Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Blood On A Nation's Hands

"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly."

Monday, February 25, 2019

Abandoned Love

I was thinking about my favorite songs, and while there's loads of them, this is the first song that I can recall really hitting me in a deep emotional place. Warren Zevon was a genius lyricist/songwriter, who handled his own death with dignity and humor that was breathtaking — if you've never seen it, run to YouTube and find his final appearance on The Letterman Show from shortly before he left this mortal coil. It's a real travesty that he's only well-known for one damn song as he was a national treasure. (Zevon was the first, and only artist I sent a fan letter to. It was a drawing I did of a werewolf eating in a Chinese restaurant when I was a kid. He never wrote me back, but I didn't hold it against him.)

An interesting side-story with the song: Zevon and Bob Dylan seemed to have a bit of an insider trade-off with the lyrics. Zevon wrote: "We made mad love. Shadow love. Random love. And abandoned love. Accidentally like a martyr. The hurt gets worse and the heart gets harder," likely a reference to Dylan's "Abandoned Love." Dylan seemed to repay the mention by titling his 1997 album Time Out Of Mind referencing this bit: "The days slide by. Should have done, should have done, we all sigh. Never thought I'd ever be so lonely. After such a long, long time. Time out of mind." Dylan also covered "Accidentally Like A Martyr" live in concert a number of times.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

The Matriarch of The People's Playground

Lula Vourderis
Rest In Peace

"From a small pushcart to an empire; whether it was feeding the homeless on top of or under the boardwalk; Lula never forgot her days without food. Deno's Snack Bar became a landmark on the Boardwalk. Visitors came to the park for Lula's shish kebob, fried shrimp and cotton candy. Lula and her husband, Denos, eventually bought the park with hard earned monies saved up from selling all that delicious food."

Photograph: Lula and Denos Vourderis in front of the Wonder Wheel, 1983

Sunday, February 17, 2019


"What, if some day or night a demon were to steal after you into your loneliest loneliness and say to you: 'This life as you now live it and have lived it, you will have to live once more and innumerable times more; and there will be nothing new in it, but every pain and every joy and every thought and sigh and everything unutterably small or great in your life will have to return to you, all in the same succession and sequence — even this spider and this moonlight between the trees, and even this moment and I myself. The eternal hourglass of existence is turned upside down again and again, and you with it, speck of dust!'

Would you not throw yourself down and gnash your teeth and curse the demon who spoke thus? ... Or how well disposed would you have to become to yourself and to life to crave nothing more fervently than this ultimate eternal confirmation and seal?"

From The Gay Science, 1882

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Creation Rebel

Today I saw my daughter to be with the help of next-level modern technology and it really got me thinking... I’ve destroyed a lot of things in my lifetime — public property, personal property, bones, brain cells, relationships — so it’s pretty mind-blowing to realize that I’m having a part in bringing someone into this world; in a sense, creating. I truly never thought this would be something I’d experience, and I’m enjoying taking it all in and figuring it out as I go. I am pretty sure L knows what to do. (She’s going to be the best mother ever.) Me? I’m happily clueless and trying to embrace it all.