I am reposting this per Rob’s request. I took it down because I thought that EVERYBODY was commenting on the Wall Street mess and I didn’t need to add my two cents, but he seemed to enjoy it so here ya go.
Gentlemen, I have had men watching you for a long time, and I am convinced that you have used the funds of the bank to speculate in the breadstuffs of the country. When you won, you divided the profits amongst you, and when you lost, you charged it to the bank. You tell me that if I take the deposits from the bank and annul its charter, I shall ruin ten thousand families. That may be true, gentlemen, but that is your sin! Should I let you go on, you will ruin fifty thousand families, and that would be my sin! You are a den of vipers and thieves. I intend to rout you out, and by the eternal God, I will rout you out.
7th President of the United States, speaking to a delegation of bankers in 1832
* * *
I heard a few bars of The Knack’s My Sharona at 6:00 o’clock this morning. That was over 10 hours ago. Does anybody know if I can get this guitar lick surgically removed from my brain?
Ooh you make my motor run, my motor run
Gun it comin’ off the line Sharona
Oh, dear God in heaven, please PLEASE make it stop! I can’t take it anymore! I’m going to jump out my 9th floor window and splat all over 5th Avenue. Damn you to hell, The Knack! DAMN YOU TO HELL!
I don’t really want to be famous, and I’m kind of scared that might be happening.
This piece of drivel is from a fluff article on Michael Cera in the New York Times. Master Cera is the young actor who played the accidental father in Juno and was also in Superbad. He’s concerned about being too famous. He wants to be just a little bit famous, but not a lot famous. A while back, I read an interview with Nora Jones and in it, she said that the release of her first album was the beginning of one of the most unpleasant periods of her life because the album was a huge success and, “I was everywhere.”
Listen here, you fucking nitwits: If you don’t want to be famous then, for Christ’s sake, don’t pursue a career in the performing arts. Are you KIDDING me?! Do you have any idea what a rare gift you’ve been given? Of course you don’t. You’re too young to realize it. At the very least, you need to keep those sentiments private and not soil yourself in the New York Times. Your job is to promote your new work. Keep you pie-hole closed about the horrors of success. Kurt Cobain’s daughter is fatherless because he didn’t like being famous. Boo hoo hoo. Poor Kurt. If you don’t want to be famous, then don’t choose a career whose success is measured in the size of an audience.
A special note to the delicate Mr. Cera: Don’t stress about being too famous. You’re too shitty an actor for that to happen. You play the same guy in every film. You can get away with that stuff if you’re Al Pacino or Jack Nicholson but until then, you’d better concentrate on showing some depth, junior. For now, you’re just a wart on the ass of Hollywood.
You’ll have to excuse me, but I gotta run. I need to start my 2-hour commute home.
Grrrrr. Arf! Arf!
I’m fixated on the theft of my credit card. When I think about it, which is often, I get angry. Too angry, really. Mrs. Wife said that we’re not responsible for the post-theft charges so I should just move on and forget about it. You can ask any ex-girlfriend; moving on quickly is not one of my strengths. You lucky readers who have normal, healthy psychological predispositions probably would have forgotten the incident by now.
I found out that there were only two charges made before I was able to pull the plug; $3.79 at Pop Burger and $1,449 at Adrien Linford. Adrien Linford is a luxury goods shop on Madison Avenue and 74th Street. The fact that my credit card was used to buy a $1,449 bauble—probably a Gucci bag or Prada shoelaces—really irks the hell out of me. You have to be brand savvy and, presumably, moneyed to know about Adrien Linford. A shallow, materialistic grub got my credit card. If the thief had charged a case of Similac or a box of Pampers, I probably wouldn’t be so irritated.
* * *
As I was typing this out I had the news on in the background. They just reported that in India, a bomb went off in a flower market killing one and injuring 15. The fatality was a 12 year old boy. They bombed a flower market. Think about that. I really do need to move on.
Well, that sounds like a cheery evening of theater, doesn’t it? This time I was about as far off Broadway as you can get. The Abingdon Theater Company is one of a myriad of black box theaters that dot Manhattan. I saw The English Channel, which I was drawn to by a favorable review in the Times but I wasn’t impressed. It revolved around the love/hate friendship between William Shakespeare and Christopher Marlowe. Does anyone know if Marlowe was gay? Because this Marlowe was really, REALLY gay. Another English historical drama. Some people would say that I’m in a rut. I prefer to call it a groove.
* * *
Before the play, I ate at the Tick Tock Diner on 8th Avenue and 34th St. It’s not really a diner. It’s a restaurant with a diner theme which is pretty lame, since there are plenty of authentic diners still around. My waiter was an old man who had no business waiting tables. He should be retired instead of grinding out a restaurant job. I felt just awful for him. He looked to be in his late 60s and had to wear a stupid Tick Tock Diner outfit—a blue logoed polo shirt and a blue baseball cap. It seemed undignified for someone his age. All the other waiters were young men and women. There’s little doubt he does it for the money.
My dear mother, who is 73 years old, just had to quit her telemarketing job for health reasons. She claims she liked working because it got her out of the house. I’m sure there’s an element of truth to that, but the fact of the matter is that she has a tough time making ends meet on Social Security alone. I do what I can and send her some money every month but it still isn’t enough. What’s going to happen when all the aged Americans who need to work because they don’t have enough money to live on can’t work anymore? How did this happen in such a prosperous country?
* * *
I came out of the gym shower and saw a guy close my locker. I walked up and said, “What are you doing in my locker?” He said, “You lock was left open and I closed it for you.” “Thanks!,” I said. Three hours later I looked in my wallet and my credit card was gone. Mrs. Wife called the bank to cancel and over $1,000 had already been charged. I found all this out just minutes before the curtain went up. I spent the first :10 minutes of the play stewing in a deep, violent, hateful, very un-Zen like anger that I had been so incredibly stupid.
Charles Bukowski on being alone:
there are worse things than
but it often takes decades
to realize this
and most often
when you do
it’s too late
and there’s nothing worse
* * *
Some people have a city instead of a life.
How’s that for an opening line? It pulled me right in. Guess what? It gets even better. This is from FULL OF IT – The Birth, Death, and Life of an Underground Newspaper the new novel from friend and writer extraordinaire Tim Hall. Tim is fresh off his appearance at the Omaha Lit Fest. His new book is a good ride. Take it.