THIS SICKNESS 8 from Bottomless Studio, featuring John Linton Roberson, Emily Kaplan, Chad Parenteau, Charles Alverson, Gianna Ratto, Chris DeWildt and a cover by Molly Kiely. 100 pages! Available in print & Kindle at Amazon!
I Didn't Write That!
29 October 2013
  Lou Reed and John Cale, the Caped Crusaders

I think...this is real. Apparently Lou Reed and John Cale had a side job...cosplaying Robin and Batman. At children's parties. I direct your attention to a piece of fetish gear Lou apparently thought would be funny to use for his costume. Although, granted, with Robin, how do you tell?


Source: Atomic Samba. (thanks to Brook Mantia for directing me to it)

Rest in peace, Lou. Full of surprises.
By the way,  it goes well with this(around the same time), don't you think?



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28 October 2013
  "Watch Me Turn Into Lou Reed Before Your Very Eyes!" - Lou Reed - "Walk on the Wild Side" - The Hostile Rant Version (Take No Prisoners, 1978)

The infamous, and fascinating live version in which he goes off on critics for liking him, and dishes on everyone in the song. Here is Reed at his most Lou.


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  Lou Reed - "Street Hassle" - Studio and Live

From the album of the same name, here in both studio and live versions. One of Lou's finest moments.




Waltzing Matilda
Waltzing Matilda whipped out her wallet
the sexy boy smiled in dismay
She took out four twenties 'cause she liked round figures
everybody's queen for a day
Oh, babe, I'm on fire and you know I admire your -
- body why don't we slip away
Although I'm sure you're certain, it's a rarity me flirtin'
sha-la-la-la, this way

Oh, sha-la-la-la-la, sha-la-la-la-la
hey, baby, come on, let's slip away

Luscious and gorgeous, oh what a humpin' muscle
call out the national guard
She creamed in her jeans as he picked up her knees
from off of the formica topped bar
And cascading slowly, he lifted her wholly
and boldly out of this world
And despite people's derision
proved to be more than diversion
sha-la-la-la, later on

And then sha-la-la-la-la, he entered her slowly
and showed her where he was coming from
And then sha-la-la-la-la, he made love to her gently
it was like she'd never ever come
And then sha-la-la-la-la, sha-la-la-la-la
when the sun rose and he made to leave
You know, sha-la-la-la-la, sha-la-la-la-la
neither one regretted a thing

Street Hassle
Hey, that cunt's not breathing
I think she's had too much
of something or other, hey, man, you know what I mean?
I don't mean to scare you
but you're the one who came here
and you're the one who's gotta take her when you leave
I'm not being smart
or trying to be cold on my part
and I'm not gonna wear my heart on my sleeve
But you know people get all emotional
and sometimes, man, they just don't act rational you know,
they think they're just on TV

Sha-la-la-la, man
why don't you just slip her away

You know, I'm glad that we met man
it really was nice talking
and I really wish that there was a little more time to speak
But you know it could be a hassle
trying to explain this all to a police officer
about how it was that your old lady got herself stiffed
And it's not like we could help
but there wasn't nothing no one could do
and if there was, man, you know I would have been the first
But when someone turns that blue
well, it's a universal truth
and then you just know that bitch will never fuck again
By the way, that's really some bad shit
that you came to our place with
but you ought to be more careful around the little girls
It's either the best or it's the worst
and since I don't have to choose
I guess I won't and I know this ain't no way to treat a guest
But why don't you grab your old lady by the feet
and just lay her out in the darkest street
and by morning, she's just another hit and run.
You know, some people got no choice
and they can never find a voice
to talk with that they can even call their own
So the first thing that they see
that allows them the right to be
why they follow it, you know, it's called bad luck.

Slipaway
well hey(man), that's just a lie,
it's a lie she tells her friends.
'cause the real song, the real song
where she won't even admit to herself
the beatin' in her heart.
It's a song lots of people know.
It's a painful song
a little sad truth
but life full of sad songs
penny for a wish
But wishin' won't make you a soldier.
With a pretty kiss for a pretty face
can't have its way
Y'know tramps like us, we were born to pay.

Love has gone away
and there's no one here now
And there's nothing left to say
but, oh, how I miss him, baby
Oh, baby, come on and slip away
come on, baby, why don't you slip away

Love is gone away
took the rings off my fingers
And there's nothing left to say
but, oh how, oh how I need him, baby
Come on, baby, I need you baby
oh, please don't slip away
I need your loving so bad, babe
please don't slip away 
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  Lou Reed & John Cale - Songs for Drella Live at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (1989)

In its entirety, the late Lou Reed and John Cale's requiem for mentor and friend Andy Warhol.


And Lou's related song, from the great New York:  "Dime Store Mystery."


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27 October 2013
  Lou Reed RIP (1942-2013)

"Hey, Lester."
"Huh? --Oh, crap....uh, hi Lou."
"So, eternity, huh?"
"Uh, yeah."
"So there's some things I wanted to get off my chest."

(Lester runs, screaming.)

Lou Reed wrote short stories as poetry as rock songs. 

Lou Reed died today. When I discovered the Velvet Underground when I was 17, it changed my life forever and so did Lou (even though I'll admit overall I always liked John Cale's music a bit better of their solo work). Now I'll be even more annoyed when I see that video game ad that uses "Perfect Day." Here's a very articulate remembrance of Reed at the New Yorker that says much of how I feel about Lou. And here's a 1992 interview by none other than notorious Lou Reed superfan Neil Gaiman.

I was fifteen and playing Transformer in the art room at school. My friend Marc Gregory came over, with a request. His band covered 'Perfect Day', but he'd never heard the Lou Reed original. I put it on for him. He listened for about a minute, then he turned around, puzzled, looking uncomfortable.
"He's singing flat."
"He can't be singing flat," I told him. "It's his song."
Marc went off disgruntled, and I still believe I was right...
Gaiman: Good writing ought to be hard.
Reed: You have to really want it. If you don't, it's sloppy. It's actually offensive -- you'd be better off driving a truck.

 
He was an egomaniac and a jerk, but he was also a genius who changed the sound of everything you hear, forever, either directly, or indirectly, via those he influenced. He was effing Lou Reed, so I think he's allowed. There would be no punk without Lou. Everyone knows that. But certainly, though, the Velvet Underground had a bigger influence on my generation, via the Verve reissues (and R.E.M. covering them) in the mid-80s, than on its own. There'd be no "alternative"--in fact, most music would be very different without his pioneering of noise. There'd be no Sonic Youth, just as one example of hundreds.



But Lou's palette was one of the widest of any songwriter, far wider than Dylan--who, I'd say,  in the end, Lou was more important than, or the Beatles. He could just as easily write a soft, pretty song that would grab your emotions and wring them till there were tears. Lou Reed was, even more than that, one of the greatest poets, and definitely New York's greatest poet, of the latter 20th century. His ability to tear your heart right out with the pictures he made in words is not spoken of often enough. Possibly, that's why cartoonists like him so much.

A Lou-sized hole in music is a rather big thing.

Lou, as you know, did a version of LULU too that came out midway in my work on my own. Here's a live performance I posted a while back; it was better than it's reputed to be.

And here is the album that changed my life: WHITE LIGHT/WHITE HEAT. Rest in peace, Lou.



Next, once again, Lou's best solo album, BERLIN.



And now hear this.






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26 October 2013
  Suzy Spreadwell: America's Sweetheart Episode 1, p. 12

Back to Earth in this week's Suzy.

Read last week's here, and click on image to read full-size version!

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25 October 2013
  Supreme Court Fables: Scalia and the Thermostat
 One day, Justice Scalia said of  the Supreme Court's thermostat "It's  been doing a great job regulating temperature for decades. So it's obviously done its work. Let's have it removed." And it was.

A week later he died of pneumonia.


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21 October 2013
  LULU Book 1 Reviewed by Rachel Brandt at Sound on Sight

A very nice review of LULU I hadn't noticed, from back in July. Check it out. 

(As always, you can get LULU in print and digital here)

"Unlike many female characters who are engaged in her lifestyle, wrought with open sexual encounters, she is not manipulative. Unlike many women in comics and pop culture who use sex to get ahead, Lulu, is seeks out the things in life that are to be enjoyed and is naïve as to why other people don’t do it more often. She makes no attempt to manipulate the men she’s with or gain anything with her feminine wiles outside of her own pleasure...It's deviant and thought-provoking with beautiful line work and the perfect read for someone looking for a comic outside of mainstream."

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20 October 2013
  The GOP and the True Believers
A thought or two on the shutdown humiliation of the GOP, which is a textbook example of what "give 'em enough rope" means:

There has, in the past, usually been a difference between what the GOP actually wants, and what it is willing to use.  

What the GOP believed in was power and money, and the status quo of a particular class. All the things it used--racism, nationalism, xenophobia--are tools. They always are. They would use the religious right, for instance, but rarely actually deliver for them--and thank god for that. The Southern Strategy was about harnessing those forces, not about belief in them--that's why Goldwater was rejected, because he would have put the True Believer faction in power. It sounds strange to say so, but we should in some ways be grateful the GOP are such hypocrites usually.

That's not the case now. The people who have believed the rhetoric, who think these things are actually the point of the party, have gotten into control.



The problem with this is that these people do not believe government should work, mainly because they do not know what government does. Consider the senior citizens a few years ago who protested the government getting involved in their healthcare, and it turned out they didn't know Medicare was the government, or Social Security. This is a similar case. It's unclear if they understand the military too is part of the government they deplore. They think government is This Alien Occupying Force That Only Helps Poor People. So of course they want nothing but to slow it down or stop it. (Fox attempted, laughably, to call it a "slimdown")

Only one has to start realizing--even if one is a Republican--that a party that spends five years running proposing nor passing any useful legislation; pursuing no initiatives; and doing absolutely nothing but attempt to disrupt the government, either by action or by threat; that one has to question whether this is a political party at all. And if it is, just what is their function?

And not just disrupt what they don't like about government--disrupt all of it, in its entirety, and try to destroy the credit of the US as well. One has to ask if they are anything more than in the way.

The GOP grownups have to start considering just how this ensures money or power for them, to allow the crap they say to stoke the base to actually be pursued seriously.

And honestly, after five long years of this bullshit, I suggest many of the rest of us would like to get on with our lives and for the government to be realistic and boring again for a while.

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  Suzy Spreadwell: America's Sweetheart Episode 1, p. 11

This week's Suzy.

Read last week's here, and click on image to read full-size version!


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19 October 2013
  Charlie & Artemis Today

And now, a cat post. My new li'l boy (he's the grey one) and my somewhat older little girl, who hasn't been feeling so well,  hanging out today. As you might see, he's grown a bit. (He was 6 months old on Oct. 9)

She didn't like him at first, but Charlie doesn't seem to understand that concept and was tenacious.

(Photos by Christine Hannigan)
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  London After Midnight (Tod Browning, 1927; Partial Restoration)

The closest possible restoration (as far as anyone knows, the film is lost) of the long-sought-after classic silent horror film starring Lon Chaney.

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13 October 2013
  New: Two More Illustrations for Robert Leitz' "Memoir of a King"

More from the commission I told you about a while back. New illustrations for a fantasy novel by Robert Leitz, "Memoir of a King." Click either image to embiggen. 

To talk to me about doing some awesome art for you, write me at john(dot)roberson(at)gmail(dot)com.



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12 October 2013
  Suzy Spreadwell: America's Sweetheart - Episode 1, p. 10

Well, that's not exactly avoiding temptation, Suzy.

Read last week's here, and click on image to read full-size version!



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05 October 2013
  Suzy Spreadwell: America's Sweetheart - Episode 1, p. 9

A bit of mixed feelings for Suzy this time around. 

Read last week's here, and click on image to read full-size version!



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02 October 2013
  Dušan Makavejev - MAN IS NOT A BIRD (1965)

You all know my love of Dušan Makavejev's WR: MYSTERIES OF THE ORGANISM. Here is another favorite, MAN IS NOT A BIRD, from 1965.

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