Friday, June 30, 2006

Fireworks, anyone?

Hey hey hey! Happy Independence Day! Oh that I still thought we were really still free in this country but okay, I refuse to discuss religion and politics because I hate them both and know I won't change anyone's mind so if you do not feel the same and insist on talking about either with me, I'll ignore you. (Ha ha - unless of course you agree with me, said the way liberal pro-choice anti-Bush agnostic)

So a bunch of cool stuff is going on here in the Slick household as I get ready to say good-bye for the summer to both Julie and Eric -- both of whom, as you know from my prior one million posts -- are taking off for Nashville on Monday morning to hang out with Adrian Belew for a few days before opening night of their tour in Indianapolis, Indiana on Thursday, July 6, 2006. Oh how I wish I could be there but I ultimately decided not to attend the first few shows and will catch up with them either in Europe or on the east coast portion of the tour which starts in New York City on August 8. I did see that a new show has been added on August 18, 2006 at the State Theater in St. Petersburg, Florida - details here.

Also, I believe next week will see the release of the above pictured anthology in which my story "Daddy Left Me Alone With God" appears and of course as soon as it's available, I will furnish you with a link because this book contains short stories by some absolutely incredible authors and I promise you won't be disappointed.

Speaking of short stories, I know I said I was on Neil Gaiman hiatus but I just received my copy of Noisy Outlaws, Unfriendly Blobs, and Some Other Things That Aren't As Scary, Maybe, Depending on How You Feel About Lost Lands, Stray Cellphones, Creatures from the Sky, Parents who Disappear in Peru, a Man Named Lars Farf, and One Other Story We Couldn't Quite Finish So Maybe You Could Help Us Out from McSweeney's Books, which cost me a big $5.00, and I absolutely guarantee you that this is the best $5.00 you'll ever spend. It's even a hardcover edition! Besides containing a short story by Nick Hornby, the brilliant author responsible for like my favorite movie/book EVER about rock music and relationships, High Fidelity, this book also includes "Sunbird", the story for which Neil Gaiman just won a Locus Award as best short story 2005 and trust me, it is.

I know Susan Henderson is in South Africa right now but I find it hard to believe she won't be near a computer for two weeks so I'm doing this for both of us:

Susan, that is Neil being attacked by a flamingo (shades of Anansi Boys) in Poppy Z. Brite's apartment.

Not being a horror fan, I didn't know who Poppy was but now I'm addicted to reading her daily journal and I love her so much I wish I was her girlfriend. Or her boyfriend. I'm not sure. If one is to believe Wikipedia (and in this case I do because Poppy herself addresses this many times in her journal archives), though "born a biological female, she has gender dysphoria/gender identity issues. She identifies more as male than female but makes no attempt to dress or appear male and also does not expect to be referred to as "he". Brite is comfortable with the term "non-operative transsexual".

She's a kick-ass writer and funny as hell, which is all I care about. Okay, I'm lying. She's married to a (male) chef named Chris and oh my god would I love to question her about her sex life. After which I would adore eating at Chris' restaurant.

Okay, what else. It's finally sunny here in Philadelphia, which, if you watch the national news, has been flooded for the past three days. Things like that just don't happen here. We have shootings galore, yes, but natural disasters, no. Kelly Drive, which is adjacent to the Art Museum and where we ride our bicycles and walk the dog, etc., was completely under water courtesy of the Schuylkill River overflowing its banks. Luckily my house is up on a hill facing the Art Museum or I suspect I'd have sump pumps going full steam in my basement right now. But Eric put me through a real scare on Tuesday. He went to New Hope, Pennsylvania to jam with some members of Ween which is where the Ween house/studio is located. He had an absolute blast except for the fact that New Hope is now completely under water and he got out just in time...right before they closed the bridges. I was watching the news that day with my heart in my mouth. Yeah, so getting back to Ween, Eric jammed with their guitarist and bass player - Dean Ween and Dave Dreiwitz, who are doing a side project with Chris Harford. Assuming Adrian Belew has no plans for Eric to tour or record in October...and it looks like that's the case because Adrian is touring for a few weeks with Robert Fripp at that time...Eric will be touring with those guys for a few weeks opening for Trey Anastasio. And then in November Eric and Julie will be joining Adrian Belew again for a swing through Texas and the west coast.

Can I trade lives with them?

Nah, I'm pretty happy these days. Disgustingly so. Revisions/edits to my novel, Baby Boomer, are going really well and in a perfect world will be ready to be shopped around at summer's end. And ta-da, I've finally updated my website. Okay, I'm lying -- Eric did it for me. I'm totally hopeless at web stuff which is why I love this blog. Anyway, it's still a work in progress but I really needed to get rid of old news and dead links. So right now it's bare bones but Eric was kind enough to link my blog to the site which is what I really wanted and I'm still playing around with the idea of adding photos and some other stuff. But since I'm surrounded by clutter in the real world (big pack rat here), I kind of like the idea of a stark, minimalistic website so that's what I have at the moment. Anyway, here's the link. As I said, I'm still tweaking it but it's a start.

Anyway, if for some reason I don't make it back here until next week, have a Happy 4th of July! Sob...this is our first one without Julie and Eric and Gary will have no audience for his illegally purchased in Maryland yearly fireworks display -- the one which keeps me in the house shaking, waiting for one of the kids to run back in screaming "Call an ambulance! Daddy blew off his arm!" -- but I suspect he'll round up some neighborhood kids and have a little party anyway just to continue the tradition of me here at the computer a total mess with one hand on the phone ready to dial 911. And getting back to said Independence Day, again, I would love to get on a soapbox right now and tell you how dismayed I am about our current lack of freedom (Can you say Patriot Act?) but well, you know, I did say I refuse to discuss politics, so...


Tuesday, June 27, 2006

On Sale Today: Another Bite of The Apple

So for those of you who were kind enough to purchase my novel Three Days in New York City, the sequel, Another Bite of the Apple, was released today and you can read an excerpt and purchase it right here.

I like how they have it advertised -- this is the first time I've seen the promo for the book and it made me smile.

"The man she loves is engaged to a woman who could be a supermodel. The man she despises but can't seem to resist is beckoning once again. Her life isn't going nearly as she'd thought it would when she moved to New York City.

What's a girl to do?

Elizabeth is back, attitude, insecurities, and all, in this sequel to Three Days in New York City."

Yeah, that about sums it up. It's being released in digital format today but of course you know I expect sales to be brisk and like Three Days in New York City, it will be out in paperback and at a Borders near you sooner rather than later.

Okay, I'm hoping sales will be decent.

Oh alright, I'm hoping to make one sale. Will it be you? Pretty please?

Nah, all kidding aside, I had a blast writing this book and if you liked Three Days, you will probably really enjoy the sequel because it brings, comes that catchword I the series. Don't hate me for using "closure", I honestly couldn't think of a better word. But oh god how I hate when people say it ad nauseam.

I also learned that a 7,000 word short story I had written a few months ago -- a light-hearted sexual comedy categorized by Phaze as a Samba -- was a contest winner and will be available for sale in the middle of July. Trust me on this. It's the best $2.00 you'll ever spend. I give good erotica, you all know that. Ha! And yeah, click on the Phaze link I provided in regard to that -- Another Bite of the Apple and Three Days in New York City look awfully cool on their front page along with the announcement of all six Samba contest winners.

Speaking of my pals at Phaze, hey hey hey, we're invading New York City on August 11 for a reading at the Happy Ending Lounge. I'll be talking that up more in weeks to come but have a look at the cool flyer (which I will soon be illegally stapling to trees and poles all over the tri-state area har har but fear not, I am conscientious and will then take them down once the event is over)

As for now, I continue to toil away at Baby Boomer, my first mainstream novel in a couple of years, and for once I was thrilled by the copious amounts of rain we got yesterday and are expecting all week because yes! that means no construction workers next door. It was so quiet in here I was in heaven. I wrote upstairs in my journal in longhand so I wouldn't be distracted by things happening on the internet though I'm sad to say I've forever abandoned the idea of a fountain pen, damn it...but I really do like a certain black rolling marker by Uniball so that's what I'm using and loving it.

Anyway, that's all for now. I'll be back tomorrow with more news from the writing and music world...unless, of course, something else exciting happens in the meantime.


Friday, June 23, 2006

What should I eat first?

No, no, I'm not going to eat Neil Gaiman -- this pic is for Susan Henderson, who is leaving for Cape Town, South Africa on Monday and made a special request because, well, she knows I have a knack for giving good Gaiman. Hey, Sue, aren't you happy I know how to upload photographs to this blog full size now so that we can use our little mouses to click and enlarge? Ha ha, too bad I don't have a stat counter to monitor how many times we both do that today.

And oh that we could click and enlarge in real life.

Now, now. You saw that one coming, didn't you? And more stuff on Mr. Gaiman below, by the way...I have to get it all in now before Sue leaves on her trip.

So yeah, Susan is going to South Africa to give a reading of her brilliant work with the equally brilliant Liesl Jobson. Liesl lives in South Africa with her husband and graciously invited Sue and her family to stay with them for two weeks. I'm so jealous! Meanwhile, I'm usually skeptical about people who claim to have psychic powers though I try to keep an open mind, especially as I have those little flashes myself -- you know, where you sing an obscure twenty year old song in the shower for no apparent reason and then you're sitting in a restaurant later that day and the same song comes over the sound system; or maybe you start thinking of someone you hardly ever see and they either call you ten minutes later or you walk down the street and there they are...stuff like that -- but Liesl, man, she is scary. She once did a quick reading for me via AOL instant messenger a few years before I started this blog and she knew things about me she couldn't possibly much so that when she offered to do a full reading, I chickened out because Liesl tells it like it is and if there's a gruesome, horrifying death in my future, I didn't want to know. Psychic talent aside, she's just an amazing writer and the link I gave you is her Google listing so that you can treat yourself and read some of her incredible short stories.

ETA: Actually, as Sue just posted in my comments section, she is not staying with Liesl. She's staying with Mr. Henderson's childhood friend whom they haven't seen since he put traffic cones in their hotel room on their wedding night. Now you know I need details on that one and I've asked Sue to provide them in the comments section so you might want to check there later if you are as curious as I am.

In other news, today is my first day back on real food since this whole sordid tooth affair began two weeks ago.

Strangely enough, I don't feel like eating anything unhealthy. I've lost so much weight I may as well really go for it so I can experience life as a skinny person. Oh god, this means I have to make room in my closet for about a thousand black wintery long sleeved blouses and sweaters because I've been using all of my exercise equipment as seasonal clothes racks for the past five years.

So even though it's not even 7:00 a.m., I've got a craving for miso soup and sushi. Hey, the Four Seasons Hotel is a mere eight blocks from my house and they have Wa-Teishoku, which is a traditional Japanese breakfast. It's to die for -- here's what you get:

Yakizakana – Grilled Salmon
Ni Mono – Vegetables Simmered in Chicken Broth
Tamago – Coddled Egg
Tsukemono – Pickled Japanese Vegetable
Gohan – Steamed Rice
Miso Soup
Nori – Seasoned Dried Seaweed
Japanese Green Tea

Yep, I should go there now but I still have a low grade fever, damn it. I wonder if they have take away? Oh, Eric....

Poor kid. He's probably still asleep because he spent yesterday in New York City hanging out with Keith Emerson, Jan Hammer, and Roger O'Donnell of The Cure. The lucky bastard got to sit in on a song at B.B. Kings last night, too. He has such a tough life, my son. Actually, he ended up spending the night in New York but he told me he's taking an early train home so he should be here in a few hours.

Speaking of Eric (and Julie, too), Adrian Belew has added another show to the tour. This one is in Pittsburgh on August 12 at The Club Cafe. Eric just played there last month as drummer for Project Object and he said it's an amazing venue.

While I'm talking about music, assuming this stupid fever goes away and I feel nice and healthy after my Japanese breakfast (I'm dead serious about having Eric swing by The Four Seasons and pick one up for me. I just realized if they have room service, they have take away)...I'm supposed to see Robin Trower Saturday night at the TLA in Philly. Yeah, yeah, I know. Once a stoner guitar god fan, always a stoner guitar god fan. But of course my musical taste is all over the place and oh how I wish I could post MP3s on this blog. That's the only thing I like about My Space but alas, it's not enough to keep me really active there. I just can't get into it nor can I figure out how to navigate it properly. I mean, I've never once ended up in the same place twice when I click "Home". Just how many "homes" are there on that site, anyway? But there is one cool thing about My Space and that's the fact that all of these strange and unknown-to-me writers keep inviting me to their sites and I've read snippets of some really interesting new books which I'd never have found on my own. So I guess it's just a matter of working the system. Once my mainstream novel is published and I'm out there promoting (notice how I say that with such conviction?) I will use it to network but I'm way too afraid to push erotica there. I'm finished with erotica now, anyway...though every time I make that decision, I get an email about a contest or a cool new anthology and I can't help myself. Which reminds me. Another Bite of the Apple should be out any day now. What can I say? Writing erotica comes naturally to me. And yeah, yeah, of course I read Neil Gaiman's journal entry about it the other day and because I was still on pain meds when I read it, naturally I assumed it was written just for me. Hahahahaha - seriously, I'm just messing around but I did read it with great interest and was quite pleased by what he wrote. But then again, when aren't I pleased by what he writes?

Wait - did you see this link on his blog yesterday? Oh my god, that's the most...never mind. I probably should not have posted it but it's just so bizarre I couldn't resist. So yeah, I highly recommend you click on that link because it's kind of entertaining in a very disturbed sort of way. Good lord! While you are on that page, make sure you visit links such as this though I think I just made my daughter nauseous because I just IMed her said link. (She's at her boyfriend's house which is why she isn't being sent out to fetch me breakfast)

Okay, enough Neil. I really am putting him to bed (oh god) for a while. Especially with Sue away in South Africa for two weeks. It just won't be fun without her.

Let's see. What else? Right. There's an acoustic guitar album, “Imaginational Anthem Vol. 2” which is very, very cool. Pitchfork Media reviewed it pretty favorably and here's the link. The reason I am writing about this today is that IA2 is currently on tour to support the release, and they are in Philadelphia tonight to perform at First Unitarian Church. If you are in or near Philly and reading this, you know what a cool venue that is, so why not go and support these fine guitarists? To quote the late, great Frank is the best!

Meanwhile, I can't believe that Julie and Eric are leaving for Nashville to rehearse for a few days with Adrian Belew one week from Monday and then they are gone until the end of summer. Well, that's not entirely true -- they have a week off between the time they get home from Europe at the end of July until the east coast portion of the tour begins in early August. They never went to overnight camp as kids and I went with them on all of the Rock School tours so this is my very first taste of empty nest syndrome. The only upside is doing any requested edits/revisions to my novel without distraction, if I don't count the construction next door. Just when I thought it couldn't possibly get any worse, yesterday I hear thunderous crashing and banging that was so intense I had to open my front door and see what the hell they were up to. Oh my god, they ripped the entire facade off the house! So basically the people who bought it shelled out a ton of money just to live on my street because they are building an entire new, custom home. I'm still having a very hard time digesting how gentrified and yuppified this neighborhood has become. Maybe I'm still living in 1980, but to me, if you pay a million dollars for a house you should at least get a nice plot of land and a single home without adjoining neighbors. But because we are within walking distance of downtown Philly and right adjacent to the Art Museum, all of a sudden I'm living in this wealthy neighborhood and I can't believe it. When I first bought my house at age 24, it was mostly blue collar people who'd lived here for generations and worked at the old Schmidts Brewery but we were part of the pioneer movement -- artists and writers and musicians who bought homes in the area because of its proximity to downtown.

I should probably think about selling this place and taking the money and running but where would I go? I love Philadelphia, and while I'd really adore living in the UK, whatever profit I made would be worth 50% less so that wouldn't make much sense, would it. But oh oh oh, to live in England. I dunno. Maybe when empty nest syndrome happens for real.

And why am I even talking about stuff like this? God help me, being surrounded by yuppies is getting to me after all. They're trying to convert me and succeeding! Help!

Speaking of that...

Oh, Eric...come need to walk to the Four Seasons and get your mother her Japanese breakfast...

Har har.

Ooh ooh. One final thing. I have this hunky oh so hip friend, writer Dennis Mahagin, and he's running a very interesting promotion over at his blog. Go check it out! Here's the link. In case he adds something additional, it's the post dated June 22, 2005 which says "Shhh...". Dennis will probably blush when I say this, but he reminds me very much of a favorite poet of mine, Gregory Corso. Hey, please visit that site as well so you can hang with the cool kids like Dennis and me.


Wednesday, June 21, 2006

The Evil Tooth Fairy

Yeah, so the evil tooth fairy took my tooth yesterday and when I felt under my pillow this morning, nothing. All he left me with is a swollen face (again) and an insatiable hunger. I'm allowed nothing but pudding or yoghurt today and woo hoo, tomorrow I get to have warm soft food like a bowl of noodles or oatmeal. Wait, I see I'm allowed a can of fruit cocktail. Huh? When were these instructions written, in 1950?

However, the evil tooth fairy's agent --my oral surgeon -- did give me a prescription for Codeine so that tells you what kind of pain was involved. Now here's something you would have thought I'd have learned by now: Never read the paperwork that comes with your prescription or you will make yourself nuts...or, in my case, even more nuts.

"Codeine can cause drowsiness or hyperactivity".

Okay. Which is it, then? Even in my worst (and much younger) partying days, I only indulged in things of a hyperactive nature for a brief time. A few episodes of my heart skipping a beat and imagined trips to the emergency room where I'd be instantly arrested was enough for me.

Now those drowsy drugs...mmm...but I suffer from insomnia and natural hyperactivity so that's why they used to appeal to me but these days a glass of good wine with dinner is all I really need.

Oh god...dinner.

Sorry. I'm really, really hungry. And I just had to drink a cup of cold coffee because as I said, I'm not allowed anything warm until tomorrow and I'm not willing to have the headache from hell because of no caffeine.

Note to self: Break the coffee addiction once and for all when this is over. Go back to tea. Tea is the new coffee, anyway. I know this is true because In Style Magazine told me so in the oral surgeon's office yesterday.

And what a character my oral surgeon was -- first time I'd ever met him and initially I thought he was kind of scary and then my imagination really took over because what kind of person picks that as his/her career? Day after day of blood and spit flying and people screaming in agony, or, in my case, having a full-fledged panic attack while in the chair.


As I sat there trying to absorb all of the information he was throwing me about the tooth, what to expect and having me sign all of those dreaded release papers about jaw deformities and strokes, I had a brief moment of clarity and said to myself "Well, an oral surgeon is nowhere near as bad as a person who decides to be a proctologist" and I calmed myself down.

And then I saw the velcro arm restraints on either side of my chair and frankly, I started to lose it because the surgeon told me he didn't feel it was necessary to put me under, he could probably do it in fifteen minutes with a local...but it would take that long because he fully expected the tooth to break.


And then he started to sing.

"Oh here comes a little pinch in the cheek la la la and open wide la la la another little one and now a big one LA LA LA on the roof of the mouth doobie doobie doo..."

Okay, like, I never received that much novacaine in my life and then he walked out of the room with the dreaded Terminator line "I'll be back".

One second alone and I realized I couldn't swallow. I was so numb I couldn't feel my tongue or back of my throat and I started gasping for air.

"The stroke...the jaw deformity...Rob...get a grip...deep aren't going to choke to death in this dentist's chair anymore than you were going to choke from peanut butter asphyxiation in your Neil Gaiman dream."

So I somehow forced my brain back into a happy place thinking of that (ha) and in walked the singing dentist again, this time wheeling in an evil cart of sharp instruments.


"Gurgle gurgle," I replied and damn it, this really was like my dream of the other night except it was real and what, now I think I'm psychic? Oy.

To be honest, I couldn't feel any pain but then he starts with the singing again "La la la I'm pulling out your tooth bibbity bop bop bop" and I swear, he lifted me three inches off the chair as he yanked.

That's when I had the panic attack.

"Stopppppp..gurgle gurgle...can't...gurgle gurgle...want to be put no no."

Well, I tried, but I was speaking in tongue and he kept on singing and pulling and then out came the tooth and he showed it to me in all its gory glory. Oh my god. Eww!

"Ice on your face as soon as you get home, Advil, Codeine, nothing but pudding/yoghurt for 36 hours blah blah blah..."

Got home, did as he said, but as soon as that novacaine wore off, I started howling.

I took the damn Codeine even though it was 50-50 I'd have the preferred reaction.

You know I'm not that lucky.

Midnight I was still up with my heart pounding in my ears and now I was really screwed because I couldn't have a glass of wine because it said in huge letters on my prescription bottle DO NOT TAKE WITH ALCOHOL.

Now. I suppose I could have gone by my initial reaction while in dire pain, which was "Oh, this means you need to swallow it with water, not wine, but you can have wine in a few minutes" but I am not a complete idiot so I sat here all night alone with an icebag on my face surfing the net. Half of my family wasn't home and the other half was upstairs snoring but after a while I passed out and this is how they found me this morning:

Yeah, so now we know who really cares about me in this family.

Just kidding. Eric was awesome. Because he was the only one in the family available yesterday, he was the one stuck accompanying me to the great tooth extraction of 2006 and he did a great job of calming me down the whole way home in the cab where I was convinced that underneath the gauze I was chomping on, I was probably hemoraging to death.

Anyway, I have more music and writing news but I seriously need to find something soft and cool to eat so... (Ha ha - I know what you are all thinking -- wash out your brains with soap right now!)


Monday, June 19, 2006

Dreaming and other cool stuff...

So of course that's Eric Slick on drums and Julie Slick on bass and here's the official Adrian Belew press release on the School of Rock website written by Paul Green:

PGSORM alumni and Uber Rhythm section Eric and Julie Slick have gotten a dream gig-they are now the back up band for guitar legend ADRIAN BELEW! For those who aren't familiar with Adrian, he's a former guitarist for Frank Zappa, David Bowie, and The Talking Heads, as well as the frontman for King Crimson since 1981, not to mention his own fantastic (GRAMMY NOMINATED) solo career. He is also, IMHO, one of the greatest guitarists walking the earth, and a beautiful human being to boot.

Eric and Julie will be joining him for his upcoming tour dates, including Zappanale 2006 (which also features the School of Rock All-Stars.) While on tour, they will also be recording a live album: SIDE FOUR!

To see all of the tour dates for the Adrian Belew Trio, as well as read Adrian's own announcement about Eric and Julie, please check out Adrian Belew's website


Pretty wild, huh?

Actually, I'm so excited let me cut and paste the dates here and yes! I see the Rome, Italy date confirmed and now I can get my act together and see if I can swing the Italy/Amersterdam portion of the tour:

●07/06 Music Mill - Indianapolis, IN
●07/07 VPASAC - Springfield, OH
●07/08 Double Door - Chicago, IL
●07/16 Zappanale - Bad Doberan, GER (more)
●07/17 Laghetto Di Villa Ada - Rome, IT
●07/19 De Boederij - Zoetermeer, Netherlands
●07/21 Berg Herzbert - Herzberg, GER
●08/08 B. B. King's House O Blues - NY, NY
●08/09 Stephen Talkhouse - Amagansett, NY
●08/10 Turning Point - Piermont, NY
●08/11 Buffalo Icon - Buffalo, NY
●08/16 Chastain Park - Atlanta, GA

Also, I'm pretty sure August 13 and August 14 are the World Cafe Live in Philadelphia but it's not on their website yet because their webmaster has been on vacation. And I believe they expect to add more shows after the Georgia date...Florida is one possibility.

Okay, on to some writing news. In spite of the tooth from hell and construction next door, I've been on a real tear to finally finish Baby Boomer (and I may change the title yet again but that's the least of my worries) so that I can send out the whole thing before I start bouncing around Europe. Congratulations to Jordan Rosenfeld who also just signed with a new and wonderful agent as did two of my other close friends who are always in the comments section here but since I didn't read it on their respective blogs, I don't want to let the cat out of the bag for either until they are ready.

And please take notice that another one of my great pals Ellen Meister has a brand new website and finally, Amazon put the cover of her new book on their site so now it appears in all its glory on the right hand side here where I have "recommended reading" instead of that sad empty white box that's been there for the past several weeks. I say take this opportunity to pre-order it! Trust me on this, it's an incredible read.

Okay, you know this post so far has been too normal for me, and I can't even believe I'm sharing this because I swore I was going to give the whole Neil Gaiman thing a rest but yeah, it's true -- after writing about him for months and giggling about how adorable he is with my pals, last night I had my first official dream about him. While I was asleep, I mean har har. It's what just woke me up and initially I couldn't make heads or tails of what it means -- which is fine, I worry about people who take dreams too seriously -- but sitting here now and sipping my first cup of coffee of the day I do have a few theories which I'll share at the end of this thing.

But first, remember that I am still on antibiotics and painkillers so my imagination is on overdrive...the tooth from hell gets removed tomorrow which is a whole 'nother story. I'm scared!

Anyway, the dream. I'm sitting in a cafe in Germany with my family -- and that would be my entire family -- Julie, Eric, and yes, even Gary, who, exactly like Neil's Mary, likes to stay in the shadows and hardly ever travels with me except maybe once or twice a year where again, he keeps himself distant from my writing life -- affords me both solitude and freedom to come and go as I please -- hence why the relationship still continues after all of these years. And mutual adoration for Julie and Eric along with all things music of course. (As a side note, because I'm a yenta I freely admit to googling Mary/Gary but I got nothing. Well, in Gary's case that's not entirely true. There is a very staid, academic Dr. Gary Slick who is a doctor/college professor and lives in Oklahoma -- not my Gary for sure, who spent last night hollering at the television and clamoring for a revolution to overthrow the Bush administration and take control of the oil fields. Anyway, even stranger there is yet a third Gary Slick who does the dog show circuit with beagle gundogs. I couldn't resist clicking on Google Images and there he was, Beagle Gary, with a dog that looked exactly like my Monty! They won third place. What's hilarious is that our Monty isn't even a purebred but a mix of beagle and God knows what else but I swear, he's a ringer for the award winner. But as far as Beagle Gary goes, he looks Republican and wears a baseball cap. He raises gundogs for Christ sake. Wait. What is a gundog exactly? I don't think I want to know. For those of you wondering, my Gary has shoulder length hair, a full beard, and plays guitar.)

Okay, I'm digressing for a change. So the four of us are at this little cafe in Germany, and I'm pretty sure it's the restaurant which really exists with the yellow umbrellas outside in Bad Doberan where all the musicians hang during the Zappanale Festival. The waitress hands us menus and none of us could understand anything on them, even Gary, who believe it or not took German in high school because like me, who took Latin, wanted to be "different" and god forbid either of us took anything normal like Spanish. Even in my dream, I knew to warn everyone that we had to be careful of what we ordered because Julie and Eric are both vegetarians now, so that eliminated anything schnitzel-wise but as Gary pointed out, there was nothing schnitzel on the menu, anyway, and were we really sure we were even in Germany? (Another side note: Gary is the one going to Zappanale this year in spite of his hatred of airplanes and I'm incredibly jealous but I've got to stay here and baby-sit the dog. Don't ask. But as I said, I'm obviously going to immediately see about Amsterdam and Italy and a bunch of U.S. dates, too, now that they are official. Gary and I will probably be on planes flying in opposite directions on July 17. And did you ever see anyone digress so much and take so long to just spit out a story? Okay...I promise to just tell the rest of the dream now.)

So...we're sitting there all confused and starving and trying to comprehend the menu when I look up and see with a jolt that Neil Gaiman has joined us. He takes an empty seat next to me and says "Hi" and Julie, Eric, and Gary all said "Hi"...he takes a menu, looks it over, sees our anxious faces, and says "Don't worry...I'll handle this," he said.

"Julie and Eric are vegetarians," I warned him.

"I know. I read your blog," he replied. (Oh please. He probably read it twice and both times caught me gushing about him which wasn't too mortifying and there I go sidetracking the dream again)

So I blushed and could hardly talk at all and Neil says "Relax, Robin, you're part of the family now."

Ha ha - I'm still trying to figure out what that meant. I'm part of my own family now or I'm part of Neil's?

No, it means you are insane, Robin. Continue on with the dream before you lose the rest of your three remaining readers.

So Neil motions the waitress to come over and he speaks to her in some strange, foreign language that sounded more Martian than anything else. She writes down what he says and walks away. Neil looks at us and says "I've ordered us all the same thing. You will absolutely love it."

And then a few minutes later our food is delivered and we look down and we all have four huge black bowls (ha...a little Neil/Robin dining attire thrown in) filled to the top with peanut butter and milk. I'm totally serious. It was like two scoops of Skippy Extra Crunchy swimming in milk, as if it were cold cereal or something. And we all just kind of stared at each other and then at Neil, who was happily spooning the stuff into his mouth so naturally I took the first spoonful on behalf of the Slick family, my family followed suit and from that moment on, none of us could talk because the peanut butter was totally stuck to the roofs of our mouths and had rendered us all mute.

And that's when I woke up, gasping for air, and when I realized I wasn't dying of peanut butter suffocation I started laughing out loud and went downstairs to write this up before I forgot the details.

I am sure dream analysts could have a field day with me but as I sit here now, I've just come up with five explanations on my own:

(1) The dream means that in reality, I have a terrible longing to return to my childhood and peanut butter sandwiches and big glasses of cold milk were a part of that. Also, I know that Neil writes childrens' books;
(2) I am very worried that Julie and Eric aren't getting proper nutrition since they've decided to be vegetarians but that doesn't explain Neil Gaiman at our table unless I just wanted him there to look at;
(3) I really want to go to Zappanale and I'm pissed that I can't because Gary is and someone has to stay home and take care of the dog. That doesn't explain Neil Gaiman at our table, either, unless I just wanted him there to look at;
(4) I am a complete lunatic who is even being badgered by my sleeping sub-conscious to shut up by attempting to glue my tongue to the roof of my mouth;
(5) All of the above.

And now with this post I realize that I've probably finally given my Gary his first real Google listing. He would be extremely annoyed if he knew but he won't find out unless someone tells him. He never goes anywhere near a computer unless he absolutely must and considers the internet and most modern technology the Mother/Father of All Evil and the death of true creativity.

Ho ho. Not me. Give me anything electronic with either a battery and/or a plug and I can guarantee you I'll find happiness.


Thursday, June 15, 2006

I Did Warn You That He Is A God...

"You didn't mention that he was a complete and utter pain in the arse, though."

Ha ha - hardly. So I will spare you all the gory details of the last few days and focus on the way cool stuff instead. A couple of days ago when I blogged the whole sad story of my infected tooth, I was completely freaked out to receive an e-mail from Neil Gaiman Himself along with this..ahem...previously unpublished devil-eyed photo as bribery to get to a hospital or at least let him know that I was on the mend. Right. Like I would ever say no to Neil.

(And I finally learned the secret of uploading a photo to blogger so that when you click on it, the photo goes full size so if you want to really swoon, click away...)

Actually, dire pain and fear of death led me back to bed and conferring with the dentist again after which I am now happy to report that I am home and the infection and fever are gone from my body...just not the area of the tooth itself which alas must be extracted on Tuesday at 1:00 p.m. Root canal is no longer an option because I was such an idiot but okay, I admit it, I'm relieved about that. Then woo hoo, I get to spend another week or two on antibiotics recovering. Luckily, it's the back tooth so my perfect beauty will not be ruined. Oh god. That's the pain pills talking, trust me. Anyway, I should (but won't) post a photo of the new, improved skinny me as a result of not being able to eat solid food for a week...right now I am sitting here in bed wearing a pair of size ten jeans "just because" even though I'd be way more comfortable in pajamas.

So speaking of Neil Gaiman and how cool he is, I recently read an interview in which he was asked "What is your greatest achievement?" and he replied "My children."

No wonder his fans love him the way they do. And of course my answer would have been exactly the same.

Because really, the true silver lining of this tooth debacle and being bedridden at home is that Julie and Eric have been rehearsing non-stop for the up-coming Adrian Belew tour and I am their ecstatic audience. They've got the CD from their rehearsals with him down in Nashville last month (which I totally confess to downloading on my iPod and have been listening to whenever they aren't rehearsing) and they've been playing along. First of all, what a freaking awesome set list. It spans Adrian's career. Secondly, I am just blown away by my kids' talent. I've been turning off all sound in my room and opening the door so I can hear every note and it's like I'm living in some kind of wonderful musical fantasy world. Yep, I admit it -- I am the luckiest woman in the universe right now, wonky tooth and all.

I'm plotting and planning to see if I can make their show in Amsterdam in July. I've never been there and well, you know, I'm a natural for that place. They're also playing in Italy but that date isn't confirmed yet so I can't schedule a flight but I understand the Amsterdam and Italy dates are a few days apart so it would be amazing if I could attend both. But if I can't manage it, there's always the midwest U.S. shows in early July and of course the east coast swing in August -- I'll post the entire tour schedule as soon as it's complete but there's a partial up on Pollstar.

And finally, if you don't understand the heading of this post or the subsequent quote beneath, do yourself a HUGE favor and treat yourself to Mr. Gaiman's Anansi Boys. Hey, I'll even provide you with the Amazon link. You will not be sorry - it was my one of my favorite books of 2005 and I was fortunate enough to have read it while traveling through England by train last October which was the coolest thing ever. I was reading one particular chapter while on the train to Newcastle and I looked up and saw the most beautiful double rainbow. And then in January when Neil was in Philadelphia, I got the book autographed and got to meet him and oh god...

Okay, enough. It's all in good fun.

Meanwhile, this you can't believe but knowing me, you probably will. While I was in the middle of writing this post last night and was about three-quarters of the way finished, I received a second e-mail from Neil because I'd written back to him and asked if it was okay to post the above pic he sent me on my blog and obviously he said okay. Sigh...what a guy. He really does have a generous heart. Anyway, I use AOL mail so I heard "You've Got Mail" as I was writing this. When I saw who it was from, I got so excited that I closed my Firefox browser so I could read it instead of merely minimizing the screen. Unfortunately, Firefox was what I was using to type this entry and I lost the entire post. I just stared at the screen numbly in disbelief because in almost two years of blogging that's the very first time that's ever happened to me. I tried the "recover post" thing but because I'd closed the browswer altogether without saving anything I wrote, there was nothing to recover.

Anyway, I did the best I could this morning to try and reconstruct what I wrote last evening but damn it, I know I'm missing some of my best material. Have I mentioned what a dork I am?


Sunday, June 11, 2006

Sick Slick

Eric Slick performing with Dave Dreiwitz, bassist for Ween in Dave's side project, Crescent Moon, on Thursday night

So it's a lot of fun to google my kids lately. Ever since Adrian Belew hired them to be his new power trio, their names are appearing on forum boards across the world.

Here's a mention of Julie and Eric Slick on the Yes forum board, All Good People;

Here's another one on the Primus forum board, The Bull Board;

They get some blurbage on yet two other King Crimson forum boards, Elephant Talk and ProjeKction

And finally, here's one from the Ween Forum Board which mentions Eric's performance with their bassist the other night in his side project, Crescent Moon. And um, while Eric was performing with Crescent Moon, he got an offer to sit in as a substitute drummer from time to time for a band opening for the Flaming Lips which is one of his favorite bands so to say he was a bit excited over that is an understatement.

Anyway, the reason for the title of this post and my three day absence from this blog (and oh my god, the whole My Space writers' crew -- I'm not ignoring you and thanks for all the invites) is that I've been incredibly sick and am terrified I may be in the hospital in another day or two. Worse, it's my own damn fault. So if stuff like this makes you queasy, stop reading now.

I knew I needed a root canal on a bad tooth -- an upper left molar -- a few months ago but the dentist put in a temporary filling and it felt fine so I decided not to deal with it because it's not the root canal itself I hate, it's that whole biting into the jelly so they can make you a new crown and the whole time thing -- it's usually a once a week visit for five or six weeks to the dentist, etc. and I dreaded it so I just put it on the back burner.

Stupid, stupid, stupid.

The temporary filling fell out recently but shockingly, there was no pain at all, the tooth felt fine, and once again, I went on with my life and didn't call the dentist.

When Julie and I went out for dinner Thursday night (more on that later...sheesh...I have to at least be able to end this post on a positive note) I bit into a soft, warm piece of bread and all hell broke loose. I felt like I'd been shot in the face. I have a pretty high pain threshhold but let me tell you, I almost fainted. But I wasn't going to ruin dinner because Julie and I had been looking forward to going out all week and we'd already told our waitress what we wanted for our appetizers and entrees. So I quickly ordered two very potent house made Sangrias and downed them both within five minutes. Somehow I got through the meal but I knew I was in big trouble because I could see my cheek. You know what I'm talking about? Ever get a bruise or swelling on your cheek that makes it so puffy you can see it out of your eye and it's almost like an obstruction?

And then Julie looks at me and says "Oh my god, Mom, you look like Quasimoto!"

Not sure if that was an accurate remark -- wasn't he the guy with the hump on his back...but anyway, it's not exactly a remark you should make to a hypochondriac -- especially one who just had two very potent drinks and could see her cheek.

Julie didn't realize the seriousness of the situation and I guess neither did I and I didn't want to ruin the evening so when she suggested walking the three miles home instead of cabbing it, I numbly agreed, even though I felt like throwing myself down on the pavement and letting out primal screams of pain.

Got home, took a handful of Advil, and prayed it would pass.

No such luck.

Friday morning I woke up with my left eye completely swollen shut and the entire side of my left face looking like I had the mumps.

Oh my god, I must have an abscess, thought I, and called the dentist hysterical. Lucky for me, he said I could come in at 2:00 p.m. I called his office at 9:00 a.m. That meant I had five hours to scream in pain and worry, so what do I do? I went on the internet and started researching what happens when you neglect an infected upper molar.

Did you know that an upper molar is like one inch from the sinus cavity and two inches from your brain? And that if you have a serious infection it can rapidly travel and literally kill you?

I couldn't stop reading and by the time I got to the dentist, I was both a physical and emotional wreck. Plus, in all of my internet research, I also learned that these infections are so insiduous that a lot of times even the strongest antibiotics don't work and you need to be hospitalized with an I.V. drip.

So at least I was prepared when the dentist saw my face, my x-ray, wrote out the prescription and said "If you aren't feeling better by Monday or Tuesday, call me immediately and we may have to hospitalize you. And whatever you do, stay in bed or calm in a chair and don't do anything around the house because you never know where these infections can go and a lot of movement on your part could be very, very bad."

Of course all I could think about was the three mile walk home the night before and how lucky I am I didn't pass out then.

He prescribed a very potent antibiotic and some wicked pain killers, which I hate. How the hell does anyone ever get addicted to those things? God. They make me so fucking dizzy and sick in the stomach it's almost as bad as the pain in my face. But I broke down and took them because I was literally screaming and luckily I had warm pudding and a Xantac as well because finally I got at least a bit of relief.

But it's now Sunday and I don't feel much better. Admittedly, I've only been on the drugs for part of Friday and all day yesterday so I am praying that I turn a corner today or yeah, I suspect I'm in the hospital tomorrow. My eye is still swollen and I have a lump on my cheek directly under it which tells me the damn infection got to my sinus cavity. I'm weak, nauseous, and just about as sick as I've ever been in my life and what makes it worse is that it's all my damn fault for being an idiot and not going to the dentist months ago.

So the bottom line is, if I disappear for a few days, I'll have Eric post my hospital room number and telephone so you can all call me and tell me how dumb I am and then send me flowers and balloons. Ha.

Actually, I was going to end this post talking about the absolutely marvellous restaurant where I had my...sob...last supper Thursday night but I find I can't even sit here at the computer and must go back to bed and god damn it, I'm crying right now.

Have I mentioned how STUPID I AM?

This is one time not even Neil Gaiman can make me feel better, but to continue on with tradition, here's another cool photo so at least my friend Susan Henderson will be a happy camper today:

Later, (I hope!)

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Odds and Sods for Thursday, June 8

Studio Belew - photograph by Eric Slick during the Nashville rehearsals last month

So I'm taking a quick break from writing my novel to report a few interesting things here.

First of all, Eric has a gig with Dave Dreiwitz, bass player for Ween tonight at Mexicali Blues in Teaneck, New Jersey. It's a crazy bass and drum only thing called "Crescent Moon" -- Eric's pretty stoked about it, so if you are in the area, the show starts at 9:00 p.m.

Because of this gig, which is like a half hour from New York City and Eric's dad is tagging along, Julie and I decided to stay home and go out to dinner tonight here instead and we were looking in the Philadelphia City Paper for some new, cool downtown restaurants and what do I stumble on but an article about Julie and Eric written by music columnist A.D. Amorosi in his Icepack column...and of course as usual because I am both anal retentive and excited, I will cut and paste the pertinent part here as well:

You know that I know that you know Philly expat Paul Green's School of Rock gets greedier daily. A new CEO—Matt Ross from Clear Channel. A Hollywood branch so to be close to Jack Black's kids. Yet, it's funnest knowing that chicken-choking guitarist Adrian Belew (King Crimson) just plucked a duo of Philly Greenies, siblings Eric and Julie Slick, to anchor Belew's new power trio, this after playing Zappa's "City of Tiny Lights" at February's School of Rock gig at World CafĂ© Live. "Musically it's closer in spirit to Crimson than Cream," says Belew of his trio's odd time signatures and dark chordal shapes. "But we'll follow the Cream/Hendrix mold of adventurous playing and loads of stunt guitar work." And if the kids act up, will Belew take away their allowance? "Worse yet, their credit cards!" says Belew, who's "pretty much of a kid myself."

Um, I have to admit I don't exactly love what A.D. wrote...either about Paul Green or the kids, but hey, what's that they say about publicity? Even crappy/inaccurate publicity is better than no publicity at all.

First of all, Julie and Eric are Rock School grads who played with Adrian at the New York Knitting Factory in March of this year, not at the World Cafe in Philly and not as Paul Green's students. Julie will be twenty one years old and Eric is nineteen and as readers of this blog know, just came off a five week tour with Project Object featuring the legendary Ike Willis. As far as having their allowance/credit cards taken away, don't count on it. Julie has more money than God and can buy and sell me. So yeah, I sort of beg to differ with A.D.'s jab that they're kiddies and the stuff he says about Paul but I do love Adrian's response and wonder if A.D. called him directly for those quotes. Hmmm...

Anyway, as luck/serendipity would have it, I just caught A.D. Amorosi on our local news/entertainment television show, 10 Live! and he goes on and on talking about Harry Connick, Jr. and Nelly Furtado, and Ice Cube...oh, and the dreaded American Idol people, so that tells me all I need to know about him.

But still, you know me, I'm going to be picking up 100 copies of the City Paper today, anyway.

Also, I see that Krimson-News has picked up my blogpost about Adrian Belew and Julie and Eric and did a nice job of plucking the relevant parts from a few different blurbs I made last week so I'm very pleased about that...especially as they also used some photos and the link to the Rock School soundtrack.

I am also humiliated to announce that I now have a My Space Account to help promote my books and the new anthology in which I have a story which will be out next month. I am a truly pathetic person who has no understanding or knowledge of how My Space works but if you are interested in being one of my "friends" or seeing just how pitiful I am, here's the link. You are welcome to add me as a friend, ask to be my friend, whatever it is you have to do and if anyone wants to volunteer any info as to how to make my site prettier and automatically hear the music (Adrian Belew, of course) when you sign on instead of having to hit the play button, I will be happy for your assistance. As far as the blog portion goes, I guess I'm just gonna cut and paste what I type here for now until my new books come out -- both Another Bite of the Apple and the short story anthology -- but really, I have no idea what I'm doing.

Funny story already. I have a pal, Grant Jarrett, who also has a short story in the anthology and he said yesterday that he was going to start a My Space site, too (that's how this whole thing started -- all 12 of us in the anthology said we'd do it) so this morning I get an invite to be Grant's friend. So that much I knew how to do -- I clicked "Accept" and went to Grant's site to comment. What do I see? He's got 83 friends already! I'm like, how the hell did that happen? Up until yesterday, I only had four friends, one of whom was that bot "Tom" who I honestly thought was the kid who lived next door because yep his name is Tom and the bot bears an uncanny resemblance to him. I was like, oh my god, how did Tom find my site already and why does he want to be friends with me when he's 21 years old and friends with Julie and Eric? And then I see another "friend" is not a friend at all but a pair of swingers or a porn couple of some sort but I must have hit "accept" thinking they were someone I knew. I hear I can delete them but to be honest, what if I do know them and I hurt their feelings? They may be someone I know from the erotica web ring to which I belong, what do I know. They haven't commented so they aren't hurting me. Huh. Actually, I just clicked on them and it turns out they are writers so it's a good thing I didn't delete them and I apologize for calling them swingers.

One thing I do find weird about My Space is that people comment and you can't comment back so their remarks just kind of hang there. I don't know if I'm going to get used to that.

Oh...back to the Grant story. So I asked him in a comment on his site How the hell did you get 83 friends already and it turns out it's not the Grant I know but another Grant -- a writer named Grant Baille who is also a member of my on line writing group. So now I've been an active My Spacer for a few days and I've already made two faux pas. Oh well. I'm guessing there's a search option where other writers seek each other out and that's how he found me...I have no idea...all I know is I'm extremely worried that My Space is going to become a huge addiction for me and that's the last thing I need...not to mention the fact that I really do feel too old for it. I have to giggle, though. I notice everyone over thirty lists their age as 99. Yeah, like we're all really going to type in our correct dates of birth.

Whatever. All I know is, I've promised someone a perfect, newly revised one hundred pages of my new novel, Baby Boomer, by the end of this month so I've got to close all windows, get off the internet, and resume writing.

But for you, Susan, here's our daily twisted Neil Gaiman moment, fresh from Balticon:

Oh my. I don't know about Neil, who is currently in bed with a sore throat, the poor baby (oh god...don't even go there, Rob) but I know seeing that pic just made me feel a hell of a lot better.


Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Are we not men?

The Hall of Famers from Rock School performing DEVO

So, I hear I missed a great School of Rock Best of Season show Saturday night because not only was Skunk Baxter fantastic but they brought Eric Slick, Dan Nitz, Mike Connor, Matt Manser and Joey "Reno" Randazzo out of retirement to perform DEVO one final time.

Here's the You Tube, though. It's wild and crazy though you really need to be there live to see it and believe it. This was a spur of the moment surprise so they didn't have their white suits (I took the above photo during the west coast tour of 2004) so they improvised for costumes Saturday night (and I'm trying not to think about the fact that they resemble terrorist beheaders)...anyway, I love the way Eric drums on this:

Oh crap, for some reason the embedded version isn't working, so here's the direct link to the You Tube Film.

In Adrian Belew news, the tour schedule for the eastern part of the United States is starting to fill up nicely. I have some dates but I want to wait until they all appear on the venues listed so I can post links, however, here is the first one and I'm so stoked I can't even begin to tell you - they're playing BB Kings in New York on August 8. Here are the details!

Ha - you will note this is an old advertisement for the Power Trio and mentions Les Claypool on bass and Danny Carey on drums. Well, how cool is it that Julie is replacing Les and Eric is replacing Danny -- I mean, really -- those are some shoes to fill, huh.

Anyway, in my world, forgive the brief blog posts - I'm going to be absent most of June completing Baby Boomer as yes yes yes someone is interested in it and would like to have it by the end of this month. I just need to tweak it a bit more before I'm confident about the edits. Okay, you know I'll never be confident nor will I ever able to stay away from this blog for a month but I really need to devote serious time to writing so yeah, I may not be here every day.

I know there's other news but right now my son and his girlfriend are fooling around on the sofa next to me (ack!) and my daughter is hocking me about going out to buy a new cartridge for the printer and I also need to visit a crazy herbal store to buy Oil of Peppermint because apparently this is the natural way to keep squirrels from eating the apples off my tree (do you believe it? I have a twelve foot by twelve foot oh poor me I live in the city garden in the back and planted a little tree a few years ago which is now this huge gorgeous thing bearing fruit!)...though I'm not so confident about this peppermint stuff cos' I tried it before as well as other natural ways to rid us of pests/rodents and um, they don't work. But poison just isn't an option so it may be the squirrels who end up enjoying my apples, not me...oh well...that's what Whole Foods is for, huh.

So let me get out of here so I can take care of my errands early and come home and work on the novel. If anything exciting happens in the meantime, I'll be back.


Friday, June 02, 2006

With a Rebel Yell, She Cried More, More, More...

Hey hey hey, I'm full of news today, and -- gasp -- some of it actually has to do with writing. First, I am really stoked to announce that one of my short stories has been selected (along with work by some other pretty impressive authors in the literary world) to appear in a new anthology called REBELLION published by Rebel Press which should be available for sale shortly at the usual places (Amazon, etc.) as well as the publisher's website. If you click on the link, you'll find author bios, excerpts, and further details.

Secondly, if you are in the Philadelphia area and are looking for something cool to do tonight, please join the extremely hard working editors/writers from Philadelphia Stories for a silent auction at the Mummers Museum. I've donated an autographed copy of Three Days in New York City as well as two coffee cups embellished with two of my short stories from Flash Fiction (which I am pleased to see are still for sale on their site) for said auction. In a perfect world, I plan on attending the event tonight as well but I'm not one hundred per cent sure I can make it. In any event, let me just reiterate how wonderful Philadelphia Stories is -- it's a magazine devoted to publishing the work of local authors and is distributed free of charge at places like Borders, coffee shops, etc. It's not an inexpensive endeavor to put out a literary magazine like this and it's important to support it so I hope some of my local readers can make it or if not, even a small contribution (details on their website) would really be appreciated.

Third, my beautiful and talented daughter Julie has produced a song by the Jangling Sparrows which will appear on a new CD titled "Unleashed II" and the release party is tomorrow night at World Cafe Live at 7:00 p.m.. For tickets and further details, follow this link. All who attend this party will in fact receive a free CD!

Fourth, tomorrow evening is also the PAUL GREEN SCHOOL OF ROCK BEST OF THE SEASON FUNDRAISER with very special guest JEFF "SKUNK" BAXTER, legendary guitar player for STEELY DAN & THE DOOBIE BROTHERS. Advance tickets are $12.00; $15.00 at the door. Speaking of said doors, they open at 6:00 p.m., the show starts at 7:00 p.m., and this is one of those times I need to be able to clone myself -- my son's lovely significant other, Carolyn, will be singing back-up with Skunk on two songs.

Fifth, in what will be their final performance before Eric and Julie go out on tour with Adrian Belew, Eric will perform with the band, Flamingo, as part of the Troc's Sunday Balcony series. Showtime is June 4 at 2:00 p.m.

And finally, for my good pal Susan, and you should click on that link because today she interviews the amazing Hillary Carlip (whose book I am currently reading and just being blown away by) is a photo I wish I did not find because I think aliens captured him for the evening, tied him up, tortured him, and dressed him against his will...Neil Gaiman as you've never seen him before:

Oh, Sue, I can't end my blogpost with something as traumatic as that. Wait...I know!

Ahhhh. All better.


Thursday, June 01, 2006

Surreys and Death, among other things...

So as promised on Tuesday, here we all are in our cornball surrey on the boardwalk in Ocean City -- unfortunately Eric's girlfriend Carolyn is not in the pic as she was the photographer...the photo we got the unsuspecting tourist to take was horrible and completely cut off Carolyn's head so I couldn't post it. Notice the only one smiling is Julie, because she is driving and well, she's a maniac and the rest of us were hanging on for dear life. Nah, in all fairness, it was a lot of fun because as you can see by her determined expression, it was her goal to run as many yuppies over as possible within an hour's time -- she got extra points if she hit power walkers wearing big-ass iPod headphones ignorantlly and obliviously blocking the specified surrey lane on said boardwalk. I mean, come on. It's not rocket science. There are three clearly drawn lanes in each direction on the boardwalk. Bicycles on the left, surreys in the middle, pedestrians, who have the widest lane, on the right. But no, we have our power walkers who not only choose the surrey lane but walk in pairs so you can't even pass them without getting hit head-on by some lunatic in the bike lane going in the opposite direction who thinks he's Lance Armstrong.

Enough of that. Let's talk about music. In stalking my son on Google, I found Mike Keneally's forum board. Look at all the mentions of Eric! And in case you don't know who Mike Keneally is, here's his website. So to say this is cool is putting it mildly.

Hey, did you know DC Comics has decided to make Batwoman a lesbian? Read all about it here. Good for them. Up yours, conservative Bush asswipes!

And also as promised -- or should I say threatened -- here I am in my official Neil Gaiman Death t-shirt. And yes I know -- I have very cool refrigerator magnets and the reason I'm wearing sunglasses is that we'd just come in from walking the dog and I made Julie snap the photo before she left for class and there wasn't time to think properly...she was rushing me cos' she was late. I really am the least photogenic person I know, but wtf, the t-shirt looks good, anyway.

Oh okay. I always wear dark glasses. Just call me Blind Lemon Jello.

And yeah, I'm still sitting on some writing news but I haven't been given the official okay to say anything yet so maybe tomorrow? Oh well. Speaking of writing, today I hope to get another chapter or two done though the noise level from the construction next door seems to be getting worse and I didn't think that was possible. If it's not ninety degrees again today, I'll probably take the dog to the park with my journal and pen. Eric and Julie are doing intense rehearsing for their upcoming tour with Adrian Belew and then Eric will probably take off to hang out with friends; Julie and Matt are going to see Radiohead at the Tower if nothing else, maybe I can adjust my body clock and do some serious writing tonight. I'm starting to have painful nightmares over how long it's taking me to finish editing/writing this novel and self-destructive is just not my style!