Archive for houston

Houston VIP Poetry Slam – First in the Season

Posted in bar, houston, poetry, review, southmorehouse, writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 4, 2012 by tymora42

It was good to see some of the old guard keeping watch over the up and coming Houston Poetry Slam talent. This was their first slam of the season to prepare for sending a team off to North Carolina. It was a great show, but that is hardly what I want to talk about. I might be a little rusty on appreciating the quality of the poetry involved, yet my good natured heckling skills were alive and well toned. You have to keep yourself in shape.

The venue was a low key coffee house on the east end called Secret Word Cafe. The same place Marcel Murphy, Houston Slam Team alumni, runs a writing workshop every Saturdays at 11am. The barrista / owner (i don’t even want to try and spell her name without seeing it) made a special tea for me and named it after the African name Jelani Williams gave me before he died off continent retracing his roots for the umpteenth time. Can it really be retracing if you have already done it, embraced it and started to live it?

The event was live and I am looking forward to future showcases – every Friday at Secret Word. They have a lot to work on before the Nationals in August. Some great poets spat in our face about greater issues than teen angst, politics, sexuality, color and growing up. The winner, DEEP, hit us with a first person piece about a mother sticking her babies in a dryer or an oven or a microwave. i was never sure which and it could have very well been all three. They were nearly going to forego the encore. i could not let that happen.

Marcel performed a sacrificial piece. It was not his best. It was not his worst either though. My only disappointment (aside from not seeing some of the old school greats: Karega, Rassul, Murph, Marie Brown, Craig Lindsey, Cedric “Brother Ced,” Alex Wukman, Doug Shields…. this list could go on for a while) is that Kyle Blue never stepped out onto the matt. His girl did. She rocked a piece about an aspberger kid wanting to be treated like an adult. My favorite was Peter “the Rock.” Although he did not win that night, I am positive he will be a member of the Houston Slam Team.

Come out and support them. Secret Word Cafe every Friday. Doors open at 8pm.

Go F Yourself – another Hash post

Posted in adventure, beer, blog, houston, rant, relationships with tags , , , , , , , , on January 30, 2012 by tymora42

Tonight I got to tell more deserving people to go fuck themselves. Yes, this is another Hash post.

We ran trail, a shiggy 5 miles through south Humble’s development. Only part of it was green belt sidewalk. The rest was marsh and twigs, my kind of terrain. Being a swamp born coonass those second wave marathon runners slowed me down through the brush. The first wave was long gone. The second could take me In a clear straightaway. This, however, was home. I ducked and weaves like willy the wabbit, bowing my sunglasses down when eye pokers threatened, letting my arms grow numb from the brambles and stickers, hopping over the wet bits by staying close to the trees and hobbling over downed logs. When there were not logs I made them with swift kicks to trees. I was determined to keep my feet dry. That was dad’s first rule of backcountry hiking: Always keep your shoes dry. Never get wet unless you have to.

Despite the three or four river crossings, I managed to have dry socks when I rolled into circle. Yes, I bragged. Yes, I knew I would have to drink for it. Yes, I threw a sock in the two faces of my accusers. Yes, they made me do a tea bag down down. This is where they laid me on the ground and poured beer through my sock and into my mouth. I knew it was coming so I saved my beer for it. With the two kegs sponsored by Karbach brewery floated in under an hour I knew the only alternative was pickle juice.

The walkers got lost. A game warden wrote a citation. A Galvez hasher exposed our identity. A crazy girl ran with pickles. Am I missing anything?

They spanked a twenty one year old birthday girl at the on after. Barbeque sauce was shuffleboarded down the row with a high score of 1 for team BBQ.

Someplace around there I started talking shit. Nah, the shit talking had begun long ago for me. Tonight I just kept them rolling. Some old guy I have met at every function played the not remembering me game. Guess what? You can go fuck yourself you old English prick. He was only interested in my persona because I got to spank the hot birthday girl and he didn’t. There were a few others. They got theirs. Most of those that got it last time either remembered or avoided which suited me just fine. Thats one way to remember someone. The hash casher girl asked me again who I was, which can be a bit upsetting because she actually has to write my name down to record runs or whatever. You remember 30 percent of what you write.

Chuggers asked about my broken legged friend. G did not. He probably has Alzheimer’s anyway. I respected my elders and told him, “Not that you remember but…” Blah. I also drank in circle for a titty twist and comment about someone’s dead grandma. Life is good. The trail was great. The on after had awesome food by an unappreciated Assgrabber. I jerked off and went to sleep.

Go fuck yourself.

Houston Hash gets a Humpty Dumbass

Posted in adventure, beer, blog, houston, travel with tags , , , , , , , , , , on January 9, 2012 by tymora42

My buddy broke his leg. I broke a vow. He considered this an even trade.

I have been running with this group called the Hash Hound Harriers. If you are not in the know, their concept is simple: follow the rabbit and drink along the way. They are a multinational organization with independently operated cells across the globe, like terrorists except for the drinking part. I mentioned that. Drinking. It almost needs to be mentioned again. And I am sure it will be.

The “hare” lays flour along his tracks. The rest of the group chases him. Every once in a while (1.5 miles give or take) they “beer check” you. That means you drink. At the end of the route is a keg and a circle and songs and dancing and shit talking and cuttin up. That means you drink more. It’s fun.

Right before that, the more drinking and singing and circle stuff, is when my buddy took a dive off a 12 foot wall.

This was not the normal hash run. It was actually a bike ride. They have all of these different variations in the 40 plus years the Houston Chapter has been active. They call the bike version the “Cychohash.” We rode 12 miles (really 15 because we lost trail for a bit and wandered in circles) ending at these abandoned grain silos along the bayou. You could climb up inside of them through this hole and a rope on the back side. I won’t say it takes too much of an adventurer to explore this, but evidently it does take enough of one since most of these hashers chose to stay on the ground.

And these people chase other people through the woods and back alleys of the city and the more “shiggy” a trail means more water and weeds and mud and forest obstacles. When a 12 year looked up the pipe, grabbed the rope and started his ascent with nobody following behind, I had a sudden revelation: There is a difference between an athlete and an adventurer.

I joined H4 because I thought it would be adventurous. Sometimes it is, but for the most part these guys are all athlete. I am not an athlete. Athletes were the guys who kicked my ass in highschool. I had a rude reminder of this at their New Years party. I felt like the social outcast nerd that crashed the jock frat party except they had grown up a little. They served better beer, they played terrible music on a soundsystem that could not handle it and instead of pushing me around they just ignored me and forgot that they knew who I was. Happy twenty twelve!

A few Hashers cross over into the adventurer athlete realm of the Vann Diagram. So, what’s the difference? An athlete is trying to win. An adventurer does it because it is there. Athletes avoid danger. Adventure seekers dive headlong into it. Athletes want speed. They want to hurry and get there. Adventurers crave the journey.

This pipe and silo was not at all the leg breaker of my buddy. Humpy Dumpty climbed a wall. He did not so much as fall as he did drop a couple feet from a hanging position and land awkward. He heard it snap. He saw it dangling. He shouted the only name he knew. Some of the crew heard him. It was a couple of women I met earlier. We had shaken hands and introduced ourselves. I remembered both of their crazy nicknames given to veteran Hashers who have done stupid things in the past to get those names. As my friend shouted my name they asked him, “Whose that?” Go figure. Nerd in the frat house.

Oh, they know my name now. They yelled for a medic. Nobody officially stepped up while everyone wanted to do their part in helping, which mostly included snapping pics of him on the ground with their cell phone cameras. I observed for a second to see if anyone was more qualified than my meager Eagle Scout wilderness survival skills. They weren’t.

“Step back,” I said. “Don’t move him. I need two sticks and some rope.”

Nobody moved. I was still not important enough. I found the sticks myself and used my scarf belt to stabilize the wood on either side of his leg. I normally wear a faerie scarf belt. This time was no different. You never know when you may need to tie something up. I used the scarf to brace the wood on either side of the fracture. This ex-navy dude whips out a cord of manilla from the trunk of his car. Together we bound him up with bowlines and half hitches and a square knot for good measure.

“No ambulance,” my buddy cried, “No insurance.” It looked like we were doing this ourselves.

Once his leg was immobilized so as not to exacerbate the break, three tough guys fireman carried him to the back of the hare’s car while I called his girlfriend. She followed us to the Methodist Hospital. We checked him into the emergency room.

Nurses and Doctors from other floors gathered round to look at my handiwork. I was proud. They even left the splint on to take the x rays. As proud as I was showing everyone pictures and retelling the story, that pride was missing one persons validation. I called my dad. Part of me did it to tell him about the experience (read: adventure). The other part, the part I did not realize until I was actually talking to him, was that I wanted to thank him for providing me with the skills to take control of a situation like this with adequate knowledge and calmness to handle it correctly.

How did I break a vow? I said I was not going to go to Ruddyards, a dive bar my broken ankles friend frequents, the biggest reason he is always broke, and just as big a reason he has enough weight sensitivity issues to not want to be called Humpty

Dumbass. Of course he went there that night. He needed some comfort food in the vein of 151 and coke. Yeah, I went inside to clink glasses with his stupid ass and break my vow.

He told me, “Alright. We’re even now, but I guess that ski trip is off, huh?”

remembering southmorehouse

Posted in band, bar, beer, blog, family, houston, life, love, music, passage, performance, review, southmorehouse, technology with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 12, 2010 by tymora42

southmorehouse logo

Tooling around on the social networks that will remain nameless I saw a post onto a friend, the poet / musician Aaron Trumm’s wall (this may be a better link to him) from a guy I knew back in the southmorehouse days, Alex Wukman, another poet that frequented the community. He commented from his mobile on watching Marie Brown, a Houston slam poet, performing at Inprint! , probably for slam nationals, and remarked how great she was. “When Ruby do hair, Ruby do hair right!” I can remember her starting the rhythm. Alex said he almost forgot how good it was. So did I.

southmorehouse was an avante garde art space, sometimes called a venue, sometimes a gallery, sometimes a commune. Overall it was a loose knit community of outsider artists in many genres. As quoted from a lighter bearing the logo that I pocketed one night, it was a “home for the functionally insane.” The best summary of its existence from beginning to end was written by Buffalo Sean’s Art Blog. Sean would know. In the early days he would pass out drunk on the sidewalk and we would spray paint a chalk outline around him. In the later days he would pass out drunk and we would spray paint a chalk outline around him. Although the location changed, the outlines remained. After 7 years Sean had spray paint outlines of his body all over the city.

I snooped around Alex’s profile not sure if I should send him a friend request. We knew each other. I remembered him. Self doubt crept in and asked if I really thought he remembered me when I saw a link on his favorite movies, “Southmore House: the Rise and Fall.” Edd McCoy, president of the community in the last of its days and art coordinator for the three years prior, told me of a rumor he heard that this was being created. We both thought it was pretty bold for any movie to be made about the venue without consulting either of us. Now that I saw the title “Rise and Fall” it was downright shocking.

After I got over the elation of somebody actually wanting to make a movie about this piece of time that played a major part in my life, I began to notice discrepancies that unsettled me. The first was the separation of “southmore” and “house.” The second was that they capitalized it. Not being much for capitals I tried my hardest to make the lower case clear to the people who made the flyers, but they were making flyers so i was happy enough about that. One thing that did come across eventually was the lack of separations. Evidently not to these guys.

The next, and the biggest, was the lack of the logo anywhere on the page. That logo was a branded symbol encompassing the spirit of the (dis)organization. One part anarchist’s circled A, another part the chaotic randomness within the order of pi, a house with a swooping roof and arched doorway like the original when it was on Southmore street, simple enough to be drawn quickly with a paint can, encouraged to be done on as many occasions as would arise, yet flamboyant enough to be penciled with care and stenciled over with a sharpie there was never a set graphic style to the logo. It was made for everyone to use. It was trademarked and copyright free. But I still never saw it anywhere on their profile page.

So, I looked harder and realized from the photos and videos and comments posted that these were all the kids from the post founder days. These were the attendees that took it over after 2005 when it turned its focus to the hardcore scene. One friend that I do keep in touch with must have seen the “Tyson Moore likes Southmore House: the Rise and Fall” post on my page and went to check it out while I was still perusing for the logo. He seconded the comment Alex made about not focusing just on the music. Alex mentioned the poets. Doug Shields, an event coordinator at southmore, really jump started the slam scene in Houston at the space. Another guy brought up the theatrical production of “The High Elves Christmas Play” hinting at the other stage presentation offered in the pre mid decade years. Rob, the aforementioned friend, said he had the best birthday of his life there. He had pictures to prove it. Was that the night when Organ Failure from Super Happy Funland played Robot Parade and Muff of Amish Acid Dealer knocked over the cabinet? We could not get the smell of vinegar and mustard out of the floors no matter how much Terry, Wendell, and Guido tried. Yes, in case you were wondering, that is what that smell was. Armpits, ass, and vinegar. Maybe a little corn syrup dried up and leftover from the Halloween Blood Bath party. The good ole days.

These memories made me seek out pictures, videos, blogs, whatever would show up in the first couple of google pages. This was problematic. The version of the house that will be remembered by people who do not read will be the latter years when it ended. In 2000 when it started we were on the edge of social technology. Digital camera were astronomically expensive. You can imagine how much streaming web cams cost. You were lucky if your cell phone had color much less the ability to take images or, god forbid, video. Facebook had not even been invented yet. The documentary had 400 friends. I can only imagine how many friends the actual place would have had. For better or worse we touched many lives. If you go to the place our website used to be, southmorehouse.com, somebody bought it up and is selling painting on it.

My next favorite summary was from Loop Scoop in a nostalgic look back on Houston in honor of their 200th post. “#83: the southmorehouse for being whatever it wanted it to be.”

So, I ask you who find this to tell me in the comments about your favorite show at southmorehouse. Make it as long as you want. Put it on your blog and provide a link for us. If you were involved in any way, put a link to yourself. Tell us what you did. Tell us what you are doing. Post those rare pictures and video. Especially the pre 2005 days.

Thanks to everyone who made up southmorehouse. You were the best.

Houston Death Scene

Posted in death, faeries, houston, life, story with tags , , , , , , , , , , on July 19, 2009 by tymora42

Houston Death Scene | short story | modern fantasy realism

Houston Death Scene | short story | modern fantasy realism

A short story about a near death hit and run in the southern metropolitan museum district. There we meet faeries and an angel to teach him a lesson about life and living.

I almost died. Maybe I did. Maybe I am walking in a parallel world where the car missed. Maybe this is the mystery of the afterlife, a world where you keep on living. Is that heaven or hell?

In Houston we crossed the street of the Contemporary Art Museum to the Fine Arts. An old friend worked there. We would find out later that he had already left for the day. I was with my best friend, a girl, and this guy from Massachusetts. Two others from Salem, the town of Hawthorne, were in our group as well, but they were laid up in a hotel suffering from heat exhaustion. This was only the beginning months of the southland’s brutal summer. Another good friend called to make sure I would be at the Last Concert Café to meet him in a few hours. Since I was only in town for a short amount of time, three days, it was important that I made things happen quick and with efficiency. I was on the phone with him as I crossed the street.

click here to view the full story on a stylized page