Monday, September 15, 2014

State of the Nation Sept. Version

It's been almost two years since i left what is commonly referred to as the Rat Race, it's a proposition that many would seemingly jump at if say you were independently wealthy and didn't need to work, in my case i've just never been that much of a success in the straight world, fucking shady dealings? i'm like the Warren Buffet of that shit but in the legal and above the board shit i've always been nothing more than a laborer, never made shit as far as wages and since these days the corporations want to suck the soul outta you and bleed you dry i didn't have to think twice about what to do next so i took to taking caring of the boyos and these days i'm getting pretty good at it, toughest job i've ever held but easily the most rewarding...

But you see i was born on Patriot Day, a day i didn't even know existed until just recently but on this last one i was summoned by the courts to appear for my civic duty and do my best to get out of sitting on some jury... and so it was that i got in the car early and headed towards my old stomping grounds of dahntahn, now it's been a while since i've sat in the morning commute clusterfuck and as i sat there i began to wonder how people did this every day, this soul sucking existence and i understand that most probably had families or ambitions and the former i understand perfectly and the latter not so much but as i looked around i could not help think of that lyric from Synchronicity? i believe, "packed like lemmings into shiny metal boxes/ contestants in a suicidal race..." it seemed to me it was the face of capitalist slavery everywhere i turned, spurned on to earn more and buy more and be more though i think that none of it makes sense and i'm not naive enough to buy all the hippy-dippy bullshit and hell i'm just as guilty as anyone of capitalist impulse buying and hoarding when it comes to vinyl records and literature i just believe there has got to be a simpler way of getting on with life and living it instead of wasting it in the pursuit of what? i don't know and though this may sound like somewhere along that commute i found the Jesus i can assure that i have not, though if i ever do i hope he has a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow and is riding a unicorn...

And so i spent the next 5 odd hours sitting in a room with a bunch of strangers, Nick Disaster told me later that he was sad that i had to spend my birthday downtown and stated he hoped i didn't get picked, the I-mac of course chimed in that he agreed and added that he hoped we could eat some cake soon, lovely those boyos, so i sat and studied that faces round me, a very butch lesbian who looked like the Bob's Big Boy mascot, a closet hipster in a cheap suit and pierced lip, the young urban professionals, the old ladies and angry old men, i brought along a book of Hemingway's short stories that was given to me in college by a friend, inscribed that she'd hoped i went far with the writing thing and of course i could do nothing but laugh when i saw it, sat and read Up In Michigan, A Big Two-Hearted River pt. 1, A Clean, Well-lighted Place (which is still one of my favorite stories of all time and only grows in importance as i get older) and a few others and when i had dodged the bullet and was released from my civic duty i walked over to the courthouse and collected my $11.38 and bought a sandwich and a soda from a street vendor and sat in the park and ate it, the sun shining and not a care in the fucking world, watched the worker bees flit back and forth and talk of office drama, shoo-ed pigeons away, listened to taxi drivers honk and holler as they fought for space at the hotel across the street and when i was finished i sat a bit longer, thought about grabbing a beer but instead strolled through the city in a round-a-bout fashion on the way to my car, all in all it was not a bad way to spend the first half of Patriot Day...

And later that day i would finally eat the cake that Nick D. picked out and open my present as the boyos danced around me smiling and giving me hugs and telling me they loved me and even an old bastard like me could do nothing but grin like an idiot, and so i put them to bed, each with a story and then headed off to the new local where i drank some strong coffee and oatmeal stout before switching back to the cheap and easy to drink PBR, watched a shit football game of the local heroes getting waxed by the most hated team in the league to us ex-Clevelanders and then i ambled home, looked in on the boyos and listened to the sweet sound of their sleep and then sat in silene and gazed out the window at the stars, a fine day indeed if ever there was one...

Of course a couple of weeks before this i had the yearly trip to the doc, i always find it fun what questions they ask as you get older and though i don't feel that old i guess i am, still closer to 40 than 50 but not by much, he asked how my erections where to which i replied rock solid which got the good doc chuckling, i almost told him that sometimes i'm a bit of a teenager in that department and can manage to pop random boners but i figured i'd save that info for the lounge, he told me he crunched some numbers and ran some tests and stated that since i'm "getting up there" he analyzed my risk of heart attack and stroke for the next ten years and put my risk at exactly 1.3%, to which i replied that i'd most likely keel over on the way to my car then right? he laughed once again and was amazed at  how much i'd changed since i first walked in his office many moons ago, and i almost told him that many moons ago i didn't care if i made it this far but now i have a couple of reasons to keep on getting out of bed... and so who knows? with any luck i might be writing another one of these posts next year, i won't worry about it to much but i'll keep my fingers crossed, besides i still have some more shit to get written down...

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Mother and the Misfits

I was in the car tonight between CD's which is a rare thing, i usually never hear the radio long enough to even stop and listen and here in Iron City we have this new age/alterna-indie/lesbian folk/ public radio station which since i don't have satellite radio is the only station i ever really listen to... that said they play some good shit and the World Cafe was on and Ryan Adams was on and anyone who's ever been to the lounge knows that Ryan's a favorite around here, the host brought up something about his cover of Mother by Danzig, which got them to talking, which got Ryan to doing the song, which in turn got me to put on my best fucking Glenn Danzig voice and belt out the lyrics over the mellower albeit great version that Ryan Adams was playing...

Nick Disaster sat in the back seat on his was to the first class of hockey school taking it all in, the little dude has a sly way of absorbing shit and storing it, he feels no need to brag or boast or let you know what he knows until it becomes beneficial to him in some way,  he reminds a bit of this guy i know but i digress, Nick has been on a huge Kiss kick lately, all 5 years old of him, he's been really getting into early to mid 70's Kiss, of course he started with the popular one, Rock N' Roll All Night and has since expanded his repertoire, he was fascinated to learn that his Old Man's first concert was Kiss at the Richfield Coliseum on the Dynasty Tour, the first record he ever bought with his own money was Love Gun, remembered seeing them on the telly (The Paul Lynde Show) when he was around Nick's age and being fascinated himself, of course now the old man didn't want to tell him he hadn't listened to them in 30 years and maybe i should be worrying cuz maybe just maybe Kiss is the gateway band to a lifetime of sex, drugs and rock and roll but again it's rolling out of control, so back to my singing in the car on the way to hockey school, Nick wanted to know who the real guy who sang Mother was and thus began Nick Disaster introduction to Danzig and the Misfits, he couldn't wait to get home and see the video cuz he wanted to hear the song and see these guys, he wanted to know if it was loud and fast, i believe he's at the stage where any rock band in make-up will do...

And so he did his hockey thing and then we drove home and we ran in and sat down at the computer to bring up some old video and good ole' Nick just sat there watching Glenn tear through Mother and then he wanted to see The Misfits so we brought up their old stuff and he looked at the pictures, sometimes telling me to be quiet or stop singing cuz he wanted to hear the words, those big blue eyes soaking it all in, his daddio sat there with him beaming as he watched him absorb the sights and sounds and i couldn't help but shake my head and wonder what this could/would lead to in 20 some odd years from now... and then the videos were over and i told him to head upstairs and get ready for his bath and he turned and flashed me a wicked grin, did a bit of air guitar and bolted up the steps... thus creating another entry in the ever evolving daddy blog that is the lounge...

Monday, September 8, 2014

My Morning Jacket - I Will Be There When You Die





Quite simply one of my favorite songs ever recorded... i could say more but i'd just fuck it up...

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

The Summer of the Shark



On the eve of the first day of school this isn't a post, it's a love letter, a love letter to a summer well spent, a summer where the old man learned a thing or two from his past mistakes and made it a pretty damn good one for his boyos, you see if you've never been a stay at home you might not understand how utterly inundated the mind can become, especially in the summer time when there are no breaks or respites, it can be either a long slog into hell or it can be livable even brilliant at times... and so this summer i set out to make myself a better daddio and god damn i think i may have done just that, yes of course there were some rough spots but i did my best to keep them to a minimum and remind myself that the boyos are just boyos and that they will make mistakes and they have a shit ton of energy and can fucking punish and pummel when they see fit and that it's all how the daddio shucks and jives and deflects the blows and maintains a cool head and hugs and laughs and high-fives...

And so tomorrow the I-mac heads off to 3rd grade and Nick Disaster gets ready for the big K-garten come the next, a moment that may see his old man get a bit misty seein' as how we spent most of the last two years hanging out on a daily basis, and though it won't be much different it will be and i know it... but it's cool, they gonna do it sooner or later just gotta enjoy it while i can, like this summer, spent swimming and playing hoops and riding bicycles and playing futbol, seeing foreign lands and the bloodiest battle in American History, learning that Milton Hershey was an unmitigated failure before he figured it out, rode roller coasters, saw baseball games, started a tradition called Pancake Saturday mornings in honor of Hemingway's Nick Adams Stories  where the old man has started dropping hints about the other old man and how maybe next summer or sometime this winter i'll go straight off the rails and start reading the stories aloud every Saturday morning thus insuring a lifetime of therapy for the boyos...

And yes it was a good summer for the old man as well, i got to spend a lot of time reading by a pool or in a park, feeling the breeze or the sun, i carted the boyos wherever they needed to go, i grinned like a fat cat as i watched the scenery at Milf City aka the local pool, observed the trophy's and the PTA set, i was one of the few men there every day and like a smart man i kept to myself, content to take it all in, no need to get any more involved than that, besides i had laps to swim and boyos to lift up and toss into the water, but it was quite entertaining and kept this schoolboy's imagination active, like i said previously making elaborate histories for strangers, attempting to imagine their lives, drove stoned and smiling through the suburbs listening to music and staring at the houses, got a bit of a tan, cut down trees, demo-ed a bathroom, built a grill, all kinds of things new and old but alas all good things must come to an end... but i enjoyed damn near every minute of it...


Sunday, August 24, 2014

Without Talk or Fireworks

















I recently wrote in a letter to Mr. Gulfboot Johnson that the real art i'm trying to perfect these days is living and though it is a most imperfect art i do believe it is the most important art, i said something about all other art, writing, painting etal springing from this, that the rest was superfluous, a distraction, stated that the world was to caught up in gazing up it's own ass and calling it the center of the universe but that was the culture we lived in, days on end spent mourning the loss of celebrities when what the ones wrapped up in the coverage should have been mourning was the loss of themselves, that a wise man once said the adult world, the careerist, was nothing more than a game of trinkets for chores (to quote the esteemed Mr. Gulfboot) a game that is very adept at serving up heaping, steaming piles of shit in various forms and guises...

And so in order to do good works i ran up to the corner store, the Rite-Aid, i'm fucking there alot, i'm like the sane man in a sea of weirdos or vice versa, tonight i was on a mission of mercy, to score the heating pads for a sore back, it's the least i can do for those who help me lead this charmed life of public swimming pools and a new grill, who keep me in sunglasses and leased autos, and so i got in the car and made my way, this VU album playing, myself being very stoned and driving slowly down the street with the windows down, the sweet air of a late August early evening blowing, Lou rambling away about Jesus (song 5) and myself gazing out the window at neighbors i do not know but have elaborate histories for, making my way to my destination...

Inside i know all the clerks to say hello but not well enough to exchange in anything other than the smallest of talk, i'm polite and glassy-eyed and i wander through the store like a lost man who knows exactly where he's going, serene under the glowing fluorescence, and i'm standing in the aisle and this fucking song by Peter Cetera is playing, On My Own? i don't know the fucking title nor do i care to, it's a song i've heard a thousand times, seen the god damn video to back in the early days of some thing called Music Television when it had the power to make a schmuck like Pete Cetera think he was a star, hell maybe it was a Chicago tune before Pete got all uppity and went solo and i'm standing there and wondering how this guy got so fucking famous singing such shit tunes and i'm fairly giggling to myself at the surreal-ness of this existence as i debate the pros and cons and i walk towards the counter and smile at the clerks, one or two of whom i'm guessing know i'm cooked, pay for the stuff and wander out to the car...

The sky is a turning a lovely dark blue to the east and a brilliant pinkish red to the west and the breeze is light and pleasant and i get in and turn the key and roll the windows down and Lou and Mo and Sterling and John are playing that song up above now and i pull out and head toward my street and i'm smiling for i have not a care in the world, none, and i thought to myself as the wind blew through my graying sideburns maybe i'll type something tonight or maybe i'll listen the VU or Lee Hazelwood or Spoon or say fuck it and put the computer controls on shuffle and do nothing, watch a baseball game i care nothing about, attempt to read more Faulkner and pet the cat's belly, but it will be a fine night, one without talk or fireworks, one without worry or thunderstorms, and i will work on this art of living, i will let the world gaze up at it's own bunghole in amazement and i will not judge or ridicule, simply put one foot in front of the other, one word in front of the other and get on with the business at hand... whatever it may be...

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

The Laying of Wreaths



These memories of youth recede further into the sunset with each passing day, days that seem so old now that they could be sepia tinted in the bursting of the dotcom bubble, the time of hand over fist money and living hand to mouth, these days that make up part of this colorful tapestry known as a lifetime, a bright and dangerous corner embroidered with blood and sweat and laughter, and i keep saying i'm going to write it all down but as we know the days can slip away faster than a poor man's money, these days strung upon days, Raskolnikov's Blues and Goodbye to the Billy Goat, these tales that have been spun in bars and park benches and lying sweaty in bed next to some strange female, they are there and they are floating through the ether waiting to be gathered up like so many lost flowers and planted in the most meaningless of places...

A woman who claims to love me was chastising me from across a wooden picnic table painted white, she said i could talk to anyone, and apparently this bothered her, i stated i could listen as well and by this statement she was not amused, maybe angered but not amused and as i stood and gazed at the beautiful drops of water beading on the amber bottle there was nothing left to do but listen and gaze off into the trees and dream of the clouds i could not see, as there was no use in defending the indefensible, it was best to take the switch and show as little pain as possible, and it was not my gig and i wandered aimlessly like a ghost, the cold beer and hot sun my only lovers and i dreamt back to those days strung upon days and these days stringing upon days and i said to no one in particular that it's time to write it all down, to make empty promises to every cat in the house, and you will succeed yes you will indeed at least that's what the man said, and why don't we stand up and yell bullshit? we'll just have to let each and every one of us define the S word in whichever way their heart desires and then it won't much matter, it won't much matter at all...





Friday, August 1, 2014

The Old Man Diaries

They called it Boyo Night, and it was, we played games and ate tacos, had a Klondike Bar, it wasn't anything astounding and yet it was one of the most beautiful fucking evenings of my life, there are times when you write things down cuz you want to remember them, no other reason, just so you can look back and smile, they spent the night smiling and laughing and then they dragged themselves towards their rooms, spent from the futbol and the park and the games, at one point i stood and listened to the wind and watched the blue light grow darker, i wondered why i always had problems remembering days like today... and then it struck me, we remember and we forget, if only to be surprised by it's beauty the next time it happens, to keep it sacred, to hold it up and gaze at it in wonder... trying to figure out how the simplest most ordinary of days can have more meaning than years of running the streets and looking for some unknown truth and yet now here the truth sits, clutching his stuffed bird or propped up and reading a book in his bed...

And so i post this clip again, it's the closest i can come sonically to how today felt, if that makes sense... and of course because i have sung both these songs to both the boyos, ND has turned 5 and i know that soon he won't want me to sing to him anymore, especially cuz the old man doesn't always sing the traditional songs and because most likely his singing voice is shit, but it's coming and i know it, i'm lucky, i get to put the boyos to bed every night, i know soon that will end and they won't need the old man to read or sing or just lay there and talk, when i'm brutally honest i know i'll miss it alot more than they'll ever know... all i want in life's a little bit of love to take the pain away...