Saturday, April 28, 2012

Odd Book Title of the Week: Baseball Dope Book

This just struck me as odd. Given that steroids, growth hormones, and other synthetic performance enhancing drugs weren't refered to as "dope" in 1965, the title just seems, well quaint.

I am certain some roid-head is trying to mainline this piece of literature right now to get some edge in his game. Go fig...

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Friday, April 13, 2012

Open Letter to Mr. Grant Morrison

Dear Grant Morrison,

Thank you for being my favorite comic writer of the past decade. I have been a fan of your work on so many DC Comics titles, from Final Crisis, Batman, All Star Superman, and Doom Patrol. I can't truly express how innovative I think your work truly is in this medium.

While I am certain that many individuals at conventions might approach you with critiques and commentaries about your work, asking why you did this or seeking explanations for your creative decisions, I am actually writing because I have a very modest proposal for you to approach with the DC Comics character of Superman, and I believe that you are perhaps the only individual with the creative wit to handle such a task.

Before I get to the meat of the proposal, I want to return to a brief character you created with little back-story who appeared in your run on Animal Man.  In one of the alternate versions of Earth that Animal Man encounters during the Crisis 2 storyline, we see Dream Syndicate of America, we meet an African American Superman, the Sunshine Superman. This character only appears briefly in other comics, once in In Infinite Crisis and once more in Final Crisis. However, I would love to see a story with him as the titular character. Of course he needs a villain, and who could he face? No mere Lex Luthor would be appropriate, nor would a Doomsday, Brainiac, Titano, or even a Prankster. He needs something more fitting to the name. Thus I propose drawing on the Donovinian roots and introducing, The Hurdy Gurdy Man.

The story could actually write itself, using the Donovan song, "Sunshine Superman."

Sunshine came softly through my a-window today
Could've tripped out easy a-but I've a-changed my ways
It'll take time, I know it but in a while
You're gonna be mine, I know it, we'll do it in style
'Cause I made my mind up you're going to be mine

I'll tell you right now
Any trick in the book now, baby, all that I can find
Everybody's hustlin' just to have a little scene
When I say we'll be cool I think that you know what I mean
We stood on a beach at sunset, do you remember when?
I know a beach where, baby, a-it never ends
When you've made your mind up forever to be mine

Hmm, hmm, hmm, hmm, hmm
I'll pick up your hand and slowly blow your little mind
'Cause I made my mind up you're going to be mine
I'll tell you right now
Any trick in the book now, baby, all that I can find

Superman or Green Lantern ain't got a-nothin' on me
I can make like a turtle and dive for your pearls in the sea, yeah!
A you-you-you can just sit there a-thinking on your velvet throne
'bout all the rainbows a-you can a-have for your own
When you've made your mind up forever to be mine
I'll pick up your hand and slowly blow your little mind
When you've made your mind up forever to be mine

I'll pick up your hand
I'll pick up your hand

Donovan's lyrics read like the internal monologue of a maniacal villain…albeit a slightly inept one of the Silver Age of comics.

So here is the plot suggestion, of which you can cull, deviate, or completely use in whole as told using the lyrics.

The Hurdy Gurdy Man is in rundown Apartment looking outside onto the sunny streets below at group of young college students. They are dressed in hip clothes, he is old and outdated. But he has kidnapping on his mind because of love rejected.  You see his schemes in flashbacks. Even civilized proposals to win the affections of one of the students we zoom in on that Hurdy is watching.

In classic Silver Age style, Hurdy reaches has come across some arcane information about a pearl that has mind control power. The pearl is in possession of Aquaman and Hurdy must steal it from the Sea King which he does successfully. Hurdy then attaches the pearl to his mind controlling hurdy gurdy that he then uses to make mind control slaves out of the college students.

He proudly declares that he can beat the Justice League when Sunshine Superman shows up with Green Lantern in Tow…And from there a battle ensues. The students are freed and Hurdy learns a lesson in humility.

As you see, Donovan's words create comic cameos from many classic characters. The Rainbow Raider could appear.

Of course, Donovan would need to be given credit for this story since we would be using him as inspiration for this fictional work. But it would be the best comic adaptation of a piece of lyrical work ever!

Mr. Morrison, I implore you to consider this story proposal. I think it would do wonders for both the fictional reality of Superman and for preserving the musical legacy of Donovan. I am certain your creative integrity could do wonders with this concept.


The Wonderful World of Clutter.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

How to Name Your Metal Band…Easy to Use Instructions…

I can imagine everyone who reads this blog has had fantasies of wanting to be in a rock and roll type band. Why, because being in an adult contemporary band is just a bad idea and it will get you beat the hell up in my neighborhood. For reals.

So I figured, I would make some of the work of starting a band easy for all of you amateur air guitar dreamers out there. We all know that every good rock band doesn't actually start wtih music, it starts with a kick ass band name. And the hardest part of starting a band is always getting the name right.

Think of all the lame band names that are out there:
  • Savage Garden
  • Phish
  • Nickleback
  • Hoobastank
  • Tony Orlando and Dawn
And then think of all the awesome band names that exist:
  • Death
  • Gay Marriage
  • Master Musicians of Bukkake
  • Jackie-O-Motherfucker
  • Styx
  • The Archies
Of course, this always begs the question, what makes a good band name versus a bad band name?

I have often found myself in this predicament, scratching my head as I tried to come up with the right name for various aborted musical projects.

The Burnt Selena Project, the monicker under which this blog falls, was originally a noise project, and it was a name that stuck. Then there was the Anomia Orchestra, a fifteen piece one off performance piece I put together before leaving Ashland;  Ich Bin Ein Cobrrra, the failed German Techno outfit with lyrics about butterflies and Liberace; The Public Decency League, the all keyboard pop group; et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. Try and Step on Her was the most successful of bands in which I was involved and that was a name clipped from a line from a Yukio Mishima novel, something completely out of context--We could have been Loco if we had kept thumbing through the dictionary.

These were names cut on the fly. Of other projects I was involved, one was called "Bully Culture." This was a name I hated from the get go. Why? Because it was dumb. Luckily my amp and keyboard blew up simultaneously and I never had to play with the people ever again.

Now to return to the most practical advice I can give to people…

Naming a metal band is perhaps the most easy thing to do. I have even set up a little diagram to show you how to successfully do it:

For successful naming, one requires equal portions of a15-year-old boy's inability to understand a concept and the simultaneous ability to make his mother cringe. The same can work for punk bands. Day-glo Abortions is a fine example of such a naming convention working to full effect.

In fact, if you look at the above list of successful band names, all of them confound the minds of teenage boys but still run shivers down the spines of their doting mothers.

That is why I have only one name that would choose if I were to form a metal band.

Cold Speculum ©

The mere mention of the word makes women, mothers, sisters, nuns, grandmas, even labor and delivery nurses cringe in fear. And 15-year old boys simply think, "Wow, that sounds soooooo cool." 

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Saturday, April 7, 2012

Don't Forget the Feast of the Chocolate Bunny...

In my exploration of Montana, I think one of my favorite finds was coming across the Museum/Gallery of Mr. Bill Ohrmann, "retired rancher, artist, and…spokesman of the earth."

In his 70s, he creates amazing outsider art that would put to shame any artist featured in Juxtapose magazine. I don't believe there is a sense of irony or anything else in his work. It just is…

So let's celebrate The Feast of the Chocolate Bunny, "Easter" to those more devout types, with this painting of eggs being chased into the ocean by a rampaging hell tractor of brimstone. 

And to learn more about Bill Ohrmann and his work visit his website. The man is truly awesome, humble and a great artists. And if you get a chance to visit his museum, there is a giant metal Wooly Mammoth. How cool is that!

Tapioca Triumphs

Why is tapioca so damned awesome?

Well, tapioca is the only food that has ever caused a ship to sink. And I would call that triumphant. So basically, it happened like this. A giant cargo ship carrying tons of tapioca caught fire in a harbor. Of course you don't want a ship on fire, so the harbor fire crew started dousing the flames. Everything was cool…right? Well, hot water and tapioca…that makes pudding (for the record, I don't like pronouncing the "g" in pudding so from here on I shall be typing puddin').

Yes, tons and tons of non-flavored puddin' erupted from the hull of the ship. The tapioca swelled enough to rupture the steel hull and it overflowed into the sea. Now isn't that awesome! has the whole story just to prove I didn't make this up.

So for this Easter, the official feast of the Chocolate Bunny, Zombie Religious Figures, and Destruction of Peeps in Microwaves, I have decided to buy a bulk pallet of tapioca from Costco and fill up my bath tub with it. 

With a tub full of tapioca, I simply sit in it. 

And while sitting in my tub of tapioca, I will dream of being on a Venusian landscape. 

It will be like those old films where they show women dancing in bubble rooms. But the bubbles won't pop. And the tapioca will be real. Because puddin' lasts forever in my world. My Venusian world of tapioca filled delights. No sunken ships, no ruptured hulls, just tiny bubbles that last forever. 
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Sunday, April 1, 2012

I Stood Before Giants...

But now...

I am a little taller than I was in these pictures...

We need more places like The Trees of Mystery.
And that is all...

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