Eurotrashcation: Part Three

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Click here Part One and Part Two.

We woke up when the sun hardly a flesh wound, only slightly bleeding over the horizon. If there was such a thing as a sun in the U.K., that is. We headed over to the nearest convenience shop and slightly bled our bank accounts for cash, as though they were inflamed (they were decidedly not).

We made our way to the train station, catching it minutes before it choo-chooed out of the station. Three changes later, noticing old women wearing old clothes and worn shoes, bejeweled wrinkled fingers entwined in a husband’s and we were at Newcastle.

One of our cards, the one that actually had money on it for things like food and transportation (you know, conveniences) and we were stuck making calls to people across the pond where they were fast asleep. After the fifth call, the card was unfrozen.

We got on the bus we needed, in time for it but almost late for the next transportation. I asked the driver when the bus would move, and he said “soon”, which immediately made me feel like an ass. An Idiot American, and that wouldn’t be the first time. It drove us to the harbor, and we boarded.

This was my first time on sea, that is, if you neglect the ancient, primordial sea that is the Eastern Plains of Colorado. Our room on the ferry reminded of a brig. I lay on the bed very still and remembered stories from Maryland about kids using scopolamine patches to trip out and wished I had but one. Then the boat actually started rocking, and my stomach joined. I felt it sloshing inside my abdomen. I laid there until I grew accustomed to it, like I was having a bad trip by myself, trying to help myself with a repeated mantra. We went to the on board restaurant for lunch, walking with bow-legged steps. I ate the salmon, because I figured it would be fresh. I don’t actually know anything about the life of a seaman, so I shouldn’t say anything.

We puffed on cigarettes on the deck and watched the smoke signals disintegrate behind us. Some heady motherfuckers walked by, laughing in the Dutch language. Despite my landlocked origin, it was actually Hoss that was got a little sea sick. We spent a good hour in our holding cell, with me rubbing his tummy, trying to coax him back to life.

We went up to the ferry’s bar, rolling our eyes as we passed a Tina Turner cover band. I ordered a margarita, the first I had in months, and he ordered a club soda. The bartender, seeing our age, was rude and curt. Or maybe that’s just how it was. We watched a Dutchman get really drunk, holding his phone up and banging it down. I ordered another and asked Hoss to tip the man really well.

We went back to the holding cell and told each other secrets, secrets too private to be written here.

For lack of better entertainment, we went to the movie theater, and watched that James Bond movie where he clearly has a tentacle fetish. We laughed, we rolled our eyes, we made Archer jokes, we slept. The ferry passed through the sea.

Eurotrashcation: Part Two

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Click here for Part One.

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In the morning we threw ourselves out of bed, threw our shit into our bags, and threw our feet out the door.

The next stop was the city of Norwich, where I was studying for the semester. I was not terribly excited for this stop, if I’m being completely honest. I had spent four months there already, stumbling from pub to pub in search of margaritas and rowdy people to party with. The city was sleepy, and I wasn’t ready to go to bed again. Hoss wanted to see what I had been up to, so we went.

It was Easter when we rode in that coach to Norwich. Couples were returning to town, holding hands and complaining about in-laws. A kid’s head rolled against the seat as she slept.

We checked out the campus, first. The design is rooted in the ’60’s, but the colossal cement glacier has slid through the decades. Walk paths crossed over ground floors, cut underneath with flights of stairs, like the campus was folded up on itself. In conjunction with the grey sky, the ambiance was something desolate. The sun flirted with exposing herself, but the foul air she used as perfume made her unappealing.

Then we headed into town. The town was closed for the remembrance of its Lord and Savior’s resurrection. The Norman castle loomed on the hill, its white stone burning to assert its authority. We stopped going into the churches after we accidentally interrupted a second Easter gathering. Cobbles of the road clunked beneath our steps. Men laughed at drunk passed out in some trash in an alley.

We ate some Indian food. It was simultaneously the most vegetables and most flavor I had eaten in one sitting for four months. We were short on cash, and had to give a shitty tip.

Norwich was the vacation from our vacation.

 

Tea in England

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I have been on the hunt for grass for months now. Too long have I gotten inappropriately drunk at the British pubs. Too long have I sadly looked up the stoner tag on Tumblr.

tea

My interest is that of the connoisseur. I wanted to compare what the Brits were smoking to that of highly superior Colorado weed. I was wrong. My tolerance had dropped drastically, rendering any sense of superiority I had born meaningless.

I hounded after my few acquaintances in England. One girl, an American I know, lives in a flat with British types that rage, as far I can surmise. They have a history of throwing lemons and melons out of the window, on the kitchen floor, it sounds like a good time. They go into their bathroom and turn the shower on and light up a j, to diffuse the smoke in the steam. They practice some strange rite of passage known as a “windmill”, where they take a long drag, hold it, and spin in circles till they’re deliriously dizzy. This also sounds like fun.

I asked my flatmates. They knew nothing.

I finally got an invite to a flat party in my complex. They were pre-drinking before going to the club, which I was not into. I shared the remnants of a bottle of Jack with a friend, and hung out on the balcony. A Brit poked fun at my less than admirable roll-up cig, and then offered to roll me one. In seconds he transformed the paper, the filter, and the tobacco into a splinter-sized stick. All around me I could smell the earthy scent of cannabis. A woman gave her joint to the man that I was talking to and went inside. I asked for some puffs, which he obliged me. It was at that party that I met my last hook-up, a man with long curly ginger hair. We chatted about Burroughs and dabs.

Several weeks later, I invited him out for a couple of drinks. We went out to a couple of pubs, drinking an unsteady line of double gin and tonics. We discussed Burroughs and Ginsberg and Stephen King and Lovecraft and Arthur Machen. We talked about the legalization in Colorado. Eventually we landed at a place called the Mischief. And then he invited me to come back to his place to … (wait for it) SMOKE.

We got to the flat. In his room he had stacks upon stacks of books. He showed me that he was currently reading The Doors of Perception and I knew he was a homie. Other indicators included the Fear and Loathing and the Dark Side of the Moon posters. He had the first pipe with resin in it that I had seen in months. He had run out of tobacco, so I had popped back into my flat to retrieve my own. He had said he was bad at rolling, but the spliff he produced was long and magnificent. Because I had seen the coppers with their silly hats walking around, I kept lighting cigarettes to hid the scent, but he seemed unfazed. Before long, I was very high. The kind where your thoughts are speeding through your skull too fast to register, where your head disconnects from your body and your legs start buzzing. It was after I had said “Poetry should be ephemeral” and before he had gotten the wine that I started feeling sick. I ran to the women’s toilet and cleaned up after myself. The toilet was broken, which gave me painful paranoia. I went back into the kitchen and we sat at the table, both of our heads in our hands. I said that I thought I should call it a night. It was as I was saying good night that vomit again filled my throat and I  ran to the men’s bathroom and again emptied my stomach. I embarrassingly wished him a good night again.

At home I lay on the bed and tried to keep the room from spinning, with a shitty sitcom from Netflix playing to an unwatching audience.

Tales from a Boulder 7/11

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I recently quit working for 7-11 to make a little money for my time abroad. It was the first job that I had had with giant corporation (other than a job with a university bookstore, which is a different kind of corporation), but that wasn’t the problem. The managers of the place were a really nice couple who were pretty lenient on the rules of the corporation.

The thing that I quickly realized is that people are straight-up shitty to cashiers. It didn’t help that addictions and sometimes very large amounts of money were at stake. During one of my first days there, a man got irrationally angry at me for asking him to repeat which scratch ticket he wanted. The same thing happened with cigarettes, chew, coffee.

Even people buying Zig-Zag wraps were sometimes shitty. This one guy came in for some watermelon wraps. It was one of my first days, and I hadn’t sold one of those yet. I start looking for it, and he yells at me “LEFT!” and “DOWN!”. It was ironic that someone buying a blunt wrap had so little chill. Anyways, I found it, and scanned the bar code. When you scan a tobacco product into the system, it immediately asks for an ID. I was feeling a little spite-y, and it wasn’t too unreasonable to ask him for some ID, so I did. He got all in a huff and started spouting some nonsense about “I’ve come in here every day!” even though I had never sold anything to him before. He finally gave it to me, and I put in his birthday, and I put the card on the counter. Then he got so mad because “I handed you the card, you hand it back!”. It was satisfying to wish him a nice day, though, as he huffed out the door.

Given the store was in Boulder, it isn’t much of a surprise that there were characters. There was the Boulder-every-mom who always came in with her kid and always looked critically at the price of her smoothie, even though I learned how to put in after the first week.

There was the woman who couldn’t decide how many goddamn hot dogs she wanted. I call this event the Great Hotdog Fiasco of 2015. I hated this stupid woman from the moment she mouthed her stupid infantile voice. She came in and ordered a hot dog. Then for two. No, wait, no, one. Yeah. No. Three. Four? No, definitely three. By the time I had gotten the hot dogs ready, I had thrown the fourth away, because there’s nothing to be done with a pre-made hot dog if you can’t sell it. All this while, the woman had been standing beside me at the grill. When I threw it away, she pathetically patted at the cover of it and was whining, “He threw my hot dog away, he threw it away.” Finally the crisis was sorted out.

There was a guy who always offered to come back and buy me “something pretty if I win” the Lotto.

There was the homeless man who asked for a light from me. He was cool.

There was the man who taught me what the Boulder mating call is. (Hint: its tapping the edge of your credit card on the table. Get it? Coke.)

There was the time I’m pretty sure I smoked the stuff of someone’s cokerette from the ash tray outside because I was craving and I’m living that grunge life.

There was the wheelchair-bound man with the motorcycle helmet who always mumbled his order of cigarettes, even though I know for certain he was able to communicate.

There was the man who called us to ask how much a grape-flavored blunt cost and came in with a bunch of pennies. He was a sketchy dude.

There was the old lesbian couple that was addicted to PowerBall. There was also the cute lesbian couple that was living in a truck and ordered a pizza (the pizza of 7/11 is shit, in case you were wondering) and bought some slices of cheese and asked us to shred them and put them on the pizza. She told me it was their idea of a nice date nowadays.

I was surprised one day to hear the damn binging sound of the door opening and a white woman flamboyantly exclaiming “Hola!” to the general room. She wandered around and bought several items and set them down on the counter. I reached for one and she gesticulated madly. “Sorry, germaphobe.” She asked me to shoot the items with the scanner instead, which I did. She then asked for a bag, and I moved to apply the bag fee before she screamed, “Wait, no!” and then apologized “Sorry, control freak.” The shirtless dreaded construction man who had already paid looked at me and said, “Wow, you must see everything, huh?”

 

The opinion of Satan’s concubine.

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On one of my last blog posts, a Satanist blog commented that I didn’t understand real Satanism.

I’ve read The Satanic Bible and I agree with the basic tennets or whatever. Be your own god, indulgence not compulsion, that sort of stuff, and that’s cool. I’m not really a LaVeyan Satanist, though, I’m just satan-worshiping. The satanist with a lower s, if you will.There are some things about Satanism that I have trouble getting behind, but I respect the philosophy.

This is not a Satanist blog, per se, it is a satanist blog.

In The Satanic Bible, LaVey makes the claim that Satan is an archetypal figure of freedom, rebellion, and independence, and I agree with that. I love that. I’m also pretty much an atheist, and I’m not really comfortable with lot of things about religion, and the Devil, especially where Milton’s concerned, epitomizes my sentiment towards theology.

I also have an interest in both the occult and that which is cheesy, hence my enthusiasm for black masses and ritual sacrifices. I’m kind of a witchy dude, I don’t know what else to say.

And even LaVey was ironic about the stereotypes surrounding Satanism. A favorite: one of the chapters in The Satanic Bible is titled “Hell, The Devil, And How to Sell Your Soul”.

That dude’s blog is pretty cool. Its called SatanicViews. Check it out.

Still the coolest satanic band.

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Okay, okay, okay. I finally have time to write this review.

I was wary when I went to see Ghost in Denver a couple of weeks ago. I had listened to it beforehand, and their new album, Meliora, is anything but what the title suggests. Their previous albums, Opus Eponymous and Infestissumam, in my opinion, are much better.

I was disappointed by the new album mostly because of the lyrical content. Their previous studio albums were rife with double innuendo and the risque, not to mention just plain sex. Like, listen to the way Papa E (I’ll get to his appearance in a second) sings. Its sexy and commanding and mature. By way of example, some of the instrumentals enable opportunities to wrap an arm around a lover.

A less important facet of my wariness was the band’s new look. At the prior concert I went to, Papa E was papal, in the style of those inversed black masses.

black mass

Basically a Ghost show.

He contained himself, which made the song’s lyrics that more uncannily unholy. Because of Papa E III’s dancing, I was afraid the  The new masks of the Nameless Ghouls were kind of corny. They weren’t spoOoOoOooky enough. People expect spook.

I am not a fan of Papa E out of his gown. He looks good in it, he should keep it on.

I write all of this merely for the sake of my natural tendency towards criticism and bemoaning. In actuality, none of this matters.

It doesn’t matter, because Ghost needs to be dynamic. Their schtick is based in theater, and theater lives on variance.Despite my complaints, Ghost still does a great show. Its difficult to leave a Ghost show disappointed and they cannot always do the black mass thing. It is important to take the papal gown off of Papa E, or else every show will be the same.I mean, two women in nun costumes went on stage and administered unholy communion to the first row, c’mon.

A band only produces good work with diversity, or else it drops redundancies, not albums. Good job on not getting pickled in repetition, dudes.

If things go as planned I’ll be performing a ritual satanic sacrifice

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Ghost is playing in Denver in two days, and Hoss and I are going to go see them. In an unprecedented move, a friend of our’s mom bought tickets for us, for free, which is about the coolest thing I’ve experienced. All shall embrace the love of Satan.

Their last concert that I went to was metal as fuck, what with the background noise of crying babies and the opening act of King Dude.  We shall see what their new act is like now that their new album is out.

Hoss and I recently bought a vape pen, which will undoubtedly only add to the metalness.

Keep an eye out for a review in the next couple of days.

Usually, you say “symphony”, and I say “cacophony”

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I recently went to the symphony with Hoss, because we are oh so cosmopolitan. We did ourselves up, Hoss in a suave tuxedo, I in a hicky plaid shirt and bow tie. The show was at a church, which was a little too holy for me.

It was not so nearly impressionistic in actuality.

It was not so nearly impressionistic in actuality.

Dvorak and Beethoven were on the docket, the Dvorak being dark and Slavic, and the Beethoven full of joie de vivre. An old man sitting beside me who couldn’t see gave me a lecture on the necessity of perseverance. Besides the despicable affectations of genius that a viola player feigned by romantic lolls of his head, it was an enjoyable night.

There was an intermission, during which I ate a skewered marshmallow, brownie, strawberry snack with as much decorum as one can whilst eating a sticky, gooey spear.

The second part of the show consisted of the Beethoven. The symphony was lucky to share the stage with the Lehnert Trio, who are a pretty big deal in Colorado. Oswald, the father-husband-violinist, and Oswald Jr., the son-bassist needed to re-tune their instruments to the sounds of the spheres, but Doris, the mother-wife-pianist was on point.

When she took the stage, I was kind of astounded by her presence. She wore a blue dress-suit that sparkled in the lights above. In her silver hair she had a glimmering hair clip, with dangling earrings to match. She smiled at me when she sat down at her grand piano, which disarmed me.

She played fantastically with an energy that was fascinating to watch. She bobbed her head as well, not with affectation, but with sincerity of emotion. Her fingers pounded the keys like lightning bolts from the cosmos. Yes, exactly that. She played with the exhibition of a rock star, and the expertise of a craftsmen.

– Professor Rhadamanthus, Esq.

When I go to a show I now expect stilt walkers or its a no-go

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We were looking for something fun to do for the weekend, so we checked the listings. We saw a band’s name that struck our interest. Hoss and I did a little Googling, as we are wont to do.

And we saw their motherfucking video right here:

(You can check out the rest of the MarchFourth Marching Band’s videos here)

It goes without saying that we were hooked. We dressed up, (they seemed like the kind of band you would want to dress up for) Hoss in a golden vest and me in my leather daddy jacket and my Dresden Dolls-style stockings. I had blue hair at the time, so that helped too.

We went to the bar across from the street to drink a couple margaritas and dry-heave a little. Hoss was drunk and feeling generous, so he gave his flask of gin to houseless woman, and we got into the show, stumbling, ready to party.

And we motherfucking did.

Straight up, MarchFourth Marching Band was the coolest show that I have ever seen, and Hoss agrees. There were motherfucking acrobats, contortionists, burlesque dancers, and maybe some fire-eaters? I don’t know, I was wasted.

The band had a very ska-y sound, and it was shit that you could skank to with abandon and loss yourself in. They played as if they were having fun, and that transmuted to the crowd. And, when they played their cover of Nirvana’s “In Bloom”, I completely lost. My. Shit. The brass was a explosive and my ears were bleeding with awesomeness. The performance artists added an element of authentic, human spectacle that can’t be achieved by the light shows and pyrotechnics of most shows.

Then something cool happened. Hoss, overcome by the sheer awesomeness, started shouting “HOLY SHIT, HOLY SHIT!”

People had been drinkin’, so they started cheering it too. The band noticed, and they cheered it back to the crowd, and started playing with a new fervor. They rocked our asses off again.

Then something magical happened. A fucking unicorn – kidding. No, the drummers jumped down from the stage into the audience. So, not only were there was great music and great performances, there was also a transgression of that invisible wall between the talent and the fans. The musicians were in the trenches, beating on the drums, in range for the crowd to blow kisses to them.

It’s cool when you see an awesome band with lots of talent. It is another thing completely when you see an awesome, talented band that grooves on connecting with its audience.

Twitter Campaign for a More Holy America

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Hey, folks!

As I can probably guess, there are many of you are dissatisfied with the ungodliness that pervades this great country.

It is because we have forgotten Her.

She is a goddess-like, urbane, stylish, fashionable Feminist Icon who deserves a place in each every one of our souls.

Our inspiration:

Because She Lives

If this post so moves you, please use the Twitter hashtag #BecauseSheLives to express your love of cultured sophisticates.