Monday, September 27, 2021

Frankie Says Relax


For Mr. Mago, who was puzzled.

 Since I've referenced this band and their excellent song here several times recently, I'm going to post up the video version that was banned (!) in the U.S market when it first came out:

                                    Damn, I need a glass of icewater and a smoke after that

Now here is the version of this rampaging, danceable disco anthem to anal sex that was released in America! It too was juuuust this titty-close to getting banned for the suggestive sound effect at 0:15, which was deemed 'too liquid' by reporters on MTV:

                                     Oh go ahead.  You know you want to listen to it twice.

And here are the lyrics to the American version:

Mi- hi-hi-iiiiiine....
Give it to me one time now
Well, whoa, well
Relax, don't do it
When you wanna go do it
Relax, don't do it
When you wanna come
Relax, don't do it
When you wanna suck, chew it
Relax, don't do it
When you wanna come
When you wanna come
Relax, don't do it
When you wanna go to it
Relax, don't do it
When you want to come
Relax, don't do it
When you want to suck, chew it
Relax, don't do it
When you want to come
But shoot it in the right direction
Make making it your intention
Live those dreams
Scheme those schemes
Got to hit me (hit me)
Hit me (hit me)
Hit me with those laser beams
Laser beam
Don't do it
When you wanna come (come)
I'm coming
I'm coming (yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah)
Relax (don't do it)
When you wanna go to it (what's inside me?)
Relax, don't do it
When you want to come
Relax, don't do it
When you want to suck, chew it
Relax, don't do it (love!)
When you wanna come
When you wanna come
When you wanna come
Get it up
The scene of love
Oh feel it
Relax, don't do it
When you wanna go do it
Relax, don't do it
Relax, don't do it
When you want to suck, chew it
Relax, don't do it
One time, one time, one time (hey!)

Yes children, it was 1984, the Stainless Steel Amazon was but an infant, and I was living on Capitol Hill in the middle of Seattle. Our top 40 Hit was 'Owner of a Lonely Heart' by Yes, until this song came down like dynamite! This song had them literally dancing in the street when it came out!  You heard it everywhere on The Hill.  It wouldn't be until 1991when local boys Nirvana pushed it off to the side with 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' during the height of the Grunge movement, which overlapped the post- Punk, NuDance club scene. I didn't make up those dopey genre names, btw.  That was the fault of The Rocket magazine, which was for a brief while even more prestigious than Rolling Stone here in the U.S.

I had just left my first husband and moved back to Washington.  I had gone right back to my club clothes and my Bowie-Meets-Bernadette Peters look, and there I was, on Welfare, not a dime to my name, literally an outcast living amid a whole community that was also on the edge of acceptance, and this song wasn't asking anybody for acceptance; it was celebrating what it was.  That needed to happen.  People saying 'Your foot is no longer on my neck, and I'll never express myself in terms of victimhood again.'

So you can probably see why it stuck in my mind.  Not only was it fun and irresistible, it was winning a kind of battle.  And face it - who doesn't like a rousing tune about butt sex?

I'd always wanted one of those huge block print t-shirts, the long ones that were so fashionable in the 1980's, that had FRANKIE SAYS RELAX on it, but I felt at the time that would be going a little too far, seeing as I had an infant and was at the beck and call of the Welfare agency.  Surprise visit by your caseworker? Oh, it happened.  And had it happened go me, sure as shit,  there I'd be in my 'Frankie' t and nothing else, fighting off the cockroaches in my little railroad flat with one bathroom down the hall - unacceptable living standards by Welfare's rules right there.  Nope. Sorry, Frankie.  And so I waited until last January, in 2020, to order myself the t I'd craved for so long.  Trump was in office.  It was practically a necessity.

The henbiddies in Lynden, home of Christian Separatists, homeschoolers, and the practice of Abusive Home Birth, absolutely freeze in horror when I come rocking up wearing this bad boy.  And they should.  That is the revenge that lifelong hatred enacts upon the ageing bigot.  Let them pay in anger, high blood pressure and palpitations for being shitheels.  Because they know what the lyrics to that song mean, and just knowing those lyrics is SINFUL and my t-shirt grabbed them by the throat and rubbed their noses in that meaning, right?  Ah, displaced blame.  Nothing like it.  Suffer, motherfuckers.

Do you have any memories associated with this song?  Do share them, in detail, in the comments!


Sunday, September 26, 2021

Time! Marches! On!



Lord, I am so done with this remodel.  However, there is good news in the midst of my angst!  

We have a stellar company coming in to clean our attic, which is an eccentric maze of old rafters, old rooflines, strange narrow runs where none should exist and birds nests the size of an exploded bale of hay, among other perils. Like critter shit. Ah, life in the country in a pre-code house.

We also have the insulation company lined up and scheduled, which was a dog and pony show, let me tell ya.  There's a lot of men out there in this, the reddest corner of the bluest state in the Union, that see an older woman and get jacked full of aggression and paternalism and try and TELL you what you want.


Like that is going to work on me?  Did you not see the Klingon Empire insignia on my dorklord t-shirt?

                                Abandon hope! Knittin' and prayin' grannies don't wear shit like this! 

                    ...or like this either.  USE YOUR EYEBALLS YOU APPALLING MANCHILD!!! 

 The worst offender by far was one contractor  (KAZ Contracting, for anyone who lives in 'Fourth Corner' country) who came rocking up into MY house and insisted that he do the whole job, cleaning and insulation. INSISTING. That he do it, and for a laughably inflated price!  Over and over again! Each time just a little more sternly! What, I ask you, the actual fuck.  I thought he was going to plop his ass down and invite himself over for dinner.  I had to turn on that 'Mean Mom' voice and put my fists on my hips in that 'Tellin' YOU' stance, and that finally chased the idiot.  Never pass up an opportunity to exercise a little street theater, kids.

Can you imagine how this dude must speak to his mother?  That attitude stems from breeding.  Dad probably spoke to women in exactly the same way.  Here's calling that shit OUT.  Just remember, the hand that rocks the cradle, cradles the rock - and also the checkbook. Just because I'm female and old doesn't mean that I'm sweet or docile.  It means that I have had many more years than you to steep in evil practices and hone my methods to perfection.

 I'll get you, KAZ Construction!  And your little dog! 

Similarly anyone who doesn't call back on an inquiry.  I guess you don't need my cash, Chuckie, because you just wasted my time like it's cheap.  Oh this pisses me off!  It's a common courtesy for fucks' sake, and a standard business practice!  In the age of cell phones there's literally no excuse whatsoever for this shit.  You don't have a single minute to at least shoot me a text?  You're off the island, Paco. 

Now in other news, I've had to cut down my poor Camperdown Elm that had succumbed to a case of slime flux that engulfed the entire tree in one Summers' time.  I got it down leaves and all, and into the burn pit it went.  It's the only thing you can do when a plant is this badly - and suddenly - infected by so virulent a disease.  I was so appalled and so very sad when I discovered the extent of the problem, but when I smelled the overpowering rotten, fermented aroma that the burning wood gave off I felt like I was finally at peace with the decision.  I'm still bummed about it, though. 

This was by far  my favorite plant in the whole garden.  I've wanted one since I was six, going past the Poulson House on the corner of Powell Boulevard and McLaughlin Boulevard in Portland Oregon, and seeing the fantastic specimen that lived in the front yard and crawled like a  giant carniverous spider down the steep lot toward the sidewalk.  What a lovely thing it was.

This is the Poulson House as I remember it, back in the 1960's and 70's when it was painted black with pink trim!  Scary as hell, with ghosts dripping out of the windows!  The tree on the right side is the old Camperdown, and out of shot is the side of it that went down the hillside.  This place still stands and has been fully restored, but sadly the Camperdown was eliminated, which sucks.    

The way you have to look at it is, now I have room for something new next year. I sulphured the trunk and the surrounding soil, and I'll let it freeze out over Winter.  Next year I'll layer it over with lagoonage and plant something extravagant - and disease resistant - in it's place.  I'm thinking a Star Magnolia.

My garden is absolutely alive with bumblebees and other native pollinators!  It's like a miniature version of the movie 'The Birds' out there!  I've seen them teem to my blue asters before, but this year it's gone totally berserk.  Even the hornets are getting in on the action, next to the bumblebees, honeybees, the hoverflies, the regular flies and what have you.  The hummingbirds are absolutely enraged by all this competition and are out there swearing like sailors about this whole state of affairs.  Then in the evening the sphinx moths and hummingbird moths come and the second shift takes over, with tiny bats and ground sparrows sneaking around the flowers.

        Hummingbird Moth.  Isn't it almost too perfect a disguise? They even sound like a hummingbird too!  Absolutely nuts about the color blue, in case you want to attract these wonderful little pollinators. 

I can deal with most insects, bugs and arachnids.  But there's something I find distinctly icky about moths with big fat pulpy bodies, like Sphinx and Hummingbird moths; and if one gets in the house I go full on Squealing Moron, flapping and dodging and brandishing magazines trying to chase the poor confused thing back outside.  I think this comes from back when I was first riding, and in the evening the moths would hit the windshield and the visor of your helmet and leave a huge heaving splatter of icky pudding to mark the scene of their demise.  GAAAAAAAH!

This is why I chase them outside instead of flattening them.  That and I'm not a monster ffs.  I know they're harmless, but they're also all...mothy.  Those of you wishing to send me moths, I'm sorry but you'll have to return them to Hell from whence they arose.  I already have enough, thanks.

Friday, September 17, 2021

God Make It STOP

Wherein I Bitch and Whine

 Well, we didn't pass inspection.  (For those of you tuning in just now, we just had every single bit of our wiring torn out and replaced, from the least outlet to the breaker box and right out to the light pole.)  There are STRANGERS IN MY HOUSE AT RANDOM INTERVALS and they keep SHUTTING OFF MY ELECTRICITY!

Thankfully we are still on warranty, because they company that did our wiring and called it done and billed has been back 4 TIMES since.

Long story short, I went full-on Icy Rage Queen on that action because

This worked.  They got real prompt and obliging.  I mean management, of course.  The electricians were great.

Still, though. Do you remember being a kid at a family gathering, and all the grownups were talking about their property taxes and lawns and their bills and leaking roofs and lot lines, and thinking "Dear Christ just kill me now if this is how I'm going to be when I'm their age" ?  Well, I'm their age now, and here I am, and this is the biggest thing in my life at present, and it really is just that sad and boring.

Here's the way we see it:  A house is a box to keep your shit in. BOXES SHOULD NOT BE COMPLICATED! I've lived in a shed twice in my life, and I liked it just fine. One was an actual metal garden shed, just a place I slept and kept my important papers and stuff locked up. The other was a full-on Tiny House the size of a garden shed, and it rocked. (I also lived in an abandoned house for a couple of months.  I had to shit down the sewer pipe in the bathroom and then 'flush' it with a bucket of water.  Yes I've had a strange life.)

The Biker feels similarly.  He lived for five years in a one-room cabin that he'd built in Alaska. It had room to park his Harley, fresh running crick water, electricity, a toilet, a fantastic view of the mountains and rivers; and the only pests were the grizzly bears that would crap next to his mail box. 

 Of course ours would be a lush, high-living, plumbed and insulated shed.  With solar panels. Like this:

Here it is:  The FirstNations Dream Rancho For Two!  This is not to scale; the plans are around here someplace and I'm just too lazy to look for them. 

We've talked about this ever since we decided to live together.

 At first we put it off because we were 1. raising a kid and establishing credit, and then we put it off because 2. we were busy good-timing it up because the kid moved out, and then we put it off because 3. we wanted to money up and have a plan B in place, and now here we are, 4. twenty-some years in the same place, our separate spaces and our shared spaces established, everything about our relationship working smoothly - with contractors clomping in and out at the beginning of monsoon season. 

 Lesson: Be born into wealth.

Well, the last electrician just walked out saying 'It's finished!' and it better BE FINISHED. It's a good thing all this was on warranty or I'd light this fucker off and watch it burn.  One is exasperated, y'all. 

And I still have to sort out the attic and the insulation! 



Sunday, September 5, 2021

Electric Boogie!!

 Finally the electricians arrived to replace ALL the wiring in our house!  One more step toward TOTAL INSULATION AT LAST!

I'd always told my husband that we were running live 'knob and tube', which he did not want to hear, but then he can't get into the attic and I can, and it was pretty obvious up there since the remodeler didn't even bother to close the junction boxes.  I'm not a dumbshit ffs.

Presented here on a bed of Filberts because presentation is everything.     

Behold!  This is the kind of horror that was up in the attic and all over the house.  The electricians were appalled!  More importantly,  I was vindicated!  

That this house ever passed inspection before being sold was probably a matter of an inspector having driven by and going 'Yeah, it's standing,' and receiving his kickback.  This shit was illegal twenty-five years ago and it's illegal today.  The company that did the remodeling is notorious around town for his shortcuts and shoddy workmanship.  We figure, what the hell, it only has to last us until we go into assisted care.  We're throwing money at it now just to stay comfortable until then, and part of staying comfortable is not waking up on fire.

The kitchen and dining room are up and running, and we've been playing 'Outlet Roulette' for the past three days.  The power is glitching since we're on temporary connections until they can run new service to the house and replace the master fuse box. 

Where is the fusebox?  Why, in my bedroom!  HUZZAH!

Still, the outfit we hired is really banging it out in record time.  Most importantly, they're running the lines through the attic instead of under the floor joists.  We flood, and it's only going to get worse over time, so we're planning ahead for the time when the floodwaters reach the actual structure.  Here's hoping that never happens, at least while we're in residence. 

I have made many discoveries and had many core realizations during all this activity.  I discovered that a family of Gods' little creatures was living in my kitchen by hearing the sounds of an electrician gagging when they moved the counter out from the wall.  That was embarrassing as hell.  I did a record time deep-clean on that and apologized profusely.  

I discovered that we own entirely too many tchotkes.  Entirely. Too. Many. And I discovered that all our furniture is really heavy, too.  That's the tradeoff for owning original Mid-Century Modern pieces because we are super cool and trendy here at Rancho FirstNations.  Yes I am bragging.

Core realizations?  I am not the housekeeper I used to be.  I used to be, as one woman noted years ago, The Hippie Martha Stewart.  I was very exacting about order and cleanliness.  Now, the combination of being really short and having crappy glasses has resulted in accumulations of crud that I simply didn't see until I had to move things around.  The stuff in my linen closet is aligned with geometric precision, but spiders, mice, and wildfire soot have added to the overall state of entropy despite that crucial detail.

Another core realization was that I have internalized the tenor of my social environment to the point of going to the trouble of hiding certain things from the gaze of the electricians, such as my copies of  The Autobiography of Aleister Crowley, Witchcraft In Europe, and the Malleus Malificarum.  Every one of these guys live here in town, and I'd rather be known for my garden than I would be for my reading material. (I have actually had problems with this before, when one of my daughters' friends told her mother what I had on my shelves and her mother forbid the kid from ever visiting again. Yeah.  We have well over a thousand books in our collection, most of it non-fiction, but no - the kid zeroed right in on the three eeeeeeevil titles and narked to her mom. The rumor went all over the school and straight to the parents: SSA's mom and dad are Satanists!!! which we are not.  Still, thanks, ya little shit.)

Still, as much of a nuisance as all this is, I am very happy despite my bitching and whining. We won't have nearly as many power dips and surges as we have had for years, and the likelihood of death by rodent - assisted fire will be greatly reduced.  Then the insulation will go in!! This Winter isn't going to be anywhere  near as hard as last Winter was.  I'm really looking forward to that!  And similarly, next Summer isn't going to be as rough, either.  My house will be a refuge from the weather instead of being at the weathers' mercy!  Imagine it!