Monday, February 29

LEAP.

point a.
point b.
four years apart-
hop, skip, jump, and we're already here again-
leap to leap,
exxxtra-to-exxxtra,
anomaly to anomaly,
and now a hominy of homilies about hot fire and hard styles-
all of that,
today,
on the twenty-ninth,
a.k.a. LEAP DAY,
all slightly overlapping,
so that we may resume our travels,
abridged across the previous patch of rough and coarse course-plotting,
complete with overthrowing;
glass-house-stone-throwing;
plot-coursing,
and of course,
the necessary roughness of tempering a temper-tantrum temperament,
across the patchwork plots of temperature and temerity.
no?
oh, yeah.
it's mutha-'ucking LEAP DAY,
and i'm pretty sure that means all crime is legal today?!
is that how that works?
i might have it confused with purge rules,
but i always get them mixed up.
i hope it IS a battle-beast free-for all day, though-
because i've got a laundry list of larcenous, licentious, lewd, loud, lascivious,
and lecherous largess to squeeze into this way-weirder-than-groundhog-style
full-force elusive fourth-year february event.
mmmhmmmm.
also,
you KNOW i gotta make treats for the special times.
yeah,
that's right.
and today is no exception to the rules,
except that it IS exceptionally expert.
(oh, c'mon)
mmhmmmm.
and especial expertism calls for a little extra hottness from the oven.
allow me to show you what's really getting activated
in the woodsly goodsly lovers' leaps and boundlesssness....
teleport:

hand pies for your eyes!!
sweetened-up flaky pastry crust,
with blops of frozen butterishness,
and creamchee', and ice water, and a pinch of vanilla.
yeah!
i wanted all the flavor, and texture, and since i was up molto early,
as is usually the case,
i did all the things one does to pie dough:
chilled it, folded it, rolled it, rechilled it, etc. etc. etc.-
and while all of that was happening,
my wild maine blueberrries,
and SO much lemony citrus sexxxiness
got together with some sugar,
and stewed themselves into an orgiastic fantasy of tasty goodness.
so i cut 'em out,
and filled 'em up,
and i pinched 'em together with some forky presses,
and i finger-painted them with real maple syrup in order to stick all the
raw sugar sprankles to the tops!
kaBOOM.
*
i'm saying goodbye to february,
and hello to a free day to do and say whatever i want.
oh, wait.
that's actually already every day,
so i s'pose i should try arson, or assassination, for a change?
and by that i mean the literal versions,
not my usual hot fire spit and character demolition.
ha.
today is the day,
and it's GOT to be good.
i'll not allow for anything less.
there will be fire, lightning, thunder, smoke,
and maybe even some pizza.....
???!!!
anything can happen,
because today is extra credit,
and i'm fixin' to get a more than perfect score.
i'm grateful for the restoration of my forward motion,
i'm lucky to have replenished the stores,
and further stored away a surplus to the initial requirements.
too much is the right amount, neighbors,
and today is the embodiment of that sentiment,
and i aim to do it justice;
never quiet, never soft.....

Sunday, February 28

brown-eyes

peanut buttery brown bars of exxxtra-crusty-edged crucial cooked-up bakery business?
mmmhmmmm.
i doo-doo that freaky sh!t,
and you like when i do, too.
peanut butter is delicious,
unless you've got an allergy,
in which case, it is actually still delicious,
but you will DIE from enjoying it.
.....which, in this case, is probably worth it,
because i've got the brownie jauns that'll make you go to your early grave
with a great big chocolate-smeared smile on your face.
check the teleport:

peanut buttery!
super cocoa-whisked chocolate explosions everywhere!
coconut, to add a little fiber and a lot of texture to cakeish rectangles
that'd otherwise get too dry and dense from all that p'nutty power....
neighbors-
the 360-surround crispiness keeps watch over a moist midsection,
and that's pretty great stuff-
but,
the chocolate drizz really keeps the taste going as it melts into the crumb.
yup.
what?
oh.
that's peanut butter frosting.
i was really just taking them to eleven with that,
but it does seem to add some sexy sweet showmanship to the mix, doesn't it?
ha!
i make my brownie batter in a pot.
i do.
i melt a stick of butterish, or coconut oil,
in with a cup of the milky stuff of your choice,
and add two cups of brown sugar.
whoa.
i'm not scared.
plus a half a cup of cocoa, and then maybe just a little ground chocolate,
and in this instance, a half a tsp. of salt, a tablespoon of vanilla,
half a cup of coconut, and half a cup of peanut butter.
when that's all melted together, on medium-low heat,
i take it down a notch,
and then stir in two cups of flour, and another 'nother half a cup of tapioca.
guys, it's like a half an hour's worth of bake time, at the standard cakey 350 F,
and you've got new hottness oozing into your whole life just like that.
i duuno about you, but i could ( and have) terrorized a ton of 'em.
y'know what else i've been decimating all dang day?
this tasty worse-water from the midwest:

boom.
lacroix.
the choice of all hip white folks everywhere,
in everyone's favorite classic pamplemousse.
or, as people would call it: grapefruit.
i'm excited,
because it's finally available here, years and years and years after my first sip.
it's up in the northeast now, and i can sip it up all the time.
but, i mean, how good is it?
it's like fresca, but not even a little sweet,
and that other stuff?
the cerise-lion?
a.k.a. the cherry-lime tall boys?
c'mon.
medicine-flavored bubblesauce,
in energy drink-style cans,
but with absolutely no go-go in there anywhere.
i LOVE it.
*
february is on it's last legs.
tomorrow means we're moving onward towards spring.
up in the mountains,
we don't get very excited or optimistic about that.
we know better.
it's hard styles only for the next eight weeks,
and then maybe we'll see about some positive thinking.
time moves us where it will, and for all our struggling against the current,
or dwelling in the past (ha),
the flow deposits us on stranger and stranger shores with every rise in tidings.
damn.
this is where i'm at,
but i'm curious to see where i will be;
never quiet, never soft.....

the look before you leap(year)

four years ago, today,
my well-formulated carefully-considered best-laid whole life's plan was cancelled.
damn,
time surely does fly, neighbors,
even without the having of much fun.
no joke.
so,
four sleepless years later,
we're already here again,
hovering on the precipice of a leap day.
under the premise of time-traveling into the ephemera to solidify something more-
we're cultivating an extra revolution,
we've entered a bonus round,
there's a 'nother score plus four hours to bring into balance
the grafted craftwork graph of time and space we call the calendar.
i ca hardly account for the term in between jumps.
so much hard work,
and so many missing pieces,
all collected, collated, cataloged,
just to be reassembled at great cost, all so i could resume the black-handed path
of the warrior poet as a self-made and repurposed person.
wow.
so,
i've replaced and replenished what up and left, or faded out afterwards...
except for friends.
awwww, man.
that part, it turns out, was never ever going to be my strong suit.
i've got rules on rules on rules to qualify and quantify
and name the nameless as either dopeness,
or that which needs must F* right off.
the problem with high standards is that you can clearly define what's good,
and everything else.
it would seem that with that knowledge and the will to abide by it,
hermiting away in the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress,
with just my bright-eyed ampy-d,
and our squinky-eyed shark-bullet bombardier crabtree,
is to be my lot as the blueprints come back into focus.
guys,
that's personal information, in it's own way,
but i don't keep secrets about myself.
truth telling is the style i rep the hardest,
and it's the hardest style to represent in the first place.
i'm ready to leap into the future, once the event horizon is breached.
in the meantime,
i'd like to make more art.
huh?
no.
i mean it.
i do a whole lot of baking, and cooking, and a holy sh!tton of tattzappin',
plus,
a linear megamarathon of dog walking,
and a fair length of lap-wrapping driving through the woodsly goodness.
what i'd LIKE to do more of is to draw.
yeah.
and i'm gonna whip up a whole new batch of berserker barbarians,
battle-beasts, and blitzkrieg bobotrons,
because too much is the right amount,
and i've allowed myself a leap-length to recuperate from the old and busted.
i think it's high time the new hottness gets re-activated.
i drew these guys:

they are just 2" tall.
s'kyoooot.
a ghoul and a guardian,
or a ghast and a draugr,
or somethin' like that.
if i can locate all my marky-markers, tonight,
they'll be framed and ready to hang out, literally,
along the sheets of rock that shelter me from the elements/.
i'm scanning the horizon for brighter spotlights,
or beacons that may beckon back some exxtra-expert creative supercharging.
no excuses should be tolerated,
so i'll just have to keep tattooing just as hard,
and sleep somehow even less,
so i can get makey on a whole swath of savage stormswept sword and spear sh!t.
*
today is the day.
a new one.
a better one.
and tomorrow is surplus to requirements,
which means it must be especially elite,
because rules is rules,
and that's what i need.
i'm grateful for this stronger, louder, faster life,
and for the ones who've chosen to be a part of it.
it's all really happening,
and that's the whole point;
never quiet, never soft.....

Saturday, February 27

ROCKBLOXXX

neighbors,
it's cookies that i love.
for real.
and not just any cookies-
i'm talking about MY cookies.
yeah.
the number one chief rocka,
the boomshakalakas,
the rumpty-dumpty bump-shakin' baked greats that really get it
going on and on and on until the break'a-break'a dawn jauns-
oh yes, yes, y'all-
i'm talking about albie rock bloxxx.
yep.
and when i make 'em,
i tend to really get into it, and get after it, and get busy with my big business.
check the teleport:

c'mon.
that's expert.
and if they're not your thing, that's cool.
you just failed the taste test.
however,
you aced the bad-taste test so rejoice in your doo-doo butter,
while we snack up on all those flavorful discs of hottness and oats an' that.
word up.
original coconut oatmeal chocolate chippers are so flippin' good
that i freak out about 'em all by themselves and terrorize a trio right off the jump.
so when i dip half in dark chocolate,
and then bifrost-blast a rainbow bridge across my victuals
with that asgardian sprankles activation?
that's valhalla for my mouth.
mmmm.
therefore, if i add cocoa,
and make chocolate coconut oatmeal chocolate chip cookies,
i've effectively upgraded the chasis, for a more luxurious model.
that's worth exclaiming delight,
or at least adding confectioners stencils indicating as much.
that's right.
that's be plenty, if i wasn't so obsessed with taking things too far.
but i am,
and too much is the right amount......
so i mixed in some peanut butter, as well.
yuuuuuuuuup.
peanut butter chocolate coconut oatmeal chocolate chip.
with cross hatching made of chocolate.
seriously,
you're excited, am i right?
dozens and dozens, dished out while the rest of y'all were dozing.
that's my thing.
i want to maximize my time,
i want to maximize my results,
i want MORE of everything,
and that goes double for cookies.
rock bloxxx aren't for nibblers,
and they aren't for single-cookie indulgers, either...
if you don't want at least three,
you clearly don't understand what a rock block IS.
would you like to know HOW these blocks hapen?
okay:
two sticks of butterish,
2 cups of brown sugar,
a cup of applesauce,
a tablespoon of vanilla,
half-a teaspoon of salt,
a quarter cup of maple syrup,
crushed coarse oat flour, plus rolled oats, and/or whatever kind of oats you'd like,
coconut, pulverized, and coconut, flaked,
plus lots of flour, like at least three cups....
so you've got around four and a half cups of flourish stuff,
plus teaspoonfuls of baking powpow and baking soda....
once all that is ready,
then you can freak it off with chips or chunks or bumps, or blops,
or whatever else,
and chances are, anything you choose is the correct decision
it's fast and loose,
and it's open to input from the makery bakers who F* with 'em.
that's what's so effin' expert about my method-
going farther, taking it further, and then continuing a few steps past the edge
will only ever reward you with even more elite treats,
provided you make them from golf ball-sized balls,
and bake them at 375 F, for like 12-13 minutes.
hahaha.
*
maybe i need an appointment book?
or a day planner?
i think i'm misusing my time.
otherwise,
how do i explain always being awake,
but not getting nearly enough done on any given day?
an improved efficacy in my application of energy and effort;
that's what i want.
i s'pose more than four hours sleep would be required for that?
losing four hours to fugue has got to be worse than sleeping an extra two.
that's simple math.
i want to get just a bit more accomplished.
i think i'd actually rest easier if i did.
uh-oh.
that's a chicken-egg scenario, isn't it?
well, that figures.
i mean,
i don't ever really mess with either of those things,
and i'm willing to bet that's the unmessed-with answer i'll reach however i approach it.
womp womp.
wide awake, and not-asleep.
those are the two states of matter in the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress.
it's a haunted house, of sorts,
but,
i think it's simply all the uncounted sheep that are bleating inside the walls.
hordes and herds and flocks of unfinished fleecing,
turning stiles and hopping the fences between day and night.
that's what's up, and also, i'm what's up,
and that's early and late.
my lids are heavy, and my bags are packed, underneath my eyes,
and my opposite-angled almond eyes?
they're open, because sleep is not a thing over here;
never quiet, never soft.....

Friday, February 26

try to stop me from eating cake.

hey, yo-
this cake-piece i baked up is so good,
your whole face will feel happy when you bite into it.
that's real talk.
dried, unsweetened flaky coconut,
and more of the same, but ground into coarse flour,
and wheat flour, and soy-yogurt,
and lemon juice, and lemon zest, and lemon extract,
and coconut milk,
and all the cakey-bakey in-betweens,
all in together now,
and all amped up to be some next-level expert sh!t.
no joke.
check the future-type teleport:

BAAAAM!
neighbors,
all that fatty-boombattie full-fat butterishness,
and that crushed coconut,
and most of all that thick coconut milk jauns
have some heaviness that makes for the most moist succulent stuffs-
but,
i'm super glad i lifted it up with lemon,
because those citrus notes help it soar above the decadence of it's own density.
yup.
lemon and coconut go together like third dates.
and you KNOW what happens on third dates!
ha.
the frosting is pretty much more of that,
but whipped up,
and mellowed out,
and before it could get called done-zo,
i HAD to hit it up with sprankles of lemony zestitude.
i mean,
c'mon,
it may be a simple thing to take two flavors and let them overlap over and over,
but rules is rules,
and too much is the right amount,
so it can't be all wimpy
it needed that little something exxxtra,
and i'm glad i've got it,
and also,
i've been eating way too much of it, too
...obviously.
i can hear it calling to me, even now-
shhhh.
listen;
allllllllbie, why won't you just munch up on my slice a little bit more?
y'hear that?
yikes!
guys,
the frosting has such great texture,
and it's from the pulverized coconut dispersed throughout,
but,
not so much that it's gritty.
that's the key.
sandy frosting is bullsh!t,
and if you disagree,
you probably live in a desert or on a beach?
i dunno.
*
lords of the underground on the stereo,
cake in my mouth,
tattzaps on the schedule,
and full-steamed heads ahead of me-
there's poor sleep to be accounted for,
and long days of doo-doo buttery appointments to stoke the flames beneath,
and build up even more pressure for the hot furnace of berserker fury
that's been boiling over into harder styles and harsher words.
it's all really happening,
and when the day ends,
that's pretty much the whole point;
never quiet, never soft.....

ka-bloom.

neighbors,
my ace numero-uno homegirl ampy-d
brought me a bouquet!
yeah!
i got flowers,
from a lady,
because she correctly guessed that i've been needing a little cheering up.
guys,
she saw to that by filling up some empty kitchen space
with a big ol' bunch of bloomin' buds,
and they tie the whole dang room together.
check the nighttime-special-delivery-type teleport:

expert!
really,
who else would sign up to take care of me??
i'm grateful.
i'm lucky.
i'm pretty psyched that i'm the kind of man who gets excited about getting flowers.
i mean,
i really like flowers.
here's the thing-
kindness shown to me is a rarity.
there are precious few folks who are even close enough to me to span ANY time,
let alone the intimate and excellent moments that cause lasting connections,
and impart the tightly-knit bonds of spirit and memory
that'd make any really-real mother-'ucker do the nicey-niceties
and go out of their way to perform the goodwill gestures that come from
feeling the magnetic push-and-pull of real friendship.
no joke.
so,
i got flowers,
which is rad in itself;
but,
more importantly,
i got somebody who gives a sh!t,
and that's what's poppin'.

barbarian lord knows what's up.
and the truth always sounds like the truth;
never quiet, never soft.....

Thursday, February 25

overdoing it.

neighbors,
i got it right.
i did.
i wanted a straight-up turbo-dope boomfire hottness exxxplosion for my mouth,
and that's exactly what i got.
yup.
wednesdays are for eating better than usual,
and since every other other day is for eating better than most,
it's no small task to turn it up even louder than eleven...
but i did it,
because i had to.
why?
because it was a snow day for at least a little while.
and that meant that ANYthing could've happened in the first half of the day.
so even though it turned into a flooded deluge of disillusioned icy sh!tslop after lunchtime,
and the roadways and the driveways and the skyline were disgustingly wet and messy,
the initial snow magic still lingered, at least in spirit,
all along the countertops of the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress.
what better way to summon up some woodsly goodfellowship
than with some hearth-warming heart-attacking heavy-duty deliciousness?
word up.
friends,
check the mutha-'ucking teleport:

wu-TANG!
homemade seitan, herbed and starched, and pan fried right up,
over pickles and pea tendrils, for a little green somethin',
topped with vegan roast, repurposed into slab bacon
through the process of a succulent soak-and-sear scenario.
how good is it?
it's the goodEST!
ha.
plus a few scallion sprankles,  for good measure,
because a little more green flavoritism never hurt anybody,
and then a healthy smear of some super garlic-activated ultimate guacamole jauns.
duders,
yellow sweet pepper, poblano, red chili, and jalapeno, working in unison,
took this exxxtra-garlicky guapo y fuerte dip into the far-flung reaches of the dip game.
real talk.
.......and that bun is from scratch, kids.
twice risen, cold proofed, shaped up and corn grit bottomed,
they got the semolina and gluten treatment,
and a little pinchy pinch of sugar, plus a dash of agave in the liquid portion.....
damn, son!
i'm over here making sure even the BUN world is shook.
um, yeah.
i love sandwiches,
and i especially loved this worthy addition to my nutritional reality a whole lot.
mmmmmmmm.
and just when i was feeling like that sandwich was a stand-alone BANGER,
i turned it up again,
and i brought it down like thunder with four side orders of expertism!!
crawnchy, peppery watercress, cool crisp cabbage, snappy carrot strips, and scallions,
mixed in with vegenaise and black peps to slay my whole slaw perspective;
and then, we had to get the F* up, like simon says,
because i had a whole big 'nother bunch of farro munch!
two days ago, it was so good,
i had to take it one step further, and improve on my enjoyment...
red onions and cilantro, lemon zest and juice, tart and crawnchy and citrusy,
tossed and turned amidst that wheaty magic, making my entire face excited;
obviously, i needed more guac', with some contrasting super-sweet mini-tomatoes,
because too much of a good thing is what i want, and what i got;
and then lastly,
but most definitely not least among the add-ons,
little cubes of grilled tofu and onions,
panned up in the leavin's of my bacon-slabbin' skillet.
the generous misuse of olive-oily reactivation brought back all
of that sweet, salty, smoky, spicy blackened flavor,
plus i popped off on extra g.p.o.p.,
combined with the essence of all those onion strips to really caramelize the heck
outta the whole shootin' match.
-
the tastes converged, and THE TRUTH was revealed.
i'm tellin' you-
i had seconds, but there wasn't much room after the firsts were finished.
i just couldn't help it.
that much expert dinnertime snow day snow magic
is NOT to underappreciated.
*
i've got another long day of zippin',
after another 'nother long night of not sleeping.
the thing is:
crabtree is very communicative,
and much like me,
he's not got a whole lot of good things to say.
so we complained together at 4 a.m.,
and i've been complaining ever since.
out in the rain, slipping on ice,
chewing on expensive things (that's more him than me)
we do things together,
and i'd like to think that when he falls back asleep,
and leaves me alone with my thoughts,
for hours,
i'm not truly by myself,
i'm still somehow connected to the unawakened consciousnesses
that slumber inside these halls.
by the time the day begins for real,
i've had a whole half-day underway already.
i'm never getting enough done,
so i wonder what everyone else hopes to accomplish.
nas taught me that sleep is the cousin of death, friends.
so let's avoid that family reunion, if you please;
never quiet, never soft.....

Wednesday, February 24

tic-tac-tick-tock-tacos

late days at the studio mean late dinners at the Folk Life & Life Liberty Fortress.
that doesn't mean taking shorts on the big action, however.
in fact,
it means the opposite.
usually, at any given moment,
i'm thinking about food and getting psyched on munching up a little bit,
so when it's past me normal feeding time,
and i'm a cranky bellyacher,
and i'm feeling the pressure to produce something expert,
but i'm also feeling the urge to sprint to the finish line.....
well,
in that scenario,
i need fastish food, in large quantities, and i need all of it immediately,
but somehow still with all the warrior poetry intact.
lucky for me i made that big batch of burly seitan steakiness yesterday.
that's the kind of headstart that'll help a fella out when he's got the fever
for a tuesday-appropriate time-sensitive fiesta for his face.
real talk.
hurry up, and hang on, and spit some hot fire, neighbors-
taco tuesday is not a joke:

mmmmmmmmmm.
guys,
i want all of them.
actually,
i ATE all of them.
and then i ate some more.
refried beans are good for you, probably.
they're good for me, certainly,
and my girly-girl ampy-d looooooves 'em,
so we sizzled up some onion and pepper, and nootch-blasted a batch,
with g.p.o.p. and exxxtra-butterish, plus a splash of ho' sauce,
just to get it poppin' with atouch of that new hottness.
my man travis over at veganmagictime loves farro.
i s'pose that's why we're friends.
i mean,
we both agree that farro is dope,
which is a solid foundation for any good friendship.
if you don't know about it,
you might want to find out,
just so you can catch up to the future of heirloom grains.
i'm sayin',
we're over here on that marty mcfly mealtime sh!t,
and you wouldn't want to short yourself of these gigawatts of goodness would you?
word up.
a good idea is a good idea,
and thus, i'm down to farro up my tacos,
especially since i tossed in raw white onion for exxxtra-crawnch,
and green onions, to really take my weird grain game to eleven.
that's that guapo y fuerte stuff, friends.
i need a lot of stuff to stuff in my stuff,
and to that end, i fired up a batch of shredded seitan sizzlers!
g.p.o.p.'d and sauteed to a golden outer sheen,
blasted with garlic and onion and oregano and liquid smoke,
plus cayenne and ho' sauce and black pepper,
and just a little bit of that smoked paprika red.
you know- to pump up the volume another 'nother notch.
oh, and for the record,
i prefer flour tortillas.
in fact,
i prefer flour over most things...
and damn if those floury softies didn't make each foldover a total success.
so many good things,
the only way to improve 'em was to add so many MORE good things-
pea tendrils, crawnchy, spicy watercress, sweet mini tomatoes,
and even MORE ho' sauce, to finish 'em off.
....what we have there is the TRUTH, kids.
i'll dominate a fistful every single time,
and i'll tell you something else-
i'll go back for more every time, too.
we ate late,
but we ate well.
there's really no good reason to skimp out,
and there's no better time to make your food expert than ALL THE TIME.
it's all really happening,
good food is the fundamental source of all good things;
never quiet, never soft.....

the business.

tattooooooos.
yeah.
i'm busy.
and i'm doing a whole lotta tattzappin'.
it's not fun,
straight-up street-style packin' zips into every single second of at-workiness,
but,
the gettin's good,
so i've gotta make with the gettin',
if you know what i' talking about.
yesterday,
i had a little time with my buddy todd,
and he got a little dragon activation started.
i like dragons.
(and dungeons)
and i like todd,
so i guess i made out pretty dang well on the first half of my day.
this is it:

we scribed up the lines,
some etchy, some sketchy, all hot fire, all the time,
and we'll beat it up even more in a few weeks.
here's the thing-
no matter what i draw,
it looks like i drew it.
i don't know if i'm psyched, or despairing.
no.
i mean it.
much like my general mood in a room full of people,
my hand-style is pervasive, and invasive, offensive, effusive,
and it makes allowances for very little non-native influence to shine through.
everything gets albie-ized the moment my reverse-midas mitts get a hold of it.
neighbors,
that's frustrating as F*.
for really real, it IS.
because not everything has to look like i've disregarded canon.
i mean,
c'mon,
you all already know how i feel about rules,
and that's perhaps why i get frustrated that my art-making seems to flaunt them.
ugh.
i just need to get better.
i mean,
that's the goal, isn't it?
to be the best version of ourselves?
i'm sure there's something to be said for a signature look,
a personal style,
and a dominant flavor........
but,
i'd like to be a bit more diversified.
i do all the tattoos, all the time, in all the styles,
but they still look like i did 'em,
and there's not a whole lot of plausible deniability in that approach, folks.
it's bad enough that the craziest ten percent of what i talk about
makes up one hundred percent of what most people remember about me,
so the pictures i cook up all being as readily identifiable
just sort of makes me feel a little predictable.
i want something i can't quite pinpoint,
or maybe, i just want MORE of everything.
there's greed at work in there somewhere,
a desire to be and do and have all the things at once.
too much is the right amount,
and that means i still need to practice more,
and then,
when i get it right,
i've got to practice even MORE.
when you can't tell i did it,
then i'll be satisfied;
never quiet, never soft.....

Tuesday, February 23

gross things.

in the intermediate moments,
seitan looks like human baby meat.
huh?
no,
that's real.
i start with a fat cup of wheat gluten,
to which i add a quarter cup of tapioca to mitigate the squeak;
and i use a third of a cup of garbanzo flour to fiber it up, and bulk it out;
i beat it up with black pepper, because that stuff is dope;
i activate those jammers with g.p.o.p., obvi, since that's mandatory vegan flav',
and rules is rules,
but,
after three quarters of a cup of bouillon-heavy broth,
with a few glugs of tamari, and a dripdrop of liquid smoke,
when it's all kneaded, and the juices are creating the protein powerhouse
that we all know and love?
.....it's butchered baby.
and that's not literal,
but it's still no joke.
from flours to dough,
from dough to the soak,
we're good,
it's like sh!tty bread-
but once it's boiling,
that essential babyflesh factor shines right through the broth.
check it:

boom.
yuck.
it IS called wheatmeat by some,
they just never say specifically that it looks a whole lot like
a chubby nine-month-old homo sapiens thigh slice.
ahhhhhhhhhh.
maybe glutes on gluten has been right there in front of our faces this whole time,
but i never noticed it until my mean-spirited lack-of-sleep werewolfen self
took a second look.
hmmmm.
it does look cool boiling away, regardless.
one way to avoid this scenario is to buy it, instead of making it,
but i'm pretty sure that's lazy, and not as delicious,
and that's a combination i will not tolerate in the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress.
i've got to have the homemade hottness,
because it's got that custom blend, neighbors.
i get too damned psyched on the minutiae of improvisational improvements,
and therefore,
i need to get busy with it.....
***********
speaking of mean spirited-
tax season means tattoos.
am i right?!
wooohooooo!!!!
y'all gettin' that return?
you know you love that that FREE money-
SIKE.
you do know it's money that you actually earned, but had withheld?
collected, invested, interest-garnered, and returned in a smaller increment...
whatever,
that math talk is so lame,
especially when you've gotta get those tattzaps.
no way should anybody use that loot to improve their situation.
that's be sillypants dumb-dumb jauns.
take that freebie, and get some sick ink, kid-
why?
because that's what poor people DO.
hahahahah.
take it easy,
everybody does it.
it's just that the cheapie-cheap peeps get TERRIBLE ideas,
once a year, there's a monthlong melee,
a no-appointment walk-in skimarking sh!t-salad smear
of all-out ball-out 'hood rich b!tchbaggery,
....earned-income-credit permitting, of course.
also,
if you're getting back more than you made?
i guess i'm buying you that tattoo,
by six degrees of gainfully-employed separation.
awwwww.
you could at least get a cooler idea.
no?
oh.
okay.
i'll be using those movie checks to PAY my bill to my uncle samuel,
y'feel me?
so keep 'em coming until you burn through that xbox/big-screen/KFC/mountain dew money.
ha.
not everybody does it wrong, however.
and on the very rare occasion when one of my homeboys is around,
i might even draw up a little rough somethin'-somethin' beforehand.
(which is otherwise NOT a thing)
am i tattooing a big dragon today?

yeah.
what?
no,
it's just the rough draft.
jeez.
take it easy.
i'll be zippin' that zapper after a tasty breakfast with my good buddy todd.
he's a good dude,
so he gets the exxxtra-good treatment.
i'm like that, kids.
not all of y'all are the same amount of valuable,
and i pro-rate the pregame accordingly.
yup.
that's a little behind-the-scenes glimpse into how being elite works.
can you tell the difference?
sometimes it's two inches of juggalo,
other times, it's a foot of dragon.
if those both seem the same to you,
i s'pose i'll be seeing you soon,
i'll know it's you, because you'll be standing around in a too-big sweatshirt,
posing as a busy weekend walk-in,
reppin' a turdpile of true-life baby-name movie check big ideas.
i can't hardly wait until saturday.
hahaha.
it's all really happening,
i'm just too sleepy to be anything but cranky about it all;
never quiet, never soft.....

Sunday, February 21

werewolf & i.

they say dogs and their owners tend to look alike.

a squinky-eyed squatty sausage shark bullet!

^and then this guy.
...
ummmm,.right.
i don't see it, either.

he IS very handsome, so maybe that's where i'm losing the likeness.
i do see that this little nighttime terrier is similarly susceptible
to the moon's lunatic pull, through the blue-light-bathed snowfall reflections
and the crystalline ice refraction magnification of our true inner infinite nature.
do you get me?
no?
ok.
it's like this-
nature wins,
and even wen you spend your conscious timeline
refining a better and better version of yourself,
the real dirt-dirty and grit-grimy deepest darkest inner jauns
are gonna ooze out when your guard is compromised.
that's no joke,
and the werewolf moon is pulling and tugging and worrying
along the frayed edges of fretful sleeping,
and tearing at the tattered seams of our overstuffed ironclad pokerfaces.
there's pressure building up, and power pouring over the edges of our patience.
a good night's sacking out would be the cure,
but that's not in the cards,
apparently.
y'know, neighbors,
it's not so much the lack of sleep
as it is the consistently, alarmingly, repeatedly rudest of rude awakenings.
the way i rise and shine, every day,
from the antechambers of slumberland is with my hypothalamus
sending s.o.s telegrams to every extremity in preparation of mortal combat.
i mean it.
not sleeping at all is one thing.
...it's no fun, and you're always sort of hazy,
but,
it's not the same sort of suckiness as interrupted, rhythmless
faded in-and-outings into rest.
and if it's also punctuated by the fight-or-flight panic of perpetual peril?
that's pure bullsh!t.
as it so happens,
my semi-conscious mind can't tell the difference between
the pealing mewl of dog-whininess,
and alien invaders attempting to turn their tripod walkers towards my home.
nope.
i guess i'm a little tiny bit tightly-wound.
which means that getting my face stepped on by wintry dog paws,
while crabtree tries to readjust himself into a more comfortable place in the bed
gets the same instantaneous life-threatened adrenaline reaction
as assassins trying to garrote my throat and put me down forever.
yikes.
so,
here's the thing-
i respond like an absolutely frenzied feral battle-beast whenever i wake up to what my
tentative and tempermental automatic mind perceives as danger.
and it turns our anything that's even remotely interactive,
from the first second i start to drift off,
becomes a reason to start the blitzkrieg across enemy lines.
yikes.
i'll bet it's no fun being a sound sleeper over here.
y'feel me?
think about it;
the little nothings that bring me to an instant boil are by-and-largely unnoticed,
but the brutal freak out of cursing, biting, snarling animal anger,
mostly mine, and sometimes crabtree's, will awaken even the deepest of dreamers.
we take our hard styles and our long nights to eleven.
what else would we do?
every night is a struggle, every day is exhausting, until it's over,
and that's just it-
without the rest and respite of the evening, it's never really over.
one continuous moebius morass of metallic-tasting mettle-testing middleground mayhem.
it's all really happening.
the werwolfen tooth-and-claw caterwauling;
the bursting spurts of howling hit-and-run skirmishing;
the reset-resentment of every aftermidnight hot-fire-fight;
over and over, and then over again,
there's too many wild animals and not enough cage,
there's layers and layers of blood-feud fenrir fuego flooding our veins,
and not enough lairs to lay low until the waning ebbs the flow.
if you're looking for silver linings in this,
know that the lycanthropic leaning is susceptible,
but the lernean hydraulics of this bad bloodline
will generate two new problems for every one you solve-
(also, if you know anything about folklore and mythology,
and still don't think that last sentence was expert? ....F* you, forever)
so,
if you're asleep, you're the enemy,
and if you wake us up, you're the enemy.
there are no friends here after dark;
never quiet, never soft.....

Saturday, February 20

big banh theory.

yeah,
i ate another 'nother big action burly banh mi,
on even bigger, better, baguette-ier bread,
with more buttery toastedness than before,
and extra vegenaise,
and a double squiggle of sriracha.
that combination alone is expert.
but,
with cukes and fresh basil, too,
plus lots and lots of cilantro's cool clean secret nutrients,
in addition to slice after slice of those hot green chilis,
AND that daikon carrot pickle jauns?
c'mon,
that's a super-sexy salad sandwich all by itself,
before we ever even turn it up with our two types of tofu stuffs.
on the really real,
i get busy with sandwiches,
and i effs with the stacks on stacks on stacks style of assembly.
my friends,
i'd like to ask you to now go ahead and check the bang-banh-type teleport:

.................................kaboom.
straightforward lightly seasoned pan-seared tofu steaks,
and an overlapping layer of reheated sizzle-edged molto-molto delicious vegan roast.
neighbors,
i needed that.
i'd been thinking about more of that sandwich activation all day,
and when you know there's all the necessities waiting in the refrigerator,
you really have to get it going when you get home.
if you don't, it's like admitting you're lazy,
and don't deserve to munch up on the dopeness.
and you'd be the one to know if that's the truth.
me,
i positively insist on new hottness.
anything else is a derisive dirigible of doo-doo butter
crashing into my sense of self-worth,
like a heaping helping of hot sh!t, hindenburging my mouth with disappointment.
i can't hang out with that.
not one teentsy-tiny teeny-weentsy little bit.
i want that bold jauns,
the sort of stuff that fortune favors,
and foments and fosters into ferocious furious fantastic frenzied flavors.
seriously,
who doesn't?
oh.
A*-holes.
that's right.
i almost forgot about them and their microwaved mac'n'chee' tupperware,
i was so busy remembering how elite my sandwich was,
i started imagining everybody already knew about just being dope,
or, conversely, F*ing right off.
meanwhile,
i'm snacking up on fried bok choi, too.
mmmmmmmmmmm.
i LOVE food.
and i want big gigantic heaps of everything expert, everything vegan,
and everything superfancy and unnecessary.
too much is the right amount, all the dang time.
*
food.
all the time.
that's what i'm thinking about.
the first-world vegan privilege that's condescended to by second-rate chefs,
who're busy exploiting third world tastes at first-class prices,
is something i rarely worry about.
i mean,
i've been vegan for twenty years.
that's a thing.
and that was even when i was poor,
and even when i was abroad in the flippin' unenlightened nineties,
and even when i was doing any and everything else wrong.
that's right,
since the first day i decided to be craftier than a carcass-cruncher,
more considerate than a corpse-eater,
more conscientious than a cadaver-devourer,
more committed than a carrion consumer,
i have been steady crushing the vegetable scene,
and for two straight decades, at that.
so,
is it a conceit of the industrial world to eat out-of-season awesomeness year round?
i dunno, man.
i bet every wealthy culture with the means to create commerce
traded in super-official new treats from far and away,
throughout history, and since forever ago, too.
i'm just leaving out the rhinoceros stuffed with peacock with panda-nuts in it's butt,
or whatever all those dudes were into.
i obsess over things to make,
i obsess over things i want to make,
and i obsess over things i've made,
because i want to always be better than i was,
even if that means improving on a pretty-damned good yesterday.
i'm a first-rate first-world indoor-plumbing-and-wifi advocate,
and i'm feeling a little hungry for something expert and ethnic.
hahaha.
i doo-doo that voyeuristic food tourism,
right from the comfort of the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress
i'm kind of a jerk,
i'm also sitting snugly in my kitchen,
watching snow fall softly, but alarmingly, onto the woodsly goodness
but with a bellyful of intense banh mi magic,
so i'm also the jerk who's sort of winning.
*
and speaking of winning-
late last week,
ampy d made us some didn't go grocery-shopping reverse nachos.
reverse nachos?
yeah,
take a look:

duders,
even with extra food that's just hanging around, we make some serious sh!t.
the refried beans were on the bottom,
and the chips were an assortment of previous dippin's' remainders.
some sort of crumblers were bloppin' across the surface,
and little tomatoes stayed hidden throughout as well.
this amber of mine sure knows about what's delicious.
coming home to a tray of that spread-out spiciness,
is always invited to my late-night delights.
i am grateful for all the opportunities i've got,
i'm thankful for all the indulgences i partake in,
i'm a lucky sunovab!tch in some ways,
and i'm aware of fortune's favor in those specific and special spaces and times
within the wodengeists of my mountain world.
it's all really happening,
the bitter, the sweet, the bold, the old, the busted, the big, the bad, the ugly.....
this is it, and that's all there is;
never quiet, never soft..... 

scruffs

apples, neighbors.
for my face.
y'know,
to keep away the doctors and stuff like that.
...yep,
it's all about apples.
and i want to tell y'all all about it.
for serious,
when there's treats a-poppin',
and they need to be the body-rockin' big action,
apples are a pretty definite YES as far as ingredient go.
with cinnamon, and nutmeg, and allspice, and ginger,
and a tiny hint of clove,
plus maple syrup, lemon juice, vanilla, and a bit of brown sugar?
c'mon.
that's the right way to make apples into experts.
mmhmmm.
i peeled, cored, chopped and cooked those fruits into submission,
and i rebuilt them into something better using those spices.
i used six of the biggest reddest apples at the grocer,
a gang of cortland giants,
and i will say this-
i prefer baking with crawnchy white-flesh apples.
i do.
i think the only actual reason is that i'm gonna sneak a slice or two for myself,
in advance of the cooking and baking process,
and those crisp snappy chaps are the ones i wanna sink my teeth into.
really.
there's no other obvious benefit to those jauns over the yellowy ones.
besides the fact that jaundice is gross,
and i make broad associations between unrelated circumstances.
ha.
anyway,
check the apples-to-apples-type teleport:

oh, apple scruffs, how i love you!
cinnamon coconut oatmeal slumps on the bottom,
firmly buttered up and very rich and extremely knobbly,
and those apples dumped down in between the oaty lumps,
so the juices flow freely throughout the crags and crannies of the crumb.
oh, MAN!
that's be good by itself, if that was the way i did things-
the thing of it is,
i knew i needed MORE.
i always need more,
and then, after that,
maybe just a little bit MORE.
yeah.
so i made a cinnamony better wetter batter,
and poured it over the top, like sexy cement to seal that sucker up.
friends,
that locked in all the apple hottness,
and with sliced apples on top,
and cinnamon sugar sprankles,
what i created is a little something called THE TRUTH.
damn.
i'm about those apples,
and i'm psyched on double cakey stacks,
but,
you wanna know what i'm really into?
taking it to eleven.
mmhmm.
so a la mode it is,
with cinnamon icing drizzles to really blast my 'buds with decadent dopeness.
-
i didn't measure a damned thing.
i felt like free-forming a flowing organic experience,
and i'm glad i did.
i'm willing to bet you could recreate it with a little planning.
i mean,
i know what i used, and i can estimate how much of each thing is in there,
but,
maybe, just maybe,
you've got some intuitive treat-making tendencies,
and you want to hone them into sharp focus?
that's the stuff!
it's easier than you'd think, even if you're not a natural culinary wizard.
i mean it-
you know how to make pancakes?
make that batter, but butterier, and thicker,
and that's that topping,
you ever make granola?
word up, you hippie.
that's basically the bottom,
and in between,
you've got apples.
now,
if you can't figure out how to activate THAT hottness,
you're quite likely a big jerk.
sorry, folks, but that's a thing.
they're already dope on their own,
you just have to dress 'em up a little fancy.
there's hope for you yet;
never quiet, never soft.....

Friday, February 19

where's my coffee?

neighbors,
every single day,
i wake up to crabtree complaining about something.
he's too cold, he's too hot, he's uncomfortable, he has to go outside...
it's always something.
always,
and that makes sense,
since i'm an always-person.
no?
it means both a morning and a night person;
and then also afternoons, too,
while i motormouth my way through the sit-stillness of the tattooing times.
plus,
if we're being honest here-
(and we always are, because this is where the truth gets told truly.)
i want to get more done than i actually get done,
and that means there's no laising about allowed.
so,
i'm up early,
and i get it going on pretty darned good,
but,
my wakefulness is initiated by complaint,
and coupled with my own synchronized two-part harmony of discord and disquiet.
(it's possible- think sonic youth, but as a middle-aged man)
that's a tough way to start the day,
but,
it's a very up-front reminder that there are no easy days,
at least, not if you're really doing your best to be your best.
if it's easy, you're not challenging yourself nearly enough.
that's real.
every day, from the minute i wake up,
it feels like volunteering to spearhead a suicide mission,
only,
over and over and over and over....
i'm reppin' a permanent viking berserker valhalla hunt for virtue and value and victuals.
especially those vittles, kids.
yes,
it's sort of  hard style,
but,
when the elements align,
and the oven cooperates,
even the roughest bloodshot battle-beastly morning,
and the longest darkest tossingly turniest night
are a-okay,
because there's treats to be enjoyed in between conflicts.
ha!
friends,
check the teleport:

BAAAAM!
coffee, and roasted crushed coffee beans, and instant coffee, and coffee extract,
in a couple of cakey cakes, for you and me and everybody.
yum.
baby bundt-holes, and their bottoms, which also became tops,
when i sliced and stacked 'em into whoopie jauns.
...yeah.
espresso icing, drizzled down the sides,
or ziggity-zagged aloing the tops,
depending on which style you prefer,
plus, cappuccino creme frosting,
swirled around the spots that needed filling up or in.
i take my treats very seriously.
like,
this is not a hobby to me,
it's my true and real joy.
mostly because i get to eat 'em,
but also because i have total control over the input and outcome of my creations.
i love that, and i need that.
i mean,
i could've left it well enough alone at super coffee cakes,
but well enough is not good enough,
and good enough is never ever enough-
i mean, c'mon now-
too much is the right amount.
mmmhmmm.
and that's why i also made two kinds of cookie dough,
vanilla and java,
and stacked and rolled and froze and cut the culmination of my labors into swirls.
word.
i want those fancy cookies,
and those coffee cakes,
and that drippy icing,
and that fluffy frosting.
on the ones,
that sounds way more expert than just one or two or three of those things.
i want ALL the hottness,
and if i have the means, the inspiration, and the know-how to doo-doo that freaky sh!t?
then i have to make the time to make the magic happen.
or i'll take it by storm and force the day to lengthen and accommodate my efforts.
that's called imposing your will on your world,
and creating a corona of cultivated concentrated coincidence around yourself.
yup.
i've got that nimble nimbus of imbued big action,
and i summon it up like an elite efreeti from the hot fiery furnaces of forever.
my small world is full of gigantic life.
it's packed full of moves to make,
and cakes to bake,
and bones to break,
without any breaks, or brakes, or mistakes...
i like that.
i'd like a little more rest,
or,
failing that, a marginally less-alarming awakening once in a while.
i have my doubts about that,
so i'll stick to inflicting my feelings on the woodsly goodness
while my people and my pets snooze the morning away;
never quiet, never soft.....

Thursday, February 18

GongBaoDouFu.

ha!
neighbors,
i made a small sandwich,
and then i remembered that too much is the right amount,
....so i ate two of them.
ha.
i mean it, though.
and also,
the sandwich was small for a few reasons,
one,
because i had these especially sexy crusty rolls from the local bakery,
two,
because it's a vietnamese name i could make an english joke out of,
which i couldn't resist, as my smarmy cleverness gets the best of me most days,
and lastly,
because i also made a bunch of other other 'nother stuff to munch up on, too.
yeah.
so my banh mi became a banh mini,
and his little broski became a banh mini-mi.
good thing i made two, huh?
i can always use twice as many puns.
anyway, guys,
check the teleport,
and then we'll get into some details:

kung-kaPOW!
those sandwiches are my new best friends.
SIKE.
they're being turned into nutrients and sh!t,
deep within the plant-based recycling plant in my pants.
that's real.
but,
those sandwiches were worthy of thuan thien-
(that's the vietnamese excalibur, kids)
what's in there that makes them so good?
everything.
a crescendo of crisp veggies and warm proteins and crusty bread,
with spicy and tangy tastes hiding in the cut, waiting to rock your flippin' face off.
i started with a base layer of baby cucumber,
and topped that with half a block of cornstarch-and-g.p.o.p.-coated baked tofu,
sliced up into catch-wreck-tangles,
(i baked them first because i used regular firm tofu,
and wanted a bit more of a toothsome and stronger bite-
besides, i fried 'em up before serving to reactivate all the tastiness)
plus,
instead of pate, which is F*ing horrifyingly gross,
i made a quick home-style vegan roast with the other half of the tofu,
plus a few tablespoons of leftover black beans,
a cup-ish of wheat gluten,
a LOT of garlic,
bouillon, liquid smoke, paprika, g.p.o.p. (obvi), black pepper,
tapioca, and a little soy sauce.
baked in advance, then sliced up and pan-fried to reheat it a bit,
and before you can say wordimus prime?
mmhmm.
now we're living in the future.
a good banh mi has toasted bread, and i do mine in a pan,
(it keeps the outer crust softer, and more big-biteable)
with vegenaise, and sriracha, and cilantro sprankles,
and thin jalapeno slices, and of course,
that vietnamese quick-pickle jauns.
yeah!
vinegar, and agave, and a pinch of salt, and hot water, and daikon and carrot,
and a little thought-out and planned-for timespan-
i think you really only need twenty minutes, but i gave mine hours to really get rad.
friends,
i doo-doo that banh'ing banh mi sh!t.
even when it's tiny. it goes to eleven.
-
the bigger big action, however,
is that gong bao in the middle of the plate.
damn, duders.
it's good.
like, stoopid crazy dumb good, which is better than smart good by a mile or so.
first, i cornstarched my tiny tofu cubes, freshly hewn from a block of exxxtra-firmness,
and ginger and g.p.o.p.'d 'em,
before i browned the whole batch up, and set it aside for a bit.
then i twice-fried some peanuts-
that's roasted unsalted goobs, flash fried in oil, reviving all that heavenly hottness,
and then again, with the rest of the ingredients,
they get another 'nother dose of that hot hot pan.
and in that pan i had sweet red pepper, the whites of a bunch of green onions, a shallot,
and three large cloves of roughly chopped garlic, all blistering up on medium high heat.
and once that was feeling pretty hot, i added two types of chilis, red and green,
and the tofu, and the peanuts,
and turned the heat up a little bit,
before i blasted the whole skillet with a batch of powerful sauce.
soy sauce, rice wine, a splish of balsamic vinegar, (really), brown sugar,
ginger, three MORE cloves of garlic, a dash of cayenne, a drizz' of ho' sauce,
a touch of toasted sesame oil, and black pepper,
plus a pinch of cornstarch to make it thick quickly,
because wet and sloppy is great sometimes,
but not in my gung bao.
that thickened up in a flash,
so it was set-up and ready for the finishing moves.
we made it expert with the greens of those scallions,
shredded basil, cilantro, and some mung bean sprouts.
i could've just served a bowl of that by it's lonesome, and had an amazing supper,
but that's not how i get frisky with my foodstuffs on my only day away from the studio.
nope.
i wilted some baby bok choi, and hit it up with just a b!tchslappy sip of bragg's tamari,
which let it super buttery, and perfectly salty,
which, in turn, made a celestial bed of heavenly happiness for my dou fu to sit on.
word up.
the basil tip garnish was a nice touch, too. ....i ate it with the first bite.
delicious.
-
add in that crisp, crawnchy coolwater cucumber and cabbage salad,
lime-juiced, and greenified with cilantro, scallions, and mungies,
and suddenly,
there's a feast flowing freely through the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress.
i LOVE food.
i love that vegan roast...
even though i went rogue with the black beans, and heavy on the bouillon,
it came out great, and it goes well with most things i'm likely to make this weekend.
never the same way twice is the way i progress,
not because i don't care about my culinary history,
but rather because i'm continuously writing it,
and improving upon the past.
no rewrites, no edits, only new chapters-
building volumes upon volume,
at a deafening volume;
never quiet, never soft.....

Wednesday, February 17

facemaker

more,
and more, and MORE.
too much is the right amount.
i believe it,
and i believe in doing a lot of everything i do-
and then overdoing it,
and then doing just a little bit after that.
it's really the way i live.
even when nobody's looking, i STILL don't take it easy.
and so,
a daily dosing of a dousing in douchiness,
via fleeting glimpses into digital facemaking,
is how i start off my mornings in the woodsly goodness.
mmhmmm.
finding new ways to look worse is kind of a passion of mine,
and i don't just do it as hard as i can,
i do an awful lot of it, too.
neighbors,
check the 'chat-type teleport:





oh, MAN!











there's just so many bobots,





and monsters,

and stoopidheaded ideas.

i'm not ashamed,

i'm not embarrassed,

but,
maybe i should be?
nah,
that's not my style, kids.
but this is:



hahahaha.



i do the things i do.
i am compelled, if not rewarded,
i am imperiled if i abstain,
and relieved if i indulge.
....this is how i am.
compulsive,
obsessive,
prolific?
it's all really happening,
that much i'm positive of;
never quiet, never soft.....

Monday, February 15

hearts.

panniecakes,
panniecakes,
baker-man!
i LOVE panniecakes.
i do.
waffles are great, too, for sure,
but,
pancakes have one exxxtra added bit of expertism,
and that's that they're capable of becoming other shapes.
think about it-
for waffles to be a new shape,
you need a whole other 'nother waffle iron.
i don't hate the idea of ten waffle irons,
but i do sort of dislike the idea of donating a whole cupboard
to my occasional dented-pancake variety show.
y'know?
yea, i think you do.
anyway, neighbors,
nicey mornings in the woodsly goodness are especially expert
when it's sunday, it's love-day, and it's not even any degrees outside at all.
uh-huh.
it's that time of year again.
the midwinter masochism native to all northern new englanders
sets in alongside the perpetual chill from without,
and nestles next to you within the marrow of the biting, rending,
savage, stormswept raging barbarian gypsy chillout banshee howling across the hills,
down from the frozen spires of the ghoulish granite mountains,
damn.
it's so cold everywhere,
and none of it feels good.
these are the days when the temperature turns into a cruel countdown,
dropping into the minuses, and those minuses culminating in absolutes-
words come to mind like: subzero, kelvin, abyssal vacuum.....
y'know, the works.
so,
it's especially important to cook up some hot fire for your hot partner,
and maybe even for yourself,
although it could be argued you deserve it a little less.
ha.
c'mon.
guys,
check the valentine-breakfast-type teleport:

awwwwwwwww.
s'kyoooooooooooot!
hearts on hearts,
in two sizes, (as in, hers and his, you pick which is which)
and circles, too-
just to summon the spirits and memories that make the magic matter more.
i mean it, that's for real.
coconut oatmeal panwell cakes, kids.
i've got my recipe, and i'm sticking to it.
heck, i even had a hot cuppathat custom pancake breakfast tea along with it.
really,
the coconut vanilla and the marigold syrupy yellowness really bring the
overall irish-style breakfast blend up to eleven.
and that's as it should be.
also,
when it comes to the cakey nuttiness of those pan-jauns
i don't use coconut flour. because it's just too yellowish,
and i think that's sort of uncool.
instead, in a spice grinder, i pulverize the flakes myself,
and i think the coarser texture,
and the way sexxxier color, both improve my 'cake scene a hundredfold.
that's no joke.
and i do the same with rolled oats.
yup.
about a quarter cup of each, against a cup of regular wheat flour,
with a punch of sugar,
a pinch of salt,
baking pow-pow and that soda,
and a healthy pour of vanilla,
in a cup-and-change-ish of vanilla almond milk,
curdled into butter-style mil by a generous squeezin' of lemon.
mmmhmmmmm.
that's what's good.
and you know i melt my butterishness up first, too, before i blend it in.
normally,
i'd use vegan sour cream at this point,
but lately, my white-peopley vegan market trips have been curtailed by my
the terrorizing terrorist terrier, so i don't have any.
it made only a marginal, meager difference, at most-
i just upped the ante with a dash of whisked up olive oil in the milk mix,
and it made up the difference with gusto.
seriously,
look at what i mean:

you know you  like those cookie-cuttin' shapey-shapes, for your face.
....that's right!
a little baking spray,
a few metal shapes
(yeah, i melted a plastic one a ways back, and learned my lesson)
and the very next thing you know, provided you didn't overfill,
and you rested your batter so as to not leave it all runny and funless,
you've got yourself some new hottness in full effect.
and that's when you take those perfect tens up a notch to eleven.
yup.
strawberries, and vanilla bean paste, and lemon juice, and lemon extract,
and powdered sugar, plus the thickener of your choice.
that's what you need.
why strawberries?
because strawberries go with valentine's day like roses and hearts,
plus,
they're red, and shaped like hearts in the first place,
and they pretty much taste like love before you eff with them at all.
expert.
that's not quite enough, though.
at least,
up here in the chilly wastes,
nestled within the warrior poet palace we call the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress,
we prefer to overdo ALL that we do,
and thus,
there are also cinnamon-vanilla-sugared roasted pecan sprankles, too,
plus a sploofy splat of ka-powdered sugar mix blasted
over the really real rural superiority of real grade B heavy-duty maple syrup.
breakfast is not permitted to be b!tchlike.
real talk.
*
it's cold,
but,
it's supposed to be.
i don't really like it,
but,
i don't think i should have to.
i had a great time, on either end of my workday.
a bookend-style fore-and-aft festival of fond feelings,
followed by a F*ing big jerk of a dog sleeping zero-seconds'-worth of the night.
yuck.
he tossed, turned, fidgeted, effed off, effed around,
and otherwise effed up the entire night.
someone had to,
because there's no such thing as an all-the-way-great time.
at least,
not where i live.
nobody leaves with the title,
but, occasionally, they at least get a good night's sleep afterwards;
never quiet, never soft.....

Sunday, February 14

beholder.

Dungeons & Dragons changed my life.
for serious,
when i was a kid,
i loved monsters,
but when my childhood friend liam came back from
a february school vacation spent visiting his weird cousins in vermont,
with tales of imagined adventures,
and role-playing awesomeness,
accompanied by a brief example of just how dope storytelling in
a hobbity habitat of pretend swords and sorcery could be?
holy sh!tballs,
i was hooked,
instantly,
and i learned all there was to learn about bugbears (which are neither),
owlbears (which are kinda both)
and also orcs, ettins, ettercaps, hook horrors, helmed horrors,
catoblepas, and on and on and on.
do i have a monster manual?
i have ALL the monster manuals.
do i have the monstrous compendium?
neighbors,
i AM the monstrous compendium-
and one of the monsters that always seemed totally insane,
straight off of the the cover of that binder of battlebeasts,
from the heydays of larry elmore and jeff easley,
is, was, and remains the eye tyrant.
yup.
the floating tentacled toothy ball of magic and death
and crazy oddbody bulbous cyclopean power,
also known as the beholder.
mmhmmmmm.
today,
for valentine's day,
i channeled a little bit of that old school D&D natural twenty citical hit sh!t,
and i painted up a little somethin' special.
check the floating-fury-and-levitating-love-type teleport:

BOOOOOM
it's a beauty beholder.
y'feel me?
a heart tyrant,
with extended seventh-day succulent stalking ioun aortas,
and a corona of capillary cauldrons,
labelled with the week's roll call.
why?
because eight days a week is how you show you care.
the beatles told me that.
-
yeah,
it's painted on the inside of a cut up cardboard christmas box.
so?
the red hearts are cut out of a timecard, too.
however,
i didn't just make my usual coarse and cheap art, though, guys.
nope.
in the spirit of saint valentine i even spent a whole 'nother $1.50
on some new paints, in pinky pink and a couple of variable berry reds.
ha.
*
i think nostalgia is creeping into my hands,
and i autonomically activated all my most favorite things in one picture.
before i had a chance to even consider that i would've wanted to...
that's real.
the skullish jaws, the wet hearts, the eyes on eyes on eyes,
with overlapping concentric circles, and collage clipping accoutrements.
all of it,
automatically added.
i'm predictable, or reliable, or a one-trick magic act,
but i'll tell you what else i am-
i'm making stuff,
and that counts for a whole lot.
i like it,
and there may be more of this where that came from.
i know a whole lot of creatures and chaos-aligned combatants i'd like to illustrate.
i'm excited for what's next,
because the object, obviously, isn't the biggest or the most beautifullest-
we stay ugly over here, and we stay dope,
because the main objective is MORE.
that heart is on the attack,
but it's executed to the limits of my current ability.
it isn't pretty, but it might be expert,
and i'm thinking that might sorta be my thing;
never quiet, never soft.....

if you're gonna do it....

you'd better totally commit to doo-dooing that freaky sh!t.
mmmhmmm. it's hearts and lace and pink and red and white all over the place.
y'know why?
yeah!!
happy valentine's day, duders!
now,
it should be noted that some people are the one rose and a card type of gifters,
some others, maybe more of the chocolate and strawberries and champagne,
other other 'nothers might be the kinky lingerie, fuzzy handcuffs and cheap hotel folks....
that's all well and good,
because there's no wrong way to get freaky-diki,
provided you're committed to the path, and you stick to the plan.
that's real.
look, man.
i'm not implyin' there's only one right way to get it poppin' on valentine's day,
what i AM saying is:
there's only one way to get expert on valentine's day.
mmmhmmmm.
and that's to fit as much in, and fill as much up,
as there is time and money to do it-
yup.
flowers, candy, presents, breakfast, dinner, homemade cards,
AND a storebought jauns,
just to let mutha-'uckers know that romance is no joke,
and deserves twice as much hottness,
by virtue of lovey-dovey huggy-kissie-poo-poo being
the very best bonding experience that money can buy.
haha.
oh, c'mon.
take it easy.
it's not that the number of dollars you flop out is an accurate indicator
of your romantic heart,
it's more like the effort you DON'T make proves whether you're a d!ckturd or not.
right?
or is that too stern a position to take?
honestly, i rather thought it accurate, friends...
hey yo,
i'm sayin',
hard guys do have feelings too.
and hard styles don't limit them in any way.
so yeah, neighbors-
i catch the feels, and i know the rules-
too much is the right amount.

so,
i mean,
don't b!tch out with your weak diapery butt-batter, babies.
here at the Folk Life & Liberty Fortress,
there's breakfast heart pancakes,
with our custom breakfast tea;
and there's presents, and presents, and maybe a few more presents;
and there's flowers;
and there's cards, with secret treats,
and sweet handstyle scripty messages of devotion an' that;
and there's even special treats for my little happy chappie, crabtree.
awwww.
huh?
what about candy?
what do you think i am?
an amateur?
an A*-hole?
don't be dumb.
of COURSE there's candy.
jeez.
and,
tonight,
there's a fancy dinner scheduled at a super-crackery white mountain white person inn.
word up.
the eagle mountain house is the business.
that's for serious.
i imagine we'll be the youngest (her more so than me) people there,
but i promise you this-
we'll eat the most, the hardest, the fastest,
and every bite, always, in the most extravagant way possible.
rules is rules, kids.
believe it.
i hope you're happy about today,
or at the least,
you find red and pink to be flattering shades against your skin tone.
i love the idea of true love,
i love the idea of to blathe,
i love today,
because today is love day,
and what's better than that?
wordimus prime, kids;
never quiet, never soft.....