Saturday, April 23, 2005


by David Shrigley

Don't climb inside old freezers in the junk yard
Don't try to swim to the island
Don't put ammunition on the campfire
Don't summon demons with the Ouija board
Don't shut your eyes while you're driving
Don't drink the gray wine
There is no such thing as a metal frisbee
Don't swallow pills that you find in the street
Don't throw stones at me to try to get my attention
Don't glue razor blades on to him
Don't lean out of the window when the bullet train is in motion
Don't play chicken
Don't climb on the roof
Don't hanglide over the volcano
Don't be dared to do dangerous things by people with missing limbs
Don't shout at old people
Don't liberate zoo animals
Don't slash my tires while I'm driving
Don't stage mock executions
Don't push red buttons
Don't jump over the barriers
Don't break into people's houses and climb up their chimneys
There is no such thing as a metal frisbee

Friday, April 22, 2005

A Day of Gravel

We find Hero sitting on a pile of gravel. It's Friday. Hero always sits on a pile of gravel on Friday. He had done some running the day before, as he always did on Thursdays. He ran in circles within two of the seven white stripes. The world was different when he ran those circles -- more blurry, more tiring. Today though was Gravel Day. The world sat still, if a little cold and lumpy under his butt, but still nonetheless. He tried to make this world be the same fast-paced one of the racing stripes. Maybe these rocks could move fast, turn blurry, he thought. Then he thought, the different worlds that we inhabit.

Thursday, April 21, 2005

Lost Years

Hero hated it when Manager didn't open the bar. These were the years that even Hero called "lost." These were the years he curled up under the bar at night and only Manager was supposed to know. Only Manager was supposed to close and open the place. Damn this hot shot new guy, his face always saying, "Your odor upsets me and my self-image."

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Don't Question the Revolution

from "A Knot of Dreamers"
by Nathaniel Hawthorne

We had left the the rusty iron frame-work of society behind us. We had broken through many hindrances that are powerful enough to keep most people on the weary tread-mill of the established system, even while they feel its irksomeness almost as intolerable as we did. We had stept down from the pulpit; we had flung aside the pen; we had shut up the ledger; we had thrown off that sweet, bewitching, enervating indolence, which is better, after all, than most of the enjoyments within mortal grasp. It was our purpose -- a generous one, certainly, and absurd, no doubt, in full proportion with its generosity -- to give up whatever we had hertofore attained, for the sake of showing mankind the example of a life governed by other than the false and cruel principles, on which human society has all along been based.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005


from "Desolation Row"
by Bob Dylan

Now Ophelia, she's 'neath the window
For her I feel so afraid
On her twenty-second birthday
She already is an old maid
To her, death is quite romantic
She wears an iron vest
Her profession is her religion
Her sin is her lifelessness
And though her eyes are fixed upon
Noah's great rainbow
She spends her time peeking
Into Desolation Row

from "Hamlet"
by W. Shakespeare

And in the morn and liquid dew of youth
Contagious blastments are most imminent.
Be wary, then; best safety lies in fear:
Youth to itself rebels, though none else near.

I shall the effect of this good lesson keep
As watchman to my heart. But, good my brother,
Do not, as some ungracious pastors do,
Show me the steep and thorny way to heaven,
Whiles, like a puff'd and reckless libertine,
Himself the primrose path of dalliance treads
And recks not his own rede.

Monday, April 18, 2005

Emotional Politics

There are the few who never collect themselves. They never check the boxes of public surveys, and therefore have never become an acknowledged demographic. They come from a place of malcontents, a place in some sense nonexistent; in other ways, it's more real than the reality we so often witness. They readily tire of the hegemony found in everyday life -- the mocking hug of one who knows too well: you will damn well do it whether you want to or not. Blame the corporations. Some do, and I don't blame them. Blame it on the voters with fingers poised to push the button, saying, "Try to make me learn. Try to make me see things your way. See what happens." I do, and I don't regret it. It's a question of stance and posture, and there are always those who wish that we all ease up, relax the muscles and just let it flow down the throat. It's an edge - not an advantage, an edge - a sill from which any approaching will hope that you don't cross. They wash their hands at the slightest sign of anger and complication. I crack my knuckles and push my hands further into the dirt.