Tuesday, June 7, 2022

235. Nancy Wheeler wears } an Emerson T.


When Nancy would’ve gone to Emerson College (if she goes. I haven’t watched Stranger Things 4), WECB was an AM station. She’d graduate in 1990. Or ’91. Soon after I will host a radio show from midnight – 2am once a week.

I invited undergraduate writing majors to discuss their writing & play music they liked. The first episode I was worried I couldn’t easily fill two hours, so I invited four guests; by the end of the show’s run, I invited one. I called the show Radio Never Sleeps. After the first episode, it was co-hosted by Concetta Troskie. She & I got on wonderfully, though I don’t remember ever socializing w/ her outside the studio. It’s as if she appeared & vanished; I might’ve seemed the same to her, except she once told a story, on air, about seeing me at a crosswalk. She remarked about my patience: I stood stock-still till the light changed. (When I am required to wait—in line at the market, at bus stops, etc., I zip into my mind. “Head in the clouds,” Dad admonished.) Concetta's now a dance/movement therapist.

I taped every episode. I’m not sure how it happened, but all those tapes ended up in a paper bag under the cellar stairs at my parents’—I found them yesterday. What would it do to me to listen to them?

Saturday, June 4, 2022

234. Clint Smith } loiters low.

I’ve read “Lovenest,” Clint Smith’s contribution to Looming Low II (from Dim Shores, due this fall). I won’t spoil it other than to say it’s fun &…

the narrator & his ex-wife talk in a dark parking lot next to a partially-demolished hotel. This setting is commonplace & bleak. Cooking oil, asphalt, dumpster, exhaust. Chain-link fence, young maple, bramble. A paper receipt, ground into the dirt. Mundane & awful. Especially American?

In my introduction to Clint’s Skeleton Melodies, I characterized his fiction as “realism horror.” An awkward phrase, for sure—but apt enough (he adopted the phrase as his blog’s sub-head, so surely he finds it apt). For all the fantasy in “Lovenest,” the parking lot setting grounds the story here. It’s also where the most ominous scene in the story take place: the moment before the charnel house door is slammed shut (so to speak).

I don’t know that Looming Low II will be worth your hard-earned & diminished dollar, but you’ll want to read Clint’s story for sure. (Mind, I have no reason to believe Looming Low II won’t be good! But we haven’t read the other stories yet, have we?)

In the meantime, there’s Ghouljaw & Skeleton Melodies. Get thyself to a library, nun!