Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Santa Loves Me Too

This morning we had an unexpected veterinarian crisis with Barkley, the pup. Rachel had to run him to the emergency place; blood work, anti-nausea medicine, hydration treatments, all of it. Some sort of hemorrhaging, which is never a good sign. It is troubling, the near total helplessness with which we are forced to sometimes contend.

On the other hand, I moved in to my new apartment yesterday. It is an odd, fine feeling. I hung my shaving kit on the towel rack in the bathroom and thought nothing at all of it. When I awoke I recognized the silliness of such a thing. I have a place from which to live more permanently for the first time in over a year. Perhaps in time I will forget how to live entirely out of a backpack.

Last night, I slept for six hours or more in two intervals, separated by a long period lying in bed watching an animated series (I can make my way through an entire series in two or three nights, usually). When I first awoke in the center of the night I didn't know where I was, a feeling to which I have become far too accustomed. The sleepy transition to an understanding that I was in my own place was deeply gratifying.

Then, I was giving the boy a ride to school this morning. We were approaching the moment when we would pull into the parking lot. This is a moment when he often starts to express some mild tension at the knowledge of soon being separated from either mommy or daddy. 

I told him that I love him. 

"Santa loves me too."

I know he does, buddy. I know he does.


Tuesday, December 30, 2014

We become the things we've repeated

A windstorm upon wakening; unsettling, and apropos. Tree branches scraping the sides of the house. Boxes filling the hallways in the dark, unexpected shapes to navigate.

I will be moving into a new apartment today. I had considered putting it off and wandering the states like a dusty nomad, but other concerns guided my choices. 

Now, I will learn to make a nice roast beef and veggies on Sundays, probably become a born-again Christian for old time's sake.

I still have more packing to do, of course. I have put everything off until the very last minute. Once the stuff is loaded into the truck I will rush to the bank to get a cashier's check for the deposit. Enormous sums of money, to me, leaping from my account at irregular intervals. Soon enough the sums will become much more regular. I will complain about it all here, to remind you, dear readers.

Even though I lived in an apartment in the East Village it didn't feel like an apartment. There's something different about apartments there. They feel as if they were always something else previously. They only seem to be apartments as a slapdash afterthought. An apartment in Sonoma, alternately, feels that it is precisely what is was meant to be and will never be anything but that.

This apartment is quite a bit more expensive than the one I had in NYC. Hard to believe, I know.

At least I will have my own space again. At 46, my needs have changed. Rhys will share the space with me, of course. He will have his own room, something that I'm sure he will appreciate, though I'd like to believe that he'll also miss sleeping in my room. 

My advice: do not get divorced, if you have kids it is staggeringly difficult. It consumes your entire life. For the foreseeable future, at least one year, all I can envision is working to sustain this apartment. 

I'm happy about it. It was my choice. 
I'm happy about it. It was my choice. 
I'm happy about it. It was my choice. 
I'm happy about it. It was my choice. 
I'm happy about it. It was my choice. 
I'm happy about it. It was my choice. 
I'm happy about it. It was my choice. 


Monday, December 29, 2014

"You're Innocent When You Dream"

Tom Waits, Tom Waits and more Tom Waits. That is the essential concoction for the times, the elixir of the minute and moment.

It started at the gym with Rain Dogs, then moved into the car, and then at home. Now, it informs my sleeping thoughts. Frank's Wild Years, Swordfishtrombones, Closing Time... There is an acid cabaret dancing daily within my ears, a stumbling carnival of nearly mistaken insight.

Next up, Heartattack and Vine, then Mule Variations.

The songs feel like short films, floating with woozy misadventure, populated by circus oddities, a laugh in the face of regret, as if performers and stagehands alike are all marching around my mind to the sound of some lost, drugged, fugitive band. The music feels forbidden, illicit. 

It's the always out of orbit romanticism that informs and reminds, this crazed sense of irrational hope and desperate faith in so much of his work. It prevents the tunes from lapsing into pure self-pity and self-pathos, most of the time.

When I was young I wanted to be in The Clash. Then later, I thought that maybe The Stones would also be a fun band to have been in. Now, only Tom Waits' band will do. A tour of small, smoky bars. Everybody in the band would be a multi-instrumentalist, so we would swap parts and instruments depending on mood and inspiration; a shadow carnival come to life, dressed and dancing as puppets on string, spilling out into the streets and then the afterward.

A bracing exhaustion, exasperation, the near-perpetual crises of one's best years. 

That's my latest dream: to be in Tom Wait's band, at least through winter and well into spring. Beck would eventually recognize my talents and we would do a few albums together, etc. 

To clutch desperation and hope in a single hand strumming and picking, stomping on a bass drum pedal in time with a jangly tambourine hat designed by Dr. John. The loaded waltz of an accordion and banjo-eyed jig sending the revelers ever spinning in semi-circles.

Falling James in the Tahoe mud
Stick around to tell us all the tail
Well he fell in love with a Gun Street Girl and
Now he's dancin' in the Birmingham jail,
Dancin' in the Birmingham jail.

Took a 100 dollars off a slaughterhouse Joe
Brought a bran' new Michigan 20 gauge
Got all liquored up on that road house corn,
Blew a hole in the hood of a yellow corvette
A hole in the hood of a yellow corvette.
He Bought a second hand Nova from a Cuban Chinese
And dyed his hair in the bathroom of Texaco
With a pawnshop radio, quarter past 4
He left Waukegan at the slammin' of the door
He left Waukegan at the slammin' of the door

I said John, John he's long gone
Gone to Indiana
'Ain't never coming home
I said John, John he's long gone
Gone to Indiana, he ain't never coming home.
He's sitting in a sycamore in St. John's Wood
Soaking' day old bread in kerosene
He was blue as a robin's egg and brown as a hog
He's stayin' out of circulation till the dogs get tired
Out of circulation till the dogs get tired
Shadow fixed the toilet with an old trombone
He never get up in the mornin' on a Saturday
Sittin' by the Erie with a bull whipped dog
Tellin' everyone he saw
They went thatta way, oh boys
Tellin' everyone he saw, they went thatta way

Now the rain's like gravel on old tin roof
And the Burlinton Northern' pullin' out of the world
With a head full of bourbon and a dream in the straw.
And a Gun Street Girl was the cause of it all.
Gun Street Girl was the cause of it all.
Riding in the shadow by the St. Joe Ridge
He heard the click clack tappin' of a blind man's cane
He was pullin' into Baker on New Year's Eve
With one eye on the pistol the other on the door,
One eye on the pistol the other on the door.
Miss Charlotte took her satchel down to Kingfish Row
And the smuggled in a bran' new pair of alligator shoes.
With her fireman's raincoat and her long yellow hair, well
They tied her to a tree with a skinny millionaire,
They tied her to a tree with a skinny millionaire.

I said John, John he's long gone
Gone to Indiana
Ain't never coming home
I said John, John he's long gone
Gone to Indiana, ain't never coming home.
Bangin' on a table with an old tin cup
Sing I'll never kiss a Gun Street Girl again,
Never kiss a Gun Street Girl again.
I'll never kiss a Gun Street Girl again...

[Repeat chorus]


Sunday, December 28, 2014

To Still a Hummingbird

Everybody sleeps. I came over to Rachel's to see the boy. The house is still dark and quiet. 

The nights are not as long as they had been, though not by much. They are as silent as death. I miss the sounds of the rain, a bit - not the diffuse grey tones that suffocate the days - but the sound of the rain upon awakening is a pleasant reminder.

Each day I creep closer to something. It has been some time since I have felt this way. That I can go anywhere. Just pick a direction and drive. Escape. It is something you can not claim to want if there is nothing preventing you from leaving.

Well, not nothing.

I went to brunch with some friends yesterday and we chatted about having kids, what it does to you, what it changes. It is a profound shifting of all of the large and minute components of life. Everything changes, and everybody sleeps.

One of the interactions I had that helped encourage me to want to have a child was a conversation I had with an art dealer when I worked the Genius Bar at Apple in Soho, NYC. He highly recommended having children, explaining that it does not take anything away from you but rather confirms the things you have known all along. He said that it makes one more critical of what matters and what doesn't, clarifies things, reduces your tolerance for certain people and situations because you no longer have space for them in your life.

He was right, but I do not believe the current result of my life is quite what he meant. There is only so much "you" that you can get rid of before you start to disappear completely. After having a baby I kept hearing people (men mostly) talk about how "you simply don't matter any more."

It is important and impossible not to believe this, at least a little bit. At the moment of birth you go from being the most significant person in a woman's life to being third or worse on the totem pole, usually just above the dog. 

Then, last night I went to meet some friends for dinner, about an hour drive from Sonoma. A practice run. We sat under the stars and chatted about the implications of artificial intelligence upon time, and the significance of gravity upon the universe, and what that might mean. We were all just reciting strung-together portions from various pieces we had read, but it was a fun talk.

One of the things discussed was the theoretical assertion that time might move backwards if the universe begins to be drawn back in upon itself exactly as it had expanded. The laws of thermodynamics, and specifically the process of entropy, would reverse itself. Gravity would become a repulsive rather than attractive force, order would be the result of chaos, and the universe would spin backwards towards the moment of singularity. 

Time itself would start to move backwards, precisely as it had moved forwards. We would each re-experience ourselves, though backwards through time, exactly as it happened once (or many times) before. We would be resurrected from death with the memories of a lifetime intact and then move towards birth where we would naturally esteem sensation over knowledge.

It is based loosely on the premise that no information is ever lost in the universe. Black holes would spew out the matter that they consumed. The event horizon would be one from which events occurred rather than the point at which their time cone is reduced to nil.

You would await the moments when those who have passed away would come back to life, with full and complete knowledge of when this would happen. All loss would undo itself. You would have knowledge of all events as they undid themselves. In this pre-determined universe all knowledge would revert to speculation and wonder.

Hummingbirds would still flap their wings at 50-200 times a second, but the result would be that they would draw air towards themselves, depositing nectar into plants where it would then be returned to the earth.

Campfires would ignite themselves spontaneously out of cold ash, and then reconstruct their matter into a blazing fire, then into a log and kindling, then back into trees. 

On and on like that until you shrank in size to re-enter your mother where you would eventually disappear.

It was that kind of a night.


Saturday, December 27, 2014

Turn Me Loose

The holidays have worn me out, the emptiness that attends them and their passing. Not just the seasonal melancholia but the mild exhaustion of having endured the anxiety that seems to cover the month in its entirety.

It looks as if I may be on the road soon. I'll very likely put all of my stuff in storage, might head east by car. Perhaps all the way across, back to the east coast. I just don't know.

Or, I might buy a house and go nowhere.

There is an apartment that I might rent, also. Though it is as expensive as a house and will function in a similar way: prohibitory as an obligation though nearly complete as an immediate solution. If what I wish to have most is an obligation that prevents me from making other choices.

There is, of course, the boy to consider. I do not wish to be apart from him for very long. Then there is the job. Though I believe that is something I can continue to do in this capacity for a temporary time. I would need to check.

There is also the winter to consider, the Rocky Mountains to cross without snow tires in a 4-cylinder car. Who is to say what might happen... and that seems to be the most alluring sense that I get when considering it. The thought acts upon me like a warm dream.

The road calls me dear....



Friday, December 26, 2014

Ninety-Six Theses on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences

The Norton Anthology that I have referenced here has already gripped me. These are not books to be taken lightly, though a sense of historical humor is useful even in the worst of times.

The study of religion produces within me the intense desire to have multiple wives, of all types. I do not believe that this simple arrangement should be denied to an atheist. In fact, it is a central point of my atheism, the instruction on how to morally provide for four or more wives at a time.

I've only skimmed through the pages on Hinduism. Who knows what I'll think by the time I get to Islam, which is naturally treated last, being the "new kid's belief system."

By the time I arrive in Mecca I might not want any wives at all. Or, I might only wish to have one that is half my age plus 7 years. That sounds nice, sanctioned by the cosmos. I could have my wives compete in belly-dancing competitions to create what is known as a pecking order.

My second-string harem will be comprised entirely of young women who are on the cusp of turning eighteen years old. I will call them, "The Barely Illegal Pleasure Squad Task Force, because it pleases Sean" and then shoot a documentary about the moment that the clock strikes midnight on the eve of each of their 18th birthdays. The very moment that they become free to pleasure me.

Well, in a perfect world...

For marketing purposes the title will be shortened to just, "Barely Illegal." I have argued and argued with the merchandising team and they insist that we would need to recoup on our investment.

I am only 25 pages into the introduction of the book. Perhaps a tiered polygamy scheme will not play as important a role in the telling of things as I would wish. Each volume is about 2000 pages, so there is plenty of time to explore the various sacred mechanisms of harem maintenance and coital codes of conduct.

I was quite pissed, flipping through the table of contents, to find that Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves is not considered a part of the official canon of Islamic religious literature. I question whether this investment might have been wasted on me.

Maybe such an undertaking in religions will leave me not so different than a week at Burning Man. I will be making sacrifices of flower petals and fruit to a goddess in close proximity, with a jewel in her navel and rings in her nose, smelling richly of incense and magic carpet desert tent love, describing our inner visions to one another amidst the open swirling skies, conduits for nonsense wandering freely amongst the dust and the wind, ascending and ascending for hours of a time.


Thursday, December 25, 2014

"Spare me the din of your songs"

5am Chrimbo morning. I sit here with the lit tree awaiting the awakening of the boy. He contains solely whatever magic there is in any of this. 

Don't get me wrong, I do like the holidays. Parts of them, anyway. The spirit of giving can be undeniably nice. There is something charming about it, the momentary freedom from quotidian concerns.

I received an online gift, a couple books for download, yesterday. I started reading the essays from F. Scott Fitzgerald. I was compared favorably by the giver of the gift to the content of the gift, so my ego and arrogance were aloft with interest. Though I had to admit that I also did see the comparison. Now, if only I could create that same favorable comparison outside of non-fiction.

Fitzgerald is the writer that I would most like to be able to imitate. Him, or Salter. I should go back and read Tender is the Night again, and then again and again. 

This same giver of gifts has bought me something even far nicer, though it won't be here until the end of the month when I begin my tour. He had hoped to have it here by Christmas morning, but alas... the winds of gift were not yet ready.

Okay, I hear the boy stirring upstairs. The magic hour approaches quickly on padded pajama feet.


Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Tellin' Mother Nature 'bout you and me

Finally, sleep, almost seven hours worth of it; nearly God's number.

Speaking of gods, my Norton Anthology of World Religions awaits for me, perhaps to flip through later today or tomorrow. Man's distraction, wonder, and worship. I will roam freely among the various beliefs concerning man's place in the cosmos, perhaps even the formation of that cosmos. 

Then, at the end of a long day, I will ask one or more of the gods to inhabit my ailing heart.

Who knows, we will see. I might be reading and translating Sanskrit by tomorrow at sundown. Perhaps I will emerge as an expert on the dangers of fundamentalism, embracing the pure understanding of poetry in a strictly literal sense. I could end up as an assassin belly-dancer, like Robert Plant, but a few years younger.

I have not felt very chatty lately, which affects my desire to write, if not my willingness also. It greatly adds to my spiritual dimension, though.

I went to lunch with my manager yesterday and could think of nothing at all interesting to say. Our going to lunch was for the purpose of me asking questions. I was empty of those, too. I had prepared nothing. Luckily, he is always good for some fresh insight, which he offered freely. Because of days of insomnia, I struggled to retain anything.

It exists now like the memory of having eaten soup once while ill. 

Empty as a koan, filled with the great doubt. 

The sound of a mysterious god, like a secret Santa.

The internet says that the rains will return today. My disposition has invited their return, like a mood ring drowning in a rain dance.

I am certain of it.

Need one more normal night's sleep and my sense of eternal irreverence will return, cursing all gods from a great and unfriendly distance. That is my gift from Ganesh.

Suspect that by tomorrow morning I will be levitating with cheerful spiritual wisdom, in harmony with Tao, each breath a whispered prayer for the next nest.


Tuesday, December 23, 2014

So let's take a ride and see what's mine....

My circadian rhythms are completely shot. I fear that I have developed a metabolic disorder of some sort. I have only slept a handful of hours in the last several days. It is a lonely life, this turning and racing in darkness.

All day today at work, my body has been in a painful daze. I am at all times on the verge of hysteria or tears or worse. It has caused me to eat irregularly, so that I feel doubly ill, of body and spirit. I strongly suspect that this is what menstruating must be like. I am as irrational as I have ever been, like being on a powerful drug that is no fun.

Yesterday, the sun came out in Sonoma, hopefully that will help. My body needs the sun's queues more than most. 

Today, it was out again.

On the unusually long drive back home from the city I had the windows down and chatted on the phone before finally running out of people that would answer.

Then, it was just Iggy Pop and I.

I am the passenger, I stay under glass
I look through my window so bright
I see the stars come out tonight
I see the bright and hollow sky
Over the city's ripped backsides
And everything looks good tonight


Monday, December 22, 2014

The immediate plans of rain

More darkness and fog. It is unbearable. I spend too much time alone in it, it has crept in.

I keep returning to check the weather app. Sunshine is always one day away, taunting me from the future. 

Today things are meant to finally open up for the brighter, though. It has been almost three weeks now. I could never live in a place that remained like this for any longer than that. It feels as if there is wet moss clinging to my mind, everything smells of dampness.

I awake in the late evenings and try to tire myself back to sleep with mindless reruns. 

Last night was the winter solstice, the longest night in earth's history. I wanted to make sure that I didn't miss a single second of it, not a blink.

My circadian rhythms are screwed for life, I am certain of it.

I used to lock myself away in my New York apartment for days and nights on end. Not leaving for any reason; ordering food delivered to the front door and only showering when it became a requirement that could no longer be shirked. After four or five days like that I would finally emerge, usually in the very late evening, to go to one of the local bars of character. Sitting silently is, for me, a struggle under most circumstances. I would sit and listen to the night characters that inhabited the best of the late night bars.

Ordering a pint of beer was often the first attempt at words that I had made in days. Sometimes my voice would just be a dry squeaking, a poor connection between spirit and world.

It is odd for me, now, to think back to those nights and yet miss them. I don't miss the behavior that would cause my hermitic reclusiveness, though I miss the solitary sense that can only be won from the world through rigid demands of self.

Today, I go look at a possible new place to live.  Sonoma is a renters' market to an absurd degree. If I choose to take the place, it will be the first time that I have lived entirely alone in about six years. I wonder to which form I might revert, what secret self lurks and lingers amidst the the bouts  of insomnia.

The place will be prohibitively expensive, such that I will be forced to spend more time there. It will leave far fewer resources that would allow me to ever depart. I will become a regular caller to my internet provider, launching wild midnight accusations that begin with the repeated premise that I am very angry, and not getting the speed that I paid for.


Sunday, December 21, 2014

Nine Minutes to Noon

Up early again, watching images stream across a laptop, listening to Christmas music, a playlist sent from an old friend, compiled a few years back from his father's collection. The Twelve Days are upon us.

His father passed away when he was only an adolescent. The effect of it upon him has been evident, in the formation of his personality. A picture of him standing by his father's bedside towards the end is the only tangible connection I have with that previous life he lived, the unreachable life of another's childhood. The collection of seasonal tunes is perhaps one more, though music somehow feels less than tangible to me. No matter how much I have tried to make it physical, it has a recurring ephemeral quality to it that seems to me to be untouchable.

Music will become more and more fleeting as collections will consist entirely of subscriptions. The idea of music as a possession is an increasingly fading one.

Yesterday, watching an old John Wayne film, The Searchers, I was reminded of my mother. She used to tell everybody that would listen that I simply loved John Wayne and Lucille Ball. I have no idea where she got these ideas. Once, or twice, I probably refused to rake the yard, insisting maybe instead that I was watching a film or tv program that starred either of them. From there arose the childhood myth, repeated as often as possible, into my early adult years, and even now by me.

I believe Wayne was once on an episode of I love Lucy, so maybe that's where she got the idea. Who knows.

I should have more rightly called it a John Ford film, rather than a John Wayne film. I suppose it is both. I have had an aversion for John Wayne since I was old enough to understand what an tremendous right-wing bigot he was. CS mentions Playboy interviews. I used to have a collection of them and Wayne's was among the most famous of all of them, and controversial, spewing a mixture of white supremacy, an early form of American exceptionalism, and denouncing any and all welfare programs that didn't involve enforced manual labor. His solution for poverty was quite simple, road gangs, etc.

He laughed at the idea that an actor could ever be president.

My favorite interviews from the Playboy collection were Gore Vidal and Muhammad Ali. There were others but I can barely recall now, though I see the orange bound book as if it were in my hands.

I remember the day that The Duke died. My father was in the hospital. He had eaten some bad fish at work and was in a terrible state. I remember seeing the headlines and the image. The Orlando Sentinel. I was about ten years old and the additional shock reminder of mortality left a crease. A few years later my father was back in that same hospital with the first of his heart-attacks. I remember him reaching for my hand to hold from the ER gurney. I had never seen or felt anything like it.

My father refused to make the matter of the food poisoning a legal issue. My mother felt differently. She was prepared to pounce upon them with a lawyer. My dad seemed more of the company man, best not to make waves.

Perhaps they were both right.

That is enough reminiscing for the morning. Many denounce it, even this form of skewed nostalgia, perhaps without ever knowing how well and often and truly it keeps some from the blade.


Saturday, December 20, 2014

What happens when you step on molten lava

At long last, I awoke to silence. The rains have temporarily ceased.

The internet predicts that they will soon return. I will be waiting for them. 


Friday, December 19, 2014

Deep December Drizzle

(What's not to believe?)

More rain through the days and nights. More again tomorrow, if the apps are to be believed.

The hysteria of Christmas approaches, even in the rain. I can, at least, partially see it through my son's eyes and find some genuine joy in it. 

"Family time" has never quite appealed to me the way that it might to others. I prefer my friend's families, of course. It is more interesting and fun to be an observer than a participant. It's not that I don't love my family, it's only that I struggle finding strong connections with them. The connections all seem to stop and start with the relationship alone. We share few interests, though that shouldn't matter. Maybe it doesn't. They say it's bad for the soul, to not closely adhere to family. Look at what it's done to me.

Just Look.

I spend nights alone in darkness listening to the rain. What good can possibly come of that. I could be out caroling with neighborhood siblings, sipping eggnog, or participating in some other seasonal christian activity.

My atheism has been less active this year. It does get tiring, the burden of disbelief. Many have encouraged me towards agnosticism, but I can't do it. The church is dangerous and no new Pope will change that much. It is fun to see Catholicism get such a surge out of the guy though, Francis. He helped broker the return of Cuban /  American relations, we're told. Claims that dogs can go to heaven. He's like the Ghostbuster's Pope.

People simply love the guy.

And why not? He's Argentinean, so likability is genetic. Though many have whispered that it's also a special gift from God, the seed of diplomacy. 

I watched the last episode of Colbert Report late last night. This night, I guess, it's not quite over yet. 

It is too bad to see him go, to take the character with him. Many years ago he had become a parody of the parody, had watered down his wit to better mix with the whiskey. But he could still pull off the occasional turn of thought and phrase that made watching all worthwhile. 

It will be interesting to see what becomes of him next. He seems to be a likable enough fellow also. I'm sure we will all adjust. I look forward to any political observations not made through the reverse lens of character. It's odd, but I almost anticipate a sense of disbelief, though I'm sure that too will pass.

Okay, Starbucks awaits, then the gym, then the rest of the day. 

Then, of course, the rain.


Thursday, December 18, 2014

The Lost Boys

Too much "other" to do today to write. I have taken a half day off from work, and might just need the full.

It is astonishing what a good night's sleep will do for a person, vitality returns. Last night was the perfect night for it, too. I have a potentially stressful day ahead of me, filled with questions or certainties. It is all a dread, this mismanaging of lost love.

The boy slept here last night. Now that he has his own twin bed he's much easier to deal with. I am, at least, able to sleep mostly uninterrupted. It is all a great adventure for him and one is expected to know this from the pirate sheets that cover his mattress and pillow.

He sleeps now next to me as I write this, skirmishing once again with Captain Hook and Mr. Smee.


Wednesday, December 17, 2014

... take heed, take heed of the western wind

It seems that the rains will never stop. Not for very long, anyway. It has rained with hardly any cessation since we all returned from the mountains. It was raining when we arrived, it is raining now.

I hang my towels to dry after a shower and a full day later they are still damp to the touch.

It is not the spring rains that render the world new and afresh. It is oppressive and heavy, too persistent to enjoy as a diversion. It sits atop the heart like an open ocean.

On my return from the city yesterday there had settled entirely new lakes mixed among the fields where before there had only stood cows and grass, down in the valley where the Petaluma river runs dark into the open bay.

That is all there is to report, if this can be called reporting. I will welcome the sun again when I see it, like never before. I will raise my hands and eyes to it in true ecstasy.

I promise, I will.

Oh, how can, how can you ask me again
It only brings me sorrow
The same thing I want from you today
I would want again tomorrow

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Hundreds Feared Bed

A long and wet drive into a dark city. I take the time to catch up with all of my east coast buddies on the phone. This morning was Selavy. He was the only one weak enough to answer my calls. We chatted like two teenage girls. At one point in the conversation we agreed what awful women we would both make.

I think that we agreed, anyway. Now that I think back... he didn't sound very agreeably enthusiastic about my suggestion. He probably believes that he would be a stellar woman. He does feign demureness quite well.

Ah, who knows. He's probably already out shopping for panties.

Selavy gave me sage advice about women. He said that you can't be happy with anything more than a "6."

Women who are attractive, or believe themselves to be, will cause you great misery. He encouraged me to look around at all the guys I knew that were happily married, ones that have Super Bowl parties and go shopping together on the weekends, holding hands. He said that none of the men that were with a "7" or up were very happy. They all just knew that their 7, 8 or 9's were always prepared to move on and make some other man temporarily happy.

He relayed a story about one of his other friends telling him that he wanted this particular woman to "think of him all of the time" when he was lucky if she was thinking about him while she was talking to him.

It's all true, of course. The observations that men make about women and confide in one another... No truer source of wisdom has yet been found. The honorable laws of nature that spring forth from the minds of men.

He told me that my relationship issues stem from this, "Your problem is simple. One of you is too good looking."

Well, the sun is rising behind me here on the seventh floor of our SF office. I will go stand and look out pensively at the fresh new world, imagining that I am pissing on everything that my eyes can see.


Monday, December 15, 2014


Dearth. There was a typo in yesterday's post. Ooops. Blame it on the rain.

Flurries, here in perpetuity. I awake to the sound of them, always in darkness. It is both comforting and unsettling, a familiar dream becoming cold menace.

I invite rattled chaos into my life, perhaps too much say some, because shaken chaos is precisely what I get. I'm told it's good for the soul, keeps one from becoming prematurely old, but I don't think that it's had that effect on me. 

That which doesn't thrill you only makes you stringent.

I would write more today, to affirm that my sense of humor has returned, but I am too busy. A friend at work once pointed out to me that work can be used as a defense against external chaos. Just dive into it and do it well, then the other worries of the world tend to disappear, a little bit. If nothing can be done about them then do nothing, including worry. Match nothingness with nothing.

Seems like simple, easy to follow advice, because it is. 

It's only when the night comes, the rains whisper of ill omens.

I hope that Fleetwood Mac is out there, playing somewhere in the Northern Californian rain. I wonder if Stevie Nicks still invites witchiness as part of her self-image, her preferred persona. One must only wonder. Few things survive aging, the choice of self-image among them. It is good to adopt a persistent sense of humor with a dash of self-applied (mildly deprecative) honesty to avoid the terror of terrors, the idiocy of self-sameness. 

Tell stories in which you are the heroic buffoon. It is widening. 

At this point Fleetwood Mac could have Arnold Schwarze in the band, singing the Big Witch's parts. Nobody would likely notice, nor share.

They would all clamor about how good she still looks; solid, able to do pushups, and wears them most nights too.


Sunday, December 14, 2014

Seasonal Concessions

Everything I write is too morose. I keep starting posts and the themes are unnecessarily sullen. There are a number of reasons for it, none worth reporting.

Blame it on the season, I suppose:

December has the qualities of death; not the dying of November, nor the first wind of sickness in October, but death.


Thursday, December 11, 2014


We seem inundated.

The old, the stupid, the infirm, fat, or worse. Life is a scrambled huffing that we wish to continue.

Those who aren't wealthy or smart, unlike me... they somehow live without the imaginary virtue of self-righteous poverty.  

Oh, suckers.

They still drink, and make mistakes, so the dynamic of life continues to confuse. 

The rich perplex me in a way that the poor never will. Nobody long questions how anybody ever achieved astonishing poverty.

Yet, the poor seem happy, and tests show that they are. Why not me? What do they know?

How can the wealthy be virtuous and somehow less happy. Shouldn't I also get a chance at disproving that axiom from the other side? I want to be rich, reckless, and happy. It's just math.

It is the middle-class that nobody really gives a fuck about. Some study them, for the purpose of aversion, not attraction. I've checked the stats, I am definitely middle-class. I would need a wife that made as much as me or more to even start to top out that category. 

Seems unlikely. 

Wifes, might push me above the dark side of the income inequality gap.

Think about that for a moment, I have. 

A healthy harem would make me a truly bad guy, in capitalist terms.

Young people might still have a chance. They believe and act as if recognition confers distinction. They might be right, though that rightness has lost some its sparkle in my imaginings. 

Perhaps it is why they dress up as Batman, and kill.

Who gives a epileptic bat-winged fuck about a printed biography from Scribners when you can score thousands of hits and attract an online expose from puffington post people's problem page

It is what we asked for, for what we secretly wished. Titillated by lives that surpass our own, on terms that that we have only partial vision of. 

Our own lives, to which we lack adequate access, appear dull in the reflection of such smartness, and fade. To be flooded, drowning. Beyond breathing but before death, the simulacrum of 

My thumb has become the reach of my research. Each night, sooner or later, I get crazy and start to index. It ends up with the middle, or ring. Dear, Pinky.

Media reminds: how needy we are, how little we have to offer, and how fucked up what we have to offer really is. It is the witness of a sickness: the attempt to correct or entertain just might go viral. 

I speak a bit for myself, but for others, also. I do not offer this as an advertisement, or an endorsement. It is a criticism, only.  If you go viral, then congrats, it seems to be monetized.

To wit, when I was younger, serial killers were portrayed as methodical and calculating, over time. 

What happened? The public spotlight somehow lost interest. 

Now, we have spree-killers. They prepared, but didn't include self-longevity in those preparations, at least not beyond the idea of explosive profile. Hits.

Young people just don't commit anymore. 

I would tell them to get off of my lawn but I don't have one. They never stay on the lawn long enough to listen anyway. 

Get out of my basement! seems creepy, because it is.

A man, aging; screaming toward the shade of trees; dull knives flashed in daylight, worse. 

Desperation at lack of danger. 

I look around and see only fat, hairy-lipped, herpes-infested monsters that wish to be acknowledged and then kissed. 

We all get the love that we deserve.


Okay, I can't write that way any more.


I dreamed of nuclear explosions the nighttime before last. It was terrible.

In my sleep, I was running with Rachel and looking back. We turned together, as a dream Lot and his unnamed salt-wife. Behind us, there were pillars shaped of monstrous mushrooms in the dark, rising across the San Francisco Bay by murky moonlight. We looked over the mountains as we fled. I could see a number of lightning strikes happening inside the dusty heart of the radioactive demon. Synapses come to dark wonder in dream. 

Far away, so close. 

It was nuclear annihilation, we both knew it.  We rushed to get home. Knowledge of our child, the young boy, was in the dream and between us, driving the unlit course of fear. Alarm mounts quickly, then quicker. As if seconds had seconds.  

We somehow could not gather enough fresh water, and I couldn't explain why we were trying. I'm sure it was my suggestion. I awoke just as we were attempting to both carry a beer cooler full of mud towards the hopeful safety of home. 

Death for all was certain. It looked like I might be last.

This is what I try to sleep through, in the early morning hours. If you wish to know.

My own indisposition is assumed, barely in the vision. 

The trajectory of my life, even in dreams, is still pointed at the purpose of loving others.

My battle is with the weight of mud.

My struggle is against the unbearable shift of dream.

Speaking of floods, we are here enduring biblical evenings and mornings. 

Rain is a reminder of the present, gentle or no. 

It is also other.

Rain is the mother of nature, or at least the one we love and fear.

No, that metaphor would make rain the "warm sperm of Father Time."

If Mother Earth is to be believed, then "Mommy" is a spraying, asexual hermaphrodite that breeds violent death as her most benevolent gift. 

Why can't that be our shared myth?

Some oceans are cold as ice, death just as certain. 

That might be true. 

When I notice women who align themselves with the concepts of Mother Earth they all seem a bit too testrus in their assertions and behavior. 

"Father Sperm" is not a phrase for a god that they would ever worship, most of them. 

Sexists, all other sexes.

Any person that claims "earthiness" might better also worship death by natural means, because that is the deepness of nature's nature. 

The promise of promises.

Mother Nature has long had herpes, and gives it freely to kissers.

Her unsuspecting qualities are unexpected growth. V. End.

Mother Earth has a scent that is just as bacterial, as it is wind.

Okay, a squirt of male newness:

L.A. idea (new series): 
A futuristical world in which rain triggers earthquakes...  
Image: boiling water, waves, grenades, robot semen made of pop-rocks

Hollywood, do you hear me calling....?

I am what is known as an Ideal guy... I deal LA. 

It's Mexican. It ends with an a.

No Moses's can dissuade me, with powdered stone capsules, offers of perpetual wandering.

I've always been more of a Noah; gathering two copies of favored books, one of each to each of each, herding them across any arc. 

My life is like the neck of a giraffe, inexplicable, easily broken. 

By whom, weathering floods, dynasores. 

I want to run; my life is large and has grown broad branches. 

A man can not trot if he can not sprint.

An oak trying to cross wide waters, the sense that downstream will not be a hemisphere of my choosing, nor anybody's soft tug.

A shove in winter, resisting a glove.

Moses, I hardly split the red wine. 

Like you, also never birthed.

My covenant, to drink that which did rise upon one side.

Or just the other, other earth.


Tuesday, December 9, 2014


What can be said. My buddy's family dog died today. She had become sick, organ failure. It happened suddenly, too suddenly. Not without warning, but also without options.

Much has been said about the love of dogs, and by those who are far better than I at saying it. It is an exceptional love that is achieved in the most ordinary of ways, anybody that has ever felt it knows. Some of those who deny it also know, for reasons their own. Then, there are those that have never felt it. Or worse, resist it.

Trixie was neither particularly noble nor always easy to interact with at the onset of each and every encounter, though she had tremendous and peculiar charm once you accepted that, and then convinced her to move past it with some affectionate head petting and soft talking to, if you were lucky. All was not well at home until she conceded that it was. Explosive in the severity of her greeting, unending in her verifications that all was as it should be. 

Trixie was always the first to know.

Her way of announcing need for love was also unmistakeable, endearing. Her uncontrollable exclamations at any entrance to the house will be missed, an echo of the life that we share.

The barking, her barking.


(No Tittle)

I am tired, I am weary, I could sleep for a thousand years....

I question also, much. One must attempt to balance the expectations with the answers given, the promises; compelled to try, obliged by contact, proximity.

It's never easy. Promises scarcely equal expectations. They should, might. They are always pointed at different stars.

My last lines:

No one saves others, or else, or was. 

To the spritely tune of: 

Or was, or was... all the wonderful because we does.  

We're off to slay the blizzards. 


Sunday, December 7, 2014

Deep in the Bohemian Basin


The weekend feels as if it's already over. Mondays hang over Sundays like wet moss.

My life is about to undergo some fresh changes. I invite them. There is a last-minute offer to play Prague for New Year's Eve and I want to take it, though the circumstances of life seem as if they might act in preventative ways, again. Aging seems to be only part of the problem, the conditions surrounding age add unexpected restrictions to its dynamic. 

The spirit is willing, the body is strong. So, tell me, what went wrong? 

Anybody can get by with two of these qualities: poverty, dreams, children. Trying to possess all three simultaneously is excessive and ill-advised. I suppose that poverty might have to go. I've held on for as long as I can. It was my one last remaining virtue.

Having a kid is great, if that's mostly all you ever wish to do. The boy is not old enough yet to come with me to Prague. He and I are entertained by different things. I suspect that my Czech friends would not find the same amusement in him as I do.

Who knows, they are a complex, wanton people who might respond positively to his preternatural wailings.

I invite chaos up to a point. The problem being, that point is often well past other's limitations for confusion and disorder, particularly when I am positioned as either the conduit or source. 

Having a child regulates some of this, in one way, though not always by your own design or timeframe. Things keep changing, demands keep transitioning unexpectedly, and it feels like chaos to me, though I recognize that in some ways it is happening by a certain pre-determined order. I am experiencing the quanta of parenthood.

Who knows, maybe the boy would love Prague in the winter, just like me; the dancing house, the castles and many spires, and even a dose of Kafka, too!


Saturday, December 6, 2014

The tell-tell heart

I awake to the sound of knocking; a dram within a dream, screaming.

It is a heartbeat, I am certain, never ceasing. Of this, I am sure, beyond; its regular thud and muffled insistence, the uniform patter of existence.

There is one here in the room with me, almost silent, never still, tempering the breathing to my dreaming, an eventual end of beatings.

Unbelieving, comes the alarmed echo of being, thieving from the thing. 

Faith is just a thing's seeming. 

Panic, sudden suffocation. In fright lost first to nerves, and then dread, terror and hysteria. 

Panic leaps from operation to undertaking, without a doctor's whisper. Never more than a lanced pustule, broken blister, an incision. 

Haunting, taunting, the uniform pumping of its tough fibrous purpose. 

In this sudden stop, panic is certain.

The lamp has drawn its curtain. 

Friday, December 5, 2014

Why I still love having choked the clock....

I often complain about not having time to write, today it's true.

I am tasked with completing a "self assessment" at one of my many jobs.

I love this sort of exercise. 

It produces a minimum of two sets of results, often having nothing at all to do with one another.

The first-draft version has qualifications like this:
  • Have eternally vanquished Godzilla from the Bay Area 
  • Have never ratted on anybody; don't even know the HR "red line" number
  • Always exercise very strict "code of silence," when tired, sleeping, or praying
The second-edited-draft version resembles this:
  1. Increased overall sales by an inestimable amount
  2. Expressed corollary, negligible effect on stock prices
  3. Deeply committed to company's 401K policies
  4. Avoid office politics by calling in sick

Then, I'll submit a third-and-final version that I won't bother outlining here. It bores the mind to consider oneself in a purely functional capacity, and then to state that capacity using so few words.

Laconically, as it were.  

If they asked me to write an essay about myself they just might get a dirty simulacrum of truth.

In the end, I will sneak in subtleties. Always.

When asked to summate myself as part of the obligatory self-appraisal, I'll write things like, "Consider yourself lucky to see me working for you."

Too subtle?

I've never had a boss regard me with anything less than affection*, even the ones that almost fired me, of which there were several. 

Full disclosure: It must have been the tears and roses...

* - "anything less than affection" - This statement is not strictly true. One of my managers did cut off my oxygen supply for me, briefly, at a nightclub.

In fairness, this did happen off the clock, and I survived.  


Thursday, December 4, 2014

Temporaria Iustitiam (It's Latin, brothers and sisters!)

(Two good citizens)

(This is a work of incomplete satirical fiction and is not intended in any way to be legal advice; whether substantive, useful, or purely imaginary. I am not a barrister, etc. If you feel that you are being unfairly targeted... then please contact your local police office and let them know who you believe might be your persecutor or persecutors.)

I don't like cops very much, either, and don't ever want them hugging me.

They are necessary in the same way that death is: they provide order, too often at the point of severe pain. In this, they are the presumed resolution of "sickness," and will remind you when given the chance, the literate ones. If it were not for death then there would only be perpetual disease.

Do you even have any idea of what sickos I deal with every night? 

Why yes I do, Officer, is it T. Bickle?

A few rules, for power:

- Never, ever grant power to the humorless.

- Never assume the basic goodness of humanity, particularly in those who have sought out and gained petty or substantial powers over others.

- Do not ever let the punitive force of society exceed the creative force.

In the handful of experiences that I have had with cops... I have found often, only after that fact, that they used their knowledge of how to abuse the law to direct the outcome of our interaction in such a way that they were able to flex the maximum amount of power against me, with no accountability whatsoever. Even when I was "trying to help."

Cops don't like me, generally, and I usually echo and reflect those same sentiments back to them. They don't respect me, and I make sure that they know that I feel similarly. I very rarely begin an interaction with a cop with anything less than respect. The undoing seems to be in the questions that I am willing to ask them.

Anybody that is very well liked by cops is quite plausibly a complete perversion of independent thought. If your heroes are cops then you just might have the imagination of a killer. Cops do not kill more people than the general population, but the comparative numbers should surprise anybody.

I should qualify... when discussing sports and weather, in line at Starbucks, cops adore me, wish me to be one of them, etc. It's only when they have arrived to create order that things go terribly wrong with them.

Another aside:

If "line of duty" is a valid defense, without need of further question, then why is black on black crime even questioned or referenced. If Giuliani can claim we need so many cops because there is so much black-on-black crime then why can't we extend that thought process out to its logical conclusion and reward blacks for killing other blacks? It would be much cheaper than cop pensions, and achieve seemingly similar goals. If the magnitude of the lie is to be believed at all then we have some horrible inner city comptrollers.

Back to the post:

The only thing that I have truly learned in these experiences with cops is one very simple fact: ALWAYS exercise your right to remain silent. If a cop is asking you questions then he is looking for ways to implicate you ,or to use your own statements against you, or somebody you might care about. Try to record your interactions with cops, always. The laws on this vary from state to state.

A few basic tips:

- All cops are liars.

- If there were more "good cops" then there would be far fewer bad cops.

- Do not ever open your door for a cop (This includes your car door, and even the majority of the window of your car door. Just crack it so that you can talk. Don't be a prick on this one, but do not give them the chance to unlock your door for you. They will. Tell them that you are scared and do not wish to open your window any further. This is a solid, legally defensible position that will get your ass kicked almost every time. It's worth it.).

- Keep your door locked and speak with them through a respectable space, one in which they can not enter unimpeded. You can tell them to walk over to a front window of your home and speak to them through the glass. If they break this glass without a warrant then it is a very different thing from them claiming (as this highly awarded team of two) that you opened the door for them, no matter what the facts.

- All cops are liars. They are all also writers, of a sort. Their writings are taken with disproportionate seriousness.

- Do not ever offer a cop information concerning yourself. If you are being questioned about a crime then seek legal counsel, even if you believe yourself to be entirely innocent, but most certainly if you know yourself to be endangered. Your right to remain silent will prevent them from arresting you 90% of the time, or this statistic is what I will test the very next time I have a chance.

- Don't be black, brown, or anything other than white, ever. I can not emphasize this enough. If you do not have "white rights" then you should hide inside, always. You are always a threat to a cop's safety, never forget that.

- The number of judges that question a cop's claim of uncertainty for their own safety against a dark-skinned person is virtually non-existent. Do not be black.

- Do not ever publicly question a cop's authority, just silently show them yours: NEVER OPEN YOUR DOOR. EXERCISE YOUR RIGHT TO REMAIN SILENT. You can legally stand at your front window and taunt cops with silence. You have no legal obligation to even acknowledge them. They will shoot you to prove that you were not a ghost.

- This act will be acceptable by any court of law. Ghost are very scary and real, they just proved that. 

- Every now and then you will meet a nice cop, one who even seems "good." On a bad day, or even on a very good day, this same cop will cover-up for a cop that has hurt or bludgeoned you, or immorally used the law against you, or even egregiously broken the law themselves while you were trying to help.

- Frank Serpico may have been a good cop.

A political aside:

- Notice the position of most Libertarians on the increasingly fragile concepts of Liberty and Freedom from Tyranny.

- Too often, they will side with the cops. These are dangerous people.

- Never forget that. Never forget the way they make you feel about the concepts of Equality and Justice.

- Never.

A few tips for driving:

- Turn your cell phone off before getting in your car. This has a two-fold benefit.

- Buy a dash-cam that streams to the cloud.

- Exercise your right to remain silent, always.

- Never admit to wrongdoing, wrongfully thinking that you and the cop just became friends.

- All cops are liars.

- Don't drive drunk.

A few tips for home:

- Install a webcam that streams to the cloud.

- If a cop pushes his way through your front door without presenting a warrant or announcing that he has one then shoot him dead once he has entered your home. Make sure that they fall inside your home.

- As quickly as possible shoot the next one, and then the next one, and then all of the ones on your front lawn.

- Once a felony has been committed then they all become accomplices to that felony. An illegal entrance to your home is safeguarded against retribution and you will be rewarded for heroism once the justice system and media comes to understand your unique plight and story.

- Judges simply love this, because they love the law.

- Shoot them dead until they are no more, the illegals on your lawn.

- This may take several minutes. There will be more arriving promptly.

- Verify that they had no warrant by calling your lawyer.

- Do not fret over the cost of this call.

- Use a land line, if possible.

- Relax, and enjoy the earned satisfaction of temporaria iustitiam.

- Enjoy it, your time may be coming to a sudden close, unless you happen to be white.

- Never be black.