Letters, January 2010

Dear Sirs,
As the owner of Precision Marble & Granite I see that you made fun of our sign (“Around Red Bank” 1/7/2010). If you had the decency to come in and ask about it instead of skulking around like paparazzi I could have explained it. As the sign indicates, Precision Marble & Granite specializes in oversized marble and granite pencils. These are mostly used in school literacy fundraisers. Let me tell you, nothing opens up purse strings faster than a giant marble pencil. We’re also in the process of reviving the ancient greek myth of “Tompo” the greek god of literacy. Tompo who resembles Zeus but with giant pencils instead of lightning bolts will surely inspire children to read and perhaps write. So far we have retrofitted seventeen Zeus statues into Tompo statues using our giant marble pencils. Your mocking story was hurtful and we are waiting for your apology.
John Precision
Precision Marble & Granite

Upon reading your “news” blurb about Harry Reid’s prejudiced shin bone (1/11/2010), I was moved to write you. Harry Reid’s left shin is one of the most tolerant shin bone’s in the whole of these United States. I can remember when Harry Reid’s shin (not the rest of him, who was busy elsewhere) was part of the march on Selma in 1965 and gave as rousing a speech as any bone I’ve ever had the privilege to see speak, and I’ve seen plenty! In 1966 Robert Kennedy’s right knee cap gave a fiery speech about unions and I was there and when I was a child I saw Lou Gehrig’s thumb bone give his famous “I’m the luckiest thumb bone on the face of the earth speech” and…..what? …….stop writing and go home!?….Look, I was promised rye toast if I wrote this and rye toast I will have…goddammit!….
Meadowlark Lime

Dear Blog,
After reading your story about Tavern on the Groin (1/4/2010) I started checking to see if there were any other racy or salacious gentleman’s clubs named after New York landmarks. After days of exhaustive investigation I found a few; Splay Stadium out in Flushing Queens, in Manhattan there are The Fulton Flesh Market, The Pimp-Pire State Building, Hump Towers, and Lady Liber-Teeze. I vow to continue my investigation.
Thank you for your time.
Elliot Spitzer (not that one, a different one)

A word about Snol Tempson

In a recent blog (1/13/10, I Hate Me, part 166,303) I recounted a thrilling story where I couldn’t come up with folk artist Dave Van Ronk’s name and blurted out the name, “Snol Tempson”. Well thanks to astute friends of the blog J. McBain and C. Burns (check comments on 1/13/10’s blog) I found out that Snol Tempson is more than something my mind vomited up in a fit of early senility, HE’S AN ACTUAL PERSON! (let that sink in). Here’s what we pieced together from wikipedia and other sources.
Born Lonnerton Snol Tempson in the late 1920’s to itinerant slush farmers in western Sweden, Tempson was abandoned at an early age and was raised by snow, or as he later referred to it “father snow and mother ice”. He learned how to play guitar by stringing yarn across reindeer antlers. His first album, the unfortunately named Hitler of Folk was released in 1943. it was a rough time for Sweden and many thought that a Nazi invasion was imminent. In a 1963 interview in Folk Folks Magazine Tempson addressed this topic “Well you see, I thought that we were going to be overrun with the nazis and I was scared and I wanted to get out in front and let them know, I would play ball with them”. Songs like “Deaths Head Rag” and “Give me an H (for Hitler)” earned him the hatred of the entire Swedish nation and after the war he moved to Austria where his next LP was the mewling love letter to Russian leader Josef Stalin, Stalingrad-Stalin, Grand! Not much is heard from Tempson until the middle 1950’s were he settled in America and recorded a series of forgettable albums for the Forkways imprint (other artists on the Forkways label were Barb Dylan, Feet Seger, and the Kingston Duo). His final album on Forkways was the anti-anti-segregation record, 1963‘s Segregation is Hip! Not much is known about what happened to him after that. There are reports that he was seen on a Cambodian cable access show called Hot Tubbing with Pol Pot in 1976 singing a song called “Re-education is Where It’s at”. After that the trail runs dry and the mystery of Lonnerton Snol Tempson grows.

Boy, 8, on TSA watch list

By Ray Sedecki
The New York Time

The U.S. Transportation Security Administration (TSA), under intense scrutiny for its handling of terror watch lists in last month’s Christmas bombing attempt, has on its Web site a “myth buster” that attempts to reassure the public.
Myth: The national No-Fly list includes an 8-year-old boy.
Buster: No 8-year-old is on a TSA watch list.
“Meet Osama Bin Laden Jones,” said Eva Braun Jones, introducing her 8-year-old son, a New Jersey Cub Scout and frequent traveler who has seldom boarded a plane without a hassle because he shares the name of a suspicious person. “It’s not a myth.”
Osama Bin Laden Jones’ mom initially sensed trouble when he was a baby and she could not get a seat for him on their flight to Florida at an airport kiosk; airline officials explained that his name “was on the list,” she recalled. “We just liked the name when little O (“O” is the child’s nickname) was born, it’s very musical sounding. We didn’t know he shared it with the most known terrorist in the world.” Ms. Jones continued “We’ve had problems with our other children’s names as well; Saddam Hitler Jones who is now 12 years old, and our youngest Mussolini Klansman Jones who just turned two.”
Representatives for the Jones family say they are in discussions with the A&E network for a proposed reality show called “Watch List!”

I Hate Me, Part 166,303

Signs of my impending senility
1)While describing the spelling of something, I had to describe a ” – “ I could have went with “hyphen”, even “dash” would have been acceptable. Not being able to get my brain synapses to fire correctly the best I could muster up was “half an equal sign”.  2) We were playing Dave Van Ronk in the store today and someone asked me who it was and I couldn’t think of his name and after some brain grimacing I blurted out “Snol Tempson”,  who for all I know might be the swedish Dave Van Ronk (or as us cool kids refer to him, DVR).  It’s all down hill from here.

Holder wrong about Harry Reid?

A&P news service
Eric Holder, the nation’s first black attorney general, defended Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on Monday over racial remarks the senator made about Barack Obama during the 2008 presidential campaign.

Holder told The Associated Press that Reid is a good man, and as Holder put it: “I don’t think that there is a prejudiced bone in his body.

Harry Reid's "prejudiced" shin bone

However, Professor E.F. Stuckley a prominent race-ologist at Liberty College disagrees.
“I’ve seen this Harry Reid, this so called progressive and I’ve seen his x-rays and I can say without a shadow of a doubt that Mr. Reids left shin bone is extremely prejudiced. So Attorney General Holder is wrong, w-r-o-n-g wrong. ” Professor Stuckley produced an x-ray of the offending shin bone and continued, “I ran the tests myself and I am one hundred percent certain that his shin bone, his left shin bone is prejudiced. As prejudiced as George Wallace’s (left shin bone) was.” Professor Stuckley is scheduled to appear on the Glenn Beck show later in the week.

Book Nook, January 2010

Twinkle Twinkle Little Death Star
-a Chamba Fett mystery-
By Kevin Mitchell ($19.95, Spacely Press)

In the field of Star Wars speculative fiction, Kevin Mitchell’s Chamba Fett mystery’s are an anomaly. These detective novels based in the Star Wars universe have more to do with Raymond Chandler than they do Darth Vader. The other major Star Wars mystery series was of course John Stearns Tales From Palpatine’s Cat but those stories were very different, more of a futuristic Indiana Jones type thing, Mitchell’s stories have more of a noir-ish feel. The Chamba Fett series features Lieutenant Chamba Fett an officer in the Imperial Navy and cousin of infamous bounty hunter Boba Fett. Chamba’s two fisted approach to solving crimes were introduced in 2004’s Jedi Hide, Jedi Seek, and Twinkle Twinkle Little Death Star is the fourth in the series ( the other two titles are; Grebo’s Tauntaun Gambit and Tatooine Shakedown). The plot involves a murdered courier who had plans to the new Death Star as well as ties to an Ewok prostitution ring. It’s a fast paced and exciting read that will appeal to both Star Wars fans and futuristic space crime novel affectionados alike.

(available through Amazon.com)

this is cool

It’s Elvis’ 75th birthday and here’s a lot of Elvis book covers from John Gall’s Spine Out


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