The Good Word of Sprout

Location: Chicago, Illinois, United States

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Creative Writing Workshop

Completing a piece gives me a warm and solid feeling of accomplishment. I have taken a piece of myself, polished it, and now the world can see it gleam and smell its unwashed stink. I examine the piece, reading it from different angles, as God's child, as a filthy peeper dressed only in women's shoes, each time a different person, a different laugh. I can't escape the feeling that I'm revealing more of myself than I realize.

I like it when people compliment my work when in a group. That reduces my baseline anxiety and eases my worry. I stop picking at my scalp. What are those hard parts anyway? They're fun to peel away. The judgment may be harsh, but with one compliment my presence no longer needs to be justified. Since I am capable, I fit in. Someday I may excel.

My turn is coming. The mob readies its fangs, ready to vent the rage of years of social slights and disappointing sexual experiences. I know what it is to show work, to show filet of soul (that's terrible) and have others wonder what else I do when I'm alone. I know what it is to hope that they won't kick me in my vulnerable spots again and again, relishing my gasps and grunts, but still be honest enough to prepare me for someone who will.

In writing, criticism wounds me. Even faint praise depresses me. I'm addicted to the endorphin buzz, high, hugging the Downy scented adulation. I've developed a tolerance for it. I must have more. I'm a perfectionist. Sell me more.

It's my turn.


Saturday, December 26, 2009

Dessert Tips: Vanilla Ice Cream

We have ways of making a scoop of grocery store vanilla ice cream more interesting:

1) Add chocolate syrup, whipped cream, and rainbow sprinkles.
2) Whip it into a paste, add a splash of milk, and drink it through a curly straw.
3) Teach it to talk.
4) Teach it to talk about something other than its friends from the freezer section who you've never met.
5) Add bacon, set it on the floor. Fight the dog for it (no hands allowed).

Cookbook forthcoming.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Three Links

Well, I got a couple weeks of holiday mayhem left before the winter doldrums -- when the ceiling and walls creep in until I can reach out and touch them without fully extending my arms, and when blogs play a leading role in keeping me sane, second only to daydreaming about the sun, the Cubs, and street parking that doesn't involve negotiating knee-high piles of dirty ice.

These are interesting bits, in no particular order (you shouldn't believe me -- of course there's a particular order):

1) Let's Pet Stuff

2) Spontaneous (Something Intelligent and Relevant)

3) Nice, Very Mature

I hope all of you stay safe and warm and get what you want for Christmas, tangible or intangible. Peace.


Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Problem/Solution/Com- plication

Problem: I am a mutt. At the dog park, I hate how the purebreds make me feel: so inadequate, so ugly.

Solution: Lick my balls, lick m'balls.

Complication: I've been neutered.


Monday, December 14, 2009

On Light and the Ego

Occasional flashes of bright light produce a harmless jolt of terror and a metallic whiff of truth. It's fun like a haunted house is fun. Dig it.

Any extended period of bright light devastates. Honesty ravages the ego because the ego is a set of lies that needs just enough darkness to keep the inner narrative plausible and the self-esteem intact.

As a general rule I do not shine truth on others unless they abuse power. But one cannot know how truth works or how to wield it unless one first shines it on himself. The stakes must be high. To mitigate damage, the power of light should be used collectively -- from the many with less against the few with more, against the current, weak to strong, disenfranchised against establishment.

This game needn't be played, though. Beyond the ego lies enlightenment. We can just leave the ego behind. If it won't be left, we can set it ablaze and grow things in the fertile ashes.

Saturday, December 12, 2009


Clean and arrange, arrange and clean: I do in my home, I do as I write. I leave enough dirt as to not be a prude. Dust is not dirt, black is not white. Her jawline curves, I court her displaced. I tickle my bits, my pieces just so -- several issues to overcome before the hump I over go.


Tuesday, December 08, 2009

A Mind Problem Compounded

"I love you," she says, "but I need to know that we have a future together. I need to know that you love me, that you love me, love me, love me, me..."

Electric shock. What to say? Fear. Now seconds have passed, and she just stares at me. Why does she have to be so ugly when she sleeps? Her mouth looks like she's had a stroke. I'm sure I'm not attractive when I sleep. I probably look like I have rabies. Maybe I shouldn't be...

"Well?" she says.

Oh God.

"Maybe in a few years..." You'll have a stroke and it will even out your sleep face. Wait, do I plan to be with her until she has a stroke?

Yes, and afterwards, when her sleep face is normal or twice as bad.

She pales. Here it comes.

"In a few years? In a few fucking years?" She leaves in tears and doesn't even bother to slam the door.

Why, mind, why do you do this to me?


Friday, December 04, 2009

Three Links

It's getting too cold to go out. The wind is a formidable foe. So pull on your long undies, grab a choice warming beverage, and settle in. The dark days are here, and fat is your friend, or maybe your friend is fat.

These are interesting bits, in no particular order (always a lie -- of course there's a particular order):

1) Making a Name for Yourself

2) One Sword

3) Bronx Freedom Fund

Enjoy the twinkling lights this weekend. There is magic in them.


Thursday, December 03, 2009

Musings on a pot-luck

Where I've asked everyone to bring a different gravy. What happens if we run out of food to pour gravy on? Although there may have never been food -- we may have been pouring gravy on gravy and slurping out of bowls and cups, first using spoons, then ladles, then our mouths and tongues. Now there is gravy in my hair. But what next? Do we start to pour and smear gravy on each other? Do we pour it on the floor, build a meaty Slip 'n Slide? Both?

Both probably.