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Archive for December, 2008

old people, brain power, planes

Tuesday, December 23rd, 2008

One thing about getting a little bit older – I realize that older people don’t necessarily have the answers – as a matter of fact, they’ve had more opportunity to fuck themselves up. Sometimes the answers old people provide are dogmatism. It makes me respect young people more. Everyone starts out shiny and righteous. Actually this gives me hope and greater understanding, sure. Gives me a lot of respect for older people who DO come out on top of it all, still articulate and caring. I have a kind of admiration and jealousy for cheerful people, too.

I’ve lost some of my brain power. I think it’s partially due to being cooped up in an isolated bubble for two years, partially due to smoking too much, partially due to Geodone. I’d stopped smoking grass for a couple months, tried it again last night but didn’t have any good effects from it, just increased anxiety, so that experiment didn’t work.

I miss coffee. I had a cup this morning for the first time in a couple weeks. I realize that all my life I’ve amped up my interest in living by drinking coffee. I might be stuck on it. I think it’s the most powerful drug I know, hardest to quit. I’m going to see how it affects me all day, another experiment.

Well I’ve been off Geodone for almost a week, and I think my depressive symptoms are lessening. The hardest time is morning when I can’t figure out what to do. If I had a job, my free time will become sweet again. Right now it’s sour because I feel I should be creating, yet I have no words, really blank. Well, I tried to write a poem yesterday and got farther than I usually do lately. Maybe getting off the Geodone is helping that.

Here’s the poem –


Thought is as relevant as the underside of leaf,
the bristled ground floor of an ant’s eye level,
Soul as significant as an aphid cow

The miracle of eye believes in pain for seeing is believing on
this plane and thought is emergence and existence transcends
the improbability of clockwork

There are ghosts of ant battlefields between dandelion stars



cereal killer

Tuesday, December 23rd, 2008

wink – foto by smith

There was a small weed growing at the base of our lime tree up on the roof. I like to live and let live so let it live. It grew larger and began distracting from the flow of the lime, so I pulled it up. Its roots were so deep it took two tugs to get it out. Its tenacity and large healthy root system impressed me, so I got a pot and soil and replanted it. Wasn’t worried about it surviving because it’s a weed and weeds grow like, well, weeds. But it wilted, started dying. I nursed it back to health.

So now I have a healthy weed that’s not particularly attractive growing alone in its own pot of soil. Don’t really want it around, but since I killed it and saved it, I can’t just turn around and kill it again – that’d make me a serial plant killer.

Now if it were a cereal plant, I could kill and eat it with no trouble – it’s in my blood memory. My cave-person ancestors used to hunt and kill herds of wild wheat, then husk the slaughtered kernels to drag back to the cave to feed the clan.

Ode to Andy Warhol – foto by smith


the united mutations of smiths

Monday, December 22nd, 2008

Lady (aka Mrs. Smith) – foto by smith

The United Mutations of Smiths:

Mr. & Mrs. Smith – movie, 1941, directed by Alfred Hitchcock starring Carole Lombard and Robert Montgomery – 6.6 out of 10

Mr. & Mrs. Smith – movie, 2005, starring Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt – 6.4 out of 10

Mr. & Mrs. Smith – TV series, 1996, starring Scott Bakula and Maria Bello, 7.2 out of 10, lasted one season

Mr. & Mrs. Smith – TV series, 2007, starring Martin Henderson and Lauren Birkel, lasted one episode, 4.1 out of 10.

Mr. & Mrs. Smith – real life, 2006, married by the Wiccan Witch of the Midwest, starring Lady & Smith, still showing in syndication, 10 out of 10.

Lady & the Tramp – Disney animation, 1955, voices of Barbara Luddy and Larry Roberts, 7.4 out of 10

Lady & her Tramp – real life, 2005, directed by Lady, starring Lady & Smith, still in production.

& her tramp (aka Mr. Smith) – foto by smith


silly surreality

Sunday, December 21st, 2008

carnival ride – foto by smith

I’m a bit down today. Realized this when I told Lady, “The worst thing is to be born female, the second worst is to be born young, the third worst is to be born human, and the fourth worst is to be born at all.”

This came up talking about her cramps. I asked if they were similar to flu stomach pains, and she said no, they’re different. I replied how lucky she was to be born into extra pain as a woman, then gave her my worst born list.

I’m 62 years old, and I’m weary of the world’s sorrow, pain, theft, abuse and general knavery.

So it’s time for silliness, to reset my emotional index.

Told Lady today we’ll name our firstborn Almost Everything Smith. That way, after people meet her or him, they can tell folk they know Almost Everything.

Earlier told her we’d name all our kids Tope. A tope (toe-pay) is a Mexican concrete speed bump across the road, and what are else children but life’s speed bumps? We’ll name them Tope 1, Tope 2, etc and just refer to them by number.

Of course if we do have children, the Church will have to pay for them since it’d be a miracle because I had my sperm tubes cut thirty-two years ago. Whenever people wonder if I’m broken, I just tell them not to worry because I’ve been fixed.

Lady’s also a mite down, so I tried brightening her mood with a bit of surreal silliness. As she walked down the hall, I followed with two books. Each step she took I patted one of her buttock cheeks with a book, chanting “Beat-ing-her-but-tocks-with-books, beat-ing-her-but-tocks-with-books” – each beat one bat to butt.

It’s all the Academic’s fault – I wanted to be one of Them, but when I tried and applied, they rejected me, told me I wasn’t SERIOUS enough. And it’s been downhill ever since. Sometimes I wake up in condemned comedy clubs with the sordid memory of an empty audience and the taste of bad puns in my mouth.

carnival ride – foto by smith


x – you are not here

Saturday, December 20th, 2008

map shown to folks who were asked if they
could find America on it – foto from internet article

[ NOTE – I missed that the article I based this blog on was supposed to be satire. But even so, my points are still valid. ]

When citizens of the United States of America were asked to find America on the map above, 37% could not do it. The red splotches all around the USA are their guesses as to where America is.

One person when asked what the blue land mass represented, replied “Iraq.”

Another answered, “I live in the U.S.A., so why would I need to know where America is? Or the United States for that matter? As long as there’s still room on that map for all three of those countries, I’m sure everyone will keep getting along just fine.”

When asked our country’s capital, they guessed #1 – Minneapolis-St. Paul, #2 – Mount Rushmore, #3 America City, #4 Whitewater, and #5 Washington, D.C.

31% said America was “the best state of all the Unites States,” while 22% thought America was “a place to definitely explore when I finally get my passport.”

If you think I’m lying, check out

This helps explain how Americans let Cheney & Bush steal the Presidential election twice, eviscerate the constitution, invade two foreign countries, murder more than a million Iraqis, kill over 4,000 Americans, spy on Americans, kidnap Americans, and steal billions and billions of dollars for their KBR/Halliburton masters: citizens of the United States of America simply didn’t realize the America doing those evil deeds was their own country.

Our host in Croatia said he liked Americans, but they had two failings: they didn’t know geography, and they didn’t know history.

That’s why 24% of Americans still think Bush is doing a good job. How do folk this plumb dumb get up every day, dress themselves, eat, go to work, and raise families? How do people this stupid not only survive but actually prosper in today’s complex world? What ever happened to Darwin’s survival of the fittest?

ps – there’s another problem involved here – AMERICA refers to North America (which includes Canada, the USA, Mexico), Central America (Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama), and South America (Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Columbia, Ecuador, Guyana, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, Uruguay, Venezuela and 3 territories: Galapagos Islands, Falkland Islands, French Guinea), so those polled above who chose Canada and Mexico were partially correct. The pollsters who chose such a regionally bigoted question in the first place are showing their own stupidity.

a carnival ride – foto by smith


If a relationship fails in the woulds

Friday, December 19th, 2008

relativity – foto by smith

While on our 3rd floor patio roof tending our plants, cactus and trees in smoke and sun, I look over and see Howler – the big black roof dog across the street – lying in the sun staring straight at me. This is unusual because Howler glances at me only to look away for something interesting. So I waved and talked with him awhile. He just stared at me unmoving, so I talked and gestured more. Then Howler lifts his head a bit more up towards the sun and I realize he’s sun bathing with his eyes closed. He had never noticed me. Probably couldn’t see me in the first place with the sun in his eyes.

Just another social relationship where I think everything is going along just fine–in fact better than ever before–when in fact the life form I’m interacting with doesn’t even know I’m there. Not the first time my ego has misled me. Nor my first one-sided relationship. Heck, I talk to inanimate objects. I’m used to being ignored.

If a relationship fails in the woulds and the relatees don’t see, is it still related?

Two weeks ago on the roof while looking up at the conjunction of Jupiter, Venus and the just-risen crescent moon, I heard a child laugh and glanced down at two human silhouettes on the dark sidewalk below. A mother was following her small son, and with every step his sneaker shoe souls flashed red lights in the night. I kept looking up at the night conjunction lights, then down at the mother following her fast-stepping red-flashing son, marveling at being on a roof under the Mexican night sky watching two once in a lifetime occurrences at the same time.
I wonder if the Gods watch me, as I watch others. If so, I hope they’re amused.

roof dog TV – foto by smith



Thursday, December 18th, 2008

Lady amidst sidewalk pi̱atas Рfoto by smith

While up on the roof in the moonless dark with my night smoke, I hear children running, shrieking, laughing. I look down two floors at the party across the street where they’ve strung a line from the telephone pole to a man on the roof and hung a piñata from it. The children and adults ring a great circle around the piñata while a man in a cape hands a large stick to one child at a time who tries to break it open while the man on the roof bounces it about. For the small children, he bounces it low and slow, but for the strong and quick it’s jerked high and fast.

For twenty minutes they beat this thing until finally a wee one breaks a protruding horn off the bottom and candy and firecrackers fall to the street, the children converging. The larger boys immediately light the firecrackers and throw them down the street where they explode loudly and repeatedly beneath my sleeping Lady’s window.

Watching the street day and night from our third floor roof or second floor kitchen window is my daily movie, my reality TV screen. There’s a lot of life lived here on the street, in the streets. People walk, talk, kiss, hug, sell, blare horns, ride bicycles, motorbikes, sit and talk and eat and drink, dance, grill chicken, fix cars, play music, dogs bark, old indigenous women with baskets on their heads hawk bread, peppers, strange fruit while children play and dogs roam. Vendors on three-wheeled bicycles rigged with car batteries to run loudspeakers call out “tamales, atoli, rico tamales” while other venders have wood fired stoves on their bicycles which let out mournful steam whistle cries advertising baked bananas. The ice cream bicycle constantly beeps his clown horn while the knife sharpening bicycle plays a pan pipe flute riff. I forget which bicycling vendor beats a triangle. The natural gas truck sounds like a slice of ALL-TALK-LOUD-ALL-THE-TIME radio segueing into electronic cow moos and then loud loud “GAS DE OAXACA” loudspeakering out before going back into electronic cow moos. The water vendor just cries one long drawn-out “Aaaaaaaagggggguuuuaaaaaaaa”.

There’s a lot to like here.

ghost rider in the sky – foto by smith


quantum stereo

Wednesday, December 17th, 2008

Life – foto by smith

Reading a death blog, I was reminded of this itty ditty from my late teens.

Quantum Stereo

You ask – is there life after death?
Holding my breath
Intending no mirth
I reply – is there life after birth?

The graveyard’s filled, the graveyard’s full
And still the dead are dying
This lifeless life makes death look dull
I wonder why I’m whying

– Steven B Smith, 1965

I’ve discovered in the decades since there IS life after birth, even though the walking dead still are daily dying.

Life and death – more ubiquitous, widespread, and inevitable than death and taxes. Though I suppose Life & Death’s redundant because death implies life. Perhaps “death is redolent of life” is more accurate, sublime.

Besides, only as a group or species is it Life & Death – for the rest of us individually, it’s life OR death.

Death – foto by smith


fool killer coming

Tuesday, December 16th, 2008

enough – foto by smith

I have a new hero – Muntazer (or Muntadar or Muthathar or Muntadhar or Muntader) al-Zaidi. He works for Iraqi al-Baghdadiya television, and during an Iraqi press conference he took off his shoes and threw them at George W. Bush. As he threw the first shoe, he shouted, “This is a farewell kiss, you dog.” With the second shoe he yelled, “This is from the widows, the orphans and those who were killed in Iraq.”

The five different spellings of al-Zaidi’s name come from five different online news sites. Makes one wonder about their accuracy. Makes one think the white world doesn’t much care about checking out how to spell brown-skinned people’s names.

Throwing shoes at someone is a gesture of utter contempt in Iraqi culture. It means the person is as low as the dirt underneath the sole of a shoe. That certainly sums up Bush in my book, although you’d have to toss in treason, theft, lies, mass murder, illegal invasion, and a host of other sins for a complete picture of Bush and his puppet-master Cheney. To make them semi-human, you’d need to add a brain to Bush and a heart to Cheney.

I would have been even happier had both of al-Zaidi’s shoes hit Bush, and ecstatic had the cowardly Bush dropped dead of fright.

Last month, crowds of Iraqis in Ferdous Square pelted an effigy of Bush with their shoes. I’d prefer they’d used rocks and rolls.

We need to pelt the CheneyBush Beast. Or de-pelt them.

killer – foto by smith


pumper nickel

Monday, December 15th, 2008

Domestic violence: nothing to celebrate, time to fight – foto by smith

Pumpernickel – isn’t that a five cent prostitute?

Carnival ride – foto by smith


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