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#219 :: Party Bottles

September 15, 2004

pilule troche ‘popup’, ampoule ed ‘width=500,height=500,scrollbars=no,resizable=no,toolbar=no,directories=no,location=no,menubar=no,status=no,left=0,top=0’); return false”>This is a very, very early example of mass-produced, full-color graphic design – a ceramic container for potted meat produced some time just after the mid-19th century. (From my father’s collection). Rubberstamped and then handcolored, glazed and fired, battalions of British soldiers arrive by warship and landing boat at the Crimea, to fend off Russian agression against their Turkish allies (if I’m reading this correctly). Wrapped around the ceramic jar (which stands about 4 inches high), they look crude, orthographically drawn and gallant in the sort of stiffbacked fashion that would have had them still shooting and reloading by ranks in the regimental way, only to be cut down by guerilla potshots, as if they had learned nothing in the Colonies 80 years earlier.

(UNRELATED SIDE NOTE: Only a few more days to get in on the Name the li’l alien contest … )
mind ‘popup’,’width=500,height=500,scrollbars=no,resizable=no,toolbar=no,directories=no,location=no,menubar=no,status=no,left=0,top=0′); return false”>At some point, Fitzgerald settled in Towson, Maryland (the years 1932 and 1933, to be precise) to rent a house called “La Paix.” At some point a couple of decades later, my folks were fun-loving college kids, and the house was being torn down. They made off with the pull-handle from his water-closet, and my father subsequently enshrined it in this ornate little inlaid-mother-of-pearl frame. It hung in our home as long as I can remember growing up, and hangs there still, beneath a venerable coating of dust. It struck me as funny at age 7 as it still does decades later. Because at some point – more likely on several hundred occasions – F. Scott Fitzgerald got up from the crapper like everyone else, and gave this thing a yank – and then unlike the rest of us resumed writing “Tender is the Night.”
viagra 40mg ‘popup’,’width=500,height=500,scrollbars=no,resizable=no,toolbar=no,directories=no,location=no,menubar=no,status=no,left=0,top=0′); return false”>Homies, the fetishistic plasticizing of Latino-American gang members by some enterprising toymaker, grew only more famous and desirable once they were denounced by the Latino “establishment” for sugarcoating thug life. Legions of little Homies lurk on the shelves of L.A.’s toy stores, frontin’, representin’ and dissin’ their little resin hearts out. Chato appears to be a refugee from the “Dogpound” line, though he’s not pictured in the lineup. I have no idea what he was doing in among the Wedgewood, brandy snifters and vintage lead soldiers in my parents’ china cabinet, although my dad allowed as how the magnet – an aftermarket modification – was reminiscent of the magnetic Scottie toys you used to be able to buy in vending machines at Howard Johnson’s restaurants up and down the New York State Thruway when I was a kid. If you really need to feed your fetish, Chato can be had for about $5.99 on eBay right now. He’s less than an inch high.
viagra ‘popup’,’width=500,height=500,scrollbars=no,resizable=no,toolbar=no,directories=no,location=no,menubar=no,status=no,left=0,top=0′); return false”>The copper kettle had simmered 10 minutes long now. The nurse took a hook, dredged up the basket. Jaw set primly, she emptied it, steaming, onto a towel on the instrument table with a little tinkling clatter. One by one, the doctor’s tongs dipped and retrieved the hot cups, waving them expectantly in the air to cool before seating them. Plip. Plip. Plip. A flock of little glass bells, nesting on the old woman’s exposed shoulder. Thermodynamics took hold. Heat fled the cups, contracting them and sucking her blood to the surface for letting. Shplup. Shplup. Shplup. A tight-backed stork he looked, in his charcoal jacket and waistcoat, plucking them off and returning them to the wire basket. He had been caring for her this way for three days now, yet she was faltering, her condition growing steadily worse.
“Cu” page, Dorland’s Medical Dictionary
A Muslim explanation of cupping
eBay: “blood cupping glass”
check ‘popup’,’width=500,height=500,scrollbars=no,resizable=no,toolbar=no,directories=no,location=no,menubar=no,status=no,left=0,top=0′); return false”>The size of a sequoia he was, with a big gleam in his large eye. He whistled that day on his way through the neck-high woods, his gentlest trudge rippling the pond, startling the fish. He fumbled in his suitcase-sized pocket, afraid he had lost it through an ill-darned hole. No, there – he clenched it in his fist until the prongs dented the ham of his hand. Deep breath. As he drew nearer her door, he began to sing. Small boulders loosened from the scree on the nearest mountainside, tumbling downward, before he found his pitch and really started belting. It was at that point that the crows bolted from the tall oak planted beside the base of her foundation and she swung the thick oaken door wide, her hubcaplike eyes a-glitter, her huge, soft upper lip trembling in anticipation.

This is for dress-up time, an ancient, scratched, rattling gift from my mother to my daughter. It says you mean business.
information pills ‘popup’,’width=500,height=500,scrollbars=no,resizable=no,toolbar=no,directories=no,location=no,menubar=no,status=no,left=0,top=0′); return false”>This wouldn’t keep out a crackhead with a crowbar. It’s crudely hammered iron, cold-forged (but for the hasp) and pickable with a couple of well-placed screwdrivers. But in old Kathmandu, where they paint the great Swayambanath stupa with ghee and chant to honor Buddha, it’s probably big and gnarly-looking enough to do the job. The key is inserted through a top slot and shoved into the lock, where it compresses leaf springs, letting them slip out through the hole. More hand-wrought locks here.
erectile ‘popup’, rx ‘width=500,height=500,scrollbars=no,resizable=no,toolbar=no,directories=no,location=no,menubar=no,status=no,left=0,top=0’); return false”>Easy indicators ping the eyes in a semaphore of popcult semiotics, a whirlwind sartorial tour of 30 or 40 raw, fertile, fucked-up years in American history (and arent’ they all) as expressed in a single Britons toy: Bandanna, waistcoat, slouch hat, Colt repeater. So many unanswered questions: Did his inside jacket pocket hold stolen mine deeds? Did he beat his horse or his women? Did he assault Chinese railwaymen or work alongside them when he was too young and dumb to shoot himself an income? Did he dip snuff? Sip laudanum? Was he a poker or a blackjack man, or did he prefer to kill time shooting bottles off rocks? Did he come out West for money, or to escape the law back east or was he mustered out of the Army when the war ended, all piss and vinegar and gun skills and nowhere to put all that rage?

Did he sing?
here ‘popup’, page ‘width=500, viagra 40mg height=500,scrollbars=no,resizable=no,toolbar=no,directories=no,location=no,menubar=no,status=no,left=0,top=0′); return false”>My father painted this, in tribute to a short horror story my mother wrote in the 60s – about (as best I can remember, having read it once in my teens) a young tarantula with a case of tragically unrequited interspecies lust. Borne by banana boat from South America to the big city and carried into a glamorous torch singer’s boudoir in a fruit basket, he becomes passionately infatuated with her beauty, then when she misinterprets and spurns his eight-legged advances, falls victim to genetic destiny and mortally wounds her with a bite because he must. The clock never entirely worked right (my dad acquired it second-hand) but that never really mattered. The only number painted on the face is that of the cocktail hour. The glass dome under which the lovestruck arachnid lurked for years on the family mantelpiece was a repository for the fallen-out teeth of the artist’s children (until the stench of decay grew too strong), and the carcasses of bees, junebugs and cicadas that they brought to him. No doubt my mom will remind me of the title and correct me on any details I’ve flubbed (or, better yet, provide a pointer to the story online if it exists).

And on that note note – Only two days more until I pick a winner in the “name-the-freshman” contest. Jump in now and suggest a name (a name with a story is always appreciated) and he could become your own heavy little object.
viagra ‘popup’,’width=500,height=500,scrollbars=no,resizable=no,toolbar=no,directories=no,location=no,menubar=no,status=no,left=0,top=0′); return false”>These behave with a relentless molecular certainty. Pick them up and drop them at random, as if casting bones for a fortune, and they self-group – bottles with bottles, fish with fish. Their physics is as predictable as that of soap bubbles and sand grains, oil and water. Do it over and over again. Clutch them in your fist, taking care not to crush them, then place them firmly on a surface and uncup your hand. They slither into segregation. What this behavior has to do with anything – condiments, cod, sake, friction – should be addressed in writing to the makers of Leisure Party brand party bottles, whose name appears on reverse of the cellophane package only in kanji, which I can’t read. How do you fill these things? No helpful pictograms. Just a rollicking hunch that you have to sit over a bowl of whatever – soy sauce, colored juice, Goldschläger – and dip their mouths, pinch out the air and let the thermoplastic return to its manufactured shape, sucking in the party juice.

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