Grandma says, “Katy, you need to get out more.”
She says, “You need to go DO something. Do it all.”
She says, “Katy, you need to experience the world while you are still young.”
Grandma says a lot of things, and all of the things she says are things like these things, and she says things like these things practically all of the time.
We hear her every word. We roll her every word around in our hands. Slowly. Considering each for shape and for size. Smoothness and weight. Impact and echoes and related after-effects. For potential to forfend flesh shadows.
We consider Grandma’s words, but we know better than Grandma. We know there is too much to do in here to ever go outside.
There are never enough hours in the day. On this point at least, most of us here are in agreement, although there exist several minority positions of note among us. By far the largest and most persistent of these minority positions is that far from there never being enough hours in the day, the problem lies in there being far too many.
To be honest, most of us do not take this position – nor in fact those who hold it – the least bit seriously. Over the years, the never-enough-hours contingent has worked successfully in tandem with the much smaller precisely-enough-hours contingent and the well-perhaps-just-a-couple-more-hours-would-do-nicely contingent to marginalize the too-many-ers.
Of much more concern now are the biorhythm-ers, who can point to a real, live-in-the-flesh study in which subjects – cut off from natural light and from all sense of time – fall naturally into forty-hour cycles of activity and sleep.
We know this study exists. We have seen it with the two eyes. We have weighed its possible long-term effects on our collective consciousness. We have agreed that it threatens to make our simplistic “There are never enough hours in the day” saw look quaint. Antiquated. Like nothing but a superstitious old wives’ tale.
And so we lack consensus, but as of this writing, at least, it remains our plurality position that there are never enough hours in the day.
Many of our hours are spent on the brushing of the teeth. In regard to the frequency, timing, and method of the brushing, there exists much disagreement among us. Volumes have been written on what should be done, particularly about the infected molar on the bottom left side of the mouth, far, far in the back. These writings we have collected in many three-ring binders, adding both tables of content and indices. These writings we have made available for public inspection in the closet in the hall.
We have reached consensus in support of the public inspection of the binders in the closet in the hall.
Grandma, for all her insights – “But Katy, you’re so pale!” “Katy, why don’t you go out and get laid for a change!” – she frankly does not have a clue. Grandma knows nothing about the proper number of hours in a day. Not like we do. Grandma has no coherent position whatsoever on the subject.
And Grandma has not written a single word on the brushing of the teeth, the frequency and the timing and the method, let alone on what should be done with the infected molar on the bottom left side of the mouth, far, far in the back.
Finally – and most importantly for our purposes – wisdom from Grandma is accorded little or no weight with us because Grandma has never looked up at the spackle scenes.
You see, it is the spackle scenes which consume the bulk of our time, often twelve, sometimes sixteen hours of our day or more. Even during those hours in which we close the eyes, the familiar scenes continue to flash before us. We debate their shapes and their meanings.
Current discussions and debate focus on one specific portion of the ceiling. A section in the northeast corner of the apartment. Near the door. Just over the couch. Not far from the water stain. The ridges in the spackle there tell a story, although the recondite nature of the story remains open to different interpretations.
Naturally, several factions have arisen, each labeling all other interpretations as heretical. As apostasy. As sinful, grotesque, or as impossible. Some of our factions resort to vile and at times even criminal measures to gain the upper hand.
Yet there are rarely any obvious winners.
We stare up at the spackle scene on the ceiling for hours. The ridges begin moving before the eyes, go in and go out of focus. Outlines, faces, whirlpools, architectures. They are born. They grow. Age. They crumble and blink out forever.
“There!” The mouth gasps. “Do you see? That is Tarab. With his hands up, like this? Right there? He is out on the plains. He is preaching to indigenous tribes.”
The Tarab-as-old-time-preacher faction is not large, but what it lacks in size, it makes up for in persistence. Night after night after night, as we gaze up at the spackle in the northeast corner of the apartment (near the door, just over the couch, not far from the water stain), the same scene reemerges. We find it right away. It clicks into place.
On the other hand, in the same space, one evening, Thursday before last, there was a moment in which the spackle showed us the body of a woman. A woman from behind. Leaning over. Reaching back to spread vaginal lips.
This left quite the impression and even today, there are those among us who believe it to be the proper interpretation of the spackle scene. Its one true image. However, we have been unable to locate it again, ever, no matter how long we try. No matter the angle of the head. No matter the direction of the lamp-shadow.
There are thirty-six current interpretations of the spackle scene in the northeast corner of the apartment. They vary in content. In detail. In profundity.
One faction among us, whom we will call The Reptiles, sees nothing but images of food in the spackle.
Another sees Mom.
And so the hours are consumed, and the days, and there is never enough time or there is too much time or there is precisely the right amount of time, but certainly not enough for us to go out and see the world, as Grandma would have it.
Beyond the time, other complicating factors necessarily prove prohibitive. We would never reach agreement on where to go, nor on how to get there, nor on the way to hold the mouth and the eyes once out in public. Speech would be impossible with all of our factions jealously vying for even a single word, a syllable, a moan.
Life is good in here. We keep busy.
So now, the Grandma issue has been addressed – thoroughly, decisively put down! – and our dinner time is here. There is never enough food. Tonight there is just a single egg left in the fridge.
And as to how it should be prepared for the eating, well, we are many minds…
Tarab, the synesthete hermit invades the spackle party scene...ReplyDelete
I knew there would be SOMEBODY brave enough to comment on this post. You might be it, buddy.
Some times I see the Flying Spaghetti Monster - http://i.imgur.com/A0eEg1i.jpgDelete
doing a spackle party scene...
A Imgur test
Looking for the Flying Spaghetti Monster in the urns on toast works, too. You never know when his noodly appendage will make an appearance.Delete
My grandma only told me, "Don't fart on a sleeping dog or you'll get your ass bit." She drank a lot. There have been times I have contemplated the patterns in the ceiling like a more abstract Rorschach test. Sitting in a dentist's chair, awake too early staring at the ceiling in bed. But I have never had an epiphany from it.ReplyDelete
You obviously have too heavy of a schedule. If you're not contemplating the spackle at least 8 hours a day, you're probably at risk of a heart attack. or nervous breakdown. Or both.Delete
Those very personal conversations of the constant internal dialog can be quite exhausting, can't they?ReplyDelete
Our ceiling spackle is textured to resemble flower petals ... except in the bedroom where my wife has attached glow-in-the-dark stars, moons, and planets of varying sizes and shapes. When the lights go out it's like lying on the prairie at midnight. Well, for a few minutes, anyway. Many years ago, I watched Napoleon's army march across the acoustic tile ceiling of my bedroom ... for 18 hours straight. I had taken two hits of purple microdot and was listening to Inna Gadda Da Vida .... on a loop. Toasted.
"For potential to forfend flesh shadows." Hooked from there on .........
Great Write, Katy ....
My trip soundtrack used to be a track by David Tibet and Steve Stapleton called "I Left Her for a Cartoon Octopus." It might not even have required the chemicals to trip to that.Delete
I'm glad I wrote this one. I usually write my blogs in one sitting - this one took me two nights. I like to throw more difficult pieces in once in a while to keep myself and everyone else on their toes...
Yes. Well. I guess that dates us both .....Delete
btw .... Just finished listening to that track and you're right. I'm gettin' traces right now ....
The types of drugs or the specific songs?Delete
I don't think anyone does acid anymore. Trippers all seem to go for DMT, which only lasts a couple minutes so is no good for a road trip or long evening spent listening to Floyd at home.
Tarab is easy to spot. The vaginal scene, like Quagmire said, "You have to believe it's there." As for your grandmother's advice, I would take it. Diane talked me into taking her to Cancun before we were engaged. After that, we went to Jamaica, but I much preferred Cancun due to the beauty and feel of the limestone sand. I would highly recommend Cancun, especially if you like snorkeling or visiting Mayan ruins. I was lucky enough to go there when they were still excavating and got to talk to the excavationist about the Mayans and what they had learned. I also got to take a forbidden photo, though I had to do it secretly. All of those James Bond movies payed off in that way at least. haha They've tourisized (a word I made up) the one I visited now so you can't go all of the places I went, but it's still something to see. Listen to the tour guide about how to climb the steps and you'll have an easy time getting up while the others are panting and out of breath when they get to the top. If you're not a strong swimmer, don't go too far from the shore on the swimming trip that's included in the trip to Tulum. Also, don't swim too close to the net that's SUPPOSED to keep the sharks out. A 14 year old boy was lost there on our trip. I WAS going to swim out to try to save him but Diane reminded me that we didn't have the money to get back to the hotel if we missed the bus. I felt really bad about not swimming out there after him but I had to look at things realistically. I just hope the mother found someone else to swim out to look for him or his body.ReplyDelete
The water is too deep to stand to catch your breath so you have to do a dead man's float and breathe through the snorkel to rest. If you know how to do that... and that you should hit a shark in the snout, you should be okay. I didn't run into any sharks, but I didn't swim in that direction on the trip.
I used to be quite a student of spackle myself, especially since I was housebound for so many years due to my surgeries. I know it's difficult to leave, but reading about something isn't the same as experiencing something. I got to look down where they threw the bodies before they were exhumed. I don't know if they still let you see that or not, but there was an opening in the floor of the temple where they threw the sacrificed bodies. According to the archaeologist, the Mayans got tired of the sacrifices of their children and killed their leaders. The problem was that none of them knew how to read the stars from the observatory to know when to plant and most of them starved to death. There is still a small reservation of Mayans there. I wanted to visit but the tour guide wouldn't let us.Delete
Ancient indigenous architectures scare the crap out of me. Maybe I've just read too much Graham Hancock. Or maybe it's from living my whole life in Houston, where nothing is more than 30 years old. But when you start getting to those structures that are thousands of years old, I mean, I get a buzz.Delete
OH... MY... GOD! Katy, this is one of the best things I have ever read. F*ck! So good. I love staring at drywall patterns, I so often see faces; superheroes, random average people, and souls in the throes of torture, with a little help (LSD) I would stare at the walls until I expired. This was just great. Great. You just elevated in my mind from a funny and above average blogger to a great writer. So good.ReplyDelete
Thank you, flip!Delete
I had trouble with this one - it seemed to veer wildly back and forth between Thomas Ligotti and Douglas Adams.
But I wanted to say it and I said it and now I have to think up another one.
I think I can see a dentist doing a root canal on an infected lower molar. Yes, definitely a dentist doing a root canal on an infected lower molar.ReplyDelete
Or maybe it's Cthulhu.
Hey look! Your battle against the man must have paid off. I see you have a profile picture again. Congrats!Delete
Dentists are always a last resort. No offense, but you guys are weird.
Okay, if we're gettin' confessional about the patterns we stare at... we've got this bullshit wallpaper in my bathroom, and since I usually spend about an hour a day in that room seated on the throne, I almost always have reading material in hand, or a Sunday crossword puzzle to finish. But... there are nights when I stagger in there in various states of impaired-ness, and sometimes I just stare at the wallpaper and find creatures and people and scenes I've not seen before.ReplyDelete
I've got an active imagination, and if you give me more than a minute or two I'll find something far from sane in the paper patterns to stare at. Can't find them when I go back and check, so it's just one of those "you had to be there" moments.
Tarab might be harder to find for the uninitiated.
acid+Iron Butterfly=Tarab (may be expressed Tarab = Iron Butterfly × lsd²)Delete
don't need a slide rule ....
I never realized what a bunch of navel=gazing bastards we are around here.Delete
If I had ads on my page, some lava lamp manufacturer could make a mint.
Speaking of navels... did Adam and Eve have navels? Just curious, since they weren't born of a mortal human with umbilical cords. What did THEY stare at when they were on the toilet? Lava lamps, prolly...Delete
I think Eve looked like Karolina Kurkova, a Victoria's Secret model with no belly button.Delete
Adam wouldn't have had one either, but he would have had that rib-ectomy scar, since I don't believe Yahweh was a good surgeon. I mean, with his aversion to science, I refuse to believe that he studied very hard.
I wish I still had a spackle to inspect in my house. We recently redecorated and the spackle was destroyed in The Great Wallpapering Incident. Can I come over and look at your spackle?ReplyDelete
Sure you can, but you should also remember that in a pinch, clouds can serve as good makeshift Rorschach spackle.Delete
The walls of my apartment are smooth. There are no patterns. This is so unfair. Same goes for the popcorn ceilings. Again, no patterns. My old apt had linoleum in the bathroom with a funny pattern though. So, I used to sit in there for hours looking for images of people, places and things. I miss that floor.ReplyDelete
I am sorry to hear that. I can start emailing you pictures of ceiling spackle.Delete
Because I'm one hell of a friend.
My walls are pretty boring but I've got an old wooden dresser with some patterns that would blow your freaking skull.ReplyDelete
Also, I have a bone to pick with you, so I figure it's about time I say it. We've always had a pretty simple, albeit good friendship, you and I and I (since there's two of us). I would go to my Internet browser and type in the letter "L," and it would automatically fill in "Lesbiansinmysoup.com." Every single time. It was nice.
Now that you're Fascist Dyke Motors, this has completely changed. I type in "F" and my browser autocompletes "Facebook." I follow this up by typing in A and it still thinks I want Facebook. Then I type in a C because "fascist" isn't a regular part of my vocabulary and I always screw that one up. Still Facebook. It's a huge pain in the ass typing all of those extra letters just to get to you.
So what I'm saying is... you need to become more popular than Facebook. Because all this extra typing is killing me.
I'm just trying to help, man. I don't want you to get into trouble when your wife uses your computer to check facebook. Significant others get irritated when they think you're looking at lesbian porn.Delete
At least mine always have...
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That doesn't make any sense.Delete
If that's true, then why is "hotvirginsluts.com" the first thing that pops up in my browser when I hit the H key?
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“What men desire is a virgin who is a whore.”Delete
- Edward Dahlbert
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The Beer for the Shower guys just won the internet. Best comment of the day. The day being June 23rd, but still, funny ass comment.ReplyDelete
On the same note, I can't simply click on your link and get to your most recent stuff now that you've gone and messed up the internet. Now I have to click on your link, then hit "home" to updated.
Other than that (and a rabbit eating the cabbage plants in my garden) life is sweet.
Give the Shower Brew Boys an award of some sort.
The Beer for the Shower comment hurt a little, to be honest, because (as those who know me are only-too-well-aware) the original intent of my blog was to be more popular than facebook.Delete
But look at me: years into this, no David Fincher movie with a Trent Reznor soundtrack about my rise, not even an ability to trick people into giving me all their private information.
Loving your new cyber pad. And yes, there's just too many hours in a day. And too many years in a lifetime. Somebody get me out of here already.ReplyDelete
Thank you! I like it so far. It's not all that different form the old place, but everyone can use a fresh start once in a while.Delete
Oh, and I have not forgotten about what we talked about a couple months back. It is in the pipeline!
Remember me right if I'm wrong but I believe we both us signed in and out of Facebook about the same time about two blog sites ago. I remember both of us had Nadia"s sister Mazia from Morocco sign in as friends at the same time. We all three had Leonel on as a friend, You disappeared a day before I did but right before I asked you to warn the guy from off from hitting on Mazia because he had already pissed Nadia off big time by hitting on her. Can;t remember his handle but i think his name was Charles or Charlie. I think he was from the Seattle, area and I know he was tight with Princess Leah because he got my number from her. Is my timing right and do you remember?. At any rate because my facebook account has been dormant for Years. Wher I when i punch a F into the address bar, Faclst Dyke Motors is first up. Great Post as always..Delete
Hi, Frank. I liked this post because it's not really like any other post I've ever written.Delete
I do remember that facebook situation, and it WAS Charlie - the guy who went by "Torrent" elsewhere.
I've thought about doing the facebook thing again, if for no other reason than apparently facebook can drive traffic here. But I really don't think I will. I am very impressed that I outrank facebook on at least one browser in the world!
I'm happy you remember it, Ya. Torrent. He was entertaining in one way but never figured out or didn't care when he crossed lines. I have a story I want to tell you but not on this blog. I'll email you. I'm 90 percent sure I never told you but I know it won't surprise you.Delete
This blog is better and your fans are mostly a real cut above some of that old bunch. Which browser is the one you mentioned above. As always I'm jealous of your writing
Obviously, things are a lot more low key around here than at the old, old place.Delete
But in general, I think it's for the better.
I think most of the people who stop by are here to read whatever I write. Their reasons at the place where you and I met were more questionable.
Nobody's trying to find my house because of THIS blog. No creepy declarations of undying love. No threats.
Overall, it's just a much nicer place to be.
Your fans often blow me away with their comments. I was always told I was smart probably because I could always almost max most multiple guess tests. Never actually maxed one but got damn close on my Gre. . I learned years ago that all that proves is I was very good at multiple guessing.. That's one reason I look forward to reading you and their comments. I'm never bored and very often pleased by what I read. .Thank you allReplyDelete
Thank you, Frank!Delete