RAVEN MACK is a mystic poet-philosopher-artist of the Greater Appalachian unorthodox tradition who publishes zines & physical books & electronic books & music & photography & digital art & just generally whatever feels necessary to survive this deluded earth thru Rojonekku Word Fighting Arts survival systems (Version 69, establish 14 Feb 1973). Comments encouraged.

Friday, July 30

Thursday, July 29

b o o t b


hard to find the time to shine
when chasing punched clock minute
hands across a cement wall

Wednesday, July 28

Tuesday, July 27

Monday, July 26

r i c o n


teaching my young to respect
the tall grasses of left field,
far from the umpire's eyeballs

Tuesday, July 20

a Rojonekku contest


Florida Heat Wave is a book put together by this dude Michael Lister, and I was lucky enough to be included in the collection, with a story called Escambia Counties. I have an extra review copy that the publisher sent me like two months ago to give one away inside the interwebs, and I never have yet, mostly because one copy got buried beneath old issues of Sports Illustrated, Harper's, Juxtapoz, and the weekly free newspaper they put in our mailbox that has the Food Lion circular tucked in the middle. I anxiously look to see what's on sale that week that might afford me to cook giant amounts of foods in the back yard for hours and hours and hours while drinking beer, which hopefully will be on sale as well, though they rarely advertise that, probably because of god and shit.
Anyways, there are two ways this will probably go. One way is the path I've felt destined to follow from a young age, where fame shines its ugly light on me, no matter how hard I try to avoid it or how many times I fuck it up. The second path is I have the life sucked from me like the liver cancer rats at my work, and all I do for the rest of my life is work, come home, watch TV shows, drink beer, have the weekend to piddle around the yard, and then go back to work.
For the sake of argument, and to remain hopeful for the future like Whitney Houston before cocaine, let's hope for the former, which means a pre-print copy of my first published short story will eventually be worth like half the cost of the paper it's printed on. But honestly, if you are still here, after all my flame outs and freak outs and nonsense, you are either somebody who knows me or someone who enjoys my bullshit or maybe both, though those people seem to be few and far between, which is probably best for this stupid world.
Nonetheless, I have a copy to give away. Here is the deal. Let's pretend for the sake of pretending that the eventual winner has me show up in their town on the Greyhound around 10 am on a Saturday morning, and you shall host me, probably after not sleeping and making friends with some kid from east Tennessee who had traveler's flask of Jim Beam to share, through the Saturday, and I’d catch a bus back home the next morning around 9:30. Feel free to make me sleep wherever and do whatever, judging my personality from what you expect of me, and pretty much plan on me having $23 to blow during this visit. But I will leave you a copy of my stupid first short story, a pre-print review copy in fact, where they throw in extra “l” in my last name because I don’t smoke blunts, I smoke els. Tell me what we might do that day, what you’d expect to happen, whatever. Email it to my shit over in the sidebar, which is ravenmack at gmail.com in case you are lazy as fuck, which means you probably wouldn’t enter anyways.
I’ll give it a couple weeks roughly, let’s say like middle of August, whittle it down to three, let the publisher dude knock one off the list, and my wife knock one off the list, and then we’ll see what kind of balance is left on my credit card at that point, and maybe I’ll bring this shit straight to you, via the glorious Greyhound bus system.

Wednesday, July 14

J.J. Krupert Top 13 Countdown - June '10 #10: "Tumbling Dice" by The Rolling Stones


The pentathlon of loungerism goes like this.
Number one, horseshoes, to 13, with 3-point ringers, two-point leaners, and one-point points, seven is a skunk. Perfect pentathlon of loungerism has four folks, probably dudes but maybe ol’ ladies too because some ol’ ladies still know how to get down, and you can do a double elimination of games. Best method is to have old 5-gallon buckets over the stobs that you can slide to the side for end tables by each pit, and then cover back up to keep people from busting they selves up in the dark.
Number two, and you need the four, is Spades, with partners. I used to be all about big and little joker style, fuck the two of spades ghetto version, but it’s hard to argue with a perfect deck of 52, and jokers convolute that perfection. Three games where every partnership is explored, and you learn who the good players are and who the gravy trainers are.
Number three conversational. You can’t really score this aspect, because it happens the whole time, and also because it just don’t work that way. But you can always tell the person sitting in the circle of thought streams who is biting his ears, holding onto the MOST AWESOME STORY he wants to share, and when he finally finds a spot to break into the conversation, his tale relates to something that happened three tales ago, not now. Conversation is freestyling in the sense it has to connect with what just happened, not what had happened a while ago. Anybody who says, “Going back to what you said about...” is speed bumping the now with his goddamned desires to be the shiniest star of the past, even if that past is just ten minutes ago. I have friends for years that I wrote off forever because of this personal disease. Ego is a too much thing. Go with the flow.
Number four, I don’t know, just fill in your own game. I’m down to play. I called it “pentathlon of loungerism” and at this point am just trying to get to number five. Good thing I didn’t call it a decathlon.
Number five is the dice. I learned it from my ex-girlfriend’s brother, and brought it to Richmond, and the Black Label drinking punk rockers called it Eyeballs even though the dude I learned it from called it Huvna, which I have no idea what the fuck that means. Some make it a gamble and others just do it to occupy the night. Nowadays in my life, me and the ol’ lady just call it playing dice. And it’s a perfect fucking game, and my laptop is resting in the dark on the same pick-a-nick table we play upon right now, screen drawing in bugs that got me paranoid they are termites because they look like flying ants and flying ants are termites usually. Fuck it, eat my house down to dust. I’m gonna sit right here until I die.
STEAL "Tumbling Dice"
NEXT UP:
Wally, with flair.

Tuesday, July 13

J.J. Krupert Top 13 Countdown - June '10 #11: "Love's Gonna Get You (screwed & chopped)" by Boogie Down Productions


I will say, this is one of my all-time favorite Screw tapes, for multiple reasons, but this song is a big part of it. Boom bap screwed is like what I wish he had always dabbled in more, and less of the fucking gangsta shit. This song is the ultimate Screw song to check out if you never have: the repeating lines, usually three times then move on but occasionally he tweaks the standard method; the druggy pre-echoes of drum kicks; the assaultive repetition of gun shots; and just the general thick humidity southern goodness of something that should’ve took five minutes to get through taking twelve minutes. Multiply that by real life, and how a five hour drive takes twelve, or a job you was gonna have for five months, you end up at for a year, or the car that’s got to last you five years ends up rolling the odometer twice and is still in the yard twelve years later. That’s Screw, and that’s my life, and that’s those that I know that I respect, and that’s how I wish the fucking world spun but it don’t because it wants five minute songs to go down to three, and it lives by the desire for money that ends up killing off KRS’s main character in this song. Misplaced priorities and loving upon that which lacks true value, it’s gonna get you. Speed it up and youtube it and tweetbook thumbs up it, but it’s still running the wrong way.
Lately I’ve been burdened internally by this belief that American humanity is diseased, and not in a weird faggot hippie dude, “Kill your TV braddah!” type of way, but like for-real diseased. Like all these things we are encouraging, cybertronically in our lives, what does it do to our internal organs. No one has ever been able to scientifically explain a gut feeling, much less where your soul (if one exists) could be, which in most metaphysical religious traditions tends to be nearby where your umbilical cord would go when you was a rice flake sized organism in your mama’s belly. What does all this radiation do to that? Science don’t know and the product people don’t want to upset their product parade, and most folks are all too excited to have little electronic things that could conceivably do big worldwide things, except mostly they just play Space Invaders with their texts and emails, trying to fight it all down to nothing in the inbox.
There’s got to be more to all this than that clusterfuck of technology at my fingertips. I’m not saying I know what it is, and I’m no luddite that thinks we should sit fireside and pick the lice from our offsprings’ dreadlocks, but shit man, something ain’t right. I know that much. When I drive up and down the same goddamned roads every day and bust my soul to turn fake dollars into food stuffs and talking phones and bright lights in the middle of the sunless night, that’s about the only thing I’m sure of I know... something ain’t fucking right.
STEAL "Love's Gonna Get You"
NEXT UP:
Grimy famous rock, thus not so grimy since punk ass fratboys love it too.

Monday, July 12

J.J. Krupert Top 13 Countdown - June '10 #12: "The Watcher" by Hawkwind


The ability to think is overrated because when you contemplate the entire universe and how there has to be other forms of life and how they not only do exist but have probably already interacted with us, and then you see people like Al Gore or that Elana Kagan Supreme Court bitch and how they look like reptiles in human form, and you sort of realize you are no better than the cows down the road behind the barbed wire, except at least the cows are like, "Fuck it man, I'm gonna chew some grass the fuck up all day long. And if everybody else walks that way, I'm gonna walk that way too. Hell yeah." But we are all self-important and righteous and like to pretend our life has some sort of higher purpose or that we need to do this or that or acquire a thing or leave things for our offspring or an endless myriad of confusing tangents running through the fucking brain that is so blessed to have the power to do so.
I sit in a room with four computer monitors aimed at my head, and a $100,000 microscope lumbering over my right shoulder, and I can feel the effects of these things inside my brain. My once sharpened billowing puffs of brain matter are dulled down and lacking focus and lacking just lacking all the way around overall. So because of this I have taken to going to the railroad tracks and just sitting there, looking at nothing, for at least four hours. I keep a 5-gallon bucket in the back of my truck for this very purpose, to flip over and sit on at the end of a walk, and look around, and whatever wonderful things I saw on my trip in, I keep in my brain to try and remember to fill the bucket with on my walk back, to try and sharpen the mind's edges again. But mostly I just sit there and look at things. That is the important part of this self-meditation. Smart phones and wi-fi beams and everything else you already know about, it does things. Pendulums don't just swing one way.
Also, I was somewhere lame recently, perhaps the tire store getting a new set of shoes put on the family Subaru (from 1997, in case you think I be rolling fat, which I am, but not the way you think), and I read an entire Rolling Stone article about Lemmy, who is really about as fucking great as you would think he is. And at the same time, I’d never want to be Lemmy, because I’d hate that life. But good goddamn, am I ever thankful there is a Lemmy in this crummy ass world.
STEAL "The Watcher"
NEXT UP:
Perhaps my most favoritest example of DJ Screw's awesomeness ever.

Sunday, July 11

J.J. Krupert Top 13 Countdown - June '10 #13: "Mind Playin' Tricks On Me (screwed & chopped)" by The Geto Boys


I'm not sure if this year Halloween falls on a weekend or not, which doesn't matter much because the weeks don't end so much as blend in together with seven straight days of obligations across a latitudinal line of the calendar, back to the left like a typewriter from 1973, and back at it, no pause, few spaces, bad grammar, whiteout never touching the onion skin of my life, hoping there is a god with a big book so I can have someone else proofread my actions and distractions once the lungs stop filling up with hazy air and the heart stops pumping the corn syrup thinned out blood, and tell me how it all reads. From where I sit, it's an ugly story, and inherently a tragedy, though there's plenty of one-liners mixed into to spray paint some silver lining. Thing about one-liners is there's a long psychology of preamble and meandering experiences to get there, and lay the foundation for those one-liners.
You know the only person who really has done screwed music as good as Screw? OG Ron C. He did the best of Rap-a-Lot mix, and that's what this is from. Sometimes when I hate the world but love myself yet hate myself and love the world, I like to lock up in a small place, like the camper trailer, which is stacked with boxes now that I'm trying to renovate my goddamned 1907 house into something more accommodating for my growing brood of pullet children, and light candles and get my mind all twisted around some substance or another, which has lately been mostly what is left of the gruit ale homebrew I made with a few droppers full of wild lettuce tincture from the ol' lady's apothecary mixed in, and just blast some fucking tweaked out Rap-a-Lot. Finding the OG Ron C screwed Rap-a-Lot's Greatest Hits to steal inside the internets (thanks Sicknote the #1 Limey and MP3 MVP) was a godsend, because it fits well into the dusty dark corners of my 2010 brain.
STEAL "Mind Playin' Tricks On Me"
NEXT UP:
Space is the place in the place to be.

Saturday, July 10

J.J. Krupert Top 13 Countdown - June '10 Intro


In June, J.J. Krupert went to Las Vegas, and he learned various things. It is a land there where everything is a facade where they not only engineer the look and sound but the smells with piped in aromas that attach to your emotions. I was lucky enough to be ultra-aware of these things and avoid their pitfalls. J.J. Krupert realized that all those ugly fucking MMA t-shirts you see in magazines, the people that actually where those all live out there. It is a fairly embarrassing city to walk through and look around at others that would be associated with you in much of the world's mind. I thought it would be a good place for Al Qaeda to open a recruitment office, but J.J. Krupert thought that was not so kosher a thing to think. But he's been listening to a lot of Pakistani hashish jazz lately, pretending the Arab world is this great mecca of unblemished creativity. Oddly enough, at the same time, I work with an Egyptian guy, who teaches me things like how they had stone rockets and all early science was stolen from that part of the world by the crusaders.
Relatedly, J.J. Krupert and myself found a place called Ellis Island Casino right off the strip where they had cheap ass microbrew which all flavors tasted like swill beer with different food coloring in it, and a cigar smoke hung in the air that dated back to the '70s, and all the sad sacks of Las Vegas, who lived there, for a month or a year or a lifetime, came in and got as close to the Strip as they felt comfortable with, and it was a great place. We sat outside where there was a pile of coals and a chicano dude cooking chicken halves and we each had a half of barbecue chicken with homemade cole slaw and some baked beans and plenty of bread to sop with and plenty of $1.50 microbrews to sip on and it was a good heartwarming thing, soulwarming even.
It was while eating there that I started ranting about how science is its own religion, and they believe their own tenets and expect the rest of the world to go along for the ride with blind belief as well. But J.J. Krupert dropped how science is still ruled by moral codes - ethics - in what it deems appropriate to study and not to study. Yet it is going against the blind belief of religion. Thus, science is inherently dysfunctional. It made sense to me. It was Las Vegas, so we had wanted to do some hallucinogens in honor of Oscar Zeta Acosta the great Brown Buffalo who once roamed that godless void, but thank god we didn't find any. Hallucinating in Las Vegas would have been hell, a literal and painful hell. We did dip our fingernails in some diprivan or whatever that milky shit that Michael Jackson overdosed on is called, because I found a few bottles of it at work.
The theme to June's J.J. Krupert is altered mentalities fighting to be the truth in a clouded as fuck dude's brain. And being the J.J. Krupert is purely retard math with very specific parameters in place already, there really is no specific theme set out upon the table before the list is calculated. It just sort of cooks up that way, like life. Everything goes the way it's supposed to if you let it.
FIRST UP: Perhaps the strangest and darkest song ever to be The Hip Hop Jam of its day, in drugged out remix form to make it even stranger and darker!

Friday, July 9

blah blah blah

When I was planning on leaving the blog mostly unattended, my original attention had been to dedicate my time to this book that had exploded into my mind all at once. But life has been a big fat piece of hectic shit lately, so mostly I just try to figure out ways to con money out of people so that I can pay just under two-thirds of my bills. I have done nothing except mind outlining thus far on the book, which means I'm like every piece of sad sack shit out there in this world who thinks they have the great american novel in they brain if only they had the free time to put it into a keypad.
I am starting to realize a few things that are probably obvious to those around me. First off, I will never amount to shit. Something is not wired right in my brain, or I wasn't born with that fresh-dipped moonlight on my third eye, or something is wrong. I'm not sure what it is. If I knew, I probably wouldn't be so goddamned doom every three out of four weeks of my life. Nonetheless, it is what it is, which is what common ass people like me tend to say when they realize they are hopelessly fucked, in the moment or the grand scheme of things. It is what it is.
Secondly, I am a creature of retarded habit. Thus it is probably better I write some retarded nonsense every now and then rather than write nothing at all. If I hit a spell like I have lately where I haven't written shit in like ten days and I'm sitting around watching some dumbass fucking movie on the tv at night and I realize I'll go to sleep and wake up when an electronic device yelps at me and go back to a job that does nothing for me other than pay just under two-thirds of my bills, it makes me want to steal a schoolbus, do angel dust, and wreck it off a cliff like a 1978 after school special.
So there will be a thing, that I think will be semi-daily nonsense with a song download in memory of my biological father J.J. Krupert, who died with a gun in his hand. That is all I really feel like sharing with you in this fake ass world right now. (Actually, that sounds more melodramatic than I meant it to be; I just don't want to overload myself with doing dumb shit for nothing because I be broke plus the beard goes white and I feel like I should be dedicating my small windows of free time towards making something up that might get stitched into a book form and then my grandkids can one day be embarrassed to have come from my branch of their family tree.)