A Smile Makes a Lousy Umbrella

Random 10

  • Like a Hurricane – Neil Young – Greatest Hits
  • Weathered Tome – A.F.I. – Black Sails in the Sunset
  • Big Church – Sunn O))) – Monoliths and Dimensions
  • The Happiest Days of Our Lives – Pink Floyd – The Wall
  • Things Aren’t Like They Used To Be – Black Keys – Attack and Release
  • Margaret in Captivity – The Decemberists – The Hazards of Love
  • Hey Hey, My My (Into the Black) – Neil Young – Rust Never Sleeps
  • Thirty-three – Smashing Pumpkins – Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness
  • Valley of Debris – Heartless Bastards – All This Time
  • You Know You’re Right – Nirvana – With the Lights Out

For Rhu_ru:


“Rain just keeps on falling on me, and it ain’t no light shower either.  No sir, this downpour is like a hurricane and it doesn’t matter whether I’m indoors or out.  So you might want to move your fancy book there.”  He gestured at the weathered tome under the arm of the girl next to him at the bar.  Margaret looked at him, perplexed, until a sudden intensification of the downpour onto the man’s already rain-soaked cowboy hat deflected a wave of water at her and sent her scurrying for a safer barstool.  She sat there carefully wiping the drops from the big church on the cover. “The happiest days of our lives are gone” the besodden man continued despite losing his audience, “things aren’t like they used to be, when I could have brought sunshine even to this dreary place.”  The bartender smirked at this, and neither man noticed the reader of the thick volume at the end of the bar was no longer a small blonde girl, if they had looked in that direction they would have seen Margaret in captivity within a dark mass that seemed to be gathering all the light from the already dingy room into itself.  The bartender felt the pull too late, and couldn’t find anything to hold on to as he slid down the bar into the void.  Arms flailing, he yelled for help, “Hey!” “Hey!”  “My My” (into the black went the bartender) “we meet again.” the man, now alone, turned to face the slowly expanding darkness “Thirty-three years later, have you come to remove this curse you placed on me?”  No answer came from the cloud as it enveloped him.


Many years later, in the middle of the desert, in a spot that no one knew there used to be a bar, a man stood considering a cowboy hat that lay at his feet.  He waved his companion over and they both ignored the many potential treasures hidden in this valley of debris, and considered the hat.  One of them spoke, “You know, you’re right.  There’s is no way that should be possible, but that hat is soaking wet.”

10 thoughts on “A Smile Makes a Lousy Umbrella

  1. Excellent story as usual.

    1. Johnny Ryall — Beastie Boys
    2. Elevator Music — Beck
    3. Universal Corner (live) — X
    4. Engine 143 — The Carter Family
    5. Darkness on the Edge of Town (live) — Bruce Springsteen
    6. Full Moon Empty Heart — Belly
    7. Oh, My Pregnant Head — The Flaming Lips
    8. Fountain of Youth — Guided By Voices
    9. There’s No There — Dinosaur Jr.
    10. Oceans — Pearl Jam

    Bonus: Thing Called Love — Johnny Cash

    • for some reason your comments are coming up as spam, free. Are you trying to sell me cheap pharmaceuticals or something?

      Anyway, excellent list (as usual).

  2. Great story. I was curious as to how you’d work ‘Margaret in Captivity’ in there, but it was a job well done.

    I’ve got quite a few of the tracks in my library rated, but not quite all (something like 7000 tracks still to rate, so to say that they’re ‘not quite’ all rated is like saying i’m ‘not quite’ a millionaire). I’ll get there, though.

  3. Dick Prall – “Great Admirer” Fizzlebuzzie
    50 Cent – “Many Men (Wish Death)” Get Rich or Die Tryin’
    Avenged Sevenfold – “Trashed and Scattered” City of Evil
    Finger Eleven – “Sick of it All” The Greyest of Blue Skies
    Li’l Wayne – “You Ain’t Got Nuthin’ ” Tha Carter III
    Neil Diamond – “Sweet Caroline”
    Avenged Sevenfold – “Scream” Avenged Sevenfold
    Eric Clapton – “After Midnight” Time Pieces
    The Features – “GMF (Genetically Modified Fable)” Some Kind of Salvation
    Interpol – “Obstacle 1” Turn On The Bright Lights

    I was just listening to the Heartless Bastards last night, The Mountain, anyway. All This Time is my next album purchase. I got an iTunes card just this week and I went back and forth between The Heartless Bastards and Camera Obscura, before settling on Let’s Get Out Of This Country. THB is def. next.

    • All this Time is an excellent album. The title track is one of my favorite Bastards songs ever.

  4. My Chemical Romance – I Brought You My Bullets You Brought Me Your Love: “Headfirst for Halos”
    Ben Folds Five – Whatever and Ever Amen: “Brick”
    Bowling for Soup – Let’s Do It for Johnny!: “Pictures He Drew”
    Taking Back Sunday – A Decade Under The Influence: “A Decade Under the Influence”
    Tim McGraw – Live Like You Were Dying: “Drugs or Jesus”
    Fall Out Boy – Folie a Deux: “27”
    Taylor Swift – Taylor Swift: “Should’ve Said No”
    Hawthorne Heights – The Silence in Black and White: “Niki FM”
    Good Charlotte – The Chronicles of Life and Death: “Falling Away”
    Bowling for Soup – Let’s Do It for Johnny!: “The Bitch Song”

    Great Story! You should have a page with all of the stories in one place.

  5. 1. “Painted Bird” Giant Sand Glum
    2. “Femme Fatale” Big Star Keep An Eye On The Sky
    3. “Mannequin” Wire No Thanks! The 70’s Punk Rebellion
    4. “Sunken Waltz” Calexico Feast Of Wire
    5. “Up Around The Bend” Creedence Clearwater Revival Cosmo’s Factory
    6. “Rock & Roll” The Velvet Underground Loaded
    7. “Save Me From What I Want” St. Vincent Actor
    8. “Tear Down the House” The Avett Brothers The Second Gleam
    9. “Stars And Sons” Broken Social Scene You Forgot it in People
    10. “Read, Eat, Sleep” The Books Thought for Food
    bonus: “Say Mama” Gene Vincent Rock and Roll Fugitive

    Fun read, Mak. If the science thing doesn’t work out, you’ve got a future in lit. And the Neil vid was choice “crunch.”

    • …and Rhu_ru picks today of all days not to show! He may be smarter than he looks.

      By the way, Bootsy. Congrats on the 500th comment here at the Ghost. You win a lifetime subscription!

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