It’s July and I’ve been in the US of A for just about a month. That’s about it. Subscribe to this newsletter or unsubscribe. The choice is yours. Just be aware of the life affirming or destroying words you will read here. You can also check out the back catalog of old issues here. These will also change your life.
In this world these days, you can’t depend on much. But one thing you can depend on for sure, is that I will, come hell or high water, there will be a Top 10 this month which covers everything from survival show reality TV to global systems to psychedelic rock randomly and beautifully.
I’ve spent an inordinate amount of time on my mom’s back patio in the suburban wilds of Cleveland, Ohio looking at this:
What is on the other side of this thicket is the ninth hole of a prototypical Midwestern, suburban golf course. In these parts golf is not the high fallutin’ British style of class signalling so much as an excuse to spend hours getting hammered in the sun, drunk driving a small, two person electric cart around legally and talking to other local nouveau-riche owners of landscaping companies and middle managers about how bad things are and fuck Tony de Blasio who couldn’t hit the broadside of a battleship if it was right I front of his fat face. I hear them every day and yearn to see the other side. More than anything I ache to put together who these lushes are and have tried to piece together a picture based on the songs they blast from their golf carts.
Top songs on the 9th hole in the East Side of Cleveland, Ohio and what they mean
1. Digital Underground “The Humpty Dance”
A clear winner, “The Humpty Dance” is a song, a life’s dream really, that will not die. The 1990 rump shaking party anthem is a clear sign these guys were ready to party, and they aren’t limiting it to the backyard barbecues of the Rustbelt’s North Shore either. They’re bringing that swerve everywhere with them. Their joi de vivre knows know bounds, not by hour or by day or by context, as the humpty hump reverberates across the first 9 and joyous refrains of, “Yo ladies, oh how I like to funk thee,” ring true, bringing a smile to everyone in earshot. This song drips with a sexual energy not often seen on the golf courses of Ohio, and for that they win.
2. Guns n Roses “Paradise City”
There are very few bad GnR songs. In fact, there may not be any, but considering that my current status as a mere mortal might not be able to comprehend pure perfection, we’ll leave it at that. “Paradise City” though stands as phenomenal rock anthem to a better place. There they stood on the green of the 9th hole. They could either wrap it up at that point and go to the clubhouse and get even more blotto, or they could do the additional 9 holes. What they had though, in those 6:48 minutes, or 5:20 for the WLS-AM radio edit, is a horizon, a promise of a better future. It’s, “So far away, so far away,” and they know it. They know it will take some time and as much Coors Light, but that course and their sheer force of will and avoidance of their real lives will take them home. “Take me home,” holes 10–18 cried. “Take me home. Oh won’t you please take me home.”
3. Madonna “Holiday”
Those few hours there on those manicured greens of Northeast Ohio are to these golfers just as Madonna says they are, a holiday, a celebration and it not only could be so nice, it is. Could everybody spread the word and have this celebration across every nation? While that might not be on Joe Polansky’s or Matt Puccelli’s mind right then as they chugged their Whiteclaw’s on a Wednesday afternoon, they knew they were in holiday mode for those brief hours and weren’t going to let anyone stop them.
The Last Days of Rome
Friends the Experience
I was in New York City recently, and saw advertising everywhere for Friends the Experience which at first amused me, but then as the world-ending ramifications of it sank in, shocked me to the very fibre of my being. I need to add though that I’ve been at various points of life, a fan of “Friends.” You may ask why.
There is something about the okay-ness of it all. Nothing really that bad happens. The problems the characters would have were as enviable and unrealistic as their lives. “Friends” was a comforting escape you could slide into and out of without any sort of commitment and the jokes hit and then dissipated into their oversize apartments and coffee mugs. It was all just fine, forgettable and like a summer breeze, something you enjoy for a moment but don’t notice when it leaves.
So what do you do there at this “experience” you ask? Why you just hang out and take selfies of a perfect recreation of the set and then have shitty corporate events there. What is that you hear in the distance? That is right, the trumpets sounding the end. The end of people having ideas in general and potentially the end of Western Civilisation itself. Sure, it’s been a good run I guess, but it’s pretty clear if this is all we can come up with, it’s over.
Super Serious Forwards
The AI prompt art-ing guides abound of course, but as a stained glass fan I enjoyed this one. Of course they’ve been already at it with writing for a little bit, but here an author outs himself and using language model GPT-2 to write their next novel
Beautiful font system and terribly impressive customisation tool for Universal Sans
That’s it. Now go out and get yourself an ice cream. You’re worth it.
Speak the Truth