Tag Archives: Tom Petty

Things Are Pretty Swell Here in Crazeysburg!!

Yes, we have finally hit on the cover layout for The Guitar Hero Goes Home, now all we need to do is insert the text on the back cover and I can order the test print!!

I already know that the page numbering is screwed up and I can’t fix it, because my manuscript is locked into that Beta template that no longer exists. But if that’s the only thing that’s out of whack, I’m going to be okay with it. (The page numbers begin on the first page, which is the copyrights page, which is never where the page numbering begins, but that’s that.)

Here is a sample of the cover design without the info for the back cover:

It’s actually a very bright yellow, which isn’t really coming across here, except in that little square for the barcode. But you get the idea. The color really just pops.

So I’m very happy! We are almost there, gang.

Another thing that has me over the moon with happiness: Wow!! My brand new vacuum cleaner arrived yesterday and I can’t believe how fantastic it is.

I have had so many different types of vacuum cleaners throughout my life, from really cheap no-name brands, to the expensive Dyson models. I’ve had canisters and uprights and no-cord stick models. And my favorites by far are the Eureka Uprights.

I thought I really loved the Eureka Airspeeds, but this time I bought a Eureka Powerspeed because it was on sale and I have to watch every penny right now.

When I took it out of the box, I was feeling disappointed because it just seemed so cheap compared to the Airspeed. Meaning really cheap plastic, and less parts, and it just didn’t seem like it was going to tackle all that cat hair.

But, wow. I could not believe how great it was. It is just the most awesome vacuum cleaner I have ever owned.  And it is light as a feather. And it was just amazing, the amount of cat hair it picked up.  I haven’t seen my carpet looking this good since I moved in. (Although “good” is qualified by the fact I actually need to replace all the carpeting because it’s really old and has stains from the previous owners. But still!!)

Between that dust buster I bought a few months ago, and now this new vacuum cleaner, I am at last a very happy homemaker.

Okay, I had the funniest dreams. Both of them had my adoptive mother in them, but in a very nonthreatening way.

In one dream, I was standing at her bedroom door, trying to get her attention to tell her something, but she was in bed using a vibrator that was so loud, she couldn’t hear me.  (So weird, right??) (And as far as I know, my mother was not the vibrator-using type. There was a vibrator still in its box, with no batteries, that was stuck in a drawer in the buffet in the dining room (!!). It sat there  for a few years, until I finally figured out what it was, when I was about 13, and I absconded with it to my room and there it remained, fulfilled in its purpose for being, and unmissed by anyone else in the house.) (And I guarantee you, the vibrators today are way more amazing then they were back in those days, but we made do. Beggars can’t be choosers.)

And in the other dream, I was getting ready to go to Girl Scout sleepaway camp and I was worried that I was going to miss the bus that was going to take me there. And then I had a sort of epiphany and I said to my mother, “I don’t think I should go to camp. All the girls in the tent will be 9 years old and I’m 60. It just doesn’t make sense.” And then my mother smiled at me. This smile that implied I had finally grown up.

So weird! But really funny when I woke up and thought about it all. (I’m still not planning on acting my age anytime soon, but I don’t think I need to go quite so far back as 9.)

Okay! The weekend has begun over at Bad Seed TeeVee, where they are going to show music videos made by fans of Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds throughout the whole weekend.  I’ve watched a couple of them so far, and they are, once again, really imaginative.  You can watch them here.

And as I mentioned yesterday, the official Tom Petty website has begun releasing songs from the upcoming Wildflowers part 2 boxed set onto YouTube, so now we can watch them until our wee bonny hearts are content.

(I believe it is actually going to be called Wildflowers & All the Rest.)

The collection won’t be coming out until mid-October, but I really do think it’s going to be an amazing set. I think Tom Petty, wherever he is now, is really happy about these songs being released finally, since he wanted them released in his lifetime, but apparently could not figure out how best to market them if he did.

What better way than to market them posthumously, when they are guaranteed to sell?

Problem solved.

Okay, gang! I have not yet worked out here. And I’m not sure what I want to do– yoga, treadmill, aerobics… So I’m going to think about that and then get this day underway.

Thanks for visiting, gang. I hope you are enjoying your Friday, wherever you are in the world. I leave you with 2 of the new releases from Wildflowers part two (“There Goes Angela” — I love that song — and his original home demo for the song “Wildflowers”  — a video that features Tom with one of his many dogs and a cat.)  Enjoy!! I love you guys. See ya.

Another Stunning Day in Crazeysburg!!

The weather has just been astoundingly great this summer, gang. It truly has.  Hot and sunny during the day, cool at night. Even during the worst of the heatwave, it was always cool by morning.

And today is no different.  Even though the virus still leaves its mark on everything, beautiful weather makes everything more endurable.

Well, in my opinion, it does.

A quick FYI and then I will veer far from the topic of politics: Yesterday,  Kevin Clinesmith was the first to plead guilty to “the Obama FBI’s fraudulent Russiagate operation against Trump. And more guilty pleas are expected to follow.”

There was apparently some sort of massive plea bargain involved in that guilty plea, so I’m guessing he won’t go to prison, but at least people are now being forced to come forward and admit that the whole Russiagate thing was a lie and a waste of time and of taxpayer’s money. Simply because Obama’s administration wanted Hillary to win and they hated Trump.

So. No Russiagate. Big surprise there, right? And oddly enough, even as far back as 2016, even the Russians were saying there was no Russiagate. But the more I tried to blog about that whole thing, the more my computer kept getting hacked, so I had to stop… But there we have it.

(And a long, long, LONG time ago, I used to actually respect Nancy Pelosi. Now I wish she’d just find herself another job. She makes Democrats look like hate-filled maniacs.)

Okay, that was the politics. Now, onward.

Nick Cave sent out another Red Hand File today that was so beautiful.  It’s about a non-verbal teenager in Australia, Tyler Hartfield who suffers from cerebral palsy, and a song he wrote and performed with his band at school. The coverage in Australia and the band performing the song can be found here. (Tyler’s musical inspiration is Nick Cave.) (Also an Australian, in case, for some inexplicable reason, you didn’t know that.)

The song is really good. A real triumph.

Okay. I did indeed speak with Valerie yesterday, and we went over the cover at for The Guitar Hero Goes Home!! Just a couple text-based things need to be added and we will be done and ready to publish it, gang!!

I will still have to get a test print to see how it looks in reality before I can actually let it go to print. But we are indeed almost there. And hopefully the novel will be available for sale in POD and eBook formats by the time I am a guest on those 2 upcoming podcasts, wherein I will be promoting the book! Yay.

Then, next in line for print publication (POD, to be precise), will be The Muse Revisited, Volume 4: The Selected Erotic Fiction of Marilyn Jaye Lewis (aka: Me) 1994-2012.

So we are making progress here with this HUGE stack of stuff on my desk (and down on the floor around my desk).  Plus, I am under the growing suspicion that the current novel I’m working on, Thug Luckless: Welcome to P-Town, is going to be a very interesting book, gang. The kind of book that no publisher on Earth (except maybe Last Gasp) would ever publish.  So there is just no reason to think I am not just going to publish it myself.

But it is such a liberating feeling — to just write the book the way it seems to be asking to be written without worrying about who on Earth would publish it and/or which bookstore on Earth would agree to sell it. (And I’m not wading into any of the traditional taboo subjects that have given me problems with the FBI and the US Attorney General’s office in the past. So I’m not worried that the book will be against the law in any way, it will just be for certain forewarned audiences.) (i.e.: “Warning: this book is likely to offend you in some way so be forewarned.” That kind of thing. But I just feel that, before I die, there are these things I want to express about humanity and tolerance and decency and joy and sex and love and regret and horror and duplicity and savagery and people who look the other way.)

All righty! On that note, I’m going to get going here. The morning is rapidly disappearing.

I hope you’re enjoying your Thursday, wherever you are in the world. I leave you with my breakfast-listening music form this morning (and truth be told, it followed me clear into yoga this morning, too!).

I’ve posted it here many times, but here it is again, for your listening pleasure!! Cat Stevens’ “Moonshadow,” from his massively popular 1971 album, Teaser and the Firecat.

(And tomorrow, I will start posting new videos/songs from the upcoming Tom Petty Wildflowers part 2 box collection. His official web site has started to release the stuff on YouTube today.)

Meanwhile, enjoy “Moonshadow” for the millionth time! Okay. Thanks for visiting. I love you guys. See ya.

“Moonshadow”

Oh, I’m bein’ followed by a moonshadow, moonshadow, moonshadow
Leapin and hoppin’ on a moonshadow, moonshadow, moonshadow

And if I ever lose my hands, lose my plough, lose my land,
Oh if I ever lose my hands, Oh if… I won’t have to work no more.
And if I ever lose my eyes, if my colours all run dry,
Yes if I ever lose my eyes, Oh if… I won’t have to cry no more.

Yes I’m bein’ followed by a moonshadow, moonshadow, moonshadow
Leapin’ and hoppin’ on a moonshadow, moonshadow, moonshadow

And if I ever lose my legs, I won’t moan, and I won’t beg,
Yes if I ever lose my legs, Oh if… I won’t have to walk no more.
And if I ever lose my mouth, all my teeth, north and south,
Yes if I ever lose my mouth, Oh if… I won’t have to talk…

Did it take long to find me? I asked the faithful light.
Did it take long to find me? And are you gonna stay the night?

I’m bein’ followed by a moonshadow, moonshadow, moonshadow
Leapin’ and hoppin’ on a moonshadow, moonshadow, moonshadow
Moonshadow, moonshadow, moonshadow, moonshadow

© 1971 Islam Yusef (Cat Stevens)

Well, Sorry I’m So Late!!

I started off the morning going right into working on getting the manuscript ready for publication (The Guitar Hero Goes Home).

Getting very, very close, gang!! Finally! Spent quite a bit of time on the phone yesterday with Valerie, so the cover design is also almost done.

Late yesterday afternoon, when I was closing up shop for the day, two official reviews for the novel came in and I was just so happy, gang. Since the novel is experimental fiction, I know it is not going to appeal to everyone. And since it’s not erotic fiction, I’m guessing it will be a tricky sell to most of my regular readers.

So far, though, the feedback I’m getting from the advance readers who are male has been really, really good. I have gotten no feedback from any female readers yet. So I guess we’ll just see.

But here is M. Christian’s review and it really made my whole night:

“As arousing as it is heartfelt, as lyrical as it is penetrating, as meaningful as it is wild and untamed … I can give no greater praise for Marilyn Jaye Lewis’s The Guitar Hero Goes Home than to say this is a book written by a wonderful writer at the height of her powers.  HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!”

And he swore that he actually meant that; he wasn’t just being nice…

It’s tricky when you know the people who are giving you the feedback — are they just being nice, etc. But I’ve decided to just go ahead and allow myself to feel good about it. Because it puts me in a really great headspace about the whole project.

Okay. Well, I don’t really have anything much to say today because my focus has basically been on getting this book ready to go to print. However, I’m into Season 3 of Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries in the evenings and I have not seen any of these episodes before so that’s really exciting!! The show is just so fun.

So I will close this brief — and very late — post. I hope Friday has been great to you, wherever you are in the world!! I leave you with a Broken Record podcast on YouTube fromTuesday — Malcolm Gladwell talking to Rick Rubin about Tom Petty. So enjoy, gang. And thanks for visiting!! I love you guys. See ya.

Another Productive Day in the Hinterlands!

Yesterday was, I mean.

But first!! The Tom Petty website released another song yesterday that will be in the upcoming Wildflowers PT. 2 boxed set. It is called “There Goes Angela” and it was just lovely, gang! An acoustic home demo. I really loved it. I cannot find a link anymore to how you can listen to it (they had it posted yesterday). But it was one of those true Tom Petty awesome acoustic songs where he empowers the woman alone in the world, as he usually did in his songs.

Also, Nick Cave’s website revealed Cave Things today!! A place where you can buy sort of extremely expensive things that Nick Cave has designed or curated in some way. The items are really cool. Some of them are “coming soon,” but the descriptions are already there. Everything is pretty much on the pricey side. For instance, a really nice guitar pick with Warren Ellis’s picture on it, which in US dollars cost about $4, before shipping. So that’s sort of a pricey guitar pick that, you know, if I bought it I would be afraid to use, because I wouldn’t want to damage it, or anything.

Still, the stuff is really cool, but being the somewhat lowly scribe that I am, I cannot afford any of the items I actually really want. But check them out anyway, because if you are not a writer, then you can probably afford everything!!

So. Yesterday.

I spent the entire day working on the re-edits of The Muse Revisited collection and came to the decision that the “new” revised edition will only be one book, and only available in trade paper, POD (Print On Demand).

My decision came about because of the page count.

It turns out Volume 1 has a really small page count, so it doesn’t really make sense to offer it separately in trade paper, even though the page count works fine for an eBook.

Then Volume 2 has a really high page count. And volume 3 has a kind of average page count.

But if I put it all together in one book — all 3 volumes, together — it becomes way too expensive for Print On Demand.  So then I thought, what if I pull some of the stories, to ease up on the page count, put it out as one new collection…

…but then I couldn’t offer it as an eBook because it would potentially cannibalize any sales of the tons of eBooks I already have in the marketplace, published by myself and other more traditional publishers who wouldn’t appreciate that at all.

So then I finally came up with the idea to put it out under one cover, but only as POD trade paper.

So I pulled the erotic memoir, the erotic fantasy stories, and the erotic romance stories from the (new) 4th volume. It’s only traditional erotic fiction. But then I’m adding some stories that were not included in volumes 1-3. And now the collection covers 1994-2012, and as of right now, has 25 previously published erotic fiction stories in it.

Plus! I finally found a copy of that publishing history that SomethingDark.eu had published in 2012, and so that will be included in the back of the book, and it lists my publications, honors and awards from 1990 to 2012, and also includes a list of all the reviews I wrote of erotic fiction and nonfiction books for various magazines and websites back in the early 2000’s. But it doesn’t include the erotic art shows I curated in NYC, or any of the multi-media work I produced, which was just a hugely massive amount of work (1997-2006).

But I thought it would make for an interesting book. Again, everything in it is previously published and will really only be for people who prefer books over eBooks.

The title is: The Muse Revisited, Volume 4: The Selected Erotic Fiction of Marilyn Jaye Lewis, 1994-2012. And the cover art is going to be black & white and feature this photo below in some way, that Valerie took of me at Coney Island in 1995, just prior to my 35th birthday.

June 1995 Coney Island, Brooklyn NY

I don’t know — you can sort of tell by the expression on my face that we probably weren’t up to any good.  Holly Lane was there that day, too, because the Mermaid Parade was going on that day. And if you were ever at a Mermaid Parade at Coney Island in the old days — nothing respectable at all was ever going on. And it was a blast.

Okay, so I started a new publishing company, Marilyn’s Room Books, and it will be at marilynsroombooks.com — although nothing is there yet. I don’t know if I’ll just keep it as a vanity press or publish other writers down the road, but here’s the logo, in case you’re interested:

And here, for your reading pleasure, is one story from Volume 4, that does not appear in the other volumes.  It is not what I would call “erotic,” necessarily — it’s more about erotic cannibalism.  It is microfiction (less than 300 words), and it appeared in Dirty: Dirty: An Illustrated Anthology of Dirty Writing published by Jaded Ibis Press, 2013, and was written expressly for them.

(And with that, I’m gonna leave you, gang!! I gotta get ready for Abstract Absurdity Productions work here today! Thanks for visiting, though. I love you guys. See ya!)

**************************************************

“We Warned Her”
© 2012 Marilyn Jaye Lewis

It was autumn, so we slung her over the split-rails to dry in the crisper breezes, knowing the smoky air would trap the piquant flavor of her and keep it that way all through the winter. Sweet meat where there were once tight curls of flaming red hairs; those lips hairless now, smooth and cool. The throbbing, over. The tender folds salted and the blood drained. In spring, she was succulent to the eye – engorged, even, to the point where she’d driven us mad. We’d warned her: “From here, we can see your thigh!” She’d laughed at us – her mirth like tinkling bells strung through plum blossoms that are caught on the gentle wind of an April rain. We could hardly fault her for it – that blithe laugh. She’d seemed as intoxicated by spring as the dewy hyacinth blossoms, or as the swollen buds of the old roses that had not yet burst with their sultry fragrance of sin. She’d refused to believe us, yet here was her proof: gone now, from the waist up. Splitter-splatter went the shards of bone in blood. “Straighten your skirts,” we’d urged her. “Don’t sit that way – we’re going balmy!” Lewdly was how she sat, legs splayed down in the grass, those flowery dresses with their many underskirts of lace raised too high. Until it was plain that she’d worn nothing under those lacy skirts; that the fleshy folds beneath the tight red curls were swollen and wet with something salty-sweet. In the summer, she was even worse.  (“I want to devour you,” I’d whispered once, my fingers plunging up into her while I lost control of my very breath. I licked them then – my fingers – and madly kissed the side of her damp face.)

© 2012 Marilyn Jaye Lewis

Wow, What An Eventful Day!!

Yesterday, that is.

Right after I posted to the blog yesterday morning, I got into the car to drive into town and get the groceries. I stopped at the little ATM drive-thru at the edge of town there, but the ATM was temporarily out-of-service.

What I was able to do, though, was somehow gouge the fuck out of my rear tire.  I drove about 1/8th of a mile from the ATM, when I heard something not at all pleasant coming from the back end of the car.  I pulled over, got out, and lo & behold, a very flat tire.

So then I had to wait for roadside assistance to come change the tire. (Yes! I was a mere 5 minutes from my house…)

But here are some good things about that:

    • It was a gorgeous day!!
    • My phone service had been going in & out all morning, but after a feverish prayer to the god of cellphone service, on my second attempt to call roadside assistance, the phone came back on and stayed on the rest of the day
    • I don’t have to pay for roadside assistance, it comes with my Honda lease
    • Basically everyone who passed me on the road stopped and asked it I needed any help, which was so nice
    • I saw a bald eagle land in the field across from me, and then take off again, and those wings are incredibly HUGE. It was breathtaking!!
    • The guy from the roadside assistance came in 20 minutes!!
    • The guy was really nice!
    • My Honda comes with a  great spare tire because it is brand-new
    • I drove straight to the town where the  Honda dealership is once the tire was changed,  before going to get the groceries, and they had the tire I needed, I could afford the tire I needed without having to put it on a credit card, and they were able to take me right away without an appointment
    • I hung out in the Honda waiting room and played around on Instagram until they finished changing my tire (behaving not as if I will be 60 next week, but as if I am still 12!!) (Yay!!)
    • Last but not least, this was my view while I waited for roadside assistance:
The view from my car while I waited for roadside assistance.

It was definitely not a bad day.

The only thing I sort of regret is that, by the time I was able to get to the grocery store, I was really hungry so I bought all kinds of cool stuff that I never buy!!

For instance: organic grilled veggie pizza that I will eat in its entirety all by myself; many assorted non-GMO, organic,  salty, not-at-all-fat-free snacks; and high-protein, low-fat mint chocolate chip ice cream bars!!

And the entire time that I was putting all these no-no’s into my shopping cart (“no-no’s” only because I live alone so I will eat all of this stuff all by myself), I kept reminding myself not to worry; that I have a treadmill now!! (And all I need is for that special treadmill-belt-lube to arrive, so that I can feel motivated to actually assemble the treadmill and — you know — use it.)

So there we go!! A perfect day!! (And to be honest, it wasn’t until I opened the cupboard this morning to get out my non-GMO, organic flax & pumpkin seed granola (that fools my body into thinking it is not post-menopausal but is, in fact, way, way, way pre-menopausal), that I saw all those happy snacks awaiting me!! And I got super happy myself!!

Oh, and when I finally got back from town, that set of stoneware appetizer dishes all covered in flowers that I had ordered the other day, had arrived! And they are really pretty. (Of course, it’s sort of sad that I will never ever ever use them!!)

But, anyway — they’re mine.

All righty. So I got nothing done yesterday at my desk. However. Today, I want to do a straight read-thru of The Guitar Hero Goes Home, to see how it reads from start to finish now.  (Plus, it looks like M. Christian and Ralph Greco, Jr. are willing to blurb it and/or review it!!!)

Then I am going to toy around with a short flash fiction/memoir type piece for submission to an upcoming anthology. Then, get back to work, finally, on Thug Luckless: Welcome to P-Town.

So that’s my day!! (First, I’m gonna finish the laundry, though. So, you can see –life is just super exciting!)

All righty. Another gorgeous day here in Crazeysburg. I am gonna get at it. I hope you have a terrific Tuesday, wherever you are in the world. Thanks for visiting, gang.  Today, I leave you with a Rock & Roll Hall of Fame video from 2012 — a tribute to George Harrison, that includes Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne in truly fine voice (two of the Traveling Wilbury’s, btw, which included George, Roy Orbison, and Bob Dylan); the tribute here also includes George’s son, Dhani. But hold out for Prince’s guitar solo, gang! It comes in at the 3:20 mark on the video and lasts about 3 minutes. It is truly an awesome guitar solo. Just so much love in it.

The whole piece is just really joyous! “While My Guitar Gently Weeps.”

Okay, so listen and enjoy. And have a great day. I love you guys. See ya.

Gotta Love Summer, Gang!!

It’s not terribly hot here today, but we’re going to have nothing but high humidity and rain and thunderstorms all day and on into the night.

The good news (although I actually like rain and thunderstorms), but the true good news is that the problem I was having with my lungs after the virus — catching my breath during days of high humidity — that residual effect from the virus is almost completely gone.

So, apparently, I won’t have that problem for the rest of my life, as I was starting to fear. So that is some truly good news.

I don’t actually have a  whole lot to blog about today, mostly I am focused on my writing projects and the (ever-shrinking!!) To-Do list for Abstract Absurdity Productions.

I might actually try my hand at another chapter for In the Shadow of Narcissa. However, as I’ve stated here on the blog before, I’m not sure if I will keep posting the new chapters to the website or not. I am seeing sings (also signs!!) that it is being downloaded in foreign lands, probably by someone gearing up to pirate it.  In fact, they are probably annoyed that it’s taking me so long to finish the darn book!!!

I do apologize — my brain has not been working properly since something like early March…

Okay.

I checked out the new Tom Petty video yesterday — the one that is a sample of the upcoming Wildflowers Pt. 2 collection that is at long last in the works. (It’s called something else, though, that’s not the official title.) As I said yesterday, the “new song” that dropped yesterday, is a homemade demo he made of the song “You Don’t Know How it Feels” — a hit from his Wildflower solo album (1994).

I have to say that Tom Petty’s homemade 8-track demos (made when he was extremely famous and very rich) sound remarkably better than any 8-track homemade demos I ever made!!

The demo is okay, but the video, gang — I thought it was GREAT. It was created and directed by Ben “Blaze” Brooks and Aaron Hymes. And I just loved it. And I think that Tom Petty himself would have loved it. It’s posted below for today’s listening music!!

BTW, if you weren’t aware — Tom Petty was also an artist. In fact, he went to art school after high school but was quickly expelled for not attending classes because (according to his biography) he was too busy doing a bunch of, well,  sort of intimate stuff with some girl!!  Anyway — he drew, he painted. He was very talented in that way, too. So I think he would have loved the video these guys made because it relies on some of the iconic artwork Tom Petty did during his career.

Okay, on that note, I really gotta scoot!! But thanks for visiting, gang. I hope you enjoy your Saturday, wherever you are in the world!! I love you guys. See ya!

Almost Time to Harvest those Peaches!!

Can you believe it’s already late June?? Peaches are beginning to get ripe?  A moment ago, it was February…

I have, like, a hard time getting my mind around that. And even though we’re mostly out of lock down around here, and Kevin (the director of my play, Tell My Bones — whenever that manages to get off the ground again, sometime in 2021); well, he and I keep saying we’re going to meet for dinner at the Granville Inn — I keep sort of dragging my feet because I’m not sure I want to see that beloved place with everyone wearing masks.

But of course, if everyone thinks that way, then nothing will get back to normal.

Anyway. It’s late June and I still halfway feel like I’m still in lockdown mode. But part of that is okay because the evenings around here have just been splendid.

By late afternoon, I finally was able to pull myself out of what was happening to me yesterday, gang, but it got really really bad before I was able to do that.

I don’t know why, but sometimes, my triggers get hit so hard (by key people in my life) that the spiraling down just takes over and happens so fast. I get like a zombie; it’s so awful. At its worst point, I went out and took a walk, but I had to absolutely force myself.

I walked into the dollar store and bought vitamins that I didn’t even really need — clearly not someone hell bent on self-destruction, right?  Just trying to interact with reality. And with the nice lady behind the checkout counter. She smiled and said, “How are you today?” And I was forced to be fake and say, “I’m good. How are you?” But it helps. It really does — hearing my voice say that. It’s at least something that’s not telling me to die.

Then on my way back home, I ran into two older men (strangers) from the senior living complex, who were sitting on the bench in the town square (that’s really a triangle). One of them was old enough to need a walker, but both of them were just so friendly and so nice. They forced me to remember for a few moments that life is beautiful. That I have every right to live.

Just two of the angels who came to my assistance yesterday. (I rely on some truly beautiful unknown angels; I really do.)

This thing that happens in my brain has nothing to do with how I actually feel about myself here & now. It’s an old program, an old voice, that gets triggered. Usually, I can override it all by myself. But yesterday was one of the scarier days.

You know, back when Tom Petty managed to become a heroin addict at age 50, it dawned on me that it was never too late to become a heroin addict. Or when all those famous movie stars who became alcoholics in their later years,  wound up drinking themselves to death, it served to remind me that it was never too late to become an incurable alcoholic. And then, when one of my colleagues — a very well-known erotic photographer — jumped to his death from his balcony in San Francisco a couple years ago, when he was in his late 70s… It’s just that horrible reminder that I never know what my brain is likely to start telling me if I’m not incredibly vigilant.

I did manage to get some work done — focusing on “tasks” kept my mind from doing that horrible shit. At one point, though, I was on Instagram, looking up the suicide hashtag and interestingly enough, when you enter that hashtag, a little gatekeeper comes up with a link to “Get Help.”

That was actually enough to shake me out of my tunnel vision — should I get help? — but I proceeded to the hashtag anyway. To see what people who think about suicide had posted there. But then it actually led me to some Anne Sexton poems, so I decided to follow the Anne Sexton hashtag instead, and that got me to a much better place. And eventually, it got me right back to my desk.

So, I was able to get some work done on Girl in the Night , and also tackle a lot of the stuff on my To-Do list for Abstract Absurdity Productions. That kind of focusing helped turned down the voice in my head a lot.

And then somebody I care about so much came through so unexpectedly, in spades, yesterday, and I was able to completely break the spiral.

Speaking of Tom Petty — the battling Petty clan seems to be coming to some sort of agreement to move forward on those early Wildflower tracks that were never released. And today, at TomPetty.com, the first song from that batch will be debuted. An 8-track version of his song “You Don’t Know How It Feels.”

I’m not sure I need to hear an 8-track version of that specific song, but I am really eager to hear that Wildflowers Part 2 collection, whenever it comes out. (Plenty of unreleased songs that he actually wanted released are supposed to be on it.)

I don’t know if you tuned into the NASA YouTube channel to watch the guys go off on their space walk this morning — at one point, nearly 77,000 viewers were streaming it. Wow, they have to wear so much stuff to go out for a walk in space. But it was still nice to see that Russians and Americans can thrive together way the heck out in outer space!! (If you’re too young to remember the original “space race” — the USA and the USSR couldn’t have been less accommodating of each other back then. To put it extremely mildly.)

Well, all righty. I guess I will get to work here on this beautiful day. Today, I know it’s Friday!! I have all my faculties in working order here today. So I hope you are gearing up for a nice weekend, wherever you are in the world. Thanks for visiting, gang.

Today, I will leave you with Neil Diamond yet again, but a much more uplifting song than yesterday’s (which was also a favorite of mine, even though it was sad). This one today is one that I post here a lot. But it is such a great song! “Sweet Caroline.” Who can ever get tired of it?? And this is such a great version of it. Okay. Enjoy, gang. I love you guys. See ya!

Looks like my worst mistake was my best one!!!

Remember yesterday? Remember how I almost died there in my kitchen, trying to breathe while my lungs exploded after I used the steroid-based allergy spray for the first time in a month?

It took awhile for the feeling to level off, but it does seem like the steroids actually helped. By the end of yesterday, I was breathing normally for the first time in a month. And so far today, I’m still breathing normally.

So I used the allergy spray again this morning, since I need it for my allergies…

I hate to speak too soon, because every time I post here that it seems like I’m nearly 100% fine — finally — I then get breathing issues again. However, I actually am feeling just about 100% totally fine. So we’ll just see.

Well, my dad is leaving the house today for the first time in 6 weeks because he has a doctor’s appointment. When he told me about this yesterday, I was totally speaking to him like he was a two-year-old: Wear your mask, don’t touch anything, don’t speak to anybody, wash your hands! I was so not happy that he was planning on leaving the assisted living “compound,” you know? He’s almost 90 and he’s made it for 6 weeks without getting the virus.  And he lives in a county that has a high rate of not only the virus, but also deaths from the virus.

But off he goes to the doctor today, so we’ll just see about that, too.

All things considered, yesterday was a really good day around here. I discovered that the very old tree in my backyard  is a dogwood tree! I noticed yesterday that it was in bloom, so I went out to look at its blossoms and, lo & behold — it’s a dogwood. All the other dogwoods in town have lost their blossoms already and are green now.

I love dogwoods so much that I was even thinking recently that I should plant a dogwood tree in my backyard. And in keeping with the absolute magical nature of this crazy town — voila! — I suddenly discover that I have one!

The tree is ancient. Last spring, I did notice that it had some sort of white blossoms on it but I never took the time to really investigate them. However, since this spring I am just indescribably here, 24/7, and always looking out the kitchen window at my backyard, I took the time to really look at it. Plus, this spring, it seems to have way more blossoms than it had last year. So, what a great discovery.

My dogwood, yesterday afternoon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Also, yesterday, the a1000mistakes blog out of Australia posted that Einstürzende Neubauten has a new album coming out on May 15th, Alles in Allem, and that they dropped an official video for a new song, “Ten Grand Goldie,” featuring Blixa Bargeld singing in a lovely surgical mask.

I watched that video many times yesterday — some of the lyrics are in English, but most of them are in German, so I have no idea what the song is about, but I still really liked watching it. (And it could very well be that even if I understood German, I still wouldn’t know what the song is about, because I don’t really understand what most Einstürzende Neubauten songs are about. ) Anyway. It’s posted below.

I also watched a video for The Birthday Party’s song from 1983, “Fears of Gun” numerous times.  Whoever put together the images for the video, I liked it a lot. It’s an intense song and I don’t think I ever really understood that song, either, even though it’s in English. It has something to do with not being super happy about love, though — and so on and so on…

I also streamed the movie The Vicious Circle, a British crime-thriller from 1957, starring John Mills (father of the indescribably adorable, Hayley). It was really good. I loved the cinematography — great black & white footage of London in the late 1950s. Plus, I never did figure out who the murderer was until the final 3 minutes of the film, so that was cool.

And I also did some thinking yesterday about how I’m feeling about my writing, even though I didn’t actually do any writing yet. When I spoke to the director of Tell My Bones on Wednesday, he mentioned again how “risky” the scene/song is that’s all about lynchings and slave auctions. And he kept saying that he loved it, and was standing by it, but that it was so risky. So I thought about that a lot yesterday, too — you know, like, why does he keep saying that it’s risky? Am I really setting myself up here?  To me, it just feels powerful and completely unexpected. Which, to me, is art, you know? It won’t be included in the staged reading, because none of the actual musical numbers will be included. But I know that it will at least be “alluded” to and I’m really curious to see how they’re going to do that.

Also, yesterday night, Dana Petty uploaded a photo she took of Tom Petty and their dog, Ryder, on a deserted  Malibu beach at sunset.  (If you didn’t see yesterday’s post, their dog, Ryder, died the other night.) Wow, what a stunning photo. It was so beautiful, it brought tears to my eyes. I know there must be a way to copy photos from Instagram, because I see Instagram photos on Pinterest a lot, but I do not know how to do it. So you’ll either have to follow Dana Petty on Instagram, or simply take my word for it that it was a really touching photo, even though it’s mostly a photo of Tom Petty from behind, as the dog is running toward him, along the beach. (It did have the feeling like the two of them were already in heaven…)

Okay, well. Today is May 1st ! Which was Elvis & Priscilla’s wedding day. And also my own wedding day — back in 1993. I have no idea where the time went, so don’t even ask me!! But May 1st, nonetheless, is one of my favorite days of the year.

I believe in spring weddings — I really do. I’m totally into the whole “I’ll Be With You in Apple Blossom Time” idea. Both my weddings were in the spring. (And I actually left both marriages in the spring, although I didn’t plan it to be like that.) If I ever get married again, I think I’d like to choose a spring day that doesn’t actually exist — you know, make something up: like, Tuenesday May 34th. Something like that. And perhaps then the marriage will only exist in theory and thus be a spectacular success. We’ll see!!

Okay. I’ve just been notified on Instagram that Bad Seeds TeeVee has just had some new videos uploaded to it, so I will no doubt watch that again today! I am actually going to try to do some writing today, too. I am feeling that good, finally.

So I’m gonna get this day underway here. Thanks for visiting, gang.  I hope you have a perfect Friday, all things considered, wherever you are in the world.

I leave you with all my listening music from yesterday: “Dead Radio,” by Rowland S. Howard, from his amazing Teenage Snuff Film album (1999). The aforementioned “Fears of Gun,” by The Birthday Party, which I believe is from their Mutiny EP (1983) but I’m not positive about that (lyrics are in the video). And Einstürzende Neubauten’s brand new song, “Ten Grand Goldie,” from the upcoming Alles in Allem (some lyrics, in both German and English are in the video).

All righty! Enjoy. I love you guys See ya.

“Dead Radio”

You’re bad for me like cigarettes
But I haven’t sucked enough of you yet
Nothing is sacred and nothing is true
I’m no-one that’s nowhere when I’m here with you

I’ve lost the power I had to distinguish
Between what to ignite and what to extinguish

I blew in last night, I’m the ghost from the coast
When the lighting is bad I’m the man with the most
You left me to choke on a heart up in smoke
Smiling through your tears and your tetracycline overdose

You’re good for me like Coca-Cola
I don’t get any younger, you don’t get any older
Everything’s sacred and everything’s true
All of this is possible when I’m here with you

I’ve got a lot to say but I keep my own counsel
I’d like to spit it out but I won’t speak with my mouth full

I blew in last night, I’m the ghost from the coast
When the lighting is bad I’m the man with the most
You left me to choke on a heart up in smoke
Smiling through your tears and your tetracycline overdose

© 1999 Rowland S. Howard

Big Bunch of Stuff On A Rainy Day

In case you’re not among the nearly 70,000 people who already know this, Nick Cave dropped a new “official video” yesterday on YouTube. His cover of T.Rex’s 1968 song “Cosmic Dancer.”

It is really, really lovely. Not only Nick Cave’s singing, but the whole video is lovely — it includes some really uplifting footage of Marc Bolan, both onstage and off. You can watch it at the bottom of this post.

The song is apparently to be included in a  Marc Bolan tribute album coming in September, with a big bunch of other people contributing songs, too. I am not a fan of tribute albums in any way whatsoever — like, not even close. But Nick Cave’s cover of “Cosmic Dancer” is beautiful and so is the video.

And speaking of videos…

Last evening, I watched My Darling Vivian on Amazon. It is streaming free this week, as part of Amazon’s support of the SXSW 2020 Film Festival that was canceled because of the virus — it gives filmmakers a chance to have their films seen despite the cancellation of the festival, so check it out. There are lots of films being shown. Not just documentaries.

That said, though, My Darling Vivian is a documentary about Johnny Cash’s first wife, Vivian Libretto. And if you like Johnny Cash, you kinda have to make yourself watch this. And try not to sit there with your mouth hanging open. And then you kinda have to ask yourself how on Earth did Vivian manage to survive her marriage to Johnny Cash and go on to live as long as she did without shooting herself?

The documentary is told by Johnny’s 4 daughters — Roseanne, Cindy, Kathy, and Tara. And Johnny does not come off like some sort of true bad guy; he comes off as someone who had a lot of problems with drugs and fame. However, if you liked June Carter Cash (Johnny’s second wife), get ready to not like her so much anymore.

I thought it was just a really well done documentary. I don’t love Johnny Cash any less. But it was still illuminating — what he allowed to happen to his first wife and the mother of 4 of his children. And what the press can do to absolutely crush a defenseless woman and how it can make her utterly disappear when the second wife is someone famous.

On another super cheerful note… Dana Petty announced on Instagram yesterday that her and Tom’s beloved dog, Ryder, died in her arms late Tuesday night. So fucking sad, right? Though Tom adopted Dana’s son, Dylan, from a previous marriage, they didn’t have any biological children between them, but they did have dogs. Plenty of dogs. Tom Petty loved dogs — like, seriously.

When Tom Petty and his first band, Mudcrutch, got their first record deal, he loaded up the station wagon with his gear, his dogs, his new (and newly pregnant) first wife; left Florida and off they all went to LA. The first album bombed, and so, unable to feed a wife and brand new baby, Tom sent them back home to Florida until he could afford to feed them — but he kept the dogs. I mean, how much can dogs eat, right — besides everything in sight??

Anyway. Tom always loved his dogs.  And Ryder was Tom’s final dog before he died, 2 years and 8 months ago.

So now Ryder is at play eternally with Tom in the fields of the Lord, but Dana is going through even more loss right now and it’s just so sad. (And things always feel doubly sad when you read about them in the middle of the night on Instagram, don’t they? And all the photos, too?)

Together again now, forever.

Okay. On the good news front…

I had a really great phone conversation with the director of Tell My Bones yesterday, and the plans for doing the Zoom version of the staged reading continue to move forward and his plans for the production of it are making me really, really happy, gang. I will go over more of the details when it feels appropriate to start blogging about it.

On the virus front…

I was finally feeling pretty good today. My lungs felt reasonably clear. So, for the first time in over a month, I took Flonase for my allergies. I’d been afraid to take it until now because it’s a steroid and I was really wary of what a steroid taken through the nose would do to a bat-borne virus that lives in the nose and lungs.

So far, I’m okay. But when I first took it, man — I thought my lungs were going to explode and I’d have a heart attack or something. And I stood in the kitchen, in front of an open window, trying like crazy to breathe, and I thought, well, today’s as good a day as any to die. But then  it settled down and I was able to breathe again. And so now we’ll just see. The Flonase was probably not a good idea yet, but so far, I haven’t died.

I did drive into town yesterday to get the groceries. And the market is right next to a Home Depot, which is where I buy all my flowers every spring. I always wait until Memorial Day to get the flowers because the frost is completely done by then and the flowers are all on sale for the holiday. But yesterday — man was I tempted to get an early start this year! Brighten up my porches!

However, I have to spend a lot of money on the barn over the next few weeks, so I’ll wait until that’s done. But I am so ready for flowers around here, gang! (I’m so ready for a lot of things. Aren’t we all?)

All righty. Well, I guess I’ll close this. then call my dad and get the weather report!! (Honestly. What is it about dads and weather??) I hope you enjoy your Thursday as best you can, wherever you are in the world.

Thanks for visiting, gang. I leave you with this lovely version of “Cosmic Dancer.” Enjoy, okay? I love you guys. See ya!

The Joys of Teeny Tiny Movies!!

Wow. I’m going to start right off with a digression.

Valentine’s Day on Instagram is quite a fertile little world, in and of itself. The things people choose to post can be just really illuminating.

A poet I follow who lives in Canada — I actually know her, but we haven’t worked together in years. She seems to have quite an eclectic assortment of vibrators. And they also seem to have some sort of seasonal appeal. Meaning — much like me and my dishes — she has favorites for various times of the year and she photographs them (just the vibrator itself) and posts it to Instagram.

Yesterday, of course, she posted a photo of her Valentine’s Day vibrator. (It was red and looked almost sort of like a heart – in a Salvador Dali kind of way).

It would never, in a million years, occur to me to post anything like that to Instagram (or anywhere, actually). (Not that I have an eclectic assortment of vibrators. I’m just saying.)

But I guess, in a way, that’s art. Or perhaps visual erotic poetry, or something like that. (When she’s not photographing vibrators for the various holidays, she photographs chairs — all sorts of chairs that she sees abandoned on the streets.) (There are quite a huge amount of chairs abandoned on the streets in Canada, in case you were curious.)

Of course, Dana Petty posted a beautiful photo of herself with Tom, and said something about love, quoting Anais Nin. And then, moments later, one of Tom’s daughters posted a photo of Tom with his first wife, Jane. (So the step-mother-daughter feud seems to be alive and well out there in LA.)

Tom, of course, didn’t post anything at all to his Instagram page this year because he’s dead.

(Although his “official page” is still alive and well.) (And kicks into high gear whenever there’s something new from WB Records to merchandize — to make money off of him, posthumously.)

(Which only always makes me think of that staggering song he wrote, “Joe,” from The Last DJ album in 2002: So burned out Johnny thinks the books are shifty/ What good’s that alky to me when he’s fifty?/ Well we could move catalog if he’d only die quicker/ Send my regards to the gig and a case of good liquor/ He gets to be famous, I get to be rich/ He gets to be famous, I get to be rich…)

Then there was the usual assortment of really, really cute animal videos for Valentine’s Day.  (And I mean, really cute, gang. From owls to koalas, to tiny kittens playing with baby pigs. Just too fucking cute.)

And, of course, the veritable deluge of Keanu photos for Valentine’s Day. Currently, they are mostly of him with his mom at the Oscars (his fall-back female when he wants the paparazzi to fuck-off). (He has taken his mom to many, many, camera ops over the decades. And she always looks so fucking good. That mom of his doesn’t age at all.)

Image result for keanu with his mom at the oscars
Keanu in 2020, at age 55; Mom, ageless

(I’m seriously hoping that he and that really cool artist woman haven’t broken up, and that her absence was only a case of her saying “no way am I ever appearing with you in public again, dude, ever” — because she seriously got eaten alive by the tabloids after that last thing at the LA Art Museum-Gucci thing.  They just seemed so fucking happy together, though, so I would really hate to think they broke up. And he still looked really happy at the Oscars — (not that I watched it, I see the world through my Instagram feed!) (I hate awards shows) — I don’t think he’s got any kind of a broken heart or anything; I think maybe he just enjoys fucking with the tabloids.)

Anyway. A lot gets revealed on Instagram. Especially on Valentine’s Day. Or perhaps even very early the following morning. I, however, only ever post photos of my various cats or what the weather looks like outside of my various windows, or if there’s a full moon over Basin Street. Always the same sort of non-committal thing. (The blog is revealing enough, I think.)

Oh, and the official Nick Cave page posted a promo for his upcoming art exhibit in Copenhagen that was very humorous — and extremely short. I watched it 3 times before I realized I was watching the same clip over & over. But it was funny.

It had all the elements of an Abstract Absurdity Production, in fact!!

Which actually was what I wanted to post about today. All that stuff up above this is just a massive digression.

Peitor and I got such great work done on the “Lita” script yesterday! And I know this will sound perhaps absurd and abstract in and of itself, but we still only got 3 scenes onto the written page. And those scenes will each last 45 seconds or less. Still, it was great work. And even though it took hours, we were really, really happy with what we had accomplished when we were done working for the day.

(And then Peitor texted later in the evening, to say that we needed a shot of “the desk against the wall once we hear the keys in the door” and, once I thought about it, I saw that he was completely correct. I know that we probably seem insane, but this movie is going to be so fucking cool. Totally absurd and abstract and even a little erotic and disturbing and also quite lovely to look at!)

(And our micro-micro-micro shorts are going to be completely awesome, gang. Every time I think about them, I can’t help but chuckle out loud. We are planning to shoot 2 of those this year. I don’t think we’ll be shooting the “Lita” script this year, or, if we do, it will be very, very late in the year– yes (!!), probably when The Guide To Being Fabulous is premiering in Toronto. Because we refuse to even consider beginning shooting “Lita” until I get that specific A-list actor that I want for the key role. I’m so absolutely serious about that, gang.)

Well, we are planning to have the Abstract-Absurdity web site launched on April 1st, and a couple of the micro-shorts will be streaming there. So, I’ve gotta  lot of work to do there. But I will, no doubt, keep you posted.

Today, I am either going to work some more on In the Shadow of Narcissa — OR — write something Thug Luckless-related! Yes, gang, he’s pushing against the insides of my brain, trying to get onto the paper, too! So we’ll see.

And I spoke at length with Sandra yesterday — she’s up in Canada, now. And, based on her rehearsal schedule up there,  it sounds like the table-reads for Tell My Bones will begin in NYC in March. Shit. So — yeah. I gotta get my mind around that. March is, like, 14 seconds away. Thank god I don’t have to cast that thing. All I have to do is show up.

(And — NO! — even though it is super-duper incredibly easy to get to Copenhagen from JFK, I am not going to try to fit in a micro-short trip to Copenhagen to see the Nick Cave art exhibit! It is not going to happen, because it will only complicate my schedule, my work, my bank account, my life — so it ain’t happening. I’m not even going to think about it, or so much as ponder the logistics of it. And all the airline-booking-deal-alerts that pop onto my computer to tell me what flight deals might be lurking in the direction of Copenhagen will simply be ignored!!)

Yep. Absolutely.

And on that note!!! I’m gonna get started here, gang!! Have a wonderful, wonder-filled Saturday, wherever you are in the world!! Thanks for visiting, gang. I’m not gonna leave you with “Joe” today, even though it is an intense little song — it’s a bit too jaded and acerbic for my tastes here this morning. But I will leave you with something else from The Last DJ (such a great album, gang): “Have Love, Will Travel.” So fucking beautiful. All righty! I love you guys. See ya!

“Have Love, Will Travel”

You never had a chance, did you baby
So good-looking, so insecure
And now you say you can’t remember
When the lines you drew began to blur

Yeah, when all of this is over
Should I lose you in the smoke
I want you to know you were the one

And may my love travel with you everywhere
Yeah, may my love travel with you always

Maggie’s still trying to rope a tornado
Joe’s in the backyard trying to keep things simple
And the lonely DJ’s diggin’ a ditch
Trying to keep the flames from the temple

Oh, and if perhaps I lose you
In the smoke down the road
I want you to know you were the one

And may my love travel with you everywhere
Yeah, may my love travel with you always

How about a cheer for all those bad girls
And all the boys that play that rock and roll
They love it like you love Jesus
It does the same thing to their souls

And when all of this is over
Should I lose you in the smoke
I want you to know that it’s all right

And may my love travel with you everywhere
Yeah, may my love travel with you always

c- 2002 Tom Petty