It was another beautiful day today and it truly felt like spring so that was nice.
Last night I worked at Maxwell’s. And as usual it had gotten fairly dead by 11:00 which meant it was better to go home than stand around and do nothing for that last hour. Bill had stopped by earlier for a burger and his waitress Chloe thought the world of him. So did the other waitress Jessica but Chloe was the main one. It was good to have him there if only for a little while and he was in good spirits.
I came home last night and there was Bill overturning so many things. He spent part of last night most of the morning looking for paperwork for his mother. That is when he wasn’t distracted by a documentary on Rowdy Roddy Piper or Star Trek Voyager. He finally found it and was going to do what he had to do tomorrow. I mentioned that it might be better to get it over with today rather than run around frantic before he drives a bus tomorrow.
He actually listened to me and left. It was good to have him out of the apartment because with the two of us here at the same time all the time, it does get troublesome or at least has the potential to be that way. I wandered around Hoboken, stopped by the Guitar Bar to see Jim Mastro who wasn’t in. I raved about Rare Books to the guy who was there and since he wasn’t what you would call engaging, I left and wound up by the really big supermarket.
Juan was interesting the other day. He texted me about how his last boyfriend might have been ‘the one’. All I could do was remind Juan of the things that he sent me, the shitty things this boyfriend did. And to read Juan’s side of it, the guy is a total douche bag drug addict. But love is not only blind, it’s incoherent and I saw that Juan had friended this thing once again on Facebook. Not my problem and all I will do is offer a shoulder once again when Juan needs something to cry on.
And Pedro is going full blown teabagger. He has gotten so bad that I removed one comment from a post I made (& I never do that) and changed the settings on his newsfeed coming in from All Posts to Only Important. Not the end of the world but I don’t need his constant barrage of negativity.
Other than that, there’s not much else to write about, for now.
Released 30 years ago today: New Order- Power, Corruption & Lies
It’s very strange, how if I don’t eat, meaning skipping a meal- my spirits just plunge into despair. It happened today and it was very bad. Last night I saw RoDa and it was good. We talked as he worked at Maxwell’s. I helped out some as he worked and since we are both fans of Jean Michel Basquiat it was planned to go see an exhibition in Chelsea that ends this week. RoDa and I have a habit of trying to see shows and postponing over and over and before you know it the exhibition is over.
RoDa is a bigger Basquiat fan than I am and it seemed imperative thatw e go today. Hundreds of other people had the same idea apparently. I met up with RoDa with his wife and kids and we all headed onto the Path train. It was good that RoDa brought them though I think a lot of the art was over their heads and they wound up going through the exhibition leaving RoDa and I to check out each and every painting. It was very crowded and that meant inching along.
After the show we met up on the sidewalk. The kids were hungry and wanted McDonald’s and I was tired and wanted to take a nap. The cement floors of the gallery and the slow pace did not help my back at all, neither did helping out at Maxwell’s last night which was also standing around for a spell.
Let’s face it, I am getting old. RoDa understood my desire to go home so he and his family went one way in search of the golden arches and I went towards the Path train. When I entered the station I could feel the air hitting my face meaning a train was about to arrive. I was lucky and nabbed a seat and sat reading Barney Hoskyn’s Across the Great Divide, his book about the Band. I sat next to a man and woman who were discussing how books are read and how information is gathered from them.
I got to Hoboken and my spirits crashed. I just wanted to get home. I called Annemarie who was happy and funny and me on the other end just emotionally flat lining. She hit the nail on the head, I skipped a meal, low blood sugar equals crasherama. So I made a quick peanut butter and jelly sandwich which I washed down with some lemonade and then tried to take a nap. The food helped but the sugar in the lemonade did not help the napping. Instead of an hour like I hoped I got about 20 minutes.
But I do feel better and I will likely follow my sister’s advice and graze throughout the day, healthily rather than depend on the 3 meal plan I’ve been following. And now a cup of coffee since I do have things I have to do tonight.
RoDa and daughter
And rest in peace Phil Ramone. I worked with Phil in the 1990’s at Skyline Studios and Right Track Recording. Great guy and quite a character, very funny.
Juan came by last night. Bill was on his desk top Mac and getting into his proper frame of mind for working on his script. That meant singing along to smooth jazz and some lite house music. I didn’t mind and neither did Juan. We watched The History Boys which Juan had never seen before. He enjoyed it but remarked that he would like to watch a comedy with a happy ending. He was right. The last two movies we watched don’t exactly end well. Seeking a Friend for the End of the World ended just like that title says.
And the History Boys while funny and witty and deep, has an unfortunate turn of events that Juan said before it happened, that he hopes what he thought was going to happen, doesn’t. Like I said he liked it and I made a point of getting something funny, guaranteed laughs so I picked up Zack & Miri Make a Porno, which I had seen before and found to be sweet and funny. Plus there is some nudity which should make a 25 year old young man happy.
And of course today I took the troll bait and wound up defending Yoko Ono in a few forums. Yesterday would have been John & Yoko’s 44th anniversary and to mark the occasion she posted an image which I am posting below. It is not a new photo, it was the cover of her 1981 album Season of Glass and I recall seeing it then and being upset but understanding the concept behind it. Yes it’s gruesome but not as gruesome as watching the man you love being torn apart by bullets in the night.
I am always astounded by the people that hate Yoko. I always liked her after seeing her sing Who Has Seen the Wind on the Mike Douglas Show way back when. Such vitriol and racism comes forth, people wishing that Lennon’s killer had murdered Yoko as well. And also there is the whole switching “L’s” for “R’s” and vice versa in an attempt to write the way Japanese people speak English. I shouldn’t be surprised since I did see a midnight showing of Let It be back in the day and people would hiss and boo whenever Yoko was on screen.
I have to learn to just ignore it and walk away. I’m not going to change anyone’s mind, though I do hope that I would be able to open someone’s eyes. I mean I have done it before via this here blog so I suppose I hold out hope for the best.
And now I am writing this, not checking up on my emails. Jeopardy is on and I am kicking ass. Bill always says I should go on the show, but I am not so sure about that. Easy enough sitting in Hoboken, but to start the process? I know Harpy has done it in quite an altered state and my brother Frank also attempted to try out. Me with my self-doubt and total lack of confidence? Oh that would work out just fine. Perhaps I should try some trivia contests in town before I fall down that rabbit hole.
It’s Valentine’s Day and it’s been a good one so far. Woke up to find a heart shaped box full of Godiva chocolates on my computer. An hour or so later I found a video of Bill on my tablet, stating his love for me. Nice to have a record of that. I responded with a video of my own which hopefully won’t wind up on Tumblr. And I’ve been busy sharing videos and posts on Facebook stating my undying love for Bill. I’ve enjoyed it and so did a few of our friends so it was nice it worked out.
Last night Bill and I had a talk which was overdue. Things were said and we cleared the air. Then he went to bed. Bill hoped that the Lawn Hors d’œuvre SUV (aka the Olivia Show) episode that he was a part of a few weeks ago was going to be broadcast last night but halfway through he realized it wasn’t so he went to bed. I watched the whole thing, then watched The Last Word and the news before going to bed myself where I slept quite soundly. I woke up with Bill kissing me goodbye once again.
There was a plan to go to lunch today but I mentioned that we should use the gift certificate that we got in 2010 from Jim and Meghan and Lily and Ruby for our civil union for dinner tonight. I called the restaurant and the certificate was still good. We’re going to Helmer’s right across the street from Maxwell’s. I’ve been in the Hoboken area since 1984 and I have never even set foot in the restaurant though I have certainly walked by it in various states of mind and body several times. It should be interesting to say the least.
I spent some time messaging with my brother Brian last night. It started with his posting the Isley Brothers singing Work to Do. I remarked that the first time I heard the song was when he was driving back from the Parkway Lanes with my mother on a Monday night and the version I heard was by the Average White Band. I did not hear the Isley Brother’s original until a few years later. Somehow the messaging turned into growing up in Lodi under the watchful eye of Sauron, also known as Dad.
How Brian and I weren’t the best students but having us both sit at the dining room table for two hours under the premise of ‘doing homework’. Even if the homework was easy and done in 15 minutes, there would still be one hour and forty five minutes to fill. And mere feet away, Dad with his fading hearing would have the TV blaring. Nothing was achieved except for Dad’s hearing getting worse. Our grades certainly did not improve and for me all it did was foster my dislike of education in general. I would eventually copy by hand pages of an encyclopedia to pass the time.
Brian learned how not to raise his kids though so that was good.
Today’s cold and damp entry is brought to you courtesy of the local bibliothèque. It’s a cold and damp day here in Hoboken and on days like this the bibliothèque is in full swing. Everybody and their brother seems to be here, staying dry and crowding around whatever computer terminals are available.
I am on the second floor in the reference department, on the tablet that I got for Christmas from Bill. No more chairs designed by De Sade in front of computers that were originally rejected by Mattel for Intellivision back in the day. No, a quiet corner is all I need.
‘Why am I here and not home?’ you ask. I was climbing the walls and it had been a while since I had done any volunteering at the bibliothèque. Apparently there’s been a surplus of volunteers so my being here to do such a thing has been redundant. And I am fine with that, it’s good to see so many supporting the library.
So it is in a quiet corner in which I sit. I don’t think it will be quiet much longer since the schools are letting out and quite a number of them will be here for homework, or hook ups with other students.
And there was no text from Shlomo today which is an amazing thing. He’s been so needy lately and I have to admit that he did piss me off yesterday with him making a mess and leaving it behind for someone to clean up. I at least extinguished the candle but I refuse to wash out his cocktail glasses or empty the ashtrays which he and his Zionist hoodlum friends left in the lounge which is currently being used for storage or a sukkah.
Last night was a nice time spent with Bill. He was asleep the other night when I came home so it was good we were both awake. He suggested watching a screener of Argo which he got from the Film Actors Guild. I do want to see it but I wasn’t into it last night. I turned on a Pioneers of Television show on PBS which I knew he would enjoy greatly. And he did, many laughs were had. I love finding things that Bill will like and I like it even more when he is into it.
I suppose we will watch Argo tonight. I hope it will be better than SIlver Linings Playbook. The only thing worth watching in that was Jennifer Lawrence. Judging by the Golden Globes, Argo is a good movie. We have passes to see Lincoln next week, the night before Bill has to submit his ballot for the Film Actors Guild, so I guess we will be cutting it close.
Lincoln is really the only movie we want to see, despite knowing how it ends. Maybe that will be the perfect time to tell Bill of my Fjord’s Theater adventure. An adventure I created but do not remember at all, I just know the story of what happened that day in 1964.
An hour or so later: I was just reading an article online about Dick Gregory. The website had a family filter on it so his name in the headline was spelled D*** Gregory.
It was very similar to what happened a few years ago about track star Tyson Gay. The conservative religious websites had defaults set to change the word gay to homosexual, so the name was posted as Tyson Homosexual.
Off the top of my head
The Madonna singer in chat mode
and he’s off again for another appearance of the Madonna singer
Well it’s the Dorothy Parker/Samuel Beckett steel cage death match. Miss ‘I hate having to write but love having written’ vs. Mr. ‘I can’t go on- I’ll go on’. That’s basically where I am at right now. I told Bill a little while ago that I don’t think I will be writing tonight and here I am doing just that, writing. Crazier things have happened I can tell you, but this isn’t one of those. Whether or not this entry makes it to 500 words remains to be seen. So far it is not looking too good but I have rallied in the past and will do so again.
Let’s see when I was last doing this here blog thing, I had just gotten back from helping Shlomo out at the cigar shop. Oddly enough that is what I did today. Shlomo has been a bit under the weather and sent an urgent text to me this morning. He did order the cigars I asked for and would I mind working for him today at the cigar shop, in effect making my cigar request no charge. How could I refuse an offer like that? And what would the GZA have to say about that?
Monday I also helped out at the cigar shop. I had a feeling that Shlomo would need some help. Israel and Brandon were not to be found and so stopping by on Monday afternoon I was corralled into helping Shlomo. I was out of there by 4:30 and came home to find Bill getting himself together for a trip out to Bergen County. I was starving and looking forward to the trip, seeing my family and stuffing myself with food. It was infinitely better than being with some guys who did their best to avoid expectant spouses and nervous gym working cousins on Christmas Eve.
And once we landed in Bergen County, all was well. Brothers and their wives and children and their boyfriend/girlfriend were all assembled and it made for a lovely time, and the phone was handed around once again so that everyone could have a word with Annemarie. After a few hours that went by too fleetingly we all headed back to our homes. It was all very pleasant and the buildup and the hype takes so much time and effort and it is all over much too soon. A ride back past the house I grew up in was nice, the neighborhood all decorated nicely.
Back home Bill and I exchanged gifts and went to bed fairly soon. It had been a long day and now it was basically over. Christmas day, Bill was up before me and made coffee. I showered and looked forward to doing not much at all, but Bill wanted to shoot a video with a Christmas message. So we trooped out to Wally World and I recorded Bill driving a very large vehicle and him making a very nice, very funny holiday greeting. It’s on his Facebook wall if you’re so inclined.
That’s it. I said I wasn’t going to write and here I did write. Hope you had a good Christmas!
There it is, The Smoke Shop
You can smell like Antonio Banderas
or you can smell like Jennifer Aniston…
while watching Daniel Stern in A Christmas Story 2…
So I watched the 12.12.12 Concert for victims of Hurricane Sandy. Can’t help but compare it to the Concert for New York from 2001, but that was then and this is now. Different circumstances this time. And this time I was living in Hoboken. Similar vibes though and a hearty round of applause for the firemen from the Rockaways and Breezy Point. It was definitely based around NY though NJ was mentioned several times and Connecticut a few times. It was enjoyable despite the fact there was no David Bowie (retired) nor Elton John (touring) on stage last night.
It started out with Bruce Springsteen which was a surprise since he is a top shelf act. He was entertaining and it was funny to watch Jon Bon Jovi on stage singing Born to Run as the last song of the set. I did wonder if Bon Jovi asked Bruce for advice on child rearing since Bon Jovi’s daughter was busted for heroin possession in college a few weeks ago. Clarence Clemmons nephew did a pretty good job on sax, filling in the big man’s big shoes. Once again the E Street Band were commendable and a force of nature, better than Sandy.
Bruce was followed by Roger Waters who was for me, as boring as ever. Little or no charisma involved with him. Good band I suppose though I am not a Pink Floyd fan and was nonplussed. And I am also not a Pearl Jam fan so I couldn’t care less when Eddie Vedder came out and sang Comfortably Numb. I much preferred the Scissor Sisters version of Comfortably Numb, but they weren’t asked to play so it doesn’t matter what I think. A meeting of the bores if you ask me but the audience didn’t seem to mind.
Adam Sandler came out (not that way) with Paul Shaffer on piano for a mild butchering of Leonard Cohen’s Halleujah. Comedy genius of the highest order. That was snark. It was over quickly and painlessly so that was good. One song- on and off. At that point I left point A (the cigar shop) and headed to point B (home). That meant I missed Bon Jovi (the band) and Bruce Springsteen coming out for a song with them. I didn’t see it so I didn’t know what it was.
I hoped I would miss the awful Eric Clapton but as I got home there he was being adored and singing whatever it was he sang. Bill was home when I walked in and was surprised to see me watching Eric Clapton, since Bill knows how I feel about him. Clapton was followed by the Rolling Stones who did a very short set, maybe three (two) songs ‘Has Anyone Seen My Baby’ and ‘Jumping Jack Flash’. They were quickly off the stage and were followed by Alicia Keys.
I don’t care much for Alicia Keys. She’s alright I guess but her music leaves me cold, but I think of her highly, more than I think of Eric Clapton. To my surprise she quieted down the Garden and the audience seemed to really enjoy her. I was impressed by her playing and her presence. Still I wouldn’t rush out and buy her music.
The Who followed and were much better than I anticipated. Roger Daltrey’s voice seemed a bit haggard, Pete Townshend didn’t have much to sing if at all. Keith Moon sang more than Townshend and he’s been dead since the late 1970’s. Apparently the censors on the broadcast channels were asleep at the switch and missed Daltrey’s ‘Who the fuck are you’. I am not sure if they got Townshend telling everyone to go get a fucking beer.
But they were impressive, perhaps the best of the lot and I almost regret not seeing them for free last weekend in Newark. I did see them back in 1979 and I found them boring but then again I was having a major anxiety attack due to the threat of being outed by my brother Brian earlier that night. That’s another story for another time.
Kanye West came out reminded everyone that it wasn’t all about classic rock, the kids- they do like their hip hop. He was underwhelming and in his leather kilt, looked out of place. The audience seemed to like him and he probably would have done better with a live band rather than a DJ and triggered tracks and samples. His set went on way too long and was probably even longer than Paul McCartney’s.
Billy Joel came out and did his thing. He looks like someone’s uncle who is an accountant from Long Island. His singing voice was good, his talking voice was craggy. He did what was expected of him and of course the audience ate it up. I was reminded of my former classmate, John Nesselt, whom I used to argue with about who was better, Billy Joel or Elton John. Last night Billy Joel won by default.
Chris Martin from Coldplay came out and did a song or two, including a duet with Michael Stipe on Losing My Religion. Chris Martin seemed genuinely thrilled to be there and remarked that if everyone donated to the cause, they might be able to match the ages of the rock stars backstage.
Then out came Paul McCartney with his crackerjack band. They opened with Helter Skelter which still has negative Manson connotations. I know my sister in law was a bit perturbed by Macca’s opening selection, I thought it was great. I was dreading Yesterday or Hey Jude, not that they’re bad songs but just a bit on the side of overplayed. The big thing that everyone was a buzz about was Krist Novoselic, Dave Grohl and Pat Smear with Macca.
They played a song that might be titled Cut Me Some Slack and I enjoyed it. I enjoyed the sounds coming out of Paul’s guitar thing. It looked like a cigar box guitar or an electric ukulele and some tasty noises were coming out of it. That was it, one song with the remnants of Nirvana, then Paul did I Got a Feeling and Live and Let Die. No Hey Jude, Yesterday, Long and Winding Road or Let It Be. Then he gave the stage over to a bunch of firemen and people affected by Sandy as Alicia Keys sang Empire State of Mind.
It certainly ran over and we had recorded it on the DVR, then hastily adding some more time to the recording before that too ran out and I couldn’t be arsed to record anymore. I figure it will all be out in one form or another and I will catch it then, even though I’ve seen it already.
The 12/12/12: A Concert for Sandy Relief Set List
Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band
“Land of Hope and Dreams”
“My City of Ruins” > “Jersey Girl”
“Born to Run” (with Jon Bon Jovi)
“In the Flesh”
“Another Brick in the Wall (Part 2)”
“Another Brick in the Wall (Part 3)”
“Us and Them”
“Comfortably Numb” (with Eddie Vedder)
“It’s My Life”
“Wanted Dead or Alive”
“Who Says You Can’t Go Home” (with Bruce Springsteen)
“Livin’ on a Prayer”
“Nobody Love You When You’re Down and Out”
“Got to Get Better in a Little While”
Let’s face it, there is not a lot that I like these days or at least willing to put up with. Patience is low and I am decidedly anti-social somewhat. I am content to stay in and today was a day for that. Rain and snow most of the day made for a good time staying indoors and avoiding most everyone. The only time I went out was to go to the supermarket which is a true test of patience. I passed the test and came home without anyone’s blood on my hands.
And last night was peculiar too. Being alone most of the day without interacting with anyone made me very happy to see Bill climbing the stairs. I had the door open and I had a nice smile on my face which was genuine since I was happy to see him. He questioned the smile and figured something was up or something went wrong. It was neither. I put away his groceries and took his back pack off of him. It was a bit later than Bill said he was going to be coming home and he still needed to eat dinner.
I correctly guessed he was having pasta and suggested that he use the pot that I always use to make pasta in, rather than the sauce pan that he uses and spills over into the stove. In fact I mentioned that he should think of the pot as water. You see, for the longest time, Bill avoided drinking water. He preferred Vitamin water or Gatorade or Ginger Ale. Anything but water. I always told him he should drink water but I always got the brush off.
Then time goes by and Bill is diagnosed as being a borderline diabetic and the doctor recommends drinking lots of water. I hold off on the ‘I Told You So’ mantra. And so, in saying that he should think of the pot to make pasta in as me telling him about water, I hear ‘I don’t want to think about it’. And that effectively shut me down. Haven’t really spoken to him since then, nothing besides the good night kiss. No wishing that he sleep well. I don’t even remember him leaving this morning but he did make a pot of coffee which was nice.
And there has been no contact between us all day. No texts, no emails. He did send a link for a job, stating that it wouldn’t hurt and he was right about that, it wouldn’t hurt. In fact, it didn’t hurt. I followed the link and sent in my resume. Despite all that I’ve been in a good mood. I guess it could be because I haven’t had much contact with anyone today. I’m cool with it. I don’t think any jobs will be coming my way, not until January at least. Anything offered would be seasonal and end in January anyhow.
I am happy to say I did not feed any trolls today. I figured I would let the militiamen play with themselves, no need for me to sink down to their levels. I have got better things to do with my time, I think. I did clear a whole bunch of crap off my computer. A lot of things. Doubles, triples. Everything had to go. And since I did that the computer seems to be acting alright. No warnings or anything like that. I was up until 2:00 in the morning, checking and deleting stuff anyhow. There is still a number fo things to get rid of but for now everything seems to be hunky dory. Borderline
It’s a Friday today. Which is good I guess, yet another day for me. Resumes going out, Bill has been helping out on that front. An extra pair of eyes helps. I was up and out pretty early today, Hoboken still on the disabled list. And with the really big supermarket still under repair, it’s the smaller and now more crowded supermarket that has been my destination lately. The rumors are that the big supermarket won’t open for a few weeks if at all. They were inundated with a lot of water and who knows, word is their lease was up and they won’t be renewing.
That would be too bad, not just for consumers like myself but it would also put a couple of hundred people out of work. Their location is not a good one and in the past year I’ve heard they’ve been flooded three times. There are new piles of debris on the sidewalks and streets, and a lot of basement apartments are being totally gutted. The day laborers are keeping busy moving rubbish and remnants of people’s lives into overflowing dumpsters. It does weigh on you and makes me appreciate that despite my losing some things, other people lost everything.
Last night I watched the Rolling Stones documentary Crossfire Hurricane. It was very good, great footage of the Stones from the early days. It definitely looked like riots going on during the shows, both boys and girls charging the stage just to get a grab at Brian or Mick or Keith. No one really seemed to go after Charlie or Bill, probably to their relief. And who knew besides Mick Taylor that he left due to a developing heroin habit? I thought it was because of him not be able to get any songs on the albums, but he said it himself.
Bill came home after that, he was helping his mother. His cousin had to be somewhere so Bill stepped in. And since the Path train is still inoperable from Hoboken to Manhattan he needed to take the bus which is usually fine by him, but last night at 11:00 there were a few hundred people on a line that was snaking around itself from the south terminal to the north terminal. NJ Transit decided to go back to their normal schedule despite the other transportation (besides the ferry which stops around 11:00) down for the count.
Still Bill was able to get home midway through the Colbert Report and after some soup he was off to bed. And it being a Friday his is driving a bus. Not to Atlantic City but rather he is being trained on the route to Foxwoods or Mohegan Sun which is exciting for Bill. I am not looking forward to another bad night of sleep but I will do what I can and not get too worked up about it. Tomorrow will be here soon enough and I’ll be able to see my man once again. Even if he’s just sleeping in bed it will be good to have him home for a few hours. 10 Fool To Cry
I was feeling a bit unwell earlier but I am feeling alright now, a few naps helped but going outside was pushing it. You see, after all the fun and beauty on Saturday, it spilled over into Sunday though with a bit of the old catholic nonsense of having to pay for your fun. There was no drinking at the picnic (in a public park, a no no) and nothing illicit was consumed as far as I know. It was all clean and nice and good and sweet, especially the malomars and madeleines and chocolate mousse face cake. There was pasta salad and crudité and they were packaged up nicely and brought home after being out in the open air for a few hours. Perhaps that was what did me in this morning, having been grazing on the pasta salad and the crudité most of the day. Either way I woke up feeling quite unwell in my lower regions.
I woke up earlier than usual today, not from feeling ill, just felt it was time to get up. After a shower, some coffee and cereal- that’s when I started feeling funny. And not ‘haha’ funny, more like ‘what the fuck is that all about’ funny. Took it easy and went back to sleep. I did have to go to the bibliothèque and the supermarket and that was my only time out.
At the bibliothèque was Mike Cecchini from up the block. We walked out together and since he had to go to the supermarket we did that as well. I was sociable but not at the top of my game and soon was climbing up the four flights of stairs to my bed. I slept once again for about a half hour and got out. I was able to do laundry this morning and it’s been slowly drying. Not much else to write about. It’s supposed to rain tomorrow and that would have been the better day to be unwell since the weather looks so pleasant today. But I didn’t have any say in the matter so I have to take it as it comes. That will be about it for today’s entry.
I am surprised that I wrote this much. Earlier I had a temperature of 97.5 and now it is at 98.0 so I guess I am on the mend, but that is all I am writing today. I am definitely running on a low flame.
Not a good day at all. In fact it basically started last night. Bill was on his way home and I made plans to meet him at the Path train. I also had tentative plans to see a friend do an acoustic set here in Hoboken and when I asked another friend if they were going, they said no. So I didn’t feel like going by myself plus this friend told me that lately all these people doing short acoustic sets around town have been playing some really depressing songs. I didn’t want to hear that so I just killed time at home.
My niece and I texted about going down the shore today and her itinerary involved being on the beach between 9 and 10 this morning. That meant I would have to get up early, catch a train with a beach chair and an umbrella and be out in Bergen County by 7:30. I wasn’t into it and told her that it was too early for me, but to have a good time. With that being taken care of I put it out of my mind and practiced my guitar a bit before heading out to the Path station.
It was a beautiful night with a beautiful moon and I enjoyed a cigar taking some lunar snapshots as I walked towards the Path train. Of course I was early and sat on a bench by the station steps and just waited with a few other folk. A couple of trains deposited people and eventually Bill made his appearance. I walked over and gave him a kiss and a hug and we walked along River Street towards home. Bill was full of details about his trip. This cousin, that aunt, his uncle, their kid, which of course was to be expected.
And also every little detail about the flight, the seat he sat in as well as the train trip and the near dilemma he had with his ticket on his smartphone which was rapidly losing power. When I heard him about to go off on a tangent I did my best to steer the conversation back to where it should be going rather than a discussion on the most minute details. Of course I had things to say but I wasn’t going to have my chance to say them, at least not while walking down the street.
After all my day was almost comical with the key dilemma. I got my chance to tell Bill about my day as we were walking through the apartment door. The GOP convention was on and that was stressing me out somewhat and I was curious to find out what happened when Clint Eastwood took the podium. We came home and Willard Romney was making his speech with quite an unenthusiastic audience. I knew I could find the Eastwood story online so that was no big deal.
Bill had settled in as we watched and we were both glad it was over since we wanted to watch the 11:00 news. Then came the Facebook messages. A message about why wasn’t I going to the beach with my niece and her husband. My answer was not satisfactory and the pressure was on. I explained that it was too early and read that there was no such thing as being too early. At 11:45 I was too stressed and took a Xanax since I knew if I didn’t I would more than likely be dwelling on the fact that I wasn’t going down the shore even though I had reconciled myself to the fact that I wasn’t going hours earlier.
Bill went to bed and all I had was a bad feeling and the Xanax was not working fast enough. It did kick in and soon I was fast asleep in bed. I barely remember Bill saying goodbye as he went to work this morning and as bad as I felt last night, I felt even worse this morning. The depression has lasted all day. Not because I wasn’t going down the shore, but the undue pressure that was applied to me last night. I know they meant well, but I was resigned to the fact that I was not going and the attempt of being pressured into it was not helping.
Chaz came by once again this morning with a bagel and more photos to scan. I decided to put them under his Facebook page rather than mine since they are his pictures and I’m not in most of them. It was the smart thing to do. I can’t say I was good company though and Chaz headed out about 90 minutes later. I ate my bagel and headed out to go busking. And busking was a bust. I was not into it at all, not feeling very outgoing and more than likely scowling as I strummed. After about 45 minutes I was done and headed back home.
I didn’t want to have anything to do with people at all, and that included Facebook which I am not on today. No pics, no posts, no sharing of memes and photos and whatever. And now that I am done with this entry, I am done for the day. No plans until tomorrow and that is more than fine with me. The ringer on my phone is off so if anyone calls me, I won’t hear it. I just want to be left alone and have this day put to rest as soon as possible.
Oh I should eat but it seems I am too busy feeding the trolls on YouTube. So proud they are stuffing their faces with greasy chicken all in the name of free speech. Yes the CEO of that chicken joint is against same sex marriage. Big whoop. He’s entitled to that. And he is also entitled to donating money to anti LGBT groups like Exodus.
For those playing at home, Exodus is a quasi-religious organization that claims to heal lesbians and gay men from their sexuality. They don’t come through the process as heterosexual, they come out in a deeper closet, repressing their sexuality and sometimes marrying a person of the opposite sex who is also deeply closeted and equally repressed.
And it is not just here that Exodus does their foul underhanded deeds. Exodus big wigs have been travelling to Uganda and giving speeches to leaders there. A lot of African countries are virulently anti-gay, and having these ‘esteemed United States representatives’ telling them how gays can be cured, inflame the beliefs of these leaders when the methods of Exodus (including hitting a pillow with a tennis racquet and screaming ‘Daddy didn’t love me.’ FOR REAL) don’t work, these leaders feel that they should kill all the gays.
In various African legislatures and parliaments, Kill the Gays bills have gone up and almost part of these countries constitutions. Lesbians have been repeatedly raped in order to ‘get the gay out of them’. Gay men have been maimed and killed. Lives have to be lived in secret. This is what the main sticking point against the chicken master is about. And a good many people in this country (though the numbers get reduced every time someone comes out of the closet) want LGBT to go back and stay in the closet.
It’s not too far a guess to assume that these same people would like people of color to go back to the back of the bus. And that is a troubling statement since some people of color despise LGBT more than non-people of color. Some people of color seem to think that civil rights only pertain to them. Same sex marriage is a civil matter, therefore a civil rights issue. It has nothing to do with bullshit religion. Marriage is a civil right. The great leader Martin Luther King’s widow, Coretta Scott King came out for same sex rights and that offended a good number of congregates in those churches.
I bet if Malcolm X were alive he would be standing alongside LGBT standing for their rights. Even the latest Prime Minister of Jamaica (notoriously homophobic country) has been making inroads regarding same sex rights. It’s a long process, a long road ahead. We go over one hill and see many more hills ahead that we all have to climb.
It takes a lot I suppose to step out of one’s shoes and step into another’s. See how that other person sees things, experience what they go through. It’s not easy to do and I try to do myself but occasionally I react badly. Then hopefully I regain some sense of composure and remember to do step into those shoes. It’s unfortunate that some people can’t even conceive of someone else’s shoes.
Just woke up from a Xanap. It was good and longer than the 15 minute allotment I’d been having lately. This was deep and restful. Glad I did it. In fact I probably could have slept a lot longer if I did not have the foresight to set the online alarm clock two rooms away. The online alarm clock sounds like a slippery rubber puppy yapping and makes one get out of bed before it piddles on the floor. No dreams to recollect from the Xanap. It was quite a muggy day and I enjoyed the sleep in the air conditioned room.
Last night I did go out, and I was a few minutes before the storm, the derecho that was fast approaching. iTunes came out with a new Beatles collection, 14 songs that I of course had already, so I made my own version of Tomorrow Never Knows. I listened to that on my iPod on my way and had an umbrella as well as my camera stashed away in my bag as I strolled down Washington Street with my head held high. The show was scheduled to be in Sinatra Park by the Hudson River but was moved prior.
It was moved to a pub directly across the street from the Guitar Bar which Mr. Wonderful Jim Mastro had posted on Facebook. Still some people are not plugged in all the time like I usually am, and someone posted signs at Sinatra Park directing them of the relocation. With ominous skies approaching from the west, I threw the cigar I was smoking into a puddle and walked into the pub. It was in a side room, not the main part of the bar and I was directed through a door which had put me onto the makeshift stage.
Nimbly stepping over chords and wires I found Jim Mastro and asked him where Meghan was. It turned out she was not coming. She did not want the girls, Lily & Ruby hanging out in a pub, not that hanging out in a bar or a pub or a VFW Post ever did anything wrong for me. I was disappointed and went out to the sidewalk to call Meghan. She was on the other line and after explaining why she wasn’t there told me she would call me back. I stood at the sidewalk and took some pictures of the storm clouds.
The Guitar Bar All Stars started with a rip roaring version of Ring of Fire by Johnny Cash. I thought it was a little loud and went outside for a minute, after saying hello to my friend Karyn. It wasn’t raining yet and when I came back in Karyn was talking to someone else and I saw another friend, Alice who sometimes plays bass in Karyn’s band. I bought myself another Corona and bought one for Alice as well.
I did have a quick chat with Alice who asked if I was working. When I told her my situation, she remembered and wondered if there was a way to make money from this here blog, “Perhaps some advertising?” I remarked that this here blog is too personal, and the only adverts I could hope to attract would be pharmaceutical companies pushing antidepressants. Alice laughed. It would have been nice to talk to the both of them, Karyn and Alice, but it was too noisy and after the third song I bid my goodbyes.
Of course as soon as I opened the door I saw the deluge. I was off to meet Bill and luckily I had the umbrella. I rearranged my shoulder bag and opened the umbrella and headed out. The skies were full of lightning and the streets and sidewalks were rapidly getting flooded. I was a little worried about being struck by a falling tree branch rather than lightning though that was in the back of my mind. I wisely wore boots instead of sneakers so my feet were relatively dry.
The shorts I was wearing did become see through, so my black boxer briefs were plainly visible. I made it home as the storm raged, and immediately got out of my wet clothes, the boots drying out in the hallway. And that was it basically. It would have been a different, more fun scene at Sinatra Park but since we were at the mercy of the elements there was nothing else that could be done.
Today as dry once again and muggy as all hell. I had a few errands to run and after that was done I walked over to the river and did some busking. The toddlers love to stop by and watching me play, saying hello and doing whatever dances toddlers do under the watchful eyes of their guardians. Not too many people out today though I did make about $1.45, which when added to what I made the other day surpasses whatever monies I had made when I first started busking a few years ago.
Then I came home and had a Xanap which brings us to the beginning of this here blog. Currently watching the Olympic opening ceremonies with Bill and enjoying them. Former roommate Kevin has been a bit pissy about the whole thing, snarky comments on Facebook. I remember going to clubs and making fun of people who were dancing and having a good time. Then eventually I realized they were having a much better time than I was as I sat there making fun of people that were having the fun that I wasn’t having. Though I’m not dancing I am having more fun than Kevin it seems.
It is hot. It has been hot the past week or so. This is nothing new. All across the US it has been hot in record temperatures. Still there are fools who do not believe in climate change and they also do not believe it is manmade. No, with all the cars and trucks on the roads, with environmental protection regulations reduced or discarded, with the rain forests being depleted, there is no way that climate change could be manmade.
Fucking idiots. In the winter when there is a record paralyzing snow storm these jackasses usually say ‘how about that global warming?’, not realizing that as they say that in 20 degree cold, on the other side of the planet forest fires and dust storms are all the rage. I mean just look at the cloud formations. Some crazy shapes or dark and violent storms appearing out of nowhere, unforeseen by meteorologists knocking out power for a million people in the Maryland/Virginia/Washington DC area.
It was in this heat that I went out this afternoon. It was the last day to feed Lois and Fred’s cat and I was more than happy to do it. For a moment I was happy to at least get out of the apartment. I did the same thing yesterday, but once on the street I noticed I did not use deodorant which left me feeling a bit overripe. No worries, I just went home after feline feeding and applied the deodorant and sweated some more in the apartment.
Bill was around, napping for a little while before getting up much earlier than expected. In a totally different move from last year’s July 4th Bill and I made plans to see the fireworks on the Hudson River. Julio and I had been texting about meeting up, and initially I thought we would go to 4th Street in Hoboken and watch there, but since Julio was uptown we headed that way. Of course there were a lot of people going in the same direction. Enough people to make meeting up a bit difficult.
But we figured it out. Julio pulled up on his bicycle while Bill and I sat on a curb smoking cigars. Rand and Lisa texted that they were at 14th Street and we were only 3 blocks away but there were a few thousand people between us so we decided to stay where we were. The fireworks were excellent. Usually it’s seen them once, why see them again, but they were impressive. Perhaps it was because they were so close and so loud.
Bill and I held hands while watching while Julio took pictures to send to Stine and Alexander in Denmark. In the back of my mind I had to be wary since two men holding hands can attract unwanted attention. In fact while Bill and I were waiting for Julio, a young gay couple walked by us holding hands. One of them was wearing a Wonder Woman t-shirt so I said ‘Hey Wonder Woman’, but he was too sullen to acknowledge and probably thought Bill and I were two Hoboken guys smoking cigars and putting him down. As if a Hoboken guy would recognize Diana Prince’s breastplate. Friggin’ newbies.
After the fireworks we decided to stay put and let everyone else go first. We stood and talked for a while, Julio telling us about his apartment with fantastic air conditioning. Julio was surprised to hear that we hadn’t installed our unit yet. I mentioned that Bill doesn’t mind since he’s Puerto Rican and Bill promptly shot that one down. That line was from a year or so ago.
I had come home from work, crazy hot outside and before I left the apartment that morning, I shut the windows since it was supposed to rain. It may have rained, it might not have, but when I came home there was Bill sitting in the dense heat in the apartment with the windows still closed. I asked him why he didn’t open the windows and he said ‘I don’t mind the heat, I’m Puerto Rican!’ So it’s been a running gag since then. But not anymore.
As we walked from the Hudson River there was a lot of traffic on the streets. Bill mentioned that the buses were not running down Washington but using the side streets instead. As we passed a bus stop there were a couple of dozen people waiting for a bus. I asked Bill if the buses were not coming their way and he said they weren’t and went to the people to tell them where they could catch the buses. As he was doing that Julio and I crossed the street. I asked a police officer if buses were running down Washington Street and the cop said they were.
Julio and I looked at each other and said ‘uh oh’. The dozens of people that Bill was talking to were walking past us to the designated stop. Bill made sure the last person who was waiting for the bus was on their way. We Bill caught up with me & Julio, we told him what the cop said. Bill said the cop was wrong and their were posters made telling people where to catch the bus. Why they didn’t read it, I don’t know. Bill was right, the cops were wrong. We soon split after that, Julio riding off on his bike and Bill and I walking home holding hands.
Bill stayed up for a while when we got back home, I stayed up and watched the directors cut of Alien. It was just as good as I remembered and didn’t notice much that was different from the previous times I had seen the movie. Maybe the scene where Tom Skerritt and Harry Dean Stanton are still alive and asking for Sigourney Weaver to kill them was different or new. Would I have stopped what I was doing to get Jones the cat? I couldn’t really say.
I woke up this morning and after some coffee and cereal, I installed the air conditioner again and waited for the cool down. Slowly the bedroom was getting cooler and after a while I turned it off and headed out to feed the cat. I wore a hat this time and while it kept the heat in my head, it also kept the sun off my face. I decided to go to the really big supermarket to get a few things and saved some money once again.
Lois had given me a big bag of socks from where she works. Apparently they are samples and they are nice to have, so I’m walking through the supermarket with the bag of socks as well as a canvas bag with a bottle of water in it. I get what I need and decide to head up to Washington Street before going home. There is a store on Washington that has a nice produce section and the celery I buy there lasts longer than celery bought in the supermarkets. Maybe it because it’s packed in ice, but it lasts about two weeks whereas the supermarket celery goes limp within a week.
I walk through the heat, a panhandler asks me to buy him a soda to which I reply I am unemployed. He grimaced and walked away. I walk into the store and go to where the celery and produce was kept on ice but all I see is some oranges. The woman behind the counter sees my consternation and asks what I am looking for. I tell her and she tells me they’re not carrying it anymore. A week or so ago they get rid of their deli counter and now this.
Perhaps they’re going into the liquor business since they do sell that as well and you know there are simply not enough places to buy liquor in Hoboken. A liquor store on almost every other block will not do. So yeah, I was disappointed and overheated and had to get out of there as fast as possible before I said the wrong thing.
Now I am back home, relaxing and not doing much else. How about you?
It’s a Saturday and it’s been a good day. Bill came home this morning from driving a bus to and from Atlantic City once again. I of course stayed home and watched TV. I’ve never been to Atlantic City and I’m not a gambler so I guess I would sit on the beach down there, that is if people still do that sort of thing. I haven’t been to the beach yet and I suppose I will once Annemarie gets to town in a matter of a couple of weeks. It should be nice having the chance to chill out on the ocean and think once again how nice it would be to have a house down there.
I’ve been busy enough today, some more grocery shopping, some more laundry and picking up Bill’s dry cleaning as well as several walks past the barbershop. Almost every time I walked by, my barber Tony had someone in his chair. Since I live but a few doors down from the barbershop, I just turn around and head home rather than sit there watching other people get their hair cut. Just when I resigned myself to probably getting my hair cut on Monday, I walked by once more and there was Tony on the street.
I sat, Tony cut and we talked. My hair is so thick that it’s like wearing a hat so I needed to do something since it’s been so hot out that I sweat while sleeping, waking up to damp pillows which is no fun. Tony tells me a lot of guys would like to have hair as thick as mine, so I shouldn’t complain. Now I have the summer haircut, no muss, no fuss and not even a comb or brush is needed since it is that short.
I played guitar last night and I think I sounded good. This afternoon I played and it sounded like crap. Perhaps I was more open minded and nimble with the fingers. Maybe it’s because I was alone. Bill was getting ready while I played this afternoon and he doesn’t criticize, especially since he doesn’t know the rock and roll stuff I attempt to play. Still it was muffed chords and a general let down as far as I am concerned. Luckily I tried it at home, thinking I was going to go to the river and play but I knew it would not be a good idea.
Maybe later I will play again as my guitar stands there looking forlorn. But now I am getting hungry and will eat after I write this. No plans for tonight, I still have the Elephant Man to watch on DVD. I also have Withnail & I which might be a bit more entertaining. Last time I saw that was when it first came out, when there was a cinema underneath Carnegie Hall. I liked it but as time moved on, I read more and more things about it, making me think it warranted another look so perhaps that look will occur tonight.
After I eat, I will go out and walk off dinner, perhaps have a cigar by the river and read some of the Love & Rockets stuff I have. I still have Mojo & Uncut to read, but those magazines deserve a special time and place to be read and since I will have them forever and the Love & Rockets stuff is from the library and will have to be returned I am prioritizing I guess. Tomorrow is Gay Pride day, so happy Pride to friends and supporters of the LGBT world. Don’t know what Bill wants to do about it, surely we will watch the fireworks but between him coming home and going to sleep, and the fireworks there are a few hours to fill.
The first time I saw Daniel Rodriguez was probably over 20 years ago. He was an occultist then, dressed in black almost all the time with a pentagram hanging around his neck. I never really spoke to him, nothing more than the small talk one says when conducting a transaction. I was working at the Little Shop of Video in Hoboken back then and came across a lot of people when I was there. There were regulars like Susan Howard that came in almost every day with her dog, there were guys that had positions very deep inside city hall renting transgendered porn almost daily.
I still see these patrons from time to time on the street and usually think to myself, ‘I wonder if he ever returned ‘She Male Action Volume 6’. They’re older now and collect nice city pensions while sitting on benches watching their waistlines expand with every passing day.
The owner of the store was a nice guy, Peter Kressley. When I first met him I could have sworn he was gay, he was with his number 2 guy, Leonard and they were so close it led me to believe that they were a couple. It wasn’t until I met Peter’s wife Karen that I figured out what was what.
I just brought that up since I had just seen Daniel Rodriquez on the street, he didn’t recognize me but I recognized him. Time has not been kind to Daniel Rodriquez. The Little Shop of Video was one of the retail gigs I had in the past.
Another retail gig I had was at Pier Platters in Hoboken. That was owned by 2 friends of mine from Maxwells and it was not a steady job. I was on the list of people to call when the regular staff couldn’t make it. It mainly was a job where I sat behind the counter and rang up CD’s and vinyl. It was around the corner from the main store as this shop was set up to sell mainly CD’s which at the time were new. The vinyl was used and I snagged a few choice albums from people who were trading their old stuff in so they could get it on CD. Pier Platters faded away though, a victim of rising rents.
Then there was Farfetched. I first started working at the Fourth Avenue shop in the Village in 1997. I met Susan at a party at the Paramount Hotel that Harpy was throwing for his then girlfriend. Farfetched had just gotten robbed at gunpoint by a guy named Delroy Kemp. Susan and Harry discussed having a man work the shop and until they could find one, I would do.
There was a bit of a worry that I would play nothing but reggae since I was deeply immersed in the reggae world. I worked with Susan and her business partner Lois, and their friend Denise. It was a good place to work, once again called on to sit in for whoever couldn’t work. I enjoyed my time there and I am still in close contact with Susan and Lois and of course Harpy.
I told Susan and Lois at Harpy’s party that Farfetched spoiled me, that they had my back as much as I had theirs. They had no illusions of grandeur, and it was always a good time to work there, even during the hellish holiday season. Farfetched fell victim to the times, rising rents and a zealous neighbor who coveted their space.
Today was a day from purgatory. Not heaven, nor hell, but that place in the middle according to catholic doctrine. Very convenient. The phone and voice mail fiasco continued last night. I was apprehensive to come home last night, rather than deal with Bill and whatever mood he might have been in after his day and mine. And sure enough he was in not much of a mood, very subdued. I was quite subdued too. But he only stayed awake for a few minutes, giving me a perfunctory kiss good night which I reciprocated.
I stayed up some more, watched some TV and eventually went to bed. But I made a point of kissing Bill’s sleeping head before I fell asleep. Had an interesting dream about Julio and I meeting up in an 99 cent shop on Main Street in Lodi. It was a weird dream which featured the old Lodi that I grew up in.
I woke up about an hour earlier than usual, surprised to find Bill gone, surprised there was no farewell kiss. I walked to the bathroom and sent him a text saying that I missed him and would call him when I got to the cigar shack area. No phone call while waiting for the bus, still I texted him, telling him I missed him.
When I got to the cigar shack area, I called him and got a voice mail stating that he would be away from his desk from 9:00 to about 4:15, attending some function that his law firm was having. I suppose this was his way of showing me how I send people to Siberia, and now it was my turn, as if my father never did that to me. I guess 8 years really didn’t count hanging out with Solzhenitsyn.
The man cave at the cigar shack was still shut down, Jerry Vale came in early to allow some guys to crawl through the vents to see if they were open and operating properly. They seemed to be on our end but also needed to check out a neighbor’s vent. So Jerry Vale called the neighbor who flatly refused a 10 minute look see to check on the input and outputs. So the man cave was closed and sales had dropped considerably.
Zack would be tearing his hair out in the office but Zack is bald so there is nothing to pull out. Lawyers are now involved. The cigar shack lawyers, the neighbor’s lawyer and the landlord’s lawyers. It is now officially complicated.
And on another level, I still haven’t heard from the rival cigar shack that I met with. Thanks Freddy Herko. I try to remain hopeful and via a Woody Allen paraphrase, quoting Emily Dickinson, ‘Hope is the thing with feathers’. I am losing feathers. Even Jimmy Seltzer helped with a bolstering of spirits but those reserves are dwindling. Tomorrow is a day off so I am greatly looking forward to it.
It was sweet, both Thomas and Jerry Vale seemed concerned for my well being.
Now I am home. It’s a Thursday evening and it has been a long day. Up at 7:30, at the bus stop at 8:30 and in the cigar shack at 9:30. I got through alright, after a few decisions on how to get through the day. Some Facebook friends were dropped.
Didn’t need to deal with their shit anymore since I usually have to deal with their shit face to face. Now it’s only face to face, no phoniness. Its more ‘professional’ wouldn’t you say? The day was slow enough and also had an empty promise that was repeated from yesterday.
I didn’t believe it then and I didn’t believe it today. I have also decided not to give any sales away, even after I hit my personal goal. I used to do it but since no one else does it, so why should I? From now on it will be all mine. I couldn’t really expect others to do what I do.
That would be impossible I guess and unfair to them. It’s a burden, such a burden, oh what a burden to be so relied upon. You can thank Brian Eno for that line, or rather, I can thank Brian Eno.
I was aloof most of the day, while friendly and sociable. I guess I am that way right now. Bill is sitting behind me watching Lawn hors d’œuvre on his iPad and I sit here in front of the computer with my back to him. He offered to turn on the TV but he’s in the middle of his show and whatever I wanted to watch is being recorded so I can watch it anytime.
So the only sound is Sam Waterson & Carey Lowell talking about a case. A deal is struck, the ominous closing music is playing as Waterson & Lowell close the show. Bill probably has another episode on schedule I’m sure. He just turned on 30 Rock and I just turned down the volume instead of listening to the last 6 minutes.
Yeah I’m ambivalent tonight. Tomorrow is a day off and you know what? I really don’t care. Pathetic isn’t it? And it has been quite a struggle to write this much so far. Nothing to write about really. Not that there ever is.
I’ve slowly started looking for a new job again. Nothing major, just an email to useless staffing agencies. One out of three responded to my email. I try to send an email every couple of weeks but I am sure I have been binned.
No response makes me feel like I am a hopeless case. The longer I am out of the office environment means it will be more difficult to get back into that situation. In June I will have been at the cigar shack for 2 years. Nothing to be proud of I’m afraid.
Yes it’s a job and yes I am grateful to have a job but it is stressful. Sell sell sell all the time. No sitting down, which more than likely accounts for the weight I have lost. I haven’t needed to unfasten my trousers when I take them off in about a year. I remove my braces and can easily slide right out of them. What an accomplishment!
That’s it. I hit over 500 words for today. No mas. 08 No Clocks
Yes it was back to work for me today, after 2 days off. Saturday was spent doing laundry and strolling around Hoboken. No corned beef and cabbage for me. I never had it and don’t recall my mother making it. Maybe she did and I just never ate it, which is odd since my mother was not running a diner and you ate was put in front of you.
So like I wrote, I went to Maxwells. I had a pint in the apartment before I left and was soon on my way to have a pint with my dear friend Lois. Bill was driving to Atlantic City so I went solo. No iPod so I listened to the sounds of the streets, a very John Cage thing to do. I was not impressed with what I heard but maybe the whole thing is about not passing judgement.
Lois was there with a bag of socks for me. She’s been hanging onto them for a few months and our schedules finally coincided enough that Saturday was the night. She also had some women’s socks and tights which she gave to our lovely bartender. She was a cutie and quite nice.
Lois had about 2 pints and a plate of artichoke hearts. I had about 5 or 6 pints and felt fine. Spoke with Bill once he got to Atlantic City. Took the call on the sidewalk so I could have a quick smoke away from the noise inside. I didn’t recall it being so loud when I worked at Maxwells in the last century, but then again they did not have Bose speakers above the bar.
Much time was spent asking each other to repeat what was just said. Lois is great though, so creative and very supportive of other artists and musicians. She loves my photographs, how I seem to see things that other people just don’t see. She did confess that she doesn’t read this here blog that often which was perfectly alright by me.
After the pints and the gossip and talking about our respective mates, I walked Lois home with a paper bag and a dozen socks. Some water and a quick check of email once I got upp the four flights of stairs before I turned in.
The next morning, some more water to tend to my headache. I didn’t feel drunk, just politely buzzed but it was enough to remind me why I don’t really drink these days. The next day is so wasted.
Bill was home and quite energetic. He went to the gym as I licked my wounds. I did make it out and went to the store. I almost talked myself out of it but persevered. Once I was home I merely watched the TV until Bill returned. I did not feel like cooking and instead ordered in from Johnny Rockets. I had a hankering for a big ol’ greasy burger and they delivered.
Now it’s a day later. It was a weird day at work. I did resent Thomas asking me to switch days with him in a few weeks. It certainly could have waited until today but hearing it on Friday planted a seed that started to sprout in the back of my mind all weekend.
And it was not so busy but the store did alright I guess. Zack was back in the game contacting his deep pocketed clients. My clients wear speedos it seems. I did post the blog for the store once again. I usually write on Thursdays and Saturdays but since I was out on Saturday, I wasn’t about to write for the cigar shack.
I saw Mike Cecchini on the way home, he was strolling the avenues with his lovely girlfriend Sarah. That was nice and brief. They invited me to join them but I wanted to be home with Bill.
Another day to get through before I can have another day off. And that would be tomorrow, the day off. Today is the day to get through. It’s been an up and down kind of day. Not as cold as yesterday, in fact it being 40 degrees, made it feel like today was a spring day. And the temperatures are suppose to go up to 50 on Saturday which is all very nice.
Right now there are about 12 men in the man cave, smoking and drinking and eating. I am playing a disco soundtrack playlist, right now it is Chic with Good Times, a song that always gets me on the dance floor. But I’m not dancing. I am standing in the front of the cigar shack to let people know that we are open for business.
It’s been an up and down day like I said. I did the most sales today but they weren’t big ticket numbers so I am in second place, behind Bradley who had about half of my sales but his were the big ticket numbers. I came home last night to Bill’s loving arms. He spent a good part of the day cleaning and shredding papers with his pal Fred. I asked what Fred thought of the state of our apartment and Bill said Fred mentioned that it was in better shape than his own apartment.
And with my last sale I am still in second place but over a thousand so that’s a good thing, I think. About 40 minutes to go. Zack mentioned that I should take some food home to Bill but really the picking are slim after being picked over by cigar stained fingers. Bradley is ensconced in the corner, almost like he was holding court.
Tomorrow I think I have a busy day and of course that would be all up to me. Lot’s of things to do, places to go and people to see. Will I get it all done and still have time for myself and Bill? That remains to be seen. I am more than likely staying out of Bill’s way as he continues his cleaning binge.
The whole concept is to get it clean and keep it clean. Bill would like to hire someone to come in once a month to clean and though it is a nice idea it seems a bit much. Then again, it’s his money so if that is what he wants to do with it then by all means. 31 minutes to go.
I wonder if Juan is upset with me and Bill. I thought we would see him over the holidays but there was no word. I hope it wasn’t because Bill and I were too tired to entertain him on Thanksgiving night and he felt dissed. I mentioned it to Bill and Bill says we did not diss Juan, we were merely exhausted. If Juan reads this perhaps he will clear up the matter but then again since he has a man he is probably way too busy to read about such matters. I know I wouldn’t be arsed to read what a 49 year old guy would write, especially if I was 25.
9:00 finally rolled around. Jerry Vale locked the door, I counted my cash drawer, got the money ready for the bank tomorrow and put things away while cleaning up a bit. There were quite a few guys left the man cave all drinking and laughing and smoking. Neither Zack nor his number two said anything about staying later, so I didn’t.
I simply got my shit together and headed out the door. No food, no drink, no free cigars for me. I guess Zack might be pissed at me for leaving, but like I said, no one asked me and no one told me, to stay. I wanted to be home with Bill, not in a room that I spend a good part of the day cleaning up, not wanting to arrive at a party where everyone else was three sheets to the wind.
“It’s been a long day.” That’s what Jerry Vale has to say. And for him it was and still is. He was scheduled to come in before noon but got a call to come in even earlier. So he wound up coming in a little before noon. Can’t fault him for that. It’s been a long day for me as well.
Last night was pretty good, Bill came home and drove me crazy (in a good way) like he always does before turning in around 10:30. I stayed up until abut 12:30 before I went to bed. I awoke once again to Bill kissing me goodbye. He said he would see me tomorrow which meant he was driving a bus again tonight to Atlantic City. I wished him well, told him to be careful before getting out of bed and giving him an extra special hug since I love him so.
I then puttered about taking a shower, making coffee and pouring ceral. Yes it’s quite mundane but it beats being an invisible sculptor which is even more mundane. Soon I was on the street walking to the bus stop. It was a nice morning, quite cool. In stood in the sun and enjoyed a nice cigar. It wasn’t too crowded and not too many Hoboken residents roaming around.
The bus ride was uneventful of course and instead of looking at my smartphone I read The Last Sultan, a biography on Ahmet Ertegun. I am enjoying it much more than I expected to though looking at the index I have to say I was bothered by the fact that there is no mention of Arif Mardin in the book, or at least no mention worthy of a listing in the index.
Perhaps there was bad blood in the end between the two Turks though I doubt it. Still I made a point to walk by the first (or one of the first) offices and studios of Atlantic Records at 23456, that is 234 west 56th Street, right next to Patsy’s.
It’s been a long day nonetheless and even though there is less than half an hour left it feels longer than that. That’s probably because I won’t be getting home until after 11:00. Such is life I gather.I have decided that the best way to go to work is with no expectations. When I seem to have a grip on things (or at least that is what I tell myself) things generally go awry. And if I have a bad attitude then that doesn’t work out either.
So tabula rasa seems to be the ‘proper’ way to go. Hopefully there won’t be any problems getting home since the trains were all screwy due to a police officer shooting a groper at the 125th Street station. That happened this afternoon and caused a lot of headaches for the patrons of the cigar shack. At least that was the excuse for them staying here from 10:00AM until 7:00PM.
Just got home after a pretty good day. It all started last night I guess with Juan coming over for a few beers for his birthday. It was good to see him and my anxiety over him coming over was all for naught. There was simply no need for that, he’s a dear friend to me, and Bill likes him a whole lot as well.
He came over at 9:30 just as he planned. And I am happy to report that Juan has a boyfriend, someone I can’t wait to meet. It was good to see Juan happy and I have to say I haven’t laughed so much in what seems to be a long time.
At midnight though I realized I was drunk and I am really no drinker these days. I had a ten hour shift ahead of me today and sadly I had to send Juan on his way. Tonight he is back in South Jersey or maybe in Philadelphia with his boyfriend.
I woke up with a slight hang over after not having any difficulty falling asleep. A headache made its presence known and it was dispatched with a couple of Advil. Cereal and coffee after the shower and soon I was headed out the door to the bus stop yet again.
Across the street from the bus stop sat Rand having a meeting of sorts in Stacks. He took my picture and I couldn’t figure out how until after a few minutes, and then when I spotted him, shook my fist at him in a faux rage. Deborah, downstairs neighbor once again got on at the next stop and we chatted. I was definitely in good spirits, much better than Wednesday and we shared a few laughs as we sped through the tunnel.
We parted ways and I waited on the platform for the train, staying far away from some crank who was shouting about who knows what. It was Frank Burns and Jerry vale today at the cigar shack and it was good to work with Jerry Vale. Frank Burns was as effeminate as he usually is. I never noticed how swish he can be.
It is weird to work with a Xanax snorting son of morticians. I keep trying to engage him in conversation and asked him what he and his cousin did after they left the cigar shack during the World Series and he confessed that they had sex. I didn’t bat an eye, I suppose it was his attempt at wit. But as ever it was more of the wit of a nit.
A few customers have come up to me in the past as well as today and told me about how much they can’t stand Frank Burns. In fact when I called him Frank Burns it got a few belly laughs. But that’s neither here nor there.
He left at 7:30 as his schedule allowed and then came back almost an hour later ostensibly to spy on me and Jerry Vale reporting to the guy who manages the cigar shack who is somewhere out on Long Island for the past couple of days attending a management seminar.
Frank Burns didn’t stay long and more than likely headed off to the nearest buddy booth. Jerry Vale and I had a few laughs as we set about closing the store. Thomas is due in tomorrow to work alongside me and Frank Burns so that should make it interesting, Frank Burns working with two co-workers that he really can’t boss around.
I never really cared for Joy Division, though I did prefer New Order. Maybe I just didn’t like Ian Curtis’ voice. I still don’t. Maybe 2 or 3 songs by Joy Division and that’s about it. Right now I seem to be ina Manchester bands mood, mainly the big 3. New Order, The Fall and The Smiths. But that is most definitely neither here nor there. So since I have nothing at all worthwhile to say, it’s time for some navel gazing, or for a certain few, navel grazing.
November 2, 2005 was all about Sandra Bullock. That was when I was being kind about the one later called Bleedin’ Hope. It was definitely a stretch and true to my old self, I lurched into surrealist territory. That’s where I found my bearings when I was but a twenty something youth in Asia. The Sandra Bulwark was last spotted in San Francisco selling hand bags and glad rags to women with too much money. I gave up the ghost years ago and her mention here is merely a byproduct of what happened 6 years ago with my Breton inspired pen.
November 2, 2006 had me working at Wolff Olins, getting out early to see a dentist who gave me quite an exorbitant estimate for some work. I balked and skipped away and came home and readied myself to see the Slits at Maxwells that night. The Slits were phenomenal and I regret today not going up to Ari Up and thanking her for everything she had done for me and for music. I was quite happy to see them and it was a good evening at Maxwells, seeing a few old pals. The future was still relatively bright.
November 2, 2007 had me working in midtown again on a ship which later turned out to be the Lusitania. I was catching buses at 7:10 in the morning which seems far out to me now, though of course I would be willing to do it again if the job was right. Forget about the money being right, it’s all about the job. Harpy broke his heel a few weeks previously in 2007 and I ventured up to Washington Heights to see the fabulous invalid. A case of beer and a few packs of Marlboros is what I brought. I should visit him again, but that would involve actually going somewhere besides work or my apartment.
November 2, 2008 was mainly a review of the B-52’s show at the Hammerstein Ballroom the night before. It was a Sunday so it was definitely before I stopped writing on Sundays. Bill and I had a drink at a pre-fab Irish pub nearby and I was wearing my Obama as Superman shirt which got a lot of compliments. The show was great, Bill and I were buzzing and dancing. Keith Strickland reminded everyone to Barack the Vote which a great majority of us actually did.
November 2, 2009 had me wallowing in unemployment. No jobs to be had despite my endless searching which carries on somewhat to this day. The post has something resembling a political slant, as well as my decision to vote for Jon Corzine and definitely not for Chris Christie. That didn’t turn out as well as I had hoped. Some wandering around Hoboken occurred as well and that also carries on to this day.
November 2, 2010 had some computer problems which probably gave Bill the idea to get me a new computer for Christmas rather than have me use his Mac which still rarely gets used. Three candidates in other states lost their elections, people that I did not care for in Connecticut, New York and Delaware. I wrote about some people at Guggenheim Partners who interviewed me a few times and opted for a door stop instead. I was bitter but I got over it, and changed their names. And once again it was the day before Juan’s birthday. Juan might just make an appearance tomorrow, but we shall see about that in due time.
A day off tomorrow which should be good for all concerned.
I Knew The Bride when she used to rock and roll is playing right now. It’s been a long day at the cigar shack. And it’s been busy, the shack did phenomenal business today. It was Zack and Frank Burns and me today.
The day started off alright. I slept really well thanks to some melatonin, and woke up feeling refreshed. The I realized I had to go to work so that feeling of ‘I can do anything’ quickly subsided. I got myself together once again, shower, coffee, cereal and soon I was on the street headed to the bus stop.
It was awfully cold this morning, temperatures were in the 40 degree range. And snow is expected tomorrow, 6 to 10 inches has been predicted, at least that is what one of the customers told me and he lives in North Brunswick.
No neighbor Deborah on the bus ride into Manhattan today so I stared at my smartphone. No more looking out the window for me. I listened to Patti Smith on the walk through the bus terminal, Easter to be precise. Got as far as Because the Night.
I do love Rock & Roll Nigger though. Could be my favorite Patti Smith song. Her use of the word ‘nigger’ is defined as being ‘outside of society’. Jimi Hendrix, Jesus Christ and Jackson Pollock all made the cut as well as Grandma I think.
A short ride on the subway and once again I found myself in the vicinity of the cigar shack. There was Zack and Frank Burns behind the counter. Somebody had a black eye and it wasn’t me and it wasn’t my fault either. I wasn’t feeling to well and I think the reason is because of an ionizer which has been in use in the man cave.
It really puts out an offensive ozone odor which I find more displeasing than the smell of cigars burning. I never minded cigars being smoked, at least not good cigars. Dutch Masters and Antonio and Cleopatra (what my dad smoked) and White Owls are a whole ‘nother thing.
For lunch I sat on a bench near the park and tried to stay warm. I finished Mojo with George Harrison on the cover and started in on Uncut Magazine, on which the cover is all about bootlegs.Being outside helped quite a bit and when I returned to the cigar shack it was all systems go.
Very busy and that is when the numbers starting increasing. Zack was quite happy about it and surprisingly Frank Burns did alright too, sold 2 crappy pens that seemed like they were bound for the island of crappy pens. Glad to get them out of the store.
Perhaps whomever orders things won’t order crappy pens that merely take up space. Still I would not be surprised if those crappy pens are returned within the next 2 weeks. Just a feeling I get when I look to the west I suppose.
Can’t wait to go home and that should be just about an hour from now. Frank Burns is one of those people that screams at the TV when a sporting event is on. I know this since he is in the man cave screaming at the TV right now. And now his cousin is here with him so the number of voices screaming should increase by one.
This is the cousin that Zack insinuated months ago that ‘maybe they’re not cousins but actually lovers’. Pathetic really. In any event there are now less than thirty minutes to go and I am quite fine with that.
Tomorrow’s players will be Thomas and Jerry Vale with the Frank Burns dancers making an appearance, performing their homage to Isadora Duncan on Crystal Meth routine. Irma Thomas – Time Is On My Side