Thursday, June 19, 2008

Episode #452*

Some Republican did and/or said something stupid today.
He/she/it is stupid.

More Bush administration crimes came to light.
They suck, and they won't be punished.

It's tough, I know.

But chin up, little buckaroo! One year ago today I started this mediocre blog and here's my gift to you: some putrescent purple prose from my only piece of godawful, overwrought, melodramatic, nightmare-inducing fiction!


You wanted wacky album covers instead?

"Patience, grasshopper. Wax on, wax off."

"Crisp writing does not exist in this excerpt, does it?"
"No, sensei!"
"A well-plotted story does not exist in this excerpt, does it?"
"No, sensei!"
"Good characterization does not exist in this excerpt, does it?"
"No, sensei!"

Given that stuff from that flick is about 180° from the junk below, one would assume I must be drunk for using it. But I'm not, so I don't know what the hell happened to my brain. Do you? I think I'll stick to poetry from now on. I promise. *cue conciliatory music* [what does conciliatory music sound like, an Afterschool Special soundtrack? That reference was lost on all you young types, wasn't it. You millennial wankers get all hot and bothered about Schoolhouse Rock and other assorted cultural artifacts from the 70s like Luke Skywalker hair and your parents were busy getting high behind the grade school gym when that shit was on the tube. Damn whipper snappers.]

[Anyway, for those that don't want to dirty their beautiful minds with the following crap, here's the short version: guy walks past a fancy library, sees a bunch of leaves caught in the wind, then runs to work. Yawn.]

I passed the entrance at no. 58 of the magnificent Imperiale Bibliothèque Nationale, its grand, black iron gates, lifted from some long-lost English gothic novel, allowing me passage those first two Saturdays in Paris to whittle away at my petrifying ennui in the brand new, frightfully welcoming beauty of the Salle de Travail – the theatre of centuries contained in her cast-iron supports, wrought-iron arches, glass roofs and tiled walls, and in her pages housed in that holy place, exquisitely lined upon shelves lorded over by grand scenes of natural joy, Beethoven’s sixth dramatically brought to life each moment in those rich murals of verdant green. I passed uncounted streets, the rues Rameau, Saint-Augustin, Saint-Marc and, rarest of all, some of the very few unmapped alleys that managed to avoid, through some ancient magic, the brutal hand of Haussmann, some clean, some filthy, all paved canals, blurred portals that led to the maze of buildings between myself and my destination, a vertical hex inscribed in stone, in the barrels of active chimneys, in the salt of the earth that laid its lugubrious curse upon every man, woman and child that dared defy the gods to live, work, play, struggle and die here. Even the ones whose flesh never starved, the aimless bodies that I passed on that treeless avenue, they suffered from malnourished spirits nonetheless. Those of us rare souls who had the prescience to recognize this condition could do nothing to save ourselves. Escape from this eternal spell was impossible.

Turning the corner sharply, I shunned going directly left onto the Boulevard Haussmann and paused, my gaze turning right, down the Boulevard Poissonnière and then above. Unfurled from the canopy of clouds, gentle streamers of light fluttered beneath, occasionally broken by the swirling breeze that made the tinted leaves dance to a Spanish guitar melody, unheard save by the dreamers. As I looked up that long street, as I caught the reflection of a man in a window staring back at me, I saw none but the crestfallen. Avoiding him as best I could, I watched those autumnal ornaments, when the air stopped to breathe, have a rest against the limestone, brick and glass, the first daubs of color on an unadorned fresco. After a moment, the air rose again, my sickness temporarily lifted, and the dance began anew; reds, their pulsing veins flush with delight, jumping far and wide; yellows, aglow like a field of daffodils in the sun, pirouetting around statuesque trees and through oranges, their spicy, perfumed steps rhythmically leaping to and fro, barely avoiding joining hands with stately browns that moved not to this tune, but to its own, a lilting waltz, their anxious hearts hiding underneath this poem to imaginary romance. This bewitching joie de vivre abruptly vanished when the whites came, the discarded papers of a wastrel, the garbage of this city, sallow below its artificial beauty. I looked upon the great hall my soul had just traversed, had just felt, the leaves lying as motionless as wallflowers, mastered by the memory of a someone lost long ago.

Leaving the busy intersection, I headed southwest on the Boulevard des Italiens, where, my wondrous reverie apparently over, vengeful discomfort reanimated itself. The shapeless faces of the crowd began to take form; an impression, an emotion, most of indifference; some of those I disliked; some who offended me with their blind allegiance to progress at the expense of truly living; others, those that I loved, those that had disappeared – all by my hand. I ran, miraculously managing to not collide with anyone or anything. I ran when I saw their faces now so clear, their open mouths straining to speak. I ran until I reached no. 15, inhaling with the seeming intent of forcing my lungs to burst out of my chest. Slowly regaining some degree of equilibrium, I calmly exhaled and unlocked the front door, going in to begin another day drowning within an ocean of words.

*oops, almost forgot the accompanying YouTube.


DivaJood said...

There is no try, only do.

Da doo ran ran ran, da doo ran ran.

Unconventional Conventionist said...

Happy Blogiversary!

DCup said...

Wow, Randal! Very nice. I'm trying to think of who that writing reminds me of.....

And happy one year of fucking around on the internet in a most entertaining way.

susan said...

Whew! I'm so glad I remembered to put my thesaurus in my bag this morning. That was fun. Happy Bloggiversary!

okjimm said...


" I passed...I passed...I passed, turning the corner...leaving the busy intersection....managing not to collide...I ran until I reached no. 15...I calmly exhaled..."

& then you nailed that three pointer right over his outstreached fingertips!!!!!!

Hey, thanks for all the great 'writes' and all the good words!!! :) You da man!!

Hill said...

Wax on, wax off!

Keep rocking and writing.


Utah Savage said...

What Hill said. Usually I say, What Randal said, but this is gorgeous writing, lush, rich, and yes, it reminds me of someone. I'll have to think on that. Reread, and think....

Happy Blogisversaday.

Tom Harper said...

I'm more of a Cliff Notes kinda guy. Loved the video and all the captions.

Happy Anniversary.

Beach Bum said...

I miss Pat Morita, I liked anything he was in. Happy Anniversary.

Freida Bee said...

Happy Birthday, Dearest Randal.

Spartacus said...

Just one year? Holy crap, and here I thought you invented blogging. Keep on with the versification. I'm hooked.

American Hill BIlly said...

Ah?? that was long, and sitting in Honduras after a stressful day; I've downed 80mg of valume(spelling??). Of Course legally over the counter, so UP YOURs "Bush Cabal" I love Beethoven, His music has rocked for centuries.

Peace and Freedom

Unconventional Conventionist said...

I read this again.

Uncounted yet counted. An obsession with Hausmann. It rings vaguely Russian to me, an homage of a culture looking for a home it doesn't have. But the Beethoven puts it in a different realm if you keep it in your head as you read.

And you're damn near L'Opera.

Rue Meyerbeer!

Are you Robert le Diable? Is this all about Phantom of the Opera?

Anita said...

c'est EXCELLENT, mon ami!!

keep up the good work!!

oh, and happy bloggy-versary !!

Mary Ellen said...

Am I too late for the party? Happy Blogoversary! I dumped my blog one day before my one year anniversary...didn't realize it until afterward. How stupid was that? I missed out on the opportunity to have cake!

Ummm....there is going to be a cake for this anniversary, right? You clowns didn't eat it all, did you????


Later...kiddo. I'm waiting for you to put up some pics for me. You promised pics of you in your underwear, didn't you? Still waiting....

Randal Graves said...

diva, wouldn't Yoda sing that "ran ran da doo?"

UC, thanks!

dcup, oh, I've stolen from so many, it's hard to say.

Beats earning one's paycheck, no?

susan, I tried to pick the least horrid part. Ought to tell you how bad the rest is. ;-)

okjimm, this white man can't shoot, so that would've clanged off the rim, believe me!

hill, until they pry the keyboard from my cold dead fingers. Or I get bored. :)

utah, I dig endless sentences, so it's probably mere simply subconscious theft from the likes of Proust. Now, if I could only steal some of his talent. Would that be considered graverobbering?

tom, can't ever go wrong with some Python!

beach bum, if you hadn't seen him in any of his other roles, I think everyone thought he actually talked like Miyagi!

FB, merci, mon amie.

spartacus, if I did, I'd be über-rich and we'd all have an extra stimulus check!

AHB, Beethoven is certainly The Man. Hey, they just want us to be safe. So don't buy drugs from Canada, either!

UC, well, this is only a part of the story. Takes place in 1869-1870. I originally tried to write a Lovecraftian ghost story, then it morphed into this weirdo thing that makes no sense but rambles on pretty good I think. I don't know how real writers do it. They're all fucking nuts.

I think there might be some darker Russian stuff. Simply by osmosis, we can't help but filter stuff we've read/heard/dig into our own creative acts, even if lesser than the source.

anita, merci!

ME, yeah, you blew it. I bought a giant cake, but you never showed up so I ate it all myself. Then got real sick, so here's my doctor bill.

I promised nothing. And trust me, it's for your own good. You were to see that, you'd go blind, and not in the OMG-I-just-saw-Brad-Pitt-naked! kind of way.

Dr. Zaius said...

Happy Blogiversary, Randal! You will never drown in an ocean of words. You have the blogosphere to use as a life boat!

Stella said...

May I add my wishes for a happy blogversary also, randal. Blogging was created for blogs like yours. I need more visits because I always leave both smiling and thinking. Is that possible?

Randal Graves said...

dr. zaius, it's a good thing all you guys can float!

stella, smiling and thinking? Then I'm doing something seriously wrong!

Madam Z said...

Darn! I think I missed the boat. But if you do see me floating away, in the tumultous wake of the inflatable kayak, please read the sign I am struggling to hold aloft...the sign that says, "Congratulations, mon ami, for maintaining your superb blog for an entire glorious year."

Liberality said...

happy #1 dude!