Notes on Los Lobos’ “Native Sons”

Los Lobos

No More Beatlemania, Once Was Enough!
It’s Time for Los Lobos Mania!
Notes on Los Lobos’ “Native Sons”

I once published a theory about bands with five guys. It went like this: bands with five guys suck. I published the theory in a zine and we received dozens of letters, most contesting the theory and saying what a fool I was. When my band played shows, strangers accosted me to tell me I was wrong. I can be timid and don’t always think well on my feet outside the classroom. Yet I fended off all challengers. The theory was silly but surprisingly solid. 

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The Punches 

Paula + Gian
The Punches: Some words on Giancarlo DiTrapano, on the 1 year anniversary of his death

Gian published me twice in his journal, affectionately known as the Tyrant. The first time I didn’t know him well, but by the second time, we were close. We stayed close until his death. I had a crush on him as we began to get to know each other, and on a cigarette break during some reading in Brooklyn —in, like 2007? — he had fucked a priest in Hell’s Kitchen — I think behind a building. I asked, how was it? He said it was great. That was how I realized we were not on the same team. We both were on team friendship and as our friendship grew, we agreed on so many writers and books — the journals of Cheever was a particular bonding moment. At the beginning of publishing the Tyrant journal, he’d publish the work of dead, unfashionable writers — F Scott Fitzgerald, Tennessee Williams.

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Telling It Straight? Bloody Oath.

Blog Tour

It’s ace to see Mage of Fools getting good love in some rave reviews, so I guess it’s no biggie to stretch a bit and give back to the community. 

What I’d love to do for youse is fire up a barbie, throw a rack of lamb, sweet potatoes, veggie burgers on it, even pass around cold ones in a tinnie or a bottle, platters of smashed avo on toast as aperitifs. 

But the pandemic is a bummer, covid cancels plans and we get all suspicious real quick about tucker and booze from bloody strangers, especially ones from Woop Woop.  

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Hair After Chemo

Hair

Hair After Chemo: A Guide to Post-cancer Treatment
by Logan Davis

Every nickname I ever received was, in some way, about my hair.  No playground triumphs or hallway altercations ever demanded the notoriety for a moniker. I was born just ahead of the release of Gilmore Girls, so my name wasn’t quite as popular (and consequently ambiguous) as it would be for those a few years younger. Some folks called me “Lo” but that stopped after a doctor told my parents that was a cruel thing to do to a kid who was just diagnosed with depression. So the names were always about my hair. 

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Happy Hour of the Wolf

Bar

Happy Hour of the Wolf
by Michael Narkunski

The innocent start: you’re sitting on the stool, as usual, awkwardly waiting to be seen. 

It’s the wrong time again, as usual. Too early to get anything close to the amount of attention that could satisfy you—but that’s just one way to look at it. Another side of you is thrilled with the happy hour hunt, thinks it’s more civilized to meet someone not-so-sloppy drunk (anyway, a bar is a bar). It’s also more charged and surprising, two guys connecting in the daylight when everyone else is in friend-mode, in unwind-mode, in still-a-person-in-the-world-mode.

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The Stories That Save Us

pills

The Stories That Save Us
by Claire Phillips

“Don’t worry Claire, you have my genes.” This said by my British astrophysicist father when I called to ask why he had failed to disclose my mother’s actual mental health diagnosis for several years A man so reticent I didn’t even know he held the John D. MacArthur professorship at Caltech until I did a bit of sleuthing for my memoir, A Room with a Darker View: Chronicles of My Mother and Schizophrenia

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Clothing I Have Loved and Lost

clothespins

Clothing I Have Loved and Lost
by Jenna Kunze

I like clothes best when theyre not my own. Its like a shirt is only just a shirt until its on the body of someone I love, or even just moderately like, then its The Shirt and I need it now. 

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Home

home

Home
by Jeehan Quijano

Home means different things to each one of us.  It could be the yellow door of your childhood home, the tread of your father’s boots as he left for work, or how your kitchen smelled of roasted chicken or lentils or apple pudding.  Home could be the red brick wall building on the corner of the street, or a distinct sound, say the way the church bell rang or how your neighbor’s rooster crowed early morning.  Home could be the crisp air of autumn whose particular scent you have not smelled in any other city you have lived or visited.  Home could be a feeling, a state of being, or a city far from the place of your origin, far from a past that evokes longing or dread or ambivalence.

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