Wednesday, March 31, 2021

Overheard at Booth 1: Sundown notes

Have a soundtrack in mind for a screenplay about a West Virginia mining town called Sundown

Includes, Gordon Lightfoot's "Sundown" - possibly opening out on a wide pan shot that pulls through the main street of the town which leads to the mountain, whose top has been blown off.

Then, toward the end, when the hero (or anti-hero) kills the boss and sets the equipment on fire, Sweeney's Men "Hiram Hubbard"

And the final credits roll with Elwood's cover of "Sundown"

NOTE: this came from a notebook, entry dated 1-18-2013

Overheard at Table 3: The Path

 "The path that we meander is worn dull by our footfalls.  But that just makes it familiar, it doesn't necessarily make it right."

(from a notebook, entry dated 1-6-2013)

Overheard at Booth 2: One More Drop of Morphine

One More Drop of Morphine

You give her water through a small sponge
at the end of a tongue depressor.
Her lips suckle the water but her eyes do not open,
Until you remove it, put the sponge away.
She tries to reach for your arm, she mutters,
"No quiero morir."

Then Ana comes in the room.
"She's in distress," Ana says,
"She needs one more drop of morphine."

A flick of a switch, and soon,
her eyelids begin to flutter.

Ana says, "I just need to rest.
It's been so long now.  I just need 
to sleep through one night."



Tuesday, March 30, 2021

Overheard at Table 1: More Scattered Lyrics


Hard to find
Sleeping in hallways
Money Maker
Needles poking out from under your pillow
Yesterday's sweat stains
The plants in the cupboard

Paddle boat stirring up the river

Rolling in a '71 Caprice
With the make-out couch for the back seat.

[NOTE: these came from a notebook - undated, but other entries note January 2014]

Overheard at Booth 3: Maybe That Wasn't Such a Good Idea

1.  Maybe that wasn't such a good idea, I thought, as I stood there, watching the house burn.

2. Maybe that wasn't such a good idea, I thought, as I sat there, handcuffed, in the backseat of the police cruiser.

3. Maybe that wasn't such a good idea, I thought, as I lay there on the ground, while the bikers stomped on my face.

Overheard at Table 1: Song Scrap

from a notebook

notes 1-2-2013

- crunchy guitar lead riff

Hello blind man,
I'll help you cross the street

Hello deaf man
I'll help you feel the beat

[then, in a different pen, dated 3-10-2020]

Hello legless amputee
I'll help you stomp your feet.

NOTE: so, as you can see, probably not the greatest ... but perhaps for a short punk song (under 1 minute)

Overheard at Table 3: The Last Filling Station

Well, it's the last filling station
before the end of the world.
The sun left one 
Fading orange ribbon
to separate the black mountains
from the indigo sky.

You climb behind the wheel.
Your spouse says nothin
cuz there's nothin to say.
The kids are asleep in the back seat.
And you pull out and drive away.



Overheard at Table 3: This is the End (2013)


The most interesting part of this movie was an interview I heard with Seth Rogan describing how his friends had one Christian friend, who was the nicest guy in the world, and they asked him one night, 
"Hey man do you think we're all going to Hell?" and their Christian friend just said matter-of-factly "Yes.  Yes I do."

And he just thought that was weird, and that conversation was the genesis of this movie.

The result was some sort of quasi-tragic-comedy about Hell being unleashed on Earth, and the ultimate way to Heaven was doing one selfless act.  One act of sacrifice.

But that misses the point of what Christ taught, entirely.

Again, the world thinks that somehow if you are "just good enough!" then you will get to Heaven.

Not what Christ taught.  Not at all.

But well, hey, it's just a movie.  How it is as a movie?  

I suppose every cast member playing themselves was fairly ingenious, and I thought the idea of Michael Cera being a total douche was somewhat funny.

Overall, not really a movie that you HAVE to see ... but if there is nothing else on and you want an apocalyptic movie with a few cheap laughs, this would fit the bill.

Monday, March 29, 2021

Overheard at Table 5: In a Meeting

In a staff meeting today, the boss totally insulted my co-worker, telling her that she was going to be closing everybody's projects.  I mean, she's really good at closing projects, but she's always talked about wanting to be a PM, and my co-worker just went off, saying this was not was she was hired for and she wished our boss would have told her this before talking about it in the meeting.

Man, you could feel all the air being sucked out of that room.  I was afraid they were gonna go all Godzilla vs King Kong!  I was thinking how I could suck myself down to size and slide out under the door.

Overheard at Booth 5: Some Lyrics

 from a notebook, undated, but other entries around it indicate January 2014

dream is a story, dream is a car
you use to travel beyond the farthest star

the poetry you spray today
will become all tomorrow's cliches

Overheard at Table 2: from Salinghetti Chronicles Vol. 319


For Salinghetti Chronicles Vol. 319 Track 2

Madeliene Peyroux "Always a Use"

Maybe baby it always ain't worth
the trouble but there is always trouble
in my mind
and I never get used to you.
Baby you won't ever want to see me if you
knew how I make up the 
truth as I go along.
My thoughts are the pebbles you 
so casually tossed into the stream
Maybe baby life ain't never really
what you dream, but it seems
you could one day get used to me.



Overheard at Table 3: Oppositional Defiant Disorder

"So when are you gonna start bringing your people back into the office?  Once they all get vaccinated?"

"I'd like to as soon as possible, yeah, but I know one that I can't.  Her son has ODD."

"Oppositional Defiant Disorder?"

"Yeah.  12 years old.  Last week he stabbed his sister with a shard of glass.  Now my employee says they can't be left alone together, or with someone else."

"Kids these days."

"No foolin'!"

Sunday, March 28, 2021

Overheard at Booth 2: Harry Potter vs the CEO

And he was telling his friend, "And so our pastor on Sunday was having ANOTHER sermon about Wicca, even slamming Harry Potter... I couldn't believe it.  Harry POTTER?  Dang, even the liberals are now disowning Harry Potter, but seems like the pastor is preaching like it's 1999, because he's all on about witchcraft.  I thought he was going to mention Dungeons and Dragons any second ...

"but it still burns me up that he never talks about the millions of CEOs out there who lead companies and cheat their employees out of fair wages and do whatever they can to screw their workers over for the sake of a greasy dollar, but does he ever talk about that?  NOOOO!"

[note: this was inspired by a journal entry dated 1-6-2013, which was when we were still attending Second Baptist Church in Houston.  So more than likely this was from a sermon given by Dr Ed Young]

Friday, March 26, 2021

Overheard at Table 1: The Bridge

This poem ... makes me want to rewrite it.  Maybe that's presumptuous, I don't know.

Here is the original:

And that one inspired this one:


From the apartment window, I see the bridge that crosses the river, carrying tourists from one bank to the other.  Wide, sandy-stone, thick columns supporting the stone edges upon which people perch themselves, taking pictures to post for their families back in whatever country from which they come, and they come, here, to this picturesque bridge on this picturesque river in this picturesque town.

Every morning, as I get dressed for work, I look out the window at that bridge.  Each morning, there, in the middle of the throng of tourists, I see my father.   He looks up at me.   He is wearing that blue windbreaker, his favorite, even though it is threadbare and one of the sleeves looks like it wants to come off.  He sees me at the window, and he lifts his left hand and waves to me.  He is smiling and the wind musses his thick black hair

... and then he disappears as the world explodes, silently, into a cloud of thick gray smoke, one instant and an eternity before the roar shatters my ears and the wave shatters the window against my face.

Then I blink, and I am back again to this window, looking out at this bridge.  The tourists are still taking pictures of themselves in the early morning.  A boat meanders from under the bridge.

There are no terrorists here.  There is no one to blow up this bridge in this picturesque town.  The only thing that I have brought with me here are a few scars along my cheek, now fading.  You can barely even see them.

And my father.  I have brought him along.  I see him each morning.



Overheard at Table 2: Four Albums, Ranked

The question was to rank these four albums - so I listened to them all.

Dire Straits - Making Movies


Side One is solid: three perfect songs

Side Two is a little weak, but overall, it works.   

Led Zeppelin - In Through the Out Door


Side One strong, with a great order of the songs, the standout track being, of course, "Fool in the Rain" which showed that the band could grow into new musical territory.

Side Two only good for Carouselambra, and even that song on certain parts.  "I'm Gonna Crawl" is simply a throwaway song, and "All my Love" is just cloying and syrupy.

The band was starting to show signs of slowing, while tracking in familiar territory that is reminiscent of Physical Graffiti and Presence, the only two songs showing variety .   

The Police - Zenyatta Mondatta

Side One - Don't Stand So Close to Me is fantastic,

Driven to Tears and World Running Down - rather bland and forgettable

The two hits from this album (Don't Stand and De Doo Doo Doo) are rightfully hits.  Stellar songs, each one.

Behind my Camel is unlistenable

Man in a Suitcase is good.   Overall, this album is only good for the two hits.  The rest is throwaway.

The Cars - Candy O

Let's Go - perfect

Lust for Kicks and Dangerous Type are good.

But other than that, there is really no reason for acclaim on this album.

So, these four are ranked in order.

Thursday, March 25, 2021

Overheard at the Counter: 100 Songs

MR steps up to the counter and says, "If Lou Reed can list his 100 songs, then so can I."

Niall Carter says, "Yeah, but Lou Reed was Lou Reed and you're, well ... you."

John Steppenwolf says, "Don't listen to him.  Whatcha got?"

MR slaps a list down on the counter ...

Artist Song
1 The Beatles  Come Together
2 Heart  Barracuda
3 Ozzy Osbourne Crazy Train
4 Deep Purple Woman From Tokyo
5 Glenn Miller In the Mood
6 Benny Goodman Sing Sing Sing
7 Jethro Tull Wond'ring Aloud
8 Buddy Holly Everyday
9 Gungor This is Not the End
10 Simon and Garfunkel America
11 Rosie Thomas Kite Song
12 The Smiths Cemetry Gates
13 Dire Straits Six Blade Knife
14 Howlin' Wolf Spoonful
15 Taj Mahal Linin' Track
16 Beethoven Moonlight Sonata
17 Beethoven Fur Elize
18 Tom Waits Gun Street Girl
19 Mississippi John Hurt Make Me a Pallet on Your Floor
20 Bruce Cockburn Pacing the Cage
21 Ricardo Arjona Ella y El
22 Bacilos El Edificio
23 Third Eye Blind Semi-Charmed Life
24 Gordon Lightfoot The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald
25 The Beatles Dear Prudence
26 The Pogues feat Kirsty McColl Fairytale of New York
27 Dave Alvin California Snow
28 Cry! Cry! Cry! Cold Missouri Waters
29 Paul Simon Train in the Distance
30 Te Vaka Tautai E
31 Telek Midal
32 The Temptations Can't Get Next to You
33 David Byrne and Marisa Monte Aguas do Marcao
34 Billy McLaughlin Fingerdance
35 Black Sabbath Paranoid
36 Ramones I Wanna Be Sedated
37 The Rolling Stones Gimme Shelter
38 The Charlie Daniels Band The Devil Went Down to Georgia
39 Sly and the Family Stone Everyday People
40 Richard Thompson 1952 Vincent Black Lightning
41 James McMurtry Choctaw Bingo
42 Warren Zevon Desperadoes Under the Eaves
43 Andy Prieboy feat. Johnette Napolitano Tomorrow Wendy
44 John Newton Amazing Grace
45 Haim Hallelujah
46 The Who The Real Me
47 Ten Years After Circles
48 Be-Bop Deluxe Crystal Gazing
49 Neil Young Thrasher
50 Robin Hitchcock Glass Hotel
51 Bob Dylan Visions of Johanna
52 ABBA Take a Chance on Me
53 Pat Benatar Heartbreaker
54 The Runaways Cherry Bomb
55 The Kinks This Time Tomorrow
56 The Who Join Together
57 Kermit the Frog Rainbow Connection
58 The New Pornographers The Bleeding Heart Show
59 Meat Loaf Paradise by the Dashboard Light
60 Iron and Wine The Trapeze Swinger
61 Elizabeth Cotton Freight Train
62 Barenaked Ladies When I Fall
63 Barenaked Ladies Light Up My Room
64 Richie Havens Ramon
65 Chris Tomlin Jesus Messiah
66 Barenaked Ladies This Is Where It Ends
67 The Woodentops So Good Today
68 The Weepies Can't Go Back Now
69 Janis Joplin Me and Bobby McGee
70 Marshall Tucker Band Can't You See
71 The Chemical Brothers Dissolve
72 Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit If We Were Vampires
73 Foday Musa Suso feat Kronos Quartet Tilliboyo ("Sunset")
74 The Guess Who No Sugar Tonight/New Mother Nature
75 David Bowie Memory of a Free Festival
76 Lou Reed Satellite of Love
77 George Thorogood Who Do You Love
78 Allman Brothers Band Little Martha
79 Sam Baker Pony
80 Warren Zevon Excitable Boy
81 Blind Faith Can't Find My Way Home
82 Fiel a la Vega Solamente
83 Juan Luis Guerra Testimonio
84 Randy Newman Dayton Ohio, 1903
85 Simon Wynberg Mariah's Watermill
86 Jefferson Airplane Lather
87 Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention Dinah-Moe Humm
88 Jethro Tull Mother Goose
89 Trout Fishing in America Back When I Could Fly
90 U2 Bad
91 R.E.M. King of Pain
92 William Orbit/Strange Cargo El Ninjo
93 Frente! Bizarre Love Triangle
94 Penguin Café Orchestra Telephone and Rubber Band
95 Queen 39
96 Ambrosia Harvey
97 Los Lobos Tony & Maria
98 Blitzen Trapper Furr
99 Brandi Carlisle Have You Ever
100 Rob Hyman feat Cyndi Lauper Cyrus in the Moonlight

Overheard at Booth 5: Two by Polani


Today I can think of no greater loss,

than to never again feel the rain.

                    - Polani


God allows us trials and tribulations

to sharpen our awareness

of our finite understanding

                    - Polani

Tuesday, March 23, 2021

Overheard at Table 5: They Comin' to America

"Well, looks like Biden got himself a surge."

"People obviously got the wrong message."

"Now all the Republicans are blaming him for saying 'everyone come on in!'"

"Thing is... he never said that."

"Well, if you tell people who are being raped and killed that you will be treated humanely, then they'll come."

"Ahhhh, that's it!  He should have just said, 'If you come here, we will kill you.'  That would stop it."

"I think that was actually on Stephen Miller's action plan if Trump had won the election."

"I don't doubt it."

Monday, March 22, 2021

Overheard at Table 2: Half Staff for Hookers

"I tell you this, if Biden lowers the flags to half staff for when hookers get killed, he'll have to keep them lowered forever."

Overheard at Table 3: What is That, if Not the Soul?

What is That, if Not the Soul?

What is that, if not the soul?

The wonder of tomorrow's surprises.

The laughter at a joke that tickles your brain.

The hook of the song that catches your throat, as you stop yourself just before you cry.

The images that pass across a flat screen, that show you invented people that you have just fallen in love with: the hero, the heroine, the spunky child, the faithful dog, the android, the alien.

The sunset across the lake where you sit in a boat with a line in the water and feel a wave of peace wash across you.

The memory of seeing your child for the first time, newly born and eyes tight shut and breathing, breathing, breathing, that beautiful breathing.

The conversations shared across the dinner table, where you and your friends solve all the problems of the world over a good warm meal and a frosty cold drink.

The light in the eyes of your lover from the other side of the restaurant table, that light that lets you know that you are desired, that you are wanted, that you matter.

What is all this, if not the soul?



Friday, March 19, 2021

Overheard at Table 3: More Scraps - half written "Life on the Skids"

Life on the Skids

... took a lazy turn

through the badlands of my mind

Got shot down, got turned around,

there was nothing I could find

So I made my way back home again

Using the ditches 'side the road,

Covered in mud, covered in blood

from those I'd never knowed.

All the cooks cleaning up the kitchen

and I'm staggering through the fields with the janitors' kids

someone says they wished I'd quite my bitchin'

But they ain't never lived a life on the skids



Overheard at Table 4: Respectable Sins

Respectable Sins: Confronting the Sins We Tolerate

by Jerry Bridges

Fairly good book.  Doesn't get to the actual sin that I see that this society loves, but at least it addresses arrogance and pride.

Lately, during my walk with Jesus and continuing study of the Bible, I am finding that we have a tremendous difficulty in American society in appropriately addressing our addiction to monetary wealth.

By that, I mean, I have never read a book by a Christian scholar nor heard a sermon by any pastor that takes James 5:1-2 directly at its word.  Every time the book of James is approached, that part is skimmed over, watered down, excused.  "Oh God is really only talking about people who WORSHIP money."

Yet, no one ever waters down Romans 1:27 

In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.

Pastors and Christians will go all day long standing firm on the Bible and blasting homosexuality, but they will never say the exact words of James 5:1-2

Now listen, you rich people, weep and wail because of the misery that is coming on you. Your wealth has rotted, and moths have eaten your clothes.

Note how this passage does not say "you people who worship money."  It says, "rich PEOPLE"  But OK, while you now go hunt for passages to try to dilute this warning, I will state that the book does a great job of identifying the sins of ingratitude, selfishness, anger, pride ... many contained within their own chapters, which makes this book a good sounding board for a weekly Bible study, should the study giver delve in with Biblical passages to round out the subject of each chapter.

Additionally, Bridges is spot on in reminding us of our purely human ability to rank sins by severity.  For example, flipping off someone on the highway is not the same as raping your niece, right?

Not in the eyes of God.

Now, as you go and try to argue that, just realize that I instinctively want to say the same thing.  I've flipped off many people on the highway and I've never raped my niece (nor anybody else, for that matter) and so I want to think that I am "better" ... which I am, according to human law.  Not in the eyes of God.  A sin is a sin is a sin is a sin, no matter how we may try to put it on a gradation of "sinfulness."

All that to say, in short, it's a good book, a necessary book, and a good start to the re-evaluation that we all need as Followers of Christ.  Let us use this to look at the sins that we allow in ourselves while we condemn others, and then let us repent, turn back to Christ, and let the Holy Spirit indwell in us to work out our salvation.

P.S. "Working out our salvation" is also Biblical, but sometimes this too needs an explanation.  More on that on a different rant...

Overheard at Table 2: Birthday Month

Dad: So you're going to Miami Beach?  The whole week?

Daughter: Yeah.  It's Spring Break, and it's also for my birthday.

Mom: Didn't you just go to Austin with your friends for your birthday?

Daughter: That was last week.  For my birthday LAST week.  Miami is for my birthday THIS week.

Dad: It's called a birthDAY, not a birthMONTH.

Daughter: Well, I have to celebrate it all month.

Mom: Oh my God, mija, why?!

Daughter: Oh don't get that way, guys, it's just one month out of the year.

Dad: Making it one-TWELFTH of your LIFE!

Daughter: Well ... I just have to, OK.  Because well ... it's for ME.  Call it "self-care".

Dad: I think you've mastered the art of self-care.  Total mastery.

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Overheard at Booth 4: Seasons Blunder

 (from an old notebook - undated, but adjacent passages note January 2014)

Seasons blunder through the atmosphere of thunder,
Punctuated by Shakespearean sonnets.
All your blunders, you know she never forgets.

Thursday, March 11, 2021

Overheard at Booth 4: What Poets Find

What Poets Find

What poets find
is that tiny green leaf
at the base of a blackbrown 
bush that stands like brittle 
kindling after a long hard freeze,

which is to say, 
they find
one speck of life
among all this death.


Monday, March 8, 2021

Overheard at Booth 2: Psychedaelic Cowboy and the Twisted Bitter Rainbow

 #SenseWrds 522 Twisted Bitter Rainbow

Psychedaelic Cowboy wraps his arm around her,
to steady her as she shoots.
She’s a dead shot, but they’re atop a train, a train
heading into a tunnel, where the gunflash
shatters colors, she grits her teeth
and keeps shooting, as he holds the rail,
the taste of his own blood in his mouth.


Atop the moving train,
Psychedaelic Cowboy wraps his arm around Madge,
to steady her as she shoots
As they race into the tunnel,
her gun-flash shatters colors, she grits her teeth.
He holds the rail,
the taste of his own blood in his mouth.

Overheard at Table 3: The Border

The Border

It's the border.
Here, in the middle of the night,
Hiding from the lights, listening for
the buzz of the propellers of the drone,
here, there is no border, there is
no demarcation line, there is only
one step
in front of the last step taken,
before the next step,
& on til dawn.

Overheard at Table 1: To Those Who Deny the Soul

To Those Who Deny the Soul

The other day, I heard a man 
speak that there was no soul.
That neuroscience had proved a negative.
Proved the non-existence of that which cannot be defined.
My soul wept.
My soul longed to reach out to the man, 
To touch his soul, his soul which had been wiped into 
non-existence, never again to cry in sadness
for no reason over a piece of music, never
again to be inspired or repulsed by a painting
on some museum wall, to never again
feel the urge to throw a couple of coins
into the open case of a busker on the street
playing, "American Pie" for the eighteenth 
time that day.
My soul, with its ethereal nature and 
independence of consciousness, my soul
will continue to leap for joy at this art which
does not feed our bellies, nor swim upstream to spawn
nor build nests, nor weed out the weakest antelope, nor
spin webs, nor flow forth from springs to dig through mountains
and connect the continents to the sea.


Sunday, March 7, 2021

Overheard at Booth 1: Overs and Over Again


1. Bob Dylan “It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue”

Scene: corner store, hot day, kid behind the counter, obviously bored.  Selling cigs, single cans of beer, etc. to Mexicans, blacks (all stereotypes).  Get’s text, “It’s over” from Chulita

Sighs.  “Whatever.”  He goes back to reading his hot rod magazine.

2. Guns n’ Roses “Paradise City” 

Scene: After his shift.  Still light outside.  Walks down the LA streets.  Goes into the repair shop, where he hangs out with his friends until the sun goes down.

3. “La Bruja” Walks to his brother-in-law’s house, where he hangs out with them on the couch drinking beer.

4. She comes in.  Starts yelling at him to get out.

10. Kid is down in San Diego, getting seduced by Chulita’s cousin.  She breaks in – causes a fight

11. Chulita and the kid are running … jump into her car.

12. Chase scene.  She at the wheel.

These are some notes for a movie script applied to the songs that I have on my playlist on YouTube under this title.

Friday, March 5, 2021

Overheard at Table 5: Reading Erotica

 #Erotica280 527 Lunge

Their divorces had left them
hesitant to speak freely, 
guarded about their lives, 
unwilling even to touch, hold hands, hug ...

but one night, over baked lasagna,
her place,
when the kids were at her ex's,

oh! the suddenness with which 


Overheard at Booth 2: Varones del Señor Weekly Study notes


Capitulo sencillo

Historia sin culto

Pedro 1:13-16 - Cenid los lomos

Deut. 6:4-9 


1940's - John Wycliffe, Isaac Watts, Johnathan Edwards, John Whiddle, Wheaton, Billy Graham "HAzlo otra vez!"

2 Corintos 7:1 

Hagios = santo

Hocios = Piedoso

Hornos = mikapuro

Hebreos 12:1

Tim Keller, NY   1 Corintos 13:2


Felipe Beras

Mateo 5:14