- Essays: On The Road (And A Little Off)


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Rockvale, TN May 24, 2007

Hey Joe
It's about 1:35 am here in Rockvale.  I
had begun to miss your crusty old ass and
so went and looked at what you've been
putting up there in the ether.

And it's a reflection of pretty much what's
goin on with me.

I go to a little church around here, as you
know, the members of which are families
that have been here ever since the east
coast powdered-wigged Very Rich, needing a
buffer between themselves and the Injuns,
gave away land to our Irish Scots ancestors
as reward for their service in the
Revolutionary War.

Anyway, we're a small congregation of
breakaway but non-snake-handling (at least
so far) Presbyterians, and every Sunday
lately we've been lifting up our prayers
for the safety of one, and now two, of our
members currently caught up in Iraq between
their stupid religious empire and our own.

I wanted to also hit on the fact that more
and more Greenies are showin up here.  I
got a composter I just finished making out
of a old plastic 55 gallon drum, and I'm
going to get chickens soon...need a couple
of guinea hens as well to keep down the
ticks and scare off the snakes.  The crunch
is coming.  Gas will get no cheaper, the
rubes just haven't realized it yet. Peak
Oil has hit and these captains of industry
and their repressive regime partners are
milking the last of it for all they can

Global warming is real, and New Yorkers are
buying property around here so they'll have
somewhere to come when the water gets up to
their chins.

Rutherford County, where I live, is the
next county over from Davidson County,
(where Nashville is) which has the highest
population of any county in the entire
State of Tennessee.

Rutherford is also, along another of its
boundaries, the next county over from
Williamson County, arguably, some say, the
richest county in the whole Newnited
States.  So there sre resultant pressures
driving John
and Mary Public over into our space.

The local boosters are rubbing their hands
with glee; all up and down Route 99 is
construction. Last year 99 was a
ten-minute drive into Murfreesboro through
beautiful farmland, now it's a snarling,
cursing strangled mess through new
construction at 8 a.m. with four new
stoplights in the last 6 months (there used
to be just one).  All of it coming closer
and closer to Rockvale.

So in Murfreesboro they haven't heard of
the sub-prime-fiasco-driven dildo America
is taking up the ass with no butter.  The
whole fuckin County has gone crazy with

A feasibility study has already been
performed and is optimistic, not to say
jubilant, about the possibility of putting
in a goddamned Bible Theme Park, I'm not
shitting you, seeing as how Dollywood has
added millions a year to Pigeon Forge
coffers over there in East Tennessee.
Well, I'm not thrilled about the idea of a
bunch of well-off Fundamentalists coming
over here and riding The Rapture (my
proposed name for the roller coaster, if
the theme park idea does go through), and
fucking up my little Eden in the
process.  I don't think the County needs
more money and I sure don't think we need
more people.  I don't stand to do anything
but lose.

But they been moving in like crazy around
here.  I met a woman from Minnesota just
moved here with her husband a few months
back. The genuine Middle Tennessee accent
("light fay" for "late fee") is becoming
more and more rare.  I mention accents
because the minute she opened her mouth
(she sounded like Margie, the pregnant
sheriff in "Fargo") I could tell where she
was from.  And I understand, I really do.
It's friggin COLD up there most of the
time, Slim.  But it's gettin crowded here.

She asked me where I go to church, and I
told her, and then she said with a
detectable pride that THEY go to the World
Outreach Church, also a big property holder
on Route 99.  I think they're called an
outreach church because they can out-reach
everybody else. We have about maybe 70
members tops, they got about 8,000.
Big-ass traffic jam every Sunday caused by
the Christians getting their SUVs into the
parking lot.  I think I read of some 25
million dollar scandal at the World
Outreach Church in Detroit.  Anyway they're
a huge franchise.  Jesus On a Stick.

Well, I'm puttin myself to sleep here as
well as you I'm sure...and the old bed is
looking mighty good.  I'm goin to pick in
France again this August, looks like, with
my cheese-eating, wine-swilling,
left-leaning European friends.  Wheeee.

Just wanted to say heidy.

As a good friend of mine always says:

in Art and Labor