Lacking the vocabulary

Yesterday, I listened to throwback American top 40 the 70’s on WTIX  New Orleans and Barry Manilow’s I Write the Songs comes on… Funny I can remember an entire conversation with the girl across the street when this song was first out.

She was in love with Barry Manilow and I sort of already knew that  was foolish but I didn’t really have the words to explain why. Of course, there’s the whole celebrity crush level of impossibility, but i think I knew he wasn’t interested in girls. But I don’t know that I knew the word gay (was it in common use in 1976). And if I knew the word homosexual, I don’t think I would have used it because it included the letters S-E-X.

So instead I said something about him having a big nose and I remember being embarrassed but that’s what I came up with instead of saying what I really thought. Mostly I’m not even sure if the neighbor girl would have known what gay was.  Her life was much more sheltered than mine.

And here I am 35+ years later and I’m embarrassed all over again for my child-self but not because of the gay-thing. Instead it was because I ended up having to defend my position of big nose equals unattractive. Funny the things you remember.


Fake Band Names

I think most of these are from 2013

Look what I found under my keyboard while doing some basic cleaning…my random list of fake band names:
Enforced Uniformity, blues punk
Vomit Mouth, thrash metal
Melancholy Toad Flax, emo rock
Rapid Plant Fanciers, Robert Plant tribute band (of course)
Disturbance Invest, weather themed punk
Vicissitudes of Fortune, prog blues
Dictionary to a Gunfight, traditional country – an all librarian band
Plank Off in the Stew Room, pop prog

Strategic Sheep Purpose, my hipster indy rock band name

AND last but not least…
Inexplicable Affliction, my old school punk band name.

Hospitality as Indoctrination

When visiting or moving to New Orleans, you are welcomed to the point of madness (your own or the welcome wagon’s). It occurs to me that this welcoming is a form of indoctrination…

Be like us (while, of course, being yourself) and join our way of life. Let us show you how to enjoy life and appreciate your world. And if you don’t, then you don’t get us and aren’t a real New Orleanian.

Which brings me to the who’s more NOLA-er than thou debate raging around town, I will admit that I can be bad about this since parts of my family have lived in the GNO for over 150 years. I can show you where my great grandfathers’ had their coffee company & shoe shop, where my grandmother grew up, where my parents got engaged, and I love sharing that history…probably too much. But I think if you embrace what it means to be a New Orleanian (which is not a drunkard non-NOLA people), it means being part of your community, taking care of your neighbors, being tolerant (which includes live music and go-cups), celebrating life, and, yes, not making work the be all/end all of your life. The be all/end all is supposed to be your family, either the one you were born into or the one you created. Being yourself and if that self is eccentric, OK.

Which in a round about way, brings me back to my complaints about a certain NOLA chef on TopChefNOLA. Generosity of spirit and time, is a hallmark of being a denizen of this city. With his ill-manners and overall jerkiness, I say he’s not a New Orleanian based on behavior alone. Of course, it could all be editing.

That’s my Friday ramble…this was an idea that occurred to me while watching a Rising Tide panel in September and something I’ve been considering off and on since.

Carrots & Eyesight

Maybe it was Bugs Bunny or maybe it was the episode of Gilligan’s Island where Mrs. Howell eats radioactive carrots and gains supersight, but for most of my life it’s been a truism that eating carrots makes for good eyesight. Well…maybe.

*Correction: Mrs. Howell eats radioactive sugar beets and has incredible speed/energy. Mary Ann eats the carrots and gets amazing distance vision.*

Here’s a great blog post from the Smithsonian about WWII propaganda helped promote this idea. This poster is my favorite from their post, partially because it’s from the World Carrot Museum:

Longevity of species

I’ve always been fascinated by living fossils…those animals or plants that have remained untouched for millennia and keep on doing what they do. I have a special fixation on horseshoe crabs since when I learned of their existence was around when they were reclassified from crustacea to arachnid. Yep. They are closer to spiders then crawfish.

But I digress.

The bee orchid really does exist, as I would expect from an comic. If the rest of the supposition is more poetry than science, I’m OK with that

Made up band names

My HS friend, Dave, published a post about his made up band which existed in his mind in late high school/early college. And while I’ve never had an imaginary band…well except for Athena & the Goddesses which evolved because my friends and I were wearing togas at school (in HS) and decided to do a Supremes style routine…for the record I was back up, definitely NOT lead.  Maybe it was a spirit day activity?

Anyway I still amuse myself by creating band names…and the type of music they would play.  The most recent was my punk band, Inexplicable Affliction. I heard the phrase and knew instantly it should be a band.

About 6 weeks ago in the wee hours (maybe 3 or 4 am),  I was hanging in an awesome dive bar in New Orleans, Brothers III and gave this name out to my friends. A little while later one of the regulars came up to me and said, “so you’re in a punk band, huh?” Please note that because of earlier festivities I was dressed in harlequin purple, green & gold shorts, tights, a carnival themed tshirt and a sparkley sequin carnival colored tiara…so not very punkish.  I told him that I just liked to make up band names.

After that each time that I passed him in narrow bar, he would say, “hehe Inexplicable Affliction.” I’m glad that on occasion my silly amusements entertain someone else.

And then I wandered over to the French bakery that had just opened to get pastry and go to bed.