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Tapewrecks On The Electric Love Muffin

Currently Reading: 
The Eagle and the Raven by Pauline Gedge
Today's Playlist: 
Baphomet Pan Sub-Niggurath by Unaussprechlichen Kulten
Bored Civilians by Keith Cross & Peter Ross
Demo 2014 by Ardour Loom
Heptaedrone by Khthonik Cerviiks
III-V by Endlichkeit
In Turmoil by Ancst
Necrosophic by Harvest Gulgaltha
Saman by Hildur Gudnadottir
Simulacrum by Xothist

Last year the excellent Tapewrecks blog wrote about my interviews with Joe Genaro and Rodney Anonymous (Linderman) of The Dead Milkmen. Tom Quinn of the blog was mostly concerned with the "fictitious years" of the band. It was neat to see some parts of the interviews transcribed. 

Tom just informed me that there is a new piece up about Rich Kaufman of The Electric Love Muffin. Again, some bit of the interview (conducted this time by guest interview, former interview subject, and friend Stacey Finney) has been transcribed. 

It is here.

A Tree Falls In Fairmount Park

Currently Reading: 
The Eagle and the Raven by Pauline Gedge
Today's Playlist: 
Baphomet Pan Sub-Niggurath by Unaussprechlichen Kulten
Bored Civilians by Keith Cross & Peter Ross
Demo 2014 by Ardour Loom
Heptaedrone by Khthonik Cerviiks
III-V by Endlichkeit
In Turmoil by Ancst
Necrosophic by Harvest Gulgaltha
Saman by Hildur Gudnadottir
Simulacrum by Xothist

While running on Forbidden Drive in the Wissahickon last Friday, August 15 I heard the ripping sound of a tree falling. At first I wasn't certain what tree it was, but I knew it was close to me. Then I saw a massive tree fall a few yards in front of me. On the other side of the tree was an elderly woman walking a small poodle. I heard her screaming before the tree hit. As soon as it fell I began to climb through it to get to her. Behind me was another runner, a young woman who joined me in scrambling through the tree. We reached the old woman and found that she was seemingly okay but her dog got clocked. She was wailing and holding the bleeding dog. The runner fortunately had a cell phone, so she called 911 (but there were no area locators around us) and she called the old woman's veterinarian with advance notice that she was on her way. I asked her if she had a husband, family member, or friend she could call. She said she had no one. Since she was about a mile from her car on a path, crying, and carrying a bleeding dog, I asked the runner to stay with the woman while I ran ahead to the parking lot to find someone to agree to drive back to pick her up to drive her to her car. When I got to the parking lot by the Valley Green Inn, I found some bicyclists who agreed to get her, but their car was locked in the parking lot (there's a convoluted way to get in and out for part of the day and night), so I had a find a cook in the not-yet-open restaurant who didn't speak English well and get her to agree to open the gate. By the time the bike guy and I drove towards the woman and the runner, she was nearly at the parking lot. I helped her into the truck and away she went.

Upon returning home I was hit was the impact of what I witnessed and took part in. Mostly I felt bad for the woman and the dog. I didn't know if the dog would survive and I didn't catch the name of the vet she was taking it to. I tried calling some area vets to see if they saw one of their patients with a tree-damaged dog, but I had no luck.

Come Saturday morning, I heard from Adam/Atom Goren of Fracture and Atom and His Package. It seems his wife Jenn was at their vet at the same time this woman came in with the dog. Jenn later related the story to Adam, who then saw my Facebook posting about the incident and connected them. He told me the name and location of the vet (which rang a bell in my head) and I called that morning to talk to the receptionist at the office. She knew exactly what I was talking about. Once I explained who I was in connection to the story, she was very willing to talk and said some kind things to me. At the office they were fond of the woman and her dog. Alas, however, the dog needed to be euthanized. She asked for my name and telephone number in case the woman wanted to thank me. I didn't need to be thanked and I thought she might not want to think more about that awful morning, but I gave her the information.

The next day I ran was that Sunday morning (I skipped Saturday as I had to work a convention in NJ). In the time since the tree fell and Sunday morning it had been cleared away, leaving only a line of bright green leaves across Forbidden Drive and a stump at the edge of the path. As I approached the spot where the tree fell and ultimately killed the small dog, a russet fox came bounding from one side of Forbidden Drive and ran across the Drive precisely where the tree fell and to the other side, where it disappeared into the forest. A fox is a rare and wonderful sight in the Wissahickon, especially on a Sunday when many people are in the park. No one one else was there to see the creature. I was struck: death -- but life.

A few days later I saw Logan, a man I see when I'm out running and with whom I'm friendly. I had already told him about the incident, so when he came upon the woman he knew all about it and talked to her about what happened. She adopted a dog the day after the accident and was walking with her new dog.

Last night she called me to thank me and send me blessings. I missed the call, but I'll call back today.

It's been a strange -- and ultimately tragic -- chain of events, but it could have been far worse. On the path no signs of what occured a week ago remain. Even the trail of leaves has been dispersed in the wind.

Of Human Bondage

"His habit of reading isolated him: it became such a need that after being in company for some time he grew tired and restless; he was vain of the wider knowledge he had acquired from the perusal of so many books, his mind was alert, and he had not the skill to hide his contempt for his companions' stupidity. They complained that he was conceited; and, since he excelled only in matters which to them were unimportant, they asked satirically what he had to be conceited about."

-- I feel you, Philip. That is, Philip Carey in W. Somerset Maugham's 1915 novel Of Human Bondage. It may have taken me 43 years to get around to reading this book, but that beats never managing to get to it then dying of cancer/heart disease/car accident/shark nibbles/lethal rejection/brain analism/worm stuff/the pox/SIDS/etc. Stripped of the ornate verbosity endemic to many novels of the era, Maugham's prose has a very modern fluidity and his understanding of his characters (and considerable humor) make the lengthy novel (607 tiny-type pages in my early '80s orange-spine Penguin edition) flow while entrancing the reader. Bully!

1-2-3-4! Puppies Are GO!

Currently Reading: 
Thank You For Your Service by David Finkel
Today's Playlist: 
Tliltic Tlapoyauak by v/a (Black Twilight Circle)

The era/error of the yuppie (young urban professional) is over.
Let us enter the era of the "puppy," which is the:
Punk
Urban
Professional

S/he comes from the hardcore punk scene and brings from it the ethics of punk and its DIY ethos along with a desire to GET PAID. Areas of employment include but are not limited to: graphic design, small business operation, food trucks, screen printing, carpentry, writing, medical care, computer programming, audio recording, etc. Willing to give the Wall Street types and Penn students the boot. Killer record collection. Co-op memberships and farm shares. Rescue animals over Lamborghinis. 
Go!

Philly DIY Skillshare Conference 2014

Currently Reading: 
Thank You For Your Service by David Finkel
Today's Playlist: 
Elixir of Sorrow by Lunar Aurora
Movements From Masses/Motets/Chansons by Guillaume Dufay/Capella Antiqua Munchen
Rejoice and Transcend by Wrought Iron
Return of the Silkie by Carol Kleyn
The Next Four Years by United Nations

I'm not putting this in the "Event" section of this site because it's not directly L!F!P!-related, but the project may come up when I appear on a panel about running a small business with a few others (including former interview subject Jeff Ziga of Little Baby's Ice Cream and R5 Productions). This is a three-day and night event running from August 1-3. My panel will be at the Beaumont Warehouse (5027 Beaumont St. in West Philadelphia; close to the Mariposa co-op) from 6:30 - 7:30 PM on the first night, Friday, August 1, 2014. It may run later due to the Q&A session. The weekend will feature all manner of panels, events, food, and live performances. Should be great fun! I hope some of you can come out to the panel and, more essentially, to the event as a whole.

There is more information about it here on their Facebook page.

Masturbation Core!

An essay I wrote on "masturbation core" for an Policy of 3 EP released in the early '90s was recently "unearthered" and given an appreciation on the Abandoned 7"s Tumblr and Facebook page. It was weird to read something I wrote so long ago. I'm glad some folks still find it funny.

On the Run

On the Run by Alice Goffman book cover
Currently Reading: 
Billion Year Spree by Brian W. Aldiss
Night Warriors by Graham Masterton
On the Run: Fugitive Life In An American City by Alice Goffman
Today's Playlist: 
Collections 1-3 by The Cleaners From Venus
Hrana by Vindorn
Litany To the Moon by Shroud of Satan
Melita & Veno Dolenc by Sedima
Part 3 by Myrkwid
Something/Anything by Todd Rundgren
The Process of Self-Immolation by Alraune

Essential reading, especially for my fellow Philadelphians, is the recently published (to great acclaim) book On the Run: Fugitive Life In An American City by Alice Goffman (Fieldwork Encounters and Discoveries, 2014). Goffman chronicles the stories of those living and negotiating lives of crime, poverty, and imprisonment here in Philadelphia, though the cycles they move through, are victims of, and themselves perpetuate, play out in cities throughout the US. The intimacy Goffman achieved with those whom she profiled gives the book an immediacy often lacking in sociology books that examine societal issues down the length of patrician noses or through the jargon of academia. For those who live in Philly, it's very easy to hear the voices of Goffman's cast of characters since their vernacular and speech patters are part of the rhythm of our city.

Being a new book, some may find the hardcover to be a bit expensive. An alternative for those living in the 21st Century is the ebook, which is just $9 from Amazon. This is how I'm presently reading the book.

On June 16, 2014 Alice Goffman spoke at the Philadelphia Free Library. You can listen to her on their podcast here.

I Got Cinepunx'd!

Currently Reading: 
A Different Kingdom by Paul Kearney
Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King
Today's Playlist: 
The Path of Spectrolite by Imaginary Softwoods

Earlier this week I was interviewed on the Cinepunx podcast about LOUD! FAST! PHILLY!, the Cabbage Collective, Exhumed Films, and Diabolik DVD (among other things). There is much goofery (and nearly two hours of it)!

Give it a listen right here

A Cavalcade of New Photos!

Eric Bresler portrait by Karen Kirchhoff
Currently Reading: 
A Different Kingdom by Paul Kearney
Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King
Today's Playlist: 
Noise by Boris
Stvaranje by Maja de Rado
Ultraviolence by Lana Del Rey
Venomous Wine From Putrid Bodies by Demonic Rage

Feast your eyes on some new photos by Karen Kirchhoff! She re-photographed several interview subjects for her photo exhibit (still up at the Grindcore House in South Philly). She re-shot these folks because I originally photographed them when Karen wasn't available. The original photos are still those you first see, but if you click on the following interview subjects, you'll see superb new Karen photos:

Will McAndrew (added to her original shoot)

Dennis McHugh

Frank "Blank" Moriarity

Bobby Startup

Brian Sokel

Thomas Adams

Stacey Finney (who has a new interview up with Jo-Ann Rogan of the band Thorazine)

John Manhardt

Since there's no interview with Eric Bresler, I'm adding his photo here.

Feldman: A Question Answered and More

Praise From a Future Generation pages scan

Recent interview subject Vincent Feldman supplied the following bit of information as an addendum to his interview:

"I forgot to mention that after Legitimate Reason broke up Grant Plunket and I played in a reggae/ska band called Just Us.  We made a studio demo which I have no record of.  We didn't play out much except at a few parties and most memorably a big punk rock block party in 1988 on Rodman Street around 12th street."

Upon completion of the interview, I was left with a follow-up question that I felt needed to be addressed for clarification. I wrote to Vincent:

You mentioned in the interview that your father applied for conscientious objector status during World World II. Considering Hitler and the Nazis were aggressively engaged in exterminating European Jewry and your father was himself a Jew, what was his reasoning for declaring himself a conscientious objector?

Here is Vincent's reply, which I post without comment:

"My father was a pacifist and politically very astute.  If WWII was about saving the Jews then that war was entirely lost, never even engaged really.  He was well aware of plenty antisemitism from within the US.  My father lived in Baltimore for a while in the 1960s and he recalled to me that the beaches in Maryland had signs posted barring Blacks, Jews and dogs.  The Jews who joined the US Army or worked in the Roosevelt Admin. were sourly disappointed in the war effort in regard to saving Jews."

Vincent adds this note, which is illustrated by the two pages of book scans he sent along to me and which I have posted here:

"The best example of my dad's political insights occurred within a day of JFK's ambush murder.  I am attaching two pages from Praise From a Future Generation by John Kelin.  He predicted Oswald would be shortly eliminated and a Jew would be used in the plot."

Please note: I (Joseph) present these materials as submitted to me by my interview subject. These are not my personal views.



 

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