Timeline contributions


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I don't really see a reason why he would lie to Burnett in that point.
Not at that time, no. But we can't overlook the possibility that he was stretching the truth slightly and engaging in some early myth-building, even then. Burnett was a publisher, after all.

We could add "truck driver" to the jobs in 1954, but to someone looking at the timeline without all of this discussion it's not going to make sense.
on an unimportant sidenote: have just reread 'Confessions of a man insane enough to live with beasts' and right at the end of chapt 4 (which deals with the bleeding ulcer) he writes:

"Thirteen days from the night I entered I was driving a truck and lifting packages weighing up to 50 pounds."

But sure, that's only fiction and right in the following sentence he reminds us of that: "A week later I had my first drink"
Thought it was a funny coincidence with the letter though.

And btw.: Today I've reread 'Life and Death in the charity ward' as well and it's interesting to compare, what he took from the one thing into the other and what he made up for the later ('Erections') version.
maybe it sucks to come back to that goddamn truck-driving again (I just stumble upon it while reading things):

in a letter to Corrington from Jan 14, 1963 he writes about the time right after the hospital:
"I got on a mail truck and drove it around and delivered letters and drank lightly, experimentally ..."

So, hanko and hooch had it (and I suppose some others too who didn't bother to repeat it). The truck-driving actually was for the PO.

Oh and btw: in his 'Narrative account of career' (no date, guess around 1974 since he mentions the Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts) he writes:
"I came out of the hospital and got a job driving a truck."

Like you all, I hope I don't stumble about more of it and we can close this truck-driving-file now.
ow fuck!
That odd truck again!

"When I came out of that hospital, I was strangely relaxed. So I got hold of a typewriter, and got a job driving a truck."
Interview with Robert Wennersten, 1974 in: 'Sunlight Here I Am', p.94.

(yeah, I know - "Shut up and play yer guitar!" / sorry)
and HERE he isn't driving a truck!!

"I came out [of the hospital] 900 years older. Found a job as a shipping-clerk somewhere and got hold of a typewriter."
( letter to Douglas Blazek Nov 4, 1964 in: 'Screams', p. 1154)


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Could be that he usually told the story as "getting out of the hospital and getting a job driving a truck" because it sounds good. Going from the verge of death (maybe) to truck driver in a few weeks sounds like the story of a badass. And isn't that what he wanted us to believe he was?

I think if we looked for details on any job (other than the P.O.) we might find a lot of contradiction and embellishment, like you're finding here with the "truck driver" gig.
I didn't want to bitch around with that thing anyway, I just happen to stumble over it these days, whithout intention.
But now, I'm off to marry a millionairess, so hopefully, I won't have to read about that damn truck again.


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We have no way of knowing, but it feels like there is something true about the truck-story. He mentions it too often, in too many different places.

It could have been a mail truck for the P.O. for a short period of time, "highly romanticized to give the story juice" , like many other things in his life. "Marrying a millionairess", for example.
just a minor thing:
the timeline gives the marriage date (Barbara Frye) as 10/29/1955, while the marriage certificate in 'B in Pics' (p.51) says 10/30.

(please note that the FBI was totally off the point (as they're so often) claiming 9/25 to be the date.)

have just realized, that 'Frye' is usually spelled 'Fry' in the timeline.
I changed it after this.

According to the person who once was here claiming she was Barbara's granddaughter the true name was 'Frye' and Barbara only cut that to 'Fry' (maybe because of her short neck, she wanted to have things short *haha*).

Of course this is only valuable information IF this person actually was her granddaughter.

(but I'm over that anyway, since I'm divorced already and my fuckin' father has just died. / *insert a sigh of relief here*)


Founding member
I believe it was Frye, but if someone wants to change their name in some way, I figure the world should go along with them.
my fuckin' father has just died. / *insert a sigh of relief here*
I would say "I'm sorry," but it doesn't sound like you are. ;) It does sound like there's a story there though...
[...] Frye, but if someone wants to change their name in some way, I figure the world should go along with them.
Agreed. Only, it seems she never 'really' changed it: the marriage certificate says 'Frye' and I bet her death certificate even so. Whatever.
(of course I too have never 'officially' changed my name to Roni even though it graces my passport.)
I would say "I'm sorry," but it doesn't sound like you are. It does sound like there's a story there though...
baby, you sure know what I was referring to. Here's a hint:
"… he was such a stupid prick […] well, that’s all over and he’s dead dead dead, thank god"
... said who? and which somebody's writing a bit about that who?
(so, this was only a short note, about where this somebody is in the process so far.)
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on a sidenote:
Buk uses the name 'Fry' in all his letters to Sheri Martinelli. But then - he drops a lot of letters in this conversation.
I have nothing to add except to say I continues to be flabbergasted as to the level of knowledge and dedication to this site from it's members. I look forward to the day I can say something of profound incite. mjp...how come your sound knob does not go up to 11? what's up with that?
another just minor thing:
Our timeline got it right, while our books-list doesn't:
Even though Krumhansl says 'Longshot Pomes' came out in 1962 (#8) there's evidence that it came out in October 1961, which means before 'Poems and Drawings' (and of course before 'Run with...').

Evidence is Abel's article 'The Early Chapbooks ...' (p.48) and the 'Late-Oct 1961'-letter to Martinelli.


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I don't have a "month" value in the database for book publication dates, so books in the same year are listed alphabetically. That could be fixed, but I don't know if it's worth the trouble.
another thing not related to the timeline but to the poems-database / and neither a contribution nor a correction but just a question:

is it true, that 'Old Man Dead In A Room' appeared in Outsider #1 as well as in #3?
Of course the poem is worth repeating ...


ah, maybe we should re-name this thread to something like:
"Tiny remarks on unimportant little nothings from a picky person with too much time on hand."
just for matters of completion:

"All right, I came out of the hospital ~round 1955 and got a job -- shipping clerk for a light fixture plant in east l.a. -- "
(WR #45, p.6)


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just for matters of completion:

"All right, I came out of the hospital ~round 1955 and got a job -- shipping clerk for a light fixture plant in east l.a. -- "
(WR #45, p.6)
I was reading the long letter to Corrigan (re: writing an intro to the first LouJon book) the other day where he gives what is essentially a one page biography and he talks about driving the truck again after getting out of the hospital...and in the poem my 2nd and 3rd jobs (which isn't in the db yet) he mentions the stock clerk at Sears as his third job...

Which is just to say that pinning this stuff down precisely is difficult. But it would certainly appear that the post-hospital Supreme lighting gig came after driving the truck and his first stint with the P.O.

But Sunbeam lighting is in 1950 and Supreme lighting is in 1955 and I always wondered how many damn lighting fixture places there were in Los Angeles, or whether those two jobs were somehow one in the same. They are so far apart I leave them as separate jobs, but it makes you wonder.


"The law is wrong; I am right"
Sunbeam lightning and Supreme lightning even sound the same. Maybe it's a case of Buk not remembering the exact name of the lightning company and the year he worked there. It would be odd if he worked for two different lightning companies five years apart without him never mentioning it.
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question just occured to me:
Buk was in New Orleans to write 'Crucifix' for (nearly) a whole month.
How much vacation a year did a postal clerk get at that time? Do we know, how Buk had handled this with his bosses?
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