-- My first reaction to the white box is always, "I hate the white
-- I want to negate it, force it back into something that is real, livable.
-- I like the idea of playing with that reaction along with the fridge's
position as the center of domestic life. I have been thinking about kitchen
habits and routines that center around the fridge. It all seems related
to the way what used to be considered old fashioned or oppressive to women
now seems on the cutting edge of feminism (or so we are led to believe,
and maybe I do believe?).
"monster" - the word has multiple resonances
-- the monster of the monster movie (who represents a fear of otherness),
-- the monster of size (what the Bretz Bros meant, I think, when they
named the couch),
-- Sesame Street muppet monsters,
-- monstrous human beings.
-- Couch who has committed war crimes, like Eichmann, or one of the various
Serbian military officers who pop up in the news, but is being sat on
by oblivious partygoers.
-- Emerging theme (shorthand): brutal male couch, oppressed female fridge
-- Couch or an indicated couch, used as a sort of puppet, with a mean
male voice (which could be voiced by a female actor, sure).
-- I'm picturing a sort of poem in which no character names are given,
but there is the possibility of multiple speakers
-- In the freezer compartment, I will have a running loop of video (or
DVD) of close-up of hands engaged in daily domestic tasks that take place
in the kitchen, i.e. washing dishes, kneading bread, churning butter.
Perhaps this will be framed in a set of curtains so one only sees the
image and not the equipment. In the fridge part, I will make it a kind
of doll house with furniture made from various containers and packages
found in a fridge. Maybe people could play in (with) the doll house?
My name is Kay MacCarthy and I am the host
of a half-hour DIY program called "The Well-Made Weapon." Right
now I don't have a regular time slot but I am in onversations with QPTV
and others so I am really hoping to share my work with lots and lots of
viewers, who (like me) love to make decorative, non-functional weaponry
from materials easily found around the home.
My show blends a little bit of history with a pinch of resourcefulness
and a whole lot of excitement about weapons and how they can be used
as beautiful and creative additions to any home. Robyn told me about
her idea to put a doll house in a fridge and, well, I love the woman,
but I wasn't terribly impressed with her idea.
So we got to talking and I mentioned some of my more edible creations
(the pineapple pineapple grenade springs to mind), and she agreed that
perhaps she might feature some of my work in the fridge. I am really
psyched to be a part of your group. It is so inspirational to be around
so many creative minds, all working together. If you want to see some
more of my work, you can check it out on Robyn's
Robyn Love gave (sold) me your name.So I guess I'm now the MONSTER
of your dreams.
I think your Well-Made Weapon show will fit nicely into our fall
lineup of The Homely Household. Of course we'll need to make some
cosmetic changes to your overall presentation. First and foremost
we need to identify you and your decorative weapons as uniquely American.
I've mocked up a web site intro that may be helpful for suggesting
to you the direction I think we need to go with your makeover.
The name change from Mac to Mc may seem insignificant but these are
the subtle details that fall into my domain as your producer. I need
to think ahead to matters such as product placement. So first think
Abstraction, Cubism, Expressionism, Impressionism, Magic Realism,
and Minimalism. Now think of one day soon having a pure all American
art-ism. That's right, McCarthyism. Dream big, Kay. Dream big.
For the Well-Made Weapon we will introduce a new "recipe"
for a decorative weapon in each half-hour television segment. The
following is a rough outline of the pilot show.The segment will feature
the decorative IED. Most viewers switching over from Martha Stewart
of course will not know what an IED is. So part of this pilot show
and every show will be educating the public as to the exact nature
of the weapon used as model for the art object. But first we will
have a little fun with audience's naiveté on weapons.
Many viewers will confuse your pronunciation of IED with the acronym
IUD. You will exploit this confusion through most of the segment but
later go on to educate the audience as to the true nature of Improvised
Explosive Devise and the high percentage of fatalities and amputees
in Iraq from these weapons. Blah blah blah.
I am also talking to the writers about inserting ICE into the segment
somehow. ICE is a nice little acronym for IED Countermeasure Equipment.
At one part of the segment we'll have you run to the freezer to put
some ICE on your forehead as remedy to your exploding IUD. A little
clumsy in concept but the writers might be able to make it work.
The Homely Household
why so fast, Ben? a girl likes a little romance...
You have to be fast to play in the big leagues. I know what
housewives want and I'm determined to give it to them. By the way I
got the title of my show The Homely Household from a verse in Lord Byron's
'Tis melancholy, and a fearful sign
Of human frailty, folly, also crime,
That love and marriage rarely can combine,
Although they both are born in the same clime;
Marriage from love, like vinegar from wine--
A sad, sour, sober beverage---by time
Is sharpened from its high celestial flavor
Down to a very homely household savor.
I am so excited!!! Yesterday I found a butter mold that allows you to
remove the carved portion (it is hinged at the sides and the bottom
piece--the carved piece-- releases from a set of clips). It means that
I (along with my viewers) can carve a new bottom piece so that one's
butter will have the impression of whatever you want--a landmine, a
machine gun, the H-bomb, whatever! The possibilities are endless!
From "Weapons: A Pictorial History" by Edwin Tunis:
"The first automatic pistol made in America was the Colt .38 introduced
in 1900...The caliber was increased to .45 in 1905 and in 1911 the gun
was adopted as the official US Army side arm. The Colt is the most
dependable of all automatics, an important characteristic since it is
intended for personal protection at close range and close range is no
time for a gun to jam or miss fire. It's quite a gun. It will stop a
running man in his tracks and will flip a light man clear over. It
delivers a mighty wallop and it jumps in the shooting hand like
fresh-caught salmon. This makes it a dangerous weapon for bystanders."
Argentine Ruling Revives Cases of 'Dirty War' Victims
By _LARRY ROHTER_
Published: July 15, 2005
I am so psyched! It worked!! I didn't record the process--need to
"fine tune" it first, but it sure was fun. Now that I know it
can think about the perfect way to make it a centerpiece for any party
or gathering. I am thinking about adding a boarder of blue berries for
that patriotic look, or perhaps that more "classic" iceberg
base with a carved carrot or two. Hmmmm...carved carrots...a whole new
avenue to explore!
jello is a harsh mistress...
LA OLA/SLOW RIDER/EGGHEAD
Confessions of the Beer Mystic
"I never had much faith in twelve-step programs until I initiated
my own. The only piece of furniture in my SRO apartment is a divan in
the far right corner. Notice that I call it a divan, not sofa or couch.
I put the refrigerator kitty-corner from this divan in the apartment.
If I stumble forward in the exaggerated sidewinder movement of the intoxicated,
there are exactly twelve steps every time I get up for a cold one. Amazingly,
the toilet bowl in the hall bathroom is also twelve steps from the divan.
Ever since I pledged to make this twelve-step program a part of my daily
life, my drinking and urinating had taken on an almost magical synchronicity.
I'd gotten rid of all the old bad habits and patterns. I felt like a
As my twelve-step program prescribed, I never kept anything in the
fridge but beer. And then one day there it was. Or should I say, there
he was. Sitting there in corner of the fridge half hidden behind the
beer. For now I'll just call him Mr. Egghead. But he was much more than
"Not long after I initiated the twelve-step program, I felt it
was safe to go out into public again. The first occasion for that was
a book party for the great palindromist, Dr. Awkward. His newest work,
"So Many Dynamos," had just been released. I knew that the
Doctor, like other modern-day alchemists, was secretly engaged in The
Great Work while operating under his public guise of palindromist.
"The book party was one of those wine and cheese affairs more
popular at art openings in the 1980s than now. In those days I would
rummage through Leo Castelli's dumpster and fish out discarded invitations.
Every night, sometimes twice a night, I had an art opening to attend.
More important than all the new art I saw, was my ability to supplement
my mostly liquid diet with the solid nutritional value of cheese. I've
probably had more cheese -- more kinds of cheeses -- than anyone in
the world. For a while, these art openings seemed to be competing for
who could serve the most exotic imported and specialty cheeses. I once
had buffalo cheese, supposedly made from bison's milk. Don't ask me
how it tasted; my palate long ago ceased to discern. A beer's a beer.
The same with cheese.
"Somewhere along the line, to my dismay, cheese disappeared from
these openings. I believe it had something to do with The Guerilla Girls.
The Guerilla Girls is an anonymous group of feminist artists. I don't
know much about them, except that they all wear gorilla heads. Rumor
had it that The Guerilla Girls were secretly mixing some truly exotic
cheeses into the cheeses at certain art openings. Posters showing a
lactating Gorilla Girl were wheat pasted all over SoHo. I forget what
the poster said, but from that time on out I noticed cheese began slowly
disappearing from art openings everywhere.
"So I was glad for the cheese at the book party. After a number
of quick wines, I immediately spread some brie -- I think it was brie
-- on a piece of rye and swallowed it. I was home again. Just like Mamma
used to make. I was knifing what appeared to be gouda, when the Doctor
tapped me on the shoulder.”
LEGGS: The gimmick is the packaging. A pair of nylons in a silver plastic
egg. The commercial had a woman in a short dress strutting her stuff on
a street and all the men turning their eyes to look at her. The stuff
she's strutting was named in the tag line. "Look! She's got Leggs!"
Deconstructing this commercial as a writer with one of the chicks and
under the watchful eye of Mr. Egghead.
Could the egg heads be cut off at the nose to float? And something feminine
like bathing caps put on their heads? Now they're emotional.
All the eggheads shouldn't be put into one basket (nose or no) or one
slow rider. Some of them will have to walk beside her, like a float or
a buzby berkley big finish where bathing caps are not optional.
Yes to the Buz by Berkeley big finish. The glamour . . . the precision
. . . as they step to. Around the fridge? Up to the fridge? On top? Inside
the fridge coming out? Marching with sparkly stilettos attached?
What we are not is food, hopefully for anything, except parasitic bugs,
so maybe we are not not food. but we are not kept in little freezing cold
boxes, unless you consider office air conditioning a form of refridgeration/preservation.
I don't know who these eggheads are, but if they "buzz by"
maybe they come out of the egg compartment? eggs on stilettos?
The train of showgirl eggheads dancing through the fridge . . .stopping
off at frozen emotions . . . meat, stopping off at contained explosions
. . . chocolate cheese cake, stopping off at excesses blocked by time
. . . dollop of dripped sour cream browned at its edges, stopping off
at good intentions . . . mom's ambrosia salad*, stopping off at pretensions
. . .capers for ice burg lettuce . . .dancing on out of the fridge for
what really matters . . . fame's piazza.
-- 2 bananas, sliced
-- 3/4 cup diced orange
-- 1/2 cup seedless grapes
-- 1/4 cup chopped dates
-- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
-- 1/4 flaked coconut
Combine fruits, sprinkle with lemon juice; chill. Add whipped cream;
toss lightly. Serve on crisp lettuce; garnish with coconut
from Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves,
Ali Baba's cook who also happens to dance and who is your domestic partner
for Slow Rider
Hbetser will heretofore be Mabel Gravy for the
Diva Divan. This may help you Morgiana? It will definitely help Mabel
to be among the eggheads for a change.
Perfect. Mabel Gravy is comfort food . . . 'tho conjuring up yummy
tv-tray warmth . . . Mabel Gravy is also fearless in her apronish
(Now, I'll see Mabel and gravy all around me . . . like text slowly
rising up from underneath water . . .the words will appear in newspapers,
books, signs, packages . . . anything I happen to read. Friends will
innocently use the words Mabel and gravy in their conversations and
it'll secretly jolt me like the sound of a wave hitting a rock)
I think tickling is what made me the asskicker that I have become
today. Morg, do I mean literal butt whooping or perhaps metaphorically,
kicking the asses of the audience with show stoppers, or both? An
apron is ideal!
Morg prefers the literal: preparing linen; stirring broth over a
fire; dancing for guests; butt whooping the captain of the forty thieves
. . . but she'll take on the modern metaphor.
Awhile back a discarded Rosie the Riveter Air Freshener on the sidewalk
caught my eye. I picked it up, sniffed it, and then stuck it into
the outside pouch of my bag.
The ad reads Funky Fresh. My pouch does smell sort of funky now. But
more like the inside of a rental car than a woman's armpit.
Sometimes I want to be a man's man. Get drunk and go out to kick
ass. Sometimes I want to be a woman's man. Get all suave romantic
and go ballroom dance.
It would be fun to get drunk with Rosie, go to the ballroom dance
and fuck with people. Run from the cops. And afterward have sex sort
of quick and functional, like a loose rivet you replace with a new
Not sure what a date with Mabel Gravy would be like. Yeah, dinner,
but then what? Apple pie? This scary Oedipal thing wants to start
happening. Mommie Dearest pinning me to the ground and tickling me
to death. Bennie Nee Nee Nee. Little Bennie Nee Nee Nee.
True story. My wife was born on my mother's birthday. Exactly 6
years 6 months 6 days after I was born. 666 She thinks I'm the devil.
I think she's the devil. Can I change my name to Lucky, the Loser.
Destiny's Clown in Fame's Piazza.
no, no. First date? Second? Doesn't matter. sitting on the divan
after dinner . . . seeing Bennie's wet underarms, which smell nothing
like a woman's, his clipped knuckle hair, ashes falling from his
cigarette . . . Mabel knows there will be no scary Oedipal thing
tonight and stands. Bennie takes one last puff . . . grinds his
cig out in one of Mabel's clean ash trays . . . and follows her
to the front door to say good-night.
Mabel's Recipe for Coconut-Banana Rolls
Dip banana sections in lemon juice and honey; sprinkle with toasted
coconut. Serve with cream cheese softened with fruit juice. Garnish
with red flavored gelatine or jellied cranberry sauce. Can be refrigerated.
[I want a world where celebrities give their fingerprint instead
of their autograph. Nothing safer, more secure, more democratic than
a celebrity. I write here the words "Bin Laden" and they
don't get underlined as a mistake by spell check in Word. At first
I'm confused. Is Bin Laden so safe secure and democratically elected
Evil to have already entered the lexicon? But then I realize both
Bin and Laden are words in their own right, commoners. The poet H.D.
hung with Ezra Pound and William Carlos Williams. She held the notion
that words were like vessels that could be cracked open, myrrh like
resins releasing their imaginative aromas. Common bins laden with
Again back to text as recipe. A list of ingredients. But then what?
How to blend? How hot is the heat? But I'm not a good cook, so all that's
too complicated. Give me only recipes for strange new elixirs. Something
I just sprinkle yeast into and watch ferment. Something I can drink
and get drunk on. Unlike those eggheaded showgirls, I dance in abandon
with the spirits.
Perhaps Mabel's married to the refrigerator ? It's a secret, illicit
affair...she gains all of her sensual energy from there and then cooks
amazing dishes....which bring her suitors, suitors, suitors, which she
has to cleverly dispose of so that she can be alone iwth her NORGE.
[WHo is Bennie? I haven't been keeping up with the serial story form.
Miss a day and you miss a new character. Bennie can try to impress me
with his antics and especially his COOL, but nobody is as cool as NORGE
and nobody is as secretly COLD as Mabel....
I was shuffling the idea around of three voices based on the fridges:
the I, the cool, and the cold (loosely coinciding with a person (I), the
fridge portion (the cool), and thefreezer (cold). Some ideas that pop
up are: the barriers that separate the three, power struggles and outages,
being stuffed to full, not having enough, something cool becoming cold
Maybe the I starts out as an individual, but the cool and the cold fight
for control of the I, only to have the I morph into an amalgam of both
the cool and the cold??
I like the notion of voices from a cold dark place.
Me, myself, and I as cave dwellers before the advent
I arrived at the egghead idea through the allegory -
food for thought - with the fridg being a sort of
repository for thoughts or ideas “on ice” or on hold
A place to stop or “retard” the incubation process
(rot) fertile or not.
In most definitions of appliance I found that device
was a word most often used, and synonyms for device
being apparatus, implement, machine, or contrivance.
This mechanism for retardation seems to have slipped
into my life as a way of dealing with the quantity of
info available and necessary for the continuance of
I really need a cell phone with internet access,
games, a camera, etc. ( perish the thought or not ).
The ever expanding capacity for all that rot has me
feeling like I’m becoming like the class egghead
In my schoolyard “playground politics” days the name
egghead or pencil neck carried some weight not
particularly desirable if you were the so named.
Generally the reference was to the fact that you were
a “ know it all” or a walking encyclopedia of useless
facts that even the teacher didn’t care about.
food for thought,
all that rot
all your eggs in one basket
perish the thought
egg on one's face
egg sucking dog
2 more phrases that came to mind partailly because of
the holiday. I grew up small town mid west and after
the town picnic (before the baseball game and
fireworks) there were kid contests like threelegged
race, gunnysack race, wheelbarrow race, and of course
the egg toss where the competeing partners would line
up opposite each other taking a couple steps backward
after each successful toss and catch until there was
only one pair with an unbroken egg.
I thought that this was the source for "egg on one's
face" (that being the unlucky loser) but as the google
search exposed it means a social gaffe originating
from the saying "egg sucking dog" which is a dog that
has turned from asset (protector of the chickhen
house) to liability by eating the eggs and being
exposed by not licking all of the egg off.
Of course the winners of the egg toss were required to
break their egg to make sure it was not hard boiled.
Dirty Old Egg-Sucking Dog
Well, he's not very handsome to look at
Aw! he's shaggy and eats like a hog
And he's always killin' my chickens
That dirty Egg-Suckin' Dog.
I'm gonna stomp your head in the ground
If you don't stay out of my hen house
You dirty Egg-Suckin' hound.
Now if he don't stop eatin' my eggs up
Though I'm not a real bad guy
I'm goin' to get my rifle and send him
To that great chicken house in the sky.
You're always a-hangin around
But you'd better stay out of my hen house
You dirty Egg-Suckin' Dog hound.
Copyright Jack H. Clement
dining: "we're not chasing design prizes. we're
dining the experience of eating together, communing
together tends to enrich out hearts with each other.
families say that a key to staying connected is eating
together. talking over dinner.
here in the couch, we are lounging while dining. the
models seem to be devouring something while so relaxed
and sleepy eyed. are they eating, consumming
a way to a man's heart is through his stomach. maybe
this saying informs me about Stephan/Gus. There have
been movies of serial killers keeping body parts of
there victims in their refridgerators. freezing food kills the cells.
am i a keeper of hearts in my fridge? yes. do i want
to kill them? no. preserve them? yes. consumme them?
yes. after all, i am a diehard romantic.
lost in the world of food molds and coorporations
i want desperately to put on your apron, Mabel
roll bananas for the female fantasy
stuck searching among ocean lines
circling about understanding the lunar cycle:
mystical like me, defined unlike me
can i grow a beard for the bees
yet still shop our local MegaMart for lacy innerwear?
will you meet me at the cart corral for local gossip
sometimes the bay disappears and
it is a mystery
the midday moon is also gone
this is where you will find me
come ride the bus with gus
things the mood hides are within me
a trip of your lifetime!
come one come all!
enter the fridge and despite the frost i will warm you
Not so fast Gus. You're not so clear, the freezer's been thrown open
for the bi-annual defrosting, so there's a good deal of fog in this
room. Your bus offer intrigues me, I need to get away. but please,
enough of the romantic talk, I'm telling you I'm as cold as ice and
it just make me chillier. You can't explain the lunar cycle to me,
I guarantee it. but did you know this stuff about dogs and egg faces?
(where the phrase "egg on the face" comes from?) Now that
piques my curiosity. I never knew a dog liked raw eggs. That dog must
me hungry, huh? Ever see a dog eat a grape, by the way? That's entertainment.
i passed a bouncing body yesterday.
eggs don't bounce unless they're hardboiled.
my heart stopped and i was paralized by an unknown
unable to process the event, my hand went to my mouth
and after the man rose and hobbled...no hopped... to
the side of the road, i continued on.
my hand was still at my mouth and my breath was short.
i was looking for someone to connect with over the
step by step slowly regaining composure, i noticed my
hand...no my finger... at my heart...circling my
heart...unconcious movement/gesture...it felt good to
comfort from my finger.
the man was ok. i went back to the scene hours later.
it was empty, but i quickly turned my head afraid to
concentrate too much energy on the spot.
ALI BABA BED
Why Ali Baba to
"The Thousand and One Nights or Arabian Nights is a series of anonymous
stories in Arabic, considered as an entity to be among the classics of
world literature. The cohesive plot device concerns the efforts of Scheherezade,
or Sheherazade, to keep her husband, King Shahryar (or Schriyar), from
killing her by entertaining him with a tale a night for 1,001 nights.
The best known of these stories are those of Ali Baba, Sinbad the Sailor,
"BORGES: It was not Scheherazade who established the canon of
the Quitab alif laila ua laila, The Book Of The Thousand Nights and
One Night, but a Frenchman by the name of Jean Antoine Galland, who
with the help of a blind Maronite from Lebanon added stories such as
"Alaeddin and His Magic Lamp," "Ali Baba and the Forty
Thieves," "The Sleeper and the Waker," which even his
enemies dared not omit. His translation was then translated back into
Arabic, where it replaced the original, if there ever was such a thing.
It was the Orientalist Edward Lane who festooned the tales with a lush
exoticism, placing the word "romantic" into the bearded mouth
of a 12th-century Muslim, which is a kind of futurism. But it was Captain
Richard Burton who translated the tales into what they were all along:
a repertory of marvels. Burton, who dreamt in seventeen languages and
claimed to have mastered thirty-five. Burton, who risked sure death
to visit Mecca disguised as an Afghani and kiss the aerolith of the
Kaaba, who tasted human flesh, who heaped onto Scheherazade's tales
kisses, Viziers, palm trees, moons, with a stamina worthy of Cecil B.
The bed is the place of birth and death. It is where we loose ourselves,
or our consciousness, we become out of control (as if we ever were in
control). How important is consciousness in relation to life or existence?
We lie down and sleep, sometimes when people die those who remain say
"they look as though they are sleeping". Fucking is the "little
death". Sometimes when we sleep we dream.
Stories in a way are like dreams.
i maybe want
to do a performance with lots of water.
i maybe want vivian (a 5-year old friend) to perform with me.
i maybe want at least part of the performance to be butoh
am looking for butoh
flashy flesh strangled by the squall and dragged in ecstasy into the
the rigor mortissed lightening bolt after its little death
then floats to the surface on a sundrenched halfshell
like voices from a cold dark place or text slowly rising up from the depths
and what is it now?
a rare gem yearning, reaching to grace the ear of god
or a monstrous tumor masquerading as the child in its mother's womb
itself born of the irritant grain that tormented it into existence
manipulating the ebb and flow of his sense of purpose
--what do i want, why am i here--
disturbing the dream of his bygone power
like the secret jolt of a wave
hitting a rock
I AM WHO I AM
Tetragrammaton, something written that cannot be spoken.
The burning bush said to him
I AM WHO I AM
So Moses was graced with author-ity. He could write in stone.
But the rest of us writers need to eat our spinach in order to wheat
paste hard copy posters of our productions up.
In some ways DIVA DIVAN ostensibly appears unevenly slanted toward the
visual artists. Sofa, fridge, and the art as the given. And these site-specific
materials do permit the set design a certain type of fascist control over
But back to Moses, which came first, the written words or the stone,
or the articulated performance of the burning bush? They all seem to spring
simultaneously from the same authority.
In the end the theatre production, the art show, the art book catalogue
will be created from a process that will be transparent to all participating
and witnessing but finally will present an authority and NAME impossible
to decipher for any audience.
Even in this early stage, the web page Gabriele just posted begins to
suggest certain structures developing. But the process will continue to
overrun any too early solidification. The better translation for
I AM WHO I AM
I WILL BE WHO (what or that) I WILL BE
solidification and or crystalization
The Moses story is a good one and I don't to but it just reminds me of
the first time I had to step up and defrost the freezer section myself,
(1st loft, 1st yr art school, etc.) thinking that the secret of life could
or would be revealed in the process (too many drugs) and then realizing
when it was done that the only thing revealed was the fact that if I continued
to use the fridg, defrosting would have to be done again. The second time
it had to be done the door of the freezer section was imbedded in ice
and was pushing the fridge door open creating even more ice, so I just
put the whole thing out on the street.
I'm sure the Beer Mystic can see the problem with that solution and
then it was revealed to me "rite" or wrong that frost free is
a wonderful thing.
you may have seen the reruns of honey mooners on kinescope. movies shot
from the t.v. set. as the episode happened. we did them live. in the moment.
we look primitive in blurry black and white so what. jackie gleason my
stand-in avatar did me well, wish to say hi to him and his last wife marjorie.
boy could she cook. funky and tasty. new orleans mean like the music.
must have been her roots and routes to get there in brooklyn. all of us
loved brooklyn by the way, thought it realer than manhattan, less art.
in the early fifties everyone remembered they were from somewhere else.
we had dress up clothes and day to day working clothes. the iconography
was clear and all over the place. put on a tie and a suit and get tipsy
on martinis, live your life that way, and be the thin man. it was enough
to wear a style. you bought it or chose it and got a living wage. the
bus company where i drove a bus supplied a gray surge uniform for five
dollars. deducted from my first ten weeks pay. fifty cents a week. alice
stayed home as a homemaker. i raged and raged. it was a man's prerogative
then. things ticked me off and i got loud. alice never let one get bye
her tho. stood up to me word for word. i was a jerk. victimized by my
macho. but not a jerk eintirely since i cared about her and earned a living.
from the age of 12 i tried to talk at least a full octave lower than my
natural speaking voice.
maybe you liked the episode where i tried to make a fortune selling an
all in one kitchen appliance like ronco.
did you see the episode on cayuga lake. we canoed up there fished got
drunk and orgied all weekend in order to get in the mood.
i said pow in the kisser right to the moon. the usa did get to the moon
in sixties wasn't it.
the refrigerator was the center of our set. we shot the 44 episodes in
that one room. sometimes i hid stuff in the refrigerator. the coil on
the top of the refrigerator means it was a modern appliance before the
second world war.
i'd tune up for the new episodes by opening the refrigerator door staring
into the box for maybe thirty seconds. don't know exactly why i did that.
but it did empty my mind and calm me. i guess all my nagging obsessions
stuck to the empty shelves.
diva nick figured out how important the fridge was for our improvisational
work. i'd thank him. except like usual there's no holding him responsible
for inadvertent brilliance.
Art Carney as Ed Norton, Ralph Kramden's neighbor and running partner.
He always addressed his friend as "Ralphie boy." But Ralph always
addressed his friend as "Norton." And wife Alice would always
say "Ralph Kramden, you listen to me nowŠ." to put him
back on the straight and narrow. Norton's wife's name was Trixie. How
wacky is that? Sounds like a stripper's name.
Norton worked in the sewer. The ultimate shit job, literally. But he
never ranted and raved like Ralph. No, he just took all the shit the world
piled on him in stride. His goofiness was like the grace that is bestowed
on all the sacred fools. Lucky, the Loser.
i always loved norton don't think i didn't. funny ranting the way i did
turned me into one of those pop up dolls without legs the kind that pop
back up after you knock them down. but for some reason i thought norton's
feelings got hurt more than mine. the cause of his physical humor the
way he tossed his legs and arms around flopping like a floppy doll. guess
we were the opposite kind of kid amusements. me the pop up loud mouth
and he the floppy rag doll you had to love and keep no matter what.
we were of course along the same continuum certainly. the laugh to laugh
game. since i've moved on i've taken to reflection more and physical comedy
less. boy could i use a little of the traveling music tho just to limber
up again. we did it all without a laugh track or a live audience. which
meant our timing was honed right by vaudeville, in the blood. it's like
writing for theater. no substitute for watching people say it in front
of other people. sometimes i think it was all there the entire story of
america or at least america circa 1950s. the job, the breadwinner, the
wife, the neighbors and friends, the social organization, sex coming through
when we did the mambo... (divas call it mumbo now, huh) we had a confidence
about who we were. no black people unfortunately. what a waste. no spanish
or latins or asians. just us loud immigrants from europe. a shame we didn't
cast a wider net. hey. that was television.
that play of sam shepherd's where they keep looking into the fridge and
finding nothing there. hey. like i said. that's how i tuned up to do a
hey looking at the news these days is like looking at the fridge. take
a look and guess what nothing's there.
i think art is a more versatile actor then me or maybe we're neck and
neck. our secret was not trying too hard and living a fool life with as
many experiences as possible. see the bridge and jump off or jump in.
at least when it comes to people. then the mystery of being both recedes
and comes clearer at the same time. one thing about being alive. gotta
laugh about it.
later, love yuh,
alice alice i'm looking in the fridge and there's nothing to eat
you'll have to make do with peanut butter, ralf. i had to let out your
pants again and needed to buy fabric from tailor zuckerman. he did the
best he could but it was a special material that had to be matched.
i got the uniform from the bus company. how special is that.
they haven't made material like that since the war. nothing that cheap.
zuckerman spent over an hour trying to find anything like it. and let
me tell you something dear, it took a lot of it to give you some room.
boom pow right to the moon.
great. the way things are going i can see it's the only way i'll get
out of here and get a vacation.
ohhh ohh ohhh, one of these days
ed and i were talking about ole times the other day and yeah the doll
came up. we got a royalty i think five cents on every one of those. we
yukked it up about how they never could get his expression right. something
about the squared off template that fit the stamping machine they used
to save a few bucks. hey we're going for it. signed up and ready. take
a serious bid. who thinks about keeping that kind of junk. this'll even
things a bit get ed laughing again. the guy can get morose. sit there
at the table in front of the fridge staring off. those grunts somewhere
between grunt and gurgle tossing his hands around. that's not to say that
whenever the lights went on he didn't hit his mark and turn his line.
but during down time. sometimes he'd sit there not moving just staring
out. looking at the fridge or out the window. i learned it was best to
sit down near him and read not paying any obvious attention to his struggle.
just be there right there nearby. did that many a day. do it today as
a matter of fact. now and then. although with time he laughed more and
stared less. hard to make a funny man laugh you know. it all feels so
professional and manipulated. when it's your biz the laugh lines telegraph
a long way off. it doesn't work unless someone is brand new and spontaneous.
making an original response. strangely enough old jokes also work. jokes
you've hear a thousand times. jokes you've told a thousand times. we're
one day ed sat there for maybe an hour had me worried. hard to just keep
quiet and be there. but i did. this time it was real rough. he was staring
and moaning and groaning a long time. then suddenly without a change in
his look he said. "this kramer guy stole my shtick ralfy boy. watched
his show last night. he nailed me... the moves coming from nowhere. he
did the moves that come from nowhere. he felt them. listening to his body
talk. the body talk. i started doing that in second grade. tore the class
up. he did it. the sucker was good."
i smiled and said to him, "look, they don't steal from the poor.
you're a rich man talent wise. a king. take it as another jewel to wear
in your cap."
he got up right then and there walked over to me put his arms around
me and kissed me on the cheek. next second he fell down doing one helluva
pratfall. we laughed until we pissed.
--ed at table staring at the fridge making low groans and gurgles.
a few spastic seaming movements. ralf reads looks up now and then.
this lasts for thirty seconds.--
how'd we wind up with bennie the magpie as manager.
chattering everyone up.
"author, author-ity" writers know they better shut up and
talk. a magpie. bennie the magpie chattering everyone up.
could have gotten us more than 5 cents per friggin doll. so what.
so what anyway. the avante guarde needs to shut up about itself.
after the age of thirty. by forty they better put a lid on it for good.
after that they do the same ole thing over and over.
just like the rest of them.
nothing new. there's always been a crazy yelling and screaming.
right from the start.
--ralf looks up.--
glad you're feeing better. and a little traveling music please.
--raucous music. ralf and ed get up and do their wild dances.
music stops. moves slow down to butoh?--
Man Meets Nature
we've always been fascinated by these trees, usually found in urban settings,
eating/being eaten by the fences that get in their way. when they get
really big and their trunks straddle both sides of the fence line, they
retain scars on their bark in the shape of the fence links.
FRIDGE INSTALLATION PROPOSALS
i would like to make a plexiglas sheet - i sometimes work
with thin plex, trace comics and insert found text into the thought bubbles
-- so i was going to make a large sheet -- a see-through comicstrip --
and crack it-smash it , then place it in the fridge - like cracked shards
of thin ice with cartoons on it. the words i would like to take from someones
writing -- a selected writer so i can riff off of their writing
Rex Rime here proposing to put a good face on all my
eggs in one basket, a tisket a tasket.
I would also propose, for the extra symbolic edge,
that there be a wise old pigeon scaring owl on top of
the talking face on the fridge. I wouldn’t want the
wisdom of yo mama to escape anyone.
Trouble, In Paradise
Do people ever think about the environment when they manufacture things,
mean, I was plastering my wall, sweeping up the joint compound from the
floor, thinking about going into the dirt along with the paint flakes
animal coming across it, they could ingest it and die. This is an example
my everyday existence with my mind. I am often obsessed with garbage,
dirt that it goes into and how we somehow will end up ingesting it. When
go into a large box store it is frightening when my mind goes that way.
night I could not sleep because I thought we could run out of oil in the
next 5 to 10 years. Furthermore, what function does oil serve in its natural
state, inside the earth? The next morning I walked into store on Route
that specialized in caviar, I thought from the hudson river. In the back
was a magnificent diorama of wood carved figures of russians with an
enormous dead sturgeon. I asked the man behind the counter about caviar
from the Hudson. He said this was his family's business and they had to
selling it in 1996 because the sturgeon became scarce and they are protected
now. Then they imported them from Russia, but not anymore, because it
been protected under Communism. afterwards, all broke loose and they
overfished the sturgeon. A conversation ensued in which he said that cities
were environmental places to live. I was amazed and in agreement that
said this. He said people usually thought he was crazy because of his
(thoughtfulness) about the environment ......
To take some kind of action and to fulfill my wanting to make things
fill the refrigerator with environmental info positive and negative and
embellish them as if they were fetish objects. I would like to make
postcards, pamphlets, and/or refrigerator magnets and possibly sculptures
that will go on the outside or inside of the refrigerator.
do people ever think about the environment when they manufacture
things. i mean, i was plastering my wall sanding the surface smooth
doing some paint... later, when sweeping up the joint compound and
the plaster flakes i thought this will be buried in dirt, in the soil.
what if an animal came bye. it could eat it and die. this is an example
of how i live with myself every day, how i live with my mind.
i am often obsessed with garbage, the dirt it will go into and how,
after a complicated process, the garbage will come back to us in the
food we eat. if i go into a big name store, a target for instance
or a walmart, it is frightening when my mind goes that way.
one night i could not sleep because i thought we'd run out of oil
in the next five or ten years. furthermore, i thought, what purpose
does oil serve in its natural state inside the earth.
the next morning i walked into a store on route 28, a store that
specialized in caviar,caviar made from sturgeon caught in the hudson
river. i heard about the place years ago and finally decided to take
a look. in the back of the store was a magnificent diorama of carved
wooden figures. they were russian fisherman standing behind an enormous
dead sturgeon. i asked the man in the back about caviar from the hudson.
he said that the store is his family's business and they had to stop
selling hudsoncaviar in 1996. the sturgeon had become too scarce and
were protected now. for a while they imported russian caviar, but
that was impossible now. russian caviar had been protected under communism.
afterwards, all hell broke loose, the sturgeon were over fished and
became very rare.
the owner of the store said cities were environmental places to
live in and people needed to understand that. everything needs to
balance. i was amazed to hear him say this. he said people often thought
he was crazy when he talked about cities and the environment. i told
him that i agreed with everything he said.
it is very hard for me to be alive today. there are smells that make
me think nightmarish thoughts. when i'm driving i smell the gas burning
in the engine. for an hour or two i cannot eat after i drive my car.
but i have to drive to get food and shop for things. when i am in
a big name store, a target or a walmart, my feelings and thoughts
go all over the place. the colors look bright and run together. the
boxes, cans and appliances seem stacked too high, i'm afraid they
will fall and bury me. when i am in a big name store my shoes stick
then suddenly slide.
at bloomingdales the make-up women look smooth faced orange and red.
is this the new make up people wear now orange and red.
i found that if i sit quietly in the corner of my living room and
stare out the window
looking up at the sky... this calms me down... gardening is impossible
now. in the garden i think of dirt. i like to rub a white cloth on
a white floor...
List of art pieces(over all obssessive quality, positive and
problems and solutions-The environment, black humor too.)
-- pig driving a car(fridge magnet drawing)
-- tree paper sculpture made from supermarket flyer
-- environmental pamphlets sewn with beads
-- picture of an attractive woman's open mouth(fridge magnet)
-- map of the concreted U.S,roads and parking lots ( a frightening map
-- Magnet-The US is 5% of the worlds population and produces 40% of the
-- books inside fridge "Conversations at the end of time(environmental
criticism book), Cofessions of a corporate Hitman,What's the Matter with
Kansas, Life and Debt in Jamaica (A video)
-- Fridge magnets made of garbage-cup, crumpled paper, toilet paper role
-- old bird decorations with glitter hanging from fridge shelves
-- Accordion folded large words that actor can pull out of fridge like
"Catastrophie or maybe words a writer would like to give me.
-- fridge magnet "for Consumption"
-- "picture of fish killed by fish trawlers (by catch)
-- Picture of cows in a factory farm (YUMMY)
-- Global warming protection kit for birds to use themselves(such as an
-- nside fridge-animal abuse magazines
-- magazine issue-suburban sprawl and wild animals in your backyard
-- picture and words on or in fridge-%80 of the worlds forests ancient
forrests are gone
-- fridge magnet-picture of a clear cut forest (before and after images)
-- 10 things you can do now for the environment(fridge magnet(s)
-- Magnet-fewer that 620 mountain gorillas are left on earth
-- inside fridge-graphic pamphlet with horrific picture of animal experimentation.
.... and so on and so forth
Decorative Weapons (see above)
While everyone was talking at the BBQ, I started having
visions of jello molded into weapons, served on a platter, stored in a
fridge. The perfect chilly treat for these hot days (yikes!!). So I put
my thinking cap on and tapped into one of my favorite resources--The Internet!--and
I found my answer:
Watch out Julia Child 'cause Kay is coming to town!
Bill Cosby would make a good spokesman for these weapons. Wally, your
actor friend larry moten does a great impersonation of him. Maybe....
Dr Bill has caused some controversy especially his hometown here in Philly.
In all in his speeches starting last year, most recently at a Temple commencement,
he has been delivery a message to his community.
Examples of objects:
Frost-free dressing, heads, hand grenades etc—works especially well
if it’s an object used in the next scene.