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tough guy poetry and manly stories of loneliness
all contents copyright Jon Rolston 2004, 2005, 2006

March 30, 2011

garbage is the last american dream

There isn’t a single digital file of my grandfather. The war hero shot down 7 times in World War Two, it got to be so often they called him a war klutz. He’d fly his disabled bird back to France and land in a field, make love to a farmer’s daughter after a good french meal. Life was easy and there was very little record of it.

There is so much of me online, digitally archived. But in two hundred years will this stuff be accessible to the common person? Or will it require special equipment to connect to this internet? This blog may be a 8 mm reel of film to the flea market crowd of 2100 AD.

Has anyone noticed how many different junk/antique shows there are on tv? Storage auctions, estate sales, pickers, any show that shows people finding something and selling it for money is a green light. Pawn shop shows, like Hardcore Pawn, have me hooked.

It must be this recession. People want to feel reassured they can survive without a college degree. Let’s be honest, most people didn’t realize you could make a living bidding on abandoned lockers at Public Storage before they saw it happen on tv.

As “real jobs” like lawyers and managers that used to be promised out of college disappear and triple digit student loans are on hold while the unemployment checks come in, people are seeing new possibilities. If there is treasure in the trash we’ve created then this generation can get rich too.

Who hasn’t wanted to go to an auction and try and make a killing? Well, I’m tired of it all. I got cable two months ago and realized all my ideas are in production. So here’s my latest: I’m going to get Doug to shoot me going through garbage cans around the city and we’re gonna find out how much money we can make out of garbage. It’s the final conclusion of this current reality trend.

We shoot saturday, so if you have any helpful ideas, get ’em here quick.

March 27, 2011

sunday school

A break even day at the market. Left early. Trading goods is older than agriculture. Ever think about how ancient the flea market tradition is?

March 23, 2011

I marched over to the high school this morning, stormed into the girls locker room. That scared me more than the handful of fully clothed girls there. I jumped back like a kicked dog and found the right office.

As a former delinquent it felt great to demand to speak to the principle. She was very nice and gave me the phone number to the SF Unified School District who took care of the problem. Now imagine your town was wiped out by a wave and then everyone got radiation.

March 22, 2011

Hauled more garbage from my local pub The T Off. This is the paper towel dispenser in the men’s room. It’s nice to be up at 5:30 am. The high school alarm is ringing again. The police tell me to talk to the high school so yesterday I did. They told me I needed to talk to the school district. I’m very tempted to spray paint “fix the alarm” on the building in 12 foot letters.

March 21, 2011

bad dream after frozen oreos

Husky boy war. Dark denim jeans and they floated ashore under cover of a new moon. Dad packed their lunches this time. He puts a lot more cookies in the bag than mom. 
Lunch was water proof and the rifles rested on bellies as they back stroked to the cove’s sandy shore. 
Fashion magazines with skinny jeans were asleep in newsstands. The husky boys hoped everything unfair would be lost at sea but dawn broke and fat was still a bad word so they shouldered their rifles and shot cookies to crumbs. 

March 20, 2011

Called the police on this city last night. High school alarm goes a’ringing like “whaaa whaaa whaaa” all random hours. Asked the police to tow the building. Have it removed. Asked about getting a 30 foot wave to bust it up and shut that damn noise down.

When a little accident in Japan can drift over to California and New York buys the entire supply of antidote so the junk men have to go breathe heavy in the radiation all afternoon it makes you wonder who okays an emergency plan that doesn’t take a natural disaster or loss of electricity into account.

March 19, 2011

magandang oomaga america

Boondocks is the only word English picked up from the Phillipines, so I’m told. “Magandang oomaga” never usurped “Good Morning”. A little research reveals “yo-yo” to be from that island nation as well.

The bunducs, or boondocks, are the mountains, where the jungle lies, a rural isolated place.
All the same prejudices apply as they do with your common hillbilly. Funny accent, less educated, scared of having their picture taken, frustrated with online banking screw ups.
Thank you and good night. Magandang gabi.

March 18, 2011

call federal police on this city

Wanted to start a jug band, but be more punk rock. So it’s a piss jug band.

Did you see storage wars last night – the show where people bid on abandoned lockers? I’ll catch it with on demand.
There was another load of old pot at the dump. The pot clubs sell edibles like brownies, lollipops, cupcakes, ice cream, whatever. People are trying to use their food stamp debit cards to purchase them. Hey, Medicare covers Viagra. Same dif.

March 16, 2011

stuck under jeff’s door

March 14, 2011

liver, like in one who lives?

The liver performs a vital detoxification function in the human body. It’s like the filter on your work computer and your water faucet rolled into one keeping all kinds of toxins from hanging around and “shittin’ up” the place. Ever try to deliver a sliver of liver in a flivver? Quiver inhibiter shimmers inna minivan.

If there were an authorial liver on this post, that would have been filtered out – thus illustrating the importance of this hidden organ.

Are you with me? I was with my girlfriend – work related dinner at a fancy hotel downtown. The Palace. Big chandeliers, wide carpeted hallways. Open bar. Who has an open bar at a liver research fundraiser? The type of function where there’s a sit down dinner of salmon over rice pilaf that’s been waiting for us in a warmer since I was home picking out shoes. I won’t name names.

My date was late so I hung back after the bar closed with a glass of white wine…heard its great with fish. I got talking with a guy who called himself a volunteer doorman. Turns out he’d received a liver through the organization hosting the fund raiser. I dropped my glass.

“My body rejected my own liver, it happens occasionally. In my late twenties it finally gave out, my brother in law donated 70% of his. The liver and the skin are the only organs that can regenerate themselves. His grew back inside him, and it grew back inside of me,” he said.

I needed another drink but my broken glass was at my feet. How does a liver know when to stop growing inside of you? How much damage can you cause before it gets mad and quits? And if it keeps regenerating, why do you need your brother in law’s?

“Scar tissue builds up and blood can’t flow through, which is cirrhosis. Then it stops regenerating,” he explained. Then you get a new one. Or you die. 1 in 5 folks waiting for a new one die before a spare comes on the market.

The volunteer doorman with a stranger’s liver didn’t tell me that last bit, the giant powerpoint presentation did, while dessert and coffee were served. Did you know a skin cell can be reverted back to a stem cell? I did, by the end of my three berry fruit tart.

The neighborhood lost a fixture to liver failure this week as well, which is odd timing. He was only 44, liked to hang around the bar and shoot pool but didn’t drink. So, without really having known him, I’d still like to wish him well, where ever he is now.

March 13, 2011

no matter how little i make, at least i’m not in church

At the flea market, saw a guy who took the metal edge from Bic lighters and ringed his hoodie with them.

I’m not gonna call myself stupid. I’m not stupid. But sometimes I learn too late. Too late to be called smart.

On tv, Storage Wars shows a group of people who pay a little money for a storage locker’s contents, then they resell items for a higher price. My tv show, if I were to have one, would track how much money I lose. How much I could have made if I was a little more aware.
200 chop sticks came my way, free of charge. So I brought them to the flea market. I figured maybe someone collects them. I charged a guy 3 bucks a pair and he bought 5 pair. An easy 15 dollar profit. But what if I’d known they were ivory? That people pay a lot more than 3$ a pair for them? Can it be called a loss, even when a profit is made? Can it be called stupidity? Or an opportunity to learn about the world of collecting chopsticks?

Met a guy who wanted me to sell a few things at the flea market for him. He hopped in his 1935 MG convertible and headed over. Then he broke down. The old Hauler! towed him home.

March 10, 2011


March 9, 2011

10 story love

March 8, 2011

half’s and half not’s

It may seem like you need a pair to split, but even one can be divided.

When you multiply by half, you divide in two. Multiplying is not obligated to create more. 10 loaves of bread multiplied by 1/2 a loaf of bread is five loaves of bread. You don’t have to be Jesus to make less out of more. You have to understand multiplication’s dark side.

.5 is like saying half. Unless it’s .04 which is half way drunk. Half in the bag is .10 or more. Think of it in terms of labor. If you were to work a whole day, but worked half assed, you didn’t get a whole day’s work done. You watched some YouTube, texted friends, and created a little added value for your employer.

Ever heard of a halfie? Not quite hard, not totally soft. It’s a diminished state. If you were flaccid you wouldn’t be thinking about sex and you could get some housework done. If you were hard you’d be busy. But this halfie has you stuck, embarrassed to get out of bed, afraid to make a move.

Not all halves are bad. Every morning millions choose half and half (although that sounds like a whole) or half decaf half regular. Sometimes half throttle or half joking is just the speed a situation requires to avoid a wreck.

Half time is a chance to reflect on performance much like midlife crises are the wake up call it’s half over. These are important moments. Thanks for reading.

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