Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Plato, Aristotle & That Girl Who Writes Bad Poetry...

 I like philosophy. Not as much as dentistry, but close. All that thinking. All those theories. All those notions about who the hell we are and why we do what we do. Endless questions with unknowable answers. It's like trying to put in an order at a McDonald's drive-thru.

Like bad poetry you say? Yes, Susan. Like bad poetry.
All those old men trying to make sense of reason, morals, knowledge and sometimes beauty while drinking absinthe. Lots of absinthe! Apparently it helps take the edge off. It does for me. My favorite philosophers were a branch of Sophist's who believed that nothing exists and if it did exist, it wasn't real. Ouch. Did anyone bother getting out of bed in ancient Greece? Anywhoodles, a few more bad poems so the day doesn't seem like a vortex of sin and degradation that sucks your soul out into a void off nothingness. Or...kittens sitting on a rainbow eating cotton candy. Your choice, of course.

Emanuelle Kant

Emanuelle Kant but
he probably could have
since it was entirely possible
at the time.

Neitzsche And The Ice-Cream Truck

God is dead.
But this atomic
berry blast popsicle
is heavenly.

Critical Thinking (Of You)

X equals my uptight girlfriend
Y equals fun-loving you
If X equals another day with that wing-nut
Y are we not having sex right now?

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Let's Go A-Caroling! On Second Thought, Let's Drink Grain Alcohol Instead!

Since the holidays are still pointing and laughing at us from on top of our Christmas trees and nuns are out in the cold smoking cigarettes and getting ready for Jesus's big birthday party, (Shhh, it's a surprise this year!) I'm guessing there are strange relatives coming in and out of your bathroom doing lord knows what and Uncle Stan is hovering over you as you read this with whisky on his breath asking, "you got any porn on that thing?"

Now might be a good time for a little bad poetry. After all it does say THE VERY BAD POET up there on the marquee. Time to put my money where my mouth is. Although last time I did,  I ended up in a womens correctional facility with a delightful bunkmate named 'Carla' who flushed my shoes down the toilet while I was sleeping. She also got great joy out of kicking me in the shins. We eventually became BFF's after I gave her all of my clean underwear and became very good at her favorite game 'Where did Carla hide her teeth?'

I should send her a Christmas card.

Anywhoodles, here are a few bad poems from B IS FOR BAD POETRY to warm your cockles. If they get too warm, you should probably see a doctor.

Nietzsche And The Ice-Cream Truck
God is dead.
But this atomic
berry blast Popsicle
is heavenly.

A Brief History Of Feminism
Sally sells seashells
by the seashore
as if people didn't know
you could just
go to the beach
and find them yourself.

Unfortunate Cookie
You will soon meet someone
who will bring you much joy and love.

Eventually they will devour your soul
like it's a hot dog eating championship.

When one door closes
another door opens
onto a cliff.

How To Reprimand a Cynical Optimist
You can have your cake
and eat it too
but don't let me catch you
five minutes later
in the bathroom
with your finger
down your throat.

From B IS FOR BAD POETRY 2009 By Pamela August Russell
Publisher: Sterling
ISBN: 1-4027-6787-0
ISBN13: 9781402767876
$9.95 US
Hardcover with Jacket (not fur)

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Yo-Ho-Ho And A Bottle of Irony!

A famous writer I know once told me a story about another, even more famous writer she had gone to visit. When she arrived, the more famous writer was sitting in a chair looking out the window towards the gray Canadian mountains and said, "Irony.  It's all we have left."
I couldn't agree more. Then again, it was Canada.

Some critics have even said that irony has been the death of American literature. I'm sure Faulkner and Steinbeck would agree, Sedaris and Heller would not. Clearly, it's not for everyone. Still, there are people walking around in the world who just don't understand it. Or as I like to call them, people without a sense of humor. They're out there hiding in the bushes.
Trust me.

I find this disbelief in irony hard to believe.  Which is ironic because I find most things in life hard to believe. How about life itself for instance. Can you believe we're all going to die at some random time and place completely unbeknownst to any of us? Yet here we are cleaning the toilet bowl, wrapping Christmas presents and throwing cocktail parties like we couldn't give a crap. And for the most part, we don't. Unless of course you're Woody Allen who writes entire films based on it. For the rest of us it's just the giant pink elephant in the room that we all step delicately around to get to the sausage tray and open bar. Ironic?
You bet, Susan.
So why all the fuss about irony? Well, it seems there are a few folks out there who think I should take my literary endeavors a little more seriously. Oh, I do. I'm very serious about using humor, sarcasm and irony in strange and wonderful new ways. I assume that most readers already know how bad things in life can get. I'll leave the seriousness of it all to the dramatists and Franz Kafka. In the meantime,  I'll be writing 'bad poetry' and short stories about silly things like how I helped Bob Dylan learn how to write songs. (the man couldn't rhyme to save his life) And if by some cosmic irony I get hit by a bus, the only thing I want to hear at my funeral is, "Look! She's moving!"

 "I don't want to achieve immortality through my work...I want to achieve it by not dying." -Woody Allen

Photo: Kathlyn Horan http://www.tinfishfilms.com/

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Happy Holidays...Lard Ass!

Well it's officially official...

I'm fat.

No, not in that 'maybe I should have shared that 18 pound turkey' kind of way or that Hollywood actress-y 'I weigh 105 but my manager says I look better onscreen at 102' kind of way either. This was my doctor saying "You should lose a few pounds."
A few? That's like telling Bukowski he's better with just 'a couple' of drinks. Sure, things were starting to jiggle.
I'm a writer.
I sit.
I sit around.
A lot.
I sit around and stare at nothing. It scares the cats.
Apparently it scares the neighbors too. There were phone calls.
As I see it, there are a few problems with losing 'a few' pounds.
Problem #1: 'A few' turned out to be 15 pounds.
It didn't help that as I was leaving he said, "Good luck, lard-ass."
The nurse even grabbed the lollypop out of my hand
with a look that said we're not screwing around here lady!
Problem #2:
I like white food.
Pasta, pizza, cheese, bread. Lots of bread. Lots of crispy, doughy, toasty bread!
Yes, Susan, carbs. Fatty, yummy, dirty carbs.
Problem #3: There is no exercise in the world that can keep me interested for more than 5 minutes. Except of course a police chase and unless I cross the State line into Nevada they tend to end pretty quickly. Being roughed up and handcuffed only burns about 40 calories anyway. So what's a gal to do?
I have a plan, Susan.
I've decided to go ahead and balloon up to 350.
Whoopie Pies, fried chicken and pancakes with syrup for breakfast, lunch and dinner!
That way it'll be obvious to EVERYONE that snacking is a form of exercise in and of itself. Also, it'll be impossible for me to keep writing. Much like jogging, one sentence and I'll be completely out of breath. In the meantime, gird your buffet table. I'm on my way over with an empty stomach and a 5 year old holiday fruitcake.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

No dessert until you sell some poetry!

There's a delightful story by Barry Yourgrau in his book of short stories called 'The Sadness Of Sex.' It involves a woman whose vagina has escaped from her loins and is terrorizing a small town. I feel the same way about my new book B IS FOR BAD POETRY. Yes, Susan, I do write sometimes when I'm not trying to learn fire dancing in the shower. Since we live in a capitalist society, turns out you can't write a book and hand it out for free at the mall. So I'm off on my Willy Loman adventure. Join me, won't you?

Thursday, November 12th at MANDRAKE BAR in Culver City 8pm
Book Reading/Booze/Embarrassment!

Saturday, November 14th at Chevalier's Books in Larchmont 11-1pm
Book Signing

Saturday, November 14th at WACKO on Hollywood Blvd. 6-9pm
More Booze & Book Readings! Bring your own bad poems!

And a few reviews:


Thursday, October 29, 2009

People. They're not just for breakfast anymore

I always say I'm going to stop reading the news online. Yes! I should be writing. I'm aware of that, Susan. But as long as I'm hooked up to the internet and not a morphine drip, chances are I'll be buying vicodin in bulk and reading the news. Lots of it. Todays 'what the fuck' headline:

'Coyotes Kill Young Singer-Songwriter On Hike In Park'

Seriously. WTF! Now I know I won't be finishing my crappy novel today. She was probably thinking of lyrics to her new song about the great outdoors and how society is a prison...wishing she had a pen to write it all down and then WTF!

Friggin' coyotes.

Now I'm all for irony. But this is just the world on a platter of cruelty.
being a very bad poet above all else, some very bad poetry came to mind when we all know I should be writing. Things like:
'and I thought the music industry would eat you alive'
or 'I took the road less traveled and that was probably a bad idea after all'
or 'The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy unless you run into coyotes.'

Sadly, there's more. But I should get back to my 'writing.'

Monday, October 19, 2009

What the hell am I doing drinking in L.A.?

There is a circus freak show of things writers get themselves into when they should be writing. Booze comes to mind first. After that, it's just a cacophony of the ridiculous. I'll do my best to expose you to some of the sordid places I go when the writing gets tough and the tough hide under the kitchen table. For instance, I thought it might be fun to use the word 'hirsute' in a poem. Essentially, it means hairy. Not exactly what I was thinking of. Lo and behold it was all downhill from there. For example:

Hirsute, my love won't matter

was the line I was thinking of. That was five hours of wasted time I'll never get back. After a vicodin and a call to the  suicide hotline I realize of course love won't matter if it's hairy. What the hell is that and who would write such a thing? After the pills kicked in and 'Wanda' talked me out of blowing my brains out, I realized I may have actually meant 'forsooth' which makes a lot more sense. It may not mean alot to most people but that's what happens when you lay around naked with a pad of paper and a pen.