More than one person asked me if I had really placed the Boz Scaggs Tested – Boz Scaggs Approved logo on a gas pump yesterday, or if I just Photoshopped it on there. No, I really put it on a gas pump, and to prove to myself that it wasn’t another one of my Robitussin and paint thinner-based hallucinations, I drove by to see if it was still there today. Twice. In the morning it was right where I’d left it, but when I came home from work it had been thoughtfully realigned and moved to a corner of the display, where it works a lot better, stylistically speaking. It is one classy looking gas pump.
I would have placed it there myself, but I was kind of rushed and for some weird reason I didn’t want to be seen doing this, although for the life of me I don’t know what I thought was going to happen.
Gas Station Attendant: Hey! Hey you! What are you doing? You’re not putting a novelty Boz Scaggs sticker on my gas pump, are you?
Me: (runs away and hides in bushes)
So yeah, that’s a real thing I do now: I post weird Boz Scaggs graphics all over town, and I will continue to do so until I get the help I so desperately need.
And apparently this has struck a chord with my readers because more than one of them has not only encouraged me, but offered further ideas. Valued commenter Rose, for instance, thinks that I should create t-shirts with the Boz Scaggs Tested – Boz Scaggs Approved and the Boz Scaggs Says Go Fuck Yourself logos, and wear them according to my mood. I might just have to do that. They could replace my Bea Arthur’s Penis is Bigger Than Your Penis t-shirt, which is a little outdated, what with Bea Arthur being dead and all.
I was also informed that I had overlooked possibly the best graphic of the bunch, an oversight which I correct here:
But you are high out of your goddamn mind if you think I’m going to be posting this anywhere in public. People completely lose their sense of humor when they see the word “ejaculate” in a playground setting, and I can only imagine what would happen if that were to get traced back to me.
Me: So, what are you in for?
Cellmate: Murder. You?
Me: I falsified a guarantee from Boz Scaggs that a park bench wouldn’t ejaculate on children.
Me: (gets shanked 438 times)
So, yeah, not going to put that one up. Although maybe I’ll print one out, sneak into the local library, and slip it into a book on the history of the Whig Party in Colonial Politics. That oughta seriously shake someone up.
While you’re mulling that weirdness over, I want to talk about a different kind of weirdness: This is the 45th anniversary of the release of the double-album Trout Mask Replica by Captain Beefheart & His Magic Band. If you’re not familiar with this particular act of “music”, it is to weirdness what Lindsay Lohan is to genital warts. Check out the opening track, Frownland:
Jesus. And just think, there’s an entire double-album’s worth of “songs” like this to be had, and they’re all equally unsettling. A renowned critic at the time wrote that Trout Mask Replica was “great played at high volume when you’re feeling shitty, because you’ll never feel as shitty as this record.” He should’ve won the Nobel Prize for that line. (Supposedly, this steaming pile of whatthefuck grows on you after repeated listening, but another critic dismissed this idea, stating that it “still sounded fucking awful after six listens”.)
Listening to Frownland, I realize that the United States Armed Forces missed an opportunity. Fuck waterboarding, if you want to get terrorists to spill the beans simply give them a couple of doses of acid, lock them in a pitch black room, and start playing Trout Mask Replica at full volume on an endless loop. Those whose brains don’t reject their bodies on general principle alone will do anything to get out of there. They’ll be giving you intel on Mullah Omar’s skid marks in no time.
I like Trout Mask Replica, but not because it’s enjoyable in any sonic sense. I just like living in a world weird enough that someone could release an album with songs like Neon Meate Dream of a Octafish and not be chased down the street by a torch-weilding mob. (Says the guy putting Boz Scaggs stickers on gas pumps.)
Everyone at work has been talking about the season finale of Game of Thrones lately, and if you recorded the last episode don’t worry, there are no spoilers here. (The midget totally has sex with a dragon.) I don’t really care what’s going on because I don’t watch Game of Thrones. Why? Because I fucking hate midgets, that’s why. No, that’s not true. I don’t watch Game of Thrones because Norman Mailer was a fucking asshole.
A little backstory: For a while, I got on a Norman Mailer kick. He was a great writer, and very prolific. One day, I sat down and started to read Harlot’s Ghost, which is a novel about the CIA. Now, I love clandestine shit. I’ve got 3 excellent books on the über-secret NSA, lots of stuff on counter-intelligence, biographies about men who ran a veritable shadow-government during the Cold War. I am fascinated by that kind of thing, and so to sit down and read a great, big, huge motherfucking tome with the CIA as the backdrop made me giddy as a school girl, albeit one with facial hair that liked doin’ it with broads. You know what I mean.
Anyway, I devoured the book, enjoying every word. It was absolutely wonderful until I got kind of close to the end and realized that there were a lot of loose ends to wrap up, and very few pages in which to do so. Did you ever read Stephen King’s The Stand? A zillion fucking pages long, everything sets up for this massive battle pitting good versus evil, and then this happens:
“And then one of the bad guys blew the rest of the bad guys up with a big bomb and the good guys won and everyone went home and ate pie. The End.”
Seriously, when I read that ending, I was fucking FURIOUS. I hunted Stephen King down and locked him in my basement for 13 years. Yeah, it gave him the idea for Misery, but did he include me in the acknowledgements section? No, he did not. That fucker.
So as I approached the end of Harlot’s Ghost, I started getting more and more afraid that the last line would read, “Then he woke up and said, ‘Wow, what a crazy dream I just had!'”, and then I would have to hunt down Norman Mailer and stash his flabby ass in my basement, which meant that I’d have to clean up the mess that Stephen King made (that guy is a fucking S-L-O-B), and damn that’s a hassle. Also, I still have the Encyclopedia Brittannica Kid down there, and even though I’m only feeding him Purina Monkey Chow, it’s still fairly expensive.
So I held my breath as I turned the final page and saw the words “To be continued…” Fuck. Well, at least I wasn’t going to have this story end like an episode of the fucking Brady Bunch. So I went on with my life, and figured I’d read the sequel when it came out.
Some years later, I wondered what had ever happened to Harlot’s Ghost II, or whatever it was going to be called, and I looked it up on the internet. It seems that Mailer had lost interest in writing the sequel and shelved it. Then he fucking went and died, the inconsiderate bastard. I wanted to dig his ass up and have him reanimated, then have him infected with AIDS. I was pissed.
So now, let’s circle back to the Game of Thrones, or a Song of Fire & Ice, or whatever the fuck that series of books is called. I hate the whole dungeons and dragons genre of literature. Can’t stand it. Which is strange, because my favorite book of all time is the Lord of the Rings. That’s the exception because it is so well written. And over the years people have tried to convince me to try something else in the genre. “Dude, it’s this really cool book about a magical tree-elf that…”
Not interested. But then, somehow, someone got me to read the first book, Game of Thrones, and I was hooked. George R. R. Martin can fucking write. And the story was badass, and no character was safe, and I was enjoying the hell out of it. Then I noticed that this was a 7 book series, and only 5 had been written yet. And that the gap between books was getting longer and longer. And then I saw a picture of George R. R. Martin:
Look at that guy! He looks like he’s one Burrito Supreme away from a massive coronary! (He also looks like Jabba the Hut got it on with a merchant marine.) This is not the guy who I am going to rely on to complete this series of books. If he does it, great, I’ll go back and reread from the beginning, and then I’ll watch the series. But I will be damned if I am going to put all of my eggs in that flabby basket.
Someone once told me that it would be ok, because “if he dies, someone will finish the story.” No. I have never been down with the whole changing of the guard author thing. That’s cheating and it’s bullshit. “Coming out in Hardcover, the penultimate book in the Song of Fire & Ice series by George R.R. Martin, as written by his nephew Skippy.” No fucking thank you.
So people can talk about Game of Thrones all they want, I’ll just walk out of the room because there is literally nothing that they could say that would make me watch the show or read the books before they are finished. Well, almost nothing.
“Wow, I did not see that coming. Adding Boz Scaggs to the storyline? That’s crazy!”