Happy almost New Year’s, everyone! We made it. It’s been a damn slog through shit and torment for some, but here we are.
I wrote the following ages ago. 2001. It’s actually been published a few times. So I’ll post it here as well. Yes, I lived in Maryland for a year or so.
ON LEAVING MARYLAND Oct 24, 01
This landscape of density– bays, capes, chunky rivers with salt currents, Chesapeake, St. Mary’s, Magothy, Elk, Patapsco. Those highways, byways, freeways, cloverleafs, turnpikes; no road going where it should, no direction sane or logical; towns designed by blind, malicious children with better things to do that day. Summer in Annapolis– a creamily green jungle of humidity, oppressive like a moist fevered hand against the face. Not like the sagebrush-smeared lands at all. Where everything is seen, where everything is measured in miles, not the time to get there. Too many trees in Anne Arundel County, boles dark and fulsome with mold and mildew; the iron of my wind chimes turns red overnight. I can’t remember how to think here… The fan’s little motor hissing beside my bed and my skin riddled with sweat and pores and odd hairs. And the winter before, the heat did not come on. They have gas here, pilot lights and little blue flames. Always out, unlit, hidden beneath, out of reach of my short arms. The drawbridge going up and down for sailboats, the neighbor man offering to show me and my friend his one testicle, the other he’d lost in Vietnam. Someone placed the ocean here. But even that blue beast has to endure weekend sailors.
Happy December. I wrote the following ‘a while back’ when I lived in Maryland. Pre- 9/11. The kitten has been up since two thirty. So, too, have I.
Shivering, I am always cold or always hot, sometimes mildly comfortable for a few hours. I like how socks look on my feet. As if my feet were small, delicate and fashionable. However, they are wide, callused and stubby, but they get me around. Which is what feet are supposed to do. Poor feet, I am always losing my socks. Sometimes they don’t match, sometimes they have holes, sometimes they’re new socks. Will I be old someday, still looking for a matching pair of foot coverings? Wandering about in some room that no longer exists, looking underneath imaginary chairs for my socks? Calling out, as if they will answer. I’m cold. Come do your job. I’m shivering. Naughty socks, to hide that way from an old insane lady.
Well, it was on TMC, which has been showing Tarzan movies for days now for some reason. I got to see the Johnny Weissmuller Tarzan, the Ape Man, and part of Tarzan and His Mate. I’ve seen both already, if we’re all being strictly honest here.
So there it was. With that title. Come on! You’d scroll past that title?
Is it weird 1950’s era porn? It is a horror movie? Is Tarzan facing off against the actual devil, who’s a woman?? What can it be?
I read the synopsis–Lyra wants Tarzan to bring her lots of elephants to kill so she can harvest their ivory, but Tarzan refuses.
So, in trying to get Tarzan to comply, Lyra has her henchmen [one played by Raymond Burr, who oddly reminded me of the guy who plays Negan on the Walking Dead.] kidnap Jane to persuade Our Hero to do as Lyra wants.
The henchmen, of course, mess this up! Jane is presumed dead, the tree house gets burned down, Tarzan gets captured. What??
SPOILER——–> Don’t worry. Tarzan wins the day.
There’s also, gulp, some tribe of white folks living in the…African jungle, who look like products of actual Aryan breeding, right down to the curly blond hair and Nordic cheekbones galore. And that’s just the manly men of that tribe. Yeah. Uh.
My mind went pffft.
And stayed off the rest of the movie, it had to, out of sheer primal survival needs.
This tribe of Vikings gets tapped to do the heavy lifting as the ‘natives’ are, um, lazy and don’t wanna work hard and…PFFFFT. The men get captured, helped to escape, by Tarzan and then re-captured because…SHE-DEVIL wants her some money-making ivory, baby!
So, Jane fights the same snake and crocodile from all the other movies, gets sick, has to be healed by a guy dressed in straw and beads, and Tarzan allows himself to be gently tortured by Raymond Burr. Whose character, by the way, is the actual villain of the movie.
The she-devil seems oddly caring and concerned about people, especially Tarzan. Who’s this 6’4″ GORGEOUS man with blond hair and Weissmuller’s swimmer build.
I then note this actor, Lex Barker, has played Tarzan about five times. And died in his early fifties. Ah! Sad!
Because, yes, I looked this movie up on IMDB. I’d never heard of it.
Because it stormed all afternoon so I couldn’t stare at my mini garden, looking for new leaves. Or take a quick peek into the bird’s nest in the privet hedge. Or go look for the dog’s lost ball, which he loves and wants back. It’s been lost for days now.
Yes, actual thunderstorms and some actual rain.
Of course, all the animal stuff, it just jars you. You know good and well animals were hurt during the Tarzan shoots, you just freaking know that. But.
When the editing is off or does those jumps, you notice how the elephant will lie down first and then get attacked and ‘killed’. I also noted that the monkeys, in one of the Tarzan movies I peeked at for a bit…and I watched several because I’m a sad sad little shut-in…were actually people in monkey suits. Cheetah was real, at times. I guess?
At one point, Tarzan jumped on a hippo to escape crocodiles. There was the shot of an actual hippo and then the very fake hippo with Tarzan sprawled across that weird fake back like some sort of human frog.
Oh and my fave. When Tarzan fights not one, but two lions. That was not in the She-Devil one, and was Johnny, not Lex.
We clearly see the fake lion that Tarzan wrestles, mixed in with a real lion that just growls and runs about looking spooked…as if someone had a whip and chair and a torch off-screen to get it to go where the director wants. I don’t know if that’s what they did, but that’s what it looks like.
So, our manly jungle man kills the lioness, then faces off against a lion. Back to back fights with giant felines.
Tarzan also is seen taking on a gnu, killing it with a small knife after twisting its head about as the animal yells accordingly, and then cutting off a hunk of raw meat from the carcass as yet another lion runs up to drag off this dead beast as Tarzan heads up the nearest tree, one hand full of actual raw meat.
Jarred is rather too polite a word to express my inner WTF screaming.
Was that a real goddamn gnu? It sure looked a little too real. Brain PFFFT. Ah, that’s better.
If you’ve seen any of the creaky Tarzan flicks, you know a bit of what I’m blithering on about.
Oh my gosh, the rampant racism…can I get an amen? It’s…wow. You just…wow.
And I don’t remember which film this was, but I do remember Weissmuller in it– where I think it was supposed to be pygmies who had a pit with a giant ape-thing in it. Who killed whatever victims the pygmies? children dressed up in weird ways? threw down to it.
Now, the monkey monster thing was a man, obviously so, dressed up in some sort of monkey outfit. And oddly more pitiful than scary. I wasn’t scared of that thing. It was deformed and lumpy and sad. I wanted to help it.
Yeah, it was tossing victims around like they were stuffed bunnies, but…still. One of the intended victims was, ahem, Jane. Who got to do the faint and be carried bit. Oh my! That same limp draped in the villain’s or monster’s arms popular go-to.
Oh the pygmies. Or Little People in blackface. Or children. Or…yeah. That was. You just. Your brain stops.
You’re going, am I seeing this? Is that, uh, what is that? What’s happening here? And then you go– golly, so glad we’re in post-racist times! [Sarcasm. That was sarcasm.]
You then switch over to the Hallmark movie where a young couple fight gently to remain in love and save their bed and breakfast and the guy gives up Manhattan for a goat. A goat. He misses the goats.
So, yeah, I switched back to Tarzan. I’m a sad little shut-in, did I mention that??
Why am I writing about Tarzan movies that today would be rightfully skewered for their KKK-esque treatment of Africa and all that?
I’ve been avoiding a big long political rant for some time because…I’d lose my marbles and not get them back for some time if I did.
SPOILER—————> Political shriek almost here. Look away now if you’re squeamish.
I also have Handmaid’s Tale, season one, waiting to be watched. For a week now.
I peek at the American political landscape and it’s almost as if this Hulu series is more of a documentary than grim misery porn entertainment.
I don’t need to watch a television series where a country morphs into some sort of hellish biological prison for women, who are forced to breed for the state. Is that not where American is headed RIGHT FUCKING NOW? Look at Iowa. Look at the Bible Belt.
You have trouble breathing as this shit starts to stack up and stack up and stack up. Is this where dictatorships starts? Of course it is.
But where is the tide to stop the rising tide of totalitarianism? Where are the check and balances? Where are the loud-voiced pugnacious fighters on the side of common sense, common decency and basic rights for all people, not just the few selected Christian-esque males who make all the laws and hoard all the money?
Right now, it’s comedians versus politicians and actual presidents. It’s people doing satire versus people unable to understand why they are fodder for the satire cannons.
That absence of self-awareness just shines right through there on the Alt-Right. Wheee!!! It’s people greedily hurting as many as possible then claiming they’re the real victims here.
When conservatives and such are called out on their nastiness, their hypocrisy, their crimes and misdemeanors, their schemes and frauds and underhand dealings…they cry and scream and claim they’re the ones being attacked and marginalized.
And it works, it works, it works so very well.
There was an actual New York Times op-ed piece [by Bari Weiss] on JUST THAT VERY FUCKING BULLSHIT TACTIC. Being presented as if…as if very very true.
As if those conservatives screaming and stomping in so many public places, and on the media lately and gosh, always, have been silenced and not allowed to speak at all…while speaking about how silenced they are.
With no awareness that they are speaking, about being silenced, WHILE GETTING AN INTERNATIONAL PLATFORM TO AIR THEIR ALLEGED GRIEVANCES.
God damn it. GOD DAMN IT.
Ah, mini political rant. Well. There ya go.
Oh and to end this weird mash-up of Tarzan and political shrieking, I got some submissions sent off. A film noir-inspired play for a contest in Los Angeles and three plays for some woman-heavy festival in Detroit. I think I’ve been rejected by both places.
But yesterday, this woman from Columbia [the country!] wants to create a work around one of my short plays, as well as use that same play for some university something or other. The Care and Feeding of Baby Birds.
Sometimes the universe gives you a small sign that yes, you can sorta write stuff people actually do respond to once in a blue moon.
And then you wonder how Tarzan always looked so shaved and groomed in those old Tarzan movies. No chest hair. Did he manscape, too? Those loincloths don’t hide a lot.
You have to wonder about grooming because the movie itself seems full of fake stuffed animals stalking the latest version of Jane and people dressed up like some Grand Dragon’s most acid-laced dream about Africans in actual Africa.
And those ‘long ago’ views on black people seem the same as they are right now in 2018…holy fake stuffed lion, ya’ll.
But gee, Tarzan’s kinda nice to look at if you ignore everything else…
Someone in the internet interverse referred to the movie, the Shape of Water, as Fucking Nemo. That has stuck with me.
I’ve read a review over on Movie Boozers where they shredded this film, nearly as much as they went after the Fifty Shades stuff. Okay, not as much, but close. If you’ve never heard of Movie Boozers, go check them out. I find myself actually LAUGHING OUT LOUD at their take on the current and past crop of films. [It might even have been on Movie Boozers where I read that reduction of Shape of Water into Sex with Pixar Character.]
1. Shape Of Water: That said, Shape of Water robs me of the ability to coherently speak due to its staggering levels of self-indulgent, and highly disturbing, narrative dissonance. YOU CAN’T MAKE ME BELIEVE IN AN INTERSPECIES LOVE STORY IF THEIR BIG ROMANCE PRIMARILY INVOLVES LINING UP EGGS ALONG AQUAMAN’S TANK FOR BRING-YOUR-PET-TO-WORK SNACK TIME BEFORE YOU, UGHHHHHHH, BANG HIM GIVE IT UP AND SWIPE LEFT ON TINDER LIKE THE REST OF US, BISH. Oh, yeah, I wondered when the all caps button would get stuck again. No. Just no.
So, I rented the film. Yes, from Red Box. I’m one of those people who miss Blockbuster. Now you have a real and awful glimpse into my soul.
The Shape of Water had just won the Academy Award for, uh, everything? Best Picture, at least, I remember that. And it’s by the guy who did Pan’s Labyrinth. Which, if I need an excuse to sob and feel bad for days, I pop into my DVD player and wallow in the soul-destroying beauty of that film. I don’t need an excuse to sob and feel bad for days, my brain does that to me all on its own…so.
Okay! I expected a gorgeous, dark film, full of uncomfortable truths and great visuals. Perhaps the people who had not liked this film were more into Lifetime movies about abused women taking back their lives and crazed stalkers being brought to justice. Or movies where shit blows up and it’s ninety percent men with lots of sweaty muscles on display and giant weapons, not to mention shotguns and flamethrowers. Tee hee.
First off, the film really is gorgeous. The tones reflect a rather watery world, with cool wavery blues, shadows, blurred lights, night setting…yeah. The tiny apartments they lived in, yes, yes, yes. People with no actual money living in tiny dark dingy places! Yes, ma’am! Our heroine masturbating every night before she goes to work, hey, who hasn’t done that when having to work graveyard? Hands? Tee hee.
Though, I honestly did like that this woman, who lives alone, masturbates on a regular basis and the film maker regards it as normal and natural. It’s just part of who she is. Score! She’s not waiting for some man or beast to ‘wake her up’. She’s woke, baby. It’s just rather startling and pleasant to see a depiction of female sexuality that’s about HER PLEASURE and that she just enjoys it.
It also gave the movie a foreign film air. As America cinema tends to paint women as shrills, shrews, bitches, cold sex-hating ex-wives or very young whores/madonnas. Masturbation among American cinema females is seen as desperate, old-maid behavior. See Girls Trip for an example of this. Jokes about detachable shower nozzles here please.
Okay, before we veer off into how the movies treat women’s sexuality…
Secondly! I expected more and got far less from this movie. The story…eh. It’s the wallflower and the outsider; they just added a fishman to the mix. Is that bestiality? If you’re having an affair with something with gills? Are we edging over into, gulp, tentacle porn? Well, sort of. We do get brief fish/heroine sex. We also got a finger show on how the fishman’s penis works.
Now, Adult Nemo, wow. Well done on that. It didn’t look like some skinny dude wrapped in plastic and making weird sounds, like oh, the Creature from the Black Lagoon. There seemed to be an utter believability to this fishman of Shape of Water. That it could mate with a human…eh. Does that make it part human? Because that would get into some actual legal and ethical issues over keeping it locked up, torturing it and yes, you guessed, killing it and then dissecting it later on.
Because what do movie scientists and military folks do the very second they get their moist hands on something exotic, out of this world or unknown and rare? Right! They wanna cut it up and look at its guts! Oh my goddess!! Can we for once NOT GO DOWN THIS PARTICULAR PLOT HELLWAY? Scientists find some one of a kind creature and WANT TO KILL IT RIGHT OFF? Are you INSANE? I just…it’s just not logical or…god damn it!
What if they had discovered the fishman was some sort of undiscovered evolutionary shoot of humans?? What??!! I’m already more interested in that angle than the tired, played out, little shy mouse falls in love with some outcast who falls in love with her, wah, the end.
Thirdly–The storyteller, the film maker here…took away her voice. My my. In a time when it’s so horrifically obvious that women’s voices are already pretty much silenced, to feature a MUTE FUCKING WOMAN as your main character…Jesus wept.
And then that dream sequence where she sings and dances…dances with the fishman…I…I honestly didn’t know what to make of this. Because it seems more fairy tale/fantasy than the entire film combined and then some. It jarred me. It was beautifully done but seemed at odds with the entire rest of the film. Ah, there it is.
Okay! Here’s four. Here we go. Hold on to something.
Let’s move on to the super-concentrated Batman-esque villain that rape-romps his way through Shape of Water, shall we?
Michael Shannon is one of my favorite actors. He’s scary-sexy; yeah. I can’t explain it better than that. He should have been Christian Grey. I bet Shannon spitting out those truly abysmal lines would have been something to hear and watch. That intensity, that quiet intent, that notion that he could go pussycat or psycho tiger and you’d welcome both.
My crushes are weird and varied, sorry. If you got through my take on The Big Lebowski…yep.
Now! As the villain of this film, eh. I’m going to blame the story here.
This villain, a government procurer of oddities–honestly, that’s what I thought his job was. He just goes around slapping the shit out of weird animals/human hybrids and grinding his teeth because his wife talks too much-– brings in a tank full of SOMETHING to this government facility in Baltimore, Maryland.
It was found in South America. It does not like our villain and shows this by biting off two fingers, which our heroine finds. Now, the fingers being sewn back on to his hand and then rotting away…that alone was great. It was visual, it summed up the villain, it…yeah. Our villain is a rotting smelly finger! Got it!
The problem with the villain? One-note. Bang bang bang. He’s one of the sharks from a sharknado. You just sit back and wait for someone to chainsaw this guy in half while spouting a sporty one-liner.
Not to mention, he’s such an OBVIOUS villain, everyone knows to avoid him and fight him. He’s repulsive, he’s a bully and then some; he’s a concentrated dickhead.
I wanted so much more from Shannon’s role. Oh my gosh, a love triangle developing instead of him trying to be a rapey asshole to our heroine.
What if he had been torn by the empathy and such Rita shows to the fishman [is there an official name for the creature?], which makes his job all the harder as he, too, starts to understand and sympathize with Fishy? Sort of like the Russian spy guy…who had an actual character, motivation and arc. He, the Russian spy guy, sympathizes with the monster, and helps with the escape…by planting something that so very obvious the Russians would have used…in a facility full of American military personnel. I just. Ugh.
What if we get to see something other than kill kill wanna rape that silent freak girl I’m mean mean mean from the villain? Give Shannon a real acting challenge. Give him a place to go. He can’t start at ten and stay at ten and end the movie at ten. Boring!
And worse, just bad screenwriting. It’s a rookie mistake. This is a rookie mistake in a straight to dvd movie called Bad Villain, Part 8, Revenge of Squishy. [A Finding Nemo shout-out.]
Give us a story where we root for everyone and it breaks our hearts. Because those we root for can’t all win in the end…which is rather closer to actual stories of love in real life.
This is touted as a fairy tale.
Fairy tales tend to teach lessons. On behavior and what to do and how society deals with those who step off the path. [Badly. Badly is the answer. Do as you’re told, ladies.] So what do we learn from The Shape of Water?
Love conquers all, even death. Yeah, except it doesn’t.
Bad guys always get theirs. Yeah, except when they don’t and they seldom do in real life, if their lawyers are competent.
Friendship is rewarding and wonderful. Yes, actually, it is. Point awarded. I really enjoyed the relationship between Eliza and Giles, played by Richard Jenkins. Far more than the romance between Rita and Adult Nemo…oh dear. I keep thinking her name is Rita. It’s not?
Scientists are evil and always want to kill everything. Except for the Russian double agent guys, because they know about being different? I’m not sure at all here what I’m supposed to take away about scientists.
Red shoes are a sign of rebellion.
Oh yes, you thought I wouldn’t bring up the RED SHOES our heroine, Rita, [or Eliza. Why do I think her name is RITA? Why?] bought and then wore. Women and shoes, oh yes. Uh huh. Though, women really do love shoes. Here’s why.
Your feet don’t look fat in shoes. Your shoe size doesn’t go up or down, after all.
No one looks at your feet and tells you about the latest diet craze or that you have such a pretty face, it’s a shame you’re such a hideous porker from the depths of hell. Of course, if you have hooves for feet…welp. So no, women can’t win this one, either. Sorry!
Same thing with jewelry or scarves or hats.
But. Red shoes. She couldn’t buy them before she…DISCOVERED NEMO LOVIN’. And got her groove going and discovered her inner sand dollar! Oh god damn it to hell and back and then back again.
An actual romance novel/chick flick staple! Fuck me running.
That woman who finds courage to buy some article of clothing because…I just can’t, my brain liquefied for a bit. It’s Pretty Woman and she gets to wear pretty clothes! Incoherent scream snarls inserted here.
It might seem I hated this movie. I didn’t. Most of it was well done and entirely watchable. Other parts, not so much. I wanted to love it, I just couldn’t get there. It was no Sharnado II. Feeble joke but you get the point? Sharknado II came together as a whole…Shape of Water just did not. This is why I do not review movies for a living or, um, ever.
Yes, I did compare a movie about sharks raining down on NYC with a movie about interspecies romance that won actual big time awards. Yes, I did.
I had the same problem with La La Land. I could admire the artistry, and that scene in the planetarium, City of Stars. Wow. That I actually watched with real wonder and a slight ache in the remaining straggles of my soul. But the La La story, oh so overdone and been there many times feel to it. Trying to make it in LA as an actress…slap me with a mackerel. And the ending. I wanted to just beat the film makers with a sack full of moldy pudding. It would be gross but not leave bruises.
I hesitated about posting this at all.
It’s rambling, long, disjointed, full of adult language and adult themes and reveals I have a bit of a crush on Michael Shannon. But.
It’s my blog, right?
A few only will glance at this and then go on to look at cute cat videos and some super-popular mommy blog and add their comments under politically charged stories written in the Washington Post.
And last night, Michelle Wolfe roasted all of D.C. and the media. She didn’t mince words. So, if she can do that, I can post a random movie review.
Oh, the mini garden is doing okay. In case you were hankering for news in that area from yours truly.
I wrote the following after receiving a rejection.
Then moi conceived a magnificent plan.
Here’s my ‘brilliant’ plan!!
I’ll write some stream of consciousness, totally woke prosepoemsmear and submit that to X submission opportunity! It will be lacking in actual grammar, structure and paternal literary merits! It will have no merit. None. Not a whiff of merit. I stayed highly aware of my own wokeness the entire time I typed that below. Did North Korea just flippin’ BOMB US?? Where is the vodka?
If I consider ‘murica right now…I’ll start eating my bad hair. I won’t bother with a mustard chaser this time.
Flapdoodle sexbugs of Ganderv55
CarLISLE gives nothing and I rot like a dream as we rut in the leaves beneath the tree of his mother. She brings us old toast and new coffee her hair on fire from daddysexjuice and we smell her burning but she pours us coffee and scolds us about jesus who is meek and mild and full of corn. mother moother you are old news and mother directs us like traffic cones into the river of my lovers who slap me with morality. i screamed could not find my way but my carLISLE advised me to take three aspirin and stuff them in my sexbug and oooooh i discovered the sands of my own breasts and i wept because i am not awake.
we went on the sidewalk found a cup and a dead idea, took both back in our backpack and put them in a cage because it’s all we know of high heels. dream on screamed moother and we dreamed on
until father gave us gum that smelled like cinnamon whores at low tide which created ghosts in our intestines that we farted out as ironic statements of purpose for ivy schools that never considered us contenders. I WORE A YELLOW FLAPDOODLE and nobody told me I WORE A YELLOW FLAPDOODLE and I wondered why no one told me because i posted the bread pictures and everyone hit the yes button and told me yes yes yes and squirted yes juice into my burning eyes. I tire to be brilliant but the diamonds turn to rodents in my kneecaps where slime shops for canned meat and mark down cancer drugs. WHY WON’T U SLAP MEE mmmooother asked as she sliced smelly lettuce for the eternal meal
and sister, my sister is dead yet sits on my right hand better than god or allah because she gives me pink gummy bears for my sexbug slit and doesn’t need them back to glue in her scrapbook where she once glued a live frog that begged her to traditional marry it and she told it no, it wasn’t fresh and that she wanted a turtle to lay eggs in her vast pulsing worldwomb. My sister puts her hair out to be sliced and my mother slices it slices and my sister marries the frog and glues herself in the scrapbook that’s how she died and yet how she lives because i can cut her shape from the pages and stick them to my eyes so she stares at me as i paddle over the rainbutt and into the dirk
but CarLISLE won’t say. Theres nothing there and I MADE HIM UP because father asked me to and we all obey we all obey
except the cat but the cat lives on some other plane thats not here at all poor cat.
77 oh 5 hump my leg like naughty poodles of elves left in the jupitor rain and all the numbers confuse me with yearning
so i dig up the cat and the cat doesnt scratch me because mooother
cut off its soul and used it for a suncatcher but the sun stays captured in my father who hangs strips of his love on the wall like narrow rewards won at turkey shoots.
run brother run
u hav no bro says car and i curl up and shud at it all but the Ganderv55 invasive me so i sigh thru the orgi and use vanilla soap and my cookie smell sells stocks so great men can shit with ease
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.