Sunday, July 20, 2014

Cleaning out the Closet



Another sunday night alone in the cave, the neighborhood sleeping, the humidity rising, the cat sneezing, you know even the unemployed have the weekend comedown, waiting for the Monday morning grind, thinking about that first cup of coffee and an afternoon spent ogling milfs poolside, trying to read a book but having to many thoughts crammed into the head, thoughts of lust and movies and dollars and sense and drugs and lust and ice cream sandwiches, the smell of sun tan lotion, popcorn and dusty baseball fields, all the useless things that occupy the mental garage, the derelict daydreams that come slipping in the unlocked screen door at the back of the house, always at the most inopportune moments, catching me completely off-guard like the uncontrollable boners of my wayward youth, like slapping yourself in the face, and yes i stole that last bit but blah de bliggety blah, the words constantly tossed in my direction, the self importance of the self important always trying to work on my self-improvement, when really lets face it, there's nothing left to improve or more correctly nothing left to prove, the making of a well made pancake between the hours of 9am and noon will forever interest me more than the corralling of greenbacks 5 or 6 or 7 or 8 days every week, and it comes back to Sunday night and it's almost murderous quiet, interrupted occasionally by the bark of a dog or the sigh of a ghost, and like Mr. Owens i just don't understand, with all these hamsters running to and fro, with all the egos and ids and super-kids, with an endless news cycle and all the entertainment that the first world can afford, that this world keeps goin' nowhere, so that lap steel will convey more meaning, that trumpet have more feeling, than all the words and numbers, than all the words and numbers, and i just won't understand, i just can't understand.... another Sunday night, alone in the cave...

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Let us stab the lazy right outta me, like that man on the cross, let's give up on this struggle and fucking surrender, like a certain boho afro'd white man of times past let's just say that i'm not here, i'm gone, i'm not here nor there nor anywhere, i've have drowned the ego and brought him back to life in some vain attempt to destroy the monster... and yet it was the monster who whispered let it go, it's all ebbs and flows and shadows and light and what does it fucking matter, it doesn't matter, the point is not to ponder the praise of the flower lily but to get on with the weeding, one can only hopscotch from one addiction to the next, from vice to vice, for so long before one becomes bored and tired of the ritual, no sense lighting candles to the filthy saints, do not genuflect to the past words of the long gone self, do not worry about the outcome or the market or the morality, just do, just listen to Li Po laugh, wait for the horn section to kick in, avoid the back of the garage, keep the hand out of familiar and strange pants alike, wipe the blood from the fingers, suck the blood off the teeth, the only noble savage is the honest savage and this savage is sharpening his spear and angling for honest nobility, granted from a plastic sword by the boy-king in all his wonder, just do, that was the message, found in the fortune cookie, found scribbled in black sharpie on the derelict bathroom wall, found scrawled on a note in the pocket of some blue jeans not worn for years, found staring blue-eyed back in the mirror each morning, found curling from the smoke as it rises from the pipe, just do motherfucker, just do...

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Instant Disassembly



Long live the lounge... the lounge is dead... long live the lounge... the lounge is dead... long live the lounge... the lounge is dead... long live the lounge... the lounge is dead... mamacita, long live the lounge... the lounge is dead...

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Nick Disaster - 5 year edition

 
This is Nick doing the Joey, as in Buttafucco, rocking the Adidas track suit at the ice cream stand, since October of 2012 this kid and i have been hanging out on a daily basis and i can honestly state it's been some of the best days of my life, he's the second son of the son of a second son and though his daddio wasn't a second son he was a second kid, what does that have to do with anything? jack shit.  These days he's scoring goals for the local futbol team and he spent the winter on the ice playing hockey, he's a thinker and sometimes he doesn't say much but when he does he makes it count, that is of course when he's not talking like a sailor cuz he spends to much time with his old man, next September he starts school and his old man will be sad that first day knowing that it'll never be like this again, i'm fucking getting misty-eyed now just thinking about it, but i know how it works and don't worry kids, his old man will be alright... the other day he spent the day playing with my friends daughter, he'd been playing with a little girl down the street recently as well and when his big brother tried giving him the business about having two girlfriends ND just smiled, his big bro was like, "you can't have two girlfriends" and ND shot back "yes i can" and big bro said, "no, you can only have one" and ND just grinned and said, "I can have two, you just don't tell them about each other", all his old man could do was shake his head and smile.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

That song i heard one night while laying on the floor




You know in that last post i mentioned this song, the song written by the guy who now owns that record store, and after a little digging i found this one and only version on the interwebz, this might be one of my favorite songs ever put to tape, you see this song reminds me of this kid i knew, a big kid with a wild head of knotted hair who lived on the third floor of a three story walk-up, where he had no bed until he discovered that the beat-up leather couch against the wall was a sleeper sofa and he pulled off that thin mattress and tossed it onto the floor, bought a couple of foam egg-shells mattress pads and called it a bed, in that apartment with the hole in the ceiling where every time it snowed outside it snowed in the kitchen, right in front of the fridge, an old beaten kitchen table in the corner of his room, his radio atop it that seemed to never be turned off, an old manual typewriter, piles of books, French doors and a balcony with an old bar that overlooked the scenic monstrosity that was North Oakland, his favorite bars dirty sign visible in a piss yellow light, the room where he caught that break and could catch two elbows on the cuff to supplement the income and the drinking and drugging, handing his old-ex best friend a cut for doing nothing more than answering the door and grabbing beers now and then, back then it seemed as if that kid could feel and taste and see every breath he took, an absolutely beautiful existence with no net or plan or idea of what might happen next, living off thieving from the Bagel Joints cooler and hustling dollars bills into his pocket from the special the place ran, 4 bagels for a buck- no tax- 3 coupon limit, on a busy lunch you might grab close to twenty bucks and with the contraband meat and cheese you had dinner and a head start on the boozer, he bought Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain with that stolen money, a one block radius that contained the universe, a supermarket - 4 bars- liquor store- breakfast joint- laundromat- pharmacy- pizza joint- strip bar, there was no need to leave, and it was there on that block, in that third floor walk-up that this kid heard this song one night, laying on the floor as the sound of the late night streets came drifting in and a little white kitten lay next to him purring, feeling the breeze come in through the crack in the French doors, those lyrics made a lot of fucking sense, rudderless, grasping at any wisp of hair that he could fall in love with, whether he meant it or not, the arrogant and beautiful pain of the young existentialist wrapped up in the fine art of living, looking back he wasn't such a bad kid, yeah he may have caused a few headaches for those that loved him and those that attempted to, but deep down he didn't have any bad intentions, as a matter of fact quite the opposite, and don't worry he's doing alright these days, oh it's been years but you'd still recognize him, i catch glimpses of him every now and then... and when i do it always makes me smile...

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Vinyl Fetish



Yes i know, you're thinking that right about now i'm dressed head to toe in a tight vinyl suit, the kind the Gimp wore in Pulp Fiction, zipper over my mouth and eyes and crammed into some trunk waiting for my dominatrix to come in and spank my bare ass because as we all know any vinyl suit worth it's salt comes with a flap so that the good master can unzip and expose some bare flesh for her cat o' nine tails and hell on some days you might not be to far off but today this here post is about something else entirely...

Yesterday was like x-mas for all us vinyl nerds, it was Record Store Day and on that day we get up early and stand in line and then cram into our favorite record stores so that we can get our hands on some rare vinyl, of course the line is populated by a bunch of sad and lonely dipshits like myself but i like to think that i'm the coolest of the sad and lonely dipshits and besides it's for a good fucking cause man, you see like most of modern society the advent of digital music has taken the independent record store and put it on the proverbial rack, between the big box chains and I-tunes these places were disappearing faster than blow at a stripper party but somewhere along the line vinyl began to get fashionable again or maybe kids just wanted something that wasn't fucking zeroes and ones and had art on the cover and sounded really fucking good as they sat around pulling tubes... and of course those are all good reasons but besides that the record store is like a good pub, sometimes you can learn shit or be turned on to new things and hell dare i say it can broaden ones horizons, world view et al...

And so i rose early on Saturday and drove to my old hood and stood in line, and of course with every good intention there comes the bad ones, you see RSD was started to help these little indy places, you can't find this shit at Best Buy but an hour after the first stores open you can find it on Ebay for about 5 times what you could have gotten it in the store for but that's commerce for you and if there is a buck to be made someone will be trying to make it, yet it really pisses off the cats like me who actually get into it for the music and the art work and what have you and that's not to say i haven't flipped a few records in my day cuz i have i just don't make it my primary reason for getting up that early and standing in line and battling crowds...

My favorite joint is a little place near my old house and i've been going to it for 19 years now, it's changed owners but other than 1 asshole clerk who thankfully took his math rock band and fucked off to Chi-town it's always been owned and staffed by some great people, mainly guys in bands or old heads and the current owner was in this local band that i heard when i was sleeping on the floor way back in 1993 and the full electric version of the song made me think this guy must be some arrogant prick but in reality is one of the nicest fucking guys you'll ever want to meet, a soft spoken and down to earth guy with a wife and kids and still playing music but understanding he'll never be a darling over at Pitchfork though when you hear the guys records i for the life of me can't understand why he was never the biggest fucking thing in indie rawk...

And for the most part everyone at this place is cool, you can call out if you're looking for something and chances are someone will pass it to you people are civil and polite and it's the exact fucking opposite of black friday at Wal-Mart, of course there are some tools and this one guy just annoys the living fuck out of me as he frets and shakes and pops Xanax for his anxiety all due to trying to grab all the coveted vinyl on his list, and hey it's nice to get all the shit you're hoping for but just like X-mas when you was a kid you may not and hell if you got the dosh or the patience or sometimes both you can always find it on the interwebz, sometimes you just have to wait for the price to drop a bit but as Jimmy Cliff once said, you can get it if you really want it, and so i'm sure you're all wondering what the hell did i get out of bed so early for? Well i'm sucker for colored vinyl and the record up yonder was re-mastered and re-issued on some swirling pink, grey, black and white vinyl and man does it sound good, if you don't know my love of the Velvets you must be new around here but that's okay cuz just like the record store we cool...

Now what else? There was the Joy Division's Ideal for Living EP, re-mastered off the original tape or some such shit but without all the Teutonic cover art that adorned the original, there was a copy of Drive By Truckers Dragon Pants EP on 10" vinyl and if you haven't heard their new album i highly recommend it, there was a Parquet Courts 7" (for those who like the might Fall or Pavement), and then there was my two most coveted records, a 7" picture disc of the beloved Harry Dean Stanton complete with a full size poster of his documentary Partly Fiction and a box set of Dinosaur Jr. 7"s with the original artwork of their first four singles and new one of the boys covering the Cure and the Byrds, and as we also know J. Mascis is very popular guy around here, fuck that band from Seattle, Dinosaur Jr. put them to shame and though  Kurt was a decent guitarist J. is a fucking virtuoso, when you hear something J. plays on you know it immediately cuz he's that distinct and i could go on and on about him but i wont' cuz i feel like blazing up and listening to some records... I'm a nerd you know.
 
 

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Once Around the Weekend



They always tell you things come in three's or go in circles, i think that was like the whole fucking point of the Lion King if i'm not mistaken and today i was sitting at the park watching the boyos go ape shit all over the place and enjoying the sun beating down on my face, out of the corner of my eye i saw this guy i thought i knew, knew from what now feels like an entire lifetime ago, and it struck how when i was a kid i used to walk past the bars and gaze in wonder at the dimly lit places, hear the music and smell the booze and cigarettes, and then i got to be a teenager, a tall teenager who could grow a damn fine 5 o' clock shadow and soon i was getting into a few of these places and then i turned legal age and for a long time the damn well were my church, a place so holy that i felt the need to go and worship every day, sometimes multiple times depending on the mood and finances... and this from someone who freely admits that booze was always secondary to the drugs, but the atmosphere and the anthropology were second to none, i learned so much in those well spent hours in various pubs, in various cities, countries, backwoods, suburbs...

And yet these days it's back to the beginning, back to not really giving a fuck if i get there or not, back to drinking in my basement or at my friend's place and driving by the neon and gazing in but not really wanting to venture towards the door,  as if i  was a teenager again...  and i know that the main reason is that i like to be home and close to the boyos and for a guy who put running the streets and practically living in bars at a premium it gives me a good chuckle these days when i realize where i'm at now...

And so this guy i knew from another life and i spent a half hour or so cocking our heads and trying to figure out if we knew each other and at one point he walked over and said, "Kono?" and i laughed and said yup and we struck up a conversation about school districts and real estate taxes and the kind of shit you'd expect from two guys standing in a suburban park... and it probably struck us both as surreal, of course not as surreal as the day we walked into Lamaze class and saw each other but back then we were different guys...

You see back then i was on what could only be politely called a serious coke bender, yes kids you may ask how serious could it have been? but when you begin talking years and not weeks or day or months you get the gist, i'm guessing it was close to four and like most benders it starts all innocently enough and then soon snowballs into the abominable snow dude, but that is a tale for some other day, and so here were two former fuck-ups, the last guys at the party, the ones who leave the bar and head straight to the after hours club, the ones you end up sitting on the front porch with or in smoky apartments while the sun comes up and you haven't been to bed yet, there we were talking about school districts and real estate taxes and then we went our separate ways and i came home and threw Mr. Westerberg on the turntable and just like happy accidents should happen, side 2 song 2 kinda sums up how i feel these days, and it feels alright...