A Mere Outline for One Aspect of a Book on Mystery Catalysts, Guerrilla Playfare, neoism, booed usic, Mad Scientist Didactions, Acts of As-Beenism, So-Called Whatevers, Psychopathfinding, Uncerts, Air Dressing, Practicing Promotextuality, Imp Activism, CircumSubstantial Playing, etc..

in BalTimOre:

I've recently been informed by my old pal Tom DiVenti that the Maryland Historical Society has decided to join the 21st century by documenting the literary underground in BalTimOre in the 1970s, 1980s, 1990s, &, perhaps, other times too. This happened because Tom approached them offering them his Apathy Project & Press archive & they voted in favor of receiving it. Furthermore, Tom directed them to other archives such as one based around the work of David Franks & my own tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE archives.

I applaud this effort & hope that the MHS present this history uncensored in the spirit of the times they're documenting.

Because of this recent interest, I've decided to create some BalTimOre-centric webpages to make BalTimOre research easier. This Mere Outline one will be the 1st of these. There may be others.

I lived in BalTimOre County & City from my birth on September 4, 1953 to late July, 1994. I'm an internationalist, or, as I prefer, a "'Patanationalist", & have traveled a fair amount. As such, I wasn't necessarily doing everything in BalTimOre even during the above-mentioned years. Nonetheless, I was very active there & the following chronology will demonstrate that my BalTimOre activities didn't completely cease with moving away.

ALSO, since I'm keeping the MARYLAND aspect in mind, I've listed things that happened outside of BalTimOre County & City proper but still in MD - such as in Annapolis.

- tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE note, July 24, 2017E.V.

 

001. [Student Piano Recital

- Louise Carlson's House, Woodlawn, us@

- 1959 or 1960 or 1961

- Louise Carlson was my piano teacher. I was forced to take piano lessons by my mom. Her original plan was for me to study for 6 years. Most of my life I've thought that I started when I was 6 & that the piano teacher &/or my mom gave up on me when I was 9 because I hated the lessons so much. However, in 2007, 2 of my student recital programs surfaced & I was 10 when I played one of them so I may've studied for 4 years or I may've started when I was 7. Dunno. At any rate, this was probably my 1st recital before I was ready to 'hit the big time' at the posh Evergreen House. I have absolutely NO memory of any of these piano recitals.]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

002. [Student Piano Recital

- the Evergreen House, Baltimore, us@

- 1960 or 1961 or 1962

- A duet performance with my sister of what was probably a very simple child's piano piece for 4 hands. Our participation in this recital was an outcome of my piano teacher's membership in the Baltimore Music Teachers Association.]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

003. [Student Piano Recital

- the Evergreen House, Baltimore, us@

- March 10, 1963

- I played Weybright's "At the Fair".]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

004. clown reading

- charity benefit (for people with Muscular Dystrophy ) in the backyard of my parents' home in the suburbs of Baltimore, us@

- summer, 1963?

- Wearing a full-body antique bathing suit meant for an adult male (&, hence, very large on me) & a long black hair wig, I read satirical poetry that I'd written about my sister.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

005. [Student Piano Recital

- Parish Hall, Luthern Church of the Redeemer, Baltimore, us@

- May 24, 1964

- I played [W?] Scher's "A Spooky Fairy Tale".]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

006. [folk music concert

- a Brooklyn, Baltimore, us@ coffee-house

- summer, 1971

- Playing 12-string acoustic guitar, upright piano, & singing I performed covers of music by the Incredible String Band, Leonard Cohen, Bob Dylan, Woody Guthrie, & whorehouse blues songs, etc.. using the guitar & probably played "Cool Mule", a boogie-woogie, on the piano along w/, possibly, songs by The Band & others.]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

007. audience participatory reading

- Apathy Project, Baltimore, us@

- September, 1977

- The Audience was handed a folded 8&1/2 X 11" piece of paper with 2 pages from my book:

t he book

t he referent 4 wch consists of

t he non-materialized transparent punch-outs from a letter/whatever stencil

printed on it. Page 31 was on the front: this consisted of a grid of 15 X 15 1st 4 letters of words with each vertical column having every fragment begin with the same letter. The grid arrangement, the vertical organization, the non-referentialness, & the fragmentation were all meant to stimulate the reader to extrapolate & explore the text creatively. Page 89 was on the inside: this consisted of a fragment from a longer text in which all "e"s were substituted with "(v)"s. This fragmentation & substitution were meant to disrupt the otherwise linear narrative so that the reader's attention would drift off. The audience was then asked to read simultaneously from these texts in whatever way they wanted to which they proceeded to do.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

008. audience participatory reading

- Dave Kotofski's apartment, Baltimore, us@

- 1977

- This was a "private" reading with little or no audience other than Dave. Reza Baraheni, Iranian writer & freedom of speech activist (author of "Crowned Cannibals" - a critique of the Shah's regime) then in exile, read "linear, referential" poetry in English & Persian - & Marshall Reese, Kirby Malone, & I read, or otherwise presented, mainly "non-linear, non-referential" texts. I presented various "spatially expanded" writings which included hiding words & phrases in Dave's place for him to find later.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

009. ATTEMPT TO SCORE SUM ACTION FOR DAILY LIVING

- various simultaneous locations, Baltimore, us@

- early 1978

- A group of perhaps 8 people were organized into every possible duo. Each duo chose a time of day when each of them would perform an unusual (or usual) daily activity specified for them by the other. As such, each person had (if the number of 8 people is correct) 7 times of the day when they knew they were performing something at the same time as 1 of the other members of the group. I remember, for example, taking out the fortunes from fortune cookies (preferably without breaking the cookie) & the pimiento from stuffed olives (preferably without ripping them) & causing them to switch places as my instruction from Beth Downey. These simultaneities were performed for at least 1 week & were deliberately undocumented so that the emphasis would stay on the experience itself rather than any object produced by it. A later version for vaudeo documentation was started but unfinished.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

010. a thing involving audio tape, tape playing machine, 2 cushioned seat speaker cabinets, 2 paid book-ends, emptied pockets & pocket-books, books, a book-shelf, & an audience?

(originally written as:

.."a thing involving

audio tap(hh), tap(hh) playing machin(hh),

2 cushion(hh)d s(hh)at sp(hh)ak(hh)r cabin(hh)ts, 2 paid book-(hh)nds,

mt(hh)d pock(hh)ts & pock(hh)t-books, books, a book-sh(hh)lv(hh),

& an audi(hh)nc(hh)?")

- more simply &/or commonly known as "the human book-ends thing"

- Red Door Hall, Baltimore, us@

- fall, 1978

- Two long planks joined & supported at the middle & held up at either end by sturdy speaker cabinets on their sides formed the "bookshelves". Boxes filled with books were scattered about on either side of the planks on the floor. The "human book-ends", Laurie Stepp & Beth Downey, emptied their purses onto the speaker cabinets so that they could rattle when sounds would come from them & took their places on the cabinets facing each other across the planks. During this action they only communicated thru gesture. What was originally a 3 hour 4 track reel-to-reel tape with only 35 very narrow range sounds on it was played in stereo so that 2 of the tracks were heard forwards during the 1st 3 hours & the other 2 tracks were heard backwards during the last 3 hours. When the tape was being flipped the "human book-ends" were permitted a break. The audience was encouraged to pay in "ob(hh)ron + gold" & to react to the situation in some creative way. One friend, Augusta Leigh McDonald, went so far as to find a goldfish pond & capture a goldfish that she named "Oberon" to pay with. Bonnie Bonnell imitated the central tableau by making a miniature version of it in a corner. Gayle Hanson tied up Steve Brookes & read from the masochistic book "Venus in Furs". Most people, myself included, placed & arranged the books on the bookshelves & attempted to communicate gesturally with the book-ends. Richard Ellsberry typed a typewriter portrait of me. The essentialness of the materials & their unusual restrictiveness were meant to function as (& did function as) a catalyst to the audience to draw their inspiration from. A-Muse-ing.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

011. GHOST FILM presentation with Ghost Writing Booklets

- Community College of Baltimore, Harbor Campus, Baltimore, us@

- fall, 1978

- Members of the audience were given note-pads with invisible ink writing &/or drawing on them (i.e.: "Ghost" writing &/or drawing) & were given pens to "take notes" about the film they were about to see or "doodle". The pens that they were given were the "developer pens" for the "ghost" writing & their ink was invisible except where something was already marked by the ink that they were to develop. Thus, the resultant notes or doodles & the original preparations were only visible where they intersected - producing a collaboration. An attempt to show my film "GHOST FILM, A Nightmare for Projectionists" was then made. Given that the film is deliberately a poorly spliced mess, this attempt was only partially successful &, once again, the deterioration of the film was contributed to so that it could continue to progress as a nightmare for projectionists.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

012. 30' long X 6' high paper dolls for 8 people

- Balto Media Edition Fashion Show, Red Door Hall, Baltimore, us@

- January?, 1979

- Volunteers from the audience were linked together by & enclosed in giant paper dolls which they then paraded on the fashion show runway in a disoriented manner.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

013. closed-circuit tv dressing room dress form action

- Balto Media Edition Fashion Show, Red Door Hall, Baltimore, us@

- January?, 1979

- A video camera was aimed at me in the dressing room which was connected closed-circuit to a tv for the audience to watch at the end of the runway. I was naked except for a flexible metal mesh dress form. The dress form was gradually covered by (an) assistant(s) who hung all of my more eccentric clothing onto the mesh until I was substantially covered by it. In the meantime, various other people, such as Susan Lowe & her children, moved about in the dressing room.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

014. STEE-V SQUEE-G DECODE "twins" in portable wardrobes stuffed with STEE-V SQUEE-G DECODE xeroxes

- Balto Media Edition Fashion Show, Red Door Hall, Baltimore, us@

- January?, 1979

- Charlie Brohawn & I cut leg holes in the bottoms of plastic wardrobes & arm holes in the upper sides & stuffed the wardrobes with specially made xerox "decode" collages & paraded on the runway as "twins".

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

015. B.O.M.B. crashing of improvisation class

- Corner Theater, Baltimore, us@

- March, 1979

- The Baltimore Oblivion Marching Band (B.O.M.B.) - variously called a roving band of defiant youths (in "newspaperese") by myself & No Name Interaction/Reaction Group by Sumu Pretzler (a.k.a. Doug Retzler) & co-founded by us with Richard Ellsberry & others - was a loosely knit group with variable membership that got together, mainly on weekends, to crash various events - usually with the intention of stirring up some action & catalyzing greater interaction between all those involved. This usually involved eccentric dress, toy instruments, & aggressive "socializing" (or "anti-socializing") with strangers.

- B.O.M.B.'s premier crashing was at an improvisation class where our crashing was meant to be a critique of how silly we thought the class was. We snaked thru the students & teacher(s) alike trying to get them to spontaneously react to our unexpected presence & then left before they had too much of a chance to integrate us into their perception of the class.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

017. Making a Display of Myself #1: Slanted Pencil Moustache

- Penn Station Photo Booth, Baltimore, us@

- spring, 1979

- The 1st part of a 3 part action in which I subtly altered my face & had a black & white picture taken of it in the photo booth which I then put on display in the place allotted for such on the outside of the booth. The poor fidelity of the photos made the slanted moustache appear possibly real despite its well-nigh impossible "shaveability".

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

018. Making a Display of Myself #2: Dots on Face/"Bullet Holes"

- Penn Station Photo Booth, Baltimore, us@

- spring, 1979

- Following the same procedure described in the preceding entry, but with the face alteration being the addition of dots, these photos eventually returned to me in a convoluted way 2 years later! A friend of a friend was telling me that he'd found & stolen a display photo on a photo booth of a guy who looked like he had bullet holes in his face! Of course, the photos that he'd stolen & saved were of me & the circle was completed & the mystery solved.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

019. Making a Display of Myself #3: Crunchy Peanut Butter on Face/"Skin Disease"

- Penn Station Photo Booth, Baltimore, us@

- spring, 1979

- Once again, following the same procedure as in the preceding 2 entries, I smeared crunchy peanut butter on my face in the photo booth during rush hour at the train station. Given that the sides of the booth were open to prevent any "hanky-panky" in there, my action was totally visible to the commuters. A couple of weeks later, a friend of mine (Cindy Heidel) told me at a party about going to the photo booth & seeing a picture of a guy with "a horrible skin disease" which she then stole. It wasn't until later that she realized it was me.

- I'm still waiting, decades later, for the slanted pencil moustache photo to return to me.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

020. Visit to Lacquerland

- a construction site in Maryland, us@

- late March, 1979

- In fall of 1978, I started working as a hard-wood floor finisher. This job involved stooping over a bucket of lacquer & brushing the lacquer on the floors as a part of the finishing process. Inhalation of the fumes caused intoxication. Co-workers Brian Wolle (a.k.a. "Brain" &/or "Herr Brain Storm Drain") & Doug Retzler (a.k.a. "Sumu Pretzler") & I exploited this high & tried to have fun at work by improvising vocally while lacquering. These improvs centered around creating a mythology about the living conditions in "Lacquerland" - our name for the state of mind & body gotten into from the fumes. Our audience, when there was one, were our fellow construction workers - who were apparently entertained but who made jokes about our being "crazy". There were a fair amount of these sessions but, for the purposes of this history, I've restricted myself to only listing the 3 that we audio recorded.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

022. reading in Cindy Heidel's Dating Game

- the Maryland Institute of Art, Baltimore, us@

- spring, 1979

- A woman (the potential "date": Claudia Behrman) was separated from the contestants (me & 2 others) by a partition. She asked questions of each of the contestants such as "Are you more like Johnny "the Wad" Holmes or Sherlock Holmes?". Whenever I was asked a question I read an excerpt from:

t he book

t he referent 4 wch consists of

t he non-materialized transparent punch-outs from a letter/whatever stencil

making no attempt to have my answers be "relevant" to her questions. The "winner" was a guy playing the role of an "army man" - complete with military helmet.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

023. t he phantom of t he opera

- Festival of Disappearing Art(s), Red Door Hall, Baltimore, us@

- Sunday, April 29, 1979, 10PM

- The chairs were arranged very close together so that the audience was seated in uncomfortable proximity. The audience faced a hanging blanket which functioned as a "theater curtain" to hide "where the show would be".

The recessed window nooks were covered with billboard paper with rips in them. Each nook had a sign labelling it "John Wilkes' Booth". Unknown to the audience, John Ellsberry (who was "obsessed" at the time with the Lincoln assassination) was hidden in 1 of the nooks with a black & white reel-to-reel video camera & deck. While Marshall Reese introduced me, I navigated thru the cramped audience - increasing their discomfort & forcing them to interact with me - while John videoed my actions & their reactions. The curtain was then removed, John ripped his way out of his hiding place, & the "real show" of the audience watching themselves on video began. After the audience had watched the tape & realized that they were the "performers", John returned to his no longer secret camera position & the intitial process of me moving thru the crowd while John videoed was repeated. This 2nd time, the audience's participation was more enthusiastic as they tried to remove my clothes & otherwise impeded my progress.

extended frame photo: Sue Abramson

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

024. B.O.M.B. at Johns Hopkins Spring Fair

- Johns Hopkins University Campus, Baltimore, us@

- spring, 1979

- The most memorable portions of this action are Charlie Brohawn & I wearing each other's clothes as a continuation of our "twins" routine & our running thru the crowd tying them together with string. The "documenter" of all this filmed almost all of his footage of the tits & asses of dancing girls rather than of us.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

025. B.O.M.B. at TNT Parade

- Charles Street, Baltimore, us@

- spring or summer, 1979

- This was primarily distinguished by Sumu Pretzler/Doug Retzler convincing a parading bunch of boy scouts to lie down in the streets for him so that he could draw their body outlines in chalk while they "played dead".

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

026. Another Visit to Lacquerland

- another construction site in Maryland, us@

- date uncertain, possibly mid 1979

- Another mythology-spewing plunge into derangement by myself & fellow denizen of Industrial High Society Herr Brain (see #17).

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

027. SUPPORT MULTI-DIRECTIONAL MIKE'S RUNNING FROM PUBLIC OFFICE

- the "Artists Support the Mayor's Ball", the Maryland Institute College of Art, Station Building, Baltimore, us@

- summer or fall, 1979

- As a publicity event, this event was organized to give the appearance that artists supported the Mayor in his running for re-election (or some such). I was hand-delivered an invitation to this by person(s) unknown. The main event was inside but outside on the parking lot a punk band ("Da Moronics") was being paid to play. I entered the building carrying a "picket sign" emblazoned with the words that form the title for this action. The sign was meant to request that those present help me escape from the machinations of politicians & government. Everyone present inside seemed to be very rich. I didn't recognize any of them as artists. There were tv crews & reporters everywhere. I was almost immediately confronted by a security guard & told to leave. As I was being ushered out, an apparently rich woman that I passed sneered something like "OH! Get that awful thing out of here!" (meaning me).

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

028. CRAB FEAST #1

- Corpus Christi Church, Baltimore, us@

- November 21, 1979, 2 - 8PM

- Tables were set up in the basement of the church where people ordinarily played basketball. The tables were "set" with xerox "place mats" with pictures of tuning forks & crab mallets as the "utensils" & a transistor radio was set in the middle & tuned to a "top 40" station & left on as the "Crab Feast". I returned periodically, providing no explanation, to photograph whatever was happening in the room as response to it.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

029. CRAB FEAST #2

- Security Square Shopping Mall, Baltimore suburbs, us@

- December 22, 1979

- Under the instigation of Gayle Hanson, crabs with baby doll parts tied to them were taken to the shopping mall on the last saturday before Christmas in hat boxes & released by Gayle & me on the floor of the mall near "Santa's" stand. A mesmerized crowd quickly formed while Gayle "explained". One of "Santa's helpers" came along to try to put a stop to this bizarre behaviour by sweeping up the crabs which made it even more bizarre for me. We were eventually kicked out of the mall by security people & we returned what crabs were left alive to the harbor where they swam sluggishly off.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

030. nameless wandering wind ensemble

- Baltimore, us@

- winter, 1979/1980

- cris cheek (clarinet), Chris Mason (bass clarinet), Gayle Hanson (clarinet?), Patty Karl? (clarinet?), & I (alto sax) improvised while wandering the streets & alleys. We were joined by a guy named John(?) playing recorder who heard us passing by.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

031. nameless wandering wind ensemble

- Baltimore, us@

- winter, early 1980

- With an unknown line-up that consisted of at least Chris Mason & myself, more wandering improvising on wind instruments. Again we were joined by John(?), this time on alto sax, when we unwittingly passed behind his apartment.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

032. nameless wandering wind ensemble

- Baltimore, us@

- winter, early 1980

- Again with an unknown line-up beyond Chris Mason, myself, & Doug Retzler pulling a wagon with some sort of large cardboard horn, meandering improvising thru the streets. A black guy told me I played like John Coltrane which I found strange but flattering considering that I could barely play the thing - especially in the cold weather.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

033. CRAB FEAST #3

- the Telectropheremanniversary, the Proposal Gallery, Baltimore, us@

- January 24, 1980

- With exposed knees & genitals, we (Gayle Hanson - Voice & Electric Organ, John Ellsberry - alto sax, Lee Warren - Electric Bass Guitar, & myself - Voice, Electric Guitar, & Electric Organ) played 2 sets: 1st: trying to somehow play along with recordings of incoming phone calls to the "telephone stations" that the event was a celebration of the 1st anniversary of, & 2nd: playing original songs about such relevant topics as the transmission of "(telectro)pheremones" & venereal diseases. Thruout, phone calls to our premiering 3rd phone station were forwarded to multiple phones in the gallery to be answered by anyone present who felt so inclined.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

034. CRAB FEAST #3&1/4

- the Balti-Media Edition & Science Fair Benefit, Corpus Christi Church, Baltimore, us@

- March 1, 1980

- I'd made a 4' X 4' X 7' replica of a transistor radio called AS RADIO which was supposed to be pushed around on a wheeled model's stand while musician's played from scores inside of it. As an unpopular weirdo act this was shoved off 'til last by the organizer, Doug Retzler, while the "real" musicians - the rock "stars" - milked their prima donna time for all it was worth. By the time it was our turn, the audience was largely gone - as were some of the players - & some of the players were asleep. A Flop.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

035. CRAB FEAST #3&3/4

- the Balti-Media Edition & Science Fair, Johns Hopkins University Glass Pavilion, Baltimore, us@

- March 30, 1980

- The same thing as the preceding Flopping because of the breaking of the stand wheels.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

036. B.U.T.N. related conference call audio improvisation via WJHU

- Baltimore, us@

- summer?, 1980

- A conference call improvisation by Doug Retzler, Richard Ellsberry, & myself broadcast live over the radio using phone sounds, etc, to promote our "telephone station" of the time: (301)962-0210.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

037. TINKLERS Big Band

- Red Door Hall, Baltimore, us@

- October 19, 1980

- The only big band performance by The Tinklers. This show consisted of their usual mix of "childish" charts & explanations, sign language, & songs. I played alto sax & function generator - this latter with my toes.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

038. reading by proxy

- Grand Open Reading, Red Door Hall, Baltimore, us@

- January 4, 1981

- I was invited by Tom DiVenti to participate in a large reading. We misunderstood each other - I misunderstood his invitation & he misunderstood me to have consented. Usually I avoid such readings because I don't like conventional readings at all, because I rarely consent to read unless I have something special in mind, & because I find most readings to be little more than Mutual Admiration Society Group Therapy Sessions in which little or no critical standards are present. Disgruntled that my name was on the poster & knowing that everybody would ultimately just be sick of each other at the end of such a long reading & glad for it to be over, I asked Richard Ellsberry to be my proxy & to simply be the last person to read & to read the list of everyone who had read before him. Sure enough, the crowd roared with disapproval with Keith Worz (usually creative in his heckling) going so far as to try to cut apart Richard's names list with scissors while Richard attempted to read it.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

039. attempt to undermine "reality" maintenance traps

- next 2 t he keswick home 4 t he incurables across from t he rotunda, Baltimore, us@

- Monday, February 2 (Groundhog's Day), 1981

- While embedded between 2 floors of a building I listened to a "hypnotic" tape that I'd made which attempted to convince me that I could walk thru walls & perform other extraordinary defiances of "consensus reality". The audience was kept at a distance from this action by 2 "bodyguards" (Kirby Malone & Richard Ellsberry). The "attempt" was either witnessed thru doorways or on 2 monitors which were stacked vertically in the attic of the building that I was in the 1st floor & the basement of - the top monitor showing the top half of my body in 1 room & the bottom monitor showing the bottom half of my body in another. Because most of the time none of my flesh showed, it was unclear to those who had arrived late whether there was even a body in the clothes. This was sponsored by Desire Productions.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

042. Paper Dolls in Dava's Class

- School 33, Baltimore, us@

- summer, 1981

- Two groups of "child-size" paper dolls were given to the students to wear & they were encouraged to write & draw on each other. Most of the students were uncomfortable in the restrictive "costumes" & 1 of the girls ripped her way out. After this, all of the students were encouraged to do the same - which they did with great gusto making a total mess & throwing the paper scraps around enthusiastically. I thought of this as my sly way of providing them with confining role models to break.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

043. No No Class Umbrella Lesson

- Experimental High School -> the streets, Baltimore, us@

- fall, 1981

- Asked to co-teach a class at the Experimental High School, I named the class the No No Class & centered it around the teaching of guerrilla activities. At the 1st class I told the students that no matter how well they'd do in the class I planned to give them all "D"s (the lowest passing grade) since grades were aspects of a different political system than what the class represented. Some students dropped out immediately. They were then shown 2 vaudeos of quasi-documentation of 2 "guerrilla theater" type actions. At the end of the 1st class, they were asked to bring umbrellas to the next class.

- The 2nd class consisted of my having the students walk down the sidewalks, tightly clustered together, with umbrellas over their heads - despite its not being rainy or sunny. The purpose of this was to force other pedestrians to have to navigate under the moving variable height ceiling that the clumped umbrellas created. As the finalé, we blocked the entrance of a supermarket until a guard chased us away.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

052. Zero Hour

- Artifice, Baltimore, us@

- March 21, 1982

- This was my 2nd 'performance' 'performed' in absentia (others being the January 4, 1981 "Reading by Proxy", the following "Publicity Stunt (performed by Monty Cantsin)" & the "Panel Dummy Speak" of June 19, 2004). I'd been asked to do something for the "Odd Nights in March" in the Festivals of Disappearing Art(s) / Krononauts month long series of events that surrounded the Krononautic Organism's Party for People(s) from the Future(s) but I was unable to attend because I was going to be in NYC for the Neoist APT Fest. SO, I made fliers that were typewritten on plain white paper cut into 8.5"X2.75" strips with 4 lines of text in 2 variations: one: with the word "zero" on the top followed by a line with a scratched-through "it's not" & an unscratched-through "9 o'clok" (a highly esoteric reference to B.U.T.N. (BalTimOre Underground Club) & a Crab Feast song) followed by a line with the address of the 'performance' followed by a line with "tentatively, a convenience" & my P.O.Box address; two: the same as one except with the word "hour" at the top. Accidentally, nowhere was the date of the 'performance' shown. Intentionally, no explanation was provided. I spray-painted graffiti around town that had a very stark "0" overtop a very stark "HR" with one or both of the papers in between the 2.

For the night of the event, Ricky Kilreagan was presenting "A Psychosexual Inventory" where he had people come & be interviewed by him one by one on sexual matters. After this, they were to sit in a room where an 8-track cartridge tape was to play of a sound piece that I'd done called "Zero Hour" where I played the clocktower melody poorly on alto sax with 15 minutes of 'silence' between each of the 4 parts. This 'silence' was actually loud hiss from the lo-fi of the recording. Since there was no tolling of bells at the hour mark, it was always "zero hour". Unfortunately, my stringent request that the entire tape be played was not followed & only something like the 1st 15 minutes was played. I later learned that people thought that the hiss was the piece. It was my intention that the passing of time be the focus but, predictably, people became immediately bored & even in this 'performance art' context the audience (& organizers) were catered to & the tape was stopped. I had previously played this tape at my apartment in 1979 or thereabouts when a planned presentation of it at a friend's gallery hadn't happened because the gallery wasn't open when it was scheduled to be.

Perhaps one of the best outcomes of this is that I think "0 HR" was taken to be a mysterious new graffiti tag by one or more people after that.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

056. INAUGURATION OF THE B.T.O.U.C.

- Bal Tim Ore Underground Club, Baltimore, us@

- December 31 (New Year's Eve), 1982

- With the help of friends, I moved the 4' X 4' X 7' replica of a transistor radio called AS RADIO (previously mentioned in connection with the 2 last Crab Feast flops) into an abandoned set of rooms in the approximately 3 mile long train tunnel between (what had been) the Mount Royal Station & the Camden Station.

This space, & another, newer, set of rooms in a new extention of the old tunnel, were further decorated with elaborate graffiti (mostly made with stencils) made by myself, Dave Bakker, Randy Hoffman, & Laure Drogoul (&, possibly, others). An 8 track cartridge player & an amplifier & some speakers were installed in the AS RADIO & connected to the power in the tunnel & the Club was ready to open! Having stuck a marker up thru a manhole cover at the top of a shaft leading from the club, we located what was to become the "V.I.P." entrance on a conveniently unused lane on Howard Street. On New Year's Eve, Randy, Dave, & I (as Tim Ore) placed highway cones around the manhole & used a meathook (which bent) to lift the heavy, concrete coated, manhole cover. Dave & Randy were dressed as construction workers with hard-hats & shirts that had ID tags on them that read "Balto Co". Friends were invited down into the hole & down into the club & beer was provided. 2 truck drivers who stopped to ask for directions were invited down the manhole. They were dubious at 1st until they saw the spandex wrapped Sin-Dee Heidel emerge at which point they decided to descend. Eventually a reporter & a photographer came & did their do. When they left, they called train authorities to ask them what they thought of this & 2 of them stopped by at street level to visit. When they arrived, Randy & Dave, still manning the manhole, kept a straight face & asked them if "they'd like to see the boss". They did & I popped to the surface looking very "un-boss-like". I chattered away merrily & explanatorily for awhile & promised to close the "V.I.P." entrance when we left & the railroad officials were sensible enough to leave us in peace.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

059. acceptance of CERTIFICATE OF MERIT & a red rose

- Best of Baltimore Ceremony, Pier 6, Baltimore, us@

- Thursday, August 11, 1983, 6:30PM

- Having been nominated as 1 of "BalTimOre's Best" by Dave Bakker, I was awarded, while wearing my Tim Ore clothes, at a mayoral ceremony. The mayor remembered me for years after this & presumably wondered what exactly I'd received the nomination for.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

060. "If You've Only Got a Moustache" in "Tim Ore Frames Himself as a Graffiti Artist"

- That Frame Place, Baltimore, us@

- Sunday, August 28, 1983

- Surrounded by the environment of my Tim Ore exhibit, I sang a 19th century american song about the wonderful socio-sexual advantages of having a moustache (ever notice how almost all the guys in porno movies have them?) while wearing the Tim Ore clothes I projected a slide show on general Tim Ore lore & the history of Famous Moustaches - including such figures as Groucho Marx, Hitler, Dali, John Waters, & Frank Zappa.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

061. Poop & Pee Dog Copyright Violation Ceremony

- 14BX Sub-Par/Con (The 3rd Church & Foundation of the SubGenius Convention), a Baltimore Train Tunnel, us@

- September 18, 1983, very early morning

- A wire was stretched across the train tunnel thru an eye hook & 2 partially truncated & mummified dog corpses that I'd found there that had apparently been run over by trains were hung from the wire on either side of the tracks. A metal sheet with instructions for using Black & Decker power tools with a No Copyright symbol spray-painted on it was suspended between the dogs. The dogs were painted white with the words "Poop" painted on 1 of them & "Pee" painted on the other & glowing cyalume light sticks were placed between their rear legs. The walls of the tunnel were spray-painted with non-intersecting (except for, perhaps, the occasional accident) squiggly lines which I associated somehow with native Australian dreamtime culture. A strobe light flashed, someone made the dogs dance by tugging on the wire, & Ron Cummings manipulated & played tapes that he'd made of him beating on the dead dogs. I was naked except for my shoes & socks & I had white squiggly lines painted on me. I danced & gyrated wildly & beat the dogs & the thunder sheet with a club. The dogs were on fire & exuded what one might call a "foul" smell. I had been entrusted with the sacred head of Arnold Palmer by a representative of the Bloody Head Launcher's Society which I had set on fire & which I was also beating about the tunnel. The title of this ceremony was a reference to "Pee-Dog" comix by Jay Condum & Gary Panter & "Poop-Dog" comix (which was a friendly rip-off of "Pee-Dog") by the Reverends Ivan Stang & Sterno Keckhaver. Eventually a large quantity of police came (from the railroad cops, the city police, & the nearby federal reserve bank guards) because 1 of the attendees reported having witnessed something "horrible & immoral" & I was arrested. When the "news" found out about this (it was done partially as a publicity stunt anyway) they "reported" that I was a "Cult Leader" who was "praying to the dogs" etc. Very little attempt was made to actually find out who I really was or what I actually was doing & when I was interviewed what I actually had to say was considered too weird to quote. I was quoted both in the newspapers & on tv as saying things that I hadn't said by people who hadn't even been present at the time when I'd supposedly said them. The cop who'd arrested me bought a photo of this ceremony from me. Another cop who'd allegedly been on the "force" for 26 years was quoted as saying in the newspapers "I'd rather run up against a man with a gun than a situation like that!" The beat goes on..

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

062. An Interweaving of Familiar & Comfortable Items (for the Collaborators)

- That Frame Place, APT 7, Baltimore, us@

- Thursday, September 22, 1983

- At Dave Bakker's suggestion he & I combined some of our generic motifs into 1 "performance". This took place in the space of the Tim Ore show. I was dressed in the Tim Ore clothes & Dave was dressed in an austere black suit. We began by dragging our way across the floor to each other from opposite ends of a rope that had strings attached to it that were attached to various objects in the room such as an approximately 3 foot tall inflatable "cave-man" & a table & chair, etc. Hence, when we pulled on the rope the objects attached to it moved. Dave was under a transparent plastic sheet. A tape played of muzak from an "easy-listening" radio station that ended with a news report about the Inauguration of the Bal Tim Ore Underground Club. When Dave & I met at the middle of the rope & the middle of the room, Dave came out from under the plastic & we toasted to each other with rum & coke. Dave stood on a table at 1 end of the space while a tape played with a simple Casio music-track & a voice-over of Dave's that began with "Sitting alone in an empty hospital room.." & included "Sitting & thinking about thinking about nothing..". The voice-over stopped & the music picked up speed. Dave removed his suit to reveal pajama bottoms with rappelling gear surrounding the crotch that may've seemed like some specialty sexual apparatus to the audience. His chest was wrapped tightly with wide clear plastic tape with some sort of medical device in the center. He started to rapidly wrap his face very tightly with more of the same tape so that his face became very distorted. He sat & pulled on strings that were strung thru the ceiling & down to inverted mannequin legs that were sticking up from the floor. His manipulation caused the legs to clack open & closed. I, as Tim Ore, performed the same "If You've Only Got a Moustache" presentation described in a previous entry. Dave laid down on a stretcher that he'd made that had a large, stitched wound in the middle of it. This stretcher was tied to the same rope used earlier. I dragged the stretcher & Dave across the room by pulling on the rope - knocking over all the objects that the rope was attached to in the process & various other objects in the way. When Dave reached a window, he attached a rope to his rappelling gear & climbed out the window still wrapped in tape & in his pajama pants. I jumped out another window which, unbeknownst to the audience, led to another room rather than to the outside. Dave's exit was so spectacular that no-one except Monty Cantsin/Istvan Kantor noticed me leave.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

063. Thanksgiving Day Parade

- Baltimore, us@

- Saturday, November 19, 1983

- A large group of people were organized by R.U.T.S/L.E.R. (Random Universe Tours & Services (Doug Retzler) & the League for Esthetic Research (Dan Carney & Alec Bernstein)) to add the unusual to the traditional Thanksgiving Parade. Many, many people participated. Some of the people like Laure Drogoul, Nancy Andrews, Liz Downing, & Gabrielle Hourticulon made floats relevant to Thanksgiving traditions. Gabrielle pulled a live turkey in a cage. This was considered to be so offensive that she was thrown out. Many of the floats were parodies of the military with camouflage & dancing missiles. I was wearing camouflage coveralls & a Reagan Mask. Strapped to my feet were baby dolls that made some sort of crying noise when they were squeezed (or walked on). I had a friend, Matty, wear another Reagan mask & we tied a long banner between us by attaching it to our necks. The banner had this "Thanksgiving Prayer" on it: "Give Us Today A Conquered Nation So Many More May Suffer Starvation". With substantial difficulty we walked the full 3 or more miles of the parade & with our arms outstretched "like Zombies" - much to the enthusiastic response of the crowds lining the streets. Our group was so large that the parade officials made us split up into 3 different segments to diffuse our potency. 1 of these segments (2 floats & miscellaneous other things) were thrown out of the parade for "getting out of order".

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

064. "Alternatives to Vicious Cycles: The Intermingling of Subcultures to Facilitate Understanding"

- Emergency Show, M.A.P., Baltimore, us@

- Friday, December 9, 1983

- I had gotten to know drunks that were squatting in the building next to where I was residing. Their form of squatting had an unhygenic destructiveness reflective of their alcoholic/economic hopelessness. They used their 2nd floor as a toilet/dump. The floor was covered with Thunderbird bottles, piss, diarrhea, & cigarette butts. They drank & fought & passed out on the 3rd floor.

Their difficulties in many ways paralleled my own & their proximate despair helped increase my own. Having been threatened by 1 of the more psychotic of the winos, I was totally paranoid 1 night that he intended to force me into a confrontation in which 1 of us might kill the other. I decided to use this crisis as creative fuel & conducted a "live" radio show via the telephone in which I gave a "blow-by-blow" description of the accumulating fear & my way of dealing with it - with music & effects mixed in by the WJHU "DJ" Ron Cummings. Eventually the situation calmed down & the drunks & I established a fairly stable & friendly relationship. Having been invited to participate in the "Emergency" show I decided to transplant the misery of my neighbor's & my life to the gallery. I partitioned off a 2 room space & covered the floor with T-Bird bottles. I offerred to pay the winos to participate in the "performance" simply by attending it & talking to people. On the day of the "show", there was a larger group than usual of alcoholics waiting to help me. Some of them I'd never met before. They had misunderstood me & thought that I needed to assemble a gang for some sort of rumble. When they finally figured out that they weren't there to fight some of them dropped out. By the time the "Alternatives.." started there were only 3 of them left. The space was crowded, the bottles were being kicked around, my "paranoia" tapes were playing, & there was an open mike that people were encouraged to use. The drunks were being very vocal - in some cases being political & talking about alcoholism & in 1 case just being "out-of-control".

The atmosphere was intense & claustrophobic. I was passing around joints the contents of which I wouldn't identify (it was oregano with perfume) to try to increase the paranoia.

After enough "joints" had circulated & the claustrophobia seemed strong enough, I had my father come in (none of my friends knew him), wearing a policeman's uniform with a german shepherd on a leash, & just walk thru the crowd. He's had a tracheotomy, so I didn't have him say anything to break the paranoid illusion of his being a "real" cop until he left the 2 rooms where the "Alternatives.." was happening. I'd originally tried to get the railroad cop who'd arrested me for the "Poop & Pee Dog Copyright Violation Ceremony" to do this but his commanding sargeant wouldn't permit it. My intention in creating this situation was to simultaneously make the gallery attendees more aware of the oppressive misery of the drunks' lives & to give the drunks a paid vacation from it where what they had to say was of primary importance.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

065. X-Mas in Lacquerland

- a house in Baltimore, us@

- December 25, 1983

- Deciding that it would be more fun to work than to spend Christmas with our relatives, Doug "Sumu Pretzler" Retzler & I once again recorded a visit to "Lacquerland" (see #s 17 & 23). It was decided that every day is February 29th there & that the pterodactyl seems to be the most common bird.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

066. booed usic

- t he telectropheremoanin'quinquennial, Galaxy Ballroom, Baltimore, us@ - Tuesday, January 24, 1984

- This was the occasion of the 5th anniversary of the Baltimore Underground Telephone Network. The word "telectropheremoanin'" being a pun that combined "telectro" (as in having to do with telephone communications) with "pheremones" (lust inducing biological signals) with "moanin'" (as in moaning with pleasure). This pun was the theme of the night. I had paid a phone sex prostitute by mail to be called by me that night. In case there was any problem with that I'd asked my friend Lisa "Wet-Legs" (as she became known after this night) to act as a back-up. The basic idea was that I'd call the prostitute & broadcast our conversation to the bar's audience - gradually making it more & more perverse. As my conversation was to get stranger, the booed usicians were to gradually start playing until their sounds would drown out the conversation. The booed usicians were: Mark Harp (tapes & radio), Craig Considine (trombone), Ron Cummings (tapes, records, & mixing board), Leroy Keltner (trombone), & myself (tapes). There was "trouble on the line" at the phone sex prostitute's so Lisa substituted. Lisa had gotten mysteriously sick earlier, had vomited & passed out - my call awoke her. This added to the general feeling of it all. Suggestions from the audience were taken & someone's friend was called too. I was too drunk &/or inhibited to carry on a very good conversation so the extremely able Buddy Johnson was called in to relieve me. The highlight of his conversation with Lisa for me was their reminiscing about school-days they never had together when he pulled out his "short fat pancake" & she "covered it with Mrs. Butterworth's". Throughout the "phone sex" & the booed usic that encroached on it, an hour long analysis projector transfer to video of the 16mm version of my film "Subtitles" was shown on a large video projection screen.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

073. Form Love Letter reading

- the Severn Institute, Annapolis, us@

- December 8, 1984

- I made a form love letter which had the dual function of exploiting the aphrodisiacal qualities of romanticism & making fun of the absurdity of it. I often filled in the name of a person that I was sincerely attracted to & gave the letter to them in places where the lighting was so low it wasn't obvious it was a xerox. Even though the letter was written in a deliberately "poetic" overkill style, I found most women to be surprisingly responsive to it. My intention hadn't been to "humiliate" anyone but just to have a mutual laugh over the ridiculousness of my own extreme romanticism & that of anyone who might share it. Sometimes it backfired somewhat. For this reading, I addressed the letter to 2 different women & had them read it simultaneously.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

076. booed usic

- t he No Business as Usual Benefit, St Johns Church, Baltimore, us@

- June 29, 1985

- More video simultaneous with booed usic in which the main other visual element was me frantically trying to save the borrowed stereo amplifier that I was blowing. The booed usicians: Beef Jerky (guitar), Herr Brain Storm Drain (percussion), myself (tapes, records, radio, ring modulator, voice).

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

077. [piano concert 'for' 'transitionals'

- St Johns Church, Baltimore, us@

- spring or summer?, 1985

- This wasn't originally intended to be a concert for an audience - I just wanted to use the baby grand piano at St Johns to play & record some experiments I had in mind. However, the time arranged for my access to the piano coincided with a gathering of 'transitionals' at the church. These were, I was told, schizophrenics & other people who'd been institutionalized for mental problems who were using the church as a sortof halfway house where they could attempt to 'transition' back into the 'normal' world. As such, I wasn't exactly playing 'for' them but they were there. I remember the situation being somewhat awkward because I don't think that my playing was framed for them in any formal way. In other words, I doubt that I announced that I was going to play a concert or anything like that. I just prepared the pianos & then played. I vaguely remember people meandering around, possibly talking, probably not paying much attention to me. One of the 'transitionals' did come up & critique my piano playing after it was over. Alas, I don't remember what he said. I played 2 SELECT SUSTAIN 'pieces' of mine: "Black Keys Sustained" & "Whole Tone Scale Sustained". For the 1st, I (w/ assistance from my girlfriend O. J. D'Art & possibly others) I held down all the black keys & then weighted down the select sustain pedal so that those keys would be unmuted throughout. I then took advantage of this in a half-hour improvisation where the black key pentatonic scale would've 'wallowed' in harmonics, & the tempered diatonic white key scales could've been either staccato or sustained. I alternated between these possibilities & combined them. For the 2nd, a whole tone scale throughout the entire keyboard was sustained in the same way. Again, I performed a half-hour improvisation exploiting the unique harmonic situation created by the selective unmuting.]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

079. booed usic on Mozart's 200th Birthday

- Galaxy Ballroom, Baltimore, us@

- Monday, January 27, 1986, 9 - 11:30PM

- Attendees were given a paper entitled "19 Preposterous Lies About What Will & Will Not Happen" & a Mike Film Form Letter (see a previous entry for a superficial explanation of this 1) & a "bruise" rubber-stamping to indicate that they paid when they entered. I wore shoes made from loaves of bread; presented films, slides, & vaudeos; cut a "double negative" shape in my leg; I read Tony Lowe's "Universal Famine Appeal" while launching his balloons with slogans on them like "Thoughts Can Fly"; the audience was prompted to "sing along" to the "graphic notation" of my film "Sound Along WITH t he Bounding Ball(s)"; & the booed usicians played. For this occasion they were: Herr Brain Storm Drain (percussion, cornet), Beef Jerky (small instruments, etc..), Mark Harp (tapes), Norman Yeh (violin & piano), & myself (tapes, records, & radios). Projectionist: Joan Lobell. To quote from the "19 Lies" flier "The average person prefers to only experience the consonant - by which I mean experience which they fool themselves into thinking that they are comfortably familiar with. I do not want the average person near me. I prefer the dissonant vowels. That's a thought to take into consideration when you wonder why I might lie when publicizing public it shows (mad scientist didactions) that I instigate & participate in."

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

080. "Miss Gay Galaxy" on the "Larry Vega Show"

- Galaxy Ballroom, Baltimore, us@

- early1986?

- [October 16, 2010 note: I had previously left this off my "Mere Outline.." because it was such a minor 'performance' but, shucks, there might be SOMEONE out there who'd find this interesting & it would seem that I'm becoming a 'completist' here so I'm including it.] "Larry Vega" (aka "Dick Hertz") hosted a fake tv talk show in the Galaxy Ballroom in the Congress Hotel &, later, at the 8 X 10 Club. Larry's costars were "Corky Niedermayer" (aka Mark Harp), & "Morry Fine and his All-Blind Orchestra". Stoc Marcut made frequent appearances as did many others. Stoc portrayed Dr Ruth & Tom Synder, eg. Larry's show was deliberately vulgar & politically incorrect - glorying in moronic tv spoof humor. His stock phrase was "What the hell ya gonna do?". In a hand-out for the August 19, 1986 show at the 8 X 10, Larry described himself with:

 

LIKES: fast cars, fast women, fast foreplay, smoking

HATES: slow cars, slow women, rattan, the handicapped

FAVE COLOR: plaid

FAVE FOOD: cold borshcht

SCOTCH: Old Overcoat

 

Vega had asked someone to be a guest "Miss Gay Galaxy" (probably someone who was gay) & when they didn't show asked me to substitute. I didn't want to play being gay by using swish (or any other) stereotypes so I probably quickly brainstormed with my girlfriend of the time, O. J. D'Art, & one other unknown male friend to do a different routine. I went on stage just wearing my usual ragged winter clothes & as response to Larry's questions pretended to be very shy. I explained that I wasn't the only one who deserved the "Miss Gay Galaxy" award because I had been 1/3rd of Siamese Triplets & that we'd recently been surgically separated. Taking my cue from a comedy routine by Janor Hypercleets, the "living tongue" of the Church of the SubGenius, I explained that when we were separated I'd gotten the balls. I named my other 2/3rds something like Janor & Janet Hypercleets in honor of this. I don't think Janor was in town at the time but maybe he was the male colllaborator. I then invited my other 2/3rds on stage. They came on, twitching - this was probably intended to look as if they weren't "all there" & the 3 of us proceeded to pretend to attempt to reunite - rolling around orgiastically on the floor while Vega 'cut to a commercial' or whatnot.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

090. to 106. First Meeting Re-Enactments

- San Francisco, San Antonio, & Baltimore, us@

- every Monday (except June 2) from May 26 'til September 22?, 1986

- Martha Peterson & I met when I showed my film (made as Monty Cantsin in collaboration with Monty Cantsin & Monty Cantsin - with soundtrack by Monty Cantsin, etc..) "Transparent SMILE - Monty Cantsin Performing with White Colours" (broken into 2 parts on YouTube: https://youtu.be/EGc-rohmq4k & https://www.youtu.be/p84MiQDrsnc ) at a bar called the "Sixteenth Note" in San Francisco. We "fell in love" (a.k.a. had sex under the influence of Ecstacy) & I asked her to go to BalTimOre with me. On our weekly-versaries, we "re-enacted" meeting each other for the 1st time by reliving it in various new ways. This story is told in substantial detail in the "I Guess SMARM isn't Short for School Marm After All?" chapter in the revised 2nd edition of my book How to Write a Resumé - Volume II: Making a Good First Impression. As such, I'll keep the description short here. Martha & I would, usually, go to a public place pretending not to know each other & go through a pre-planned mating ritual - the silly extravagance of which was sometimes intended to bemuse unsuspecting onlookers. Sometimes we had confederates. One of these was filmed in super-8 by Patty Blaster in San Antonio. This was probably the 2nd re-enactment & to quote the YouTube notes: "The cynical good humor & alcoholic self-parody is clear.": http://youtu.be/Ne1_-f6RaQg My current favorite might be the one where I went to a bar /restaurant where I had friends working & where the bar-tender, John Fonda, was a friend of mine. Martha came in later & told the bar-tender that she'd just arrived from San Francisco. When he asked her why she'd move to B-More from there, she said that she'd seen a film show by a guy named "tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE" & that she'd liked it so much that she decided to move to the city where he lived. John got very excited & told her that I was sitting in the restaurant. She, very shyly approached me at my table where I was sitting with friends & introduced herself. When "it came out" that "she'd just arrived in Baltimore & had no place to stay" I "magnanimously" offered to "let her stay at my hotel for free". My friends were shocked at my using such a ridiculous lie as to say that I owned a hotel in such a transparent ploy to fuck Martha but they didn't say anything. After a little more of this straight-faced silliness, she & I left together. This provided material for gossip for months until I finally told my friends that they'd been set up. The laziest "re-enactment" I can recall was one where Martha simply came into my bedroom while I was there & we tried to figure out how we could've managed to not previously meet each other when we'd been sharing the same bedroom! We managed to continue this practice 15 to 17 times until we were no longer interested in each other enough to bother.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

107. pirate tv premier of "6 Fingers Crossed Country T.Ore/Tour" vaudeo

- Luskin's, Towson, Maryland, us@

- Saturday, December 27, 1986, 3PM

- With the essential collaboration of Lizard Media Systems & using a channel 3 broadcaster, we tried a test-run broadcast from Lizard's mobile home. It was a sunny day & my vaudeo showed bright & clear on the wall of tvs in the Luskin's (a sortof cheap home entertainment center store). For the actual event, a fairly large group of people was organized to meet at Lizard's R.V. They were asked to go in small groups into the Luskin's & to gradually tune all the tvs to channel 3 while we broadcast the guerrilla premier of the vaudeo quasi-document of the "6 Fingers Crossed Country T.Ore/Tour". Unfortunately, the broadcast wasn't working at 1st & none of the people tuning the tvs to 3 thought to come back to tell us that the tvs were only receiving "snow". This had alerted the salesman that something weird was going on & they were following the strange "customers" & retuning the tvs to football. Finally we got the transmission corrected & the pirate tv game continued. All of the participants did a good job of playing it straight & the Luskin's personnel never really did have any clear idea why they suddenly had so many customers wanting to tune the tvs to a channel that "doesn't get anything" but was getting something anyway!

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

107. Easter Island Bunny Booed Usic

- Hourhaus, Baltimore, us@

- April 19, 1987

- This was the 1st presentation of mine in which the simultaneous film & vaudeo (& booed usic) were of a substantially planned inter-relation. This was also my 1st collaboration with instrument-maker & player Neil Feather who was to be1 of my main collaborators over the next 7+ years. It was also the last of the "strictly booed usic" type of shows. The booed usicians: Neil Feather (vibulum, former guitar), John Sheehan (drums, horn guitar), myself (tapes, records, radios). Despite the complexity & diversity of this event, I once again became reputed to be something along the lines of "the guy who does shows about him fucking a bunch of girls". (Not intended to be) Flattering(?), but not particularly accurate.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

109. [Something that Dissolved the Shadow of Something that Was Next to Something that Burned Twice

- Neil Feather & Valerie Dearing's Apartment , Baltimore, us@

- Easter, 1988

- The 1st "public" concert by this improvising group with the ever-difficult John Sheehan not participating (if I remember correctly). I was probably presenting Philosopher's Union Members' Mouthpieces (approximately 5&1/2 minute PXL-2000 close-ups of mouths of people responding to the question "What is your philosophy?" or some such) for the 1st time. The riddle-like name that serves as the title above was our band name. The band consisted of Neil Feather, John Berndt, & myself playing who knows what.]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

124. [Concrete Mixing

- The Attic, Baltimore, us@

- November 30, 1988

- This was originally scheduled to be the cLosing of Karen Eliot's "Paracultural Exhibition" but it coincidentally turned into the aftermath of the Losing of my bookstore job (weelll.., I didn't actually lose it, I was fired). This presentation was from Karen Eliot (John Berndt), Karen Eliot (Peter Pan), & Karen Eliot (myself) - all playing various tapes & electronics. I played the busking unit/blatnerphone with Philosopher's Mouthpieces. Given that I was a bit angry about the circumstances of "losing" "my" job, my penultimate participation was spent ranting about money etc.. - followed by a spirited playing of a pan of meat. The other Karens contributed such things as rewritten Hardy Boys material & Muson playing.]

 

126. [Volunteers Collective I

- Art Strike Attic, Baltimore, us@

- April 16, 1989

- I've fantasized about a group to be called the "Vengeful Clowns" which would consist of all the most abused outcasts that I know taking revenge in creative ways. The initials for this group being "V.C." would be reminiscent of the "Viet Cong". John Berndt kept these initials & proposed the "Volunteers Collective" as "a loose ensemble of changing "membership", focused on goals by their individual enthusiasm at each point, on projects which suggest the participation of a defined group but for which no suitable context exists here". Most, or all, of our manifestations so far have been as a social group in which people get to "know" each other thru audio improvisation. Only those "V.C."s which had an audience & which I participated in are in this list. This manifestation included: Neil Feather (former or bendy guitar), Alan Barysh (alto & soprano sax), John Berndt (oddly-strung guitar, percussion, SPX-90), Caroline Armstrong (floor percussion & drum-set), Elyce Semenec (floor percussion), Miekal And (alto sax, voice, computer manipulated recordings?), myself (drum-set, floor percussion, guitar, alto & soprano sax), Scott Larson (radio?, small electronics?, animal recordings?, etc?), Liz Was (drum-set).]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

127. Dunking Booth Reading

- Apathy Press Benefit, SoWeBohemian Festival, Baltimore, us@

- Memorial Day Weekend, 1989

- Tom DiVenti, the founder & primary publisher of Apathy Press, rented a dunking booth & asked people published by him to volunteer in it to try to make money for the press. I've always found the psychology of dunking booths to be fascinating & repulsive. Usually, the person in the booth viciously taunts passers-by in an attempt to get them angry enough to try to dunk them. The exaggerated formalization of what I find to be an all-too-normal social relation of hateful baiting interests me but I still dislike the basic oppressive competitiveness of it. Given that this was a benefit for a press & that the usual dunking booth biz involves talking to the audience, I decided to give a political reading that both addressed my own relationship with violence & the potential for social change thru an expanded sense of non-sadistic humor. Furthermore, knowing that plenty of enemies of mine would be present at this very popular fest, I thought of this as an opportunity for them to express their dislike for me in a formalized way which I could subvert for my own purposes. Sure enough, Tom Dantoni, someone who hates me more than most in Baltimore, took advantage of the opportunity to walk up to the target & simply press it to dunk me. Given that this both fulfilled my expectations (thusly making me feel "wise"), & that I got it on vaudeo, I was satisfied.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

128. [Volunteers Collective II

- Neil Feather & Valerie Dearing's Garage, Baltimore, us@

- June 11, 1989

- More audio improvisation from: Neil Feather (nondo, bendy guitar, vibulum, etc..), John Kennedy (a.k.a.: John Berndt - oddly-strung guitar, SPX-90, percussion, etc..), Caroline Armstrong (nondo, percussion), Elyce Semenec (percussion), Clark Snell (?), & myself (percussion, oddly strung guitar, nondo, etc..).]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

133. Something That Dissolves the Shadow of Something Which Was Once Close to Something That Once Burned Twice

- Displace, Baltimore, us@

- November 4, 1989, 9PM - 1AM

- The 2nd & final public presentation by this group. Neil Feather & I spent 20 hours installing our equipment in this room. John Berndt put in alotof time too. John Sheehan pulled his usual "difficult" routine by refusing to say whether he'd participate or not & then showing up at the "last" minute after Neil & I had set up his equipment for him. Neil's set-up was the most extreme: he had bowling balls hanging from a metal frame from piano wire which swung as pendulums against moveable bridges on necks - the resultant sound of the strings hitting the bridges was processed thru a 16 second digital delay. His other instruments included: Bendy Guitar, Nondo, & Contraption. I surrounded myself by 15 drums & cymbals & other metal things, a guitar, & a VCR & monitor playing a fairly complex feedback vaudeo I'd made. John Berndt was using some sort of home-made oscillator & Oddly-Strung Guitar - amongst other things. John Sheehan played a bass that he'd made from a kit. The agreement that we'd had before-hand was that we'd play for about 5 hours - with any of us taking breaks whenever we felt like it - but with at least 1 of us playing at all times. There were a few other agreed-upon things (few, if any of which, would John Sheehan commit to cooperating with) such as playing for an hour straight without any of us dropping out & with all of us playing as intensely as we could stand. When the time came for this latter, I had been drinking alcohol & taking oral morphine & was a bit worried that I might have overdone it so I played frenetically to try to work it out of my system. After John Sheehan dropped out, the rest us entered a nudist phase. The way the equipment was set up was basically so that it filled the large room we were in but so that people could walk anywhere around us. In the meantime, Brad Hwang & his room-mate Matt were having large mobile machine battles in an adjacent room. In 1 highlight & neoist reference, John Sheehan donned a sortof hockey face mask, lit a steam iron on fire that had a pick-up attached to its bottom, & played the pick-up by banging a piano wire against it that was mounted between 2 boards that he held between 1 foot & 1 very begloved hand.

A movie from this is on YouTube broken into 2 parts:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=McbJXs4XC7w

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sCQHJk7I8DA

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

134. Generic As-Beenism

- Displace, Baltimore, us@

- Saturday, December 16, 1989

- The final version of "Generic As-Beenism" had projection problems but was distinguished by having Laura A. Trueseal back, John Berndt playing synthesizer from the back of the space, & Jake T. Unclean performing a shadow-puppet show with giblets on the side from behind a parachute or some other large drop. This audience-surround aspect, the over-all funkiness of it, & the wacky visceral irrelevance of the giblets' squishy presence made this a particularly memorable moment in "Cobbley World History".

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

135. ["Eloquent Voices", subtitled "Pathetique" for car horns (by Dick Turner)

- VEX, Swann Park, Baltimore, us@

- March, 1990

- This Krononautic Organism's Vernal Equinox party took place at a particularly toxic waste dump type environment in Baltimore City. Dick Turner's contribution was to premier his piece scored for car horns (& lights). I participated as 1 of the car players.]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

136. [the Official, May 5th, 1990ev, 31st St. Between Greenmount & Barclay Block Party Combo

- Block Party, Baltimore, us@

- May 5, 1990

- This was the premier of the group that Neil Feather & I founded that we decided to call the "official group for any occasion". Given that 36 of the next 42 entries were done under the umbrella of this project, it's probably a good idea to restrict the information of "official" entries in some way to avoid too much redundancy. Therefore, I won't list our instrumentation, I'll try to give a coherent general outline of our approach in this entry only, & I'll stick to concise participant info at the end of each. We worked with what we call CAMUs - an acronymn for "Cue Activated Modular Units". This means parameters for playing that can be activated by any player at almost any time by cueing with previously agreed upon signals. The rules for these parameters could be anywhere in the range between simple to convoluted with players having to make quick mathematical calculations in order to play accents in sync with the other players, etc.. The CAMUs included guidelines for behaviour. The "John Trubee Squee-Gee Blivet" (named by John Berndt partially in honor of the "reality" undermining confrontationalness of John Trubee' s infamous prank phone calls) was performed by suddenly confronting an audience member as if you were a "schizophrenic" street person (perhaps with Tourette's Syndrome) & screaming emotionally charged gibberish in their face as if it were "all their fault". This early show was fairly simple but the later shows got to be so complicated that it amazed all of us that we could remember so many parameter guidelines & follow them so quickly. Personnel: Herr Brain Storm Drain, Courtney McCullough, Neil Feather, myself.]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

137. Hairballs, Wigs, & Weaves for Skinheads

- Anti-Racist-Skinheads Rally, Baltimore, us@

- spring, 1990

- At the suggestion of Professor "Footlong" Franks (David Franks), we collaborated on founding this bogus support group. Given that to most people I was a "skinhead" at the time because I had a shaved head that's tattooed & "looked tough" & wore a flight jacket & steel-toe boots, I was pretty sick of "skinhead" stereotyping. It seems that outside agitators came to town & tried to stir up "skinheads" as white-supremacists. Then the "skinheads" tried to get a parade permit to walk thru a notoriously racist white neighborhood. Anti-racist & pacifist forces in the neighborhood fought the granting of the permit & the city officials agreed to let the parade happen in front of city hall (where there are Jewish history plaques). The media jumped on this with relish. Hot Dog! Their stupid oversimplifications & sensationalizing reduced "skinheads" to being only white & only racist - completely not noticing that Baltimore had black skinheads, that black & white skinheads hung out with each other, & that an anti-racist skinhead group existed. Thus every white male with a shaved head became a target for volatile blacks too stupid to see thru the media hype. All this increased racial tension rather than decreased it thusly playing right into the same old "divide & conquer" scenario that's kept the poor fighting each other for who knows how long.. At any rate, "Footlong" & I co-made a pamphlet (my portion was done under the name of "Moms" Brutus) parodying the whole thing meant to be handed out at the white supremacist rally. Anti-racists planned a counter-rally but the racists cancelled saying that they only wanted to rally in the all-white neighborhood. The counter-rally happened anyway & "Footlong" & I & some other cohorts attended to hand out our pamphlets. Jake T. Unclean handed out a flier from "Girls Shave in Solidarity". "Footlong" sported a rainbow-afro wig & I wore my "Hair Suit" (covered with wigs) & a wig on my head. When I pulled off my wig, people gasped "a skinhead!" Most of the "leftists" were as knee-jerkingly predictable & dumb as ever - afraid to "let us" speak because they were afraid of the language we'd use & not too sure we'd be politically correct. In the end they nervously gave us the platform. "Footlong" & I read from our pamphlet while Jake shaved her legs. The media so misrepresented this anti-racist rally as being some big defeat of the "skinheads" rather than the rag-tag affair it really was that, even as a participant in it, I couldn't stomach it all.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

138. the Official, Saturday, June 23, 1990ev, Patapsco Park, McKeldin Area, Paul & Cindy's Wedding Trio

- Patapsco Park, Maryland, us@

- June 23, 1990

- Our 2nd "official" gig this was actually for some friends' wedding! During 1 part when we started rhythmically describing the trees around us 1 friend got so excited that she started jumping up & down. To her embarrassment, she was wearing a dress with nothing underneath that was tied loosely behind her neck & the dress fell off. At another point, after a plant in the audience cued us with "Just show us your bathing suits & eat your pretzels!" we stripped off our outer clothes to reveal 1 piece "girl's" bathingsuits. Other highlights, other than the greatness of our playing, were the wedding guests trying to convince us that the state police had come to the park because of complaints & that we really should stop. Personnel: Jake T. Unclean, Laura A. Trueseal, Courtney McCullough, Neil Feather, & myself.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

139. [the Official, July 10th & 11th, 1990ev, Punch Night at the BAUhouse Trio

- Baltimore, us@

- July 10, 1990

- Two sets with the same line-up as the previous entry (our briefly stabilized quintet - notice that the # of players indicated by our name never coincides with the actual # of players).]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

140. the Official, July 21st, 1990ev, disPlace, 1220 Curtain Avenue Sextet

- Baltimore, us@

- July 21, 1990

- More & more CAMUs coupled, for this show, with my "Wallpaper Video" of a loop of an initially intact set of windows being wrecked by a wrecking-ball with the loop causing its reconstitution playing over & over & over.. In the spirit of wrecking, I accidentally smashed my watch during the "Wreck" CAMU. Personnel: the same quintet as the previous 2 entries.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

141. [the Official, Friday, August 17th, 1990ev, People Who Play as a Part of Approximately the Same Event That Features Bands from Baltimore, Philadelphia, & New York Sextet

- Displace, Baltimore, us@

- August 17, 1990

- More & more & more CAMUs with the introduction of my explaining that we play "Aleatoric "Fortean" Novelty MYTHO-GOSSIP Usi(al Service Industry So-Called Whatevers".]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

143. the Official, August 28th, 1990ev, Shattered Wig Review Night at the Bow-Wow House One Man Band of Slip-Shods

- Baltimore, us@

- August 28, 1990

- More & more & more & more CAMUs. This time coupled with an explanatory "Official Business" booklet & my "One Word per Person Party" vaudeo. By now, we'd probably started playing with fire - so, during the "Wreck" section we lit pieces of flash paper that we'd taped around & carried off the "injured". I introduced us wearing a Gorbachov mask & clothes that were all black on 1 side & all white on the other. My hair was dyed to match. Personnel: the afore-mentioned quintet.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

144. the Official, September 14th, 1990ev, People Who Send People Back Somewhere Without Having Been There Before Twins

- BAUhouse, Baltimore, us@

- September 14, 1990

- Even more CAMUs. This may've been the beginning of our snake-charming music bit. The quintet.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

145. [the Official, October 12th, 1990ev, 14 Karat Cabaret Hungry Rabbit Touring Colony

- Baltimore, us@

- October 12, 1990

- Even even more CAMUs. Snake-charming had become "Worm Charming". The quintet.]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

146. [the Official, October 13th, 1990ev, 14 Karat Cabaret Hungry Rabbit Touring Colony

- Baltimore, us@

- October 13, 1990

- A different show from the night before given that almost every show involved new CAMUs in a new modular relationship that became more & more complicated. Both these Cabaret shows involved at least video & probably film. The quintet.]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

147. the Official, October 25th, 1990ev, Only Band in Town Without Courtney McCullough in it Quintet

- BAUhouse, Baltimore, us@

- October 25, 1990

- Courtney McCullough preferred to be bar-tender this night. Another action-packed night full of drastically shifting structure with unusual instrumentation & even a little bit of "3rd World" "rip-off". The quintet minus C.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

148. the Official, December 31st, 1990ev, Kinko's Office Party, We-Miss-You-Neilers

- Masonic Temple rental space, Baltimore, us@

- December 31 (New Year's Eve), 1990

- Neil Feather was in Mexico during this 1. Flaming kitchen sink, flashlight on a turntable, a Spike Jones cover, Brad-A-Lon, a pre-programmed electric piano deserted by Courtney's Xanax addled lounge lizard dad.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

149. End of the World Party

- Washington Monument, Baltimore, us@

- January 18, 1991

- A local paper had run an article about how the US government was planning to launch a satellite so explosive that if it were to blow up in the biosphere most humans & other such big biological things would be killed. Jake T. Unclean organized this quasi-nihilistic quasi-millenarian ranting session. With John Eaton & Erica Freudenberger we used a megaphone to ask everyone around us what they would do if they really thought they were going to die tommorow. Despite our prompting, we were the only ones who expressed any ideas along these lines. 1 black skinhead did harass me for "knowing" that I "looked slick".

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

150. Protestors Against Gods in the Gulf

- Washington Monument, Baltimore, us@

- February?, 1991

- John Eaton, co-editor of the magazine "Reality Sandwich" & I basically thought of this 1. As response to the Gulf War we made 4 large picket signs. The 1st read: "Honk Once if You Love Jesus!" (a common christian bumper-sticker), the 2nd: "Honk Twice if You Love Allah!" (you've heard of him haven't you?), the 3rd: "Honk 3 Times if You Love Jehovah!" (is it all beginning to blur together?), the 4th: "Honk As Much As You Like If You Just Want Them All To Leave You Alone!" (this pretty much summed up our position). Most people passing by in cars only had time to read the 1st 1 or 2 if they read from left to right & thought we were religious fanatics. Jake T. Unclean & Erica Freudenberger added their usual zest & zeal.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

152. [the Official, May 18th, 1991ev, Open House in the Garage at 3PM Solo Quartet

- Neil Feather & Valerie Dearing's Garage, Baltimore, us@

- May 18, 1991, 3PM

- The "official" project had shrunk to its founding duet. This marked the premier of the "78" CAMU - a sequence of 78 beats that was to generate many a groan of anxiety from "official" players to encounter it. Personnel: Neil Feather, myself.]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

153. [the Official, May 19th, 1991ev, Open House in the Garage at 3PM Solo Quartet

- Neil Feather & Valerie Dearing's Garage, Baltimore, us@

- May 19, 1991, 3PM

- See the previous entry.]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

154. with Laughingtree

- an alley in the SoWeBohemian Festival, Baltimore, us@

- Memorial Day Weekend, 1991

- Laughingtree was a "performance" group that based their themes around extrapolated hypothetical insect culture. They wore elaborate insect costumes & did things like dragged around huge clumps of cutlery while playing tightly worked out rock'n'roll medleys. Toward their demise, they started concentrating more on improvising rather than r'n'r. I had a cameo appearance playing piezo miked small percussion. The other main personnel were: Clark Snell (insektar), Peter Williams (bass), Lyle Kissack (drums), Carol Shuford (cutlery clump), & probably others..

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

155. [the Official, August 13rd, 1991ev, Bughouse Apex Roto Zither Auxillary

- BAUhouse, Baltimore, us@

- August 13, 1991

- The premier of Neil Feather's new instrument: the "Apex Roto Zither". This is a 24 string semi-automatic music machine made using such things as a steering wheel, a fishing rod, a sewing machine, a door-knob, multiple pick-ups - some moving, etc, etc.. It can be played by "remote-control". For this show we started out in a different room from the audience & the instruments. Thru a mike with a long cord we instructed members of the audience to go to the instruments & do certain things to get them started on their semi-automatic course. "Blaster" Al Ackerman was asked to turn on the vibrators of Neil's "Vibulum", Laura A. Trueseal was asked to turn the Roto Zither's steering wheel, Carol Shuford was asked to step on the bowling ball fragment which activated the 16 second digital delay. Eventually Neil, John Berndt, & I came out wearing red clown noses & proceeded to play for another 80 minutes - trying to highlight Neil's instruments. This was probably the 1st time that we'd used foot-pedal controlled lights for "atmospheric" lighting effects.]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

156. the Official, October 28th, 1991ev, Pixilatin' Deadly Drolls

- 'Patanational PXL-2000 Movie Festival, BAUhouse, Baltimore, us@

- October 28, 1991

- Leading to the intermission in the PXL fest, Neil Feather & I played such things as small & demi Nondos while Valerie Dearing's Philosopher's Union Member's Mouthpiece played. I played my Nondo with wind-up toys & played vibraphone in public for the 1st time.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

157. [the Official, Friday the 13th, Generic Neuro-Linguistic Programming Party Band

- Baltimore, us@

- December 13, 1991

- The premier of the "Big Band" version of the "official" project. "Medium Band" might be a better way to describe us since we'd started out with 20 members & shrunk to 10 by this time. Fortunately, we'd already recorded the 1st side of our record when there were still 15 members left. Our 1st 2 shows, other than a "Beach Party" tv show, had been cancelled. 1st we'd been scheduled to play at an elementary school under a joint arts department / science department sponsorship. Then we were scheduled to play at a prison where they hadn't been able to get any "entertainment" for months. Supposedly a convict committee had listened to our tape & rejected us! By this point we had a complex repetoire more tightly challenging than what the founding quintet had played with if only because of the doubling of membership. This was at our warehouse practice space & we played in a circle, as was our typical rehearsal practice. Personnel: Jake T. Unclean, Neil Feather, Courtney McCullough, Dawn Culbertson, John Berndt, Peter Williams, Scott Larson, Chris Astier, John Eaton, & myself.]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

158. [the Official, December 14th, 1991E.V., Oh, I Forget..

- Baltimore, us@

- December 14, 1991

- The 2nd set of our premier - distinguished from the 1st set because Peter Williams didn't play with us on this 1 (&, besides, we had a different name!).]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

159. the Official, January 18th, 1992E.V., Fake Party

- Baltimore, us@

- January 18, 1992

- 1 of my favorite aspects of the "official" structure is that it's a conceptual approach that doesn't always require the use of specific instruments & props. Given my usual interest in penetrating "ordinary" situations, I tried to co-ordinate participants in the project to structure their interactions in social situations around CAMUs - as always, keeping a straight face in the interest of making it difficult for any unwitting audience to be "sure" about what was going on. E.g.: 1 player would start telling a wild story that would lead to something that the listener would presumably want to hear the outcome of & then digress - continuing this pattern to prevent any story climaxes from being reached. Other players would respond by either talking simultaneously or sequentially using the same structure. This is called, predictably enough, the "Digression" CAMU. Or a player could cue the "Ill-timed Preparation for an Encore" by suddenly leaving a room & doing something furtive somewhere - with the other players also leaving & doing something furtive. Our 1st attempt at this was at a party at Alan Barysh's. It wasn't very successful partially because the other partiers (our un-witting "straight" "men") were too few. Realizing that there wasn't much likelihood of arranging & (quasi-)documenting a more successful version of this, I decided to throw a "Fake Party" to do this in so that I could vaudeo it more easily. This was accomplished with the assistance of the late, great John "Santa Claus" Fonda, the ever-humorous "Blaster" Al Ackerman, Mora Majorowitz, the ever-enthusiastic Megan Hamilton, Tim Sheehan, & the ever-overkill John Sheehan as the fake partiers. John & Tim made enormous quantities of samozas. The "official" fake partiers were Scott Larson, Neil Feather, John Eaton, & John Berndt. Chris Astier crossed the line back & forth between the 2 categories - usually helping with the food preparation & ignoring the "official" procedures. I was the cameraperson & "director". Since most of the unofficial fake partiers had never witnessed an "official" presentation before, they were reasonably good "dead weight".

The movie from this is on my onesownthoughts YouTube channel here:

Part 1:  http://youtu.be/rpYh80gWvpw

Part 2: http://youtu.be/LqBoLNQJEaU

Part 3:  http://youtu.be/9BXYWDnxvsE

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

160. the Official, March 21st, 1992ev, 14 Karat Cabaret, We're Not As Intense As John Duncan But We're As Worth Paying Attention To For Reasons More Complex Than There's Time To Explain In This Measley Band Name Band

- 14 Karat Cabaret, Baltimore, us@

- March 21, 1992

- Being on a double bill with John Duncan I decided against using any "sexual" film &/or vaudeo material & chose to present the more subtly conceptual "official" material instead. With Neil Feather surrounded by his inventions on the front of the stage to the audience's frontal left & me surrounded by my "erector set" percussion & many other devices behind him, the visual emphasis was overwhelmingly on construction. To the audience's frontal right was a movie screen on which I premiered an approximately 1/2 hour version of my 16mm film (still in progress as of this writing) entitled "John Lennon's Erection As Blocking Our View Homage & Cheese Sandwich" - a technically diverse, "non-linear", multi-mood extravanganza that parallels the "official" project in its genre reference juxtapositioning. Neil & I played largely in the dark occasionally flashing our foot-pedal controlled lights like lightning flashes to give the audience fleeting glimpses of the elaborateness of our gear. Much of the film contains construction footage so the feeling was of something elaborate being built inexorably in front of you too quickly to be able to grasp it all.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

161. the Official, April 29th, 1992ev, Band That Does Accept Money From Institutions

- "Progressions" Series, University of Maryland, Baltimore County Campus, us@

- April 29, 1992

- I had been invited to present films as a part of this "interdisciplinary" required course for the supposedly more sophisticated arts students. Wanting to present the "official" "Big Band" that had been practicing for almost a year with no place to play outside our practice space, I plugged a "show" with both my movies & the band. The result was probably 1 of the biggest extravaganzas of "reality" undermining the students are ever likely to be subjected to. They hated me. They hated US. They wrote papers about it which the teacher was kind enough to give to me. I published them, unedited (i.e.: replete with spelling errors) in a book called "Reactionary Muddle America". Don't expect to get much of an idea about the presentation from their papers though. More inaccurate accounts could hardly be generated. 1 woman wrote that after she left the show she could hardly find her way out of the building. I'm surprised any of them ever found their way in in the 1st place. A large poster with computer graphics greeted them at the entrance. A tad-pole on the poster became a "sperm" in 1 of the students papers. 14 page carefully computer typeset booklets were available at the door as hand-outs. These contained a list of the movies to be shown, a political-philosophical text, my complete movieography (with 114 listings), graphics, a list of band members & their instruments, a table of the CAMUs that we planned to use in the presentation, a brief explanation of our playing, a brief description of a complex sample CAMU, an article advertising the "show", & the 3 posters made for the show. All of this was made especially for this night. In other words, we gave them something more carefully made than any of them were ever likely to make in order to get their diplomas! I presented 8 vaudeo projected movies - a total of 67 minutes + the time of my prefaces. 1 woman walked out after 15 minutes & cried for the next 45. Then it was time for the band. A 55 minute version of "John Lennon's Erection As Blocking Our View Homage & Cheese Sandwich" was projected with a black rectangle blocking its middle so that there would be a blank space that the vaudeo could be projected into. I was on stage & the rest of the band were spaced about in the audience. In a carefully pre-planned sequence, I improvised a meandering "Neuro Linguistic Introduction" in which, by using hand signals, the band was cued to anticipatorily call out words in unison that fit my "narrative". These words collectively formed a stretched out sentence introducing our band name. Then we segued into a "Simon" in which each band member said the word or words that the previous band member had said & added a word to the sequence until every band member had added something twice. Then we segued into a simultaneous reading of a text in which our simultaneous accenting of 35 out of 78 beats was an example of what the text was about. Then John Berndt came on stage from the audience wearing a turban-like head piece & led the group in an "Imitative Unison" after which the whole band came on stage playing screamers. To kick off our stage set, we played an instrumental version of "78" in perfect coordination. This was what 1 brilliant young scholar called "everybody doing their own thing all at once". Gee, I'm sure glad we got recognition for our 10 months of practice. I had 4 videos playing simultaneously with the ability to have 1 of the 4 projected into the middle of the 16mm projection & 1 to appear on the 2 monitors on either side of the stage. The 4 tapes were: "Teaser" - a continually repeated shot of a penis trying to penetrate a vagina & popping out before getting a chance to fully enter; "Wallpaper Video" - the previously described wrecking ball wrecking of a building that had once housed 1 of Baltimore's biggest newspapers (now defunct) "The News American", "Concrete Mixing Usical Material Vaudeo #1" - an hour long sequence of carefully excerpted portions of some of my more sensationalist or strikingly imagistic vaudeos, "Concrete Mixing Usical Material Vaudeo #2" - an extremely fast moving summary of most of my movies from 1979 to 1989 - the slowest shot being a quarter second long. Most of the band members had foot-pedal controlled lights which they flashed periodically. For the penultimate section, the "Worm Charming" part (meant to charm the worms in the audience with its simple-minded steady beat) we set various things on fire. We had our favorite flaming sink, flaming Brad-A-Lon, flaming cymbals, etc.. John Eaton came out playing an alto sax that he'd liberally dosed the inside of the bell with the flame-paste that we used to make things flammable. Flames were shooting 2 or 3 feet out of the bell & shooting out the lower finger holes. When John finally put the sax down in the sink, all the welds came apart & the sax fell into its components! 1 student complained in his paper that we hadn't properly miked the flaming sax. Too bad we didn't just hand it to him so that he could've played it himself. Personnel: John Eaton (alto sax, voice), Scott Larson (medium accordion, voice, sink, abomination), John Berndt (DX7 synthesizer, voice, VSS-30 sampler, soprano sax, stephanie palmer apologetica), Peter Williams (bass, voice, pots & pans, pipe xylophone), Sarmad Brody (voice, Ensoniq VFX synthesizer), Courtney McCullough (voice, tenor sax, bass clarinet), Eric Myers (voice, cello), John Dierker (voice, clarinet, bass clarinet, alto sax), Dawn Culbertson (voice, bass, brad-a-lon), Neil Feather (former guitar, voice, R.E.SK1 sampler, bell tree, apex roto zither), myself (voice, "erector set" percussion, [thwarted] "terrence dougherty" electronics, trumpet, vibraphone), & Chris Astier (voice, fretless bass, tom).

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

162. "Behavioral Drift #8/9 (The Slo GAME)" (by Franz Kamin)

- the Parish Hall, First Unitarian/Universalist Church of Baltimore, us@

- June 11, 1992

- This 15 minute piece coordinated by Sarmad Brody under the direction of the composer involved a "Narrator-Translator", 2 "Players", a "Thread Man" & a "Stain Lady", & 6 "choric Depots" - each with 4 members. This was an elaborate performance in which the 2 "players" played a game in stylized dancer slow motion while the "Narrator-Translator" recited a text partially about non-competitiveness, the "choric Depots" vocalized - occasionally ringing hand-bells, the "Thread Man" had to weave certain color clothes thru a fabric prepared with slits from the back to produce certain symbols & the "Stain Lady" had to place certain colored stains from the back of the same fabric. Both had to react quickly to signals from the "Narrator-Translator". I was the "Thread Man".

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

163. the Official, July 25th, 1992ev, Band That Stretches The Amount of Typeface that Their Name Occupies Wildly Beyond the Parameters of Easily Remembered &/or Repeated Band Names in the Interest of Excessive (Self) Promotion Which Can Never Be Stressed Enough Given the Incredible Greatness & Simulated Originality of the Reality Bending Qualities of Their Quantum Psychological Playfare & Aleatoric Fortean So-Called Whatevers (not to Mention CAMUs) etc.., etc..

- 14 Karat Cabaret, Baltimore, us@

- July 25, 1992

- This was the last "Medium Band" show before a smaller version of the group left to go on tour. It was also the only time we performed our "Ersatz Buddhist Intro" - followed by a great puppet routine from John Berndt in which a punching puppet played a monofilament string held taught by a circular saw blade & miked with a piezo transducer. The players lined the side walls & the front of the space to partially surround the audience so that they could get a clearer perception & sensation of the speed & complexity of the player interaction. Many of our CAMUs build &/or move from player to player in a circular direction. The more the audience is surrounded, the more they can be aware of this. E.g.: in the "Off Beat Off", the cueing player plays a pulse, the player to their left plays triplets off the pulse, the player to the 2nd player's left plays in sync with the note durations of the triplets but shifts the accent to the 1st of every 4 beats rather than the 1st of every 3. The next player plays a pulse again but in sync with the accented beat of the preceeding player rather than that of the initial pulse provider - this results in 2 pulses - the 2nd being slower than the 1st. The process continues. To the inattentive, it seems that people aren't "playing together" when in actuality this playing in different tempos requires strict discipline. This performance involved our 1st use of foot-pedal controlled lights in a systematic rhythm. In a CAMU called the "2 Note - Atomizing Split", the cuer starts alternating in a steady rhythm between 2 notes, the rest of the band joins in rhythmic sync, half of the band "splits" from the other half by playing another 2 note in a different rhythm, then the half from which they'd split splits into 2 smaller halves - the splinter group again playing a different 2 note, this process continues bouncing back & forth between the 2 sides until every player is playing only 2 notes but in different rhythms. Then the process is reversed until all the players are in sync again. With the lighting, each player flashed their light on the 1st of their 2 notes. Thus, it starts with all lights flashing on & off in sync & gradually becomes much more complex - creating elaborate flashes & shadows - & eventually reunifies. Very disorienting if 1 isn't following the rhythmic progression. This was also the 1st time that we partially used a new element of the projection/playing relationship. The final 10 minute reel of my film "John Lennon's Erection As Blocking Our View Homage & Cheese Sandwich" was shown. New footage in the film was of various people "cueing" CAMUs. At the end of the reel shown, the "Wreck" was cued in the film & the players responded in kind. Personnel: John Dierker, Scott Larson, John Berndt, Dawn Culbertson, Eric Myers, Neil Feather, Courtney McCullough, John Eaton, & myself.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

177. the Official, March 12th, 1993ev, Medium-Sized Band Who Have Just Put Out Their First Record & Who Will Be Selling Them At the 14 Karat Cabaret for a Fabulously Reasonable Price as well as at Normal's Music Store at 429 E. 31st st. & Who are more Wonderful, Original, & Imaginative Than Even the Most Overblown Hyperbole Could Possibly Even Begin to Praise & who have a Penchant for Very Long Hard to Remember Band Names That Even They Find Hard to Remember but how else can they Make Laure Drogoul, Baby MaDenney, & the Ever-Lovin' Pamela Purdy Laugh Otherwise? - &, Besides, This is Probably Their Last Show So Why Not indulge them a Little, Eh? Incredibly Rapidly Shrinking Big Band Orchestra OOMPH!!

- 14 Karat Cabaret, Baltimore, us@

- March 12, 1993

- The 1st of the last(?) "official" so-called whatevers. Simultaneous with a snow storm, we went ahead with these 2 shows anyway. This included the premier of Dawn's variation on Neil's "Roto-Debacle" entitled the "Roto-Moe" in which the "Roto-Debacle" was "performed" using only 3 Stooges jokes. Also the premier of the "John Trubee Squee-Gee Blivet" described in the 1st of the "official" entries & Sarmad's tribute to Ruth Crawford Seeger entitled the "Seeger". Personnel: Neil Feather, Eric Myers, Scott Larson, John Berndt, John Eaton, Sarmad Brody, Dawn Culbertson, Peter Williams, myself, & Rebecca Barten.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

178. the Official, March 13th, 1993ev, Medium-Sized Band Who Have Just Put Out Their First Record & Who Will Be Selling Them At the 14 Karat Cabaret for a Fabulously Reasonable Price as well as at Normal's Music Store at 429 E. 31st st. & Who are more Wonderful, Original, & Imaginative Than Even the Most Overblown Hyperbole Could Possibly Even Begin to Praise & who have a Penchant for Very Long Hard to Remember Band Names That Even They Find Hard to Remember but how else can they Make Laure Drogoul, Baby MaDenney, & the Ever-Lovin' Pamela Purdy Laugh Otherwise? - &, Besides, This is Probably Their Last Show So Why Not indulge them a Little, Eh? Incredibly Rapidly Shrinking Big Band Orchestra OOMPH!!

- 14 Karat Cabaret, Baltimore, us@

- March 13, 1993

- The last of the last(?) "official" so-called whatevers, it's a fitting memory of this dedicated group that they played despite public transportation's having been shut down by the "blizzard" & there being little audience. It's a fitting memory of the audience that there was 1 at all considering that some of them had to walk for miles under difficult conditions (being drunk probably didn't help their slipperiness coordination much either). John Eaton wore a damn cute cat suit. On both nights we tested the audience's patience by having them introduce the show by reading off of papers that John E handed out that went thru our entire (& tiring) band name. We even played the rarely performed "Hillbilly" - a muthafuckin' crowd-pleaser if there ever was 1. Personnel: same as the preceeding night minus Dawn Culbertson who couldn't make it because she lived in the county where the snow was too bad. Alas, our band name for this occasion doesn't say it all..

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

179. ["Radio Music" (by John Cage)

- Church of Saint Michael & All Angels, Baltimore, us@

- Sunday, October 10, 1993, 3:00PM

- A performance of the 1956 Cage piece as part of the Baltimore Composers Forum's tribute to him. The other players were: Sarmad Brody, Dawn Culbertson, Scott Larson, Mark Longaker, John Eaton, Leroy Keltner, & William-John Tudor.]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

180. "Red 19" & "Angerds engMudsroodn" (by Franz Kamin)

- 14 Karat Cabaret, Baltimore, us@

- mid November, 1993

- Two "performance poems" (perhaps) by Franz Kamin. Angerds engMudsroodn had Leroy Keltner playing trombone, Kirk-Evan Billet playing flute, & Sarmad Brody playing keyboard. Its narrators were myself, Dawn Culbertson, Franz Kamin, Sara Epple, Jeanine Farrall, David Yaffe, & Neil Feather. Our texts were in a nonsense (?) language invented by Franz.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

181. "She Turns Alone" & "Unknowing Games at the Hut (Behavioral Drift 10)" (by Franz Kamin)

- Church of Saint Michael & All Angels, Baltimore, us@

- Sunday, November 21, 1993, 7:30PM

- She Turns Alone was another "performance poem" (perhaps). The "Choir" consisted of myself, John Berndt, John Eaton, Leroy Keltner, & Sarmad Brody. We lined the walls spread out on 2 sides of the audience. Franz read while we extrapolated off his text with scored vocal sounds. Jeanine Farrall stood on the stage & performed scored motions as the "Gesturalist". The term "Behavioral Drift" is derived from a side-effect warning on a mood control pill packaging (see also #161). Unknowing Games at the Hut was a sortof perverse subversion of Freudian Psychology & cyclical epics performed in the style of a mental institution talent show or high school play with "20th Century" "performance poetry" as the text-style basis. Every performer played most of the roles at one or more times during the approximately 22 minutes of its duration. There were the old woman/women, the sexy girl(s), the wood chopper(s), the tree(s), the card players, & the angel(s). Sarmad Brody provided a repeating narration throughout. The gist of it was that an old woman lived alone in a hut & fucked a tree, giving birth to a child who grew up to be a wood-chopper & chopped the tree down without knowing it was his father, then leaving for the city to meet a sexy girl who he takes back to the hut only to get himself killed by a vengeful tree, the sexy girl then becomes an old woman at the hut only to repeat the cycle all over again. In the meantime, the 3 card-players each personify 3 archetypes of attitude: the winner, the loser, & the person whose problems are always "somebody else's fault". Each performer changes costume to change roles. The sexy girl costume consisted of a grotesquely stuffed bra, a black wig, & a decorative waist chain; the old woman's was a wig & a shawl, the angels wore sheets & yellow wigs. The wigs were made from mops. The tree was represented by a person standing in "crucified" position in front of some branches on a ladder. The card players wore hats & held big cards. The wood chopper wore a hunting vest & a sortof mining light. Each character had a way of acting. The old woman walked with a shaky stoop & talked with a wavery voice. These ways of acting were cartoon archetypes. Each performer drifted into other characters than the ones whose costumes they wore at times. As such, this was a "true" "Behavioral Drift". There were variations in the cycle which such as having more than one sexy girl & old woman etc.. at the same time. Everyone ends as an angel. The sets & costumes were created by Leroy Keltner, Sarmad Brody & members of the New York crew who had performed this piece's last presentation (Pixie Alexander, Steve Clay, Mitch Highfill, & Peggy Young). The performers were myself, Martha Colburn, Dawn Culbertson, Sara Epple, Jeanine Farrall, John Berndt, John Eaton, & Leroy Keltner. "Back-stage" assistance (performance expiditing) was provided by Peggy Young. Franz directed it.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

182. [Volunteers Collective XVI

- 14 Karat Cabaret, Baltimore, us@

- Friday, December 3, 1993

- Yet another audio improvisation from: Jack Wright (Alto, Tenor, & Soprano Saxes), Neil Feather (NuGuitar, Effects), John Berndt (1 String Stand-Up Zither with Spring & Bridges, Electronics, Stephanie Palmer Apologetica, Soprano Sax, & Guitar), myself (DX27S Synthesizer, K1m Synthesizer, Mirage 8 bit Sampler, Multi-Verb Processor, Small Instruments, Voice), & John Eaton (Alto Sax & Mouthpiece, Stage). Further visuals were provided by my "Color Bars" video.]

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

183. "Theatre Piece" & "Radio Music" (by John Cage)

- 14 Karat Cabaret, Baltimore, us@

- February 11 or 12, 1994

- Theatre Piece (to quote from the previous performance's program notes):

"(1960), generated by Cage using the same set of transparent overlays that gave rise to the electronic work Fontana Mix (1958), is for eight performers. Each performer is asked to make a deck of cards containing nouns or verbs, one to a card. One then undergoes a card-dealing process, specified by Cage, which creates a unique part from one's own set of 18 pages containing time lines and numbers (the numbers indicate choices of actions during the dealing process and modifications of those actions).

The performer, meant to appear as her-or-himself, prepares a thirty-minute part withour consulting the other performers. Rehearsals, as Cage says in the instructions, are for avoiding dangerous collisions. A committed performer in Theatre Piece acts almost as composer, and will spend as much time creating and learning to execute a part as a performer in a more traditional piece of music. (The word more is used in the sense that Theatre Piece , now 33 years old, was a seminal work in a whole generation of performance art which has itself gained the status of tradition in the experimental atmosphere of the late 20th century.)"

The result, in this case, was fairly intricate. An interweaving of actions conceived of independently by each performer. To describe it all would take a long time & severely tax my memory of it at the moment. Alas, no vaudeo quasi-documentation of this performance exists (thanks to the videographer erasing over it). There is, however, a vaudeo from the performance of it with almost the same cast presented as part of the tribute to John Cage mentioned in #178. The performers were the same except that Neal Woodson performed instead of me. The other difference was that, due to snow, Sara Epple was unable to perform in this presentation. The cast were: myself, Kirk-Evan Billet, Sarmad Brody, Dawn Culbertson, L.J.Schollenberger, John Eaton, & Leroy Keltner. Sarmad & I (at Sarmad's suggestion) resorted to each listening through headphones to our own prepared tapes to tell us precisely when to do what.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

211. Premier(s) of "The "Official" John Lennon's Erection As Blocking Our View Homage & Cheese Sandwich"

- Orpheum Theater, Baltimore, us@

- Friday & Saturday, May 9th & 10th, 1997, Midnight to 1:30AM

- These premiers involved the rear-screen projection of the above-mentioned film with Neil Feather sitting on & playing his relatively new instrument: the MeloCycle - with his NuGuitar & a Vibulum (etc..) to the audience screen left & myself to the audience screen right. The MeloCycle is a former exercycle (that still functions as such) that's become a string instrument. During the 'slowest' part of the film, I proclaimed my "Upping the Anti-School of Fucked-Up & Away" essay which partially explains the extremely fucked-up conditions under which the film was made. Both Neil & I are in the film so our presence in front of the screen was extending our screen presence more into the audience space.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

212. 2 Simultaneous Lectures: "(M)Usic 1885 to the Present" & "140 Slides to a Better Me"

- Normal's, Baltimore, us@

- Sunday, May 18th, 1997, 8:30 to 11:30PM

- This was an (almost) solo version of the lecture described in #s 205 & 208 - revised & refined & expanded to include a simultaneous slide show. It was advertised with a poster that read:

tENTATIVELY a cONVENIENCE

will LECTURE YOU!

Which was obviously meant to have the facetious undertone that it was my intention to be strict with people for not already 'seeing' the 'basic truths' that I planned to reveal. The subjects listed for the (M)Usic - 1885 to the Present lecture were advertised as:

Erik Satie; Charles Ives; George Ives; Microtonality; "Firsts"; Change Ringing; Tempo; Toy Symphonies; Henry Kling; Adolph Wölfli; Graeme Revel; Henry Cowell; Ivan Wyschnegradsky; Sound Poetry; Kurt Schwitters; Expanded Percussion Orchestra; Edgar Varèse; George Antheil; Race Records; Lucille Bogan a.k.a. Bessie Jackson; Electronics; Johanna M. Beyer; "Celestial Harmony"; Recordings Recycled; John Cage; Pierre Schaefer & Pierre Henry; Morton Feldman; Spike Jones & the City Slickers; S/F/X; Sun Ra the Solar Myth Arkestra; Spatiality; Alvin Lucier; Fluxus; Yoko Ono; Joe Jones; Automatic Instruments; Annea Lockwood; Environmental Recordings; the Marantz Pianocorder; Richard Teitelbaum; Home-Tapers; tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE; Usic; egnekn; Karlheinz Essl; Internet

& the subjects listed for the 140 Slides to a Better Me lecture were advertised as:

Remodelling Consensus Reality; Mad Scientism; d composing; Sound Thinking; Thought Collecting; As Beenism; Psychopathfinding; Jacking-Off-Of-All-Trades; Homonymphonemia; manager of U.M.B.C. Bookstore; Haircuts; Testes-3; Usic; Usic - 1; Balling Tim Ore is Best; Tim Ore; Attempt to Undermine Reality Maintenance Traps; Seat-Belts Violation; Casandra vonRinteln; Corrected Napoleonic Gesture; Sayings of a Famous Artist; my grandmother; Appearance Tactics; Bal Tim Ore Underground Club; E.G.Head; Odd-Ball Sports; Usic - -1; Alternatives to Vicious Cycles; booed usic; Brains; WD-40 in Inter-Species Fishing Erotica; Steve Estes; Fire; Work; Porno; The Statue of Liberty Shafted; Tattoos; "Mud" Jim Cobbs; Generic As-Beenism; Eye-Tracking; Glasgow Suburban Branch of the Bal Tim Ore Underground Club; Low Classical Usic; DidActions; So-Called Whatevers; Uncerts; Interspatiality; Michael Pestel

The presentation was roughly divided into 3 parts with 2 intermissions separating them. I began with passing the Suitcase around as before & then with my vaudeo "Chinese for Celli". Then the "(M)Usic 1885 to the Present" lecture began. I lip-synced with the prerecorded lecture in a way precise enough so that most people probably didn't realize that I wasn't reading the lecture 'live'. This became apparent when I walked into the audience to distribute a list of "Women Composers" while the lecture continued independent of my presence at the mike. The slides were shown simultaneously with the lecture but not with the vaudeos or films. During each (m)usical example I would usually advance the slides & comment upon them. These slides are basically a quasi-documentary retrospective of various projects of mine from an 18 year period. Since I'm a bit bored with talking about them all, my commentary was sometimes lackluster. After the (m)usic lecture played an excerpt from John Cage's "Credo in Us", the 1st intermission happened. The presentation resumed with 2 more of my vaudeos: "Murraygate Busking" & "Great Moments in OddBall Sports: A Cue Stick Guitar Duet" before the (m)usic lecture began again with the lead-in to an excerpt from Pierre Schaefer & Pierre Henry's "Symphonie Pour Un Homme Seul (Scherzo Movement)" - once again with the simultaneous slides. The (m)usic lecture ended with the audience being led to another room for the computer demonstration of Essl's "Lexicon-Sonate online..". The audience was then led back into the main presentation room where my 16mm film "Psychological Playfair" was presented simultaneously with its approximate vaudeo equivalent sometimes called "Boota". This was followed by my vaudeo entitled "Frothing Catatonic Siamese Twins Volunteers Collective XXVII d composing Mozart Release Party". At some point during this 2 sets of Siamese Twins / Frothing Catatonics (more appropriately called Frothing Epileptics) entered & staggered around. These were Kristin Fetterolf + Neil Feather & David Yaffe + Scott Larson. David smeared his froth on 1 of the TVs. Another intermission happened & the final part began. Under the white coveralls I was wearing I had hidden a deflated beach ball which was connected to a hose that ran under the pants leg & ended in a bellows pump on the floor. The audience's view of me was obstructed from about mid-chest down by a podium & a table etc.. While a silent version of my 16mm film "Bob Cobbing" was projected at 18fps so that it would play for about 45 minutes the vaudeo from John Henry Nyenhuis' & my presentation of my "Bogus Piano Concerto" at the Music Gallery in Toronto played with sound (see entry #194). I read my essay "Low Classical Usic" & pitch-shifted every sentence within a range of 2 octaves. This latter was accomplished by foot-control. I also used my feet to periodically pump the beach ball. The combination of trying to read this 12 page text with pumping the foot controls was more athletic than I expected & I was sweating within minutes. The audience could tell that I was pumping something but couldn't see what it was. After the film & vaudeo & reading were over (somewhat in sync), I walked out from behind the lectern & showed my distended belly & said something like "See how inflated I get when I talk for 3 hours!" & the presentation ended.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

247. Air Drop #1: Code Name: Uniform Foxtrot Oscar

- overtop Baltimore, us@

- Saturday, September 28th, 1997, 3:30 to 4:30PM

- I (tANGO, aLPHA cHARLIE {Practicing Promotextual & Air Dresser}) plotted this action with pilot Delta Bravo. We decided to drop approximately 1,000 paper airplanes from a small plane over Baltimore - coincidentally simultaneous with the 2nd annual book fair being held in the Mount Vernon area there. Delta & I agreed to have a text printed on the planes that would vaguely give it the appearance of an advertisement & to use green paper to be suggestive of money. The basic text was:

"Free Ticket Out Of Baltimore

LIMITED OFFER!

Redeemable Anywhere Within City Limits

Le Groupe Absence"

 

This text was accompanied by drawings of a 'UFO' designed to go through an animated sequence with a punchline (of sorts)if & when the paper airplane's unfolded. I spent about 16 hours preparing for this by folding the airplanes. I was significantly assisted by many people - the most active of whom was Alpha Charlie who probably helped fold for about 6 hours or more. The paper plane type chosen was the one I remembered from my youth as the one most capable of flying acrobatically: a rectangle with 2 diagonal corners & 2 flaps. Delta Bravo & I sat in the front seats of the plane while Juliet Papa sat in the back vaudeoing. I opened the window next to my seat - very nervous about the 100+ m.p.h. winds grabbing at it while I did so. The planes were mainly dropped over Wyman Park (because a group of friends were waiting there as observers in an "X" shape) & over Mount Vernon because of the Book Fair. In the interest of a massive dumping, I held the window open over the fair while Juliet Papa dumped a garbage bag with about 350 to 400 of the planes out in rapid succession. The park observers said the planes could be seen reflecting the sun in a fabulous array of loop-de-loops. A ground search later yielded about 10 of the planes in the targetted areas. How many actually reached the ground (rather than tree & building tops) is hard to estimate. How many people saw them descend is as much a mystery to us as we assume the planes' purpose would be to anyone who did see or find them. It was my hope, as with many of my actions, that this would stimulate flights of the imagination & act counter to closed-minded-ness by providing a mystery for which there'd be no obvious solution. Alas, as 1 friend has pointed out to me, the typical human mental process seems to be to simply shove unsolved mysteries into the easiest available mental compartment, regardless of how ultimately unworkable it is, & to forget about them. Even a cult-of-the-mysterious-paper-airplanes would be preferable to that. "Le Groupe Absence" might be described as a 'patanational corporate mirage that I was once invited to be alien diplomat (or some such) for. This was my 1st action in its name.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

261. Attention-ExSpanDex #1

- Normal's Books & Records, Baltimore, us@

- Saturday, September 26, 1998

- This was the 1st presentation of a cross-country tour which I retrospectively dubbed the "Attention-ExSpanDex Tour" mainly because most of the vaudiences couldn't endure the lengths of the programs. Entries 259-266 are from this tour. All but 264 meet the attention-span-expanding criteria. Most of the presentations involved multiple projections of super-8mm, 16mm, slides, filmstrips, VHS (projected &/or on TVs) + talking & other 'live actions':

How Orgone Cinema Treats Its Visiting Filmmakers

- 5:40 - 16mm & VHS - January '95

Presented simultaneously with a dramatic reading of the generic S.P.C.S.M.E.F. Speech (see the prototypical speech in 253) whilst wearing the Killer Whale Outfit over the Cloud Suit + the severed head hat (see the description in 255).

Department of Failures - 2:30 - VHS - November 11, '95

Diszey Spots - 11:20 - 16mm & VHS - October-December '93

The Postman Always Rings the Homunculous of Woody Allen & Hollis Frampton Twice

- 8:24 - 35mm filmstrip & audio cassette - July '96

Grounded! - 6:00 - 16mm & VHS - May '95

Peterson's Restaurant - 14:56 - 16mm & VHS - 1st 1/2 of '95

Air Drops - 19:30 - VHS & 35mm filmstrip - September '97 - September '98

This being the rough draft of the quasi-documentation of entries of 246 & 258, a couple leftover paper airplanes from the 2nd Air Drop were flown into the audience at certain points.

Funny Farm Summit Meeting - 14:00 - 16mm & VHS - August '94 - July '95

The Department of Maybe Presents: Problem Solving Demonstration

- 55:00 - VHS - November 4, '95

This was the audience-participatory section which I found to be surprisingly well received. See entry 201 for a previous description.

Death Bed Aerobics - 4:45 - 2 35mm filmstrips & audio tape - July '98

See the description in 254. A difference being that instead of wearing the funeral home softball team t-shirt, I was wearing a plastic chest with glow-in-the-dark bones on it. This 'skeleton' & my right thigh's glow-in-the-dark dust-mite tattoo were charged up with a black-light to be shown to the vaudience as the finalé. "Death Bed Aerobics" was presented everywhere during this tour except at a screening (not listed here) at the San Francisco Art Institute sponsored by the San Francisco Cinematheque.

Thanks to John Berndt for arranging this.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

278. Making Odd-Ball Sports History by Uncertizing by Playing a Game of Black Rectangle over the Eye

- Ottobar, Baltimore, us@

- Sunday, February 6, 2000, 10:30-1:00PM

- I organized this evening. I had a self-inking rubber-stamp made with an image of a boy's face with a black rectangle over his eye taken from my filmstrip entitled "The Postman Always Rings the Homunculous of Woody Allen & Hollis Frampton, Twice" with "Black Rectangle over the eye" written underneath it. I rubber-stamped this around downtown Baltimore & near & in the Ottobar to subtly establish the image & the "game" name in advance.

The program began with Scott Larson playing his one-man band "Abomination". I had made an 8'X8' white Spandex screen for rear projecting onto & this was erected at the front of the stage at a slight angle. John Evans then projected a 16mm film of his by bouncing the projection off a mirror so the image could be larger than the shallow stage depth would've otherwise allowed. John Dierker improvised a tenor sax soundtrack to the film, which was otherwise silent.

"Black Rectangle over the eye" was introduced thru a screening of "The Postman.." filmstrip & a pamphlet relevant to the strip was handed out to the vaudience by etta cetera (a.k.a. etta cetera & Rita Rodentia - see most of the recent entries - starting at 212 with etta cetera mention).

Midway up the screen on either side were 2 2' slits for John Dierker & myself to stick our torsos out of from behind. Wearing rubber costume versions of towering Thai hats, I explained something like "that there's nothing like wearing ersatz Thai hats to make me feel like playing a game of Black Rectangle.." & we began. I played a digital horn controlling a wave-table synthesizer & played a loop on a CD that I'd specially contructed for such purposes. etta rear-projected the "Where We're" filmstrip (mentioned in 274) in the upper middle of the screen (without its soundtrack). John Evans projected my 16mm film "How Orgone Cinema Treats its Visiting Filmmakers" overtop my head - following the same projection technique used in the Music Gallery premier of John Henry Nyenhuis' & my "Bogus Piano Concerto" (see entry 199). John Dierker played tenor sax. This "game" was in 17 parts & John D had specific pitch sets & styles to play in during parts 2-9 after which he could play mostly free-form. At the entry to the 3rd part, Dave Scheper began shining a flashlight around & thru his "Codzilla" sculpture to shadow-project on the entire screen. This is a "junk-metal" sculpture of something resembling a codfish skeleton standing about 5' tall on its tail. The shadow was very dramatic & dynamic. Highlights of this were when etta cetera confronted Codzilla with a hand-shadow of a dog profile & when she 'fed' Codzilla a beer. At various points, John D & I would take black rectangles of tape & place them above our eyes - sometimes acting as if we were somehow 'triumphant' - such as by raising a fist & shouting "YEAH!". At the end, I announced that John D had won the game.

This was followed by a projection of etta's "The Truth About the Dimensionally Challenged" & then by my "Shuffle Mode" (in filmstrip versions). The evening ended with a trio improv played by Scott, John D, & myself.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

333. "Volunteers Collective Revisited", 19 Movies under 5:00, "Guitarists Anonymous Withdrawal Aids #6"

- Copy Cat Building (1511 Guilford Ave ...503B), Baltimore, us@

- Saturday, May 10, 2003, 10PM - Midnight

- After being jerked around by Twig Harper of "Tarantula Hill" & subjected to attempted robbery by subculture exploiter Todd Lesser of "Monozine" & "Mission Space" (also the booking agent for the "Ottobar") in an attempt to arrange a similar show to this in Baltimore in January, I was lucky enough to stumble across the friendly & generous folks here - with special thanks to Nielie (whose name I'm unfortunately probably misspelling) & James & Todd (?) & "another-girl-whose-name-I-unfortunately-forget". Since much of what I present in Pittsburgh is too ambitious to tour with & since I rarely get paid anything even remotely close to what would even BEGIN to cover my expenses (not to mention my time), I've been largely unable to present satisfactorily complex shows outside of my current home town. However, since Baltimore is my town of origin, I decided to give it the old anti-college try. Unfortunately, in Baltimore, I'm unable to get the kind of enthusiastic, expert, & well-equipped assistance that I can get in Pittsburgh from the likes of the "Mattress Factory" (see entries 312 & 314) & "Jefferson presents.." (see entry 326) so I was still limited to using what equipment & costumes & the like that I could bring to town thru my friend John Peck's generous car driving assistance. Hey! This intro is longer than many of the earlier entries, innit?

ANYWAY, this evening began w/ something roughly equivalent to my "Release Gig for "Circuits of Steel" CD" (see entry 318) - ie: wearing the Anarkanian multi-tentacled outfit which I'd changed by adding joke-shop severed hands to the ends of the tentacles (see entries 305, 312, 318, & 326) & carrying my Suitcase (see entries 199, 205, 208, & 211) with the tape-player hidden in it covered over by a Blind Bowling League shirt, a dirty sock, & a novelty t-shirt w/ a rubber light switch on it, I walked into the audience while my "Volunteers Collective (superimposition version)" vaudeo was projected. Opening the suitcase for the audience members one at a time caused, as usual, a loop-tape to play wch then triggered Volunteers Collective samples via radio-mic - transmitting from the suitcase to the pitch-to-MIDI converter that enabled the triggering. Lowering the vaudeo sound after its initial Volunteers Collective intro text reading, I continued to open & close the suitcase - making the triggering connection more obvious because the samples were no longer 'buried' in the mix with the vaudeo sound. Then, as with 318, I surreptitiously switched the radio-mic to under my Anarkanian hood & twitched somewhat (some might call it dancing) whenever I triggered the samples vocally. Finally I switched to controlling the signals via my 5 octave keyboard.

This section was followed by the 1st 19 of the "20 Movies under 5:00" that'd been assembled together for my "Movies on the Mount / Short Attention Span" presentation in early 2002 (see entry 315).

I ended with the same Guitarists Anonymous (see entries 314, 315, 316, 317, & 328 for GA #s 1-5) presentation that I'd given in San Francisco in February - minus the "Grossinator" (which I'd forgotten). Having removed my Anarkanian suit, my "Low Classical" CD-covered glitz was revealed beneath. Nielie projected the slides & "another-girl-whose-name-I-unfortunately-forget" projected the filmstrip (in a suitably animated manner) while I projected the vaudeo & mixed its audio in & out whilst simultaneously playing the Guitarists Anonymous samples.

There were 20+ people in attendance. As usual, I left feeling unloved & depressed. 40 years of performing before small audiences who barely talk to me for small amounts of money (or none at all) while mediocre assholes make huge amounts from the adulation of morons has taken its toll on me. Cheerio!

Thanks to Dave Scheper & Alex Van Ness for being so damn helpful!

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

397. "Letter to "Kem""

- as part of "The Blasterthon!!!!!!!" in honor of the memory of "Blaster" Al Ackerman at the red Room, Normal's Bookstore, Baltimore, us@

- Saturday, June 29, 2013

- "Blaster" Al Ackerman & I started corresponding in October of 1980. In the world of Mail Art, where Blaster is probably best known, it's my opinion that a vast majority of the participants are content with little more than making easily mailed conventional artworks such as collages. Blaster & I immediately bonded by sharing the tendency of a very small subset of 'Mail Artists' (I always called myself a "P.I.N.-U.P." - a "Postal Interaction Network - Underground Participant" & never liked the term "Mail Art") to be more trickster oriented. We used multiple names, mailed things through a variety of intermediate addresses, & otherwise confused &, hopefully, stimulated our correspondents with socio-political-conceptual hi-jinks.

One of the 1st such things that Blaster & I collaborated on were letters to a woman whose 1st name is "Kim". In late 1980 or early 1981, I had seen an image of a 'Bat Duck' in a Mail Art related catalog with the address of Kim next to it. Since I was prolifically pursuing correspondents at the time I wrote to Kim in my usual highly calculated eccentric style. Kim replied in a way that was ultimately intolerant & insulting, claiming no knowledge of why her address was in the catalog & expressing irritation at the difficulties of my writing.

I forwarded this correspondence to some of the more stimulating mail friends I had at the time - wch included Blaster & Reverend Ivan Stang of the Church of the SubGenius. Blaster then wrote 2 utterly hilarious letters to Kim, renamed as "Kem", & sent copies to me. Stang did something similar. All of this correspondence then made it into 2 small books of mine documenting the process. I reissued this documentation in a book made especially for the June 22, 2013 Devival in Pittsburgh & for this Blasterthon!!!!!!!.


 

In honor of Blaster's highly revered memory, I then read a "Letter to Kem" for The Blasterthon!!!!!!! too. I also premiered the movie I made honoring Blaster entitled "This Will Explain" - something Blaster often wrote on things he sent people in the mail. A movie I made of this reading augmented by a relevant section from my memorial feature is on my onesownthoughts YouTube channel here:

http://youtu.be/HhaKB8ZUOg4

A movie of the entire 4 day Blasterthon!!!!!!! is here:

Day 1:

www.youtube.com/watch?v=VF1kvJcGzdc

Day 2:

www.youtube.com/watch?v=uyYMhQ-x9Ds

Day 3:

www.youtube.com/watch?v=MtZ8BMkM5XU

Day 4:

www.youtube.com/watch?v=wwRcfoPBWHc

It was a truly incredible & touching homage to a truly great man.

- recollections from tENTATIVELY, a cONVENIENCE

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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