Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Thursday, November 29, 5 pm
Collins Cinema, Davis Museum & Cultural Center
106 Central Street
Friday, November 30, 7 pm
First Parish Church Meetinghouse
Corner of Church St. and Mass Ave.
Friday, November 30, 7:30pm
Jenny Browne, Mairead Byrne, Annie Finch, Caroline Knox, Akilah Oliver celebrating the publication by Fence Books of the poetry anthology on contemporary motherhood, "Not For Mothers Only".
45 Mt. Auburn St.
Truthfully, I will not attend any of these.
But I would like to, in a way.
Caroline Knox has new book coming out on Wave called Quaker Guns (what a title!) which I procured a copy of. She's a brillaint technician.Below is an excerpt. Maybe I will go and say hello.
We took our bathrobes and stuck them in the washer.
(Ritta put hers in the blue laundry machine.)
I said, “Refen ingete inget.”
Nocturnes are hard to Xerox;
birds follow the glare of water.
We prepare tax returns for people in Florida,
people in Florida whom we have never met.
Posted by Brian Foley at 12:23 PM
Monday, November 26, 2007
I am in my office in the bookstore basement. Outside my office is where all the used books are kept. Right now there is an annoying young couple sitting in chairs scanning the fiction section, ennuciating author's names in a Frasier accent. They are only annoying because I wish I was them (actually, the accent is poorly executed, which is also annoying.) When I was young I worked in an ice cream shop. After a while, I no longer enjoyed ice cream. There is a parallel I'm drawing upon, but it's ill suited, as I still think almost exclusively about books and writing. I still visit different bookstore every weekend on my days off, when I can just be a visitor. Emily and I both work in book stores though, and the enthusiasm is not the same. I should work with things I already dislike to prevent this kind of thing. Maybe then the opposite will happen and I will find a new proufound passion for tax law or something.
Posted by Brian Foley at 1:37 PM
Friday, November 23, 2007
i came into work early
to paint the devil
on the wall
then i went for coffee
later i got the intimate
play by play
the drought had announced
a newfound inspiration
after being estranged
since the late twenties,
and for a moment
there, panic replaced
one boy mistook
the monkey's smile
as an invitation
Posted by Brian Foley at 12:20 PM
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
My friend from the Emerson barracks Nicole has a story in Night Train. It is quite good. Good for Night Train. Good for Nicqui. Find it here. It is called Lemonfish.
Words I enjoyed in Lemonfish
5. tea and penned (as combo)
Posted by Brian Foley at 12:24 PM
Pitchfork: Another one of your blog posts mentioned a reunion of the State.
Michael Showalter: Yeah. We're making a movie together. It's sort of on hold because of the writers' strike. But I think within the next two years, you will be hearing about a State movie. In the vein of a Monty Python film, which is to say a sketch comedy film. Like The Meaning of Life or something.
Finally!. The State returns! I'd be happy if it just came out on DVD.
When I was 17, in the ice ages of Ebay, I bought my girlfriend at the time a ninth generation dubbed VHS copy of State episodes for $89.00. It was like watching a snow globe make jokes.
Years later, I interviewed Stella for Chunklet magazine. You can find that embarassing experience here. Terrible writing, but scroll down to where they make fun of me and talk about their elbows.
Posted by Brian Foley at 11:04 AM
Two new poems have been accepted to Right Hand Pointing for their upcoming humor issue. I thank Peter Berghoef for pointing me in the direction of this magazine whilst reading his fine work. Likewise, the editor of RHP, Dale Wisely, forwarded me a hand grenade of laughs with a short story he wrote that he thought I'd like called, Kentucky Fried Chicken and the Souls of the Faithful Departed. Once it's published, I will post it, becuase it made me produce sounds out loud. Killer.
Posted by Brian Foley at 10:25 AM
Monday, November 19, 2007
Saturday - I was scared I would miss the day entirely, so I took a walk to Grolier's Poetry Shop. I know many people have heard of the shop. I am quite happy it exists, a shop only for poetry. However, they are lacking in many things, particularly anything new. Do you ever feel guilty going into a store, a small store with a lugubrious shopkeeper, and not attempting to buy anything? I do. I dont know what it is. There should be a name for that feeling.
Let's call it timorous constipation. So, my timorous constipation was acting up. I bought Frederick Seidel's Ooga Booga to satiate the urge.
What a fantastic creep! Hilarious little ryhmes about Italian wealth, famous friends, cafes, hotels, and owls. You get the idea they were written on a napkin. Highly enjoyable. Following suit, I took myself out to potatos and pork chops at Grendel's Den and finished the book with a cup of tea at Algiers.
Go here to quickly listen to him read his charming poems from the book. I suggest "The Owl You Heard."
Posted by Brian Foley at 10:54 AM
Friday, November 16, 2007
Thursday, November 15, 2007
I read this book whilst cooking sausage last night. I had to put it on slow burn so I could finish this. It was well worth it. This book made me happy. Below is an excerpt. Further on it only gets better. I highly encourage the purchase of this book. Just look at that cover art!
I am a white mineral made of sodium chloride. I have been used for thousands of years as a medium of trade or payment as implied in the word “salary.”
I am a white woman, & I was in Pine Ridge & Wounded Knee.
I am a white woman whose child entered her home through the gift of adoption.
I am a white, heterosexual, conservative Republican evangelical, & I am an environmentalist.
I am a white male. What are you?
I am an artificial intelligence computer program.
Pleased to meet you.
Posted by Brian Foley at 10:57 AM
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
Years later, you could not find
a public drinking fountain within city walls.
They had been outlawed and returned
to their natural habitats
of luxury gymnasiums and condo shipyards.
Pete’s brother? You remember the one
with the hairlip? Arnold’s his name
Public fountains were his livelihood,
the only way he could drink without dribbling
He was fined three years community service
for suckling on a neighbor’s lawn sprinkler
and is now confined to the bib,
to drool like an octogenarian
unable to close his own window all the way.
It’s said in the private scrap yards
behind dead eyed german shepards and razor wire
grey puddles collect in rusted white basins
the undrained pipes of former bubblers
crying their last cascade.
Posted by Brian Foley at 12:32 AM
Monday, November 12, 2007
I read two books this weekend. One was Samedi the Deafness by by Jesse Ball.
Carl recommended it as a real champion, and he was right. It is a riddle of a book. It is like living in a cotton breast pocket of a giant liar. Who is this Jesse Ball? For one, he is a poet of some weighty concern. Here is an example, from a 2005 Boston Review.
A Set Piece
to be told at gatherings
The resignation of the sheriff left nothing to be done. The populace of that tiny hamlet poured out into the cramped streets, half-dressed and quarrelsome. Shops were broken into. Women were vigorously affronted. Men too were affronted, with equal vigor and panache. Many living near the municipal zoo were beaten by a crowd of contrary children. I taught everyone a hymn I had written, complete with musical accompaniment. It went:
Kill us if you like,
but you won't like Hell
when you do (when you do)
come to (come to)
in the heat (in the hot)
in the hot (in the heat)
in the goddamn fire of the Lord.
I pretend now to have made it up, but actually an old woman sang it to me when I menaced her husband with my little knife. I wanted their clothing, particularly her aubergine housecoat.
But don't be concerned for me. This sort of thing is what everyone does when everyone does it. And everyone who doesn’t does play along, or at least watches from the wings as those who do do what they do, whether well or wantonly.
In another hour, we shall burn the town to bits. I’ve always wanted to, and now we’re in cahoots. It’s a wonderful thing, being in cahoots. One can’t help but prefer it. We’ll all sit on the hill outside of town and laugh and hold hands with pretty girls and boys while pretty girls and boys laugh and hold hands with us.
And the sky will stream fitfully across the sky, its sails filled by the same wind that prompted us this morning when we rose, rosy cheeked and ham-handed from our all-too-narrow beds, filled with the same rippling restless pleasure that even now sits like a lantern in my youthful throat.
Crap that's good. He is a man of another time, and most certainly another place. He has me talking like a country peasant, and I think i like it. This is one of the best books I've read this year.
Posted by Brian Foley at 10:11 AM
Thursday, November 8, 2007
My friend Pete made a video game. It's called Phase. It's Guitar Hero for your Ipod, but you use the songs you have stored. Pete helped make Guitar Hero. I've played guitar for more than thirteen years. I've played Guitar Hero twice.
I was not very good at Guitar Hero.
You can buy this on Itunes now. I will buy it and play it on the way to NY.
Posted by Brian Foley at 2:50 PM
Emily has a piece in a one night art/music gala in NYC this weekend. It's features the two twins from Slapstick. It's pretty sick.
The show is called The Evening of Champions The basic directions
are here, but click on the link above for TOTAL INFORMATION
F Train @ York St
A Train @ High St
Saturday, November 10th
Doors open at 7pm
135 Plymouth Street, Suite 208
Dumbo, Brooklyn, Planet Earth
We both, of course, will be in the city all weekend.
I hope someone takes me out to brunch.
Posted by Brian Foley at 2:12 PM
Tuesday, November 6, 2007
Tonight I hosted Stewart O'Nan at the bookstore for his new book, Last Night at the Lobster. It's compact little book about a manager of Red Lobster in New Britain, CT on the the last night the restaurant is open for business.
What I really appreciate about this book is the complete lack of irony in it's setting, as well as the lack of that saccharine void of sanctimonious drivel which sometimes accompanies stories of the working class. This isn't about class. This is about putting your head down and getting through the day.
What I love is the true suburbanness of setting it in a vaccuous chain restaurant, not some cute mom & pop diner romantically imagined by the author. Those places barely exist anymore, and terrible chains were where (and sometimes still are) we would end up as a default because of their familiarness, a familiarness I can't happily name. It's a sad fact, but absolutely real. Here is a little explanation of Stewart's motivations -
Q. what made you choose the Red Lobster?
A. People consider chain restaurants soulless noplaces, boxes out along the commercial strip. They’re everywhere, and to most people unremarkable, as bland as the food they serve. I liked the fact they’re overlooked, hidden in plain sight. And Red Lobster’s not cheap. It’s not fast food, and yet it’s not a real restaurant either, just a copy of a corporate ideal. It’s a completely American in-between zone, a natural stage for my people.
This is a truly hopeless dirge in the most familiar of ways.
In the end, the manager goes on to work at the Olive Garden.
How perfectly real.
Posted by Brian Foley at 10:05 PM
I've been in desire for a new occupation. This may be it.
Posted by Brian Foley at 10:09 AM
Thursday, November 1, 2007
Possible Halloween Costumes for 2008
3. Floridian Line Beard, a.k.a. the chin strap (possible conjuction with number one)
4. The State of Montana
5. Pussy Inspector
Once again I didn't dress for success on Halloween. Real life dilemmas impeded on my inner child once again. My inner child is not doing so well. In fact, he's getting his ass kicked. I think I should get him a bodyguard, to keep the Melvin Moodys' away just like in My Bodyguard.
You are the thorn in my paw, Matt Dillon.
7. Adam Baldwin from My Bodyguard
Posted by Brian Foley at 1:41 PM