hankrules2011

Book reviews, health, hockey, publishing, music

Archive for April, 2012

Interview with Philip K. Dick

Posted by Scott Holstad on April 30, 2012

Interview with Philip K. Dick.

Fascinating interview for any Philip K Dick fan. Read it!

Posted in Publishing | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Literary Diary Entry

Posted by Scott Holstad on April 28, 2012

I’ve been posting some diary entries from the 16 old diaries I recently found, dating from 1984 to 1992. This will probably be the last one I post. I don’t see much point in blogging about things that happened 20 years ago. This entry was written after I had moved from Knoxville TN to Tempe AZ. Anyway, here’s the entry:

_________________________________________

June 13, 1992

Last night I went down to the Coffee Plantation and, among other things, I met the editor/publisher of Zone, a local-based magazine with a national circulation of about 15,000 — pretty good for a literary mag. To make a long story short, we talked for about three hours and I gave him a lot of marketing ideas. In response, he asked if I was interested in several projects — an article about the L.A. writing scene, an article on the small press scene, and he asked if I could land an interview with Bukowski. Huh. They would also list me as editorial consultant, or something like that. Things to ponder….

Got a lot of things in the mail today. A postcard from Lisa. A few magazine rejections. A couple of acceptances. A small mag with some of my poems in it. A letter of appreciation from someone I recently gave writing advice to…. However, I’m spending a hell of a lot of time writing shit these days. I wonder if I’ve lost the touch. I can’t write prose. Blocks from hell. It’s just too stilted. Haven’t done any decent poems in a couple of months. I’m not sure if it’s a lack of inspiration or a lack of ability or what. Maybe I just don’t have what it takes.

Well, after all that, I actually did get a lot done tonight after all that bitching. Nine new poems, two of which are pretty decent. Yeah! Also met a few strange people. Not a bad day.

Posted in Writing | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Writing and Working – 1991

Posted by Scott Holstad on April 26, 2012

I’ve been writing a few diary excerpts from old diaries I recently found. I thought I’d copy one here from the summer of 1991. I had moved from Knoxville to Phoenix during the Bush 1 recession and I couldn’t get a job. After getting kicked out of where I had been staying and literally relying on my car for living a little while, I eventually rented a room in a dump in Tempe before getting a horrible job in downtown Phoenix, where I then moved to be close to work. I worked from 6 AM to 6 PM six days a week plus one Sunday. That’s roughly 28 days a month. It was grueling. And I was getting up early and going to bed late to be a writer, writing feverishly for hours every day and then submitting stuff to mags and publishers. I don’t know how I made it. Anyway, here’s this entry:

__________________________________________

June 3, 1991

Long day at work today. Like always. When I got home, Knoxville Ami called me and we talked for awhile. I miss her. I wish I could hang out with her for a few days. I miss Robert too. We were quite the trio.

I got up this morning at 4 AM to try and get some writing done. I’ve been researching what pays because I’m sick of being dirt poor, living in a roach infested apartment in gangville Phoenix. Mags like Esquire pay, but they generally only accept about one unsolicited submission a year. Porn pays. Smut mags like Oui, Chic, Swank all pay $100-$400 a story. Hustler pays $500. Two of those a month and I’m doing a lot better. I got three pages done this morning. I have a lot of interesting experiences to draw from….

I really feel like my life, and life in general, is one big waste. I sit here every night writing and waiting for time to pass so I can go to sleep to get some rest so I can get up in the morning and do menial work simply so I can come home in a robotic state of making the hours pass so I can go to sleep again and escape, only to get up the next morning and start the same fucking grind all over again. No one seems to understand this nightmare — not even my closest friends. They tell me it’s a phase, a learning experience. I think “stagnation” would be an understatement. Brain and body rot is more like it…. I spend every day looking forward to my mail cause I have nothing else to look forward to in life. No money! No future! Nothing. Maybe I’ll get an acceptance from a magazine. It’s happening more frequently, but poetry doesn’t pay rent. Who am I kidding? Writer. Shit!

__________________________________________

Working 12 hour days 6 days a week for shit pay really wore me down. And my 2-5 hours of writing and submitting to magazines each day further wore me down, although sometimes I think it was also the only thing that saved me. I lasted in that environment two years before moving over to L.A. to go back to school.

Posted in Writing | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Mountain Bikes

Posted by Scott Holstad on April 25, 2012

I was all excited to write a post about mountain bikes this morning, but I don’t really feel up to it right now. Nonetheless, I think I’ll press ahead.

I had a nice Mongoose I bought in Pasadena years ago for a lot of money. My ex gave it away when we split up. Meanwhile, my girlfriend found a steal on a decent used mountain bike a week or so ago, and is eager to get riding. Well, I want to join her. I’ve been combing Craigslist and other boards for used bikes, as well as looking at places like Dick’s and Academy Sports, etc. I even ran into — and out of — a Trek store. I can’t go for a 10K bicycle. Wow.

Well, it came down to two or three possibilities. One was a new Mongoose at one of the sporting stores. Bare bones, but good enough and what I was looking for. Also, very reasonably priced. However, on Craigslist, I found another bike for sale that looked like a pretty good deal. It was a no name bike in pretty good condition listed at $65, but the owner agreed to come down to $50. We went to see it last night, noted the seat needed adjusting and the brakes needed tightening, but otherwise it seemed fairly decent, so I bought it.

I’m having some misgivings now, however. Sadly. First of all, we adjusted the seat with no problem. Good. Then, early this morning, I tightened the front brakes perfectly. The back ones, however, looked tricky. The cable was broken off and if I didn’t get a hold of it just right, it could slip out of what was holding it and I’d be damned if I could get it back in. Which is exactly what happened. I’ve spent an hour and a half on my knees trying to crimp wires and cables, trying to extend the cable where there was no extension possible, trying to reconnect — all to no avail. I’m going to have to take this no name bike into a good bike store for a new brake cable and repair, surrounded by nice, new, expensive bikes. A lesson in humility.

To make matters worse, I got in a two bike bike rack today. I had ordered it Monday so my girlfriend and I could drive our bikes down to the river to go riding on the path there, among other places. Well, I set it up on my car this afternoon. Had one hiccup, which I fixed. Then I lifted the surprisingly heavy aluminum bike up onto the bike rack, and it wouldn’t fit — at all. The frame is a touch too big and it’s shaped oddly, so it just won’t fit. So I won’t even be able to get this damn bike to a bike store for repair. Now I’m thinking it was a lesson learned and I blew $50. I’m thinking I’m probably just going to go ahead and get that Mongoose I should have bought in the first place come payday. Live and learn, right?

Posted in Sports | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

February 1990 Diary Excerpts

Posted by Scott Holstad on April 24, 2012

If you’ve been reading my blog at all, you’ll recall that I recently found 16 old diaries of mine, dating from 1984-1992. I’ve printed several excerpts here, and while I’ll keep most everything to myself, I might post a few more before putting these away in storage once again.

______________________________________

February 16, 1990

I’m feeling much better today. I was suffering from a tremendous hangover yesterday, worst one in at least three years. I had gone over to Carey’s with Nicole, a cute girl from Memphis I’ve been casually seeing for a little more than a month. She brought her roommate, Terri. We had a 5 liter box of wine, some gin, and some bourbon. Well, I went hard at the bourbon before turning to the wine and I just had to drink at least 3 liters of the stuff, all on an empty stomach. After awhile, we went over to Planet Earth to dance and party, and I got violently ill, so we left. I somehow made it home and passed out only to be sick all day Thursday. I puked in the morning and couldn’t get out of bed until 8 PM at least.

Today was kind of odd. I talked with Courtney and she gave me hell for Wednesday night. I then turned in a cover letter to the English graduate department. I’ve been cleared for acceptance by the UT graduate school. I hope I get accepted and get an assistantship. I was running some poems off later and heard someone say, “Scott.” A lot of people have been talking to me lately who I don’t know, so I was hoping to bullshit my way through this….

February 22, 1990

I’m feeling very unhappy these days. I’m sad and lonely and unhappy. I used to be a carefree, happy person! Now I hate everyone and everything. I had God, people, society, the huge joke of it all, myself (while I also love myself at the same time — warped dichotomy), life, eating, holidays, even sports. Everything formerly pleasurable now leaves me feeling empty. And girls! Why can’t I meet an intellectually stimulating, moderately attractive, gregarious, open minded, liberal, ambitious, non-materialistic driven, intelligent, sexually open girl who is reasonably compatible and trustworthy? Because they don’t freakin’ exist! Not here, anyway…. I almost wish I could go back to my innocent days when I didn’t know and didn’t care. I felt more content, happier. I enjoyed meaningless sex. Now I’m so sick of that! I want to be somebody, do something relevant — not just own things. I want to be a poet. Sadly, no one can deal with me because I’m so eccentric or, on my part, the vast majority of girls just don’t interest me anymore.

Two weeks ago, I read some of my poetry at the Laurel Theater. I’ll write more about it later. Two months from now, I’m reading at Davis-Kidd, a big step up. They have many published authors read there.

I think I’m starting to suffer from severe depression. You know, I was happy for years, most of my life. I haven’t been happy for a full year now. It’s been getting more severe since last June. Normally I’m a strong person, but right now I’m feeling very weak….

My parents are strongly suggesting I see a therapist again for the third time in my life. It’s odd that at the time of the greatest maturity and responsibility I’ve had so far, I seem to be sinking deeper emotionally. Indeed, while I’ve always been a bit of a cynical pessimist, I’m getting much worse. I’m don’t think I’m feeling any more bitterness or hatred than usual, but I’m getting more abrasive, critical, lonely, depressed, sad, disillusioned, etc. I feel like I’m sinking into a deep black hole I won’t be able to climb out of. And I don’t see how I can go back. Oh well.

______________________________________

I guess I had a flair for the dramatic. I don’t know if I should have just shared these words. After all, they’re the ramblings of a young college student who didn’t know shit about anything. Still, it’s been interesting to see where I was, where I’ve come from, what has transpired for me throughout my life. I wish I had kept my diaries more diligently….

Posted in Writing | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Good Happenings

Posted by Scott Holstad on April 23, 2012

I had a good weekend. Where to begin? I guess I could start with my getting my girlfriend concert tickets for Crosby, Stills & Nash here in Chattanooga this summer. She’s a big fan, and while they’re not my favorites, I was tickled to make her so happy and we’ll have fun together. I was especially pleased because two days before she complained a little about my going to the Dead Can Dance concert later this year, and she gets nothing. Hee hee!

We also went to the grand opening of a new second hand store which specializes in outdoors-type stuff. And we found a decent used bike for my girlfriend. Cost? $20! We got a new seat for it, cleaned it up, and she’s ready to rock and roll. Now I have to find a new bike for myself. I had a good Mongoose, but my ex gave it away, so I’ve got to find something else. I’ve been combing Craigslist with little luck. Might be forced to buy a modestly priced new one. We have to go for rides together now. I’m very excited! I’ve already ordered a two bike bike rack for the back of the car. It should arrive in a week or so.

My girlfriend’s a Baltimore Ravens fan. I’m a Pittsburgh Steelers fan, so it makes for some fun rivalry during football season. I’ve been fortunate enough to see the Steelers play live several times, but my girlfriend’s never seen the Ravens live. I knew she’d love to. Well, I discovered they’re playing a preseason game in Atlanta this August, so I got us two tickets. They’re on the 30 yard line, on row 11. Decent seats. Again, she was pretty excited, and this made me happy.

Friday night, we ate some excellent food from Choo Choo BBQ, a sweet little dive here in town. Indulged in an adult beverage. Cuddled. It was nice.

Also, got some good reading in this weekend. I’m reading more Philip K Dick short stories, but also started another sci book which looks somewhat promising. I’m kind of surprised at how quickly I’ve moved from nonfiction back into sci fi, a genre I loved a lot as a younger man years ago. I’m really enjoying it!

Last night was pretty big. After 18 years of listening to my friends bug me about this, I finally went to my first yoga class! I went with my girlfriend, who’s been taking classes for nearly three years. I felt like an idiot, but the teacher was very nice and helpful and made me feel relaxed there, even though I endured some physical pain. LOL! I actually did well enough for my teacher to tell us that I “hit a home run” at the end of class. That was awesome! It was really cheap, and the class is a mixed class — not just for beginners — that meets on Sunday nights, so I suspect we’ll return again. Good times…

Sadly, I did watch my Pittsburgh Penguins lose in the Stanley Cup playoffs, but they had a good year, and with all of the injuries they had this year, I feel like they did well. I am disappointed, though, that they didn’t get further.

The weather has been beautiful, albeit a touch chilly the past few days. Still, our flowers are blooming so beautifully out front. I should post a pic sometime.

Well, I guess that’s all for now. I’m deliberating about posting some more entries from my ancient diaries, but am not sure. Many of them are R rated at best, and I don’t want to embarrass my girlfriend by posting sordid tales of my past back in the ’80s. Still, there are some interesting entries, so I might — we’ll see….

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Devastating Dog Tale

Posted by Scott Holstad on April 20, 2012

I’ve been reading through the 16 old diaries I found recently, dating from 1984-1992. I came across an entry about a disturbing experience that still haunts me to this day. I’m going to write an excerpt from it.

January 22, 1988

I was supposed to play racquetball with Andy Rice today. As I pulled out onto Gleason Road, I started following a Jeep Cherokee and I noticed two dogs walking on the side of the road. Just as I was approaching Suburban Hills, the second one — a German Shepard puppy — ran out in front of the Jeep. My heart stopped. It was fucking awful! It seemed like it was in slow motion. The Jeep tried to stop, but it hit the dog. He got stuck under the wheels as it dragged him along. They stopped the car, but couldn’t see where he was, so they backed up — right over him! I saw all of this behind them. We stopped and I got out. I’ve never heard screaming like that in my life. It was in mortal agony. Its back legs were crushed, and one looked practically torn off. Parts of its belly were hanging out on the road. I wanted to be sick. The other dog took off. And this dog looked me right in the eye while in such agonizing pain. I wanted to kill myself. Blood was pouring from its mouth. It started dragging itself by its front paws towards the woods at the side of the road and gradually got there, screaming and crying the whole torturous way. I was completely devastated. I couldn’t stop shaking. I thought briefly about going home and getting a shotgun to come back and finish him off, put him out of his misery, but instead I got in the car and got to the nearest pay phone and called Sandi. I stood beside Kingston Pike bawling my eyes out. She tried to console me, but what could she say? Needless to say, I was worthless at racquetball, and when I left, I couldn’t return home the same way. I bawled the entire way. I went to bed and cried so hard I shook. It really doesn’t make much fucking sense. I mean, I never knew this dog, right? But the thought of a poor little dog, laying awake at night wondering where his playmate, his companion, his friend was simply kills me! It’s so totally unfair. It’s not very nice that pets have to die in the first place, but Scamper lived a long, satisfying life — 16 years. This dog didn’t get that chance. I can still see the poor, defenseless little animal crying in sickening agony, not knowing why this had happened, not understanding why his master couldn’t help him. I really wish I didn’t have to see that, but more importantly, I wish it didn’t have to happen….

Posted in Writing | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

An Absurd College Love Life

Posted by Scott Holstad on April 19, 2012

As I’ve blogged about recently, a couple of weeks ago, I came across 16 old diaries of mine in an old box. These diaries date from 1984 to 1992 — mostly my college years. I’m remembering some things I’d forgotten, I’m trying to remember some things I wrote about but have no clue what was going on, and I’m pretty much shaming myself at my … socially outgoing life back then. I liked to have a good time. Thank God I settled down in my 30s….

This entry I’m about to post is a short excerpt from a longer entry in 1987, when I was 21 and in my third year of college. I’m posting it, at the risk of embarrassing myself, because I think it’s funny in its complete absurdity and silliness. God, the drama! OK, here it is:

______________________________________

December 17, 1987

OK, so I’ve got to get my love life straight. I’m going out mostly with Kim. I’ve also gone out some and expect to some more with Beverly, Jayme, and Margaret. I’m supposed to go out with Maureen and Maria. I’d like to go out with Becca and Jenny. I’m also trying to get Shelby and Ellen off my back. I’m still infatuated with Sherrie. I’m close friends with Karen. I need to maintain a close friendship with Dee. I also have to keep Kaye and Amy in mind. Whew! It’s sadly funny….

______________________________________

So, I kind of played the field in college. A lot. What can I say? I liked girls. As I said, thank God I eventually settled down. For what it’s worth, I’m living with the complete and utter love of my life, my girlfriend, Gretchen. We like to say that we’re twin souls cubed. Heh. This relationship is actually mature and loving and caring and unlike anything I’ve ever experienced in my life, so I’m truly lucky and happy. I’m just glad none of those college girls worked out for me, dammit! LOL! So, there you have it. My secret’s out. Pretty pathetic, isn’t it? Heh.

Posted in Writing | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Tennessee’s Pat Summitt Changed The Game

Posted by Scott Holstad on April 19, 2012

Tennessee coach Pat Summitt changed the game – ESPN

This ESPN article is a great tribute to possibly the greatest coach to ever coach basketball, men or women’s — Tennessee’s Pat Summitt. Yesterday, she retired from coaching due to her nightmarish early onset dementia problems. She bravely battled through these over the past season, but you could see it taking a toll on her. She just wasn’t the same.

Summitt made women’s basketball the game it is today. We wouldn’t even be talking about it if it weren’t for Summitt. She won more games than any coach in history — 1,098. Every team of hers has made every one of the 31 women’s NCAA tournaments that exist. She’s won eight national championships, second only to UCLA’s John Wooden’s 10. And one thing many people don’t know, but I’m particularly impressed with — every player she’s ever coached has graduated with a degree! How many other coaches can say that? That’s right — none.

Last year, when it was announced that she’d come down with dementia, I was sitting in a parked car in downtown Chattanooga and just started sobbing. It was previously unthinkable. She’s one of the strongest people to ever grace the face of the earth. Why did it have to happen to her, at age 59? It seems rather cruel.

I knew, like most, she’d have to step down as coach soon, so her timing is good. One of her assistants is taking over, a coach who’s been with her for 27 years, and Pat will stay on in an advisory capacity, but the torch has been passed. It’s a sad day indeed, for women’s basketball, the University of Tennessee, and the entire state. I hope she can stay as healthy as possible for as long as possible for the remainder of her great life.

Posted in Sports | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Arbitrary Diary Excerpt

Posted by Scott Holstad on April 18, 2012

As I’ve blogged about lately, I found 16 old diaries of mine, dating from 1984-1992. I’ve been slowly reading through them. I thought I’d open the one I’m reading to just any page and type out what I wrote for that day. Bear in mind, I was not overly deep as a 20 year old. Rather, I seemed to just record things that I did or that happened to me throughout the day. Aside from when I was writing like a drama queen due to tempestuous adolescent relationships, I rarely explored anything beyond the surface. Pity. Well, here’s an entry. For what it is….

November 10, 1987

It’s really a very rainy day out today. I got up at 11 AM and went to the library to watch A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Didn’t like it too much. I liked the print version so much better. I just loved reading it in class. While at the library, I talked with Stan, Bruce F, Ellen R, and Jane A.

Morris K sent me some materials for my big deposition this Thursday. Yikes!

Sherrie just called. I’m surprised. She said she’s not staying after class tonight. I asked her if she had weekend plans. Friday night, she’s going to a party at Scott G’s, and Saturday she’s studying. She has no time for me anymore. I can handle that. I guess I’ll go out with Margaret and/or Shellie. Jennifer will probably ask me out too. I asked Sherrie if she’d dance with me sometime again. She said she’d like to. She then asked an odd question: Do you always go dancing when you go out? Well, half the time I do. I enjoy it. I asked if that applied to her or to other girls. She said both. Well, she and I have gone to movies, the zoo, ice skating, plays, etc. Besides, she drinks a shitload of beer every time she goes out. So what’s the difference? I really don’t know why she asked that. Obviously we’re to be little more than acquaintances from now on. Oh well.

I went to class tonight and then the library. I saw Sherrie briefly before class. I also called Shellie and asked her out for Friday night. Laura H was at the library, but I just ignored her. I saw Kim W there and talked with her for awhile. We were friends at King. She’s a grad student now.

Later, I went over to Andy Holt apartments and talked with Laura S. Then I went up and visited Ellen W. She was really glad to see me. I then ran over to Ruby Tuesday’s to meet Karen. We had a few drinks and a good time talking. Sherrie had left a message for us to meet her at the Last Lap around 8. That’s one of Scott G’s hangouts. Sure enough, who shows up at 8:30 but Sherrie with Scott G in tow. We all got drunk. I left around 11:30. I had a good time with Karen. She’s considering telling Chip that she doesn’t want him to present her at Cherokee and instead asking of friend of hers — Grant. She and I talked about a lot of things. We decided that Sherrie has close friends to buy her drinks and then when they get too serious, that’s it, they’re gone. That’s probably what will happen to Scott G. I supposed at least he’ll get laid for his troubles.

It sure is nice getting dumped on. The sad thing is, I’m still crazy about her, even if she is a shit person. Hell, I’d do it again. She’s great. It’s just too bad that her character is as low as a ditch on the side of the road. What’s up? I’m nice; I don’t get it….

Well, good times. It’s snowy tonight, and it’s supposed to be a high of 41 tomorrow.

Posted in Writing | Tagged: , , , , , | 2 Comments »

 
Cafe Book Bean

Talk Books. Drink Coffee.

Simple Living Over 50

Defining Life's Changes

The Book Review Directory

Over 150 Book Reviewer Bloggers Listed

more than just a country boi

The Strange Happenings of a submissive Daddi's boi-princess

A.D. Martin

writing - novels - film - television - video games - other stuff

In My Words

Life in my own words, my thoughts, my daily happenings, whatever....

Ravings of a Madman

(and other assorted things)

Crumpled Paper Cranes

Fumbling by Leisure, Singing to Cake

My Blog News And Blues Reviews

WHATEVER YOU'RE LOOKING FOR

I Read Encyclopedias for Fun

The official blog of Jay Dee Archer. Exploring new worlds, real and fictional.

Piece of Mind

Everything in my blog is sprinkled with wizard dust.

Kiss My Glass Boston

Wine, cocktails, whatever.

My Preconceived Life

trying to add another person to the planet

bluchickenninja.com

graphic designer, bibliophile, spoonie

Drunken Dragon Reviews

A Fantasy Blog Gone Horribly Wrong.

Lynette Noni

Embrace The Wonder

Megan Has OCD

About Mental Health, Daily Struggles, and Whatever Else Pops in My Head

Tropical Affair

Observations of the illusion through the eyes of wonder...