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.:[Tuesday, February 14, 2006]:.
The Prison Art Show
Crazy Ryan gave me a collection of drawings that he bought from some people in prison. Looking through them, I was, honestly, a little intrigued. When I asked Ryan how he'd got them, he told me that he'd asked different people to draw pictures for him, and he gave them things (packages of Ramen, for instance). He told me that the guy that drew most of the ones I've scanned and posted below complained and said that if he drew them in the real world, people would pay $200 for them as tattoos. Ryan reportedly responded, "This isn't the real world. Do you want the Ramen or not?" I asked him what he wanted them for, and he told me "Shit, fool, now I own original artwork."
Anyway, I've made up the titles myself, but here are a few of the drawings with my commentary.
Title: What Have I Got In My Pocket?
Price: Apparently, some Ramen from the Prison commissary.
Influences: Looks like Indian and gay porn, I guess
What does it mean?: Well, the primary focuses of this piece are an arrow with a feather tied to it and a snake. One doesn't have to be Freud to see the obvious phallic imagery. Of particular interest is the fact that the arrow and the snake's rattle are pointing upwards like erect penises. The snake is also biting itself, a reference, obviously, to homosexual conduct. I think we can safely assume that the artist is conveying the message: "Thank you for buying my art for a package of Ramen noodles... now I'm going to have bloody anal sex with you." At the present time, it is unknown to me whether or not the sexual transaction implied by this piece was actually consummated, but I've seen enough episodes of "Oz" to guess that the answer is probably "yes." I also think that the $.37 stamp in the corner (which varifies the piece as genuine, prison art) makes it particularly valuable.
Title: Cobra Commander Will Fuck Your World Up
Price: Smuggled tobacco that was then smoked in toilet paper.
Influences: Star Wars and G.I. Joe
What does it mean?: Hmmm... what appears to be either Cobra Commander or Darth Vader (with rhinestones appliqued to his helmet) is shooting lazer beams or death rays or something out of his eyes while a man on fire screams in the background. I'm beginning to think that the prison atmosphere doesn't lend itself to very positive representations in the realm of art. The guy on fire in the background appears to be black, which I don't think shows a very upbeat attitude about "our colored friends" in prison. Maybe multiculturalism seminars for our incarcerated brethren would open their minds about how great black people are! Note again, the $.37 stamp in the corner (which varifies the piece as genuine, prison art) makes it particularly valuable.
Title: Can I Meet Your Sister?
Price: No Fucking Clue.
Influences: Mescaline? Jail Kool-Aid with no sugar? I'm drawing a blank, here...
What does it mean?: Have you ever wondered why it is that when someone is on death row, a woman always ends up marrying them? Doesn't killing someone make them, automatically, a bad potential husband? Well, for all of you single ladies out there, this picture gives you another reason not to marry your "prison beau." There's a serpentine dragon, which is yet another phallic symbol. There's a drooling death's head. And then there's a woman, wearing a hoodie, with a pierced tongue and some sort of skin disease under her ear. Oh, yeah... she's also got blood leaking out from underneath her eyelids. I'm not sufficiently schooled in psychology to make some sort of definitive judgement about what this picture says about the artist's attitudes towards women, but it can't be good. It's entirely possible that the picture is a statement about how today's phallo-centric world leads to the death and oppression of women, but I think it's more likely to have something to do with gouging out their eyes and skull-fucking them.
Title: Want Some Candy, Little Girl?
Price: I think this one was free.
Influences: Michael Jackson
What does it mean?: Man, after thinking about the previous three drawings, I kind of was looking forward to something that didn't feature snakes, or skulls, or flaming skulls that shoot corpses and snakes out of their mouths. But to be quite honest, I think I find this the creepiest of all. I mean, there's the tree and teddy bear (who has "Hope" written across his foot), and there's the colored balloons. I'd like to think that they represent the innocence the artist lost when he went to prison, but I'm thinking the tree is probably where he left his last victim and the balloons and teddy bear were how he lured them into the car. Just a guess...
Anyway, if anybody wants to offer me some Ramen noodles for some original art, drop me a line...
| a BEN production by me at 6:01 PM
No, I'm not gay... I'm just single...
So the other day I was cleaning my new apartment and putting away things that I should have put away when I first moved in, but of course I'm completely unmotivated and there's only so many hours in the day for watching internet porn and "Malcolm in the Middle" reruns. And I find this letter in the bathroom, presumably written to my apartment's former occupant. The addressee's name is curiously absent, so I don't know who this heartfeld missive was penned to, but I do know that it was written by a passionate young lady named Monica.
Monica, if you're reading this, sweetie, I've got some advice for you.
Don't ever pour your heart out over three pages telling your former other how heartbroken you are that they broke up with you. All you're doing is leaving a permanent record. If you have some things that you need to get off your chest, remember this: that's what late-night drunk dialing is for. Not only do you get to say those things that you didn't get to say when he said "get the fuck out of my apartment," but there's the added bonus of waking up both him and the person he's now sharing his bed with. And the best part is, there's no permanent record! Unless, of course, you break the first rule of drunk dialing... so never, ever, ever, under any circumstances, leave a voicemail or answering machine message when you're drunk dialing. That defeats the whole purpose. If you get an answering machine, immediately hang up and press redial. Do that repeatedly. Hell, he'll have to answer eventually. Or... he'll take the phone off the hook and change his number. But either way, you've communicated.
Now, let's focus on your word choice:
Wow, I can't believe it really happened. I can't believe we broke up. I didn't think this day would ever come or maybe I just didn't want it to or want to think about it. It's hard and it hurts and I'm sorry but I can't get over and you. But I'm sure that's what you want me to do but you know I'll be ok.
If you are going to commit yourself to words, make them count. I know that they aren't teaching you kids how to fucking express yourself properly these days, but you can do better than that. Instead of the above, how about this?
Wow, I can't believe it really happened. I can't believe we broke up. You're going to laugh at this, but it reminds of Medea and Jason in Euripides' "Medea." You know, because Medea had sacrificed and done everything that she could to make Jason happy, and it wasn't enough. He left her, brokenhearted, so that he could be with someone else. Oh... you know how else this is like "Medea?" Because I'm going to fucking kill you.
Isn't that better?
Another little point is that, if you're going to ask questions in your final communication, make them good questions. Don't ask something like, "what's your shoe size?" Ask, "did you not like going down on me because my cooch smells like rotten tuna?" Thus, the following is a completely inappropriate question:
What happened between us that made you so scared and want to back away? Sorry if my hopes and dreams of marriage scared you but I mean every girl dreams of it and since I was with you for two years of course it ran through my mind.
You already know the answer to that question, Monica. Of course, your talking about marriage is what caused him to dump your goofy ass. You might as well ask him if he likes blowjobs or if he wakes up with a hardon in the morning. Instead, ask him a question that maybe he doesn't know the answer to either... I'd suggest, "did you know I have herpes?"
Another place you seem to have problems, Monica, is in appropriately placing blame.
You told me that you were an ass to me and I deserve better. That's not true, you were awesome. We argued but that's normal. You still are awesome, don't be so hard on yourself because even though this hurts it's not all your fault.
Now, technically, you're correct here because it's mostly your fault for talking about marriage. But, in post-breakup communications, IT'S ALWAYS THEIR FAULT. Always. For instance, if he broke up with you for cheating on him, some people might say that was your fault. But, of course, it isn't. It's his fault because he couldn't bring you to orgasm consistently. Or maybe you "probably" gave him a sexually transmitted disease... you didn't give it to him, his sorry, cheating ass gave it to you! Tell him what a worthless fucker he is, Monica!
Finally, go out with a bang. Telling him how much you still care about won't make him feel appropriately guilty. This is bad:
But, please, if you need to talk about anything even if it's me or if you had a bad day, then call me because I still care. Well, I hope this works out because I love you and miss you. -Monica-
What are you saying here? That if he's having problems with his job or whatever that he can call you and talk without putting out? Grow a fucking brain, Monica! Here's what you should have written:
But, please, if you need to talk about anything even if it's me or if you had a bad day, don't bother calling me. I'll make sure that when my parents are trying to clean my brains off the bedroom wall, they know that they have you to thank. Much love... Monica
Isn't that better? Now, if you die he'll feel guilty about it for a few weeks.
| a BEN production by me at 4:43 PM