Jim Trainer

Archive for October, 2013|Monthly archive page

anniversary

In Poetry on October 23, 2013 at 3:30 pm

crazy this mourning for you
that your death could be more real
than any living here.
even in these carpeted rooms
cups lined with the thickest liquor
books thick&sagging in their shelves
even with all my confidence
that the thick line
of her German thigh
will remain on
the green velour
sofa
and I have finally won her smile,
I will have to cut
out back
beneath the eaves
smoke one while looking up
to see the
October
moon
cleaving the summer away
knowing you now
better than me
making the entirety of it all
threadbare
baser than the most wicked
poverty
wiser than
the highest crown-
this is harvest, this is anniversary.
were I to
rake the loam with your hands
were I to truly
surrender
as you have
then I would hear them, too
I would hear them all
and know at once
how strange
is this mortality,
that all effort&endeavor
all lengths you have gone
to provide&protect
those whom you have loved
it has done nothing for this
waiting
it has not made time less
cruel
it has not made us miss you
any less.

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Too Skinny, Too Small by Don Bajema Chapter 4

In Uncategorized on October 21, 2013 at 12:45 pm

“Get up,” Dad said.
I opened my eyes to cracked varnish on the plywood ceiling a foot above my face which in the many hours over the years I’d spent tracing it with my fingers, I’d seen, by following certain cracks, etched a map of the old Pirate coastline from the Carolinas down to Florida.
I swung my legs over the edge of the bunk and landed six feet below, silently, just barely quivering the trailer floor and made my way down the hall to the living area-a widened room with a tiny stove, bench seats around a tiny table taken up with a big television.
The trailer rocked and creaked with Dad’s shifting weight between the one shelf refrigerator and the greasy, filthy stove. Most trailers are stabilized with jacks and concrete blocks-Dad just backed it over the concrete slab, unhitched it from the truck, plugged the electrical cord into the box, slid the stairway out from under the door and we were home-that was eight years ago.
We had an awning for a little while but it got blown to shreds and just flaps in canvas strips when the wind comes up.
I get waffles from the ice box for breakfast, sometimes an egg that is cooked over a high flame-Dad’s always in a rush-making the egg white crystallize with grease and the yoke dry as a biscuit.
I open the refrigerator door.
“Any milk?”
“Do you see any?”
“No.”
“So I guess there’s no fuckin’ milk, is there?”
I close the refrigerator door and slide sideways into the chair at the table, you don’t pull chairs back because there’s no room.
“Too fuckin’ hot,” he says.
I glance at the indoor outdoor thermometer he’d bought Mom for Christmas a few years ago.
“Eighty-eight already.”
“Get ya milk on the way home.”
Usually if he said something like that he’d come through but I’d have loved to eat a bowl of cornflakes to help wash down these eggs. The waffles I drowned in syrup.
“Any..” I was thinking butter but..
“We are a bit short in the dairy supplies.”
He got up, “Want another egg. Fix ya a egg.”
He was being nice.
“Yeah, sure,” I said as I got up to go to the bathroom and ducked my mouth under the faucet to wash down the egg yolk-the kitchen sink is broke, that is, it only pumps hot water.
I pissed and slid open the bathroom door to the dining area front room space of the trailer.
Dad turned to slide the egg onto my waffle. Cut a bite of egg and waffle for himself, forked it into his mouth and chewed nodding,
“Protein. You need protein. I’ll get some papaya, dried kind, Russians say papaya and some enzyme in egg protein is the quickest shortcut for absorption.”
He flipped through a stack of sports magazines and training pamphlets, Scholastic Coach, NFL programs. Combine preparation books. But he was big with the Russian track and field programs. Olympic lifts and sprint work. He couldn’t find the article he was looking for,
“Anyway take my word for it.”
I slid in the chair under the hot pan and Dad’s armpit.
“I been thinking a little and all the barbells, and the weights, and all that.”
He shifted through a stack of mail, tossing most of it in a little overflowing plastic pail, he glanced at me to see if I was listening,
“It seems to me, what counts is the muscles contracting-you know? It doesn’t matter what makes them contract so long as the contraction is close to maximum. So that it gets the idea it needs to be stronger in order not to become exhausted, muscles do not want to be exhausted. If they are, and we were designed in prehistory, right, so if you’re out there in the grasslands with the big cats looking for you, you do not want to get tired and slow.”
He linked us constantly to our natural origins said there was the only true identity.
“Your Mom, on every sucker list on the planet.” He kept tossing the mail, now bouncing off the stuffed basket and landing on the floor.
“But contractions done frequently. That’s the secret. So..maybe we don’t need weights at all..and maybe we can up the frequency of the all-mighty contraction because we don’t need a lot or maybe any equipment.”
He flipped the egg. Pushed another frozen waffle down in the toaster.
“Something to think about.”
A perfectly cooked egg riding beneath a waffle soaked in syrup slid on my plate from Dad’s spatula,
“I’ll get back to you on that.”

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Too Skinny, Too Small by Don Bajema Chapter 3

In Uncategorized on October 13, 2013 at 11:20 am

“Eddie. You didn’t sleep, did you?”
“Not much.”
Donna let a thick bathrobe drop from her shoulders to the bathroom floor then in two seconds of precise and smooth articulations she was almost immediately in a bra and panties. Sexy as hell that she could dress so fast, practiced in the art as they say.
I could breathe again when her foot slowly shut the door as she took position in front of the mirror over the sink.
This was the first I’d seen her in the flesh in the three days she’d been staying with me. Not that everything wasn’t appealing about Donna and she had me convinced she liked my company beyond being obligated to, and I loved having her around, but the idea of approaching her intimately just seemed to be for a far off future moment, and waiting for that moment was pretty satisfying in itself. I liked her ways-like her perfect timing as she appeared and disappeared from room to room in intervals of a few minutes to a couple hours always suiting the mood, never lingering and the way she said little but what she said was almost entirely unique. I never heard a phrase, or a pat term, no contemporary cultural reference in her words, if she were dressed she’d be anti-trend-she’d stick with classical lines, nothing over done, that was the way she dressed her speech and what she said usually had an element of something I’d never thought or heard before.
Her laugh was not frequent and never sustained. She had a wry smile when most women would laugh. She usually played music in the kitchen and once I saw her dancing in there in a nightgown letting her hair fall over the sunglasses she was wearing as though she didn’t want to see herself. Nothing showy about it, just on time, mildly suggestive but only to a certain point and only in an instant, she even took the corner of her bottom lip between her teeth once. She moved less as the trained dancer I learned later she’d been and more like a wayward trailer park girl coming down from her meds.
Donna is like watching a great movie, or reading a good book, she’s a walking wet dream as a penthouse companion.
Her eyes have a-dawn-of-mankind-predatory-intelligence behind them that manages to pretend pretty convincingly that she regards me as an equal, quietly respecting me like I was a poker player she was hesitant to bet against, all this-physical beauty disappearing and reappearing-caught dancing out of character-sleeping quietly beside me-laughing easily-generating a desire to know her, while feeling an uneasy sense in her of an experienced hunter behind a calm and constant deception.
I’m talking way too much about her. And you know what that means.
She knew I was afraid to touch her with any kind of intimacy. I was sure she knew why, but she offered no therapy, no coaxing me back to life.
She maneuvered her way around this problem as though it didn’t exist assuming an otherwise intimacy in her atmosphere as close and easy as though we’d been non-stop on a damp mattress for a day or two. I assumed my fear would pass, or be overwhelmed and one of these hours I’d have my wrists turned up beneath the small of her back and my face in her delta which was my recurring fantasy coming in flashing images superimposed on walls, counter tops, her reflection in the floor to ceiling windows, on almost anything I gazed at-I want to be at her table. I’m starving.
But I can’t imagine holding her in my arms, leaning in on her, throwing our hips together and shaking her surrendered body beneath me…because the last human intimacy I felt was on that field, and its left in me a trauma, I tremble at the thought of it, and its almost always on my mind as though the snap of his body, and then the way he flew, gangly disconnected like a puppet with cut strings amid the loudest hurricane howling in a stadium I’d ever heard thundering down and swirling the grass around my face guard like it meant to curse me for all my days and nights to come. And I knew what had happened immediately, its finality, its no going back and to get anywhere near that place again, to touch anyone, to bump into them on a sidewalk, to clutch them in bed just seems like it will cost me my sanity. I can still hear the stadium roaring beneath every sound, I fall asleep to it, I wake to it’s low roar-like the bellowing from an ancient battlefield.
You always feel that guttural storm. It goes right through you. The energy is directed only at you like an intense stare in a room but magnified by the thousands of distant eyes and howling stunned voices, like they’d made a discovery, or shared in the sensation of the impact, a kind of gigantic recognition-of you. And these, big play storms of approving human spirit are thrown over your shoulders like a King’s robe. Athletes live for it.
But this roar was beyond that, it was as though there was recognition on some deep level of horror, something they at first celebrated and leapt in the air over, and then wanted to retreat from, wanted nothing to do with as that same roar trailed off into a moan as though eighty thousands hands were suddenly lifted to cover eighty thousand gaping mouths. The roar went suddenly silent, it just ceased all at once, and a circle of players spread away from Chad Washington and me like oil on water.
I stood there, pointing down at him like a guilty kid, a guy shot it and it was in every paper in the country, raised on every screen, my hand pointing down at the player at my feet, my body sagged in defeat, my head turning slowly, I was still panting from the play, you can see the steam coming from my helmet, but Chad Washington’s chest wasn’t moving, his eyes stared straight overhead like he was looking at the Goodyear Blimp buzzing like a gigantic bee high over the field. There was steam coming from his body, like his spirit was lifting, but from his helmet nothing but a dark shadow. I was probably crying. I don’t know for sure because something separated from me on the impact, I can’t explain how much I knew and how instantly I knew it. I killed him. I knew not from my mind what had happened and it’s still kind of horrible to know that my body knew before my mind did. He was dead. I knew it though I couldn’t comprehend it. I know it now and I can’t comprehend it, I see Donna opening the bathroom door, suddenly stifling her smile, and stopping mid-sentence at what she had on her mind at what she must be reading on my face and walking to the table to pick up her book and moving toward me to put her long fingers on my shoulder before she crosses the window and goes into the bedroom, shutting the door, letting me be alone.

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Too Skinny, Too Small by Don Bajema Chapter 2

In Uncategorized on October 6, 2013 at 10:43 am

(for Chapter 1 click here)

There’s a pecking order in every relationship, small unit, massive population. You’ve seen it, felt it, been subjected to it no matter where you work, where you worship, where you sat at the Thanksgiving table, even when you’re at your most ultimately anonymous-deep in a crowd of strangers- you’re ranked as peckee and pecker; be in any group of people and you’ve been assigned your place.
Move up you’ll get a few pecks in the face from the guys in front of you, someone climbs up behind you, you better attack or you’ll drop a slot, less food, less shelter, less everything. Attack, you have to, even, and especially, if you don’t want to. Fail to sink your beak into a cheek, or tattoo a forehead and you’re down a notch until you’re on the bottom, and there is a momentum, it works upward and it works downward.
Its there in every human interaction-there’s the bloody beaked world of your rank. All this necessary and as natural as the sunrise and moon hanging in the sky, this part we have to play to contain, measure and distribute the prevalent animosity and aggression within all of us in our numberless-planet-wide-human-primate troop.
How well do you compete? How willing are you to take? How unwilling to concede? How pragmatic with the part you play in the fate of others? How much fear-not respect-can you put into others? How far will you go if contested?
I watched the sidewalk way down beneath my window for a long minute. All those people, shifting right and left, stepping on the heels in front of them, being glared at and returning glares, shouldering around and through each other the sorting out of the pecking order.
There’s people who walk in a line, never giving an inch, willing to bang shoulders with strangers than give any kind of room-mindlessly it appears but secretly entirely deliberate, mostly some kind of inherited attitude, some innate quality that demands they themselves come first on the desperate primate self assertive grim set-of-the-teeth level.
Then there’s the other people ‘aware of their surroundings’, hoping to avoid conflict, hoping to keep things moving in some semblance of co-operation and common good who slip sideways through these more belligerent tough-hard assed-cowards who assert themselves from the sidewalk level, to the pop-corn line at the movies, for the parking spot, to be first to get through a door. Yeah, there’s a polite expectation to crowded interaction at the produce section, in the gas line, at the bar, and the deli counter-but its paper thin, useful only in mutual consent which given any stress at all, Christmas shopping, freeway stalls, virtually any excuse and the reasonable comportment goes right out the fucking window. You can count on someone being entirely ill equipped to see further down the sidewalk than their own immediate imperative-and don’t misunderstand I’m not talking about strutting ghetto hard-asses, or hyper aggressive silk suited ex-frat boys, some of these sidewalk stompers….these cold eyed shoulder slamming bastards are not gender specific-there’s plenty of young-don’t-look-at-me-I’m-too-beautiful-strutting snots, or fed-up middle-aged bitches clutching steaming lattes, heads jutting forward from their chicken necks, with their ‘Fuck you eyes’ and meaning business, and unhappy fatso’s terrified to be noticed and knowing that hope is laughable, hoping not to be resented, but knowing that too is unlikely making so many of them fattening up their kids and family in order to have company, in order not to stand out, in order to have a couple more beaks in the fray, skinny, nasty neurotics too, people of every description defending their wider-space-than-yours as they would any of their American possessions and entitlements beyond number.
These neurotic mid flock jerks will stand in the middle of a suddenly halted crowd shrieking their lungs out for as long as it takes to get any imagined aspect of their own, mindless way. You can see it. The sidewalk has a coward who fears that he will be read as weak, read as soft, read as a mark or a pussies if she doesn’t over assert themselves in every fucking situation calling for co-operation. The entire American crowded urban me-first culture is infested with these assholes.
There’s a black car blaring its horn at a knot of walkers failing to clear the intersection fast enough for the solitary driver weaving his Mercedes through the crowd, forcing his bumper through them, nudging them out of his way.
This warm, comfortable bastard behind the wheel is so anxious to get to the Lincoln tunnel and out of the metropolis he’s leaning on the horn in his sound insulated cab with his jaw twisted to one side mouthing spells and incantations at the people jumping out of his way or slowing to stare at his windshield in defiance.
He’s willing to knot the faces, and bend the knees of sixty cringing pedestrians, old ladies reaching for their ears, babies in strollers crying, men containing the urge to blast his window open with an elbow, yank him out by his silk tie and pound the fat motherfucker into the pedestrian cross-walk. But they absorb this because Modern Life Says You Have To Take This Shit-gone are the days of duels and respect demanded through the knowledge that disrespect will get your belly sliced open or your forehead crushed, so their jaws tighten under his incessant, Here-I-am-get-the-fuck-out-of-my-way blaring horn.
He’s just one man, doing very well for himself, at the bottom of the towering Manhattan architectural canyon inside his luxury car abusing sixty shivering people negotiating a crowded sidewalk in a sleet storm.
One man comfortable in his plush seat, he and his music, gliding to his mansion just beyond the city, his three crackling fireplaces, abusing sixty people cold in the January wind whipping their jackets, sleet freezing their faces, Whole Foods grocery bags disintegrating, briefcases and back packs tangling their knees.
And now the umbrellas come out and in case you sympathized with the pedestrians you can see them now blithely risking the eyesight of on-comers as they plow through the crowd, spinning here and there unconcerned with the needle sharp umbrellas fractions of inches from the faces of those around them. There’s a few gigantic golf umbrellas making fair negotiation of the sidewalk impossible for the shivering many.
The driver in his black carriage, the put-upon bitch with her latte, the general swarm of walkers, the cornea piercing umbrella fencers-most if not all of them are big football fans.

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ACL WRAPUP: Jimbo’s Big Weekend

In Uncategorized on October 4, 2013 at 3:10 pm

Going for the Throat

well ACL’s been done but I drank a shit ton so I’m just catchin up now bros  sorry. but I wasn’t drunk at the festival I was drunk at home LOL!  I saw some awesome bands and buds tho.out on the greenbelt  how sweet is it if yr day started out like this right:

then .  after I went to the beer store it was sick I was pounding THIS:

then I saw my bro he was like:

by then I was completely wasted .but I stuck around for T.V. On Arcade Fire who fuckin ruled it bro .man they were killahhhhhh:

ok.just picture the singer bein like  “and I told YOU YOU DON’T GO OUT WIThOUT ME!  NO NO! YOU BITCH!!!!!!NOOOOOOOOOOO!”

and he throws this fucking TV right?  right off the porch.
killer. freals yo.

and that was only SATURDAY bitches.  word.

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Better Than Drugs

In Uncategorized on October 3, 2013 at 10:55 am

NOTE FROM THE EDITOR:
Due to indescribable and excruciating lower back pain and a relentless work schedule, Jim Trainer was unable to provide you with his latest criticisms of the US Gov, the NFL and the vapidly insipid music industry. Upon hearing of his troubles, and as his his editor, I summoned him at once to my Office in San Francisco, where he spent four days smoking Jimson Weed in the morning fog before returning to bed to watch Hunter Thompson interviews. Despite his efforts he was not able to adhere to his semi-daily schedule of providing you, Invaluable reader, with an 800 word commentary on “the way things should be”.
Rest assured, thanks to days of salty honey on the breeze, accidental, true culture in the streets,languid sun-walks and a decadent bed always beckoning, Trainer was able to enjoy deep healing. He was able to heal and rest up and is now back in the Pearl of the South&grinding it out. Please accept this blog, written just before he left for California, until Jimbo can get back in circulation. Thanks for understanding.

-Elsha Storm
The Editor
San Francisco, CA

Better Than Drugs
Waiting For the New Journalism, Seeking Refuge in Apathy
by Jim Trainer

I don’t cook, I don’t clean
I don’t have the energy for the scene.
I don’t got no car,
I don’t worry about the price of gasoline.

What a life, eh Brother? I’m out here on the roof (where else?) and the view from this vista is grand. There are 2 crews down there on the street working. The city is building another turnaround, just up the street from the mansion and the site of their last renovation at the corner here. They spent 9months doing the one out front and it was pure misery, brother. 9monthhs of waking up to a cement drill or, if I couldn’t sleep, seeing them gather around their trucks in the blue morning; them down there and me up here-the laborers and the ex-laborer.
In fact I just submitted a poem to Apiary Magazine chronicling my time as a crew chief in North Philly. That was some hard fucking work Brother, but the 90s were different. Aho back in the sanguine endays of the American Century you could make a buck 20 drilling crete for two days a week. You could get by, providing you kept your Barista shifts at the neighborhood coffee shop and they’d still run you a tab for coffee, groceries&smokes.
An old friend and aspiring writer wrote me recently, asking if I’d be attending our 20th High School Reunion. Besides a resounding Fuck no. I told her, and not without hubris, that I have no use for nostalgia and no use for the past. Am I holding on to past hurts? Do I still hold a grudge against certain meatheaded upper classmen who were at that time the Kings of the Fucking World? You bet. And it’s way too early in the evening to get catty, gentlemen, so, fuck it. I don’t wish nobody harm. And that’s the truth.
You know I love ya. If you don’t know that I love ya than I probably don’t.
In fact if you aren’t in my life anymore you aren’t a keeper, but you’re probably living the life an ex-Football playing choad deserves-cush-job, once-hot wife, spoiled kids, and in perhaps the most comic turn of events, supporting the nazis of the UD police force in their efforts to keep “the element” off the streets of our podunk hometown.
that town’s as good as gone
-Payday

Even though the youth is gone, and the good old days, I’d never wish to be anywhere but right here, right now. For true. The back gives out. My smoking cough has taken over my laughter. It only hurts when I laugh. The ladies have stopped paying visit (although that’s my choice mostly, bramacharya). But even in my fat&decaying state I prefer the present. I don’t wish to go back, but I do wish it could be the 90s again. When the economy was booming and the media didn’t bother you with the details of our dirty little wars and dips into theretofore unheard of countries like Sarajevo.
In the words of the late, great John Lee Hooker, in the 90s everybody friendly, even ol OBL, ODB and GHB. Aho. Good times. Shittty music, but we still had our underground.

Wishing for the days
-Minor Threat
Yep. Guess I’m a little nostalgic after all. I don’t miss being a laborer though. That’s a hard dollar Brother.
Which perhaps brings me to point. I don’t care about the US Gov being shutdown. I don’t care about Breaking Bad and I could give two fucks about Miley Cyrus. Also, your spirituality really gets under my skin. I don’t care about High School and I don’t care about punkrock.
Shall I break it down for you, good&cherished reader, country-simple?
Ok. Will do. And if you’re with me this far you understand that I am not talking about you. WE are talking about THEM, in the fine Irish tradition of warming ourselves with misery, better than whiskey-Ok, onward.
The problem is not with government. In a democracy, the government is of, by and for the people. Any problem you have with the government is a problem you have with yourself. Yep YOU.
The problem is not with the ruling class. The problem is that the ruling class are some of the best paid citizens in the Land of the Free. The problem is with the rich, and your sullen, defeatist acceptance of the shrinking middle class. You don’t read Going For The Throat to rally. There is nothing political about my writing. Aho.
I don’t lose any sleep
worrying about the state of the economy

-Circle Jerks, I Don’t
Don’t ask me about the economy. Leave it to the pros. Quit clogging up the social networks with your commentary, as if it mattered to anyone but you and your friends list. Keep watching tv and fantasising about millions of dollars made in meth deals or legions of zombies corrupting your way of life. Quit commenting on the music industry-it likes the attention and it’s nothing but boardroom rock&bullshit pop music that won’t be remembered 20 years from now save for maybe at your highschool reunion.
Just leave it to the pros. That’s what I do. Read Paul Krugman or Noam Chomsky.
And take it to the streets, Citizen. Brush up on your Amer Natl Govt and include as many folks in Your Party as possible. This distinction between Repubs&Democrats? I call bullshit. That’s their game. Ignore the detractors, don’t watch the fucking news. Get on the Gandhi trip. It’s either that or eat the Rich. And by that I mean eat the Rich people. Whatever you do, do not post things on your timeline that I will have to suffer. I can’t take it anymore. And come Sunday, read some more of Brother Don Bajema, why don’t ya? He’ll be posting a new chapter of Too Skinny, Too Small every Sunday until the Super Bowl. Which is great news b/c ever since I declared my boycott of the NFL, Sundays have been a real drag. Aho. I’m hard pressed to find anything intellectually stimulating or fun to do at week’s end, when the whole country goes numb behind a blue wall of television light.
Don’t get me wrong, I care about your opinions. Your concerns are mine brother. Which is why I implore you to get informed and become the media. Write your own blog. I will read it. I will support you. Think your position through, clearly illustrate it in a clever and/or way that is pleasurable to read. Do something besides getting up on your Facebook soapbox.
I get it, the site is a self-fuck, 6billion people thinking out loud and talking to themselves. On good days Facebook is better than the New York Times and closer to street level than The Business after a soccer game…on bad days I delete you and on worse nights I even block you. Facebook has its perks. But I am transitioning out. Now watch him dissappear. I harbor ill-will toward none, save myself, but this much madness is too much sorrow. I must willfully isolate myself and not talk for 3 days. I must get on a plane and forget about my troubles for awhile.

Brother Don Bajema’s Too Skinny, Too Small on Going For The Throat every Sunday until the Super Bowl. F the NFL. F the music industry. Eat the Rich. Go for the throat.

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the one that she hates

In Uncategorized on October 1, 2013 at 10:32 am

He said he never heard you laugh
the way you laughed
with me
we got it up to 8 and ¼ inches
in the bathroom
you sucked on it
until it grew enough to get the tape on it
and measure it
but
from where?
“the base?
the
balls?”
we could hear the old man out there
on the other side of the door,
“Guys? Hello? Hello? Guys?”
the day was getting on
and I was getting annoyed
with life
the way I can get annoyed
with life
we rolled around on the daybed
drinking the old man’s German beer
must’ve looked like
a thousand Hemingways
rolling around on the daybed
laughing
we finally said goodbye
the sun hadn’t set
yet
the old man was drunk&unintelligible
and you got in the van
and drove away.
I miss you.