Seth Abramson

#sadtoys

Careless Bears. Sobby Horse. Not Wheels. Connect One. Gobots. Optimus Meh. Tickle-Me Eeyore. Speak and Autocorrect. Mr. Pothead. Arby’s Dream House. Stray Thundercats. Taser Tag. Tonka Prius. Upper G.I. Joe. Managed Care Bears. Day Care Bears. Where Did He Touch You Elmo. Tickle Me Emo. Risk-Averse. Solitaire Confinement. Serf Village. Microscopic Machines. Speak and Dwell. Simon Begs. Garfunkel Says.

Raggedy Andy Dick. Tragedy Ann. Barbie Dream Doublewide. Average Average Princess. Her Little Pony. My Little Gelding. My Little Pony Abattoir. Full Hippos. Etsy Sketch. Baby’s First Dali. Easy Bake Dutch Oven. Goodbye Kitty. Chatty Catheter. The #sadtoys game is very revealing of your age, FYI. Serious Putty. Sullen Putty. Pogs. Mr. Potato. Sugar-Free Candyland. Rainbow Spite.

Teenage Mutant Ninjas. Sitar Hero. FIFA 1939. Lego Pompeii. Lego Alderaan. Sad toys are dirty ones; remember that, ladies. Wii Wii. Mii. Yo. Ping. Gobots. (Am I right?)

Matchbox Le Cars. Nixon Logs. Pet Sand. Junior Shake Weight. Mousse Trap. Fur Bees. Ex-box. XBox 180. Sega Leviticus. Sega Dreamcast. Sega Saturn. Settlers for Cataan. Oregon Trail. (Seriously, go back and play it; everyone dies of terrible shit.) Hungry Hungry Humans. France France Revolution. Civil War Operation. Army Men on Leave. Pick-up Stick. Kick the Crayon. Tragic Eightball. Sim Detroit. Class-Action Figures. iTouchy. Top10 #Trending Topics: 1: #SadToys 2: #CraigforCongress 3: #LobCity 2014-02-06 06:08:31 GMT. Texas Tee: “Don’t Mess With Texas!” #SadToys #wcw #MattsVideoOfTheWeek #RedNation #ThisCouldBeUsButImFat #Houston. Sorry, This Doesn’t Usually Happen.

Pre-op. Unsuccessful Operation. Really Sorry! Inoperable. Life With An Incurable Disease. The Crying Game. Autopsy. A Ouija board to bring dad back. Crossfire on CNN. Operation: Iraqi Freedom. The good die young, and the ungrateful have everything. Don’t Wake Stepdaddy.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b0PtiMAie3k.

Toystore-bought musical instruments. A recorder. Cribbage. Dreidels. My First Crucifix. A dead bird you found down by the creek. Yellow snow. Toy boats that can’t float. An empty refrigerator. Jumped rope. A bag of broken glass. Books. Money. Bankruptcy. Sidewalk chalk outlines. My stepmother’s lighter. My dick. A stick. A bowl of condoms. Cigarettes. Mouse crap. A dirty extension cord. Colorful household cleaners. Some bullshit, handcrafted wooden toy (when my friends all got Nintendos). An actual rusty trombone. A real twister. Dolls made of Kleenex. Toys in Happy Meals. Frozen vomit. A castle made of Bugles. A phone cord tied to a hairbrush. A pill dispenser. Tylenol. Rocks. A knife. A stick. Broken glass. A noose. Jump-rope and a stool. Plastic bags. A matchbox. Matches. Does this look infected? Shopping for a car in Wichita? 2013 Suzuki SX4 Sportback Base Hatchback. Please Read and Share: “Such a Waste: Don’t Let Fame Take You By Surprise, Prepare for It!” My heart. Your imagination.

Statement of Concept: “#sadtoys” comprises a selection of responses to a February 6, 2014 call for tweets made by “@midnight,” a panel show airing on Comedy Central. The show had asked users to contribute ideas for “sad toys.” Any tweets using this hash-tag on the relevant date were eligible for inclusion in “#sadtoys,” whether or not they were responsive to the @midnight open call.

More Will Be Revealed Later

I’m a multi-function device, my friend. Little rubber feet
laughing all over you. Features, attributes, benefits?
The most advanced yet accessible motherfucker
lying in bed and living on Lipitor. Lots of voluntary effort—
long on promises, short on delivery.

I left a message on your answering machine: “Learn once,
repeat everywhere.”

Mom, look what you started.

{evil grin}

Whatever you say—
something sorry and straight,
something about a small,
bald, unaudacious goal–
learn your shit or up and quit.
Real-time is somebody else’s
problem? Let me know
how that works out for you.
I know a lot of people like that,
and if you ask me,
living large looks like trouble.
In other words: think globally,
act locally. Do the right thing.

“A work of art is a work in progress.”

Google that shit.

The ideal is intercourse and inebriation.

I could be wrong.

Are you over eighteen? Are you in trouble?
Smile and read your friendly manual.
(Okay, read the screen, stupid.)
What you see looks pretty good
because the powers that be
want to sell. Why? If I tell you, will you buy me
a drink?

I’m a subject-matter expert
with a seriously impaired imagination—
“product superior to operator”—
a smart little rich kid skater smiling ear to ear,
sitting in my chair laughing (laughing to myself
with sugar, honey, and iced tea)
and still in the dark about real life. Real life is
temporarily not available.
Real life is career suicide.

(Thank Science it’s Friday! Until further notice,
I’m taking a shower. What’s in it for me?
Jerking off. Playing with myself. Don’t judge me;
I search the web and spank the monkey.
A single point of contact works for me.
Short on time? This says it all: Life’s fucked up;
there’s a hole in the middle of the sea.
Without a doubt, everyone is laughing at you
or laughing about you. Keep calm and carry on.)

In search of ecstasy? Let it go;
ecstasy is weather without the wait.

Change of subject: You wish I was you,
clad in naught by air. Unpleasant visual! Trust me,
you’d hate to be me: toes up, tired,
shaking my head, short on time,
trying to keep a straight face. (The list goes on.)
That’s life in the big city. Traffic, titty bars,
terms and conditions,
single white females, soon-to-be exes,
sexually transmitted diseases, standing
room only, sensitive New Age guys,
“not safe for work,” quality control,
“this job beats no job,” thanks “in advance,”
“tall, dark, and handsome” (try before you buy!).
In other words, player versus player. Sit
and sweat. Same shit, different day.
And the end of the world as we know it.

Sleepy city, better you than me.

New college graduate? Double incomes, no kids?
Single income, two children,
oppressive mortgage? What’s in it for you? What
the Hell is next? You never know. And do I look
like I give a shit?

(Wouldn’t it be nice if well-off older folks—
very sad faces!—pick up Ecstasy?
“Why should I wait? The sooner, the better!”)

Teachers are watching. (Side note: Who
cares? There ain’t no justice.)

“Please turn off your electronic devices!”
She who must be obeyed,
screaming with laughter—
there ought to be a law—
rings my bell. Roundhouse kick! (Rank has
its privileges. The rest are mine.)

“Point of view is a personal problem.” Piss
off! So I see rainbows, butterflies,
and unicorns—
to be honest,
what’s the difference between rainbows,
butterflies, and unicorns? You tell me,
parent over shoulder, person of no account!
People like us press lots of keys to abort.

Quick question: Why should I wait?
Fear of getting caught? Something like that?

Male or female,
you always have other options: north, east,
west, south.

“You talk too much–without thinking
too much.”

You know what? You don’t know me,
old man.

Person, pizza paid in full.
Pizza, person paid in full.

{away from keyboard}

You may already know: Portland is generally
recognized as safe. In other words,
on the road or out to lunch,
get off the damn phone while you’re driving.
Overcome by events? A person in need?
Hitting bottom and starting to dig? First Lady
of the United States?
Get off the damn phone while you’re driving.

Don’t ask me how I know that.

Quoted for truth in your fucking dreams
(good for one night):
“Obligatory energy is the enemy.”
Obligatory energy is not too bright,
out of touch, not invented here (Portland).

Not interested. Not in this lifetime!

Tomorrow is cancelled;
owing to a slight oversight in construction,
a process too complicated to explain,
I just ejaculated on my keyboard. My kind
of place.

Statement of Concept: “More Will Be Revealed Later” is composed entirely of words and phrases that are either chat acronyms or texting shorthand. A list of these words and phrases can be found here: http://www.netlingo.com/acronyms.php. For instance, the final two stanzas of the poem translate to “NI. NITL!// 2moro S CX;/ OTASOIC,/ A P2C2E,/ I JEOMK. MK/ OP.”

2 Words From Each of 66 Consecutive Tweets by 1 Poet

Face down,
your body saddens me. (Too much rough sex.) I’m available now
to fuck, of course. I refuse anyone else. On Thursday I drink to

get some; in gentle leather, everything rhymes and poetry is
true, is absolute.
Its shortcomings are written all over: so callous, always glorious.

I shared your hands, left shoulder—first signs
some poems, men, and garbage whispering have reformed your
humanity. (“In truth,

I saw the child being followed. Found it…pleasant.” “Maniac!”)

MUSIC IS A BROTHEL!

_________ MARRIED HER!

Big news
sounds occult, annoys me. It breaks the shadow. My work looks
like the rotting, dead phone. (Been waiting? Everyone is.)

What is not burning? Outside of Seth Abramson, who’s allowed
in the basement?

I ask the doors, “Do you kill me?”

Statement of Concept: “2 Words From Each of 66 Consecutive Tweets By 1 Poet” is a creative collage of two words taken from each of 66 consecutive tweets by the poet Rauan Klassnik. Origination of the concept for this poem, as well as the retrieval of the phrases from Twitter, occurred only after the tweets excerpted here were made.
Seth Abramson is a doctoral candidate at University of Wisconsin-Madison and Series Co-Editor for Best American Experimental Writing (Omnidawn, 2014). He is the author of three collections of poetry, most recently Thievery (University of Akron, 2013), winner of the Akron Poetry Prize, and Northerners (Western Michigan University, 2011), winner of the Green Rose Prize from New Issues Poetry & Prose.

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About Posit Editor

Susan Lewis (susanlewis.net) is the editor of Posit (positjournal.com) and the author of nine books and chapbooks, including Heisenberg's Salon, This Visit, and State of the Union. Her tenth book, Zoom, was awarded the Washington Prize and will be published in 2018. Her poetry has appeared in such places as The Awl, Berkeley Poetry Review, Boston Review, The Brooklyn Rail, Cimarron, Gargoyle, The Journal, The New Orleans Review, Prelude, Raritan, Seneca Review, So to Speak, Verse, and Verse Daily.