Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


decay & ruin
Biosphere II
dead malls
Irving housing

got that wrong

appropriate tech
Arduino μcontrollers
Backwoods Home
Fractal antenna

fun social media stuff

(nobody does!)

Like my brownhouse:
   rowdy visitors
Saturday, December 27 1997

  got out of bed at something like 2pm. Wet snow was falling from the dreary skies. I was sick of winter already, though this kind of weather does bring back a visceral nostalgia for romance.

Matthew Hart drove Deya and me to the Barracks Road video place, and we checked out something like three videotapes. We also stopped at the liquor store: a litre of cheap vodka for me and a "what the hell" litre of cheap gin for Matthew. He's got a complete liquor suite now.


atthew headed off to work, and Deya and I watched one of the movies, Drugstore Cowboy. It's a charming little piece that reminded me fondly of the sociopathic days of Big Fun. Of course, there were two major differences between the drugstore-robbing gang of young adults in Drugstore Cowboy and the dissolute youth of Big Fun: at Big Fun, there was a lot more humour and good intentions and a lot less competence and motivation. The role of William S. Burroughs in the movie seemed just a little forced; I'd wager it was created specifically for him, and that's never good for a movie. Still, his presence demanded my undivided attention. What a strange world, where dilaudid is the ultimate prize.


hira the Dog made a point of escaping from Deya this morning, but then she came back after about an hour of running around. So I decided to make a show of trust this evening, and I took Shira out without a leash. What a big mistake that was. She ran around through a few yards, came back briefly, sat in the snow for a long time mocking me from afar, and then she just tore off and vanished. I called, I whistled, I clapped, I explored neighbors' yard, all to no avail. What an idiot I'd been. I finally gave up on her and went in the house and continued with my vodkatea. I'd check outside every now and then, but Shira was nowhere to be seen. A fine way to spend a Saturday Night.

But when Matthew was driving home from work, he picked her up halfway down Observatory. "Please try to be more careful with her," he urged. "Okay, but she got away," I lied.

Matthew was watching yet another ganster movie, and I joined him for awhile, but soon I became bored and headed off to bed. I would have fallen asleep, but I heard the noisy arrival of people downstairs. I had to investigate.


  came down the stairs to find Morgan Anarchy, Theresa Venesian and both Cecelia and Leticia the Brazilian Girls (back for the holidays from their new home in Brooklyn). They were all pretty drunk, but most worrisome of course was Theresa's level of drunkeness. I could tell by the violence with which she hugged me that tonight was going to be one of those nights.

I hid my vodka as soon as I could (it had been sitting on the coffee table), but Theresa quickly noticed its absence, and she complained until Matthew let her break into his gin. With every swig, I became increasingly concerned.

But the craziness didn't really break out until the second wave of people arrived: Ray Snabley, Fatima, Jesse (on vacation from Virginia Commonwealth University), and Kiki -aka Bad Sex- (visiting from Michigan). Kiki has a reputation for going nuts and causing problems, but tonight he was pretty subdued. The person who seemed to be causing the most problems was Theresa, followed by Jesse, the Brazilian Girls and Fatima. Let me give you an idea of the craziness:

Jesse seemed to be digging Fatima a quite a bit, if you know what I mean (this was confirmed the next day by Matthew). But in our little world, romantic inclinations can never be tastefully expressed except by violence. They'd be rolling around on the floor in some kind of mock battle, knocking things over and breaking things. The Brazilian Girls would be shouting "Chaos!" and throwing things; at one point Cecelia tossed an empty litre bottle of Carlo Rossi blush at me.

Theresa has always had a certain jealous fondness for the boy Jesse, and seeing him focused so intently on Fatima made her take action; she'd dive into their midst with claws and pudenda flailing, or else she'd kick and punch them remorselessly. Sometimes Theresa would focus for a moment on others, including Matthew and myself (we'd hidden the gin and were sardonically blaming each other).

Theresa dealt the dog the same rough lack of subtlety that she used on the humans. But as a dog, Shira had no way of knowing that Theresa is always a lunatic when she's drunk. As she was roughly groped and pummeled, Shira had a look of terror in her eyes. And she was not just afraid of Theresa; the general mayhem in the room had her cowering on the couch. But still she stayed with us, simply because Matthew was there. I felt very sorry for her.

It's my house, these were my friends, but all I really wanted was some sort of calm. I was too sober and too old to have any appreciation for the pointless destruction I was watching, but I didn't want to be a wuss and kick them out. They'd already been kicked out of Ray's house for harshing on the mellows of hapless hippies. And it was Ray who finally came up with a helpful suggestion. He said that the music on the stereo (punk rock, of course) might be exacerbating the situation, and that if we changed it to something more mellow, the attitude in the room might improve. So Matthew put on some Johnny Cash. The room cleared out quickly.

Theresa was a person to be avoided, not just by Matthew and me, but by most of the visitors as well. A large fraction disappeared into the Kappa Mutha Fucka basement, smashed a few things, and escaped through a hatch. Occasionally they'd appear on the porch, or outside the window, but once the Johnny Cash was on, they pretty much avoided the living room.

When things had quieted down and the bulk of drunken visitors had wandered off on a snowy stroll, I returned to bed. But then, for a second time, I heard people slamming around, falling into bins of recycling and otherwise making noise. This was pissing me off. So, half naked, I came down the stairs and asked if people were going to start being quiet or was I going to have to "do something." Matthew indicated that the chief noise makers (Jesse and Theresa) had just left, and the Brazilian Girls suddenly expressed sympathies for my plight. Satisfied, I returned to sleep.

Now, as angry as I might have been that these visitors had only come to my house to act crazy and be stupid, I was not as upset as Deya. She was overheard terming tonight's contingent "assholes."

one year ago

For linking purposes this article's URL is:

previous | next