Friday, May 27, 2011

In Memory of Mr. Gil Scott-Heron

I'm tired. I'm tired of the willful ignorance that is romping around as political discussions. On this day one of the great men of poetry and music has pass to the other side. I speak of Mr. Gil Scott-Heron.

I saw the man perform many years ago. I don't know much more to say. I did a tweet. I wrote 480 words in Facebook.

But my heart wants to write a book and nobody reads anymore, so I am told. This is a poem from the (currently) last album Where Did the Night Go?

I can tell you that one of the first things I did when I got my hands on the Internet was to look for him. No joke. He had been quiet for too long and I was trying to catch up. I wasn't alone.

Eventually the silent collective of those of us caring about GSH found out he was in England. Having some turbulence over there with the chemicals. I had to adjust that the man who made it clear to leave the stuff alone was juiced and volatile.

This is The Bottle

It took about 10 years for the BBC interview video to surface on the web. I could see he had been roughed up by his addictions. Gil was still inside but not the same. Still, the silent collective couldn't let him go. We sent invisible good wishes and petitions up on high on his behalf.

These past two years were very encouraging. I didn't care if he was doing covers of blues songs or small snips of poetry. The man was working and staying focus. As much as he could. Maybe the next album would light into the soul like a B-Movie

When folks do a tribute page they want other people to know that this person is important. You should know why we honor this conflicted but talented man. He wasn't perfect. Dang sure no angel.

Scott-Heron made it hard to be a fan.

But for a moment we gather and understood what it was and what it could be in terms of storytelling, poetry, performance and musicianship.

I'm about to crash. I need to sleep. Or be sad. Maybe both.

Zorro Est Arrive on the Finally Friday Freakout

Once upon a time there was a video jukebox called a Scopitone. It was placed in bars, upper level clubs and places where people got to see the performers of the day do their thing while knocking back a Martini.

I can't do the whole history justice but I highly recommend a visit to the Scopitones blog. There are videos from France, Europe and a few Americans you might recall like Lou Rawls, Della Reese and Brook Benton.

I want to introduce you to a gentleman by the name of Henri Salvador. Henri was a well respected jazz performer and vocalist. He was also a clown in the best sense of the word. I can't speak a lick of French but for this video you don't need to.

We need some fun after the past two weeks. I think you are gonna like this.

Sound familiar? This is not a cover of the song "Along Came Jones." This is the original that inspired the American version of the song.

I got one more for you. Tout ├ža c'est pas grave which translates to It's All Okay.

I wish the heck I paid more attention in French class but I think I get the gist of it. Some of his videos are pure uncured ham; others are just strange without a translation or cultural background to get the joke.

Mr. Salvador appeared in a couple of French movies in the 1940s and 1950s. Looks like he had a television show too. I have to stress that he wasn't just a prankster; he seems to have the kind of career that allowed him to have the flexibility to try new things and not lock him into one format.

In any case, I blame him for my new Scopitone habit.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

I'm Still Here Thinking That You're Not Gone

Yep. I didn't make the cut. Apparently nobody else did either so I'm kinda sad about that. Really.

There was a whole bunch of people I had hoped that would be removed from the planet in a holding place until it could be explained to them that the concept of Agape or universal love was the goal and not the ranking of "I'm more holy than you."

Come to think of it, if members of that noxious Westboro Baptist Church gets to go to heaven then I don't think I want to go.

Speaking of not going, this is a video I recorded with Rick Hodge who has a book called 2011 Our Destiny Has Arrived.

Folks, no worries until December 12, 2012. That is 12/12/12 aka the Age of the Fifth Sun.

Part 2

I heard a son call his father to check in on him.

"You still here Pop?, yeah, me too."

I think the rest of us want to say that you can't escape life through false prophets who profit on fear. Spirit doesn't operate that way.

Even if you are an Atheist one thing is clear, either you live your life or your don't. It is a choice and praying for your spiritual removal en mass I think violates that freedom of spiritual choice thing.

In other words, I don't think you can make Spirit/God/Jesus do anything. And if we could why would we so willing to commission other people's souls to damnation? Why would you follow a being that tells you to do that?

Last word on the (non) rapture. A special shout out has got to the RaptureHelpDesk. Best dang use of Twitter for humor that I have ever seen. I look forward to October 21, 2011 cuz it is going to be hard to top these tweets. Cracked me up.

Part 3

Yesterday I paid $4.50 for maybe a scoop and a half of Gelato. It was Stratachoco... something but it was good. Dark chocolate laced into vanilla ice cream. This is counter to my normally frugal ways but I had seen the store for years and never went inside.

I liked it.

I am going to try to make it another eight years before I go back to that place. I will not pay $5 for a gallon of ice cream but I have to admit this stuff was tasty.

I should get around to making my bucket list so I can put luxury ice cream on it and then cross it off.

Well, this is just to check in. I'm trying to write another post, edit video, do laundry and possibly dye my hair. I guess this is justifiable procrastination. So much to do and see.

Not enough time.

Never enough time.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Creep on the Finally Friday Freakout

So he creep, yeah he kept it on down low... Well, how could I not? I have spent days with my fellow salt miners trying to wrap my head around two men, prominent richer than rich men get themselves into so much trouble.

It makes no sense. My saline crew members have evaluated the Creepenator's actions and behaviors to new analytical powers I did not know they possessed. We talked about it so much that we are taking a vow of silence so that we don't talk about it any more.

Cuz really, we'd rather not have certain images in our heads. And with the Rapture/Judgement day coming up we got stuff to do like go to the Red Bull Soapbox Derby or Silverlake Jubilee, which has nothing to do with anything spiritual unless fifty food trucks, a bunch of musicians and a plethora of art activities put you in a higher plane of being.

So hopefully this is the last of it. Let TLC get your attention but remember to creep outside of matrimony is a dang reprehensible action no matter what you station of life is or how much dough you have in the flow.

I present the above reminder to those of you who are thinking about taking a dip into somebody's else hip that is on gold band lockdown.

Don't do it.

The other guy? My fellow miners are content that he went from a $3,000 a night hotel to Riker's Island in New York City. We think the accomodations at Riker's will get his attention that long before this accusation there might have been behaviors that, in hindsight, might have lead him to his new position in life.

Go on and fool with the elementals if you want to. Those forces are patient. Their timing is impeccable. The ultimate booyah. I'm gonna hush up now cuz they don't like finger pointing either.

We send our love and support to a woman who is being stalked by Franco/American media and her life, no matter the truth, will never be the same.


Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Brief Moment with Andy Behrman Author of Electro-Boy

After the past few days I could be very happy curled up with some Justice League of America cartoons and leave you fool adults to yourselves. I want to write about moving forward and doing positive things and yet I get sucked into Ahnold-land and Anglo-Franco confusion about the "Perp Walk."

Well, the only thing I can do is to share what I've seen these past few weeks. The first Mental Health Day in Pasadena has come and gone but I do have some video of a few of the participants that were nice enough to speak with me.

Andy Behrman is an author who has spent some time dealing with the high and lows of mental illness. He doesn't have access to the media like a certain actor but he does have a story to tell about living in a manic state.

Yes, California can make you crazy but I'm thinking that isn't what he means. This video was records at the first Mental Health Day in Pasadena 2011.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Counting Down the Days Paying Attention

I listen to a lot of podcasts like The American History Guys. One thing I learned from the fellas is that you respect the people who had to make decisions in a certain space and time.

You can step back and evaluate it from your time frame. You can dig in and try to put a context to what the heck was going on to make folks so nutso crazy (my words, not the History guys) and you can see both sides and understand that the historical picture is complex.

If you have been around me in real space you know I've been keeping track of the end-timers. I got word on three separate dates, for example May 21, 2011, October 21, 2011 and December 12, 2012. I'll add more as time goes on.

Or not.

Now let me be clear. I cannot not nor will not disrespect a person's belief system. If you believe that the end really is here then ok, I think you have more important stuff to do than read this post.

Family Radio Billboard
I can however step back and look at people's behaviors, billboards and more importantly how some folks will behave on May 22, 2011.

It has been trippy. People putting bible tracks in my face. I must look like a class-A sinner cuz I get that a lot. The guy walking through Pasadena carrying a really big cross. The up tick in pride of knowing that you are the chosen and I am not.

The selling of everything you own and your home? Oh, my. That is some serious commitment that might be a bit uncomfortable to sleep with on the 23rd.

I mean, the whole conceptual thing is one big dang gummed wow. I'll tell you one thing; it does bust up a good chunk of writer's block. If you can't get a story or poem out of this then lay down the pen and walk away.

So I have to say that I am on high investigative alert. This is my first end-time so I do want to try and document properly. I'm counting this one as a practice because I have two other dates and I'm sure a bunch more will pop up for 2012.

The camcorder is charged up. I have got paper, pen and a spare camera for back-up. I think I'm ready. I'm set either way. I've got relatives in both places.

No worries here.

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Javon Johnson at the USC Stage L.A. Times Festival of Books 2011

I'm walking around the festival doing some people watching when I hear a voice. I follow my instincts and discover Javon Johnson.

This is a tribute poem Javon spoke about his grandmother and needing her strength to guide him in these most interesting times.

Doing a bit of quick searching about Javon I learn that he is a Postdoctoral Fellow teaching classes at the University of Southern California. I can't find a blog or web site for him as yet.

He has appeared on Def Poetry Jam and other media projects. You can watch an interview of him at the USC Trojan Vision channel.

Grace Krilanovich at the Skylight Books Booth

Grace Krilanovich is one of the people I pointed a lens at during the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books. What happened was that I just got on the USC campus and I was overwhelmed by the number of people.

There were parents and babes in strollers. There young women welded to communication devices looking for other friends whose faces were stuck in communication devices. The map challenged and impaired were trying to figure where they were and where they wanted to go.

Then there was the Ben and Jerry Ice Creme Truck. Couldn't get near it. Well, I could but choice not to do so. I was trying to show some kind of restraint.

Grace was kind enough to speak to me about her book The Orange Eats Creeps. I'm a plucky duck but I have no technique for interviewing folks. I'm learning as I go.

Other Thoughts

I kind feel sorry for authors that aren't famous. They need to promote their book. Some writers, not all, want to communicate with other people.

I know this for a fact because some of the authors that I approached (without showing my camcorder) looked at me with a tinge of hostility or disappointment that I was not the kind of reader they envisioned.

I pivot and walk away.

It is hard. I know. Many authors spend time writing, dealing with publication issues and survival. You want the book to be published, talked about and generate compensation for your hard work.

Many writers and authors ain't gronking this social media connection aspect. I am talking about the other authors who's tables I avoided, not about Grace. She was very kind.

If you are finishing writing a book and you intended to sell that book you might want to practice your people and conversation skills. If you are going to spend good money for a booth at this kind of event and you have no flyers, bookmarks or other promotions items to share with potential readers you are in trouble.

If you haven't promoted your book via Twitter or made connections to like minded blogs and web sites why are you at a book festival? You book cannot exist in isolation. It needs to find the communities that want to embrace what you have to say.

Somebody has to say this. If folks look at your booth and there is nothing there but you looking sour and your book we are going to turn elsewhere.

Real people and our wallets will go where we are wanted.

Videoblogging Addendum

Yes. I'm a little late for Videoblogging 2011. I was over-booked. Plus I was truly bummed out about the spamination of the term videoblogging in Twitter. The few of us that tried found out that affiliate marketers, content farmers and diversion maggots poisoned communication by lacing the joint with get rich quick offers. One day there was a bunch of it and the next day gone. Or another content farm gets its minions to pollute the other side of the lake.

I've said what I've needed at my other blog but I hate this part of humanity that sees something good and has to sh*t on it in order to make a profit.

Moving on.

Monday, May 02, 2011

Day Late and A Dollar Short - Videoblogging Week Day 2

Yep. I scrabbled something up. I have stuff but stuff takes time and I don't have it. I have to be okay with that concept. I can't have and don't want the 27 hour day. I'm sleep deprived as it is.

But I do want to put in my two cents about libraries and not just because I invested educational time and effort. We are still humans. We do need contact with other humans that doesn't require an electronic interface.

Don't get me wrong, I have truly benefited from technology. I have been able to prove many a gatekeeper that they were wrong, I can do it.

We still need the verbal in-person communications. We need to see other people that are different from ourselves. We...

Dang. I just heard in my head the voice of Captain Kirk. I don't know why; I'm a Spock girl.

Actually I do respect actor William Shatner because that man is a case study in survival. However life comes to him that is how he takes it. Typecast, breaks the casts, re-invents himself time and again. His career is like the symbol for infinity. I like Kirk but I respect the endurance and talent of William Shatner.

Where was I? Oh, heck. I forgot. I need my nappy time. Well, the video will explain all or not a lick. I gotta wake up early so dig y'all later.