Norbert Fragg: The Frost Diaries


Date: Wednesday, 13 Jan 1999 20:38:16
From: Bknt at aol dot com
Subject: Norbert Fragg: The Frost Diaries
Dear Team,

     While stumbling south on America's famous Highway 61,
which links numerous Faulknerian Mississippi Delta hamlets
each claiming to have been the birthplace o' the blues, I
chose for my evening's rest the Memphis-themed Heartbreak
Hotel, selecting what purported to be the very accommodation
that inspired the late Rock  n' Roll Doctor Lowell George to
write the intemperate blues ditty "Cold, Cold, Cold."

     To my frigid revulsion, I discovered, in a fetid
chamber reeking of dismally distilled bourbon and the
cheapest of rose-scented cheap perfume, beneath the
appropriately flea-infested mattress,  shoved thoughtlessly
among forgotten socks and an autographed Little Feat
promotional panty, a still- chilled cube containing the
frozen scrawlings (some would say drawlings) of the
perpetually skittish but inevitably British guitarist
Norbert Fragg, the Man with the Blame whose Bartok rock and
other suspiciously complicated reifications of musical
infetishmento, performed by that rebarbatively enfluenzal
recording ensemble, Cringe Plumpton, have apocalyptically,
if not infinitesimally, nudged the titanic vessel of mass
culture ever onward toward its cynical icebergerac
extinction. Yes, it was the very Fragg, composer of such
bouyant ballads as Spat Food, Heptaparapish-in-a-pot, Rabies
of the Load (available only in Japan) Va-Voom (a limited
Correctors Club release marked "return to offender" after it
was sent in sympathy to the American President Bill
Clinton), and Quack, which, Fragg told us in the liner notes
to his combustible 5-CD collection of Internet musings,
Flame by Flame, "is the sound of 117 ducks attempting to
interrrupt a Guitar Wonk session for the purpose of
acquiring autographs from Patrick  Le Petomain' Methanely."

     While I would generously abandon these frosted flakings
in the frozen food section of my local supermarket, I
believe that Fragg's comments regarding his new career as an
after dinner mint and his insights into the Fears of the
Running Man are of such vital significance that I just HAD
to foist them, with my own petard, upon the gullible public.

     Thus:     

     Efforts on behalf of my sister to secure her Quibble
Bruvver instant fame and glory as a post-prandial
wit-slinger threaten to dash themselves upon the rocks of
perdition when I mention unfortunate tendencies among
hypothetical audients.  For the act of wording to occur,
audients must not only refrain from photography and
recording, they must also forsake the taking of notes, as
that is an act of taking and I just can't take being taken
anymore. To this my sister  replied that few, if any, of my
audients will be sober enough to take notes, and those that
might be will remain soporfically content to merely remember
my presence. This runs counter to my observation, based on
nearly 30 years of failing to get the worshipful attention
and commercial support from any but Earnest Young Men, that
the act of remembering can, and will, interfere with the act
of wording, especially in regards to what has passed, c.f.
"Rememberance of Gas Passed" by Marcel Foost. Sister replies
that all of this is beans--beans I say!--and that my
initially malordorous objections to being persecuted as an
object of inexpensive entertainment by those who don't know
a fundament from a fundamental will dissipate as soon as I
cease cutting off my nose to spite my face. An appointment
with a plastic surgeon is not necessary, she adds. We Fraggs
have always had a smell of sense, and, having consulted an
infumous southern Californian claiming to be expert in
aromatherapy, she has instructed me to repeat, "the nose
blows" several times daily, and otherwise sniffle
cheerfully.

     I surround myself with the groundscrapes from the
Tainted Bribe, a Washington, D.C. night club said to be the
favorite of many politicians, while remembering an incident
that prefaced, but did not deface, this musical coffering.
Arriving somewhat delayed before the performance, I was
basking in pre-gig unease when  I removed myself carefully
from a van and saw, amidst a polite and smiling collection
lobotomized reified musical mung beans sufficiently pathetic
to part with hard-earned pay for my services, a vaguely
Italiante person of unbridled enthusiasm proceeding toward
the Standing Man with untoward haste. With instincts honed
in the slag pits (some would say Fragg pits) of audient
abuse, the Standing Man became the Queasy Man who, though
not necessarily a Great Man did not desire to be a Late Man
as the now Running Man said, "Where have you been?"

     Having been here, there and inbetween, the Standing Man
became the Dashing Man who evolved rapidly into the Crashing
Man when the High Grossing Mass Culture Artists Only
entrance was locked. Wishing he could morph into the
Slashing Man, the Squeamish Man became the Peevish Man and
vaulted back into the van, where a few panicky polyrhymic
foot taps upon the accelerator turned him into the Driving
Man, but inadvertantly transformed the Pursuing Fan into a
Bug on the Windshield.

     Before he slid off, the now Expiring Fan called out,
"Fragg-thy-am, will you eat green eggs and Spam?"

     "I will not eat them in a van, I will not eat them as
you planned," said the Shouting Man. "I will not eat them at
the show, I will not eat them when I go. I refuse to eat
them when I play, and would not contemplate them any day!
Though Fragged I am, I spit upon your fetishized demand!"

      After the performance I was sent a note by the Late
Fan's wife that he was, or rather, had been, the slightly
well-known Italian orchestra conductor Riccardo Muti and
that he had wanted to schedule a performance with myself and
fellow Italians Luciano Pavarotti, Quentin Crispi, Brian
Enetti, Adolfi Bowie, and some guestbook posting ax-man
named Three El Keneallli.

     Quoth the Cold Man: "Hock-tooey, Muti."

     (At this point, the diaries melt into an slagg-infested
piffle of volcanic eructations as lambently lackluster as a
malfunctioning lava lamp.)

Bill Kent


Mike Stok