Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Paper Mache Dinosaurs

When I was a child I used to build paper-mache dinosaurs. Quite simple process really: take a few small balloons, blow them up with air, and then wrap these balloons up with wet, sticky strips of newspaper. Then, finally try to form this blob into the semblance of a Brontosaurus or a Tyrannosaurus or whatever horrible prehistoric vision your imagination can muster. When your creation dries, the sticky glue forces the structure to hold its form. If you feel particularly crafty, you may paint your dinosaur any which way you deem fit.

On my bookshelf sits a dinosaur I made when I was 9. It is a Brontosaurus and it was painted bright red by an unsteady hand and an unsure eye. My 9-year old breath, so pure and so full of childish hopes and idealistic dreams, I surmise, still sits trapped inside this Brontosaurus which sits preserved like a time capsule, or a Trojan horse, housing someone’s beloved toy soldiers and tin Indians and assorted worthless knick-knacks such as paper clips and bottle caps, buried in a back yard somewhere only to be forgotten. I remember seeing this on PBS: in certain savage nations, warriors will eat the brains and sinewy tendons of conquered foes. The theory is, I suppose, they will absorb their opponent’s strength. Hmmm, with mind racing I wonder devious thoughts. Perhaps if I drilled a small hole in my paper mache Dinosaur and hurriedly sucked out MY encapsulated 9-year old breath in one huge inhalation, would I re-absorb the bright-eyed vigor of my youth, even for an instant? Would the cynicism and jaded hopelessness that come with age be wiped away, even briefly, like a sponge or a wad of “triple absorbent” paper towel wiping away a stain, as you usually see on TV? The twisted, obtuse rationale here would probably be the equivalent to eating a child from a conquered village in the hopes it could somehow slow the impeding, plodding, agonizing approach of age?

Now imagine if you will, somewhere far off in the multi-dimensional expanse a 9-year old boy, brushing his teeth dressed in Superman pajamas, looking in the mirror grudgingly preparing for bed. All of a sudden, the earth rumbles and the lights flicker off, and this child is privy to an apocalyptic vision yanked right out of his own nightmares. What he sees - what this sweet, innocent, unprepared child witnesses this fateful moment on this fateful night: an ugly, desperate, scary man with HIS dinosaur he made for HIS daddy clutched between long fingers. The ugly man this child sees scarily distorted in the bathroom mirror is bent over like a gnarly stick, or a hunchback with dark penetrating eyes gazing deep into his own, lips pressed up against his beloved creation, as though he is thirsty beyond reason lost in the desert, drinking from a canteen. A grotesque image. This man’s chest rising and falling like a pathetic fish sitting in the dry sand, surrounded by life giving oxygen, but dying from suffocation.

Thursday, May 26, 2005

"La Fée Verte"

Dearest Leon,

Here you find me this rainy night on the outskirts of Istanbul. Among the dregs, castoffs, whores, and criminals in the back of a ramshackle, no-name dive bar. Here I sit wrapped in rags sipping absinthe, waiting my turn to draw a breath from the hookah. My eyes half closed muttering nonsense perhaps in a waking dream, or perhaps it's the opium speaking through me, using my body as a vessel, an oracle, to vocalize it’s foreboding secrets. You wouldn't recognize me. My hair has grown to uncivilized lengths and I now wear a beard whereas before my chin was bare and my neck clean. It has been almost six months since I defected from the battalion - a coward, or so labeled by His Majesty the King.

The last place on earth, my friend, you expected to find me was among this unsavory congregation of broken dreamers and cackling strangers stranger than fiction. In this dimly lit cesspool, a final refuge for the broken and pitiful. I sit between the twins, Ignorance and Want, “Les Enfants Terrible,” now fully grown. I’ve been told they prepare to travel. One will head north, to Germany, the other West, toward Italy. They follow the wind of change; heeding the trumpet of Fascism. The light is dim, a pathetic fire-pit and several candles cast more shadows and doubt, create more questions, then produce revelations. There is just enough light to reveal the unsavory events that perpetually transpire in this conclave of the absurd - this circus of nightmares. There is no sound save the feint, raspy coughs of the sick, and hushed moans as somewhere in a nearby room, three lonely souls seek temporary and fleeting bliss.

Your mission this night, my dearest friend, is to rescue me: to bring me home. Heh, home. You may ask what unfortunate series of events brought me to this dismal, shit-hole corner of the world that sits on the outer fringes of humanity and sanity? Well, the answer is obvious, if you don’t know already, as you were an unwilling participant in my fall from grace...

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

An Urban Oasis

Right next to Interstate 80, crisscrossing State Street, smack dab in the middle of the slums deep in the heart of my city there exists a park. It’s a lot, really, about 10 acres, which is meant to simulate a forest. Through this “mini-forest” runs a babbling brook complete with fish (carp and catfish I believe). There is a path in this park that winds and threads like a snake. You ever see that famous image of the snake that has eaten it’s own tail, thus forming a circle? Well, this path is that snake, only instead of a circle it forms a purposefully asymmetrical track that weaves around trees, over boulders, and cuts swathes through well-manicured grass. In fact, every shrub, tree, and patch of moss in this simulation has been diligently planned. If you’ve ever strolled through a real forest you might notice the random distribution of bushes, trees, and grass which are a result of the random distribution of seeds. One might notice the quiet war the trees wage with each other for sunlight and water...for the optimal position. This 10-acre lot, this simulation of a forest, this oasis in the center of the steaming concrete ruins known as the ghetto, is meant to appear random, and sadly fails in this task. From idea to blueprint to reality, some city planner may have had the best of intentions. However, when I jog through this park I can’t help but notice the eerie artificiality of it all. It’s kind of like watching the latest Star Wars installment and the passionless, hollow performances the actors give. Perhaps the local denizens cannot notice the difference? This park wears the well-manicured mask of a forest; it’s sole purpose to provide a temporary solace to all of the jaded, mask-wearing cynics - like me. I’ve noticed no animals live in this forest, not even birds, save the junk fish you might find in the filthy brook which vagrants piss in. Sometimes I wonder where this brook leads? There aren’t any lakes in the city, no outlets. Or perhaps, like the snake-like path, it is circular.

Like an image from an M.C Escher painting, this brook forever flows nowhere.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

An internal struggle

The summer heat is really starting to become quite opressive. Consequently, this weekend I desperately needed to repair my swamp cooler. I drove to my local Grocery super-center to see if perhaps they sold the necessary supplies I needed for the job, which they did. On my way back out to my car, merchandise in hand, I was accosted by a toothless homeless woman.

“Hello sir. May I ask you a question?”

My silence, irritated expression, and unwillingness to look her in the eyes should have served as a sufficient response.

“I’m not asking for money per se...” She continues as I load my SUV.

Per Se?

“You see sir, I’m stranded and just need a little bit of cash so I may call my husband so he can wire me some money. I’m not from round these parts sir, see? I’d really like to get home and see my kids and...”

Typical sales technique: keep talking never allowing the customer the chance to say no.

“Hey, look lady, I don’t have any cash. I used my debit card today to buy my stuff. Sorry.”

She pauses and stares at me, pathetically waiting...waiting... for something, I don’t know what. Godot perhaps? A sudden outpouring of generosity and mercy? A spontaneous, radical change in my beliefs and values? You see, I don’t oblige panhandlers, I never have. I despise the uncomfortable situation they place people in. I despise the internal moral struggle I am presented with every time this occurs, because yes, I am a human being and yes, I do feel sorry for these unfortunate souls. However, the last thing I am willing to do is contribute to some drug addict’s habit, or finance some fucking wino’s trip to the liquor store, when I have my own demons and vices. Call me selfish.

I especially despise being lied to by panhandlers.

“Sorry lady. Good luck.” I tell her as I swing into my car and slam the door and start the engine. "Under Pressure" by Queen is playing on my cd player at an uncomfortably high volume. I stare at her from beneath my sunglasses. She pathetically lingers for a second longer. Through the swirling heat I see her body tense up, she juts her lower jaw forward and her neck jerks to the right a couple of times; the danse macabre of the Meth addict. She then turns around and walks away only to approach someone else. Only to give the same spiel I can only assume she’s rehearsed hundreds, no...thousands, of times before.

Monday, May 23, 2005

Non-Negotiable part 2

So this dude has the balls to turn his back on Socko and I and continue to stand in line with his piece of shit friend. At this point I get really pissed. Normally I’m able to keep my cool, but tonight I lost it. Perhaps it was due to extraneous drama going on in my personal life, or perhaps I'm just tired and pissy, and ready to blow off some steam. Unfortunately, for the moment my hands are tied. You see, my job description mandates I have to maintain the utmost “professionalism” up until someone decides to throw a punch at me. Once this happens, it’s open season my friend.

So I proceed to lay the bait. “Hey Stupid...”

His friend turns to me. “What deed you say?”

I continue to intently stare at the other guy (I call it mad-dogging). “I’m not talking to you asshole, I’m talking to your friend. Comprendes Mendes?”

The other guy turns and looks at me. I have his attention now.

I take a step closer. “Hey puta, you got 100 bucks? Cause I’m not letting you cocksuckers in now unless you pay me, and my associate here, 50 bucks apiece. Of course a fucking scrub such as yourself probably doesn’t even have 5 bucks...”

His face turns redder.

“...In fact, why the fuck ARE you here tonight? You actually think you’re going to find some pussy, an ugly ijo de puta like you? The chances you’ll get laid are precisely 3.2 trillion to one.”

Socko snickers behind me.

I step even closer. “ So why don’t you do yourself a favor, turn around, and walk the fuck away.” As a final insult I spit my gum in his face.

As I anticipated, he takes a swing at me. He throws a wild-west style haymaker, telegraphing it a mile away. I catch his arm and tuck it underneath my left armpit. At the same time I take a step forward and deliver a heel palm strike deep into his face. Blood erupts out of both nostrils like popped zits, as tears instantly swell up in his eyes thus blinding him. I still have his arm in my possession. I grab his thumb and using his thumb and wrist as leverage I spin him around and at the same time yank him out of the line and onto the filthy concrete. I think I hear something pop. He starts hitting the ground and screaming in pain.

The cool thing about Aikido is the ability to use your opponents weight, movement, and aggression against them. You are in complete command of your opponent’s body. Should your opponent try to outmuscle you they’ll wind up with dislocations, busted fingers, or far worse. Most bouncers are instructed to avoid throwing punches. The key is to restrain unruly patrons and transport them to a more discreet location where you may cuff them and/or beat the shit out of them, away from prying eyes. In our case, that discreet location is the back storage room.

Out of the corner I see his friend lunge at me in a rage only to see Socko grab him from behind and place him in a chokehold and buckle his knees. He has about as much mobility now as a newborn swaddled in a blanket. However what I DON’T see, nor anticipate, are the three vato’s 20 ft down the line. I DO see the foot as it rapidly closes in on my face.

I start seeing stars. I then feel 2 sets of hands grab me by my shirt and then a dull impact to the back of my skull. Dumb fuck tried to punch me in the back of my head, how smart is that? I break into a run. To my dismay I hear my favorite shirt tear clean off me and all I’m left wearing is a black tank top and my jeans. I do manage to free up a few precious seconds to summon help:

“Fuck! Code Red at VIP! Code Red at VIP! You hear…..”

The same dumb fuck, the mute, kicks me in the stomach and knocks the wind out of me and slaps my radio out of my hand. I do have the sense to grab the same jersey he refused to take off and pull it up over his head thus utilizing it as a strait jacket. I grab him and run his head into the brick wall. I have to make this as quick as possible because I know his friends are not too far behind and ready to converge on me like a pack of hyenas. At this moment in my peripheral vision I see about 4 black shirts zip by me. The bouncing staff has arrived just in the nick of time. I was just about to get gang banged by the homies.

I exhaustedly sit down on the curb and in between gasps for breath I can't help but giggle. The adrenaline and endorphins are still coursing through my body like heroin. My job's done and I leave it up to the guys to clean up the mess. I fumble with my radio but my hands are too shaky to re-clip the wire to my wife-beater. I look down and I find a gallon of my own blood splattered all over my jeans. Not only that, one of my eyes is swollen like a grape and sealed shut tight. FUCK!


I exit the staff bathroom. The dried blood finally has been scrubbed off my swollen face. As I’m walking through the back storage room guess whom I find hog-tied and lying on his stomach on the sticky floor waiting for the police? Evidently, he pulled a knife on one of the bouncers. I kneel next to him to get down to his level, enabling him to clearly see who I am.

I waive. “Hey, remember me?”

Again, as he did before, he looks straight ahead and ignores me. Proud mother-fucker.

I stand up and look around. Coast is clear.

“You know what homey? You tore my favorite shirt.”

I stomp on the back of his skull with almost all of my weight. I think his head bounces off the concrete. I hear a rhythmic crunching sound as his body flies into a 5-second convulsion fit. When the cops arrived later on to pick this guy up (pun intended), he was still unable to talk. Even if he could speak, who the fuck would believe him? It’s his word against the entire bouncing staff’s. Suprisingly, I didn't get fired or even in trouble with the boss that night. Socko covered my ass, for some strange reason, and told everyone these guys attacked us. Which in fact, they did. Or maybe Socko and the guys knew I took a beating and perhaps they respected me more for it? Nah, I think the real reason was that they were all thrilled as fuck to see my face messed up.

For several weeks after this incident I watched my back. I figured for sure there’d be a swift and decisive retaliation. Every car that would slowly drive by made me sketchy. Every lingering glance I’d get would make be a wee bit nervous. I’d insist on parking in the gated lot. However, retaliation never came. I later found out this kid was on probation for drug possession with intent to deal. He was locked away for a good 15 years and wouldn’t be bothering anyone.

Saturday, May 21, 2005

Non-Negotiable. part 1

Inspired by "Clublife."

Saturday. June 2003, 10:17 pm.

I showed up to work 15 minutes late due to traffic and my fucking prick of a boss is already busting my balls telling me to “suit the fuck” up and get my ass out by the VIP entrance. I grab my radio out of my locker, slip the ear-bud into my ear, and clip the wire to the lapel of the western-style long-sleeve shirt I’m wearing. It’s my favorite shirt, the tight, black and white one with the embroidered green marijuana leaves and shiny rhinestones. Instead of clipping the radio to my belt I instead slip it into the front right pocket of my intentionally-faded, low-rise “Energie” jeans, which by the way cost me over 165 dollars. On my way out one of the bar backs tosses me a Red Bull.

It was a hot night. Saturday is my least favorite night on VIP. It’s hip-hop night. There's already a line of thugs, shorty’s, pimps, and ballers stretching to the end of the block and halfway down the adjacent block and the club hasn't even opened it's doors yet. Saturday night is the worst night of the week in terms of monetary compensation. Usually, when I work VIP, I can pull in some decent jack as EVERYBODY thinks they’re a VIP and are usually willing to pay for a speedier admission. No one likes waiting in line, it’s humiliating and insulting. However, hip-hop night usually draws a more unsavory crowd. “Ghetto” could be a suitable word. There aren’t as many high-rollers which usually means I make less tips.

The first thing I usually do is walk the line. Walking the line is the process of cherry-picking the most attractive girls and escorting them up to the VIP line. That way, if someone happens to drive by they’ll see a huge group of fine-ass girls near the front entrance and the likelihood of them stopping at our establishment increases exponentially. It's also an opportunity to address any dress code issues earlier on, and thereby avoid an ugly scene in front of the club, and also as a courtesy to the customer, prevent an unnecessary 2 hour wait merely to be turned away at the doors.

On this particular night, as I start to walk the line, I spot 2 dew-rags and 2 jerseys in the first 20 ft alone. Usually patrons are good about removing their beanies, dew-rags, or sports caps upon being asked because, put simply, if they don’t, they will not fucking get in. There are always those few assholes who think they’re above the dress code. They’ll take off their beanie and cram it down their pants mistakenly thinking this will suffice. It doesn’t, when I ask you to remove your dew-rag I’m really TELLING you to take it out to your fucking car or toss it in the trash cause you sure as FUCK aren’t bringing it into my club. Of course, I’m a little bit more polite. A lot of these losers have nothing better to do than sit in their cars at the crack of dawn, waiting for me to leave the club, so they can beat the shit out of me or better yet, cap my ass. Working VIP has its perks, namely untaxed, cold, hard cash direct in my pocket (getting paid under the table is a blessing…especially when you’re on unemployment - which I was at the time), but the flip side to this is there’s the possibility of making a lot of enemies. However I digress.

So I spot 2 dew-rags and 2 jerseys. The first three guys obediently removed their questionable apparel upon being asked/told. The fourth guy was a bit more difficult.

“Hey, do you have a t-shirt underneath that jersey?”

Dude just stares at me. He's Mexican and he either doesn't understand or is pretending he can't understand. It's usually the latter with these guys.

I turn to his buddy and tug at my shirt as I say: “Tell your friend he's not getting in with that jersey. He needs to remove it.”

They converse en espanol. “Hey Mee-ster, where he gonna put it? We were dropped off.”

“That's your business.”

They converse some more then they turn away and continue to stand in line as though our conversation didn't even transpire. What the fuck?


These two dickwads continue to ignore me.

“All right, get the fuck out of the line, you're not getting in.” I motion to the head bouncer, Socko, to come over. Socko is the guy who landed me the job in the first place. He's an Armenian monster, about 5'8", but built like a fucking tank. Easily over 3 bills. He also happens to be my girlfriend's (R____), sister's boyfriend.

“Hey Mee-ster, we don't have no car, yo.” All of a sudden this fucking lowlife piece of shit speaks English.

“Oh you can talk now. Well then didn't I just tell you two to get out of the line? You're not partying here tonight.”

“But Mee-ster...”

“No, it's non-negotiable.”

I hear Socko start giggling behind me. “Non-negotiable....” he softly repeats to himself. You see, the ongoing joke at this club between the bouncer staff and I is that I'm somehow “too educated” to be working a job such as this. Whenever the guys would overhear me use correct grammar or syntax, or bust out a word with more than two syllables, they'd always snigger among themselves. Despite the fact I know how to fight, and have participated in quite a few altercations, and have size, and tattoos, and all of the physical characteristics of a bouncer, I could never fit into their world, or maybe they weren't allowing me to. Maybe I'm just the pretty, shit talking, firecracker VIP guy. Consequently, I stopped trying to become one of them. I'd merely show up, do my job, and go home.

So this dude again has the balls to turn his back on me AND Socko and continue to stand in line with his piece of shit friend. At this point I get really pissed. Normally I keep my cool, but tonight I lost it. Perhaps it was due to some extraneous drama going on in my personal life, or perhaps I was just tired and pissy, but was ready to blow off some steam on this piece of shit. You see, the key is to maintain the utmost professionalism up until the client takes a shot at you. Once this occurs, it's open season. So I proceed to lay the bait.

“Hey stupid..."

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Haloscan? Feh.

Well I had to do it. I'm returning to Blogger comments.

True, Haloscan is a free service, and apparently you're getting what you pay for. I discovered Haloscan will only "present" the 200 most recent comments. What I mean by this is lets say you have 4 posts and there are 50 comments left on each. Any posts farther back than these 4 posts will display "No Comments" even if there are comments there. If one were to try to leave a comment, mistakenly thinking they were the first person to do so, they'd discover all of the previous comments sort of "hiding out." However, if you pay 12 bucks you may become a "premier" Haloscan member. Premier members are given "800" comments.

NOTE: I'm going to leave Haloscan on here for the time being(they shall harmoniously co-exist). This way I may wean myself back onto Blogger. Plus, I need to be able to read all of your previous comments and add validity to my lonely life.

If you could though, I'd prefer you leave any comments, concerns, insults, or pillow talk on Blogger.

Preciate cha!

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Then and Now


“Well, Happy Birthday bro. Salute.” You hold up your mini-glass of saki. I follow suit.


We’re dressed to kill. I’m in that black Prada suit I bought when we went to Vegas last fall, a purple Versace shirt, and black Kenneth Cole shoes. You’re wearing strictly Armani. We have this knack of finding something to celebrate every single night, you see, there’s always an excuse to go out and party. However, tonight is particularly special as it’s my 23rd birthday. It’s a special night and it’s a great excuse to blow some cash on food, drink, bitches, and blow. So here we are at Kagami…or, Kazahutisi, I forget the name but it’s the best sushi joint in town.


The last thing I ever expected was to receive that phone call from you telling me you were sick. It was a snowy night in December, close to Christmas. Your voice sounded so faint. Like you were on speaker and our conversation, in turn, was on speaker. You had moved to Chicago. As you told me about your declining health all I could think about was how your voice had to travel hundreds and hundreds of miles through freezing cable to finally reach me. Like a washing machine on spin, I kept dwelling on some bullshit idea that your voice, I swear, should have been even fainter than it already was. That it was a scientific miracle, courtesy of Alexander Graham Bell, that you and I were even able to carry this conversation in the first place. We’ve come a long ways, you and I, from our days as kids when we’d tie two Dixie cups together with string.


The club is popping. You and I meet up with the rest of our boys near the VIP entrance. Of course, you know the doorman and the bouncers and the owner, fuck, you know everyone in town! We walk past the 8-mile line stretching clear to China. We walk past the velvet rope and the beefy motherfucker with the clipboard. In this moment, I’m Henry Hill and suddenly it’s 1964, and I don’t have to wait in any fucking lines.

We work our way single file through the kitchen and the back storage room and the coat- room until we finally approach the dance floor: we’re greeted by lights and tribal beats and irregular record scratching and a sweaty sea of attractive girls and roided out guidos.


I caught the red eye to Chicago to come and see you for the last time. Tuned out, jacked into my I-pod, I watched the snow relentlessly fall through the tiny window. I thought about our lives and our adventures and the funny fucked up things you used to say that I’d adopt as my own and proudly use when you weren’t around. I thought about your folks and how annoyed they’d get when we’d stay up late playing with our G.I Joe’s when we were kids, or when we’d steal your dad’s cokes from the fridge or when we’d sneak out at night and smoke weed in that field by our neighborhood. I thought about the “fort” we built one summer with plywood we stole from a building site, and how we had our friend Jay(who was 18) buy us porn so we could hang pictures up of naked whores on the walls. I thought about scout trips when you, me, and Matt would fuck with the other kids. That 4-hour flight I think I sifted through a truckload of memories desperately searching for that one defining moment where I finally understood. That one scene in this comedic tragedy of ours where your character gave that pivotal soliloquy that defined you wholly, “Friends, Roman, Countrymen….”

Or something like that.


After about 20 shots of Tequila between the two of us, and a hilarious night of acting like hooligans, we stumble out of the club. We prop each other up like drunken buddies from a Hollywood 50’s musical, Deano and Frank. Of course, we don’t know where the fuck we parked and we’re too stupid to convince the other we shouldn’t drive, so we aimlessly walk through the empty streets like lost sheep. We turn the corner at 5th and duck into a dark alley - I swear it’s a shortcut. We stop for a second so you can take a piss as I sit on a crate talking about some bitch whose number I got and whom I probably could have fucked if I didn’t have to take your ass home tonight.

I ramble on and on and then WHAM I get knocked on my ass by some fucking punk with a bat. As I'm passing out I can't help but chuckle. Between the stars, I see you (three of you actually) tackle this piece of shit...your dick's hanging out because your pants and boxers are still wrapped around your ankles.

When I regain consciousness you tell me we need to get the fuck out of here. You say you think you might have seriously injured this dude. I weakly thank you as I get up and trip over a garbage can, disoriented. On the ground I see a 16-year old kid who was prepared to fucking kill me so he could steal my wallet. His face looks like something you’d see in an episode of E.R. but a whole lot messier. I start stomping on his face, sobbing with anger and rage, adrenalin and pain.

"Hey, take it easy! Yo, it's over. Let's get the fuck out of here, now" You say as you pull me away. I kick him in the ribs one last time and spit on him, a sticky wad of saliva, teeth, and blood.


It was raining in Chicago that night. Your room stank vaguely of piss and old vomit. Dead quiet. The only sound was your heart, as it told the machine by your bed it was still awake, and also an occasional cough or two; and of course, the rain. Always the rain.

Fuck, what happened to you? You looked like you weighed a hundred pounds. I remember you used to joke that you always had a fat face and that’s the reason you couldn’t model. In a sick twist of fate, your face was thinner than I could have ever imagined. Your arms seemed to be the size of garden hose with 20 needles connected to wires protruding out like you were some fucking cyborg.

“Hey gorgeous.”



"How you feeling?"

"Fucking peachy." You wouldn't look at me. You just blankly stared out the window.


"Hey...I brought you something.” I said as I handed you a small package wrapped in newspaper I had tucked away in my black pea coat.

“Can you open it for me? Heh, I just ran the NY marathon, I’m kinda tired.”

Holding my tears back, trying to look strong, I sat on your bed and opened the package. Nestled inside, wrapped in tissue, was a 3-inch black plastic figure. “Don’t say I never did anything for you, bitch” I weakly said with an even weaker smile.

You cradled the figure in your garden-hose arms like a newborn. You smiled then coughed then laughed then coughed again. “Ohhh shit dude, Snake eyes. I was always jealous you owned this. God, I never thought you'd ever part with... thanks, but I couldn't...."

"Don't worry about it bro'. I want you to keep it."

Silence, but not so uncomfortable.

With a raspy breath you went on to say: "Hey, you remember that summer we trained to become ninjas?"

I silently nodded. Thunder broke somewhere far off in the distance, NYC maybe. You and I just sat in silence savoring this final moment, listening to the rhythmic, tribal beat of the rain.

Monday, May 16, 2005

Inside looking out

My gaze is forced skyward and starward, against my will, like a Rhesus monkey strapped in a cockpit, shitting it's diaper, holding a one-way ticket to Jupiter. The cubicle of my own mind forever preventing me from stepping out of this translucent box that reeks of stale urine and rot. Outside, I hear Fate knock and snicker as she twists the crank, excitedly waiting with baited breath for me to burst out and put on a show; (a silly, senseless show meant to fright and delight) a permanent grin sloppily painted on my face and a frigid spring buried deep up my ass tethering me to my self-imposed clink. However I fight, and I dig, seven inches a week, with my wooden spoon - and one day I pray I may scurry down the rabbit hole, pocket-watch in hand, to meet the Queen for crumpets and tea at last.

Sunday, May 15, 2005

Last night's events

Saturday night, 3:17 am

It's way too fucking early and the city is still sleeping off it's beer buzz. After a restless night of trying to write something creative and failing miserably I decide to take a little walk around the block. The gas station is unusually busy for this time of night. The good news is I somehow managed to snag the last chocolate chip cookie. I swear to god every time I come in here lately it's the same story...no chocolate chip's, but about 6 or 7 oatmeal raisin and peanut butter's.

There's some yuppie asshole standing in front of me in line. He looks to be about 40-ish. He's bald with a comb-over and he's wearing a denim button-up polo shirt, some really tight tapered jeans(that fall to his upper ankles), one of those stupid brown belts that look like the leather has been weaved, white socks, and dark brown penny loafers (with dimes wedged into the slit where the pennies are “supposed” to be) He also reeks vaguely like mothballs. He's chatting up a storm, probably cause he's had too much coke. I can only assume tonight was another unsuccessful night at the karaoke bar so he's trying to do whatever he can to pick up on the shy girl who is working the register before he goes home to another lonely night of jerking off. I shift from my right foot to my left and then back to my right, as though I have to take a piss. At this point I'm beginning to lose my patience with this guy. I'm anxious to get home and jot down a clever idea that had sprung to mind into my notebook. I politely cough, trying to give him a hint. He finally notices the line beginning to form behind him and chuckles. He then spots something on the floor and bends down.

“Hey! A nickel, this must be my lucky day.” He tells me, and me alone, with a nervous giggle. He pauses and stares at me as though he's expecting me to say something about what just transpired. It looks like he's holding his breath.

I don't say a word to him. I instead look away and start fingering the refillable mugs on display on the shelf beside me as though these cheap fucking plastic mugs are more interesting than what this lonely, pathetic guy has to say to me. Fuck, how insulting.

After what seems like an eternal awkward silence he finally gets the clue, turns around, bids Missy adieu, and walks out to his awaiting Mercedes.

I step up to the counter to pay for my cookie and coffee. Missy looks kind of spooked. She keeps staring down at my t-shirt. I don't know why. It's a tight as hell, faded 70's vintage Harley Davidson t-shirt I found at the consignment shop that reads “Support your local biker trash.”

“I think that guy is going to die in a fiery car crash tonight.”

“What?” Missy looks up as her face turns red. She's getting more and more nervous by the second.

“That guy. He said he found a nickel... that today is his lucky day. Famous last words, right?” I pause, no response, just a vacant stare. Somewhere in the distance I hear crickets churping. “It's a joke. I'm kidding... it's an ironic hypothetical.” I smile to put this poor girl a little bit more at ease.

Like a delayed orgasm, all of the tension slides off her face and body into the tiled floor beneath her. She slowly begins to smile ear to ear and then begins to laugh. Not so much at my joke but a laugh of relief. I continue our conversation by asking her how she's doing, and about the weather, and about the price of tea in China; about whatever. Now that I've got her comfortable and actually talking to me I feel a little braver. It's time for the spider to weave his web.

I flash her the biggest smile I can muster and say: “Hey Missy, may I tell you something?"

"Yes?" A spark of hope ignites in her eyes.

"You guys bake some fantastic chocolate chip cookies...”

Friday, May 13, 2005

Walden; Or life in the woods

"Let us first be as simple and well as Nature ourselves, dispel the clouds which hang over our brows, and take up a little life into our pores. Do not stay to be an overseer of the poor,but endeavor to become one of the worthies of the world."

-Henry David Thoreau

“So what do you like to do?”

“I like the outdoors, camping, fishing...stuff like that.”

Why is it when you first meet a girl at a bar they always say that? It's as though they assume everyone loves camping, fishing, and the outdoors? Like this is going to impress me? I’m the kid who hated those weeklong backpacking scout trips up in the mountains for 4 days huddling in the cold and rain trying to cook a fucking G.I ration on a piece of shit sterno. Yeah, I’ve never really been a big fan of the outdoors unless it was a trip into the woods to eat mushrooms and drink. Well actually, there was this one time at scout camp…

Summer 1992.

Our Scout troop was spending the weekend up at this reservoir, I forget the name, but I remember I was super bummed out because my friend Jerry and I were planning on having a sleepover that weekend at his house so we could watch late night porn as his parents slept. (he was the only one of us who had cable) The last thing I really wanted to do was spend the whole weekend out in the middle of fucking nowhere. Jerry, that lucky fuck, didn’t have to go on this particular trip, but I did. My old man forced me to go...So did my friend Matt's dad, so I wasn't alone.

A little about Matt: Matt was the quintessential drama/Shakespeare geek. All of us were, but Matt was the ringleader. Everything he ever did: every carefully chosen word, every action, to Matt, was an artistic statement. We’d walk around reciting lines from “Hamlet” or “Romeo and Juliet” or “Macbeth"...we’d try to fuck with people, and we’d try to outdo each other. Matt always came out on top. Matt was a performance artist. For instance, one time we were all in math class taking a midterm. The entire room was a dead silence, everyone deep in concentration. All of a sudden Matt, this eccentric fuck, screams at the top of his lungs, “I AM NOT A ROBOT!!!” gets up and runs out of the room. All of the other kids were shitting their pants wondering what the fuck just happened...my friends and I just sat there sniggering like a friggin pack of hyenas, you see, that was Matt, unpredictable and ready to explode... like a powder keg.

Anyhow, Matt and I went up with our Scout troop to this reservoir. We all arrived on Friday night and Matt, myself, and 2 other kids went “crawdad” hunting. We convinced these kids to eat a couple of the crawdads, raw. These dumb fucks were so desperate for our praise they’d probably eat dog shit if we told them to. The next day, on Saturday, the troop decided to go on a day hike. Matt and I pretended we were sick (Matt even made himself puke) so we wouldn't have to go. To our delight the scout leaders fell for it, hook line and sinker, and we were allowed to stay at base camp. Once everyone left Matt and I went on a little hike of our own. There was another smaller, really isolated lake by the reservoir so we decided to head there. We walked along in the sunshine talking about kid shit: ninja’s, dungeons and dragons, comic books (this was before we discovered women, obviously). We finally reached the lake and found it was teeming with trout. We didn’t bring our fishing poles and we couldn’t let this opportunity go to waste, and we did have our scout knives in our pockets, so we decided we’d go spear fishing. We found some old twine lying around and tied our knives to some sticks.

“Hey, let’s re-enact Lord of the Flies!” Matt excitedly blurted out. Wow, what a fucking great idea! This lake was out in the middle of nowhere; there wasn’t a living soul for miles and miles. We stripped down to our tighty-whitey’s. Matt, that crazy fuck, then said in order for this to be authentic we have to be naked, and filthy. So we took off our underwear. We then smeared mud all over our bodies and faces and hair. We looked like a couple of pygmies, the only thing you could see were the whites of our eyes. We both waded out, waist deep, into the cold-ass lake. After about an hour and a half of unsuccessful, exhaustive spear fishing I finally managed to wound a fish. I remember we both savagely screamed in glee, danced along the bank, and raised the fish to the heavens as an offering to the gods. Caught up in the moment Matt and I decided to skin the fish and remove it’s guts and spine and neatly lay the disgusting mess on a flat rock as an offering to “Baphomet.” We ate it's eyeballs and some of it's skin. It started to rain and I remember sitting there watching the steam start to rise off the remains of the dead fish. It was a fucking rush. I remember how in touch with nature we both felt. For a moment, Matt and I actually became cave-men, or fucking neanderthals somewhere in prehistoric southern France, surviving off of our wits and savagery. The wind and rain on our skin and hair, and the dirt on our bodies, only added to the primordial intensity and mental de-evolution we were experiencing in those moments. The thunder clouds started to clap overhead as we danced around the rock where the dead fish lay howling like wolves and laughing hysterically. It was all too much for the both of us. We decided to “meditate” so we could calm the fuck down. Our little hearts were beating like mad and we needed to collect ourselves before we returned to camp. We climbed a tree (not a bright idea during a storm... still naked and covered in mud), found a comfortable spot, closed our eyes, and hummed a continuous “Ohm.” This was a "ninja technique." You see this was part of our training regimen. Coincidentally, this was also the summer Matt and I decided to hone our martial arts skills so we could become costumed crime-fighters, like Batman. You know, sneak out of our houses at night dressed in black and wearing masks and bust drug dealers and shit....

We washed ourselves in the lake, got dressed and returned to base camp only to find everyone freaking the fuck out wondering where the hell we went. They were about to call the Forest Service or the search and rescue to come find us. Matt and I apologized and put on our sorriest faces and sulked into the tent. Once inside the tent we laughed and laughed. We used to call this maniacal laughter, “laughing profusely.” We were selfish kids who honestly didn’t give a shit about anyone but ourselves. Ah, the good old days!

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

If you don't know me by now.

“All the things that we've been through
You should understand me like I understand you
Now girl I know the difference between right and wrong
I ain't gonna do nothing to break up our happy home
Oh don't get so excited when I come home a little late at night
Cause we only act like children when we argue fuss and fight”

June 2003. The summer of heartbreak and the winter of emotional discontent. I remember that year you tried so, so, so hard to keep me straight and narrow. You ever see that movie “North by Northwest” where Cary Grant's character is being chased by that plane out in the middle of fucking nowhere? Well, that's where I was, minus the plane and Cary Grant. No, I was Cary Grant; there I was running with all of my breath, shitting my pants, trying to outrun the tumbleweeds and the vultures and the devil, following the rose petal scent of rot and decay. Depression laced with addiction laced with despondency; translated in layman terms, I was dead. Every morning I'd get up at around 2 pm, swallow 4 ephedra pills, 2 aspirin, snort 2 lines of Coke, and wash all of this down with a cup of cold coffee I just happened to brew the night before at around 4 when I stumbled in still tripping on E while you lay asleep in bed waiting for me. I used to tell you I stayed out late because I was seeing friends in from out of town. After about the second week (10 days minus the weekends) you stopped believing me. Shit, I'm sure after the second day you stopped believing me but were too nice to actually say anything. You wanted to save me. To save me? You might as well have sealed me in formaldehyde and placed me on the shelf with the rest of your failed experiments. “You cannot save he whom does not want to be saved” I'd tell you every day as though the phrase was going out of style. As though I had invented it.

"Selfish" isn't the best word, but it's the first word that comes to mind.

“We've all got our own funny moods
I've got mine, woman, you've got yours too
Just trust in me like I trust in you
As long as we've been together it should be so easy to do
Just get yourself together or we might as well say goodbye
What good is a love affair when you can't see eye to eye?”

J___, do you remember that last night you and I fought? Yeah, that was the same night I accused you of cheating on me and spit on you. We were at the club, me with my friends and you with yours, celebrating your birthday, of all things. Amped up on tequila and anabolic steroids, I happened to see you on the dance floor talking to some dude. My brown eyes turned green and then red and then black, as I pushed through the crowd and grabbed you by your hand, shoving the other dude into the waiting pack of my homeboys who were ready and rearing to attack. You told me he was just a friend from way back... and no, you two never fucked. You started to cry as you just couldn't get it through my thick skull I was throwing away something true...something good. You started to cry because you were hurt and dismayed at my unrelenting selfishness. You started to cry because you invested so much into this wretched, wretched “relationship” only to get nothing back in return from me. I disagreed: I pointed out to you, in slurred backward speak, that you were with me, which is in itself, a gift. You laughed at my absurdity; and our backwards, fucked up, strange love which defied conventional logic, driven by Ex and sex. The law of cause and effect was not applicable to us...or the effect was an undesired one. The effect was this: me, a drugged out piece of shit loser/abuser. The cause could have been any number of things. I secretly wanted to fuck my mom; I missed my ex; I was a dismally unambitious failure; I suffered from seasonal disorder; multiple personality disorder; post-traumatic stress disorder; acid reflux; erectile dysfunction; gingivitis. You see I always had an excuse for everything. I always had to place the blame on everyone else, anyone but myself. You finally walked the fuck away from me that night. You couldn't stand living with me anymore. I don't blame you, neither could I.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005


Such a pleasing glow the Friday evening early dusk casts. Not quite day and at the same time, not quite night - an ample mood so rife with delights. I sit cross-legged on the porch in my favorite chair, cigarette in hand nursing a beer. Sometimes I love to simply stare and soak in the sights, sounds, and smells of the neighborhood as it, in turn, absorbs the pent up stress of my bullshit workweek; simple pleasures oft taken for granted. A favorite past time of mine is counting how many dogs stroll by, proudly showing off their owners; the highest count thus far is nine. Usually about half past six an army of fireflies come out of hiding in a dazzling display of luminosity. Innocently living out their brief lives shining bright in a peaceful competition for mating rights.{I’m taken back to when I was a kid. I’d bottle about two or three to keep in my room to serve as relief from the beast that lurked outside my window just beyond the trees} The hum of the cicada’s a haunting cadence: a perfect compliment to the chorus of a dozen mowers and blowers - the disharmonious buzz forming an oddly soothing synchronicity. Such lazy thoughts on such an unambitious evening, as I idly sit on my porch any old Friday while sipping my drink and having a smoke as I watch the dogs and the lights and the sights and the sounds of my peaceful suburban neighborhood.

Monday, May 09, 2005

Look at all the lonely people

There’s a gas station around the block from my house that serves THE most delectable chocolate chip cookies. They’re larger cookies with a diameter of about 8 inches and a 1-inch thickness. These cookies are loaded with chocolate chips, not just semi-sweet either. They mix in dark chocolate chips at a perfect 1:1 ratio. I’m sure they lace these cookies with cocaine too. Addictive doesn’t even begin to describe them. Obsessive? Maybe. Fanatic? Yes. Sometimes I’ll go to this gas station 2, maybe 3, times a day just to see if they have baked a fresh batch. I’ll usually pick up two of them, along with a can of Red Bull and a pack of Prime Time mini-cigars.

As often as I’m at said gas station, I’ve never really tried to befriend the help. It would probably be in my best interest to express a little interest in their lives. A small expenditure of energy that would probably insure a few freebies and the esteemed privilege of “cherry picking” the treasure trove of cookie inventory I can only assume is kept in the ever-mysterious backroom.

There's this guy who works the graveyard shift (which is usually when I come in as I’m a vampire, minus the faggy ruffled shirt of course). I don’t know his name but his nametag reads “Big Bear.” He is a portly, jovial man about 5’ 7” with a bushy, under-conditioned mullet. He wears very large aviator, cult-leader style, slightly tinted glasses and has a well-trimmed Jesus beard. I feel a definite child molester vibe from this guy. I can’t quite put my finger on it. Perhaps it’s the high-pitched, nervous giggle he emits after every fucking lame-ass joke he always gives while ringing up my merchandise. Or maybe it’s the piercing, lingering stare he gives his patrons. Or maybe I'm misreading Big-bear completely? Maybe in reality he’s a lonely 35-year old man who still lives in his mother’s basement. Maybe his life consists of playing video games, watching Star Trek, and jacking off to naked photos of Jeri Ryan. Maybe he’s been saving his pitiful paychecks so he can finally afford to buy that movie-replica Darth Vader armor he’s been lusting after for the past 2 years which costs around three thousand dollars?

Then there’s “Missy.” She usually works the closing shift that I’m guessing ranges between 3-10 pm. She desperately wants to be noticed by me, by you, hell, by anyone. She is one of those anonymous faces that disappear in the crowd, never standing out. One of those faces your eyes will often pass right over because you are always looking for someone else...anyone other than her. Missy is quiet as a mouse and just as nervous and skittish as a mouse too. When I come in to buy my junk she always gives me a shy smile. She tries to initiate meaningless conversation inquiring about the weather, about my purchases, about my life, and I know this takes all of the courage inside that squat little body of hers. I know the polite little one-line responses I give her, as inane as they may seem to me, mean everything to her. It is the air she breathes and the water she drinks to stay alive. The hurried, formal and polite conversation I give her feeds her fantasy. It's a mental snapshot she saves for later when she goes home and frigs herself and shoves that 10” dildo up her pussy as her 7 cats solemnly watch on; as Paula Cole sings her sweet songs.

So the question I ask myself is this: Would it be worth my while to establish a friendship based solely on lies with these poor souls so I may satisfy my selfish cravings for some cocaine-laced chocolate chip cookies? Would it be right to fuck with their very fragile, very suicidal minds and lead them to believe I actually give a fuck, that I actually care, so I may have access to that elusive back storeroom?

Saturday, May 07, 2005

Shooting the Shit


“What do you think dude?”

“About what,” I ask without looking up, continuing to load my next clip.

“My new shoulder holster dude. What do you think?”

I look up for just a second, just long enough to satisfy him so he'll shut the fuck up. “Looks Pimp bro'.”

“Does it look good? Do I look like a mafia-ass motherfucker?”

“Yeah, it looks good. I like it.”


I can smell the leftover burrito I tried to eat earlier starting to rot as it rests on the rock where I left it. It's a hot day. The sun sits like a sumo in the middle of the blue sky daring any force to challenge it. We're out in in the middle of nowhere, some Red-neck playground, doing a little target shooting. It's really just an excuse to get the fuck out of dodge, talk shit, and drink beer. Shooting is an afterthought.


“So what do you think?”

“Dude, I already told you, you look Pimp.”

“No, about tonight. You think I'm finally gonna fuck K____?”

I spit on my Desert Eagle and start rubbing the length of her body, it was a gift to myself last year. I finally managed to shake the monkey off my back and dump R_____. As a reward I bought myself this gun..a 0.40 caliber, compact model. Perfect for concealment. Replace one bad fucking bitch with another right?

“Joey, I think your chances are good. Serious. She wants you. Can't you tell, Fuck?!”

Joey laughs as he raises his Beretta and takes aim. “Fuckin-A bro, I know it....”


“Everytime I'm around that bitch I can smell it bro'. She's in fucking heat – Shit did you see that shot?”

I stand up to get a better look. Joey has blown up the red spray can he had decided to shoot that had been sitting in his trunk for the past 3 months. Dead on. Red paint blankets the ground for five feet behind it.

“Looks kinda like blood dude,” I say in admiration.

Friday, May 06, 2005

Taking out the Rubbish

I’m not really one to dwell on current affairs but I thought I’d give my take and state my case on a few things that really bother me as of late. At first I thought I’d craft an adorable little “Amelie”-style list numbered 1-50 but that’d be unoriginal.

What is up with Reality TV? Why is every one of them being marketed as “the next, great human drama” or some other equally aggravatingly misleading title like that? Human Drama, what? Trust me folks, if you have time to tivo and re-watch this schlock you MUST have way too much time on your hands, like Pat O’Brien with a tissue box and an unlimited minute calling plan? Yes, I confess I’ve tuned in to the Britney and meal-ticket show….well…no not really, I’m playin’ yo. I don’t really have time for TV what with farting out all of these stupid posts.

Speaking of posts, I’ve been examining my work, critiquing my crap, and I’ve noticed I might not be writing on a deep enough intellectual level. My writing doesn’t have that cerebral edge. You know lines like “the swirling soup of my consciousness teleports me to the apex of atmospheric degradation. Like a scared shitless cosmonaut on cruise control soaring 5,000 miles above sea level, the abysmal solitary confinement of the padded cell of my thoughts relentlessly…” Yeah, that kind of stuff. My writing may be too raw. It isn’t tight nor is it solid. I've been told it’s shakier than Katherine Hepburn on crack.

I recently submitted some of my work to an on-line poetry site. It got torn apart. Of course almost every member of said site goes by the name of “Sage-beauty” or “Willow Breeze” or “Wicca Goddess.” I’d bet you a buffalo nickel most of these fat bitches own about 20 cats apiece and only eat organic, vegan treats (in public that is…twinkies and fried chicken while at home, washed down with a diet Coke)

Note to self: swing by Border’s and pick up a copy of “Grammatically Correct.”

Hey Sar, there’s been rumors on the internet’s…Bush, god what a dip shit. Hey, pull out of Iraq and let them be a sovereign nation. Waitaminute, they already are a sovereign nation because, as we all know, a sovereign nation is a nation that is sovereign. A nation that is in a state of….sovereignity (if that’s even a word) Ya see, we’re GIVING them the gift of sovereigninity. We’re giving them cute little Eye-Rack-ey folks…freedom. Guiding them.

Bush, do you realize the entire world fucking hates us/you? I hate you…you greedy fuck. Politics were never my strong suite.

Last but not least, I’d like to thank my mom on this wonderful upcoming mother’s day. You taught me superficiality, ignorance, and materialism. The day I see you again will be much too soon.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Rollbacks and Fatcats

Ah Wal-Mart: a veritable human zoo, a frenzied gathering of commerce and consumerism. Where I live, a melting pot where the dregs and castoffs of society, including myself, all meet in pursuit of the “perfect” deal. To buy shit we don’t really need because prices have been cut and inventory is limited, and failure to act on this undeniable impulse may lead to many sleepless nights of sticky regret. You may or may not know this, but you NEED that Ronco brand slicer and dicer. You need that all inclusive car cleaning and detailing kit complete with a real leather shammy. You need that George Foreman grill. Plus, where else can you buy cheap electronics, tasteless clothing manufactured with love by an 8-year-old Honduran girl, or boxes and bags galore of calorie loaded junk (with half the carbs and minus the trans fats, of course)?

I love Wal-Mart. They treat me good. They understand. They understand that the customer, no matter what the circumstances are, is always right. The customer is king because in reality, their customers will always be serfs. We need to feel special. We need validation and Sam understands this. Why shouldn’t I return that vacuum I bought 6 months ago which now doesn’t work? I threw away the box, and I lost the receipt, so? Why shouldn’t I exchange that game-cube I won in an office raffle for a Playstation? I didn’t even buy the fucking thing at Wal-Mart, hell I didn’t even buy it, but who cares? It all balances out in the end. Weights and measures daddy-o, weights and measures. The fact is I speak for the unseen majority. We live paycheck to paycheck because we choose to buy junk at an irresistible price.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

City Lights

R___ lived up on the east side with her sister. Their house was a rathole, ghetto as hell, but had a remarkable view. At night you could see the entire city stretch for what seemed hundreds of miles. A little backround: R___ and I dated for over two years. At one point we were even engaged. Shit was pretty deep. Because of a fuck up on my part we broke up on New Years eve, 2003. We did our own thing for six months. She dated a few guys and partied a lot. I partied too. I had also met someone really fucking incredible during our time apart. I’ll call her J___. Of course I didn’t realize how good I had it until, like an idiot, I left J___ to re-pursue my Ex. (or should I say J___, tired of my bullshit, left me) Why? I thought I was still in love. I had walked away from my life and my future wife without offering even the slightest fight. How wrong I was.

R___ and I got back together for a month that July to give it one last try; talk about a miserable time. She was hopelessly addicted to cocaine, searching for a savior. She was a fucking mess...a wreak, so was I. I wanted to know if I still had feelings for R___. I wanted to know if I was still in fact, in love. In love with R____ as a person, and not just in love with love, or in love with the perfect memory of how things used to be when times were good. However, things had changed. It wasn’t like in the past where I’d patiently endure her tantrums and piece of shit friends and silently tolerate her various addictions be it painkillers, alcohol, or weed completely blinded by love or the incessant need to “make things right.” The second time around I didn’t really give a flying fuck what she did. In fact, I was subconsciously doing whatever I could to insure she’d get rid of me. R___ loved my newfound indifference. It turned her on. It also made her even clingier. She needed me more than she ever did then when I was a “nice” guy. I think the reason I stayed with her as long as I did that July was because I was afraid she would kill herself had I of left.

Scene: A typical summer night, circa July, 2003.

“Do you know why the lights twinkle the way they do?”

“Is it the smog?” R___ curiously asks in her cute Russian accent.

“No, it’s not the smog.”

We sit in silence staring at the cityscape; I’m nursing a beer, a latte, and lighting another fag (I had become an unrepentant chain smoker). I scan the horizon with it’s millions of dots trying to determine where J____, the “other” girl I had dated while R___ and I were apart, could be. I played this game quite often: sitting on R___’s porch staring at the city…looking for J___; it was a self-destructive “Where’s Waldo” I loved to play. I had narrowed my search down to two locations. The general vicinity where J___’s apartment was where she lived with her dog OR on the corner of 4th and 2nd, where the club her and her friends liked to frequent stood. I try not to think about her being out there with someone else, someone new. How hypocritical considering here I am, half dressed, with my ex, who was a major source of contention between J____ and I and ultimately the cause of our breakup and the...

“So why do the lights twinkle?!” She persists, interrupting my train of thought.

“Tuzik, what causes the lights to twinkle is people throughout the entire city either turning their lights on or turning their lights off,” I quietly explain.

She solemnly nods in agreement, my words not entirely registering, or perhaps they do but she has already withdrawn from the conversation thinking about her next line, subconsciously getting up to go back inside while blowing her nose to clear the path for the beloved white powder, her Queen Mab. Our coke binges are the only activity we share anymore, that and some lackluster, uninspired sex. She begs me to come in and do some lines with her. Like a fool I agree.

A week later, I left R___ for the very last time.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005


I received a very sad e-mail today. It was from a woman whose son's best-friend killed himself yesterday morning. He was only seventeen. She mentioned that I have commented on his blog as well as her son's blog in the past. At first I had no idea who this could be as she didn't leave a URL address or a blog title. However, upon a little research I deduced who he is. Chad Brandos commented on my blog once. I don't know if this is the right thing to do, but his blog address is http://blog.chadbrandos.com/.

Suicide is a strange thing. I went back and read some of his entries and there really isn't any indication life was all that bad for him. His last few entries he talked about his prom. There's even a picture of him, he's not a bad looking kid. He reminds me a lot of myself at that age. Akward, a little geeky, dealing with acne and shyness, into sci-fi, shit like that. What really gets me is his last entry posted on May 2, 2005, the entry title is "Goodnight" and it simply reads: "It’s time for sleep." The comments were turned off.

No mother or father should have to outlive their son.

UPDATE: I've confirmed Chad's passing, his obituary may be viewed HERE.

Words of War

Sometimes when I write, and the words struggle to escape (such as right now), I will often feel like a pagan god of old antiquity - so bored and so indifferent, each word I choose: a warrior, resplendent in the shiny helm of metaphor, breastplates and greaves crafted by the mighty hammer of theory, and razor sharp spears forged in the raging fires of the abstract. The vast, white computer screen is one of the great battlefields of lore. These champions wage war with each other, as they fiercely vie for my attentions and affections, to gain my notice and thereby insure their continued existence. Entire armies of brave words that represent a specific topic or idea of mine will clash with other armies that represent a radical reworking of said idea, or a contrasting idea altogether. The lines of words, always in perfect formation, will wage bloody holy war to hold their ground against the equally perfectly formed opposing armies. Sometimes specific warriors will rise up in the ranks and hold special favor in my heart. These words I will reward and guarantee optimal placement in their relative armies. I will usually appoint them as generals or commanders, or sometimes if the mood befits me...kings. Most other words, weak and unsure of their role in the grand scheme of things, mere pawns. Their lives are meaningless and I will often snuff them out of existence on a whim. All of these words, some confident and some weak, all fight for one common goal. Immortality. The winners of the great war will go on to be remembered in the annals of my writings, to be read and reflected upon by others. However, sometimes…when I am in a benevolent mood, I will simply erase all of the words with a swift click of the mouse. For I am a god, I created these words, these…warriors, each holding so much meaning, out of nothingness…out of thin air.

Monday, May 02, 2005

A Letter to Madame X

{an Introduction}

August 11, 1880. As though on the wisps of a billowy dream twas a clear starry night when we met the first time. I believe it was that risqué cafe on the outskirts of “Le Blvd de Desir” if such a place exists. However it's so real in the shadow of my memories. I was dressed in a top hat and tails, a man of distinction, hungry for praise, struggling for fame, and everything that comes with it. You were a woman of class and beauty. An aristocrats wife, bored with life, horny as a cat. You sauntered in seeking adventure in the steamy streets of the art district. The red lights outside the cafe reflecting off your ivory skin, so clean and undefiled; like a perfect, tempting statue carved by the hand of Michelangelo. I sit in the darkest corner of the bar sipping absinthe for “l’heure verte” is well at hand and I seek inspiration among the ruffians, riff-raff, and cosmopolitans, every now and then scribbling an idle idea or doodling a sketch into my notebook. As I reach for my pen, a darling thought dancing in my head, I spy you from across the room, your black eyes locked on mine…

February 20, 2002. Any club, in any city, I sit in a corner with friends, all of us tripping’ on E. The music elevates us to another world, anywhere but here ya know. Some girl I know rubs my bare chest and abs, lost in the rush of the touch that Ecstasy brings I lie on a couch adrift in space, periodically inhaling the Vicks and then holding my breath to the point I almost faint. Only the music I hear and the lights of the glow sticks I see, magnified by three and distorted by eight. Absorbed in the beat, I’m transported to another place, another time: a voyager of the mind, a pawn of fate, alone in the dark. And then I see you, across the room. You dance alone, Evian in hand. Casting a trance with the universal, liquid diction of movement. You see me watching you and stop for a moment and smile. A familiar smile that I can’t quite recall, but I swear I once loved. The knowing smile the walking dead share stating carnal desires, stating, no...screaming the knowing message we have nothing to lose but everything to gain, a night of passion, solace in sex only enhanced by Viagra and Ex, lost in each other's embrace. The smile of the lonely and disenchanted...