The Library Is A Hell Of A Drug

After months of being separated, the Library and I reunited. And it feels so good. Cause we understood.

Only now the experience is like a cop TV show/Colombian cartel movie drug deal.

At the appointed date and time—you get a time and a date when the deal is going down. When your shipment has come in.

I step up to the table, make eye contact and wordlessly place my library card on the table and take 2 steps back.

She takes 2 steps forward, looks down at my card and she looks up at me: scanning. I’m not carrying a wire or heat: either a gun or coronavirus fever.

She nods. I nod back.

We good. She has the stuff and is willing to give it to me. Which is a deep relief because I’ve been jonesing since I quit cold turkey back in mid-March.

I step up to the table, make eye contact, and wordlessly place my library card on the table and take 2 steps back making eye contact the entire time.

It’s not said but I know: Make. No. Sudden. Movements.

I’m nervous. I wanna make a “joke” to evict the tension. I can feel a drop of sweat slowly sliding down my back like a lover’s gentle one finger caress.

I take two steps forward maintaining eye contact, in one sweeping motion grab the bag and grab the card turn and walk briskly to my car. In the car, I tear open the bag and yep…that’s the stuff.

Smells so good. I exhale. I didn’t realize I was holding my breath this whole time. I start the car thinking this should tide me over but the Library and I know…that’s not true. I’ll be back.

They got the stuff I want.

-28-

In Bowie’s Space

A couple of years ago I was so fortunate to get a NASA JPL tour from Krys Blackwood! Just Wow: it was an incredible experience. (is…present tense)

In this one building’s lobby on this NASA campus was a wall of photos surrounding the word Disruptors.

The photos were the usual dynamic creators you’d expect from NASA Nerds: Carl Sagan, Captain Kirk (“Risk is our business!”) and yet in the corner was Prince (YES!!) and off to the side was oh! the following David Bowie image.

That brilliant and talented individuals who’re actively working to literally get us to Mars (where there is hopefully no spiders!) see Bowie daily is astonishing. Your focus is your fate!

In life and in death and in space and on Earth Bowie galvanizes us all. He remains missed.

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Poop O’clock

Back to the land of people, passwords and ugh…pants. #DownWithPants

Even though my Poop Schedule is still on Vacation Time.

I may struggle silently but at least I do not struggle alone.

-28-

My Birth: A Big Bang Story

Indeed today is my birth day.

I’ve spent over 4 decades soaked in popular culture across every single medium: as such I would like to thank some of the special creators and wonderful things that enriched my life and probably made me too quirky to sit with at lunch in high school.

My deep and endless thanks go to…

Forrest J Ackerman, Roger Corman, Boris Karloff, Vincent Price, Stephen King, Lon Chaney, Mad Magazine, Ian Fleming and James Bond, Zorro, The Shadow, quicksand, The Batman, Bugs Bunny, Frank Sinatra, The Invisible Man, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Sherlock Holmes, Quantum Leap, The Muppet Show, The Planet of the Apes, Spider-Man, Thriller, Ray Harryhausen, Wonder Woman and Lynda Carter, Carol Burnett, Edgar Allan Poe, Harry Houdini, The A-Team, SETI, The Incredible Shrinking Man, Jerry Lewis, Back to The Future, arcades and pinball machines (especially Indiana Jones!), Carl Sagan, The Lone Ranger, Knight Rider, Invasion of the Body Snatchers, Richard Matheson, Flash Gordon, Run DMC, Beastie Boys, Doctor Who, Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, Scooby-Doo, The Outer Limits, Invaders from Mars, secret passages triggered by pulling a dummy book, The Space Shuttle Challenger disaster, James Dean, Mork and Mindy, Jules Verne, freak shows at the circus, Star Trek: The Next Generation, Dean Koontz, The Iron Giant, The Rolling Stones, Alfred Hitchcock, The Three Investigators, Elvis, Errol Flynn, Ray Bradbury, NASA, David Copperfield, X-Men, The Six Million Dollar Man, Sean “Bond” Connery, Darth Vader and R2-D2, funhouses and haunted houses, Marilyn Monroe, Steve McQueen, (the Dukes of Hazzard & the Fall Guy), Sue Grafton, Batman 66, death traps, Chuck D and Public Enemy, Super Friends, Fonzi, Spider-Man 67, Souls of Mischief, C.S. Lewis, Freddy Krueger, The Hardy Boys, Michael Jackson, The Black Museum, Orson Welles, Transformers, G.I. Joe, The Amazing Kreskin, X-Files, Bruce Springsteen, Rocket Robin Hood, Aliens, Defenders of the Earth, The Simpsons, Gilligan’s Island, Star Trek, Terminator, zombies and Halloween (the night…the movies less so.).

I have lived an astonishing life: I’ve travelled in time, saved the universe on numerous occasions, been to planets beyond our star system and encountered aliens: some friendly, many hostile…occasionally some are green and horny.

I’ve guarded secrets, foiled schemes, solved mysteries and seen more than my share of dead bodies. I’ve lost friends: good solid men and stoic women; not many of them have come back.

I don’t fear death and risks no longer intimidate me.

I know no matter how bad it gets; no matter how much darkness threatens me, no matter how big the monster is…no matter how outrageous the odds are…I know…I know…I know there is always a way and that’ll it work out. After I’ve been knocked down I don’t get up as quickly as I did in my youth but dammit I still get up. I have an obligation: I didn’t just hang out with these creators and these superheroes to just surrender the present and allow the triumph of catastrophe!

“I’ve watched my wild youth

Disappear in front of my eyes

Moments of magic and wonder

It seems so hard to find

Is it ever coming back again?

Is it ever coming back again?

Take me back to the feeling when

Everything was left to find…”

It has been and continues to be A Wonderful Life with so many Wonder Years. And as long as there are stars to maps and planets to catalog it’s irritating to live with gravity and all that keeps us down.

Now: where the cake at?

-28-

Be Well Read

Confession: I like to read. Thankfully my subway is often delayed so I’m never on time for anything but I am well read when I finally get there.

Since 2011 I’ve been using a google spreadsheet to Fitbit my reading. (It’s one of those weird things where somebody’ll ask for a book recommendation and my brain goes I dunno. Real helpful…as such I started to write it all down.)

Starting in 2011 I’ve used my birth date (September 28) as Day 1 and I read for the year up to the day before (September 27).

I tend to knock out about 80 books in a year (plus a buttload of comics…about 400 or so single monthly issues and roughly 100 trades/graphic novels for the year).

This year I’m under slightly: at 76 books. (September 27 is Friday…I won’t start a new book; rest up instead since I just concluded 2 books today).

Which means since September 28, 2011 I’ve read a grand total of 518 books.

(Sports biographies, Stephen King novels, start-up memoirs, poetry collections and lots more.)

I don’t say this to be impressive; you know me well enough we’re way past trailers and first date manners. I’m cool with who I am; hopefully you are as well.

I share it because I often see people express the desire to read more. And what I’ve learned is that like everything else in life when I paid attention to something it improved.

If you wanna lose weight you hafta keep getting on the scale. I was startled that something as simple as pay attention would dramatically increase the amount of books I’d read. It worked so…I pass that on to those who long to read more.

Figure out what works for you…GoodReads, google spreadsheet, note thingie app on your phone…and go nuts: write it all down; track it like a focused hunter and in no time you’ll be devouring books whole like a python.

There’s so many incredible and astonishing books out there impatiently waiting to make your life better…to inject wonder into your imagination and to startle your set theories while refreshing your outdated facts.

It is a fantastic time to be an avid reader: especially if you pay attention.

-28-

The Unreliable Narrator Is A Wonder To Behold…

Just had a horrible thought.

My birthday is coming up (on the 28th) and I…I am no longer the cute kid in the Jets varsity jacket hanging out with Paul and chasing after Winnie Cooper.

I am old enough to be the narrator.

Damn son: it’s a Wonder how fast these Years go by.

-28-

Gathering Ocean Natives

Earlier tonight I was talking to this cute girl (not like that unfortunately but I enjoyed making her laugh…I was getting better at it which is an encouraging sign the first time you start doing something) and in between laughs we were talking about The Ocean.

How big and majestic and beautiful it is: 2 days ago she’d just got back from a Miami trip and was talking about The Ocean like she’d ran into an old friend. The Ocean is doing well…then she jumped on an airplane and walked into my life.

She never took off her jacket so that’s why I said not like that…she’s never gonna look at me like she does The Ocean.

It’s been a year…maybe more since I’ve seen The Ocean. Which is both a short and a long amount of time. I miss The Ocean.

Last time I saw The Ocean it was in LA. And even though she didn’t take off her jacket I decided to tell her about The Ocean in LA…specifically Hermosa Beach one of my favourite spots on this entire planet.

Hoping she’d take off her jacket I was trying but failing to remember the name of this small ice cream shop near the beach.

Years ago I was wandering Hermosa Beach aimless yet open to adventure smoking a cigar. When the cigar sadly came to its expected end I looked up and there was this ice cream shop. I painfully parted from the cigar (you made my life better!) and wandered into the shop.

There was one customer: this ridiculous fit lass in denim cutoff shorts clearly flirting with the CW Show style hunk boredly plunking ice cream scoops into sugar cones. Her beautiful smile was so bright I honestly didn’t know how the ice cream didn’t melt.

For whatever reason he wasn’t at all interested in her; she was all in interested in him and for all intents and purposes I didn’t exist.

While I waited for this doomed romance to unfold to its Romeo and Juliet conclusion I noticed the girl’s t-shirt: Local Natives. I dunno what that is…a band?

This girl is exotic I can’t imagine the circles she travels in…I envy the ears who’ll collect her whispers and hot breaths: she’s an exciting trailer for a movie I’m never gonna see.

She got her ice cream but not his number.

As she left the ice cream shop I snuck a glance at her booty hoping it was small…a flaw any flaw to suggest I’d dodged a bullet like a girl who doesn’t enjoy McDonald’s french fries. Sadly she’s flawless it’s as glorious as you think it is.

I stood there in the last of her lingering scent when CW Ice Cream Hunk said: “Hey man. Thanks for waiting. Do you know what you want?” I lied and said ice cream.

When I got back home I googled Local Natives and discovered this incredible band. The saddest songs are the ones we never put on mixtapes. Eventually, I lost track of them like losing a friend in the busy Times Square crowd.

Meanwhile, time and circumstances brought me to this present moment talking to a cute girl with her jacket on about The Ocean. I couldn’t remember the name of the ice cream shop not that it mattered. Our time was up. She hugged me and said it was so great to meet me.

We parted and I got into my car. When it started I’d left the radio on and it’s one of those majestic moments where fate/God/coincidence/divine meeting: the universe is orchestrated solely for your needs.

The radio DJ says to me: “This is an incredible song…new Local Natives: When Am I Gonna Lose You!” WHAT.

“Their new album Violet Street will be released on April 26.” He pushes play on the song which has these lines:

“I remember the trees summoned down
Like an archangel choir
And the ocean was all we could see
And I knew that I wanted you
When am I gonna lose you”

DAMN. The Ocean.

I dunno who that epically fit girl was in the ice cream shop but thank you. This new song from the Local Natives is incredible.

I dunno where you are or what you’re up to. I hope you’re happy in a way in a way you never thought you could be…so happy in a way that it embarrasses you. Oh man and I’ll be honest: I hope you still look rugged in those shorts. That I don’t doubt.

I put the car in D, turned up the song and drove off.

-28-

Cherish The Gibberish

Under an ash grey sky I’m walking on Young Street when I stop at the curb waiting for the light to change.

Beside me a homeless man wearing Polar Vortex chic…rocking a sleeping bag like a poncho mutters gibberish. 

I listen closely (I always listen closely because when we want to be dismissive we label people crazy and that corrosive label offers some outstanding hidden gems.)

Sure enough he stops muttering then yells at the top of his lungs to no one: “WHAT IF THERE WAS A BLACK SUPERMAN?”

Then goes back to his regularly scheduled gibberish program…only he adjusts his sleeping bag-dress like an unruly girdle and wanders onto the street into oncoming traffic, annoying drivers who loudly honk in protest as he diagonally shuffles to the other side. It’s unclear where’s he’s going only that he’s determined to get there.

I’m still waiting for the light to change…but: man if ever there was a metaphor for social media.

-28-

Settle Sauce

This post is for that group of dynamic individuals Beyoncé affectionately labels as all the single ladies…

Went out for lunch…spaghetti and meatballs the size of my head and now I’ve 2 spectacular bolognese sauce stains on my shirt…looks like I’ve been shot.

There’s no need for Tinder when all of this can be yours…it’s not giving up if you choose to settle!

-28-

My Pal Sammy Trailer

Every Christmas break I pantlessly sit and watch and absorb a lot of pop culture (books, comic books, tv shows and movies) and then I have tea and I think a lot and I write a lot so this time I’m recording a handful of My Pal Sammy episodes; this is my Captain’s Log…a podcast record of some of the pop culture I’ve been consuming and some of the stuff I’ve been thinking about over my 2018 Christmas Break.

Yo: Welcome to My Pal Sammy I am your pal Sammy Younan and this is my 2018 Christmas Break podcast!

Listen Here or click on the handy download link.

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