Saturday, July 22, 2017

The Dead Milkmen live at Clark Park in 2017

An old friend posted news that The Dead Milkmen played live in Clark this past weekend, and from there I found a performance from 1993. I know well the name of the band, but I was never part of the scene or one who could name or sing their songs. But I've always been a fan of Clark Park as well as contemplating the passage of time, so I enjoyed considering my own various memories of my childhood's neighborhood park whose surreal likeness is the central real estate of my unpublished novel Spark Park (or Cartoon Bubble from a City Underwater).

According to a Wikipedia entry for The Dead Milkmen: ". . .the band's moniker came from a character named 'Milkman Dead' in Toni Morrison's book Song of Solomon." I've twice been assigned Beloved, and I've taught Sula four times, but I've never read Song of Solomon. At this point, I doubt I will as there are so many other writers who deserve attention.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

art-student debt

At L.U.S.K. it's rare that we honor another writer's birthday, or even our own, but Chelsea Martin's this past Sunday drew me to her Facebook wall and then this piece she wrote about student debt and her longing to buy a house. She's a small businessperson with five published books, but it appears as if she could also use even more debt relief than this Congresswoman would like to offer. In honor of Martin's birthday, I'm strongly considering ceasing to encourage my daughter to embrace the arts as anything more than an avocation although I'll certainly look forward to her return to art day camp in a few weeks. Pottery and painting worked fine for me through age ten, and I can't remember why I stopped attending University City Arts League classes. Possibly I'd become even more obsessed with street sports and half-court basketball, or maybe it was the move to J. R. Masterman, and the homework that greeted me at my new school.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

currently reading

I'm almost finished Henry Miller's Tropic of Cancer and am thirty pages into Mo Yan's Change. On the horizon are To Live by Yu Hua and Too Loud a Solitude by Bohumil Hrabal.

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Happy Fourth of July from Henry Miller

I think it was the Fourth of July when they took the chair from under my ass again. Not a word of warning. One of the big muck-a-mucks from the other side of the water had decided to make economies; cutting down on proofreaders and helpless little dactylos enabled him to pay the expenses of the trips back and forth and the palatial quarters he occupied at the Ritz. After paying what little debts I had accumulated among the linotype operators and a goodwill token at the bistro across the way, in order to preserve my credit, there was scarcely anything left out of my final pay. I had to notify the patron of the hotel that I would be leaving; I didn't tell him why because he'd have worried about his measly two hundred francs.

~~ from Henry Miller's Tropic of Cancer

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Auggie's Revenge: Reviews, Interviews, and Excerpts

Book Reviews: "The Teaching Life as a House of Troubles," by Don Riggs, American, British and Canadian Studies , June 1, 2017 ...