Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Vacation Is the Best Time For Equalizer 2000

The weather couldn't have been better for my vacation week, but the trout were not very cooperative. I lost a couple goodish ones but hey, don't want to be like James Frey here and claim I brought them to net.

I forgot to bring movies so was stuck with some VHS tapes that were on hand — a dumb documentary about Sonic Youth, "Dr. Strangelove," "Horse Feathers"... and a piece of forgotten caca called "Equalizer 2000."

I think my friend Kurt left this from a CACA trip several years ago.

It's a semi-lousy "Mad Max" ripoff, in which The Ownership live in post-nuclear holocaust Alaska and lord it over everybody else, including the Mountain People, the rebels, and Dixon's group, which includes a girl with gigantic breasts.

An ex-Ownership guy named Slade spends all his time looking like an unsuccessful candidate for the Village People and first obtaining, then losing, and then regaining the Equalizer, a combination machine gun/rocket launcher that makes everybody quake. Slade has an Australian accent, sort of, but nobody's gonna mistake him for Mad Max. Mildly Irritated Max, maybe.

Why can't I meet a gal like this? Won't spend a lot of time talking about T.S. Eliot, I bet.

Automatic one coil deduction for no breasts. Academy Award nomination for the Mountain People and their splendid deus ex machina attack on the Ownership, with dull spears and bows that look like they came from the tag sale of a defunct Girl Scout camp.

Two coils.

The fishing was marginal — I managed to avoid a multi-day skunking and bring a couple of semi-decent browns home for one of the gals at work — but it was fun tramping the river and assessing the October flood's effect on the streambed.

The state DEC has "creel agents" out and they are very efficient. Luckily they don't check licenses, as I forgot to renew mine until Day Three. One of them obligingly snapped this picture of me in streamside finery.

I also declared war on the mice that ate the shoulders of two of my tweed jackets. "Three dead mice, three dead mice..."

And here's a cluck who tried wading in the murky Esopus where the state did extensive flood control work, creating in the process a very deep pool. This fellow almost went all the way in, but managed to clamber out with no more damage than a red face.

Postcript: The Onteora School District budget passed, but not without the usual controversy. But if the voters in Shandaken want to know if their kids are getting a decent education I refer them to this bit of graffiti on the Herdman Road bridge in Phoenicia, which is unusual in the genre in that it is legible and comprehensible.

Reading list: Semi-Tough, Dan Jenkins; The Power and the Glory, Graham Greene; One Step Behind and Firewall, Henning Mankell; Basket Case, Carl Hiaasen.

It was really enjoyable to crank up the electric guitar. I can't make a lot of noise at home, the dopey nosey buttinski "Aaaagh I got a whiff of cigar smoke but please ignore my thumping at odd hours" shitbird neighbors would bitch like there's no fucking tomorrow if I did. Figured out that strange augmented chord thing on the Velvet Underground's "New Age" and the Steve Cropper guitar part on Wilson Pickett's "Ninety-Nine and a Half." Failed to master the riff on Plumtree's "Scott Pilgrim," which is irritating as the song itself is very simple. I just can't get that initial doodly bit.

Soundtrack: Mix disc of old Stones, I mean really old, "Miss Amanda Jones" and "Flight 505," that era. Stereolab mix, older stuff up to "Mars Audio Quintet." Rhino's "Soul Spectacular!" box set. Wynonie Harris, Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys, stray Duke Ellington CD that must belong to my folks, "Mojo Box" by Southern Culture on the Skids, Velvets "Live at Max's Kansas City," Richard Hell compilation (seriously annoying in places), Talking Heads "Fear of Music," "Music From Big Pink" and "The Band" in a nod to Woodstock, the next township over.

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