The Friday Morning Listen: Tom Waits – Blood Money (2002)

Had he not died in 1994, Charles Bukowski would have just celebrated (yesterday) his 92nd birthday. Yeah, old Hank living to the ripe old age of 92, “ripe” being the key word here as his special blend of alcohol-fueled lechery and misogyny was legendary. Still, Buke had a good heart. I’ve always been amazed at the perceptive tenderness he was able to focus on topics.

Some people might argue that his negative outlook (which I tend to think of as: not suffering fools gladly) was basically all that he had. You might think that if you weren’t paying attention. Or maybe if you were paying attention, but at just the wrong moment. I can understand that. I’m not the most positive person, tending to be a glass-half-full kind of guy. So I bet if a fleeting sideways glance was directed my way, I might be mistaken for Captain Negative™

But that’s just not the case. And despite all of the things I see wrong with with the world, and all of the monumental stupidity, I do have hope. I’m not sure how this is possible, because sometimes you run into people who are so awful that you wonder how their dishonesty and blackness hasn’t infected the rest of the world. It’s as if they’re getting away with things while (as Tom Waits related) “God’s away on business.”

Me and TheWife™ have met a few such people. I’m not sure they’re even aware of the consequences of their actions. I guess I don’t really care either. Because while they diminish the possibilities inherent in their own lives, we won’t be letting them damage us in the long run. Believe it.

The Laughing Heart

your life is your life
don’t let it be clubbed into dank submission.
be on the watch.
there are ways out.
there is a light somewhere.
it may not be much light but
it beats the darkness.
be on the watch.
the gods will offer you chances.
know them.
take them.
you can’t beat death but
you can beat death in life, sometimes.
and the more often you learn to do it,
the more light there will be.
your life is your life.
know it while you have it.
you are marvelous
the gods wait to delight
in you.

[amazon_enhanced asin="B000YQUO10" container="B00137UZ6S" container_class="" price="All" background_color="FFFFFF" link_color="000000" text_color="0000FF" /] [amazon_enhanced asin="B00005YX3K" container="B00137UZ6S" container_class="" price="All" background_color="FFFFFF" link_color="000000" text_color="0000FF" /] [amazon_enhanced asin="B004GCXYXS" container="B00137UZ6S" container_class="" price="All" background_color="FFFFFF" link_color="000000" text_color="0000FF" /] [amazon_enhanced asin="1574231057" container="B00137UZ6S" container_class="" price="All" background_color="FFFFFF" link_color="000000" text_color="0000FF" /] [amazon_enhanced asin="0446698202" container="B00137UZ6S" container_class="" price="All" background_color="FFFFFF" link_color="000000" text_color="0000FF" /]

Mark Saleski

Mark Saleski is a writer and music obsessive based out of the woods of central New Hampshire. A past contributor to Jazz.com, Blogcritics.org and Salon, he writes several weekly features including the Friday Morning Listen, (Cross the) Heartland, WTF! Wednesday, and Sparks Fly on E Street. Follow him on Twitter: @msaleski. Contact Something Else! at reviews@somethingelsereviews.com.