A gradient sky hovers over this polluted waste. My window keeps getting larger and larger, and my left and right have never seemed farther away. College is a waste of money. Work ethic is hard to come by, and even though my window is stretched as thin as the soap on a bubble wand, I am being choked by it.
There’s a couple of schools and public housing that hover about the grounds of Temple, usually crawling with a plethora of excited city kids. They whirl and whisk around noise and a good game of basketball, all with a smile not unlike one would find in this city… and yet their situation is altogether different. Consistent with the concrete lines fixed to the pavement, we find divides. Here are college kids paying to be here in this section of north Philadelphia. The shoes tied together and thrown over the power line, the endless trash, chain-link fencing.. all paid for in full by someone’s parents.
The power is here, just shifted to a vision so unlike the average picture. Here we have a group of people desperate to be in the grime and grit, and surely another group that can not wait to get out. Temple is located in one of the poorest and hungriest congressional districts in our nation. To see groups of over-privileged, snap-back sportin’ hip kids mingling with the actuality of life is altogether confusing and strange. Our vacation in this great city is a vision of endless drunken nights, the occasional sloppy fuck, and practice. We practice staying in our little temple approved bubble (usually), complete with a full police force with over 100 officers strong. Somehow, this can’t be real.
While reality is the boarded up houses just off in the distance of my window, there exists another one contained in the walls of research buildings and the like. That intense juxtaposition of attitude, wealth, and ability is a striking thing to have in such a city. Disparity has always been a concept I have been familiar with, but the actual practice of such a term in real life is simply terrifying. We go through the ‘freshman 15’ when only blocks away kids go without something to eat, again. We pay thousands to look out upon what must be a wasteland to some and call it culture. Or the ‘real world’. Or whatever one wants to deem it, in order to feel disconnected.
Still, its not all bad. Even having these barbaric packs of idiot college kids roaming around, the people here could not be nicer. Genuinely, there is a reason they refer to Philadelphia as the city of brotherly love. It’s just that the imagery can be intense sometimes. Life is like that.
We have some new items that you may or may not find interesting at the store:
- NEW! Cannabalism: An illustrated history. 105 pgs. 19.99.
This makes a great conversation starter, and works well as a coffee table book. Enjoy over 200 real photographs of REAL cannibalism. From deep-jungle tribes to tired sailors, its all here! Enjoy REAL recipes for each detailed and beautiful picture. Tell your friends tell your wife tell your neighbor down the road a little bit. The plump ones. Them.
-NEW! Mechanical Urine 1 (one) Large Jar. 30.00.
Tired of machines that don’t produce urine? Well now you can buy your own machine urine direct from us! Just keep it as long as you like, and if you get tired of it, simply flush it down the toilet for easy clean-up!
-NEW! 1-a-day beerds 2 (two) boxes. 15 per box. 25.00.
Misplace your confidence? Reclaim your manliness and get your kids to look at you again with 1-a-day beerds. The disposable beard that smells like beer! Simply select one of our full bodied beerd bags found in the box and apply the organic adhesive paste found in the box. Then just shake the loose hair liberally across your face and arrange in ANY pattern! Over 5 colors per box (gray,red,super red, black, and gray-again) ensure you a NATURAL looking and feeling beard. Simply peel off hardened adhesive when your ready to retire for the night!
-NEW! Life-sized Alexandre Dumas figure! SPECIAL: ONLY 500.00
Always loved Dumas? Well now the beloved author can come live at your house FOR THE FIRST TIME. Experience Dumas in all his glory with our beautiful, hand-crafted figure, featuring FULL arousal. He is life sized (in more ways than one) and stands tall and proud at 6 feet with 6 inches. Call for further details @ 666-666-6667 ext: 777 (number no longer active)
The renaissance of the internet is altogether distracting. As my generation begins to venerate objects, people, films, and media that (in the “real” world) does not exist, I find it….. simply distracting. One of my favorite aspects of the internet is not necessarily the internet or what is on it per say, but the effects only beginning to take hold of permanence within our very society. Why kid yourself? It is absolutely HILARIOUS that politicians use Twitter, that CNN espouses its Facebook beliefs on the reg (‘cept Don Lemon, my man), and that you can follow me @douchebag on Twitter. The inherent narcissism within our outlook tickles me pink sometimes. Or whatever color I want it to tickle me. Other times, its the fact that our generation (this “Lost” or “Y” or “Swag” generation) NEVER REALLY TOOK THE INTERNET SERIOUSLY. Save for a few brilliant and useful people, we use twitter for telling our friends where we at, post lame (albeit funny) cat videos on tube sites, and generally just absorb as much porn as our genitals can fuckin’ handle. TOOOT TOOOT all abored the Baby Boomer train! And thus the 50 and 60 something, pre-geriatric-cool-wannabes come into the picture. Attempting to build more industry, commodify, and overall tie down our beloved “Virtual Wild West”. Now the mainstream is obscure. Blogs reign, user reviews rock, and online videos have replaced TV. Demassification is like punching out a stained glass window. Now the different shades are even more scattered.
The goal has, was, is, and will always be: Make it more safe for 6 year old johnny do-gooder to wander sites aimlessly, free from 3rd world acne ridden hackers, credit card fraud, kinky porn, and general mind-altering radical sites, while he should be out in the mud. Don’t get me wrong here, I (like every red-blooded american) LOVE basing every facet of our society on the fact that there are rich, spoiled, and very young kids out there; but something tells me that this just will not fit. Or at least, it certainly will not fit well within the confines of my generation’s beliefs. You know, the beliefs that all men are created equal, etc etc (yes we do have morals, but we also have type 2 diabetes and burgeoning Warcraft careers too, fuck off). We like our wild west. Our demassification. Our wild multitude of niches.
But there will certainly come a time when all of it will be reigned in. The whole ‘internet’ thing… its too free. Too open. Too utopian. Total accountability and total knowledge are things the world’s leaders really do not like. Mainstream can only be sidetracked for so long, until it once again takes hold of people’s supple little minds. Manipulate the right people, plant the right fears, and you got Americans screaming for change and/or blood and lower taxes. Mostly blood. And lower taxes. Baby boomers just plain do not get the internet or the culture that comes along with it. Their post-hippy balding business suits come only to make a buck. We all know the only way to make a buck is to take control.
Still, its always nice to live in the moment is it not? Just remember at this very moment there is a 50 year old firefightin’ mustache sportin’ country boy browsing his Facebook news feed so he knows what this “Ke$ha” is. We all are getting a little bit smarter. Or more pale. Hopefully it can last for just a little while longer. A generation of people who had infinite knowledge at their fingertips owe a lot to this world.
Post-modern caveman. He can’t reconcile with the fact that god is dead (still?), and finds his hunting/gathering useless and stressful. Organic, stone-age hipster diet is really working for him though.
Anthony bourdain’s imagination personified as a Haitian master looter who drinks too much and has a slighting look for every occasion, a good western knock-off tee shirt, and a pregnant wife who surely hails from Senegal. The garments she hand-weaves sell handsomely in uber-exclusive LA boutiques.
Wilfred: A 30-something hypochondriac/ investment banker who presupposes his injuries. So much so, he always has many band-aids on him, and also loves to peel them off when he is in his local pool. After a 20 minute swim, there are (at least) 6 floating bandages.
20 year old “recession-proof” white suburban kid who remembers the struggles of the great depression vividly. He loves pot roast and potatoes, survivalist thrift store shopping, and insists on using lay-a-way payment for most items (like his new zune). He often talks about going to high school uphill both ways on twitter (though he never attended school past 8th grade).
If the corn, (high in the August sun) could just reach a little further, the deep sky could frost them tips thoroughly. I imagine frost and fruit go together in an abstract, selfish manner. Delicate smears of finely chopped ice crystals sticking to supernaturally long corn is imagery fitting. Fitting who?
Fitting small stroked amish boy, shall he wander into my dreams of a more “exciting” midwestern town?
I unfairly worship the urbane and urban. Simplicity is too often ignored. There are 5 colors in my pallet. So I see them all in high definition. No need to clear the static or fish thru the polluted stream of channels. 5 is more than enough for my mind. Textures need not apply, i have not even begun to understand the humanity. Despite my nights of neon, pine branches never make me squint when they clog my VHS vision. Shall we rock, my wonderfully creaky wooden friend??
When I feel the old hunger coming on,
I think of my two great-aunts,
A farmer’s daughters,
Speaking into the dusk in North Dakota.
I imagine the dark baron
Riding out of their mouths,
Thick-skinned and girded
Against disaster, swathed
In cuirass and chainmail and a curse.
My hunger was theirs
Too long ago. It swims in my blood,
Groping for a foothold.
It is the dark I thrust my tongue against,
The wine and the delicate symphony
That makes my head tick so exquisitely
Tonight. My ladies,
My dusky girls, I see you
With your bustles puffed up like life preservers,
Your needlepoint rose garden,
Your George Eliot coiffures,
Your flounces gathered like an 1890s valentine.
You both took heroin.
Your father never noticed.
You sprinkled it in your oatmeal,
Embroidered doilies with it,
Ate it like a last supper
At midnight. I know what you meant.
There was always the hunger,
The death of small things
Somewhere in your body,
The children that would never
Take place in either of you.
You were a garden of lost letters.
A lust inhabited your veins.
The village spoke of you.
Under your parasols, two rose windows,
The world swam with color.
Riding the monotonous hills at daybreak,
You escaped the indecisions
Your blood has handed down
To me. You rode your father’s spotted horses
As if they might have ferried you
Over an edge, a dark mouth in the distance.
I see you ride the black hills of my mind,
Sidesaddle, gowned in lemon silk,
In your laced-up flesh, completely unaware
Of something I inherited,
The needle point of speech,
The hunger you passed down that I
Guy who perfectly peels bananas. He has NEVER eaten a banana thread!! Not once!!
Feminine gay rapist who only targets
Macho football players. Strikes with a wisp of warning. Picks his victims carefully and wears rival school colors during said crime. I just wonder what a sexual harassment suit would read like in court if it only involved a football team. Probably pretty simply.
Colorblind tattoo artist. He never makes a mistake.
Guy who speaks only in cliches. “hey what’s a guy gotta do to get a beer here!?”
“America is pacifistic and cannibalistic. Outwardly it seems to be a beautiful honeycomb, with all the drones crawling all over each other in a frenzy of work; inwardly it is a slaughterhouse, each man killing off his neighbor and sucking the juice from his bones. Superficially it looks like a bold, masculine world; actually it’s a whorehouse run by women, with the native sons acting as pimps and the bloody foreigners selling their flesh. Nobody knows what it is to sit on his ass and be content. That happens only in the films where everything is faked, even the fires of hell. The whole continent is sound asleep and in that sleep a grand nightmare is taking place.”—