Archive for writers

The Mrs. Butterworth Book Club

Posted in Alphabetfiend, Art & Culture, Art Lover, Books & Writing, Cinema & Filmmaking, Goof & Glamour, I Heart Funny Fellas, I Heart My Love-Tribe, In Celebration of the Absurd, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 3, 2010 by alphabetfiend

“I’m one of the few who voted for Obama because he was a friend of Bill Ayers.” -JW    

I too am one of those few.    

 

     

My freaky filmmaker friend, Tim, and I recently started a two-person book club. We dubbed it “The Mrs. Butterworth Book Club,” after a surreal conversation we had in highschool in which Tim asked me, out of nowhere, “What would you do if you woke up and Mrs. Butterworth was at your bedside? She’d have to be on yer pillow cause she’s rather short.”    

I’ve always had a soft spot for the absurd and so I have a soft spot for Tim.    

“I didn’t have to worry about fitting in with a crowd I didn’t want to hang out with in the first place.” -JW    

 

Both fans of John Waters, we chose his new book “Role Models” as our first MBBC selection. “Role Models” — the latest of several memoirs by the filmmaker, writer and professional outcast — focuses on people who have inspired or influenced Waters. The book begins with >surprise!surprise!< Johnny Mathis then moves on to reformed Manson Girl Leslie Van Houten; later comes Commes des Garcons designer/deconstructionist Rei Kawakubo who crashes into various hillbilly heroes from Baltimore such as Ester the barmaid and Lady Zorro the lesbian stripper.    

    

“Nothing is more impotent than un unread library”   

John Waters writes about reading the way a junky waxes poetic over crack.  

I’ve just finished the chapter “Book Worm.” Love love! Waters is a notorious and obsessive bibliophile, owning nearly 9000 volumes of wordy goodness.I can’t wait until he writes a whole book like that chapter, where he’ll delve into one weirdo tome after another. That would be a fantastic book! Waters has smart, obscure taste in literature and continually surprises me with his thoughtful insights.    

The chapter on Little Richard is next. I can’t wait.    

I saw Little Richard not too long ago. It was a free show, just a few blocks from my house, in the U of TX quad, so we meandered over.    

   

I’ve seen many old greats and I’ve learned not to expect too much. I saw Hasil Adkins at The Continental Club, paid a penny too, he played maybe two longs and left the stage. I’ve seen Ramblin’ Jack where he’s talked all night tellin’ one great story after another but there was one raspy time where he sang a song, coughed, sang another song, coughed and took a bow. I think it was James Chance that left the stage in a hissy fit like he waz Fred Alan Wolf at a physics conference. (Wolf’s hissy fit worked out well for me. I chased him out and we chatted all afternoon. He set up his laptop in the shadows of a patio umbrella and semi-patiently explained to me his theory of the thalmus gland as rudimentary time machine. I Heart Fred Allan Wolf!)    

Little Richard did not disappoint.      

Little Richard glittered like an LSD rockstar. The old man rocker took that place down to the ground. Holy hell! I fuckin’ cried. Yep. I wept as Little Richard sent spasming waves of energy through a crowd of cheap, clueless college students.  Seeing Little Richard that soft summer evening was a spiritual thing. I had my own Little Richard religious experience.      

"Saint Richard" by Vicki Berndt

So far the Mrs. Butterworth Book Club mostly consists of gushing to one another on facebook about just how fucking great Role Models is and how much we love John Waters as a way of life, posting killer quotes as our status updates and generally annoying the rest of our facebook friends.    

Screw those less-enlightened folks whose only knowledge of John Waters is “he has something to do with that fat drag queen who ate dog shit in some movie that no one’s ever seen.” If that.     

Makes me wanna scream, “Divine ate the dog shit! The film was Pink Flamingos! John Waters was the director! Fuckface!”    

I’d throw in that fuckface at the end, just for extra measure, like the cherry on top of the sundae or the pretty that flatters please.    

No, I kid. Really. So what if they’re morons who wanna wait (who CAN wait) until Role Models comes out in paperback. Whaddo I care? I don’t, cause I kid, but it is funny how things have changed and yet stayed the same. Tim and I hung with different crowds in highschool. We might never have spoken if our inner freaks hadn’t had such magnetic pull and now, all grown up, I have so much more to say to Tim than to the gorgeous girls I once hung with (who are now smiling mothers posting owen mills portraits all over their facebook pages, with not one free moment to read and if they read they certainly wouldn’t read Waters’ odes to Manson girls, trannie derelicts or Johnny Mathis.)     

   

The Mrs. Butterworth Book Club has only two members but that’s more out of necessity than design, being that no one else has expressed an iota of interest.    

That’s fine with us, right, Tim? All the more dog shit for us!    

Today I went to type out a few sentences on Tim’s fb page and try as I might it wouldn’t post. Old school friends were im-ing me and I was losing patience in fine Luddite fashion. The pups were barking to announce guests and the Robot was calling from the other room. Frazzled, I copied my note to Tim and stuck it into my open wordpress window under quick-post for safekeeping….which has me thinking….hmmm. I was gonna review the book for y’all anyway so why not post my thoughts here and then send the links to Tim? Maybe some of you are reading Role Models too and wanna pipe in? Maybe Tim and I can convince you to read Role Models? Even if you’re not reading the book, please join the discussion and tell us about some of your own role models, heroes & muses. What about an infuriatingly brilliant nemesis…anyone got one of those? (I sure do. Don’t I, Sugarbear?) 

Waters sez "Read this"

If you’d like to join our very informal Mrs. Butterworth Book Club, we’d be glad to take on new members with a taste for the odd in literature and in life. We’re keepin’ it simple. See!  Here’s my fb note to Tim:    

Hey Tim! Checkin’ in to the Mrs. Buttersworth Book Club… am just about to start the Little Richard chapter on p.183, had a houseguest for a couple weeks and fell behind.    

All that stuff about the Manson’s O-MY! I never knew they’d sneak into houses and move the furniture. So trickster, I love it, but stabbing someone 16 times? Nah, not for me.    

All the Baltimore stuff in the bar chapter was a riot. I have some these “artsy hillbilly” friends from Baltimore and they tell the craziest stories ever. Plus I loved The Wire and Homicide, both set in Baltimore. Homicide was brilliantly cast by Pat Moran, whom Waters mentions repeatedly as “My friend, Pat Moran”.    

That stuff about lunatic mothers and the craziness those kids grew up with? I found all that to be just waaaay too familiar. Great reading tho. Great writing!    

 Finally, while I consider myself to be a big reader, life-long, I must confess to not having read even one of his five recommendations. Have you? Guess we know what we’ll read next in the MBBC, huh? Which one do you suggest? The pervy kid or the deluded ladies? Or pages and pages of dialogue? I’m up for any and all!    

I’m not a huge fanatic as far as his films go but as a man, as a mind, John Waters is thrilling.    

He’s also a hell of a writer and a real storyteller.    

This book has been a treat. I’m loving it. I’m devouring it.     

“Tennessee Williams wasn’t a gay cliché, so I had the confidence to try to not be one myself. Gay was not enough. It was a good start however.”    

 ** The Saint Richard painting is by Water’s soul-sista Vicki Berndt whom we’ve featured before on Cream Scene Carnival. Role Models is available at amazon and so is the Waters pick: In Youth is Pleasure by Denton Welch, with a forward by William Burroughs.    

Alpha the Fiend

Posted in Alphabetfiend, Books & Writing, Style & Fashion, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 9, 2010 by alphabetfiend

I’ve been too busy actually celebrating my birthday to post my fastasy gifts for the Cream Scene Carnival alter-egos. Alas, I’m still in the mood to play so I’m gonna keep posting these suckers ’til I’m done, here and there so as not to bore my kinksters to death. But stay with me, kids, cause where gonna ask the question: Can dresses & dictionaries be sexy? Yes, yes, a thousand times yes. You’ll see.

How to spoil an Alphabetfiend? With books, of course!!

Did you know a dictionary could be sexy? Alpha did! Alpha’s been lusting after these glamorous dictionaries for some time now. They’re pricey but bound in colorful or metallic leathers. The silver dictionary (with Alphabetfiend monogram) is gonna look gorgeous on the fiend’s bedside table, close at hand and crossword ready. (Available at ballard designs for the SmartyPants in your life.)  

What is Alphabet a fiend for?

Just look to your keyboard for inspiration!

I know! Sweet little post earrings made from vintage typewriter keys! The perfect way to woo an Alphabetfiend. (Tab Typewriter Key Jewelry)

Alphabetfiend is the queen of the ampersand-riddled run-on sentence cause her mind moves fast and she always has more & more & more to say… which makes this ampersand brooch a fitting gift. (Another Empire)

How ’bout these socks by Ken Macy that celebrate the old-school joys of writing… cracking open a composition book and inhaling the smell of glue from the binding mmmm…. a stack of pure clean paper that is begging for ink… a fistful of just-sharpened pencils.

Evokes the giddy excitement like from a fresh stack of notebook paper...mmm

 Who doesn’t love snail-mail? Alpha loves loves loves snail-mail. Alpha still buys stamps. Alpha still writes love letters and valentines. Not just to lovers either (though an Alpha lover is a lucky fucker.) This air-mail envelope is actually a purse by Paper Plane.

Typewriter earrings, envelope clutch & ampersand brooch — witty accessories for the smart-dressed girl that could be worn with either of these dresses by Maeve (available at Anthropology.)

To those of you who are yawning, thinking “Clothes? Again? Is there anything more boring?” I must say, “Yes, there are many things more boring than my aesthetic fantasies.” Still, if you’re feeling antsy, then go ahead and imagine these dresses in compromising positions. You may include, in your lurid visions, the literary crush of your choice. Strip these dresses from her fluttery body all lit-up by the library’s milk-glass lamp-light. Let your hand creep past that creamy hem, past black lacy garters and up and up and she opens like a book, being the bookish sort. Maybe you prefer the red shirt-dress, a-blossom with a smattering of wild roses. You bend her over your poem-strewn desk and you smack her bare bottom. More. More. When her ass is as rosy as her dress you take her from behind and frock the frocking fuck right outta her.

You may defile these dresses in all manner of nasty ways but you MAY NOT piss all over them and make her wear the piss-soaked dress to a truck stop because neither of these dresses are THAT dress. If you are curious about that dress or if you still don’t see how dresses can be sexy than check out this pervy post by “A Funny Dominatrix” but NOT NOW, NOT YET, not until I say…. oooooookay…. GO.

Goof speed, kinksters.

Happy Birthday, Alphabetfiend. Good night. Sweet dreams.

A Ghost (in the machine) Story

Posted in Art & Culture, Books & Writing, I Heart Tricksters, Intuition & Gut Intelligence, Mythos, Psyche & Sexuality, Romance, SPOOKY KABUKI with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 25, 2008 by alphabetfiend

“Sarah Wolfe is about to fall backwards. The thick walls that seperate the past from the present are crumbling, but she doesn’t know it yet.”– Nick Bantock

While plotting out a properly eerie week of SPOOKY KABUKI, it was always my intention to follow up the steampunk post with a GHOST (in the machine) STORY. But I’m all the hungrier for The Venetian’s Wife  after a recent jolt of Indian myth in the movie “Sita Sings the Blues.”  The Venetian’s Wife is one of many disturbingly beautiful books by Nick Bantock. Bantock specializes in mythic image-laden visions, crossed connections and mysterious correspondence. Bantock is the bastard child of the trickster god Eshu who has haunted the machines of man for as long as we’ve been trying to communicate through wires.

The Venetian’s Wife is about communication, connection, art and Hindu spirituality. It’s about the past & the present. It’s about a spiritual and sexual awakening. It’s a lush soulful story that makes your cells hum. It’s a romance, a travelogue, a voyeuristic peek into the communications between the living and the dead. But mostly it’s a ghost story.

Ghost is a very broad term and although I have met no others of my ilk, I am assuming that is what I am.

This is no joke. I am deadly serious. After I was struck down by lightning back in 1469, I found myself drifting aimlessly without a real comprehension of time. I was neither in nor out of the physical world; I had no memory, only a vague consciousness that took succor from any source of electricity I came across. One day I encountered a new conductor and became hypnotized by the vibrating electrical pulses. I tried to get closer to the charge — I pressed myself toward the heart of the glow, and, without warning, I became saturated with light. My memory returned.

This beauty is a feast for that third eye and an oddly perfect October read. Published in 1996, The Venetian’s Wife is worth a (re)visitation. Pull it down from the shelf and blow the dust off the spine. Borrow it from the library. Hunt it down at Amazon. Enjoy!

Bantock is a beasty of mystery.
Bantock is a beasty of mystery.

Check back all week for more SPOOKY KABUKI. There’s more tricks and more treats to come.

Lusty Luddite Looking to Seduce Lonely Steam Punk

Posted in Alphabetfiend, Art & Culture, Goof & Glamour, I Heart Steampunk, Intuition & Gut Intelligence, Mythos, Sexy Bitch Steampunk yum, SPOOKY KABUKI with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on October 25, 2008 by alphabetfiend

I had a dream, years ago, that I’ve never been able to shake. It was one of those dreams where you wake up to profound disappointment because you don’t actually have the thing you had in your dream — the perfect pair of elf-cobbled gypsy-toe boots or dead Dad not dead. It was one of those mornings and I hung my head. I’d gotten lost in a department store of fairy tale oddities and was winding through a maze of small majicks, when the “electronics” section beckoned. (An only in dreams rarity. I’m a low-tech Luddite. I still haven’t succumbed to a cell phone.) The mythic machine that called my name was something awesome strange. A “computer” with claw-feet and typewriter keys, a disc of abalone shell in lieu of a mouse pad. I traced my finger over the smooth oceany spot and felt the pulse of the machine. It wanted me as much as I wanted it. It craved stories and hungered for books. I was just the girl it was looking for.

I’d only heard the term steampunk used when referring to a certain segment of the sci-fi genre so I had no idea that such a thing existed outside of my own brain.

So imagine my shock when I opened a magazine sometime later to see my DREAM MACHINE was actually a real world possibility. Not only do other freaks fancy the same idea, but they are actually building it… coaxing a modern entity into the musty pulp novel past.

The literary fantasist in me wants to sit down everyday to an antique Corona & a pack of cigarettes. But the real-life writer must save, copy, cut & breathe. I have a half-dozen vintage typewriters. When I need to think slowly and poetically, I’ll sit down to play. But I rely on my apple for all serious writing in a world of standard-format submissions, deadlines, internet access, and 16 hour work sessions. What the computer provides in practicality overshadows the clickety-clack wordsmith fantasy.

Now, thanks to an underground steampunk movement, I may actually get to have the best of both worlds. Someday.

First I must get rich. Either that or somehow get a steampunk geek to fall in love with me. How hard can that be? Where do steam punks hang out? I’ll show up there in my floor-length gown (pin-tucked puff shoulders, high-neck, long-sleeved) in luxe velvet the shade of sunny tobacco. 1930’s peep-toe pumps with brass buckles and t-straps. I’ll tug my treasured leather aviator cap & vintage goggles snug over my ringlets. Dab some MAC “Film Noir” lipstick that goes on like a black & white movie. Right? What steam punk could resist? Maybe he’d see the stories beneath my ribs and shudder to think what I could do with such a keyboard.

I so so need that clever keyboard. But alas. I can’t even afford a voyage to the big city to attend “The Grand Chrono’nauts Tea” in my beloved NY. Too bad. What better place to meet a lonely punk looking to get steamy with a longful Luddite?

What about you? Can you make it? If so, go! Fondle the clangy keys for me. Don’t be shy. Take liberties. 

Until that day when I can have a steampunk laptop and a steampunk motorcycle, I’m gonna tide myself over with this limited edition steampunk fez from fez-o-rama. I’ll put on my thinking cap while conjuring the crafty plot whereby I seduce my very own mad scientist geek boy. Except I already have a RobotBoy. Damn. This steampunk dilemma is a sticky wicket. It’s no wonder I need a thinking cap!

I hope you have enjoyed this act of SPOOKY KABUKI — stay tuned for more odd twists of reality.

AUTHORS NOTE: If you are interested in steampunk be sure to hit that tag b/c I’m always finding new and amazing bits of steampunkery whether motorcycles, clothes/jewelry, dreamy aesthetics or more computers — namely one that is part computer part church. Crazy beauty!

%d bloggers like this: