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07/01 Direct Link
The papers do it again and again. Some guy gets caught doing something violent and stupid. The papers make him look like he's merely misunderstood, there must have been a mistake!

Case in point. Darcy Allen Sheppard got himself killed while attacking Michael Bryant. Initial reports said Sheppard was an obvious angel, misunderstood, to be pitied. Turned out he was everyone's worst fucking nightmare. Violent drunk, didn't give a shit about anyone but himself.

Same with Christopher Coke.

Same with Manuel Zelaya.

Think you'll ever see a retraction in any of these asshole cases?

"Sorry, we were really, really gullible."

07/02 Direct Link
I guess the sensation of hunger is caused internally, by internal organs. I guess the nervous system is somehow tweaked , maybe from the outside of the stomach. (I guess the inside is too full of acids to be hospitable to neurons.) I guess it's a type of pain--I guess that's why everyone talks about 'hunger pains.' I guess that's more accurate than anyone til me ever really understood. I guess there could be a masochistic pleasure to be had from extreme hunger. I guess it could be. All I know is when I get hungry I start crying.

07/03 Direct Link
Let's be cats, my darling, for just about an hour
And locked into a cellar where even we can't see
And fumble let's along its length of flooring
And when day comes we won't know day has come
Within that hour, and sound be sounds increased
With naught but furs and cushions, claws and pads,
Until we don't know who is who and what is what
And melt into the floor and ratty sad couch left
Behind by a former tenant, crummy coarse fabric,
And then we'll get another type of sight,
A type of sight beyond our fellow cats.

07/04 Direct Link
A Vision

There's a man standing at a streetcar stop. He's with a woman, and he's crying. She looking left, up the street. (This is taking place in Canada.) She looks at her watch. He wipes his eyes and looks around. He's somewhere else for a moment, then he's back where he started. He gasps, and cries some more. She looks up the street again. There's a streetcar coming. As it nears, she says something to him. Something that looks harsh. Then she gets onto the streetcar, and you do too. She sits behind you. You can feel her there.

07/05 Direct Link
A Place of Perfect Order

I've built a box, and inside of it is a place of perfect order. Six squares of plywood each glued on all four edges and assembled in the only way six squares of plywood each glued on all four edges can be assembled. Inside, there's nothing. It's a perfect place, a place of perfect order. Everything outside is chaos and disorder, but inside the box there's perfect order, the perfect blackness of perfect order. Everything outside is chaos and disorder, but inside the box there's perfect order, the perfect blackness of perfect order. Perfect. Perfect.

07/06 Direct Link
Adolescent Sex

She suddenly touched me in the groin area and cried, "You're it!"

"Hey!" I shouted and scrambled up the dirt after her. I slapped her deep between her leg and yelled, "You're it!" and slipped trying to get away.

She smacked me down there and--"You're it!"

I caught her by the leg and pulled her near. I patted her crotch and said, "You're it."

She brushed my bulge and said, "You're it."

I touched her, undoing a button. "You're it."

She did the same. "You're it."

Zip! "You're it."

"You're it."

"You're it."

"You're it."

"You're it."

07/07 Direct Link
Dog on Vacation

I chose this year to be a cat for two weeks. I sat flat in the sun, hot and drooling. I gobbled up cat food then walked around rubbing against stuff. Slept a bunch more, then I hung around near where the floors met walls just in case some kind of thing showed up, something to kill, but there wasn't ever anything there. Shoot! It was a pretty lazy time, got to say. Shitting indoors was nice, too. I scratched away at the stuff, too, like I'd seen cats do. The days flew by, then went home.

07/08 Direct Link
Cat on Vacation

I deserved a vacation, something annual, so I decided to become a dog for a two week period. I slept for divinely lengthy periods, punctuated by such activities as: chasing small animals of many different varieties, leaping at closed doors, excreting in exterior situations, et cetera. It was a very appealing change of pace, if I do say so myself. Now certainly, the scent of dog is something one must get used to--but I could not seem avid at bath-time (of which I had merely one, alas). But my vacation ended, and I became catty again.

07/09 Direct Link
I hear that Teeje was going back from the hospital on Wednesday--she was there because her brother had overdosed on something or another, I guess he's okay--and when she was crossing some street or another she dodged a bicycle and fell onto the curb, and just then along came one of those tiny joke Smart Cars or whatever those things are called and it ran over her foot, breaking three or four bones, and she wound up in the hospital, which wasn't that far away--she hobbled over there by herself. That doesn't mean I have to like her.

07/10 Direct Link
TO ACCOMPLISH SOMETHING
ACCOMPLISH SOMETHING LIKE
SOMETHING LIKE THE BUILDING OF A BIG
OF A BIG WHITE HOUSE-
ISN'T THAT SOMETHING
SOMETHING YOU'D LIKE TO ACCOMPLISH?

YOU'RE ON THE ROOF OF
YOUR BIG WHITE HOUSE WITH
WITH THAT LAST NAIL NEEDED AT THE PEAK
AT THE PEAK
THE POINT POINTS DOWN
THE HAMMER YOU'RE HOLDING PROPERLY LIKE

AND YOU BANG IN THE LAST
THE LAST NAIL AND LEAN
AND LEAN BACK AND LOOK ACROSS THE ROOFS
THE ROOFS AROUND YOU
ON YOUR WHITE HOUSE
YOU SLIDE DOWN OFF THE ROOF DEFTLY LIKE

SHOULD YOU MOVE IN?
SHOULD YOU MOVE IN?

07/11 Direct Link
REVIEW OF A THANK-YOU CARD

I've received a thank-you card from the wedding I went to last month.

The handwriting has a good script to it, and it looks like she ran out of room near the bottom.

She says the gift was fun, etc.

I was hoping for something ascorbic.

Now I know that they wrote several dozens if not a hundred of these notes, so I guess I should be thankful it's not a form letter.

However, in that I'm reading it as a review of my own work, I take it as indicating I've failed. Failed again.

07/12 Direct Link
TRAILER

Coming this August....

Dare to believe ... the unbelievable. Dare to think ... the unthinkable. And dare to accept ... the unacceptable.

[A woman using a vast variety of cameras photographing her apartment. Darkroom. Negatives. Proofs. Loupe. Blow-ups. Computer files. Electronic enhancements.

[Conversation clips: "I know she's here." "Where are you?"]

This August, take a glimpse at what happens beyond the edge of what you normally see. All the love ... and all the terror.

[Picket line. Everyone's wearing white. Signs flash by: ON STRIKE. NEITHER ANALOG NOR DIGITAL. NO CHEESE.]

Coming this August.... Prepare yourself for....

"UNTITLED STORY"

07/13 Direct Link
The mailman gave me a box today. I had to sign. I wasn't expecting anything--it was from the government. And it was heavy. Seemed to jingle.

I opened it with a blade. Under three layers of padding was a smaller box which I opened.

It was filled with pennies.

There was a document enclosed.

It was my tax return.

They'd sent me my tax return in pennies.

8,418 pennies!

I wracked my brains. How'd I offended them? Why were they insulting me like this?

I called the number on the document.

Gave my name.

They hung up on me!

07/14 Direct Link
8.

Strangest thing that ever happened to me was this. There was this creepy guy who lived on our street. Harvey Roberts. About 40, lived in his mother's basement. I can't remember exactly why, but one afternoon my sister and me went over there. He said he had a trick to show us. He tied my sister onto his bed and cut off her clothes with scissors. Then he took a knife and started cutting her flesh. She was laughing the whole time. Like I said, it was the strangest thing that ever happened to me. No, wait. Second strangest.

07/15 Direct Link
9.

Perform an act of imagination, folks. Pretend I'm five years old.

Hi. I'm five. I'm on vacation with my family. We are at a beach in Nova Scotia. You know what I really, really like to do? I look for lovey-dovey couples--the kind who look like they're about to firetruck--and I stand about four metres away from them, and stare at them. (Sometimes I pick my nose!)

Because I know that in twenty years I will be on a beach with a pretty girl, and my peepee will be hurting. I wanna ruin stuff for everybody everywhere!

07/16 Direct Link
10.

"Driftwood"

There comes a time in every man's life that he has to talk about
"driftwood."
Even if he lives in the prairies, the time arrives when the word
"driftwood"
passes his lips. So, here I am, walking along, and my mind's eye can see nothing but
"driftwood."
When
"driftwood"
dries out, it is ideal for a clambake. (Plus you need rocks and seaweed and a tarp, but here I'm only considering the
"driftwood.")
You can paint
"driftwood,"
you can paint a picture of
"driftwood,"
you can even make furniture out of
"driftwood."
Some were spars; all were trees.

07/17 Direct Link
11.

I was standing at the station platform, waiting for a commuter train. Slowly, a long, black train rolled up, slowed, stopped. A conductor (I suppose) leaned out cadaverously to me. "Are you the person whom I was intended to stop for?" "Are you going to North Station?" He shook his head slowly. "No. This is an express train." "Express to where?" Again he slowly shook his head. "Good day, sir." The train quietly rolled off. I could see the ashen passengers looking out stilly. The train disappeared in the distance. Loudly the commuter train rolled up. I got on.

07/18 Direct Link
12.

The assessment is general that the people in this town are hostile and suspicious. M-'s sister says their Catholocism is "ultra-orthodox." M- herself said some creep was "leering" at her in the Co-op. I myself feel nervous in the Co-op--but that's typical of me in any shop, because I look like a thief. Even the children are decidedly shifty-eyed. Anyway, the feeling of suspicions was confirmed to me just now when I went into the hardware store to buy a floatation device for one of M-'s nieces. The guy sold me two boulders for $19.99. Boulders don't float!

07/19 Direct Link
13.

Dear editor of The New York Times,
I write to you to cancel my subscription. I have recently begun a subscription to The Inverness Oran, a weekly published in Cape Breton, and I must say, your periodical pales by comparison. If the Oran reports there's going to be a church dinner then by golly there's going to be a church dinner. If a group of youth engage in a sack race, then sure as you're born the reader will be provided with the contestants' names, ages, roots and parishes. Their honesty is refreshing; it is news fit to print.

07/20 Direct Link
14.

Peaches

The girl with the distracted breasts is wading in the water while the girl with the brasts that hate one another is setting up an umbrella. Look at that girl. Which one? The one with the proud breasts. Oh, her. I've never seen such proud breasts before. Reading Twilight is a girl with seasonal breasts and tossing a baseball in the air is a woman with American breasts. That woman's winding up her generated breasts. "As the wine-dark sea" is the woman with breasts like five ocelots. An insurance-breasted woman is off to the parking lot for beer.

07/21 Direct Link
15.

Four came over.

The redhead said, "What happened?"

I felt very accused. "Well, Mike Wise asked if we had The Science of Special Statistics and I went and found it. He was talking to some pal of his so I rang through someone else first--but I'd already keyed in the Science, so the total was $895,018.00. I got nervous, pressed CA, tried to sort it out, then Wise rolled away without his book."

The redhead said, "I think we're going to put you on stock for a while."

I'd been humiliated. But--why was Wise in a wheelchair?

07/22 Direct Link
16.

The car sputtered, stalled, came to a halt.

"Damn," said the driver. "Looks like we're out of gas."

"What?" cried the passenger. "You're my girlfriend's sister, and you run out of gas? Here?"

She looked at him. "Here?"

"In the middle of nowhere!"

"We're on the main road of a small town. You can see the Co-op from here."

"Why did I ever agree to get in a car with you?"

"You asked for a ride. Look, the gas station's a block away." She opened the door. "Be right back." And was gone.

"No! Come back and seduce me!"

07/23 Direct Link
17.

"These little things remind me of you"

A cloud, a telephone, a planet, a stanza, an emotion, a woman, a harpsichord, a cigarette butt, a Swiss army knife, "Sanford and Son," an ocean, a patio slab, a weed, a rocketship, some pants, a hot potato, Africa, an aquarium, a book of photographs, the north wind, a signature, a barbecue, Alexander Pope, yeast, fingernails, lots and lots of houses, insignificance, L, bridges, a galaxy, symbiotic relationships, jokes, relatives, winter sport, folded paper, a firework, a theorem, a new deal, carry-on luggage, a dramatic pause, a table, and a cavortious astynyx.

07/24 Direct Link
18.

THE BURNING SHIP

"It's just ... amazing what these city folk think. Their eyes are simply burning with lust when they see our women. Just because we have beaches and bikinis and whatnot they think we're morally looser than themselves. Which is utterly absurd.

"All our women are churchgoing, upright. Maybe it's just the influence of pastoral, you see? To them, we're all shepherdesses or golddiggers. We laught at them when they're not looking, when they're not drooling. It's not something to write about. Too sickening."

"So, why do you put up with it?"

"For the money, of course."

07/25 Direct Link
19.

NOTEWORTHY FACTS

1. Helen doesn't like the Chronicle-Herald.
2. Ruah came in eighth overall in a race in Mabou, July 17.
3. Somebody's Husband, Somebody's Son isn't as good as Happy Like Murderers.
4. Walking distance from Port Hood to Judique's about 17 kms.
5. "Shoulder business" refers to off-peak accommodation rentals.
6. Barbecued haddock: grill on one side, then turn onto foil.
7. Ashtrays were originally made from ash wood--hence the name. (I pwned Mary with this one.)
8. You can take aerial photographs from a radio-controlled toy aircraft. (It's done!)
9. Someone up there likes me.

07/26 Direct Link
THE UNDERSEA WORLD OF JACQUES-YVES COUSTEAU'S IMPACTED EARDRUM

Have you ever had an impacted eardrum? I get them about every three years or so, and while it's going on, it feels like I'm under water. Nothing sounds right. It's fuzzy, and I talk fuzzily too. Too quietly, I understand. And you can hear youself breathe all the time. Like Dave Bowman.

"I zee bevore me zeveral automobiles, and zere's a dog being led by a female perzon. Ze glories of zis undervater ztreet vorld ah ztunning. I am moving easily, looking here and zere. Are you rezeiving me, dere, Zhim?"

07/27 Direct Link
Newsreader at desk.

"Good evening, I'm Beatrice Perin, and here's the news."

VOICE: Look carefully, men. Isn't she lovely?

"The problems in the Gulf are continuing after three months...."

VOICE: Doesn't she look clean? Doesn't she look squeaky clean?

Newreader touches her nose. "Excuse me." She takes her hand away. Her nose is askew.

VOICE: Men- Do you really know where she's been?

"In other news-" She sneezes, and her fake nose comes off, revealing the crater where her nose used to be.

WHISPERY VOICES: Syphilis.... Syphilis....

She wipes her forehead--skin peels off.

VOICE: Guys, think before you fuck.

07/28 Direct Link
The Canadian Census: Spit or Swallow?

Every once in a while it comes. The long census. And we like it, or we think we like it, and so we're willing to play along, and so, we swallow. But then after a while we begin to think: Are we really that into it? And we think: if it comes again, we're going to spit. Most of us have swallowed at least twice (do the math!) and it, unlike ourselves, didn't really go down well. So let's liberate. Let's stop the swallowing. We'll feel more dignified in the morning after, you know.

07/29 Direct Link
The New Judgement

It's like this.

What will they like?

They'll decide what's important, and what's not, according to two simple rules.

If it's from the dominant group (auto racing, classical music, cocktail attire), it can't be liked, and liking it results in judging the viewer as violating some ism or other.

If it's from the subordinate group (knitting, rap music, blue jeans), it must be liked, and not liking it results in judging the viewer as violating some ism or other.

Using this scheme of distinction, you can make it. You will be accepted as not being an ist.

07/30 Direct Link
I'm there, looking at you from behind for more than two blocks. I'm there, making up pet names for you in the middle of the night. I'm there, beside you on a crosstown bus, appearing not to be aware of your divine presence. I'm there, gathering information as I listen to you fight with your boyfriend on the telephone. I'm there, planning practical jokes with your name on them. I'm there, mute and angry, when you flirt with a man not me. I'm there, checking out all of the books you checked out.

I think I love women too much.

07/31 Direct Link
ANNOTATIONS TO THE TENTH SECTION OF THE SECOND PART OF ULYSSES: A SELECTION

personification spring
triad
Gerty makes entrance later
slip?
Gerty adult by comparison
irony--nasty
inversion
spite?--perceived
who?
takes after citizen
mother's side uglier?
anemic
Mary
dreams
superstitions
Mary
laughs at Edy--thinks Edy jealous?
l word
consider what we know of med students
Mary
knots
Reggie not good enough
hardly
MISQUOTE
did talk--12.712-747
Bloom might like this
8
father figure
euph.
toilet paper
like Stephen in 3
both err
romantic Byronic reading hero; unhappy Heathcliff
capitalized!
name of the father distorted
annoyed
dislocation of down-up