Monday, June 12, 2006

 

YOU CAN'T WIN IF YOU DON'T PLAY

One score and nine days ago, we started this site with the intention of exposing some of the totally corrupt shit going on at the Iowa Writers [Writer's(?)/Writers'(?)] Workshop. We were dedicated to the proposition: "This shit is totally corrupt." However, under the burden of our ensuing fame and power, our crusade temporarily degenerated into a drug-fueled orgy of barbaric sexual deviance and the worship of hideous pagan idols. But no longer. Once again, it's time to light the fire under the proverbial pants of the Iowa Writers['(?)] Workshop!

In this spirit, I hereby offer:

THE IOWA WRITERS' WORKSHOP IS TOTALLY CORRUPT MANIFESTO

1.
Insofar as we are able we hereby refuse to publish or be involved in the publication of verse known to be written by anyone other than ourselves who has ever attended or heard of the Iowa Writers['(?)] Workshop.

2.
What's up with that fucking apostrophe, anyway?

3.
This shit is totally corrupt

Saturday, May 20, 2006

 

Know what else?

Know what else is totally corrupt about the Iowa Writers' Workshop?
Summer.

The Iowa Writers' Workshop pretends to be about writing. But I bet you didn't know that all summer, the Workshop doesn't even meet. That's right. For three months, there's all these Workshoppers just loafing around town, drinking beers and also other beverages. Meanwhile, other people are working in offices. Or building cell phone towers. Or cultivating cheeses so that these lazy-ass writers can have their nachos all summer. Fucking writers and their nachos.

This shit is totally corrupt.

Friday, May 19, 2006

 

It seems like not a day goes by...

It seems like not a day goes by when the Iowa Writers' Workshop doesn't stop seeming more and more corrupt. I mean, there's not a day I can imagine that it wasn't more corrupt than it was yesterday, or the day before any such day in question. It is as if there is a certain ratio of corruption that will increase the corruption-amount every day, and so on. The corruption will continue to expand, exponentially or by aforementioned ratio, until a time in the future that I don't even know when that is.

Soon the Spirit will fade, and there will be no voice crying in the wilderness:

This shit is totally corrupt.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

 
So we've got the Dey House, right? Well, that's some small potats, because New Jersey has a fucking DEY MANSION:



AAAAAAAAAAAAAArrrrrrrrrrgggggggggHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!
THIS SHIT IS TOTALLY CORRUPT!

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

 

LOOSING MY MIND

About a month ago I completely fucking lost my mind. Whose fault was it? Keep reading and see. What follows are excepts from my diary.

EPISODE ONE:

It all started when the Workshop told me I would be teaching a class called Studio. I thought, great, cameras and paintbrushes, I can do that. I mean, I can't teach them how to run the dark room or anything, but I'm pretty sure you just dump some clear liquid out of a jug into a sink and throw your film right in.

I get to class. I've brought along my Sony digital camera, twenty sets of Crayola crayons, and a roll of butcher paper. My first class, I've decided, is going to be about finding your inner vision.

Well.

I roll out the butcher paper before them, hand out the crayons, and ask them to tear off sheets of paper and do whatever they want to do. They scribble, I wait. Then at the end of class, I ask them to turn in their papers.

They haven't drawn a thing. Crayoned onto all their papers are SHORT STORIES about essentially how a high school cheerleader misses her childhood dog more than her ex-boyfriend, but less than Cher. Apparently they all think that Cher is dead.

EPISODE TWO:


Night-time. Dave's Fox Head Tavern. I put my quarters into the juke-box, pick out my four songs, and wait. I wait and wait and wait and wait and just as my first song comes on, the bar closes. I buy a six-pack of beer to take to an after party, but then decide I'm too tired so I just go home. In the morning, I wake up and realize the six-pack has been sitting all night long at the foot of the bed.

Without cold beer in the fridge, what's my incentive to get up?

I decide to skip the Studio I'm supposed to teach that day.

I email the class and tell me to write something about their feelings. I tell them not to worry, I won't be collecting the assignment.

EPISODE THREE:

I decide there's a little room in my head called Studio. I can get there by laying in bed and repeating the word "Cher," like a mantra, "Cher cher cher cher cher...." When I get to the room called Studio, the only thing to do is email my class. The problem is, email isn't email in Studio, it's just a pneumatic tube that delivers beer.

So I'm thinking, shit, I've just sent alcohol to my entire class! I call Connie to report the error, but the only person I can reach is a Cher impersonater. I tell her, Help, I need to save the Studio! I need to save the Studio!

EPILOGUE:

Flash foreward. So, to answer the question: whose fault was it that I went crazy? Cher's? Beer's? Studio's? If you chose any of those answers, you're wrong. The correct answer is: The Workshop. Because this shit is totally corrupt.

 
A child said What is this shit? fetching it to me with full hands;
How could I answer the child? I do not know what it is any more than he.

I guess it must be the flag of their digestion, out of hopeful green stuff woven.

Or I guess it is the handkerchief of the Lord,
A scented gift and remembrancer designedly dropt,
Bearing the owner’s name someway in the corners, that we may see and remark, and say Eew?

Or I guess this shit is itself a child, the produced babe of the vegetarian co-op elite.

Or I guess it is a uniform hieroglyphic,
And it means, Splatting alike in broad zones and narrow zones,
Growing among white folks as among white,
Kanuck, Tuckahoe, Congressman, Cuff, I give them MFA’s, if they went to Yale.

And now it seems to me this shit is totally corrupt.

 

slices stacked up, I got colonial bread

Why is it that every time I order breakfast in Iowa City (home of the totally corrupt Writers' Workshop), I get disrespected?

This morning, I went to my favorite diner for their "Texas-sliced french toast."
Now, where I come from, "Texas-sliced" means big. The word was even written in a grand, western font so that it looked like TEXAS was being branded into the menu as I read. In other words, the menu was the heaving flank of a mighty longhorn steer, and TEXAS was its name-o.

I'd stayed up all night thinking about corruption, and the Iowa Writers' Workshop.
The drool in my mouth had turned balsamic with rage. I headed to the diner.

My french toast slices were thinner than fly-paper, thinner than my nostril walls, thinner than the thinnest of thin dimes. These people--these criminals--had taken a normal-sized slice of bread and FILETED it, and then they'd FILETED the FILET. Powdered sugar trembled across the pocked bread. You might think it was a kind of toast-blossom, a delicate arrangement, but it was robbery at $7.49. I didn't even get hash browns. Say it with me:

This shit is totally corrupt.

Monday, May 15, 2006

 

Dollars & Sense

Sure we all know the Iowa Writers' Workshop is totally corrupt, but wait till you take a look at some of the facts and figures!

Poems the average Workshop poet publishes before attending the Workshop:
4
Poems the average Workshop poet publishes after attending the Workshop:
235

The Number of the Beast:
666
The Number of the Beast minus the number of poems the average Workshop poet publishes after attending the Workshop:
431

Major event in 431 A.D.:
Marcian is captured while fighting the Vandals.
People who broke into my apartment and stole my TV and my X-Box:
Vandals.

I know what you're thinking: "But...The Iowa Writers' Workshop involved in petty theivery? That seems absurd." Well, look at the facts and figures one more time, make the connections in your own mind, and see if they don't add up to crime.

This shit is totally corrupt.

 
Yesterday I saw my favorite professor walking towards me on the other side of the street. I thought about crossing over to say hi, but I didn’t know if that would seem friendly or sycophantic. But it would have felt strange to disregard even an acquaintance in public, much less the man at whose side my voice had caught and heart juddered all semester in workshop. I thought about calling out, but then I was afraid that would undermine the semblance of blasé assurance I’d been so carefully cultivating in his presence. Finally I decided on a hearty, though not too strenuous, wave. I looked at the sidewalk and pretended not to have noticed him. When we drew close, I absentmindedly looked up, and then adopted an expression of sudden recognition. I tried to wave, but my sleeve somehow got stuck in my jacket pocket, and by the time I could free my arm, which sprang like a toy snake from a can, my professor had already passed by. He never saw me. Once I got home, I couldn’t stop crying. This shit is totally corrupt.

 
Also, what's up w/ everyone thinking that just because I don't get to the crossword first I'm not going to do it?

YOU KNOW THAT'S WHAT I BUY THE PAPER FOR! STOP STEALING MY DAMN CROSSWORD!

This shit is totally corrupt.

 
I just bought a fifty dollar motherfucking eighth, and man, there were hella stems in there.

This shit is totally corrupt.

 
Last month this totally prestigious writer came to town. So after the reading this friend of mine (after this incident I'm not sure I would call her a "friend" anymore, more of an acquaintance) went up to the prestigious writer and they started talking. Pretty soon, they were at a nearby bar having a grand old time, and said prestigious writer, who just so happens to run a very prestigious literary journal, told my acquaintance (formerly my friend) that he would take her poems - ALL her poems. So now this prestigious literary magazine is going to publish an issue devoted exclusively to the poetry of my acquaintace, who is not even as smart as me, nor as good a poet, and who hasn't even read Coleridge! And all because she got a prestigious poet drunk.

I heard they also had tons of wild sex in the bathroom at the after-party after the bar closed.

This shit is totally corrupt.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

 

more corruption

So this one workshopper is leaving town, and she offered me an awesome-ass chair from Target--for free! I was like, cool. I don't have any furniture in my apartment (I sleep on the floor, next to a jar of peanut butter and an open sleeve of saltine crackers), so needless to say the idea of a chair was totally inviting, LOL.

But THEN I was at this party, and I heard from ANOTHER workshopper that my friend had already given the chair away! When I confronted her, she just shrugged and said: "Sorry. It's a done deal." I should've known, of course. I mean, this girl is ALREADY FRIENDS with the person she gave the chair to, so.

This shit is totally corrupt.

 
Yesterday I was buying bread at the New Pioneer Co-Op. I like their breads, and I was looking forward to buying a loaf, taking it home, and eating it. Also, I had a friend coming in from out of town, and she was going to eat the bread with me. She requested a panini. All in all, things were looking good.

I get to the bread area, and what do I see but a panini, pre-wrapped AND on sale for half price. I looked at the bread woman. I smiled at her as if to say "I can't believe my luck! A cheap panini!" and she smiled back as if to say something similar.

I reached for the panini.

Then, just as my fingers were within inches of the packaging, this guy from my workshop grabbed the bread! Not ONLY that, but he didn't even look at me OR acknowledge the fact that we were in workshop together.

This shit is totally corrupt.

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