Friday, October 31

this is hallowe'en.

a second day of dress-ups,
and more importantly,
a whole day of treats and tricks?!
i made a coat to go with the medals i showed y'all a ways back.
the sergeant steampepper-style hottness was in full effect,
when used in conjunction with all the other pieces of hallowe'en hottness?
get ready.
may i present albrecht voneisenrock
11th baron Wodengeist
commisar of the blitzfelsenbrocken fusiliers;
field marshall of the frontier stratospherium wastes;
lord of hinterkrieg and the nordenvalds.
super flippin' nerd sh!t is happening right now.
check the hallowe'en-type teleport:
and the defense of the stratospherium wastes hasn't been kind to the baron, either-
that rebreather gasmask has got some serious work cut out for it:
hard on the ol' eyes, huh?
oh, c'mon.
the campaigns in the nordenvalds took a dude's whole lower arm off,
but that didn't matter much, now, did it?
i had so much F*ing fun making all this stuff, neighbors.
gas masks and coats and hats and robobotronics,
and even all the other other small things, too:
no details were beyond mattering,
and i s'pose that's why i haven't slept much in two months.
totally worth every second though.
because i LOVE HALLOWE'EN!
it's finished for tonight.
sure i've got a few treats up my sleeves for tomorrow....
but, right now,
it's time to take it a little bit easy.
i'm sore all over, and exhausted everywhere else.
i did what i set out to do, which was to stay ugly and stay dope.
see what i mean?
and that's all there is to it;
never quiet, never soft.....

today is THE day.

this is it.
the big action,
the big business,
the big fun.
all of it all day long.
i'm ready.
are you?
i think you'd better get ready, kids.
i'm serious.
because it's ALL really happening,
and that's the whole point,
i got up and frosted the F* outta some tricky treats.
check the happy-haunting-type teleport:
pumpkin cups, all kinds of cakey and that,
but, are they just cupcakes?
as plain as they come?
c'mon, what are you?
an A*-hole?
no way, jose.
they're spiced and moistened and sweet as all get out;
and activated to the ghostiest mostest with that creamchee' frosting on top!
they're totally yum4tum, neighbors.
and of course after a base coat of ghost white ice,
i had to mix it up with those two-tone swirls of bloppity gooey frosty hottness,
orange and green for hallowe'en, y'know what i mean?
and so many different sprankles.
because too much is the right amount,
every time, and all the time.
i love today,
even when i hate today.
and that's just the way it is,....
i'll be putting in some contacts in a little minute,
and i'll be brushing eye shadows all over my lids, too.
high dramabombin' is the way it's gonna be today,
and if i get anything else done,
it'll be a hallowe'en miracle, for sure.
there's no time for more writing,
there's only real life as a pretend person,
dressed up, messed up, and ready to fess up to all the blistering babarian rage,
and savage stormswept lightning-striking hot fiery berserker fury
that six weeks of costumes and no sleep will produce.
today is the day,
powered by cakes,
and fueled by a haunting and abiding irritation with all things.
maybe i'm just getting into character,
and maybe the apex is a crescendo of thunderous and deafening sh!t.
i guess we'll find out in a few;
never quiet, never soft..... 

Thursday, October 30


it's mischief night.
the one before hallowe'en.
i won't be toilet papering any schools.
i won't be shaving creaming and door handles.
i won't be soaping any windows.
i will be wrapping up some cupcake baking,
and i afterwards i most certainly will be using a superhot glue gun.
that's what sort of mischief i get up to these days.
and also,
i dress up.
playing the part of an industrious man of science,
a professor of lightning-harnessing atmospheric storm-navigation,
and an al-around fancy man about town.
that's me.
and on mischief night/day,
i doo-doo that costume-type sh!t.
check the telport:
i mean,
with the tippity-top hat,
and that big ol' burly brass-breathing deep-pressurized
upper ionospheric diving harness?
it's kind of expert.
i sure hope so.
with those tailored tweeds,
and all the rest of it, too.
mischief is on the menu,
and so is pumpkin flavored everything.
rules is rules, neighbors, and that's just how it's gonna be.
oh, okay, have a little more:
because without a stratospherium electronophizer,
how would power the dang thing?
which is why it has one, obvi.
and from the back:
sassy, sophisticated, steamy steampunk preholiday active participation.
i just love costumes, kids.
so much.
get a closer look at this sh!t:
and check the teleport for those spatterdasher gaiter jauns, too:
all the tanks and hoses and valves and gauges.
i just want y'all to know how much work,
against time and the weather, that this little jobber took.
...because it was a flippin' ordeal.
all kinds of painting, and priming and plasti-dipping,
plus lights and pleather and tacks and rivets and everything.
and this is just one of three,
over the next few days.
of course, there's so much more to say,
and even more still left to do.
in fact,
i'm cutting this one short,
because it's all still going on, especially right now;
never quiet, never soft.....

where've i been?

shuuuuuuuut up.
where've YOU been?
because where i've been is gettin' busy,
heading into the future,
and getting ready for my favorite time.
that's where the heck I'VE been.
and i've been in my kitchen, baking,
and i've been on my kitchen floor, making,
and i've been at the tattbomb studio faking my enthusiasm,
and also,
genuinely working on projects when there's no work.
i should've brought some today,
it was all walk-ins, all damned day long....
and seriously,
that was the lamest part.
that and the weather.
it was lightly breezin',
and sunny,
and warmish,
and nothing at all like yesterday when i was trying to paint
and glue and shape and mold and tape and paint some more...
the high humidity and the dirty biting cold downpours weren't helping at all.
the perfect weather, today,
was a solid five-fingered palmslap in the face of being finished with costumes an' that.
i'm not finished, all the way,
but i was all the way finished with today's costume.
three days of hallowe'en, neighbors.
that's a thing.
it is if you actually love hallowe'en and aren't just talking up some bullsh!t
to inflate your actual real-life enthusiasm.
i may also have been pretty busy in the oven area of my workspace, too,
in between trips to the stores, anyway.
because what's up with treats?
loctobery hottness needed to happen in my mouth,
and i think we all know what was the most necessary action to activate.
that's correct.
vegan pumpkin chee'cake.....
check the teleport:
aren't you glad you scrolled down past all those dumb words?
i thought you would be.
extra buttery cinnamon graham crackery crustiness,
and super-firm soft deep, rich, sexy pumpkin magic filling.
oh, that.
it just so happens that it's cinnamon vanilla butterscotch drizzle,
and it's the F*ing big business.
no joke.
and with a goobieblop of soya-whippedy creme on top?
breakfast at the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress went to eleven.
chee'cake first thing in the morning?
that was, like, just right.
no sleep the night before?
that's not even close to good.
and then, when you factor in the whole week before that,
staying up late,
and forgetting to eat,
and burning myself,
and huffing fumes,
and stressing out to the limits of sanity over minutiae ,
all of it, all the time,
just so i could go to the studio, and tattoo random, unimpressed strangers?
real life always prevails.
all that work, largely unnoticed.
that's what being a woodsly goodsly warrior poet is all about, i s'pose.
live away from like-minded people,
try harder, be louder, and participate more than they do,
and then watch as the results pale in comparison to the effort.
....and eventually disappear.
it's all really happening.
that's the whole point;
never quiet, never soft.....

Monday, October 27

going bananas.

banana bread takes FOREVER to bake, duders.
foreva eva,
and that's especially lame when you're hungry for a big slab or three.
i tried something different this time, too.
in addition to cocoa for chocofication,
i eschewed tapioca on it's own for binding moistenization,
and instead added vegan instant chocolate pudding.
holy F*ing sh!t, neighbrs!!
the densest, heaviest-duty booty-blastin' brown bomber resulted.
i'm sayin',
it's thick, it's rich, it's soft, it's firm, it's sweet, it's neat,
and it's alllllllll mine.
check the bananarama-type teleport:

lookin' at the mountains out my morning window seat,
drinking a piping hot cuppa,
and going down hard on this burly barbaric beast of a bread?
today is the day.
i'm feeling pretty good about this breakfast treat, too.
i added a ton of chocolate chips,
while there ARE bananas in it,
it's still basically a loaf of cake,
and it's also totally flippin' expert.
too many slices inside my bellyhole,
not enough sleep behind my see-balls,
and so much to do all the time.
the good news?
while that bread is baking,
you can basically run a marathon,
or paint a respirator,
or lay out acres of crafty bits and tiny doodads,
and ruin all available surfaces everywhere but the kitchen countertop.
(that's for mixing and mashing and stirring)
lots and lots.
that's the minimum amount of everything.
that's the plan for today's to-do list.
to do:
LOTS and LOTS of every. single. thing.
this mad scramble across the brisk hours of this morning is brought to you
by bananas, and chocolate, and mountains.
this is it.
this is what i've become.
baking and making and hermitage,
like a hairy fairy from the forest.
that's my time,
and that's my place,
and that's the truth.
every day there's more of all of it,
and every day, there's more to do;
never quiet, never soft.....

paints and pipes.

i have been staying up later and later,
and getting up earlier and earlier.
i guess i'm just excited about hallowe'en.
i don't know why, really.
i mean,
i still haven't made any plans,
and i still haven't finished anything up.
even if i'm staying home eating candy all by my lonely,
after working all day on cover-ups and craptards,
i'm still psyched on hallowe'en.
and also on making stuff.
i painted some stuff.
like that foam facepiece i showed y'all a little minute ago....
primer black, flat brown, metallic bronze, antique brass.
all of 'em,
in various concentrations, and to great effect.
and when i was done with the rattlecan flash and splash,
you know i had to go in there with the metallic wax finishes,
and then add all the pleathery trimmings,
and the real-life metal bits and bobs,
and then spread on the dark washes and wipes,
and the highlight drybrushing,
and then a bunch more pleather and pleats and pins and needles....
check the gasmask-monster-magic-type teleport:
allow me to present the stratospherium rebreather apparatus!
and from the side:
and in the rear, the hoses connect to the aetheric regulation tanks:
because what else would they do, right?
what a screaming giant dork i am.
i don't know what cracked the seal on this explosion of makey nerd action,
but it's out of control.
i can't wait to read a book or ten, and rake leaves, and cook fancy dinners,
and vacuum this whole flippin' place once november second rolls around.
in the meantime,
the next few days are gonna be a mad dash scramble to finish up what i can,
and dress up like a big fun big time three-costume crash-test active participant.
oh, yeah.
and there's just one other 'nother thing, kids.....
it lights up, too:
no, it's not pointed at my eyes.
what kind of an A*-hole do you think i am?
take it easy.
that's reflected light, and it's expert.
i s'pose i should be psyched, huh?
i mean,
i'm doing what i like,
and i'm making things that don't suck too hard.
i'm just still wondering why.
i'm sure there's a secret reason in there somewhere,
and the secret universal plan is providing me with the opportunity
to undertake a project designed to hone my disused makery skills
and to meet deadlines an' that whilst adding on more ad more and more.
the object, after all is said and done, is more.
too much is the right amount,
and it's all building towards something bigger and better, always.
it's all always really happening, and i'm doo-dooing everything i can to keep it going.
i'm choosing this crafty craftmaker costume catastrophe wrench
because i feel like i HAVE to.
harder styles and harder times are all i ever expect,
so i'm really just building up my immunity, glued seam by glued seam.
i drill 1" holes over and over into pvc pipes.
i screw shirt sleeves into plastic tubes.
i affix conductive electro-thermonetics (lamp-top-finials) to it all.
this is what's up,
and this is what i'm about;
never quiet, never soft.....

Friday, October 24


that's what craft foam looks like before the primer and the paint.
i get so disappointed in the meantimes,
especially when it's cold and wet and rainy,
and there's no time or available atmosphere to correct the raw state
of a new makey thing.
i'm just sayin'-
clear plastic and green fluff is not an expert look.
trust me.
oh, okay.
then maybe you'll trust your own eyes:
before you just assume i'm totally F*ing up though,
the details are what bring it all together.
for a basic framework,
the shape is there.
the bulk is burly and barbaric.
it's just that the extras and add-ons are gonna activate the sh!t out of it
once it has the right combination of bells and whistles..
but, right now?
it looks kinda lame-ish.
i know it does.
then again,
i also know what i'm making, so i can envision the end result.
and it's a good thing i can, too.
otherwise, i'll tell you what-
i'd maybe think i was bringing the weak sauce up in here.
and that's not cool.
not one little tiny bit.
more projects.
more more more more more of everything.
except time.
that's running way short.
i'm glad i've got what i've got,
and i'm sure i'll get as much done as i possibly can.
it's not like i'm trick-or-treatin',
or costume partyin',
or even doing anything besides workin'.
the thing of it is,
i'm reppin' the spirit and memory of dressed-up mess-ups
for all the grown-A* woodsly goodfellows everywhere.
i like it.
you do too.
i've been busy everywhere but at work.
driving and shopping and baking and making messes and cleaning up.
but work has been a total butthole.
hit-or-miss fluctuations,
and terrible ideas all up in my face on the occasions there are even any ideas at all.
i've got a full day today,
but yesterday was full of crap.
and NO tattoos.
plenty of craft-makin' and hot gluin',
and lots of second-thoughts and deconstruction.
but, no movie checks,
and that's no joke.
it's dark, and dreary, and dreadful,
and i'm unimpressed to say the least.
check the discount-countenance-type teleport:
drivin' around, thinkin' about all the work i'm gonna do as soon as i get home,
and all the sleep i'm gonna skip while i doo-doo that tedious sh!t.
i'm on my grind, and i'm doing all of it as loud, as fresh, and as hard as i can.
the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress worthy warrior rulebook says-
stay ugly, stay dope.
...and you know i love house rules.
i'm not sure what the point is,
other than occupation of my creative faculties.
i'm not sure at all about that.
i'm not having fun.
i'm just having a time of it.
spanning time with the self-imposed pressure to always do more.
there are worse things, though, for certain.
i'm running short on time, but i'm not OUT of time.
a better fate than that is every single minute of all the rest of it.
it's all really happening,
and the why will resolve itself if i just keep going.
that's it;
never quiet, never soft.....


so much cake.
that's how much cake i want.
that's the stuff, neighbors.
cake after cake after cake.
i'm just sayin'-
cake is expert.
chocolate is pretty damned good too.
actually, it's really really good.
that gets it going every time.
and when i start thinking about cake AND chocolate.....
you know how it's gonna go.
active participation and preheated ovens, y'all.
that's the ticket to treat paradise.
check the density-deluxe-type teleport:
vegan white chocolate fudge in a circle.
a.k.a. the big action.
what that means in real life is-
i left out the baking powder!
heavy-duty pound-cake consistency results,
especially when activating tapioca to make with that anti-dryness-style
pudding-in-the-mix business.
burly brick circle jauns,
in fudgy white chocolate splendor
(i know it's not actually chocolate. take it easy.)
it tastes good, too.
it tastes 100% not ruined for not having the fluff, anyway.
add that cocoa marshmallow-swirl cream-chee'-laced frosting,
and you've got ultimate decadence and shameless self-indulgence to eleven.
what do you even do after that?
oh, right....
dark chocolate drizzle lattice wizardry.
too much is the right amount.
no joke.
at least two kinds of chocolate,
and one pretend chocolate, too.
that sh!t is good for you, and it's good in you.
heck, it might even be good ON you.
no way to know for sure.
what we can say we know, though, for certain,
is that i have some at work, and you're welcome to munch up a slice.
you're welcome, kids.
one week until hallowe'en.
oh yeah!
the best one.
you'd better believe i'm excited for it,
and you'd be wise to recognize that i'm dreading it.
i've got three semi-finished incomplete costumes.
yeah, i know.
but, listen, friends-
i spent so much time on details that the details became their own things.
what can i say?
sometimes the spin-off runs longer than the ensemble.
think frasier to cheers.
sorry young people...
no. wait. F* that.
young people don't read blogs.
i'm still making things.
maybe some of it will become a costume,
maybe some of it will just be how i span my time away from work.
i guess we'll find out in a week;
never quiet, never soft.....

Thursday, October 23


that was quick.
the woodsly goodness is so flippin' different than my birthplace.
i mean it.
like, different planets, almost,
with people so drastically dissimilar as to be a species altogether separate from my own.
the good news?
i don't really socialize with either subset of folks.
not the nutmeg-stately urban-derived ethnically-ambiguous dirties in connecticut,
nor the bearded camouflagians in workboots that predominate the north country.
i have the ones i'm around,
and the rest can F* right off.
the last few days were no exception.
me, and harvest and maple,
and a little tiny bit of my parents, too.
that's all i really needed.
berfday shoppin' after school?
dinner in the city?
cake at home?
that's all that had to happen.
that and also this:
i'm sayin'- rules is rules.
don't be dumb.
emergency tofutti with fall sprankles is a must.
and if i must, i must, and i certainly will.
we had a good time.
there was a lot of driving.
across the northeast, and back again, in a short span of time,
with a whole ton of travel between towns once i got there...
but that's just the way it is.
you know what i did when i got to where i had to be?
i parked out of sight at the high school.
because who knows if i'm embarrassing or not?
what'd be worse than getting picked up at school
by some big loserhole of a parent in front of the rest of the entire student body?
i know what i look like, guys.
and i'd hate to be a source of stress to my kids.
turns out, she doesn't care, because she is not an A*-hole,
and apparently, in her eyes, neither am i.
so i picked her up, and she ruined about thirteen photographs,
until i caught this one without her making a face:
candid profile jauns.
i remember when she was just a cute little baby!
everybody says it, but that's because it's a thing.
tall boots and high socks and flowing hair is a helluva lot different
than onesies and poopie diapers, so the passage of time is really severe.
what a beauty, tho.
they both are good-lookin', hard-workin', sweethearts, and that's no joke.
i don't know what she's showing me.
i was taking pictures, man.
the thing is, they're big. ...for small people at least.
and they're really becoming actual people.
they're not too sh!ttty yet.
and we had a hallowe'en moment, too.
because i handed out all the ingredients for their costumes,
an they went bananas,
and everybody had big fun.
connecticut was a blur of food and roads and family togetherness.
i can't tell you about the relief i'm feelin' at how easy it all went.
the times have changed.
the fights are over.
the war is won/lost/forgotten about.
the old grudges are too smudged to read into,
and the new memories are founded on moments of monumentalgratitude and generosity.
this is the way we live now,
and i am grateful for the time i've been given to span with these women.
that's it;
never quiet, never soft.....

Tuesday, October 21


my daughter, harvest, is fourteen today.
years, neighbors.
fourteen years.
in a row.
teenaged for a minute now,
and turning taller and older and everything.
today, tho-
today is the day.
the berfday.
and that means connecticut is where i'm headed.
family togetherness and paternal activation and cake.
there will be cake, too.
it isn't a berfday without berfday cake.
that's a thing.
and of course,
i'll be bringing it with me.
otherwise, i wouldn't get a slice.
vegan baked greats aren't invited to the party, usually,
unless accompanied by an expert.
lucky for me, i don't just know one, i flippin' am one!
i mean, sure, i have to bake it in new hampshire and bring it with me,
but active participation is kind of my thing anyway
(damn. b.y.o.c.      because box mix is for jerks,
and applesauce eludes the egg-dependent instructions-followers)
i'm on that vanilla x14-type sh!t.
check the happy-berfday-harvest-type teleport:
you think i went a little overdramatic with the photo?
well, how about you maybe shuuut up a little bit?
it's dark out and it's raining, and it's an all-white cake,
and that calls for a double light source, and an eagle's-eye view. .
i used a LOT of frosting.
i mean, a LOT.
the cake math on this science treat?
i used 1.5x the frosting for a cake .75 the height of a regular one!
that's double, duders.
because too much is the right amount.
you know that already.
so, there's goobieblops on top of swirls, and blarps on the sides and everything.
if there's still frosting in the pastry bag, you gotta keep squeezing.
rules is rules, after all.
and another 'nother rule for berfday cake?
and since i'm reppin' a double circle of spirit and memory for the crumb,
with a wholeheartedly unholy helping of vanilla in myriad incarnations,
and even a little bit of top secret vegan white chocolate tapioca.....
(the kid likes plain cake, but i don't know if i can ever all-the-way hang out with that.)
i've got my ring of cakey hottness,
and i've got so much frosting in so many bloppy drops,
which means all that was missing to take it to eleven, for fourteen's sake,
was to get the sugarglitter all up on it.
i figured we could all do well with a punch or three of seasonal color-coordinated
site-specific harvest-hued sprankles!
i made it work, neighbors.
my kids are busy.
like, they're so busy.
like, they're SO busy i'm on a lightning-striking viking voyage to connecticut
for a blitzkrieg of berfday family magic fun times,
because they've also got other other stuff to do.
it's berfday cake, after berfday dinner, after berfday shoppin',
and all before seven p.m.,
so homework and studying can get done.
i will most likely see 'em for less time than i'll be carbound on the trip to get there.
and that's just in one direction.
the alternative is to see the for NO hours, and that's no kind of option.
it's cars and crap and traffic and congestion,
a little tiny bit of overlap with the rest of my blood relatives,
and cake,
thank the heavens for cake.
harvest skye ruth.
a little wet pink squawking raisiny naked mole rat.
babies are just such waterlogged little grossies-
but that was the most beautiful thing to me at the time.
that's what i remember about this day, fourteen years ago.
and crying like a F*ing giant diaperbaby my own self.
my firstborn child, my little daughter...
she's practically a person.
it's too soon, but it's also just right.
i mean,
events unfolds the way they're going to,
and time travel only goes in one direction,
and i sure am grateful for the time and direction that i've been given.
it's all really happening all the time,
but that's especially true today.
a big ol' sentimental heartful.
that's it;
never quiet, never soft..... 

Sunday, October 19

pie or cake?

sometimes, a pie just hasn't got the girth, guys.
i mean,
they're generally not the stout bombers i'm craving, anyway.
they've got all the flavors i want.
what do we do when faced with a choice?
we choose the wrench.
and we choose both options if they both have positives to enjoy.
hybridization is nature's way of making things more successful at existing.
knowing that nature wins in the end,
it has to be mad-scientist bakery time in the woodlsy goodness.
doesn't it?
yes. of course it does.
apple pie cake.
that's a thing.
i know it is,
because i made it happen.
check the crumbly-cakey-type-teleport:
knobbly, bumpy, baked blocks of burly self-contained apple magic.
that's what's up.
graham crackers pulverized into flour,
and rolled oats ground up into the same,
apples, peeled and minced, and cooked with maple and cinnamon
and mixed into an extra buttery (creamchee' accented),
soy yogurt smootherized floury nutmeg-infused vanilla-bean activated
batter, and beaten into shape so all the best parts touched each other?
so expert.
and then that cinna-maple creamchee' frosting for your face, too??
in the middle, gluing it all together, because that's what pie is missing.
and on the top, dollop after dollop-
goobiebloppin' a little pretty princess swirl for that extra sweet treat happiness.
all the fall flavors are there,
and all of it is really happening.
where you been?
i mean,
you might wanna pop on by and scoople one up...
because otherwise you're missing out real hard,
and that's no joke.
the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress is all about apples and/or pumpkins,
are you serious?
what do you mean, why?
what are you?
an A*-hole?, maybe because it's october,
and those are the rules.
the seasonal creations are in full swing.
whenever i'm not working or crafting,
i'm baking.
i haven't cooked anything fancy in a minute,
but i've been dominating that oven on the regular.
the thin gs i'm not doing are the things that don't need doing.
that's the way i'm looking at this month.
events unfold along the grid of squares on the calendar,
and this line of blocks is filled with cake and connecticut.
my time is accounted for,
and there will be presents to account for soon enough.
all of this, all the time,
that's what it's all about;
never quiet, never soft.....

too many hats.

i've got an expert leatherette aviator cap,
with scrappy straps and flippy-flaps and crap all over the place;
i've got a daring derby of barbaric burly brown bowler dome dopeness;
i've got that whiz-bang word-up wide-top topper hat, too....
that's real, neighbors.
i got a lot of hats for hallowe'en.
the thing of it is-
they didn't go super well with my sergeant steampepper custom coat.
not even one little teeny tiny bit.....
y'know what that means, don'tcha, duders?
that's riiiiiiight.
i had to have a whole other 'nother snazzy dazzler for my big bald pate.
because too much is always the right amount.
that's for real.
but, with that in mind,
i'm just sayin'-
i figure that if i'm gonna dress like a baron of baller-A* doodietwankles;
or an earl of expertism to eleven;
or even an archduke of activational loud, fresh, hardness,
i can't show up wearing some headgear that doesn't denote
the level of elite rank and pomp and substantial circumstantial site-specific personal style
and all of that sort of selfish self-righteousness my new hottness is is all about.
i can't be all bringin' that weak-sauce to hallowe'en, now, can i?
no way.
so i made myself something a little more appropriate
for an imaginary admiral of my presumed rank and standing.
check the general-gendarme-type teleport:
and that insignia?
yeah, the big gold earring, with stuff on it.
that's what i mean.
a shield(button) and rivets(brads) and crossed axes!?!
that's what's up.
the barbarian outer provinces, guys.
that's where i'm thinking i'm hangin' out.
whatever that means.
at any rate,
that's the skulltop skillset i'm reppin' now.
one side has a ch-ch-chain hangin' off of it:
because that's manly,
even if the four types of ribbons and trims aren't.
the other has a dingle-string tassel dangle:
because old-timey armies liked fancy dazzlers all over the place,
and didn't believe in camouflage.
(as a result, they mostly got shot a lot)
oh, yeah, definitely.
i love putting that overkill to it.
that's my thing.
i don't just do it,
i over do it, and add the fire and explosions to it.
what can i say?
i don't just talk about it,
i be about it, too.
well, originally,
it was a german alpine ski patrol cap from the army surplus shop.
the thing is,
the germans have nice gear,
but throughout history, they're sort of the baddies, y'know?
so lacy crinkles and ribbons are very necessary for goodguyification of the goods.
all day tattblastin' today?
all night craft-attackin' later?
lunch and/or dinner in there somewhere?
i'm super busy,
and i'm super tired,
and i'm super motivated to take as few breaks and pauses as possible.
can i do it all?
probably not.
will i collapse at the close of business on all-saints day?
will i stop with this Q&A conversation soon.
yes, i will, right now;
never quiet, never soft.....

army armor arm.

the gloves i had were the wrong ones.
just wait a minute, and i'll explain-
my daughter isn't quite 13 yet,
and she has very tiny hands.
like, tinier than a size small glove, even.
that means that without her here to wear an example of her specific
appropriately-sized hand-clothes,
i had to improvise.
but, the small gloves were too big.
so how was i spanning my saturday night,
after a loooong day of tattblastin' girls en masse,
complete with entourages of encouragers, well-wishers, naysayers, and pouters?
after enduring that for not nearly enough compensation-
i took my hard-earned gains, and went to the department store.
saturday night is the exact time when the beastliest creatures ooze out
of whatever bog or semi-rotten stump they've been sleeping under,
and talk overloud, in their stained sweatpants, down every aisle, at the slowest pace.
and also,
it's when i buy gloves there.
i had worst time,
and i may have used the guilty-by-associative-property of worth-assessment
to really do a number on my previously adequate self-esteem.
but the good news is that i got the gloves.
yes i did.
and when i got home,
i made a little gauntlet activation for the tiny-handed kid.
check the teleport:
robobotronic magic?
maybe so.
a steampunkish auxiliary artillery arm?
for sure.
what's better than power armor?
get a look at the sides:
i think the rivets are the best part.
or maybe the thumb.
or maybe the pipes.
i'm just excited for her to get it, and get fresh for the best holiday.
oh, yeah,
and the other other side:
that's what i was doing last night.
my big burly barbarian business was with small hands and stretchy fabric.
i s'pose it could've been worse-
i could've had to do what everyone else was doing.
this was definitely better.
it got cold again.
out of nowhere, or really, out of the northwest.
(that's where the winds blow in from 'round these parts).
that means autumny blankets and fleecy sleepy pants,
and an extra cover or two.
that's good for nighttime comfort,
and it's great for climbing into all those comfy-cozies
after all the hot glue has cooled.
i'm on a time constraint,
and i've got acres of activation to engage in before the final bells toll.
i guess sleep isn't invited, and i presume that the nights,
while getting darker, earlier,
and gonna get a whole lot harder and even longer before the deathly hallows
do what they do.
we've got moves to make, kids.
we've got a job to do-
and this is it;
never quiet, never soft.....

Friday, October 17

green-eyed monstrous victoriavision.

more goggles.
for real.
i said i was making another 'nother couple sets.
and i meant it.
i tell true stories.
you already know that.
i guess this time right now, we'll try a few less words,
and get going with more pictures.
that's  the plan...
check the teleport:
green is good.
and a little brown bow, just so you know they're for a lady.
check the details:
cameos and hearts are fancy.
they just do what they do, which is mostly look cool and be shiny-
and sometimes, that's what we need.
isn't it?
yeah. i thought so too...
and how about that trick-or-treatery night-vision activation:
word up.
red is also good.
red and green on hallowe'en is expert.
.....just as long as we agree to no purple.
i mean,
really now, friends,
stop it with that sh!t.
i probably won't win any dad-of-the-year-awards.
i understand that, empirically,
i'm accumulating quantifiably less than enough points for the title.
if my name is in the running for active participant and devoted duder of the day?
i got that sh!t on lock.
me and mine are making time to make magic memories of family togetherness.
we doo-doo that father-daughter-style sh!t.
believe it-
i'll be spanning time with my girls next week,
for the 14th yearly berfday shoppin' spree,
 and cake (obviously), an' that sort of stuff.....
AND for early hallowe'en delivery of all this dopeness.
there will be big fun, and non-stop action for all of us,
the whole trip.
that's what's important, after all is said and done-
making all the moments matter more.
you could have regular times,
but what's the point of that?
just be dope, or F* right off.
that's the thing.
you know the deal,
and you love it;
never quiet, never soft.....

Thursday, October 16

treats don't wait.

driving all over the place;
craft-making into the smallest hours of the night;
working almost single every day;
responsible adulthood is pure butthole.
there's just so much to do,
and there is never a time when there isn't something i've left unfinished
for the next day to start under the pressure of completing yesterday's work.
that's a hard style.
even when it seems like i've barely stopped moving,
and it was dark when i fell asleep, and dark still when i woke up,
which means i probably didn't rest anywhere near enough.....
there's this little voice in my left ear.
why my left?
i dunno.
it's the devil?
i hear it whispering to me.
and i listen up.
what is it saying?
oh, y'know, secret recipes.
and when i'm up at six, with the oven preheated,
and the warm stove melting butterish pats and dissolving three kinds of sugar,
i know that the day will work itself out because it HAS to.
and also,
there will be treats to help it along.
that's IT!
check the october-rust-hued-hottness-type teleport:
pumpkin pecan chocolate chip gingerbread minis?
holy sh!t, kids.
my whole face was filled with all that autumny expert explosive lusciousness.  
all the spices, as usual,
and oven-roasted pecans,
and little tiny cute-as-heck chocolate chipsters,
and pumpkin by the patchful.
baby breads are so cute,
and they totally taste full-size.
no joke.
what about that drizzle, on the diagonal drip-drop tip?
cinnamon and chocolate and vanilla for the victory.
so much flavor,
so dense and deep and delicious and heavy-duty dope.
the morning?
started correctly.
the rest of the day?
powered by cakey nutty activation.
it will all resolve itself, friends....
i love treats.
that's why i make treats.
and that's why i eat treats.
i need treats.
in my kitchen.
in my oven.
in my mouth
in my life.
i pick my spots carefully.
and i fill them with goodness.
that's pretty much my goal.
all the good places, all stuffed full with good.
i've got treats aplenty,
and tons of flour an' that to make even more.
too much is the right amount,
and that means i'm right where i'm supposed to be;
never quiet, never soft..... 


goggles means the same as steampunk to most folks.
i'm pretty sure that's a thing.
at least,
as far as the questions i've gotten so far....
'what about your goggles?' and variations thereof.
if you cursorily know what steampunk is,
then it's very likely you probably just figure it's goggles and a top hat.
i GOT that top hat situation down pat, super solid.
i guess i need those eyecups, kids.
because i'd hate to look like a green and gold sergeant pepper,
or have folks think i'm just doing a poor michael jackson impersonation,
i s'pose i had to activate the qualifier.
rules is rules after all....
making things is pretty dang good for my brain most of the time.
and also,
making a recognizable and obvious attempt at something archetypal
has got to be a sure-fire way to escape having to talk to people
about what my costume is supposed to be.
you already know what the worst part
about having hallowe'en times in the woodsly goodness is-
all these camel-colored corduroy-collared carhartt-coat-clad stoopidheads
who don't dress up, don't hand out candy, and dislike anything creative,
interesting, or different.
up in these mountains, adult dudes in costumes,
who are not walking a five-year-old to their neighbor house for candy
are like virulent gay-ebola.
that means i already have created a due-proof forcefield just by leaving the house.
but, what about al the other other people of this valley?
i'm just sayin'-
nobody knows anything about what's good.
and that's no joke.
and what eats bigger balls than trying to explain to some necktards
just what the F* a steampunk airship stratospheronaut is?
what even ARE all those words?
they're not for them, that's for sure.
fancy craft crap is absolutely not invited to the backwoods mudpits
and the budweiser-and-hockey-mask bonfire sh!t that goes on there.
of course,
neither am i.
the thing of it is, neighbors,
i LOVE dress-up times.
as far as anyone who isn't a hill-person, a trailer-oozer, or an old person,
video games may just save he day.
because video games sometimes have steampunky stuff.
of course,
that pretty much means weird goggles.
i know, i KNOW, I KNOWWW.
i already did it, anyway.
check the teleport:
that's how it's gonna be.
with that ambervision jauns in 'em, too.
get a good look at all the gluing and cutting and strapping an' that:
and the other side:
triple magnifiers.
pretty neat, no?
well, i thought that was cool.
one more?
one last one, for your face:
goggles, y'all.
see how i snuck a little elastic back there?
that's the stuff my big dumb head needs to hold these snugly in place.
that's real.
this set is the first of three planned pairs.
the next ones are for my daughter maple.
those are destined to be some green-eyed fancy dazzlers.
she gets the improved techniques,
because she is presumably an improved version of me, anyway.
and that's it.
orange lenses,
brown and burgundy straps and stuff.
brads. and so much hot glue.
this cheater-version, without stitching or riveting still takes some time.
and i'm running especially low on that these days.
long nights, hard nights, warm nights, really....
i'm spanning time, with difficulty,
as slowly as i can take it,
wile it goes along so damned fast.
it's all really happening;
never quiet, never soft.....

Wednesday, October 15

XV on the fifteenth.

hey guys!
guess what?
today is the day.
like, for real, it's the one.
a big one, even.
today makes it officially fifteen F*ing years since i began tattooing.
that's a thing.
it's been fifteen years since i tattbombed my very first one.
back on on my old friend metal mitch gibbs,
and when i did it, oh MAN....
i did it very poorly, unbelievably slow-paced,
and with nervous trepidation about my dearth of applicable skills.
i doo-doo that terrible learning curve-style sh!t.
fifteen years later,
i'm at least a whole lot faster at it, anyway.
for serious.
fifteen YEARS.
a decade, and then a whole other 'nother other half of a second decade.
when i was fifteen years old,
i couldn't even imagine doing anything for as long as my whole life up until that point.
don't get me wrong, neighbors.
tattooing has been good to me,
like a semi-abusive codependant stockholm syndrome sort of a thing.
i mean it.
it keeps me hooked, even when i hate it.
and sure,  through this career path, like a pathogen pathway,
i get systemic destruction.
a little lower lumbar brokeback white mountain sh!t,
sideways fingers pointing at an awful angle,
and a whole slew of unfortunate alterations to my original packaging....
and that was pretty busted to begin with.
awwwwww, man.
and don't think i'm not grateful.
because i AM.
tattooing and the collateral activation that comes with it affords me all the means
motivation and opportunity to do lots of other stuff.
and yeah, very little of the stuff has to do with tattoo culture,
most of which i actively shun and/or reject.
i do what i do.
and i do tattoos, too.
it's part of a big picture.
a symphony, really,
and tattooing may be the flutes and piccolos.
necessary for all the minky nancypants parts,
but by no means the F*ing tubas.
the rest of my life is the big brass section, and the kettledrums....
in my version of peter and the (were)wolf,
those flutes are still pretty flippin' important.
i have the day off.
there was, for a little moment, the temptation to mark the occasion with a tattoo,
inflicted on myself as a little tribute to the milestone.
upon immediate reconsideration,
i realized the very last place i wanted to be today was in a tattoo studio.
so instead,
my lady and i went downeast,
and tuned up a terrific celebratory lunch.
check the teleport:
man oh man,
i must be getting even older than i thought.
we munched up hours ago,
and i'm STILL feeling disgustingly full.
that's a good thing, though.
it just means i did it right.
fifteen years gone by.
all of it, every moment, every minute;
every town, every state, everywhere and every when;
every terrible ending,
every exciting new beginning....
tattooing has been the hub the rest overlaps and revolves around.
it's all connected,
and all of it is part of the worst true story i've ever heard.
this is my real life,
that's the most comforting and uncomfortable thing;
never quiet, never soft, never enough.....

Tuesday, October 14

aiguilettes, fourragere, epaulette.

there are a lot of parts to a military-style uniform.
more than i thought at first,
and more than i even knew the names of.
imagine my surprise when i needed to recreate some of that
for my hallowe'en costume.
a little bitty baby bit of background research led me to a lot of learning
about dress uniforms and the symbolism of all that fancy stuff hanging on them.
especially the expert adornments and ornamentations of regal,
royal, mega-majestic couture.
that's no joke.
turns out, your dude napoleon was all about giving out specific honors
in the form of ropes and strings and sh!t.
which explains why they're all named in french.
depending on the side they're worn on, the style, the thickness,
the tassels and fobs, and the color, even,
all those spaghetti straps are for personal and/or unit rank, distinction,
and situational accolade designation.
holy crap.
that's a lot of stuff to keep track of.
i guess two hundred years hasn't made any of that less complicated.
that also means quite a bit of backstory is certainly acceptable to have,
for a well-fleshed-out character to fill in the blanks,
and the sleeves inside of the costume.
all that extra work, all that extra adhesive, all that extra measuring and cutting.
hard styles, friends.
this dressing-up stuff has a whole lot of 'em.
rules is rules,
so i've been gettin' busy with my busy business.
check the french-words-type teleport:
brooms on your shoulders are what's up.
i did not intend to make an elaborate coat at first.
no i did not.
not one bit.
not at all.
too much is the right amount.
i have to be true to my infinite nature, kids.
that means that keeping it simple is not invited over.
i started with the cuffs.
a little trim, a little strap, a button or two.....
and i moved along to the back,
a few buckles, a couple flaps, a little chain,
and by the time i got to where i'm at now?
i went from a dude who was wearing a sorta nice jacket,
to a full-blown admiral of the most elite and accomplished fleet.
three costumes.
that's what i've got going on.
not on purpose, just be default.
i mean,
i even started F*ing with the top hat again:
we always need more teentsy glass tubes, don't we?
it's those little things that make me happy.
semi-clever details.
you know what i mean-
i'm no leather worker.
and i'm no LARPer
and i'm definitely not a craftsman.
i'm just a crafter...
and my (very) hot glue gun and i are in F*ing full effect these days.
oh, heck no, i am not sleeping much,
and i'm eating a lot less, but of a lot worse things than usual.
not jerky and doritos.
jeez. i'm not a quitter A*hole.
go easy.
it's just that i don't want to lose this thread of artsy art(ish)makey hottness.
there is only what there is,
and when it leaves the eaves of the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress
it doesn't come back quickly.
getting while the getting is good to go.
that's what is happening here in the woodsly goodness.
never quiet, never soft.....


indigenous peoples day?
sorry, feely do-gooders, but i can't hang out.
christopher columbus was probably an A*-hole,
for sure,
but so was everybody else.
normally that doesn't excuse bad behaviors,
i mean, why would it?
the thing of it is,
for aall the racism and exploitation, and the inevitable overthrow,
he still sailed the boats, y'know?
and for that, he got his day.
he got his day named after him, actually....quite a ways posthumously...
and a country,
and co-ownership of my nation's capitol.
there's a big ol' a place in ohio, too..... but really....
that's gross.
don't be dumb.
don't forget- he's an italian guy.
that means that growing up where i did,
all the goomba dum-dums revere that mofo extra hard.
that's real.
for two blocks, there's everything columbus all over the place-
plus columbus square, a columbus roadrace, and a columbus day parade.
they love that sh!t.
i hate parades, and i hate running,
which is really just a worse, sweatier parade.
except a lot faster, which does help a little...
so, actually, in real life,
i don't honestly care much about actual real columbus stuff...
the day, the race, the city, the district, the man....
none of it, and not at all.
that's a thing.
i even saw his house in genoa many years ago.
weird that the only hovel still standing just happens to be his childhood home.
i suspect a little bait-and-switch.
oh, those sneaky genovese.
i do like columbo, though.
mostly because peter faulk was awesome, and also grandpa in the princess bride.
but, really, though-
when it comes to cities b!tching out and kowtowing to nervous perceptions
about equality and offensiveness?
i just hate nancying around with nomenclature,
to edit and waterbabeify history.
that's just lame.
sure, columbus was probably molto bigoted.
i mean, he was a grumpy old italian guy.
they're like that.
(wry stereotyping notwithstanding)
you should've heard the old folks in my grandma's neighborhood,
and they'd had five hundred years to open up their minds a lot.
i'm sayin'-
this dude landed his boats after a little minute on the previously flat earth,
met some brownish dudes whom he couldn't understand,
and that clearly meant the must be indian.
what an A*-hole.
of course, to be fair-
that was before they started speaking spanish in columbia.
noooo, YOU stop it.
an italian merchant-explorer guy gets a spanish-speaking cocaine spot?
that happened.
and imagine if portugal hadn't been giant limp fraidycats?
we'd have schwa sounds all over the place up here.
long weekend?
who me?
no way.
that's not real.
i did a few tattzappin' jobs,
and then i went to joann fabrics.
maybe it was indigenous textiles day.
sure thing neighbors.
let's just make everything the worst.
no pictures this time, and a day late, too.
i was up until this morning,
and i was up and at it again, before the sun rose to warm me.
not enough is the same as too much.
not enough sleep is just too much awake.
that's the way craft store explorers tell time;
never quiet, never soft.....

Sunday, October 12

scone zone.

cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice, mace, and cloves.
get used to it.
that's the seasonal blend.
and it's flippin' delicious, too.
for realsies.
if i'm feelin' like poop;
and i have much too much going on (which is always the case);
and maybe i also spill pvc cement all over the big sexy rug in my kitchen,
and ruin it and my brain, with gluey gross toxic fumes;
and i'm freezing cold indoors with an extra sweater on......
then i gotta get expert over by my oven for a minute or two,
that's it.
creaming together all that pumpkin and cream chee' and butterish,
softened and smoothed out and squished up into lots of fluffy flour,
and tapioca, and spices, and baking powder, and soymilk, and vanilla,
and a punch of brown sugar is good therapy.
and folding, and turning, and folding and turning and folding and turning,
about thirty more times than i just mentioned makes the dough soooo dope, duders.
that's no joke.
that means i'm making scones.
and that means the oven is cranking out about four hundred degrees of hottness,
and that means everything is getting better.
so when it comes time to cut 'em into wedges, and dust ';em with cinnamon,
all that is rough and harsh and contentious has been equalized,
and the raging stormswept quarrels inside my pounding head are quelled.
and also, there are scones.
which is even better than all that.
check the pumpkin-spice-type teleport:
oh yes, neighbors.
they're so lovely.
oh, well, there are roasted salted pumpkin seeds in there, for variety,
and for extra activated flavor and texture.
good eyes, kid...
those ARE maple-soaked raisins, too.
little moisteners to keep the dry crumb situation at bay.
that's smart. all the cinnamon-complementary things go together.
and yes, those are cinnamon brown sugar icing drizzles.
it has to go to eleven, or why are we even bothering?
that's clearly what's up.
breakfast today is great.
warm treats, hot tea, hot glue gun, all of it.
there is always time for baking something great,
even when there isn't even time to catch your breath.
i'm panting and racing,
but every labored hasty lungful tastes and smells like pure autumn radness.
i'll take my little triumphs where i can get 'em.
today is the day-
just like every other day;
never quiet, never soft..... 

the top.

we're all mad here, neighbors.
i'm angry, or at least upset anyway, a lot of the time.
i'm a grumpy guy,
and i'm cold too often, and what's worse,
i have the faintest irritating little bitty baby cold.
a filthy rhinovirus is chargin' against my nostrils,
and i've got all sorts of aches and fugues and agues and irritants.
i'm a little mad.
y'know what that needs?
a mad hat.
i mean, c'mon.
that should be obvious.
i guess y'all should probably check the teleport:
that's one tall topper, right?
is that a working light on it?
you know it.
don't be dumb.
for sure, i'm a great big giant lame-o...
i've also got a towering top hat,
with a tinkers lamp and ribbony laces an' that.
so now who's an A*-hole?
it's still me, isn't it?
ah well,
you know the rules-
stay ugly, stay dope.
making tiny engines on hats IS dope.
isn't it?
that's like,your opinion, man,
get a little bit better look at it:
that's a chopped and reassembled outlet box,
a slice off of a wheat thins box,
some airhose valves, assorted caps, sexy green rearden metal type wire,
brass brads, and a wind-up clock key.
and then there are these grommets:
lace-ups, friends.
and yeah, that light, too:
it's just a candle-style tea light in a hole.
with a cap over it.
it's pretty neat to have a giant hat with a tiny nerd lamp on it.
at least, i think it is.
i keep making stuff,
even though none of it is gonna be able to happen at the same time.
there may be costume/character changes throughout the hallowe'en season.
i guess that's the way it should be, though, guys.
because too much is the right amount.
and that's a real, true, actual thing.
when i wake up,
i get to see this:
i know.
no big deal.
i am just feeling pretty grateful for the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress.
i do all the other other sh!t that isn't hats and plastic guns to keep it running.
(although those are real guns right there)
responsible adulthood isn't all that great,
but a fantastic flora-filled bedroom to lay down and rest my worn-out
weary wreathed-in-worry skull in is totally a great ending to every sh!t-salad day,
and it's a well-appreciated worthy reward at the finale of every amazing evening, too.
making moves to maintain this old busted castle is what i do.
i suppose after a brutal summer,
i'm just now taking a minute to appreciate why i did it all.
true stories, friends.
that's what i tell;
never quiet, never soft.....