Tag Archives: Arlene Ang

kardashian opossum strung and handy nachos, oh my

I recently ran a long race on my fucked up heel. I won the race. Leave me alone.

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The Broken Plate really needs you to submit!! Go now. You have until Oct 31.

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Juked! Another incredible Arlene Ang poem.

[she is my sister, as you know]

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Blink, shuffle, touch a mark on your left temple, go Teutonic, and pay attention to Rose Metal Press, flashers!

Our Fifth Annual Short Short Chapbook Contest submission period begins October 15 and ends December 1, 2010. Our 2010 judge will be Kim Chinquee. The winner will have his/her chapbook published in summer 2011, with an introduction by the contest judge. During the submission period, please email your 25–40 page double-spaced manuscript of short short stories under 1000 words to us here with a $10 reading fee via Paypal or check.

I can personally say (hint, hint–see that little EGGS book to the right side banner?) that Rose Metal will make you a booky-wooky that will glow like cotton undershirts of  Sunday butter on a chainsaw.

You can’t slay a dragon if you don’t shod-on your purple boots. String that bow! Don’t go falling slant in the town lights of Forgetville, USA. Huh? It means ENTER!

[i saw a hawk harass an owl yesterday. that’s rude. blur-jays and brows harass owls, i can see that, but a hawk? i though they were sort of bros…]

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(photo from a major green light nacho blog)

We shall be cheering for the Texas Rangers in the World Series. Why? NACHOS.

No kidding, people actually went to Texas Rangers games to eat nachos. When nachos and a beverage or two were consumed, they usually left the game because what was on the field wasn’t usually worth watching by then.

Often, the lines to the concession stands to get the nachos were long.

“Doesn’t matter,” one friend, living in the Dallas area at the time, once told me during a night at Turnpike Stadium. “Thinking about those nachos is better than thinking about the game.”

Why are they so surprised people would go to a ballgame only for the nachos? I’d kiss little rainworm stones for hours just for one nacho chip, cheese, a sketchy jalapeno…

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It is Mean Week over at HTML GIANT. People are wriitng obituaries.

1. Dead: Publishing Genius and Anderbo.

2. Deceased: Elimae, WWATD, online lit mags in general.

3. Deader than disco: AWP.

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Who doesn’t love Charlie Sheen? You go, man. Jesus H. The candle has been burnt but he made a new candle out of dirty bras, beer bottle foil, and the time-release coatings he just split from his Oxycontin…my Lordie.

“It’s been a very eventful trip,” his ex-wife says. And me, I love understatement, yet another lost and human form of humor.

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I write a story about John McEnroe eating some cat-head biscuits and throwing Moon Pies over at BLIP. What is BLIP? Well, it used to be RICK MAGAZINE. Then it used to be the Mississippi Review or something.  I can’t follow all the barbed wire, hinder axletrees, or should I say threads….

[get them damned goats off the lawn!!]

What do I know?

Here is some about the controversy (?). This is summer 2010 link, so basically the Epipaleolithic period in blog world speak. You probably know all this already. So why don’t I shut the fuck up?

[snap that racket’s neck, johnny-mac!!]

I read all the BLIP stories for this week. I was coffeed up and all sort of blur skin glow, all wavy rain synapse, all fifteen dollar refrigerators of glow (shard of me already planning lunch nachos), and I thought, I’ll read all the BLIP stories before I go run (hobble, fucking heel) and go to work and read some fiction drafts.

21% of the BLIP stories were blar rawlooking uniforms.

21% were OK feet (mine included)

42% were glow, at least ribbon in hair, at least rope-veined claw, maybe pink ribbon in blond hair glow.

16% were damn fine glow.

The best was “And One Blue Pussy” by Jennifer Pashley. Here is an excerpt:

He has a pony­tail that hangs halfway down his back. Blond and mostly straight. I don’t notice it until he walks away – because of the cap, because of his face. Like a mannequin’s face, carved out of wood or plas­ter, seam­less and smooth and all the same color, even the lips. Like you could pose his stiff arms in a polo, that his fin­gers would hold the shape of dainty point­ing, you could hang your keys on them, place them at his waist, or his col­lar, fanned out like the fin­gers on the baby Jesus in an old paint­ing. He walks away and I see the pony­tail, longer than mine, and way longer than Wendy’s. She cut her hair in her first trimester and now couldn’t make a pony­tail if she wanted to.

Not many of us go out. The bars in the hos­pi­tal neigh­bor­hood are col­lege bars, and it’s June. The one guy who goes with us won’t fully sit on the seat, and his wife texts him through his entire beer. He never puts the phone down and it keeps ping­ing, he keeps look­ing, he fum­bles through short mes­sages with his fat thumbs. Right after, he says he has to go. It leaves us in an empty place on a Mon­day night, with some piped in Grate­ful Dead, a lone bar­tender with a mess of dreads, a big belly and a salmon pink t-shirt.

I wait for him to make his own expla­na­tion. He says, Who wouldn’t want to date a red­head named Bridget?

I’ve dated a red­head named Brid­get, I say.

He says his friends set them up, and only told him that she was unpre­dictable, that he would love her, but that she would sur­prise him.

I also dated a red­head named Sam, I say.

Sam, he repeats, fishing.

Samuel, I say.

You’ve had boyfriends, he says, not a question.

Sure. I’ve had boyfriends. I’ve had twenty-five boyfriends, all named Sam, I say. Smirk. He orders another round.

What’s that from? he asks, like it’s a line from a movie. Behind him, the bar­tender wipes in a circle.

Andy Warhol, I say.

Andy Warhol had twenty-five boyfriends named Sam? he says.

They were cats, I say. Sugar Mag­no­lia comes on. It’s a book: Twenty-five cats named Sam. I cross my legs then under the table, and fin­ish the title for him, clos­ing my eyes when I say it. And one blue pussy.

He appears to work some­thing out of the side of his cheek with his tongue, which is pierced through with a round steel ball that clicks against his teeth. It goes pretty quick from there, talk­ing and not talk­ing, my foot on his foot under the table. His arm against mine above the table. Drink­ing, pay­ing, walk­ing to the car, the quick nego­ti­a­tion of who will drive and where, and when I ask him later, how many girl­friends he’s had, to at least try and even up the score of ques­tion ask­ing, he only says not enough.

Jesus, Sean, that excerpt was too long. This is a blog not a lit mag, Freak-O. OK, sorry. I got carried away. I like stories of random sex and Andy Warhol and tattered conversations, OK. And bars. And also there are nurses (remember, I am an RN) and what type of title is AND ONE BLUE PUSSY?

A glow title my friends.

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I’m not the only one who uses celebrities in their fiction. Just finished Celebrity Chekhov by Ben Greenman. Author takes Chekhov stories and brings them up to date, replacing the characters with celebrities: David Letterman, Paris Hilton, Michael Douglas, oh my.

[this opossum walked below me. it snuffled the air. it itched the air. i pulled out my iphone and took a photo and then i wrote a little flash fiction about a opossum, or notes of, so i guess the iphone has some practical use for writers…]

Some of the C Chekhov stories are trivial. Some are perfect mimics. Some are actually odd and fresh, the concept working, the pre-formed (in our minds) persona working in this new place. An example would be “The Darling,” starring Nicole Kidman and Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt and Keith Urban. Also effective were “A Trilogy” (The Jon Lovitz section is a comedic masterpiece) and “Terror.” The latter is about Michael Douglas, and possibly his current illness gives this story even more pathos, but I would point out and compliment a method Greenman ripped from Chekhov (obviously on purpose–the book is homage) and uses to startling effect: the juxtaposition of the natural world with our human concerns…

Douglas (who has quit acting to run coffee shops) gnashes and gnaws existential on life:

And do you understand life? Tell me: do you understand life better than the world beyond the grave?

I recognize that education and the conditions of life have imprisoned me in a narrow circle of falsity, that my whole life is nothing else than a daily effort to deceive myself and other people, and to avoid noticing it; and I am frightened at the thought that to the day of death I shall not escape from this falsity.

True dat, but then we get all of this delivered on a park bench, and this scene:

On the river, and here and there on the meadows, a mist was rising. High narrow coils of mist, thick and white as milk, were trailing over the river, hiding the reflection of the stars. Every minute they changed their form, and it seemed as some were embracing, others were bowing, others lifting their heads as though they were praying.

* Here is a long interview with Ben Greenman.

* Review of book here.

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Here is a photo of a deer walking past my deer stand a few days ago. I took its photo not its deer-burger.

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Here is a story about Kim Kardashian. Who the fuck is Kim Kardashian?

[EXCUSE ME–her sister eats nachos! Her sister eats nachos!!

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“Joy”

It was twelve o’clock at night.

Kim Kardashian, with excited face and ruffled hair, flew into her family’s house and hurriedly ran through all the rooms. Her parents had already gone to bed. Her sisters were awake, trying on lingerie. Her stepbrother was looking at himself in the mirror.

“Where have you come from?” her sister Khloe cried in amazement. “What is the matter with you?”

“Oh, don’t ask! I never expected it; no, I never expected it! It’s positively incredible!”

Kim laughed and sank into an armchair, so overcome by happiness that she could not stand on her legs.

“It’s incredible! You can’t imagine! Look!”

Her other sister, Kourtney, threw a quilt round her and went in to fetch their stepbrother Brody. He came into the room, holding a hand mirror. Within a moment Kim’s parents were in the room as well.

“What’s the matter?” her mother said. “You don’t look like yourself!”

“It’s because I am so happy. The whole world knows me! The whole world! Until now only you knew that there was a girl called Kim Kardashian, and now the whole world knows it! Mama! Thank heavens!”

Kim jumped up, ran up and down all the rooms, and then sat down again.

“What has happened? Tell us sensibly!”

“You live like wild beasts, you don’t watch very much television and take no notice of what’s online, and there’s so much that is interesting there. If anything happens it’s all known at once, nothing is hidden! How happy I am! Oh, Lord! You know it’s only celebrated people whose names are published online, and now they have gone and published mine!”

“What do you mean? Where?”

Kim’s stepfather, Bruce Jenner, turned pale. Her mother crossed herself. Brody looked at her and then looked back into the hand mirror.

“Yes! My name has been published! Now all the world knows of me! Bookmark that page and print it out in memory! We will read it sometimes! Look!”

Kim went to the computer, tapped a series of keys, and then pointed to a paragraph on the screen.

“Read it!” she said to Bruce Jenner.

He put on his glasses.

“Read it!”

Kim’s mother crossed herself again. Bruce Jenner cleared his throat and began to read: “ ‘We will all be hearing more of Kim Kardashian soon . . .’ ”

“You see, you see! Go on!”

“ ‘. . . since an intimate video starring Kardashian and her ex-boyfriend has been confirmed . . .’ ”

“That’s me and Ray J . . . it’s all described exactly! Go on! Listen!”

“ ‘. . . and will be released later this month. The tape, which Vivid reportedly acquired for one million dollars, includes more than thirty minutes of explicit sexual activity . . .’ ”

“Go on! Read the rest!”

“ ‘It was filmed a few years ago, when Kardashian and her boyfriend, an R&B singer named Ray J . . .’ ”

“I told you. Ray J! But keep reading. There’s more about me.”

“ ‘Initially, Kardashian tried to block the release of the tape, but at length came to an agreement with the distribution company.’ ”

“That’s right. I’m being distributed. You have read it now? Good! So you see. It’s all over the Internet, which means it’s all over the world! Give it here!”

Kim closed the window and turned away from the computer.

“I have to go around the neighborhood and show this to a bunch of other people . . . the Gastineaus . . .the Hiltons . . . .Must run! Good-bye!”

Kim put on her hat and, joyful and triumphant, ran into the street.

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Smokelong Q is named Smokelong because you can read a flash fiction in the amount of time it would take to smoke a cigarette. Now you know something. Want to know something else?

They have a 30 word flash contest in November. Sweet.

Gum those words, folks. Chew and spit.

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I vouch for VOUCHED.

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I am grading/eating nachos/drinking a beer/watching football. We call this a Sunday.

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Damn, M Sarki over at elimae. Pretty dern glow, sir. You made me wash out my slackwater for a moment there. I just about J-boned my flatness. I thought there was no way M Sarki would be publishing online.

I was wrong.

In my nude art work the model is most definitely my collaborator and there must be space and tolerance for absolute failure.

Amen, dude!

Oh I just used The Google and here he is at failbetter.

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Gritty Tony O’Neill interview at 3 am.

Watching people shoot up, smoke crack, all of that stuff – I find it hypnotic.

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This blog has too many long excerpts today. Well, arrest me! Seriously arrest me–I’m lonely. My days are a wrecked car hidden behind a cabin made of cheese.

[climb the steps! push open the door!]

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…and we are always doing depressing things together. Drinking champagne or going to visit the polar bears. Things not to do, but to have done.

Why yes, Liana Imam has one golden dust flash over at decomP. Thanks for the words, Liana.

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We actually didn’t arrest Susan Tepper. Susan Tepper was doing some Pop-Tart flattening stuff. They just had Susan Tepper leave the grocery store. Susan Tepper was throwing her body down on the produce. Susan Tepper was basically bruising all the produce and so that’s why they asked her, you know, to quit throwing herself around or leave the store. People don’t want produce all touched by somebody’s body.


I don’t know.

** blog update to Susan Tepper photo (please note scissors used in cutting pizza):


Arlene Ang. JMWW. Eeeeeeeeeee. Bosnian Beer.

She might be my favorite poet.

You remember putting the penny last night in your mouth, like a nipple”

HELL and O.

Three prose poems here at Past Simple. Read them. Like them. Or be stupid. I love prose poems. They are cousin of FLASH FICTION. They are the friend who will bail you out at 4-nothing, a.m. Will let you crash on her rooftop, naked. These poems are dropping the doll onto the floor. What will happen when the butterflies all go extinct? No tornadoes? Gigolos have faith in all storms clearing. Offer me a beer? Language bids me eat nachos, sit and eat nachos, sit and think about the hot attic of my unhappiness.

Etc.

Arlene Ang here.

Arlene Ang here.

Arlene Ang here.

Do I have to lead your sad-ass dime-store god to the microwave popcorn??

Wake the frack up!!

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A great story by Aleksander Hemon in the New Yorker. If you are too cool for New Yorker fiction, you are trying too hard to be cool–which is NEVER cool, in fact is the definition of anti-cool, so just read the damn story.

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A new JMWW is out! Good stuff to make you steam-ear your daily routine.

Melanie Cotter drops a Hanged Cat on us. Hey now!

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Ok, I read Tao Lin’s Novel. SIX THINGS I THINK ABOUT TAO LIN’S NOVEL:

1.) People compare Tao Lin to Haruki Murakami. That’s a bit ridiculous, and maybe lazy?  Or even is it fair? Uh, one is translated when read in the U.S. (usually), and one is not. They look the same (relatively) so write the same? They both use black etchings on a white paper? They both write of dolphins, bears, presidents, other animals as characters?

I think Murakami is indeed Magical Realism, as established already in the literary mega-verse. In his novel, I don’t think Tao Lin is doing the same thing, the same way. This isn’t a critique of either author, but I just don’t see them as similar.

2.) For all you stoners kids who simply must have all your meals as a bright, gooey snacks, if Lin’s novel was a youtube video, it would be this youtube video.

3.) Tao Lin’s sentences are difficult to read. A friend of mine called them, “The anti-sentence.” Yes, yes, I know there is some Avant-garde/literary student in academia/Po-Mo (oh gods no!) reason for this: fragmented modern existence, language as artifice…wait, I just hurled-up a corn dog on a clown’s hat. I’m sure some readers will have all types of reasons to defend sentences that often destroy pacing, flow, “readability” (what the hell does that mean?), and please go right ahead. I even see your point, sometimes. But, listen: The sentences are difficult to read.

Update/qualifier (the beauty of a blog):

I suppose I mean the arrangement, not the individual.

p. 65:

A different waitress brings their food. Her name is Bernadette. They eat for a while. They are eating. (“How do you have fun?”) Jawbreaker, You win you lose, it’s the same old news. Octopus. Mark was sad about his Octopus. Steve stands. “Andrew,” he says. “Come here.”

And so on. Could be me, though. I readily agree I might not follow things others easily do…

4.) Rabbit’s foot: lucky for the rabbit?

5.) A better comparison would be The Stranger, by Camus. With a dash of Walter Mitty and Sarah Orne Jewett.

6.) I found the book intriguing enough to try out his book of poetry. details later.

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This morning, while eating waffles inscribed in a blue advertisement announcing HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL (this actually ON the waffle), my four year old kept repeating, “I don’t know where I’m going. I don’t know where I’m going. I don’t know where I’m going.”

Man, I wish I could have told him something better than, “Indeed.”

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Regis Philbin is god. Dive Bar. Playgirl Magazine. Salsa.

Loudest Sound I Hear Today: An amazing line of storms. Lightning strikes of glee; thunder like a 20 foot cousin. My son said, “Dad, is that God bowling?” I should explain he goes to a Christian daycare where they brainwash educate him about such things. I answered, “Which god?” Then gave him a short speech about Buddha, Allah, Krishna, Huron, Futons, Eros, and The Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. Hope that helps him out.

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Arlene Ang is back from summer break and blogging. I think her poetry is like a special store that sells lemon-scented shirts. You should most likely read The 37th Secret Love Poem from The Dirty Napkin.

Maybe since you are an American Idol fan and brush your teeth with a squeaking sound and even shoot Jager at barbecues in Memphis you should read: from Letters to Kelly Clarkson by Julia Bloch. This piece also mentions the number 14. As anyone who knows me is aware, 14 is my favorite number, and embedded in almost all of my writings.

Double Room is one kick ass magazine, as you know.

Double Room as vertebrae of a wall.

Double Room as bone china.

As energy…

I like persona pieces. I like Flash Fiction/prose poemy things. If I was going to write a story about Regis Philbin I would pretend I interviewed all his friends and co-workers. The piece would rip off that Barthelme Kennedy piece we all love, “Robert Kennedy Saved From Drowning.”

Here’s an example:

April 14, 11:18 a.m. From Walter McDerrt, friend of Regis:

“One day I asks him why he only does the TV. And what a nut, a great, big nut. He gives me this look, says he feels like he’s sinking in quicksand. I asks him what he means, you know, I’m concerned. He says, What do you think I mean? Then he laughs and says he’s testing this theory, this theory about quicksand. It’s nothing, see? It’s nothing but something we’ve all picked up from TV, Tarzan or some shit. Said we see something and just pick it up, like a lump of Silly Putty. You get it? Do you, huh? Reege says there ain’t no such thing as quicksand in the real world. Says he wanted to show me something, about television.”

Or:

April 19, 10:00 a.m. Let me give you a few tips on this silly Millionaire game.

* The show runs in about 50 countries (and for those who think the world is so different, it’s a hit everywhere but Japan), but if I were playing for maximum cash, I’d play in Canada. Although a million Canadian is less than a million U.S., Canadians pay NO taxes on the winnings. In the end, you’ll be wealthier in Canada.

* Do not trust the audience answer in Russia. Russians give the correct answer only 11% of the time, in an attempt to deliberately mislead the contestant.

* If you find yourself sitting in the hot seat of India’s version of the game (titled, Kaun Banega Karodpati), simply stall for time before answering. The host, popular film star Amitabh Bachchan, will coach you to the correct answer.

Anyway, that’s how I would do it…

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Here is your Alabama MFA gossip story for the day. I know this is why you tune in, all 14 of you. In the 1970’s/80’s there were a whole group of professors at Bama with major Hemingway hangovers: Dubus, Rabbitt, W (I can’t name this one; he could screw up my life), etc. and they drank hard and carried guns (I’ll tell the gun in the classroom story later) and wrote manly fiction and poetry and pretty much strolled the hallways and bars of Tuscaloosa like literary John Waynes.

One day Rabbitt comes out of the most awesome dive bar ever:

after a long night (The Chukker ignored all drinking laws, including legal hours of operation. In fact, if you were drinking at the Chukker, and legal hours expired, they would lock you in the bar, not out) of liquid lounging and sees he has left the top down on his red convertible. A summer storm has filled the floorboards with rain. So Rabbitt pulls out his pistol and fires 6 shots into the floor, to drain the car…

This is probably true as not. There are a zillion of these stories floating around Tuscaloosa. There is even an essay of the Outlaw Days of that English department. (I can’t find it right now and don’t feel like looking because I need to go play roulette.) And there is a residue, a fracture from the quake–those years affect how things are done today at Alabama MFA. But maybe that’s best for another post…

In the future I will tell you the gun (actually guns) story and also the time the ABI (state FBI) went undercover to infiltrate my workshop and also the one about the flaming bicycle and maybe even the now-famous-writer but then one night I saw her…no, I won’t tell that one.

By the way, Rabbitt is an excellent poet. Here are fourteen poems for you to read.

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Has anyone noticed Planter’s Peanuts new slogan: “WHAT MEN LOVE”? I don’t really see a gender difference in eating peanuts. In my experience, men and women both equally enjoy peanuts. Maybe this was just odd to me?

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In the news today:

1.) Authors will gladly sign their own books!

2.) Authors will set themselves on fire if you reject their work.

3.) Authors who wrote for Playgirl Magazine felt their “Hands were always tied”

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