Monday, August 26, 2013

Until the Bracts Have Mauved Up

Ubu Projex, the art and business directorate of the American band Pere Ubu, can confirm that notice has been received this weekend from the United States Customs & Immigration Service (USCIS) rejecting the visa petition for British band members Keith Moliné and Graham Dowdall (aka Gagarin).

The sole grounds for rejection is the band’s refusal to seek approval from the American Federation of Musicians (AFM).

“The AFM are the antagonists in this affair,” band leader David Thomas said. “They have no business telling me who can and who cannot be in the band.”

Details can be found in previous press releases,

Cleveland guitarist Dave Cintron will join the band for the September US tour and provisions are in place for Moliné and Dowdall to link remotely for one of the songs in the set.

There has been much disbelief and incredulity about this not-uncommon example of the obstacles international bands now face when seeking to tour the US.

“The whole process has been going on since May, with several delays and absurd complexities,” Thomas said. “The Cintron version will be magnificent, I have no doubt. If I cannot put a band together without government interference and without a pat on the head from the AFM, like a grateful dog, then so be it. I have no interest in frittering my life away with campaigning.

“We will proceed with our music. Nothing will be announced from the stage. We won’t be writing ‘protest’ songs or haranguing audiences.

“There are visions and ideas to pursue. There’s too little time to waste it on fighting stupidity. In the words of the MGM lion, ‘Ars longa, vita brevis.’” [Yes, we know it was Hippocrates.]


John Ashbery

 It’s really quite a thrill
when the moon rises above the hill
and you’ve gotten over someone
salty and mercurial, the only person you ever loved.

Walks in the park are enjoyed.
Going to Jerusalem now
I walked into a hotel room.
I didn’t need any name or anything.
I went to Bellevue Hospital,
got a piece of the guy.
As I say, it’s really quite a thrill.

Quite a thrill too to bend objects
that always return to their appointed grooves—
will it be always thus? Or will auto parts
get to have their day in the sun?

Got to drone now.
Princess Ida plans to overwork us four days a week
until the bracts have mauved up.
Then it’s a tailgate party—
how would you like your burger done?

A little tea with that?

I saw her wailing for some animals.
That doesn’t mean a thing doesn’t happen
or only goes away, or gets worse.
What’s the worst that could happen?

The midnight forest drags you along, thousands of peach hectares. Told him I wouldn’t do it if I was him. Nothing to halt the chatter of locusts until they’re put away for the night. He edges closer to your locker. Why did I leave it open? I’ve forgotten the combination. But it seems he’s not interested in the locker, maybe my shoe—something unlike anything he’s ever known. Sensing the tension he broke the ice with a quip about the weather somewhere, or maybe—maybe an observation on time, how it moves vastly in different channels, always keeping up with itself, until the day—I’m going to drive back to the office, a fellowship of miles, collect some of last year’s ammunition. Then I’m definitely going to the country, he laughs.


  1. last night while trying to sleep i had an anxiety attack i broke out in a sweat i had diarrhea i kept returning to the fear of death

    today i feel ok

    here's a joke i read in the weekly world news, and posted at michael berube's blog years ago - he said he liked it



    A RABBI, priest and a minister walked into a bar in a small Iowa town—but nothing funny happened.

    “When I saw the three of them walk in,” bartender Joe Blobonski says, “I thought to myself, ‘This is gonna be good.

    I mean, this is the setup for thousands of jokes, so I figured something hilarious is about to happen.”

    But the results were disappointing.

    “They sat down at a table, and didn’t say much.”

    Blobonski says he expected to burst out laughing when he took their order.

    “The priest said, ‘I’ll have a Virgin Mary.’ Then the minister said, ‘I’ll have a Bloody Mary,’ Blobonski says. “I could barely contain myself, waiting for the rabbi’s punch line.

    “But then he says, ‘I’d like a Diet Coke,’ A Diet Coke?

    THAT’S not funny. I couldn’t believe it.”

    At another point the rabbi asked, “Do you get many rabbis in here?”

    Blobonski says, “I said ‘No,’ waiting for the rabbi’s hysterical comeback.

    “But all he said was ‘too bad.’ “

    The three religious wise men quietly drank up, paid the bill, and left.

    “It was really pretty boring, to be honest,” Blobonski added.

    Published on: 09/05/2004

  2. Link thanks, but season tickets will enable you to purchase 15 buck beers which in turn will purchase aging European imports and guaranteeing a top 9 finish.

    I miss the Weekly World News.

  3. Jim: Because he's brown. And thank you for the kind word a day or two ago.

    bDr: I am adopting a new comment format. I will simply make a brief statement and expect you and Jim and anyone else interested to assess my mental state and the relevant topicality from the available evidence. Today's comment:


    Thank you.