Archive for May, 2011

Howdy…sorry for the following, but today flat-out sucked. Hell, the last few days haven’t been all that and a bag o’ chips. First we had the Big Blow of 2011 (aka Duke Energy Can’t Find a Light Switch with Both Hands and a Flashlight) OR (aka The Twister That Didn’t Like Chubby Checker)…I’ll wait while you younguns wiki Chubby Checker to get the reference. 60 hours sans power, 2 nights away from home…not fun, but thanks Lucy and Max for letting us crash.  Then just general hectic weekend (the usual). THEN routine changes which never bode well…and then TODAY.

Today sucked solely because of work. Why would you think it was cool to close up for an hour at mid-day…one of your peak times…without asking anybody if it was ok? And on a related note, why eould you argue with the boss while he is trying to sort out said mess? Here’s a general tip: If I want your opinion, I’ll ask. Otherwise, STFHU! I applaud your loyalty to folks, but dag-gum… Also, if you want the position I’m currently in, ask for it and see what happens. Otherwise, let me TRY to do my job to the best of my feeble ability.

Here’s hoping tomorrow sucks less…hopefully I’ll have another quarter CD playlist…if not another free playlist too…


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Ridin’ with Puddin’…odd title for a blog, no? BUT if you know me, it fits. First, the “ridin’ ” part. Since I was a teenager, I have loved driving at night on some unknown road while the radio plays and cigarette smoke flys out the open window. I did it to test my theory that it’s impossible to be lost (which it is…every road leads to one you’ve either heard of or already ridden on). I did it to escape whatever stress had popped up in my life. And I did it for inspiration…for bad poetry then and for my fiction now and ghost hunt too…and to see the world. I HATE driving in traffic and on interstates…often one leads to the other. Ask my newest brother-in-law about the badger at the beach for an idea on how enraged I can get behind the wheel. Two lane roads with ample passing lanes are perfect…and take you to neat places. However, several of my friends and family aren’t as enthused at the prospect of ridin’ with me as I am prone to road-rage, speeding, and am easily sidetracked by new and more or less unplanned diversions.

The “Puddin” part of the title comes from my friend Susan’s ongoing comedy novel about a rock band who ghosthunts on the side… it’s based on me and 2 of our friends. In the band I’m the bassist (I think), a horn-dog, and the chief ghosthunter and my name (much cleaned-up from the original) is Pudden Tuckfard. This is also my name as host of the also-fictional “Hey, Y’all , Hold My Beer” webcam show that I will star in one of these days about my “redneck gone ghosthuntin’ ” antics. Since none of my other nicknames have lasted, Puddin’ has stuck. The t-shirt slogan “Every Gal Needs Some Puddin’ ” from one of the stories may have helped some too…

Basically, the title appeals to all sides of my character…the adventurer, the scholar, the Carlinesque comedian, the vulgarian, the place-proud. Hope y’all enjoy the ride.

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From the fine folks at Manifest (and their wonderful clearance racks):

All listed tracks are from CDs that I paid less than a buck for…and most are on iTunes-

1-Ghost Town by Will Hawkins

2-That’s Life by Peppers Ghost

3-Death on the Sickbed by the Old Haunts

4-Right As Rain by the Kennedys

5-Ruby by Bochephus King

6-Losing My Mind by Bravo Johnson

7-I’m a Slut by Howlin’ Maggie

8-Blue Collar Man by Travis Tritt

9-Never Bit a Bullet Like This by Sammy Kershaw (with the Ole Possum hisself, George Jones)

10-Hadrians Wall by Maxim

11-Riverside by 13ghosts

12-Picture of Your Daddy by Karen Tobin

13-Workin’ Man’s PhD by Aaron Tippin

14-The Ghost of the Girl in the Well by Willard Grant Conspiracy

15-Welcome to Tally Hall by Tally Hall

16- Key West Intermezzo by John Mellencamp

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Free iTunes playlist…

As threatened…LOL. All of these were free at some point on iTunes and are listed in no particular order.

1-The Bay by Metronomy

2-I Wrote the Book by Beth Ditto

3-Gold Mine by Breanne Duren

4-Surprise, Surprise by Brett Dennen

5-Down by the Water by the Decembrists

6-Living in America by Dom

7-Foster the People by Helena Beat

8-Around My Head by Cage the Elephant

9-New Orleans by Emmylou Harris

10-Walk On by G. Love

11-Angel of Darkness by Hot Tuna

13-For 12 by Other Lives

14- Leaving on the 5th by Voxhaul Broadcast

15- This is What Rock n Roll Looks Like by Porcelain Black and Lil Wayne

16- Staying’s Worse Than Leaving by  Sunny Sweeney

17- Helplessness Blues by Fleet Foxes

18- The Thought of Losing You by Dredg

Some of these are from today…so go get ’em!

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Outline for Newest Novel Idea—4/2011: REMEMBER TO TELL the ghost stories…not everyone lives and breathes this stuff…give sufficient detail but don’t overwhelm folks with your bloody brilliance…

Open inside the mind of a young man in modern southeastern Tennessee… fragments of a nightmare… stacks of burning sheep and piles of crops, unintelligible voice from nowhere, a hand swinging a stone, the sound of bare feet slapping on stone…darkness… then a man with a kind eyes, prominent nose, and bloody face muttering in an unfamiliar tongue… blazing sun and heat and dust in a press of people in odd clothes… he awakes in a frenzy of sheer terror, flailing around to the point that he knocks a water glass onto the clock radio and shorts it out in a flurry of sparks. We’ll be back with him in a bit.

Scene at Vatican on May Day in near future with Pope Adrian VIII (2nd English Pope, first in almost 1000 years) surrounded by leaders of several major Protestant faiths (William Murphy-Crest,Archbishop of Canterbury, Nahum Udall-Danton,President of the LDS, Ellison McGee, President of SBC, and Orthodox Patriarch of Constantinople Cyril VIII) following end of Vatican IV, which was marked by reunification of Anglicanism and Catholicism and an agreement to set up commission to explore he resolution of issues with Orthodoxy. Pope issues ex cathedra an apostolic constitution as both a papal bull and an encyclical titled In Amotio of Remnants of Gentilitas (on the Removal of the Remnants of Paganism) FIX THIS TRANSLATION via a live TV broadcast, in which it is announced that all Christians are urged to pray for all ghosts and etc (use full thesaurus) to go to their heavenly reward within the next six months (by All Souls Day) or risk damning these souls to eternal perdition. The throwaway comment that only the capture of Cain or the Wandering Jew by all the Wild Huntsmen about could stop the damnation goes without comment or note at the time.

Three months later (Ascension Sunday?)-

On wrap-up of summary, scene to academic office at small college… Dr. Kennedy Tolleson (universally known as Doc Kenn) who is America’s foremost expert on the paranormal, prolific author and commentator on all things ghostly, and winner of the James Randi Educational Foundation $1 million prize for proving the haunting of Ford’s Theater in Washington DC on live television under tightly controlled conditions. Following a rather obscene internal monologue, the phone rings with a summons from the White House…the known ghosts of both the White House and US Capitol have responded rather vigorously to the news from the Holy See and the President wants answers and to avoid a panic and has dispatched a plane to a nearby AFB to pick up Doc Kenn.

At the same time as the above, a huge number of men on horseback have gathered at a point of land in Cornwall, as we learn from one of the horsemen. We hear only snippets of their multi-lingual conversations, but can make out “Cain”, “Home”, “Jude” over the sounds of horses, metal on leather, and the sounds of horns.

Next day- Doc Kenn arrives at WH just in time to see Fala run down the hall in front of Oval Office and hear the barking as well as catch a glimpse of Lincoln walking down the hall…his escort mentions how creepy the place has been over last few weeks… knows it’s not “the settling of an old house or any of that crap”

Doc Kenn enters Oval Office and is greeted by President Broderick Robbins (D-VA) who is competent but is very harried due to the odd events at his home and office, Vice President Derrick-Phillipe (fix this name) Johnston (D-NY), a large black man who grew in Harlem and got rich playing center field for the Cubs and was World Series MVP when they won it about 15 years back and then went home and ran for the US House and admittedly “ain’t got time for this mythical bullshit” and Speaker of the House Mitchell Stinson (R-ID), a very conservative Protestant Republican who is very much convinced that a priest, not some ivory tower academic is the only solution to this problem. The

Senate Majority Leader, Calvin Jones (D-CA) had a heart attack after his encounter with a ghostly figure outside the Supreme Court Building (Old Capitol area?). Here we will be introduced to the most common hauntings from non-public areas of the White House AND US Capitol.

Doc Kenn is assigned Diana “Dora” Hills, a staffer from the National Security Council as a temporary aide and assigned an office at the Capitol near the VP’s office. She has top security clearance and is a former CIA field agent..and a stunningly well-built tall redhead who finds this assignment to be a waste of everyone’s time as this whole ghost thing is just mass hysteria. However, despite the 15 year age difference, she finds herself attracted to Doc Kenn on several levels. Just as the discussion wraps up, a gardener bursts into the Oval Office, pursued by a Secret Service agent with pistol drawn, who both breathlessly report the appearance of a lady in an old-timey ball gown wearing a turban in the Rose Garden wildly waving her arms and silently ranting. The agent fired 2 shots at the figure to no effect and the gardener has come to quit…saying that pulling weeds is no good if it upsets the dead.

Doc Kenn and Dora arrive at their office and he begins calling in his team of investigators, who we will meet shortly.

Meanwhile, we now join the various Wild Hunts all over Europe as they appear at all hours under various leaders…in Brittany, the ankou is seen with them. We hear some of the same snippets of conversations as before, with the noises of a hunt intermixed.

From both newspaper and local TV news accounts, local lore about ghost dogs, autos, horsemen and etc are all on the increase at all hours from DC south through the desert Southwest and into Southern California.

Back in north Georgia, our young man goes through his daily routine as grad student at small southern religious university (like Wofford or Erskine)….but the waking nightmares (or flashbacks to his past as both Cain AND the Wandering Jew) have begun to interfere with his carefully constructed world…(add both medieval and early modern aspects from each from web and books)…also, the reader will note the increase of wild geese on campus and throughout the town in general…

Back at the US Capitol, Doc Kenn’s team has gathered and completed their set-up…they include:

a computer and general technical guy (CS), an audio expert (MR), a video tech (BR), a general input monitor (AR), and an assistant researcher (BJ). During our review of the setup and intros, will examine some “public” haunts of Capitol. We will also meet a very unwelcoming Capitol Police officer named Jacob Mathesburg, a staunch Catholic who feels that all this ghost stuff is of the Devil and that the Pope was far too kind not to have condemned all wandering souls straight to Hell. He also calls the team “pagans” and devil worshippers and then storms off, after suffering at the hands of Dora. After set up is done, Doc Kenn and Dora go to dinner, take a stroll near Georgetown OR Bladensburg (either Braddock OR duelists) and etc… Officer Mathesburg decides to go kayaking on the Potomac to relax…and has an uncanny encounter at the 3 Sisters and drown, like CIA Director Bill Colby. In AM, the Washington Times call him the latest curse victim…the Post just mentions the argy-bargy with Doc Kenn in passing but no mention of curse.

The drowning triggers a media frenzy. The President dodges most questions on Doc by directing press to Speaker Stinson, but does admit to calling in Doc due to some odd events at both WH and Capitol. He ignores question from Fox News about the gardener’s account of ectoplasm on WH walls, blood in the water, and other outlandish fictions with a withering look. Doc Kenn is sequestered in office reviews tape and accounts from previous night and lets Dora run flack.

Wild Hunts of all sorts are reported on the Eastern Seaboard of the US and Canada from all over the web. (Check for Canadian analogues.) Local haunts are also becoming more active as well, especially in Georgia and Tennessee.

AT breakfast at his usual haunt, our young students hears an older couple discussing “Gabble Ratchets” …(tie to Cain, WJ via Gabriel’s Hounds) and all the pieces fall into place just as the weather goes to Hail (lol)… and hundreds of Huntsmen and their packs appear outside the town…their usual antics follow as the youth flees into the nearby hills on foot.

In DC, Doc Kenn makes his report to the Speaker and the President and Veep. With statement that activity has peaked and should soon return to normal, all hell breaks loose in Oval Office. Harding emerges from his closet, JFK appears at the French doors, FDR’s wheels chair is heard squeaking in the corridor outside, the stench of past fires waft through the room as does the cries of agonizing women (Mary Todd, Jackie, Frances Cleveland, Ida McKinley). LBJ is heard roaring from the restroom as well.

In hills of TN, boy is caught and torn to pieces by hunt at suitable site (Chickamauga?) and at same instance, Oval Office goes back to normal.

Book closes with Dora and Doc Kenn pre-coitus and with either 1st Biblical sign of Apocolypse OR birth of Antichrist (may be from folklore).

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Continuing today’s trend…Itunes now has a selection of free music that pops up every Tuesday. Now, most of it is by people you’ve never heard of but still, it’s worth the money. I’ve snagged some neat playlists (free) of acts from SXSW as well. Some I’ve gotten, played once and forgotten but some have let me to go spend money… Give it a shot, what have you really gotta lose?

Playlists of this stuff coming soon too…

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First, let me add my rose petal to the Grand Canyon of the blogosphere RE: The death of Osama Bin Laden. Glad he’s dead. Glad we treated his body with far more respect than it deserved. And I hope this shows what a true waste the Iraqi invasion was. Could and should have happened YEARS ago.

Anyway, on to less blood-thirsty thoughts. Manifest, the new and used record shop in Charlotte (and Columbia) is one of my favorite spots (that doesn’t sell my books, natch) and the reason is simple: CDS for under a buck. Now, some of you will freeze up when presented by a wall o’ CDs and I want to make you happy at the prospect. First, itunes singles run you about a buck, so that’s our first rule. $1 per song= good deal. If a CD is a buck and you like 2 songs, you win. Now to make browsing easier, if the CDS are under a buck a piece, chuck the 1st rule. Start in the soundtracks and compliations section…if you’ve heard of a song or band, get it. Then start at the As…here’s where having an obsession helps. Find your “thing”…my “thing” is ghosts fer instance. SO if a song, CD title or band includes ghost, haunted or spirit in their arsenal…I’m in. Now hunt for artists you know…grab those too, even if you don’t normally listen to it (regardless of genre or whatever). And away you go…now AFTER you rip said CDs, you can donate them to your local library, so everyone wins!

After I finish off the rest of the novel outline, I’ll post some playlists for your pleasure (?)

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