flotation device 15


Hello. I recently finished up a new issue of Flotation Device. I continue to be on somewhat of a roll. This one is everything that came to mind when I thought about the second band I played in, The Rories. Mostly mundane things as I tried to avoid obvious band/music zine stuff. But I don’t know what that really would be at this point. If you’re interested in getting one. Feel free to get in touch or head over to ye olde etsee shoppee!

bike riding

this is a shorty outtake from flotation device 12. i eventually took it out cuz i felt it didn’t add anything. and i didn’t want to contribute to the glut of zines that feature bike riding in them. and anyways, i’ve prolly already made my fair share of contributions to that glut anyways. on the bike riding note – i am looking forward to warm night bike rides again. tonight was one of the first of the year. so i’m especially stoked now!

One of my favorite things in the summer is to ride my bike late at night. Alone on the street only a few cars passing occasionally. Cool air. Sometimes heavy with humidity. But always cool and caressing after the heat of the day. The buildings pass by lazy. Trees that line the roads. Dark branches against dark night sky. Leaves green rustle whisper in the night breeze. Coming home from wherever I was. A show. A movie. A friend’s house. A diner. A bar. The city quiet for the night. Slowed down. Feeling like a hometown. A comfort zone. A pocket of safe from the world. Float and glide on rubber tires past mail boxes and street lights stoplights intersections. Cool air on my skin through my t shirt through my hair. My city. My town. My home. Trees overhead. Stars through the leaves and branches.

video games

this is an outtake from the 2216 section of flotation device 12. i felt i had already included enough pieces that established jeff and, sadly, this one had to go. in the end not much was really mentioned about our video game playing. a serious oversight.

Hey. Jeff said sneakily looking around.


Hey is it getting dark in here? He asked. It was still light out.

Awesome. It’s totally getting dark in here. I shut the blinds to cut the glare. He turned on the tv and the n64 and put in perfect dark.

This is the game we played most. Most on the n64.

Video games became one of our main things to do while hanging out. He was into video games and wanted to do sound for video games. Design it. Create the soundscape and sound effects. Compose the score. He loved it. I liked to play socially. So if I had someone to play with I was happy. He was always renting games. Some I would watch him play, some I wouldn’t. He’d play for a couple hours and then go out or do homework or play guitar or skate.

Is it getting dark in here? Initially it just meant perfect dark, but of course eventually it came to mean, do you wanna play video games? Of course we could always be direct about it and say, Hey do you wanna jam some vids. That always worked too.


this is an outtake from flotation device 12. it just never fit in anywhere once i started putting everything in order. i wrote it in the summer of 2007.

The smell of gasoline through the windows the other day. Sun bright glaring and someone mowing the little lawn next door. It had such a huge sound like the mower that we had when I was a kid. The big green beast that I had to use all of my twelve year old body to push and maneuver sweating grass stuck all around my shins and ankles. Shoes stained green gasoline filling my nose wishing I were done the sun baking me. Why did I wait til the afternoon to do this? All the other subdivision houses with their uniform manicured lawns constant water and upkeep. Energy and effort. Squandered resources. The trees behind our house the big old trees that had been there for so long before all of our houses. Pushing the mower up one way and then back down slowly cutting away at the week long grass. Thinking that it would be awesome to have a yard that had super tall grass. Prairie grass. A little nature preserve with paths to walk through the bright sun glaring off the cul de sac in the front. The neighborhood kids playing hockey in the street or tag or basketball or wiffleball or riding bikes or running around or through sprinkler or anything other than mowing the lawn and me wishing that I were doing anything else.

Growing up moving the lawn summer after summer. Mowing other people’s lawns for ten bucks an hour. Eventually rocking a walkman with mix tapes cranking in my ears over the roar of the engine and the grass blowing all over and swaths being cut row after row and it was great music that made me feel so cool and so good and so energized and amazed that music could be so good.

And the sun tanning my arms and my face. I used to not wear a shirt and imitate my dad mowing the lawn but i grew up and started thinking about girls and got shy and I put my shirt back on thinking about the girls I had developed crushes on during the school year and tuning out the lawnmower daydreaming about girls and being anywhere other than mowing the lawn in the ninety degree afternoon sun.

Always looking for an excuse not to do it.

It all came back to me the other morning when i was making breakfast – a bagel some cereal some water – in the kitchen. The roar of the engine the raw gasoline smell and all I could think of was the sun shining through the branches and leaves of the trees overhead while I mowed the lawn. Will kids still mow the lawn? Do they now? Will we mow our lawns when there’s no more gas? No more power? Will kids still daydream while doing menial household tasks staining their socks green with fresh cut grass?