Wednesday, December 31, 2008

THEY GOT THE FIRE DOWN BELOW

A BULLETHOLES NEW YEAR REDUX


Back in 1998 I was lucky enough to live in a very bad part of town where Crack and Crack Whores ran rampant.I never partook of either, but at some point we all became "neighbors"
As I would pull down the gravel alley at 5:30 in the morning on my way to work, there were two girls on the corner that always asked me if I wanted a "date"; being a bit of a rube, it took me a while to figure out what was going on there.
But before long, as I would pull in at the end of the day, they would all wave at me and I would holler out the window
"Hellllloooo Ladies!"
"Yabba-Dabba-Doo!" or
"Honey, I'm home!"
or somesuch.

Some times I would go to the corner and talk with them late at night, staying out of sight so as to not drive off any prospects. There were probably 3 or4 girls that worked that area at any given time.
One night a guy I knew from High School pulled up. Was he surprised to see me!
But thats not what this story is about.

This story is about the very pretty little girl that would work the streets on occasion. She had beautiful, soft looking, well groomed hair that she would toss about in a very sexy way. She seemed different from the other girls…
I figured she was a "Part-Timer", a fairly bored housewife that came out on ocvcasion for a taste of life on the edge.

One morning in my driveway I was checking my oil. This pretty little girl was passing by and so I said
“Good morning”, because really, I had been dying to say something to this pretty little whore.
She stopped and tossed her hair back and shielded her eyes from the sun and says
‘Whatcha’ doin'?”
I looked at her as I slid the rag slowly down my dipstick.
“Jus’ checkin’ my oil “ I says, and added with a grin
“Would you like me to check your oil?”
She did’nt miss a beat and fired right back
“Would you like to check my oil?”
She was smiling pretty as she tossed that sexy hair around again.

Well, I must have turned about 5 shades of red, because, yes, I would have liked to check her oil, but I really did not have the guts to go about it.
Of course, she already knew all this, but decided to let me off the hook.
“You don’t “date” do you?”
“No ma’am I don’t…I’m probably better off all by myself”
“OK” she says, flips her hair back and starts away.
She got a few steps away. For some reason, I had to add
"You are awful pretty though.”

She stopped and turned around and just laughed and said
"And you are awful sweet, and are probably better off all by yourself”
and waved bye.


A few nights later on New Years Eve, my friends "Mr. and Mrs. Hot to Trot" saw her and they pulled over to the right in their Convertible Ragtopped Corvette. They wanted to know how much she would charge to take on the both of them!
Just a little curious... just wanted to see what it might cost for a little taste of life on the edge.

Before you could say “Tit-Bit and Gimme a Dollar” they were surrounded by the Vice squad.
They were arrested and spent New years in Jail.
Yep.
That pretty young whore was a Cop.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!
YA'LL BE CAREFUL OUT THERE!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

BOY SCOUT EGGS

Charles Russell was a Master of Western Art. And except for the horse, this is typically the scene on Saturday morning at any Boy Scout Campsite and explains how all that stuff gets in Boy Scout eggs.




DMarks...you crack me up!

Monday, December 29, 2008

A PANCAKE PRIMER, PART 1

AND BOY SCOUT EGGS

Some folks call 'em Griddlecakes.
Then you got your Hotcakes, Hoecakes, Johnnycakes, Crepes.
You got your Dropscones, Latkes, Buckwhweat Blini, and Dutch Babies.
Some are the size of Silver Dollars, others as big as a skating rink.
I could write a book about Pancakes, I'll try not to here.

Dad called 'em Flapjacks. I remember standing on the Hico three step ladder when I was a boy as Dad showed me how to flip 'em. Thats the best part of making them, you know, when you flip 'em over, and you get to see what a beautiful golden brown creation you have made. Its one of the most highly anticipated things in the world, the first appearance of the first side cooked.

It may seem a small thing, but it is not.
Ask any child if they would like Pancakes for Breakfast. Watch their eyes sparkle, see how quickly they get dressed. Tell them that they can help cook the pancakes and you have them won over for life. The only thing better than eating a pancake is making a pancake, any 6 year old knows this. They know what most adults have yet to realize....

PANCAKES ARE LIKE SNOWFLAKES!
THERE ARE NO TWO EXACTLY THE SAME!
THEY HAVE THEIR OWN LITTLE PERSONALITY.

When I was 11 and in Boy Scouts, we went on Campouts and we had to cook for ourselves on Saturday Mornings.
The menu was usually Bacon and Eggs.
We generally fared pretty badly, with the bacon either burned or undercooked, the eggs too runny or out of the pan entirely, spilled into the fire.
And even on the off chance that our meal appeared edible you would find bits of earth (or something) had fouled the bacon with a gritty crunch and there were leaves and Bark and other organics stirred in with the eggs.

I wish I had a dollar for every Bug, Cockle burr and/or tuft of hair I pulled out of Boy Scout Eggs.
They are like their own food group.

This is why we kept a box of cereal in the Chuck Box. If we had remembered to ice the milk and it had not spoiled overnight, then we could have Lucky Charms or Apple Jacks and would not starve before it was time to fuck-up lunch.

But on Sunday morning, Chan, the Scoutmaster, would fire up his huge griddles.
Chan had seemed like a hard ass, with his requisite that we obey all orders, any orders on the spot and without fail. In charge of 60 boys in tents, with knives, axes and fires everywhere, will make a man a hard ass I suppose, and cause him too go to great measures to insure obedience, like "Chan-hikes" at 3 A.M. where he pulls all the boys out of their tents and takes you on a 5 mile jog through the woods in order to wear you out so you (and he) can sleep.

And on Sunday morning Chan would fire up his huge griddles.We would line up for all the pancakes we could eat, flushed down with ice cold milk. It could be cold, or raining, or both, but every boy had a smile on his sticky little syrup face, eating the best breakfast there could ever be.


To be continued...

Friday, December 26, 2008

AN EXODUS TO NOWHERE

My old friend Lily called me at midnight Christmas Eve.
She was crying.
I haven’t written about this girl in a long time, this girl I chased for almost 7 years.
I had to give her up a while back, but we won’t go into that.
I knew that if she ever called me again, it would be during another of her disasters, real or imagined.

She had lost her job, her electricity was turned off until a friend gave her money, she had no food. She talked about what a torture life had been for her.
And because of something my pal Kissyface had written, I thought I could relate.
“Yeah, Lily, I can’t remember the last time I was somewhere that really felt like home.”

Home. What a concept. Whats your idea of home?
Me, I’ve been adrift so long that it almost seems like a place unrecognizable.
I’ve lived the same place for three years now.
Is it home? Not really, not even close. Its just a place, usually messy, and a home strikes me as being much more than a place, messy or not.
Home. What a concept.

Imagine all the songs, all the films about home.
Coming home, leaving home, being home.
"Homeward bound, I wish I was"
"Can't find my way home"
'Lemme' go home, Whiskey"
"Hick'ry wind, is calllin' me home"
"Just click your heels three times Dorothy"
"A heart needs a home"

Anyway, when I said all this to Lily, she seemed surprised. Lily, who has moved at least 6 times in 2 years, for reasons unknown.
She says
"Oh no, everywhere I have stayed has been home. When I got this Apartment, I just loved it, it has a great porch. And my other apartment, it had a huge bathroom. When I lived at Maureens, it seemed like home until Maureen got there. And my other apartment was like a home too, until my son moved in and mother got me evicted”

Through the tears andf sobbing she explained to me that even the times she had had to sleep in her car with her belongings in storage that her car had been her home, while she thumbed through her well worn copy of The Secret.

Home. What a concept.
We talked for an hour, she and I, and I suspect with the Ice broken again, she will call soon, or I will follow up. Maybe I should do a few posts to try to figure this one out some more.
One of us, Lily or me, must have it all wrong.
Maybe we both do.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

BAD MEDICINE

I went to the Pharmacy an hour after leaving the hospital.
Gave them my prescriptions and my Insurance Card.
How much will it be?
They can’t tell me till after they fill the prescription.
That’s gotta be Bullshit, I never bought a car like that but guess what?
Thats the way the American Health system works. So I ask a really stupid question…
How much would that be BEFORE Insurance.
It takes the man about 15 minutes to figure it out.
$850.
Eight-hundred and Fifty Dollars!
I just shook my head and crossed my fingers.
An hour later I step up to the counter. My prescription is ready.
Girl takes my Insurance card, runs it through the register and says
"Its expired".
"Expired? The issue date is 1/1/08….what is it? An 11 month card? I just spent 20,000 dollars in the Hospital with that card."
So I ask…what in the blue f*ck am I supposed to do?
You know what she said?
She didn’t even bat an eye…she says
“You could pay full price!”
I says
‘I can’t believe you just said that to me”
Because I can't.
Believe she said that to me.
I thought I was going to faint!

Anyway, I called my boss and he says that happens sometimes and to keep running the card through until its accepted.
So that’s what we do because, boys and girls, I would not spend $850 for medicine if they told me I would die and burn in hell today.
Especially if I had $850.

But things being what they are, my card eventually worked.
She rings me up again, and says in the most cold-blooded voice i've ever heard
"That'll be Five hundred and Fifty dollars"
$550!
I nearly went into Diabetic Shock right there at the counter. My legs wobbled, my knees began to buckle and the blood rushed from my face.
“Sweet Weepin’ Jesus, woman,
(the same one that had just suggested I pay 850)
I don’t have 550”
I looked down and to my right. There was a little (huge) lady in a Motorized shopping cart. She must have weighed 500 pounds and was shaped like a sack of potatoes. She looked up at me, shook her poor head, and with a face full of empathy says
“Don’t you just HATE this?”
It was like
“Welcome to the F’n Pharmacy, Pal!”
I am sure my blood pressure was about 14 million over 2 Thousand.

My dying last words are soon to be spoken.
I ask the woman how it could be that my Insurance only covered 300 of 850 dollars worth.
That’s my last dying question.
Its all I really want to know.
Mind you, if I had 550 Dollars, I would probably be handing her my money.
She goes back to the register, spends a few moments and comes back with another total.
“ I got it down to 225 dollars for you” she says, showing as much emotion as a Hefty Garbage Bag.
“How’d you do that?” I ask.

Know what she did in answer to my question?
She shrugged her shoulders.
Shrugged, like “I don’t know what I did”.
Like I’m supposed to be happy!
Never, ever, ever have I felt so vulnerable.
Raped and Freezin', as Alice Cooper would say.
If had had a pistol I might have shot her.

Well, I figured out what she did after I got home and looked at the receipts. She nearly charged me 320 dollars for the test strips used to check my sugar. Those are free, all I do is give a drop of blood.

I felt like I had been Playing 3 Card Molly….the game you can’t win.

Monday, December 22, 2008

ELOQUENCE

"I hope you all are in a happy Christmas mood now and forget all the stress and just sit down with a candle for a while."
Angela's Christmas Card to us all.
Good idea.

Friday, December 19, 2008

UNTITLED

Chavonne came to me Sunday night in a dream. I had waited 30 years for another chapter to her story.
She came to me just as she would be today, just the right amount of aging, her thin blonde hair a bit stringier; her rounded Pixie face a little thinner.
Those flashing blue eyes that had been so full of wonder, they were saddened now, as though with too much knowing, too much wisdom.
She came to me as I slept in my hospital bed, a newborn diabetic.

She came with her beret, her knitted vest that looked like an Afghan, she came with all that jewelry and those hoop earrings, and those blue jeans with the blown-out knees.
She came with a boyfriend, and a Hash Pipe, and with clipboards on the wall. She did not seem as interested in talking to me as I would have liked to imagine.
I would have liked to imagine I was her sole purpose in being here tonight, but I was not.

We spoke briefly. I asked about her mother.
Her mother.
Her mother, who had explained to me at the Funeral why Chavonne had loved me so much.
“Chavonne never had a friend like you Steve, she never had a friend so marvelously unconcerned about her health”
Her mother who recently died of lung Cancer, Chavonne said.

Oh, how I wanted to talk to Chavonne! I wanted to talk to her alone and up-close and way down deep.
But as things so often go in Dreams, the setting was all wrong. There were people everywhere; we were in a noisy, out-of-sorts, out-of-doors kind of place. To have an intimate conversation would be impossible.

Like before, I took Chavonne by the hand, and led her blind diabetic body through the woods, through the brush towards a bonfire where we might dance.
“Hurry up, follow me” I urged her like before.
We were not going to the fire to dance, no.
I was going to make a place for us to talk.
I ran people away from the fire. I was like the Christ flushing out the temple. Sparks from the fire shattered skyward as people flew into the woods. The noisiness subsided, I could hear the gurgle of a Stream nearby. The fire began to dim, to soften itself in the nighttime. There were wild geese above us, or Seagulls, or newspapers riding on the wind. Chavonne sat waiting, blindly satisfied to sit by the fire and let its glow, its synesthesia, work its magic.

But there was one person, a faceless mousy girl that would not leave. She was busy with chores, busy with dressing and her make-up, with sorting junk mail, with counting leaves, and arranging stones. In frustration I told her:
“You have to go now! I do not care that your breakfast is on the table, that you have not finished dressing, never mind your bills unpaid past-due, your junk mail, your leaves in need of raking. I have no need for you undone laundry, your dishes in the sink; you may vacuum the forest floor later, this afternoon, and shine your mirrors tomorrow if you must.
Just be gone.
Be gone right now and leave Chavonne and I alone to talk”.

It was at this point in my dream I began to resurface. You know, that feeling of rising as you begin to wake where the dream fades but there is still no hint of reality. I usually try to hurry my dream up at this point.

Of course, I didn’t want the dream to stop. I did not want to go. We never want to leave a dream that seems to have such a poignant promise wrapped around it. As we rise from such dreams, we are convinced the place we are returning to is just a lie, just a lock, just a stage where we play out and pretend to be who we truly are.
As I passed from my dream state, I could see Chavonne through the watery ripples with that wistful smile…
Her lips moved, and it took a moment to hear the words, frozen as if in time, words so softly spoken.
“Oh, Steve, you haven’t changed a bit.”

I awoke, and I cried and I cried and I cried.
I had waited 30 years for this chapter.



"Antisthenes says that in a certain faraway land the cold is so intense that words freeze as soon as they are uttered, and after some time they thaw and become audible, so that words spoken in winter go unheard until the next summer."
plutarch

SKYWARD

WILD GEESE?
SEAGULLS?
NEWSPAPERS?


STARDUST! (CLICK)

"WE ARE STARDUST

We are a Billion Year-old Carbon"

I don't usually post up Youtubes. I seldom look at them.
But this guy has a way with a song, and a touch all his own.
And it keeps me from posting up a hard, hard post.




"I don't know who I am, but lifes for learnin'"
j. mitchell

Thursday, December 18, 2008

BULLETHOLES DATING SERVICE

If I can find a match for this Gentleman, imagine what I maybe can do for some of you!



"Bulletholes found my perfect Soul Mate. We were nose to nose in five minutes!"

THE SHINING

OK- I'm really tired of talking about Hospitals and Diabetes and Addiction...though today I can claim 150 days spotless clean...
Ah, there we go!

Clean!

My apartment had turned into a HAZMAT site over the last several months.
Last night my son's girlfriend came over and cleaned for me. Her name is Maddie.
She shines.
My son , Rip, has been doing well for two months now.
His feathers are gone and hair grown back.
He has a good job at a shipping warehouse, loading and unloading.
He has earned his car and is enjoying it immensly.
He and his girlfriend have set up shop in my middle room.
He has't moved back in, I'm afraid we'd kill each other, but I have given him a place where he and Maddie can come to kick back and be close.
Just them, a few nights a week.
No buddies, no parties, just a little spot of their own and that kind of thing.
The other nights he stays with his mom.
Maddie can't spend the night over there, as mom has an 8 year old.

They grow up so fast.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

MEDICAL MARVEL

I went to my Doctor yesterday for a follow up.
As I sat in the little Exam room, the door opened slightly and two faces appeared in the crack.
“Hello” says I.
“Hi” comes the reply in duet “Are you the guy that was here Friday?”
“Yeah”
The door opens a little wider.
“The one they sent to the ER?”
“Speaking”
Two faces of two young Patient assistants appear now as the door opens wider.
“The one with that rode his bicycle 5 miles to get here with a Blood Sugar of 451?
They are all the way in now and I give them my best smile
“That’s me, in the flesh.”
“Your bike is on the back porch” says the blond.
“Yeah, they wouldn’t let me ride it to the ER” says I.
“I can’t believe you did that” says the Brunette.
“I’m just a Medical Marvel” says I.

Friday afternoon when I got to the Doctor (5 miles in 30 minutes by bike, not bad) my blood sugar was 451.
100 would have been normal.
They tell me some people get as high as 1000, but they are in comas by then.
My blood Pressure was 175/125. my pulse was at 110 or something.
The doctor came to me and said
“Steve, I want you to go to the ER. They will probably admit you and do a lot of blood work. You may be there for several days. What do you think about that?

A year ago I know what I would have done.
I would have stood up, hands on my hips and said
“I don’t think so Doc: I feel fine. I just rode 5 miles to get here, and if you just give me a little medicine, we can both be home for supper.
I’ll get this thing worked out ”

But that’s not what I said Friday. I said :
“I’ll do what ever you tell me to do Doctor. You tell me where to be, and I’ll be there. Tell me to turn my head left and cough, I won't even ask why, i'll just do it. I can get a ride to the Hospital if I can leave my bike here”
He smiled and said “Yes, you can leave your bike here, in fact, I must insist”
‘You’re a good Doctor”I says.

I’m learning to take orders.
Powerless to my addiction.
Powerless to Diabetes, Blood Pressure, Tri-Glycerides.
There are higher powers. They make the big bucks.
I surrender.
I get it.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

BETTY BOOP and PRINCE ANDREW

Yeah, Hospital Gowns!
For those of you unfamiliar, I can sum it up for you pretty easy.
Just imagine Superman standing before you, with that big barrel chest of his and those biceps and all that testosterone, and that little ducktailed hairdo.
Now strip him down to nuthin’ till he’s bare beamed and buck naked.
Now, give him his Cape. He can wear his cape, but he must wear it backwards.
BACKWARDS!
His whole ass, his love handles, that big wart on his left shoulder blade, even his hairy asshole are duly exposed.
You don’t need Kryptonite to defeat Superman…just put him in a Hospital Gown!

I took to wandering the halls one night in mine.
Betty Boop, one of the buxom Nurses, asked if I was supposed to be up. I said
“yeah…..noooo…well….probably not” and she just laughed.
So I said in my sexiest Barry White voice:
“Why don’t you show me the Fire Exits, you know, just in case one of us bursts into flames?”
“Are you trying to get me into a stairwell?” She says.
“Isn’t that what they do on Greys Anatomy?” says I.
“I don’t watch Greys Anatomy” says she.
It was at this point I figured I better just mind my manners.
“Neither do I. When are ya’ll gonna put my name on the door?” I ask.
“You don’t want to stay here that long, do you?’ she answers.
“No, no, I don't guess so” and I went back to my room.

The next morning, up and walking around again in my backwards Superman Cape, Prince Andrew the male nurse comes to me.
“Hey boyfriend” he whispers ”Everybody can see that cute little butt of yours. Why don’t you let me fix that for you?”
“That’s Okay” says I “doesn’t bother me a bit”
“Oh, I know it doesn’t bother you hon, but the whole floor is in a tither” then he adds with a really disturbing smile “Especially me!”
We just laughed and laughed.
So I say “ OK, I’ll go back to my room and we’ll do it”- meaning “fix my gown"- only in a flirty kinda way.
Yes, I can flirt Gay if I have to.
But Prince Andrew is pretty sharp.
“Oh no, boyfriend, we'll do it on the Stairwell!
I nearly choked.
“Have you been talkin’ to Betty Boop?”
He smiled and give me a wink.
We fixed my gown.
In my room.

Monday, December 15, 2008

I AIN'T NO BIONIC MAN

Of all the things in this world that make no sense,of all things that are wrong and unjust, the Hospital Gown must be in the top five!


I'm back home and then to work tomorrow.
I feel great!
I have a ton to talk about, but this afternoon I have to gather enough medicine and Pharmaceutical Supplies to qualify me as a Bionic Man!

Friday, December 12, 2008

WAY MORE

I did a post yesterday about an old girlfriend and my X Wife.
I just want all you guys out there to know that when these women get together they do an awful lot of talking between themselves...
Way more than us even...
Way more.

MAXED-OUT

Well, its twelve days to Christmas and I have cancelled my order for Internet.
Those bastards!

And over at Minxy’s I see a spanking set of tools that reminds me of my little girl..
Reminds me of when my daughter, Aubree’, was just about 4 years old….
Her mom took her to a Dollar General Store to look for something to get me for Christmas.
After a time, Aubree’ came running to Mama, excited about what she found for me.
“Turners, Momma, come see!!! I found turners to get for Daddy!!!”
Of course Momma had no idea what “Turners” could be.
Aubree’ grabbed her hand and raced to the tool section and showed Momma what she found.
A set of Screwdrivers!
Turners!
She is almost Twenty now, but she is my hearts delight!

I said last year that I never know how to act for Christmas until its over.
Hopefully, with a little money-letting next week, I’ll have it figured out before too long.
Today, I feel a little sad, a little worried, for some reason.
I think there are a lots of folks that will have a tough Christmas, and a whole year of knocks to come their way.
To feel negative like this is no real stretch for me, but to actually write it?
Everything seems kinda Maxed -Out.
Ho-ho-ho.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

COMPETITION

The Ex Mrs. Bulletholes and I were driving down Camp Bowie yesterday, an old street here in Fort Worth that runs through the Museum District and an Entertainment District, and then through one of the highest end shopping districts here in Fort Worth. There is one of those Stanley Korchak Fur places where you can buy a Fur Coat as big as a Polar Bear. Why anyone in Fort Worth would need such a coat, I don’t know. Our average daily high temperature registers down into the 80’s. Last year, we fell to freezing twice…ALL WINTER!

Anyway, as we passed the Country Club where I used to work, the conversation went this way…She says
Didn’t your friend Liz live on that street?”
“Yeah, she sure did. She was the Pastry girl at the Hotel.”

Now the XMrs. Knows Liz better than that; All three of us had met at the Hotel.
She says
“No, Liz did everything at the Hotel, including pastries”
“Yeah, Liz was alright!”
I knew Liz before meeting XMrs. Bulletholes.

After a moment, I continue…
I took Liz fishing once, you know”
“Um-Hmm…”
“And I took her to a Jazz Bar too!”
“Um-hmmm
I can't quite get a rise out of her, so I say:
“And sometimes if I was drunk I would go over there and knock on her door at 2AM in the morning and if she didn’t answer, I’d grab her Garden hose, turn it on and splash her window till she woke up.”
“Well, your son is doing the same kind of thing these days.”
“Huh…I wonder where he got that from?”

She doesn't chew my ass this time, just breezes right past it.

“Did she ever let you in?”
“No, not too much...maybe once”
“Where else did you take her?”
“That’s about it I guess”
“What about the night you took her to the Omni” she says, grinnin' her head off.
“The Omni? I don’t rightly recollect that one”

The whole conversation is starting to take on this comical, surreal quality in which I usually come out the fall guy. Its okay.
“Well, Miss Know-it-all, I don’t remember anything about taking Liz to the Omni.”

The Xmrs. Continues:
‘Yeah, you took her to the Omni to see the show about the whales. I was on a Blind-Date that night, Junebug fixed me up, and you were going to take Liz there to keep your mind off me.”
“Oh, Really” I say “ So were you and me dating at the time?”
And she says
“No, not really”
“'Not really!'” I say.“What the hell does “not really” mean?"
The Xmrs, her head is just bobbing now, she's grinnin' away, and she is very pleased with herself says
“I hadn’t quite made up my mind about you yet”
“That’s great” says I “in my mind, I must have been dating you long before you knew who I was. So tell me, how was that date?"
Her face falls, she shakes her head.
"It was pretty bad"
I am vindicated.


PICTURE IN MY MIND
OF XMRS BULLETHOLES BLIND DATE

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

"GET WHAT YOU WANT WHEN YOU WANT IT, YOU CAN GET ANYTHING"

MAJIKAT, 1976, EARTH TOUR

I had the worst seats in the house.
Row Double Z, up in the Crows Nest.
The nosebleed section.
I could barely see as three magicians came on stage with big building blocks.
They juggled 'em, they threw 'em, they spun 'em.
They stacked them in the middle of the stage with the spotlight on them.
A minute passed as the crowd got restless.
Then in a flash of powder and a cover of smoke, the boxes exploded and left one guy on a stool strumming his guitar where the big blocks had been.
It was Cat Stevens.
The crowd went wild.

I don't remember how many songs he did, just him and that guitar on that stool. You could tell he was way into his music, eyes closed, swaying in a soothingly frenetic manner, seeming to be singing to himself, for himself by himself, playing like he was the only one there.
It was awesome, but it wasn't awesome yet.

As he played "Where do the Children Play" I turned to my girl, Susie, and said
"This is really great, but where is his Band?"
Well, at about 2:20 of the following YouTube you will see the answer to my question.
I remember the curtains opening much slower, and the crowd going even wilder, but HEY, what do I know?
I was up in Double Z.



Any Major Dude that was at that show will tell you it was the best concert he has ever been to.
No one would have expected that.
The crowd would not let him leave.
We'd seen Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple and the Who the previous year.
We'd seen ELP roll through with the Laser lights, we'd seen Yes fly in with Three Real UFO's...
Next year Pink Floyd would bring a Big Pink Pig.

But we'd never seen nuthin' like the Majikat.
One guy, in love with his music, nothing to hide behind but a stool, a microphone and his own inexorable talent.

Great Moments in Blogging

You are doing a post that you don't plan to publish just yet because you really are just trying to work things out, try her on, and what you are writing is like your deepest darkest secret, that you might never tell anyone, but when you turn your computer on after the weekend you find that it has published and one of two things has happened:
You have twice the usual comments or:
You have no comments at all.

GREAT LINES FROM THE MOVIES

Sometimes the best lines are the ones not said.
I particularly like one of the opening scenes in "The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly".
We see four armed men walk down a dusty street. They pause outside a Barber Shop, draw their guns, and using body language all enter the shop at the same time, guns a-blazing.
Next we see a man, wrapped in the smock of a customer crash through the front window, having killed all four of his attackers. He tears off the smock, breathing heavily and grunting, wipes away the shaving cream from his face.
This is our introduction to the The Ugly.
Outside a Beauty Shop.
Beauteous Interruptus.
How Ironic.

Later, the Good, played by Clint Eastwood, will take him in to the Sheriff and collect a bounty.
The Ugly is wanted in "14 counties of Five States " for crimes such as "Abandonment, Cruelty to Animals, Inciting a riot, Mayhem,Robbery, Robbery of a Church, Murder, Cruelty to Old People and Sodomy".
Then, just as the Ugly hangs, the Good shoots the rope from around his neck and rescues him, only to take him to the next Sheriff and collect the bounty again.

It reminds me of what I used to do at age 10 on Saturday mornings. It was back in the day of "returnable" glass soda bottles.
I would bike down to the local Buddies Grocery and by a Coke.
And while I was buying the coke, I would grab two or three of the empty bottles sitting in the "Returnables" rack beside the Coke machine.
Lighthearted, I would make my way to the nearest Piggly Wiggly, where I would turn in my bottles for a nickle each, and as I passed merrily by the "Returnables" rack, I would grab a few more empties, and off I would go to Safeway!
When I had 50 cents earned (or collected, however say you) I would go to Jeds Wondramat (a Laundry), where there was a Pinball Machine called "Spanish Eyes".
For a dime I could play, and sometimes win a free game.
If I lost too quickly, I would just go and talk a storeowner out of a coke and start my enterprise once again.
My Saturdays were filled with 'Spanish Eyes".
When I became a Boy Scout the next year, I had to stop.
God, how I'd love to see one of those old "Spanish Eyes" pinball machines.


By the way, I once racked up 11 free games on one play.

I was like the Ugly, coming out of that window.

Pop,pop,popoppop, popopop,po! Pop, pop, pop!

Friday, December 05, 2008

THE SAND-DOLLAR

PANTHER CITY FOUNTAIN, DOWNTOWN FORT WORTH

I have been going to downtown Fort Worth quite a lot recently.
Like many downtown areas, Fort Worth suffered the effects of urban sprawl in the 70's and 80's.
It was not a destination for anyone except for those that worked in the tall glass office buildings built with Oil Money as housing for Banks and Insurance Companies.
Fort Worth has two nicknames; Cowtown and Panther City.
Cowtown, because Fort Worth had some of the largest Stockyards in the world on the Northside at the turn of the century.
The name Panther City comes from an incident in the 1880's. it seems the railroad stopped short of getting to Fort Worth, and it was close to becoming a Ghost Town. A Newspaperman came to Fort Worth to check it out and found a panther sleeping on the steps up to City Hall. He went back to Dallas and wrote all about it. Then some men with money stepped up and got the railroad to complete the track to Fort Worth.
Anyways, Downtown Fort Worth, like a lot of other cities has been revived. There are high-Dollar Condo's next to City parks, there are affordable apartments within the downtown proper.


An Entertainment District has been established, called Sundance Square, and there are bands that play outside for free.
Its really been a major transformation took place over the last ten years.
The once empty, old brick buildings now are full well into the night with restaurants and bars and music venues.
These old buildings are magnificent in their Craftsmanship. You see a lot of really nice brickwork Masonry, bas relief Horses and Longhorn Cattleheads.
Its enough to bring a tear to a Fort Worth boys eye.

WHAM-BAM THANK YOU MA'AM
Anyway, as the Ex. Mrs Bulletholes and I drove along on the southern edge of downtown, I said to her:
"Aint that the old "Chalk Her Up" Bar that we went on our first date on over there?"
She says:
'Nooo...that would have been "The Sand-Dollar" that we had our first date at."

I had to grin.
The Sand-Dollar was where we had "made out" at the Bar for TWO HOURS before being ejected for Public Lewdness. The man said "get a room" as we were placed to the curb.

"No" I said 'That would have been our first "Make-out" date. The 'Chalk Her Up" is where you first let me tag along."
"See" she says "tag along"! "That WAS NOT a date!"
Hmpf.
Ten seconds of silence.
Then I kinda whimper and say:
"Well, I thought it was a date!"
That XMrs. Bulletholes!
She's a fast machine.
The dangerous kind.
A total Blam-Blam!

THE CHILLS

Last week I posted a revision of the story of the Thankgiving morning that my Dad died.
In the last two days I have happened upon a few sites with their own stories of loved ones with Alzheimers.
And last night in one of my Court sessions, I had occasion to tell a very condensed version of the year I buried a lot of people. The poor little counselor, a pretty 22 year-old Blonde, never saw it coming.
Water Baby saysI tell these stories way better than I actually write them, and the writing of them has only improved the way I tell them.
So as I closed my story yesterday evening with the words
"I like to think Dad stopped by for a two week visit before he went home"
I looked up and there were tears just running down this poor girls face.
As she reached for a tissue, she showed me her arm.
"That story gives me the chills" she said.

Anyway, scoot on down to the next post, "Smarter Than the Worm" for a bit of a happier REPOST from my long, long story.
Its a small, pleasant memory that came out of a big emotional story and there is something about it I like...and I plan to finish soon...
After all, its the little things that keep us going, yes?

Oh, that little Counselor Girl?
After listening to my shit it wouldn't surprise me if she resigned today!

SMARTER THAN THE WORM

"The pleasantist' thing in Angling is to see the fish on Golden Oar shoot through the silver stream and greedily devour the treacherous bait"
Shakespeare

"Out of the blue and into the black..."
Neil Young

PART 3
1959
Dad absolutely loved to fish.
My first memory that I can put a date to was after my sister Lisa was born; I would have been two and a half years old or so. Mom had been home from the hospital for a week or two and was laying in bed nursing Lisa. Dad had asked if she were OK and if he and I could go out to Grapevine Lake for the afternoon.
I assume permission had been granted as he and I walked out the garage Door.
I remember asking very soberly if "Mother" was going to be okay with us gone.
We climbed into a big ol' Oldsmobile, a 1958 punked out with Jet Fighter Wings and a motherlode of Chrome, and within 10 minutes we were hopelessly stuck in a muddy field. It was a short cut Dad had been using to get onto the Blacktop from the house.

To think that moments before I had been concerned about "Mothers" welfare.
"Ahab, beware of Ahab."
This is my first memory.

We spent the whole afternoon trying to get unstuck. We did not make it to the lake that day.
I think it explains a lot about why Mom was always a little concerned for us, outside of just being a Mom. I'm sure that she was relieved that day, with us close by in the field.

1964
One evening in Detroit, Dad shakes me out from in front of the TV.
"Come along here boy, I need some help."
He is grinnin' like a Butchers dog, has an empty Coffee can, and also his Headlight-Flashlight on. Its the business end of a flashlight attached to a headband that you wear on your head, a separate battery pack that clipped to the hip; it was manufactured in the 1940's and would be worth a lot of money now.
No, probably it wouldn't be worth much to anyone but me.
Dad kept it with all his Camping and Fishing gear in his Sea Chest.

Down the street we go in the dark, Dad looking like some kind of spelunker that has lost his cave. I have no idea what this one is about, but Dad always had some kind of project/adventure going. We get to Mr. Bowles house. Dads illuminating gaze is directed down, down into Mr. Bowles flower bed and laying on top of the ground are the Biggest worms that I have ever seen.
They are almost a foot long, as big around as a pencil, and you can see the big blue vein though the Opaque reddish and tan wormskin.
There must be hundreds of em'!
"Wow, thats cool Dad... what are they?"
"Night Crawlers"
"Night Crawlers?"
"Yes, and we are going to use them to fish with"
"Okay"
'Now that one there, where the light is shining, get him."

I take a step towards the bed and drop to my knees. As soon as I hit the ground, all the Night Crawlers, quick as lightning, zip into their holes. I had no idea that a worm could move that fast.
"Out of the Blue..."
"You have to creep up on em' nice and easy" Dad explained. "They feel the vibratiions."
"...and into the Black"

We move down the bed to where there are more laying undisturbed. Stealthily, I go to my knees and crawl up to where I can reach one.
"You're going to have be fast..."
"Yeah, Dad I get it!" and I try to grab the first one.
Not only do you have to be fast, you have to choose the right end of the worm to grab; you have to grab the end that goes back into the hole. Otherwise, all you get is mud. The worm is no dummy, and never comes all the way out of the hole, and stands ready to go below to safety.
You have to be smarter than the worm.

I got pretty good at it. The Coffee can would be full of worms. A fishing trip would follow the next day, and what fish we caught with our worms!!! We did not sit on a dock, catching Bluegill...no... Dad rigged the live worms to where we could troll them from the boat, and we caught Walleye, Pike and I even took a 4 foot Musky one day!
But the time spent simply gathering bait, being outwitted and outrun by a worm that was faster and smarter than us... I would laugh, and Dad would chuckle... and... during the 4 tears we spent there...Mr Bowles never seemed to miss his worms!

I didn't know then that one day I would be in charge of gathering the bait, planning the trip, packing the tackle and gear and even setting up and baiting Dads rod on what would be his last Fishing trip.

"Theres more to the picture
Than meets the eye
Hey hey, my my"

Thursday, December 04, 2008

THE 27 DAYS OF INTERNET

I have been trying to get Internet at home.
That is to say, I ordered it.
Apparently, it is not like ordering up a Pizza.
So I wrote this song.
Fa-la-la-la-la-Humbug!


27 DAYS OF INTERNET
On the first day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“The Installation will be free and starts today”

On the second day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“Your Service will begin on Monday”

On the third day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“Well, maybe tomorrow in the evening”

On the fourth day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“A $50 one Time Fee is not an Install Fee. No, Mr. Renfro, its simply a One Time Fee”

On the fifth day of Internet AT&T said to me…I mean, I said to them
“YOU MOTHER-F*CKERS!” but I had no idea we were just getting started.

On the sixth day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“The Self Install Kit is Pending Shipping”

On the SEVENTH day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“We apologize for that Mr. Renfro; we never received your order, though I do show a $100 Payment and a One Time Fee of $50.”

On the Eighth day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“Our technician will be out today for your phone line”

On the ninth day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“Our technician will be out tomorrow for your phone line”

On the tenth day of Internet AT&T said to me…
‘Your Phone line is fine. We will need to go into the Apartment. How much? About $100.”

On the 11th day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“We apologize for that. No, we don’t know why your phone is working before we had a chance to fix it…Yes, a miracle Mr. Renfro!”

On the 12th day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“We apologize for that. No, we can’t actually charge you until you get service, at least in theory.”

On the 13th day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“Oh, you wanted Internet too?

On the 14th day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“Its scheduled for next Thursday. We will send you the Self-Install Kit…yes, the one someone told you we’d be sending 11 days ago. We apologize for that.”

On the 15th day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“We apologize for that. No, you can’t cancel and get your $150 back…”

On the 16th day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“That right Mr. Renfro, your deposit is really a payment and can’t be refunded as such. No, we are not cramming yu Mr. Renfro, it just feels that way”

On the 17th day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“Yes, someone is writing all this down”

On the 18th day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“No we can’t confirm your order.”

On the 19th day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“No, there is no such thing as a Self-Install Kit. We will send you the Install kit, which includes the Modem for $50.”

On the 20th day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“We apologize for that, and we are sending you a $50 Gift Card as soon as you pay your first bill. Now, what is that billing Address?”

On the 21st day of Internet AT&T said to me…
No, we can’t confirm your order. Your order is pending, and will be pending until we confirm the install.”

On the 22nd day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“Thank you. We don’t know. We apologize”

On the 23rd day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“Yes, if the Red light is blinking it means the Internet has not been installed or is pending activation”

On the 24th day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“Look at it again tomorrow morning. Maybe it will stop blinking tonight. Is there anything else I can do for you?”

On the 25th day of Internet AT&T said to me…
“We show your order is pending and will be installed by 8PM today.”

On the 26th day of Internet AT&T said to me…
How many? Let me see….yes thats right Mr. Renfro, you ordered Internet Service and a Phone 26 Days ago. We apologize for the delay.”

On the 27th day of Internet AT&T said to me…“Hmmm…there has been some difficulty getting your pending order activated. I’m taking $5 off your bill right now…Yes, you do have a bill even though you don’t have service.
Thank you for choosing AT&T."

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

HEY! WATER BABY!


If anyone happens to have an Old E-mail Address for the Water Baby (my d-d-d-aughter) please forward it to me.

Her Computer was stolen, she has forgootten her EMail for logging into her Blog, and every time I think I have successfully hacked my way in, I get the inpenetrable CTL-ALT-DELETE Security measure.
Or else I end up "stealing" her Blog! (click here)


Someone, please help!

BLACK ROCK ARTS FESTIVAL

Meet me at the 'Freak-out Tent!
On the playa!
We'll see the Man of Fire!

AMERICAN PIE

Even my kiddos know the lyrics to the title cut of this classic about the Day the Music Died.
It stayed at #1 for four weeks after hitting the charts in November of 1971.
There are two very famous songs on this Album. I say it plays very well the whole way through.

It brings back memories to me of Rhonda, my girlfriend I met while "Caroling" during the Christmas Vacation of 1971. We did most of our 'Caroling" in the woods next to our neighborhood, liplocked while our hands stayed warm in each others pockets.
Rhonda was my girlfriend for a year, till she moved to Pheonix.
If you see her, say hello.

Anyway, she and this album really bring it back for me. When it gets cold, I think of Rhonda, and when I think of Rhonda, I think of this album.
There was another song on this album that took a while, but it did hit # 12 on the charts, called "Vincent", and it is a very nice song. Really gorgeous.

But the reason i'm posting this today is for a song on American Pie that did not make the charts.
It is a song that I would sing at the top of my lungs on the busride to School with Rhonda planted firmly in my lap.
Its been a long time Rhonda, but I'm sure when you think of me you think of this song!

EVERYBODY LOVES ME BABY
Fortune has me well in hand, armies 'wait at my command
My gold lies in a foreign land buried deep beneath the sand
The angels guide my ev'ry tread, my enemies are sick or dead
But all the victories I've led haven't brought you to my bed

Now the purest race I've bred for thee to live in my democracy
And the highest human pedigree awaits the first-born boy baby
And my face on ev'ry coin engraved, the anarchists are all enslaved
My own flag is forever waved by the grateful people I have saved

You see, everybody loves me, baby, what's the matter with you?
Won'tcha tell me what did I do to offend you?

Now, no land is beyond my claim when land is seized in the people's name
By evil men who rob and maim, if war is hell, I'm not to blame!
Why, you can't blame me,
I'm Heaven's child,
I'm the second son of Mary mild
And I'm twice removed from Oscar Wilde, but he didn't mind, why, he just smiled


Yes, and the ocean parts when I walk through, and the clouds dissolve and the sky turns blue
I'm held in very great value by everyone I meet but you
'cause I've used my talents as I could,
I've done some bad,
I've done some good
I did a whole lot better than they thought I would so, c'mon and treat me like you should!

Everybody loves me, baby, what's the matter with you?
tell me what did I do to offend you?

Yes, boys and girls, you are in luck! You tube!


MEOW!

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

An Old Friend

is back to doing some writing.
I like his stories a lot.
Go see "Ifs of Og".

I should also mention the irrascible one, Citizen H...
Ladies, he's single again!

And though I have already mentioned her, Grizzbabe deserves some love.

And I do hope to be able to direct you back to a very old friend very soon...


Monday, December 01, 2008

FEEL THE NOISE

A Judge says his novel punishment of forcing noise violators to listen to music they don't like for one hour has cut down on the number of repeat offenders in this northwestern Colorado prairie town.
About four times a year, those who plead guilty to noise ordinance violations are required to sit in a room and listen to music from the likes of Manilow, Barney the Dinosaur, and The Platters' crooning "Only You"
"These people should have to listen to music they don't like," said the Judge..
The Judge began the program years ago when he noticed that many of the repeat offenders simply showed up at his courtroom to pay their fine with cash.
Video of a recent class showed teenagers with long faces shifting in their seats, hoping for a quick death.

The worst offenders, mostly SOAD, Dokken, Ludacris and Coldplay listeners are made to listen to the 5th Dimension, Partridge Family and early Michael Jackson.


What I wonder is whether a lethal injection of Barry Manilow would qualify as Cruel and Unusual Punishment?


ONLY IF IT DON'T KILL YOU, BABY, ONLY IF IT DON'T KILL YOU!

"The Cyclamate of Pop Rock; He writes the Sludge"
playboy magazine

MAGIC TEA

Remember my nice little neighbor Christian Lady?
The one that makes the Great Iced Tea?
The one that has forgiven me even though I was rude?
She let me have two gallons to take home Friday night.
I drank a whole gallon and got up to pee every hour or so.
When I weighed in on Saturday morning, I’d lost three pounds!
So I did it again Saturday night and guess what?
I lost another four pounds!
I’m hangin’ on to her for dear life!
Her tea is Magic!
I think I'll call her Misty.

"NO, MOMMA!"

I always wondered where my sister and I got our big raucous laugh. I always thought it might be Dad, but after thinking about Mom this weekend I have decided she and my Aunt Laura would be the origin. I recall a trip to East Texas when I was 10 years old:

We went to Toledo Bend Lake, to see some family property. There was my Dad, Aunt Laura (mom's sister), and Mom. As we left the small town of Alto, where Mom and Aunt Laura had grown up, we passed over a creek, Boxes Creek it was called, and this creek was running red from recent rains that ran-off from the deep red clay of the region.
Mom said:
“Laura, do you remember how the whole family would come down here to the Boxes, on Saturdays, and the boys would get on one side of the bridge and the girls on the other, and we would take our Saturday baths?”
I was horrified.
I said:
“No Momma, tell me you DID NOT do that!”
And she and Aunt Laura just laughed!

When we got close by the newly formed lake, in the Big Thicket they call the Sabine National Forest, we stopped by a cemetery in the little town of Isla. Only there is not a little town of Isla, there is only the Cemetery and a three story, dilapidated weather-beaten building.
To the eyes of a ten year old, this building looked to be at least 200 years old.
It did not just lean, but the added feature of a twist where the faces and corners were all askew. There was not a glass pane or door left, there was no roof, and what had kept it from falling entirely no one could tell.
It was the ricketiest three story shack there ever could be.
I wouldn’t have stood within 20 feet of it on a bet. There had to be a million or so snakes that were taking residence in there, and just about the time that thought gave me a shiver, the worlds biggest Possum walked out on what may have been a front porch in the last century and gave a big yawn.
It was about then that Mom proudly announced to me:
“Stevie, this is where I was born and went to school!”
I gulped hard and said
"No, Momma, please momma, tell me you did not!”
And she and Laura just laughed!

Next, we walked into the woods of the old Mason home. heading for the lake.
We came to a creek that we needed to forge. Dad found a big tree, blown over in a storm that we could walk across. Dad crossed the stream on the log, then Aunt  Laura started to cross. It was then that I noticed just how far down it was to the creek, and how skinny the log was.
I said:
“Momma, you can’t go across this, we’ll have to find another way for you to cross.”
Then I saw that Aunt Laura was only halfway across and it was my turn and I hollered to Laura
“Hurry up Laura... its my turn to cross”
Then turning back to Momma:
“No momma, you can’t cross here! Laura, Hurry up!”
And she and Laura just laughed!

Some fifteen years later, the Cancer was eating away at Momma. My soon to be wife, Yvette, and I would sit on the couch with Momma in her easy chair. Yvette would give me a punch to the ribs and I’d giggle. Then she would poke me in the tummy, and I'd laugh a little harder, Before you knew it, she would be tickling me in the ribs in the belly, under my arms and I would be kicking and flailing trying to get loose from her.
She had me in a tickle-grip and I would be too weak from laughter to escape. The more I laughed, the weaker I got.
It was like laughin' quicksand.
The tears would be streaming down my face and I would turn over onto my belly with my weak little elbows tucked in, to try to get away.
Then she would start in on the bottoms of my feet and I would be howling!
"No, Yvette, No, Pleeeaaase Noooo!"
I could barely even breathe!
Through my streaming tears of laughter I would look over to Momma. She would be holding her sides, bent over with laugh-tears running down her face.
She would be laughing louder and harder than I.

Momma died at home, December 1st , 1986.