The lady at the bank said, “Sorry Thomas do you have time, or are you swamped?” so I said I was on lunch. The lady at the bank put her hands on her hips and whispered, “I’m waving the associated fees.” As I was waiting the lady at the bank said, “Have another munchkin,” and I touched a chocolate munchkin (or donut hole). The lady at the bank said “Did you try the pumpkin flavor?” as I did so so I said “I’ll have the chocolate” and she almost rolled her eyes? Another lady at the bank who I’d seen before came out of the back room and smiled saying, “Hi Thomas, nice to see you,” and the lady at the bank said to the other lady at the bank, “We’re just going to go ahead and wave Thomas’s fees, we really need to take care of Thomas,” and “Thomas, have another munchkin.”
ZOLA’S #8 “Living and Dying 2012” is out now. Had a lot of fun assembling this one more in the former OSPREYS collage-style than in the recent “full pages from the hip” mode that characterizes especially the first five ZOLA’S. General idea in my room during production was “When you’re working like crazy on a big project, sometimes it’s fun to take a minute off to overdo the little one.”
Issue 8 brings us to 104 pages of business so far, and we are not counting the covers and endpapers of each issue as business.
$30 gets the whole deal so far plus what’s coming; $3 gets an envelope with this issue to sniff. Paypals and whatever are here. THANX TO MY SUBSCRIBERS, you dudes will be seeing this one shortly ~~
Subject: Final Breakfast 10ish-2ish 12/18
From: Tom Bubul
Date: December 14, 2011 2:47:55 PM EST
(This email is about FINAL BREAKFAST, my house ~10am-~2pm this Sunday.)
Isn’t it weird that a baby in a diaper was so recently wearing a red sash emblazoned with a gold “2011,” and that now, that sash has turned to black, and is worn by a grim reaper (and/or an old man who will fight a baby wearing a red 2012 sash depending on how you like to envision the changing year [but baby either way, the new year as a baby is constant])? Really, isn’t that weird? Where do these grim reapers keep coming from so fast.
As I’ve been in this grim reapers thinking mode I decided to call the breakfast we’re having over here on Sunday FINAL BREAKFAST because it could well be the last breakfast you eat before this year’s grim reaper is defeated by/replaced by/transformed into next year’s baby, by which I mean, if you eat only one more breakfast this year, I think this One will be a suitable One? Or maybe it makes more sense to say final = ultimate = really good
FINAL BREAKFAST is at my house Sunday 12/18 from 10am-2pm - order foods from a menu or hang out - Davey will be here doing stuff, his cat will be here doing stuff, Hall is co-piloting - spiritual unity will be playing (and perhaps possible, if even in the limited way that it can be when you’re eating with some people in an unusual room) minimum two times - it will be on the 3rd floor somehow.
Menu is fresh breads that I am going to wake up to bake, eggs however, vegan guy, lunch combo (soup du jour / extremely something sandwich), roasted items, house recipe, greens, a pancake, a breakfast meat, another thing, a paper menu, a coffee cup, soy or regular, melted american cheese slice, hangover cure, …, …
Whenever we do this I like to say “Several moms have successfully dined in this house” though I have no idea if that is a useful indicator of anything to anyone. It costs normal. Something in here about how we used to do this a lot in the withered and dusty past, isn’t it weird how long ago that is already, and how small it is compared to the vibrant present, and the infinite potential of the future? As the poet recently texted, “Time, what a mystery!”
Call/text/email me to let me know you’re coming if you want to (best), or just come (completely fine).
(570) 574 2436
Often when I am doing the dishes or sweeping the floor I think, “I am a warrior.” Why does this line resonate to me? Is it because saying “I am an artist” does not connote resistance, fortification, or strength? What do I believe I am at war with? Other than days and the kitchen floor.
In check-out lines at Price Rite. The clerk dressed in blue’s wail of sadness is the word “Override.” This stops the line until a manager in red arrives to press buttons on the clerk’s screen. This sometimes happens wordlessly and without eye contact. I have been waiting for ten minutes already, but I am a warrior, I will continue to wait.
While trying to parse this idea that I am a warrior the Monopoly Child record “Gitchii Manitou (12 step re-trance program for troubled dream-warriors)” came on. Naturally I thought, am I troubled? (In some ways, yes.) Do I need to be re-tranced? (I am often loathe to accept that sometimes someone else needs to come touch my screen, sometimes wordlessly or without eye contact. I sometimes say Override in an obtuse, inaudible manner. I sometimes don’t know that I was saying Override until much later.)
Last night I was provided the opportunity to play a lengthy piece of music to partially score a lengthy drawing performance, so I came up with this routine for air organ. I played it dressed in blue, fell asleep on the floor, then around 3am I walked home:
Each number corresponded to a pre-determined chord (pick your own chords it doesn’t matter). Each step (i.e. each line) was three minutes long, with short pauses between steps, during which, incidentally, I drank wine. Each chord in each step was played for three minutes divided by the step number, so step one was chord one for three minutes, step forty-eight was four progressions through all twelve chords, each chord played for a little less than four seconds. It’s not worth detailing why the progressions in each step are what they are, mainly because this routine as-is is an idea-demo, not a final thing in itself; as far as it goes, immediate thoughts were that this would produce more interesting results if it were four times longer (192 steps), four times faster (45 second steps rather than 180), and with some phasing sub-system for adding articulation.
I thought a lot this morning about why I feel compelled to perform music and it’s in part because it’s a useful way to re-trance. I am a warrior and it’s a gray day in Providence, sweaty in the house. Who’s my manager in red now? It’s important to know what you’re asking for, and who you’re asking. It’s important to keep the lines moving.
Well so I keep taking photographs of my desk but it’s too hard to capture anything -
A pile of things I printed out -
Different surfaces I’ve been marking with different devices, at various states of completion -
Feels sorta important to be updating this so that I could look at it later and say, “there’s when that” -
Louis moved out and I was surprised to feel visceral sadness -
Another day in the winds of Lockwood Street -
Laura moves in this afternoon -
Dreamed last night that my mom woke me up in my childhood bedroom to let me know a crowd was coming to crucify me; I packed a duffel bag (I never use duffel bags) and ran to the cemetery; my dad told me he would meet me at the marina across the river if I could get there, he asked if I knew where it was, I was like, of course I know where the marina is, come on -
Gray, windy; however many septembers listening to black ash dub; been in Providence nearly half as long as I was in Philly already -
Coming up on one full year of constantly thinking about 120 Days of Sodom -
Cooking column -
Mothers News Literary Supplement -
Bear Deluxe -
Dirt Palace -
Little cover painting for Kate’s book -
Pre-cooked bacon and hot dog tacos at Mickey’s luxury permanent hobo camp -
Jonny turned 27 -
“How to Use a Megalixer” -
Videos of my parents’ neighborhood flooding -
Well I’m back home now. I have a hundred new things, I made a million new things, I’m working on a trillion new things.
I forget how to cook, I forget how to make plans, I forget how to relate to other people sorta?! I mean, the food I’ve been making has been good, the plans I’ve been making have been followed through on, and I think there has been an exchange of emotion and data in all of the interpersonal moments I’ve had so far? Do feel semi like I left the house without my wallet/keys/cellphone/jacket and it’s colder than I thought it would be. Of course I have a $20 in one of these pockets and some singles in another and I don’t care, I’ll ride a bus until morning, or figure something out. Like a zoo animal released back into the wild, not that I don’t have the urge to kill, just that I’ve been suppressing it for so long, and my meals have all been delivered so timely.
I guess just to say I’m back at my desk squinting into the future, and that strong winds are blowing.
wow! cheap gas, westminster street, providence
Blessed return/Providence solutions = I ran into Serena at La Lupita and told her that I’d lost my bike key and wondered whether she had some advice as I’d just been trying to open it via amateur means for over an hour. She came over later on with an angle grinder and showed me how to cut it off. I couldn’t believe the quality, serendipity, or rate of turnaround on this favor. Does this happen anywhere else?
1st breakfast back, lockwood street, 3rd floor
I had a miller lite in the Dirt Palace entryway
Habaneros, almonds and dates are featuring heavily right now
American cheese slices on eggs in the morning
Baked a good loaf of bread
Asian market is closed for their summer break, aghh
Adam made a pizza
Davey made tangy peanut noodles, I made regular Tuesday noodles
Lupita once so far
No lunches, only breakfast, snack, and dinner
Everyone talking about an earthquake
Everyone talking about a hurricane
allen, last day of camp
While I was gone I bought a set of flat files from Maureen Keaveny via text message ($$$ “the future” $$$) and also had them delivered. Yesterday I put them together barefoot and shirtless and worried the whole time that I would crush a toe, cut my chest, or pull a muscle. (Davey asked if I needed help and I told him I was good.) Mike texted me re: he’d “made a drawing of some guys carrying records”; I texted that I was putting the drawings from when I was one of those guys into a flat file. It’s hilarious that you (I) can fit ten years more or less into a certain dimensional container. I know this is just a bad mood thing to say but man, the past: what a sad joke of an ashcan, what a plastic bag full of tissues, what a heavy metal box filled with old paper that’s gonna be nothing but a pain to move into the bedrooms and studios of the future.
But also uhhhh email me if you wanna look at my flat file and buy some drawings, that’s possible now, hahahahahha, and in that it would transmute the past into the future, it might make me feel a little better about this pile I’ve been carrying around for so long.
Mikey Alee Sophie if you guys see this on google reader, thinking of you.
Man we had such a nice little party last night. I had a lovely time. My only regret is that I forgot to spice the black beans better for the tacos, and they tasted like plain black beans. Sophie and Mickey climbed into my pile of pelts this morning and we rapped for a while in there, then KW came up and was like “Get up and design me a tattoo of a little face.” I made this sheet of options for her and she picked row four number two—-
—-and then I spent the afternoon lying on the couch and listening to both discs of volume three of the Upsetters singles compilation, looking at the ceiling, and texting.
This second half of yesterday’s post does not reflect the conversation I had with James at the party about FUN HOME (he made some points about the drawings themselves that I haven’t fully digested; also he straight-up disagrees with all of my opinion of it below, hahaha), or the HI HAT set Jacob played, which was wonderful. Second show from this great, great band, bringing the “Providence mystery edge” hard.
3) COMICS I READ
Allison Bechdel’s autobio comic “Fun Home” on Zelda’s recommendation. Super steady drawing, capable but not aggressive or showy, but with these occasional detailed or compulsively rendered panels that made me go “oh whoa” in the good way. The story is perfectly paced, and draws on and refers to a life of reading that, when it works, works. I love it when people can do more than one thing with a high level of interest, skill and investment. Enjoyed reading this a lot!
Brecht Evens “The Wrong Place.” Pretty impulsively bought this at 8am after looking at a few screen caps on the comics comics blog, thinking, oh shit, this looks wonderful. Kinda bummed that it was not that wonderful to read! If this was a set of paintings in larger format without any story, maybe this would be something; some of the pages are killer, some of the character posing especially in the first sequence is well-observed and so right on. But as a narrative it’s fucked! Pretty juvenile treatment of pretty banal understandings of pretty typical ideas - male sexuality and friendship; shallowness vs. seductiveness of partying; group nighttime dynamics; very simple treatment of “kinds of living” and “kinds of desire.” Most troubling is the bizarro false dichotomy between “the boring guy with the job” and “the shallow guy who parties”? The treatments of courage, desirability, independence, self-worth, and even “what is cool” are all fucked too.
A critique came up at drawing day that this book was “made to be liked,” and I can get behind that. There’s nothing risky here, and the things that are good are good in this super obvious candy way (such that for example a guy might look at it for five seconds at 8am and be like, oh, that must rule), while the actual narrative/emotional/social content here is a real slowball, really leaning hard on the painting to carry it, or really assuming that its reader must be a completely unexperienced and socially illiterate teenager. But I mean, parts of it look great!
Chester Brown “Paying for It,” his autobio comic about 10+ years of visiting prostitutes. This book rules so hard. Completely maniacal drawing, hilariously/wildly reaching internal logic, good jokes. Courageous, real, and bald in the best possible ways. Whether or not “you agree with him” or this is a complete picture of the issues he’s putting forth re: prostitution is not the point at all here. Re: the above, this dude did not make this book so that people would like it, he made it because it is the real, true shit of his life, distilled into a funny, swaggering, inviting little book, and he invites you to hate him, hate his work, and disagree with everything he says in it. Aesthetics and content specifics aside, attention all fucking artists everywhere: Dare to make work this uncompromisingly true to yourself.
4) WEYES BLOOD, U.S. GIRLS, BLOOD HUFF
I saw three good shows in three different secret rooms this week.
WEYES BLOOD at Quince Street = Met Natalie in Philadelphia when she was 15, at which point she had already been on the path, and knew her for a while down there. Awesome to see her as a full-grown guitar witch 8 years later in a Providence basement, and she’s still just 23(?!) - girl is still at least 3 years ahead of people 10 years older than her and keeps getting better and better. Her record on EHSE is out.
BLOOD HUFF at Amherst Street = Bummed to not see a full FATHER FINGER set at this show, who’s looking good? but the band of geniuses BLOOD HUFF was just fine; Mickey threw her shoes and flipped out; lyrics about how nothing matters; crowd dancing and partying, insisting on an encore, Mickey sez, “I don’t even want to do this, I just want to go to bed.” Drank coffee upstairs with the full team present, then this classic scene turned out to be going on after the huff set was over =
U.S. GIRLS at Paragon = Dude, U.S. Girls has been one of the best live bands in North America re: solo singing along to tapes/electronics for at least two years now. This was an ultimate bummer set: She was all set to go but the PA speakers fried. Played out of an amp and it wasn’t loud enough/sounded like dog shit/energy was lost in the technical difficulties. Even so, the first song she played before everything burned out featured a total transformation: She went completely inside of her character so fast and RIPPED, and it sounded great. When the speakers went she still wanted to finish her set one way or the next; it’s fun to see somebody play who clearly loves to play, isn’t afraid of playing or fucking up, and goes for it. She seemed bummed on this set for sure, but man, the intimations of what she’s sounding like live right now were there, and I mean, damn dude. U.S. GIRLS: Keep coming back to Providence, I will go see you every time.
Gonna break this post up over I think two posts? I feel like this format that I love, which is “put your five blog posts together into one blog post” just means that nobody reads them, ahahaha.
1) WHERE I AM
Stayed up all night photoshopping and making a website then woke up around 1pm today. Now BIN SERIES #7 playing in the 3rd floor apartment, just wiped packing tape slices all over my sleeping bag to get the cat hair off, listened to the Crono 12000BC music in David’s ride on the way to Tropical to pick up some souza and Price Rite to pick up taco stuff —
— couldn’t be further from where I’m about to be this weekend and out till the end of august. Super looking forward to swimming a half mile every day and running on the road as much as I can. Had a dream a few weeks ago that the campers showed up and I started to cry I was so happy to see them, which is funny, but also serious!
2) BELOVED PHARAOH
I watched this teen movie BANDSLAM with Pearl (Pearl is 11 now) and her friends on I think Sunday morning at 10am in Brooklyn at Brian’s house, after dropping off the glyph he bought from my show. I ate a bialy with raspberries and butter and a leftover crepe with nutella. The movie is not worth explaining or watching but it features a lot of super-reduced “what is a relationship” content, which is always super interesting, a kid who has “an encyclopedic knowledge of all music” as the hero, the hero names his rock band I CAN’T GO ON I’LL GO ON and the movie does not explain what this is which is bizarre (the hero kid commends this band name as being like other good long band names like CLAP YOUR HANDS SAY YEAH; this is hilarious for at least three reasons, but mainly because what can this allusion possibly mean in the context of this movie?!?), and there’s this scene at the end where David Bowie cameos and is watching the band play on youtube, and he emails the hero kid, and offers him a record deal on his “new indie label.” hahahaha I guess I loved this movie.
ANYWAY the point of bringing this up is that one of Pearl’s friends had a white t-shirt with a black line drawing of some hieroglyph-style character on it, and under it in black capitals curly serif italics it said BELOVED PHARAOH. I asked her about it and she said her friend designed it and everyone in her class got one; it was the winning design for an egyptian studies week or something at her school? Anyway it ruled, here is a composite I made on the train the other day of what it sorta looked like, can someone please print this for me onto a white shirt:
Postscript to this is that when I got to Boston my brother had a shirt there that Misha had made for me, black sharpie on white shirt, and it is a drawing of pac man with rasta dreads and the caption is PAC MON. So no need to print me that shirt, I have that one now!