Friday, June 14, 2019

Interview with Townes Van Zandt about Blaze Foley:


Interviewer: “So, what songs did Blaze write?”
Townes: “Ever heard of Clay Pigeons?”
Interviewer: “No”
Townes: “He wrote that. How about Big Cheeseburgers?”
Interviewer: “No”
Townes:He wrote that. How about “Theres no Goodwill Stores in Waikiki”?
Interviewer: “Um, no”
Townes: He wrote that. How about Achy-Breaky Heart? Have you heard of that?
Interviewer: “Yes! I know that one.”
Townes: He didn’t write that one.
From the 2018 movie "Blaze". Good movie.
Blaze pictured left with Townes in the middle.

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

SHE COULD TALK THE EARS OFF A WOODEN INDIAN

The X mrs Bulletholes likes to tell the kids about how we met working at the Hyatt. I had just finished cleaning a big Halibut, which included carving his eye out and placing it in my mouth for a little kitchen fun. I turned to go show my buddty that I had three eyes by opening my mouth to display the big Halibut eye which was a perfect size for such nonsense.

As I turned, there she was, redheaded and freckled and cute and I had been dying to meet her for months. She was a Banquet Bartender.
'Hello" she says. 
All I could do was give her a long faced look, the one where you try to keep from smiling...and I nodded and grunted in reply. She began to talk to me, just chatting away, and me making all these dumb expressions, unable to say a word trying to figure out how to get out of this.
I was really stuck, stuck like a fly on sticky paper. At some point I just thought what the hell, opened my mouth and displayed this big fisheye. 
She screamed and then she laughed.... thats when I knew she was the one!

PAY ATTENTION

I like it when I go to Sonic, and the girl taking my order sounds like she is new; she stumbles over the order a little bit (unsweet raspberry ice tea, easy ice) and when she comes out the door I can see that she is worried, tentative, maybe her last customer was mean, but she comes out the door and shes frowning and uptight, she looks up and sees me, I give her my biggest best smile and I can see the worry melt off her face, her shoulders relax, and she is smiling too, and she gets to the car and I give her my best hello and thank you, now she's half laughing happy and relieved and says you're welcome and confidently skips back to the door, what a great day at work she must be thinking. Its not much, but its good to know you can have that kind of power if you just pay attention to someone besides yourself.

Thursday, June 06, 2019

THE LEGEND OF THE WHITE FLAG


We have a legend and an artifact down at my NA Group. The artifact is a mop handle with a white towel hanging from the wall. The legend is that one day a recovering addict was wanting to use. He called his sponsor. “What should I do?” he asked.
“Where are you ?” asked the sponsor.
“I’m at Precinct Line and the freeway”
“There is a Target store there, yes?”
“Yes”
“Pull in to the Target parking lot and park”
“Ok Done”
“Now go into the store, to the household aisle”
“OK, I’m there”
“Grab a mop handle and a white cleaning towel.”
“OK”
“Go to the register and pay”
“All paid”
“Now go outside and tie the white towel to the end of the mop handle”
“Got it”
“Now go out to the corner of Precinct Line and the freeway, wave your flag and yell “I surrender”.
So he went out to the busy intersection and followed his instructions.
“I surrender, I surrender, I surrender” he hollered, waving his flag.
His sponsor asked him “So now, do you still want to use?”
In all the excitement, he had forgotten all about using…
We say surrender is the key. And following instructions, surrenders baby brother.

Sorrily, the white towel and mop handle was misplaced when we painted a while back. I wish we still had it.


Wednesday, June 05, 2019

THINGS OVERHEARD THIS WEEKEND

I have a friend whose grandkids, 4 and 5 years old, were invited to have their pictures taken with actors dressed as WW2 Nazi soldiers.
They shook their heads. No. They would prefer not to.
One of the Nazi soldiers asked them “Is it because we are dressed as bad guys?”
One of them nodded his head. Yes. 
No statues needed to inform today’s youth who the bad guys were. They pick it up. They know.
THE POWER OF ART
You wont find many WW2 Memorials in Germany. You will find many commemorating the First War. Sometimes names were added to the First War sculptures of those fallen in the Second, such as this sculpture, created in 1935 and amended after 1945.
They say most of those sculptures created in the 20’s and 30’s were part of the Nazi propaganda effort.
Artistic style and expression was giving way to Nazi aesthetics.
More here…
https://vova.pomortzeff.com/german

Sunday, May 19, 2019

ON ROE V. WADE

FROM MY FRIEND BARBARA

"Roe v Wade says the proper way to balance the fundamental right to make decisions affecting our own bodies and the rights of the unborn is to allow abortions with only minimal restrictions in the first trimester, restrict or ban in the second, and ban outright in the third. States can be less restrictive than that but they are not supposed to be more restrictive. So some very liberal states dont restrict second trimester and allow even "partial birth" abortion which is horrible. Now I will tell you, if a pregnant woman actually needs a horrible pregnancy- terminating procedure late in her pregnancy, for medical reasons, a doctor will perform it regardless of the law. And yes it's horrible but if you're pro-life you cant object to saving a mother's life. Anyone who decides after the first trimester to end a pregnancy without a medical reason is beyond my comprehension. I wholeheartedly agree that the baby's rights have to be protected and Roe v Wade recognizes this too. You don't fix that by criminalizing abortion. You fix that by enacting state laws that are as restrictive as Roe allows them to be. All a person has to do is fly from Alabama to California to change from a criminal to a law-abiding, 6 weeks pregnant young woman who survived a sexual assault. That's ridiculous! The Roe case is sound and DOES stick up for the baby's right to be born. Anyone who takes the time to read it will see that."

Saturday, April 20, 2019

WHY I DON'T DATE

Bought tickets for an event at the bequest of one girl, Gina.
'You can take me there" she had said.

But an old boyfriend would be there, so she chickened out. 
"I'm   sorry. I just can't handle it" she had said.
"Thats OK. You dont have to face anything you dont want to face" I said.
I asked two others.
Deanna was busy. Venita was out of town.
Two more, Nina and Rina, did not return my calls. 
I asked another, Dina, who said “Have you asked Jenna if she and her son would like to go?”. Apparently, she would like a chaperone, yes? 
So I contacted Jenna, who seemed to be open to the idea. 
So quickly, I bought two more tickets, only to have Dina say “I hate to be a fuddy-duddy, but, a rain check?” 
So I ask Jenna if she is still in, and she says “I told Dina it’s a bad time for me” 
Well, guess what sister? 
It’s a bad time for me too. 
Now I got 4 tickets and I’m down to calling old loves from 16 years ago and girls with boyfriends: 
“I need a date tonight. Pays 20 bucks.”

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

HELLO, DALLAS

Ok, so I’m one of these guys that likes to name things. Just like in the bible, you know where they said we get to name the beasts?
Well, I like name my household appliances. 
My toaster, Brownie. 
My oven, Roger. 
The blender I like to call Miss DiPesto, after Agnes DiPesto, the extremely loyal and quirky receptionist for the Blue Moon Detective Agency who always answers the phone in rhyme. 
The bedroom bookshelf is named Dusty.
The washer and dryer, Dagwood and Blondie.
I even named my toilet.
Say hello to Dallas.


Monday, March 25, 2019

THE AMMO CLOSET

I dreamed a couple Jarheads in a Humvee approached me. They needed me to help them load up some ammo from the ammo closet. They took me to the ammo closet, it was just a little closet door with a lock on it, and we started loading the boxes of ammo into the Humvee.. . One of the boxes of ammo came open. Instead of bullets, there were those little candles, like what you use under a food warmer. I said "Guys, theres nothing but candles in these ammo boxes" "Thats right" they said "Ammo" And we kept loading the boxes. When the Humvee was full, I went to lock the ammo closet door shut, but couldnt find the lock. "Hey guys" I said "Where is the lock for the ammo closet" They said "Aw, dont worry about it. There's nothing in there but candles" I knew we should have locked that closet.


Wednesday, March 13, 2019

THE INFINITE


Dorothy: Why can't we go with you and see all the Crowned Heads of Europe?
Professor Marvel: Do you know any? Oh, you mean the thing. [gesturing to his sign] I never do anything without consulting my crystal first. Let's go inside, and I'll show you..This is the same, genuine magic authentic crystal used by the priests of Isis and Osiris in the days of the Pharaohs of Egypt, in which Cleopatra first saw the approach of Julius Caesar and Marc Antony. And so on and so on. Now, you, uh, you'd better close your eyes for a moment, my child, so I can be in better tune with the infinite. [looks through her basket] We can't do these things without reaching out into the infinite. That's all right now, you can open them. We'll look into the crystal. What's this I see? A house with a picket fence and a barn with a weather vane of a...of a... running horse.
Dorothy: That's our farm.
Professor Marvel: I see a woman. She's wearing a polka-dot dress. Her face is careworn.
Dorothy: That's Auntie Em.
Professor Marvel: Her name is Emily.
Dorothy: That's right. What's she doing?
Professor Marvel: Well I, uh, I can't quite see. Why, she's crying. Someone has hurt her. Someone has just about broken her heart.
Dorothy: Me?
Professor Marvel: Well, it's uh, someone she loves very much. Someone she's been very kind to. Someone she's taken care of in sickness.
Dorothy: I had the measles once and she stayed right by me every minute. What's she doing now?
Professor Marvel: Well, she's, uh...What's this? Well, she's, she's putting her hand on her heart. Oh, she's, she's dropping down on the bed.
Dorothy: Oh, no, no, no.
Professor Marvel: Uh, that's it, the crystal's gone dark.
Dorothy: You don't suppose she could really be sick, do you? Oh, I've got to go home right away.

Wednesday, March 06, 2019

GIN RICKEYS


I was ready with it… I put it in your hand as soon as you walked in the door. I had been waiting for you, for this… tradition, for this… thing we do, just you and I…
To tell you the truth, it’s the kissing, afterward, that I look forward to the most… the never tiresome, never-ending bitterness of your mouth, of your lips, on the first ninety degree day of the year after gin rickeys.
- The poet known only as Peregrine


A CONVERSATION WITH DAVE MOWS GRASS ABOUT RUNNING




Steve to Dave Mows Grass
"Remember how I drove 300 miles to get you to go to Kansas City and see Black Sabbath, and we drove all day to the hotel room and got a couple hours rest before the show, and when we got to Sprint Center, just before we got in line for the show, and I discovered the Black Sabbath tickets weren't in my pocket? That the possibility existed I had left them at the hotel, or lost them at the Wendy's where we stopped to eat? And we had to go all the way back to the car, fourth floor garage parking, hoping against all hope they were in the car? 
That's as close to breaking into a full run as I've been in years."

Dave to Steve
"You're such a mess, Steve Renfro! You understand me better than anyone else, but as a person who goes through a mental checklist before even getting up from a toilet, I admit that I still don't quite understand you. While I worry every second of every minute of every day, asleep or awake, it's as if you never worry at all. That is until you realize the Sabbath tickets aren't in your pocket, then all the worrying you should have been doing for the last several days kicks in in one giant cardiac event. I'm sure I was laughing when you broke into a dead run in that parking garage, your giant head engorged with bright red blood like a bloated tick. Comical terror!"

Thursday, February 28, 2019

ON TECHNOLOGY



I saw a post bemoaning the fact that kids today, they don’t get to read real books, its all Kindle, and they may never know what its like to hold a real book in their hand, smell the paper, turn the page. And that they will never have to practice the patience like we did, waiting for a roll of film to be full so that we could take it to the developer and wait two weeks to get the prints. “Technology” they said “Is ruining our kids”

I got to go on a business trip to NYC a couple years ago.
They picked me up at the airport and took me to the office. Gave me a company car to go to the hotel.
The manager asked if I knew how to get to the hotel.
“I’ll just google up a map and print it off. I’ll be fine”
He looked at me funny and said “Why don’t you just use your phone?”
That’s when I went into my throwback old codger mode.
“Oh no. I don’t use my phone for that kind of thing. That’s a slippery slope for me. I want my phone to just be a phone like the good old days. If I use it for a map today, I might end up using it for working a crossword puzzle tomorrow. God, how I hate the 21st century”
It was about then I realized just how stupid that sounds.
So when the trip was over, and I came back to my world, guess who started using the map function on their phone? Its really quite convenient.
I do crossword puzzles on it too.
Do you really want to wait 3 weeks to get your film developed?
Its not the end of the world. Not yet.

Thursday, February 21, 2019

MAGA HAT

I bought one for a friend of mine. It was sitting in my backseat when I picked up my daughter and a friend of hers. Her friend found it and tapped my daughter on the shoulder. They were both horrified.
"Dad!" My daughter said.
I had to do some explaining real quick
"No no no it's not mine. I bought it for a friend" I tried to explain.
It was hilarious.

People go nuts when they see that hat.

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

GREAT BIG SPENDER



I’m thinking about the worst part of waiting tables. It had to be the night before rent was due, and you were about a hundred bucks short. You were a hundred bucks short because of all those nights after you banked 100 in tips you promptly went out and blew it on drinks. “A round for the house!” you would holler, and two chicks would be rubbing up against your thigh. Suddenly you were a big shot, a big spender, a high roller, and you should have been able to predict that when the bar shut down those girls would carry your drunk ass out to their car and drive you home, and pretty much just dump you out at the curb. When you checked your wallet the next morning it was empty. It was empty and for a moment you wondered if those chicks had rolled you. But then you vaguely remember hollering “A round for the house!” and arm wrestling Ronnie Barrington for 20 bucks. All one had to do was take one look at Ronnie to know THAT is a really stupid thing to do.

And now here you are the night before rent is due. You’re a hundred bucks short, the crowd is thin, its not even Lobster Night, but the four top left you 20, and the six top 30. Its fifteen minutes to close, everyone is doing sidework and the next table to come in will be yours. So there is hope. One good table and you are in. The door opens. It’s a party of five, notoriously big tippers! You are grinning from ear to ear. Grab five menus, head to the door. “Hey ya’ll! Welcome to the Keg!” and you lead them to the best table in the house. Pull the chair out for the ladies, shake hands with the fellas. Open for business like a cheap bordello. And that’s when the head of the table says “Thank you Steve. Is Bob here tonight? If Bob is here, we’d like him to wait on us if that’s OK. Is that OK Steve?” Fucking Bob. Every hair in place, drives a Vette, sells gold on the side, plays scratch golf and ya just want to kill him.

HIGHER POWERS




The concept and belief in a power greater than myself always, always, always appeals to the best that is within me.
Good that something does.

Monday, February 11, 2019

ON SOCIALISM

I'm glad I live in a society with both Republicans and Democrats, it keeps the lunacy in balance. I'm glad I live in a society that is based on Capitalism, but employs some Socialist ideas and principles because I think a purely Capitalistic system would be just as bad as a purely Socialist one.
In fact I'm not sure there has ever been a country that did not employ some measure of Socialism.

Wednesday, February 06, 2019

EASTER IN DETROIT



In the corner of the yard were the hydrangeas
Mother called them snowballs
Before they bloomed, there were little snowballs on the clover
Which attracted  
The bees to come out from underground to buzz
And I wonder now why I never took a shovel and paid the bees a visit.
Two giant plums that had more thorns than plums
A bird bath, a swing set,
And two tall thin acorns that Dave and I
Climbed to the very top and swayed
While we looked out over Lake St Clair.
I remember showing my sister how to catch a bee in her hand
And if you held it tight enough it could not sting your hand.
She only tried it once.
She could not hold it tight enough.
Mom wore me out.

bulletholes, 2019

MARLBORO COUNTRY

"The Rastafarian’s cigar smelt of compost. I can never guess what they’re really thinking. Not that I’ve ever really known any. I’m not a racialist, but I do believe the ingredients in so-called melting pots take generations to melt. “Mistah,” the Rastafarian told me, “you need”—and I flinched—”some o’ this.” I obeyed his offer and sucked on his turd-thick cigar. Ruddy hell! “What is this stuff?”
He made a noise like a didgeridoo at the root of his throat. “That don’t grow in Marlboro Country.” My head enlarged itself by a magnitude of many hundreds, Alice-style, and became a multistory car park wherein dwelt a thousand and one operatic Citro├źns. “My word, you can say that again,” mouthed the Man Formerly Known as Tim Cavendish."
[Cloud Atlas]
Artwork by Fort Worth's own Jay Wilkinson, on display as "Chameleon" @ Fort Works Art through February 9th.

Sunday, January 27, 2019

EVEREST

You havent climbed Everest until you get back down.

Friday, January 25, 2019

THE MORAL DECAY


I applied for this apartment 6 years ago. I wondered if that THING that happened in 2008, that wasn’t supposed to be on my record because I did the court program 100%, would be on my record.
So when the lady said there was a problem, I thought “Oh No!”
Then she said “Did you have a marijuana charge from 1974? Because we cant tell if it’s a felony charge or a misdemeanor.”
Boy was I relieved!
“It was a misdemeanor” I said.
She said I would have to go downtown and get a copy of the charges before she could rent me an apartment.
I laughed. “Do you mean to tell me after the trail of destruction I’ve left for the last 30 years, this is all y’all can come up with? After everything I’ve been through, the unmanageability, the addiction, the moral decay, the cheatin’, theivin’, connivin’, stealin’ when I shoulda been buyin’, vagrancy, bankruptcy, divorce, no credit, bad credit, homeless joblessness, foreclosure, and not putting the toilet seat down, and this bubble-gum pot charge is the best you can do?”

We do recover.


Friday, January 18, 2019

WHY WE BUILD THE WALL

Somebody is trying to sell me a wall. The same way they sold my father and my brother a Vietnam. 
We need a wall like we needed Vietnam. I ain’t buyin’ it.


Interesting song I heard last year on the Old Prairie Home Companion show.
Anais Mitchel, from her 2010 opera, "Hadestown". There is a minute of chatter before the song.


RASPBERRIES


I remember falling in love with Carol Channing when I was 10 years old. 
I could not resist the way she hollered “Raspberries!” in Thoroughly Modern Millie.
Carol, gone to the big glass of champagne in the sky.

Wednesday, January 09, 2019

BIG SURPRISE

AT&T is reportedly planning a significant round of layoffs (7,000), despite receiving a large tax break and various regulatory favors such as the repeal of net neutrality rules.

Thursday, January 03, 2019

UPON OUR HEARTS




"Here was a Jewish rebbe, and the pupil asks the rebbe about a passage in the Old Testament, Deuteronomy 6, I believe, where it says…“Lay these words upon your heart.” The pupil asks the rebbe, who is more of a Hasidic master than a “clergyman,” why does it say “Lay these words upon your heart? Why doesn’t it tell us to put them in our hearts?”

The rebbe answers in a way that I think you may find 
very beautiful: “It says ‘upon our hearts,’ not ‘in our hearts,’ because as we are, our hearts are closed and the words cannot enter in. And there they stay upon our hearts-- until one day the heart breaks. And the words fall in.”

Interview with Jacob Needleman by Kristina Turner April 2012 - Needleman, Jacob
Articles on Gurdjieff and his System

GURDJIEFF-INTERNET.COM

HELLO 2019

The first hour at work of the year.

“Boss, David is on line one. Would you like to take the call?”
“Hang up on him.”
Now that’s the kind of answer I used to get from techs that didn’t want to talk to customers. It was their way of using the “No “ word. The power word. They would eventually pick up, but I had to talk them into it. I hated that. I’m glad those guy are gone.
But now I’m dealing with a boss that is doing the same thing.
‘Hang up on him” he said.
I thought a moment. “Sir, I don’t hang up on people.”
I could see him bite his lip. He took the call. But he came back a little later.
“You better lose that attitude” he said.
“Hey, I’m not the one telling people to hang up on people”
Against the current, we beat on.