Monday, October 25, 2004


Today the American Mastodon had the good fortune of possessing a decidedly small appetite. When this occurs, his MO is to grab a fruit juice from the downstairs cafeteria and make his way over to the local outdoor shopping mall. In Los Angeles, where the sun shines 24 hours a day and the streets are lined with Skittles and dandelions, all malls are out of doors. All are accessible.

While he was there, perusing the local bookstore and peeking his head inside the always reliable men's fashion store "Banana Republic", he saw a woman that caught his eye. Unlike the Starbucks woman whose sheer perfection (save one small caveat, as you know) made the AM's head spin and tie loosen, this woman was tall, gangly, and uncoordinated. There is something about a woman who's arms and legs are too long for her body that appeals to the American Mastodon. Don't get him wrong; he doesn't seek out deformed women or prefer ladies to have humpbacks or goiters, nor does he like his women "irregular" - a leg slightly shorter than the other, a hand with small fingers and a bulbous wrist. Granted, these afflictions would all produce a somewhat "gangly, uncoordinated" woman. That is not what the AM is trying to describe, and he apologizes if in your mind this is the image that has been conjured.

No, the American Mastodon simply means a woman who is largely perfect in every way. Where this woman is deficient is in regards to the proportional size of her limbs, and the ease with which she uses them. There is something about a woman whose legs and arms, and occassionally fingers, are longer than intended. The resulting gait, the loping arms, the over-dexterity of fingers buttoning buttons or holding a fork - these are qualities that the AM notices and appreciates. While others may prefer to call these characteristics "deficiences", the AM sees something else - a hint of insecurity, a childish lack of familiarity with one's body, the cute and charming image of a woman tripping for no reason, then steadying herself with her purse.

For you see, like the nurse who wipes a tear from the cheek of a hungry babe; like the shepherd who would walk to ends of the earth to find a lost sheep in the woods; like a benevolent God whose ear is turned always to the voice of the poor and hopeful; the AM, too, loves women of all shapes and sizes, and wishes them happiness and comfort.


The American Mastodon has taken a bit of flack for not enjoying David O. Russel's over-act fest "I Heart Huckabees" which, to be fair, was a movie with genuine moments of brilliance and insight. He just didn't care for it all that much. What, pray tell, is a movie that the AM does care for? And cares for quite some bit?

"Sideways", dear readers. It's fucking great, and if you don't like it, you're either a homo or an Arab, but you're certainly not an American; you are, to be sure, no lover of things pure and sweet.

Friday, October 22, 2004


As literally fives of you know, the American Mastodon is a lover of women. A quite masterful one, at that. Now, this news may come as a surprise to those envisioning the AM as nothing more than a loping, ponderous Zyglolophodon, a veritably furry, proboscidally-endowned, tusk-bearing mammal, long ago wiped from the face of this earth. Well, the AM's got news for you. The laws of nature dictate certain things, and one of them happens to be that the Mastodon is adored by women the world over. The question then becomes not, "which among ye lasses shall claim thee Mastodon," but rather, "which of these lasses shall the Mastodon choose for his lot."

The answer, surpisingly, yet recurringly, is "That gooky one over there."

For you see, the American Mastodon was afflicted at an early age and has yet to find cure for that most elusive of illness, the Yellow Fever. This is no surprise to scholars and scientists who have tracked the migration of the mammal - it was not that long ago, geologically speaking, that the Mastodon's ancestors were making their way to this great nation by way of the Bering Strait.

Yet for as much as the AM loves the wily ways of those smallish, hard-working, and soft-skinned China dolls, he also knows and understands the intricacies of their physical beauty - and, though unfortunate - the limits of their bodies. That's why he finds news of this to be nothing less than the world's ultimate, and quite paradoxical, tease de la coq.

Thursday, October 21, 2004


Personally, all I'm trying to say is: yes, I'm a fucking homo. And I'm a goddamn motherfucker of a metal guitar player with my metal brother, who's not a fucking homo. Nobody else in the band's a fucking homo. And this 25% gay band will kick anybody's ass! I fucking mean it.


Rumor on the street is there's a Presidential election coming up. These sorts of things don't concern the American Mastodon all that much. He's been here for thousands of years, and has seen all stripes and colors. Things pretty much move in one direction or the other, and back again. But for any of you that are desirous to know the political leanings of the nation's largest lover of tubers and shoots, be sure to check out the newly-returned Bull Moose Blog.

Damn if that jackanapes didn't steal the AM's style though, you know?

Monday, October 11, 2004


In honor of the American Mastodon's 100th post (or so the folks at Blogger say), a small fictional piece of literature has been drafted for this very website. It describes a day in the life of an ordinary Joe, who's name, remarkably, is not Joe.

He was a board-certified romantic and a self-diagnosed diabetic. He held an advanced degree in despair from the university in Manitoba, and at night sketched proofs on a chalkboard which always sought to find an explanation for the presence of sculpture. It was a cold, grey Tuesday morning when the man stepped outside for a cigarette and to watch the garbage truck pass by. He enjoyed watching the men work the truck and wrangle the cans that lined the street. Such coordination they had: hopping off the truck and grabbing a can, swinging it with the greatest of ease and letting its contents spill into the truck, throwing the empty can to a partner, flipping the empty can over and letting the cycle repeat, all the while watching as the truck crept along gingerly, only ever a few feet at a time, devouring waste and grinding it in its huge metal jaws.

The man was envious of the clearly defined and necessary work of these men. To have such purpose in life - go, rid this world of trash - seemed to him honorable and comforting. His own occupation as a youth minister often left him feeling empty and shallow. Most days were spent playing foosball with incurious children or working on finishing the new youth sanctuary - the "functuary" - in the church. As he painted the beams that held the structure together and kept it from falling, he thought about the men whose job it was to collect the trash. At night, popping popcorn and watching Disney movies with high schoolers, he longed for the satisfaction of knowing that at a day's end, he had given more to the world than taken away. He was a steward of little things, to be sure, and chief among them was making sure the young people he knew did not enjoy themselves too much.

You see, the man had developed during his tenure at Sleepy Sisters Pentecostal Church many theories on both religion and youth. Of these myriad theories came what he referred to as his "Unified Understanding of Us". This hypothesis stated, roughly, that there was little point in dissuading young people from acting inappropriately because of the disapproving glare of a benevolent creator. Rather, young people would do better to work hard, sleep early, and avoid a young life of indiscretion and large appetites that is nearly always met by an adult world not willing to concede such entitlements. The man's goal was not to teach them the joy of God but rather the drudgery of life, with the hope that somewhere in between, a fragment of meaning could be found.

The man pulled the last drag from his cigarette as the garbage truck rounded the corner and inched out of sight. He smelled the air and looked at his watch, and went inside to put on a pot of tea.

Wednesday, October 06, 2004


By request, the American Mastodon was contacted and asked to provide his opinion on the recently released film, "I Heart Huckabees". The following are his thoughts.

Well, it's disappointing, really. This film represented a chance to resurrect that great, forgotten American genre, the "existential-screwball-activist-romantic-comedy". Ok, all joking aside, in all seriousness, let me be serious. Alright, seriously, this film was pretty bad. Bad despite itself. Inspired acting, great scenes, and good dialogue. But no characters. None. Every character in the film was flimsy and one-dimensional, with either deeply-held convictions or deep-seated repressions and insecurities, all wholly without explanation.

The film was a mess and didn't achieve any of its aims. It was humorous and entertaining, but so is the Daily Show. Russell seemed contemptuous of his audience, and to prove that he thought they were idiots, he provided a condescending deus-ex-machina or whatever you call it at the end of the film. I could've done better. Give me five bucks (that's half off the ticket price!) and I'll tell you all you need to know about "Huckabees": "Life is hard, sometimes interesting, and your perceptions of it will always change".

You know where to send the checks.

The American Mastodon, once thought to be an extinct species, lives a solitary life and rarely makes public appearances.

Tuesday, October 05, 2004


This generation and its myriad travails needs a Herzog like something awful. The American Mastodon is willing, and he is ready, to hoist that mantle.

In unrelated news: the world's youngest, yet arguably biggest, fan of Paris, Texas.

Monday, October 04, 2004


There once was a woman who was in love with three men. The first man she loved was her husband. Thirteen years of matrimony had nurtured between them a deep and lasting intimacy. He worked hard to provide the things she desired. Their child was a natural composite of them both, and when she held him, she thought of her husband.

The second man the woman loved was a carpenter. The woman and the carpenter were old friends, friends since childhood, and though he had long ago wed another woman, and she her husband, they remained very close. In summers, the two couples often went on trips together. Although she would not confess to loving the man, in her heart she did and wished often for his hand to brush against her blouse, or to be alone with him and injure herself, so he would place his hands on her without shame.

The third man the woman loved was a neighbor with a motorcycle. He was young and worked on cars and he drove his motorcycle around the neighborhood faster than the posted speed limit. With this man the woman had been infidelitous. On Saturday mornings, after her husband had left to play golf with friends, she would walk next door and the two would make love once, never more, and then she would return home. After four months the woman decided to end the affair, because the man had fallen madly in love with her. Once, the two lovers held each other on a muggy summer morning, huddled close and comfortable in each other's embrace. The man turned to the woman and said, "I want to show you how much I care for you. I want to ride my bike to Kentucky and back. I will, when I get that spare part I was telling you about. You watch." She decided then that she should discontinue the affair, but still, she loved him very much and often thought of him when making love to her husband.

Loving the three different men in her three different ways was the woman's secret. She held this secret close to her heart and wondered to herself, in those moments when she watched her little boy play in the backyard or stared at the water in the bathtub spiral and spin down through the drain, who the next man she would love would be. She wondered if the next man would fall rabidly in love with her, like the man with the motorcycle. She wondered how many men it would be possible to love at once. And when she wondered this last thought, she wondered if she could keep that secret, as well.

Friday, October 01, 2004


Returning home from a day of work, sitting down on the couch, and turning on the television. "Casablanca." Oh. And how.

Hearts full of passion
Jealousy and hate...

It's still the same old story
A fight for love and glory
A case of do or die

The world will always welcome lovers
As time goes by

The American Mastodon, a species well adapted to various terrains but ultimately not the art of survival, thinks Bogie had it right. Keep up a stiff front and put em on the plane.

-"Here, I saved the first drink for you."
-"No, not tonight."
-"Especially tonight."

The AM could keep going. But he won't. He knows you know how it ends.