Tag Archives: Blar me.

Blake Butler. Venison Burger. My Depressed Brother.

Dinner was venison burger for me. I remember this deer well, a windy day in October, a perfectly placed arrow at 22 yards; and I would like to thank this deer in the Native American way of gratitude. I am not being sarcastic. I took a life, stilled an existence, and I do not take this act lightly. I hope through the act of preparation, the study, the hours of shooting my bow, the physical work of the hunt, the ethical killing shot, the work of bringing the animal home, of cleaning the animal, of eventually placing it here, on my plate, into my body, I can in some way make this a good act, or at least natural, and earned.

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Here is a pic I ripped from Blake Butler’s blog.

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He is holding his book, EVER. I bet he is proud as a dog with a roadkill sandwich. Ever is about to be read, by me. First I must finish The English Major by Jim Harrison and The White Road by Tania Hershman. I am halfway through both and have decent flow right now, so no worries. All these damn bloggers and their “I read 80-100 books a year, I have balls the size of oranges, etc…” got me recently pissed off, so I am focusing on reading many more books this year.

How will I do this?

1.) For the first time in over 10 years, I will not read every issue of the New Yorker magazine (though I will probably read all of the updated fiction).

2.) Increased use of stimulants.

3.) I will neglect my dog.

4.) Less attention to personal hygiene.

5.) I will refuse to fish or canoe on any Tuesday.

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Matt Bell rocking out on the Caketrain Chapbook Contest. Good work, Matt. I will add thee chapbook to the many others coming to my icy cold mailbox in Muncie.

I already pre-ordered his chapbook with the most blurbs in the history of chapbook blurbing from Willows Wept Press.

I have a bunch of others coming but I sometimes order books while intoxicated so am not sure what titles, or really how many, or even where they are coming from, or going.

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It is -8 in Muncie today. FUCK THAT. I feel like my depressed younger brother. This is a photo from my parent’s house, holidays past, and really one of his “better” moods. I think I beat him in some Playstation game right before this photo, or maybe in Jenga; and, as you can see (note bandage on R foot), he walked outside and cut his foot on a shard of broken dreams.

Book Review, Holiday Literature. Lunch. Complaint Letter About my Shampoo.

Today I finished The Pets by Bragi Ólafsson.Then I wrote a book review for New Pages. I’m sure it will be out in January.

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Here is a negative review by an idiot. Fuck San Diego. Two words: oxygen bar.

Here is an interview of author.

Here is the beginning of my review…(unedited, since I haven’t even sent the review in yet).

Everything I know about Iceland could fit into a shoebox: two Björk CDs, a six of Viking beer, a tin of cured ram scrota (a gag gift by one of my “friends”). But I do find the unique and au courant alluring, and my ventures into the unknown experience often prove worthwhile or at worst innocuous (the only extreme exceptions being Riverdance and Robo-Tripping—I seriously advise you to lay off both, no matter what the cool kids say.)

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Here is a new Christmas story, Jimmy Chen on Juked.

Here is another about Christmas and cats by Lafayette Wattles. If there are two things I admire, it must be holidays and cats. Though bibles and hand grenades are a close 2nd.

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My shamppo broke, so I wrote this letter:

L’Oréal USA, Inc., Consumer Affairs,

PO Box 98,

Westfield, NJ 07091-9911.

I am writing concerning one of your cosmetic/beautification products, a conditioner, specifically, L’Oreal Paris Fresh Vive Clean Shine Conditioner Zero-Stripping-No-Build-Up–System Citrus CR Frequent Use. It is in a plastic bottle the color of an eggshell, or maybe of clouds right before a spring shower, or maybe coffee just as the creamer is spinning within it—kind of off-white. The bottle is ergonomically shaped and fits the hand of an average adult. The bottle is # EX072, also with 20AKMP-03 printed alongside your address, in bold print letters, which may or may not be relative. Hopefully, with my descriptors, you can identify this bottle/batch/industrial unit.

Anyway.

I am writing due to a failure in the conditioner consistency. Ever since I visited my girlfriend’s girlfriend in a downtown loft of Minneapolis, Minnesota, I have always used L’Oreal Paris Fresh Vive Clean Shine Conditioner Zero-Stripping-No-Build-Up–System Citrus CR Frequent Use in my twice daily (sometimes thrice daily) washings of hair, and the product has at all times had a glossy, pearly, creamy, velvety texture, with just a thickening hint of tangelo peel (my estimation), which I find refreshing.

However.

This time was different. On September 7, 2002, I became first aware of the problem. It all began with the conditioner delivery process, as I was forced to squeeze the bottle with excessive intensity, huffing and grunting and, yes, cursing, just to get the conditioner to exit the bottle and settle into my open palm. I found this alarming. Usually, this particular conditioner flows from the bottle, in an agreeable manner, like maple syrup on Sunday morning crepes. Sir or madam, it did not flow. No. It slugged, yes, then spat, drooped, and congealed. There was no way I could apply, work through, or leave in for one minute with this dusty nugget of conditioner. It looked like old toothpaste, or rubbery caulk one would find in the bathroom corners of an old neighbor lady’s house. It reminded me of a dead slug, or nursing home linen—I mean it was decrepit and dry and white and horrible.

Can you explain? I can’t. I have hypotheses, naturally. The conditioner might have been in some way dehydrated. My mind goes immediately to the tangelos (again, I’m assuming it’s tangelos in Citrus CR), possibly inferior due the recent drought and number of devastating brush fires in central Florida. Or maybe the bottle had a sealant failure? Like the shuttle with the O-rings, you know? So, I checked out the bottle and even used a small magnifying glass I got from CVS pharmacy and I saw absolutely no failure of the exterior seal or casing. I thought about sabotage. I mean, like anyone else, I have several enemies, but who would tamper with a man’s beauty supplies? Oh god, I don’t even want to consider the implications.

As you can see, I find this dilemma worrying. Excessive worrying, you’re probably thinking, but all of us are different. We all have our little “thing” we worry over. For me, it’s my stomach. No matter how many crunches, I have to check my stomach in the mirror at least ten times a day. I don’t know why. I think fat will just appear, like a whitehead or something. My mom worries about The Bomb. Still! I told her the Cold War is so over, but she doesn’t listen. And there’s this lady, Mrs. Gorman, who lives three blocks over who worries I won’t show up every two weeks to trim the dandelion shoots from around the post of her mailbox (a gaudy plastic thing in the shape of a chicken barn). I mean she sits out there in this old red porch swing waiting on me all day and I always show up (admittedly, sometimes late in the early evening) and she always says, “I thought you weren’t coming.” Why? Why would she say that? For seven and a half years, every fourteen days, I have trimmed the dandelion shoots from the post of her mail barn, even in the winter when not even one dandelion shoot exists. (Though she insists I show up, I don’t charge her in the winter.) Why, I ask you? Why does Mrs. Gorman imply I might not show up to complete a job I’ve been doing for nearly a decade? Who knows? Who can answer such questions? I mean why does god allow diet sodas? How does Oprah gain and lose all that weight? And so on.

Well.

What I’m saying is I guess I know how Mrs. Gorman feels. I am comfortable with cosmetic sameness. Time and again, without fail, I want an excellent, excellent, excellent conditioner. Basically, I am conditioned to my conditioner. That’s a joke. But this issue is no joke. I really need to know the next bottle of beautifier will be like the last bottle. It’s important, a comforting routine, like the seasons passing, holidays, car trouble, a neighbor boy coming every two weeks to trim a yard . . .

Two days ago, I inverted my bottle of L’Oreal Paris Fresh Vive Clean Shine Conditioner Zero-Stripping-No-Build-Up–System Citrus CR Frequent Use and I peered deep inside its opening (now clogged) and I squeezed and clutched and strangled, and once it finally released its grubby little chalky dab of conditioner in my hand, I have to admit my lips formed the words: “I thought you weren’t coming.” Yes, just like pitiful old Mrs. Gorman.

I want my old conditioner back. Please, please, please, don’t make me switch conditioners—the last thing I need right now is a big decision in my life. I’ve got all kinds of relationship problems and an ingrown toenail and a small IRS situation and my girlfriend’s girlfriend keeps calling from Minnesota late at night and. . . Well, I digress.

Please reply with an explanation of your conditioner breakdown. I must know. I really must. For now, I’ll add mineral water to the remaining product and do my best. That’s what I do, whether washing my hair or trimming a dandelion or seeing an out-of-state girl, my best. I expect the same.

Sean Aden Lovelace, BSN, MFA

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Lunch? Basic nachos. In fact, the original 1943 recipe. Clean and pure as cacti.

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