Monday, May 31, 2010

Josh Alan Friedman's Coney Island (Part IV)

Coney Island withstood greater peril with each decade. Still, it created one-of-a-kind rides, never duplicated. Showmen with no formal training would dream up rides in the winter, and go for broke, gamble all they had. If one engineer said it couldn’t be done, the next would build it...

"Coney Island (Part IV)" by Josh Alan Friedman

Click here to read it at Black Cracker Online.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Josh Alan Friedman's Coney Island (Part III)

Angelo the dwarf boasted, “I’ve seen more undies, close up, with the women in them, than any man alive.” His job was to whack women’s fannies with a dingbat while their skirts blew up from floorboard airbursts.

"Coney Island (Part III)" by Josh Alan Friedman

Click here to read it at Black Cracker Online.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Josh Alan Friedman's Coney Island (Part II)

"The mechanical rides were nothing short of revolutionary, engines used for fun and chaos instead of work. This, in an age before airplanes, cars and lawsuits..."

"Coney Island (Part II)" by Josh Alan Friedman

Click here to read it at Black Cracker Online.

(Click here to read Part I.)

Monday, May 10, 2010

Josh Alan Friedman's Coney Island (Part I)

The Steeplechase logo was a demonic face leering out at summer crowds for 70 years. His hair parted center, winging out to both sides. The mouth smiled obscenely over 33 teeth. One critic called it “the most incredibly vulgar trademark ever seen.”

"Coney Island (Part I)" by Josh Alan Friedman

Click here to read it at Black Cracker Online.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

by Andy Biscontini

You have eighteen months to demonstrably answer the following questions:

(Demonstrative graphs and diagrams are acceptable, but must be accompanied by synopses not to exceed one thousand words.)

1. Is it possible for the United States to establish responsible relationships with or facilitate the establishment of relationships between enough population factions within Pakistan and Afghanistan to establish a functioning economic system? If so, do we expect some kind of cut in return?

2. If Afghanistan has a future as a non-narcotic agricultural society, is the most obvious relationship not one of supplier to Pakistan’s densely populated urban areas? If so, would it then be Pakistan’s interest and responsibility as purchasing (consuming) economic partner to maintain the health of Afghani society, with implicit potential for cultural influence?

3. If the only thing the U.S. gets out of the whole thing is the satisfaction of fostering the development of healthy and benevolent sovereign societies, does that justify the expenditure of blood and treasure?

4. Wouldn’t it be cool if Britain agreed to shoulder the investment in urban Pakistan that could help finance the reorganization of agriculture in Afghanistan? If so, would that be a preferable use of their suddenly scant pounds as opposed to their current military presence in Afghanistan, not to mention a heartwarming shot at post-colonial reconciliation?

5. Is it called “market-making” when you create a market for healthy food and agricultural products while setting non-exploitative terms with your providers? If not, why?

6. Is it rare for people from healthy societies to want to blow everything up?

©2010 Andy Biscontini

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


The great Neil Innes - of The Rutles and Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band - gets his Cracker on.

Visit Neil online here at the Innes Book of Records.

photo © 2010 Wyatt Doyle

Monday, May 3, 2010

Josh Alan Friedman's Thunder Roadtrip

Jacksboro Highway attracted the meanest white people in all of Texas. Outlaws hid there and gangsters flourished within the 40-odd honky-tonk beer joints and lavish nightclubs. The 16-mile stream of neon offered a proliferation of illegal slot machines, backroom gambling, whores, dope, booze and constant shootouts.

"Thunder Road Bites the Dust" by Josh Alan Friedman

Click here to read it at Black Cracker Online.

photo © 1989, 2010 Josh Alan Friedman