Friday, August 23, 2013

Whither On Edge?

This is how I know I lived my entire life in Texas: I just bought something at the store & it came out to be $3.16 & in my brain, I started to say, "For God so loved the world that he gave his only son..."

I know I am not currently in Texas because the person behind the counter did not get really happy & say that out loud to me.

That anecdote has nothing to do with Self Help Radio today, which is a show entitled "on edge."  It's not going to be a show about being nervous - it's going to be a celebration of edges.  I'm sure it's a lot more exciting than it sounds - but not much more.

It's on today - today! oh shit! - from 4 to 6 pm on 88.1 fm WRFL Lexington.  It will also be streamed simultaneously on the WRFL web site if you're nearer to a computer than radio frequencies.

In any case, I hope you'll listen!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Preface To On Edge: Problems With Nerves

Gary is a worrier.  So is his mother.  Is worrying genetic?

Gary asked his dogs.  The one that understood English did not understand the question.  He said, with bright eyes, "Treats?"  It sounded like a whine.  But Gary understood Doglish.

Gary asked his cats.  They all understood English but they pretended they did not.  They laughed at him behind his back.

Gary asked his wife.  She said, "Why are you worrying about this?"

Gary asked the ugly person in the mirror.  The ugly person in the mirror mouthed his words back at him hatefully.  Then the ugly person in the mirror sneered at him.

Gary asked the Internet.  The internet call him "a fag" & told him "real men don't worry."  However, the internet also told him that he won a lottery in a country he'd never been to - it was a lottery he hadn't even entered! - so Gary forgot all about worrying as he quickly sent his bank information to the nice person who wrote the unbelievable news in terrible English to him.

Then he started to worry about what he would do with all that money.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

The Sadness Of Backyard Dogs

There's a recorded PSA (public service announcement) that runs on the station occasionally about adopting cats & dogs from the "pound" (as it used to be called) or Humane Society or whatever.  It says, "A human is the best thing to happen to a shelter animal."

But is it?

There was this Irish Setter (I think that was the breed) who we'd see every day on our dog walk.  He (I assumed it was male) was very old, & he was always in the same place - on the back step of his house (the house was on the corner of an intersection, so we'd walk past the back yard), usually on his side, sleeping.  I never got close enough to actually see how old he might be, but he seemed at least partially blind & would bark at us if he heard us.  One thing I could tell is that his fur was filthy & matted - he was obviously not terribly well cared for.

When his owners were in the backyard, however, he was animated.  He so badly wanted to be talked to, touched, interacted with in any way.  & I never saw - granted, I was just walking by most of the time - I never saw any of them - the father, the mother, the kids - pay him any attention.

He was always outside, he had a small shelter next to the garage, but in heat or cold, he was in the backyard.  Early morning or late night.  I don't imagine he ever was allowed inside.  I got so sad & angry walking by that I told the wife we should change the route so we wouldn't have to walk by.  I had a feeling the dog would be dead out there one day & the family wouldn't notice him until he started to smell.

I feel bad about that - but what could I do?  The dog "belonged" to those people, & they probably provided him with the bare minimum necessary for him to live on.

We changed our dog walk & didn't pass the house any more.  A couple of times this summer we ended up walking past & the dog wasn't in the backyard any more.  I looked for it each time, but it's certainly gone.  It broke my heart but I thought to myself at least its suffering is over.  I am glad I don't know the details of its passing,

I didn't feel so bad about walking by anymore, & occasionally now we do.

Tonight, as we walked by, a new dog was there, barking at us as we passed.  I just felt so so sad.  Usually I try to give treats to neighborhood dogs to calm them down & to get to know them.  I don't want to get to know this dog.  Once he stops being lively, he'll be all by himself in the backyard for the rest of his lonely life.

I know this is traditionally how humans have raised animals, & I know dogs are stronger than we are, & have co-evolved with us, & understand that relationship.  This family treats its dogs about the same way most people have treated dogs since humans first domesticated them.  & certainly the kids will treat their dogs the same way when they're grown & have pets.

But don't we know better now?  Shouldn't we know better now?

Damn it just depresses me.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Alligators & Crocodiles

Two hours of scary crocodilians!  Someone could get a leg bitten off!

Learn the difference between alligators & crocodiles over on the Self Help Radio web site.  Or listen to the show in pieces as if snapped into two by a gator's powerful jaws: part one & part two.  Old reptile song list below.

Thanks for listening & for pete's sake be careful!

(part one)

"Alligator Story/Alligator Crawl" Louis Armstrong _Hot Fives & Sevens_
"Gator Wobble" Memphis Jug Band _He's In The Jailhouse Now_
"Alligator Meat" Joe Swift With The Johnny Otis Band _The Swingtime Records Story_

"Later Gator" Freddie Mitchell _Later Gator_
"See You Later, Alligator" Bobby Charles _See You Later, Alligator_
"Juicy Crocodile" Cellos _Rang Tang Ding Dong_
"Alligator Wine" Screamin' Jay Hawkins _Real Life_
"Meaner Than An Alligator" Ty B & Johnny _Rockin' The Bop Vol. 2_

"Alligator Man" The Greenbriar Boys _Best Of The Vanguard Years_
"Gator Tails & Monkey Ribs" The Stix & Stonz _Jack The Ripper_
"The Alligator" The US Four _Teenage Shutdown: Jump, Jive, & Harmonize_
"Warlord Of The Royal Crocodiles" Tyrannosaurus Rex _The Definitive Tyrannosaurus Rex_
"Gator Bait" Gaturs _New Orleans Funk - The Original Sound Of Funk 1960-75_

"Crocadilla" Spider Jive _Man Chest Hair_
"It's A Cold Night For Alligators" Roky Erickson & The Aliens _The Evil One_

(part two)

"Crocodile" Monty Python _Monty Python's Contractual Obligation Album_
"Crocodiles" Echo & The Bunnymen _Crocodiles_
"Crocodile Tears" Red Guitars _Slow To Fade_

"Alligator Song" Bilders _Pyx (1985-1988)_
"Crocodile Cryer" Martin Stephenson & The Daintees _Crocodile Cryer_
"Crocodile" XTC _Nonsuch_
"Alligator Boogaloo" The Knockouts _Attack Of The Terrible Boots_

"Alligat'r" Peppermint _Keep Your Chin Up There, Sailor_
"Le Crocodile" Would-Be-Goods _The Morning After_
"Alligator Skin (Jumbler)" Tilly & The Wall _O_
"Alligator" The Babies _Our House On The Hill_

"Jon The Croc" Guided By Voices _Class Clown Spots A UFO_
"Cry, Crocodile" Tiger High _Catacombs After Party_
"Alligator Dance" Human Eye _Into Unknown_
"Alligator" Guards Of Metropolis _Alligator_