Sunday, August 22, 2010

Giving Bluegrass A Second Chance

I've been living in bluegrass-obsessed communities for awhile now, all up and down the Rocky Mountain corridor. My response to this mania over the past decade has been to dismiss bluegrass out of hand.

This despite the fact that:

1. I love an old man playing a fiddle as much as the next gal.
2. I fancy the moonshine.
3. I have a soft spot for music best played on a porch or stoop.
4. Those are some fine-looking instruments.
5. Bluegrass covers of songs like Gin and Juice make me smile.

Even so, even so. A boycott was clearly in order (ever the reactionary, this one).

Then what happens? I fall in love with a guy who majored in bluegrass in college. MAJORED in the stuff, for heaven's sake! A hairline crack appeared in my defensive fortifications (which Fort Scott has done nothing but exploit, let me add).
Life's funny that way.

So it's a Sunday afternoon and I am painting the house and I'M LISTENING TO BLUEGRASS. By myself. And it's hitting the spot.

OK, these songs may not be straight-up bluegrass per se. Maybe they're bluegrass-lite, but I've made it this far and that bolsters my hope that tigers can change their stripes.

1. Catherine McCellan / Take A Break
2. The Avett Brothers / Kick Drum Heart

3. Bearfoot / Time Is No Medicine
4. Carolina Chocolate Drops / Hit 'Em Up Style

Not that I'm saying I'm a tiger. Students on my last course said I was more of a hare.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

The Advent Of Fall


I don't know about you, but I can't wait to get my hands on some fucking gourds and arrange them in a horn-shaped basket on my dining room table. That shit is going to look so seasonal. I'm about to head up to the attic right now to find that wicker fucker, dust it off, and jam it with an insanely ornate assortment of shellacked vegetables. When my guests come over it's gonna be like, BLAMMO! Check out my shellacked decorative vegetables, assholes. Guess what season it is — fucking fall. There's a nip in the air and my house is full of mutant fucking squash.

I may even throw some multi-colored leaves into the mix, all haphazard like a crisp October breeze just blew through and fucked that shit up. Then I'm going to get to work on making a beautiful fucking gourd necklace for myself. People are going to be like, "Aren't those gourds straining your neck?" And I'm just going to thread another gourd onto my necklace without breaking their gaze and quietly reply, "It's fall, fuckfaces. You're either ready to reap this freaky-assed harvest or you're not."

Carving orange pumpkins sounds like a pretty fitting way to ring in the season. You know what else does? Performing an all-gourd reenactment of an episode of Diff'rent Strokes — specifically the one when Arnold and Dudley experience a disturbing brush with sexual molestation. Well, this shit just got real, didn't it? Felonies and gourds have one very important commonality: they're both extremely fucking real. Sorry if that's upsetting, but I'm not doing you any favors by shielding you from this anymore.

The next thing I'm going to do is carve one of the longer gourds into a perfect replica of the Mayflower as a shout-out to our Pilgrim forefathers. Then I'm going to do lines of blow off its hull with a hooker. Why? Because it's not summer, it's not winter, and it's not spring. Grab a calendar and pull your fucking heads out of your asses; it's fall, fuckers.

Have you ever been in an Italian deli with salamis hanging from their ceiling? Well then you're going to fucking love my house. Just look where you're walking or you'll get KO'd by the gauntlet of misshapen, zucchini-descendant bastards swinging from above. And when you do, you're going to hear a very loud, very stereotypical Italian laugh coming from me. Consider yourself warned.

For now, all I plan to do is to throw on a flannel shirt, some tattered overalls, and a floppy fucking hat and stand in the middle of a cornfield for a few days. The first crow that tries to land on me is going to get his avian ass bitch-slapped all the way back to summer.

Welcome to autumn, fuckheads!