Saturday, March 11, 2017


Back in the days of the print fanzine, Chris used to review tapes from some VHS company (editor's note: LSV Video). The tapes were a mish-mosh of public domain things and they were sold under the banner of  "Floor Sweepings". Contents varied, but the viewer was sure to come across a pie fight sooner rather than later. I just saw the LITTLE RASCALS short where the gang put on their version of JULIUS CAESAR (the one where Chubby had his lines written in the hem of his gown and his mom kept giving him grief when he'd hoist it up to peek at them) and as we all remember, that short ended in a glorious pie fight. Some of the action was even in slow motion (editor's note again: I wonder if this is where Sam Peckinpah got his idea for THE WILD BUNCH?), which was still a new enough wrinkle in the film world that people couldn't get enough of it.

The pies looked like real pies too, with crusts and a very pie-ish texture. Contrast those pies to the pies wielded in  THE THREE STOOGES shorts which were at best an approximation of a pie. And if memory serves were constructed mostly of shaving cream. It just goes to show you that even in the relatively short time between the production of LITTLE RASCALS shorts and the ascendancy of THE THREE STOOGES, detail and craft were already being fudged for the worse.

Finally no one could be bothered to make even the most phonus balonus of ersatz pies and now we have to watch Ellen Degeneris. When was the very last pie fight on TV anyway? Someone should look into that. (Editor's note one more time: occasionally the early SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE used pie in the face humor such as when Chevy Chase played a cop trying to defuse a bomb or when the assassination of Lee Harvey Oswald was  re-enacted only Jack Ruby threw a pie in his face!) I'm guessing Soupy Sales either heaved it or took it in the mush (undoubtedly during his days on THE "NEW" SOUPY SALES SHOW in the very late seventies), but probably some small market kids show opted for a pie gag after some stagehand took a whiz in the head of the gorilla costume after finding out the host had been nailing said stagehand's wife.

Anyway, like the floor sweepings tapes here are some random things I never got around to in previous columns. A spring cleaning of the brain if you will.

"Untrammeled vistas of pristine tedium" is a description I wanted to use in a record review.

I finally heard the ST  JOHN GREEN LP. If the USS Kim Fowley had captured the Doors in his tractor beam this would have been the result. Some of the lyrics are cringe-worthy, but unlike Morrison's babble, not pie-in-the-face worthy. By the way, the bootleggers who issued this CD wrote in the enclosed booklet that the money due to the people involved is being held in escrow until they come forward. When did bootleggers learn to spell "escrow"??? Actually bootleggers have a higher IQ than the standard issue person and come come up with amusing titles for boots right off the top of their heads, like MORE BERMUDA THAN PIZZA which is amusing right up until the time you remember what you paid for it.

I wanted to write up some a rticle about the messages scratched into the inner bands of records, but I didn't know where to go with it. I even thought about doing a one act play where the dialogue was all inner band messages, but I didn't want to chance any pies thrown my way, even those LITTLE RASCALS pies that really seemed to be a treat to transfer from face to fingers and slurp up. I hope Petey got to lick the pie pan.

Can anyone explain just how those messages are scratched in there? Do you tell someone at the pressing plant what you want written, or do you have to go there yourself and do it?

What if you make a mistake? Is it like wet cement and you can smooth it over and start again? As an example of what I'm talking about, I'll select something from my crates and relay the message therein. OK. This is the double LP MATTER DOMINATES SPIRIT? A TRIBUTE TO JIM SHEPARD! by various artists. Side one..."BRAVE CLOUD". Side message. Side three..."MAKE UP YOUR MIND". Side Four..."FIND AN ESCAPE HATCH". Here's another one, a Crass/Poison Girls split 45. Side one..."REVOLUTION MY ARSE I WANNA DO COKE WITH KEEF". Ha! Just kidding. Side one..."LEFT WING RIGHT WING YOU CAN STUFF THE LOT".  Side two..."FLESH AND BLOOD IS WHAT WE ARE". The sleeve stresses not to pay more than 70 p. for the 45 but I'll let it go for 71. I bought it during a soul-searching fifteen minute window of 1980 when I thought junk like this was "the real punk" but quickly realized that if I had zero interest in being a boy scout and collecting merit badges why would I want to collect the vinyl equivalent?  A heavy decibel purgative of the Angry Samoans directly afterwards was a refreshing brace of reality.

I was also going to do a review of Pink Floyd's THE WALL  as done by Aunt Clara from the TV show BEWITCHED and have her bring the walking hammers off the inner sleeve to entertain Tabitha. The hammers end up crossing in front of the Kravitz's living room window and Aunt Clara is trying to return them to the sleeve..."Oh dear me, uh...Sam?" but it wasn't very funny and you know what? It's still not.

And now, for the first time on any blog, I will tell your fortune by opening the letter "V" issue of OP from 1983 and pointing to a review at Random...MARK HEINEMANN cassettes. The four pieces on SWALLOWTAIL ($5) comprise a lovely, gentile whole, despite a variety of styles and influences... Your fortune: you will buy a Shamrock Shake at McDonalds, forgetting that they have a chemical aftertaste. You will debate if you can get another few months wear out of your socks. I was gonna say you may as well watch the video of that woman with a giraffe mask that has been viewed millions of times than revisit 90% of the hallowed OP, but I just read a review of Jandek where Calvin Johnson called him "wispy" so the court will seek a continuance on this matter. No, wait, here is something called KIWI-SEX. Your honor, the prosecution rests.

1 comment:

Stanley J. Kirby said...

Aunt Clara reviewing the WALL... How could that suck? Wish they had those floor sweeping vids on dvd.