The Mr. Goodbar

The Mr. Goodbar 

In a mixed bag of chocolates 
I saw him and hoped, from afar
he was not ashamed to be
the Mr. Goodbar

In this home, he has probably
always been chosen last
in a game of grabbing
by a sweet-toothed family

I saw him and I realized
I had no idea who was—
never knew his chocolate;
never tasted his peanuts

After careful consideration, 
I decided he was The Best
The man always standing
whilst the others digest


Z


Z

 

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Fragility in a Frame

Last week, I was in Brooklyn visiting friends. I went on an excursion with Liz and ended up at a store called Union Max. I bought a set of 1970’s moth/butterfly specimens— each preserved in cellophane.

The lady at the counter warned me that they will easily fall apart; however, they were inexpensive and the idea of framing them felt exciting. I saved one for myself and finally devoted some time this afternoon to frame the one pictured above. 

The task ended up being a real mother f’er—the attention to detail required to complete the project was way more than I anticipated. After carefully cutting open the cellophane, the pieces instantly fell apart. I turned off the A.C. to prevent the wings from literally flying away and ran off to grab gloves, tweezers, and other tools.

Painstaking as it was, the end-result was quite satisfying. I am going to try my best to keep the piece safe and sound. Afterwards, I made sure to warn Liz that the one I gave her will probably be a beast.

Here is a photo of her yet-to-be-framed Lime Butterfly—so beautiful and fragile.

Papilio demoleus

Z

Turtlenecks and Pearls


So, I was thinking about the most random thing earlier today. The idea of Hell and what I would consider to be completely miserable consumed a few minutes of my afternoon. You know, classic work thoughts. Turtlenecks quickly came to mind.

When I was younger, I was forced to wear them and I despised them. Still do—but I just don’t wear them! The last time I did try to wear one, I had to go home and change because I couldn’t stop tugging at the collar of that ridiculous, maroon mf’er. Into the trash it went. 

Generally, I am not what one would consider to be claustrophobic; I mostly prefer safe, enclosed environments. The idea of endless space and/or falling into the sky has always been frightening to me. Keep me grounded, please!

Anyway, I came to the conclusion that, if the damned are forced to wear uniforms in Hell, a turtleneck must be a component of the agonizing outfit. My train of thought took me back to a story one of my besties told me years ago…

One day, she decided to wear a string of pearls she had inherited from some family member. She was going out that night and the look just seemed right. The feeling did not last long—she found herself at a social gathering feeling choked by her glistening heirloom. What ensued was a certain sort of struggle.

She tried and tried to properly remove the necklace, but could not seem to subdue the bastard. After giving it her best shot, she finally seized hold of the sinister strangler and ripped it right off. Pearls broke loose and fell to the ground.

From the way she described the experience, I am confident she does not regret breaking the necklace and does not miss it at all. I can empathize—because of the turtlenecks. One person’s accessories and garments can truly be another person’s worst nightmare.

As I am typing, I can almost feel the devil’s hands around my neck.


Z

 

Words

A sales meeting in 1956; Cincinnati

Words

You know what I think:
The words that we say
could very well be shot
back to us one day

Do I think about
tomorrow?
Life’s little invoices do
tend to arrive after
the make-or-break
moments—
have passed us by

I need to try to make
each and every word
I can consciously say
feel good both now
and even after
today


Z

Quicksand

Quicksand

Ground can be tricky—and
we know we’re in deep trouble
when our feet like to stand in

quicksand

Never did I stop to think the struggle
accelerates and ensures the lethal sink 
I began to see each part of me
disappearing

Took a look around—one last time
Let memories invade

Certain I was the upcoming remains
underground

The darkness had won!
Curtains of clouds put out the sun
Another sucker couldn’t withstand
quicksand


Z

 

A Lesson in Red Satin

Recently, a friend of mine sent a text that read, “Can I call you?” I was available and let her know. She called and stated that she was in a bind and that her school (she works at a college) had an art exhibit that day and she was concerned some of the people who were supposed to have art displayed would not come through. I agreed to send a few photos over electronically for her and her coworker to print out and get out there. 

I receive a frantic call a few hours later. “Zac, I just got home from work. The lady in charge of the fundraiser just called me and said that you won an award and you need to be there to accept the money some woman put into the prizes.” I did not realize my piece could win any competition and definitely was not expecting to receive any money. I had a half hour to get dressed and show up to receive the award. It was actually fun. 

Later that night, I got to thinking about how strange and fun that experience was and how much I love a sporadic adventure. I considered this an adventure and was extremely grateful. I remembered something from earlier in the week. 

My buddy from college, Heath, is a rapper and just released a new album. He put a post on Facebook and was interested in finding out how many of his fans would be interested in receiving an autographed actual CD in the mail (apparently these have been fading out for a while). I had neither listened to his album nor had seen him for years. But, he was always so sweet to me and was one of those guys who is an awesome person—genuinely! The mouse pretty much clicked itself.

The cool correlation between these two events left a smile on my face. I have begun to realize, over the years, how important it is to support our friends who are doing their thing and following their dreams. All too often, people expect art to be for free (even friends) and it can leave anyone who has created something and put themselves out there feeling vulnerable and insecure. I want to fight that. I am a supporter of my friends who create and I know from experience that the support can and will come back. 

Just wanted to share my thoughts. Oh, also, I got second place. Coming in second never felt so good.


Z