‘Status Joe’ + ‘Father’ | Cowboy Jamboree Magazine: Family Strain | 28 March 2017

First published on 3/28/2017 in Cowboy Jamboree Magazine.  To hop directly to the stories, click here. “Status Joe” is on page 11, and “Father” starts on page 12.

Many thanks to Editor Adam Van Winkle at CJ Magazine for publishing two stories of mine in the “Family Strain”-themed issue of CJ Magazine. I fell in love with CJ’s previous “Alacrity” issue — especially stories by Hillary Leftwich and Robert James Russell, and so I thought I’d try my hand at it.

These two stories definitely deal with strain.  “Status Joe” is a monologue story, or what Kathy Fish calls a “breathless paragraph.”  Mr. Van Winkle, upon acceptance of the piece, said the voice was “up our alley…worrying over ag stocks…like Duane Moore in Larry McMurtry’s Texasville.” Yes!!!

In it, a persuasive investment pitch comes from a baffling financial broker, a smooth talker whose gonna make you ask for that piece of paper he’s dying to push, gonna make you wait before he takes you on as a client, gonna make you feel like a fool if you express a doubt.  I’ve listened to a few investment spiels in my day. There might just be some good advice in there….

The next story, “Father,” one prompted by news stories of vandals leaving pork on mosque doorsteps. When, if ever, might bad behavior be excused? It’s not a politically correct question, but it’s an honest one, a truthful one.

I take comfort in the punk tagline of 3AM Magazine: Whatever it is, we’re against it.

Marc Dennis “Jesus Fucking Christ” at Hausted Kreutler, 537 W 24th St, NYC

I got thinking: Who might one ever excuse for this type of action? I worry about combat soldiers. I worry about our combat veterans. How can the parents, the brothers, the friends of slain soldiers find comfort? Can we allow them to take comfort where they might? When, if ever, might bias crimes be excused or evoke empathy?

The world is filled with gray areas. There is no right answer.

I hope you like the stories. Hop on over to Cowboy Jamboree and enjoy reading the whole issue! Thanks for visiting my blog.

Header Image: Break Glass In Case of Emergency by Ruby Anemic, photographed at the Slower than God exhibition, DeBuck Galleries, 545 W 23rd St, New York, 2014.

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