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This whole monstruousity was originally conveived February through March 2001 by the members of The Big Note - a Frank Zappa YahooGroup. After an arduous gestation period, this site was birthed on April 11 2001. True to the essence of collaborative effort, these people are held responsible.

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Fugue Off

Howdy All! Jack Bivouac here...
The Gravies keep a comin'. And even though they tend to be circular in motion (as the same questions are asked of all), their vigor always remains to be seen. Here are four good ones for your digestion. Enjoy!
Jack Bivouac

We have received a new Lumpy Gravy submission from a deviate named Uncle Herman. The group now has 48 hours to post any dissent on this application.
SOFA

Dear Sofa, Thank you for your utmost patience! It's a fine trait in modern furniture. The questions you posed proved to be thought provoking. My answers may not be...
> describe your depth of Zappa appreciation: would you describe it as Zijagh (Zappa is just a goddam hobby), or Ziawol (Zappa is a way of life)? [chose one, or supply your own nifty, tuff & bitchin acronym - and explain what it means] <
I thought about my car, a Mercury "Zephyr" (Zappa Extends Perfect Harmony Year-Round) but it needs a new tranny. I thought about my inflatable boat, a "Zodiak" (Zappa Only Demeans - I Am Kidding), but it's got a leak. Not to mention I spelled zodiac wrong, and don't want to make a bad first impression. So I settled on where I live, "Zeeland, MI USA" (Zappa's Eclectic Energy Leaves Any New Dude Missing Institutionalization. Understandable Situation, Agreed?)
> please state what your favorite FZ recording is, and why you feel it is the best music ever set to wax. <
I harken back to the sexy 70's, and choose the 2 albums that got me hooked. I wore out the 8-tracks, and the vinyl got too thin to touch. They would be "Apostrophe" and "Joe's Garage Act 1". (I won't mention Ed Polermo cause I forgot how to spell his name.)
> And finally: chose an appropriate Zappnick for yourself. We can't go around calling you imuncleherman - unless that is your Zappnick, in which case I guess we could... But it's kinda hard to pronounce! <
I would like to request you accept the imuncleherman, as my Zappnick. I realize it's not very Zappa-ish, but I'm well known as Uncle Herman in a couple of other Groups. So please, my fine upholstered friend, call me Uncle Herman for short. And please let me know where to send the DNA sample.
Sincerely,
Uncle Herman

Well, there you have it gang; in a nuthouse... shell, I meant to say shell! Let me remind everyone that yes votes do not need to be logged. I just assume that everyone wants new members, so please only respond to this if you have a reason for excluding this applicant. That is all.
Thanks,
SOFA

I must say I rather enjoyed that. Let the lad in. It'll be a breast of fresh errors. But, in the future, would it be possible for me to ask that all "applicants" be referred to as "supplicants"? It just sounds more penetrating to my ear. Also, does anyone else think that when writing books of fiction, the naming of a character should be treated with due care and caution? I like the name Wim because it sounds like Whim, but to name a character Wim Frenzy seems both reckless and capricious. I'll take your answers off the error. Speak loudly--as there's bound to be some sort of lubricant blocking the canals.
DH

David, you know I rarely criticize, but don't you think it's rather selfish of you to expect every applicant to implore GoD? And I halfway agree with you on naming a fictional character. I think that it should be treated with care *or* caution. Moderation in all things, I say, including moderation. Thus the result would be either reckless or capricious, but never both, which I admit would be highly undesirable.
Poodle

Poodle, I don't know what came over me. Last night I tried to redefine the definition of insanity by allowing my nine-year-old to have a sleep over with eight of his best buddies. We were all on this magical sugar and junk food high...and things got a little.... out of control. Anyway, we all got to sleep around midnight, and we were all up again at about four. Sugar.... it's so sweet.
Fill it to the rim.... with Brim! Remember those old ads? That was a simpler time back then. I mean what if you wanted sugar and cream? Fuck it, I guess! Spilling over the sides, onto the table and then the floor! Next thing you know, some kindly neighbor is over to "borrow" (yeah...right) something and slips and cuts his or her head on the edge of your table. Blood splatters into your cup. No thanks, fill it to a moderate level please.
Poodle.... you are SO right.... in So MANY ways.
DH

> In the future would it be possible for me to ask that all "applicants" be referred to as "supplicants"? It just sounds more penetrating to my ear. <
I don't know if we can afford to call them that, as the price of base emollients (required to keep them supple) has sky-rocketed in the last few years and we have precious little in the coffers. I would entertain the idea of calling the applicants 'succulents', however, as it would still sound more penetrating to the ear, and require much less watering.
A very cheerful Welcome to our newest deviate, Uncle Herman! Make yourself at home. I'm sure you'll find everything you need. If not, don't start whining. Nobody likes a crybaby...
SOFA

: : :

Hail Citizens! And other assorted animals... We have a new Lumpy Gravy to consider. Maria is admittedly not a Zappa fanatic, but she seems bright, witty, and not afraid to speak out. You have 48 hours to post any dissent to her inclusion. So, destined to take the place of the Mudshark in your mythology, he it goes now, Maria's Lumpy Gravy - rub it!

> would you describe it as Zijagh (Zappa is just a goddam hobby), or Ziawol (Zappa is a way of life)? [chose one, or supply your own nifty, tuff & bitchin acronym - and explain what it means] <
Piles - signifying bleak Zappa-less existence of shallow depravity. *(SOFA note: I mistakenly sent out the term anachronism instead of acronym, which helps explain this response)*
> please state what your favorite FZ recording is, and why you feel it is the best music ever set to wax. <
Who are the Brain Police? because it features a guy on tweezers.
> And finally: chose an appropriate Zappnick for yourself. <
Tomato.
I'd quite understand your utter rejection of my petition. But, many thanks for your kind note.
Maria

That's it kids. Let the Lumps begin!
SOFA

At first I was puzzled by the choice of Tomato as a Zappnick, but then I realized that Frank said, "Call ANY vegetable," so it qualifies. Also the use of the phrase "bleak Zappa-less existence of shallow depravity" shows that this is someone who may really NEED to be in the group, and recognizes the fact. Think about the boundless opportunities to Zappavangelize right here on our own list! For once we won't just be preaching to the choir. She's got my non-negative vote!
Poodle

Let her in!! Let her in!! Let her take her teeth out and be in our list!!
Sharleena

Heck yeah! Maria and I worked together back from 1947 to 1953 formulating the Office of Information--Variations, Education, and Youth (OI--VEY). For those of you who may not know, these years were critical ones as regards to cold war policy vis--vis the former Allies and Axis aligned nations. With Maria's guidance, we coalesced our mountains of data into four cohesive points:

  1. Is there a need for a comprehensive psychological warfare plan in a time of peace that could be easily activated during times of war?
  2. Would it be necessary to establish an organization to co-ordinate the various psychological warfare planning in individual foreign states in terms of how they fit into the overall international mix?
  3. Should such an endeavor, were it to take place, be formed under the auspices of the CIA or NATO?
  4. Who should oversee the overseers?
As our work progressed, Maria and I became increasingly aware that our own overseers were performing their own experiments on us. We made a pact then to just disappear for a while and hook up later on a Frank Zappa mail list at some point in the early 21rst century. As to why I feel Maria would be a nice addition to the Big Note--let me say that she has an expertise in "deciphering" how "messages" are "received" by an "audience." And which "message" will be the most "effective" at having its desired "effect" on the "individual" or "entity" "receiving" it. Tu comprends? Nuff said.
Maria, welcome to The Big Note.
"Come in," we say. "We'll give you shelter from the storm."
DH/glands of destiny.... wired for a big, glorious wonderbra future, and things are looking up...Up.... UP!

: : :

Another Gravy kids. Fruney hails from Australia. He has been a regular (and astute) poster at Yellowmud's "Barry" site. He certainly has an appreciation for FZ. See for yourselves...

Dear SOFA,
Fruney is short for Frunobulax. So, from hereon, my Zappnick shall be Fruney! Now onto other business...
My depth of Zappa appreciation? Let's try: ZIAANAA (Zappa is about as necessary as air) or perhaps ZPEAOML (Zappa pervades every aspect of my life).
Next: favorite FZ recording. Well, there a are number of recordings that I find to be in the supremely excellent, or "masterpiece", category - including: Roxy and Elsewhere, Apostrophe, Joe's Garage, OSFA, Civilization Phaze 3, SUNPYG, Hot Rats, WOIIFTM, MAJNH, THING - FISH (that's right, you heard right), Uncle Meat... But maybe at the top o' the heap - LATHER. Why? Because it's got absolutely everything: live stuff, compositional prowess, and excellent guitar work, some of his funnier stuff.
SO there we have it. Bye for now.
Thanks for writing twice.
Fruney.

The group has 48 hours to post any objection to Fruney's application, starting midnight (EST), March 2. There ya have it...
SOFA

Wow! Fruney's an obvious mate. I'll throw some shrimp on my barbie doll in his honor. As for Tomato, well I'm allergic to tomatoes, but for the good of the group I promise to wear gloves when posting.
Viva la vegetables!
Uncle Herman

Is this person also a clock fetishist? What about leisure wear? It's a minute before six o'clock already.... fer cryin' out loud! Gotta go buy school cheese.
DH

My only question is, what took him so long? Is he a procrastinator or something? God, I respect that in a man... I say, "aye".
effzee

Good point, effzee.
Procrastination has pretty much been my hallmark as moderator of TBN, as SOFA will readily attest. In fact, I like to think of it as something of a tradition. I think I smell another award in the making. Perhaps the Round Toit Award? Anybody got one they could scan? I've seen them around here at the flea markets from time to time. No rush. Whenever you get one is fine.
Poodle

"Get around to it" is the Toit reference. In Argentina it might be called the Manana Banana. Conferred by the Royal Society of Procrastinators for the ultimate procrastination, which is to fail to get around to putting something off - meaning, you accomplish something by default. And guys, remember to have your procrastinator examined every year after age 40.
PONY

I put off becoming a procrastinator for a long time, as I wanted to retain my amateur standing.
Poodle

Is this Phaze II of "Let's Have All Barry's Posters Move To TBN"?
My heart bleeds, but I have to say: Fruney should get in!
YellowMud

My mom once told me that procrastination would grow hair on your palms, that you could become addicted to it, and that if you did it too much it could "stay that way". So far, I've only found the second one to be true, but I'm here to say...
What?
Oh! I see... Belay that last.
(Ahem) I've never been one to procrastinate. For some reason, I keep putting it off, or waiting until the last minute. Who's got the loving time to procrastinate in this day & age? Not this Sofa, that's for sure!
Welcome Tomato; it's great to have you with us. The group - at times - tends to be a little over-the-top in the testosterone dept.; like a midget on Freud's couch, we ask that you be a little patient. I only hope the pronunciation of your name does not lead to fist fights. Tell me; is it Toe - may - toe or Toe - mah - toe?
And another Howdy out to you, Fruney! I wondered how long it would take you to find us. Being a frequent visitor to the "Barry" FZ Tribute site, I have read a lot of your posts. You have a very fine eye (or should I say ear) for detail when it comes to Frank and his music. I look forward to communicating with you on a more regular basis.
Take some time and explore the site; we've accumulated some pretty neat stuff. If you have any trouble, just post. One of us will gladly come to your aid. Above all, make yourself at home. We're here for you. Oh, but please, don't put your feet (or get any jiz) on the sofa.
SOFA

: : :

Greetings All! We have another Lumpy Gravy to consider. This one comes to us from Michael, who wishes to be known as "La Honza" (tho' I think he means Ya Hozna - we'll find out). I resisted the temptation to edit his "Zappreciation level" - it's long-winded, but enlightening... The group has 48 hrs in which to post any objections to La Honza's (?) membership.

Sofa and Honorable Zappites,
Hello and salutations to all! Thanks for letting me into this close Double-knit group, The Big Note. My Zappa appreciation has come in evolutionary portions. I don't know how other's music appreciation has developed, but mine has been one of steps on a road to musical enlightenment.
Step One: Early high school love of the Beatles. Not the 50's bop- Beatles, but the 60's-70's "thhhh-thhhh-thhhh. This is some good shit. What the fuck are those guys sayin? Damn! This is good music!" Beatles.
Step Two: Mid high school love of Led Zeppelin. Musical essence...glam...riffs that froze into my mind...guitar playing...Led Zeppelin.
Step Three: The Grateful Dead. Full devotion on all levels. The "quit work and follow" kind of devotion. Noodling guitar work at its apex...lyrics and music that transcend all walks and genres. Pure Music.
Step Four: Phish. Enter humor and the addition of visual entertainment to music. Never a dull moment. This band never ceased to amaze me...and they still do.
Step Five (the last step?): Zappa. The Dalai Lama of Music. The fusion of Humor, Oddity, Superior Pure Essential music. Music of which a new sector of Science/theology could be based...Zappalogy???? How could there be another step?
So, in essence... Ziawol. I denounce my Christian name Michael (mcharp0). (If not taken!) I wish to be known as La Honza.
Favorite Zappa? Apostrophe (') or Swiss/Fire! I also dearly enjoy Ahead of their Time.
Sincerely, La Honza

You may begin judgment, SOFA

That's all for this installment, folks; I hope you've enjoyed these Lumps. The last one, from "La Hozna" was approved (and, yes, he meant 'Ya Hozna'), but he quit the group after only a week. SOFA figured he couldn't handle the embarrassment of getting his Zappnick wrong right out of the gate. We soon had another Ya Hozna knockin' at our door - one who has stuck around, and has been a fine contributor to the Group. But that's a Gravy for another time...
Until we read again, Jack Bivouac signing off.

Frank Zappa


More Lumpy Gravy?