Neoprimitive Thinking: It's What Comes After Postmodern
|Posted by Kimberly on January 13, 2019 at 8:10 AM||comments (64)|
PLEASE NOTE: This image was posted on a computer screen, where it appears sideways. And it sometimes--but not always--appears upright on a cell phone screen. Go figure, I guess So, take this all as you will...
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And to take everything, always, in context.
∞ ∞ ∞
~ And please do click on the photo as well ~
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NOTE the Survival of the Fattest album (below) is intended to be obnoxious and kinda offensive--as it is punk rock music from Southern California. And that if you are offended by it, you are missing the point.
The album cover and title is not to criticize any individual overweight person, but to point out that as an overall society we do need to stop consuming so much.
Also note that "Fat Wreck Chords" (the name of the label) ALSO suggests that whoever has the "Fattest" beats and the "Wreck-y-est Chords" will ultimately win out in the evolutionary race.
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~ The 1st track (and the last!) on this tongue-in-cheek album offers a tongue-in-cheek glance into our current state of affairs ~
This is a bootleg YouTube recording here, which is not that good, since these artists are not that famous and do need the $$
But note that I have purchased this album 4 times - and strongly encourage you to make a purchase yourself, as the whole album really rips !!
1. Hi-Standard - California Dreamin'
2. No Use For A Name - Justified Black Eye [2:18]
3. Snuff - Nick Northern [4:57]
4. Propagandhi - Nation States [8:14]
5. Lagwagon - Sleep [10:32]
6. Diesel Boy - Titty Twister [12:28]
7. Good Riddance - Mother Superior [14:26]
8. Tilt - Libel [17:30]
9. Wizo - Raum Der Zeit [19:53]
10. Strung Out - Rotten Apple [21:33]
11. NOFX - Vincent [24:02]
12. Frenzal Rhomb - Run [27:26]
13. Hi-Standard - Wait For The Sun [30:18] ~ another good metaphor for this day and age
14. Lagwagon - Lamens Terms [32:37]
15. Bracket - Talk Show [35:24]
16. Snuff - Walk [38:10]
17. Me First And The Gimme Gimmes - Country Roads [40:04]
afterpostmodern.org by Kimberly Pratt is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
|Posted by Kimberly on January 10, 2019 at 5:20 PM||comments (1)|
|Posted by Kimberly on January 5, 2019 at 8:40 PM||comments (0)|
|Posted by Kimberly on December 14, 2014 at 5:15 PM||comments (0)|
Lion with eyes of water
Eyes that spoke of the sea and a sadness as vast
A sadness that hung on you like a cloak.
Other times filled with mischief—an otter at play
Floating on your back with the fruits of the sea on your belly
Cleverly cracking shells open with a rock and frolicking with me.
And sometimes a bear
Burly, brusque, not to be trifled with
Serious as the night is dark and as the day is long.
With the wisdom of an owl, that mighty hunter
Silent, stealthy, able to see and hear in all directions
Things that escape others, but not you (only and always you).
I would not escape you but did break your heart
In spite of all my efforts to restore it
My head filled with foolishness and folly.
Now I see more clearly, as do you, through eyes I can picture still
I know the black panther of your soul—brave and strong, noble and true
And I remember everything, all these things, all of you.
∞ ∞ ∞
|Posted by Kimberly on May 7, 2012 at 11:40 AM||comments (0)|
I have walked past this sign near my house at least a hundred times before finally remembering to bring a picture-taking device along with me. This sign has always held such mystery to me--offering a glimpse of the sacred admist an extremely profane stretch of Airline Highway road.
Not only is this stretch of road unattractive and stressful for pedestrians and motorists alike, but I have found that it is ill-advised to appear too happy while walking along it. Even wearing jeans and tennis shoes, this can be taken as a sign that you are "slinging it" and a pickup truck driver may slow down, beep their horn, and pull into a parking lot to indicate interest. I always feel like saying "Mister, if I was slinging it, I wouldn't be this happy" but I guess that is part of the "act" in these scenarios.
In any case, the neglect suggested by the weather-beaten sign here is belied by the tender care given to the lovely little palm tree. And the back of the sign is my favorite, with it's wise old owl watching over us, his wisdom available to any who are willing and able to listen.
|Posted by Kimberly on December 31, 2011 at 3:50 PM||comments (0)|
It was sometime in late summer, the first summer after Katrina, and I was living on Allard Boulevard. The short stretch of two blocks that together comprise Allard Boulevard in MidCity are among the most beautiful in New Orleans, a city in which beautiful blocks abound.
Allard Boulevard also benefits from its location at the bottom end of City Park, near a wildlife-rich bayou filled with ducks, turtles, an occasional grouping of swans, and the elegant egrets, either white or silverly blue. The egrets wade slowly along the shallow waters, carefully and calmly placing each slender leg—cautious and alert but without hurry or worry. This small bayou is bordered by tall, stately Cypresses and surrounded by ancient Live Oak trees, grown wide and wild with massive branches that twist dramatically and hang heavy with Spanish Moss. A lovely water fountain encircled by benches sits not far from the bayou and is watched over by a delicate bronze nymph statute that sits at its center.
The other side of the bayou can be reached by either of two small arched bridges that will take you to a playground where the Live Oak trees have grown branches, thick as tree trunks, winding low along the ground so children can play on them. The playground sits between a small classical gazebo and a much larger rectangular pavilion that is bordered on one long side by concrete lions. The four lions lay reclining and facing the bayou—and the ceilings of both structures are painted that specific shade of just-almost-robin-egg-blue that is known to repel mosquitoes and other flying bugs.
A small but nobly constructed bronze sign posted among the winding trails in this southern-most section of the park will inform you that the land was formerly the Allard Plantation and was donated to the city for civic purposes. And so, Allard Boulevard was the name given to the residential street below it with the most palatial houses, impressive both in scale and beauty.
It was somewhat of a fluke that I found myself on this block. A graduate research assistant at the University of New Orleans at the tail end of the resources I had accumulated before returning to school, I found it rather ironic to sit in graduate seminars discussing poverty in the abstract when by any statistical measure many around the table were experiencing poverty in the concrete.
Well, it was on this most glorious of streets that my second cockroach story occurs. My placement on this block came about when Jeffrey, the professor I was renting from in another part of MidCity, decided he needed to sell the massive house I had been living in with several units including a slave quarters at the back of the lot. The buildings had not been flooded but but suffered substantial exterior damage. And since rental housing was incredibly hard to find during this time, Jeffrey and I became roommates in the condo on Allard Boulevard that a real estate company rented to him until he could find a house he wanted to buy.
This condo was the only multifamily building on our block. Even with its four units, the building was smaller than many of the single-family mansions that surrounded it. Two of the units in our building were still under aggressive renovation and this would occasionally disrupt existing tenants, human and otherwise.
So, at this time I was living a pleasantly sparse but gracious material existence and was sleeping on a futon mattress placed directly on the floor. One night, after a particularly vigorous day of renovations that reverberated throughout the structure, I was sleeping peacefully on my back until coming to with the distinct feeling of something skittering across my chest in a downward direction. I instinctively reached up to grab the intruder off my chest, slapped it on the floor next to the futon mattress, and with my other hand grabbed a shoebox that was fortuitously available within arm’s reach. I slammed the shoebox down hard and immediately fell back asleep.
I awoke the next morning wondering if this had been a dream. Alas, it had not. I looked over at the shoebox and tentatively lifted it up. The massive cockroach was indeed there, squished but still squirming. I slammed the box back down and quickly left the room to take a shower. I dressed and ate breakfast. By the time Jeffrey returned from his morning stroll to the park where he would read the New York Times on a bench in the sun, I was sufficiently composed to tell him about the “encounter” and ask him to remove the squirming cockroach from under the shoebox when he was able, as I still too shaken by the visceral (and highly personal) nature of the experience to finish the job myself.
I told the building/construction manager about this the next time I saw him, and he gave me one of those *heavy sigh* “Well, you do realize you’re in the Deep South” replies, which I found extremely dissatisfying. I thought without saying “But this one skittered ACROSS MY CHEST” and out loud tried to counter with a rational explanation of how it seemed that the renovations were disrupting the bugs and he might want to be aware of that, but the battle was already lost.
Once you have stepped into the shoes (and slapped the shoebox) of the apparently-squeamish-person-from-not-around-here-with-unrealistic-expectations-about-bugs, there is little you can do except a brief side-step shuffle and exit with as much grace as you can muster, stage right.
“The Cockroach Smackdown” is partnered with another super-short story posted earlier called “The Cockroach Shuffle.” CLICK HERE to read “The Cockroach Shuffle”
|Posted by Kimberly on April 11, 2011 at 2:00 AM||comments (96)|
EXCERPT from letter to a friend dated June 22, 2010
... I had a confrontation with a cockroach last night that I wanted to tell you about. But it’s not gross or scary, so you can relax and enjoy it without waiting for “that” part.
So, I usually don’t eat before sleeping but I was watching TV and had just bought some delicious local honey at the store that day. The magnolia trees are in bloom here. They have been for a few weeks and the magnolia flowers with their huge white blossoms give off an intoxicatingly heavy, sweet smell that hangs in the air around the trees and occasionally turns up in a breeze as you walk down the street.
I regularly buy this “RAW HONEY” sold by “Jay Martin, beekeeper” with a New Orleans city address on the label. The latest jar I just bought tasted different, with a strong, almost skunky-like new flavor, and I tasted it again to try to figure it out. I soon realized the new flavor in the honey is magnolia, from the magnolia blossoms the bees have been pollinating for a few weeks now.
This newly purchased honey inspired me to have a late-night snack with plain yogurt and raw walnuts. I have been avoiding late night snacks and getting to bed early for a while, and so the kitchen area has usually been long-abandoned and completely dark by this 11pm time.
I get up from my bed, go into the kitchen, get out a small glass and put it on the counter top—on top of the transparent cutting board that overlays an image of the Zodiac Wheel, with all the sign symbols, pictures and zodiac names. The cutting board is embedded in the kitchen counter top and must have been installed in the 1950s when the house was built, and how cool is that? I love it.
Anyway—I spoon some plain yogurt in, toss in some nuts, and turn around to get the honey. Well, the glass is small and the yogurt is spilling over the sides a bit, and as I turn back to the counter with the honey in hand I see a big, fat cockroach rearing up against the side of the glass (in the Deep South they may call the biggest ones “palmetto bugs”, but make no mistake about it, they are cockroaches, and massive ones at that).
Now, I realize that cockroaches exist in the house, although I don’t often see them. After all, we are in Louisiana and this house is not exactly sealed tight. But usually when I see a cockroach, it is belly-up, legs folded. And if I do encounter a live one, they either freeze or run.
But last night, as I turned back to the kitchen counter with the honey in hand, I see this huge cockroach retreating from the glass of yogurt. And as I was turning, out of the corner of my eye, I had seen that it was standing up on its hind legs—flailing its antennae and swiping its front legs to get at the yogurt spilling over the top edge of the glass—before having turned and skittered away. And all of this, the entire cycle, occurring one of those cockroach-split-seconds in which they reveal their remarkable capacity for agility and speed.
In any case, it scurries away from the glass and backs into the kitchen counter top lineup that includes an aluminum mixing bowl, glass Pyrex measuring cups, a scrolled metal basket with tea boxes stacked inside, the wooden spice box, and a large bottle of olive oil.
From there, the cockroach turns his body around to face me and rears up on his hind legs, nonverbally tongue-lashing me with flailing front arms and antennae. From this posture of defiance, he soon breaks into a brief horizontal skitter, but it is resumed when he finds a more guarded and secure spot. Now safely nested between the aluminum mixing bowl and spice box, he quickly returns to his confrontational posture, reared-up-on-hind-legs, face-on, defiant, antennae lashing out at me: j’accusé.
I was startled, and also surprised by the boldness and indignation of this big fellow. I soon realized, though, that we had so thoroughly established our “shifts” in the kitchen that, according the cockroach, I had broken our apparently unspoken arrangement. I guess the cockroach figured that whatever was on the kitchen counter at 11pm was as much—if not more—his as it was mine. Excusez-moi, Monsieur Coquerelle.
Well, I made away with the yogurt, and he made away with his life. Lucky for him the cockroach killer was asleep for the night, and the counter top is no place for a crunchy/squishy “palmetto bug” death in any case. (My personal aversion to killing cockroaches comes not from any moral qualms, but rather from physical ones.) I did make sure to bang up the counter top items on the way out of the kitchen, though, just to shake him up a bit and stake my own claim to the kitchen territory.
|Posted by Kimberly on March 8, 2011 at 6:00 PM||comments (0)|
It is 11:38 a.m. and I am sitting in my kitchen patio enjoying the sounds of the Metairie Mardi Gras Day parades. This muted combination of sounds wafts over the houses in the neighborhood and weaves in through the windows of my house and through the open kitchen doors: connecting the inside of the house to the outside porch and the backyard; the fresh air and the breezes; the clouds and the sky.
These parade sounds include a lilting background of cheering voices woven together with music from marching bands, brass bands, and from float speakers: old-school Mardi Gras classics by Dizzy Gillespie and Louis Armstrong interspersed with popular rap songs--and punctuated with an occasional riffed brass horn accent thrown out by an enthusiastic band member; or an official vehicle siren clicked on-and-off in an encouraging burst of brief whoops; or a string of celebratory horn-beepings sent by parade vehicle drivers to parade-goers on the sidewalks and sidewalk bleachers set up specially for the occasion.
In addition to the parade sounds in the distance, the radio brings the music of WWOZ community radio (the funkiest station in the nation) into the house. A small sampling of today's lineup includes brass bands (Rebirth!), Mardi Gras Indian music (The Wild Magnolias), and the distinctive New Orleans sound of Dr. John and Professor Longhair--with that irresistible rhythm that has a full-circle twist in every beat--and deep south blues from the likes of Son House, Junior Kimbrough, and local legends like Koko Taylor and Irma Thomas.
The porch doors are also open to fill the house with the sweet scents of a semi-tropical spring, tossed about and circulating freely in the brisk winds today. I'm especially aware of this smell since returning last night after a brief trip to Arizona. The early blooming flowers have emerged around the neighborhood in the past weeks and taken-things-to-the-next-level with the assistance of the rain that fell while I was away.
I also suspect that spending a few days in the arid and relatively un-fragrant Arizona desert climate heightens my awareness of the rich fragrances that emerge here as soon as winter even starts to think about ending--beginning with the smaller plants around this time of year, and increasing in intensity as the flowering trees and bushes that grace the Deep South begin a series of blooming cycles that will end only when the chill of winter begins: the first-to-bloom Japanese cherry tree, and the Camilla bush blossoms, and the blossoms of the signature magnolia tree with its distinct pattern of stature and appearance; its unique way of holding itself and hanging its leaves and moving in the wind; and a scent that you could never forget if ever you had felt it deeply, ever allowed yourself to surrender to even a single instance of the magnolia tree and be carried by its spirit--even if once and only for a moment.
So, for the first time this year, the smell of the blossoms is strong enough to be carried in the air and circulated in the still-cool spring breezes near the ground. Clouds stream rapidly far above, carried by larger and more aggressive winds in the atmosphere, and down below the combined scent of all the blooming flowers is perceptible to any who care to breathe in deeply.
The winds rise and fall, asking the tree branches to dance and they accept, leaves shimmering with delight. Through the kitchen window I see the occasional solitary leaf breaking away from its tree and drifting down past the houses, sometimes alone but more often followed by others--nature sending "second-line" parades down streets and sidewalks on a day without sunshine, a day that threatens to rain but will not, holding off even thunder until the afternoon when the 2011 Mardi Gras parades will have safely wound down. The three weeks of celebration that built up to it will have come to an end. Tomorrow morning, it will be Ash Wednesday and--except for the beads caught up in tree branches en route--you will be hard-pressed to find trace that the whole spectacular series of events had even happened.
|Posted by Kimberly on December 1, 2010 at 2:35 PM||comments (0)|
Daisy was so tiny when I first saw her. They has taken her from her mother too soon, and not cared for her.
It was Dave’s idea to get a dog for my birthday. He asked me what I thought and I liked the idea very much. So, we had driven to this house listed in a classified newspaper ad for “Lab/German Shorthair mix puppies, $50.”
When we first saw her, she lay on the floor in a rough shower stall in the basement. The floor was concrete, cold and hard, and not improved by the thin, damp newspaper that covered it. She was limply splayed across it. Her few remaining brothers huddled apart from her in the corner of the stall.
I immediately thought, “My God, we have got to get her out of here.”
I picked her up and held her. I saw her belly was much too swollen and too many fleas crawled over and under the shiny, soft hairs of her black coat. She was breathing shallowly and did not open her eyes.
I thought, “Sweet Jesus, I hope we’re not too late.”
We went upstairs to pay for the dog and were led to the dining room. The man at the table had disassembled a handgun and was cleaning the parts on the dining room table. Dave told me later that the man made it clear to him that there were no refunds, and it was only much later that I considered if this had also been a symbolic message from a negligent, unlicensed dogbreeder to customers who might be concerned about the condition of the dogs. The house was located in a rough-enough neighborhood where symbolic displays still carried some weight. But, in my generalized state of ignorance at the time, I did not even realize that dog breeders are (or should be) licensed and could be reported for treating their dogs so poorly.
At the time, upstairs in the dining room, I was not thinking about any of this. I was still reeling from seeing the puppies in the basement. I slowly became aware of my immediate surroundings and my eyes came to focus on the dog cowering against the wall. This was the mother, a full black lab, standing off to the side but watching everything. Her teats hung visible and heavy—they looked painful with too much milk. This I all noticed in the glance of a single moment, but what held me was her eyes.
The mother dog was staring intently at me as I stood there, cradling her tiny black puppy in my arms. She did not move but her eyes were saying, were shouting to me, “Please get my baby out of here. It is too late for me. This is a terrible, horrible place.” I held the mother dog’s gaze, and thought to her, “Okay, we will. And I promise we will do our best for her.”
Dave paid the man at the table the $50. Few words were exchanged. We left the house from the side door that had led down to the basement and walked to our car parked on the side of the street. I carefully climbed into the passenger seat, trying not to alarm or startle the little dog in my arms. She was barely there. In the car I cradled her as she lay in my lap, tiny and dark, breathing but hardly moving.
From the first time I saw her in on the basement floor I cared deeply for her, in spite of, perhaps even more so because of, her difficulties. As I gently caressed her in the car on the way home, I knew that her name was “Daisy.”
When we got back to the house, I wrapped the dog in a soft blanket and gently put her on the floor in the kitchen. Her eyes were now open but she did not seem to respond. I ran my hand back and forth in front of her face, slowly at first and then faster and faster. She gave no reaction, did not even flinch.
I thought, “Holy-Mary-Mother-of-God, I hope she isn't blind.”
I talked to Daisy and stroked her and she seemed to relax. She fell asleep in the blanket on the kitchen floor, as the sun went down and the apartment darkened.
When Daisy woke up after a deep sleep, her eyes came to focus and Daisy responded. The sun came up the next day, and Daisy came to with the warm sunbeams that streamed in through the kitchen windows.
We took her to the vet--and then later to the park and the river, the lake and the woods. For rides in the car and walks around the block. Daisy got stronger and healthier with each passing day, and came to see things more clearly than perhaps anyone else I have had the good fortune to know.
|Posted by Kimberly on November 13, 2010 at 4:40 PM||comments (2)|
Song written and performed by Iris Dement ~ NEOPRIMITIVE QUEEN OF AMERICANA
Oh, sweet is the melody, so hard to come by.
It's so hard to make every note bend just right.
You lay down the hours and leave not one trace,
But a tune for the dancing is there in it's place.
Click on image below for more ...