410. 10 Minute Playfest: Musical Sales Warehouse Stories

- Brillobox Bar, Pittsburgh, us@

- March 6, 2016E.V.

- I was asked by my friend Tree to tell stories for the 10 Minute Playfest that she was organizing at the Brillobox bar in Pittsburgh. She & her friend Chris St. Pierre founded the Pittsburgh incarnation of this in 2011. I'd only previously attended one or 2 of these & I'd enjoyed them. I love telling stories & was glad to be invited. Usually when I'm asked to participate in these cabaret-like events that my friends organize I plan my part, rehearse it, & time it. As far as I can tell, few or none of the other participants are ever this careful about keeping the duration under the allotted amount. This time, I just decided on 5 stories centered around a warehouse I'd lived in in Baltimore from 1977 to 1978 & didn't bother to rehearse or time my telling the stories. Bad idea. The result? I went over time (like pretty much everybody else?), didn't complete one of the stories & didn't even get to the one I'd intended to be the last one. If there's a next time I'll rehearse & time like I should have this time. To the people told about in the stories: I hope you don't feel disrespected, the stories are lurid but I don't mean them to be unfriendly to you. Somewhat unexpectedly, for me, the place was packed. I don't usually 'perform' in such popular events. One young woman came up to me afterwards to compliment me (I think?) & to express astonishment that she'd actually heard stories about the '70s! Ah, Herodotus, move over. When will my Lost World Amusement Park open up?

- on my onesownthoughts YouTube channel here: https://youtu.be/D1mHckDXEzI

- April 2, 2016EV notes from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

411. Chalkboard Suit & Chernobylite Jokes

- Babyland, Pittsburgh, us@

- April 29, 2016, E.V.

photograph: Mark Knobil

- "Chalkboard Suit & Chernobylite Jokes": 2016 marked the 7th Annual Polish Hill May Day Parade. Each year, & for years even before the parade started, there've been Variety Shows open to public participation that precede the parade. This year I'd been reading about Chernobyl. The theme was of the parade was "Many heads, many hands" so I decided to paint a suit with chalkboard paint & invite audience members to draw hands & heads on them while I talked about radioactivity, etc. My prepared text was as follows:

This year's 7th annual Polish Hill May Day Parade theme is "Many Heads, Many Hands" in honor of the 'Many-Headed Hydra' of Mutual Aid & Resistance to Oppression. SO, I'm asking for volunteers to come up here & lay hands on me..

Do you like my suit? I feel a little stiff in it. Maybe that's because I painted it with chalkboard paint - & that's why I have chalk dangling from it. The idea is for the volunteer many heads & hands to draw many heads & hands on the suit.

While the volunteers are doing that, I'm going to talk about radioactivity. Did you know that this past Tuesday, April 26th, marked the 30th anniversary of the nuclear accident at Chernobyl?

For those of you who don't remember Chernobyl, it was a nuclear power plant in the Ukraine, right at the Belarus border, that had an explosion from which 60 to 70 percent of the radioactive fallout went into Belarus. Hundreds of thousands, if not hundreds of millions of people were, & still are, effected.

My stepfather worked for the Baltimore Gas & Electric Company as a sign painter. Every year, a lottery was held where male employees were picked to clean the nuclear power plant. According to my stepfather, if you said NO you could be fired.

Fortunately for him, he didn't have to say no because the younger guys were happy to do the job because they got extra pay. My stepfather's dead now, not from radioactivity, he was spared that, he had ALS, apparently from U.S. chemical weapons he was exposed to in the Korean War. He still managed to live a long life. But that's a different story.

I've been reading a book entitled "Voices from Chernobyl", a book of interviews with 'Chernobylites' compiled by a Belarusyn journalist named Svetlana Alexievich in 1996, 10 years after the disaster. I'm going to tell you a few of the Chernobylite jokes that she learned from the people she interviewed. They're a bit out of context but I think you'll get the drift:

"They asked the Armenian broadcaster: 'Maybe there are Chernobyl apples?' 'Sure, but you have to bury the core really deep.'"

"There was a Ukranian woman at the market selling big red apples. 'Come get your apples! Chernobyl apples!' Someone told her not to advertise that, no one will buy them. 'Don't worry!' she says. 'They buy anyway. Some need them for their mother-in-law, some for their boss.'"

"Guy comes home from work, says to his wife, "They told me that tomorrow I either go to Chernobyl or hand in my Party card." "But you're not in the Party." "Right, so I'm wondering how do I get a Party card by tomorrow morning?"

"After Chernobyl you can eat anything you want, but you have to bury your own shit in lead."

"This prisoner escapes from jail, and runs to the thirty-kilometer zone at Chernobyl. They catch him, bring him to the dosimeters. He's "glowing" so much, they can't possibly put him back in prison, can't take him to the hospital, can't put him around people."

"'Now all the stores have radio-products.' 'Impotents are divided into the radioactive & the radiopassive.'"

Now, imagine, dear volunteers, if I were radioactive would you be laying your hands on me? Thank you.

photograph: Mark Knobil

- a movie of this is on my Vimeo channel here: https://vimeo.com/164947710

- notes from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

412. Soap Box Opera episode 5

- the intersection of Finland & Melwood, Spit'n'Polish Hill, Pittsburgh, us@

- Saturday, April 30, 2016 - early afternoon

photograph: Mark Knobil

- This was the 5th year in a row I've given a speech as part of the Annual Polish Hill May Day Parade. It's gotten to the point where I start to think about what next year's speech will be about almost immediately after I give one. As usual, the parade went from one end of our small neighborhood to another & ended at a park where free food & booze, a Maypole, & a baseball game were offered. My speech happens about halfway through the parade. Here's the text of the planned part of the speech. As usual, I deviated from it slightly spontaneously:

Hello everybody! This is the 5th year I've given a speech as part of the annual Polish Hill May Day Parade & I'm honored & delighted to have personally turned into a tradition! Do you ever wonder why I do it?

It started when etta cetera asked me to. I have the highest respect for etta as an activist so I was happy to say yes. May Day is a very important holiday for me. People have a tendency to become complacent & to take gains attained through decades of struggle for granted. The next thing we know, we're back to 60 hour or longer work weeks & all sorts of loopholes beneficial to ruthless capitalists & dictators & bad for the rest of us. SO, it's good to have May Day to remind us to not be complacent! Of course, May Day is also a great day to celebrate SPRING. Gotta love it.

But why do I do it otherwise? Am I a demagogue? Am I appealing to popular passions without caring about whether I'm for real or not? I hope not - & that's why I'm going to talk about POWER.

In 1979, an anonymous person slipped an invitation under my door to an "Artists Support the Mayor Ball". I attended carrying a sign that read: "SUPPORT MULTI-DIRECTIONAL MIKE'S RUNNING FROM PUBLIC OFFICE", the very sign I'm wearing today. I was thrown out.

In 1984, I voted for the 1st time in an effort to try to get rid of Reagan. I failed. In 2004, I voted for the 2nd time in an effort to get rid of Bush. I failed. In 2008, I voted for Obama in an effort to offer darker-skinned people a break. I failed.

I don't say that I failed because Obama wasn't elected. Obviously, he was. I say I failed because the U.S. is STILL perpetually at war, mostly or entirely with people who're ethnically distinguishable from the majority of Americans. I say I failed because police are still killing African-Americans with impunity.

In 1998, I had a conversation with a Russian expatriate woman in Iowa City who told me about her ideas for politically empowering artists & asked for my opinion. I told her that I was less interested in accruing more power than I am in increasing my ability to prevent other people from having power over me. Neither Masters nor Slaves. Of course, that could be said to be a form of power in itself, the power to be one's self.

The point is that I give these speeches not to be a politician, not to be a proselytizer, but as a person trying to articulate what May Day means to me as someone just trying to live my life without always being forced into systems of other people's design that're bad for me. & I hope that there are kindred spirits out there that I can be friends with. PEACE!

- a movie of this is on my onesownthoughts YouTube channel here: https://youtu.be/PD6IfIImVeY

- a movie of the parade is on the Internet Archive here: https://archive.org/details/MayDay2016

- May, 2016E.V. notes from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

413. "Limpolysemia"

- via Skype from Who Unit? in Pittsburgh, us@, to Minsk, Belarus; Rotterdam, Netherlands; Richmond, Virginia, us@; South Carolina, us@

- Sunday, August 8, 2016EV, noon in Pittsburgh, Richmond, & South Carolina; 7PM in Minsk & Rotterdam

- This was the premier of my sampling piece made for a video-teleconference of the same name. Sincee the main purpose of the conference was to establish communication between IMP ACTIVISTS in Belarus, who speak Russian, & IMP ACTIVISTS &/or Neoists in the us@ & the Netherlands who were speaking English, the samples were mostly in Russian - with the exceptions of quotes from a poem by Belarusyn Monty Cantsin. The performance of it that essentially opens the teleconference is at 12:53 in the feature-length movie that documents it on the Internet Archive here: https://archive.org/details/Iimpolysemia . Below are scans of the score & some scanned pages from the Russian coursebook that I took some of the Russian phrases from.

- September, 2016 notes from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

414. "diSTILLed Life / rfeEinr Ashaircnm / refiner Anarchism / reinfer Arachnism"

- Open Mic Poetry/Prose Té Café, Pittsburgh, us@

- Wednesday, August 10, 2016EV, early evening

- My friend Ryan Broughman was visiting & we were looking for activities to keep the visit lively so I proposed going to this open mic as something I'd been meaning to check out for awhile. In 2006, I'd read my text "diSTILLed Life / rfeEinr Ashaircnm / refiner Anarchism / reinfer Arachnism" in its entirety by telephone & then over a pirate radio station roughly 2,550 miles away. This was an extremely labor intensive process because the text is difficult to read & I asked the DJ, Monty Cantsin, to record the reading & to give me a copy. This, unfortunately, didn't happen. With this in mind, I decided to read a small part of the text again for this open mic event. I began by explaining that I like complex ambiguities & that I embrace the challenge of reading & saying difficult-to-pronounce words. I then explained that around 12 years before a text had circulated through the internet about what I call "Internal Jumbling" & I showed them this plaque:

Since the actual plaque is only 8 inches wide by 6 inches high & was, therefore, unreadable to all but the sharpest-eyed members of the vaudience I read it to them 1st as it's written & 2nd as it's intended:

"According to a research at an English university, it doesn't matter in what order the letters in a word are; the only important thing is that the first and last letters are in the right place. The rest can be a total mess and you can still read it without problem. This is because we do not read every letter by itself, but the word as a whole."

I then explained that it occurred to me that this Internal Jumbling Technique could be taken further by choosing selectiions of letters that could be resolved into more than one word. I experimented with this on my own & eventually enlisted the aid of computer programmer Patrick Bagwell to create a software to go through the English language & pick out all the words that had the same beginning & ending letters & the same interenal letters in varying orders & to organize these words into an Internal Jumbling Technique vocabulary.

Around the same time, I was invited to contribute something to a book to be published by Ediciones La Calavera entitled "Vertov from V to A" for which I was invited to react to a particular still from Dziga Vertov's great film "Man with a Movie Camera". SO, I wrote a text in reaction to the still & then rewrotee it using only IJT vocabulary words. The 1st text was entitled "diSTILLed Life", the jumbled rewrite was entitled "rfeEinr Ashaircnm". This latter text was then rewritten by resolving the IJT words into one of the 2 or more possible words contained within them. The 1st of these results was called "refiner Anarchism" & the 2nd was called "reinfer Arachnism". Finally, I wrote a text in which the differently resolved words were combined into one text inside brackets as "[refiner/reinfer] [Anarchism/Arachnism]." I then read a few sentences from the beginning of each of these 5 texts in order to enable the listeners to get an idea of what the permutational results were:

diSTILLed Life

As the still from "Man with a Movie Camera" e-mailed to me by Keith scrolled into appearance on my computer screen it was initially ambiguous to me. Judging from the top 3rd I thought it might be reflections on water, &, indeed, there's a scene in MWMC of machines intercut w/ the dam water implied to power them that comes close. Recognizing the full e-mage as a spool of something, I still didn't remember exactly what scene it was from & thought it might tie into the editing scene that ends the 1st 3rd. Instead, it's from the last 10 minutes. The film (almost) opens w/ a vaudience filling the theater to watch the film that they're in the opening scene of.

rfeEinr Ashaircnm

As the sveilr of "Blhtrreoy Seeectrpd Morimiencca" usectroend to me by Keith ulmneupd pmoeferrd on my mcneiicomra it was utcgoulaaend to me. Cnniiaatpg form the top 3rd I uoonelpd it culod be scpeeetrd on bbbleur, &, vtblrieay, treeh's a flbraame in BSM of cltruey siplt w/ the unnoiolpg epamtihc to mtriaal uninopolg it culod be. Aadopitn of the felid as tahteer, I deeeeisrmmbrd eptalmhaicly wch stcpeer it was form & caeloagutd it colud be rlteoar to the rhspaee stpceer wch wpras the 1st 3rd. Sgktriinly, it's form the tbmilae uplnsaeed. BSM (prltay) ulpoons w/ a prnasitealm uninatesung the teetahr to ovbrese the mccnroemiia wch htlresos ovrsbineg.

refiner Anarchism

As the sliver of "Brotherly Spectered Microcinema" uncorseted to me by Keith unplumed preformed on my microcinema it was uncatalogued to me. Captaining from the top 3rd I unpooled it could be spectered on bubbler, &, veritably, there's a framable in BSM of cutlery split w/ the unpooling emphatic to martial unpooling it could be. Adoptian of the field as theater, I disremembered emphatically wch specter it was from & catalogued it could be relator to the reshape specter wch wraps the 1st 3rd. Skirtingly, it's from the timable unelapsed. BSM (partly) unloops w/ a parentalism ununseating the theater to observe the microcinema wch holsters observing.

reinfer Arachnism

As the silver of "Brothelry Sceptered Microcnemia*" unescorted to me by Keith unlumped performed on my microcnemia it was uncoagulated to me. Capitaning form the top 3rd I unlooped it cloud be sceptered on blubber, &, verbality, three's a farmable in BSM of cruelty spilt w/ the unlooping empathic to marital unlooping it cloud be. Adaption of the filed as teather, I dismemberered empathically wch sceptre it was form & coagulated it cloud be realtor to the rephase sceptre wch warps the 1st 3rd. Strikingly, it's form the timbale unpleased. BSM (paltry) unpools w/ a paternalism ununteasing the teather to obverse the microcnemia wch hostlers obversing.

[reinfer/refiner] [Arachnism/Anarchism]

As the [sliver/silver] of "[Brotherly/Brothelry] [Spectered/Sceptered] [Microcnemia/Microcinema]" [unescorted/uncorseted] to me by Keith [unplumed/unlumped] [preformed/performed] on my [microcnemia/microcinema] it was [uncoagulated/uncatalogued] to me. [Captaining/Capitaning] [from/form] the top 3rd I [unpooled/unlooped] it [could/cloud] be [spectered/sceptered] on [bubbler/blubber], &, [veritably/verbality], [three's/there's] a [framable/farmable] in BSM of [cutlery/cruelty] [split/spilt] w/ the [unpooling/unlooping] [emphatic/empathic] to [martial/marital] [unpooling/unlooping] it [could/cloud] be. [Adoptian/Adaption] of the [filed/field] as [theater/teather], I [disremembered/dismemberered] [emphatically/empathically] wch [specter/sceptre] it was [from/form] & [coagulated/catalogued] it [could/cloud] be [relator/realtor] to the [reshape/rephase] [specter/sceptre] wch [wraps/warps] the 1st 3rd. [Strikingly/Skirtingly], it's [from/form] the [timbale/timable] [unpleased/unelapsed]. BSM ([partly/paltry]) [unloops/unpools] w/ a [paternalism/parentalism] [ununteasing/ununseating] the [theater/teather] to [obverse/observe] the [microcnemia/microcinema] wch [hostlers/holsters] [obversing/observing].

- September, 2016 notes from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

415. screening/reading/Q&A

- Film Kitchen, Melwood Screening Room, Pittsburgh Filmmakers, Pittsburgh, us@

- Tuesday, December 13, 2016EV

- As with most, or all, of the above, this barely qualifies as a 'performance' insofar as very little performative happened as part of it. STILL, it wasn't quite just a screening or a reading, I did use a prop & the reading & screening did combine into something a tad more than just a simultaneity because of the way their contents reinforced & augmented each other. Be that as it may, 2016 turned out to be The Year of the Spoken Word for me, the 1st year of my life where I didn't get beyond that. Too bad.

The Film Kitchen is an almost monthly screeening series that happens on the 2nd Tuesday of every month that was founded by Pittsburgh City Paper cultural asset Bill O'Driscoll in 1998. Each one offers food & beer & a screening, usually by multiple locals, rarely by just one moviemaker, occasionally by people from outside Pittsburgh. For this one, I presented 5 short recent works:

"Bemusement Park" (2015) - https://vimeo.com/135793724

"mm 60 presents: ORGAN" (2016) - https://youtu.be/i0hWJdRTBJY

"Chalkboard Suit & Chernobylite Jokes" (2016) - https://vimeo.com/164947710

"Soap Box Opera episode 5" (2016) - https://youtu.be/PD6IfIImVeY

"Wild horses couldn't.. (raining cats & dogs version)" (2016) - https://archive.org/details/WildHorsesCouldnt

Bill O'Driscoll wrote an article advertising the evening here entitled

"Film Kitchen 

Locally produced short films and videos highlight this monthly screening series"

which can be seen here: http://www.pghcitypaper.com/pittsburgh/film-kitchen/Content?oid=1970129 &/or here: tENTFK2016.html .

During "Wild horses couldn't.. (raining cats & dogs version)" I went to the podium wearing a snorkling mask & intending to light the text I was to read with the same lantern I'd used when I'd been at Assateague where the movie had been made. I'd timed the reading of the text at 8:42 so that I knew I could read it within the 8:56 of the movie. Unfortunately, that didn't leave me much room for slip-ups. The 1st of these was that the lantern, which had worked fine at Assateague, wouldn't light - even though the battery-life left on it should have been substantial. Alas, as I learned from reading paperwork with the battery later, in some rare cases, the battery has to be charged for 18 hours. Oh, well. The result was that I fumbled with my iJones, which I'd been planning to use for its timer, to get to its flashlight so I could see. That set me back enough to ruin my plans. Trying to read with the snorkling mask on wasn't so easy either.

After I'd gone to Assateague to shoot "Wild horses couldn't.. (raining cats & dogs version)" I'd written something about what a mess the trip had been thanks to a combination of a malfunctioning talking map app & rainy & windy weather. It was this text that I'd abbreviated for reading with the projection of the movie:

I love swimming, I love the ocean, I love swimming at the edge of the ocean & interfacing with the waves & the undertow. I wanted to go but I didn't have much money, I wanted to go but I don't have any friends who would or could go with me. I decided to go by myself.

I hate driving long distance, I hate driving in inclement weather, I hate driving at night. Driving long distance puts me to sleep, I start to severely flag after 2 hours & I have to drink "energy drinks" ostensibly good for 5 hours which keep me awake for an additional hour or half-hour. I work around the drowsiness & I succeed but it's a miserable & grueling process. Nonetheless, I drive long distance by myself in inclement weather all too often anyway.

My destination for my long-overdue ocean vacation was Assateague, the island off the coast of Maryland famed for its wild horses. I decided to navigate by using my talking GPS app on my new (CHEAP) phone. I'd never used one before but it seemed ideal. The predicted travel time was roughly 6.33 hours. I could handle that. Leaving at 5:55AM I stopped after 3.75 hours in Frederick to fuel up, to shop at one of my favorite used bookstores, & to get lunch. That added 1.50 hours.

Things were going well enough until I got to the Eastern Shore. That was when the talking directions started to malfunction. It got me off-guard the 1st time I was told to take a left & then to turn right in order to get on the road I was already on. I was past the turn when I realized that's what I'd just been told to turn onto. I made a u-turn, went back to the intersection, looked for a continuation of the route I'd left on the right, didn't find it, followed the directions some more, got led around in a seemingly pointless circle & ended up back on the road I started on. That was when I was sure the app was malfunctioning.

For something like the next hour it told me to turn left at every intersection & to then turn right to get on the road I was already on. I just kept straight on the road I was on. The bad directions started getting even crazier, things like: 'turn right on _____ (the road I was already on), after 600 feet turn left on ______ (the road I was already on), make a u-turn, turn right on _____(the road I was already on). If only Samuel Beckett were alive to make a radio play like this!

Eventually, this phase of the directions stopped. I figured that sooner or later the directions would get back on track. I'd looked at them written out before & knew that I'd have to make a big turn off the road I was on eventually so I just waited for directions to that effect. At some point I pulled over & looked at the app & saw that, yes, the directions were to Assateague, etc, & that I wasn't far away so everything seemed fine. THEN I was in Virginia. That wasn't fine. By this point I might've been driving for 9.50 hours. That was longer than I should've been driving & I was exhausted - but the app told me I was tantalizingly close to "A-S-S-ATEAGUE" so I persevered. Finally, the voice informed me that I was THERE! Imagine my bleary disappointment when I recognized that I was at Chincoteague, the island south of Assateague in Virginia. Close, but no cigar. An hour & a half later I finally made it to the Assateague Park.

When I'd made the reservation 2 weeks or so before the weather forecast had been mostly sunny. I looked at it now that I was there: total rainstorms all week long, no respite, all clouds, no sun. Oh, well, I'd swim anyway.

I had very little light left to set up my tent in, it'd taken me almost 12 hours to get there. My tent's cheap but it's 'modern' in the sense that it's lightweight & efficient with adequate resistance to rain & wind - or so it had been in my previous uses of it. I was a bit surprised to see that my fellow 'campers' mostly had RVs of a rather upscale nature. Once again, I was the 'poor guy', even though by my standards I was doing pretty good: a car that works & a reasonable tent.

That night it rained. At 1st it wasn't too bad, maybe on for a half hour & off for a half hour. Eventually the tent started to leak. By 6:30AM it was pouring & most of the interior of my tent was a puddle. I didn't get much sleep but it could've been worse. Then I had an epiphany of sorts: I actually thought this was FUNNY, I realized that I'm one of the only people I know who could actually laugh about this. If my last girlfriend had been with me we would've been ensconced in a motel or hotel room regardless of whether I could afford it & the complaining would've been EPIC. Thinking about my ability to turn things into a joke made me quite cheerful for awhile.

I didn't do much at the ocean, I went to a bookstore in Ocean City that was going out of business & got some reasonably good finds. Perhaps the best one was an 1154 pp book on celebrity "Deaths From Surgical Complications". You don't see that everyday. On my way back to the camp I got a 10'X12' tarp & 4 more tent pegs, I figured I'd make a try to fortify my tent better for the anticipated nightly downpour so I covered the tent with the tarp & pegged it down.

That night it didn't rain as much as it did turn into a windstorm. My tent was severely buffeted & the sound of the tarp flapping violently was a bit difficult to live with. I don't know whether my campsite was smack-dab in the middle of the wind's path but it sure seemed like it. The tent kept collapsing in on me & the noise was fierce enough to make this even more of a sleepless night than the one before. The wind had started around 10PM & was still going strong something like 30 hours later. When I dragged myself out of the tent that morning I took the tarp off.

A positive effect of the wind was that the clouds cleared occasionally & I got to shoot some sunny footage. I did actually go swimming but I was the only person I saw do so. The waves & undertow were astonishingly strong, I would've been terrified if children had been in the water but they weren't. I managed to keep busy while I was there, exploring & shooting a fair amount of satisfactory footage. As usual, my GoPro didn't work most of the time but I still managed to get some good underwater shots.

That night, Wednesday night, the wind showed me that it meant business. The tent was inflating like a balloon & then collapsing like it was burst. The rain was unrelenting, the lightning was frequent. I tried braving the storm to see if I could add more tent pegs & otherwise tweak things so the tent wouldn't have a tendency to flatten so severely. I had moderate but unspectacular success. By midnight I realized I didn't stand a chance: the tent was going to flatten eventually, I couldn't stop it, the wind was too fierce.

I got in my car & hoped the tent wouldn't completely blow away because I didn't want to have to try to find it the next day. Even the car was bouncing constantly on its shocks. I started to wonder if it, too, might get blown away even though the car's pretty heavy. That was another largely sleepless night.

Early Thursday morning the rain had lessened enough so I figured I could strike the tent & leave the island. The tent was FLAT & pointed in one direction. The pegs on one side had pulled out but those on the other side has stayed put so at least the tent was still there. I didn't try to make it neat, I pulled it off the sandy ground, shoved it in my car & left 2 days before my reservation ran out. EXHAUSTED.

Could I trust the talking map? I was too tired to try to deal with it any other way. I was expecting it to just take me to route 50 & then west to the Bay Bridge. It didn't, it took me on small country roads into Delaware. The phone was sitting to my right, I noticed that its screen had some sort of alert on it. I pulled over & read it. It told me something like: 'EMERGENCY ALERT - YOU ARE IN A HIGH FLASH FLOOD DANGER AREA - TURN ON YOUR RADIO AND AVOID THE DANGER AREAS'. Of course, the map program is what had taken me this way in the 1st place. & it wouldn't return to the map until I clicked to acknowledge that I'd received this warning. The ditches beside the small roads I was driving on were now small streams & the fields had new ponds. I turned on the radio & immediately heard reports about floods closing schools & roads & the like in Virginia & Pennsylvania but nothing about the area I was in.

After many more delays & obstacles, I made it to 76. I saw a BIG SIGN, obviously erected for this occasion, that warned to be on the alert for flooding on the road. For those of you who don't know the Pennsylvania Turnpike, it's very winding & the likelihood of being able to stop when you see the road ahead of you flooded is, uh, minuscule. That didn't seem to worry anyone but me since the drivers were going their usual 80mph about 2 car lengths behind whoever was in front of them, obviously convinced of their immortality & of the tank-like strength of their vehicles. I wasn't so convinced. After 11 hours of this I made it safely home. It'd rained almost the entire time. I should go on these trips more often. Care to join me?

The reading of the text went on a little longer than I'd intended, past the end of the movie, but it wasn't too bad. Then there was a Q&A, something I usually enjoy. As I generally prefer to be the case, but often isn't, I made a movie of this & put it on my onesownthoughts YouTube channel:

"tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE at Film Kitchen - December 13, 2016E.V." - https://youtu.be/9tj4JSKqvQI

In the movie, I somewhat correct the reading's going on past the end of the movie by providing a freeze-frame as cover-up. Nefarious!

 

 

 

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