Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Big Monsters!

So, back to work where I exercise with pirates and Batman. I came home to find a Father's Day present of a coffee mug that said "DAD" on it and an envelope. I know that not everybody will be as tickled with the boy's answers as me, but they are really something. The inner workings of the mind of a three and a half year old. Some of those answers are pure mystery, a few have inside stories, the rest are just adorable. I hope that I never lose that piece of paper.



Monday, June 29, 2015

"All I know is that I could not leave her there…."

Well, the second night was as good as the first, possibly even better. Trey's funky and punctuated guitar playing suited the material more and he seemed to get more comfortable at playing counter-melodies. Also, they chose material that was a bit more obscure, overall, which made things interesting. There were no repeats from the previous night, yet there were still a number of songs I would have loved to have heard: Jack Straw, Dire Wolf, Ripple, Franklin's Tower, Friend of the Devil, It Must Have Been the Roses, China Doll, Deep Elem Blues, and on and on.. Many that may have required Garcia's voice to do effectively, etc. Here is the setlist from last night, for those with continued interest in such things.

I would have loved to have heard them do a short acoustic set. I left the stadium joking how much it was going to cost me to get to Chicago next weekend, asking around for anybody with a van. I'll just need to grab my sleeping bag….

I don't believe I've ever admitted to liking the Dead as much as I do here on this blog, but I do. I was at a work function and somebody asked me if I was a "Deadhead" and I wasn't sure how to respond. I said that I didn't really think of myself as one. I don't own any tie-dye apparel, or overalls, and haven't followed a band anywhere. I have never considered applying patchouli oil to anything I've owned except perhaps my lawn mower. They then asked me how many shows I had. When the answer came back at around "a hundred or more" then they had the answer they needed.

If you think you don't like the band then try this. I once remember my dad walking by my room and hearing it playing and asking me what it was. When I told him it was the Grateful Dead he said he thought that they were "acid rockers..." I told him that they used to be but they found Jesus and now they do mostly country tunes. Not sure if he made it to any shows, etc.

Anybody who knows the Dead knows how great they can be, but Bruce Hornsby is a phenomenal piano player and stole the show for me at times. Man, his playing was exciting, and his singing as well, particularly on Casey Jones. He did the vocals on a couple tracks both nights. Great stuff. To see anybody playing as happily as he was the last two nights was well worth the effort. Improvisational piano played with that sort of verve and talent isn't something one gets to see every day, though it should be.

Now, I await for my buddy to wake up. We will go get burritos, pull ourselves together, and begin the long, strange trip back home. 

Yes, at 46 I sleep after shows, or try to.

When I awoke, the Dire Wolf, six hundred pounds of sin
Was grinning at my window, all I said was come on in…


Sunday, June 28, 2015

Far Out

Last night we went to the first of the two Grateful Dead shows that we will see this weekend. Tonight will be the second. Trey Anastasio from Phish played in place of Jerry Garcia, bringing his own unique flavor of guitar playing to the familiar and obscure Dead tunes. Here is the setlist for those of you interested in such things. 

I am usually cynical of seeing favored old rockers, though last night I kept most of that at rest. The evening was a lot of fun and they played quite well together, I thought. Some online reviews tell a different story. It wasn't flawless, but there were only noticeable struggles if you were really listening for them.

They did take an hour long set break, which seemed excessive, but what should one expect of such a band, if not excess?


Friday, June 26, 2015

"Isn't it pretty to think so?"

Oh, I just don't know what to write about today. A reasonably small but persistent weight has been lifted, my health should be returning to normal within a month or so (recovery depending), by which time the divorce should be finalized with an equitable custody agreement in place. All that is required of me is that I return to the gym and negotiate my unpaid dues. 

The past is finally becoming the past, again.

Yesterday, when Rhys arrived at my house and saw the piano in the living room he said, Wow, that's beautiful.

I had never heard him use the word before. He describes Mommy as pretty, which I am obligated but sometimes hesitant to agree with, not wanting to seem overly enthusiastic concerning the boy's affections, though I've never heard him use the other, which he accomplished in the three syllable form. 

Don't get me wrong, she is very pretty, but she is other things also. I would be reluctant to claim that she is nothing but pretty, etc. I did so in the past only under the pain and danger of marriage.

No, I kid.... just blowing off a little cold, stale steam for old time's sake. I am happy to be done with it all. Relieved is perhaps the better word, but there is a happiness there also, mixed generously with other feelings, some not so triumphant nor comical in tone.

The relief from pain is not happiness, it is something else. Anyone that has ever needed morphine knows. It is very welcoming, more powerful even than when the drug wears off and one rises back towards the surface of suffering. Alleviation from misery is not happiness, it is something else, much closer to contentment, and therein perhaps lies its truest danger.


Thursday, June 25, 2015

I did

I finally moved the piano in. It cost more money than I would have cared to have spent, but how many Irish-Mexicans do you know with a grand piano. 

Nothing connects Rachel and I any longer, except that I recently borrowed her vacuum cleaner and that we have a child together, and then a smattering of legal documents. 

All that, and she offered to give me a ride home from surgery on the 27th. The pain has finally become too great. I know many of you have wondered what is wrong with me. There is nothing really wrong, it is only that I was born of a woman.  I'm just as god made me. I am going to show the courage to announce this to the world, then have it fixed. 

The Goddess was wrong.

Vanity Fair has not yet shown much interest in my story, even less the selfies I sent them. I emphasized that I watched the '76 Olympics in Montreal. Well, I did not watch them in Montreal. I watched them from a suburb of Orlando, on television, but that was my choice as a child and I have the courage to say so.

I think Caitlyn's middle name should be Monty. 

Or, Monty Python. Or, Gold-Mettle.

It's nice, this progress, that they now offer an operation which allows me to change my dead mother's gender and sex. For another $500 I can change her name, though I'm still working closely with the Mormons to have her baptized after death under both names, Stella and Helmut, together in eternal bliss.

The Mormons have their standards, some say too many. 

Now, mommy can assume her rightful place as part of my daddy issues. Just a quick slice, snip, tuck, some dissolvable stitches, a year's worth of pain meds, and voila…. mommy is neutered. 

Fuck... I wish that I had Jesse Christ's Girl. This is not what I meant to write about today.

I had a victory yesterday that should never have needed to be described as such, and at much greater cost to myself than the piano and with far less joy. 

Perhaps one day I'll tell the story. 

It all started with a phrase like this, Will you marry me?

Well, in truth it started with the answer much more than the question, if you will.


Tuesday, June 23, 2015

"Call the doctor, I think I'm gonna' crash…."

Ugh. I dreamed all night about things lost or vanished; my mother and father, old friends, places I've lived, dirt roads, my youth, the first car I owned, past love and lovers. I dreamed of old albums playing, ones that I haven't heard or thought of in years or more, decades.

Then, my alarm went off promptly at 4:30. That's ante meridiem. I had put off doing a household chore that had to be accomplished before leaving for the city. Everything had to come out of the kitchen cabinets so that the property management company could treat the place for bugs. They had done this once before and I had finished my part to completion. When I came home I found that they had not sprayed, that the notice was put on my door in error. So, again we'll try. It only took me about 45 minutes to complete this modest task, but to act in such a rushed way so early in the morning is not something that I relish. I barely had time to drink my second cup of coffee and then I rushed to shower and get out the door, still sweating after the shower and getting dressed in the dark.

I read the note they had left before departing. It said that I needed to wait for them all day, 9am-5pm, to let them in, then I needed to leave the apartment for at least three hours while they were treating the place. People really are out of their minds in so many ways, but in particular with their expectations of what you are going to do for them. I've never seen a bug in the place, nor do I want to. They expect me to take a day off from work so that they can maintain the apartment that I am paying them to live in. Sure. They'll probably fine me $100 for having to use their key in "my" door.

I do want the place treated, though. Having a three year old boy around means that I find food particles almost everywhere, even though I try to only have him eat at the kitchen table. Everything about him is a rambling repository for crumbs. They should make kids' clothes out of the same material that they make lint brushes out of. He and I could just play on the carpets every now and then, "rough and tumble" as he calls it, then the place would be sorted. 

Yesterday, the boy and I were at the pool and I explained that I was going into the city today but that I would be back to see him on Wednesday. He asked me if one day he could meet my other family in the city. 

I have seen three doctors in the last three weeks. I haven't enjoyed any of it. Among the least of my problems, the flesh on the side of my arm, has finally swollen to medically noticeable proportions. Even my favorite bartenders are suggesting amputation. My closest enemies are offering one last arm wrestling match, with favorable odds. Every time I move my arm it feels like a golf ball is fighting its way out of an oyster. 

I just want to crawl into a womb somewhere and be healed. The fountain of youth has turned out to be a river of blood, a soon to be severed umbilical cord, and the ever life-giving sludge of placental expulsion.

How can I get some of that? I know where... but how?


Monday, June 22, 2015

No matter what they say

(… in every single way)

Fathers Day with the boy, yesterday morning. We went to breakfast and then on a spending spree in the toy section of the Dollar Store. We got about a month's worth of junk for $25. Being a single dad is tough some of the time, and loneliness does not seem to help. Yesterday, I felt lonely again. When I dropped the boy off at his mom's house she looked prettier than usual. I wanted to kiss her, but instead opted for a goodbye hug, the first in about a month. Sometimes it is useful to recognize that this relationship failure has hurt her also, that she's just a human, flawed in her own ways, but still a creature deserving of love. Not mine, but someone's.

I did as I promised and took a nap yesterday afternoon. It was really much more than just a nap. It lasted six hours. I awoke with my shoes on. I had only thought that I would rest my eyes for a few seconds. I suppose they got their much needed rest. 

The grand piano arrives here in my apartment on Thursday. It is the last item between us that has yet to be moved, to make the physical separation complete. It's a monster to do so, $400, then $200 for tuning. It'll be nice to wow all of my Mexican neighbors with my musical prowess. I'll keep asking what their favorite Billy Joel songs are. If they have not yet decided what their all-time favorite song of his is yet - it is so difficult to choose - then maybe I'll learn Somos Novios and wow the local housewives with my passions.

My abiding love for Christina Aguilera is already well known here in the barrio, through my touching and tender guitar rendition of Beautiful. But I really should build my repertoire.

To all your friends you're delirious
So consumed in all your doom
Trying hard to fill the emptiness
The pieces gone, left the puzzle undone
'Aint that the way it is...


Saturday, June 20, 2015

… an unnecessary point of departure

I don't quite know what to do with myself on weekends without the boy. I should have more adult adventures, but I don't feel like having them. They rely on adult effort. I wish only to sit, to do little, to enjoy the pace of an unhurried life, to guiltlessly anticipate an afternoon nap.

I also wish other things. There is a hidden desire to pay somebody to throw away the articles of my life. To come home from an early brunch and find emptiness without effort. No bill waiting for the service rendered, no mention of it. An act as mysterious as insomnia. Change and tangible choice, elusive as the drug of persona. A secret that unfolds as surprise. 

All that would remain would be my bed and one week's worth of comfortable clothes. Those would be folded neatly into a new piece of luggage, an unnecessary point of departure, one also unrequired. All the books that I've read: gone. A stack of unread copies near the corner, waiting, a tower of paper possibilities, of fuel. 

Our lives are flammable, yet so few ever go in flame. We age to learn to mistrust the spark. 

James Salter died yesterday. 90. He was, for me, the greatest living American writer, the one whom I most wished to echo in style, to steal from. Though, that would require much adult effort. 

Good artists borrow and great artists may steal, though it still requires an artist to steal artfully. Time is how art happens, and artists occur in no other way. So, to time that we give ourselves, fluctuating, here and there, ceaselessly between perch and flight.


Thursday, June 18, 2015

The Dance of Dissolution

I must take a basic knife safety course, a kitchen primer. I sliced my finger again. Same one. The thumb. Again, while slicing onions. At this rate I will have no remaining opposable digit on my left extremity by the end of the year. I am reverting to a flipper-like beastiness. I imagine it gets more difficult to accidentally slice through once you're down to the bone. Or, that is what the many Civil War reenactments that I have attended would have me believe. 

I bought a new set of knives, and they are sharp. I barely touched the blade. In fact, didn't even know I had cut my finger until I had ruined my sandwich. I have lost enough flesh on my left side now that it is affecting my swimming. I can not maintain ballast, even when floating belly down, arms outstretched. 

The boy is showing more signs of stress. It is heartbreaking, his frustrations. As if a divorce isn't difficult enough, to see it acted out upon the heart of your child is an additional layer of anguish that I am still not prepared for. Though, with no path backwards it makes any path forward seem far more preferable than it previously had. Remorse is fading into resolve. 

As long as the ex and I can keep working together well as co-parents then it will eventually smooth itself out, or so I'm told. The poor kid gets bounced back and forth between us almost every other day. It is no wonder that he wants some more stability. Since there are some questions that we can not answer for him we may as well try to create a sense of consistency and seamlessness in his day to day life.

Out of chaos, order.

I try to console myself with the knowledge that it could be much worse, and it is for many, though that offers little succor. Things could also be better, I am obligated to remind myself. No cynic should think otherwise.

Tomorrow, the doctor will take the pain away. I am going to press heavily for liquid morphine, to solve all of my immediate problems. That should give us the time we need to deal with any lingering maladies.

It is the only advantage to getting older that I can conjure, that doctors don't argue with me any more concerning my pain. They now know it's real. They trust the look in my eyes in ways that they have not always.


Wednesday, June 17, 2015

… deceivers, believers, an' old in-betweeners

Well, it's the same old song, it's right and it's wrong...

If you've ever heard Miles Davis play better than Willie Nelson sings the title line of this post in this song then I want to know where…. 'cause I've heard it all before, many times, and he never played so confidently late.

He played much more druggedly late, and quite often, but that's not the same.

Nelson chose to sing that line that way, it wasn't forced upon him by his demons, his believers, nor the old in-betweeners.

At a time when the world seems to be spinnin' hopelessly out of control,
There's deceivers an' believers an' old in-betweeners,
That seem to have no place to go.
Well, it's the same old song, it's right an' it's wrong,
An' livin' is just somethin' that I do.
An' with no place to hide, I looked in your eyes,
An' I found myself in you.

I looked to the stars, tried all of the bars.
An' I've nearly gone up in smoke.
Now my hand's on the wheel, I've something that's real,
An' I feel like I'm goin' home.

An' in the shade of an oak down by the river,
Sit an old man an' a boy,
Settin' sail, spinnin' tales an' fishin' for whales,
With a lady they both enjoy.
Well, it's the same damn tune, it's the man in the moon.
It's the way that I feel about you.
An' with no place to hide, I looked in your eyes,
An' I found myself in you.

An' I looked to the stars, tried all of the bars.
An' I've nearly gone up in smoke.
Now my hand's on the wheel, I've something that's real,
An' I feel like I'm goin' home.


"I preminisced no return of the salad days"

(Artist: Ryan Rice)

Well, the party is over. 

I haven't heard what the doctor has to say now, but I know that it's not good. I have seen and spoken with him before. He was kindly descriptive in his analysis of the condition. There will need to be at least one operation, perhaps more, depending. There is zero chance of survival, of course. No one ever gets that lucky. Don't worry. I might very well have a long and healthy life afterwards, but he doubts it. 

Everything reminds or encourages one that they will die one day, if the facts and shadows are thought out towards completion. 

My son reminds me most of all; the ever-boy.

He asks each second or third day now to, Please don't die, Daddy... He first confirms that I will one day die, just as his two grandfathers recently did, then he asks me if I'm doing everything in my power to prevent it, a phrase that I planted in the rich fertility of his mind. He often repeats my wisdom to me, buoyant as a curse. How else does one respond to such a question, from such a source? 

Then, he dutifully asks me if Mommy is going to die, also?

No, never, not like Daddys do every now and then. Daddys are much less reliable than Mommys, generally speaking. Have you noticed that?… A Mommy's love is eternal. Think about that, son. It is like the Sun, it arrives whether you want it or not. Mine, you might still have to work for, little buddy. It's like the moon, it disappears every time you run for a Frisbee. 

Well, I don't tell him all of that. 
He needs me. I like that. 

It's too much for his mind right now, or perhaps my conception of him is too small. I know that denying death is a lie - if you believe in the semantics of such words - but, it invites the heat of a very traditional hell deep into my heart, where it seems to belong. I can feel it in my stomach, then sometimes south of there. As Taco Bell does, lies run right through me. 

I shouldn't do it, but I'm just not ready to have that conversation with him, yet. 

He has penetrating eyes, a very questioning voice, in such way that I prefer to always have answers for his ears. There are some questions that I have yet to work out responses for - the death of Mommy and Daddy are among those. I don't even pretend to have an answer for my half of the problem.

Some say that you should not treat a child like a child, that you speak to them about serious matters with open honesty.

I say, Fuck That They are only kids, don't pollute their minds with what pollutes ours. 

Kid a bit, ya' know, for now?

Last night, I read to him generously from Peter Pan, assuring him at every questionable pirate's long-cannon shot into the clouds that this is as true as life gets: you'll always have to run cover for those you really love, and even the ones you might choose to fly with; the cannonballs will just keep coming, and that nobody ever ages in Neverland; not Hook, nor Croc, nor even silly Smee….

Never forget that, son, the irony of any tale so filled with love and romance. 

Smee gets to laugh along, too.

Smee, son, Smee
Be loveable, likeable
But, be and be.


Tuesday, June 16, 2015

What you see is what you get

I went to the eye doctor yesterday before driving into the city. I had lost the pair of glasses that I got just before leaving NYC. I had been using my original first pair, from about 6 years ago or more.To my surprise he said that my vision hasn't deteriorated very much since that first prescription. So, he gave me a new one and I looked at a few frames, but left before deciding on a pair. I was in a feisty mood. I thought it best not to make a decision while in that state.

I was asking the doctor all sorts of questions about vision and he said that there is much that we simply still do not know about it, about how the eye converts photons into what we think of as objective external reality, or at least our perception of it.

I corrected his vision test for him. This is true. I swear it. His monitor has some light falloff on the peripheries and the test was not quite centered. I noticed these two things and pointed it out to him. He was visibly shocked, told me that he'd have it fixed promptly and thanked me for noticing. Nobody else had. This came about because he could not understand the slight difference in my ability to see and read aloud clearly the last of the lines, but stated that I could see the left side slightly better than the right. It made no sense to him. They were on the same visual plane.

It was not necessary for me to then explain what an enormous nerd I am. It filled the room.

What you see above is a picture of the inside of my right eye. I had been told previously by an eye doctor in NYC to never post publicly such an image, that a person's eye is as unique as their fingerprint and it might be possible for those who wish to engage in identity theft to exploit the use of the image. My doctor yesterday scoffed at the idea, that anybody would possibly wish to possess an identity such as mine.


Monday, June 15, 2015

"Goodbye is too good a word..."

I'm in no state to write a post today. The good news just keeps rolling in while I am in tremendous physical pain. It is not just the physical pain though, there is still the spiritual pain, the seemingly endless psychic shocks, the aftermaths of love's recognition of loss, and of course... the turning away from all of that as much as is possible to face the existential void.

You know, those old chestnuts.

I would go into details but many have encouraged me to take the high road, that it serves no purpose; so, that's what I'll try to do. 

I'll leave it at this: people tend to get the love that they deserve.  

I was matching poor love with even poorer love. It nearly bankrupted me. The audits reveal a dismally inadequate handling of affairs

Trust will rot the bottom of your heart out when too generously misapplied. 


Sunday, June 14, 2015

The end of the world

Another weekend away with the boy. I have part of life figured out. I will need to put new tires on the car soon, or maybe a new car altogether.

We turned left on the main road that cuts through Petaluma and followed it through the bubbles of hills to the coast, then south on the PCH along mostly national seashore to unincorporated Bolinas, the end of the world. Onward to Stinson Beach today with the boy and my expatriate friend who is on an extended leave of absence from Prague. Airbnb has made the world possible again. 

The boy mostly napped on the way here. I was falling in love with The Beach Boys and The Beatles, again. Pet Sounds, Revolver, and Rubber Soul. In that order. I could hardly be much happier.

Sheriff John Stone, why don't you leave me alone? Yeah, yeah….

We arrived to game 5 of the Stanley Cup Finals, incredulous that Tampa Bay participates at this level. At any level, really. I'm told their team is good. I thought it was game 7, to give you an idea of my involvement. The boy is a Chicago fan though, so still am I. 

Who, in their right mind, would take Tampa over Chicago anyway? Even living in Tampa is not reason enough.

I didn't sleep a single second last night, again. I worry too much about the boy, him waking up and not knowing where he is, trying to find the bathroom and falling down the short flight of stairs here. That's all it took. About an hour later I got up and turned on the bathroom light, so that he could see the steps, but it was too late for me. My mind was already at a full gallup.

He slept next to me on a pullout that when he awoke he promptly announced was a "robot bed." The second words out of his mouth were the completion of a promise made last night to try to persuade him to go to sleep: We're all superheroes now!


Saturday, June 13, 2015

… the world where we belong

Wouldn't it be nice if we were older
Then we wouldn't have to wait so long
And wouldn't it be nice to live together
In the kind of world where we belong

You know it's gonna make it that much better
When we can say goodnight and stay together

Wouldn't it be nice if we could wake up
In the morning when the day is new
And after having spent the day together
Hold each other close the whole night through

Happy times together we've been spending
I wish that every kiss was never-ending
Wouldn't it be nice

Maybe if we think and wish and hope and pray it might come true
Baby, then there wouldn't be a single thing we couldn't do
We could be married
And then we'd be happy

Wouldn't it be nice

You know it seems the more we talk about it
It only makes it worse to live without it
But let's talk about it
Wouldn't it be nice

Good night my baby

Sleep tight my baby


Friday, June 12, 2015

Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow

- To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury
Signifying nothing.

- Macbeth (Act 5, Scene 5, Lines 19-28)


Tuesday, June 9, 2015

To Feed a Hummingbird

Well, no ornithologists read here, we've now established that. A few days ago I referred to a hummingbird feeder in which the birds could leach off of the welfare system of free seed, forgetting that hummingbirds do not eat seed, but survive on nectar and insects. So, my newly arrived hummingbird feeder will be stocked with a solution of sugar water, I think. Exciting times for the boy and I though, to have a little project to entertain ourselves.

There is also the cold sake with which to contend. I will make contact my true sumo spirit.

I can hardly keep my head up at work today. last night I stayed up late and watched the first half of "Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck" the documentary about the self-demised rock star. I made it up to the point where the band is achieving their biggest success, the release of Nevermind. Things are gettin' cray-cray for Prince Nervosa. I look forward to the second half, even knowing where it ends, and how.

I had an idea of him being an unloved child, but the wealth of childhood footage tells another story, though a surplus of footage and pictures of your childhood do not necessarily fill the empty crevices of the heart. The sense of being loved is not so easily sustained. If only… 

As for the loneliness of another's heart, none can rightly say.

The hummingbird feeder has a built-in ant moat, sensibly. 

One of my favorite anecdotes is from Jacques Barzun: He relayed how a man was boring the room of a dinner party with his seemingly endless fascination with ant colonies. After claiming several times that they were like a highly efficient Army... a woman sitting across from him finally quieted him, No Navy I presume?

Wit is perhaps the only thing that I have ever taken seriously.


Monday, June 8, 2015

Okay, don't call me Evilyn….

Well, Caitlyn cost me a few friends. Or, it may have been Evilyn. Who knows. I did not take the subject seriously enough for some. There is no pleasing everybody and it is impossible to match everyone's level of sanctimoniousness just perfectly. There are just too many variables involved. Only a mirror can reflect the full spectrum of light, sending back all of the wavelengths that are not absorbed by the object itself.

One reader went so far as to to say, A straight man will never understand what it's like… Insinuating presumably that only gay men are born with the gifts of empathy and understanding. I wasn't speaking for Caitlyn, I was speaking about her. One reader, at least, noticed that much. For many, her courage is beyond question and certainly beyond the grasp of a straight man.

I acknowledge that any form of "coming out" is a difficult and significant event in a person's life. The point that I was trying to make is that many have no such support system to applaud them when and if they do. Courage is as much about walking and standing alone as it is about being welcomed with a ticker-tape parade. This is in no way meant to belittle the courage that is required for anybody to announce themselves to the world other than what the world has come to thus far expect from them. It is merely a recognition that most do not get any support for their beliefs or impulses concerning self, unorthodox or not.

Also, Kim and Kanye were on the cover of Vogue, not Vanity Fair. Oops.

Well, I would write more today but I am busy getting back in to the work week. I only had a one day weekend, which I spent lying in bed, mostly, then watching SF lose to Cleveland in game two of the NBA Finals. Then back to bed, then back to work. When I awoke and checked the newsstands I still had yet to arrive on the cover.


Saturday, June 6, 2015

Call Me Evilyn

("front-and-back zip fasteners")

One can simultaneously support the LGBT communities and still wish everyone to shut-the-fuck-up about how presumably courageous Caitlyn Jenner is. There is absolutely 0% chance of anybody considering me courageous for making publicly known my sexual or gender preferences. So, shut up about hers. Please.

I do it all of the time right here, expressing certainties and ambiguities, so I know this to be substantively true and verifiably accurate. 

Though, if I surprised everybody with a socially motivated and politically preferred announcement that no one had ever expected... then I might be hailed as courageous also, perhaps by 5% of the people that I personally know. Nothing more.

However, if I said something as commonplace as, I find most budding young girls to be sexually attractive, and I also think that the most natural thing in God's world is for me to lie with them in the biblical sense, to assure their eternal purity, and bring forth life into this world as part of God's wonderful plan…  …well, then I would be denounced, even if I admitted that I only wanted to father them just a little bit as a woman, or even mother just as much them as a man.

No amount of taping my cock underneath a one-piece bathing suit will change this. 

This site is about me, not Caitlyn, etc.

I know what some of you might rightfully be thinking : Caitlyn's announcement had only to do with herself, not with the filthy sexual desires of the middling man whose site you are now simultaneously hating and yet reading. You would be wrong, because I found Caitlyn to be a very handsome older woman, and that is part of what she was announcing: herself as a newly formed sexual object. I should also have access to this right, as should all. 

Why don't young girls get to announce this persona with the same applause and support? If the "problem" is society's constraints then shut the fuck up if a 14 year old girl wants to be fucked by all of her teenage neighbors, rather than she merely wants to get a spot on tv to be a different sex, or gender, or anything else. Don't let the applause stop at the upper limits of your own silly morals, because that is not real applause, and you are no more capable of recognizing courage than a predator is to spotting prey.

What people seem to confuse is the difference between being special and announcing your speciality as an act of courage. These same people might tell you that we are all princesses and princes, if you just listen long enough to the voice of Disney and you so choose to change.

It's a small world, post-op, after all.

Freely squirt your fantasies of sexual courage, fame, and affluence up onto and across Caitlyn's face, and throat, and tender titties, stomach, and pussy-area. This is where your courage warms to life, no matter gender or sex. 

Give it a try: Look, look, look, then demand.

If Vanity Fair had half of a pair of balls then the back cover would have shown Caitlyn's equally receptive backside, with a taped bulge. Never forget how cowardly that publishing decision was. It was never even discussed, only thought about and perhaps lightly joked en referencia amidst the hallways and offices of such fair vanities. 

I take nothing away from Caitlyn, here. She knows this. 

I declare... she puts the i right back in Cat, and runs the two Bruces through the victory tape.

Annie Leibovitz would absolutely hate me, because I lack the requisite fame that is needed for her camera shutter to function so well and so often as it does. She has half the pirate eye of Doctor T.J. Eckleburg. I want to do a private retrospective of her work called: Davy Jones' Liquor

Jon Stewart got it partially right, as he all too often does, by assuming the sanctimonious stance that Caitlyn's decision exists in some untouched media bubble that we can only use to denounce those who notice or respond , but to subjectively hold above notice all those who place themselves in front of the lens, unless they have suffered in the way that all true liberals prefer…. 

The real crime is watching anything other than Jon Stewart. Stewart's team mind is a powerful pair of binoculars that has loosened its middle hinge and its single uniting, binding screw; which then allows itself to look closely or look away with equal impunity. 

Scrutiny is best performed with a single eye. So, it's always best to have two.

Caitlyn Jenner wants to be recognized and treated like a woman. She needs this, it relly shows. I noticed this, and I hope that you did also. She has a very delta-esque package, filled with known and unknown olympic wonders.

Her next shoot will show a tear or two, because , you know, real boys don't cry, real girls always find a smile.

The first word that went through my mind when I saw her cover of VF: Mommy.

Were we supposed to ignore her, or notice her? I can't even tell. It seems a crime to do either in the wrong way. Stewart acts and speaks as if we only get to notice his way of eyeballing, think with his way of mindfulness, respond one liberally-way, together, now, or else… 

We are in league with all the evil doing that is manhood itself - forgetting, as magically as science, that in some ways Caitlyn is also still a man, rambunctious in his public announcement, like a boy or man in drag. Not one person has praised the strength of his manhood. That is what I hope is remembered from what I am saying. He is also now showing, and always has, the same courage he did as a man. So, please, dear…. Either praise Kanye, or admit to something so ugly we'll both leave it ill-described. 

Would it be just as "courageous" for him to speak as a man now? What if he wears men's clothing next? 

Is that the same victory Jon Stewart knows how to respond to. I'm confident his writers would worm their way through a jest. I know that I could, if pressured into a pair of shorts.

Imagine there's Bruce Jenner: "It was too difficult to be a woman. I found that I loved the swimwear, but walking in heels was like a decathlon in Spring. You know, I am a woman, an athlete, and also somebody that goes to Jamba Juice." 

What acclaim might meet him then... Courage, Honesty? 

We are equally asked to show honor for activist women who have denounced the very things that Caitlyn has now embraced. 

Does Caitlyn mean that feminism might somehow be flawed?

What are we to think of such things? Agenda alone can not be the impetus of our conversation, unless both speakers are sharing the cover of the same magazine. Again, Kim and Kanye are in perfect league with Caitlyn, at least as far as Vanity Fair assesses social meaning. If you disagree, then your thoughts are like milk, they expire monthly.

Little matter at all that we consider Caitlyn's manhood. To do so now shows the same sort of brutish indelicacy for which we must all light torches and bang on village on doors. This perennial Hollywood Halloween only seems to suit those who choose to celebrate, most often on days well outside of late October. 

I am also among the throng of peasants, yet sometimes wear the panties of a gang of terrified torch-bearing townspeople. A seasonably fresh semi-cotton pair, but a pair that is not afraid of burning a witch or two, here or there, when the Daily calls.

Stewart regularly exploits gender and sexual differences as the common subject that he is pretending to explore. Don't get me wrong, folks… I'd rather be a camera than a nail, yes I would…. He makes some very powerful and salient points about what it means to be a woman in America. He does not further the discourse in anyway, however, he merely uses that found dialogue to make himself seem superior to it. 

Who can't do this? Anybody can watch the news and say, I doubt that. He attacks the correct demons, and giggles along with the preferred gods. Wouldn't you, too?

I will miss Stewart in almost the exact same degree that I will not. Very few people are as good at what he does. None are as smug and filled with such self-assured self-importance, yet also few with as much grace, wit and deftness of skill. If smugness were a crime then most of you would have had me arrested long ago. 

His agenda... his forced media giggle is false, pretentious, annoying, cloying and… well, I'll just stop there.   

I'll almost stop there: He denounces what it means to be a woman in America in the Caitlyn clip linked above - while forgetting and dismissing his usual patriotism for the time being - he must have slipped in his remembrances of how much he admires the struggles of women outside of America. he never stops to notice the difference between victory and failure when it comes to expression, he only notes that other's reaction to expression is somehow always wrong. 

He's a very useful, three-faced twat. Nope, that's not even right. He's like most ideologues: no currently achieved values will ever reach his. He lives in the temporary joys of doubt, disbelief, and the television light of scrutiny. 

If every dad ever trying to espouse their dogma - at the dinner tables of the America that he so wishes to better - had the same sharp team of writers that he does, then maybe, just maybe... his repeated canon would pop off just like dear old Dad's…. seemingly well studied, until you realized that he was always moving the cup that had the white fuzzy ball hidden underneath.

If speaking truth requires this obfuscation, and distraction, then I concede that he did it very well.

I'll miss him. I miss many thinkers that I do not necessarily agree with. 

Try reading Christopher Hitchens, etc.

So, call me courageous if you must, but young girls do look very delicious. I want to be one of them. Or, more precisely: I want to be wanted like one of them. 

I don't mean in the innocent way, either. I mean that they are sexually desirable and I want to feel that way also. Caitlyn wants that, too. If Caitlyn is courageous then pubescent girls are the nation's greatest heroes and anybody that says otherwise is a traitor, a coward. 

If announcing your newly arrived sexuality or gender is to be applauded, then why the fuck are there laws against taking children across state lines?

Any person that claims otherwise should be eaten by the pack, because they are a danger. The only reason men don't admit that young women are desirable is because they are cowards, under the thumb of women who don't look nearly as good as Bruce Jenner does right now, and afraid to take a legal battle all the way to the Supreme Court. 

They couldn't beat him in '76 in Montreal... and they sure as fuck can hardly lie next to him at a pool in 2015. Fat men are useless. They should only be taxed, or taunted, or both. 

Men are pussies, just look at Cait. Notice her lovely delta, her delicious way of drawing your eyes in towards her victories. 

Stweart gets it very wrong in assuming that she is now suffering the indignity of being treated like a woman. She is also enjoying the luxury of being noticed as one.

I would hold open a door for her. Who wouldn't?  Only an animal would act otherwise.

Few men would honor Bruce, the world is required to honor Caitlyn.  

Courage does not only exist on the periphery of desire, I've found. It sits and squats and stalks and wails right from the center, also, and sometimes dies there. Alone.

If making your sexual or gender preferences known on the cover of Vanity Fair is the definition of courage than Kim and Kanye should be awarded the Medal of Freedom. They simultaneously announced a celebration of their combined genders as if either of them were anything other than both all along. 

If you think Caitlyn's cover has any less to do with Vanity then you deserve all of the magazine covers the world can possibly throw at you, and the ads. The additions, as it were. 

Courage is not exclusive to the act of transition, it also involves the courage to be yourself, to maintain who you are, through common and dull adversity… sometimes, late at night, even if you haven't changed sexes, genders, husbands, wives, or tuxedos, anytime lately. 

I am as Evilyn.


Friday, June 5, 2015


Ugh, my lateral epicondylitis is really beginning to act preventatively. I haven't been to the gym in about a month. I keep telling myself that a sore elbow doesn't prevent me from riding my bike, but that doesn't do any good. I can hear my heart being slowed with steak, and pork, and biscuits, and strips of delicious bacon. My habits act as a boa constrictor in love with my vital organs. I need a good sweat, to work some things out of my system, but beer is delicious and cold, and never very far off.

My good and true friend from Bellingham has sent me a bottle of cold sake in the mail, and his lovely daughters have sent a hummingbird feeder for the boy and I to set up here at the house. They also have one at the corner of their house and we had a pretty good time watching the marvels of nature come and gorge themselves on the welfare system of free seed. My friend, who is Filipino by descent though born and raised American, is not near the fan of sushi and sashimi that I am. I insisted that we go out to oyster bars and sushi restaurants while I visited recently. We drank cold sake, and now he has become a fledgling connoisseur and convert of sorts. 

I am no aficionado, by any standards, though I do prefer cold sake to warm, where the light-bodied and dry flavors can be enjoyed more. I have promised to have him eating like an Asian within the year. Are Filipino's considered Asians or Polynesians? Little matter, we can orient my readers to my inherent racism and ignorance any other time. That's not the real point of the story. It is only that I have formed, by will and from chaos, a new true lover of cold sake.

It still disappoints me that there are not better sushi restaurants available to me in Sonoma. It is one of my abiding regrets and recurring sadnesses of the place. I really should have done my research…. Ah well, at the time we just wanted to be closer to Fukushima.

I feel as if I have come out from underneath something, finally. It all happens in degrees, this living. My life has fluctuated back and forth between the various stages of loss. I have come full circle and worked my way through "acceptance" back to "denial and isolation."

The circle of loss is complete.

I made a rather significant financial decision this morning that will allow the boy and I to travel more. We will be taking extended weekend trips more often, and perhaps even beyond just the weekends. I'll have to check with Mom. She and I have signed a new agreement that allows for one week a year each, though I suspect that from time to time each of us might wish to exceed that limit. For all that has gone terribly wrong there between us we still do pretty well when it comes to reaching an agreement on the boy, thankfully.

Others have filled me with horror stories, describing how things started off well but steadily devolved. Mine and the ex-wife's story is hopefully that story in reverse. We did not get off to such a stellar beginning to our end, but found some sort of middle path that seems to have allowed us a temporary reprieve from mutual misery.

The boy and I are doing great, anyway. 

Having a son has turned out to be a near miracle in the life of an anestheistiologist (a non-believer who specializes in putting people to sleep).


Thursday, June 4, 2015

The Velvet Swamp: Orlando, FLA


Wednesday, June 3, 2015

I've been workin' mister, since the day that I was born

Well I may be right and I may be wrong, but you gonna' miss me when I'm gone…  - Lead Belly

Oh sweet friends, I have figured out this life thing, for ill or else. It was easier than I had made it out to be:

You jus' gotta get in the car while it runs, hope that it has wheels on the road, and then you gotta' go, go, go, and go... with the music loud, the windows open, until the going becomes the living and the wind loves your music as does the sound of the future hitting your car at 9 to 11 miles per hour over the posted limits when nobody's watching. Departure resolves into adventure, like music you've never heard yet. Trus' it.

That's what I'm gonna' do from here on out. I promise, fuckers. 

I've been lately listening to some of the blues that I so deeply loved* as a younger man… … also folk, and some country, too… before electronics arrived to pervert my sensibilities, leaving me half-ruined to the experimental chemistry of my peers, much to my astonished amazement and recurring pleasures.

Something inside of me has let go, and is fast goin' go-go.

An obligation that I had promised would be a life-long vow - Ah' well … since signing the divorce papers I have happened upon the simplest thing in the world: I owe one less person in the world everything and yet nothing; am bound by a vacuum of lost sentiment in which a delicate boy floats between us.

No feelings of that dedicated love will direct my future again, profound or trivial. My only self-accepted responsibility now is to live a life that my son would want to participate in. It's dumbfounding how easy it all is, perplexing how long it took for the realization to grip me like a sentence. I must be part obtuse.

Men are mistreated. Vows and promises were a male invention, and few women will ever let you forget it. It's called feminism, a textual expectation of ideas.

If divorce was easier then everybody would do it. Just demand that others keep the word to which you refuse to subscribe.

It's easy, all you need is law. 

The song embedded above is one of my favorite songs, performed by Bruce Springsteen, written by Woody Guthrie.

I'm stranded on this road that goes from sea to sea 
A hundred thousand others are stranded here with me 
A hundred thousand others and a hundred thousand more 
I 'aint got no home in this world any more

Adventure, that's what's needed now. I'm boyish enough to indulge, man enough to demand what my life will be next. Some part of this thing within me remains, against adverse odds and many efforts.

Time is a matter of these degrees; not temperature, but crossing temperaments all, in all ways.

Always crossing, too often crossed.

Well, I've seen better days, but I 'aint puttin' up with these

* - That link is a poor example, one that I played while writing this. Ry Cooder is a hero in the guitar world. To be clear: I have never before referenced a Ralph Macchio film on my blog and I felt strongly enough about this fact to document the disparity between his body of work, the music contained therein, and my efforts documented here.


Tuesday, June 2, 2015

As Pigs Fly

… and ride the train we did. 

It was quaint fun for those who gravitate towards such things. It had its charms. The boy sure liked it, most of all when we would go over bridges that traversed little rivers cutting through the hills. He would excitedly declare that he could go into the river if only we had brought his Thomas the Train boots. They are rubber "wellies" and he knows that they are designed for puddle-jumping and all manner of things water and/or mud related, particularly exploring and jumping in.

There wasn't much of a destination involved in the ride, just up into the hills a few thousand feet in elevation, about 25 miles in switchbacks and stretches of curves, to a camp outpost where they sold lunch and roadside junk. Or, stuff that would get sold as roadside junk if it were not beside the tracks, but instead at a privately owned log-cabin gas station beside a state highway.

We sat at a picnic bench and chatted. I asked if he was having fun at the outpost stop. 

This is adult fun, Daddy.

Only for certain types of adults, buddy.

(Where they fly…)

There was plenty of homespun wisdom to be had from conversations overheard:

You cain't stop an earthquake. I tellya. God will prevail! The 'urth gonna do what the 'urth gonna do.

And so on.

On the train and at the stop there was a guitar player who paced back and forth singing songs about riding trains. He liked to claim that all the songs he knew were a hundred years old or more, but they were not. It only took a dollar each to get him to sing City of New Orleans or 500 Miles or The Train Song, an old personal favorite. 

He didn't know I Often Dream of Trains, at which point I coincidentally ran out of dollar bills.

The boy seemed to like having the window open and watching the trees pass. I had to be at constant alert to make sure he didn't lean out in excitement. He knows that he must sit on his "bum-bum" at all times in these situations. A fall from a train window would be an unforgiving misstep in adventure. 

I talked to him about logging and the gold rush of 1849 and what effect it had on people, and how some of the things we could see out the train window came to be as a result of those things. The West coast version of Americana, somehow both more hopeful and yet more desperate.

On the trip back he started to doze a bit. I pulled him up on me, putting my legs up on the bench across from us and then let him lie down face up along the length of my body with his "night-night," at which point he promptly fell asleep. It must do something to women to see a man care for a child as they all passed and looked down and cooed and gave exaggerated awwwws of approval.

It did feel good, though, that sense of trust and safety that I was able to provide as my feet fell asleep right along with him. He and I took a little longer to shape the relationship that we have, but it's up and running at full steam now, just a rollin' on down the tracks...