I'm writing from an Alfred Hitchcock movie.

There are two identical beds in my room, and a large picture window opening onto a view of a stagnant reservoir set snug in the soft brown hills. A few miles down the road there is the mother of all potato manufactories; piles and piles of dull russet things tumbling everwhere day and night, piles higher than grain elevators, acres of them in the open night air.

The road to my motel is a winding gravel affair, beset on both sides with abandoned semi's and derelict 24-hour greasy-spoon cafes. But inside, the motel is pristine, its Jackie chic vacuum-sealed since the Cuban missile crisis, soft pinks and faux-wood paneling, bare light bulbs and mod-ish curves and angles everywhere. Shiny, shiny.

The name of this strange, strange place: American Falls.

* * * * *

Today I performed and taught some workshops and generally squeezed out every spare ounce of energy with my puppets (damn things keep busting all over the place) and these kids. Lord, these kids, each of them bursting with the energy of a thousand suns, chaos theory incarnate, flesh and blood distillations of the passions and ambitions of generations of toil and rural sensibilities and migrants in the night, brought forth to torment and delight and provoke and endear the likes of me. I talked about Live Theatre and How to Make Your Puppet Live ("It's ALIIIIIIVE!!!") and such like.

Sample questions from Mrs. S's 5th Grade Class:
  • "How did, um, the, uh. The one, where, uh. ...?"
  • "Why?"
  • "Are you married?"

Every direction you look, rippling formations of birds are popping over the horizon, slender V's gingerly groping through the sharp October air, like so many frail ribbons in the breeze. It looks like so much courage, and so little in the face of mountains and hunters and exhaust fumes. But there they are, peeling off from some tired little marshland, stripping away like leaves from the trees, little more than dustclouds in the setting sun. I want to be a goose when I grow up. A silly, silly goose.

Reading: "Henry Adams and the Making of America" by Garry Wills; "The Divorce" by C.S. Lewis; "Go Down, Moses" by William Faulkner. Listening to: Jack Johnson, The Blues Scholars, The Four Tops, Vetiver, Liz Phair, Kanye West, Lucinda Williams. Eating: Mandarin Chicken and Spanish Chow Mein(?). Missing: The Hottie at Home.

reporting live from the interstate,



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paulmonster said...

Good Lord, I hate you anonymous people.

Sokrates said...

Howdy, Paul. Just thought I'd let you know that a non-anonymous person checked out your reincarnated blog.

For what it's worth, today I stopped at the library and checked out Michael Caine's book "Acting in Film." Despite being a theater man at heart, I am interested in finding ways to make a buck or two from my endeavors -- a return on my time and energy (and sometimes monetary) investment, if you will. Plus, I think MC is an awesome actor.

Looking forward to seeing you again at some point.

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Sally said...

I am so very, very glad to see you posting here again. I missed visiting Polyform.

I hope the tour is going well. Thanks again for your letter. My reply went out in Friday's mail.

Sally said...

Also, did you know that blogger has a security option that helps curb spam postings? You might look into using it.

sirbarrett said...

I like that Jack Jonson song that goes: "you're such a, fortunate fool, you're just too good to be true..." about a popstar that thinks she knows everything. I think it's better to be a silly goose. You're quite the teacher now. I want to learn how to make my puppet alive. Keep on rockin Poly, and enjoy the American Falls.

The Lioness said...

You're back! Paulmonster is back! YOU'RE BACK!!! This is brilliant and I am delighted!

Welcome back dahling! I will read now.

paulmonster said...

Hello, o my faithful ones, it's good to hear from you all (yes even you troglodytic anonymites out there, I grudglingly welcome even you.

Sokrates, one of these days I should tell you about the time where I was playing a pretentious Canadian acting student from the late 70's, and my costume designer put together the "Michael Caine palette" for me. In fact, I think I talked about it here on Polyform, somewhere in the archives around November.

Sally, thanks for the greetings. I would strengthen Polyform's defenses, except that now I'm so entertained by these anonymites...

Sir Barrett, where did all the good people go?

Lioness, mrrr.

JMS said...

'Ol Dad said...

Keep on rockin'(on the free world)...

sirbarrett said...

I'd like to know. Perhaps some of them are hiding deep inside their superficial shells, but you're back, so I know they can't all have gone rotten. I like how you keep your defenses open to spammers. They are entertaining indeed: "Really interesting blog. I'd like to marry it. Are you interested in leasing your car? Do it online now at X!" Might as well see the good in everyone.