Saturday, January 21, 2006


Serendipitously (and probably inappropriately, [which is my métier]) for Heath (in which case it is my [fôrt] and not my [fôr'tā']), and for a lovely but distant speed metalist, and for my pregnant Queer's First Girlfriend (barefoot in Arkansas, natch--soooooie!), and for a girl with a sore back who is in San Diego to look for a house in which not to live:

I have a dream
And must be fed.
The manta rays when you wade out
Ripple toward your outstretched hand.

The answer is
The friendliness of the body.
There is no answer, but the answer is
The friendliness of the body

Is the stars above
The dock at night.
And in the afternoon lagoon flags lazily flap
Their bodies toward yours

To be fed. I landed on
An atoll in the soft
The airport air was sweet. The blond January breeze was young.

The windchill factor
Which is Western thought
Received an IV drip of syrup of clove.
I have a dream. I have a dream the

Background radiation is a
Warm ocean, and a pasture for
Desire, and a
Beach of royal psalms.

The IV bag is a warm ocean,
Is a body not your own feeding your body.
My body loves your body
Is the motto of Tahiti.

Two flying saucers mating,
One on top the other, flap and flow, in love.
Each is a black
Gun soft as a glove.

Fred Seidel, January

Dalton Walton Certain is a putative torture name that we've already come up with, though it's got nothing on Nancy Ann Seancy.


Friday, January 20, 2006

Boy does man's job 

I used to think that Circuit City was a little better than the glut of other electronics institutions that cater to the crowd of people who never want to have to solder anything in their lives. Unfortunately, on Halloween night last year, I managed to drop my beloved camera squarely on its face, bending the lens assembly and effectively jamming it open (I blame the severely rad costumes for my clumsiness). At the time, mind you, I wasn't very upset. See, knowing myself pretty well I had gone ahead and bought a ridiculously-priced coverage plan (as in about two-thirds the value of the camera itself) so that mishaps like these wouldn't interrupt my stream-of-consciousness photography nonsense. The contract portion of the protection plan reads like an obscure legal dictionary, so when I was buying the thing I tried to engage the salesman a little. The conversation went something like this:

JK: "Hey, I drop, slam, immerse and sit on sophisticated electronic items with some frequency. Does this plan cover such events of unwitting damage?"

CC: "Why yes, see this line in the contract about accidental damage? You're golden. "

JK: "Great, yes, I see that now, this really is the plan that best fits my active lifestyle."

Needless to say, come repair time the folks at Circuit City were a little less helpful. Three months later, my camera is mailed back to me in the exact same condition in which I sent it off: crookedly mocking me with its unfortunately angled lens assembly. A helpful note inside expressed very plainly that, after an evaluation, Circuit City had decided that this particular damage was, indeed, not covered by my insurance plan against myself. In my mind, a clear image develops of the taciturn evaluation: a dozen or so sharply dressed executives and a similar number of nerdy technicians in white coats sit around a long conference table, alternatingly arguing and stdying my camera, lying in its sad state in the center of the table. One finally throws his hands in the air, exhausted after three months of hard, studied debate, "Enough! We just can't do this anymore, mail it back!"

I ended up on the phone, quoting from the contract to some hapless chap at a call center. He suggests that I have it sent in again, but not ready for another three months of bullshit waiting, I decide to twiddle around with the machine a bit before I yield again to corporate inefficiency. This is where the true hilarity begins. After a full two minutes of gently trying to pop the lens back into line, the whole things just sorts of snaps cleanly back onto its track, immediately retracting automatically.

Two minutes. Three months. We're over, Circuit City.

The first new photo in a quarter of a year.


Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Perpetual C-130 

Anyone who knows me is aware that this blog was christened in honor of a specific set of my closest friends from back home, the C-130s, a monniker adapted from the LRAFB trademark C-130 Hercules aircraft flight paths about which our social events tended to (and still tend to) organize. It sounds dumb, but it's a zeitgeist thing that seems insipid and dull to everyone except the participants of the real thing. I mean, we even have a codified driving route that is considered a sacred inside joke, a rite of initiation into our antithetically cool sect, an easy way to spend a thousand dull evenings growing up in the middle-of-nowhere Arkansas, a nice spur on the way to the lake, or, frequently, simply a way to get away from the irritations of the workaday life with some friends.

Needless to say, Google Maps has let me zoom back to the route when I need a little shot of home to make the day progress a little more smoothly. Today I noticed a detail that I'd never noticed before when tracing around the route: the satellite captured a C-130 slowly buzzing toward the runway like a retarded little bumblebee. Here's the map; zoom in to maximum resolution to see the plane and shadow, along with some creepy ghosting that must have happened when a second lens made a pass milliseconds after the first.

While I'm on the subject, I should go and fill this out with some music made by the natives in honor of the closing down of Blank Generation, the last place I saw the Gossip perform in Little Rock (in front of about nine people). Enjoy yourself some Arkansawyers.

Chris Denny, Little Rock Callin'
Warning: this song makes me tear up and want to get drunk and weepy
Christopher Denny, whose self-titled debut album was released last month, is the oldest twenty-two year old on the planet. He seems to have come of age sometime in the '30s or '40s, in the numberless dusty small towns and on the single-lane highways of the American interior, in the company of an itinerant cohort of men whose shoes were soled with cardboard but whose hearts were tender, and who were buoyed along in the margins of society by bad times and good love and the ability to turn all it into a song.

Jeanne and the Darlings, How Can You Mistreat the One You Love?

Coming from Arkansas, they first recorded for Avant as the Dolphus Singers, led by Jeanne Dolphus and her sister Dee. Their first Stax / Volt recording dates from 1967.

Chinese Girls, Night Dress
Chinese Girls came into being following a muddy 1999 Halloween party in Beesonville at which Sam Murphy and Andrew Morgan discovered they shared fondness for certain records (which records those are we'll leave to your imaginations) and a desire to make music that pleased their ears in that same spirit. Young architects. No bass. As much noise as could be generated by just two people. The early intent, these. Strings may break. Amps die and are reborn. Moustaches may come and go.

The Salty Dogs, This Happy New Year (Ain't So Happy at All)
Hailed as the Kings of the Little Rock honky-tonk, The Salty Dogs have successfully mixed the familiar sounds of Bakersfield with a unique and original hip flavor. The quartet comprised of Brad Williams, Bart Angel, Mike Nelson, and Nick Devlin

Sarah Thomas, Watch Me Drink
Singer-Songwriter Sara Thomas is figuring out the music business while she figures out life itself. Born in Little Rock and reared in Benton, Thomas has been writing songs since she was 21. Five years along, and she has begun to let others in on what she has done.


Monday, January 16, 2006

Your bartender 

is also a musician of a special class.

After letting things get out of hand a couple of nights ago at Saint Ex, I woke up with a scrap of paper in my pocket that I didn't remember receiving. This note directed me to the website of one Benjy Ferree. I knew immediately the context of the note when I visited the address: that guy had served me Red Stripes all night.

You can stream his album for free here, or download the mp3 of the track "The Desert" here. He's just played the Kennedy Center, an unfortunate miss in my case, but the happy lilt of the album more than makes up for my too-late tradition. It looks like he'll be touring through Philadelphia and New York in the coming days. I'm looking forward to hearing more.

I'm also looking forward to Extreme Karaoke with my housemates Joao and Amanda in the coming days, as promted by our Corona-and-Taco fueled renditions of the Doobie Brothers' "What a Fool Believes" and Extreme's "More than Words" tonight at dinner. Dig.


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