Saturday, July 31, 2010

We were there!!!!

It was the bottom of the eighth inning.  I was sitting on the first base line 30 seats up.  Coors Field had about 50/50 Rockies fans to Cubs Fans.   The Rockies were ahead 5-2 against the Cubs.  I was thinking if they could score just one run than the Rockies have this thing locked.  The Rockies sent two of their men out and I was thinking here we go again, the Rockies will do what the Broncos do and find a way to lose it.   Then all of a sudden the Rockies got hot and hit 11 runs straight.  It was like lightining had struck the Cubs dead.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Lapping It Out Loud

Real Punk Radio Told me About This Group

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

3333 Hits On this Page

I have 3,333 distinct views on this Blog.  Thank you.  I hope this is a place where one finds some pleasurable times.   If you like it a lot become a member... that way it is more than just my mom as a member.   I love my mom but would love to hear from y'all.

Great American Novel Search Part 7

State Book: Virginia: Fatal Convictions Randy Singer 
Road Tripping Book: The Great Shark Hunt Hunter S. Thompson

The question guiding our trip is, What is the voice of America, and how/why does it represent America today in the 21st century?

I'm Country and That's All Right

Where I am from: Lakeland Florida, Forest Grove Oregon, Longmont Colorado.  All these places have a place in my heart.  I guess I am country but that's okay.  Lets toast to our country boys wherever you reside.

Monday, July 26, 2010

King Dork by Frank Portman: A Review

King Dork
Frank Portman
Ages 14+
Pages 344
Published April 2006
Delacorte Press
ISBN 0385732910

Cluck this Book, Cluck It LOUD, Real LOUD

A teenage angster deals with high school: parental units, cliques, drugs, dorkometers, sex (the good and the ugly) and Rock and Roll. The teenager's dad has died of mysterious circumstances. He finds his dad's old books. The books offer clues. The clues are kind of a Hamlet like Ghost thing; helping him deal with high society in a strange teenage wasteland. The book offers insights on how music can be a powerful force in a youth's life. It shows how writing fan zines help a kid have a voice where his voice is powerless in a world not quite ready for his opinions.

I loved the relationships described in the book. One relationship that was developed very well was the main character and his step dad. The step dad is so out of touch, but he wants to be liked by his stepson.  He ends up playing a role not suited for him the "adult teenager".   Older guys looks so fake when they try to be hip.

The book is definitely from a different culture than the one down here in the bible belt. Psychology is the parent's religion. The parents often want to discuss feelings. And violence is frowned upon. Down here in 863 Christianity is the religion. The parents want to discuss the bible. And violence and hunting are things dad and sons do on Friday, Saturday, or Sunday Nights.  (This is a generalization it does not imply that all are like this.)

The book is a great examination of the idea of validation. We all want to be recognized, have some sort of power, and some control of our lives.

I am glad I picked up this book and gladly give it a big clucks up!


King Dork: A List of Music Mentioned in the Book

Portman loves music and his book is a good introduction to "New Wave of British Heavy Metal".

I loved the mentions of bands in the bands. I had forgotten, or had not heard of many of them.

Here is a list (it's probably not complete) of bands and songs mentioned in King Dork.

Band Names Song Title/Album TitlePage #
ACDCHighway to Hell
The SweetDesolation Blvd
Blue Oyster Cult7 Screaming Dizbusters
Rolling Stones Mothers Little Helper

Sister Morphine

The Who By Numbers

White PlainsMy Baby Loves Lovin
Led ZeppelinStairway to Heaven

The SweetWig Wam Bam
StrategyTaking Tiger Mountain
Black SabbathSabbath Bloody Sabbath
Lou ReedSweet Jane
Carl PerkinsGlad All Over
The StranglersRattus Norvegicus
Thin LizzyMon Cher Monsieur

Kinks Kinks Are the Village
Green Preservation Society
  Bands Just Mentioned
Without Mention of
a Specific Song



The Jam


New York Dolls

Small Faces

The Ramones

Rolling Stones


The Smiths

Velvet Underground

Frank Zappa



                                Sham 69

I missed a couple of songs: Motor Head: Jail Bait
The Chase is better than the Catch
Funkadelic: One Nation Under a Groove

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Y'all Punks check out the We Never Learn Blog, it is righteous:
Also check out the book by the same name: We Never Learn the Gunk Punk Years 1988-2001.
And if you still want to hear more about the book check out the interview on  Real Punk Radio with Eric Davidson.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Quote from: King Dork

At First I thought they were doing a kind of CockSparrer/Sham 69 sort of football chant punk rock. Frank Portman  pg249

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Interlude: Don't Fear the Reaper

This video makes me want to watch Hamlet, this version.

Great fun here!

Monday, July 19, 2010

50 States/Bay Area: King Dork Frank Portman

 I am Currently reading King Dork by Frank Portman: "
But my view is that there's something seriously wrong with a subculture that would prefer "Stairway to Heaven" to "Wig Wam Bam."  Come on: go listen to "Wig Wam Bam" and tell me I'm wrong.
Sweet ruled Led Zeppelin's sorry ass... I heard him whisteling a tune I recognized from my own record collection: "My Baby Loves Lovin'" by White Plains originally recorded as a demo in their previous incarnation as arguably superior Flowerpot Men."84-85


I love Frank Portman's blog check it out now!!!!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

50 + States of Reading: Bay Area Read

Bay Area Read
Portman, Frank King Dork (New York: Delacorte Press, 2006).  The writer of King Dork also is in the band Mr. T. Experience....

Monday, July 12, 2010

Next State in the Reading Challenge Massachusetts:

Denis Lehane's book A Drink Before the War represents the Boston area well, so it will be the reading for Massachusetts.  Previously we listed On the Road as the Massachusetts read but On the Road was not specific enough for one area, or one state.  So On the Road required its own category of traveling the highways of the United States.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Imperial Bedrooms: Brett Easton Ellis

Tip the world over on its side and everything loose will land in Los Angeles.  - Frank Lloyd Wright 

Imperial Bedrooms is the follow up to Brett Easton Ellis's book, Less than Zero. The book picks up with the lives of the teenagers of Los Angeles, Hollywood, and now finds these same kids in their teetering middle age. What does it mean to get old in Los Angeles a mythic space where youth is rewarded and age is not!? The book looks at how the puppeteers, the writers, the producers, the directors can at times manipulate others as if they are puppets on strings.
The city appears at one time a garden of paradise, at another time a hallway in the hell hotel. The city lives on the word "Yet!" the mirage of it all. The city lives on fear of the finality of living in a fragile place. The city knows it could fall into the pacific if there is a large enough earthquake. Imperial Bedrooms explores the conflicting pictures of Los Angeles and the Southern California Dream. The book disturbed me, because it hits on the tragic film strips that run the city, and keeps it a place of dreams. The final note from the author is: "All of the pictures are fake." Page 162

Note: for those in love with the Brett Easton Ellis books of the eighties;  it would be more rewarding to read "The Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan" or Inherent Vice by Thomas Pynchon

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Writing Lessons: Where did you get that name?

Where do you get ideas for names of places and people?
One can use real names but this is very very very dangerous.   So one suggestion could be to use the names in the back of a good dictionary, in the section titled Biographical names.   Then change the name slightly.   It is also a great place to find out the main character traits of a personality.  Deffaund, Marquise 1697-1780 nee Marie de vechy Chamround Fr. Woman of Letters.    So now you can change the name to Margaret Deffaud who is a women with a black book in her back pocket, who is always jotting down notes.    Then you can place her in modern times but with a value system from the 1700's.  She can feel disjointedness from  time because she really belongs to the old time period, this will create personal crisis in her life, conflict builds up the story.   Try this next time you are stuck with finding a person's name.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Dark Dreary Night in Monticello

UPON THE HALF decayed porch of a small frame Old Catholic Church, we were waiting for the HauntedMonticello Ghost Tour to begin. One could tell that the Church was made out of a love for Christ, because of the detailed masonry and eye for perfection found in the sanctuary's design. 
Outside the church it was a dreary night.   Tallahassee was being washed out by torrential downpours, and lightning strikes every ten feet. Monticello was so far clear of any rain or any threats from lighting. 
The tour guests were arriving with expectations of seeing a real ghost.
"Do y'all find any actual ghosts on this tour?", said a man wearing an "Astro Boy" t-shirt.
"Well last night… one of our guests thought she fell into a spider web; but in all actuality it was a ghost." said the tour guide.
The tour guide, Margaret Defraud,  was dressed up in a Victorian style dress.  
She knew what the guests were thinking,  "history is spooky".  
But I will show these Yahoos, I will disprove their doubt that "History is bunk!" I will replace this notion with History is a living breathing thing.  History is a monster that stalks its victims." 

I will walk them down that darkened street damned street Stoneham.  Stoneham Street which served as a conduit for lost souls.  Stoneham Street which was always five degrees cooler compared to adjoining streets.  She had witnessed that the wind moved constantly there. 

Margaret Defraud  believed Stoneham Street was an express way for Lost Souls.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Re-Wind: Traveling the Western Highway Route 66

When my friend and I were traveling one time the lyrics to this song helped us plan our route. You never know when pop culture will aide you in discovery. Sometimes you might end in a farmers field but hey that's only in Flagstaff. 

Well if you ever plan to motor west
Just take my way that's the highway that's the best
Get your kicks on Route 66
Well it winds from Chicago to L.A.
More than 2000 miles all the way
Get your kicks on Route 66
Well goes from St. Louie down to Missouri
Oklahoma City looks oh so pretty
You'll see Amarillo and Gallup, New Mexico
Flagstaff, Arizona don't forget Winona
Kingman, Barstow, San Bernadino
Would you get hip to this kindly tip
And go take that California trip
Get your kicks on Route 66
Well goes from St. Louie down to Missouri
Oklahoma city looks oh so pretty
You'll see Amarillo and Gallup, New Mexico
Flagstaff, Arizona don't forget Winona
Kingman, Barstow, San Bernadino

Would you get hip to this kindly tip

And go take that California trip

Get your kicks on Route 66

The song to me has come to mean America for me.   I can not think of anything more freeing than pointing my car towards distant horizons, and doing that Route 66 dream.   The dream that Kerouac would have said, "Jack, gotta go!"

Happy Fourth of July Everyone!

Alexander Rothbard: The Sale Part Two

(Continued from July 3rd 2010) I reached into my bag and brought out five cartons of Philip Morris and 500 Flat 50's.  I started my presentation and the dealer interrupted with, "What else do you want to sell?"  He bought my entire stock, built the display himself,  asked for two posters and went outside and put them up with paste, a perfect angle shot.  That did it.  It was the most difficult job in my life to hold back the tears.  I thanked the dealer and went out.   It was a little after 2:00 p.m. and my bag was empty.  However, the sale did not cheer me because he had bought,  I did not sell.  After five minutes of thinking "Why" ,  I returned and asked the dealer why he bought. the Philip Morris from me.  He stated that he had watched me through this window while I was making up my mind to come i, said I looked real "beat" and in need of a lift, so when I came in and put those cigarettes on the counter and started to talk, he could not help but try to cheer me.  I then noted that he took the flat 50's and opened them up--again.  "Why?".  "For the one cent sales"  was the answer--a new one on me.

That sale did the trick.  I bought five cartons of Philip Morris back from the dealer and a carton of Flat 50's, with the provision that if I did not sell them he would buy them from me--again. From 2:30-6:30 p.m.  I not only sold the cigarettes but also sold, displayed and merchandised 5 additional cigarettes from this same dealer since there was no jobber in the area, and he called a jobber and ordered 10 Philip Morris for delivery to him the next morning.  A most unforgettable sale.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Alexander Rothbard

Like my grandfather, I am also in sales and feel a special connection to the man who would bring Marlboro out west.  He to me was always confident, he was a man who could sell anything.   He was also a friend of many business men in the Denver area.   I looked up to my grandfather as a hero.  But all heroes have to start somewhere.  This note written by my grandfather illustrates that the first steps are always the toughest.   I have been at that frustration point, where all I saw was failure.  It is comforting to know that a man loved by many had to start somewhere as well.     

 I will have this article in two parts, one part today, and the other part will be published tomorrow, enjoy:

"I Remember the Sale"
By: Alexander Rothbard 

The sale I'll never forget happened a long time ago.  It was my third day as a Philip Morris salesman.  The first two days were a training period, third day I was on my own.  

The assignment slip gave a list of the streets (in a strange city, I asked a million questions as to how to reach my destination.   During the first subway ride I kept thinking and planning how I was really going to sell Philip Morris.

I analyzed my approach, presentation and closing but still no sale.  About 2:00 in the afternoon I hit low ebb--all the enthusiasm gone, my hopes and dreams shattered.    All I could see was failure.  The next stop was a tobacco shop.  I must have looked at the store for 10 minutes, actually fearing another refusal.  Well it had to be and I was desperate.  I walked in and gave no introduction other than I was from the Philip Morris Company.  (Continued Tomorrow)

Poetry Link: Grandfather

Friday, July 2, 2010

I Dream Of New Belgium Fat Tire Beer Sipped from My Backyard

Oh yeah, I did have a dream:  I was cruising on Alameda (in Denver Colorado) on a bike, but Alemeda had been transported to here in Lakeland Florida.   I passed a liquor store.  I took a double look, and saw that their was a sign for New Belgium Beer's Fat Tire,   one of the best beers ever,  so I get all excited because Fat Tire can not be acquired east of the Mississippi River region,  I go inside the store, leaving my bike unlocked outside.   They have set up a jug pouring business where one can buy a jug and fill the glass jug with the amber liquid.  I pour myself a jug and leave with anticipation of a great drink, but when I get outside the liquor store, there is no bike to be found.  I walk home with contentment as my guide.  

Ramblings of Greg 7.2.

I am not writing well today.  Nothing is really that bad, it’s just one of those other days.  It has been a lazy morning here in Florida.  It has been rainy and the clouds hang low like a present rumor.

My wife plays the guitar in the other room. Her soul soars on high.  

Sometimes writing is difficult, there really is not much going on. 
But you need to write every day, no matter what!   So today I sit here trying to think of what to say that might be somewhat positive.  

My arm hurts. Probably from cutting too much meat, filling customer orders, and cleaning up.  Why does ones ears not hurt from listening too much?  

Tonight I will be going to feed the homeless at Munn Park from old Chinese carry out containers, and food made by my friend Miguel Vazquez.  

Cheers to my Nederland friends, and the three guys I met in Israel.   We had a blast partying in the Old City of Jerusalem in 1997, London Underground, Arizona Bar, and spending all my money so that I had to borrow some to get back to Egypt.   I have never planned very well, and have had to rely on the courtesy of strangers.  I have learned  a lot from these adventures though. I am so happy that y'all beat those brats from San Paulo.  

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Southern California: Brett Easton Ellis Imperial Bedroom

Imperial Bedroom: Brett Easton Ellis - Southern California (Los Angeles, San Diego etc.)

Twilight Series: Eclipse

Yes, I asked my wife to go see the matinee of Twilight.  According to the bro-code, I probably lost about 30 man points in watching this movie.   But so what?  Because my wife and I both enjoyed the film.

I learned something from the new Twilight Series about the need for traditional values in today's youth conscious. Edward (the Vampire) is a great character of heroic stature. If I was Bella's father I would want the right guy to marry my daughter. Edward would truly be someone who I would have no problem saying"Yes, you can be my son in law!" He stands by his girl. He is respectful of her body. And he believes in traditional values.

At first Bella's dad thinks there is something different about this boy. No one can be this respectful these days. I would not expect boys in 2010 to act so courageously. He desires to be right with Bella's dad, and wants to ask for his daughter's hand in marriage.

Too bad Edward is fictional and is also a vampire, but perhaps we can dream of a day, when boys become like Edward and court the girl. Lets hope that the good bachelors are not vampires.

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