In Boozo Veritas #35 by Teege Braune

Mothers Bring Your Sons, Fathers Bring Your Daughters

A few weeks ago I was honored to be invited by my friend Cathleen to participate in her reading series, Literocalypse. Cathleen Bota and Kristen Arnett began Literocalypse in the fall of last year and host it in The Space, a multi-purpose community art center that I wrote about for In Boozo Veritas #24: There’s a Space for Us. In the several months since Literocalypse began Cathleen and Kristen have brought in a variety of incredible local writers, some who have a long list of publishing credits and other who are debuting their work publicly for the first time. As you would expect, these authors have shared a diverse collection of literature encompassing every style and genre including poetry, fiction, essays, and even multimedia presentations. I was so flattered that Cathleen wanted to include me in the already impressive list of readers that I accepted her invitation before I stopped to consider what I might want to read: I could share my essay about dropping LSD with my best friend in college. I wrote the first draft over a decade ago and have been revising it every couple years since then, but whatever I do with it, it continues to feel juvenile and immature.

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My story about a man obsessed with owning a pet Cheshire cat is much too long, as is my tale of an interdimensional, freedom-fighting vampire porn star. I thought about sifting through the In Boozo Veritas archive and pulling out a couple of my favorites blogs, but that felt a bit too easy. Finding my options limited I began to grow nervous. It looks like I’m going to have to strap on my typing gloves (You don’t own typing gloves?) and finish a piece on which I’ve been working, but where do I exert my efforts? Should I finally complete the revision of a story about a child who finally goes to the carnival he’s longed to attend only to find it much different than he expected or wrap up the scrap of memoir about the time my best friend made is girlfriend come on to me because he thought it would be a hilarious prank? Maybe I’ll come up with a completely new idea about oversized, screeching sperm cells and hope it comes together before this the end of the week. Hell, I’ve written some of my best work in less time than that.

You’ll have to come to The Space on Thursday night at 9:00 PM to find out what I choose to do the time allotted to me, but if my own reading isn’t catalyst enough to get you out of the house, you might want to show up to see my friend the incredibly talented novelist and poet Danielle Kessinger who will be sharing some of her poetry with us lucky bastards in Orlando for the first time, and if you’re still not convinced, Cathleen and Kristen might be bringing a flan to the reading. I can’t promise that, but there is a picture of a flan on the Facebook invite, and they have brought some pretty fantastic desserts to past readings, so who knows? Maybe we’ll get lucky.

One thing to keep in mind is this: The Space isn’t a bar, so Literocalypse is BYOB, but don’t let that get you down. After all, it is much cheaper to buy alcohol wholesale than it is out on the town. While it may not be mandatory, it is definitely customary to offer a beverage to the the event’s readers, so feel free to offer me a drink. Don’t think it has to be craft beer just because I work at Redlight Redlight. While craft beer is certainly welcome, I’ll drink just about any kind of booze you place in my hand. I’ve read multiple studies demonstrating that people are more afraid of public speaking than they are of death. Doubtlessly our ancestors developed fermentation and distillation with the specific purpose of helping others talk in front of a room full of people. Even I can’t say what sort of madness will ensue once I have that liquid courage in my hand, but I promise to entertain, to bring some humor and delight to the evening, or on the other hand, weird the hell out of everybody. This is one night guaranteed to be fun. Or disturbing. Either way, see you there.

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Teege Braune (episode 72, episode 75, episode 77, episode 90) is a writer of literary fiction, horror, essays, and poetry. Recently he has discovered the joys of drinking responsibly. He may or may not be a werewolf.

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