Tuesday, March 20, 2018

The Madness of March

It hearkened so merrily
Give unto us the rites of spring
with thy Madness of March
dribble dribble shot
oh look at that dunk
oh look at that three
didn't he walk?
We scream at the TV 
as though they can hear us
and they better listen
we pick our brackets
our trusty brackets
brackets crafted with care and love
in two minutes
because I've never heard 
of some of these sacrificial lambs
so we shall laugh 
and cry and lo
for this means spring has sprung
oh thankies from my power bill
I'm sorry you misspoke
who beat Virginia?
they are a No. 1 seed 
surely you jest
No. 16 University of Maryland-Baltimore County?
Not even the main campus?
that's not a community college?
Madness indeed
who would have thought
who would have dreamed
so it would seem
Arizona has lost as well
oh hell. 
And down the rabbit hole we go
fate dealing brackets body blows
But my picks fear no such turn
for I plucked from the muddy tides of the future
UNC as my champion
and even they be nigh victorious
they'll make the elite eight
final four for they are great
and the pool shall be mine
lest someone pick by mascot
or uniform color

Monday morning
brackets torn asunder
picks lay strewn like cut grass
oh my poor picks! 
faulty, futile, foolhardy
kicked in the ding ding by fate
felled by Texas A&M
and Loyola
I know a guy named Xavier
why couldn't you be that cool Xavier?
Everybody knew Cincy was lunching
now they're worth punching
UNC felled as I slept
All the pool money gone
a brother wept
Sweet sixteen my ass
Who ever ranked these teams
was just playing
That's all I'm saying
Tis done
we've all seen better days,
Hey, can we get a do-over?
They wasn't going to class noways

Bracket just...done.

Friday, March 16, 2018

And so, they go...

"There should be no boundaries to human endeavor. We are all different. However bad life may seem, there is always something you can do, and succeed at. While there's life, there is hope".
~ Stephen Hawking (or at least the guy who played him in the movie)

In what will surely be one of my more convoluted posts, I'm going to honor two men who recently passed who couldn't have been more different: noted physicist Stephen Hawking and rap legend Craig Mack, who sadly passed around the same time. Two from a time when talent got you everywhere you wanted to get to.

Seriously though, Stephen Hawking did put some brand new flava in ya ear.

See what I did there?

I'm going to start with Professor Hawking, who a few years ago agreed to appear on the Big Bang Theory and insisted on delivering his own lines and not having them recreate his electronic voice. When you consider it takes sometimes an hour for him to compose a sentence, it was an enormous commitment on his part. And he made the most of it, much funnier than I expected. For a man who was supposed to die before I was born and who lived everyday trapped in his own mind, he had a cracking sense of humor. But then I guess he had enough time to make the inside of his mind rather nice, so maybe we were all the ones being left out.

As you may have guessed, I didn't know Stephen Hawking personally. But from a wheelchair in a frail body in need of constant care he changed our understanding of the universe we live in. He picked up where Einstein left off. Those who did know him called him engaging, funny and brilliant - from tales of nights in dive bars to extraordinary work in the lab. Because despite the more esoteric nature of his work, it is those understandings which contribute to the continued existence of the human race. And by that I mean things involving items not of this planet that in time will effect this planet. Good stuff. He funked the world...

Yes, that is an odd and awkward segue here...

Craig Mack is however, for us old heads. One of the original Bad Boy artists, the inimitable Craig Mack was a genius of rap in '94 of a kind of rap that artists have kept pretending to discover ever since. His freestyle free verse rap, unlike the story telling style of the contemporaries, consisted of songs that made more sense if you just let the lyrical word play shine through. The intelligence of the rhyme, the patter, smoothness was undeniable. A wicked talent for improvisation along with fat beats made for quite the combination in an age where every song had to have resonance.

But while his single “Flava in Ya Ear” became the label’s first hit, at least to me, he was unceremoniously buried by his label mate the Notorious B.I.G. whose banger of an debut album Ready to Die was released first. The scant few DAYS, not weeks between that musical avalanche  and Mack's Project: Funk da World album release effectively knocked Mack out out the hype he'd started. We remember B.I.G. as an icon, but we have mostly forgotten the artist who was the first to walk away from Puffy's music machine. Mack became a legend more what he could have become than for what he did.

Hawking and Mack have things common. You wonder what these men would have accomplished had they been able to run free in their prime. 

Monday, March 12, 2018

Going to the Movies...maybe.

Rambling Post #344
I like movies. As you may have read if you read anything about my past, like on this blog, yeesh, I've written a few scripts and have a few story ideas of my own. And one day, lord willing and the creek don't rise (and I can scrape together a few hundred bucks I don't owe anyone) I'm going to make something. Technically the few hundred bucks if for some good lunches and one of those director chairs, but a man has to have standards.

I caught the trailer for "Sorry to Bother You" this past weekend, and I'm interested. It's a film out this summer starring Lakeith Stanfield from the hot show Atlanta and Oscar nominee Get Out.

Yes this looks silly, but then that's on purpose.

I found the trailer both incredible and troubling. It was incredible in that it looks like a pastel infused explosion of just on the edge of reality semi-ideas, that's been dropped in a blender with generous dash of ridiculous, served through a sugar straw with a side of that sticky icky icky. It looks fresh, different, as if it touches on social issues and yet is still just plain funny. And troubling because once again, it looks like Hollywood has shown us the whole damned movie in two minutes. The trailer looks like it shows everything but the end! I think I know most of the story at this point - Down and out guy, love life and home life rocky. Gets job. Discovers secret to job. Advances up the ladder using the secret. More money, different problems. Guy has to make a decision about his life and...profit? (Sorry, underpants gnomes joke there.)

I can't be the only one this irks the crap out of.

The premise looks interesting. The hero Cassius, who lives in his uncle's garage is desperate to get something started. He lands a telemarketing job and learns very quickly from a co-worker that to be successful he needs to find his "white voice." If you're not a minority, you're probably not familiar with the concept of a particular voice for a particular situation, but this is a very real thing. the white voice he finds - which you hear in the trailer - is the whitest. And from there, things take off. Along the way to wherever this is supposed to go, the hero meets a broad and eclectic cast of characters on a trip through a only slightly weird version of the world of the average professional. Kinda.

Express yourself
Now, I've watched enough movies with insane premises - I used to watch a lot of late night TV and at one point USA had a show called Up All Night which made you wonder if you were hallucinating as a young teen. This film looks like something from someone who watched a lot of TV like that, but still has a social conciseness. And if they don't that's okay too.

Promotion Time.
Let's go to the movies. Well, maybe. Let's see how this all plays out. I am excited though.

Barkeep. I'll have whatever the man in bowler hat is drinking. Yes, I'm a bit scared, but you only live once.

Friday, March 9, 2018

Who hath wrought this winter?

I sit, cold. 
cause it's cold outside
which runs my heating bill up inside
keeping me in one room
I snggle into my blanket, 
a room cold save a space heater that hums
hums in a steady drone that soothes and hypnotizes
and provides a warmth
it said it would on the label
and I am warmed
under blanket, sheet, and other sheet
semi warm
enough to make me tarry in my morn
moving from warm bed to hot shower
seeking warm embrace
did I shave?
oh that water too cold
I'll grow a beard instead
heat on in my car
Just gets warm enough when I finally get to work. 
I long for the heat heat
like the summer sun 
which gleefully beats down upon my soul during a long walk
that saps the strength and makes my sheets soak with my body dew
which makes me sweat from breathing
ah, glorious
let the glorious man juice
my essence
pour from my armpits
did I use deodorant? 
I do so love me some heat
but now I sit, cold. 
I sit, cold
layered up
undershirt, shirt, sweater, jacket and scarf
that is quite jaunty
fashion forward
but still nippy with that bit of wind full of chill, 
my skin bits exposed
where my not quite summer body
its work in progress, work with me
where my not ever quite summer body
slips from it's coverage 
and the cold seeps in 
like stiff gravy
like molasses
like something cold that moves slow and sticks with you for a while
which keeps me in the house
against the blustery weather
not that I go outside a lot in the heat
but it's the heat damnit
I do so love me some heat
but now I sit, cold. 

Who hath wrought this winter off of backorder?