Riffs about the glory of journals, diaries, notebooks full of musings and importance of turning off inner-critic and not overthinking while savoring the process of transcription, curation and further creative wonderment from Kura barn in provincial Japan. With evidence with my own process.
Finally, I read straight from some barely legible poetry scribbles with meanderings about sensory depravation chambers, menthol smokes with Leonard Cohen, Pan Am flights with Zeus, Buddha, Glen Canyon, and solving algorithms with nuclear fusion.
With special thanks to all who bravely step out with creative endeavors and extra for following along with my projects and what have you.
Namechecks for: Rogério De Freitas José Naranja Jason Emde Austin Kleon Gord Downie Henry David Thoreau James Joyce
Ambient video version of a Postcards from Gravelly Beach podcast “Nepal Stupa Choruses” with a cycle of poems written on a lake heading towards a temple and tea in shadow of Annapurna – the audio in the *actual pod* is much better but just happened to film whilst recording and added a few snaps from the journey for amusement and colour, so here we are, in my kura barn studio in provincial Japan, ergo:
“Washing dishes and busted spectacles lead to rowing a lake in Nepal figuring out deity, enlightenment, peace and power with choruses fresh from diaries – plus Royal hospitals, poetic devices and question mark eyebrows. Your turn Buddha, your turn.”
Washing dishes and busted spectacles lead to rowing a lake in Nepal figuring out deity, enlightenment, peace and power with choruses fresh from diaries – plus Royal hospitals, poetic devices and question mark eyebrows. Your turn Buddha, your turn.
Let’s not lose each other amidst the table cloth being pulled out from under glasses and dishes. Meaning: some technical jibber-jabber about claiming feeds sparks a history of these sporadic, occasional (yet somehow charming, right?) literary dispatches from hand-written XML to various blogs and feeds and meanderings. Plus, about me! My name is Dave Olson (hi, more below). So, let’s continue to spend time together shall we?
Archives mailed to an invalid address, delayed upon transition, relevance no longer relevant, however, archive as needed if needed affectionately assembled
Postcard, written last year, was waiting for an address, now acquired - as such, sent this curious chap on his journey from the scotch and cigar "Drawing Room" at the Majestic Hotel in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia to a mountain town across the Pacific. Red Velvet jacket not included.
Also: “I find that postcards require something quite beautiful between countries beyond politics and governments In that that little slip of paper touched so many hands making its way from me to you. It carries so many memories and so many intentions…
At first glimpse it’s just a goofy picture scribbled up but that original photo came from me on a meandering healing journey, not all that long after we sat together in San Francisco or I hid out at your house… in the “drawing room” at the Majestic Hotel in kuala lumpur, I made friends with a barman named Sunday (wrote a poem about him), wore a red velvet smoking jacket, drank hot toddys as i picked up a terrible cold on an overnight train from Thailand where i shared a cabin with a Buddhist monk in his saffron robes, a suitcase full of cigarettes and gold watches.
From one Leo to another, we carry-on, gently, kindly and intrepidly”
Spontaneous riffs and readings from world rambling renegade letter writer with a new master’s thesis, Jason Emde who, as it goes from his home in Gifu also makes a podcast called “writers read their early sh!t”.
From the Kura barn studio, Dave meanders about Japan geography and “things not done” and hat selections for Kyoto before reading Jason’s letter to Molly, then rambles on about similarities in geography, points of view, adventures whilst recounting how he came across Jason’s work stretching over a decade or more (and including naval officer Bob), oh then 2 freeverse poems (after Gary Snyder) with Jason’s streams about “usual days” in Gifu and Vernon.
Plus name checks for James Joyce’s Ulysses, Christopher Trottier, Marshall McLuhan, Ken Babbs, Ken Bole, music bits from Bachman Turner Overdrive Live at Budokon, John K Samson (of The Weakerthans etc), hooray for ampersands and em-dashes! Also Amsterdam, London, Vancouver, Bali and most points in between, except Africa, haven’t gone there.
Taking a break from chainsaw noise cutting down bamboo, DaveO rambles on about the importance of community and correspondence (yes spelled incorrectly) – especially while in a rough patch with a chronic and complex illness #MECFS – and shares a remarkable package sent by Kerouac enthusiast Dan Bacon in Massachusetts including: scrapboook, artifacts, ephemera and memorabilia from Lowell, Jack Kerouac’s 100th birthday, and other events including the impending Town and the City music festival which inspires playing of lovely blue Tanya Donelly and Parkington Sisters vinyl record.
Also shows new-ish Cascadia passport and meanders about Gary Snyder in Japan years ago and his recent convos with poet Wang Pang ++ love of maps, letters, stories, and how we’re all part of the erstwhile Beat tradition if we are living intentionally, respecting others’ voices and creating goodness.
Happy to be your fan, fondly etc. from Giggling Piglet Studio in a historic Kura storehouse in Tsuchida, Okayama, Japan.
A rollicking rapid-fire, mixed-media introduction to The Beat Generation – made especially for youth (specifically, a 11th grade lit class at a DoD base school) – with topics including:
what made The Beats, the beats (ergo: time, place, circumstance, intentions, global mindset, searching for “holy”)
characteristics of style (freeverse, spontaneous prose, collaboration, diversity, art + craft + integrity)
notable writers and characters including: Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg William S. Burroughs, Gary Snyder, Neal Cassady, Lawrence Ferlinghetti
roots and branches extending from the Beats like: Merry Pranksters, folkies, hippies, yippies, punks, DIY and even “digital nomads”
riffs about censorship, “obscenity” trials, sexuality, religiosity
call to action about the importance everyone with something to say “saying it” – including YOU
plus more notable writers: Gregory Corso, Richard Brautigan, Ruth Weiss, Diane DiParma & currently working Ron Whitehead and Anne Waldman
namechecks and cameos for: The Clash, Tom Waits, Jello Biafra, Ken Kesey, Wang Ping, Masa Uehara, Nanao Sakaki many more…
Presented from a historic barn in provincial Japan with vinyl records, artifacts, ephemera, loads of books, postcards etc – by storymaker Dave Olson who invites you to ask questions via postcard (address included within).
from the Vancouver Courier article by Robert Alstead, Oct. 22nd, 2008
I was interviewed (and used loquacious quotes like “super lame”) for an article about train travel in the Vancouver Courier.
I am including my quotes and a few other snippets about my pet-rant, ergo: inadequate train travel between here and points south – as well as the photo by Dan Toulguet so it doesn’t disappear…
Slow train coming
Robert Alstead takes a journey north by rail from California and wonders if Canada’s vanished passenger trains will once again carry us from coast to coast – Robert Alstead, Vancouver Courier Published: Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Dave Olson, who works in marketing for Gastown web design company Raincity Studios, travels six or seven times a year by train, on business and pleasure. “I don’t care for jet travel because of the incredible hassle and huge eco-footprint,” says Olson. Like many, he would take the train more if he could. “I like the pace and not having to drive, I like the rhythm and the scenery you normally don’t see, the rail yards and seashores and forgotten neighbourhoods. I find the train-riding experience somehow charming, even poetic and certainly creativity stimulating,” he says.
However, he complains Amtrak’s evening train south is hardly convenient for trips to Olympia or Portland, seeing as travellers must make an overnight stopover in Seattle. The Amtrak Cascades is also infrequent and often booked up. Amtrak does offer several “train buses” which Olson has found “super lame” with long border waits. He’d rather take the car if there are no seats on the train, although it did mean a $124 parking bill and a chipped windshield on a recent three-day trip to Seattle. “I know we would’ve enjoyed some work or playing cards or meditating on the train,” he rues.
However, the Amtrak Cascades offers a good example of the difficulties faced in enhancing rail services.
For years, Amtrak has wanted to add a second roundtrip train between Eugene and Vancouver. However, congestion due to heavy freight movement on track this side of the border meant that a new siding needed to be added to allow trains to pass. For six years, Canadian and U.S. officials and railroad owners Burlington Northern Santa Fe had been unable to hammer out a deal over who should pay for the upgrade.
That means that a second Amtrak Cascades has been running only as far as Bellingham. Then in March of last year, spurred on by the onset of the 2010 Olympics, B.C. transportation minister Kevin Falcon announced that he was committing “up to $4.5 million” (reportedly 57 per cent of the upgrade cost) to build the siding.
In June last year, Premier Gordon Campbell marked the new service on the platform at King Street Station in Seattle by exchanging a large symbolic train ticket with Washington Governor Chris Gregoire in a photo op.
The siding was completed months ago. Amtrak is ready to go. But the service hit the buffers due to complications with the Canadian Border Services Agency, which reportedly wants $15,000 per day to clear the train.
Graham says the matter is in the hands of the B.C. government. A spokesperson for the province says it’s a federal government issue. Faith St. John, spokesperson for the CBSA, said she could not comment on the matter “because we are in discussions.” But she did say that “decisions to provide CBSA services at a new location or to expand current services take into account human resource requirements and the ability to provide security and service to the public.”
She could not say when the matter would be resolved.
Update, the article “disappeared” from the internets (mostly),