No, I haven’t been posting some weird zombie erotic novella piecemeal. I’ve been trying to write a Welcome to October blog post but I keep…drifting over into a stream of consciousness vomiting on my country’s reaction to mass shootings. I’m having a low kind of day. I won’t go into that because I’m a god damn pixie of positivity, curse words better suited for sailors inserted here.
After all, I went to school at UNLV, grad school. I lived there for three years. I endured flash floods, cockroaches, truly insane neighbors and heat. But it was a dry heat. Which, hell, I prefer and grew up with. Eastern Oregon, Western Idaho, Southern Washington State, all one big happy high desert sorta landscape. Humidity?? What’s that? I moved to Maryland and found out. Gawd! So, Las Vegas was just hotter than I was used to but still dry. No humidity!
Mandalay Bay went up the last year I was in school there in Lost Wages. A big gorgeous casino, to compete with the other big gorgeous casinos and the older, looser slots of real Vegas, on Frontier…off the ‘Strip’. Or the slots in the various grocery stores. People playing the poker machines at the local Lucky in my neighborhood, fun times. You went to Wal-Mart after midnight so your car tires didn’t melt. Fun times as well. Yeah, I drank and acted in very stupid ways and somehow managed to walk away with a degree in, yep, playwriting. Or writing, if I want to sound more hire-able.
I have friends there yet, in Sin City. Oh a list of major ‘worst shootings in modern American history’ since 2007:
Oct. 1, 2017. Las Vegas
July 7, 2016. Dallas
June 12, 2016. Orlando
Dec. 2, 2015. San Bernardino
Nov. 27, 2015. Colorado Springs
Oct. 1, 2015. Roseburg
July 16, 2015. Chattanooga
June 17, 2015. Charleston
Oct. 24, 2014. Marysville
May 23, 2014. Isla Vista
April 2, 2014. Killeen
Sept. 16, 2013. Washington, D.C.
June 7, 2013. Santa Monica
Dec. 14, 2012. Newtown
Oct. 21, 2012. Brookfield
Sept. 27, 2012. Minneapolis
Aug. 5, 2012. Oak Creek
July 20, 2012. Aurora
April 2, 2012. Oakland
Oct. 12, 2011. Seal Beach
Jan. 8, 2011. Tucson
Aug. 3, 2010. Manchester
Feb. 12, 2010. Huntsville
Nov. 5, 2009. Killeen
April 3, 2009. Binghamton
Feb. 14, 2008. DeKalb
Dec. 5, 2007. Omaha
April 16, 2007. Blacksburg
Thoughts and prayers offered. More like a ‘fuck you, lol– from your true leaders at the NRA’ …in actuality.
Oh sure, granpa fought the entire German army with a butterknife and a can-do bootstrap spirit so mass shootings by lone wolf, probably mentally ill, sorts JUST HAPPEN FOR NO REASON AT ALL…suck it up, buttercups. Granpa didn’t fight the entire German army with a dull, broken butter knife so you libtard commies can take our gunz. 2A, you assholes! How dare you. How dare you. How dare you try and come for our gunz? We can’t do anything to stop these massacres, because libtards took prayers out of schools so society is sick now. Sick! Gunz have nothing to do with it! Nothing! And Chicago. Yeah, Chicago defeats anything you libtards throw out, LOL.
The above is…yeah. That’s kinda what passes for ‘discussion’ about gun control here in the USA. Australia had that one Port Author thing…Yeah, but Australia doesn’t have our population and they’re not free there, they don’t even have roads yet. Yeah, LOL, Australia, fuck them.
So…I’ll drift over into Halloween waters.
Where the zombie is high and the livin’ is easy. A slight riff on Summertime, from Porgy and Bess.
How I love October. It’s getting colder, pumpkins are everywhere. I’m not talking the pumpkin spice craporama that infiltrates EVERYTHING. Jesus, just buy some Pumpkin Pie spice and be done with it. Holy flipping gerbils!
No, it’s the actual rounded balls of squash that have the distinctive coloring that thrill my cold, dead soul. Something about that deep orange of a pumpkin’s sides…claws me in that good way like no other squash does. Not even the summer squashes make me have to stop and caress their quivering sides with a single finger.
No, squash don’t quiver. Stay with me a bit. It’s okay. I love to carve faces into pumpkins, oh yes. I love to murder pumpkins and put candles where their guts used to be. Guts meaning the seeds and stringy crap you have to yank out or scoop out with a big spoon.
And yes, dressing up and going out to drink myself into an actual blackout event. That, too. Sometimes, that is. Maybe twice. I’m not admitting to anything. There was one after-Halloween morning where I woke up with pantyhose embedded in my knee. Embedded in an actual wound I had somehow sustained. No memory, even now, of how that hose came to be smashed into my wound like that. Ever yanked blood-encrusted pantyhose from a wound in your knee? Fun times. Did I magically stop drinking, change my ways, become a constructive member of society and cure cancer? Uh. No.
Ah, zombie tequila nights. I went out, in China, on the actual Halloween night. No, it’s not really celebrated there, for those of you keeping score on your Who Celebrates What Holidays cards, which can be turned in, when full, for prizes. I did full zombie makeup. I looked truly hideous. Like someone had beaten the crap out of me. Now, in China, women are supposed to look pretty all the damn time. Why go out looking like death warmed over, ever? It’s nearly unthinkable. And anything performance-wise or dressing up wise…you go for glam and pretty, not zombie-ish and stomach-turning.
That’s right. I went out, by myself, on Halloween. In China.
I had a great night. I drifted in with others I sorta kinda knew. I ended up at this one little bar that became my favorite bar for reasons I won’t ever discuss in public. [Probably exactly what you’re thinking.] Lenore’s. Yep, a bar called Lenore’s in Shenyang, China. It was around the corner from the Swiss place, Heidi’s, where you could get stuff with cheese on it. Cheese. Real cheese. For about the cost of what you made every two weeks teaching but still. [Not really but close enough.]
Swiss-French-German food in China, to be found at Heidi’s.
And just down the street and slightly around the corner was Uncle Sam’s. An American bar. Run by an actual sleazy American guy who oozed creepiness. But it was American, with an actual American feel to it. An actual dive bar that any self-respecting Sons of Anarchy sort would have felt comfy in. Uncle Sam’s served burgers. Real actual hamburgers. With cheese. Are you under the impression that China is not real big on cheese? Impression correct! Yes, there was also a McDonald’s and right before I left China for, oh, good, a Burger King went up.
But!!! A not-mass produced burger and hand cut fries, worth the high price. Worth it. Especially when you’re far, oh so gosh darn far, from home. Even a crappy burger and overpriced limp fries, worth it.
I remember Uncle Sam’s solely for the Go Ducks! graffiti written on the wall. As in, yes, the University of Oregon Ducks. If I turned my head, there it was, when I sat at the tables along the filthy wall. It wasn’t a dirty place, it just gave you that feel of filth, depravity and the need to take a shower right after leaving the premises. So yeah, an actual real life dive bar in the heart of Manchuria.
Reminded me strongly of the biker bar in La Grande, Oregon. The Long Branch. Oh, they had cheap, cheap alcohol– as in dollar tequila night. Shots of rotgut tequila for a buck. OMG doesn’t even begin to describe what nights like that did to poor widdle country mouse me.
Mostly because I don’t remember that much about said dollar shots of tequila nights at the Long Branch. I do remember throwing up, getting vomit on my shirt, then turning it inside out and telling myself no one would notice. Except. My shirt had shoulder pads. And yep, I walked out of the bathroom with an inside out shirt and shoulder pads revealed…can you picture that? It’s a dim, misty swirl in my head at best but apparently, people still tell that tale about me. Fun!
Also, there are Halloween parties I both threw and attended that linger fondly in my noggin. Nights of debauchery, clownish makeup and inviting Satan to nestle in my heart. Costumes I recycled, costumes I made an hour before going out. Costumes I planned for almost two months. Witches, ghosts, Satan’s Mistress, a sock puppet, a yes, zombie…mostly scary choices. I have more fun doing zombie makeup than slutty nurse makeup. I know!
I should just do a post about my drinking. It was, at one time, legendary and truly awful. And one on China and how I revived my truly awful drinking habits. And a post on why America is now a parody of itself and not in a good way. And…oh. I’ll probably just try to stick to hustling my stuff.
Hugs and kisses from a zombie at heart. Oh. I somehow started a zombie novel…yeah. It’s weird how that shit takes off from a weird stray suggestion found on a stray bit of paper written, uh, X amount of years ago. A woman wakes up after killing herself during a zombie apocalypse. Aftermath. That was it. And I’ve been flinging words ever since. Restarted it, of course. I really like my main character, who finds herself in a zombie-run world and who…oh, that’s a whole other post, my lovelies.