The Adventure Of Greggery Peccary

Notes and Comments

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The adventures of GREGGERY PECCARY!
  Is it kind of funny coincidence or an intentional pun on the name of famous Hollywood star?
From: "Dennis Guertin" <>
  I think it's a play on the movie star but I think the overall reference is to Pope Gregory XIII, who "corrected" the calendar thusly:
  "...including mathematician and astronomer Christopher Clavius...agreed with the ten-day correction but believed that they should be dropped all at once. Gregory took this advice and shortened October of A.D. 1582 by ten days. Thursday, October 4, 1582 (Julian) was followed immediately by Friday, October 15, 1582 (Gregorian).
  Gregory completed modification of the old intercalation rule by specifying that any year whose number ended with 00 must also be evenly divisible by 400 in order to have a 29-day February. He also changed the ecclesiastical table of moon phases used to help determine Easter's date."
  Ref from and further info at
Oh, here comes GREGGERY,
The nocturnal gregarious
Wild swine
From: (Kerry Yackoboski)
  I assumed it was FZ, with the voice the result of tape-speed twiddling. One way to confirm this would be to play it back slower and see if it sounds like him... I have a deck that can do this so I can try it.
From: (Mitch Goldman)
  It's definitely it slow and you'll hear it... plus, I thought he was credited with the vocals on this track on the CD liner notes...
  I've also always assumed it was Frank, but come to think of it, isn't George Duke credited for vocals? And I can't remember hearing his voice elsewhere on GP.
From: (Kerry Yackoboski)
  I slowed down a tape of the song to check out the voice... it's definitely FZ as the nocturnal gregarious wild swine.
From: (Scot Beidelman)
  I always felt it was George Duke with a little tape tinkering. To me, Duke's phrasing is unique and unmistakable, even post-tinker.
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A peccary
Is a little pig
With a white collar
That usually hangs around
Between Texas and Paraguay
Sometimes ranging as far
west as
From: (Mike Quigley)
  And island just off the coast of California near Los Angeles.
From: Charles Ulrich <>
  Santa Catalina is an island off the coast of California, near Long Beach.
From: (Scot Beidelman)
  Catalina is an island off the coast of Southern California. It's a big tourist attraction, and there's these big glass-bottom boats that take you out there.
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This particular peccary
Is part of that bold (bold),
New (new) breed (breeding)
That extinguishes itself
By markings which resemble a
Directly below the
White collar
From: (Brian Zavitz)
  Peccarys (Javelinas in Spanish) have a white collar of hair around their necks. In 1972, the fashion was wearing wide ties. Greggery is hip... so he wears a wide tie.
From: whatthat <>
  White collar is American slang for rich folks. I would imagine it refers to a generic business suit, with tie and white shirt, consequently a white collar. The lower class is called "blue collar", referring to denims, I imagine, because of the manual labor.
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Every morning, GREGGERY drives
His little
red Volkswagen to the ugly
From: (Brian Zavitz)
  They were cheap and they were everywhere. All the hippies started growing up and needed they got the cheapest and most economical on gas... there was a gasoline crisis in the early 70's don't forget.
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Voodn, Voodn!
Boy it's so hard to find a place to park around here!
From: Bossk \(R\) <>
  "Voodn" means a smaller "vroom" - a sound that a car makes. The origins are not important.
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GREGGERY PECCARY takes the elevator
Up to the eighty-third floor of a grim,
Gray, evil-looking building
With a sign on the front reading:
  OK, it is a name of beautiful piece from Waka/Jawaka. But may be there are also some meaning behind it?
From: whatthat <>
  Frank often said that there are little links in all the songs for nothing more than the purpose of "unifying the collection." This and the future references to Billy The Mountain, Ethel, and The Short Forest are probably just used as names, because the audience might identify more with such a long, non-repetitive piece better if they have these little links to help them along through 20 minutes of this type of music.
From: David G. Walley <>
  Could be a play on words and dealing with Irving "Swifty" Lazar, a famous Hollywood agent.
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And so it was, one fateful morning,
GREGGERY PECCARY made his way through the
Steno Pool...
From: Evil Bob <>
  A Steno Pool refers to a Stenographer Pool and is a feature-ette of many large corporations. Many times these large corporations place all the stenographers in a central location (in THE BIG UGLY CORPORATE BUILDING) so that documents requiring editing or dictated documents requiring transcription can be processed by stenographers in one central location (as in "Hey, send this prospectus on down to the steno pool."). The main stereotyped image of a Steno Pool consists of: a bunch of air-head females who, since they are air-head females, are not particularly suited to anything but stenography and (probably) fellatio.
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Hi Mildred! Hi Gladys! WANDA
  For WOMENS' LIBROMATION MOVENINT inner sisterhood meaning of it check out THING-FISH. Drop Dead
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All the girls in the BIG SWIFTY
Steno Pool
KNEW . . .
Here was a
Wild swine
Peccary of Destiny,
  Any CC connection here with SLEEP DIRT Spider of Destiny or BONGO's Advance Romance?
From: whatthat <>
  I wouldn't think so. American culture bombards you with the idea that fucking is the ultimate to aspire to, romance leading to the actual fucking. No mention is ever made of the nice stuff that comes once you find a partner for life, i.e. the rewards of the relationship. I take this as a rather tame way of saying that all the girls in the steno pool just simply want to "romance", i.e. court, Greggary Peccary because being on his way up, he'll eventually be a rich man. Then they'll be able to break into SOCIETY.
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From: (Scot Beidelman)
  Gizmo is just another word for gadget; just a random object used in performing some trivial task (such as a calendar).
From: whatthat <>
  No. [ It's not jism] Not everything in Frank's stuff is sexually explicit, and that misconception is probably a large part of why he doesn't get played on commercial radio in the states. A gizmo is nothing more than something you don't know the name for, like a whatchamacallit, thingumybob, or a what'sit.
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AIR HOCKEYs . . . biff . . . dush-h-h!
From: (Scot Beidelman)
  Maybe it's a U.S. thing, or maybe just a California thing, I don't know. Air hockey is a game played usually in arcades. It's the size and shape of a billiard table, but instead of green felt, there's a white, smooth surface with holes punched all over it. Tiny airjets blow through those holes. Two people play, standing at opposite ends of the table, and on the table at each end something like a pocket or a slot. There's a plastic puck that glides over the table's surface (hovering smoothly over the airjets) and gets batted around by the opponents wielding these things that look like plastic bagels with handles sticking out of the middle. With those paddles, the opponents try to knock the puck into each other's slot. Much like hockey. The puck action is pretty smooth, so a good game can get pretty frantic with this mini-guillotine frantically zipping all over the table. Trust me... much fun.
From: whatthat <>
  This is a really fond memory of mine in American culture. You can still find air hockey tables around, but it takes some searching. An air hockey table has little holes in the surface that air shoots out of, making the puck airborne. You have a gizmo to hit the puck with. It's this little plastic dome with a plate on the bottom, the plate having a rim around it. Your hand fits between the rim and the dome. On the table there is a little slit for a goal. You have to try to get the puck in the goal (obviously). First to reach specified number of goals wins.
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Does it matter that this waste of time
Is what makes a LIFE for you? Hmmmmm?

I must plummet boldly
Replica-mahogany desk,
With the strategically-placed,
very hip water pipe,
From: (Scot Beidelman)
  Well, last I knew, "water pipe" is a polite way to refer to a "bong", which is something used to smoke copious amounts of marijuana.
From: whatthat <>
  It's also called a bong or a hookah. There's water in the pipe to cool the smoke from the stuff you're smoking so that it doesn't burn the fuck out of your throat while it's on its way to your lungs.
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Highly efficient, Miss Snodgrass!
From: Vladimir Sovetov
  The nice insight on the origin on the name can be found in the Billy James's book Necessity Is.... Here is a quote from Bunk Gardner' childhood story (p.33)
  'Gardner remembers: "and piano teacher's name was Elmira Snodgrass [savours the name for a few moments] - she was cute.'
From: Biffy the Elephant Shrew
  I doubt it. Snodgrass is a pretty common name. The San Mateo telephone directory lists five of them. It also lists one Van Vliet and two Zappas (although one of the latter is obviously fake--"Moonunit" indeed).
From: John Henley
  One of the best-loved educators - that is to say, teacher/coach/principal/superintendent at various times - in my hometown, and a good friend of my family's, was one Augustus "Gus" Snodgrass.
  Snodgrass was the maiden name of Neil Youngs wife. Right?
From: (Rolf Maurer)
  I believe so. Neil Young married Carrie Snodgrass, an actress who starred in some Hollywood films of the early 1970s.
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And with that.
And strode nonchalantly
Into his dinky little office
With the desk and the catalog
And the very hip water pipe.
And proceeded,
With a vigor and determination
Known only to piglets
Of a similarly diminutive
To single-handedly invent
From: (Mike Quigley)
  I wonder if there's supposed to be some kind of pun here between Greggary and "Gregorian" calendar??
From: whatthat <>
  Well, Greggary has to invent something that's already invented, and take credit for it. That's the nature of American culture, to distill everything and then charge fuckloads for it.
From: Vladimir Sovetov <>
  Well, it seems that this wasn't just a pun or a joke. The very idea of calendar as a time counting device was absurd from the point of view of Frank Zappa's cosmogony. No shit, ladies and gentelmen!-))) A real gimmick or gizmo born by evil minds of Big Swifty Trendmongers. Yeah!-))
  But, here is it, the great chunck of Frank The Philostopher theory
Frank Zappa. The Mother Of All Interviews,
by Donn Menn (DM) and Matt Groening (MG)

Zappa! From The Publishers Of Keyboard And Guitar Player p.64
  MG: Let's talk abput your ideas of time.
  FZ: Well, I think that everything is happening all the time, and the only reason why we think of time lineary is because we are conditioned to do it. That's because the human idea of stuff is: it has a begginig and it has an end. I don't think that's necessarily true. You think of time as a constant, a spherical constant --
  MG: -- in which --
  FZ: -- Everything's happening all the time, always did. always will...
  MG: So this coffee cup --
  FZ: -- Was always full, and always empty --
  MG: -- and it's always being drunk, and it's always being heated --
  FZ: -- And it's alawys being thrown, and the guy was always painting it, and so on and so forth. Everything is always.
  MG: Why does this empty cup make sense to me?
  MG: You know what I mean, though?
  FZ: Is that a Zen question?
  MG: No, why do I go, "Oh, I have already - the cup that I drank no longer appears to be full."
  FZ: Well, because it is not full at this particular version of --
  FZ: We're dealing with time in a quasi-practical manner. We have devised our own personal universe and lifestyle that is ruled by time sliced this way, and we progress from notch to notch, day by day, and you just learn to meet your deadlines that way. That's only for human covenience. That, to me, is not a good explanation of how thing really work. I seems just as feasible to me that everything is happening all the time. And whether you believe you coffe cup is full or not is irrelevant. It's like -- here's another way to explain it. What something is depends more on when it is than anything else. You can't define something accurately until you understand where it is.
  MG: When in time.
  FZ: Yeah, when is what. Without the perfect understanding of when, you've got nothing to deal with, see? 'Cause you analyze that cup of cofee a little bit earlier, and it's full. In a few minutes, you'll kick it over, and it won't even exist anymore. The state of the cup is determined by when you're perceiving it.
  DM: Which means that the future has already happened.
  FZ: Yeah. And the reason why I feel so strongly about this is, you know, this is one of the better explanation for why people can have premonitions, because instead of looking ahead, they're just looking around. You don't have to look ahead to see the future. You can look over there.
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Because NOW. AT LAST,
GRECGERY PECCARY's exciting new

Had made it possible
For everyone
To find out
From: (Scot Beidelman)
  Now, I don't know if this is strictly a U.S. fascination, but here there is a tremendous superficial concern over aging (particularly here in California, where FZ spent most of his time). Everybody wants to stay young and beautiful, and the commercialization of products and services intended to aid this process has gotten totally out of hand, and in my opinion, the whole thing is an embarrassment to our society. Zappa's attacking our obsession with age.
From: (Brian Zavitz)
  The hip young people are PLASTIC, remeber? They follow colourful time-wasting trends, and spend money looking GOOD and YOUNG. They are slowly ageing and the calendar reminds them that they are getting OLDER. When you get OLD, you aren't young and HIP anymore. And plastic people only care about outer appearences. Therefore they want to LYNCH Greggery for inventing the CALENDAR. (Hope I didn't spoil the storyline for anyone)
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What hath GOD wrought?
From: (DaveWPKN)
  First complete telegraph message sent over newly constructed line by Samuel F.B. Morse from Washington DC to Baltimore (!) on May 24, 1844.
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There were some people
Who simply DID NOT WISH TO
And that's why,
On his way home from the office
one night,
GREGGERY was attacked
From: (Brian Zavitz)
  The hunchmen are the hip young people. A hunchman is someone who is usually hired for money to carry out shady tasks.
From: Charles Ulrich <>
  That's a henchman, with an E. FZ's term also suggests hunch (a premonition or suspicion) and hunchback (like Quasimodo).
From: whatthat <>
  Probably it refers to organized crime (gangsters) wherein the competition (unspecified company) has hired henchmen (this is the real word) to kill Greggary Peccary so he can't sell his calendar and they can steal the idea and make the money. I imagine it has the "hunch" corruption to link it to Hunchentoot which was written about the same time.
From: John Henley <>
  ...the brief bit about "the rage of Hunchmen", where Frank describes them as "showing evidence of hostile intention", followed by the Elmore James lick from Dust My Broom. I may have the verbal quote wrong, but the musical quote always makes me chuckle.
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Making his way through the
evening traffic, GREGGERY notices
that the other vehicles which
crowd and bump his little red car
are all inhabited by slowly-aging
From: (Alex Slotkin)
  Anyways, I was listening to "The Adventures of Greggery Peccary" off of _Studio Tan_ the other day with one of my friends for the 20th time (no small feat), when I heard it! I made him rewind it a little bit, and lo and behold, there it was! When Frank is talking about Greggery driving home from work in his little red Volkswagen, and right after he mentions that all of the cars that are bumping him are driven by a bunch of "slowly aging, very hip young people...." you can hear a couple measures of Herbie Hancock & the Headhunters' classic jazz-funk tune, "Chameleon"!
From: (Pheezy)
  I have always thought the significance was that the young 'n' hip yuppies would be interested in this music, and Frank was most definitely pokin fun (he does that once in a while) at this fact.
From: (Ken Walter)
  Zappa is making fun of the the "slowly aging, very hip young people," who are trying to show how hip they are by listening to fusion music. At least that's how I hear it.
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To elude them, GREGGERY takes the
Short Forest EXIT off the express-
  OVERNITE SENSATION. Camarillo Brillo
She ruled the Toads
Of the Short Forest
  and also instrumental piece from _Weasels_ Toad Of The Short Forest Where is it? I really want to know.
From: (Brian Zavitz)
  I don't know if there really is one. I always thought Frank was referring to pubic hair. Toads of the short forest would be inhabitants of the pubic hair (yum!). I think this is just a CCC in Greggery Peccary.
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GREGGERY takes a bumpy trail
off the main SHORT FOREST ROAD,
which leads him up the side
of a FAMOUS (and convenientlv
MOUNTAIN, and into a strange
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cave on the edge of a cliff, not far
from a
eyes on it.
  Billy The Mountain and his wife Ethel The Tree.
  See Just Another Band From L.A. N&C.
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Meanwhile, the enraged HUNCHMEN
(and HUNCH-'WOMEN) rumble
through the SHORT FOREST until
(realizing the little swine has
escaped, they decide to park their
steaming vehicles in a circular
wagon-train formation. . .
From: Charles Ulrich <>
  The wagons formed a circle for defense against hostile Indians.
From: whatthat <>
  Yes and no. A wagon-train formation points the back of each wagon train, which is open to the elements, towards the campfire, so that the people in the wagon train can sleep with warmth. It gets cold in the desert at night, especially the further north you get.
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and have a love-in!
From: (Mike Quigley)
  A love-in doesn't necessarily involve sex, though it might. Usually it just refers to a gathering by hippie types and others to indulge in cosmic vibes!!
From: (Brian Zavitz)
  Yes...but it specifically refers to a Flower Power groovy orgy and didn't necessarily have to involve sex, but often did. People today don't have love-ins anymore. Tupperware parties maybe....
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Under the influence of a fantastic
AID, they proceed to perform lewd
acts, rip each other off for small
personal possessions, and dance
with depraved abandon in the vicinity
of a
six-foot pile of transistor radios
each one tuned to a different station).
From: Evil Bob <>
  This is an oblique reference to the music of recently-deceased avant-garde composer John Cage. One of his works was for 6 radios each tuned to a different station.
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GRECGERY doesn't realize
He has concealed himself
Inside the very mouth of
Billy the Mountain!
  See Just Another Band From L.A. N&C.
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And, as you all know,
Whenever BILLY laughs,
Rocks and boulders hack up,
And the air for miles around
Is filled with tons of dust,
Forming a series of huge

From: (Brian Zavitz)
  I think the philostopher is just some guy who gives you a bunch of non-sense answers about life to part you with your money. Today were have phone-in psychics!
From: whatthat <>
  It's a corruption of the word "philosopher." This is another thing that's a bit too elaborate to explain here, but Americans have a fine tradition of paying certain people (television evangelists, psychologists, etc.) huge sums of money to tell them things that their own common sense would tell them. Fuck knows why.
From: Evil Bob <>
  While I don't know of any textual CCC clues in this passage (aside from the obvious Billy The Mountain Connection), the music which accompanies this bit is a direct quotation from "The Grand Wazoo" occurring 3:16 into "For Calvin (And His Next Two Hitch-Hikers)".
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From: whatthat <>
No. [ Have they such sqaud in LA? ] It's forbidden (unwritten) to break things down by country of origin, except to describe food. You can have Chinese food, but you're a bigot if you refer to that group of people as Chinese.
And, furthermore, this information
could be HIS,
If only GREGGERY would attend a
(Classes now forming),
And available at a special
low introductory fee. . .
From: whatthat <>
Yes. That's their fee. They tease you that they have the information first, you pay, they talk until they reach a point where they have something else to deliver, and then they withhold that until you pay again. This way you pay and pay and pay. It's unbelievable how many people get suckered into this.
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And now, here he is,
'The Greatest Living PHILOSTO-
PHER Known to Mankind',
From: whatthat <>
  The name reminds me of Billy James Hargis. This was one of those TV evangelists who had a huge church in Oklahoma, and he went about seducing members of his church, male and female. Some couple he married divulged to each other on their wedding night that they'd both fucked him, and that's how he got exposed. He managed to cover it up and I think he's still going at it, but not on the level of Swaggert or Pat Robertson. This stuff all happened about 1975, and it's amazing he managed to blow it over (no pun intended) considering that bisexuality was still looked on as some sort of perversion.
  QUENTIN is among main characters of THING-FISH.
  Very funny coincidence of may be just the regular example of universal CC in action
From: "Eisele, Tomi" <>
  DeNameland, Quentin Robert, et al: "Stochastic Effluvia Measured as if Magically Using Finite-Method Analysis and Partial Regression 'Loogies'", J. Appl. Wzls., Vol. 2, April 1997
  can't remember where i found this....
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As you can see for yourself.
The way this clock over here
is behaving,
From: "Dennis Guertin" <>
  Which I always thought was "Time is a function." which is a valid statement.
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Now this might be cause for alarm
Among a portion of you, as,
From a certain experience,
From: Evil Bob <>
  I would appreciate further info on whether this is an actual person or perhaps a twisted version of the name of some noteworthy person (or neither). The overall quotation ties in with another bit from the liner notes on "Sleep Dirt":
  "The Eons are closing...200 years ago (September 25, 1791) exactly 12 amendments to the Constitution of the United States were referred to the states for ratification. 10 were approved by December 15, 1791, and of course we here from a certain experience have come to know them as the Bill of Rights."
Make your checks payable to

Greatest Livin Philostopher
Known to Mankind'!


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