Category Archives: My Thoughts

BOTC: Douchebags On The Clearance Rack

I’d been promising/threatening to add some things that held their value (if you want to call it that) from my old web site for quite some time, but for some reason, I don’t think I added this, and I’d squandered it on Facebook. I just rescued it. Again.

“So, I’m in the 7-Eleven the other night…

…and in this particular 7-Eleven, they have a clearance rack. Last time I was there, I noticed that they had some food on it, making me wonder who’s brave enough to buy food from the clearance rack of a 7-Eleven. However, this time, I noticed something else there: Massengil disposable douches.

Now, being the inquisitive sort that I am, this sent my mind racing in a million different directions. Why did the proprietors of this particular 7-Eleven decide to clear out their stock of disposable douches? Was this a permanent exit from the douche market, or just a temporary culling of the herd? Were douches something they carried for a long time, or did they just experiment with carrying them to see how well they moved, and find themselves sadly disappointed that more women weren’t coming to the counter with a chili dog, a Big Gulp and a douche? If this was the case, why weren’t more women in the Red Bank, NJ area purchasing their douches at 7-Eleven? Could it have been a pricing issue?

Of course, the other possibility here is that the douches were nearing some sort of expiration date. This made me wonder: what makes a good douche go bad? I haven’t read up on disposable douches in some time, so I forget what ingredients they have in them. Does anyone in the audience have any insight on this part of the discussion? I haven’t felt ambitious enough to look up the ingredients of a douche.

As I continued to think about douches gone bad, more questions naturally arose. Did it get peer pressured by its friends to try smoking cigarettes? Did it have problems at home? Maybe it was just born under a bad sign. Do they send douches to a special facility if they get in trouble after they go bad, or do they end up in the G.P.? If they do end up in the G.P., how hard must prison be for a douche?

After all these questions, it seemed like my thought processes were spiralling dangerously out of control. I couldn’t stop worrying about the douches! I had to pause for a second and catch my breath. Then, thankfully, I remembered that “bad” in situations where expiration dates are involved really just means “old”. My anxiety turned to more of a feeling of stoic sadness, thinking of all the douches who were no longer in their prime. This made me wonder one more thing before I left the vicinity of the store: if you’re a douche and you’re not able to perform at the level you were when you were younger, how do you decide when it’s time to hang up the cleats?

(Shut up, peanut gallery.)”

Raisin Poisoning

The best thing I ever saw on World of Warcraft’s Trade chat was a user complaining about how the bowl of raisin bran they had just eaten had too many raisins in it, and how they now had raisin poisoning.

It was a good, long time ago, but I still think about this rather often. Just one of those things that stuck with me.

“Considered writing novels…I thought hard about this career…”

I’m attempting to decide what to fill this space with for the forseeable future.

Right now, I’m working on some of the more traditionally static sections of websites in general, as they apply to this site, things like photo galleries, links, the “About” page, my résumé, and so forth, but eventually, I’m going to need to decide what to write about here, and how often to do it. Input would certainly help, if any of you happen to be reading this and wish to contribute opinions.

In the places where a lot of my recent output has gone (lazily, I may add; I never should’ve stopped writing in my own venue, and you shouldn’t have, either, if you did), a great deal of it’s either been oversharing about my state of mind, metacommentary about the platforms I use to communicate and how I choose to use them (this post would fall under that banner, and I’m really trying to move away from writing on the website about the website, so to speak, to the point where I’ve deleted most, if not all of the prior posts on here where I’ve done it), or what we’ll politely describe as “water cooler talk” (current events, short reviews of various types of art, that sort of thing). I also just sunsetted a very long running website, and in the process, realized that 13 years of work was almost entirely ephemeral (most writing, even the good stuff, is, but this was moreso than usual), so I’m looking to avoid that.

It’s probably an admittedly privileged perspective, as well, but as I’ve grown older, I’ve had less and less desire to spend significant time writing negative things, particularly about art I don’t care for (years ago, it became far more exciting for me to tell you about things I love), but also branching out some into even perfectly reasonable negativity about the state of the world. We all know that the state of the world sucks right now, correct? We also know that terrible people are pretty much always hard at work on fucking things up for the rest of us, yeah? OK, we’ve covered that, then. If there are things we can realistically do about it, in smaller and larger ways, I may mention those, but otherwise, it’s just not where I wanna live at the moment. Smarter and more learned people than myself (there are a few in the links; Sarah Kendzior and Bruce Schneier come to mind, off the top of my head) are hard at work on keeping us aware of our surroundings, anyway, and I hope that you’ll support them, as well as supporting me.

I am rarely short of things to write about within the confines of my hobbies, but I have another site for those purposes.

I also have a rather huge backlog of stories to contribute to The Book, but the process of getting those from text files and chat logs and so forth to being in usable condition for here (and potentially elsewhere someday) requires a ton of organizing, reading and editing that I probably can’t start until next winter.

That leaves me with months to fill, and while I’ve gone over 10 months between posts here before, I never want to do that again for as long as I live.

If you’re listening, tell me what you’d like me to share with you, and I’ll do my best to oblige or at least consider the request.

 

I’ve still been holding off on deleting my Flickr account, because of this picture.

If you missed it any of the times it went around, it went viral as a probable, but not definite hoax, with people claiming that Batman and Robin were John Cale and Lou Reed, because of a rumor that started about them playing Batman and Robin at kids’ birthday parties to make ends meet during the Velvets. (I could be wrong, and a serious Velvets historian would know way more than I, but the rumor probably started from a fairly famous picture of Andy Warhol and Nico dressed as Batman and Robin, which I saw for the first time in a while last night.) This actually snagged Neil Gaiman, Joe Hill, some folks at WFMU and a bunch of other blue checks, so to speak, so it got a LOT of play.

Anyway, yes, the kid in the picture is me.

It was 1979, I was at that year’s edition of the Frogtown Frolic in Lincroft, NJ’s Thompson Park, where in other years, I met Spider-Man and The Incredible Hulk.

Pretty dope, right? Probably 1978.

I’m guessing 1980 here. This one’s a little weird, but hey, it’d probably make Ang Lee feel better if you showed it to him.

Anyway, the Superboy And The Legion Of Super-Heroes comic I’m holding in the controversial picture above dates it. It’s issue #256, October, 1979 issue (it hit newsstands in July). And yes, I just sat here and figured that out.

Pictured here, also from that day, is a hamburger resting on that comic book.

See Brainiac 5’s face right underneath the burger?

Note that I didn’t put the burger on top of Adventure Comics #466, because, no knock on the Legion, but I had goddamn good taste as a youngster, and not only was the award-winning Deadman story “Never Say Die!” in that one, but it was also the issue with the Justice Society story where they disappeared rather than being forced to unmask in front of the HUAC.

But yes, it’s another picture of me from the same day, with some good-ass comic books and a cheeseburger, in the same shirt I was wearing with Ree…er…Batman and Robin, drinking a goddamn can of Bubble-Up. I don’t even remember what Bubble-Up tasted like. It’s probably a Sprite/7-Up clone, but there are nuances to these things. This is one of my favorite photographs of all-time, even if the camera apparently opened, and I look kinda sad in it. Little Kid Me was probably getting a vision from the future about how this was gonna go viral someday.

Oh, we still had a few things to figure out, didn’t we?

Now, Lou’s dead, unfortunately, and John didn’t return my first or maybe second tweet about the picture. Maybe I’ll try him again one more time after I post this, with this link, and hope that this isn’t the tweet that gets me a restraining order from him. I’m just trying to confirm or deny here, so we can all go on with our lives.

Let’s look at the picture, though. It’s tough to say on Batman. Not a ton to work with there. With Robin, though, the Robin hair looks like the hair he would’ve had in 1979, interestingly.

“Growing Up In Public” came out in April of 1980, was recorded in January, but it’s possible that Mick Rock shot this in ’79. I suppose I could try emailing Mick, but it’s bad enough that I’m thinking of bugging poor John Cale again.

Aside from whatever we can glean from pictures, we do know that Reed and Cale were friendly (though perhaps not to radio stations or Robert Christgau) in ’79, so there’s no “they didn’t hang out then” to throw us off the track.

Would they have needed the money in ’79? Probably not, not really anyway. They could’ve owed someone a favor, could’ve lost a bet, or maybe, they just wanted to be Batman and Robin instead of Lou Reed and John Cale. There’s gotta be days like that.

As we’ve all pretty much established, there’s a pretty high likelihood that it’s not them, but I have not heard “no” yet, so I can only tell you that the timeframe people had in mind when they first saw the picture passed around (most likely after someone ganked it from the great Plaid Stallions, where I also submitted my other Frogtown Frolic pictures to their Mall Appearance Gallery) is incorrect. If I hear more, I’ll pass it on.

None of this is *exactly* why I posted the Batman & Robin/alleged Velvets picture again, though.

Like I said in the title of this post, as I’ve been doing some Internet spring cleaning, I’m probably killing my Flickr account after over a decade of having it (a lot of which, it was unused for, sadly). I haven’t done it yet, though. My problem right now is that, if I do take down my Flickr account, the original source of the picture, with some history to it (it’s been online in the same place for 11 years), will fall off the ‘net and the people who are like “See? It’s a hoax!” will go to Flickr to prove the other people wrong and it won’t be there, starting a whole new round of speculation.

I do want that account gone, though.

Oh well, I guess this post will have to do. I’ll put it in the Museum once it’s up, so people can find it easily.

Killing Flickr (and, eventually, Instagram, though I’m not quite ready to commit to that yet) will hopefully give me motivation to make a wider photo gallery on this site, too.

I guess that’s it, then, unless I do hear from John Cale or someone else in the know.

So long, Dynamic Duo…so long, Flickr…

Capability

I think I’d be a fairly capable person, if I were also a healthy person.

The latter tends to do a hell of a job of making me forget the former sometimes.

I can’t quite decide if it’s more galling that I usually forget how capable I can be, or that I sometimes remember.