I've got this Lenny Bruce autobiography to read for class. It's not particularly good, but the fact that I'm reading it brings stand-up comedy to mind. Stand-up comedy is rarely that far from my mind, but I'm being reminded of it.
Also: apparently there's been a new shift in Catholic dogma. Women can masturbate now, post-coitally, if the man involved in the act (who still can't wear a condom, as sex is for children) didn't bring her to climax. I mention this because I could do five minutes on this that would be hilarious. But then, really, who couldn't? Lenny Bruce might've broken rules and all that, but sex and religion are a short path to comedy gold. Not a lot of effort to be expended there. I mean, fuck, he was able to do it, and he was a junkie!
Elsewhere: http://www.artbomb.net/detail.jsp?tid=504, to be precise, Matt Fraction reviews Grant Morrison's Doom Patrol, as previously established, my favorite comic ever. This is cool because it seems like Artbomb's only violation of their "we don't review superhero comics, ever, we are for the nongeek public" rule. I could talk about why this is significant and I could talk at length about how it's only right that Doom Patrol should be the only exception (although I could also name two others that should be exceptions) but no one's reading this anyway, yes? No one gives a shit when I talk about comics. (oh fuck it: Watchmen and Enigma.)
For a while I was thinking about writing about something I love in art. Besides just "quality," there's something I really have a soft spot for. And that's this balance of the weird and the fucked-up with a very sweet and lovely core. I thought of this while arguing on the behalf of the poster insert in Jim O'Rourke's Insignificance... my roommate Loren Thor bought the record on vinyl and I wanted to take the poster and frame it in the bathroom. It's an amazing piece of art, so I don't want to describe it, but long story short, Loren didn't want it because it's not the sort of thing he wants looking at it while he poops, and he thinks it's the kind of thing that could alienate potential ladypartners. I maintain there is a sweetness but I said this to Loren in that half-ironic tone that I am known to use when I might very well be talking nonsense.
I cannot find the image in question, and I don't want to describe it to you. But I will say that the other art that comes with Insignificance is awesome too, and even better in the big vinyl format: The cover is a transvestite sitting in a chair, while the record sleeve shows the same transvestite being sodomized by an octopus. The poster isn't as good as the octopus image, but that should go without saying. As I look around the internet, the only images that are easy to find are the covers to the Jim O'Rourke albums Eureka and Insignificance. The cover to Eureka is a naked man holding the head of a bunny to his genitals. If I had a record player, I would buy the album just so I could put the cover on my door, (and the music's kind of dull on that one) so amazing is it. I am willing to entertain the notion that there's no sweetness to the artist's work and it's just my gravitation to the bizarre and alienating coming through and then I try to spin it like I'm somehow well-adjusted. I don't know, you make the call.
The name of the artist is Mimiyo Tomozawa and her work is highly recommended. (apparently she's done some manga but if it exists, it's hard to find.)
As is the work of Ken Kagami, who did the art for Deerhoof's Milk Man, and drew an image I very much want on a t-shirt. It's the kind of image that would ensure I made no new friends ever and would alienate all but my staunchest supporters. It is very much the kind of thing I enjoy as one that sometimes positions myself as being different than normal people. It is also amazing. You can see it here: http://www.kenkagami.com/work/d16.html (Warning: not work-safe, but everyone who reads this blog is unemployed anyway.)
I wanted to talk about my attempts to write stories that balance the bizarre and the sweet, optimism with surrealism, and magic realism with the indie-rock-kid world in which I live. But I got distracted. And to make a long story short, I haven't written anything that does that yet. And it doesn't look like anything I'm working on now will accomplish that goal either. Right now I'm just focused on getting all the boring nihilism out of my writing, and trying to avoid obvious autobiograpy. (At least I've never written about high school or struggling with writing in my fiction.) But if I ever do get around to doing such a thing... Look out world! I'ma kick your ass!