Monday, September 12, 2005
A Photographic Account Of My Recent Road Trip
Saturday, September 10, 2005:
The trip down to cowtown for this past weekend's poetry reading was quite a harrowing experience. The weather was absolutely not agreeable as you can tell by the picture of the cloud cover over The Donut Mill, which is where I stopped at the half-way point of my trip for an Oreo Donut and some hot chocolate, served by a girl who bore an uncanny resemblance to a very, very young Meg Ryan. Anyway, once I got south of Red Deer the mild showers that plagued the journey from Edmonton to Red Deer turned into full-on downpours. Every time I approached a tractor trailer on Highway 2 (which is now called the Queen Elizabeth II Highway now) I couldn't see but three or four feet in front of the nose of my 1977 Monte Carlo, which has a hood of about 27 yards so I guess I had pretty good visability considering, just a really big car.
Once I got to my friends' Jordan and Lori's apartment the drinking pretty much began since it was already getting on into the evening timewise. Because all I had had to eat up to that point in time was the aforementioned Oreo donut and a handful of Cherry Blasters (yum) getting drunk took no effort at all.
Jordan, Lori, Ian, Heather and I ate at F.A.T.'s Bar And Grill that night after a brisk, wet walk from the apartment. I got drunker and drunker waiting for a decent meal. Jordan and I split one of the best pizzas I've had in a long time.
We played poker when we got back from the bar and had more drinks.
Sunday, September 11, 2005:
Woke up the next morning with bad hangover. I started to flip through my bag of poetry to see what pieces I should present at the reading. The hangover made all my poetry look mediocre at best.
Jordan, Lori, Ian, and I went for some brunch, though I can't remember the name of the place where we ate (sorry whatever Calgary bar and grill you were; I just have a shitty memory sometimes). After that we did some shopping while we killed time before the reading.
In the shops I was able to pick up a copy of Alex Grey's Sacred Mirrors as well as Alex Grey's 2006 calendar. I also bought some kick-ass sunglasses and Skipping Towards Gomorrah: The Seven Deadly Sins And The Pursuit Of Happiness In America by Dan Savage.
Pictured above you can see me frantically trying to piece together a set of poems that could wow the audience gathered, which was bigger and more conservative in their appearance than I had hoped for. Reading from Sometimes Sinister began to seem a lot more daunting all of a sudden because the older crowd may or may not understand what I was trying to work with as far as a concept goes in that series of poems.
Here is me reading to the audience. This picture was taken by Lori at my request. The setlist I went with was a couple of charming pieces followed by two darker ones from the latter stages of Sometimes Sinister. It went as follows:
1.)"Wishing"-a poem I posted here for you a while back and can be found in the archives here.
2.)"Mehndi Vine Ode"-one of my latest creations. I'm not sure if this fits into the framework of Sometimes Sinister because it's more abstract, but I thought it would fit in well with the idea of an idealist being deconstructed after falling for the wrong woman, this poem representing an idealist viewpoint.
3.)"Chewbacca"-One of the funnier pieces from Sometimes Sinister that describes a roommate's wookie-like sex noises. This one shows the pragmatism beginning to rear its head within our protagonist.
4.)"Matt"-A poem that mentions Cleveland Steamers and Donkey Punching. If you don't know what these terms mean you might want to google them, but I'll just say that they are very raunchy sex terms. Given my older, more conservative looking audience, this was the one that I was most hesitant to read.
After the reading was over I was approached by some radio guy who recorded the show and said that he would be broadcasting it at some point, asking me for some contact information. I signed a couple of autographs, and finally met Selina face-to-face, one of the audience members from my Calgary reading two years ago.
It was all a success!
Here you see Pages Bookstore in Kensington where I read. I was up on the second floor it that matters to you. You can even see a few of the people leaving the bookstore who were at the reading. I would like to think that at this moment one or two of them would be turning to a lover or a close friend and asking, "Honey, what's a donkey punch?"
What's a donkey punch, indeed.