Friday, November 18, 2011

Friday Night Frolic — Pointed Weights

Kandinsky











It would seem Friday has become the place where the Suburban Soliloquist goes for a third person point of
view and a stiff drink. She steps inside its faux finished walls, glazed with a red lacquer, grabs a canapé and a dirty martini at the bar where she thinks she can also swap her first person POV for a third person POV as easily as Tim O'Brien did in The Things They Carried.

Oh, those stories are haunting, says the bartender. And, well, O'Brien is a wizard. What do you want to trade for, anyway? Stick with what you got, kid.

She gets it. She's knows she's not writing a classic. But she reasons. She says her pencil's not so sharp. And if her pencil's not so sharp, it's going to make some mistakes. Sometimes the pencil has trouble deciphering fact from fiction, or deciding which it prefers. She can barely get it to draw a straight line, and it spends too much time in the margins.

In that way, she tells the bartender, she's very much like the pencil.

And it weighs on her. She's thinks about embellishment. She considers stripping down to her skivvies.

Hey, look lady, this ain't that kind of place! the bartender growls.

She wonders if she ought to trade in the manual sharpener for an electric one. She wonders. Acoustic or synthesized? Bamboo or floral? Hardwood or carpeting? Paint or wallpaper? Verbose or succinct? Pointed weights or weighted points?

How come you don't ever have any music in here? she asks the bartender.

Lady, these walls aren't real. You get a band in here and the walls will crumble, he says, shaking his head as he towel-dries a brandy snifter. You do know this ain't real, right?

Hmm, she sighs. Yup, I know. I think I'm going to refinish my hardwoods tonight. Or maybe I'll paint my walls. My real walls.

Ok, Lady, the bartender laughs. You have fun, now. That's right, keep it all real and don't be switching viewpoints! 

Actually, she brightens, I'm going to go write a poem. With a pen. Then she walks out the door and shuts it, maybe a little too hard, and the walls fall down.

And she grins.


Rusty Belle, hailing from Amherst, Massachusetts, was formed in 2006 by siblings Matt and Kate Lorenz, and friend Zak Tojano. From their About page: "...rusty belle swings easily from sweet, simple melodies, whiskey lullabies, blood ballads, busted bluegrass, and folk-punk anthems, to tongue-in-cheek sleaze-rock, glossy-mag candy-pop, and down-home porch-tunes.  the remarkable thing is that its all done with honesty and respect for the music..."  



I think I'm going to have that martini now...

38 comments:

  1. This is a rather brilliant post Jayne - wellthey all are to be fair.

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  2. I say...indeed it is a fascinating post...very captivating doing the third person thingy...and Rusty Belle..brilliant stuff...yet another musical path I shall need to investigate further...when I finish my Sat. night affair with Grey Goose vodka..just one now Dan ;)

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  3. oh nice..love the blend from fiction to reality...the fake walls, crumbling with the music or whenever we think it's time...my pencil also has trouble sometimes deciphering fact from fiction, or deciding which it prefers..smiles

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  4. living dangerously there aren't you? writing poetry with a pen?

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  5. Jayne, that was absolutely wonderful. I think she she should try pastels in open-air, and then go back to the pencil, but sharpened. (No godawful mechanical contraptions with gaunt leads that break at the first piff of breeze.)

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  6. Ah, brilliant. If you tell me you just dashed this off in one sitting, using a pen or its keyboard-and-mouse equivalent (popping the Delete and Backspace keys off, maybe), I shall have to seriously consider another avocation for myself.

    The Missus and I have this running joke about whether to use a pen (me) or pencil (her) to do crossword puzzles. I can see it both ways. But for poetry, yeah, I'm with ellen up there: a pen is dangerous. (Especially if you're gonna be poetizing about stripping down to skivvies. Ink should just not come within inches of some terrain, if you follow my meaning.)

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  7. David- Why thank your, sir, I'm glad you enjoyed it. Look into Rusty Belle, too--not like the Smiths, but just as much fun. ;)

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  8. Dan- You know, I think I took to your Oz friends, Burn In Hell, in part, because they reminded me of RB in that sleaze caberet kind of way. But they both have their own unique sound. Easy on that vodka now! (I should talk.)

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  9. Claudia- Dang unreliable pencils. I try to keep my pencil close shaven to remind him he's a proper lad, but it's no use--rebel he is. ;)

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  10. Ellen- Ha! Oh yes, woman on the verge... I barely finished this post in time to publish for Friday! On the edge with pens--so exciting! ;)

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  11. Suze- Fabulous--pastels in open-air! Yes! Why am I thinking Virginia Woolf? And no, never, never contraptions that poof at the first piff (although, I do like the imagery there (thanks for that!)l :)

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  12. JES- Oy--in all honesty, I didn't start this post until, roughly, 6pm last night, when I returned from picking up the sprite, who was at her fifth, and final, basketball tryout. And I had pretty much nothing 'til that point, thinking, in fact, that I'd missed the last call and I'd have to hang up a CLOSED sign.

    Anyway, I'm pleased to hear that it seemed to work out OK. I almost feel like one of David's former cheating student's might have. But maybe a little pressure is good for me?

    The good news: the girl (alleluia--or this weekend would not be pretty) made the Jr. High team. And, a good portion of the week's pressure has evaporated.
    Aaaahhhh.... see, this is why I needed to shed some layers. ;)

    And pens for crossword puzzles? E-gads. Not me. I definitely need an eraser for those.

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  13. If a little pressure is good for you, then maybe a LOT of pressure would be outstanding?

    Okay, okay. I won't nag anymore. You can't force good writing anyhow. (Although obviously -- this post a case in (pencil) point -- you can rush good writing.)

    Shedding a few layers every Friday is probably a good way not just to get yourself get kicked out of the POV Bar, but also to boost your readership. Choose yer poison! :)

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  14. haha...on the RB note i concur...i was thinking...why dont YOU do a r/v of BIH? Could be an interesting take..thoughts?

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  15. JES- Lots would probably help. Pressure, like deadlines (as in get dinner on the table) works best. Come to think of it, it worked well when I was in a real office, too.

    LOL! POV Bar--love it! My days of getting kicked out of bars are long over. Now, if I'd chosen the right poison, I would have come up with a better post title--and really drawn in the crowd. Dang! ;)

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  16. Dan- Well, here's the thing: I could never write a BIH review as well as you already have. I'm afraid mine would pale and die next to yours. (Though, I do think I should add BIH to the FNF list.)

    And see, now, sometimes I don't show up 'til late Friday for this stuff and end up cheating by copying and pasting abouts or reviews from a musician's website, or worse, just add a link. Aha! Mind if plagiarize from your site?!! ;)

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  17. Imaginative and fun. I enjoyed eavesdropping...

    Have that martini--and enjoy!

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  18. thanks for giving our house a theme song, off and on. i walked around the house turning the lights on and the missus follows a few minutes later turning them off. on and off. off and on.

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  19. uh, there's a line in that last song that sort of falls into place with your quirky little story. "In my head lingers the smell of a room filled with hope, hope, hope."
    Or maybe that's just my crazy imagination...

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  20. A dirty martini sounds good right about now.

    Loved this post.

    You're pretty sharp! :D

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  21. Lydia- To tell the truth, I rarely have a martini, but sometimes I crave the green olives soaked with vodka! See what I mean about fact and fiction. ;)

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  22. Billy- Ha! It's kind of like that in this house, too! I think it's genetic--my parents were the same way. ;)

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  23. Nessa- Boy, you don't miss a beat. But yeah, you still have a crazy imagination. Which ,of course, is why your shorts are always fun to read. ;)

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  24. Loree- Sharp! Haha--that's good... I'm getting this visual of oversized head sharpeners. Wonder if there are any of those on the market... ;)

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  25. J-girl be ny guest and hey..dont ever second guess yerself...you have a great style of writing and im sure you could add some fantastic ideas
    i spoke to glenn last night about it and they are always looking for a bit more exposure...theyd be honoured to have such a fine wordsmith not only r/v them but put a FNF up starring them...go for it ;)

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  26. This is so Jayne, like wavy vapors moving through and around everything, peeking and staring, pointing, although it's not polite to point, yet if you didn't point how would we know which direction to look. You did point didn't you? Hmmm...
    This was captivating!!

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  27. Haunting stuff, gal!

    Throughout my adolescence, I imagined I was writing a novel in the third person..."Now, disgusted with her mother, she goes to her room and stares at the telephone on the desk." It became so absorbing, I practically stopped talking and didn't start again until I had children of my own.

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  28. Walls are made to be broken down. And that's not just me saying it as a construction guy. That's the sympathetic writer talking. In that spirit, at 4AM I decided it was finally time to start a new novel manuscript today. And now it's looking like my cabinets could use a little refinishing too. Thanks for that. Also, The Things They Carried was brilliant.

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  29. I'm impressed with how well you keep up with all these comments, and replies, and counter-replies... (He said, probably at exactly the moment she decided she'd had enough.)

    Why not a POV Bar? One of the outlier cable channels recently ran a series called Bar Karma, which centered on a bar to which people were whooshed at some precise moment they needed to make a decision about the course of their life. (It had some other interesting features, too, like an audience-participation gimmick which left some plot turns up to viewer vote.) (More here.) I think this demonstrates that someone in TV can be convinced to try any wacky old thing as long as there's alcohol involved!

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  30. Foolish optimism on my part, I do crosswords in pen. Sometimes the square numbers are completely obscured. Oh well. What a fine edgy band, yes, perhaps a spot of grunge or the whiff of a thing from a shadowy corner. Do we know, does it matter, about the fact vs. fiction? Somehow, once told, it all becomes a version of real. There are seldom enough answers to match the questions. xo

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  31. You're so good at this Jayne - literary, inventive, thoughtful.

    Great.

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  32. Dan- Oh well! We don't want to disappoint the BIH boys, and I"ll be happy to make the introduction here. They're on my list. I warn you, though, I may quote you anyway. ;)

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  33. Leah- Oh yes, I pointed! But in which direction I can't say. I think because, well, it's definitely not a straight line. Yes, quite wavy. But there's a point at the end. I think. ;)

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  34. Nance- "Throughout my adolescence, I imagined I was writing a novel in the third person." This, I find entirely believable, for I can thoroughly relate. I remember having those same thoughts, but about my father, not Mother. No, Mother's a saint. I had a blue princess phone on my desk.

    You, not talk? ;)

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  35. Beer- A new novel! Good for you. And, well, it's the perfect time to hunker down for a long writing season--cold winds blowing into Chi-town and all. Good luck with the construction. I'm looking forward to hearing more about it... ;)

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  36. JES- Keep up--Oh, man, how I wish I could keep up with it all. I love to keep up here, but believe me, there's mold growing elsewhere when I do.

    Bar Karma, where viewers get involved is such a great idea. We reality TV/gimmick loving Americans must eat that up? I don't know--this is the first I've heard of the show--complete TV loser I am--and now I"m reminded of how totally inadequate I am at TV/movie conversation. I don't watch the Emmy or Oscar awards because I've no idea what anyone is talking about! That's sad. I think I need to rectify that. Or, maybe not?
    At lead the movie part.

    POV Bar. Would be fun to make it weekly and have everybody know your name. ;)

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  37. Marylinn- You daring woman, you! Of course you attack with a pen. Ink!

    Rusty Belle are just crazy! That's why I like them so much. My brother introduced me to their music, and I was supposed to see them play in CT not long ago, but, well, best laid plans... I never made it. Next time. I would have loved to have done a little interview with them.

    "Somehow, once told, it all becomes a version of real." So true. :)

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  38. SF- Thank you, my friend. Now if I could just apply myself. (Echoes from parent/teacher conference...) ;)

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