Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Roman Polanski Buggered My Sister!!!

The year was 1975. We were all just kids but we knew that Uncle Paul was a very busy man and it was always a special treat whenever he stopped by for a visit. He gave my Mom forty bucks and sent her out to pick up the Chinese food he ordered.

He said he was going to make my little sister a big star but I really couldn’t tell for sure what was going on in the bedroom. Maybe acting lessons or a screen test or something. All I know for sure is that Uncle Paul came out after a while, and then he made me a highball and let me smoke a cigarette. It was GREAT!!!

He left just before Mom got home and he said, “Consider yourself lucky, kid. If you can’t get a girl, then a cute, chubby boy will do. Remember that, kid.”

I might not be remembering that exactly right because I was pretty dizzy by then.

But I do remember that Mom was really pissed off when she got back home and saw that Uncle Paul didn’t leave an envelope on the kitchen counter like all the times before.

He never stopped by for a visit after that.

My Mom said he died in a plane crash over the ocean, but now I know that she told a lie.

Grownups are funny.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Monday, September 28, 2009

Sunday Morning Looking Down

I was walking across a highway overpass when I came across a tiny, little vole. It was on its back, moving its little legs in slow motion. It looked like it did not realize it was upside down with its little white belly facing straight up.

It had a tiny, little mouth that would open and close, in rhythmic synch with its little legs.

The poor, little vole was dying, on the cold, hard macadam of a pedestrian walkway off to the side of an immense overpass that spanned a six-lane highway that roared beneath us with traffic racing by at seventy miles per hour. It was all so incredibly noisy and the sky was grey and it was drizzling on a chilly Sunday morning.

I felt sorry for that helpless little vole so small it would have fit easily in the palm of my hand. And I wondered how it ever got to be so very far away from its home in the meadow.

There it was, gasping out its last breaths, upside down in the cold, the grey and the damp, all alone.

I saw myself in that rodent, and I gave thought to putting it out of its misery, but I never did. Instead I walked on hoping to reach the safety of the other side, asking myself a question: “Where is its guardian angel?”

Saturday, September 26, 2009

A Poem for Mrs. Bissage

Your soul is a . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . FISH.

My heart is a . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . FISH.

Your mind is a . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . FISH.

My spleen is a . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . FISH.

Our love is a . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . FISH.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Tales from a Suburban Backyard

In the garden, beneath the comforting shade of a grand old walnut tree, stood a tiny little tree named Shidare. She was a very pretty little Japanese maple, and she was very happy, because it was a beautiful Autumn day and her lacey red leaves fluttered gently in the cool afternoon breeze.

She was hoping that someone would come by, to see how pretty she looked, when she heard an odd sound from above. It started up high in Mr. Walnut and it made a swooshing, rustling noise that got closer and closer and so loud that Shidare became frightened and then her favorite branch was ripped clean away from her trunk and she began to cry.

“Please don’t cry, little Shidare,” said Mr. Walnut. “I am very sorry one of my walnuts fell from such a terrible height and hurt you, but you are young, and you are still very pretty, and now you will grow taller in the Springtime so that everyone in the garden can see you!”

Shidare brightened at the thought, and she set her mind to the serious task of forming callus tissue to close off her wound thus guarding against viral, bacterial and fungal infection. And she hoped that someday soon, Mr. Squirrel would fall out of Mr. Walnut and dash his brains out all over Mr. Rock, who was sitting right there beside her.


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Do It . . . Yourself

Hey, why not? Some people fix their own broken washing machine and some people fetch their own garden mulch.

And then . . . some people . . . do it . . . way hardcore!!!This photograph is by Les Krims. It is entitled "Self Operation Fiction."

Please note that our self-sufficient, surgically aptitudinous hero is using potassium ferricyanide for his topical antiseptic.

That stuff is still the absolute best for achieving retouch bleaching effects in black and white photography, especially when you do it yourself.



Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Emotional Bissage

The great Althouse uses labels for her blog posts. One of those labels is called “emotional Althouse.”

Well, it might shock my millions of adoring fans to learn that Bissage has his sensitive side. Yes, yes, I know, I know . . . that’s a terribly uncool thing to openly admit when you are a middle-aged man with enormous, astonishingly effective genitals. But it’s true.

Why am I such a semi-softie? Oh, I don’t know. Maybe I’ll tell you some stories about that later on.

But for now, let’s listen to Regina Spektor as she sings “Laughing With.” Hey, there’s no point in my denying it. I get all weepy over this one.

But why is that? Well, I'm not quite sure. Maybe it's because those big, beautiful eyes look like they would never, ever, tell a lie.

Or maybe it’s because, sometimes, you can feel completely safe, and drop your guard, and let it out.

Something like that.

Monday, September 21, 2009

A Fair Question

What's so funny about peace, love and understanding?

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Displaced Althousian Comment # 201

"A great deal of intelligence can be invested in ignorance when the need for illusion is deep."

-- Saul Bellow

"Incident at Mulch Pile"

Nearby is a municipal mulch pile. Arborists dump their wood chips and you can help yourself. I go there all the time.

So I’m using a pitchfork to load up and in drives this car. Two women get out. They’re both looking around, slightly puzzled, as though they've never been there before. They seem friendly and my surmise is they are committed lesbians. They approach and they ask, “Can you give us some advice?”

I put down the pitchfork and I say to them (and this is 100% true): “There’s not much to it. Just make it easy on yourself. Once you’ve put it in as far as it can go, there’s really no point in pushing any further.”

They give each other a mischievous smile.

I turn beet red! Heck, what I said was completely innocent!

Anyway, they must have thought that my being shy was kind of cute because we end up having sexual intercourse. I give them multiple orgasms and they tell me I have a nice organ.

Afterwards, they say to me, “You have had relations with us so you are now an honorary homosexual.”

And I say to them, “I’m okay with that.”


Your Faithful Internet Companion Purges His Car

I still try to listen to talk radio when I'm driving but it is nearly always infuriatingly pointless. I have not yet broken my hand with a punch to the dashboard. Where I come from, that’s called winning.

I’ve been re-listening to some of my music discs. I get them from the bookcase in the bedroom where we also keep the cats’ litter boxes. It is in this way that each individual CD jewel case is also a single component of an enormous and highly ineffective air filtration system.

There were too many discs in the car, and I am about to put them back in the cat room, now that their jewel cases have been scraped clean of their powdery grey, tenaciously clinging, floral-scented coating. As you cat owners already know, that coating is a toxic blend of lung-destroying, clumping, clay laced with pulverized fecal matter and aerosolized urine. MMMM, MMMM, GOOD!!!

Anyway, the discs to be returned are, as follows:

(1) Herbie Hancock, “Mwandishi, The Complete Warner Bros. Recordings”;
(2) Radiohead, “In Rainbows”;
(3) Green Day, “21st Century Breakdown”;
(4) The Beatles, “Let it Be”;
(5) The Beatles, “Help!”;
(6) Ray Charles, “The Very Best of Ray Charles”; and finally
(7) Elliott Smith, “Figure 8”.

There you have it!

(Thought you'd want to know.)

Friday, September 18, 2009

What a Friend We Have in Cheeses!!!

Many of the songs by Alan Price in the movie “O Lucky Man” flip back on themselves – cheerfully sad or sadly cheerful. This is exactly in keeping with the movie's vibe, and the way it ends, in particular.

The director is auditioning Travis (Malcolm McDowell) for the preceding film in the trilogy. The director commands him to smile but he’s in no mood because he’s been jerked around for the last 90 cinematic minutes like Job's marionette. The director then whacks him across the head and he slowly but surely smiles the most meta-ironic smile ever in the whole, entire history of the motion pictures of the pictures of motion, teh EVARRRRRR!!1!!!1!!!!

Anyway, here’s a song from "O Lucky Man" that’s been on heavy rotation in my skull for about 30 years now.For the first ten years of that I didn't know the song is based on a timeless Christian hymm. That's mostly because I have never, ever, been anything other than a no-good, no-account, scum-sucking, flea-infested, cotton-picking, dirty, rotten, rat-bastard heathen.

No matter. The song makes me feel slightly better on the inside. I confess I don't know why. Maybe it has something to do with the inherent, spiritual goodness of hymms. Maybe it has something to do with how it feels immediately after you’ve been whacked across the head, and you find yourself standing in the exact same spot you were standing the instant before.
Love must always change to sorrow
and everyone must play the game.
It's here today and gone tomorrow
but the world goes on the same.
So go ahead and smile.

For silly goose Bissage.


Thursday, September 17, 2009

Le Texte D'Attente Français

This is a wonderfully ambiguous and complex photograph by Jean Gaumy. It is untitled, so far as I know. It has that certain je ne sais quoi. No?

I ask you, is it a symbolic representation of me and Mrs. Bissage, only le vieux and le swarthy?


* strokes chin *

I post it, here, in large part, merely because I feel like I need to post something. You see, my conscience has been bothering me.

Anyway, please don't hold me to the title of this blog post. I got it from babelfish or something or other. You see, except for the words "bon-bon," "poodle-bush," and "Audrey-Hepburn," I don't speak a single, stinking word of French.

No! Wait! Stop! Hold on there, Baba Looey! Maybe I do know something more about France. After all, I really liked "The 400 Blows," "A Man and a Woman," and I would really, really, really like to experience wild, uninhibited, sweaty carnal relations with Audrey Tautou and Eva Green (together, thankyouverymuch).

Oh yeah, and then there is this: My first movie memory is "Grand Prix" (1966). Also, I think I might have once buttered up Maria Schneider -- under the influence of unnatural fungus, mind you.

Oh, and there is one more thing I know about France. More than a few of my ex-girlfriends have said that it tickles, so there's that.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Patrick Swayze has Died

We welcomed him into our homes as an honored guest. And then off we would go, all together, hop scotching around the world for headlines. Through good times and bad, he took a licking and kept on ticking.He made us laugh and he made us cry. He porked first-rate tail and he kicked dirt-ball ass. He suffered for us all, just like Jesus, when he actually touched Demi Moore, Queen of the Cooties.

But now, he is a ghost, dirty dancing in that great big road house in the sky. People Magazine's sexiest man alive is dead.

Canon PowerShot Readymade # 6

Monday, September 14, 2009

Lost in Translation?

In my dream, I find myself in a large sporting goods store. It is connected, at its far end, to a shopping mall but I’m well past that now. Instead, I am deep within the store about to wander among the many rows of white shelving.

I notice the hanging merchandise displayed for sale. Packages of sinkers, bobbers, snelled hooks. Fishing lures like spinners, plugs, jigs, flies and spoons.

I look up and I realize that the store now has a ceiling forty feet tall. The windows are so immense that it seems as if the walls are made completely of glass.

I can see that the day is overcast and cloudy, except that there is a giant plecostomus catfish on the outside of the glass. It is ten or fifteen feet long and it is hovering in the air with dragonfly wings that beat so fast I can barely see them. It is eating the green algae that covers the outside of the windows. Wherever the fish clears away the algae, beautiful, brilliant blue sky shines through.

This seems wondrous to me, and it makes me happy, like a child. But I am immediately overcome by an inexplicable feeling of dread as I notice that a terrible dark storm is approaching from the far off horizon.

A salesman asks if he can help me but I distrust him. I dash away fearing that the shelves will move by themselves to form a labyrinth that would block my way.

The man disappears and I am standing before a door. It opens by itself, and I take a step outside, and now I am standing on green grass. There is a far-off river valley between high mountains.

The sky darkens and I feel a tremendous sense of loss and emptiness.

The grand, spreading oak tree before me has perfect symmetry and a beautiful woman is standing at its base. She wears a white gown and she radiates a shimmering white light. She has dragonfly wings and I realize in my dream that she must be the same entity that I saw earlier as the plecostomus catfish -- an angel of hope and redemption.

And then I wake up. And I try to figure out, quietly to myself, if the vision of the woman I just saw was actually the character in the movie “Lost in Translation” played by the actress Scarlett Johansson.

You see, it was just the night before that I saw that movie, for the third time.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Canon PowerShot Readymade # 5

Jazz Impressions of the Blog Wars # 31

You know what? There are these repugnant men in the world. I’ve met some of them during the course of my young life.

They watch lots of pr*nography on the internet. And at some weird, deep down, reptilian level of their brain, they get a sensation that feels like the memory that they’ve actually – in real life -- smacked a woman on her ass who is three times better-looking than any other woman who would so much as give them the time of day. And they've actually seen the red welt on her ass so that proves it’s all true.

And then there are these people who like to fight with strangers over politics on the internet. Lots of insults. It seems to be very important to them that they win. How they figure out they’ve actually won is a complete mystery to me.

But I do know this: Deep down inside, to them, anyway, it must feel like they’ve used their intelligence -- but not their body -- to wound or maybe even kill another person.

And, at least for a little while, anyway, they can enjoy the memory that their life is actually worth living.

Must be nice.

Bissage is Back to Being Disgusted

It's one of my things. I always do my level best to be amused, but this morning I am back to being disgusted. Why? Because today's Philadelphia Inquirer published an opinion piece by Trudy Rubin.

Its message? Do not oppose President Obama’s domestic agenda or else America's enemies will attack.

I am not making this up.

Nor am I about to link to such a piece of revoltingly unprincipled, patently partisan crap. It’s entitled “Worldview: Taliban’s Unwitting Assistants” and you can Google it for yourself.

But I recommend you don't.

Your time would be better spent helping me find my red shoes.

(Hey! I'm back to being amused. Cool!)

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Funky Mogambo Across the Globe # 17

This is by B. Kliban and it's from his cartoon anthology entitled "The Biggest Tongue in Tunisia."

I kind of dig the chick, but then, I had a wicked crush on Tina Cole back when I was young.

Truth be told, I was insanely jealous of Robbie Douglas. He must have been huge.

How Kliban would come to know all this, I can't imagine.

Morning's Meditation

Fiestaware-coffee-cat-tablecloth, watching sweet icing; on
Georgian mahogany, newspaper chair.

Unaccustomed coffee breath.

(Hiatal hernia. Straining pot.)

Unaccountable powder-room sweating.

Toilet-paper-newsprint, grey smudge appealing, all clean now.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

The White Wedding's Burden

This photograph is entitled "Balancing Unusual Objects on the Back of a Nude, No. 1." It is by Les Krims.

Morning Dream in Four Parts, with Dénouement

PART ONE: It is the present. It is late afternoon and I am walking on a downtown sidewalk. A sizable crowd of young urban professionals has spilled out from a trendy bistro sort of place. I get caught up in the crowd and I feel foreign, disquieted, and submerged but I do not panic. In fact, in my dream I feel cooly analytic about the situation although I sincerely want to escape.

PART TWO: Suddenly, I am inside my ex-girlfriend’s studio apartment, who is by now fifty years old. She is not at home and I am surprised to discover that she has a roomate who is in her early twenties and who is in the kitchenette preparing dinner. I watch the roommate as I lie on a nearby king-size bed which has no headboard or footboard. In my hands I hold one of those women’s fashion magazines.

I am underneath the bed covers – a pink and yellow floral comforter – completely naked. I feel uncharacteristically comfortable and I am hoping that the roommate will notice and join me. She is very appealing and she comes over very matter-of-factly and we make love under the covers. It is very brief, and she is sincerely pleased about it all, so I fully realize that I am in a dream.

PART THREE: My ex-girlfriend comes home with her husband and her grade-school-aged son. The roommate is serving dinner. I am still in bed and I feel like it is inappropriate for me to be there, in plain view, while they are eating, although only my ex-girlfriend seems to notice or care. Her jealousy makes me uncomfortable and I want to leave.

PART FOUR: The roommate gets up from the table, and comes over, and tells me I am welcome to use the shower. I demur saying it’s okay, I’ll just put on my clothes and sneak out. She insists it would be all right for me to use the bathroom and she returns to the others.

I am completely naked as I walk past them on my way to the bathroom. It strikes me as odd that I feel no sense of self-consciousness; only a slight sense of pride that the roommate finds me desirable in her detached, dispassionate kind of way. When I get to the doorway of the bathroom, I realize it belongs to my ex-girlfriend and not to the roommate.

It is wrong of me to use my ex-girlfriend’s bathroom and suddenly I am in the roommate’s bathroom, which is not inside the apartment. Rather, it is outside in the back yard; just a shower head and knobs sticking out of the side of the building and I reason that I must have gotten there by walking through the bifold closet doors that form the back entryway to the apartment.

I observe that any of the neighbors can easily see me, except that right beside me is a mature deciduous shrub in which a garden spider has built an enormous spider web. I admire its beauty and at the same time I am grossed out that I might rub up against it with my wet, naked body. I am standing on a concrete stepping stone to keep my feet off the muddy lawn.

DẾNOUEMENT: Then I wake up. I get out of bed and go to the bathroom. I perform a routine systems check and I am glad to find I did not ejaculate in my pajamas. I reflect upon the whole situation, while my prostate gently weeps. Mrs. Bissage stirs in bed but she does not awaken.


Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Feel the Love # 31

Now then, what's with all this downer hub-bub about a Presidential speech to little schoolchildren?

I ask you -- sincerely, deeply, horribly -- who among us can honestly say that words of encouragement from an authority figure have not made all the difference?Why did I post this? Because I love, dammit, because I L-O-V-E.

And speaking of words of encouragement, click on this.It ain't Buddy Holly but it ain't half bad. Go ahead. Listen to it through the crappy little dashboard speaker connected to the AM car radio installed in your skull.

You know, the one with the push buttons and the big plastic knobs.

Go ahead.

You know you want to.

President Obama Packs a Punch

Here at Suddenly Bissage!!!, we have recently learned that President Obama will not deliver his address to the nations' schoolchildren as planned. No, he has sized up the defense and will call an audible at the line of scrimmage.

We reproduce his newly revised speech, here, in its entirety:

“Stay in school and use your brain. Be a doctor, be a lawyer, carry a leather briefcase. Forget about sports as a profession. Sports make you grunt and smell. Be a thinker, not a stinker.”

If only.

If only.

Monday, September 07, 2009

"Ghost Dog" has Ninny Buttons

Last night, Mrs. Bissage and I watched the movie “Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai.” Forest Whitaker is amazing, as usual, and I like any movie with a narrator, and I’m a real sucker for that serene “ancient Chinese secret” life-lesson stuff, so I recommend it.

Give it a “B.” It has a mellow, rhymic, mood which is interestingly incongruous for a movie where people get shot left and right.

I’m not at all sure where it took place, but the movie does an excellent job of making the urban world look like a giant poop-hole. The water in “Titanic” was a character, all by itself, and so too is the general grubbiness in “Ghost Dog.” I don’t like cities to begin with and the movie’s portrayal is pretty much the way I see them; trash and decay and grime everywhere. Depressing.

Anyway, the movie’s biggest fault, IMHO, is its hedging sense of humor. The mobsters are too cartoonish to be scary and the director shoves some animated cartoons in there just so we all get to feel like we're in on the joke.

Ha ha. Whatever.

If they spent more time and money on it they’d have ended up with a Quentin Tarantino movie, without the jitters. As I might have said before, “Ghost Dog” is nearly hypnotic. No jagged edges, at all.

It's worth a rent so long as you’re into dime-store code-of-the-warrior stuff (WORF!), and gangster movies like “Goodfellas,” and you’re looking for some light entertainment.

There is no greatness in it, but it wasn’t boring.

P.S. (1) I should add that I highly recommend “Rashōmon” and “The Seven Samurai,” in that order.

(2) If you pay close attention to the elements in “Ghost Dog,” it’s pretty easy to see how it never comes together so as to exceed itself, which threatens to betray the whole cinematic idiom. Maybe I’ll explain what I mean by that blather, some day later. Ha!

(3) I don’t care for rap music. It’s simply not my cup of tea. But the rap music in “Ghost Dog” was appropriately moody and it didn’t get in the way too much. I kept listening for the word "ho" but to no avail.

(4) Done.

Saturday, September 05, 2009

Excellence in Shading # 71

Horrifically cute drawings don't get any better than this one.It's by Wallace Tripp and it's called "Atilla the Bun." Get it? Ha!

Please make sure you pay full respect to the severed bunny head.


It's from the collection entitled "Wallace Tripp's Wurst Seller."

A Public Service Announcement




Thursday, September 03, 2009

Sometimes Comments Repeat on Me

I kind of like this comment I posted over at Althouse, which is very much my favorite blog.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Limericks for Our Times # 31

There once was a proud garden toad
Who lived in a mossy abode.
It went to foreclosure.
He died from exposure.
Because of the money he owed.