Friday, July 20, 2007

Ghost Writing

I watched Stephen King's "Salem's Lot" today. During college I took a great class in Gothic literature and my professor stated very plainly that of all of King's books, "Salem's Lot" was the best and one of the best additions to the American canon of literature. I have read the book a few times, and I have to say this made for television movie is a good interpretation of it.

Anyone that knows King, knows that he common elements are the supernatural, fear, children, memories, a return and redemption. What is interesting is that "Salem's Lot" incorporates all of King's classic elements and places them in an almost 19th century tale of vampires. Genius, pure genius.

I always try to write, but its people like King who figure out what it really takes to be a writer.

Today at the bar I had a discussion with a woman about poetry. She told me a few of her poems. They were interesting, perhaps a little grandiose, but they kept your attention and she had good diction. I was accommodating, but disagreed with her about one point. Her idea of writing is that a person should use writing as an emotional outlet and at least for her, her writing comes from pent up emotions and flow outward like a waterfall. Sort of a catharsis on paper. Therapists have recommended this approach for years. I have to say, in much of my writing, I do the same thing. I wait for a creative burst and let it spill out onto paper. However, for me, a true writer is someone who learns to control these bursts and let them come out in a slow fashion. Careful, calculated and diligent. She disagreed and said the best work came from sudden bursts. Its a tough argument, but I have to imagine that Faulkner, Hemingway, Wolfe and yes, Stephen King mastered the art of opening that creative vein and letting it flow slowly, carefully and with a sharp and masterful point.

Thursday, July 19, 2007


I seriously doubt that I have blogged about this, and I felt, being slightly intoxicated and emotional, that I should. So here goes.

I was thinking about Johnny Cash today, as I normally do think about great musicians. There isn't much I can write about that hasn't been covered by much better writers than myself, but I do have a few words that took me a while to put into context.

Johnny Cash was the quintessential American musician. He was uncompromising, passionate, a consummate writer, a spiritual beacon, opinionated, professional, weak, strong, and an overall musician's musician. I can sit and listen to his bourbonesque voice for hours. He had a talent for pushing his beliefs when they were not popular, no matter what. He believed what he believed, whether you agreed with it or not. At the end of the day you had to respect him. He forced it from you. Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Gospel Hall of Fame. Country Music Hall of Fame. He wore black for the oppressed, the dying soldier, the illiterate, the down-trodden and the homeless. He was the Man in Black. Without Johnny Cash, the American puzzle is truly incomplete.

Johnny Cash was so goddamn cool that he could span four decades of music with original songs that are still covered and revered by musicians today.

Johnny Cash was called home on September 12, 2003 and I think everyone misses him as much as I do.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Funny Shit

I have to sing the praises of a new website, well its not that new, but its new to me. Its called Super Deluxe and its one of Turner's new incarnations of web-tainment. Basically, its a shitload of comedians and entertainment people who have gotten together and produced web only cartoons and live action skits. The stuff is really funny and include skits like The Professor Brothers, Lonely DJ and The Maria Bamford Show. One of my favs is The Derek and Simon show and is produced by Bob Odenkirk, one of the creators of Mr. Show and a regular on Tim and Eric's Awesome Show.

The humor is total absurdist humor and situation comedy, but not from a traditional plot. Its my number 1 pick right now, as far as web based entertainment, so check it out.

Think of it like youtube, except with pros doing most of the work. The site allows fans to upload their own videos and take a stab at comedy. I think that is a great idea and involves fans and allows them to get pros to view their ideas.

Look at the site and enjoy.

Trying, Trying, Trying

Ok, so recently one of my avid readers, and I suspect one of my only readers accused me of not blogging enough. I have decided to make it up to everyone, so here goes.

What have I been doing? Well, in not so many words, trying to get a job. I have concluded that I really don't want to practice law so I apply to everything available where I think a law degree my prove useful to someone or some corporation or company or demonic wiccan cult of Mormons. Ok, that last one was a joke. I would never apply to a demonic wiccan cult of Mormons unless they had a pretty good insurance plan.

The problem with applying to everything under the sun is that either a) HR departments that post jobs on websites only do that for shits and giggles, because I have yet to hear back from any of them or b) a law degree can hurt you. I say hurt you, because I mean that I wonder if people think I'm joking or not serious. Goddammit I am.

I was eating at Broad Street the other day and found myself starring at a stack of applications for servers and cooks. Jesus Christ.

What else have I been up to? Well my insomnia has been raging lately. A few days ago, I didn't sleep for about 30 hours. I was delirious and felt like I was high. I rode around and realized that I probably should not be driving. Finally, I fell asleep for a few hours. My friend informed me that it can take up to a month to satisfy the "sleep debt" that your body incurs from non regular sleeping patterns. It will probably take me more like a year to repair the damage. Mostly, I look for jobs, drink a bit and worry about the bar.

I tried calling back the only job where I actually got a few interviews with. The guy is out of the state. I wonder if they just tell me that shit, or if its actually true. Word around the camp fire is that they are going to make a decision this week on who made the cut. Its like trying to be the most popular kid. You wear a nice suit, laugh at alot of jokes, but the whole time your thinking, "give me the goddamn job!"

Applying for jobs on the internet is strange. All these damn websites post all these jobs, but mostly they are for truck drivers or work from home scams involving stuffing envelopes.

I'll keep it up, though.

Friday, July 13, 2007

An Open Threat to the Baby Boomer Generation

Just a little bit longer. Why not get a higher education? Why not get a masters degree? Or a law degree? You become more valuable. Who says these things? People with only an undergraduate degree. Just a little bit longer. Why not take an internship? You know, everyone starts at entry level. You have to realize that you just don't have any experience. Sound familiar? Thats a conversation between someone of my generation and someone of the older generation. When I think back on every time that I have heard the garbage come out of the Baby Boomers, it makes me sick. To listen to a law professor lecture about how important the bar is, when in fact he never took the bar because during his time in law school, if you graduated from Ole Miss law, you automatically were granted a law license. Money is another funny thing. The Baby Boomers have the largest concentration of wealth in this country, all tied up in their mutual funds, retirement funds, "paid for" houses, etc... Meanwhile, my generation struggles with rising costs of renting an apartment and trying not to get married until they at least have a job at the bottom of the ladder. The Baby Boomers thought their kids grew up to be fucked up, wait until you see the next crop. Growing up in an apartment or moving back in with grandma and grandpa.
Just jump through this hoop. Good boy. Ok, now sit up? Good. Now fetch! Thats what I hear. At the same time they are barking orders to you, the have this comical view of technology, as if its interesting, but lets just leave it at that. Blog? Huh? A blackberry? You mean the pie? Then everyone has a loud laugh, as if something is funny. Oh you kids with your Nintendos and mountain bikes. When will you learn that the world is made of hand churned butter and memories. The Baby Boomers relish in nostalgia and just pray, as hard as they can, that the fountain of youth will be found in the swamps of Florida. No wills. No estate planning. Environment? Oh, hell. It will always be there. The Baby Boomers, for whatever reason, have failed to grasp the concept that the future actually does matter. They don't embrace "the new" but only crave "the old." They wear the '60s around like a goddamn Red Badge of Courage and think that today's music is just too loud. Did they forget about Hendrix, or did he not fit on the Badge? Selective memory is a motherfucker.
Go away. Thats what I say. Retire, liquidate our assets and go on cruises. Quit your jobs, please lord, quit your jobs and get the fuck out of our way. My generation is a generation turning 30 and just now entering the workforce. To the Baby Boomers, we are all "kids" even if we are in our late 20s and they just can't take us seriously.
They should, though. Social Security is a privilege, not a right. Remember that Boomers.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Three Dimensions

If you read this blog you know that I watch the news alot. I mean ALOT. MSNBC, Fox News, CNN, NBC, ABC, CBS, BBC, and all the local news channels. Not to mention I check Reuters and the AP, hourly on the internet. Well the other day I was watching the news and I saw an interesting story that got me thinking. Recently, a porn store in south Jackson was busted for selling sex toys. This isn't the first time this has happened in Jackson or Mississippi. What struck me as being funny is that the lead investigator stated that the investigation had being going on for a while and "local citizens had been complaining about the sex toys." What? Were the vibrators coming un-holstered and attacking random people? Did someone get robbed by a criminal using a large plastic penis? Doubtful. With all the money in salaries, gas, time, surveillance, and over-time, I wonder how much this "raid" cost the taxpayers of Jackson? Lets not forget THERE HASN'T BEEN A SINGLE GODDAMN ARREST FOR THE SALE OF DOPE IN JACKSON IN LIKE 8 MONTHS! Are all the tax dollars for law enforcement in Jackson going to "porn investigations?" Most likely. The cops must be really bored. I think someone needs to sit down with the law enforcement of Jackson and have a serious discussion about whats an important crime and whats a silly crime. Dope? Pretty important. A dildo? Not so important. 12 year old kid getting shot in his house? Pretty important. A clerk selling a lady a vibrator? Not so important. The way I see it, if someone wants to buy a "three dimensional object for sexual gratification", thats their business. If someone wants to sling dope, thats everyone's business. Jackson needs to wake the fuck up and prioritize the crimes. We are on our way to having a record year in crime.

Now, all this talk about sex toys and illegality got me thinking. I do alot of thinking. Anyone ever heard of Passion Parties? Throughout my travels and various places I have lived in this great state, I have known several women who have either 1)hosted Passion Parties or 2)attended Passion Parties. Are they doing something illegal? Yup. According to Mississippi law and thus why not subject them to the same punishment as these people in south Jackson? Why not? Most likely because the cops would have to get probable cause, then a warrant, then raid some house where 6 or 7 giggly women are sitting around talking about vibrators and relationships. LOL. Now that would make the best episode of "COPS," ever. Think about it. The cops approach the house and use one of those battering rams to knock down the door. "Get your fucking hands up!!!! Drop the vibrator!!! Get on the ground!!! Now!!!!!" LOL.

See, Passion Parties, along with the Casinos or as we call them in the Great State, "The Boats," are the big giant pink elephants in the room. Everyone knows about them, but you don't talk about them in polite conversation. Let me see if I can do a run down of all the women I know who have told me they have attended Passion Parties (no I'm not going to name names):

Jr. Leaguers
Middle Class
Upper Class
Super Conservatives

Wednesday, July 4, 2007


Well kiddies, its been a while since I've been on here. I've been doing some writing and keeping myself busy with insomnia. Ever since Paris went to jail, well, I've just been so distraught I couldn't think. If you buy that, I've got a nice bridge in New York that I can get you a great price on.

Lately, I've been watching a shitload of youtube videos that probably violate some copyright laws. There are a ton of great classic country videos on there and one has got me thinking. If you know me, you know I'm a big fan of classic outlaw country, such as Willie Nelson and Charlie Daniels. I've never been much into mainstream country, although Garth Brooks did grow on me. Sitting up at Hal and Mal's one day, me and a friend were talking about the difference between mainstream country and outlaw country. Just because someone can put a twang in their voice and play a few chords doesn't make them a real country musician, much in the same way that just because a person can put a band-aid on a cut, doesn't make them a doctor.

I have to say that I pretty much despise the Nashville country music scene, or at least what has been passing as country music for the past 20 years or so. Like with the rest of American music, everyone is still living on the accomplishments of artists such as Johnny Cash and Waylon Jennings. The musicians today are so "produced" that they forget to actually write something meaningful or at least take note of good writers. Nashville is just the southern version of Los Angeles.

American music is an industry of products and service. When those two ideas, producing something and providing a service mix too much, what suffers is creativity. Look in the past and it was just as relevant. When Willie Nelson first showed up in Nashville, no one would listen to his demos and he couldn't get a recording contract to save his life. 50+ albums later and hundreds and hundreds of songs later he is an American Institution.

The problem with Nashville is there are too many people who work on the ancillary side of the production of music. Hundreds of labels owned by a few domineering recording companies, has created only niche markets with too many producers claiming credit on other people's creativity, if there is any. Its disgusting to hear someone claim to be a recording executive who has an MBA and thinks that he knows good music. Well just listen to garbage coming out of Nashville and thats all I hear. Some MBA motherfucker figuring out just how many units can be moved and how to slickly market a new Shania Twain album.

The great thing is that whenever an industry becomes over-saturated with executives and non-creative people, a burgeoning anti-establishment movement arises. In Nashville and across the south, a new outlaw country movement has been taking shape over the last so many years. Artists like Horton Heat, Hank III and Unknown Hinson. People that are trying to get back to a few of the roots and suprise, suprise; actually writing their own material.

Everything comes back around, it just takes time. Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings, Kris Kristofferson, and Willie Nelson recorded together at one time, known as The Highwaymen. In their #1 hit, The Highwayman, Johnny Cash says this at the end of the song, and its pretty appropriate for anyone who hopes for better music:

I'll fly a starship

Across the Universe divide

And when I reach the other side

I'll find a place to rest my spirit if I can

Perhaps I may become a highwayman again

Or I may simply be a single drop of rain

But I will remainAnd I'll be back again

and again, and again, and again, and again