9.04.2011

sometimes i live in the country / sometimes i live in the town

So Irene kept us inside with our beans and bottled water. Only some minor flooding in Northampton, but we missed calamity by a whisker. Very bummed for Vermont, which is full of strange antique barns buried behind weird rivers, and might not be so full of dry ones right now. One story I remember about Vermont is a few activists drove to the woods in search of chupacabras, but one of them was a diabetic and started getting insulin withdrawals, so they had to stop at some strange house and knock on the door. Nobody answered. The diabetic began scratching himself. Then a truck pulled up, and this guy got out carrying a cage with a parrot in it. The activists tried to explain the situation to the guy, but he just held up the parrot cage and grinned. He went inside the house. A few minutes passed. The diabetic was kneeling in the driveway controlling his breath. Then an old woman opened the door and invited everybody in. She led them into the living room, which was full of Nestle crunch bars. "I was just watching my programs, which is why I couldn't hear y'all," she said with a Texas accent. The guy with the parrot was in the kitchen still grinning, still with the parrot cage. Someone told me this story at breakfast one time, but it might as well be a story I made up because I didn't eat enough for breakfast. Good luck, Vermont.


In other news, hoo doggie, so much change. Took my last shower on Orchard Street. Moved to Baltimore. Taught my first class at UMBC. Seems good. I'm very excited to ride the 35 back and forth between UMBC: when I first rode it, there was a new father covered with IT'S A BOY STICKERS and everyone congratulated him/joshed him for having too much sex. There was a jovial mass battle over whether to turn the A/C on. There was a man who gave up his seat for an old man and he sat down next to another man and said "If you don't respect yo elders you ain't got no mowls" and they became friends.

Next Saturday, I'm seeing Jeff Mangum in Boston with my carrot cake as a nice climatic-type event before she goes to Thailand. Kind of can't believe we're doing this. Then we're having a big Bye Bye Have Fun in Thailand party on the 10th anniversary of September 11th, which is much better than a lot of other things to do on the 10th anniversary of September 11th. Kind of weird to think my UMBC students were eight years old when Nine-Eleven became more famous than Seven-Eleven. I remember the first thing I heard about it that day was my mother told me the Weather Channel told her that all planes in the country were grounded.

So speaking of hearing and telling, it turns out I am doing a lot of readings this September! There is one stretch where I'm doing readings three days in a row: three readings and one panel discussion. Kind of nuts. I've made a thing on the right side of the blog to keep track of it all. If you live in NYC or Baltimore, I would love to give you a high five.



Thanks Barry Graham for putting Look! Look! Feathers on this list of his favorite books he's read so far this year. And thanks to him also for this Fab 5 feature he did, where I picked my 5 favorite of my online published stories and also 5 other stories online by others that I really like. Also Tyler Gobble and Layne Ransom's ultimate enthusiasm magazine Stoked just put out Volume II, which is full of great stuff from Matt Hart, Daniela Olszewska, Carol Guess, Nate Pritts, Adam Moorad, Joshua Helms, Thomas Patrick Levy, Christopher Newgent, xTx, Len Kuntz, Parker Tettleton, Nick Ripatrazone, Ryan Rader, Ashley Farmer, and J.A. Tyler. I have a little piece in it talking about how much I was taken by the book Sayonara, Gangsters by Genichiro Takahashi. Do do the checking out if you do that sort of thing.

Wow, hard to believe how much is in the pipeline right now, and that's not even counting the pipeline that people are sitting down about. Let's end on a sad and happy thing and thing: sad is that my sister's dog Sasha is gone. =( My best energy and love her way. The happy thing is this:


8 comments:

Tyler Gobble said...

Thanks for the shout-out Mike. Glad to have you a part of this thing.

Nice Vermont story.

gkwak said...

mike's internet-ing cannot be interfered with by your dance party! it's weird. saw the minor change to your profile: "he lives in blatimore, md" and thought, does he? damn. so used to seeing the words "northampton, ma" there. onward, my friend. also, wrote blatimore instead of baltimore three times and then decided to just leave it.

Anonymous said...

Dang, never knew you knew that old Ledbelly song. It was one of the first songs I learned as a kid and you know how long ago that was..:

Dad..

Mark C said...

that is a pretty sexi video.

Jeremy Bauer said...

Can't believe you're seeing Jeff Mangum. Phew. How'd I'd like to trade shoes!

Did you hear about all this?

http://pitchfork.com/news/43655-neutral-milk-hotel-to-release-box-set/

Mike Young said...

tyler, glad to be a part! thanks for doing such sweet work.

gene, i know, it was weird to change it! hope all is well in the mid-west, where at least nothing is flooding right now.

dad, yeah, it's a great song! i think i first learned about it when i read the book Sometimes A Great Notion by Ken Kesey, the title of which comes from the song, obv

mark, tell me about it, i was practically right there!

jeremy, yeah i still can't believe it's happening. i saw about the box set. crazy! it also says elsewhere on that site that he's planning on doing even bigger tours, more shows, so keep yr fingers crossed

Jeremy Bauer said...

this is something i've been dreaming of. phew. glad mangum's coming back to the world. fingers and kidneys crossed.

Gold For RS said...

can be something i have been previously having dreams about. phew. happy mangum's coming back to the planet. fingers along with kidneys intersected.
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