Monthly Archives: April 2013

Stand Next To Me

It’s been one of those days today. And by one of those days I mean a good day. At least for me. For Bill it’s not so good. Today was the day they moved his mother into a nursing home. The Alzheimer’s has gotten worse and control of her body has been steadily decreasing. Somehow his mother knew something was going on when Bill went to get her at his cousin’s apartment and his mother had what can be called a shit fit, literally. And it was up to Bill to clean it up so Bill had to strip to his skivvies to do the dirty work.

He got it done as far as I know and now she is ensconced in a home in Washington Heights/Inwood that caters to those whose main language is Spanish. The place is near where my dear friend Jet lived and died. I haven’t been to that area in a long time, perhaps not since I cleaned out Jet’s apartment. I’m sure it’s changed somewhat, more immigrants and more Yeshiva students. I expect that I will be going with Bill from time to time to visit his mother. And I am sure Bill’s cousin and her family are greatly relieved by the turn of events.

Last night Bill was driving a bus all over the place. I stayed home. No Juan, nothing else going on. Juan has a doppelganger, a bloke named Efrain. I met Efrain a few times over the past couple of years, the first time I saw him was when he was working at the local record shop and I almost went up to him thinking he was Juan to ask what he was doing there. I held my tongue.

I saw Efrain last summer trying to get a bunch of kids to sing along to the Stooges ‘I Wanna Be Your Dog’ and we did chat briefly while I sought electric refuge at the Guitar Bar Jr. in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Last night he posted a link to his music on the Facebook page he created for his music called ‘Rare Books’. I listened to the stream on the link and was greatly impressed. I sent him a message asking if the CD EP would be available at Guitar Bar Jr.

He replied that he would make it so. So gathering up my cushion change I was able to purchase his five song EP this afternoon. He was there with the great Karyn Kuhl who was finishing up her music for toddlers class. Karyn is also a great musician and I’ve known her for a long time, following her and the bands she’s been in since the late 1980’s. I told Efrain that I will spread the word via social media about his release and also found I was able to promote some of Karyn’s music as well. Everyone wins!

Efrain asked about my work at Maxwell’s in the past, not nowadays. I explained seeing bands like Nirvana and Smashing Pumpkins and thinking they sucked, which is probably why I would not do any good in an A&R position at a record label. That was probably not a good thing to say since it shows my track record at picking bands is not stellar at all.

Still I have been playing Rare Books all afternoon since I got it and also remembered a release Efrain made a few years ago, five songs that were in a red paper bag. He is quite a talented chap and perhaps in his best interest I should slag him off, thereby putting him on the path to success much like Nirvana and Smashing Pumpkins.








Here is the link to Rare Books at You could (and should) stream/buy it.

And here is Efrain singing the closing song on the EP and I dedicate it to my dear Bill.

My Brain is Hanging Upside Down

Watching Mad Men on TV, the main event is the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. I was in kindergarten and have no recollection at all of when it happened. I just looked it up and it was a Thursday, so I would have asleep by the time the news would have been broadcast. Like most days back then it is all a blur. Consciousness of the outside world, meaning the world that wasn’t Riverview Avenue or St. Francis de Sales school or the Romaine – Sinniger VFW Post, did not arrive really until maybe 1972. I did know of death, but it was more familial than anything else.

Before Mad Men I found myself to be more jazzy than anticipated. No plans were in the works, except for Juan suggesting a pint. I begged off pleading being at a cash disadvantage and Juan said he would pick up the tab. I was thinking Maxwell’s, Juan was thinking of The Pint, a gay bar in Jersey City. And not right over the border Jersey City but a few stops away on the Path train. Juan doesn’t know that gay bars are anathema to me and pleaded and texted to no avail.

He even played the guilt card and despite my atheism, I do have a catholic background riddled with guilt and it really has no effect on me at all. So when Juan texted that he was going to go home and stick his head in the oven, I asked if his mother’s oven was an electric oven. In the midst of all this Bill had come home after looking after his mother all day and was incredibly stressed from that as well as other things. Bill didn’t stay up that late and I wound up staying in and watching Mad Men.

The schedule at Maxwell’s is supposed to come out on Sunday nights. I called around midnight and there was no schedule sent in. I called again this afternoon and still no schedule. I can guess that since the next time a band is playing would be Thursday so I will probably be working then. I will call later on to find out what’s what.

The past couple of nights when working at Maxwell’s the jukebox has been untouched and someone’s iPod has been playing the songs. It certainly is a mind fuck to hear New Order sing True Faith, The Ramones with Bonzo Goes To Bitburg and Echo & the Bunnymen sing Lips Like Sugar (a crap song). It causes flashbacks to way back when, bar backing and cleaning glasses while singing along with Joey Ramone and talking with Eve, Carol and Steve Saporito as I worked alongside Martha Griffin and Declan.

Now Pedro is on my Facebook page trolling, calling friends ‘sheep’. He claims Obama voted “yes’ to invade both Afghanistan and Iraq. Pedro doesn’t know or refuses to acknowledge that Obama was a state senator in Illinois at the time and was vocal about his opposition to the Iraq invasion. But Pedro doesn’t let facts get in his way these days. I’m sure he is getting his info from Joe Farrah and his ilk. Which is too bad since I consider Pedro to be intelligent but with postings like that I begin to harbor doubts.

C’est la vie.











Everything Goes

Worked at Maxwell’s again last night and it’s true, no two nights are the same. Where last Saturday it seemed like a bus full of drunks were dropped off right outside- last night was quite the opposite. It was busy but not overwhelming and the only noisy people were a group of Yankee fans who quieted down once their alpha male showed up. Slow and steady seemed to be the rule last night.

The first two hours turned out to be akin to daycare. Families and baby strollers filled the majority of tables and once the kids had eaten a few of them were just running all over the place. They definitely raised the stress level in the restaurant and most everyone was grateful when they all left, roughly in the same time frame.

I recognized a few people from way back when but they didn’t remember me. It was two guys with their girlfriends or wives. One of the guys hadn’t changed much, just aged a bit. His friend used to be exceedingly handsome but man it was a reminder of how beauty can fade. He used to be as good looking as Robert Redford in his heyday, but now- not so much. Redford still has it, a bit craggy but he wears it well. Of course this guy from the past does not have the access to whatever resources Redford has.

And of course at 1:01AM I was out of there, lighting up a cigar for my walk home. The local Elk’s club were celebrating their 125th anniversary which explained the people strolling around in black tie and ball gowns and cloven feet and antlers. By the time I walked by after Maxwell’s things had calmed down and there were just some elk smoking outside their lodge.

I got home, Bill was fast asleep wearing his headphones so he did not hear anything at all. I wound up watching the last half of Rio Bravo before going to bed myself. I slept incredibly well and had a dream where Bill threw a ‘sex party’ for me which was unusual. Not getting into any detail at all here, but somehow Jimmy Seltzer was in it too, wearing a three piece suit. Never considered him sexy but there he was, full of sex appeal.

Bill was up before me this morning and as he was kissing me goodbye I told him about the ‘sex party’ dream. It was a great dream because it was all geared to things that turn me on. In the dream I walked into a somewhat dilapidated warehouse where I identified myself as a police officer (really). From what I gathered Bill was intrigued by my telling him about the dream, but then again I was semi awake and eager to get back to the dream, so I may have been projecting.

Heard from Juan this morning. He expressed a desire to have a few pints tonight and of course I am hesitant. One reason is Bill is looking after his mother today and he is quite stressed out and I promised him a hug when he gets home. The other reason is what I was discussing with one of the servers last night. Working in a service industry does do a number on one’s social life.

After having to serve and look after so many people, sometimes you’re resistant to going out and being one of those people and dealing with crowds and noise and whatnot. I would prefer a quiet night at home with Bill and of course Juan is invited to join us, but then again- Juan is probably bored with hanging out in this apartment. Too early to say what will happen, I can definitely use a nap though. And Juan doesn’t know what time he is working until and that doesn’t really help me with scheduling.






Brought to my attention via my great nephew earl and his mom Annemarie.

Not the Sporting News

Just got back to Hoboken with Bill after his performance of the National Anthem at CitiField before the New York Mets/Philadelphia Phillies game. Bill of course did an excellent job, he even had to compete with a jet taking off from nearby LaGuardia airport while singing the ‘o’er the land of the freeee’ part. He did well, but the jet’s engine had more power behind it. The crowd acknowledged Bill’s greatness and Bill shook the hands of soldiers and police officers as he left the field. I had hoped to record it, but the camera decided that the time was right to not being able to record.

I did have the foresight to record the sound check with the tablet but Bill and I thought the camera would work best. We were proven wrong but happy enough to have the sound check which did not have a competing jet flying overhead. And there will be a DVD from the New York Mets organization in a few weeks. That would be the one that was on the big screen which I was trying to feature along with Bill singing in the foreground. That was recorded in my head and you can’t go there. Sorry.

The sound check video is on Facebook and has been well received. At the game were a lot of Bill’s friends including his former co-workers and good old Moe (whom I always picture as looking like Gabe Pressman even though he doesn’t look like him at all) his former boss, the one I had exchanged emails with yesterday. We both ignored each other as my brother Frank with sister in law Elaine and their friends plus my niece Corinne and her beau Vic. All nice and pleasant. We weren’t sitting near them though so pleasantries were brief.

Our seats were by Bill’s dentist and his crew. Same level- nose bleeds. Last time I was that high up at a stadium was when I went on a day trip to Shea Stadium for a Mets/Pirates game. The only thing I remember is Willie Stargell’s bat breaking in half when he swing and hit the ball, the top half of the bat going flying into the stand and hitting someone. We were safe from where we were sitting, safe from bats and fly balls. I wasn’t so sure then about the jets flying a few hundred feet of the heads of members of the Lodi Boys Club.

We didn’t stay too long, despite it being a beautiful day today, it got cold once the sun went down. I almost ran around Hoboken with Juan but I had too much to do already and that was a smart choice. It was really just a swell day with a very easy ride home on public transportation. A bad night for the New York Mets with a 4-0 shut out from the Philadelphia Phillies. That was just on the 11:00 news. You know better than to come here looking for sports information.




Daft Punk – Get Lucky
This is a great song.

Rocky and Fumble

What a day. If there was a day to run into friends it would be today. But no one is around it seems. It started with a phone call from someone I used to work with, Dave who reminded me of someone I used to work around, Rocky. Dave is in the cigar business and was calling to shoot the shit as it were. As he talked about his adventures and misadventures I was walking to the bibliothèque. He knows Shlomo and Israel from the other cigar store and dished the dirt on them.

I had to get off the phone and told Dave that he should call me over the weekend, when my calling plan is not as restrictive as it is during the week. In fact anyone calling me would have the best chance of getting me on the weekends and that means you too Mr. Chasm.

I got home and found some emails from Bill and his former boss. It’s a mishegas to say the least and I replied that ‘Yeah what happened was uncool but Moe was a dick and karma’s a bitch.’ And just like when you close that door, that moment that you realize you just locked yourself out with the keys on the other side of the door, I realized after I hit the send button, the email went to Moe and not Bill, followed by a manic cackle from me that was tempered by regret at this fumble.

Moe responded soon enough, stating that he did not deserve to be called that and I said I was sorry. But it did weigh heavily on my conscience. All afternoon it weighed me down. So after roaming around Hoboken heavy hearted, I wrote once again to Moe, stating that what I wrote was not intended for him to read but once something is seen it can’t be unseen. Moe should understand that since he had been known to reply to ‘all’ on emails (throughout the company) that should only have been sent to the original recipient.

I closed with my sincere regret and sorrow that things ended the way they did. He replied that he was sorry they ended that way too. Where things stand, I don’t know. I do know that I won’t be seeing Moe at the Mets game tomorrow, now that this has happened. Then again, I wasn’t really planning on seeing him anyway. It would have been too awkward for all concerned and now it is really awkward.

Other than that, it is back to Maxwell’s for me again tonight. RoDa is working as well and I have something in mind that he might be interested in. Not going to say what it is right now, but it is something that came to me last night when I went to bed. Something that was so compelling that I got out of bed and wrote it down, sketched it down really, a germ of an idea. I just have to convince RoDa to use Google Drive, which is a great program that everyone should use.




Rocky & Fumble (with friends) from Los Bros Hernandez- Love & Rockets

Rocky & Fumble (with friends) from Los Bros Hernandez- Love & Rockets

Don’t Pass Me By

Standing Still

I am starting to be convinced that people in Hoboken say at least once a week, ‘I’d know them if I saw them’. It happened at the bibliothèque this afternoon and I know I say it often. It’s a small town, Hoboken and you see the same people over and over again and usually by the time you might be introduced to someone after a few years it gets awkward. And if you’re talking to someone about someone else, that is when the line ‘I’d know them if I see them’ comes into play.

It is a bright and sunny and warm day finally. Been out and about. No sign of Juan but Bill has been around. Didn’t do much except some grocery shopping and a stop at the bibliothèque. Tonight it’s work at Maxwell’s. My old pal, Rand is holding a lecture at the bibliothèque but since I have to work, I can’t go. I think it was scheduled for last year, a lecture about the famed comic book artist Jack Kirby, but was postponed because of the storm. Or maybe it was scheduled for earlier this year and postponed because of a snowstorm. I posted a flyer at Maxwell’s, hoping to get more people to attend.

I am still sending out resumes but not at the frequency that I used to send them out. It’s coming up on a year since I was let go from the cigar shack and being told constantly by employers and agencies that you’re not good enough can wear one’s spirit down. I’m still doing it though, a steadier job would be ideal. Until then I keep puttering along doing what I can.

Now it’s the anxiety of going back to work tonight. I really haven’t had much with regards to working at Maxwell’s but it’s been a few days since I last worked there so here it comes again. I’ve eaten and now I am killing time, enjoying a cigar before heading out. I just checked the website, no bands are playing so that means it will probably be a slow night and instead of working until midnight I will likely be out of there by 11:00.

Rand and Lisa stopped by with a friend and I sat them at a good table. Didn’t get much of a chance to talk to them but Rand’s lecture at the bibliothèque went well with about 40 people attending. I worked with Chloe and Jess and Rob was behind the bar. There were one or two schmucks (being kind here) and I was their first point of contact. One was a young man who was in a hurry and hurriedly said that he was in a hurry. I mentioned that it was obvious he was in a hurry and somehow he took some offense to that. Then he stood next to a speaker playing loud music and talked on his phone.

Towards the end, a squeaky wheel came in with three younger wheels. The squeaky wheel asked if they could sit at a table and drink and I said that they couldn’t. Then the squeaky wheel said they were going to eat and who was I to deny them a seat when the restaurant was nearly empty. Why the squeaky wheel said she had been coming to Maxwell’s for 30 years and never was denied a table. I mentioned that I worked there 30 years ago to which she stated her doubts since she had never seen me before.

She had been coming in with her kids for so long and doubted that I had worked there then. I know I had never seen her before, all nouveau riche with a voice that was the equivalent of nails on chalk board. That voice would have been remembered what with dogs cowering due to the shrillness. The timing couldn’t have been better since the squeaky wheel party came in just minutes before I left for the night.




Happy Go Lucky Me

Man Singing Rock

I am so over this winter weather. It’s spring and you would think it would be warmer and it is, but it’s in the low 40’s and damp out. Not very pleasant at all. Grey skies all day. I had lunch with Juan, just some pizza on Washington Street. He got a job at a place that I interviewed with. It’s a card shop and I walked by last month to drop off a resume. To my surprise it turned into an interview with me in torn jeans and smelling like cigars. The interview lasted about an hour, 45 minutes with the owner and 15 minutes with his wife.

I thought it went well but apparently it didn’t. I even suggested Chaz apply there which he did, but since Chaz and I are in that age group that no one wants anymore, they went with Juan who is half my age. Turnabout is fair play since I did snatch the Maxwell’s job from under Juan. Well probably Juan and several other applicants. I used my history with the principal players as well as the club itself. Juan might have been annoyed but I told him that he was the one that employers want these days. He can speak 3 languages and is in that desirable age group.

I did attempt to get Juan a bussing position, as a way to get his foot in the door at Maxwell’s but he was snatched up by a tony restaurant down the street. So he has 2 jobs, the card shop during the day and the restaurant at night. It’s not 7 days a week and the schedule is a jumble but he works it out somehow.

Once again a lot of laughs were had with Juan. I do love having him around. Bill enjoys him too and they both gang up on me when they’re together. I take consolation in the fact that it takes 2 of them to attack little old me. It may happen again tonight, Bill is out and about and Juan might stop by on his way home after work. I wouldn’t mind if it did happen again. I can dish it out and I can take it. So can the two of them, up to a point I reckon.

I stopped by the Guitar Bar and had a nice chat with Mr. Wonderful Jim Mastro. We talked about Bob Dylan coming to Hoboken in July which is very exciting. Unfortunately it will be a Friday night and I will likely have to work. I already made arrangements to have off this Friday to see Bill sing at CitiField and also the first week in May when I am attending a lecture by Brian Eno at Cooper Union.

I was definitely in Eno mode last night, watched a couple of documentaries on Brian Eno on YouTube and thought about having those 8 Eno albums re-autographed. I met Brian Eno at Skyline Studios when he was producing Laurie Anderson and asked if he wouldn’t mind signing his first four solo albums as well as his first four Ambient releases. Unfortunately he signed them with a thin sharpie which doesn’t really show his signature very well.

But after what happened in Boston during the marathon I suppose security will be tight and I don’t want to be ‘that guy’ carrying around a bunch of stuff which may or may not be signed. Still I am very excited at the prospect of hearing just what it is that Brian Eno will have to say. No matter what I am sure it will be interesting to say the least.

And my friend Jimmy Seltzer was briefly glimpsed on the Colbert Report.








I Touch Myself with Hands of Time

I think I was so caught up in winding down when I last posted that I neglected to mention my brother Brian and his wife Karen coming to Maxwell’s on Friday night. Friday was the better night anyhow and of course I focused on the ‘less than’ night. Brian and Karen were heading home after seeing ‘Not In It For My Health’ a movie about the late Levon Helm from the Band. Brian has been going to Woodstock once a month to see the shows at the Ramble and was upset when Levon passed away. Brian and I were lucky to see Levon perform on Elvis Costello’s Spectacle a few years ago.

They were dismayed at the price of parking in Manhattan, a nearby garage gouged their wallet but the universe seemed to even that out when they nabbed a spot right outside the door at Maxwell’s. It was a pleasant surprise to see them both and I was even more surprised at how much weight Brian had lost. Truly amazing and inspiring. He looks great and now wears a 36 waist in trousers. A new wardrobe is in order. It was great to see them both and I wish I would have been able to talk to them both but I was working and it was a bit busy.

They left a while later after and headed home and I continued sitting people at tables on the Lido Deck. And like I wrote, the next night was even busier. Yesterday was alright. I met up with Juan and ran around Hoboken trying to fax some documents on Bill’s behalf. Juan of course was so damn funny. He knows how to get under my skin and tickle my sense of humor. I hadn’t walk down the street in Hoboken laughing like I did in a long time, and that was thanks to Juan.

At a friends office I tried to use their fax machine to no avail but while we were there I sang a little bit of 10CC’s The Things We Do For Love, as I was doing this for Bill. Juan paid me no mind and I hoped I had the song on my Android but I didn’t. Juan played the latest Phoenix song on his iPhone which I thought was ‘meh’. I’m not much of a Phoenix fan. Last night when going to bed I turned the radio on and heard 10CC singing The Things We Do For Love.

I can’t say I was much of a Divinyls fan, but their singer Christina “Chrissy” Amphlett died after struggle with breast cancer and multiple sclerosis at age 53. And then after that came news that Richie Havens died this morning. I never saw Richie Havens and I remember getting a phone call from Julio while he was working at Maxwell’s telling me that Richie Havens was putting on an excellent show. I was too lazy in Weehawken to make it down to Hoboken.

I did work with his daughter Dahlia at Murdoch Magazines with Pedro and Harpy back in the 1980’s. She was a handful, and difficult to get along with sometimes. Some people doubted that she was Richie havens daughter but I believed her. Why else would someone say they were the daughter of Richie Havens if they weren’t?

Last night I dreamt that I had a Cadillac which I think was owned by the Crowley family, friends of my parents. It was parked in the parking lot of the VFW where my father was a member and I drove off in the Cadillac, past the Saddle Brook Diner where I slid while applying the brakes into the car in front of me. They didn’t stop so I guess it was alright. I was behind the other car in traffic on the bridge over the Saddle River which was surging underneath.

Sloppy (I Saw My Baby Gettin’)

Been working again at Maxwell’s. I’m enjoying it, fitting in more. Getting to know my co-workers. They seem to like me and I feel the same. Occasionally I play the geezer role, saying how certain bands were back in the day, or at least my perception of those bands.

Nirvana? Ugly, loud, looking like carnival workers. Smashing Pumpkins? Boring and annoying.
This is why a career in A&R would never work for me. I simply cannot pick ‘em.

Last night, Saturday was one of the strangest nights. Five bands, three of them related somehow. Bands usually get a free meal when they play Maxwell’s and sometimes the bands try to get their friends fed too. So some vigilance is required. A table for six became a table for eight, then a table for twelve. The situation was somewhat annoying but they were nice people. I, in geezer mode mentioned that the Pogues weren’t as difficult as these groups were.

And it was a sold out show.

A mixed crowd, all ages and I had never heard of any of these bands before. Two women, perhaps older than me came in for the show around 8:30. The band they wanted to see was playing at 10:30. I asked them if they wanted to eat first and they said they wanted to see the show and then eat. But once they knew the schedule that had changed and so I did a slight impromptu strip tease for them which they seemed to enjoy. They giggled and I sat them at a nearby table.

They behaved themselves. The same can’t be said of the two drunk couples, in one case the male could barely walk or finish a sentence. In the other case, the female could barely walk as her boyfriend held her hand like a leash, as she stumbled into other patrons trying to find where she was previously sitting. Of course both groups were cut off from any more drinking. This all happened in my last hour and I did see them out.

I spoke to the relatively sober half of each couple, the male’s girlfriend loudly stated that she called a taxi and asked if it was there yet. It wasn’t and I think she said that so I would leave her alone. I was only trying to make sure they were OK to get home safely. To the other couple, I asked the male if he’s taking care of his girlfriend, he’d better do more than just hold her hand.

He didn’t pay any mind to me and was holding her hand as she stumbled down the sidewalk about to hurl. Sloppy drunks.

I did reconnect with dear Andy Peters, former soundman at Maxwell’s and current soundman for the Feelies. Andy lives in Arizona and flies out to wherever the Feelies are playing since he is the only one they trust with their sound. They were supposed to be playing in Boston on Friday and since Boston was in lockdown, Andy went to Maxwell’s instead. Great to see him albeit fleetingly since everyone wanted a piece of him it seemed. No difference since I will see him again in a few months.

And then there was Brian Musikoff who I have orbited around for years without a proper introduction. Finally after years of nods and hand waving we chatted about our deceased pets, and specifically how I got to be John Ozed.

Hello Hialeah!

Straight men with bear beards. Nerds with piercings. Nerds with tattoos. Twenty something nerdy drunks.





The Wait

A grey day. It started out that way, even before the sun came up. I didn’t sleep so well since Bill was in some pain due to his back problems. I did what I could to help him out, and of course, every moan I heard made me wake up to check how he was doing. He does have some meds, but the prescription calls for no more than 3 every 24 hours and at 3:30 last night, he was half way through the first go round. I told him about some tricks that I use, sleeping on my back, a pillow between the knees.

I think I got about 4 hours of sleep. I also worked at Maxwell’s last night, off at 11:00 since it had slowed down considerably. Back on Friday and Saturday nights, with Friday being a double header, 2 different sets with 2 different bands. So many rumors going on around Maxwell’s- Is it closing? Is it moving? No one knows anything. I certainly don’t know anything about it yet I still get asked. Various friends have their take on it and they proceed to tell me which does not help me out at all.

Today was busy once I got myself started. I heard from Juan as well. After feeling on the outs with him last week, today I found myself ironing his khakis and his shirt since he was running late and about to start a new job at a restaurant in Hoboken. It’s obviously not Maxwell’s since pressed clothes were required. He also went to Mr. L’s for a quick haircut since he felt he needed one. I know he wanted to make a good impression at the new gig and I was happy to help him out.

Now it is cold and rainy and I’ve got nothing to do. I just made some penne, pesto and chicken and that was good. Bill is running around Manhattan taking care of his mother and doing things to further his career. Good night for TV. I did watch the first episode of Hannibal, but decided not to watch it any more. Too gruesome and without the style and finesse from Silence of the Lambs. I’ll aim for comedies that are on tonight.

And I will hear all about how Juan’s evening went since his clothes are here and he’ll need to pick up his skinny jeans with his skinny genes.





Poetry, Man

You bring the sadness
I’ll bring the madness
Together we’ll have a real fine time

We’ll carry our sorrow
Back into tomorrow
And none will be the wiser

until that day
which we held at bay
will be easily forgotten

for as to you
this much is true
as it is for me.

I wrote that last night. Juan was hoping to come by but I didn’t respond until too late so he stayed home. It doesn’t really mean anything, just having a go at some poetry.

It’s been a low key yet busy kind of day. Laundry and grocery and another night back at Maxwell’s.

I was going to take a nap but I lay in bed and thought about some staffing agencies Fred Nealon emailed me about, which are “more like places to collect staph infections since they’re generally useless” to Fred Nealon.

Staffmark- Used to be decent, not so much anymore. C-

Green Key Resources- Crap company at 32nd and Park Avenue. F

Bayview Consulting- More crap, circle jerks a specialty. D

Millennium Group- with a name like that, they probably had more of an impact in the 1990’s. Now archaic. D

Bacharach Group- People working in an office that is decaying with each keystroke. C.

Addison Group- Ineffectual website. Really, what’s the point? D

Core Staffing Services- Featuring Bobby Russo. Half hearted promises, zero leads. D

Office Team- Had a counselor who told me they wanted to work at the position they were telling me about. Did that mean it was a great job, or that Office Team was a crap to work for? C-

These are not the only agencies I dealt with. Just the ones that rose to the top through the muck.

All the best to you in your search my friend,
Fred Nealon





$2.00 Off

Well today has been an improvement over yesterday. My niece and her husband returned to New Jersey safe and sound after the Boston Marathon. They were safe yesterday and I would like to think they are safer at home. The whole family is relieved and also saddened by what happened.

My niece posted a photograph of herself and two running friends, right past the finish line. It was hard to believe that within a few minutes after that the bombs went off. Their friends all made it safely home as far as I know, and that is by judging by what their Facebook pages said.

I slept fairly well last night and woke up in good spirits. Bill was up and doing his thing and soon after I showered and had my coffee a text from Juan came through, asking if he could stop by. Of course he could stop by. Bill didn’t mind and neither did I.

I did have some errands to run beforehand so Juan would have to accompany me on my rounds. It wasn’t so bad. One was a trip to the grocery store and the rest were on Washington Street.

I ran into Julio yesterday before all the shit went down and he asked me if I still had his pocket sized bicycle pump. We had a good talk. He’s a new guy, more mature. Good to see him one on one since when it with the wife and kid they all vie for my attention. I can take them all one at a time, but three on one can be overwhelming, sometimes joyfully so.

And Juan was pretty funny this afternoon. Where he gets his cutting remarks from, I don’t know. He did grumble when I asked him to hold a cigar when I ran into a store. I reassured him that it would only make him look ‘butch’.

We came back home, Bill getting ready to head out while Juan and I watched Archer which we had on the DVR. And then just like that, my two favorite guys headed out. Juan to go get some lunch and Bill off to Manhattan.

I was fine with it, not that I had any say in the matter. Julio was also in Manhattan so I didn’t see him today. Still I have the bicycle pump should he call or text me again. I’ll be around.






Sic Vita Est

A sad and terrifying day. Again.

Not much can be said right now.

My niece Meghan is safe as is her husband Rob who was coaching her running the Boston Marathon with a time of 3:17:59.

A great time in more ways than one.
Should she have finished later she may have been killed or injured by the 2 bombs exploding.

Meghan and Rob will be coming home tomorrow. Hopefully their friends are safe as well.

This is the awful reality that exists today.

The latest news, 2 people killed (including an 8 year old) and over 100 injured.
Nothing much else is known at this moment.

I just hope Meghan and Rob (& everyone else) makes it home safely.

PS- Yes I know this goes on daily in other parts of the world and that the US has blood on it’s hands sometimes.

Presorted Standard

Well it’s a Sunday. I’m enjoying the new method of posting, whenever I want, not chained to the 500 words a day paradigm. Been there, done that for over 7 years. A change was needed for sure. And it’s been creatively liberating I think. Of course you might think otherwise but since only a handful of you ever comment, I will just have to guess that that handful are simpatico somewhat.

Things have been going on, mostly good. Been working at Maxwell’s, wearing the same clothes I wore way back when. People still come in, last night the restaurant was packed and I had a few groups of people waiting about 20 minutes for a table. One of the remarked that they were fine with the wait since at another restaurant the wait was an hour and a half.

People have been generally behaving, no need to bounce though I did have to have some words with a customer who was holding the men’s room door open. A very stupid man who didn’t seem that much younger than me, you’d think he had sense but then again getting older does not necessarily mean getting any smarter. And when alcohol enters the picture common sense isn’t so common.

Both Friday night and Saturday night I came home, tired enough to fall asleep or so I thought. Friday night was the worst, not much sleep at all, tossing and turning and waking up more tired than I was when I went to bed. Saturday was supposed to be better, I took an alprazolam but all it did was make me feel ambivalent about not being able to sleep properly. It could be that we need a new bed and for that, the timing is terribly off.

I am back to some weekend things that I did last year and I’m enjoying it. I never knew that being a transplant courier could be so rewarding and exciting, not to mention the satisfaction of the ones relieving the transplant. Yesterday was my return to the roller skates and after the previous night’s bout of insomnia it wasn’t as insurmountable as I had thought.

Last night as I waited for the alprazolam to kick in I watched the Coachella streaming footage. New Order was on and they were pretty good with a new bass player and 2nd guitarist alongside Barney, Steven and Gillian. I watched for a few numbers including Isolation from the Joy Division days. Isolation is one of the few Joy Division songs I like. I figured out my relationship with Joy Division the other day, I just never really liked Ian Curtis’ voice. The music is fine but I do prefer New Order and don’t mind Barney singing the odd Joy Division song, but Ian Curtis? No thanks.

Lots of friends love Joy Division but to them I keep my dislike a secret. I make no secret of my dislike for Antony Hegarty’s singing and can only think of one song he sang that I actually like, and that is the cover of Bob Dylan’s ‘I Was Young When I Left Home’.

A Sunday night at home, good TV tonight. I’m satisfied. Hopefully sleep will follow.








Bounce That

Today has been an awfully craptacular day. Cold and rainy and if I was able to sleep, I would have likely spent the day in bed. But things being what they are I did not do that and went about my day as usual. I worked last night at Maxwell’s and it was busy. RoDa was managing and the staff was good. As I had written previously, time goes faster when you’re busy and it was busy enough.

And last night I had done something I hadn’t done in a long time. I bounced. I had to physically throw someone out of the club. I saw the bloke earlier having a drink and didn’t pay him much attention until he moved, or rather stumbled past the bar, hanging onto the staircase covering and headed to the backroom.

I wasn’t sure if anyone else working had seen him but I sure did and made my move, grabbing him before he headed into the back room. He didn’t put up much of a fight but I know if I didn’t hang onto him he would have tried to go to the back again. Dan, a burly bearish type was bar backing asked if I had it under control and I shrugged that I thought I did.

My plan was to sit the guy down, give him some water or coffee and sober him up somewhat before throwing him out. That was how it used to be. I remembered being with Steve Saporito in Boston for a show by The Fall and seeing the club toss and inebriated patron out into the cold February winter. We remarked that that’s not the Maxwell’s way, that Mary Fallon would have given the guy some food or coffee before sending him out.

Nowadays, it’s just tossing the bloke outside and it is no longer the bar’s problem. So with Dan watching along with waiter Carlos, I set the bloke up outside leaning on a railing before he went traipsing out into the street, zigzagging alongside parked cars. It definitely earned some respect from the bartender who high fived me on my return.

Soon it was midnight and time to go home. I stood outside and proceeded to light up a cigar. One of the band members that played saw me and stated that he wished he had a cigar since they had played a good set. As he commented on the smell of the cigar he told me that I looked cool, that I had a certain style which made me giggle a bit. He was earnest and I walked home happily puffing away and feeling good from such a compliment.

Tonight is a Hoboken bands night which means I will probably know a few people, more than usual. It could be a good thing. I just won’t know until I get there. The weather might factor in towards tonight’s show, but then again Hobokeners won’t have far to go and will probably come out anyway to cheer on their friends and family.



Bounce That

A Big ‘W’

Well today has been a day in the doldrums. Not much to be enthusiastic about. Not even sure where this is going if it goes anywhere. Just so much bad news out there. Pissed at Obama, pissed at my friends. Pissed at the situation I find myself in.

Still I have to get it together for work tonight. It shouldn’t be a problem, excepting the stage fright that occurs between now and then. I did go out today, walked around Hoboken. Sat and read more of the Barney Hoskyns book on the Band. I know where it’s going and I know how it ends. Maybe I should quit while I am ahead. I do have an Oliver Sacks book that is on loan from the bibliothèque.

I returned two DVD’s which should have been returned yesterday but didn’t. One was Moonrise Kingdom which I saw with Annemarie in the cinema, and at home with Bill a few weeks ago. Juan mentioned that he wanted to see it so I got it and then Juan did not come over. I hung onto it in the hope that he would and the way things stand now, who knows if he’s ever coming by.

I also got into a heated comment discussion with Pedro in which he picked up on my anger and suggested I call him. I declined by saying ‘later’. I won’t call him and deleted all my comments on his wall. I also deleted some things I sent to Juan’s wall. In the parlance of Pedro and Juan as well as the kids today, I am ‘the wrong nigga to fuck with’.

Things are looking up but then again from my vantage point, looking at the bottom of my shoes could be seen as looking up. I am so disappointed in Obama with the ruse of cutting Social Security and Medicaid. I know the line that since he is including closing tax loopholes for the rich the idiotic republicans won’t go for it, but the mere thought of putting Social Security and Medicaid on the table is troublesome. I can safely say that I do not think I will support anyone running for office again, at least not in the manner that I supported Obama. And forget about the Republican Party. They are just shit.

About Richard Klatt. Richie, as he was known in my neighborhood was the younger brother of Marge Williams, a wonderful woman who lived a few doors down from my family in Lodi. Richie was a bit femme and his obvious sexuality was unspoken. He wore wigs and smoked a pipe and loved the Supremes and was in the Navy before working for the post office.

He stopped by the house after my mother passed away and I remarked once he left ‘there goes my role model’ which got a laugh from Frank, Annemarie and Brian. I do hope Richie didn’t hear that and take offence. I know that it is life, people come and go. Doesn’t necessarily bring a smile to the face though.
I was going to post this last night but obviously did not. Went to work last night, the restaurant was quite slow. I was lucky enough to miss major rain storms. I just got to Maxwell’s when the sky opened up, therefore insuring that people would not be going out for dinner. There were no bands playing so it was all restaurant.

After 3 hours it seemed like it was not going to get any better. I headed home and within minutes of sitting down with Bill who just got in a few minutes before me the skies opened up again with lots of lightning, some close enough that we could hear the air sizzle with electricity. It was intense.

I heard from Juan again which was good. He’s got his problems which I know nothing about. I have a full plate so it’s just as well that I know nothing about them.

Now I am making dinner and plan on heating it up before I head back to work. And tonight I will stay no matter how slow it is. There are bands playing so that should account for people showing up. Let’s hope so. Time goes faster when you’re busy.



Sex Pistols- Satellite

A Secret Life

Juan and Pedro. The day ended with one and started with another. Mainly texting or online. Who knows where it goes. I admit a mistake I made with Juan, expressing displeasure with his on again off again boyfriend. I should have realized that doing so would only reinforce his feelings for this principal player and with Juan’s feelings of being unloved and alone while getting messages from this principal who treated him like shit and then does an about face and claims that he misses Juan. I told Juan that if he went back then he could count me out of our friendship.

You see, I got a phone call from Juan a month ago, frantic and in tears along with some very incriminating photos. Of course I was worried and did what I could to make him feel better, but there was something missing from his life and it was either the principal player or some absence of chemicals in his system. Perhaps it was both. I was disappointed and he picked up on that via text. So Juan may be out. Who knows if I will see him again? Who knows if he will stay in Leonardo with Principal Mike and Tina Crawfish or live in Hudson County and commute? I don’t. I can’t care, I have my own problems.

And then there is Pedro. Pedro I have known since Juan was just a sperm and an egg. I posted a petition online against something that President Obama was going to do and Pedro jumped on it, ‘surprised’ that I was against Obama’s plan. You would think that knowing me for decades he would figure out that I do speak up and out on issues that concern me and the people I care for as well as what I think is best for the country. But no, he seemed to have forgotten that aspect of my personality.

It seemed he was gloating albeit half assed gloating. While he was too busy sniffing Boehner’s scrotum he doesn’t seem to know that that scrotum and the party behind it has done nothing at all while Obama has been in the oval office. And if he does know, he seems fine with it. If it’s attacking or blocking Obama then he’s good with it. He fully supported Bush and his policies including invading sovereign nations. Like most pseudo tea baggers he can’t see much further than behind his nose.

I don’t know. To me it doesn’t seem to be a good idea to alienate the one who holds the secrets. And I do hold their secrets. Juan is ambivalent to the secrets and Pedro seems to be ignorant or forgetful of those secrets. I’m not giving them up though. Not without a reason.

Other than that it was an exceptional day, summer like temperatures around 80º . Pleasant enough to go out and finish an issue of the New Yorker and continuing to read the Barney Hoskyns book about the Band. So that’s what I did while smoking a cigar.
sinatra park panorama 4.9.2013





A Secret Life

And Richard Klatt is dead.

Stage Fright

“It’s my 30th birthday…” said Rachel, the sister in law of the bartender. Rachel is from Charlotte, South Carolina. “Happy birthday Rachel.” “thank you. It feels different being 30 and all…”
“30’s nothing” I tell her and ask her and her friend to guess my age.
“42”. That was nice to hear and their faces dropped when I told them that I was 50. They didn’t ask for proof so they could think I was putting them on, they were tipsy and celebratory.

I am old enough to be the father of several of these twenty somethings. It’s humorous.
They’re not like Juan though. Juan does his own thing and doesn’t care what other people think mostly.
I wrote ‘mostly’, since no matter what, people do care what others think of them.
Juan doesn’t even give a shit about what I think of him. Off to Leonardo and the Principal Crawfish for him it is.

I worked Saturday night and Rand came by and RoDa was managing so that made for a good night. It was busy enough and as usual the stage fright or anxiety I get before going to work dissipated. It was a good staff and fairly crowded. At one point as I was winding my way through the crowd (I mangled the nail on my left hand and needed to get nail clippers from my bag) I tried to maneuver my way around a short woman. She was trying to maneuver out of my way and I wound up grabbing her breast.

I immediately apologized and she accepted the apology, knowing that it was purely an accident. I’m sure I blushed and when I returned to my spot on the floor, I mentioned to RoDa and Rand that I just grabbed a woman’s breast and that it felt like a bag of sand. Rand got the joke immediately and explained to RoDa that it was a line from the 40 Year Old Virgin. For me it was the first and probably last time I’ve ever touched a woman’s breast. I’m pretty sure I was bottle fed when I was a baby so I didn’t even see my mother’s breasts at feeding time.

I worked the whole shift and came home and tried watching Saturday Night Live with Melissa McCarthy as the host. It looked funny and decided to hold off from watching it so I could see it with Bill and or, Juan. Once again I slept really well and woke up refreshed. Bill was driving from Atlantic City and after that headed to check in on his mother. My anxiety kicked in again as the day progressed, I ran a few errands but mainly stayed indoors until it was time to go.

I was scheduled to work at 6:00 so I had dinner around 5:00. I walked up Washington Street and started seating people almost immediately after getting to Maxwell’s. There is a Sunday evening special which goes from 5:00 to 8:00 and there were a few families taking advantage of the three course meal plan. Bands were scheduled in the back room and the restaurant was busy but not excessively busy. Allie stopped by for dinner with his friend Kevin. Allie is an old friend from Maxwell’s and it was good to see him, albeit worrisome since he was walking with a cane.

And Allie was let go from his job last week as well. He’s older than Bill and myself, but has a steadier head on his shoulders so he’s probably prepared for this type of thing. Bob Bert also came in for dinner and it was cool to have a few words with him. I actually had a dream that had Bob Bert on a beach, a few feet away from Brian Jones and Keith Richards. I told Bob about that and he said it would have been cool if it were true. But Brian Jones died in 1969 and Bob being a couple of years older than me would have been an adolescent then. Of course I am reading too much into that.

Bob left and soon Allie and Kevin did too. I made friends with a German couple who were there to see some American rock and roll. Nice couple, they were headed to Florida for the rest of their holiday and enjoyed Maxwell’s very much. I consider myself the cruise director onboard the SS Maxwell’s, perhaps from watching Love Boat too many times when I was growing up- but I feel so Lauren Tewes when I am at the door.

Today was the day that spring finally arrived and after doing laundry, I took a walk around Hoboken, winding up by the river where I sat and continued reading ‘Across the Great Divide’, Barney Hoskyns book about the Band. I don’t really care for the band, I just enjoy Barney’s writing. It has gotten me to listen to their music, primarily their well-known songs, which is better than nothing I suppose.





A night before

North Korea threatening nuclear war.
Economy in the shitter.
Obama putting Social Security up for cuts.
Tonight’s top story: Basketball coach fired after recording showing coach being an asshole to his team.

I posted the above last night on my Facebook page. I figured most of my friends would know where I was coming from, literally. But not Eric London. Apparently I became friends with Eric London somewhere down the line, he is friends with a few other gay bloggers I know. Where Eric is from, and I guess its Miami Beach North Korea was the top story. In the NY Metropolitan area, the Rutgers coach being fired grabbed the headlines.

So Eric asked where it was that I was talking about and I replied, ‘OK Eric, WCBS Channel 2 NYC’. I figured that was that but to my surprise Eric unfriended me. I’m not upset, but I couldn’t help but wonder why. It could be because I am not a twink, but in any event I wound up blocking him from my Facebook page. I have to admit some confusion looking at his page and seeing a picture of some twinks as the profile but his age was something slightly above my own. I got over it.

Last night Bill and I went to see Gabriel Iglesias at Radio City Music Hall. It was Bill’s Christmas present and he loves Gabriel Iglesias. I enjoy Gabriel as well though not as much as Bill. We headed to the Path train and walked down Washington Street, past young Tim busking with his friends outside a bank. They saw me coming and started singing my name as Bill was chatting on his phone next to me. I was flattered and threw some change in their box. Tim was playing an event on Pier A this morning and I told him I would see them.

Bill and I got on a train, cops in the first car, and cops at every station that we went through. Something must have been up but neither of us had any idea. We hurriedly strolled up Sixth Avenue to Radio City, Bill have two Ratso Rizzo encounters with cars as we walked in the crosswalk with the light. I was pretty mellow and did my best to calm Bill’s protective mood. It was a beautiful evening as we strolled, following a couple who did not want to be late for the show either.

We got in, Ozomatli were on stage. I saw Ozomatli in the 1990’s in Central Park while I was working at Right Track Recording. They were great then and they were great last night. It was an abbreviated set, being the musical opening act for a comedy review. Ozomatli provide the music for the Gabriel Iglesias show on Comedy Central, Stand Up Revolution. I was surprised to find that before Gabriel Iglesias came on there would be four or five other comics doing short sets before an intermission preceding Gabriel Iglesias. They were mostly alright. I did not like one particular comic though, he said if you go to a comedy club you should not be offended by what is said on stage. Then he said ‘faggot’ correcting himself and then saying ‘Sorry, Homo American’. He was an asshole and I am glad I don’t remember his name. Bill would, but he’s not home.

It was a good show, Bill getting so excited that a couple of times he stood up and yelled. I wasn’t worried or bothered by this since there were quite a few others doing the same. Gabriel said something about Puerto Ricans and that what got Bill cheering. It was a sold out show, very mixed crowd and all in all an enjoyable evening except for that asshole.

We made it home a little after midnight. Bill headed to bed after setting things up for today, I followed a while later, happy to have two nights of uninterrupted sleep. It wasn’t easy last night falling asleep at first since my neighbors are quite noisy with their love making. Neighbor Deborah mentioned that she could hear them a few weeks ago, and last night I finally heard them. Despite that, once I fell asleep, I slept soundly. Really makes a difference it does.




Gabriel Iglesias somewhere in there...

Gabriel Iglesias somewhere in there…

Move On

When I work at Maxwell’s since I stand by the door it can get chilly with this spring weather, so I have been wearing a suit jacket. You know, that ‘new wave’ look with a button in my lapel. One jacket has a button of a cutout of John Lennon’s head from the back cover of ‘Meet the Beatles’ and for the other jacket I sometimes wear I’ve decided to go to that bottom drawer and pick out a button that hasn’t seen the light of day in years.

I have some buttons from famous bands and buttons from bands that never quite made it that far. One of the bands has a logo which is a silhouette of a man with a briefcase next to him. The band was called the Angry Young Salesman. I decided to take a pass and wore another Beatle button which was actually from something else which was lost throughout the years.

As I stood at Maxwell’s asking people if they were there for dinner a couple not too much older than me walked in. I asked if they were having dinner and they were, and they also planned on seeing the show. Sometimes I have to direct them to where the back room is but they said they knew. It turns out that the gent had played Maxwell’s back in the day so they had a good idea where to go.

I told this man and woman that I worked way back then and asked what the name of the band was. Much to my surprise the band was Angry Young Salesman. It was a cosmic goose from the universe and I am sure it was the first of many, or at least another in a long line of cosmic giggles.

Bill surprised me by showing up and having dinner at Maxwell’s. He just showed up and was standing in the doorway when I was taken by surprise. He said it was 30 seconds before I knew he was there. I got him a good table, not too noisy with a view of both the street and the rest of the dining room. I told his server that he was my partner and to take good care of him. Later for dessert I was able to have a spoonful of his chocolate mousse.

It started to slow down around 9:00 and by 10:00 it did not seem like anyone else was coming in for dinner so with the OK of the management I went home. Bill was home already and getting his things ready for a day of bus driving. I flitted about and soon went to bed. I stayed up later than usual hoping that that would help me sleep but it didn’t. Bill had to get up early, 2:30 AM to start his day after a few hours of sleep.

I lay there trying to sleep, not heeding my own advice as Bill got himself ready in the dark. I told him he could turn on the lights since I was not asleep but he didn’t. I just tossed and turned after Bill left unable to get any deep sleep.

It promised to be a crap day since sleep was nearly unattainable and I am not sure if I ever got it. I ‘woke up’ thinking of my birthday party picnic in September and was upset with the people whose landmark birthday parties I attended at restaurants, backyards and halls who didn’t show up at my picnic party. It was definitely not a good way to start the day but after the insomnia a few hours before, but it did not really matter, since nothing would have been good enough.

Slept crappy, woke up bitter. I’m better now.





Crawling from the Wreckage

It’s another cold spring day. It was nice and spring like the other day, but the past few days it’s still feeling like winter. Bill is out and about today and I am killing time before going to work tonight. And of course that involves stage fright. I already had lunch so the feelings of despair from low blood sugar are not in effect right now. And I plan to head up to work with a banana and maybe a chocolate bar with raspberries. Banana for energy, chocolate raspberry bar as a treat or a reward.

Last night Juan came over and we watched things I had recorded, mainly Kristen Schall’s stand up show from Comedy Central, which to my eyes was reminiscent of an Andy Kaufman or Steve Martin routine from the last 1970’s, leaving the audience hanging and confused for a spell. I enjoy a challenge like that and from watching Andy Kaufman or Steve Martin back then, I think some of my sense of humor derives from that sort of thing. Maybe it was performance art, before such a label existed. Anyway- it was OK, not mind blowing and probably not worth seeing more than once.

Juan requested to watch Archer which I recorded and I was about to show it when Bill came home, full of energy and excitement after a production meeting with some directors. He was going on about the reading he just had and how things are going to have to be trimmed down to a more suitable running time than what they had last night. I am supportive and do my best to reel him in when he talks about some elaborate plans. Last night I told him that one of the ideas would be good for the video rather than the stage.

That took Bill aback somewhat and I explained like how Spaulding Grey had his videos come from his stage performances, he could do the same when and if a video or movie is made from his own one man show. Just thinking ahead in a positive manner. After a while we watched Archer and then it was time for Juan to go home before the Cliffside elevator shut down for the night. Yeah, I will explain that some other time.

Juan split, Bill went to bed and I took half an alprazolam so I could get a decent night’s sleep. And I did sleep well. Bill was already up and dressed by the time I wandered through the apartment.




It’s Not Unusual

Monday night at Maxwell’s. Yes I am working there. Circle of life etc. Good timing though considering Bill’s life has been tumultuous lately. It’s all good on our end thankyouverymuch, but his solo side has had some upheaval which you will have to read on his blog, which he doesn’t have.

So I am back at Maxwell’s. It was thanks to Juan inadvertently. A couple of weeks ago he asked if I knew anyone at Maxwell’s. I asked why and he mentioned a posting on Craig’s List. On a halfhearted lark perhaps, I sent in my resume and stated directly to the owners that they know me, I know them. I know Hoboken and I know Maxwell’s history (which is timely thanks to Rolling Stone’s recent listing of Maxwell’s being the #3 club in the United States).

Todd called me up a week later while Juan was here making it awkward. I explained to Juan that with his youth, he is the one employers are looking for, geezers like me get nary a glance. Plus Juan is working at Carlo’s Bakery where the Cake Boss reality show is filmed. He claimed it was no big deal and it offered him many more opportunities to make fun of me.

I started last week and worked over the weekend. I am on staff now and I am enjoying it. But like my time spent at the cigar shack, there is a stage fright involved. I figured it out, that each time is a performance in front of different people each time, and that is why I get a little bit anxious. But this is Maxwell’s- a place I have known for decades and have worked one of those decades there in some capacity.

And there are faces from the past that have been popping up, saying hello and how they’re happy to see me. Sometimes I remember their names, sometimes I don’t. But they know me, that’s for sure. I think I handle things well with a handshake and a smile and then they shuffle off or I do.

Last night I worked and in the front room instead of the back room was a band, Swingadelic, a group that I have known of for quite some time but never saw them until then. They were very good, a bit loud since the eight plus horn players music bounced off the tin ceiling. I was out of there a little bit after 11:00 which was OK. I was supposed to work until midnight but there really was no need for that extra hour.

I stayed up until 2:30 mostly talking with Bill. I hoped that staying up later would help with the sleep that has been evading me as of late but it did not work out that way. I hope that maybe tonight I will make up for the lost sleep. Maybe.



after the flood

after the flood


Chances Are

Saturday night at Maxwells I see Bob Bert waiting for a bus to headed to Manhattan. I’ve been spending a lot more time at Maxwell’s lately, more than I have in quite a while. Perhaps it is the circle of life which if taken literally means I am about to die. I certainly hope not and the song Circle of Life is not one of Elton John’s songs that I like. But here it is, I’m inside watching Bob Bert wait for a bus outside. He must have caught the bus when I looked askance since he wasn’t there anymore when I looked again.

It was an interesting night at Maxwell’s. Someone was having a birthday gathering with about 75 of their closest friends. It was getting crowded that tables were moved into the basement to make room for the people who were standing around and drinking instead of sitting down and eating. I’m glad I was able to help out and if things go smoothly (and I don’t see why they wouldn’t) I will be helping out more and more.

Standing in the restaurant and seating people if they wanted to have some dinner. I found that standing and holding menus shows that I am working there and if I greet people without menus the people think I’m some strange geezer at the door.

And geezer at the door was a position I did hold at Maxwell’s for a few years, usually on Thursday nights though whatever night was needed I was more or less, there. I did find myself being a relic of sorts when the staff heard that I used to work there back in the day, nights when Nirvana played on a Thursday night, or Smashing Pumpkins on the same bill with Blood Oranges. Crazy lineups.

I didn’t care much for those bands then, thought Nirvana did get in my good graces. I preferred the Minutemen playing to those Sub Pop bands. Never really got into the Seattle sounds though my roommate at the time, Kevin loved all that stuff like Tad and Mudhoney. For me, the guys were gross and the music sounded like sludge. Half the staff seemed to like the Sub Pop bands and the other half thought the same as me.

I also saw something that sort of made sense the other night at Maxwell’s. At one of the tables sat a group of four bears, you know the hirsute bearded gay guys. One of them was rather flirty with me which I thought was a compliment. A few feet away stood a few patrons, hirsute bearded straight guys. I figured it out that once again, straight men taking their cues from gay men, this time bear culture which may have fed the bearded Fleet Foxes type of music these days. Guys that look like their grandfathers were in the Band.

I found that amusing. Also amusing is the fact that according to Rolling Stone magazine, Maxwell’s is the number 3 rock and roll club in the United States. With publicity like that chances are that I will be needed to help out there more often. And access to free shows as well is nice.