Tag Archives: Life

Albert Joseph’s Bravado

Albert Joseph’s Bravado Black and White Television Shows Golden Age of Radio Stories about his childhood: Melancholy in Monessen, A football star’s future— Shortened by the family’s business. Met a woman from Charleroi, “Virginia is for Lovers.” Completed a Family in 1971: A corner house he purchased at Henry Street In the borough of N. Belle Vernon. I recall (those 14 vivid years And the 16 visiting years), What I want to recall… A mill custodian, a provider, A man Read more [...]

Captain’s Boat

Captain's Boat “I’ve been weeping for a mighty long time. Yes, I’ve been weeping for a mighty long time.” Kim Whistler sang The Five Blind Boys song as if she was in the Overtown Baptist Church choir. She sang with the harmony of happiness and claps of praise. But she was three blocks and one little boy from the church. Her voice bounced off the inside of the boat as the acoustics allowed the sadness to sink into the old sea worn wood of a boat, forty feet in length. In this neighborhood Read more [...]

Azucar in the Guest House

Azucar in the Guest House “Sarita, I have a large package for you,” said Garcia the mailman. “I can tell by your obvious expression, this must be very important to you.” He hands her the box along with a few pieces of mail. “Gracias Señor Garcia,” she responds looking at the address with a smile. “I can smell your abuella is preparing dinner, please tell her I said hello.” “Si, Señor Garcia, I will tell my grandmother when I go inside.” Sara, or Sarita as she is known Read more [...]

Sparrow’s Nest

Sparrow's Nest DING! DING! “Oh C’mon man...are you kidding me...I can’t even enjoy a lunch break.” DING! DING! “I’m coming!” Jack screamed as he rushed through the garage to the gas pumps of the Sparrow service station in Belle Vernon, Pennsylvania. “Ok, that’s enough,” he said under his breath. There are no vehicles at the two gas pump islands. Just a scrawny kid named Anthony on his white and blue BMX bike. Anthony laughed from the top of his lungs at a nearby parking Read more [...]

Gas Station Ganja

Gas Station Ganja  is Available on Amazon Prologue Frank Martini, a soon to be senior at Belle Vernon Area High School, was working at the Brawn service station in the summer of 1979. An energy crisis had gripped the nation by the means of a gasoline shortage. Long lines to purchase gasoline were wrapped around city blocks, large and small. In the small town Belle Vernon, located in southwestern Pennsylvania, those same long lines went for miles from the only two service stations, Brawn and Read more [...]

The Unfortunates—B.S. Johnson

The Unfortunates A switch cycle of stories spread across my chess table, and like the game of chess, there is a first and last move—the variations are not in order. Twenty-seven short stories, to be more specific, some were one page, and others six, but all the stories were part of a timeline for me to choose my first story of B.S. Johnson’s, The Unfortunates. I parted the First and the Last pages before placing half of the remaining 25 pages clockwise, and then the other half counterclockwise. Read more [...]

In the Lanes of the World: Paris, France

A Walk along La Seine                                              By Christan Gatto, Travel Writer There was a time when I traveled to many metropolitan cities around the globe; for these cities, I studied travel books to prepare my day trips with cultural coordinates… “Bonjour, Je voudrais une baguette et le café, mercie.” I said to the cashier for my order at the café, using my basic French lingo from a guide-book. She smiled and gave me Read more [...]

Dopefiend—Donald Goines

Raw. This is the word that describes Dopefiend. Based in a Detroit ghetto, Goines tells you the story about his experiences as an addict. He places the reader in very uncomfortable situations: junkies getting their fix, prostitutes with their "johns,"  and the use of heroine being cooked up. Goines hits you with the needle that leaves a mark in your psyche. Like any great novel, the unexpected is vital. In Dopefiend, the unexpected is deliberately disturbing. There are very few characters in this Read more [...]