This piece written/updated as of April 21st, 1997 still incomplete. Any complaints or corrections (spelling included) should be addressed to email@example.com. Any resemblance to any animals used in this, living or dead, is purely dead.
Any piece of this material to be used for anything else, other then the SRL Web site, MUST have permission of the author and SRL or we'll shoot your ass.
Survival Research Labs (SRL) is a unique Mechanical Performance group, formed by Mark Pauline. Since the 70's Mark has been making machines that rip and tear machine, meat and whatever gets in their way.
Using industrial leftovers, machines are created by the tossed aside components of a previous era.
With the dumpstered wastes of yesteryears' crap, it's all reshaped and reused in an impressive display of civilian firepower.
The machines have name like the Walking Machine, the Inch-worm, and one of the new machines, The Hand of God; a massive hand propelled by an Army surplus bomb loader, created for loading bombs on bombers.
SRL is not a touring band. To put on a show, the amount of labor is intensive.
SRL consists of crews of people and volunteers working together doing everything from rebuilding the machines, "making them come to life" to building sets, props...to cooking meals, living together, and singing camp songs around a warm diesel fire.
An SRL show is like seeing a bizarre juvenile delinquent demolition derby. The performances are loud, large, and impressive. The machines looking like they just crawled out of the earth, caked with rust and oil. It's like seeing a back-hoe taking on a fork-lift, except the machines are equipped with flame throwers, spinning blades and rusty shit, that looks as though it can cut your head off. And it could.
It's amazing to see what kind of military left-overs can be recycled and used in the hands of a civilian.
By seeing a show, the audience itself is taking a risk. Flaming diesel is all over the place; a lot of the props/targets built are pretty menacing when the remains of their debris is flying through the air..
Essentially you're seeing a high-tech circus put on by delinquent mechanics, who want to do nothing more then fuck shit up with their creations.
S.R.L. tends to break taboos, taking the word "controversial" while giving you examples to exemplify their point; like a matador waving a red cape in front of an angry bull; the bull usually being the local law enforcement agencies and/or the Fire Marshall.
The artwork, the flats, are like seeing the facade of a freakshow. Artist Cati, French and hyper-active, paints out the flats of the set, with her demented visions, usually falling the theme of the show. This one being disasters.
Mark's photoshop collages are tiled out into 8 to 12 foot flats. They include everything from an orgy of gay cowboys, to a naked happy camper towering "behind" a Texas longhorn. You know...ironic, yet "offensive." But still, they always tend to put a smile on peoples faces...
The props garish, but incredibly large and staged out. As though you were the first on the scene of a train wreck.
A collaborate effort, SRL is an organization made up of people from all walks of life, every social cast.
The labor involved is a labor of love, from SRL members, to the local volunteers. Each others skills of artistry, mechanics, robotics, pyrotechnics, production, promotion, on-site/on-line networking, documenting, acquisition, all "finely tuned" and integrated with one another...well, to the best of their abilities...
It's all Industrial Strength, Industrial Culture, y'all.
Today I think I saw Mark Pauline. He was wearing oil-stained overalls. He was getting an orange in the cantina. Oh, boy, I think it's going to be a great show! Oh, Diary, I never thought it could get any better then this. Today I stopped at Callahans, and bought some real sharp looking Dude-wear! Oh, diary, now maybe the all the other mechanics will be so jealous of me.
Oh, yeah, diary, I hope Mike Dingle doesn't find this. Dingle is the guy who can tell if you've been hanging around with your hands in your pockets or not. A rough character. Mean. But diary, I think he smiled at me...I guess he can be an all right guy. O.K. Diary, I gotta go, Dingle wants me to sweep the race track, and after that, maybe I can have donut, if any are left in the kitchen...
And so it goes...on the plains of Texas. Surrounded by shit-kickers, pick-up trucks, deep in the heart of Texas...
Day One; Arrival....
Pulled in. Massive road rash from driving 36 hours from SF to Austin. About a dozen people from SRL are already out here. They flew in a few days earlier.
South of Austin is where the Longhorn Speedway is located; an oval asphalt racetrack where the SRL show is taking place.
The weather was wet. The rain earlier had turned the track into a swamp, with small lakes formed in the grass on either side of the asphalt. We were bumming out. Rain sucks. Mud sucks worse.
As we pulled up, the first thing spotted was on of the flatbed stuck in the mud, outside the track. The flatbed pretty much has the rest of the machines and other parts on the back. The first sign of life at the show is the massive tow-truck aptly named "Shameless." -as in the price they charged for pulling out the flatbed.
We were directed towards the Flameblower, a giant Flame Thrower powered by a V-8. Our first job was to rotate the hood 45 degrees, so the blower would shoot out and up, instead of horizontally. That was accomplished with an a-frame (like a tall swing set frame), a winch, and a hand winch (come-along).
The Speedway is littered with debris/parts for the show, strategically placed where that piece is going to be set. In front of the Grandstands, laying in the grass is what looks like a giant erector set. It's the frame for the building of the 40 foot tower...the Charles Whitman Memorial Tower.
On the campus of the University of Texas, is the UT Tower. The UT Tower spans high above the skyline of Austin, containing one of the largest bell collections in the country, along with an red-orange light. In the past, a favorite launching pad for suicidal UT students, failing their mid-terms.
In 1965, a heavily medicated Charles Whitman, doped up on amphetamines, Demerol, and goof-balls, blew away the receptionist and some students, while heading up to the observation deck of the tower. From there, he made a day of it, picking of pedestrians, until the tower was stormed, and his mark was made in history. (for more information, refer to WWW.Mayhem.NET; the Crime archives).
The Longhorn Speedway is located off 183, about 15 miles south of Austin. The track is oval, with an asphalt "X" crossing through the center. On either side of the raceway are dilapidated bleachers, with 3 separate entrances onto the track. Besides the asphalt, the rest of the track is grass.
Along the back of the stretch of the track, is where the shop is set. Tarped over, it's the main center where all the tools, lathes, drills, bolts, welding equipment...everything is located. This is where parts are fabricated; formed.
All along the back of the lot, are campers, an AirStream, mobile homes, and a couple of other white trash living quarters for the crew.
On Procuring Living Quarters.
The quarters are oddly scrounged up by Flynn Malfee, one of the main "point men" of the Austin show. Apparently, while driving around, he spots Winnebagos and campers in peoples yards, then hits them up, offering to rent them for a couple of weeks. So far he's been pretty successful. The back lot of the Speedway is looking like a demented trailer park for Urban Refugees. Come to think of it, it is...
Woke up, started working on The Hand of God. Ralph, one of the main mechanics, is in charge of the project. Canadian. Funny as shit.
"Naw, you want to get cher body out from under the hand of God, lest you lose a limb." He's right.
The hand is giant, with huge digits for the 6 fingers. When fitted on the green army surplus Bomb Loader, the hand "flicks"/swats, whatever's in front of it...in a limp wrist-ed kinda way. I was describing it as the Gay Hand of God. I think Mark said something about it rotating, so it's not always in that fixed position...it's a mechanical nightmare! Remote controlled. The pin on the base of the hand fit's perfectly into the hole on the base/bomb loader. The flange on the pin is really, really small. Using a forklift holding the hand, a crew of 3 people are trying to fit it in, where it perfectly lines up. I crawl under it with a stick in the hole from the bottom, trying to get it to line up, while someone up top is hitting it with a sledge...
Didn't lose a limb. Broke for lunch. Someone finished the job.
All throughout the week is the pain in the ass of getting a hold of The Boat for the show. SRL got a hold of this giant boat. Straight out of the '60s. Apparently, it used to be a floating speed lab, before it was seized. It's history. It's going to be on hydraulics, rocking back and forth with a wind machine hitting sheets of plastic, the plastic sheets being the waves.
Procuring the boat has been nothing but a nightmare, since they got A-O.K. to grab it The bottom is rotting off and the worst of it being getting it back to the site.
John Law, Wendy, and Flynn. 3-person crew to get the 28 foot boat. Insane. Took the whole day to get it, with no help from the boat yard. John Law loses his cool; scares away the head guy on the yard. The boat is enormous. It'll make fine firewood. The crew want to blow it up now. Everybody loves the boat...
Today was bad-ass. Waking up in Austin, where I passed out on Suzanne and Cheesy's (the drummer of Fuckemos) couch. I met up with Scott, one of the SRL film crew, and scored the rest of the 4 foot florescent tubing I found at a housing supply called "Habitat." 400 Florescent light tubes...Tesla coils love 'em.
One of my main concerns was scoring the Meat for the show.
SRL shows in the past usually employ some sort of carcasses to be used as cannon fodder for the machines.
This is Texas, and of course everybody wants a cow for their machines to chew up and "Bar-B-Q." Seeing that I used to live here, and my friends are all psycho, I pretty much got the job as Corpse Patrol...Makes sense; Press Corpse...
You try rounding up Road Kill.
The night before, I made it into town and ran into this ex-skinhead who turned me onto a few places to score "dead-things."...he kept on going off on this 4 foot long catfish he caught...as though you could see that from the bleachers...he clued me onto a few good places, but it was someone else who had his shit together...or so I thought...
After calling a few rendering houses, it seemed the best I could come up with was maybe some heads from San Antonio.
Earlier, Wade, an old pal, came to the site, and told me he had a line on some cows...
He gave me the number of a "sort of weird friend of his..."..his girlfriend said there was a drought last year, bunch of cattle died, so mummified corpses seemed to be abundant...
Apparently he lived near the river and had access to a bunch of dead cows. Apparently he also collected them...along with along with other things...I also heard he delivers. 30 minutes or it's free? I want a pizza with mushrooms and cows on it. Hold the shrapnel.
I got a hold of him; the conversation was thus:
"Yeah. Hello. My name is Seth, from SRL"
"Yeahh, you the friend of Wades?" complete slow southern Texas drawl. Sounded like he had a few...a few something...
"Yeah. So what's this about some you having some cows?"
"Hell, we'll getcha yer cows!"
"How many cows are we lookin at?" I was still under the preoccupation that these cows were mummified...
"Hell, we'll get as many as you fuckin want"
"Uh, yeah...?" I felt like I was talking over a prison phone with Leatherface on the other side of the plexi-glass...(see Texas Chainsaw Massacre)
"Wall, it's goanna be like this. The thing about the cows is, it's gotta be at night. We'll go in there, we'll bring some beer and some pills, and we'll get you your cows!"
"Uh...So these cows are mummified?"
"Uh, like, they're already dead...right?"
"Hell, they'll be dead and pumpin blood out of their brains as yer loadin 'em on the truck!"
"Uh, your not talkin about rustlin...are you?" pause...at this time, Dingle, sight coordinator/foreman, and one of the backers of the show have walked into the camper, and are catching some of this conversation...I'm trying to play it down-key, so the backer doesn't freak out.
More of a pause...he's probably thinking I'm some kinda city-slicker...
"You know, cattle rustlin is a hanging offence in Texas." pause... "Let me talk to Mark.. Is Mark there?."
I look at Dingle...No comment.
"Uh, he's not around. He's in a meeting." That'll hold him; that line works in every office all the time...should of told him he was out welding...
Dingle cut in. "Tell him Mark will call him back" I think he wanted his camper back...
"Yeah, listen, I'll have Mark call you back"
"Yeah, you have Mark call me. But tell him not to call too late, I gotta kid."
"OK, no problem. Thanks a lot" Phone hung up.
"You're not going to rustle cattle are you?" It was the backer from Fringe-Ware. He looked a little perturbed.
"Naw. Hey Dingle, forget it, I gotta line on a couple of rendering places..."
The next hardest thing was trying to sum this all up, and explain it to Mark...
Beer, pills and cattle.
Jenna had me cornered in the truck, on the way out to get the Manson Family Dune Buggy. Terry was caught between us. He looked as though he was going to snap at any second and bash our brains in with his golf club...
"Seth, I'll go with you to the rodeo."
"Rodeo? Why do you think I want to go to the rodeo?"
"To get your cows!"
"Yeah, right. You think they're going to have dead cows at a rodeo."
Maybe she had rodeo's mixed up with Bullfights...I was starting to get pissed off at this whole cow thing. Earlier, in a meeting, Mark made some comment to the effect of;
"So what's up with the cow? Is that some kind of Texas tall-tale? Or a
bunch of Slackers blowing steam?",
Back in the truck...
"So, how's it going? Are you having any luck with the horses?"
She was bummed out. I knew she really wanted to go to the rodeo. Somebody should of sent her there with a gun, and my job would of been over.
Tahoe Boats was another I the line of many, many scrap-yards around Austin. This place was littered with remnants of boats, with the back of the lot being littered with everything else. It was the ultimate toxic waste dump.
The goal; Picking up what everybody called the Manson Dune Buggy. A decreped piece of junk. Fiberglass frame, big head lights...the works. The other object was this massive tank for the Steam generator.
Other then that, we got to roam the yard looking for scrap and other weird shit to use in the show. One was a really rusty "cage", another, some scaffolding.
As we were doing this, we were all being stalked by this parasite from KQED. A "journalist." I was beginning to wonder why journalists tend to come out of the woodwork for these shows...I mean, personally, I'm in it for the money...but I wouldn't exactly call this "journalism"...my friend Oppenheimer described it better as "Journaljism."
For all the scumbag journalists, I swear, you only tend to see maybe one or two articles...usually being on the 7:00 news, and the local newspaper...maybe even the "alternative" newspaper. But don't count on it.
They always hang out...just in case someone dies. They're hoping someone kicks it. That way, they can be "stringers" for such hit shows as "Real TV" or "Strange Universe", cash in on their snuff footage (if they're "lucky"), selling the rights to their specially edited version on the Bizarre Cult of the Survivalists Research Laboratories.
It's amazing what you can get away with, with press credentials...I mean...I get fed every day out here, along with living in a luxury trailer with air conditioning and electricity. Who needs money?
All I ask for is one free foot, so I won't fall over when shoving it up the ass of another journalist.
Meanwhile Terry found some pipe for the Donut Cannon.
The Donut Cannon
From day one, when we arrived, Chuck Hell, (from the band Blort) was making deliveries of donuts to the kitchen. Apparently worked at a donut place, and was delivering donuts as much as he could, to the point that there were more donuts then us.
When Kimeric arrived, the idea of a donut cannon became a reality...
"Yeah, what we're going to need to do, is get some pipe. About 4 inches in diameter. Maybe six, to really pack some donuts in. Maybe some sewer pipe." Kimeric is an expert at pyrotechniques. His mind works in a way, that if you mention something to him, like the Donut Cannon, his brain instantly puts two and two together, piecing it all out.
"It's really very simple. All we have to do is get a real thick piece of steel plate, and weld it on the bottom. Then we'll just pack the hell out of it with all those donuts...." I forgot to ask him what he was going to use to detonate it...
For some reason, to me anyway, it seemed that donuts were really the theme of the whole show. Besides the donuts, Chuck Hell was also supplying 30 to 40 gallon of donut glaze for the snot cannon.
The Snot Gun
The Snot Gun is located on the front of the giant Walker. A new add-on to the Walker. Eric Paulous, one of computer experts, was out there with a laptop hooked up to the walker trying to coordinate the firing sequence of the snot gun on the Walker.
Meanwhile, the construction on the tower was coming along fine, the second 20 foot section was standing in place, alongside the other, and more of the machines were being assembled.
Today woke up with people from the Speedway tearing through the scrap-pile behind our trailer. Wanted to grab a gun and start shooting back, just so they could get an idea of the noise. I swear, I'll never understand people who get up at 6:00 in the morning on Saturday, just to move metal...
Today, a new batch of SRL arrived. They're all hanging out around the kitchen. They're assembling a group to go to "Bubba's" place, a scrap-yard down the road. It seems like everybody's excited about meeting Bubba.
Apparently Bubba's quite a piece of work. Although to me, I really think a lot of these people have never seen white trash before, so it's kinda like a field trip for them...whatever..They're going to grab a 30 foot crane to use in the show; something to grab and pull equipment while all the mayhem is happening.
Right now, I'm sitting in the press box, up in the bleachers of the speedway, typing. Which, when you think about it, is where I should be anyway.
Fuck you Sports Illustrated.
It's a great view of the Speedway. Asphalt and grass.
One of the main concerns of the show is the machines getting caught in the dirt/grass, and losing mobility; not moving. A lot of them are limited to the pavement.
From the press box, the site looks like it's own scrap-yard, with the machines looking like abandoned farm equipment, lying out in the field. In the center of the "X" , is the frame of a Teepee, made out of three telephone poles, roughly 30 feet in the air.
How to Make a Telephone Pole Teepee.
The poles are lashed together in the center with cable and cable clamps.
At the bottom, a cable is strung through the holes, which are going to be the base. In the mean time, a wedge, like a slice of cheese, pointing up, is built out of pallets, with the base being another pallet.
Next, a fork lift lifts the center of the poles, while the wedge is shoved under the center of the teepee. Raised up 7 feet in the air. Here, Circus Boy is staking off the base's of the poles with a sledge, so the poles don't slip and kill someone...
A come-along, (a hand winch) is hooked up to the cable threaded through the base. By hand, the come-along tightens the cable, pulling the base in,, slowly raising the poles up. The fork lift then grabs the wedge, gets under it, and raises it some more, the process is repeated, until the structure is up.
I'm burnt. All this typing is killing me. I turn in.
Slept in late today; 10:30. Looked out of the window of my white trash trailer to see people already working. we were up till 4:00/5:00 the night before, with a crew of about 14 people, pulling nails out of all this scored lumber. Lumber is used for everything around here. Most of the props...everything. Black Sabbath and Beer; a sure-fire combination to make a mind-numbingly job seem fun...it was.
Out of all the exciting nail pulling, some fucking geek with a tape recorder came over and was recording all the noise...of nail pulling...OK, maybe it's just me, and I'm a little too hard on other "journalists" (like Rolling Stone Boy), but when there was a lull in the sound of nail pulling and hammering, this jerk leaned down, picked up a hammer, and started banging on a board...not a nail, but just on the wood. I just hoped I said "idiot" loud enough for it to be picked up on tape.
The project; Building a walkway/bridge off the Charles Whitman Memorial Tower. Like a people mover, this was going to have dummies inside it, while being torched.
O.K. They call it "The Tower", I guess time is saved calling it that. I mean, what if it was the other way around?
"Hey could you give me a hand at the Charles Whitman Memorial Tower? Send
Sean over to the Charles Whitman Memorial Tower with 15 1/4" bolts and a
"What side of the Charles Whitman Memorial Tower do you want the walkway attached to?"
"It's going to span across the "X" on the Northeast side of the Charles Whitman Memorial Tower."
Earlier, I got a call from Jerry Dog, an old pal. He's got a farm down the road. He wanted to know if we could use a motorcycle at the site.
"Does it work?"
"Hell, I don't know. You guys could tear it to pieces, for all I care"
Later, I rolled it over to People Hater to see if they could do anything with it. Kimeric and Kevin Binker looked it over. One of the ideas they came up with was driving a pole in the ground and welding the bike to some bar to the pole, so they could start it up, and it would continually spin out in a circle around the pole.
"It's gotta be in the wheelie position." Kevin was looking it over to see if it was possible to get it running.
"We have to mount Evil Knevil on it..." Chip, from People Hater.
People Hater is another faction of SRL, but also independent, with their own crew making weird shit. Their shop is littered with tools and kids toys, being manipulated into fucked-up creations that look like dysfunctional Ed "Big Daddy" Roth cars.
Chip, Terry, Phil, Kimeric...they tend to be the ones setting out of control fires, testing out their creations on whoever gets in their way...
Meanwhile, Brian/Tiffany, from Austin, is working on putting together a "circus"-type carousel he built for a demented circus he and his friends have here. Left over from a previous performance, the carousel is located to the left of the center of the "X." About 12 feet high, with a motor in the center to spin it. I'm trying to get a hold of some dead goats for him to mount on the side...
Speaking of "dead things", I made a call back to my beer drinking pill popping cow connection...
Beer Drinking Pill Popping Cow Connection Call
"Hey, how's it going? This is Seth at SRL."
"Yeah, pretty good" He sounded more civil this time.
"I'm calling about the cows again...Wade said to give you a call again..."
"Uh, huh. Whatcha need?"
"I'm looking at at least one cow, maybe more...two or three would be great"
"Well, I can pretty much guarantee one...I could try for two. What kind shape you want them to be?"
"Well, mummified's all right, but it's gotta be strong enough to stick a spit through it. I can't have it falling apart, disintegrating...It's sort of gonna be Bar-B-Qued...on the V1."
"O.K. I'll see what I can do. When do you want 'em? You know you're gonna have to put it on ice..."
"Yeah, I pretty much figured on that...no problem. But I figured Thursday. It's too much of a mess to have it any earlier, stinkin up the place. Uh, you deliver?"
"I'll see what I can do, but I might need a truck."
"No problem, we got trucks, if that has to happen."
"So I want some tickets for doing this."
"I think we can work it out."
"I want 6 tickets. For my family." Yeah...Adams Family...
"No problem, I'll see what I can do."
"All right, I'll call you Tuesday and confirm."
"Cool, great, I'll give you a ring if I don't hear from you sooner."
"O.K." Smooth...I just hope this doesn't fall into the "If you can't do it right, you gotta do it yourself" category.
The other morning, I walked into the press box, so I could share my most
precious inter-most thoughts with Anjali, one of the cinematographers of the
Kicking back on the floor, in the A.C, was Mark Pauline! Oh, diary, my
heart started racing, for I was in the same room, sharing the same air, with
the very man who created Survival Research Labs in the first place! That's
not all, diary! He even spoke to me!
"Drinking a beer..." he even made eye-contact!
Oh, diary, am I the only alcoholic here on the site? I feel so ostracized
away from my 12 step program. And how am I supposed to call my sponcer,
diary, when I'm locked in a frenzy of temptation? The line for the phone is
impossible! Oh, diary. I think I'm going to post a flyer for an SRL 12
step/N.A. program, meeting nightly in my trailer. BYOB
The other morning, I walked into the press box, so I could share my most precious inter-most thoughts with Anjali, one of the cinematographers of the group.
Kicking back on the floor, in the A.C, was Mark Pauline! Oh, diary, my heart started racing, for I was in the same room, sharing the same air, with the very man who created Survival Research Labs in the first place! That's not all, diary! He even spoke to me!
"Drinking a beer..." he even made eye-contact!
Oh, diary, am I the only alcoholic here on the site? I feel so ostracized away from my 12 step program. And how am I supposed to call my sponcer, diary, when I'm locked in a frenzy of temptation? The line for the phone is impossible! Oh, diary. I think I'm going to post a flyer for an SRL 12 step/N.A. program, meeting nightly in my trailer. BYOB
Business as usual. With the weekend over, the stores and phone contacts are all back in their sitting positions.
I made a call to a meat rendering plant...or so I thought. The secretary informed me that they only deal in parts. She then turned me onto a place in San Antonio; J.J. Rendering. I made the call...
"Hi, I'm a student here at U.T. We're working on film, and I'm hunting for carcasses for backdrop."
"What are you looking for?" The man had a slowww southern, deep Texas accent.
"Well, what I'm looking for is a couple of cows. Maybe some horses, if you got'em"
"O.K. Let me get yer name and number, I'll have someone call you back and we'll see what we can do."
"O.K, that's great. My name is Seth Maxwell," I gave him the number. "either y'all get someone on the phone, or you'll get the answering machine; it'll say S.R.L. You can go ahead and leave me a message there."
Going over to the kitchen, lunch, a bunch of people were emerging wearing cheap straw cowboy hats. Someone put it on the list of supplies we had to have.
Picture the S.R.L crew all wearing identical cowboy hats. Our style had finally arrived.
Driving out in the blue pickup truck a.k.a. the SRL truck, was Jenna and Tracy. They were going to go talk to some rancher about the rental of some horses...the price? $200 a horse...seemed like a waste of money for a pony ride...
"Hey, wait! Wait!" I had to ask...
"We're on our way to confirm the horses!"
"When you get there, can you ask 'em if they have any dead ones lying around?"
"O.K. We'll see, I doubt it but we'll see how it goes."...
"Well if they don't have any dead ones, can you point at the live ones and say these'll do?!"
Woke up to the sound of thunder. It's raining. O.K. It's pouring. The night before we put up tarps over the machines.
Holed up in the kitchen with a few other people, trying to wake up looking at the rain. Couple of them were in tents...now soaked and fucked up.
Jenna comes in complaining she was woken up by people coming into her room. Her room is the press box, with the computer equipment with the CUCMe InterNet equipment.
"Don't worry, Jenna, pretty soon there'll be a moat around it, anyway"
James, who lives in outside of San Antonio, told me they talked to my cow connection. He's out of the picture. I figured as much...heard he crashed his car the day before. Not to mention that the rain is going to make the fields out there mud flats. I knew I had to make cattle cows. Three new rendering places to call...my plan "B."
Before dinner, yesterday, somebody screamed "fire test!." They were ready to test out the new improved Shock-Wave Cannon. One of the most amazing things is, it was pretty much all constructed here on-site, not brought down from S.F.
New and improved; 25 five foot barrel, about three feet in diameter. Massive. Mounted on a tri-pod with adjustments for elevation and windage, driven by electric motors. One of the switches opens up a valve for oxygen, and another for acetylene. The other switch hits the spark, igniting the mixture.
The cannon shoots a 8-12 foot invisible ring. An invisible blast. Really fucking loud. The resulting being an invisible wave, a shock wave, traveling 200 miles an hour.
"O.K. Who's gonna stand in front if it?!." Mark was manning the electrical outlet; the switch wasn't built yet.
"C'mon people, you'll love it, it's like being hit with a pillow." For some reason, a 200 mph pillow didn't really sound like that much fun.
A crowd of about a dozen people stood a few yards away from it.
"Ears!" Ears is the common word used to cover your ears so you don't have your eardrums blasted. The covering ranged from earplugs to Shooters/gun earmuffs that kill off 25 decibels, muffling the explosion.
With a deafening explosion, you could see the report from the cannon hitting the targets, blasting off baseball caps and earmuffs. It was hilarious.
When the blast missed the target, you could see it hit the foliage behind them, totally pushing it in. Then there's the weird-ass whistling sound second after the blast. Really bizarre. Sounds like a mini tornado; high pitched, rolling over and over. I mean weird...it sounded as though we were poking holes trough Austin's ozone layer. Oooops.
"Throw in a smoke bomb" Scott, another mechanic, tossed in the bomb. I was expecting the smoke bomb to shoot out and kill someone. Instead, it just blew out the largest smoke ring I' ever seen. Along with a few more baseball caps.
"Aim it at the Bubba-truck!" The Bubba truck was an old crane truck they scored at Bubba's scrap-yard. Took 'em the whole day to get it, pulling a hundred dead water-heaters of it to finally pull it out.
Like the pick-up truck in Sanford and Son, except blue with a 30 foot crane attached to it. A crew had been working on it since they got there, hot-rodding it with a huge engine on the crane, so it could lift and drop the Dune Buggy. It was a stationary machine.
When hit by the Shockwave Cannon, the truck just shuddered as though someone just gave it a shove. The next target was where the "art department" was putting together, and fabricating dummies, to drop around various places along the field..
First the gun going off, and then a second later, everything being knocked off the shelf. Weird. Really weird.
The testing of the cannon was a complete success...the mere size of it is intimidating as hell. This is what they point and shoot at the audience...
Oh Diary, today I saw Mark smile! He was trying out his new Shock Wave
Cannon! Oohh! The cannon is so big, diary! I felt so privileged when
Dingle asked me to climb inside it and pull out the smoke bomb. Oh diary, is
it just me and an air of bad luck following me that it went off while I was
inside it? Well, gotta run, diary, I think I hear someone ringing us for
dinner. Strange, dinner is never served at 4:30.
Oh Diary, today I saw Mark smile! He was trying out his new Shock Wave Cannon! Oohh! The cannon is so big, diary! I felt so privileged when Dingle asked me to climb inside it and pull out the smoke bomb. Oh diary, is it just me and an air of bad luck following me that it went off while I was inside it? Well, gotta run, diary, I think I hear someone ringing us for dinner. Strange, dinner is never served at 4:30.
Whatta fucking long day. Today I went and got my laundry done at Jerry Dog's. You tend to wear the Speedway before it wears on you. Got into town, sold some of these abusive stickers I made to Prince at his store, Atomic City. The money he kicked down, paid for my new shooting head-phones, and a "mag" light...un-official SRL tools of the trade...to the point where I wanted to puke...toss in a leatherman, and some steel-toed boots, and you're in like Flynn.
O.K. I suppose some cover-alls would of helped, and some decent gloves.
I decided to give up on Pill-boy, and concentrate on plan B, for the cow...
Talked to Phil at J.J. rendering...I was referred to him from a rendering plant. It seems, as I found out, that rendering places essentially just get in parts. The hard part was getting the cows/horses before they're hacked to bits...
The tension was high...Today was the day all the press was invited out to the field for a preview of the machines.
Everybody is working hard on the machines, as the press scurries around, shooting video, film, recording noises, interviewing anybody who might have some grease and oil on their shirts.
Thursday the day before the Show
In the truck, typing on the way to get the cow in San Antonio. I about killed Mark today. Woke up to hear that I wasn't getting the Rollins, the big truck to pick up the cows.
First thing I heard in the morning was Debbie Paster, telling me to get out of bed to go figure out the truck situation. They want me to use the pick up truck. Right. How many cows am I supposed to fit in a pick-up?
At the afternoon meeting, when they were talking about supplies they needed I spoke up and said I needed money for the cows. I also said that the pickup truck was ridiculous for getting the cattle.
"Well if you're going to whine about it, forget the cows"-Mark.
"Fine!"-translated; fuck you, let someone else start all over trying to score dead cows...
"When are you supposed to find out about the cows, anyway?"
"I gotta make my call at 4:00"
"Please, I can't stress this enough, if you don't do anything, anything at all today, at least make that call. I can't stress that enough" I about stood up and walked off. That was the ultimate insult out here. Having someone say you haven't lifted a finger...I was pissed.
To top it off, Cati had to start freaking out about getting the dead cow.
"You have to get some salt! Salt is very important! You have to get some salt! Don't get the cow until you have too. You must find a place for it, where it won't smell! And get some salt!!!"-read this line with a French accent going a hundred miles an hour. Read it as though you've heard enough about dealing with a dead cow.
Now I knew where I was going to put the cow once I got it...
At 4:00, I made my call to Phil...
"Hey, Phil, whatdaya got for me?"
"My brothers comin in around 6:00." pause...communication with Phil is reeeaaaal slow...
"Yeah? Did y'all get some cows?" Thursday is the pick-up day for Phil and his brother at J.J. Rendering.
"Yes, sir. We just got one today."
"Any luck with any horses?"
"No, sir. Just a cow."
"Uh, so we can pick it up?"
"What are you going to do with it" I paused...
"Well, Phil, we're going to use it in a film. It's going to be in the background. Kinda science-fiction like..."
"I'm gonna want $35 dollars for it"
"No problem. No problem at all"
"Come on over after 6:00, that's when my brother will be back."
To top it off, later I had a couple of offers from people to go with me on my errand.
"Hey, we'll go get it in my Suburban"-James. Local. About my height; short, big beer belly, always walking around with a beer in his hand. Just like me....known him since I lived in Austin.
Then there was Chris, from S.F. Or he says he's from S.F'I guess he was traveling around the country, and stopped in Texas for the show'for all I know, he could of been a serial murderer, taking a vacation from his stressful life-style. I mean, wouldn't you want to stop in the middle of your killing spree, and take in an SRL show.
"Chrisssss'when you're done loading my dead cow body on the pick-up truck, don't forget to drive through a playground during recessssssss'.."
He just pulled in that morning and offered me a lift in his Suburban.
I had to explain to him and James that there was no way in Hell I was going to sit in an enclosed truck with a dead cow in the back for an hour in a half.
When it finally came time to go, I grabbed Wendy and Chris for the ride. Wendy's great. She's like Margee in the movie "Fargo." Nicest person on Earth. Dead cows don't phase her...Chris is big, big build. Figured I'd need help/muscle in getting the cow on the truck.
Anjali kicked down her video camera so we could film the procuring of the cow.
On the way off the track, I spotted Cati, and had Wendy stop.
"Hey! Cati! Hey! Cati! You want me to pick up some pepper for your cow?!?"
"Salt! Salt! You-must-have-salt-for-the-cow-it-must-be-salt-or-it-will-st ink-up-you-do-not-know-what-you're-doing-salt'"
At this point, nothing phased me. I was pissed, relieved that I was getting out of there, I was getting the fucking cow, I was in a truck with Wendy and the Son of Sam/Daisy, finally getting the fuck out of Dodge.
We peeled out leaving dust, the Speedway and a frowning Mark in our wake'
The ride to San Antonio was pleasant. On the way down, I warned Wendy and Chris not to use big words when we got to Phil's, even though we were on the stupidest errand on Earth.
"Seth, kill me for Mark. I'm waiting for you, Seth! I'm down here in San Antone, Seth, I'm dead! For you I died for you. Seth, please have me dismembered for SRL!!!" I looked over at Chris; he was staring out the window. I scooted closer to Wendy. She didn't notice a thing.
We stopped at a Wal-mart, so I could get some gloves before we got there. Wendy flipped out in the toy section.
"Look at all the guns!" We bought a set of pearl handled cap guns, and split it up between us, yanking off the florescent orange ends. Holstered 'em on our belts. We were 'yee-hawing' and shooting 'em out the windows all the way down to S.A.
After being lost for an hour, we finally made it down to Phil's.
Is it me, or could it be my breath? Oh Diary, it seems like people are
starting to avoid me, ever since I took on the responsibility of putting
together the dead petting zoo. Oh diary, I cry for all the dead things in
this world if they only knew how much I loved them all before they passed
over and headed into the carbon arch light
Diary, I know art is a very important thing, and I'm here to make sure all
art, big or small, sees the light in a capacity to influence more and more
people into continuing on the message, that art is not going away, and that
art is here to stay! Oh diary! To prove my point, I finger-painted today!
With the blood of a dead dog! Now I just need to find some blue, so I can
finish my Texas Blue-bonnets. I'm sure this painting will help improve the
PS I brushed my teeth today.
Is it me, or could it be my breath? Oh Diary, it seems like people are starting to avoid me, ever since I took on the responsibility of putting together the dead petting zoo. Oh diary, I cry for all the dead things in this world if they only knew how much I loved them all before they passed over and headed into the carbon arch light
Diary, I know art is a very important thing, and I'm here to make sure all art, big or small, sees the light in a capacity to influence more and more people into continuing on the message, that art is not going away, and that art is here to stay! Oh diary! To prove my point, I finger-painted today! With the blood of a dead dog! Now I just need to find some blue, so I can finish my Texas Blue-bonnets. I'm sure this painting will help improve the morale!
PS I brushed my teeth today.
The first thing, as you go through the gates at Phil's, is about a hundred well fed cats. All over the place. Pregnant, et-up...everywhere. As we pulled in, we saw two huge, dump-truck sized trucks at the compound in the back.
I was having big doubts about one dead cow fitting in ours...
I hopped out of the truck, with a bunch of cats scurrying out of my way.
"Yes sir." Phil was old, 67 years old. Gray hair, wild look in his tired eyes. Missing a bunch of teeth. Wearing blood-stained cover-alls, a butchers belt slung on his side, with a bunch of knives holstered on it. I swear Phil must have been the role-model used for the crazy guy in Chainsaw Massacre.
Wendy hopped out of the truck with the video camera going, and her gun holstered on her side. We looked like freaks.
On the other side of the wall of the platform, Phil's brother was watching some sitcom on TV
"So, you got the cow!?" He gestured me up on the concrete platform, where the dump-truck was backed in. I looked in the back of the truck to see a big fucking dead-as-a-door-nail cow, lying in the back of the truck. I jumped in and gave it a kick.
"Yup, it's dead all right..." Wendy hopped up on the platform. It was covered with fresh, wet blood. Lying on the platform were two front legs off a horse, hooves and all. Trigger.
"So, what do you do here, Phil?" It was Wendy, filming away with the video camera.
"You're filming me?" He asked her the 'what's a nice girl like you, doing in a place like this' kinda question. Wendy told him she was out from California visiting me.
He motioned me to come over and look in the back of the other dump truck, parked in the "outgoing" position on the ramp.
It was filled with probably 10 or more hacked to bits carcasses, organs, and guts of cows and horses. Lying on the top of the pile was the head of a horse.
Chris pointed at the horses head and asked Phil if he'd throw that in on the deal...no go. I think Old Phil was testing us, to see if all this bothered us. Treading through blood, Wendy almost fell backwards over the horses legs while filming.
The whole place stank of death. Phil asked me again what we're going to do with a dead cow. At this point, I knew after seeing the carnage, telling Phil the truth wouldn't bother him one bit.
"We're gonna skewer it and Bar-B-Q it with a rocket engine, sort of science fiction."
"You're not planning on eating it, are you?"
"Naw..." I then told him that the filming was not really a movie, but that we were documenting a machine performance, where giant robots tear each other up. Like John Deer tractors versus back-hoes. Phil loved the idea.
We gave him some tickets and tried to talk him into coming up to the Speedway to see the show.
"You're gonna have this cow on the Longhorn Speedway?" He started laughing.
"Right in the center, Phil" I then told him about Marks giant Flame Thrower, made out of a V-8 and a donut mixing machine, with spark units on it, shooting diesel. He laughed, trying to comprehend what we were up to. Wendy summed it up to him the best.
"Phil, go to this show, and I guarantee you'll be talking about this for the next 6 months." his eyes lit up with a big smile.
After a while, we didn't even notice the smell anymore. Phil pointed down at a giant bloody liver, lying off to the side on the floor.
"You go fishing? That there's a horse liver. Makes good bait. Them fish love it."
Hanging out on the truck, were all were looking at the enormous cow. Phil asked us about San Francisco, while I was trying to comprehend how we were going to get the cow on the back of the pickup truck.
"You know, I make litter bags out of the bladder," Phil was pointing down at the heifer's udders. "..cut em off, sew em up, and dry them out. They make nice litter bags for the truck."
The cow was dead, huge, it's tongue sticking out. Freshly died that morning in a stockyard. Horns. I was wishing it was a Texas longhorn. It would of fit the theme of the Longhorn Speedway. Instead it was a Holstein...
"I'm gonna have to ask for 40 dollars, instead of $35. Didn't know it was gonna be that big."
"No problem Phil, let's just take care of that now." I handed him the cash, relieved that a deal was a deal. I wasn't even going to ask him for a receipt. Dingle would have to deal with that...
Hooking a cable to the back of the cows legs, a winch on the far wall slowly pulled the limp carcass off the truck. He moved the truck out, as we positioned ours in its place. We had a pallet on the back, for the cow to lie on.
Hooking a come-along and a chain, we hand cranked the cow partly on the truck, as Wendy and I pulled on it by it's horns.
"It's head's not going to come off, is it?" Chris was filming. Glad I brought along some muscle...
Finally, we had her on the back of the truck. We were tying it down; Phil showed Wendy a new knot; Mexican Boomer. I was about to cover it with the tarp.
"Why bother. There's no law about driving with a dead cow" Wendy, I think, was right. We thanked Phil and his brother for all their help. We were about to leave until Phil spoke up;
"Don't you want the liver?"
"Naw, I'd love to grab it, Phil, but we're not in town long enough to go fishing." It was later when I realized that that was Phil's way of being nice. He pulled that liver out, especially for us, before we even got there.
Back at the Ranch
We pulled up into the speedway with our dead cow, shooting our guns out the window. The drive back was hilarious, with people giving us the weirdest looks. We wanted to go through the drive-through at McDonalds.
At the gas station, some teenagers asked us if we knew we had a dead cow in the back of our truck...
Mark pulled up to the truck on his mountain bike, looking at the corpse.
"Whoa...!" his second words were "Oh my god...." This was the first time SRL had a whole, ungutted, unbled cow.
We were gone six hours, when it should of been three. Later we heard everybody was wondering where we were. They were starting to have their doubts that we would actually come through...
We brought the truck around to the center of the field under the Teepee, where Circus Boy came around with a fork lift and gruesomely lifted it out of the truck. Hanging in mid-air on straps around it's neck and legs. It looked grotesque, twisted around, with it's tongue hanging out. The sight could of traumatized any youngster.
Once on the ground, I had to pose with it, foot on it's head, with my gun pointed at it's belly.
The rest of the night, they figured out how to put a stake through it, end to end, using a fork-lift to push it through. I'm afraid I had to miss that glorious moment...
I was wondering if my girlfriend would ever kiss me again.
When we got back to business, they told us they had made the decisions over dinner of who was running what machine.
I got the Flame Blower, along with Treece and Craig, while Wendy and Liisa Pine got the Little Arm, with the arm-brace virtual remote control cervo-crytometer unit; 560 cfg's, 608 psr in a single quarter lectomezier. Truly amazing.
Good Friday-Day of the Show
Tension was actually low. Everybody was busy. Everybody, for once, seemed to know what they had to do. What their roll was, and what needed to be done.
We had our second to last meeting before the show, under the bleachers, in the shade. Definitely the most packed meeting, yet. It seemed as with every day approaching the show, the group of volunteers got larger and larger.
Among the crew, were also the volunteers for security. With that crew, somebody was hitting on a 40 ouncer...because of that, drinking was banned from the lot until the show was over.
Ralph came over and gave our crew a run-down on how to operate the Flame Blower, telling us to wrap foil around the cords to take the heat so they wouldn't melt. He also told us to build a bunker to hide behind. Our machine was cable controlled, with three buttons on it; Accelerate, decelerate, and fire. Our cable only spanned 50 feet away, with no way of extending it further. Apparently, we were one of the few people who were out on the battlefield during the show. The only others were the camera crew, who Mark referred to as "on their own".
Later, I asked for one of the radios for our crew. Informing everybody that there were live people out in the field and not to kill us. Mark refused. It was then when I knew he was out to kill me.
I could just imagine, being chased by the Giant Walker straight into the barrel of the V-1. to the roar of the crowd chanting "Kill him, KILL HIM!!!", with Mark and Dingle giving the thumbs down sign...
We built a shanty bunker our of plywood and lexan (?). I then attempted to spray paint "Don't Kill Us" on the plywood.
Earlier in the day, Allison gave us her car, so we could go out and score a few construction helmets. When we came back, someone called us the Village People and started singing Y.M.C.A. except it was S.R.L.L.
As the sun crept down, people started showing up. The evening had finally begun.
The Unexpected Destruction of Elaborately Engineered Artifacts
During the last meeting on the bleachers, I saw two upcoming signs of the Apocalypse; Two white horses walking out on the field, and a tall, leggy super-model, stalking the grandstands.
It was here, where Mark went over the scenario of what was to happen...
[insert Mark's game plan here]
As everyone took their positions, Jenna and Michael Michael were riding the horses around the track, Michael holding the SRL flag and Jenna holding the Texas Flag...a beautiful sight. Meanwhile, in the parking lot, the line to get in was incredible.
Once inside, you could buy beer, Bar-b-q, and cotton candy from the venders. Along with SRL, People Hater, and J.R. "Bob" Dobbs shirts (overheard; one of the venders "It aint called the "Hail Bob comet for nothing, people!").
From the infield looking out, the grandstands were filled to capacity. Some people were doing "the wave" and doing that "we will, we will rock you" thing.
It was then when Treece and Wendy noticed something weird lurking behind the Charles Whitman Memorial Tower...
The U.T. Tower was spectacular, lit up exactly like it was on campus, with the red light in the top. On the top was Charles Whitman, previously referred to as Randy Weaver, with a shotgun. Beautiful.
Below it, was an Orange Nagahyde Monster...
It had a square body, with stumpy little legs and stumpy little arms, with orange fringe. On it's face was painted big cartoon "scary" green monster eyes.
It was in the process of poking it's head out from behind the tower, teasing the audience. Then it shuffled out, kinda like the San Diego Chicken...a retarded mascot...at an SRL show.
We were dying laughing. Over the radio, Craig was filling us in that nobody knew where it came from, or who was in the costume. Some people were pissed. The crowd loved it. They were going ape-shit. It waved to the audience, and had this incredible stupid walk, as the though it's underwear was wrapped around it's ankles.
It was my favorite machine, although apparently later, someone roasted it's balls with a flame-thrower.
The show officially started with Dezier/Danger, starting up his jet car, doing laps around the track, while all the SRL members were shooting rocket flares out over the track. It looked like a scene out of "Apocalypse Now", with the red ambient light slowly making it's way down to earth...and the grandstands...and the parking lot....and the neighbors yards...
According to the schedule, it was time to start up the machines...
Looking at the audience, I think it was the shock wave cannon that posed the imminent threat....having a 25 foot barrel turn 180 degrees from the track, to pointing straight down the grandstands.
2nd up was the V2, rolling from the far right side of the track to moving into position, in front of the Charles Whitman Memorial Tower.
Walking around the aftermath of the destruction, everybody got the chance to walk close up and check out the machines and the damage. I ran off for the trailer to get the gallon of George Dickel.
Previously, someone suggested that I try sobriety while operating heavy machinery...I obliged...
Guzzling Dickel (bourbon) passing it around, watching Christian with the "Fuck Shit Up" machine (the Subjugator), pull down the telephone pole Teepee...(it was built to last.. a test of strength...it won)
Spectators down on the field checking out the remains...the bar is open.
"Original SRL Stinky Cow Horn souvenir; $50! Get cher souvenir SRL cow horn, only $50 dollars!"-Terry, taking advantage of the moment...people seemed to want it...if they only knew how it smelled on the plane ride home.
Christian, after dropping the Teepee, picking up the cow guts with the Subjugator, roasting its' guts on the fire.
The P.A. announced to public to clear the area, as SRL was herded towards the back of the track and a couple of kegs. The speedways lights were suddenly out; later we heard Alvin, the track owner was "punishing" us.
Alvin had a history of spanking us for being bad. In the previous week, he had turned the water off on us, clogging the toilets, turning off the showers. Alvin wasn't very hip to Marks' collages, either, having them covered up before the show. I had no clue as to what he thought of the cow. He probably wouldn't of flinched if it was a deer...I'm still kicking myself for not getting any deer.
Maybe it's not too late. Maybe I'll give Robert a buzz and have him kill some deer for me on his motorcycle; UPS them out to the Compound...
The next day after the show, the whole place looked like the aftermath of a "war-zone." It was over-cast, with the wind picking up and blowing the gray smoke form the smoldering fires off the track.
People were picking up trash and shit, and throwing remaining props, facades, and cow on the fire, ashing the remains, (which makes clean-up 100% more bearable).
Terry started screaming; He was holding onto two crutches...
"I'm healed, SRL, I'm healed! SRL has wiped away my sins and Healed me!"
"Say it, Brother!!!"-a couple of people sweeping off the track...
"I'm Healed! I'm Healed! Oh thank you SRL! You've healed me SRL!!!"
Crutches on the fire...Terry falls over, unhealed...
It's weird as fuck, really not knowing where to start, when you're cleaning up a war zone...Ken, from Austin, Terry and I started picking up after the remains of the "speed" boat. Armed with rakes and shovels.
Fiberglass, cable, steel...all blowing, like dust in the wind...everything was dust in the wind...
"I never thought I'd ever see myself raking up a boat before..."
The night before. The "party."
Couple of kegs, left-over from the after show party. Kickass bluegrass band, the Texas Meat Purveyors. Some hysterical song about going to the electric chair for smoking crack...
The stars are out bright, tonight. Flynn's giving 'em snorkel lift rides over the track. Meanwhile my mind is racing. My brain has already skipped town. I whipped out my heroin tea, mainly to calm me down, and slow me from being a real asshole. It didn't work.
I took off to the field and grabbed a pallet and some diesel. Started a can fire, snagging some foam-rubber to relax on. The tea was kicking in, in a good way. One by one, people were coming up to the fire. Then the snorkel lift came with the keg.
Towering over the fire was the wreckage of the Charles Whitman Memorial Tower . It's remains looked like the biggest Jungle gym on Earth. The view was great, in the distance you could see the lights from south Austin. It was high above everything, away from people.
I was starting to wonder when the beautiful people were going to start ambling back into the track. Earlier, there was a contingent of people taking off to the Dog and Duck; a bar.
One thing about being stuck out here is the lack of money, or I should say, the lack of having an option of getting money, out in the sticks.
The other pain in the ass out here, is being at the mercy of other people for a ride. Going into town from out here seemed to be such an exclusive right of passage. I really wanted to puke. It's that feeling of being labeled a "commoner." Of course, everybody wanted to get away from here, away from each other...you know, that if your highness actually concedes to you tagging along, then you, of course, get to ride bitch.
Tell me what makes a person superior to another. I really want to know. Is there a secret? A secret hand-shake? A bond, like a hippie tribal thing, where all it takes is knowing the secret tribal drum-circle hand-shake, while you're flipping off someone with the other.
Maybe they should trade it out for a milk-shake
So back in SF, I always refer to Mark's warehouse as the Compound. For good reason. S.R.L. is a fucking "cult."
Think about it.
We all live in trailers, communal meals, shitting together...doing all the beckoning of the cult leader. He gets all the chicks. They're all hot for each other.
"Hey, I'm gonna fuck yer girlfriend"
Being an outsider, I'm probably going to be offed. They all pack heat. Bottled water and hand-grenades...
It's all fun and games until your wife gets swapped.
It's all fun and games until your on the receiving end of a peace-maker.
You're out here, working for free, limited phone privileges, with this continual sense of urgency, that things have to get done. Now. And done right...the right way.
Seniority here is a big thing. Too bad I look at it as a high school thing. Fuck, they're all seniors, driving their Corvettes to the prom, with their dates having the biggest tits in town, while I'm the acne faced junior asking them if they want extra large fries with their Big Mac.
I don't hate them. I envy the bastards. They create the coolest shit on Earth. They're so fucking talented. They're fucking infectious. It's a disease which makes you want to create, to weld, to burn things, and fuck shit up. All in the name of Art.
Yeah, when I'm fat, bald and ugly, I'd want to join the cult of SRL. I love the idea of fucking all their women, and drinking all their beer...
I swear. S.R.L. Rocks
Props Ear-marked for Destruction;
1) The Carousel. Looked like a giant ugly Mushroom, with the awning painted green, orange and purple stripes. Collages tiled out on sides depicting gay cow-pokes, and Texas's love for Longhorns. Result; Destroyed. Created by Tiffany/Brian and assorted crew from Austin.
2) Bubba Truck. 30 foot crane truck covered in hundreds of dead water heaters. Green, Sanford and Son style. Engine mounted on the back w/cable. Hoisted rapidly the Dune Buggy, dropping it over and over again, crunching it on the Speedway. Run by Lisa Leathertounge and Little James. Result; given back to Bubba, for use with water heaters... Collaborate effort; SRL, Christian Ristow/Kevin Binker/SRL.
3) The Clown Box. Mexican style, 8' x 8' ft red box, covered with broken mirror. Massive doors. Inside; Giant Face/Clown head. Metal spike teeth. Jaw crunches shut. Propped along a cable from the right side of the track to the middle. Destroyed. Engineers; SRL/Mark/Debbie Lee.
4) Fireworks Stand. "Buy 5 Get One Free". Facade Black Cat panels off a fireworks stand. Tin roof. Loaded with wood. Combustible. Smoke coming out of tin smoke stack. Dummies on the inside. Proprietors; Scott/Wendy/SRL.
5) The Boat. "Trident". Ex-floating speed lab. Powered by; Wind Machine, hydro-packs. Decorated by blue and white burgies. Destroyed. Mid-water collision with smaller boat. Result; Kimeric injured, local TV reports him MIA; casualty of SRL. Crew; Michael Shilo/SRL.
6) The Tower. 40 foot tower, built erector set-style. Bolt action engineering; John Law/Cliff Neighbors/Circus Boy/SRL. Burned, collapsed.
7) Randy Weaver/"Charles Whitman" on top of tower, shooting at audience. Shotgun Action figure by Chip Flynn. Head blows up as UT Tower transformed into Towering Inferno.
8) Large cut-outs of children on tricycles; from the painting "Angel of the Asphalt." Photo-realism by Cati. Flambe.
9) Teepee with cow suspended on spit. Spit by John and SRL. Spitted by forklift. Attempted gutting by James/John/ and Seth with Machete; James pukes, adding to the distinct smell. John and Seth are disgusted by the task at hand...Spit operator; Wendy.
10) People Mover/Walkway. Giant enclosed walkway, off the Tower. Dummies on cables, "walking around." Incinerated. Burned.
11) Steam Generator. Powering Tri-Horn. Sounded as though a ship was coming into the Port of Austin. Steam everywhere.
12) Spinner. The machine that whips a cable around, creating a loud, constant noise. On of the Irritators.
Seth Maxwell Malice (1964-2010) was a resident of Austin, but after appearing in the movie Slacker, he ran himself out of town by babbling about mysterious links between the Smurfs and Krishna. Malice has since written for such prestigious magazines as Hustler and Juxtapoz and co-edited the underground newspaper FILTH. In addition, he is the author of Orthodox Ruse: A Theological Thriller (2004). The Malice archives are tentatively based in San Francisco. (from Art Lies!)