The events of Joyce’s epic and wonderful Ulysses all take place in Dublin on June 16, 1904 — Bloomsday, named for one of the protagonists, Leopold Bloom.
Raise a pint to James Joyce, and celebrate the man who gave us the mythic in the mundane, the epic in the ordinary, and the eidetic re-creation of the world in the printed word.
I saw he understood or felt what a woman is and I knew I could always get round him and I gave him all the pleasure I could leading him on till he asked me to say yes and I wouldnt answer first only looked out over the sea and the sky I was thinking of so many things he didnt know of Mulvey and Mr Stanhope and Hester and father and old captain Groves and the sailors playing all birds fly and I say stoop and washing up dishes they called it on the pier and the sentry in front of the governors house with the thing round his white helmet poor devil half roasted and the Spanish girls laughing in their shawls and their tall combs and the auctions in the morning the Greeks and the jews and the Arabs and the devil knows who else from all the ends of Europe and Duke street and the fowl market all clucking outside Larby Sharons and the poor donkeys slipping half asleep and the vague fellows in the cloaks asleep in the shade on the steps and the big wheels of the carts of the bulls and the old castle thousands of years old yes and those handsome Moors all in white and turbans like kings asking you to sit down in their little bit of a shop and Ronda with the old windows of the posadas 2 glancing eyes a lattice hid for her lover to kiss the iron and the wineshops half open at night and the castanets and the night we missed the boat at Algeciras the watchman going about serene with his lamp and O that awful deepdown torrent O and the sea the sea crimson sometimes like fire and the glorious sunsets and the figtrees in the Alameda gardens yes and all the queer little streets and the pink and blue and yellow houses and the rosegardens and the jessamine and geraniums and cactuses and Gibraltar as a girl where I was a Flower of the mountain yes when I put the rose in my hair like the Andalusian girls used or shall I wear a red yes and how he kissed me under the Moorish wall and I thought well as well him as another and then I asked him with my eyes to ask again yes and then he asked me would I yes to say yes my mountain flower and first I put my arms around him yes and drew him down to me so he could feel my breasts all perfume yes and his heart was going like mad and yes I said yes I will Yes.
This last weekend Ken & I read & signed at Borderlands Bookstore and at SF in SF. I recorded the readings & will post as soon as I can. Right now I’m scrambling to get a Podrunner mix out and get ready to go down to Los Angeles for our series of SoCal signings.
Meantime, here’s some pix from the Borderlands event last Saturday. Our heartfelt thanks to Alan Beatts, Jude Feldman, and the truly wonderful crew at Borderlands Books & Cafe for a great launch.
Ken has done a ton of signings — he used to draw Ninja Turtles, fer cryin’ in the sink — but this is his first book signing, and he was like a puppy. After our reading and Q&A, we started signing books. I was writing my name when I heard Ken beside me say, “Hey — this is the first book we’ve signed for someone!” (Hello, Uffe in Switzerland, who was awesome enough to special-order our novel!)
ComicMix just won a legal battle against the Dr. Seuss estate over the right to conduct a Kickstarter campaign trying to raise upwards of $20,000 for an illustrated book written by David Gerrold called Oh the Places You’ll Boldly Go! that mashes up Seuss and Star Trek.
Here’s my problem with this.
I rented a room from David Gerrold when I moved to LA (David was instrumental in getting me there from Florida, for which I am eternally grateful). In 1996 I published a collection of ST:TNG parodies called Treks Not Taken. It contained a mashup of Trek & Seuss called “Oh, The Treks You’ll Take!” with illustrations by Ken Mitchroney.
I gave David a copy when it was published in its small-press edition (it was later picked up by Harper Collins).
So when I read that David — who has already published a Trek pitch of mine as a Star Wolf novel (The Middle of Nowhere) without my express permission — is somehow being lauded as a creative artist emerging victorious after being put down by the Man, I can only shake my head in wonder.
As The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance bemoans, “When the legend becomes fact — print the legend.”
Ken Mitchroney and I have been friends for well over 30 years. We’ve worked on a lot of projects together — comic books, animated shorts, screenplays, feature films. We’ve created catalog copy and bubblegum cards together. Hell, I once made a didgeridoo that Ken pinstriped and Ed “Big Daddy” Roth auctioned.
These are gigs that came Ken’s way that he included me on. Even the original screenplays we’ve done have tended to be in areas I wouldn’t have ventured (baseball, NASCAR racing) without Ken’s involvement. Until I began to DJ and podcast, my work had always been fiction — pretty much a solo endeavor, and not easy to involve Ken with.
Which is why, all these many years later, it’s a source of great joy to me to see Ken — who has drawn, managed, directed, or supervised for Disney, Pixar, Dreamworks, Spielberg, Marvel, Archie, Cartoon Network, and tons more places — light up like a kid at a Christmas tree when he got his author copies of the published hardcover of Fata Morgana, our first novel together.
However much you envision that finished book — and we had an amazing amount of input on the look & feel of the final product, thanks to the amazingly collaborative approach of our publisher, Blackstone — nothing prepares you for finally holding the thing in your hands. Ken was babbling when he got it.
So, congratulations to my friend Ken. Here’s to another first in our friendship and long collaboration. Cheers, mate!