Here are a few places you can see my writing (which are the reasons I do not write here anymore):
Most recently, you can see a story I wrote about a man and his cat at Knee-Jerk Magazine.
Semi-recently, I had a poem go up on Defenestration Magazine’s website.
I’ve also, on and off, been writing articles for Literary Chicago. Mostly reading reviews, with an interview and some book reviews coming… eventually… in the future.
And, since I work at CBS, I write quite a few articles for CBSChicago.com. Some good, some… well… you know.
Scrub’s Digest: Know a Busta Newsletter
Week 46, Justin Jeremy Jones
Why I’m fly:
* My Dad owns a dealership. He lets me test drive all the cars. It’s so cool. I drive at top speed. I’ll pass anyone. I even passed a Mercedes in a Toyota once.
* I dress fly as hell. Polo shirt, golf shorts, backwards cap tilted slightly to the side.
* I was into Insane Clown Posse before anyone. Even Jack White.
* When I go to a restaurant, I always order the most expensive thing on the menu. If I’m at Wendy’s, I’ll get the chicken nuggets AND a burger.
* I go to all the parties.
* I was breastfed… ladies.
* I have a ton of cool friends.
* But I’m the coolest out of, like, all the people I know.
* The ladies love my sense of humor. They say I’m funnier than Dane Cook. Whenever I say something, people say, “Hoo-wee! That’s funny!”
* I do cool shit: I am the king of keg stands. I smoke cigarettes dipped in embalming fluid. I can no longer count to ten, but it’s worth it.
* I get my car washed every day. I get my car washed every day. I get my war cashed every way. I met guy mar mashed every day.
* My friend, Max Adams, you don’t wanna fuck with him. He could kick your ass. He was breastfed as well. You know the puppeteer that does Alf? Max Adams kicked his ass. You know the guy that created Strawberry Shortcake? They had a fistfight at a Weird Al Yankovic concert. Who won? My friend Max.
So in submarine, those are just a few reasons why I’m fly.
by Dan Shapiro with help from Barbara Shapiro. Edited by Mason Johnson
Why is this here? Because I, Mason Johnson, print out a zine every P. Fanatics. This last reading was no different, with one exception: I forgot to hand it out. Yes. I printed a zine, brought it to the bar, and never handed the thing out. I am an idiot.
Unfortunately, Chris Terry can’t read on the 23rd. I don’t hold it against him. I advise you do not either.
BUT! Nate Olison can. Both would be nice, but I’ll settle.
UPDATE Chris Bower is also reading. Which you should all be happy about.
May has been a pain to plan, apparently everyone’s busy at the end of May, so hopefully nobody else cancels.
Saturday we had the first ever Piss Fanatics reading, and it went superb. It’d be a bit uncouth to do a review of my own reading series, so I’ll just do a quick recap in show of appreciation of all the talent that was nice enough to come out and read.
Dan Shapiro, my partner in crime, actually read twice, killing both times. I had him open up the reading, no introductions or explanations, just Dan reading one of the funniest stories I’ve ever heard about a man and a monkey. Don’t think for a moment that this is some sort of Any Which Way But Loose, Dan ain’t no Clint Eastwood, and Eastwood ain’t no Shapiro. Still, monkeys are cool.
Dave Snyder took the stage and did the theme proud as he read poems he composed with his bros, like William Blake for example, who, along with Dave, coined some of my favorite bro-terms of the night: Brobocop, Broseidon. Many thanks go out to Dave, Dave’s beard, Wordsworth, Blake, and Keates for pioneering Broetry.
I forgot that you’re supposed to take pictures at events for most of the night, but here’s one of the crowd, just a little too chill for their own good:
Kevin Kern took the stage after Dave and apparently impressed everyone. I was so nervous at this point I found myself downing beer as fast as possible, and missed at least half of his poem. It’s just Kevin, I thought, I can miss this. He definitely insulted me in it though, which was nice of him. I felt guilty for missing bits afterward as people came up to me and said, “What was that guy’s name again? That was good.”
I’m just kdding, I totally heard all of Kevin’s piece, and it was definitely great. People were really coming up to me afterward and complimenting me though. Why not him, I wonder? Maybe it’s the New Jersey accent.
(Mason & Kevin, besties.)
After a short break Jacob Knabb was nice enough to introduce Dan Shapiro, singing a little ditty to get Dan in the mood to read for a second time. Jacob sings a lot. Everyone seems to hate it at least a little. I’m not going to weigh in on the matter in general, suffice to say, it seemed to have a thorough effect on Dan, who didn’t move for the entire ordeal, not even when Jacob coyly slid his finger down Dan’s back.
Dan’s second piece was funny. As funny as his first piece? Probably not, it’s hard to top such perfection, but this one, a piece about God and the Devil meeting in a bathroom in limbo, is definitely a precious piece of comedy that just about anyone would laugh at.
Chris Bower read next and was another guy where people would come up to me afterward to tell me how great he was, as if they couldn’t walk up to him and do so themselves. He was typically only a few feet away from me as they did so. Now, I didn’t pass these messages on to him. Never in a million years would I pass praise on to him. I definitely do not want it to go to the guys head. Thankfully, I can compliment him here, since I know for a fact he doesn’t read this website. I don’t think he knows how to work the “damn fangled internets.”
With that said, Chris’ piece, almost every piece by Chris I’ve heard, gives you chills. These chills are accompanied by laughing, but the chills are still there. I don’t really know how to describe the bastard, he’s some sort of genius, infusing his prose with everything awkward going on in your mind. He has his way with your suspension of disbelief, he accosts it, he kidnaps it, he gets it laid, he gets it crabs, then chlamydia, he gets it to mouth off to its mother…
… I donno. He’s just great, okay? I’ve never been disappointed in anything done by the man.
Next time you see Chris, ask him what Brokakke is.
Jill finished off the show in what was easily the most well put together story of the night. A lot of readers at readings will typically create a series of jokes, or a feeble frame of a story to deliver a couple jokes with, ensuring that the comedy will come before things like pacing and movement, character development and story, things that make a story great, but don’t always communicate well when read aloud. Jill did not settle for just making jokes. She created a full piece of work, including all the elements of a great short story, while also making you laugh. She’s like, a real writer or something. Intimidating, right?
All in all, it was a great night! Thanks go out one more time to Dan Shapiro, Dave Snyder, Kevin Kern, Chris Bower, and Jill Summers!
This is in response to Harold Ray’s recent rantings (whining). To highlight the real problem with the man known as Harold Ray one must first take a close look at his kin. This is why I am taking a moment not to insult Harold Ray himself, but the men that came before him. Regardless of our words, our real worth will be shown next Tuesday at SO YOU THINK YOU HAVE NERVES OF STEEL?
Harold Jebb Ezekiel Ray
In 1861 the Civil War started, splitting Virginia in Two. In 1863 West Virginia became an official state in the Union. One month later, Harold Ray’s great great grand pappy Harold Jebb Ezekiel Ray, a reverend of the Quick Christ Baptist church (whose slogan was “Let Jesus Fill Ya Up With His Seed”), created West-West Virginia. An autonomous entity from both the union and the confederates, West-West Virginia went unnoticed for thirty-four whole days. Harold Jebb built his new sanctuary on two simple ideas:
* What happens between a man and a woman, or another man, or another consenting animal, or a man, woman and a consenting animal, or any combination of those options thereof, stays between, well, all involved.
* There was no need to get into any wasteful civil wars. (This is where the lack of nerves of steel come in).
Many mistake Harold Jebb as being anti-slavery, when in reality, he was just anti-African slavery; having been quoted as saying, “you get dem Canadians out there in dem fields and you whip ‘em good. See dat dher, ol’ Harold Jebb just fixed this ‘ere country’s problems.”
Harold Harold Ray (yes, his first AND middle name are both Harold)
Harold Harold Ray, Harold Ray’s grandfather, worked for sanitation during the ’40s and ’50s. His one and only job was to discard of the road-kill becoming a problem now that citizens in the small town of Old West-West Virginia had finally learned to use automobiles (it only took 30 odd years). Harold Harold’s claim to fame is keeping the road kill he discovered. After the city was tipped off to Ray dressing up dead opossums in wedding gowns… for the third time… he was fired.
In an interview he was quoted as saying, “They ain’t never proved I done nothin’ with them animals.”
When the reported asked, “Well, did you?” Ray replied, “aw, hell, wouldn’t you?”
“No,” the reporter said. “I wouldn’t.”
That Harold Ray, he’s got good genes.
See him go down next Tuesday!