Sunday, January 24, 2010

Book of the Views in New Orleans

Po Boy Views
Phil LaMancusa
Money Can’t Buy Me Love
Well, guess what this is? Give up? Okay, this will be my 125th blog (and counting). Each blog is at least 1,000 words, so you know what that means? It means that I’ve got an eighth of a million words ‘out there’ and that means that it’s time for an editor to get in touch with me so that we can make a book out of all these words. I figure that with a little fluffing that we can get about four hundred pages easy; that, of course, will be up to my editor. There, I said it, MY EDITOR.
Listen, it’s only logical that since I’ve covered the same basic categories over and over again that I have subject matter for chapters such as Jazz Fest, Mardi Gras, street life, political views and food as well as a plethora of pathetic childhood stories and a lot of cosmic debris. AND: Where Y’at magazine keeps publishing me; I shudder to think that that might be gratuitous, ergo (I love that word!) I am readable. FURTHERMORE, both of those people who follow my blog think that I’m pretty dern good and they told me so.
One of the things that my followers (both of them) miss with my blog that fans who read me in hard copy, while frittering their life away, can enjoy is-- (drum roll) --my inflections. The blog readers most times cannot tell where a paragraph starts and ends unless a sentence happens to end short of a line of type; they also miss italics. These are in the magazine but I don’t know how to get them on to the blog. That blows goat and maybe MY EDITOR will have some thoughts on that.
Now, don’t make me take my belt off or wait any longer to get published as a book. Do you know why? Because you’ll miss the crawfish boil that I promised you. Why, I’ll make you a deal: get MY EDITOR (and/or publisher) to me soon and I’ll throw a bash on the strength of my (cash) advance and it will probably (if y’all get on the ball) coincide with crawfish season. We’ll have it in City Park under spreading oak trees with tables laden with steamy crawfish, corn, potatoes and garlic so spicy that your head will sweat and your nose will run right over to the icy cold beer, that there will be an abundance of. There will be watermelon, coleslaw, macaroni and potato salad, baked beans, corn bread and man, talk about good!
Now, I am not putting any pressure on you, but someone needs to get on the ball here and it might as well be you.
I thought, lying awake last night, that I should start with an introduction and it could be titled “When I Didn’t Die”. And, you’ll be the ones that I will try it on. Keep in mind that an introduction to a book should be on one page and take no longer than three minutes to read, kind of like a resume. Ready? Here goes:
“I didn’t die at childbirth, of toddler illnesses and neither was I hit by a fast moving vehicle growing up on the slum streets of New York in the 1940’s. I survived gangs on the streets when I was a teenager, dodged disaster in the military service protecting my country from nuclear war and was not off-ed marching in the name of Martin Luther King. I’ve survived fires, floods, earthquakes and romantic rejections. I made it through hunger, poverty and trips by mule and wagon through the heart of KKK territory. I’ve crossed against traffic, roamed unfriendly streets, imbibed way too much of illegal substances and pissed the wrong people off more than a few times and still I am not deceased. I didn’t get a scratch that time when in a drunken rage I challenged an oncoming eighteen wheeler to a fist fight, I skirted the demise (mine) I could have incurred from the consequences of loose morals and multiple sex partners and hurricanes, hangovers and heartbreaks have all left me bruised but not broken, bent but not bested and certainly never bored. Shot at and missed, shit at and hit, a day late, a dollar short, one step ahead of a shoeshine, two steps from the County Line and I’m not dead…yet.
And now here’s a collection of thought processes that is a result of my imaginings, meanderings and malapropisms. Believe me, it’s just the tip of the mile high lemon meringue pie. I long ago surmised that after selling the first book that writers then get to have time for further literary endeavors, and if you’ve followed my blog (you have, haven’t you?) then you know that I’ve been somewhat restricted by my thousand word space allotted in the magazine that continues, against all odds, to print my rants and raves.
So now that you’ve picked up and read this introduction let me just say this: you need to buy this book and at least one more of this book to give away. It will be way more fun than reading my blog and you’ll be one jump ahead of the upcoming film of the same name.”
There. Wasn’t that easy? What? You’ve not read my blog? Well doesn’t that just take the biscuit! I guess I’ll just have to wait another hundred blogs or so.
Okay. Here’s how it works: we’ve got two readers and they tell two more and they each tell two and it’s like taking a penny each day and doubling it each day and after a month you’re a frigging millionaire. Got it?
So ‘Po Boys’, we got some ground to cover. Talk it up! “My Dad owns the hardware store, we’ll make some signs, we’ll hold a dance and a talent contest and a variety show! We’ll save the school and get this turkey to trot, let’s win one for the Gipper, let’s make it bedtime for Bonzo and bring up Baby!”
C’mon, Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland got nothin’ on us.