NEW FICTION: Bourbon & Blondes has arrived!

From the bus stations of Rt. 66 to the smoky, neon-tinged jazz dives of the big cities, these wanton tales of longing introduce us to vixens on the fringe and those shifty men that drove them there.

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Watch: The 'Bourbon & Blondes' Book Trailer

Get your shot glass ready because you're about to enter a retro world of showgirls, drifters, barmaids and thieves.

The eternal question for scribes?

In this new social media landscape, the question becomes: Is blogging dead? It just may be...

Watch: The 'Front Page Palooka' Book Trailer

Read the pulp novella that one reviewer called 'A potboiler in the style of old school writers like Mickey Spillane, Dashiell Hammett or Raymond Chandler...'

Tuesday, March 29, 2011


I found this be be quite creepliy cool. In an 1987 interview with sci-fi/science magazine OMNI, film critic extraordinaire Roger Ebert had THIS to say about the future of the movie-watching experience in homes and it's rather prophetic:

"We will have high-definition, wide-screen television sets and a push-button dialing system to order the movie you want at the time you want it. You’ll not go to a video store but instead order a movie on demand and then pay for it. Videocassette tapes as we know them now will be obsolete both for showing prerecorded movies and for recording movies. People will record films on 8mm and will play them back using laser-disk/CD technology."

Think back, folks. It was 1987. No one knew to string together the words "high-definition" or "On Demand." While compact discs were in their infancy, it was even quite prophetic that Ebert saw that a "disc" of some sort would eventually replace videocassetes.

OK, so 8mm didn't really go anywhere, but otherwise, the dude pretty much nailed it.

For more, click HERE.

Friday, March 25, 2011

MILDRED & MABEL: ON THE MAKE (#fridayflash)

Press play for some mood music

Mildred and Mabel were cousins. And boy, they were on the make.

You see, they were Coney Island girls and, as such, knew a thing or two about a thing or two. Mildred was older by three months and held the demeanor of a busted suitcase -- and she was considered the nicer one. Her welder father taught her everything she needed know about life: Never trust a scab; people always say how they feel when they're drunk; and most important, go with your gut. It's your best friend.

As for Mabel? What she lacked in backbone, she made up for in curves. Everyone knew that her bed kept her as a busy as a one-legged tapdancer and for a small moment, she thought she'd be good at it professionally. But that was only a pipe-dream. Once her Teamster uncles and cousins found out she was trickin', there wouldn't be enough plaster for all the broken legs. Christmas would be canceled.

And still, they were both on the make. Today was different, though. Instead of hearing that monstrous Cyclone barrel against the sea breeze in Coney, they opted for the sweet smell of salt-water taffy in Atlantic City. And that was sort of the problem.

It was too wholesome. They were used to those horny stumble-bums on their home turf. Not here. The men of respect round these parts knew how to treat their ladies. What a bummer.

Mabel kept fidgeting on her beach towel.

"What with all the ants in your pants?" Mildred barked.

Mabel looked around, squinting. "Where's all the guys?"

Mildred popped her gum and shrugged her shoulders.

Mabel kept looking around and noticed sawmill called The Swamp Fox on the side of the Steel Pier. It was a dime grind palace where, if they played their cards right, could be swimming in giggle juice and johns.

"Lookie..." Mabel told Mildred. "Must be some action there, right?"

"You cruising with your lights on dim?"

"Whaddya mean?" Mabel asked.

"We can't go in there," Mildred answered. "That's where Uncle Jonesy holds his weekend poker game. You know that. ...Besides, I already checked it out."

Mabel stood up and shook the sand off her bikini and said, "Well, this is for shit..."

Mildred watched her cousin trot up towards the boardwalk. "Where you going!?"

"Where the men are!" Mabel darted back.

Prepping their gams, they stood along the outhouse near the beach. They were going to get their hambone boiled if it killed them. But first, they'd have to be date bait.

As they watched two prospects stroll up to snake the weasel, Mildred elbowed Mabel and said, "Shut up and smile..."

MUSIC: Muggsy Spanier - Caravan 1954. It can be downloaded HERE.

Thursday, March 24, 2011


A month or so back, I received an e-mail from writer Adam Schirling, a gritty scribe who not only blogs from his own funky site but curates the underground-feeling blog/zine Drunken Absurdity.

Adam said that he wanted to feature me as one of the site's Revolutionary voices. I was instantly honored and told him that I would shoot him some stuff as soon as I could. But now the pressure was more than on. Revolutionary? That sounded all ... important. What would I send?

I quickly went to the site (which I suggest you also do -- some GREAT talent over there) to get an idea of what kind of material would be best suited for him. Here's what it said:

"This site is a revolution for those who cannot stand to be left silent on the roadside anymore. Those who walk the streets late at night, heads full of misery and booze, and a heart full of despair. Strippers, poets, homeless, drug addicts, boozers, fetishists, artists, ex convicts, and all others who refuse to stagnate in the shadows while an ignorant city moves around them. We will be heard. Our voices will sink into your soul, and make you see a whole new world.

We will go into the night to find those who have a story to tell. ...The world is ours for the taking. We will show them the darkness of human life, and the beauty that rises from pure filth. Embrace the Drunken Absurdity of the Human Experience..."

Great. Even more pressure... So after perusing the archives and punching up some material, I hope his audience appreciates what I gave him.

In any case, I'm flattered. I'm officially a 'revolutionary'... I hope you enjoy.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011



Monday, March 21, 2011


How did this one escape me? While I've seen the film on the cable grid before, I actually never bothered to watch the 1987 drama "Ironweed" until this weekend.

And boy, should I have. Dunno how this one managed to escape me. It stars Jack Nicholson and Meryl Streep and is based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by William Kennedy.

It centers on the relationship of a homeless alcoholic couple: Francis, a washed up vagrant and Helen (Streep), a terminally ill woman during the Great Depression. Both Nicholson and Streep earned Oscar nominations for their roles. An added bonus? The film co-stars Tom Waits!!

The film (and book's) central protagonist is Francis Phelan, a boozy vagrant originally from Albany, New York, who walked out on his family after accidentally killing his infant son while he may have been drunk. "Ironweed" focuses on his return to Albany, and the narrative is fueled by hallucinations of the three people whom he killed in the past.

Here's the book's official description:

Francis Phelan (Jack Nicholson) is a washed-up baseball player who deserted his family back in the 1920s when he accidentally and drunkenly dropped his son and killed him. Since then, Phelan has been a bum, punishing himself.

Wandering into Albany, New York, Phelan seeks out his lover and drinking companion, Helen Archer (Meryl Streep). The two meet up in a mission managed by Reverend Chester (James Gammon), and later in Oscar Reo's (Fred Gwynne) gin mill. Over the next few days, Phelan takes a few minor jobs to support his habit, haunted by visions of his past.

A chance for a reconciliation with his wife Annie Phelan (Carroll Baker) is abandoned when a group of local vigilantes with baseball bats take it upon themselves to drive the homeless out of Albany.

The book snagged the 1984 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and is the third book in Kennedy's Albany Cycle. It placed at No. 92 on the Modern Library list of the 100 Best Novels written in English in the 20th Century and is also included in the Western Canon of the critic Harold Bloom.

Many of William Joseph Kennedy's novels feature the interaction of members of the fictional Irish-American Phelan family and utilize incidents of Albany's history and the supernatural. Kennedy's works include The Ink Truck (1969), Legs (1975), Billy Phelan's Greatest Game (1978), Ironweed (1983) and Roscoe (2002).

Thursday, March 17, 2011


These disturbing pics are part of a photo gallery of princesses from fairy tales living in current times. The shots were taken by photographer Dina Goldstein, and, as you will see, are none too joyful. In fact, they kinda remind me of Bukowski-style princesses... A tad damaged.

To see the rest of "When The Fairy Tale Ends, Real Life Begins: A Gallery Of Fallen Princesses," click HERE.

Friday, March 11, 2011


Press play for some mood music

She was supposed to arrive at 8. At least that's what Mitchell told Brian.

Mitchell had an "in" with some of the guys at the Fillmore Hotel who often dealt with these ladies of ill repute and seventy-five beans was all it took. Actually, it was five for Mitchell, ten for his "in" (his bellhop brother) and sixty more for the chick. Any way you slice it, Brian was going to get it done. Tonight.

Understandably, he was nervous and made Mitchell stay until she arrived. Plus, if the 'lady' didn't show Brian would march Mitchell down to the Fillmore and get his money back.

Then the harsh knock. Brian immediately straightened his bow tie. "She's here..."

"You look like a dweeb with that Howdy Doody getup" Mitchell said.

"I wearing a tie. Nothing wrong with that. And besides, Howdy Doody doesn't wear a tie."

Mitchell held the doorknob. "There's a hooker in the hallway and you're debating a marionette's wardrobe?"

A harsher knock. "Hel-looooooooo. Is there a 'Brian' in there?"

Brian turned red. "Open that fucking door, Mitchell! The neighbors are gonna go apeshit and tell my folks. That's all we need."

Mitchell flung open the door and there she was.

"Well, aren't you cute?" she said rubbing her hand along Mitchell's belly as she strolled in.

"Thanks... " Mitchell said blushing.

Her eyebrows went up. "... But I didn't get paid for a gangbang."

Brian smiled nervously and asked her to come inside. "Oh no ... I'm leaving. You're here for Brian," Mitchell said waving his friend over, who, by now, was already in his boxers.

"He's a little overzealous..." Mitchell said, fishing for her name.

"Bubbles," she answered. "Bubbles McCoy."

"Excuse me, Bubbles?" Brian interjected holding a new Instamatic camera. "Can we take a picture?"

She smirked. "Sure, honeypie..."

"Mitchell, can you do the honors?" Brian asked handing over the camera.

Mitchell obliged as he whispered to himself, "What-in-the-fuck..."

As Mitchell prepped to get the snapshot, Bubbles said, "Wait a sec. This is all wrong..."

Stepping out of her skirt she muttered more to herself than the two boys, "Now ... That's a bit better. We match."

Brian tried to get a peak at her breasts but her white blouse was too bulky.

Mitchell squatted and looked into the camera. "Alright, say cheeeeeeeese."

Bubbles put her head on Brian's shoulder while he took in the smell of her hair. It reminded him of the cosmetics section at Bloomingdale's and after a few seconds, had to shift those boxers a bit.

Click. It was a keeper. "Well, I best be getting out of your hair," Mitchell said handing over the camera.

Bubbles smiled some more, took a swig of Brian's beer and said "Ah, what the hell, kid... Stick around. No need to rush off."

The two boys watched her saunter into the bedroom unsure of their next move.

"I'm waitttting...." was all they heard.

Music: The Supersonics - Guitar Boogie 1960. It can be downloaded HERE.

Monday, March 7, 2011

WAY LATE (#poetry)

Press play for some mood music

Nothing safe comes after midnight.
At least that's how
I've always seen it.
Useless alley cats howl
like a dying infant,
haunting your dreams.

The phone rings.
It's the death call
--the one we
all dread getting.
Mom's dead.
Dad fell.
All at night,
and way late.

And then there's our ailments
The tooth hurts more;
Fever rages;
Pain throbs
and throbs
and throbs
and all way,
way late.

And that dude driving late
at night? Couldn't say no
to just one more.

And what about that car next
door that just parked?
Blowjob? Meth?
Your shady neighbor,
the one who looks down as
you pass him, keeps looking
out that broken window.
Up and down, slammin’ it shut.
Way late.

Oh, and then there's the
white trash down the way.
Bottles clankin' as
broken glass scatters.
A scream.
A slap.

Siren light revolves
through your bedroom.
It reflects odd colors,
multiplying in the mirror.
You’re groggy, half awake;
The image of a faded
memory gives you
a mini nightmare.
Way late.

But then
the birds chirp,
and chirp
some more
In bed, you mellow.
An early jogger;
the pitter-patter
of expensive kicks;
Someone takes out the trash;
An engine starting;
A door slams a quick,
responsible slam;
Someone far sayin', “Morning.”
The alarm darts alive.


Another day.

MUSIC: 'Round Midnight' courtesy of the Internet Archive. It can be downloaded HERE.

Thursday, March 3, 2011


Click the pic to enlarge to hi-res and then click on it again.

In yet another indication that times have indeed f#@king changed, check out this vintage comic strip where Mickey Mouse attempts suicide after his beloved Minnie leaves him.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011


Jane Russell, the voluptuous pin-up who set millions of G.I. hearts' on fire during WW II has died at 89. Her death from respiratory failure came 70 years after billionaire Howard Hughes had put her on the road to stardom with his edgy Western "The Outlaw."

Although her sultry, sensual look and her hourglass figure made her the subject of numerous nightclub jokes, unlike Marilyn Monroe, Rita Hayworth and other pinup queens of the era, Russell was untouched by scandal in her personal life.

She'll be missed.