circulated by a fan at Herod’s right, blowing at him, the air like some cadaver.  Herod watched as the sweat from his limp index finger splattered into the blue blades of the spinning fan.

A ringlet of drenched black hair fell into Herod’s eyes, the sweat stinging them. He wiped it away with a moist fist.  The whir of the fan smacked against the stillness of the room, shortening the breath that the room could hold.

Sweat collected and ran in stuttered streams down Herod’s belly; the air spat out of the fan used and useless.  The heat made his thoughts dizzy and sluggish, but he liked to sweat.  It made him feel like he did something.  He did.

He sweat.

In that dizzy hot wash, he sat nude, and while he drifted there, sweating, a wispy, nude woman got on her knees beside him and blew a long soft kiss that was cool against his skin.  She lowered her head to his limp hand, put her cool mouth to his index finger, and began to nibble at it.

Her teeth moved quickly and delicately as she bit.  Aroused, Herod felt the beautiful woman’s bites become rougher.  They were starting to hurt.  A slick, grating sound came with each nibble, louder with each painful bite.

Herod jerked forward from his sleep, from the teeth of the fan blades.  He recoiled his hand, fingertips throbbing shooting stars of pain.  The back of Herod’s neck shivered, and he chilled in the sweltering heat.  It was cooler; the pain was now subsiding, and he thought of his dream, the crawling skin, his goosebumped, cool skin:  from the pain.

His fingertips throbbed like sex, like his hot, lusting dream as he drew his hand nearer to the fan.  He tested the biting air, and his tingling, prickled skin was there in the whirling, blue, dusty metal.

He allowed his middle finger to graze the blades.  The “rat-at” sound reverberated in the room.  Again, he shivered, shuddered.  “Something good,” he thought as he tested the moving blades once more.

The quickly spinning blades caught his fingers and sent his hand flying downward with a chunk of meaty sound, hot and thick with humidity.  Herod shook out his hand, wincing at the pain but writhing at the crawling flesh on his back, the pinpricked chills that made him shudder.

Herod’s breath came quicker now, the room lessened its chokehold on him, and the cadaver air found a life of sorts.  Herod ran his hands down his chest and stomach, watching sweat, and with a flick, wrung it onto the blades, covering him in its salty kiss.

Herod’s hand still throbbed.  The hot pulsations pounded back and forth from his fingers and palm.  Shivers crawled along Herod’s neck that made him cringe and cool.  Herod thought the cool, sensuous delight was like having to suffer with an itch, realizing its tingle, and then that quiet orgasm of scratching, like watching a mosquito deliver its bite, aware of its nuisance yet feeling the barbed prick and watching blood flow into its belly, only to smack it as it attempts to fly away, the red and black stain wet and fresh on the arm, the welt just coming up.

The exchange of pain for pleasure, the sacrifice of self-will for an ecstasy on the fringe of having, is what Herod bartered for … and got.

With a voyeur’s smooth grace, he eased his throbbing hand toward the spinning fan blades, the orange sun reflecting off their metallic sheen.  He heard the “thap-thap-thap” as his fingers rubbed against the whirring steel.  Herod pressed harder, feeling the continual blows against his reddened hand, but he also felt the heat begin to dissipate in the cold shock of shivers’ crawling skin.

Herod had an erection as he held his now bloody stump of a hand into the blades, screaming in his pain/relief exchange.

The blades kept flicking up pieces of Herod’s hand onto the walls and ceiling as his face was reddening from the fan’s spray of his butchered limb’s flowing blood.  Herod writhed in his chair, his limb becoming more and more numb with each convulsive thrust.

Herod fell back into his chair, sopped with his blood and sweat.  He smelled the vibrant tang of blood and the scattered tatters of his pulped right hand.  As the chills subsided, the sweltering heat began to make its approach to his body, forming stinging globs of sweat on his stump.  THAT pain brought no pleasure; THAT pain brought no chills, no relief.  THAT pain was NO GOOD, Herod thought.

Herod thought.  Hard.  He thought what it would be like to plunge his face into the whirring, bloodied blades of the fan.  He thought he would jerk a few times as the blades caught their way into his face and skull, slicing chunk after chunk away.  He thought of what his eye would see as it was caught from its socket and whipped up at the ceiling.  He thought that the last thing it would see was his own back, bright blood covering a thousand chill bumps, freshly popped.

Herod sat in the hot chair, sticky with blood, thinking. His hot thoughts chilled him.

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 sticking limbs into fans, but it does recommend reading more Mark Justice.  I am pleased to run on his work on drinkdrankdrunk!

Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Missing: The Underground Literary Alliance

Years ago, the Underground Literary Alliance (ULA) was supposed to have an anthology out, a best of The Slush Pile zine.  It even had an Amazon page at one point; in fact, it still does, though I have no idea where that cover came from as it has nothing to do with the book, and I doubt it will still have that title.  The editor, Steve Kostecke, worked on the book for years, but unfortunately it never came out and the group broke up and Steve died.  I always wanted to read the book and Steve worked so hard on it that it was very disappointing that it never got published.

Well, cut to me getting rid of some stuff, including some old ULA zines.  Since many of these zines were rare, it seemed a shame not to do something with them.  That combined with some free time due to the COVID-19 panic has led me to attempt to finish the anthology as a free pdf/epub ebook and as a tribute to Steve.  So far, work is going well, but there are some ULAers I have not been able to reach yet.  If you are or are in contact with any of the following, please email or tell them to email me at wredfright WHEREIT'SAT YAHOO DOT COMM, as I would like to include you/them in the anthology:  Doug Bassett, The Urban Hermitt, J. D. Finch, Susan America, Tim Hall, Jessica Disobedience, Yul Tolbert, Marissa Ranello, James Nowlan, and Pat Simonelli.

Some of them I have reached out to, but maybe they're slow on email.  Nearly everyone else I've reached, though some still need to approve their proofs and whatnot.  A few others I have not gotten to yet, but I am working on it.  Those are Christopher Robin, Adam Hardin, Victor Schwartzman, Eric "Jelly Boy the Clown" Broomfield, Matthew Broomfield, Cynthia Ruth-Lewis, Mark Brunetti, Rita Webb, and Phillip Routh.  They are welcome to get in touch in the meantime, as that would save me hunting down contact information for them.

Everyone else should check their email, mailbox, or voicemail and get back to me.  If you declined to be included and you change your mind, then please don't be shy about getting back in touch.  And if you were in the ULA, and you haven't been reached yet already, then my apologies and please get in touch.

Steve also wanted to include two non-ULAers in the anthology, but writers who did contribute to ULA publications:  Cullen Carter and Cry Bloxsome.  I am not superhot on this idea (no offense to the writers, who are quite good, but I have enough trouble wrangling the official ULAers as is without any extras in the mix), but I am quite willing to abide by Steve's wishes.  Unfortunately, I have not been able to reach either of them either despite multiple attempts.  So Cullen and Cry, if you want to be involved, get in touch by the deadline, which is a.s.a.p.

On a sadder note, some ULAers have died in the intervening time.  Some such as Jack Saunders and Lisa Falour agreed to be in the anthology back when Steve was editing it, so they will be included.  The other deceased--George Balgobin, Joe Pachinko, and Joseph Verrilli--I don't have permission to use their work unfortunately.  I would very much like to, but tracking down the living ULAers is enough of a pain.  Nevertheless, if any next of kin or estate executors want to get in touch and give such permission in writing, then I will be happy to include the deceased writers in the anthology.

I hope to have the project done as soon as possible, but certainly by October in time for the ULA's 20th anniversary.  I will, of course, announce on the blog when it's out.

If you can't wait and need something to read now, then my latest novel is available here.

Monday, May 4, 2020

drinkdrankdrunk: "OHIO PIG REPORT" by The Midnight Rider

The scariest/most remarkable thing that occurred during my trip to parkersburg was what happened on the way back……I’m sure you realize by now that 99.9% of the coffees that I’ve drank over the last 25 years has been spiked with irish cream, yeah?.....well, I had 3 xl large spiked dunkin donuts coffees in the hotel before I left along with whatever mushroom stems were left over from the night before (not enough for me to see demons, but enough for a minor body buzz for the 9.5 hour drive back to iowa)……i was driving a tiny rental car (either because I’m growing more conservative in my old age or because I didn’t want to listen to my mom scream about “wear n’ tear” on my pathfinder) and had heard horror stories about the police in southern ohio (a crossroads of drug activity for the northeast)……it was a random tuesday morning, but I passed roughly 30 cops checking for “speeders” as I drove on interstate 70 from columbus to dayton…..i was going 68 mph in a 65 mph zone when a cop whipped out from the median and hit his lights…..i knew I hadn’t been speeding, but there are dozens of cryptic stickers on my car and I assumed the pigs were targeting rental cars…..officer ward (roughly 28-years-old with a crew cut) came over to the passenger side and asked for my license and registration……then he started asking me a series of questions like “where are you headed?” and “why didn’t you fly?”…..i was fairly nervous (because the fucker has a gun and a license-to-kill), but I also knew my car was completely clean----I never carry a bowl in 2017 and if I had had anything else, it would have been in my shirt pocket and ready-to-be-eaten like in a cheech n’ chong movie……officer ward said the reason that he pulled me over was that I had made an “improper pass”---I know what that means on a country road with a solid line, but I have no idea what the fuck that means on an interstate…..i spent an hour looking the statute up when I got home and I still don’t know what the fuck I did-----I wasn’t driving erratically and I wasn’t speeding, in fact, I was being super-careful because I was driving a strange rental car…..ultimately, I knew it was a BULLSHIT CHARGE, but again, he had a gun and I knew that I was completely innocent (except, of course, for the mushrooms already at work in my brain)…..after about 3 minutes of loaded questions (ie “I don’t know if you smoke marijuana or not?”), the pig asked me to get out of the car and frisked me because he claimed that I was “acting nervous”…..and less than 2 minutes later, another pig pulled up with a drug dog….the fucker walked the dog around my rental car and my main reaction to what the dog did was that he appeared happy to be outside----the dog didn’t bark, scratch, jump up or do anything out of the ordinary for-a-dog who had just been let outside…..i wanted to google “what a drug dog does when he smells drugs” when I got home, but I didn’t necessarily want that search to be on my home computer….anyway, THE PIG STARTS READING ME MY RIGHTS AND PLACES ME IN THE BACKSEAT OF HIS SQUAD CAR (and believe it or not, that was the first time in my life that I had ever been put in the back of a police car----the other times I walked into the police station on my own power)….the prick then asked for permission to search my car and since I knew that I was completely clean, I told him to go ahead (although at this rate, I HALF-EXPECTED THE FUCKERS TO PULL A BRICK OF HEROIN OUT OF THE GLOVE COMPARTMENT)……closer-to-the-truth, I knew that I had taken mushrooms that morning (along with the 3 spiked coffees) and I didn’t necessarily want to take a blood test (nor was I familiar with the rules for refusing a blood test)…..the cop seemed to think that I was a space cadet and in real time, I thought letting him think that might be the best scenario for getting out of it…..again, I knew that I was (fairly) innocent, but if I’m telling the truth: my legs were shaking and I was sweating-like-a-legitimate-pig…..at one point, one of the officers put the drug dog in the police car with me and the dog started whining----I considered that anything I said out loud in the police car was being recorded, but I dropped my one-and-only zinger of the day when I told that bitch: THERE AINT NO POLICE CATS……after about 10 minutes, officer ward came over with the water bottle full of almond milk that had been in my cooler and asked what it was----I said “almond milk” and he wanted to know why I put it in a water bottle….i explained that I had had a half gallon of almond the night before and that was all that was left…..i didn’t explain that 24 hours earlier the bottle had been full of irish crème that I had used to spike my morning coffees 2 hours earlier…..after another 5 minutes or so, officer ward sat down in the front seat of his cruiser and informed me that I was free-to-go…..the best he could do by-way-of-an-apology was to say: “I see that you’re a professor and you’re so smart that you started imagining a bunch of different scenarios and that’s why you appeared nervous to me”----in other words, his rationale was that: “PROFESSORS ARE SO SMART THAT THEY’RE STUPID” and that was it for his apology…..i shook his hand and he said something along the lines of: “I hope you don’t think less of police officers because of what just happened”----I said that I wouldn’t and that I prolly “wouldn’t tell my police officer/friends at the gym what happened”….the thing is, I can’t really think less of police officers than I already do…..in retrospect, THE ENTIRE EXPERIENCE HAD BEEN A SCAM: 1) I DIDN’T MAKE AN “ILLEGAL PASS,” 2) “BEING NERVOUS” IN FRONT OF A PIG-WITH-A-GUN IN RELATIVE AND 3) THE FUCKING DRUG DOG WAS JUST HAPPY TO BE OUTSIDE----HE DIDN’T HIT ON ANYTHING AND IT WAS JUST A TRICK TO SEE HOW I WOULD REACT…..it made me think that cops do this kind of sting all the time and it just happened to be my day to get pulled over (either that or southern ohio is such a shithole that they assume 6-out-of-10 rental cars are loaded with heroin)----the cop was completely confident that I was a criminal right up until the moment that he let me go----the fucker never broke character and he was the babyface to my heel…..i do kinda wonder if the drug dog got a whiff of my 1995 backpack though---again, I was completely clean on that particular day, but zeus only knows how many severed heads have been in that backpack over the last 25 years…..brer backpack could tell some stories, but something tells me that he won’t be making the trip when I finally make my escape from cashpoint….i won’t simply throw him in the garbage though---I promise…..old “stoners” need to be filled to the zipper with broken beer bottles and then dropped on the spot where pigs wait to feast on passing meat

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, May 3, 2020

Extreme Zeen!

New Pop Lit put out a print zine called Extreme Zeen.  It's pretty awesome looking.  It's like an art zine with a glossy cover, different colored paper, bright colors, innovative design for the text, and more.  It's very striking!  Karl Wenclas, the editor, told me he was working on a new zine and wanted to use a couple excerpts from Edna's Employment Agency.  I was more than happy to agree, but I would have been happy to just be in some quick and dirty photocopied zine.  I didn't expect a beautiful publication.  Yowza!  I am impressed!  I am also happy to note it has work from my old ULA buddy Frank Walsh in it as well, so that makes it even cooler!  I am looking forward to reading it.

Right now, I am just enjoying the publication as art object!

If you like the excerpts in Extreme Zeen, the rest of Edna's Employment Agency is available here.

Saturday, May 2, 2020

Dave Sim Saves Free Comic Book Day 2020!

It was supposed to be Free Comic Book Day today, but the event, like nearly everything else recently, was canceled.  That was a bit of a bummer as it's a fun day.  Though the free comics are usually never that great (hey, they're free, so you get what you pay for), it's still a fun day to celebrate the comics medium.  Some comic shops really get into it and basically throw a party while for others the day is more low-key.  It's all designed though to share the love of comics with those who might never otherwise read a comic (though people who already love comics join in to celebrate that love and get some free comics of their own).  At some point, comics retailers realized that a large percentage of the population would never buy or read comics because they never caught the habit, so the industry works up some special free comics to give away each year in hopes of getting new readers hooked.  When I was a child, comics were sold in drugstores, convenience stores, newsstands, and so forth, and they were cheap (a quarter, though the price steadily grew as inflation did from the 1970s on and advertising revenue dried up).  Now comics are $3 if you're lucky and are basically only sold in comics specialty stores, though "graphic novels" can be found in bookstores and some other places, but those are even more expensive, so it is unlikely a kid will get into the comic habit.  Free Comic Book Day seeks to change that.  Well, this year's was a bummer.  I even looked at Comixology the other day, and they also seemed to be no Free Comic Book Day there (though they had their usual assortment of free digital comics, just nothing for FCBD).

Thankfully, Dave Sim of Cerebus fame stepped in to save the day from being a total loss.  I doubt if any kid will get into reading comics from reading Sim's free comic (one needs a basic understanding of current events, Alan Moore comics, The Silver Surfer, and Dante to get most of the jokes), but I sure enjoyed it.  Sim apparently thinks the response to COVID-19 is as way overreactive as I do, so it was nice to know that a few other freethinkers are still out there.  The jokes are also really funny as well, regardless of how one feels about the COVID-19 panic or Sim himself, who is a controversial figure in the comics world, having grown more religious and politically conservative over the years.  I met him once at SPACE 2003 in Columbus, Ohio USA when he took a bunch of small press cartoonists out for dinner, and he was quite a nice guy.  He is a very unique individual no doubt though.  In any case, it's good to know that when even Superman's cowering inside, Cerebus will step in to save the day.

You can check out the comic here and the blog devoted to Sim here.

And it's not a comic and not free, but if you need something else to read, my latest novel is here.

Friday, May 1, 2020

What's Going On With Democracy And Civil Liberties?

These are weird times, and from a democratic and civil liberty point of view a bit alarming.  Where I live, we've had a botched election.  New York's Democratic officials seem to be actively trying to still damage Bernie Sanders even though he already dropped out of the presidential race.  We have tech companies playing censor, presumably to curry favor with the government officials who regulate them (contrast that with the early hope of the Internet to allow for a flowering of free speech and minority viewpoints, even bigger than the print zines in the picture above).  Most of the country is still under house arrest, even though I just checked the Constitution and there's no freedom from assembly, only the freedom to assemble, meaning that regardless of what's happening or the justification given by politicians, human rights don't get postponed or cancelled.  With luck, the current panic will die down, but people will need to start exercising their rights, or there will be some lasting damage to civil society as a whole and us as individuals.  Maybe the notion that Americans were much made of sterner stuff is a historical fantasy, but it seems as if centuries old Enlightenment values are eroding under mountains of cash and stupidity.    

Thursday, April 30, 2020

Lawn Follies: City Gets Rapped On The Knuckles For Trying To Seize Someone's House Because Of Tall Grass

I've been fascinated with the politics of lawns for years.  The latest news report about it concerns a man in Florida whose city tried to seize his house because of tall grass.

Thankfully, the Institute For Justice is helping him to fight back and he seems to be winning.  I hope he wins.  The tall grass laws are crappy laws that shouldn't exist.  I don't care what my neighbor does with his yard.  The neighbor could grow a forest there, and I'm never going to complain.  That's the neighbor's business and not mine.  I might not like it, but the neighbor might not like what I do with my yard either.  And it certainly is not the government's concern.  They usually are just enforcing conformity or trying to pad their coffers (i.e., give themselves and their relatives jobs) or both by interfering with grass growing on private property.

What is needed for lawn liberty to be protected overall is for more people to believe in it.  Unfortunately, many people who will wave the flag on the 4th Of July will act like Nazis the next day if they don't like their neighbors' yards.  Hyperbole?  Not really, I've been studying this stuff for years.  I've even found cases where people have been murdered over lawn issues.  Here's one:  https://fox8.com/news/man-accused-of-shooting-neighbor-running-her-over-with-lawn-mower/.  If you read it, you'll see that the murdered woman was mowing her lawn at night.  Surely, a no-no, not enough to justify a murder, but clearly lacking in neighborhood grace.  But why was she mowing the lawn at that late hour?  Because she was leaving on vacation and didn't want to get fined by her city for violating a stupid tall grass law.  Notice that no one mentions in the article about the sentencing the stupid tall grass law that probably set the whole tragedy in motion.  But a couple of years later that same city the murder happened in brags about sending out taxpayer-funded workers to harass taxpayers about the height of their grass:  "We reacted to 263 grass complaints and mowed more than 150 properties, a 16% increase."

And surely we all remember this, an all-star moment in lawn follies, when U.S. Senator Rand Paul got attacked by his neighbor.  Paul was mowing his yard, and the neighbor was enraged over lawn debris on Paul's lawn.  Cheers to Paul for mowing his own lawn; he might be the only U.S. Senator who does so.   Jeers to him for not introducing federal legislation banning tall grass laws.

Though it's amusing to keep track of these lawn follies, a serious matter does lurk underneath.  I hope you shake off the brainwashing of the lawn industrial complex and stand on the side of lawn liberty, nay, indeed, yard liberty, who needs a lawn anyway?  Grow a garden instead!

No lawn follies but other laughs can be found in my latest novel.

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

drinkdrankdrunk: "The Politics of the Third Floor Bathroom: IBS as Weapon of Mass Destruction" by Jeff Somers

Let's face it, piggies, politics is just a fancy-pants way of channeling aggression. People opposed to each other in a system instinctively hate each other, and back in our blood-splattered glory days as a race any time two Chiefs went against each other on policy, they generally killed thousands in a war between their tribes, or at the very least engaged in man-to-man combat, gouging out eyes and ripping open abdomens until one ‘policy’ had triumphed over the other.  In today’s more civilized society this sort of thing is frowned upon—the man-to-man combat thing; war, thank goodness, remains a socially acceptable way of killing thousands in order to determine policy.  You won’t see John Kerry and George Bush wrestling at the base of the Washington Monument to see who gets to order the next few thousand men and women to their deaths, no sir.  We’ve invented politics to take the place of violence.

Of course, you can invent all sorts of rules and procedures designed to keep the Monkeys we all live side-by-side with under control, and while it may work on a macro-scale, when you get down to the nitty-gritty life remains a struggle between violent personalities for control of their immediate airspace.  Political candidates can’t fight each other for the job, but I’ll bet they wouldn’t mind. People remain pretty much primitive in their desires and the manner in which they pursue them.

For proof, I offer you the third-floor restroom at my job.

Someone in my building wishes to be King of the Third Floor Restroom. Someone else opposes his candidacy.  I know this because there is a war going on in there, one which I know too much about already.  In a more evolved society, the question of who will be King of the Third Floor Restroom would be addressed through a civilized and organized procedure:  Nomination of candidates, presentation of views and policies regarding the restroom, and, finally, an election of some sort, probably conducted using urinal cakes.  Since society remains woefully un-evolved, what we have instead is a classic battle between signage and someone with what appears to be Irritable Bowel Syndrome.

Some background and geographic detail, then:  I started a new job back in April, and the offices are located on the third floor of a large Manhattan office building.  The floor has several offices being rented, and sports one large restroom for each gender, used in common by all the offices (it’s possible some of the fancier offices sport private bathrooms, and if I ever discover this to be so you can bet we’ll take that office by force, kill its men and enslave its women, and enjoy the facilities).  A perfectly acceptable situation, especially since I personally frown on anything aside from urination being performed in semi-public restrooms like that.  Shared restroom toilets just weren’t meant to be used except under dire emergency situations, you ask me.  If everyone would just use the urinals (a wonderful invention—I’d have a urinal in my home if I could) and get the hell out, we’d have a lot fewer problems in this world.  There are two urinals and three stalls in the men’s restroom, along with two sinks, of course, so we can fool ourselves into thinking we’ve washed away the microbes, and a towel-dispenser and trashcan.  Standard stuff.

So, I stay away from the stalls if I can.  I’m not one of those people who thinks he’s going to get the Andromeda Strain if my skin comes in contact with a public toilet; I don’t have to get into a Virus Suit in order to take a shit in a public restroom.  I also believe firmly that human beings have been dealing with germs and microbes and all sorts of nasty shit for thousands of years, and while you can argue that some of those microbes are pretty nasty (Black Death, for example) I still doubt anyone is going to become the new Typhoid Mary by using a public restroom.  That said, I see no reason to expose myself to nasty public toilets any more than necessary, chum.  So that’s my policy on toilets:  Avoid if possible, but use when necessary and don’t lose sleep over it.

I first became aware of a campaign to be King of the Third Floor Restroom when I entered the restroom one day and discovered a neat, laser-printed sign had been taped on the rear wall of stall #3:

PLEASE

DON’T

URINATE

ON

THE

SEAT
 
Poetic, in a way; hauntingly beautiful.  This seemed like common sense to me, and one thing I’ve learned over the years is that you can’t teach people anything common:  Sense, decency, or knowledge.  They get violent and huffy is my experience, and I wasn’t disappointed.  After the first candidate for kingship threw his hat into the ring with this bit of pithy signage, our second candidate responded the next day by detonating an ass explosion reminiscent of Hiroshima in stall #3.  It looked like an infinite number of monkeys had suffered an infinite number of bowel spasms in there.  He’d painted the damn place with his feces. And there, sitting above it like an ironic caption was the Signage.

I would have thought this to be just a merry moment of societal collapse, like many I witness on a daily basis, except that it wasn’t an isolated event.  Over the next few weeks, these ass detonations became common, always in stall #3. Candidate #1 for King of the Third Floor Restroom, whom we’ll call IBS, was obviously passionately dedicated to fouling stall #3 and keeping it fouled.

Candidate #2, who we’ll call Mr. Placard, laid low for a few days while this assault on the senses went on.  Mr. Placard obviously believes that what the world needs is more signage, that everything could be perfect if only we had the proper signs and a population that slavishly, unquestioningly obeyed the signs.  A few days after the first ass detonation, Mr. Placard crept in one afternoon and pasted a new sign on the radioactive door of stall #3:

OUT

OF

ORDER

I’ve rarely witnessed such a powerful message packed into three little words; I may have wept.  This took balls, if you ask me:  I wouldn’t have touched anything near that stall for anything in the known universe.  I didn’t even like the idea of breathing that funk.  So the sight of that flimsy, delicate piece of paper with the hopeful call for civilized discourse (behind the safety of anonymous notes) moved me.  Both these men were uncompromising heroes, in their way.

The campaign escalated immediately.  The next time I found myself in the bathroom, the Out of Order sign had been ripped off the stall door and tossed to the floor, and the stall door thrown open so that the Beta Males of the floor could see the power of IBS, and cower before it.  I cowered all right.  I cowered to think this motherfucker might be touching the same things I did in the building, that he might be standing next to me in the elevator one day, that he might be someone I’d someday shake hands with.

For a few weeks, the debates continued:  A new sign, a new ass detonation.  I came to admire IBS for his physical prowess in the ass detonation department, even as I wondered what in the fucking world was wrong with him.  I mean, to continuously generate that sort of ammunition, you have to have one hell of a bad diet, or one hell of a physical condition.  Mr. Placard, on the other hand, was clearly one of those frightening men who spend their lives complaining about their neighbors and co-workers, and finally kill all of them in an orgy of justice.  I imagined he’d adorn each of his victims with a crisp Post-It note, listing the crimes he’d just avenged.  This was a battle for the ages, and whoever won, I was sure, deserved the awesome power invested in the King of the Third Floor Bathroom.

It ended as you might expect:  IBS, with his awesome physical abilities, was victorious.  I knew that Mr. Placard had conceded when IBS invaded and conquered stall #2 in addition to stall #3 without suffering any signage at all. IBS was obviously free to do as he wished in the bathroom.  I was apparently not invited to the coronation ceremony.  And thank goodness.

This is politics in its purest form, if you think about it:  One man believes the restroom should be a sort of Thunderdome, a land without rules, where men are free to behave in any way they wish.  Another believes otherwise:  That even restrooms should be governed by the Rule of Polite Society, with said rules enforced via the written word.  The rest of us, the citizens, are ostensibly involved in the process of voting—we could speak up at any time, if we wished, join in the desecration of stalls or put up our own notes in support of one side or another—but in reality we’re just underfoot, just like voters in this country.  We exist merely as an audience, really.  The shit-flinging begins, and after a brief struggle one policy is adopted—if that ain’t government on a micro-scale, I don’t know what it.  Of course some might say that my stunted comprehension of the world around me is one good reason why I am not in politics.  I’d say I’m not in politics because I’m too smart to waste my time.  Time rubs everything blank in the end, mi amigos.

As for IBS, there haven’t been any ass detonations recently, and I wonder if he’s finally died of some sort of internal rot.

I have been rereading some old zines recently and came across this gem.  I probably haven't laughed that hard since I first read it back in 2004.  Jeff Somers graciously agreed to let me rerun it here for your enjoyment.  Please check out his website at JeffreySomers.Com for more fun.  No pressure on the readers, but he wrote, "I may starve if they don't buy all my books and click on all my links and possibly also send me cash."  I am happy to feature his work on drinkdrankdrunk

Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Red Stripe Update


A few years ago, I noted that Red Stripe, the beer of Jamaica, was now being made in Latrobe, Pennsylvania USA, which struck me as odd.  Recently, I bought another 6-pack of Red Stripe, and it's back to being made in Jamaica, which is probably how it should be.  It looks like some people got upset enough about Red Stripe not being made in Jamaica that they sued the company.  That lawsuit got dismissed, but it looks like at some point, the beermaking moved back to its origins.  It looks like they might be making Pabst, along with some other stuff (apparently, whomever pays them to brew), at the old Rolling Rock plant now.  Poor Rolling Rock is made in Newark, New Jersey USA still.

With all the good craft beer around, I drink this type of mass market beer rarely, but when the weather starts getting warmer, I do get an occasional hankering for Red Stripe and reggae music, so I am happy to know that if that will be the case again, then I will be drinking the stuff from Jamaica.  The Latrobe stuff seemed like a cover band from Western Pennsylvania playing Bob Marley songs.  Not bad, but not quite the real thing.

Whatever beer you drink, my latest novel goes well with it.

Monday, April 27, 2020

drinkdrankdrunk: "CHURCH-GOING IDA" by Keith Dersley

In my long history of bedsit bachelorhood there’s the occasion when I had the December sads and happened to mention it to Rick.  He thought it was terrible that I intended to celebrate the 25th and 26th with a kettle and a hotplate.

To me, a quiet break was no big deal, should even be enjoyable, but Rick said to his wife, ‘We’ve got to see if we can find a lady to get Keith over Christmas.’

He soon came up with the name of a grandmother, one of the young ones, called Ida. 

‘She’s a looker. I even contemplated her for myself when she came onto the ward,’ said Rick.

I knew he was kidding, as he was now happily married.  It was during his separation from his first wife that he had dallied with a domestic in the broom cupboard, holding the door shut with one foot while he sported his oak.

‘This young lady’s church-going but broad-minded,’ said Rick.

She was a nursing assistant type, working on the ward.

‘Unattached.  Just moved into a flat in Burlington Road and wants to build up her social circle.  Upgrade it, like, with the Right Stuff.  And here YOU are, not far from Burlington at all, and ready to meet someone eligible.  Coulda been meant, boy.’

Next evening I called at Ida’s flat.  It looked pretty good, and so did Ida.  She was dressed in jeans and a woollen sweater with an arty design showing zoo animals.  Grandmothers can look great these days, but even so you would not have thought her kids had kids.

‘What do you think of the place?’ she asked after she had led me to the sofa and put the kettle on for coffee.

‘It’s great.’

‘There’s still more to do, of course.  One of the girls from work, Karen, do you know her?  She helped.  My son came round and said, “Mum, you’ve got it looking wonderful.”  He hadn’t seen that new chest of drawers or the shelves.  I don’t know if he expected I’d just be living out of cardboard boxes or what.’

Over coffee she pulled out a pack of cigarettes.

‘Do you?  No?  Do you mind if I have one?  I’m getting off them slowly.’

‘That’s all right.’

I tried not to look disappointed or disapproving, but if she smoked, forget it. Though she was sexy, intelligent and a caring, decent woman, I didn’t want to get hooked on a smoker.

At one point she came close, and I could have grabbed her and made my play and I didn’t think she would have hated it, but I was undecided because of the clouds of tobacco, so the moment passed.

‘Ah, she frayed your nose, did she?’ said Rick when I explained.  ‘She told me she’d be giving up the fags.  I don’t blame you though.  I jacked in the old rollies, as you know.  I’ve got enough health complications already.  It’s amazing how many health care people still smoke, they oughta know better.’

‘Anyway, I’ll get through Christmas on my own resources. Won’t be the first time.’

‘Yes, well, maybe it’s best you rule Ida out.  But it’s not only Christmas, is it?’

‘What do you mean?’

‘Well, who’s gonna get you through the rest of your LIFE?’

I've been reading Keith Dersley's (or as I like to call him, The Derz!) work for two decades now, from poetry to fiction to memoir.  There doesn't seem to be any literary genre or media he can't do.  His latest novel, By The Time I Get To Pellax, is science-fiction!  I am happy to feature him on drinkdrankdrunk!  You can check out more of his stuff on his website, Derzville
 

New Song!: "Plagiarist In Chief"


Joe Biden Vs. Donald Trump? What is this? People going back to things they rejected as unsuitable in 1988 and thinking, "Wow, we really missed out there; we could have run out of toilet paper in 1989 instead of 2020."? I hope the mass hysteria and idiocy settles down, but it looks as if there's no end in sight at the moment. Buckle up; it may be a rough decade . . . 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.

He's the Plagiarist In Chief,
and he likes your ideas.
Likes them so much he's going to steal them,
along with your life story.

He's up against the nation's greatest con artist
who is working his hardest
at looting every last dime
from the public treasury.

How did it ever come to this?
People are afraid of a hug and a kiss.
How did it ever come to this?
People are afraid to hug and to kiss.

You're either left or you're leaving,
so there's no need to be overly grieving.
You'd think people never knew
that they would someday die.

I see you wearing a mask,
so I just have to ask.
Is that your idea or your leaders'?
Are you afraid of me,
or just afraid of you?

I got germs, and you got germs,
so let's keep our distance social.
Maybe if we can keep it up long enough
the human race can go extinct.

But maybe the experts can save us,
find some new way of having babies,
who never question authority
and have a little pet virus.

Written April 2020
Recorded April 2020


Want more Wred Fright music?  Order the Yeast? 7" here!

Saturday, April 25, 2020

drindrankdrunk: "BUMPY-4-LIFE" by The Midnight Rider

you would think that a tale about 2 professors helping a student cheat to graduate college would be the craziest story I know about luther, but it isn’t……soon after I wrote the preceding paragraph, luther packed his gear and moved to maryland to fulfill his rock n’ roll dreams by becoming the new bassist for the trolls (a 1970s-era doom metal band)….i honestly don’t know much about the doom metal scene, but the lead singer, bumpy, had been luther’s childhood idol---luther had their posters in his bedroom and taught himself how to play all their riffs……luther was enough of a fan that he would follow the band whenever they toured the midwest (at the expense of his cashpoint classes or whatever else he had to do)….it wasn’t long before he had ingratiated himself enough with the band to become their midwestern speed dealer (and rest assured, 1970s doom metal bands still do their fair share of speed)…..luther eventually became their traveling guitar tech and toured the usa with them over the summer…..art professor giada and I went to see them in june in moline and wound up smoking with the band backstage out of bumpy’s crack pipe----ostensibly we were smoking weed, but whatever substance (angel dust?) that was in the pipe the night before radically changed the dynamic of our buzz (and giada stayed up all night tweaking/asking me if she “would ever be normal again”)…...we smoked with the other members of the band, but the band itself was basically 56-year-old bumpy and whatever other (young) speed freak wanted to come along for the ride…..bumpy was short, but muscular and with hair-to-his-waist, dozens of tattoos, and some crazy, fucking eyes……he seemed to be a conspiracy nut, but that night he was ultimately more interested in trying to fuck giada than he was hearing about victor thorn and the lizard people…..giada and I stayed in a nice hotel whereas the band crashed on a friend-of-a-friend’s flophouse floor, but I guess that’s all relative when quality angel dust is your #1 priority……anyway, onto luther’s rock n’ roll fantasy….after the tour, luther moved into a maryland farmhouse with bumpy and his 30-year-old, swedish girlfriend (with the band planning on recording a new studio album in the spring and then touring europe in fall 2017)…..don’t ask me why, but the trolls are popular enough to play stadium gigs in the european union (except, of course, the czech republic where bumpy was busted for speed, spent 9 months in jail, and is currently banned from entering the country for the next ten years)…..i was supposed to go hiking in the blue ridge mountains with luther when I went home for christmas, but he never called……when I finally called him, luther asked if I knew any good lawyers in the dc area……it seems that bumpy ate too many mushrooms on new year’s eve and was in the process of choking his girlfriend to death when luther had to crack him over the head with a maglite flashlight to make him stop…and I realize this sounds like it’s going to be a funny story (and it is), but the really poignant part is that bumpy was luther’s childhood idol----it would be like if I grew up to be roommates with dusty rhodes and then had to hit him in the head with a flashlight to stop the american dream from trying to bite my face off…..bumpy is obviously a speed man, but some fan at their new year’s eve party gave him a bag of mushrooms which bumpy promptly ate……luther said that bumpy spend the majority of the evening propositioning every woman at the party while bumpy’s live-in, swedish girlfriend sat in the corner sulking…..eventually they went outside to argue and when bumpy returned, he was spinning in circles and talking about “demons from other dimensions”……bumpy smashed a bathroom window and then charged back outside to lay spread-eagle in the grass…..the partygoers let bumpy stew for about an hour, but it was 25 degrees and he was in his underwear, plus he was everyone-in-the-room’s meal ticket……his girlfriend went outside with a blanket with the intention of talking bumpy into coming back inside and going to bed…..there were screams and when luther walked outside, bumpy had his girlfriend on the ground choking her…..after trying to pull him off, luther eventually had to start cracking his idol over the head with the flashlight to make him release his girlfriend….bumpy took a swing at luther and then tried to “bite his face off” while both men were wrestling on the ground (luther said the main reason why bumpy didn’t draw blood was that he had “chiclet teeth” from all the years of abusing speed)…..by that time, the rest of the partygoers had come outside to watch the fight and one of troll’s roadies pulled bumpy off luther…..this pissed bumpy off even more, and he went inside, grabbed a shotgun, put the gun in the roadie’s belly, and pulled the trigger----mercifully the shotgun was unloaded, but the roadie punched bumpy in the face and called the police…..when bumpy came to, he grabbed a machete from his bedroom and began hacking away at his girlfriend’s clothes…..then he went into luther’s room and started hacking away at luther’s amps (bumpy also destroyed what he thought was luther’s laptop, but it belonged to the band)…..when the police arrived outside, bumpy ran into his bedroom and pretended to be asleep…..once the police “woke” him and his girlfriend informed bumpy that they were breaking up, he went for the machete again and the police had to throw bumpy on the living room floor/cuff him…..bumpy spent the next 4 nights in jail and a restraining order was issued for him to stay away from luther, the swedish girl, and the band’s roadie (the only one of the three to press charges against bumpy)……they all have to go to court in february, but for the time being, 23-year-old luther continues to live in bumpy’s house with bumpy’s 30-year-old, swedish girlfriend…..luther said at the end of our conversation that they were planning on going into the soap-making business and that he thought he was “falling in love with the swede”---I guess that story will have to wait for another time

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.

Friday, April 24, 2020

Poem: I Pledge Allegiance To The Flag Of Bunnies

I pledge allegiance to the flag of bunnies
In honor of mothers, baskets, and burial
I pledge allegiance to the flag of chickens
"I'll get you, you fwuckin rabbit" sd the Fuddamentalist
But he had to fight his way into the ghetto
I pledge allegiance to the union of dyed eggs
I pledge allegiance to the flag of the flagship of the flag of the United Empire of Imperial Utopia
I fudge allegiance to bunny balls bare
Sounds itchy, unless they're chocolate
And dropping poopy eggs yoke fest artificial mucus mind blips of seeping stripped lude manmade muck
And I became lost, like a lone emu in the red light rabbit garden district
And spent all my coin fucking like a . . .
The peter grows into more peters
And to the burrow for which it stands
And it all must come to an end

I found this poem while clearing out some papers.  It is fun and appropriate for spring.  It was written jointly by the audience and myself at a reading I did exactly 14 years ago today at The Shaker Heights Public Library in Shaker Heights, Ohio USA.  I remember getting suckered into the reading thinking I could just read an excerpt from The Pornographic Flabbergasted Emus or something, and then I found out at the last minute it was a poetry reading, so I had to crank out a bunch of poems.  I just got an intro to literature textbook and wrote an example of every type of form it had in there, plus some extras, such as this one, a sort of exquisite corpse.  I supplied the first line, and the audience supplied the rest on a sheet of paper passed around, then we read it at the end.  They didn't do too badly if I liked it enough to post it over a decade later here.  Good job, yuns!

Thursday, April 23, 2020

drinkdrankdrunk: "GM's Prescription For A Healthy Lifestyle" by Food Fortunata

Otter Muscles was the premier goalie on an otherwise lackluster minor league hockey franchise, the Hamilton Ears.

The Ears were on a current, league-record, 7012 game losing streak when Otter Muscles pulled his famous caper.  Losing by a score of 8000-2, Otter planted a hibiscus in the middle of the ice using only a slice of gouda cheese to dig the hole. Such a play, as everyone well knows, results in the awarding of 83 1/2 points and the removal of a cat spleen.

Ever since, it has been known that a man named Trapdoor Timmy will yodel on contact and the ice cream scoops he so cherishes are doomed to a life in Great Britain.

***

General Motors is a really nice bunch of people.  Especially the upper levels of their management, who understand that most Americans really don't like working all that much.  Thus, they have seen fit to help relieve many individuals from the burden of excess labor.  As a reward for their own thoughtfulness, they have also awarded themselves massive bonuses.  Federal, state, and local governments will do likewise, in short order.  In the near future, GM will be helping more and more people in this same way until eventually only the CEO will be left.  At that point, all GM vehicles will be assembled free of charge by some very fortunate orphans, who will be fed on the corpses of former GM employees, now starved to death.

***

It was around the time I turned 62 that I realized how nifty everything really was.  I started to truly appreciate the magic of cellular telephones and SUVs.  I started to see the beauty in landfills and intrusive governmental policies.  The equation Patriot Act = Freedom finally made sense.  It became clear why a miserable economy was so advantageous.  I finally saw why I needed no health care and why I didn't deserve any part of what others had.  With age comes wisdom is what they say.  It must be true.

***

Apples are quickly becoming the number one cause of death for lawyers and priests.

Guy Debord is teaching us something about sandwich construction, if only we are willing to learn.

Ah . . . the wonder of a misty morning on the underside of a rat's rear end!

Twelve times, we repeat the secret phrase and the fruit of our labor becomes apparent.  In the distance, a bagel bludgeons a raccoon half to death and Kenny Loggins kicks into another chorus of "Footloose".

This is an excerpt from the zine novel Francois Echidna And The Terrible Rash.  Food Fortunata is a musician and writer from Saginaw, Michigan USA.  If you go into a certain record store in Lakewood, Ohio USA, the proprietor will tell you that Food is a genius for his work with such outfits as The Lettuce Vultures and Sockeye.  I concur and am happy to feature his work as part of drinkdrankdrunk.  Contact Food to see what he's up to next at Wheelchair Full Of Old Men, P.O. Box 6061, Saginaw, MI 48608 USA.

Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Guest Blog On Derzville!

One of the writers I invited to contribute to the reborn drinkdrankdrunk is The Derz.  I've been reading his stuff for almost 20 years now.  I should have his contribution up in a week or two after I get the work by Food Fortunata and The Midnight Rider up.  In the meantime, he asked me to reciprocate for his own cool Website, DerzvilleThis is what I came up with!

After you read it, if you want more, then please check out my latest novel!

Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Yip!*: Dark Side Of The Ring!

It's rare that I watch television.  There is nothing wrong with it per se, though I would rather read in general, perhaps because when one reads one controls the pace as opposed to viewing where the pace is controlled by the medium for the most part.  In addition, television is often aimed at the lowest common denominator to maximize the commercial potential, and those subjects don't often interest me.

The main reason I rarely watch television though are the commercial breaks.  I understand that is how the television producers make their money, and I have no issue with that, but as a viewer, it is annoying to be interested in something and then suddenly it stops and someone's trying to sell me a car or pizza.  So, usually, I'll just be patient and wait for the DVD to collect anything I want to see from tv.  Once in a while though, a program comes along that I watch as it airs (or for cable channels, cables, I suppose, since they aren't using the broadcast transmission method).  This is because I suspect it might not make it to DVD.  Such is the case with Dark Side Of The Ring.

It's an excellent program, a mixture of professional wrestling with true crime documentary, which is because basically it's a true crime documentary about professional wrestling.  No offense to the excellent AEW, but this show is the best wrestling product on tv.  I don't know that it would interest many people who didn't already have an interest in the bizarre sport spectacle of professional wrestling, but for those that do, exploring the often tragic backstories of such events as the Chris Benoit family murder-suicide, Bruiser Brody's murder, and the deaths of the Von Erich brothers is quite fascinating.  So far, two seasons have been produced, and season two is currently airing, er, cabling.  If it keeps being this good, then I will keep watching.

Maybe I will just do push-ups during the commercial breaks.  Sorry car- and pizza-sellers!

*Yips! are good things!  So is my latest novel!

Monday, April 20, 2020

Poem: Adulthood Manual

Whenever I buy a new appliance,
even for a blender, there is always
an instruction manual.  But when I turned
twenty-one, no one gave me a manual
for adulthood, and I would have liked one.
It could have saved me a blunder or two.

So I would like to propose not a toast,
but a book, even a pamphlet, some guide,
passed out with the first legal purchase of
alcohol, which says, “Congratulations
on turning twenty-one!  Here is how to
be an adult beyond beer, wine, liquor:
Take responsibility.
Do not cause messes.
If you do, clean them up.
Drive courteously, and be polite in other matters as well.
Use a turn signal.
Do not talk on the cell phone while steering.
Vote, but do not stop there.
Participate in politics.
Think.
Then think again.
Ask why a lot, particularly when money is involved, and especially for taxes.
When you hear the phrase "national security," guard your wallet.
Pay your bills, but do not run up too many in the first place.
Only go into debt when you have to, such as for a car, a house, an education, something that will ultimately make you money.
Learn to do the math for your own personal economy; a three dollar coffee every morning five times a week for fifty-two weeks equals the vacation that year that you could have had if you had not frittered it away by not connecting the dots and not crunching the numbers.
Keep childhood alive, especially in your children, if you have any.
Continue to play, dream, and ask questions.
Wonder what your teenage self would think of you now.
Adjust accordingly, if you think you have grown in the wrong direction.
Be nice to animals, and you will find that they usually return the favor.
You are probably going to fall in love, so be careful whom you fall in love with.
Be even more careful whom you marry.
Be really, really careful whom you take the chance of having children with.
Your body will fail you.
Your parents will fail you.
Do not fail them; take care of your loved ones; they are impossible to replace.
So are you, so unless the technology that enables us to download our souls into new cloned bodies comes around really quickly, you are going to die.
Go back to the earth naturally.
God or whatever deity you believe in, or do not believe in, will take care of the rest.
Do not spend too much on weddings or funerals.
Drink responsibly, even at weddings and funerals.
Work hard and take care of what you have.
When you tire of a thing, find it a good home, or get it recycled at least.
Do not waste energy, especially your own.
Follow the money when trying to understand the behavior of others.
Do not take a job unless you can figure out how they make money off you.
Remember you might make money at work, but your boss usually makes more money from you.
If you are ever unemployed, work forty hours a week getting a job or starting a business and you will soon not be unemployed.
Do not work more than forty hours a week.  It is seldom worth it, and you could die at any time.  Tell the boss you need help, even if you are the boss, and go have some fun.
Take care of your health.
Take care in general.
If you want to be smart:  read, read, read, think, think, think, write write, write.
Want to be smart.
Better yet, be wise.
Seek wisdom, peace, and love in all you do
Everyone is in pain.
Do not be a jerk and share yours around.
If your lover leaves you, let her or him go
If you get fired, move on; it is usually for the best in the long run.
If you fail, get back up.
Question authority, and don't accept the first answer given automatically.
Know that you cannot do everything, but you can probably do just about anything you want to if you set your mind to it.
Try to leave the world in better shape than you received it.
Treat others as you would like to be treated, unless you are a masochist, in which case treat them much, much better than you like to be treated.
Your right to extend your arm ends where my nose begins.
Let others be free; do not try to control them if they are not harming anyone else.
Even if they are harming themselves and you want to step in, make sure you do not make things worse; sometimes you have to let things, and people, go.
If you want peace, fight for justice, but fight nicely as violence usually creates more problems.
Do not be afraid to get sued, get fired, or get laughed at; always do the right thing, but make sure you know what that is.
And no matter how tough life gets, it is usually more interesting than just being part of a uniform endless pool of energy, which is probably the chief alternative to this.
Do not take things so seriously; it is only life.
If you cannot laugh once in a while, then you will make a lousy meal for the worms at the end.
Do try to be tasty.”

Okay, life is probably too complex
for an instruction manual, but I still
think this is a much better idea
than doing twenty-one shots, and though you
might want more troubleshooting tips, you are
on your own.  Figure it out.  Make it up.
That is adulthood.  Welcome to the club.

More cleaning out the closet here.  This poem is adapted from a speech I had to give at a turning 21 dinner at a college I worked at.  It dates from 2007 or so.  For more recent writing by me, albeit much less preachy, click here.