# # Best Archives - coreyshead

Brother, I Can See Your Skull.

Brother, I Can See Your Skull. - The Coreyshead Blog

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Jaywalking In Charleston

January 19th, 2014 by Corey A. Edwards

Jaywalking In Charleston

This collection of vignettes, observances, and rants accumulated over a four day period in Charleston, South Carolina where I was employed as a vendor at a trade show.

I don’t travel much. This is my first trip in that direction: approximately six hours in the air, southeast with a connection in Atlanta. It’s the farthest south I’ve been on the east coast, maybe on the continent.

Anyway: stuck on a plane, stuck in a hotel room, stuck in a booth, and stuck in my head, the urge to document and rant came. Short of screaming to the heavens, I felt the need to express myself, so into my phone and computer the impressions and observances went – mostly as they happened or shortly thereafter.

Now, with only the slightest of apologies, I present them to you.

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All the Newts That’s Fit To Print – Taricha granulosa

October 7th, 2013 by Corey A. Edwards

Newts - Taricha granulosa - rough-skinned newt

Outside a rarely-used side-door in our basement, there is a concrete stairwell that spends a good part of the year damp and mossy. It gets afternoon sun, if there is any, and because of this, it dries up and stays that way throughout the bulk of the summer months but, autumn to spring, it’s a pretty moist environment.

There is a drain in the bottom landing of this stairway: a hole covered by a round, metal grate tucked halfway under the concrete facade of one wall. Our neighbors live here: Taricha granulosa – rough-skinned newts.

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Ants and Yellow Jackets

September 12th, 2013 by Corey A. Edwards

ants and Yellow Jackets

[*note – this story was originally called “Ants and Hornets” – I have since realized these are yellow jackets, not hornets – very likely Vespula pennsylvanica – the ants look to be Formica obscuripes]

The other day I was out on the property with my daughter, hanging out beneath the arch of a tree and the hollow of some bushes: a little hideout where I keep a chair for quiet, measured snippets of novel now and again.

Anyway, I was there as I said, chatting with my daughter, when she pointed out a dark hole in the ground.
“Yellow jacket’s nest,” she said. “I wont sit in here, they’re all over.”

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A Flood of Memories – Part 1 of 3
The Big Thompson Flood of 1976

August 26th, 2013 by Corey A. Edwards

Big Dam Falls at Chasteen's Grove

Big Dam Falls at Chasteen’s Grove

In the summer of 1976, when I was 7 years old, the river I lived near – The Big Thompson – suffered a flash flood of unheard of proportions. 143 people lost their lives in the rushing waters, five of whom were never found. My family, though living in the affected area, suffered little but inconvenience and shock as the human world around us reeled from one of nature’s little hiccups.

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An Open Letter To My Brain

July 18th, 2013 by Corey A. Edwards

Open Letter To My Brain
You never stop and
though I love you greatly
it seems that it’s always
what have I done with you lately?

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Doin’ the Dog –
Taking the bus to 1970’s California

July 1st, 2013 by Corey A. Edwards

Doin' the Dog - short faction by Corey A. Edwards

It must have been the summer of 1974 or so, I would have been five or six. My maternal grandparents hadn’t seen me since I was a baby, so my mom decided it would be a good time for a visit. We didn’t have a lot of money, though, so it would just be mom and I making the trip, my father and older brother would stay home. As a further expression of our finances, mom and I wouldn’t be flying from Northern Colorado to Southern California but busing.

Being wee, I knew none of the reasons behind why we were going. All I knew was, I was going on a big trip for the first time and I couldn’t wait.

You know you’re young when the prospect of taking a bus from Northern Colorado to Los Angeles with your mom sounds like an exciting adventure.

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Mined Over Matter

June 24th, 2013 by Corey A. Edwards

Mined Over Matter - short faction by Corey A. Edwards

“What happens when you send an atheist to interview a faith healer? You tell me – I can’t watch.”


The house bearing the address I was given is a drab, neglected ranch, the yard littered with assorted dingy vehicles, tarp draped filing cabinets, and abandoned appliances in various states of repair. It is the kind of yard from which vicious dogs leap, not the manicured, peaceful zen garden of a new-age professional.

I exit my vehicle tentative with caution.

What the hell am I doing here? I hate this kind of thing; meeting new people is bad enough but interviewing them for an article in a spiritual newsletter is even worse. When I took the job as webmaster for the local, new-age bookstore, I never intended to have to pay this much lip service to the dizzying array of beliefs that are the store’s bread and butter. I’m a total skeptic, an unrepentant atheist, yet here I am, about to interview what amounts to a new-age faith healer.

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The Worms

June 3rd, 2013 by Corey A. Edwards

The Worms - short fiction by Corey A. Edwards

“Esther discovers a worm on an old, hated quilt … and then the world.”

 
The Worms first entered into what you and I would think of as reality through a quasar catalogued as 3C 279. Quasar 3C 279 does not exist for this purpose nor had it been used so prior; it was just handy at the time.
A mere handful of pinkish-gray, banded, larval forms, no more than two centimeters in length, The Worms are more appropriately referred to in the singular for, despite the apparent lack of connection between bodies, “they” are “it” far more than “it” is “they”.

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Lost and Foundry – Pt. 2
I, Patineur

May 27th, 2013 by Corey A. Edwards

hiding behind my beloved turbo-torch

(Part 1 of “Lost and Foundry” can be found here)

The longer I worked at the foundry, the farther I rose up in ranks – whether I wanted to or not – and it wasn’t just because of my abilities.

First there was the appointment to head of Monument Sprue, a change that mainly involved me going to lots of pointless meetings and wandering around the foundry with a clipboard, talking to friends – not because it was part of the job but because the position and clipboard gave me the excuse and camouflage to do so. Then they allowed me to move to patina and, in short order, made me head of that department.

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Lost and Foundry – Pt. 1
All Sprued Up

May 20th, 2013 by Corey A. Edwards

pointing out the obvious in wax sprue

In the mid 90’s I found myself in a very precarious position: the husband in a married team of new parents, unexpectedly locked out of their business by their silent partners for suspicion of embezzlement.

While this presents a story all on its own, suffice it to say that our business partner’s accusations were eventually discovered to be unfounded (the butler did it) but the damage was done and, in the meantime, I needed work!

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“for after the divorce”

May 6th, 2013 by Corey A. Edwards

Poking about my “writings” folder, I discovered this piece entitled “for after the divorce,” written circa 2006. Intrigued I read it and was stunned by both its honesty and darkness. I knew I wanted to share it but I wasn’t sure why and so I mothballed it again until I understood the urge. There are some uncomfortable moments here and so much has changed in my life – all for the better! – why dredge up the clotted ichor of the past?

I eventually realized that the urge to share it had to do with the realization that we are so often capable of pulling ourselves out of the deepest and darkest places. Very shortly after this was written – a few months or more – I started that elusive career and, though my marriage did fall apart and even harder times were to come, it was an adventure that has led me to the amazing place I am now.

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Corpocopia

April 29th, 2013 by Corey A. Edwards

Corpocopia by Corey A. Edwards

Gregg discovers it’s what’s inside that matters … but it’s up to Emmy to clean up the mess.

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Shandeh and Ibuprofen

February 18th, 2013 by Corey A. Edwards

Shandeh and Ibuprofen by Corey A. Edwards, 2004

Retail records, Jewish guilt, and Russians from Sequim

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It Takes Guts

August 9th, 2012 by Corey A. Edwards

 

CoreyA while back I purchased a great little book of Japanese monsters, shown in cross-section, in an attempt to shed a little light upon just what it is that makes them tick.

Great concept. Hours of fun.

The only problem is, the darned thing is all in Japanese! The nerve of these people! (they also made a mistake and printed the whole thing backwards – someone lost his job at the printing house that day, I can tell you)

Anyway, I took it upon myself to decipher those inscrutable little squigglies that littered the page and present to you here the few I manged to get through before passing out with exertion. Phew. My brain. (be sure to click on them for a closer view)

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The Cruel Death of Jerry Guilder’s Lunch

August 4th, 2012 by Corey A. Edwards

The Cruel Death of Jerry Guilder's Lunch

“I was going to die at the impassioned hands of a half-Japanese cowboy on a grade-school sidewalk, and I was going to do it slowly and in immense pain.”

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Excerpt From A Story I Can’t Imagine I’ll Ever Write – short fiction

January 31st, 2012 by Corey A. Edwards

clownie

 

Chapter 12

in which we find our heroes on a precarious ledge over the clown pit

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Gehennan Refinery, Spewer of Cities

October 9th, 2011 by Corey A. Edwards

Gehennan Refinery, Spewer of Cities

I’m toying with putting a calendar together of composites/distortions I’ve done and, coming up a bit short of the 12 images I need, I started playing with a few of my existing photos.

One of them made an almost immediate impression on me as a surreal scene of biblical, industrial horror. A couple of hours later and we have the scene above: fantastic, unrealistic, yet somehow evoking in me that sense of ecological nightmare.

Vast stretches of steel, concrete and stone, dimly illuminated by artificial light under a toxic sky, with only a few, meager regions left for poorly maintained agriculture to limp along, almost as an afterthought, on the tortured remnants of dry, scratched earth that remain.

Beautiful, aint it? =)

Summer

June 29th, 2011 by Corey A. Edwards

Summer: The Ditch - circa 1970

 

Summer days stung
with sweet leaf chewing tobacco
the bitter blood of choke cherries
and crisp stalked asparagus purloined
like the shade we find and eat it in

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Racist

June 25th, 2011 by Corey A. Edwards

Racist

“Are you a racist?”

The question comes from the back of the bus. It is not inflected in the way you might expect: no anger, no indignation, no shock; just a loud, open question that hangs in the air like a heavy curtain pulled between those of us in earshot and our lives of careful make-believe.

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Wet Scream of Consciousness

May 16th, 2011 by Corey A. Edwards

I come in from weed-whacking the lawn when I hear the scream. It exits the wall to my right and crawls into my ear, ringing there like the buzzing of a little, lost fly.

It is my teenage daughter in the shower.

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The Face – short fiction

July 5th, 2010 by Corey A. Edwards

He wasn’t sure when it began but it seemed that now, no matter how he tried, he couldn’t escape it.

It was everywhere. In the chrome of the toaster, rippling up at him from the surface of his morning’s coffee, in the smear of color playing across the glassed face of a clock. He’d lean forward to turn off the TV and, if the light was right, there it was, staring back at him from the grey of the still dying tube: the face.

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Myrna-Joe and Cleary – short fiction

June 5th, 2010 by Corey A. Edwards

Myrna-Joe was a large woman with bad skin, dimpled joints, and bright orange hair. Not red, mind you: orange. Truth be told it was a wispy, ghost gray, having long since lost its original, dish-water dinginess but she’d colored it with one of those cheap preparations you can find for half-off on aisle 12 and now it was like that of a doll or some character from a 1960’s Rankin/Bass animation.

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Hold On To Your Hat!

October 28th, 2009 by Corey A. Edwards

Nobody shouted it at me but somebody should have.

I’ve heard it a million times before; not when it was relevant, mind you, but rather as simple and hackneyed hyperbole intended to ready me for something often not worth the effort of the cliché.

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Mission Statement

October 10th, 2009 by Corey A. Edwards

When I moved from my home of Larimer County, Colorado to Washington state’s Olympic Peninsula in 1999, I did so with an optimism built on the spine of my young family and a sense that I had an opportunity to reinvent myself.

What I didn’t realize at the time was that my young family’s spine was broken even then and that you cannot reinvent what was never completed in the first place.

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Tom & Jerry and The Bellamy Brothers (song of the week)

December 22nd, 2008 by Corey A. Edwards

I feel like I am in a time warp.

A little more than 12 months ago, I was starting out as the creative director for a perfect-bound, glossy-paper magazine; a salaried professional.

Sure, the magazine was ridiculously small but we produced a product that made people think we were a lot larger than we were. The quality of the paper, the pictures, the subject matter, the clean layout; surely it was upward for both myself and the magazine.

Heh heh … right.

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Freedom From Religion

December 7th, 2008 by Corey A. Edwards

According to various news sources, a sign has been put up near a nativity scene in Seattle by the Freedom From Religion folks reading:

“At this season of the Winter Solstice may reason prevail. There are no gods, no devils, no angels, no heaven or hell. There is only our natural world. Religion is but myth and superstition that hardens hearts and enslaves minds.”

Now I may wholeheartedly agree with the sentiments of this sign (and I do) but I find it to be tantamount to, and thus as offensive as, any of the unasked for religious proselytizing the group claims to be protesting.

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The After School Special

November 19th, 2008 by Corey A. Edwards

When I was growing up there weren’t a lot of snacks in the house and what there were we weren’t to eat. We didn’t have much money and my father didn’t hold with snacks. You ate at mealtimes and that was that.

Unfortunately, when you’re growing, there are times of nearly constant hunger. You’re satiated for so little of the time and then the gnawing comes back, a sympathetic vibration of your metabolism stretching your bones and tissue to fill your DNA’s incontrovertible requisition form.

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The Thing In The Overshoe

November 17th, 2008 by Corey A. Edwards

One cold, January day in the early 80’s, with eyes on an expedition into the iced-over irrigation ditch behind our house, I decide a pair of black, rubber overshoes would be my best choice of foot gear. I’ve not worn such a thing in forever, a combination of woolen stockings, waterproofed boots, and diligently avoiding standing water having replaced the cumbersome, black and, truth be told, hated rubber overshoes of my youth.

Sometimes, however, they’re just the thing.

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Hippie Chick

November 13th, 2008 by Corey A. Edwards

It is a pleasant summer day, the sun radiating down to heat our pleasant and bustling tourist destination of a town. I am on my knees behind the counter, busy taking inventory of a shipment of pseudo-prayer flags; squares of cloth emblazoned with brightly colored, new age motifs, strung together with black, cotton string, and selling for $41.50 apiece, retail.

The store is only moderately busy; tourists and regulars milling about the crystals, books, and tarot cards like lazy bees in a somnolent flower garden.

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Stretch Armstrong

November 2nd, 2008 by Corey A. Edwards

Do you know what a Stretch Armstrong is?

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A Penny For Your Thoughts

October 22nd, 2008 by Corey A. Edwards

It is difficult to say what the exact cause of random stupidity in young men is but a good, general suspect is boredom. More windows have been broken out of boredom than hate, revenge, or any other reason.

In the early 90’s, I was employed at a mall record store and was frequently confronted by the twin specters of my own boredom and stupidity.

Most of the time our store was active with browsing adults, shoplifting teenagers, whining children, and sarcastic employees but certain times – say around 10:30 am on a Wednesday during the off-season – contrasted sharply with this otherwise boisterous environment.

It was on such a morning that I reached a personal zenith in boredom related stupidity.

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Of Solpugids and Security Guards

October 18th, 2008 by Corey A. Edwards


cae posing as a Security Guard – 1989-1991

In the late 80’s and early 90’s, I worked as a security guard at the Loveland, Colorado Hewlett Packard plant.

A sprawling complex of assembly and R&D, the plant was plagued by random waves of climatically inappropriate creatures inadvertently shipped to it in crates and pallets from places all over North America and the world; it wasn’t uncommon to find a gecko on the wall -in winter.

One year we were infested with the strangest, scariest looking arachnid I’ve ever seen.

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