Since I am the last of the group to post about this trip, what can I say much original? NOTHING. Here is a list of really cool things I remember from the student exchange trip to Alabama and the Slash Pine Festival:
Some seriousgood reading time in the van: all of When All Our Days Are Numbered Marching Bands Will Fill The Streets & We Will Not Hear Them Because We Will Be Upstairs In The Clouds by Sasha Fletcher and Smiles of the Unstoppable by Jason Bredle, as well as parts of books by Tim O'Brien, Chuck Klosterman, Bob Hicok, and the April issue of Poetry Magazine.
Something like 6 (OKAY OKAY I SKIPPED ONE) readings featuring 50+ readers in two days. People say, MAN I WOULD HATE POETRY and I shook in my poetry shoes (boating loafers?), but smooth execution Slash Pine people. Nice work.
Meeting and seeing my online pal Brandi Wells read. We had matching black tank tops and we didn't plan it. She apparently doesn't like dudes in tank tops. I'm a dude in a tank top. We didn't fight. She was like, I WAS NERVOUS and I'm like, YOU RULED.
Seeing cool people like Oliver de la Paz (his new book was sold out :( ), Christopher DeWeese (THIS GUY IS FUNNY IN A GOOD I KNOW WHAT I AM DOING WAY), Brian Barker (PERSONA POEM WITH GORBACHEV), and Amber Nelson (NICE FEELING OF THE WEEKEND: She is the Alice Blue editor and said, You're Tyler Gobble, and I said, I guess I am. She said, I liked your submission. I said, thank you.) read.
Watching my fellow trippers rip it up and stuff. Jeremy brought THE BEERS in a way I can't rip it off the page. Elysia said something silly about wearing cowboy boots because she's in the south, and people liked her poem that started, I WANNA FORCE FEED YOU A PIGEON or something like that. Layne was loud and people want to be here when they grow up. The cursing/vulgarity score was like BSU 19 Others 0.
Meeting some sweet new people like Parker, Shea, and Stacy.
Seeing the always awesome Brian Oliu. This guy does the robot to Salsa music, writes awesome lyric essays, has a voice like I SUPPORT YOU, and was woahelpful in getting us to the fun and goodness of the town.
BREAKFAST. FREE AT THE HOTEL. First day: turkey sausage and cheese omelets. And they didn't suck. Also, donuts and apple juice. Also, mints. Last day: french toast and sausage patties. THANX HAMPTON IN. Oh yeah: Cookies and milk FOR FREE every night.
My reading was a little jumbled. I got nervous and the cool outside air shook up my contacts. But I recovered when I read On Friendship and people didn't go GROSSSSSSSS. Nice folks wanted to know me or say good job or just hug me drunkenly in a bar. Sounds good to me. I said, TYLER GOBBLE, a lot.
TANK TOPS. Beautiful weather/beautiful campus. Layne was good company lotz. We have similar goals in life and on the trip and with each other and with poetry and etc. etc. etc. WE ARE ADVENTUROUS.
DANCIN' was pretty awesome. One of the readers on Friday dj'ed at this nice little bar called The Green Bar, so Layne and I boogied down with Oliu, Parker, and others. YES.
Tuscaloosa's disc golf course whooped me, smacking my disc into creeks and shrubbery and snakepits. I hit more trees than chains. Cool seeing Lovelace tear it up and hearing his stories about his early days as a golfer there.
Overall, I'm so stoked to have these memories wiggling in my brain. Thanks people who helped like donating money like dancing with me like asking me to go like keeping me from being lonely down south like setting me next to booze like clapping and laughing at my poems like saying GOOD JOB and YOU MATTER A LITTLE. That's all I can ask for and you ruled it.
Read Lovelace, Elysia, Layne, and Jeremy's accounts of the trip.