A big sign that I am approaching a drug-related “rock bottom” is that I run out of possessions of value to sell for drug money. Eventually, everything is in the pawn shop, or the junk shop, or the clothing resale shop. Drugs gone, and with nothing left to pawn, I begin desperately seeking ways to acquire more saleable property. This is usually easier than acquiring the actual cash itself. This is the point at which I have turned to boosting and resale.

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Support us or we die!

Our fancy Yankee benefactor has pulled out, their seed injected into our womb of truth NO MORE!  Give us you money now!  Press the cash button below and impregnate SHUN with the child of the THE PEOPLE via your credit card or paypal balance, to be presented upon Issue The Thirteenth!  Let that day upon which it drops be known as "Holy Day Alpha" for one thousand years!  Huzzah!

Fuck You Facebook! 


Am I the only person who buys cigarettes anymore? No? Then why the fuck are you always tryin’ to bum a smoke from me?

Today alone, five people (including you) have seen me smoking and, like buzzards drawn to a hot carcass, sidled up and popped The Question: “Hey bro/dude/man, can I bum one of those?”

Now, I understand these are lean times. I spent my last $6 on this pack, and I’m hoping it will last at least until the end of the night. Had I acquiesced in each request, I’d have a fourth of a pack gone, and I’ve hardly even smoked one yet. 

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In the near future, all humans will be under permanent, constant surveillance. It will be impossible to commit crimes without repercussion. These are the last moments of the human as individual: noble animal, distant cousin to the wolf, the nutria, and the whale. But what of all the cool crimes? What will all the vandals and thieves do? How will the postlegal troublemaker survive?

Fear not. If you are reading this publication, you are most likely a fool, and the law has no power over a fool. By definition, laws cover only foreseeable ways to fuck things up. A truly innovative fuckup is always legal! If you find your spirit cramped by this nations laws, that is not a failure of the legal system, but a failure of YOURS.

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the downside of homicide

Somewhere deep in our hearts, each one of us has that one, special person we’d really like to kill. Some cheating lover, a treacherous friend, some relative who did us wrong, violators and perpetrators all; and on our darkest, stormiest, drinkiest nights, we consider how to bring about their demise.

Of course, most of us do nothing more than fantasize about our favorite felony. We work it all out in the scheming madness of our minds, plotting diabolical revenge over a bottle of cheap red, until we remember that our dear mother’s birthday is next week, so we’d better put a pin in the whole ‘murder’ thing for now, and send her a nice card.

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November 9th we will lie beached, exhausted, our civic ejaculate foam on the waves,

and turn our heads from what walks out of the water. Why do we give any shits? Why do we participate in this contentious sham? Your civil liberties are toast either way, and so probably is the environment and any hope of a sane foreign policy. But what’s that piping up, below my bleeding heart and my polluted lungs? It is a squalling, politically contested baby bag. I want to continue to be Not Pregnant, Not Mommy, despite the facts of sex and the perfidy of condoms. Republican appointed Supreme Court = no abortion, Democratic appointed Supreme Court = yes abortion. Does this mean I should vote Democrat? 

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People I don’t like very much often really like Mayonnaise

My first job was at the Subway on Vets at Bonnabel. People would be like, “gimme the tuna fish.” That shit was one part tuna to one part mayonnaise. I’d scoop it out with the little ice cream scoop and be like, “ok what the fuck you want on this?”


I’d give them this real shitty look, like, “Really? For fuckin real, you fat white doughy piece of shit?” So I’d take the little mayo squeeze bottle and give them like one tiny thin stripe of mayonnaise and put the bottle down and look up at them and be like, “Ok, what now?”

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We’re making a lot of progress against bike thievery these days and that’s a problem.

Bike theft is bike access, so when individuals and institutions speak out against organized bike theft and resale, they are necessarily saying “the poor do not deserve access to even the most basic forms of transportation” and are most likely bad, or at least misguided and must be shamed at bars and online.

Let's look at the basic economics of riding bicycles, a mode of transit that we can agree, everybody deserves access to.  $80 is no more than an honest person should have to pay for an honest bike.  With prices for a ridable new (or even used) bike around $300, the only way to bridge that gap for the economically disadvantaged is a well-maintained network of bike thieves and chop shops.  These networks will wither and die when we do not turn a blind eye to their activities.

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It’s an election year, so everybody is talking about nazis

Globally, the policies of the Third Reich are gaining traction again. From South African white rights groups to Norwegian white power bands, from anti-immigrant far-right political parties to xenophobic attacks on African or Middle-Eastern refugees, self-styled Nazis are bustin' out all over the place.

But we don't have to look to the Old World to find pro-Nazi sympathies. Take a moment to consider the role Nazis have played right here in the Greater New Orleans Metropolitan Area. I’m talking, of course, about Jefferson Parish, where our locally-grown Hitlerites have been remembering the dream of the Thousand Year Reich since the Eisenhower administration.

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Trigger happy shooters of town:  if you’re going to  continue trading bullets with your cohort, why don’t you learn from history and coordinate a time and place to do it?

It’s called a duel, and some of the “leading men” of previous eras resorted to it to settle their disputes.

Politicians and newspapermen were especially prone to gunfighting in the late 1800s. Street duels involving editors, reporters, and politicians were not infrequent.

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You ruined this city, god damned Shun readers.

It wasn’t rich New Yorkers, it wasn’t Movie Stars, it wasn’t tourists. It was you, you turdling asswipes, that made this place unbearable. You darling, little fucking special-rebellious-snowflakes, who bike down my street in stupid, cookie-cutter outfits designed to show New Orleans that it is your originality which will save us.

Fuck, you’re awesome! Thanks for coming here.

The fact that you picked up this goddamned “zine” or whatever the hell you call this bespoke, printed bullshit, so you can choke on American Spirits while bragging to your friends you left behind in Ohio that New Orleans is this edgy paradise built just for you is proof enough. “I only read words on paper, like Emma Goldman or the non-retarded brother from Of Mice and Men. I keep it real” you say. If there was any justice in the world, the dreck you now hold in your hands would have been dipped in skin-transmittant poison at the printer. 

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My nightmares are different from your nightmares

As a member of the gloriously well-respected and glamorous profession known as nursing, I have been well trained in the ways of cultural and bariatric sensitivity. I am aware that many medical conditions can lead to obesity, but I looked in your chart, and you don’t seem to have any of those. It took five people to hold apart your legs and the flap above your vulva for me to attempt to shove this plastic tube up your pisser. I mean somebody is feeding you, because you can’t fucking move yourself, and I daresay since Tammy and Billy are clearly giving you the Popeyes and Double Big Gulps you’re asking for, they at least care about you, or they’d let you live on your own blubber like a hibernating bear.

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Your final descent into madness should really Be planned in advance.

After all, if it creeps upon you unexpectedly, it might go unnoticed--as madness oft goes unrealized by the self--and not be enjoyed as I feel descents into madness should be. 

The pressure is just too much, right? Since you’re on the brink of a psychological breakdown, why not divide your mental instabilities into a series of fun activities? Plan your itinerary, make a date of it, do a shit-ton of DMT, and just, quite literally, go nuts. Here are some ideas to get you started:

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My name is Lucy, it used to be Luke

About six months after my sexual reassignment surgery, I was ready to fuck. Really ready. My daily sessions with the vaginal dilator and its not-a-cock inertia had become a cruel torment. I found a man on OkCupid. He looked perfect: tattoos and thin cruel lips. His name was Franz. We agreed to meet at a bar.

I should have known something was wrong from the very beginning. I have DD tits and Franz didn’t even glance at them. He chatted about his job—he subbed at a preschool—and he did not try to get me drunk. I got drunk anyway. As soon as there was a lull in the conversation, I told him that I am a filthy slut and that I wanted to lick his boots while he violently fucked me with no consideration for my pleasure. 

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I once met the man who cut all of the glory-holes on the West Coast.

“Well, not all of them - but about 90% of ‘em.  I just love it when somebody’s beat me to it!” he tells me.

I was hanging out with one of weed legislation’s great champions, sitting and smoking, as he introduced everyone there to each other: “this is ██████ he’s a dancer, this is █████  she’s a flower arranger, this is ████ he’s an artist, ██████ is from--where? Suriname? ‘studying’, and this is ██████ - he works in sales, but his passion is, uh, well he’s drilled all the glory-holes on the West Coast.” 

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A guy in his underwear comes into my yard during the rainstorm today

I can’t tell what he is asking for but it seems urgent—maybe he wants to wait it out under my lawn umbrella? No, no, I think he’s saying he needs to...pee? Yes he is telling me he needs to pee and is looking around my yard in the rain for a good place to do it.

He points at potential pee targets while looking to me for approval. I stammer words such as “Go piss across the road!” and “What the fuck?”

He finally opts to pee near the table, while making far more eye contact with me than I would have had the roles been reversed.

He thanks me and stumbles back out into the rain.

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Our city is experiencing boom times these days, for sure.

Every parking lot is now an art market, punks make a living writing bad poetry on typewriters, and you can’t swing a dead cat without hitting Elvis Costello. Even the Neutral Ground Rats always have enough dough to stay drunk.

Yet dark times line this cloud of silver and gold. Looted by ravenous developers, absentee landlords, and thousands of other people who want a slice of our spicy pie, homes are bought, tenants evicted, the place is spruced up and rented out on AirBnB. And every driver in the city knows there’s never any place to park.

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The Katrina Deniers

Like most recent transplants to New Orleans, my only exposure to Hurricane Katrina was the horrific imagery portrayed by the national media. How can one forget the devastating damage brought upon the people and places of the lower Ninth Ward, the flooding and wind damage to the surrounding area, and the emotional impact of the storm throughout America and across the world?

I pose this question to anyone whose eyes were transfixed to their television throughout that terrible catastrophe and its aftermath: have you visited the lower Ninth Ward since that time of infamy? I have. I walked its streets, ventured to one of its gas stations, gave the man behind the counter a sheath of bills in exchange for a pack of cigarettes. And I took something from the experience. Which is this: Hurricane Katrina is the biggest conspiracy since the first moon landing.

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A Message to the Queerlings

The elder Queerdos find your obsession with gender identity to be immature, pretentious, and annoying. Why do you find it so necessary to ‘identify’ with a human gender? Humans are disgusting and lame. When your elders engaged in gender bending it made the dumb humans feel uncomfortable. But now you allow well-intentioned imbeciles to make YOU feel uncomfortable without even trying. Your elders did not identify as either gender; they identified as what they were: wing-nut alien freakshows. They have no ‘gender preference’ because they are post-human androgynes, and the approval of the masses is not necessary because the masses are asses. Classless, flaccid, plastic masses, with massive asses passing rancid gasses.

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Franken Tits

I got a boob job in October of 2013. I could spend a few moments here justifying what may sound like an act of self-indulgent vanity and decidedly anti-feminist conformity to the mainstream, but fuck you, my tits rock.

I’d like to blame my mistake on a painkiller-induced haze, but the truth is that I also continually schedule myself for appointments during my period, so I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised when I realized I had scheduled a client long before the incisions and purple-black bruises covering my breasts had time to heal. Canceling was out of the question; this was a multi-hour appointment, and I needed the money.

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DO you Even like your “old timey” band?

When you were a glue-sniffing teen stealing liquor from your parents’ liquor cabinet, were your anti-authoritarian acts of revelry done to the sound of freight train inspired King Oliver covers? Were you the kid who celebrated a good crime-spree by jumping in the car and raging to Ella Fitzgerald at full blast?

No, you were listening to The Replacements or The Butthole Surfers, or whatever brand of party-punk/alternative-metal lit a fire under your ass at the time. Fueled by puberty, angst, and all the drugs you could get your grubby mitts on, the washboard wasn’t high on your list of priorities. Maybe you were even a good student, shying away from drugs and alcohol until college. Maybe you were still listening to No Doubt.

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If ever you wake up and there’s graffiti on the St.Roch market

that says “Shut the fuck up about no affordable groceries around here when there’s a Save-A-Lot eight blocks away, but outside of the designated cool neighborhood you care so much about, filled with actual poor people and cheap processed food so you’re not comfortable going there, you dipshit numbnuts,” I’m pretty sure it was me who wrote that.

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BEAUTY TIPS FOR lazy sluts

Papa Was A Rolling Stone inspired me in strange ways as a kid. I don’t remember much more of it than the first stanza, but that’s enough. Papa was a man, he didn’t come home much, and it could be assumed that he was having fun wherever he was hanging his hat. My nine year old take on this was: be Papa—fuck being the person writing a whiney song about Papa.

The arrival of hormones 5 years later synthesized with this lesson, and I arrived at a Grand Unifying Theory: Sex, yes please. It took me about 6 more years to realize that fucking leads to yelling unless you make it very clear that you are a stone and plan to roll. The only downside is a bit of slut-shaming, which is the marmite of bummers: inexplicable, but one may simply choose not to eat it.

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I walked into a hotel yesterday needing something to wear because of a disgusting accident.

Don’t ask me what happened, that’s not important, make something up. As I’ve been doing for years I found my way to the nearest fancy hotel and told a story about a lost coat. I scrunched the corners of my eyes to indicate warmth and trailed my sentences to indicate shared class and experiences. I described my item as, “black, about to here, business casual, YOU know.” This has never failed to glean me a garment, usually much nicer than anything I would actually buy.

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Choadly Winebox’s ethics & etiquette

In this age of entitlement and individualism, sometimes we forget how our actions can affect others. Let’s look at some ways we can help make our world a better one.


When some gal passes you and yells at you that you’re biking the wrong way don’t yell “Eat shit bitch!”—that’s sexist. Call her a fucking asshole.


That guy who won’t stop hitting on you isn’t “a prick”—his gender isn’t what’s at issue, it’s his actions. Call him a useless little stain, because isn’t that what he really is?

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GET free shit while Effecting social change! Don’t sit down at a sit-in and wait for the pepper spray Put on your running shoes and try rioting instead

More than 200 people were arrested during Baltimore’s riot late in April. Luckily, about half of them were released from jail without charges, mostly because the cops had no idea who had done what during the chaos, leaving prosecutors with little evidence. Which brings us to the good news: cops are notoriously bad at their jobs, and an untold number of people, hundreds or perhaps more, got away with various crimes during the riots, from stealing booze and drinking it in public to smashing cop cars and straight-up arson.

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Don’t ask questions in a convenience store.

Don’t ask questions in a convenience store. There is nothing to ask about. Ever been a long line at the convenience store? It’s because someone is asking a question.

“Hard pack, huh? Hard pack. Lemme see. Well, it’s the same price, right? Hard pack. Okeh. Lemme think about that.” No! Don’t think about that. You have smoked untold thousands of cigarettes. Just get a pack.

The products in a convenience store are the most common of our consumerist society. You know all you need to know about them. You don’t need to know the farm from which the chicken in the taquitos was sourced. You don’t need to ask if they have that obscure IPA you enjoyed back in Seattle. Just get your fucking PBR-smokes-candy, and get the fuck out.

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These FUCKING JEANS made me a feminist

Of late there has been a rising call for awareness of women’s issues, of a need for feminism that is greater than ever. Normally I dismiss this as the irrational hysterics that characterise a woman’s behavior, crocodile tears about problems that I was pretty sure we had solved in the 80’s sometime. But recently a friend let me borrow her jeans, and just by wearing this one article of women’s clothing for a few days, this one fucking pair of jeans, I have a completely reformed perspective. Feminism is necessary in today’s world, and I am proud, (if surprised) to call myself an ally now.

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Long before I was a St Claude avenue junk man, I was called the hitman

It was 1970 and I was living with my really hot girlfriend in New Jersey. She was a punch card operator, which is about as exciting as it sounds. One day I convinced her to call in sick and we went to Fun City (they didn’t start calling it ‘The Big Apple’ until the until World Trade Center was built). Central Park, The Zoo, lunch at Tavern on the Green.

The Supreme Court had ruled in the late ‘60s that entertainment with any aesthetic value whatsoever was protected under the First Amendment, which triggered a free-for-all in the porn industry. Times Square, especially 8th Ave., exploded with dirty book stores, peep shows, “massage” parlors, and live sex shows. Linda Lovelace in “Deep Throat” was packing the grindhouses 24/7.

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When I first started hooking, I worked for an agency.

The term “agency” is a bit misleading; the entire operation consisted of a few hookers, a shitty website with photos of Russian models from 1994, and an old guy who worked by day in insurance and by night answered a pay-as-you-go phone and referred drunk, inexperienced clients to us. 

I’ve always been afraid of commitment (except in relationships—I’m available, your mom will love me, and I’m totally marriage material, y’all), so when Jim, the aforementioned old guy, told me I’d have to choose a name, I asked for a few days to decide on one. I hadn’t thought about this aspect of the job. The persona, I mean. Actually, I hadn’t thought much about what the job would really be like at all. I just knew that I was tired of being broke, tired of stressing about debt, and I’d fucked some pretty ugly guys in my time, so I figured, as long as I was armed with condoms and lube, I was as prepared to bump uglies with random old guys for cash as anyone could be.

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When you spend a lot of time on the streets, you begin to classify bums by the different drugs they use as an easy way to predict their behavior. You, of course, have your languid weed bums and their new sub-group, the K2 bum, who spends all day in a dead-eyed stupor talking to himself and staring at the ground. You have your heroin bums who nod off mid-sentence and your crack bums who rage all night and into the early morning hours until they finally hit some kind of critical mass around sunrise and begin to believe the birds are out to get them.

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So there was this short period, eight years or so when I wasn’t so great about brushing my teeth

When you spend a lot of time passed out on your couch (porch, lawn, the sidewalk in front of Canseco’s), dental hygiene slowly slips from your routine. I could sometimes manage an a.m. palate-cleansing brush, but that just wiped the taste of the night before out of my mouth. Of course, for that purpose, whiskey works equally well, so there were a few weeks in there when the ol’ chompers were completely neglected.

I went to the dentist when I finally got a job that offered dental insurance. My dentist, Dr. Mark D. Anderson, looks like an older, nicer, somewhat more straight Ricky Martin. As he told me I needed twin root canals ($1200) and crowns ($800), I heard maracas in the distance, along with a softly plucked guitar.

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oh how I love Queensnake dot com

There is no more terrifying performer working in pornography today than Queen Snake.The maniacal cackling and screams of glee as she fills herself with tacks, broken glass, and/or those spiky green things that fall off trees are perhaps the greatest product of Western culture to date. I can’t jack off to it, but I can’t stop watching it either.

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on the Aesthetics of Unsolicited Dick Pics

Too many guys neglect to take into account, when composing an unsolicited dick pic, that the austerity of the medium’s fundamental constraints can produce surprising impact, provided the artist uses what little context he has available to create narrative and drama.

A Hemingwayesque approach to the economy of formal elements offers a simple, honest profundity. (You know Hemingway must have sent righteous dick pics). Don’t just show us your worked-up hog; tell us why we need to care about it. Give it a name and a history. Matted blood in your pubes is guaranteed to create a lasting impression. Why not introduce some color with a smudge of lipstick? There is a substantial freight of social and cultural context encoded in the choice of shade. Bright unsaturated reds and pinks suggest naive innocence and the moral complexity of slumming. Darker, plummy shades indicate a proclivity for the sophisticated, while bold reds evoke exacting, timeless good taste. Glitter tells us you’re not allowed to work around children. To announce that you’re the kind of man who reaches out and takes what he wants in life, juxtapose lipstick with a little bit of shit.

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Pretend to buy something you can’t afford

Set your sights on a fancy car, or that high-rise condo or office building. Dress the part and convince the salesperson that you have the means, the wherewithal, and the desire, and that you are willing to be pampered before you make up your mind. Just before you sign the check, say you’re going to look at other options and walk away.

Enjoy all the fun of capitalism without the buyer’s remorse. The more money that’s on the line, the greater the adrenaline high; why should the wealthy have all the fun? The worst that can happen is they check your credit and turn you away. Don’t let rejection scare you; your mission is to get as close as possible to the monetary transaction without exchanging any actual money.

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My bosses think I’m gay.

I haven’t given them any reason to think otherwise. Sometimes I talk kind of gay, and I mention guys I’ve dated in casual conversations with my co-workers. But the women I’ve dated? I refer to them as “partners,” or I don’t talk about them at all.

I want my bosses to think I’m gay. My bosses are straight white leftists, and if there is one thing I know about straight white leftists, it’s that they feel guilty, guilty, guilty. They feel guilty because they know that the neo-liberal capitalist system privileges them over pretty much everyone else who isn’t wealthy.

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I had cocktails with A girlfriend,

sharing tallboys in the alley until it started raining and we ducked into the dive bar on the corner. They were completely empty and listening to Nickelback. We were the sole patrons, so they gave us a bus tub full of jell-o shots and we took at least all of them.

I took a cab home to avoid the rain, rolling my jello-shot face against the damp back window, thinking about how sexy I was. “Do you want me to…suck your dick?” He didn’t miss a beat, saying a strong, hard “Yes” and pulling over onto a suburban street. I dove clumsily between the two front seats, seeing his face for the first time, bloated and sweating with excitement. I dove down. Tide? Wafted up from his open zipper as I smashed his soft dry dick into my mouth—another jell-o shot. I deep throated the warm skin putty, my face buried deep under his massive belly, the pubic hair on his balls under the tide was: cat smell/video games/smoking indoors when you’re not supposed to/cosplay/keep your dead cats in a freezer until you have time to bury them. He came as soon as he got hard and I swallowed all the cat smell stale reheated kitten milk down my throat, hopped into the backseat, and re-announced my address. Shouted “Bye!” like a child leaving grandpa’s house. He replied, “I have two days off and a king-sized bed and the best sound system in the city.”

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Let Us Now Praise Food Stamp Anarchists

We commend you, food stamp anarchists of New Orleans. You have found a way to subtly overthrow the state—by bleeding it to death!

You’re not at all like those boring, sincere French and Russian anarchists, for whom the crumbs of a corrupt state would be as foul-tasting as the banquets of the master’s table. They believe in self-sustaining communities, mutual solidarity, individual respect and a larger, human love.

It’s obvious these stodgy, black & white European anarchists don’t understand real anarchism, which involves finding a way to make the government pay for your appetites.

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21 Ways to Get Out Of Debt

1. Don’t answer unknown numbers

2. If you have a voicemail from a debt collector, don’t listen to it

3. If you answer the phone and it’s a debt collector, laugh haughtily whilst wearing unicorn fur coats and marinating your manicure in mermaid caviar and say “You’ll never get that money”

4. Say “my darling” after harsh statements to soften the blow and seem demure

5. “You’ll never get that money, my darling”

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He hired me to do A smoking session

I was sitting in the computer lab at school, nervously toggling between my work email and a paper. I didn’t know what a smoking session would be exactly, but I smoked at bars. I worried that my fingers weren’t long and slender enough.

He looked like a San Francisco leather daddy when he opened the door, so I immediately felt safe. Squat and muscular, clipped bald. He asked if I wanted water. I played with his chocolate lab. The dog was excitable but well trained. There was no feeling of sex at all.

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Mardi-gras Drug Recap


Show up for a bruncheon at a charming Mid-City house the morning of Endymion. You smell like ass and cigarettes, and these Williams College KIPP teachers don’t trust you around their two-year-old. Take completely audible bumps on their front porch with a giant Bowie knife. Realize baby laxative and a stomach full of Rally’s spicy chicken sandwiches are a bad combination. Commit completely audible crimes against humanity in their beautiful marble toilet.

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In search of clitoris

I tried to rampage my way through a breakup a couple years ago. Pity for me, I did it in New Orleans, where half-decent casual sex with a guy over 5’6 is well-nigh impossible to find; When I moved down here with a male friend he couldn’t shut up about all the great chocha that was getting catapulted at him, and I quickly figured out why: women here are fucking gagging for even competent dick.

Fast forward to Spring 2013. I pulled myself out of my hole, put on a series of dresses, and played nice with the first three likely-looking assholes who smelled tear blood in the water. Not one of them made me come. None of them even tried. I wondered if I was in the 1950s, if they considered female orgasm a myth. I thought I had gotten bedbugs from the first, because sunlight revealed a bedroom so dirty I started to psychosomatically itch. Another never touched my clit, after three times repeating that it was the best head he had ever had. I’m not sure if he knows what a clit is, as when I rubbed it myself he looked confused. The third one I don’t remember at all; at that point I was despondent. I do remember that when I asked my slutty female friends for referrals they sighed, considered, then allowed that they never got any good strange either. They pointed out that if I was going to have a lot of shitty sex, I should try to get paid for it.

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Notice how most of the gutterpunks you’ll actually hang out in a bar with are kinda queer like you and like the same drugs? Everybody hates the rednecks who live on the neutral ground, start fights, and terrorize women, even if they have a facial tattoo themselves. The lines of tribal fashion culture have blurred. As the aesthetics, sexual orientation, and ideology that separate these factions become more ambiguous, we come dangerously close to the glorious moment when we can get some work done.

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The Debt Collector

Debt collection is a shady business. Aside from the broken-legs variety of collections, the Great Recession spawned hundreds of semi-legitimate businesses, all based on the aggressive collection of a variety of unpaid debts.

I missed the gravy train created by the economic breakdown - I worked in debt collections during the summer of 2007. On my floor, the cube farm was occupied by a bunch of people who were as poor as I was. Imagine a bunch of car salesmen from one of those shifty dealerships on Claiborne, if those same salesmen, dressed up in ill-fitting JCPenney suits, were selling “financial freedom” on commission.

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The White Power Social Marketing Angle

I walked into a room full of computers and realized that 30 other people had showed up to interview for the same job. They interviewed us one at a time and made sure we knew how to log into a Yahoo chat room. We were each whispered the assignment: Get someone to say “Boston Baked Beans” in a chat room. Whoever was first would be hired. It was 2004.

I clicked on a random populated room and posted “range is broken :( :( anyone know a recipe for beans that uses oven instead?!?”

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How To wear SHUN

A dandy hipster dressed in bows and frills walks toward a crowded bar, his friends a few paces ahead, and sticking out from the back of his pants is a copy of SHUN Magazine. It occurs to me: why read SHUN when you can simply make it visible upon your person in order to fool others into thinking you read it?

What else screams “I’m hip to the underground and totally in the know” like wearing a copy of SHUN Magazine? But you know the next guy is just going to upstage you by wearing two copies of SHUN. And with the arrival of the latest issue, it is theoretically possible to have five entirely unique copies of SHUN Magazine sticking in and out of various articles of clothing.

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Hey, you know what this café is missing? Someone blowing steam in my face that smells like a discount vanilla candle.

Mmmm. Maybe you’ve swallowed a cheap truck stop air freshener. So much better than the organic smoke of tobacco.

At least actual smoke fumigates the bacteria of your hangover breath. Warm steam is practically the brunch buffet at the Court of Two Sisters to halitosis. Don’t even think about kissing someone with that mouth. 

A cigarette is a blessedly discrete period of time, a perfectly-sized break in the action.  The sound of its lighting signals relaxation time. It does not endlessly nag you with nicotine while clipped to the neck of your shirt. The cigarette is more civilized in every possible way.

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You walk into the dungeon

Dark thumping industrial music bleeds through the walls.  A tall, voluptuous lady sits at the entrance. “What can I do for you?” she asks. You respond, “I’ve never done this before, but I want to be dominated.” 

“I know just who you’re here to see. ” she says.  “Follow me.”

You follow her down a dark winding hallway, dimly lit by red lamps. Cries of pain and pleasure come from the rooms you pass. You stop outside of one that has a blue curtain draped over the doorway, fluorescent light seeping around the edges. 

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A few days ago I was walking down the street early in the morning when I saw him standing outside the Taco Bar. I’ve been seeing him for over a year now, a huge black guy who never bathes, changes clothes, or, from what I can tell, ever leaves the same three-block radius. I call him the Ghost because I like to think he’s the spirit of a schizophrenic bum who was murdered years ago, and only I can see him. The Ghost is always talking to himself and staring off into space and, when he’s feeling lively, he goes to the corner and tries to get people to give him money for tacos. He is a menacing presence and obviously enjoys using his size to intimidate people.

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Your Friend Rocco

I can’t remember if it was 2 or 3 hours, but I remember that the hotel was old and in a confusing spot, the sort of place people had hotels when there wasn’t yet a tourist industry: people just needed a place to sleep when they were away from
home. He was tall and thin and young and obviously ok. We air kissed and I sat on the couch. He sat in the chair at the farthest other end of the room. He seemed nervous. When he did some coke and didn’t offer any I was relieved. I hate being high at work but there are times when you can make a lot more money if you do the drugs. Nancy Reagan had no slogan for that.

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Job Satisfaction

I met Matt January of last year. I had rented a month in a lightless front apt on 9th street. The amount I paid to sublet it was outright absurd and I was overjoyed to be there. It snowed and snowed. I was training for a half marathon and I would go on runs so cold my head ached, leaping around puddles. The apartment was steam heated and dark and had exactly one good poster that was off-center at the foot of the bed. I stared at it. I loved it. That was the month I finally felt the city would let me stay.

The apartment was clogged with all her stuff, the woman who lived there. A closet full of thrifted clothes, books on acting and spirituality, a cd player, stacks of mid-90s cds. I replaced the shower curtain and bought a mop and broom and towels and read in bed and slept enough and met people for breakfast at Veselka often. I felt adult and happy.


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I’m against writing on the wall in bathrooms for two reasons.

One is that, through trial and error, I have found out that I apparently cannot pee and read at the same time. I’ll be midway through peeing, see something great on the wall and get distracted, and then eventually realize I’ve been pissing on the floor the whole time. The other thing is that I’m illiterate. I get distracted, then jealous.

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Thanks for the prohibition

With an expediency that, by contemporary political standards, is stunning, the City Council of New Orleans took up, debated, and unanimously passed legislation to ban cigarette smoking in bars and casinos. SHUN praises the City Council for its actions. Occasional dictatorial prohibition has always provided New Orleans with its outlaw panache, and where there’s a business opportunity, there’s a way.

Citizens, behold the advent of the New Orleans smokeasy. Similar to the speakeasies of nearly a century ago, the smokeasy will accommodate the desire of smokers to go to a bar and have a cigarette with their $5 beer and  shot. People want to smoke. They want to smoke in comfort while watching a Saints game or 

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Past years have seen the rise of female krewes, as well as the advent of several new specialty krewes that have been granted a coveted spot on a parade route. SHUN feels that there should be plenty of room for all in our burgeoning, brave new New Orleans, and, genuflecting before progress and changing demographics, submits the following ideas for krewes we’d like to see hitting the streets in the future:

Krewe of I Don’t See You

This krewe will walk the Bywater route, stoically refusing to acknowledge any of the parade attendees. Signature throw: the coveted and ever so stingily distributed Nod.

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Invest in the past: Buy a vintage landfill

After the collapse of the modern consumer economy, people will still need things. Although the people of the past will have used up the last available resources on the planet, yesterday’s irresponsible citizenry will have had the lack of foresight to place perfectly usable goods into the wastestream, particularly sites that were built before 1970.

You can seize this opportunity to guarantee your future by investing today in a vintage landfill. Classic dumps offer long-term returns, and provide a fantastic retirement plan.

There were practically no restrictions on what could be tossed into most early landfills, those humble mausoleums of the American Golden Age. Dumps constructed before the age of environmental awareness and recycling will doubtless feature an awesome array of sturdy old trash: tvs, radios, refrigerators and appliances, bottles, cans, mechanical parts, toys, and a thousand other things that will surely be useful in a post-collapse society.

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You: In the T-shirt, looking apathetic; me: half naked w/ eye patch w4m - 28 (Bourbon St)

When I saw you there hunched over the bar, gusts of vanilla-scented hope beat through my chest. My next thought was, “I bet this guy doesn’t have much money.”

And then: we spoke! My suspicions were confirmed. I quelled the capitalistic predatorial drives that fuel the parasitic machine I work within and realized you were - a human being! And I am a human being! And since being human can be so very uncomfortable, and is such an unexplained life form with such a lengthy unpleasant rap sheet - I wanted to drink beer.

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When I was a scared and stupid college student, I took a lot of shit clients

Using misery to obviate shame, probably. 

This one was very young, which set me off. Late teens to early 20s. Bony, huge raw cheekbones, translucent hair. I outweighed him for sure. He paid close attention to my body as I walked in and settled on the bed, judging my looks prior to paying. I am not offended by this: indeed it’s the only context in which I find such a gaze acceptable.  This sort of man tends to feel indignant about inhibition and self consciousness though, which feels like a set up.

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I see myself sitting at the bar,

just past the gaudy television displays, scrolling show names expired months ago and months from now.

I am having an out-of-body experience. I wish I could say that I’d never be caught dead inside Bamboulas, but I know I’ve been guilty of that crime on more than one occasion, so I can’t exactly say for certain whether it was me or not. I was pretty sure that I was standing across the street smoking a cigarette, but there I was: enjoying a beverage at the bar with a washboard that I don’t even own. Maybe I’d stolen it since last I saw myself. Was I a victim of quantum entanglement, or was it something more sinister? The friends I was with confirmed my suspicions. I have a doppelgänger.

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The worst Ash Wednesday I ever had was the one where I pepper sprayed a bunch of football jocks at random,

and received the most   severe beating of my life.

When I woke up that morning, the first thing I noticed was that my face was stuck to the pillow with dried blood. I slowly peeled it off and sat up in a haze of nausea and confusion. I was in my room on Prytania St. and all the clothes and possessions I’d had with me the night before were strewn haphazardly about the ground. I saw my can of pepper spray amongst the debris, picked it up, and gave it a shake. It was empty: an omen of ominous portent. 

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all the cool kids are carrying knives these days.

Big knives, small knives, sometimes two or three knives, right on their belts. Not utility knives, mind you. Stabbing sorts of knives. Are they at war? Do they expect a knife fight? With whom? The other knife-wielders of their gutterpunk/traveler/burner clan? Does leadership in such a group require a knife fight, like amongst the Fremen in Dune? 

Experimental psychologists have noticed something called a “weapon fixation,” the tendency of a person to focus on a weapon when it enters the room. (The next time you see a cop, notice yourself turning your attention to his or her firearm). The citizenry of our beloved city will hardly even notice a face tattoo, but they will notice knives.  

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I think my parents are having sex again.

For context, my parents have been divorced since 1998 or so. A life of pleasantly uninterrupted teen angst continued from that point forward; my parents’ divorce was a solid catch-all explanation for why everything in my life was so messed up. Didn’t have a car? Divorced parents. Got a liberal arts degree? Divorced parents. Unemployed? Divorced parents. It all made so much sense, this way to organize my universe. And if I wasn’t, really, all that upset, it got my therapists on my side. 

That all changed in the winter of 2013. One dark and snowy night, my mother heard a scratching at the front door of her suburban cottage. She threw open the door to see a shadowy figure on the front step: my father, recently evicted by his second bride. 

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Be Healthy or Die (or Why I don’t trust the Green Movement)

As a socially responsible, spiritually aware human, I personally want to ransack, poison and devastate as much of this planet as possible before finding a better form of sentient life and jetting off on their spaceship. I want to harvest as much vile emotion as is manageable, project it upon the earth, and watch this fallen star rot into nothingness. Littering is one small step I take to ensure my identity and send out a nod to others like me. Why have we heard no voice of dissent from the anti-Green movement? 

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He comes in and he’s huge

and my body says no.  We sit on the low couch and I talk and I watch him and when I smile he smiles and when I lean in he leans in and I ask him a few lateral questions and he’s surprised, but he answers. Sometimes it’s just that the situation scares them,  and what I’m picking up on is fear. I start to feel ok. We kiss and I get naked. I don’t know how I feel about my comfort with nudity. There’s a relish in it. Sexy Maurice Sendak, though that’s a blasphemy. 

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I want to have sex with Australian punks

Did you know that Australian punks don’t use the terms “male-bodied” and “female-bodied” to describe someone’s physical appearance without specifying gender? Instead, they say “cock-haver” and “cunt-haver.” Brilliant! Australian punks’ ability to be politically correct, sassy, crass and sexy at the same time is one of the major reasons why I want to sleep with them.  

If some punk dude came up to me with and wrapped his Australian accent around the words, “Hey cock-haver, I’m a cock-haver too,” then I would get a serious boner. If he then said, “Hey, this is my cunt-having girlfriend over here, right,” I would be like, “Holy fuck, I’ll have all of that stuff in my mouth right now, please.”

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3am on Annunication

“FUCK YOU GRAMMAAAWWW!” There was a palpable hatred, nuanced and complex, a feral stench of claustrophobia and contempt that could only be properly transmitted through flaring nostrils and clenched fists, its source a chthonic floodgate releasing dammed water, black and ancient and evil and beautiful, fountaining up through the bellows that was my friend David’s heaving diaphragm. He was braced to launch a second volley of flaming projectile umbrage when he realized that his business, quite independent of his awareness, had become a public spectacle. Even the black dudes on the corner who used to kick our asses in junior high had to shake their heads and say, “GOD-DAY-UM!”

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If Hipster is the popularization of counter-culture, Shun Magazine is the prime example of a product designed to never be cool, no matter how superior its intended audience believes themselves to be, and regardless of the counter-cultures it envelops.

Within its home-grade laser-printed pages are barely-constructed ideas of shaming an unapologetic public for even daring to suggest that a proper publication requires staples along its fold, lest its pages come undone into a scattered mess*. Perhaps Shun Magazine could better be described as a pamphlet, or a program for a theatrical failure, transpiring before your eyes: a story between a man who worships oblivion and a man who thinks that maybe oblivion isn’t such a good idea, neither being entirely interested in either idiom. How they’ve fooled anyone with half a brain to write for them is anyone’s guess, but probably follows a doctrine that even the worst readership is better than none at all.

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all of a sudden I regained consciousness

and became aware of my surroundings. I was sitting on a bench by the river and a guy who I could only vaguely remember arguing with was lying on his back in front of me. A couple of gutter punks sitting on the nearest bench were chastising me for what they saw as needless violence. “Dude, what the fuck is wrong with you? He didn’t deserve that at all.” I remember thinking, “I must be pretty fucked up if these gutter punks are scandalised by my behavior.”

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Fuck the Vote

I wanted to write a piece arguing the importance of voting, but since I know you didn’t vote, why waste my time? Instead, I’ll give you some great reasons why you- yes, YOU -have no business voting, and even if you did, why you shouldn’t vote for anything, ever.

1. you’re not registered to vote

What a loathsome process! Going to some dreary public building, talking to some pasty municipal servant, filling out some stupid piece of paper. Never give them your name and address! That’s how they getcha. If there’s not an app for this whole thing, you don’t need it. (By the way, don’t worry; if there ever was an app, the Board of Elections in your corrupt state would hack into it, and your vote would be stolen by some guy in an underground bunker somewhere north of Baton Rouge).

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I refuse to take any anarchist seriously until there is a major assassination

Oh you camped in a park? Wow! Smash the state, comrade! Who’s shooting Zuckerberg? Nobody? Fuck off.

Food not bombs? WHY NOT BOMBS? Do you remember the mighty “free vegan food revolution” that changed the world? No? Because it never happened.

There were four attempts on the life of Barack Obama (Three domestic), four on Clinton, (three domestic), but ONE on GWB in friggin Georgia (the country). Did your protest signs muss Dubyah’s hair? Does he have night terrors about harshly worded slogans? Quit fucking with my gender pronouns until you get some real work done.

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I was an anarchist in college, so obviously I had bad hygiene and was probably kind of annoying.

I went to the sort of public university where drinking is just as important as academics.  One time I was getting drunk at a party and started talking politics with this bro. He was wearing a yellow polo shirt but seemed fairly intelligent. He was the kind of libertarian who’s into free markets and fiscal conservatism but also drugs, atheism, and being cool with gay people. This basic political trope is just as popular among college students as anarchism, if not more so.

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all artists must die

Since I was a child I have been labeled as being artistic. Even then I resented the word. Whenever I heard it I pictured a wimp with a beret and a stupid mustache. Could it be true that I was fated to be one of these subhuman weaklings? If only I could have been born athletic or mechanically inclined. I pictured the other kids in my class growing up to be football players, firemen or even astronauts. I knew they were inherently superior and tried to be like them, but to no avail. The only thing I was good at was art.

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He’s a Senior Playah

The sound coming through my thin apartment wall when my elderly neighbor is having sex oscillates between the raspy respiration of a dying pigeon and the gasping desperation of someone drowning in a river. The springs of his bed creak intermittently in pathetic little shrieks of lightly tested metal when some slight shift of position is attempted, and the varied hackings and cacklings arising from his paramours’ wrinkled lips slip through the ventilation shaft and echo like wicked laughter over my own solitary pillow.

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My Dearest Miranda,

It’s been a great run, hasn’t it? But I’m afraid the time has come to say goodbye.

I’ll miss you; be assured I’ll always miss you. Your shiny blonde hair, your smooth, flawless skin, your conveniently-placed holes. I’ll miss the distant stare in your eyes and that adorable, open-mouthed expression of surprise that is your trademark. I’ll miss your flexibility, your patience with my idiosyncrasies, and the economy of your conversation. Your demure, retiring nature that belies your utter depravity in the sack. You’re as close to an ideal woman as they make them, dearest.

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“they’re our Protection”

While jogging with my dog (on a leash, trained, and well-behaved), we pass some white people unloading groceries from their Honda future-mobile thing. I wave and don’t get a reply. 

Suddenly I hear “Stop running! Stop running now!” and turn around to see their two huge dogs sprinting down the street at me, growling and barking. I stop just as the bigger one leaps into my dog (who bolts- a lover, not a fighter), and the smaller one dives at my ankle. I fall over and kick the dog off me; meanwhile my dog is still being chased by the other one. 

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Don’t say hi to me

A popular complaint amongst my fellow native New Orleanians is the unfriendly attitude displayed by the most recent influx of carpetbaggers and Californicators who have adopted our fair city as their new home.  (for the sake of clarity I will refer to them from this point on as the”nouveau locals” or simply “noovies” ) 

It seems that a passing “hello’”or gesture of acknowledgement in any form is either ignored or frowned upon by these nouveau locals who apparently take offense at the Southern hospitality that is our humble heritage. 

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One day, two bourgeois scumbags

were sitting on the balcony of an ivory tower, eating apples and throwing the cores into a trashcan between them. Down on the street below, they spotted an old homebum who was also eating an apple. The scumbags saw an opportunity to argue about their political beliefs. The first scumbag, who was a Republican, said, “Look at that animal. He’s a fine example of what’s wrong with the world today. A cancer on this society. I’ll bet you my Hummer H3 that when he’s done with that apple, he throws the core onto the ground.”

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So I’d tapped out my usual places to eat (Branditos, Quicky’s, Mardi Gras Zone) and was ready for a new and exciting culinary experience, or at least someplace I hadn’t eaten at in a while. There’s always Hanks on St. Claude, but it tastes like shit. If you squeeze their chicken in your fist, grease will run out onto their unmopped floor for a full minute. And it still won’t be cooked to the middle. Greasy raw chicken. Yum.

Fate intervened. Renowned food critic Michael Weber suggested McDonald’s. “What? McDonald’s?” I said. “Yeah man. Two bucks. Tastes okay.” While not exactly a rave review, Mac’s did had the advantage of being three blocks away. Plus I wasn’t in the mood to argue or be hungry, so I rode my bike there, ate a salad, had nothing to complain about, and left.

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The Faubourg Marigny Improvement Association recently replaced an historical marker at the intersection of Franklin Avenue and Rampart Street. The replacement was lauded in the FMIA’s June 2014 newsletter, Les Amis de Marigny, with a caption calling for “a huge round of applause” for the two FMIA members who “picked up and installed the new marker.”

The new sign explains a tiny bit about the neighborhood’s history, including the Faubourg’s namesake, Bernard de Marigny, and a brief overview of the early inhabitants of New Orleans’ first suburb. As history goes it is next to useless, but more insidiously, it is identical to two other historical markers already in place: one on the Elysian Fields neutral ground between Royal and Dauphine, the other in front of the fire station at the corner of Esplanade and Frenchmen.

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I had to make a rule. It was my only rule really, “No murderers” seemed too hard to enforce.

The catalyst for the rule was this guy Paul someone. If I could remember his full name I’d use it, even though that is cruel and could backfire on me, but he annoyed me so hard. His initial email, while long, was chatty and winning and included a lot of compliments, and I am as vain as most, I think. I looked forward to meeting him. It unnerves me that I’m still so interested in people.

Paul brought me a paperback book. He sat and talked with me on the bed. There wasn’t anywhere else to sit in that apartment; it was a loaner. He was hipster skinny and antic, dressed like an attractive academic.

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I’ve always thought there were too many shots of penetration in porno films


It’s not so bad these days, but back in the VHS era it was by far the dominant motif. Most films were identical: a few lines of bad dialogue, then off comes the pizza uniform and next thing you know it’s five minutes of repetitive motion. On fast forward, videos of old-school sex movies look exactly like aerobic routines. I’m not saying to leave the penetration out-- that would be ludicrous --but there are other things you can do that are far more visually interesting. In this way, modern porn vastly improves upon the comparatively unsophisticated filth of yore. 

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High noon, Friday. In the cafeteria, the students crouched over greasy formica tables exchanging profanities in their indecipherable argot. The halls of the main building would have been utterly deserted if it were not for the despised, who wandered restlessly from classroom to empty classroom and unpacked their secret stores of sorrow in the toilet stalls and the library carrels. These pariahs, ugly and awkward, travelled alone, shrinking from contact even with their own kind. But no one bothered them during the lunch hour, and they roamed the dim and dusty passages at will.  

The south end of the second floor.  Here, behind a scratched and scuffed aluminum door, was the faculty lounge.

The teachers came to the faculty lounge to drink cup after cup of bitter, tepid coffee. They sat in sagging armchairs, alone or in groups of two or three, exchanging snippets of malicious gossip and horrifying stories of administrative abuse. 

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I got so disgusted with pretentious phonies that in a fit of pique I decided to stop wiping my ass.

As self-defeating and pointless as this may seem, there was a method to my madness. I’d hang out in crowded bars in a brown cloud of fecal disregard. With vindictive glee I’d share my anal vapours in public situations just to see how long people would stand in my shit-reek while trying to impress each other. I figured it was the most antisocial thing I could do.  

The fucked thing is I started getting laid more than I ever had in my life. You’d be amazed  at how many girls in this town are coprophiliacs.

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He arrived in a three-piece pinstripe suit cosplay: Monopoly boarD

carrying a small, scuffed duffel bag. After gulping some lukewarm wine he opened his chamber of secrets and removed a layer of crumpled newspapers. Underneath was a collection of the cheapest sorts of sex toys. Beige cocks wobbled drunkenly next to rubber band rings with AA battery joy buzzers attached to them. Smeared plastic mini vibes, an extra pair of socks, an almost empty bottle of KY.

He turned to me and goggled his eyes out. “Are you ready to have some fun?!” Conspicuously absent were condoms.

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Do You Know How to Speak Yat Yet?

I had a gig at the Convention Center today. There have been some major overhauls to the facility since the last time I’d been  there. In Hall A there’s a huge room now between the exhibit floor and the lobby. It’s tastefully spackled with arty magnolia patterns on one wall and a bunch of weird unrelated words like “lard” and “Tchoupitoulas” on another. I’m puzzled over what these giant random words are about until I’m on the lobby side of the entrance and notice a plaque, kind of like what you’d see in a museum, that says  “Do You Know How to Speak Yat Yet?”

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When I realize that smoking indoors is Becoming an act of civil disobedience, the world makes me sad.

How I have watched episodes of Mad Men, looking through a dusty window, jealous as they offhandedly light up in a swank office. 

Nowadays, most of our smoking has been outsourced to the Pacific Rim nations, and not even the lowliest broom closet in the Land of the Free is a safe place to enjoy a lung dart. Under assault is the right to smoke indoors. Stupid places like New York and California have all but criminalized the humble cigarette, so much so that you can’t even smoke OUTDOORS anymore. This fascist shit is probably a highly effective strategy for helping people quit smoking, so fuck this. Smoking cuts people’s life spans, and people are generally assholes, so the sooner they check out, the better.

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I am not a rich man

I went to the local meat market, looking to get laid.

  As I scanned the room looking for a potential mate, I saw one that made the other ladies look like knuckle-dragging apes. Her hands seemed a bit big, but everybody’s got their flaws. 

Using my extensive knowledge of French cinema and tantric sex I lured her home and after some heavy petting discovered she had a dick.  I told her I’m straight, but she had such a pretty face I couldn’t help but imagine her full luscious lips on my cock. 

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on the scene with the Fist fighting Firefighters

Last week a car crashed into the building next door to our house. Someone slammed into the neighbor’s car, shoving it into the building, and the street was shut down. And my girlfriend left me. But this is a new week!

I’m talking shit with my housemate Doc when FWOP-KOOOOOOSHHHHH. We run to the door and look outside. The gas station is on fire. No- a gas truck is on fire and lying on its side at the gas station. Some chick was going the wrong way over the Claiborne overpass. He should’ve knocked that bitch right off the bridge into the trees, but instead HE swerves- right into the gas station. Nobody sees him exit the vehicle.

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When I went to grad school in the hallowed halls of UNO, there was this kid on campus who refused to wear shoes.


I hoped he was a business major, but alas, I’d see him in the Liberal Arts building almost every day- his baggy jeans brushing the tops of his gnarled, dirty feet. He made appearances in the cafeteria, eating Subway as though he had just pulled off his shoes and socks at home. I even saw him shoelessly riding the Jackson-Esplanade bus.

Shoeless Guy was an iconoclast; one of the few beacons of originality crossing our muddy and weirdly treeless quad. Opinions of Shoeless Guy were divided. Was it gross, or liberating? Did his feet hurt? How did this compare to that one episode of Seinfeld, when Elaine hates another woman for not wearing a bra?

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Protect the Cool Kids of Tomorrow: Keep Weed Illegal

We all grew up in a world where cool kids were sometimes only considered cool because they dealt weed. The trade in cannabis among school-aged people determined who was worth knowing, worth hanging out with, worth giving money to. Marijuana dealers in high school are confident people, and why shouldn’t they be? They make good money but have no bills to pay. They get their friends high and then can afford to pay for all the french fries their friends eat afterward.

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Our values

are unimpeachably pure and far more admirable than yours. The confidence we exude stems from a firm conviction that our worldview is self-evidently correct. Your uncertainty marks you as weak and lacking in moral fiber.

It might be time to write a purgative self-abasing confessional essay in which I bravely reveal my personal and existential transgressions, daring the world to respond with unvarnished truths and criticism that I might bask in my own shortcomings and own every failing as a perverse badge of spiritual honor while avoiding actual responsibility or the possibility of having been wrong in the first place.

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Do Gay Men Suck?

Another Southern Decadence is finally behind us. They came, they saw, they drank, they smoked tina, and they came again. 

For some of us, Decadence is a time to celebrate living in a bastion of liberal acceptance while herds of adorable husbears lumber down Bourbon Street with their beer guts hanging out of matching leather chest straps. For others, Decadence is a time for hustling money from overpaid suburban clones wearing matching American Apparel tank tops and fending off obnoxious drunks who think they own the place and your ass. 

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It had been a grim and brutal day of repeated disappointment and base degradation.

All the traditional spots had been bone dry and all the secondary spots equally so. In the wake of this fruitless labor, bereft of drugs, I began to doubt my chosen path as a scavenger of intoxicants from the ground. Perhaps it was not a noble calling of the highest value, as I had always surmised, but a shallow delusion; a hollow flight of fancy. 

It was in this moment of self-doubt that I looked to my right and saw, wedged between two dumpsters, a foam cooler, glistening in the sun. Its disheveled condition led me to believe that it had been left behind from last night’s party, and was now waiting patiently for a new owner to claim it. Not one to question the will of god, neither to ignore the whimsy of fate, I opened the cooler to find, at the bottom of a small, icy lake, eight fully intact Coors Lights. 

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I was living with a couple named Heather and Lloyd.

They’d met at a Trekkie convention and had gotten married in a traditional Star Fleet ceremony in Vegas. They were real New Agey, Pagany, Wiccany kind of folks. There was a mantelpiece in the house you weren’t supposed to touch because it was “for the fairies.” They would put ginger and cinnamon out overnight, and check it in the morning to see if any was missing.

Heather and Lloyd were swingers and were deeply into BDSM. They had chains and hooks hanging from their bedroom ceiling and a whole arsenal of whips and riding crops readily at hand. They were open about their lifestyle, and we often discussed it at length. 

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Emailing with this guy was like counting cockroaches:

not only is it gross, but knowing you have nothing better to do makes you hate your soul slightly. I was extremely surprised when he turned up; less surprised that by “sensual and handsome 57 years young” he meant Truman Capote’s bloated straight brother. An immediate tongue insertion ensued, after which I threatened his life and he quieted down. I’d peg him as a 66 on the psychopath scale, which skirts my automatic ejection policy by two-thirds of a percent, so we settled into it.

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Let us consider the White Girl with Dreadlocks, or "WGD"

As a person of color, the first thing I must note is the element of cultural appropriation. That is enough to fill one with disgust. Dreadlocks have been worn by various peoples worldwide, and became popular in the African diaspora after the coronation of Haile Selassie in 1930. The look became associated with African holy people in general by those who longed for the ancestral homeland of humankind from across the Atlantic. I get that. I like that. I approve of that. Black women with dreads, you rule. Black men with dreads, keep on keepin’ on.

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Our lives were a fucking circus.

Coke on the nightstand, restraints on the bedframe, every attempt at conversation exploding like a flat of dynamite under Brobdingnagian sparklers on the Fourth of July. Cats unfed, bills unpaid, friends uncontacted, hummus or popsicles or pudding the only things left we could even attempt to eat. I would kill him soon, or he would kill me, or we would murder-suicide one another. Who would be the one and who would be the other? Not wanting to find out, I duct taped his mouth one morning while he disco-napped, shoved both cats in one carrier, grabbed what remained of our stash, and left.

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His seeking arrangement profile said that he was frustrated by stupid people.

Full-face picture, stubble, 30s, lip ring. Short sculpted beard, the male equivalent of contouring powder, adds cheekbones.  Lip ring with a barb in it.  Didn’t see the arms, but $50 says he describes his tattoo artist as his ‘boy.’

He agreed to meet for lunch and was on top of confirming. Leaving the house after a blessed 8 hours sleep I realized that in my haste I’d dressed in short and white and looked cheap. When I showed up and he was wearing a kangol cap I thought, phew.

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Straight Gay Men Suck

It’s not just about tourism. NOLA celebrates its own flamboyant gayness in parades, parties, and, of course, punk and hip hop music. Being gay or queer in NOLA is so cool that even straight people try to be gay. I mean, have you been to a punk show, bounce party or hell, fucking Mardi Gras? There are always at least a few queer-identified-straight-people, or QISPs, blue-balling their gay friends to look radical and impress the ladies.     

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The Squirrel Whisperer

I like to get stoned and watch the squirrels. If I’m sufficiently baked, I can watch them for hours on end. I’ve always identified with Jane Goodall, not because I think idly watching squirrels is akin to studying chimpanzee behavior, but because I can easily imagine waking up every morning, sitting in a bush, and observing animals in a trance-like state.

You know how sometimes when you get high, the animals around you seem to be high also? I get that a lot with the squirrels. It seems like their nut foraging behavior, as well as their extreme paranoia, are somehow in tune with the stoner mind-set. One doesn’t have to stretch to envision them ducking behind a tree every now and then for a quick toke.

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One summer I worked night shift at a junk mail factory.

My chief occupation was sorting envelopes; doing this for eight hours at a stretch will rip your cuticles completely apart.  I liked to imagine the expressions on people’s faces when they received the bloodied envelope promising them cheap life insurance or a chance at the big money prize.

Nobody was really there at night except the sorting crew and the night manager. She had a huge scar across her stomach from some kind of medical procedure that involved taking out parts of several of her internal organs and a couple whole ones.  For a long time after the surgery, she said, she would lie awake at night and feel her guts sloshing around, rearranging and adjusting to all the newly emptied-out space inside her “like a fucking alien squishing around in there.”

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I always need to be the authority


in any conversation or social group in which I take part. It isn’t so much that I have wisdom, insight, and intelligent perspective to share so much as that I don’t respect other people’s beliefs or experience and simply expect them to defer to my superior personality and rhetorical megaphoning.

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