Dust on the Stupid Roses

Originally published March 22, 2006

You know what burns me up about life? That we get old and die, that’s what. I’m ready for eternity right now!

I’m ready to go hang out with my Dad some more. I’m NOT ready to go visit his stupid grave. I want to have more fun watching him do his soft shoe routine and hear him grumbling behind the typewriter in a hurry to get his newspaper column out before the deadline. Dad was lively! You know what I mean?

Here I just discovered this great singer, Ivie Anderson, bursting with life and youth and exuberance and great chops and I want to go see her and tell her how great she is. But you know where she is? In the ground somewhere. Dust and ashes.


Do you think this is fair?

If I tell you she sang lead with Duke Ellington’s orchestra back in the Thirties, you’ll go, “Oh, some boring old singer. Let’s go see The Buggers instead.” And her youth and talent and wonderfulness is invalidated because she’s in the ground and forgotten like dust on my living room floor that I ought to sweep up.

I don’t like this!

I want to go to heaven right now, please! This is not a death wish, by the way. The world is full of cool people I love now. And I’m ready for more adventures. It’s just that I want to hang with Ivie Anderson and my Dad. And my pal Rodney Albin who died of stomach cancer in the Eighties and my brother Noel who turned me on to rhythm and blues before he got smashed at the age of 19. I want us all to be together NOW!



8 thoughts on “Dust on the Stupid Roses

  1. I want to go to heaven right now, please!

    Understandable, but do you really think Duke Ell.’s leading the house band? Not so sure on that, P.
    Tho’ Duke & the boys definitely got a shot at headlining the bill in, er, ~(heaven).

    That said, if some of your corporate atheist neighbors (like…one Joel McKinnon of…New Worlds) had their way, no one would be even allowed to mention the word “heaven”, or any religious language.

    Instead, they’d replace TS Eliot, or Walker Percy (or even…Ivie Anderson) with…grokkin’ with Sam Harris, or Robert A. Swinelein, ‘Nam hawk, pal of WF Buckley, and social darwinist par exemple.


      • Thanks. You have not dug the scribblings of Sammy Harris? A Steinford boy, I believe, Harris has joined forces with the Richard Dawkins gang–sort of fratboy atheism for corporate executives. Harris was pro war, a supporter of Bush (initially) and at one time advocated torture as a tactic. And Joel of New Worlds defends that–really, the neo-atheist crew are even an insult to the old-school scoffers such as Nietzsche or Bertrand Russell…

        Google “torture”, “Sam Harris,” “neo-con atheist,” and like “fun”, and …well, it might offend you, given your refined literary tastes, P.


      • I find your SF musick posts somewhat interesting (–especially pre-hippie). The SF jazz scene in 50s-60s was quite happening as well. Cal Tjader’s band packed in ’em for years.

        Many corporate bay area types of course could care less about jazz, rock, folk, etc. Who needs authentic music when you can invoke da Klassics, like the Blue Danube Waltz, prominently featured in 2001– One of Joel at New Worlds’ faves.
        Obviously, the pompous noize of the typical Kubrick-corporate spectacle or Star Wars dreck remains a crowdpleaser for the suburbanite scientologist (granted, at times Kubrick chose some decent music–say, the Bartok in the Shining–but on the whole the music was as bombastic as the pretentious, overrated films themselves).

        (scuzi rant)


  2. moving…
    I feel the same way. Strange you have expressed how I feel about it. This is the first time I visit your blog but it won’t be the last one. Thanks for the gift of this moment of sharing.


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