Feb 27, 2013

Erotic writing

(A friend sends this:)

Spelling reform (Sacha)

(We've posted on this before, but here's Mark Twain's version:)

For example, in Year 1 that useless letter c would be dropped to be replased either by k or s, and likewise x would no longer be part of the alphabet. The only kase in which c would be retained would be the ch formation, which will be dealt with later.
Year 2 might reform w spelling, so that which and one would take the same konsonant, wile Year 3 might well abolish y replasing it with i and Iear 4 might fiks the g/j anomali wonse and for all.
Jenerally, then, the improvement would kontinue iear bai iear with Iear 5 doing awai with useless double konsonants, and Iears 6-12 or so modifaiing vowlz and the rimeining voist and unvoist konsonants.
Bai Iear 15 or sou, it wud fainali bi posibl tu meik ius ov thi ridandant letez c, y and x — bai now jast a memori in the maindz ov ould doderez — tu riplais ch, sh, and th rispektivli.
Fainali, xen, aafte sam 20 iers ov orxogrefkl riform, wi wud hev a lojikl, kohirnt speling in ius xrewawt xe Ingliy-spiking werld.

OK, and now what, where's the corresponding fragment from the Green Eyes? Well, not so easy, we play with spelling only twice, when Maurice's behind is spelled "arse" since he's a Brit. Significantly, both times a beach bear gets involved. The first time because John tries to purloin a towel from said bear to help Maurice cover up his private parts following a close encounter of a certain kind that left Maurice trunk-less (in the sense that he cannot find his discarded swimsuit): 

And so, before time, a shadow falls over my feet, a hand touches my shoulder, and a voice growls: "What are you doing here?" The voice belongs to a mature man, soft in the middle and elsewhere, and it's during the next split second that I commit the next error of the day because I'm not only arrogant, I'm also slow-witted under duress. I should have risen above the suspicious context and ask the bear directly: 'Could you lend me a towel,' perhaps followed by some explanation, perhaps even the true explanation, he would possibly laugh a deep, bearish laugh, his belly shaking, and everything would be fine, and I could walk away with a lent towel to save a British arse. But I don't. "I'm admiring your towels," I say, "trying to find out about the brand, so I could order the same."

"I don't believe you," the towel-owner replies. "I think you are trying to steal something, possibly the booze." "No," I say, no, never." As opposed to me, this round man isn't slow-witted, and he's developing dubious schemes behind his round forehead as we speak. "You were trying to get hold of our champagne," he continues, "a Pommery vintage, ten years old, a bottle that George and I brought to the beach to celebrate the first week of our friendship, the bottle worth 100 bucks."

Feb 24, 2013

The view today

  ...Yes, this is us, this morning, the Esterel hills to the south of Le Trayas... 

...with the Mediterranean right next to it...

Feb 23, 2013

Feb 22, 2013

Lübke English

Heinrich Lübke
Heinrich Lübke was the second president of postwar (West) Germany, and he is remembered for only one thing, his English. He're an example of typical Lübke English:

A: "Hello, Sir, how goes it you?"
B: "Oh, thank you for the afterquestion." 
A: "Are you already long here?"
B: "No, first a pair days. I come not out London." 
A: "Thunderweather, that overrushes me. You see not so out."
B: "That can yes beforecom. I come out Frankfurt."
A: "Das hätte ich nicht gedacht, Sie sprechen ja ausgesprochen gutes Englisch."

So, why do we bring this up? Because of Godehart, of course, the fifth generation descendant of operatic composer Richard Wagner, one of the lead characters in our outrageous novel "Green Eyes."

Spoiler alert: our attempt to dress Godehart in true Lübke English came to nothing --- it's difficult to comprehend (even for Germans), and it wouldn't be convincing given that Godehart is an educated person from an international family whose English ought to be reasonably fluent.

Anyhow, here's a fragment from the Green Eyes, from Chapter 43, "Lets have congress while I explain," where Godehart initiates John to the secrets of Manhunt advertising (Manhunt, the internet dating service):

We've reached full afterplay now, which means we are resting against the chrome grill, not the most comfortable head rests, and I don’t know what to say. Gohard is stroking his dick again. “How about a re-run,” he says as he’s pulling his foreskin in all directions.
“It was great,” I say, “but I need to save some cum for Hunnsbruck.”
“Hunnsbruck,” he exclaims, “I almost forgot. Yes, let us save some cum for Hunnsbruck. Let us get pen and paper.” He jumps off the bed and returns with a Montblanc pen and a leather-bound, Wagner-iconed notebook, this one even prettier than Howard’s lawyer’s diary.

Feb 16, 2013

Just kidding

"In truth I need the money to buy a copy of Michael Ampersant's outrageous new novel Green Eyes"

Feb 14, 2013

Green Eyes --- Chapter 19: Naked girls

Previously, Alex ("Green Eyes") offered to give us a ride, we took him upstairs for the same, we did it, and somehow we fell asleep. We wake up, and he's gone. We've spent the last chapter mourning him. What will we do next? 

I brew coffee without further justification. I drink a cup and don't know what to do. The sun is still at it, embracing the ugly water tower, it is almost on top of it now, what's the name of this position? I should take pictures for my blog, and mention in the post that the tower resembles—better is—is an ugly frog, how do we say, ‘in attendance,’ ‘in expectation,’ ‘in dire need of,’ what, ‘relief,’ ‘transmogrification,’ that word possible doesn't exist, ‘transcendence,’ perhaps. I could perhaps use an older trick, insinuating lightly that the tower is, in reality, a spaceship, which is now awaiting trans-whatever into an ugly frog. We're not getting anywhere. My blog, that's the blog that could have saved me if I would only have shown it to Alex, (or ‘showed’ it to Alex?) so that he could have liked it, and liked me more, and leave his number behind, I’m repeating myself.

My blog lives in the spare room, on the ambulant desk, in my computer (I'm still stuck with a PC). I leave kitchen and coffee behind and turn the switch. It takes forever, as you know, my PC is four years old (why did everything happen four years ago?).

Let me see, I don't quite remember when I posted the last post, like what, three days ago? About what? I forgot as well. This blog, confusingly named Freedom Fries, is about everything and nothing, including loose talk about the gay condition, risqué pictures of the semi-graphical kind, more soft porn, it never angles more than 35° above the ground, we're barely in erection country, not because I'm prudish, but because I want to avoid a content warning, which, I fear, would discourage the last of my regulars of whose sexuality I know little. Beyond the pendulous porn, there are posts with shots at light fun of the acridic type, political posts against slavery and the Confederacy, sometimes somebody emails a new joke, I find a fitting picture, you name it. There are millions of these blogs, perhaps more than potential visitors (some guy from the computer science department told me that 20 thousand new porn sites go on line each day, I can't believe it, but then I never believe other faculty).

Adult content

(This is Frank Sinatra, isn't it? Well, for once we are out-plussed. We have no corresponding fragment from Michael Ampersant's outrageous new novel Green Eyes)

Feb 13, 2013

Find a caption

"My fellow Americans, let me say to you: Stand witness to the death of the red tie!"

Feb 12, 2013

À propos (Doonesbury)

This is us, folks, this is us, Chang saying ""book,"" ("your hobby," "don't get obsessed about it," etc.), and Michael saying "book."  Chang carrying some laundry/garbage bag, Michael not carrying some laundry/garbage bag; der Rest ist Schweigen (we live together for 20 years).

Right, so here are two examples of such paragraphs from the Green Eyes (opening Chapter 21 and 29, respectively; it's usually the first paragraph of a chapter that's difficult):

(Chapter 21, My father and your father were fathers): I'm on my way to the convenience store now, except that I'm not, since the truck doesn't start. Father is in his box, I can forget about him, but my truck is a different box, in particular when it acts up. I never knew it was a truck until Joe, a neighbor, told me so—I thought I had bought an SUV from a stupid lemon dealer, a first generation Mercedes 320 ML from another millennium. But after a few miles it transpired that the fine line between arrogance and hubris had been crossed once again by some autonomous part of my brain in that the lemon dealer turned out to be right. It helps a bit, though, that this Joe—a wealthy oil man from Louisiana who owns the latest version of my model at some six-digit pricepoint and the entire top floor of the condo—that Joe calls his ML a truck, it makes a difference in the delusion compartment whether it's your truck that breaks down, or your premium-brand SUV with leather seats and other luxe options.

(Chapter 29, The sycamore tree): I realized too late what I had done, or not done. In the confusion of my father’s arrival I had left the cell phone behind, and then, despite all the mental notes to self, had forgotten about Alice, because it had been exactly ten PM when Gracelyn suggested, insisted, in fact, that I sleep with Ben in one bed. That must have been it, the mental notes to self, the deities of the English language took offense and punish me dearly now, (or it’s other deities with other concerns that punish me dearly now, but dearly it is).

Feb 10, 2013

Sirrr --- "Couldn't agree more"

More Sirrr-wise, this time as a comment on the Daily Beast (scroll down). Let us explain. Andrew Sullivan has a post on Philip Roth, who, in a NY restaurant, got accosted (if that's the word) by young, budding (and handsome) author Julian Trepper, who has just published his first novel "Balls" (balls). Trepper presents Roth with a copy of said Balls, Roth jumps up, and shoots into a tirade against writing:

“I would quit while you’re ahead. Really, it’s an awful field. Just torture. Awful. You write and write, and you have to throw almost all of it away because it’s not any good. I would say just stop now. You don’t want to do this to yourself. That’s my advice to you.”
Julian has reported on this in the Paris review and on the pages of the Daily Beast, where he's speculating about Roth's career as a bored ex-writer (Roth announced recently he had quit writing), and posits that writing is a very practical way out of boredom. 

Julian Trepper, Philip Roth

And her's our Sirrr-letter:

  Sirrr --- couldn't agree more. Boredom is the alternative to writing, or, more precisely, writing is the alternative to boredom. I'm a retired academic living in a retirement community in the south of France, and people here are bored, bored, so bored it could actually kill them. You need an inner life in order to live a good life, and while there might be other things to help you find it or live it, writing, as Julian so coyly explains, provides a practical and pragmatic way to get one, an inner life.

Folks, as an academic, I always knew about "writing," and I can tell you from experience now that there isn't much difference between writing an academic paper and writing gay pornography, especially when it’s the first draft, when the creative juices really need to flow.

OK, so. Let me tell you. The day I decided to write fiction, I found Jesus. Since I'm writing gay pornography, I'm wearing the flaccid smile of the truly reborn, my wrinkles have disappeared, my hair has grown, my penis has grown, Jesus it is. 60% of the time I'm on a high, the high people normally reach only after three glasses of champagne. And the first novel is almost finished. The first draft was finished in under five month (the first draft of my Ph.D. took two years).

Feb 9, 2013

Green Eyes --- teaser (Maud)

(So let's contemplate:

And here's a fitting clip from the Green Eyes (Chapter 20, "My father and your father were fathers," --- John is getting a phone call from the hospital (Maurice is still alive), and then father shows up prematurely; here's the beginning of the chapter, mercifully short):

The phone rings.

It's not that simple, of course, the phone doesn't ring. Instead, it speaks a pop song to me --- like your partner would in a failed marriage. I've tried everything, even phone calls (I hate phone calls, both ways), tried everything to download a ring tone like "rrringg, rrringg," a tone that nobody remembers from the analogue days. I've hit the Download ringtone now button too often, I've been charged for said tones occasionally, I've stamped on the ground like Rumpelstiltskin, I succeeded once, when my pop song was replaced by a different one that I had to learn with difficulty—it takes some time before you realize that the dahhhduhhdahh is actually yours when it happens in your pocket and not on TV—but it has happened too often now, and I love it like you love your partner during a bitter divorce.

"It’s coming back to me now," the cell sings again.

How about this illustration? Antique pederasts didn't have to bother with cell-phones, or did they? OK, here're two more paragraph from the same chapter:

How to abuse a father in the meantime? Step one, no welcome. Done. Step two, offer poison. Done. Step two-A, let him die. Fail. Step three, let him ask for the booze. Step four, there's no booze left in the fridge (Alex helped). Step five, be unpredictable. On some occasions, I go and fetch a few cans of beer from the nearest convenience store. On others, I don't, I'm off, busy, see you later, leave him key-less behind, there is no spare key, he's off to the beach, he returns, he can't get in, there are no flower pots, my cell-phone is on voice mail. The first day is almost over, two more days to go.

You wonder whether he ever raped me? No, he didn't. My mother just caught him on the wrong side of my body, when the thing stopped. Let me explain, I'm politically incorrect here in a terrible way, I know. I didn't really care. He sucked my dick, it didn't hurt. He never asked me to suck his. I wasn't hurt, or devastated, or desecrated, at least subjectively I wasn't. But I think my bipolarity has something to do with it, I learned to compartmentalize, if that's the word, or at least my brain did, the autonomous part, my father in one compartment, other things in others compartments, and myself somewhere else. These compartments are still there, I always have to think outside of some boxes, go back and forth from box to box, these boxes will possibly stay with me for the rest of my life. This back and forth all the time, it must have something to do with my mood swings, I don't know.

Feb 8, 2013

Sirrr --- "die menschliche Dummheit is grenzenlos"

(We did it again, we did it again. Another Sirrr letter, this time in the comment section of Paul Krugman's latest column in the NYT:)

Paul Krugman

Sirrr:  Following up on the last comment (people can't be reasoned with): why --- yes, in the end, they can. We've been there before, like the Chinese were for more than a thousand years during which time the frequent and devastating floods of the Yellow River basin were answered by raising the standards of the entry exams of the bureaucratic Mandarin elite (mostly writing poetry). Wasn't it crystal clear that the ancestors had gotten upset again about declining poetic standards and showed their anger through provoking natural disasters? Or think about the infamous earthquake of Lisbon in 1755, to which the authorities reacted by staging more autodafés --- wasn't it clear that God had shown his anger and needed to be mollified by more vigorous answers to overall sinning?

Along those lines, isn't it clear that the world will go under if we don't lower the budget deficit now, now (never mind that a significant percentage of the demographic believing this also believes that the world will come to an end anyhow soon, compliments Jesus Christ and impending Rapture proceedings). Isn't it clear that the answer to all economic problems lies in lowering taxes --- because it's the hardworking, dogged, teneacious rich that create jobs, those people that could get discouraged so easily by higher marginal taxes, even though the marginal income tax rate under Eisenhower (when the American economy really grew precipitously) was 91%, instead of 35, or 39%.

My father (who was German) used to say: "Die menschliche Dummheit ist grenzenlos." In this spirit.

(And while we are at it, a fitting fragment from the Green Eyes --- not the first time we're posting this fragment, but there you have it:)

Chapter 38 --- What's Paul Krugman's penis size

You think Trevor would be interested in politics, or the New York Times, or economics, or Nobel prices? Possibly not—you have other problems when you're a confirmed bachelor without a future. Trevor, in any case, who must be looking right into the eyes of Paul Krugman behind me, Trevor shows no signs of recognition what-so-ever, it's crystal-clear, he's not attracted to the fifty-nine year old Nobel laureate. In the distant past, when penises had average size, there was some talk in some quarters that IQs would be sexy, but we have proof now (sample-of-one!) that Krugman either does not look the part or that IQs are out. What's Krugman's penis size? Krugman, I realize, is drinking sparkling water, which is actually penis-enhancing, at least in the sense that alcohol induces impotence. That's what I should do, drink sparkling water, do they award Nobel prices for French? Should I raise my voice a bit so that Krugman can hear me and admire what I have to say about the Normans and their conquest of the Anglo-Saxon tongue? Where am I now, 0.13 BAC? Did you know that French has more words for booze than English? Or vice versa?

Feb 7, 2013

Green Eyes --- teaser

(A friend sends this picture:)

(And the corresponding Green Eyes fragment is?)

Chapter 43 --- A surgical strike into semantic space

"Uhh huuh," he says, sipping his whiskey. "So you want a video installation?"
"In a sense."
"On your own premises."
"You won't have much traffic in your apartment."
"Should I?"
"Perhaps you should contact the MoMa for your work."
“You mean the Museum of Modern Art?”
“Yes, they have more traffic. In New York City.”
"I'm not famous enough," I say.
"I worked in Manhattan, once had sex with the secretary of the director. Of the MoMa. Twice. Three times. My-ooh-my. These people know what they are doing. Four times."
"Hiring secretaries?"
"Hiring secretaries." He smacks his lips, swipes his unruly black hair with his fingers. "A video installation, that could be challenging."
"You are the man."

Feb 3, 2013

Public transport hazards

"This guy should read Michael Ampersant's outrageouos new novel Green Eyes

Green Eyes --- Neologism update

Armani minimum (n.phr.) Giorgio Armani's tumescence when he wears his Armani jeans. Usage (Green Eyes, Ch. 30): "Any hint of tumescence is stylishly kept to the Armani minimum."
dead-wife (n.) A female spouse, now deceased. Usage: "Alice had an affair with his dead-wife." Discouraged, cruel.
i-ding (n.) (i) Collective name for Ipads, Iphones, and similar devices. Usage (Green Eyes, Ch. 27): "He flips his I-ding, sends a text message to Google." (ii) The penis of compulsive app-users. Usage: "This I-man showed me his I-ding, but I wasn't i-impressed."
i-impressed (adv.) The state of being impressed by an I-thing or its doings. Usage: "This I-man showed me his I-ding, but I wasn't i-impressed." Awkward, won't fly (sounds like one of the lesser Urban Dictionary inventions).

Feb 1, 2013

Warm bodies (review) (reblogged)

Lokfire from Hollywood Hates Me writes:

So I saw Warm Bodies (the book) laying on the table at the bookstore. I picked it up and perused the back cover.

I'd've perused the front cover, but it was kind of off-putting.
I'd've perused the front cover, but it was kind of off-putting

A zombie romance? Man, I liked zombies before they were cool. (I kind of hate myself.)  Warm Bodies, a zombie romance, has been made into a movie. Apparently, it's something like a parody of Twilight, which seems silly to me, because why bother to parody something that's already a parody of writing to begin with?

Also, does anybody else think Edgar Allen Poe would be so happy right now. "What's this? Necrophilia is cool now? Huzzah!"
Seriously, though, it just seems like all you'd need to do is point at Twilight and laugh

Erotic birdsinging

(A friend sends this picture:)

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