What? I have to do something . . . ?
Okay, seven things about me that people don’t know . . . .
1. I have a ruinously poor sense of direction. Whether driving or walking, if I turn two corners it is no longer possible for me to remain certain how the hell I am going to get back to my starting point. (A small miracle I ever found my way out of the casinos in Vegas last month.) The immediate vicinity of my neighborhood is currently undergoing a lot of growth, including the installation of not one but two roundabouts within a mile of my house. Am currently living in abject dread of ever having to enter either of those mystifying vortices. (If weeks go by with no post, instruct authorities to begin their search near the roundabouts, please.)
2. I once attended a Black Flag concert. The In My Head tour. Took place in a National Guard Armory. Just a gym, basically. No seats. Opening acts were Painted Willie and Gone, Greg Ginn’s instrumental outfit. For most of the show I stood cautiously at the perimeter of the wide circle of agitated slam dancers who occupied the area nearest the stage. At one point Kira, the bassist, broke a string, and during the longish break that followed Henry Rollins waxed profanely about the meaning of it all.
3. This afternoon I am reading Joyce Carol Oates’s latest novel for which I have a review due next week. Called The Gravedigger’s Daughter. So far so good. Creepy, unsettling, dark -- as Oates usually is. About a third of the way in there’s a game of gin rummy in which a character is described dealing cards “like glittering blades.”
4. During one golden, the-hoop-is-as-big-as-the-Grand-Canyon afternoon at a large midwestern university some years ago, I scored 33 points in an intramural basketball game. Most of those came in the form of three-pointers raining down from all possible angles. Particularly upsetting to our opponents, who couldn’t quite fathom the skinny kid with glasses actually having a game. It was a close contest (we won), and I recall both legs cramping up as the last seconds wound down. The unchallenged pinnacle of my modest athletic career.
5. I think Firesign Theatre’s Don’t Crush That Dwarf, Hand Me the Pliers is the funniest damn record ever made.
6. Lived in France for a year, during which time I wrote a lot of fiction, including an entire novel. Hard-boiled, in fact. Kind of a Chandler rip-off, set in New York City, 1976. My detective is six-foot-eight. (I’m not short, but I think there might be a bit of wish-fulfillment in there somewhere.) Despite favorable reviews from the select few who read it, I was unable to get any publishers interested at the time. Am presently considering sending that sucker out this summer via something like Lulu, just for grins.
7. Despite the literary leanings, I am a committed numbers freak. Not saying I’m particularly great at figgerin’. I just like ’em. There exists in the familial chronicles a story of a young Shamus looking out the back car window and tallying the precise number of dotted lines on the road to grandma’s house. I have no memory of such applesauce, but doubt seriously my parents capable of making something like that up.
Hmmm . . . (Shamus rubs hands) . . . to whom shall I now forward this here little torture device . . . ?
And any of the Pokerati gang with the guts . . . .
Labels: *the rumble