Drain You

Nirvana front man Kurt Cobain committed suicide in 1994.

I woke up this morning sad, but fully aware, so I went for a run around my neighborhood. I tapped the buttons on my iPhone music library until the Nirvana songs came on and jogged as hard as I could until my middle-aged gut gave up. It didn’t seem like twenty years since Kurt Cobain died until I realized that I could run longer back then listening to his music on a Walkman.

The top search phrase for this blog is Kurt Cobain Sycophant. Sometimes, you just have to be who are and play the hits. As much as I wanted to do as he and his band did on the MTV Unplugged Special in 1993 and play covers, rarities, and unusual songs, I miss him too much not to bring my usual game.

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In five days, the living members of Kurt’s band, Nirvana, as well as his widow, Courtney Love, will put aside years of acrimony to be on hand in Brooklyn’s Barclays Center to accept induction of the group into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Nirvana, and Kurt’s memory, will be forever enshrined. To many music fans or the casual observer this caps two decades of chatter about the man Rolling Stone Magazine once ridiculously called “a spokesman for a generation”.

He was small, moody, weird, and cared about and sang for society’s underdogs. I identified with all of it. But his suicide twenty years ago, today, April5th, ended rock stars as heroes for me. As great as his music was, the fact now I know he was selfish, petty, a junkie and poor parent makes my admiration for him simplistic; confined to his art.

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I’ve lost a lot of friends and family. Together, we had personal memories full of inside jokes, intimate thoughts and fun. With Kurt, it’s very different.

The songs age well. I miss his articulate interviews, political positions, and unique perspective. But I stick with the music.

Grief can drain you, but when it’s for someone you didn’t really know, you rejuvenate through what they left behind. Kurt gave plenty for me to remember. I miss him now, as much as I did then, thanks to it all.

 

I wrote two books. They got good reviews. The third one, a sequel to the first, Woman Of Troy, is on the way, very soon.

The Ballad of Helene Troy, an underdog story about a female musician in New York City, and Soul To Body, about an ex-1990s guitar player trying to raise his teenage daughter after the death of his wife, her mother, are available, digitally, on Amazon.com for your kindles, and in paperback from Lulu.com

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The Twilight Zone

Last time: https://lancemyblogcanbeatupyourblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/25/100-word-song-woke-up-this-morning/

Hush dominated Silas’ scene. His panting couldn’t complete with the quietude around him. Blood pooled around Bart. Silas swiveled his head to look for passer-bys or the two men who had walked into the warehouse before incident. No one had seen him shoot the gun. He looked at the wound on Bart’s neck but gushing fluid hid the bullet. Silas’ breathing picked up, cutting across his chest like dozens of tiny blades.

“I’m so sorry.”

His apology bounced off the pavement. Silas ran to the driver’s side of the Cutlass, dropped his keys on the ground, picked them up then made another frantic head turn to look for witnesses. He saw none.

Silas cranked the car then made a U-Turn heading back to Ft. Myers. Tears reached the corners of his mouth. He replayed the gunshot in his mind, trying to figure out how the bullet made its way to Bart’s neck. He slapped the steering wheel with his hands and whimpered.

“Damn it! Damn It Damn It! I’m so sorry! Yes! She killed him, Bart! I wanted to go the police and tell them he was blackmailing her but she wouldn’t let me!”

He caught himself from saying more. He could feel Olive’s presence in the car, watching him, disappointed in his sensitivity but cheering his heinous act.

He stopped at a gas station two miles away. He bounded from the car and ran to the payphone. Digging a quarter out of his left front jeans pocket, he called Bart’s house in Ft. Myers. Zola answered.

“Hello?”

Silas couldn’t catch his breath. He thought Zola would figure out what he did, just by him asking for Olive. He slammed the gray receiver back into place and dropped to the floor of the booth and sobbed.

A phone book dangled next to the him. He read the ad on the back.

BEACON MOTEL: $24 ROOMS, CASH ONLY, FREE HBO, 941-5555

He got up and went back to the inside of the car. He remembered the sign for the Beacon Motel when he and Bart had gotten off the exit. It was less than a mile away. He pulled away from the gas station and started planning out loud.

“I’ll hunker down at the motel, call Olive, figure out how to get out of town and start all over.”

The motel’s décor was blue, white and yellow. A moon and stars motif belied a lack of upkeep. He pulled into the backside of the business, got out and counted out the money in his pocket that Bart had given him.

“Fifty-six dollars and thirty-four cents, I can make this work.”

He opened the Beacon’s front door. A bell tinned and a middle-aged woman of maybe fifty-years-old grinned after taking a drag from a Virginia Slims cigarette.

“Hey there, handsome. Need a room or are you lost? We get as much lost as we do business, these days?”

Silas let go of a sheepish smile, pulled a twenty and a five from his money stash then responded.

“No, ma’am. I need a room for the night.”

The woman pulled a ledger book from under the Formica counter and puffed smoke around her words.

“Sign in here, sweetheart. Since you’re paying cash, all I need is a name.”

Silas hesitated, then handed over the money and picked up the black ink pen and wrote what he and Olive talked about for him if they ever changed their names.

Evan Butler

I wrote two books. They got good reviews. The third one, a sequel to the first, Woman Of Troy, is on the way, next month.

The Ballad of Helene Troy, an underdog story about a female musician in New York City, and Soul To Body, about an ex-1990s guitar player trying to raise his teenage daughter after the death of his wife, her mother, are available, digitally, on Amazon.com for your kindles, and in paperback from Lulu.com

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Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Last time: https://lancemyblogcanbeatupyourblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/19/100-word-song-anything/

The weight of the .38 forced itself down Silas’ hip and he could feel it move toward his rear end. He stopped a few feet from the of the warehouse, put his hand on the gun, and adjusted it so he could walk easier. After covering the handle with the bottom of his t-shirt, he realized his jeans were loose. The stress and lack of eating of the past few days had caused him to lose weight. He lagged behind Bart by several feet so he called out.

“Hey, wait up. I don’t think this is going to work.”

Bart opened the door of the building and turned around with a menacing face.

“No time for this second-guessing bullshit, Silas. Just do as I planned and you can go home to your girlfriend with some cash in your pocket.”

Silas remained calm. He’d handled guns several times in his life but only once at the consequence of another person. That incident wasn’t quite two days old.

“No, Bart, it’s not that. I just think we should consider talking them, first. If we can get them to make better ecstasy  for you to sell, then we don’t have to steal their money. They can make you more in the long run.”

Bart had two faces. When he became angry, his lean, angular jaws tightened and his coloring turned from pale to almost dark pink. He lowered his voice and pointed at a telephone book across the street.

“It’s real simple, Silas. You do what I say, right now, or I make a phone call to my house and speed up the love of your life’s transition from girl next door who used her latest boyfriend to kill her old one, into cash cow whore.”

Silas burned inside. He knew Bart had a knife in one of his boots. He pulled the gun from the back of his waist and pointed it at Bart. Swallowing hard and fighting an accelerated heart rate, he snarled through the gun’s site and gripped the trigger with his left index finger. Bart let the large  metal

door clang shut behind him, folded his arms and said.

“Do it. It’ll be the first time you’ve done something without that Georgia trash telling you how.”

Silas’ breathing increased. Sweat from his hands formed a film on the gun and he turned away from Bart to fight back tears. His legs started to quiver and he felt the weight of Bart on his back, shoving him to the ground. He fell on the gun, which hit his sternum. Bart’s fist bounded off his shoulder blades and neck. He screamed.

“Stop, damn it! Stop!”

Bart jumped off of him and yelled.

“You piece of shit coward! She shot that redneck back in Georgia, didn’t she? She’s the one with the balls between you two? I knew it the minute I saw your candy ass in my house!”

Silas rolled off the gun. Staring at Bart from his back, he saw the tall, slender man reach start to reach for it. Without thinking, Silas grabbed the .38, pointed it at Bart and pulled the trigger.

I wrote two books. They got good reviews. The third one, a sequel to the first, Woman Of Troy, is on the way, next month.

The Ballad of Helene Troy, an underdog story about a female musician in New York City, and Soul To Body, about an ex-1990s guitar player trying to raise his teenage daughter after the death of his wife, her mother, are available, digitally, on Amazon.com for your kindles, and in paperback from Lulu.com

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100 Word Song – Anything

I owe Lindsay Lohan an apology. Every time she or some other celebrity check into the hospital for “exhaustion” I make fun of them. I could qualify for a bed, tonight. I traveled back to New York City last night and this morning, worked all day, then collapsed in my hotel room. Thus, 100 word song didn’t get posted in the morning, per usual.

One of 100 word song and My Blog Can Beat Up Your Blog’s most loyal readers and writers, Carrie, from The Muse Unleashed http://museunleashed.com/ chose this week’s tune. Her Rachel story has been built through prompts and one day she’ll publish it all together and blow us away. It’s brilliant. Her choice for this week’s song is Hedley’s Anything, an infectious pop ditty.

For my 100, we go back to Silas and Olive on the run in 1989 Florida, my fiction short story tentatively titled Light of Day.

Last time: https://lancemyblogcanbeatupyourblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/08/gigantic/

Bart put up his hand and shouted.

“Stop! Streetlight’s out. If we need to run, this’ll be perfect.”

Silas pulled the Cutlass into an industrial area and turned off the engine. Bart watched two men walk into a warehouse office. Silas noticed a flyer flapping on a telephone pole in the light Florida wind. It settled enough for him to read its advertisement.

Go Back To School. Prepare Yourself For Anything. Florida Technical College. 233-2323

Bart swigged the last of his coffee and opened the door.

“Follow the plan, Silas, and we can do anything with the money we’ll have.”

My Blog Can Beat Up Your Blog

As always, you have 7 days from NOW, to write 100 words inspired by Hedley’s anything. Use the medias that are social to brag about your 100 then link up to the green Mr. Linky below.

Walk

I’m learning to walk again. The leg soreness feels amazing. For two weeks, I’ve been hoofing it while working in New York City, accumulating over a dozen miles discovering delicious Chinese food in Jamaica Queens, mouth-watering pizza in the Bronx and a scrumptious diner burger in Brooklyn.

Where I live, in suburban Atlanta, no one walks unless it’s on a gym treadmill. I think I’ve been missing something as a result. Being out of my car, I smell the city, hear the bustle, and absorb the culture. While I miss the sweet tea philosophy of Georgia, I’m appreciating New York’s walk.

******blogger’s note*****

I’m working a project in New York City for the next few weeks. I’ve been several times, as a tourist and working. But it had been several years since I’d been here, 2007, I think. This piece is for my buddy velvet from www.velvetverbosity.com and her “Tea” prompt.

Today’s song is from Foo Fighters. Let it rip…and walk it off.

I wrote two books. They got good reviews. The third one, a sequel to the first, Woman Of Troy, is on the way, next month.

The Ballad of Helene Troy, an underdog story about a female musician in New York City, and Soul To Body, about an ex-1990s guitar player trying to raise his teenage daughter after the death of his wife, her mother, are available, digitally, on Amazon.com for your kindles, and in paperback from Lulu.com

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100 Word Song – You Better Run

I’m in New York City again this week for work. One of the spots we hung out was Greenpoint, Brooklyn, the birthplace of the great rock singer, Pat Benatar. I conferred with Leeroy and he agreed that this week’s 100 word song should be a nod to the recently turned 61-year-old multiple Grammy winner and early 1980s superstar. We went with You Better Run, the second video ever played on MTV, and the tune that made her an icon to teen girls and the object of desire to teen boys, everywhere, in the decade of headbands and leg warmers.

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My story around which my 100 word song entry takes place happens in July 1989, a little past Pat’s prime. But the attitude and lyrics are perfect. Have fun with this one. There aren’t any streets in Brooklyn named after Pat, but there should be.

Here’s my 100, back to Silas and Olive.

Last time: https://lancemyblogcanbeatupyourblog.wordpress.com/2014/02/13/last-cigarette/

Bart pulled one of the thirteen one-hundred dollar bills and handed it to Silas. Silas inhaled some of the marijuana joint then exchanged it for the money. He realized his single day of getting hit in the face was worth the equivalent of two weeks pay of honest work. Olive pranced from the house, smiling, and called to Bart.

“Zola wants you. I’ll take that joint.”

Silas looked away, disgusted by her sudden sunny disposition. Bart left them. She leaned into Silas, choking a bit on marijuana smoke.

“I told Zola we were staying indefinitely and we loved it here.”

My Blog Can Beat Up Your Blog

I wrote two books. They got good reviews. The third one, a sequel to the first, Woman Of Troy, is on the way, next month.

The Ballad of Helene Troy, an underdog story about a female musician in New York City, and Soul To Body, about an ex-1990s guitar player trying to raise his teenage daughter after the death of his wife, her mother, are available, digitally, on Amazon.com for your kindles, and in paperback from Lulu.com

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Higher Ground

I stood on the roof of One Liberty Plaza looking out over Manhattan with co-workers when silence swept over us heavier than the February morning snow. The body language of eight middle-aged men screamed. The glass and steel structure reaching into the sky begged a question. When is a building not just a building? When it’s this one.

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That’s the new One World Trade Center aka the Freedom Tower. The dark portion of the building on its right is scaffolding, in place for the completion of its final construction, scheduled to be completed by late summer, 2014. The fog and cloudiness of another snowy day in the city takes away a bit from its beauty but standing there looking at it was breathtaking. After the initial awe, I became sad. I remembered the pretty fall day twelve and a half years earlier when there were two Trade Towers until something evil took them down. But that wasn’t the main source of my melancholy. It was the fact that I, like millions of other Americans, have taken for granted what that horrible day meant, and what this new tower truly represents.

There’s no need to be political, here. I have another website for that, www.leftypop.com, @lefty_pop on the Twitter. Maybe I’ll do some ranting about how we lose our way from time to time, there. But for now, I wanted to show you what made my morning in the city so special, giving me the kick in the butt I know I needed.

After we left the roof of One Liberty Plaza to disperse for lunch and the rest of our day, I walked New York City’s slushy streets, looking back at the new Freedom Tower. While I know I’ll never forget what happened a dozen plus years ago, I need to appreciate the great movement forward in building a new tower and what it represents for all Americans.

You can’t keep us down, no matter how much of a funk we get ourselves into.

*****blogger’s note****

This is for www.trifectawritingchallenge.com ‘s 333 word challenge this week around the 3rd definition of “funk” FUNK
(noun)

1 a :  a state of paralyzing fear
b :  a depressed state of mind
2 :  one that funks :  COWARD
3 :  SLUMP
<an economic funk>  <the team went into a funk>

Today’s song is one of the best “funk” songs ever and it’s message is something we all need to abide. Here’s Stevie’s Wonder’s Higher Ground. Be better to each other, jerks.

I wrote a couple of books. They got good reviews. A third one is on the way, next month.

The Ballad of Helene Troy, an underdog story about a female musician in New York City, and Soul To Body, about an ex-1990s guitar player trying to raise his teenage daughter after the death of his wife, her mother, are available, digitally, on Amazon.com for your kindles, and in paperback from Lulu.com

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Tones of Home – 100 Word Song

I’ve picked up a new project in my real day job. It’s in New York and it’s getting in the way of writing. How dare it, huh? I’ll be traveling some. So, to keep pace with this blog and my month-old politics and pop culture site, Lefty Pop, www.leftypop.com, I’m making some more schedule changes. Next week, 100 word song returns to it’s original old school Tuesday morning slot. That means you’ll have six days with today’s selection before a new one shows up. I never close the Mr. Linky so don’t completely freak out, you can always catch up. I had to step down from Raised On The Radio but my columns for Lefty Pop will appear Wednesdays and Fridays at  9am. Please go check them and my other lefties, out. The writing is outstanding and we’re getting more immediate success than we hoped and planned for.

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Leeroy asked one of his favorites, Melissa aka @realgirlmelissa from http://melstepp01.wordpress.com/ She’s my neighbor, living about 5 minutes from me. She picked Blind Melon’s Tones of Home.

For my 100 we go back to Silas and Olive on the run in 1989 South Florida. To move Silas and Olive’s story along, I’ll institute a 500 to 700 word installment each Saturday. So keep your eyes out for these crazy kids. This piece is also linked to www.velvetverbosity.com ‘s “train” word prompt.

Last time: https://lancemyblogcanbeatupyourblog.wordpress.com/2014/01/29/route-66-100-word-song/

Bart drove his Mustang drove to Silas’ Cutlass. Fear rumbled over Silas like a train. He slumped in his seat. Olive whispered.

“Go.”

Bart rubbed his chin whiskers then smoked his cigarette before hollering.

“Yo, hey boy! I talked to the Finns. I know they short-changed me and took their greed out on your face.”

Silas didn’t respond so Olive did.

“We’re getting something to eat!”

She mumbled again to Silas.

“Wave goodbye.”

Silas eyed a gun in Bart’s lap. Knowing Olive couldn’t see it, he kissed her and mouthed “trust me” then yelled at Bart.

“See you at home!”

My Blog Can Beat Up Your Blog

See you in 6 days with a new song. Make sure to use your medias that are social to advertise you 100 inspired words from Blind Melon’s Tones of Home. Use the green Mr. LInky button to post.

Live And Let Die

I’m reading about the death of one of my favorite actors, Philip Seymour Hoffman, and besides the sadness of an incandescent talent gone to the scourge of drugs, the gross amount of details (the amount of heroin used and unused by the fallen star) released by the police has left me asking a question.

Do we need to know too much about people?

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This seems like a very silly and hypocritical query from a trained, college degreed journalist, online columnist for a politics and pop culture site, and owner of 4 social media accounts; Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Google +. But I honestly think we have too much information available on people, famous and not, especially when they die. I don’t think this is a good thing. Privacy should mean something.

I’m wired in a way that when someone passes away, I want to show respect and bury the bad with them. I don’t believe you take your material possessions with you nor do I feel you take your sins, either. This is part religion part wishful thinking and part aversion to unnecessary gossip. I haven’t always felt this way and when I didn’t, it hurt me and people I cared about.

The publicity around Hoffman’s death is eerily similar to Kurt Cobain’s twenty years ago. The accounts of their personalities and downward spiral into madness are stunning. We knew too much about Kurt and now we know too much about Philip.

I reject the notion that we give out too much on social media. We mute, manipulate, and massage what we put out to stroke out egos and protect our best interests. If I were to drop dead tomorrow, trust me, there’s a lot you don’t know about me, my wife and my 3 daughters and my family and friends. But if for some reason the police start telling you stuff like they are with Philip Hoffman, you’ll turn away, letting it and me die with some dignity as I’ve tried to live with some.

*****blogger’s note****

This my personal response to Trifecta www.trifectawritingchallenge.com

MANIPULATE (transitive verb)

This is also linked to I Don’t Like Mondays blog hop by my friends and fellow Lefty Pop www.leftypop.com editor and writer, Linda @modmomelleroy from www.elleroywashere.com
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Please visit her and get one of her band’s t-shirts like mine – Jehova Waitresses (@jehovawaitreses). Their music is excellent and their band members are awesome.
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Here’s today’s song from Paul McCartney and Wings.

You know what would make lovely Valentine’s Day gifts? My books.

The Ballad of Helene Troy, an underdog story about a female musician in New York City, and Soul To Body, about an ex-1990s guitar player trying to raise his teenage daughter after the death of his wife, her mother, are available, digitally, on Amazon.com for your kindles, and in paperback from Lulu.com

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Can’t Get No Satisfaction

In 6 days, the 48th Bowl of Super will take over many American television sets and enough international ones placing over a billion set of eyeballs on more than the athletic accomplishments of the Seattle Seahawks and Denver Broncos, but also the commercials. A case can be made that more people care about the ads than the game. This is important because advertising shapes public attitudes and societal conventions. I think the late great but profane dark poet Bill Hicks said it best.

(NSFW language, use ear buds if you’re around kids)

The best example of this died, recently. His name was Eric Lawson. You may know him as the Marlboro Man.

ericlawsonmrlboroman photo source – UK Daily Mail

Lawson died on January 10 from lung cancer. He was 72-years-old. He started smoking at age 14, during an era when two thirds of the American population smoked regularly. In the mid 1950s Marlboro turned to advertising executive Leo Burnett to kill two souls with one ad. He came up with the rugged smoking cowboy to sell filtered cigarettes because at the time they were considered feminine. That’s right, the guy Bill Hicks condemned in the video above not only sold cancer sticks but he did so by redefining American masculinity for two generations.  And Eric Lawson bought into it with his life and stamped it with his image, in the 1970s, as one of six different Marlboro Men over a 35-year period.

After Lawson was diagnosed with a myriad of health problems, he made another ad parodying his iconic one and publicly regretted his own smoking on several news programs.

The problem with advertising is, especially when celebrities attach their names, it works. During the slew of Bowl of Super commercials you’ll see masculinity and femininity defined in ways that will not represent any of your views, or at least mine, then the internet will be dominated by “best Bowl of Super commercials” talk. There won’t be a single ad that shows women with clothes on selling, well, clothes. There won’t be a single commercial telling men to ignore sexual and violent imagery and to respect women, even when they have little to no clothes on. You won’t see ads telling women to love themselves no matter what they look like. You won’t see any spots telling men and women to not bully.

There’s supposed to be a Yogurt commercial reuniting the male members of the cast of Full House.

I just hope the people who tell us How white my shirts can be but he can’t be a man because he doesn’t smoke the same cigarettes as me realize that not all of us are as gullible as they think we used to be. RIP Eric Lawson.

elleroy was here

****blogger’s note*****

I used the phrase “Bowl of Super” because it’s funny and I don’t want the NFL to sue me for using the other way to call the Big Game. They do that.

You know what would make lovely Valentine’s Day gifts? My books.

The Ballad of Helene Troy, an underdog story about a female musician in New York City, and Soul To Body, about an ex-1990s guitar player trying to raise his teenage daughter after the death of his wife, her mother, are available, digitally, on Amazon.com for your kindles, and in paperback from Lulu.com

bookcoverpicajjhkasfpaperbackpicturesad