Tag Archives: Bicycling

I Live With You

The penultimate day before summer, which is occurring on Thursday. It’s been a very good day. I did receive word from the company I interviewed with last week, the standard ‘Thanks but no thanks. Oh and by the way- Good Luck’ message. It was alright, I did not expect to get the job but still there was a sliver of hope in the back of my mind. I have a cavernous mind and it was all the way in the back next to my Duncan butterfly yoyo and my copy of Jonathan Livingston Seagull, under my autographed Brian Eno records.

I slept fairly well last night. I also stayed up later than usual which probably contributed to the fact that I had a good night’s sleep. I’ve been setting the alarm clock lately, trying to hang onto something resembling a routine. It’s sort of been working but what actually woke me up this morning (after Bill’s farewell kiss to me) was the sound of construction and destruction. Next door they’re doing something to a garage and that’s been noisy but what was even noisier was the water department chopping up the street down the block. Luckily I got out of bed at that time.

I made some coffee and jumped in the shower and then about an hour later, the water was cut off. It was a drag but manageable since I had done the ‘important’ stuff beforehand. That still left some dirty dishes in the sink but I knew the water would be back on eventually. I decided not to wait for the water to come back and headed out to do somethings. A trip to the bibliothèque was in order since I needed to return a CD that I took out yesterday, the Bongos- Numbers With Wings/Beat Hotel.

I used to be a big Bongos fan. Bog enough that I was taller than the guys in the band and most of the audience. Unfortunately the CD was only half good and that was the Numbers With Wings part. The Beat Hotel part is best forgotten and not mentioned. Their first album, Drums Along The Hudson was great and still is fun to listen to. Then they signed to RCA, and it all went pear shaped. It was the eighties and no one knew any better but it was a major misstep for all concerned. Still I am friends with 3 out of 4 Bongos, which is why I am holding back here.

I did see a former Bongo today, Jim Mastro, Mr. Wonderful. Always good to see him. One daughter home from college, another daughter has one more day of being a high school sophomore, and then there is Meghan off for a few weeks before doing something with kids during the summer. I had my bicycle out and decided to go for a ride. I aimed to head up the river rather than down to Liberty State Park. I had heard the Hudson River Walkway was sort of completed and I wanted to see where it would take me.

I got as far as North Bergen before the walkway ended. It was enjoyable though it would have been more fun if there was someone to ride with. I enjoyed the solitude and the weather was perfect for it. I returned back to Hoboken, the same way I left it and stopped to look at some geese with their goslings, none of them named Ryan. Finally by Sybil’s Cave I sat in the shade and enjoyed a cigar while finishing last week’s New Yorker. Then I rode my bike home. .

The water was back on when I came home but there really wasn’t anything to eat. So after putting the bicycle away and climbing the four flights of stairs, I was back on the street heading to the nearby supermarket. It was a gamble and I was hungry and you don’t go food shopping when you are hungry. But I was good and only bought a few things I needed. OK, I also bought some Belsen Dark Chocolate biscuits since they were on sale and I wanted something chocolate. So now after riding about 20 miles today I don’t think I will have any problem sleeping tonight.

Jinx!






Geese & goslings


Ryan Gosling


NOT Ryan Gosling


08 Because

It Must Be Him

Well I just got back a little while ago from a nice bicycle ride with Rand. My original plan was to take part in a demonstration outside of the Malawi consulate in Manhattan, protesting the sentencing of Steven Monjeza, 26, and Tiwonge Chimbalanga, 20, who were given 14-year jail terms of hard labor after being convicted of gross indecency and unnatural acts.

The two gentlemen had an engagement party which is highly illegal in Malawi. It was scheduled from 2:00- 3:30PM today but when I woke up and I checked Facebook, Joe Jervis of JoeMyGod had posted that Monjeza and Chimbalanga were pardoned from the powers that be in Malawi. That freed me up a great deal.

I was looking forward to going though. I had hoped I would see ace blogger Andres Duque of Blabbeando but after I wished him a happy 42nd birthday he replied from Columbia where is he is visiting family. According to JoeMyGod there was a demonstration that was hastily rearranged to protest the lack of rights for LGBT in the Motherland.

I decided not to go to that and figured I would just do some strumming by the river. I can’t really call it busking since buskers usually make some money but that’s rare for me, so I just call it strumming. Bill had just come home from driving to and from Atlantic City and he was headed right to bed.

Rand called and asked if I was interested in something ridiculous, like a bike ride to Secaucus. I was game. I hadn’t ridden my bicycle out there since I had a job that lasted for about two days back in the 1990’s. Bad job and difficult to get to. Life was easier then.

We took the 9th Street Elevator by the Light Rail up to Congress and headed to Kennedy Blvd. As we passed Kennedy Blvd, Rand was losing air in his front tire. I remembered James Vincent Bicycles on the boulevard and rode ahead to see where they were.

It’s a good thing I did since they were no longer there. I asked a few people where a bicycle repair shop was, if there was one nearby and heard about one on Central Avenue. I met up with Rand again and then I rode over in that direction.

It was no longer there, having been replaced by a Drapery Shop, which had nice drapes, nice enough to distract one from having a flat tire.

A little more detective work courtesy of Rand’s Smart Phone (Envious me) and we found James Vincent a few more blocks away. $15.00 and 15 minutes later Rand had a new functioning tire and we were pedaling from 315 Palisade Avenue.

We rode our bikes over the highways and soon found ourselves in the industrial parks of Secaucus. We headed for the Crowne Plaza in Secaucus which used to be the Meadowlands Hilton, where I first smoked a joint in the parking lot with Derry Pedovitch after attending the Beatle-Fest.

We went to what seemed to be the entrance and found a sign saying that the event that Rand wanted to check out needed to be accessed through the main entrance. Then we walked our bicycles over there and asked an employee named Vincent if there was a place to lock up our bicycles.

That question seemed to annoy Vincent a lot. One guy, looking like Jeff ‘Skunk’ Baxter offered to let us keep our bikes in his room but we thanked him and said no.

Rand went in and I stayed outside where I found myself talking to a guy from thePhilippines who was telling me about his 4 children who had graduated from MIT (the twins), Georgetown and Princeton. All on scholarships. He was so proud and rightly so.

Still as academically smart as his kids are, they are pretty dumb with regards to finances, or so he said. He went off to find his wife and Rand came out of the computer thing that he checked out.

We rode through the parking lot and found a path way that led to the river. It wasn’t much at all. Took some pictures, and smelled some sweet herbage being burned by a handsome dude watching the river. I commented on how nice it smelled and the dude laughed.

Rand and I rode again, opting to ride through the streets instead of the busy thoroughfares and for Rand it was like riding his bicycle through the Long Island towns where he grew up and for me it was the same thing, only through the Bergen County towns.

We rode through a gateway that led back to the industrial parks and decided to check out Syms. Didn’t buy anything but said hello to the handsome dude who had the herbage. We said hello to him and he laughed. Once we entered the store we agreed that the handsome dude had the right idea, getting a buzz before going into the outlet.

A ride back through empty industrial streets, past Electric Avenue where they distribute both Orangina and Yoo Hoo. It was a great day out, a nice ride back.

And now I’m going to see Julio and Alexander in the park. That’s it. Hope you had a good day as well.
The Mighty Rand


For the Turnstiles

Well Bill just came home. I’ve been home for a while. Went bicycling this afternoon. First time in a few weeks. Rode up to North Bergen, a little north of the Galaxy apartment complex.

I rode along the Hudson Waterway. The neglected side, the New Jersey side, not the Manhattan side. It’s changed since last summer when I last rode up there.

Buildings sprouted up, fences erected. Still could use a lot of work. It’s not a continuous walkway. There are parts where you have to ride on a sidewalk next to River Road. The cars go very fast on River Road, almost but not quite highway speeds.

I believe the law states that the people should have access to the river. The developers and I suppose the residents of these new buildings would rather the people did not have access to the river, so parts of the walkway are incomplete. Suddenly ending.

No signs saying the walkway is ending. It just goes from pavement to rocks. That’s fine if you have a mountain bike, it’s fine if you have a hybrid, but I have a street bike with thin tires so it doesn’t make for an easy ride.

I made the most of it of course, carrying my bike on my shoulder when needed. I went as far as I thought I could without having to deal with cars zooming past and then turned around and headed back south.

On a break I sat on a bench and looked at the river. Another cyclist clad in a Campbells Soup cycling attire stopped by and was taking pictures of Manhattan. I saw he was trying to take a photo of himself with the city in the background, so I asked him if he would like me to take his picture.

He was grateful and I took his picture. We chatted, his name was Chris and he was from Belgium. He was staying at a hotel in Jersey City and I remarked I was on my way to Exchange Place. He didn’t know about the waterfront walkway and had ridden up through the streets.

Luckily Weehawken and Hoboken was better suited for bicycles and I showed him the way back, past where I am usually strumming my guitar by Pier A. There was some event going on Pier A and it was crazy crowded. I was glad I wasn’t there.

We walked our bikes through the train station and I got Chris headed in the direction of his hotel. He went his way, I went mine and sat for a little while in the Exchange Place area just chilling and watching the river flow.

After a little while of that and talking with my sister on the phone I headed back up towards Hoboken. While riding through Newport I passed Juan Melli who I know through Facebook and we chatted for a little while.

I congratulated him on his new job in Hoboken City Hall, telling him that I too have a job, being the director of a new Manhattan Project, being a nuclear physicist and all that entails. Juan was headed to Liberty State Park and headed off in that direction and I headed north to Hoboken.

Pier A was still hopping as I sat an a bench nearby. Some guy asked if he could take my photo with a professional camera and I said sure. I asked him what it was for and he said it was for his own use so I guess I might be a pinup in Nuclear Physicist Fancy one of these months.

Came home, helped Julio bring in some stuff for Alexander’s birthday party tomorrow in Van Saun Park. I also saw my friend Lois. We had a much needed talk and things were ironed out quite nicely.

That’s about it. Right now watching a recap episode of Lost before the big 3.5 hour finale tomorrow night.

I will start work in one of these buildings on June 1

I will start work in one of these buildings on June 1


Or maybe one of these buildings

Or maybe one of these buildings


5.21.10 Chelsea Galleries 003
5.21.10 Chelsea Galleries 004
5.21.10 Chelsea Galleries 005
Self portrait

Self portrait


Clarice Starling

Clarice Starling


Hoboken from Jersey City

Hoboken from Jersey City

Too Tender (To Touch)

Well here I am writing again even though I said I might not. Force of habit I suppose. Today was somewhat different. I got my bicycle together, inflated the tires and went out for a ride.

Lovely day for it. I decided to stay away from the guitar as much as possible today. Just a break. Will return to it fresh tomorrow.

But in honor of Albert Hoffman and his fateful bicycle ride on April 19, I decided to take the bike out for a spin on April 20 (4/20 for some). I rode up Park Avenue, feeling a bit naked since I didn’t have the rear view mirror that I usually strap to my left wrist.

I had a feeling it was somewhere in my backpack and made a note to check it when I had the chance. I found the strapped mirror and put it on. I bought three of these things at Farfetched back in the 1990’s, one for me, for Julio and one for my then roommate William. I know I still have mine.

I rode up to 15th Street and Park Avenue making a right to head into the Lipton Tea Building complex. No one around except for nannies and their charges. Beautiful day, blue skies, a few clouds. Rode along the river past more nannies, past Maxwell Place onto Sinatra Drive.

The skateboarders were out as I rolled past. Decided to head into Jersey City and pedaled over to the train station. Had to walk through the station but once I got back to the light rail station I hopped on and started pedaling again.

Saw a baby blanket on the river walk and asked a few nannies up ahead if they lost a blanket. If they did I would have turned around and picked it up. They said they hadn’t but each nanny thanked me for asking.

I rode along the Newport river walk, past office workers out having a smoke. Found a nice spot across the river from the Winter Garden and sat for a spell, just staring across the river. It was nice and quiet, no one else around, save a guy who decided to take a nap a few yards down.

Back up on the bike, I rode around again, past OfficeTeam when I was interviewed by Omar Castillo back in November and who called me up about a possible job, or a lead in Hoboken. Told him I was interested and sent an email back to see how it went but haven’t heard anything yet.

Perhaps if he Google’s his name he’ll see this. Then again the name has been changed to protect the innocent.

Back up to Hoboken. On te way I bought a banana. In Hoboken at Natural & Plus they usually cost 45¢. On weekends they weigh the banana and will charge you the extra 2¢. From a cart in Jersey City it was 25¢. (I do like Alt 155).

Back through the train station where I bought the Daily News and sat by the river and read the paper, had a banana and smoked a cigar. Even rode the bike down the bike path to see if Tariq was out with his guitar but I guess he was singing ‘Melissa’ across the street from the Plaza Hotel.

Just rode back home after all that and had an earlier supper than usual since I was plenty hungry when I got home.

That’s about it. An easy peasy day.

Tomorrow night is the Specials concert. Have to figure out whom I am meeting and where.
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Hoboken 003
Hoboken 005
Hoboken 009
Hoboken 010
The bicycle
JOT Bike break
Hoboken 001

It’s a Long Way to the Top

Wow. Just got back from the first major bike ride of the year. I think I did close to 40 miles, if not more, though my odometer said 50 plus miles, but I doubt it. I am pretty tired though.

Stretched before and after but still I am a Zombie at best.

I thought about doing it last night but didn’t say anything. Bill and I watched an Eddie Izzard DVD that I took out from the library. Being a free DVD from the library means that there’s a good chance it won’t work, and sure enough the last two chapters were unwatchable.

We did watch the extras which were fun up to a point then it started freezing up and next thing you know it’s back to the library for Eddie Izzard. Watched the news after that and then it was time for a good night’s sleep.

I know tonight will be an even better sleep.

So I was up and around this morning, did the bagel/newspaper shuffle. After a nice breakfast and after reading the paper I decided to get the bike gear together.

Everything was where I left it a couple of months ago. Hard to believe it’s been a few months since I last went bicycling.

I kissed Bill good bye and headed downstairs where I stretched and tried to push over the tree in front of the apartment building.

Filled up the tires and it was off to the 9th Street Elevator to Union City. Saw the first couple of very good looking men on bicycles. Of course they weren’t wearing helmets like I was, raising my dork quotient up just that much.

Over to Palisade Avenue which was pretty much smooth sailing. The obligatory stop at 127 Jane Street where a US Marine Corps flag was hanging underneath and overgrown weeping willow that didn’t exist 7 years ago.

Back onto Hudson Street, no sexy, handsome Hector outside Five Corners liquor store. Hudson Street was busy but not overwhelming. Up to North Hudson County Park, named after James Braddock aka Cinderella Man.

Called Bill who thought I was in Bryant Park, which I wasn’t.

After a brief rest, up to the George Washington Bridge, where I was surrounded by the weekend bicycle riders who fancy themselves in the Tour de France, all geared up in branded clothing and thousand dollar bikes. I ride for fun, I don’t know why they ride.

Stopped at 178th Street where I called to see if Harpy was around. I didn’t want to hang just say Hello, but it was just as well since his cell phone went unanswered.

Headed down that very steep hill right at the start of the bike path for me, just under the bridge. Another rest then I was non stop to 59th street.

Got called a jerk by a sit down rider, one of these riders who sit in a chair and just pedal with a flag flapping behind them letting everyone know that they are there and to watch out for them.

There was a bottle neck of pedestrians and no one had a bell or a whistle to alert them to bicycles on the way. I had a horn which I tooted and said as I passed ‘doesn’t anyone have a bell or a whistle?’

That’s when I was called a jerk.

I just continued on my way and rode up 59th street and headed into the park. Watched the skaters for a while then decided to do a near lap around the park.

Not a full lap up to 110th Street, but used the short cut at 100th Street. Good looking cyclists everywhere.

I just wanted to avoid the killer hill, too steep and I figured I had done enough at that point. There were a few hills that don’t look too bad but they do have a slow incline which also takes a lot out of you.

Back to 59th Street and back on the bike path. Rode that to the World Trade Center Path train and then over to Exchange Place in Jersey City.

A nice ride through the Newport area but it still pisses me off how bike unfriendly is when compared to Manhattan.

One of the reasons it took me so long to do this bike ride today was a sudden fear of how long it is, and how for the first half I ride amongst cars which is unnerving sometimes.

Wouldn’t you know it, as I riding through Church Square Park just a block and a half away from my apartment, I nearly took a spill.

My front tire got caught in the space between the sections of the sidewalk and I couldn’t get out of it. I didn’t fall, just planted my feet and stopped.

A minute later I was in front of my building stretching again.

9.5.09 Bike Ride 001

9.5.09 Bike Ride 003

9.5.09 Bike Ride 005

9.5.09 Bike Ride 009

9.5.09 Bike Ride 012

9.5.09 Bike Ride 055

Old tree damaged by big storm a few weeks ago

Old tree damaged by big storm a few weeks ago

♫ La la la! ♪

♫ La la la! ♪

Juicy

It’s a Sunday. An even nicer day than yesterday. The sun was beaming. I woke up at 7:00 this morning. Then 8:00. Then I got out of bed at 9:00. Bill was off to church by then.

I made some coffee and went out and got the papers and other things. Saw Hoboken’s Lew Carbon at the Frozen Monkey holding court, but oddly enough no bevy of beauties surrounding him.

As crowded as Hoboken was yesterday, today it was fairly quiet again. Plenty of parking. Supermarket was fairly empty too and the streets were not like the day after the Fake Patrick’s Day parade in March.

Last night Bill and I met up with Jim Mastro and Meghan Taylor and their kids Lily and Ruby and Meghan’s brother Terry and his wife, Elizabeth Taylor. I met Terry years ago when he was working at the Beacon Theater and got Julio and myself in the Fine Young Cannibals with De La Soul opening. He didn’t remember but I did.

We all headed over to the river to watch the fireworks. It was fairly crowded but manageable. Bill and I smoking cigars as was Jim, smoking a Saint Luis Rey that I gave him. No one was complaining since there were a few other guys smoking cigars.

The fireworks display was impressive and loud. Lot’s of oohs and ahhs. We had a perfect view where we were. Lois and her husband Fred were a few blocks south and Rand & Lisa were watching it all in Weehawken.

Lily looked so demure in a nice dress and Ruby was Ruby, always photographed with her mouth open generally saying something silly. Such a nice family unit.

We went back to the townhouse where Jim & Meghan are watching for the month of July. I think they’re no so keen on living in Glen Ridge, so many friends here in Hoboken, plus things to do and see. Plus you really don’t need a car in Hoboken.

We stayed for a little while, having some cans of Guinness on the stoop. We left a little while after that, stopping by McSwells where we hoped Roda would be working. He wasn’t so we just did an about face and walked home. Soon fell asleep a little while after Bill hit the hay.

And then we’re back at the beginning of this entry.

This afternoon, I had a very enjoyable and fun bicycle ride with Meghan. Lily had a drum lesson and Ruby was bushed from being out in the sun. I brought water and bananas for the two of us and we rode up to North Bergen along the river.

It was a fun ride, just the two of us pedaling and laughing. If only there was that bike path from Bayonne to Fort Lee, we probably would have gone that far, but North Bergen will have to do for now. Meghan had to tend to Lily and Ruby and I came home and set about writing this entry.

Pop will eat itself indeed!

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Someone has a big metal thing in their condo....

Someone has a big metal thing in their condo....

The end of the road- or rather, bike path.

The end of the road- or rather, bike path.

Ain’t No Sunshine

Using the old school Open Office docs which is what I used to use daily. Then it wouldn’t behave like I wanted it to, and in a fit of artistic pique I moved over to Google docs. But here I am using this again. It just seemed so forlorn on my desktop, pleading for me to use it, see if there’s a spark, rekindle whatever it was that we used to have.

Well so far so good. I’m trying to clean up the desktop which has many things on it, effectively grabbing a lot of memory. So I’m moving things to disc to free up some space as well as deleting a whole bunch of stuff I haven’t used in a while, if ever.

Last night I met up with Bill and his friend Fred and his lady friend Lila. We met in front of the movie theater and caught the 8:15 showing of The Taking of Pelham 1-2-3. It’s a remake of the classic 1970’s movie starring Walter Matthau, Robert Shaw and Martin Balsam.

Not a very good remake.

For some reason it got some good reviews but I couldn’t see why. I was hoping to see John Travolta meet his fate the same way that Robert Shaw met his. Really it was THE main reason.

No Travolta fan here and his performance as Edna Turnblad in Hairspray: the Musical alienated me further from the former Boy in the Plastic Bubble.

The audience applauded but trainspotters like Bill and myself wondered how the action can go from 33rd Street to the Waldorf Astoria at 49th Street. A car chase scene that involves a cop car going off the overpass at Tudor City was bewildering.

I used to eat lunch in Tudor City years and years ago and it has not changed one bit, except for the flying, crashing cars. So many plot holes you could drive a subway car through them.

Despite all that it was a brilliant night to be out and about. Just wandering around Chelsea, so many interesting monsters.

I remember when people were considered tough to get tattoos, nowadays everyone and their Aunt Ditty has one. And such ornate designs, that you know will just get better looking as they age.

Much like the brawny former Marines that were in the VFW with my father. Those dark aqua blue splotches on their arms really told a story. What that story might have been I couldn’t tell you and neither could the splotches.

Cheers to those hardy souls with their entire arms covered in ink. I’m not putting tattoos mind you. Just the ones who go overboard.

Today was a gray overcast day. I decided to take a chance and make an attempt at my big ride up to the George Washington Bridge and over into Manhattan. As I stretched before riding the sun came out for a moment and I decided I was doing the right thing.

I rode over to the light rail station at Ninth Street and got on the elevator to Congress Street. As I rode over to Palisades Avenue the clouds were foreboding. Still I pedaled on up to Shippen Street where I stopped and thought for a while.

Shippen would get me back to Hoboken, but did I want to do that? The clouds were getting darker and I decided to ride down Hackensack Plank Road, towards Hoboken. But I didn’t feel like going back home so I rode around Weehawken on the waterfront. No one was around except for maybe 3 joggers.

It really sucks that New Jersey can’t get it together to create the river walk that they’ve been talking about for years, from Bayonne to Fort Lee.

If that was ever completed, or even started in some spots I would be doing that ride a lot more often. Manhattan has an excellent bike path. A little dodgy is some areas but nothing too bad.

But New Jersey? Fuggedaboutit.

Lame lame lame.

Bill figured out last night that I am taking him to see Paul McCartney at the new Mets Stadium. When we were watching TV at home after the dreadful movie, a commercial came up for the Macca concerts in July.

I think I showed too much restraint with my interest in the concerts. ‘Oh really? Interesting.’ Bill saw right through it, my showing of enthusiasm. It was the date that gave it away anyhow.

Weehawken Tree, Hudson River Sky

Weehawken Tree, Hudson River Sky

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A view of Hoboken from Weehawken that I had never seen before

A view of Hoboken from Weehawken that I had never seen before

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Vitamin

Today is Sunday, day three of a four day weekend. It did not start well and last night didn’t end well either. I don’t know what happened. After a wonderful day with Julio, Stine and Alexander and family in Van Saun Park in Paramus, and a few Stellas with Julio and Stine I came home, feeling ok.

I was pretty tired and when Bill came home I was just exhausted. I got myself ready for bed before midnight and just said a good night to Bill before heading to sleep.

I don’t think I slept too well and I woke up feeling sad. Bill was up already getting ready to head to church. He gave me a donut last night which I wanted to have this morning but when I woke up this morning it was gone. Bill ate it. That made me sadder.

Bill headed out and I showered and made some coffee when a few minutes later Bill showed up with a donut, some bagels and the newspapers. He decided that me well being was more important than catching a bus into Manhattan. It was a very nice gesture but still I had a melancholy air about me.

Like the Sunday night feeling that I would have when I was a kid with a major book report due the next day.

It really wasn’t Bill or anything that he did or ate, it was work that was weighing heavily on my mind. Bill was off once again, concerned about the state of mind I was in and I was concerned too.

I made some breakfast and had a bagel. I was able to copy the photos from yesterday onto a disc for Julio and Stine and headed downstairs where the boy wonder had opened up his gifts.

Mine was opened last night and they waited for me to show up this morning when they gave it to Alexander. I also gave the other bagels Bill got for me to Julio and Stine. I sat with Julio watching Alexander while Stine cooked some food to bring to Brick NJ.

The duck on a stick worked fine but Alexander just kept bashing it on the floor. He’s a strong boy but the duck was stronger. After a while they had to get ready to go and since I wasn’t going with them, despite being invited, I headed upstairs.

Still a bit gloomy, all the news in the papers was mainly bad and it was bumming me out. Even though I had a few cups of coffee, I thought it best to take a nap. A reboot as it were.

That didn’t last long and I set about hanging some paintings that Bill’s late father painted throughout the apartment. Then I just farted around a bit when Rand texted me a little past noon.

He was thinking about a bike ride and asked if I was interested. I was interested. It would be good to see Rand again as it always is and a bike ride would more than likely clear the blue cobwebs in my head.

Rand showed up an hour later giving me time to do some proper stretching before cycling. I also had the foresight to apply some sunblock beforehand. Since it was Rand’s idea to go riding he was calling the shots.

Last time we headed north up to Guttenburg, this time the plan was to head south. We headed to Jersey City, exploring the riverfront pathways whenever possible and wound up at Liberty State Park.

It was an excellent ride yet disappointing to see that since I had last been cycling down in Jersey City a few years ago, they still have not done one thing to make access to the bike paths bike friendly.

We tossed a Frisbee for a while before getting all sweaty.

Mid Toss!

Mid Toss!

A ride back through Jersey City brought forth ices from a street vendor who confused coconut with lemon and got a bit indignant when I returned mine.

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An easy ride back into Hoboken where I left Rand on the steps of his building, turning down a martini with Rand and Lisa, deciding to head home and grill up some hot dogs instead. Bill was home for a while before heading into the city for a reading at the Theater for the New City on First Avenue in the East Village.

I was supposed to have drinks with the Chasms tonight but they backed out, then backed in while I was showering and Bill was napping. No worries, I’m pretty beat even after stretching after cycling.

Just staying home tonight. I know I’m going to sleep well tonight and I don’t have the blues anymore.

Stine mentioned last night that she wasn’t comfortable with pictures of Alexander being posted online, that other people will see them before she does so I’m not doing that anymore. You’ll just have to take my word for it that Alexander is a handsome boy from now on.

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Lisa on the phone with...

Lisa on the phone with...

...Rand!

...Rand!

The Whole World

Let’s see. At 12:30 this afternoon it was 89 degrees out. On April 26. I can see it being like that in July or August but this makes it seem like we’ve bypassed Spring and jumped right into Summer.

Well you know, that global warming myth. It’s all a scam you see. They say it’s a man made problem, but of course this has happened a few times already. Unfortunately there are no records of the polar ice caps melts, ice shelves collapsing in Antarctica.

Greenland must have been green at some point, why else would it be named Greenland? Too bad Leif Erickson isn’t around to explain that one.

I believe global warming is a fact, and I believe it’s a man made problem. Not so much from car emissions, though that is a factor. It’s from the destruction of the rain forests and what I think no one wants to talk about.

It’s because there are a lot of people exhaling carbon dioxide. A lot more people now than ever before and without major rain forests converting the CO2 to oxygen, we are in the mess and on the slippery slope where we find ourselves today.

I was surprised that one of the people in my office say that she believed global warming was a falsehood. I usually hear that from the conservative blow hards, but that was a surprise and her standing in my view was diminished somewhat.

After having napped and written yesterday, I sat on the stoop in front of my building, enjoying a Padron and sipping on a Guinness. My landlord walked by, apparently he was inside the building.

He said he was planning on calling me since he got the note I sent in February, saying that it was posted on the wall by his phone at home. Now that he had me, he asked if I was still willing to vacuum the hallway in my building.

I told I was and we worked out a deal. He said he couldn’t reduce my rent, but would write me a check each month. I agreed to the deal. Julio says it would be a pain in the ass at first and maybe I could hire someone to do a deep cleaning to start off with, and then my cleaning on top of that would be a lot easier.

It does sound like a good idea. I already started today, sweeping up the front of the building and cleaning out leaves and garbage on the stairs outside that lead to the basement.

Last night was an adventure of sorts. Definitely out of the ordinary. Bill and I headed into the city, I still didn’t have a definite idea on where we were going but I did get an inadvertent clue.

A former co-worker on Facebook, Janelle, wrote that she was taking her mother to dinner for her birthday and after that, taking her to see John Leguizamo. I know Bill loves John Leguizamo so that was the clue.

I did a search for John Leguizamo NYC but all that came up was his IMDB entry. A put that in the back of my mind walking down the gentrified Christopher Street scene. Lot’s of bridge and tunnel LGBT teens hanging out but mostly the gay scene in now in Chelsea.

We walked over to Seventh Avenue South towards the Actor’s Playhouse where I saw a poster for John Leguizamo. I told Bill I guessed it, but not really since we were right on front of the box office.

The show was good, it was a work in progress titled, A Work in Progress- Don’t Hate. Bill loved it of course, laughing uproariously throughout.

One or two times I was the only one who laughed at Leguizamo’s jokes, making him mention that he would wait for everyone else to catch up.

I did see Janelle and her mom and hoped to see them after the show, but it was such a warm night and all the bodies in the Actor’s Playhouse made it like wearing a wool sweater inside, plus the seats were a bit on the small side, not really geared for a 6’2” frame like myself or Bill.

After the show we made a beeline for the street afterwards, hanging out in the fresh air for a few minutes before giving up and heading towards the Path train on Ninth Street where we rode the train up to 33rd Street and then back towards Hoboken so we could get a seat.

By the time the train made it back to Ninth Street most of the people were standing up against one another. Young couples heading home early after getting their drink on.

Bill and I made it back to Hoboken were young patrons were either lined up to get into crowded bars or standing outside of those establishments smoking.

Back home Bill went right to sleep and I stayed up and watched a repeat of Lost that they show on Saturday nights.

Woke up, Bill was on his way to clean out his mother’s apartment, I was off to get breakfast. After that, with the temperature rising, I decided to clean up the front of the building.

Then I fixed up my bike and called Rand and we went cycling up to Guttenberg, as far as the Galaxy Towers. A fun ride, haven’t hung out with Rand in a while.

Lisa stayed home, she doesn’t ride a bicycle lately I guess.

An entertaining couple of hours with an entertaining friend from years gone by. And he’s right.

Lost is better than Heroes.

Pics? Pics!

My buddy Rand

My buddy Rand

Galaxy Towers

Galaxy Towers

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34th Street heading east

34th Street heading east

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Garbage Peeps

Garbage Peeps

Don’t Fall In Love

Last night was most chill, and cool. Chill in the apartment, me and Bill watching Rachel Maddow and recordings of the Daily Show and The Colbert Report, followed by Bill Maher and cool weather wise. I was pretty much wide awake after having taken a nap when I got home.

All pretty good shows. Bill was watching Chris Rock on his laptop while wearing headphones and laughing at the most inappropriate times during Bill Maher. It was odd listening to Andrew Sullivan or Naomi Klein talk about some serious issues and hearing Bill chuckle,

Will I. Am was the third panelist and he didn’t have much to say except when Bill Maher discussed his documentary about the insanity of religion. My Bill went to bed soon after and I stayed up to unfortunately watch the last 45 minutes of Balls of Fury, the ping pong movie starring Christopher Walken. It was odd and elicited a giggle or two but overall not worth watching.

Woke up this morning around 8:30 and went out in the world picking up bagels for the family on the third floor. Julio was feeding Alexander while Stine was getting ready for a baby shower for Julio’s sister. Hung out with them for a while before heading upstairs and having my own breakfast.

Bill was getting ready to see his mom and I read the Daily News and started doing laundry. Another Saturday another bike ride. I wasn’t sure where I was going. I rode up the elevator to Congress Street and proceeded up Palisades Avenue, getting bananas in my old neighborhood.

Still wasn’t sure where I was going though the bike decided on heading north. I pedaled in agreement and eventually found myself in Fort Lee by the George Washington Bridge, after briefly talking to my sister on the cellphone while stopping in Cliffside Park. Had a quick bite to eat then I rode across the bridge.

Several other riders in bicycle riding gear passing me by in groups all shiny in their spandex and branding. I didn’t know until I was in the thick of it but today was a big festival for the Little Red Lighthouse underneath the bridge. It’s a children’s book too you know. Strollers and families everywhere slowing me down. I got around them with no problem and decided on a different route.

I got off the bike path and rode up to Riverside Drive and then down 96th street into the park. There was supposed to be something for the play, Hair going in in the park but I couldn’t find it. I rode over to the skate circle and sat watching Disco Granny and the guys on Bear Hill.

Bear Hill

It was nippy out and I was only there for just short of an hour. Rode down 59th street where on the hill between 10th and 11th Avenues some woman decides to make a U Turn just as I am hitting a nice speed. I yelled, ‘what the hell are you doing you fucking bitch’ she says I should just go around her, into oncoming traffic. A flip of the bird and I was on my way to the safety of the bike path again.

Rode to the World Trade Center and caught the Path back to Jersey City where I stumbled upon a Jersey City Irish Festival. Lot’s of people that looked like my tribe, most of them carrying cups full of Guinness. I thought about getting one for myself but decided to head on home and make dinner before meeting up with Rand finally for a pint or two at McSwells.

7 World Trade Center

Jersey City

Neumann Leather Building

Observer Highway

In the Midnight Hour

It’s Saturday and so far it’s been a good day. Last night was pretty good too. Hung out with Bill who was non stop last night. Non stop talking. He was getting worked up on everything on TV. The Daily Show, Colbert Report, Olbermann with Rachel Maddow, the the Olympics, when he started talking ghetto which is quite a sight coming from Bill.

For those that don’t know, Bill is not from the ghetto and he doesn’t talk like that at all. It’s a running joke among me and some of his friends about how ‘non-ghetto’ Bill is. After a while though I needed to ask him to tone it down. It was getting tiring and by that I mean I was getting tired listening to him.

Eventually I started reading the latest Mojo Magazine wand tuned him out somewhat. After watching Michael Phelps win his 7th Gold Medal Bill went to bed. I stayed up for a while reading and watching a little bit of Oceans 13. I didn’t see Oceans 12 so I wasn’t sure if I missed anything. It didn’t really matter since I started watching this edition midway through and eventually I could not keep my eyes open.

Fell right asleep as my head hit the pillow. Woke up to Bill kissing me good bye for the day and him wishing me an enjoyable bike ride. I said it depended on the weather. He wished me a good bike ride again, leaving me to believe he checked the weather report before leaving. I soon got out of bed and was out on the streets getting ready for my day.

Ran into Linda who was my favorite cashier at the supermarket. She suddenly wasn’t there anymore and was replaced by several incompetents. I thought the worst, but here she was. She had taken an early retirement and was living on her late husband’s pension.

I was glad she was still alive as I thought she might have passed away. She’s an older woman who reminds my sister of our grandmother. I’ll have to take Annemarie’s word for it since I don’t remember my mother’s mother.

I was back in the apartment in no time, having a nice breakfast and reading the papers. Around 1:00 I decided to go for the bike ride that Bill suggested. Rode over to the Light Rail station on 9th street under the Palisades and took the elevator to Congress Street.

A beautiful day as I rode down Palisades Avenue, turning onto Hudson and through my old neighborhood. I saw Hector who runs Five Corners Liquor around the block from where I lived with William Charas for 11 years.

I always though Hector was so handsome and macho and had a crush on him for a long time. His hair is white now but he’s still a sexy guy. Woof! In a minute! After that lustful escapade in my mind, I was soon on Hudson Avenue heading to North Hudson County Park.

The hills were definitely a lot easier this time around. Last time I rode was three weeks ago and it really wasn’t difficult heading up to the George Washington Bridge through Cliffside Park and Fort Lee. I crossed the bridge with no problem, even stopped and took some snaps as the bridge bounced up and down under my Airwalks.

In Washington Heights, I took some more pictures on the bike path underneath the bridge. When I ride I tend to see other riders, in fact the whole environment as aquatic. There were a lot of bicyclists, more than usual and some were riding in groups like schools of fish.

Cars were sharks, trucks were whales, pedestrians were all different types of fish. Then there’s individual fish like myself cycling past various schools of fish. Just something that I entertain myself with while cycling.

Pics taken while riding with no hands! Look ma!

Under Riverside Drive

Ahead

Behind

Battles were playing Summerstage so I rode over to the rock and had a sandwich. Stayed for Black Dice who were noisy and fun. They had a beat going somewhat and I enjoyed them very much. I saw Battles last year at the Seaport and they were ok, but I didn’t feel like staying for them especially since I enjoyed what I had heard from Black Dice.

Went over to the skate circle and wasn’t too impressed with the day’s DJ, so I rode out of the park determined to avoid any confrontations with Eastern European Ped-Cab drivers. Back to the bike path on the river, riding past the Tibetan protesters across the street from the Chinese embassy, and the ludicrously overpriced ferry winding my way down to the World Trade Center and the Path train to Exchange Place.

At Exchange Place in Jersey City there was a Puerto Rican festival which I took in for a little while. Woof all around. A pleasant ride back to Hoboken followed. A shower, a nice dinner and now this.

Whatever

All in all approximately 40 miles today.

Tomorrow I plan on going to Summerstage for the final show of the season, Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings headlining. No bike, I’m going shanks mare.

RIP Jerry Wexler

Rock Your Baby

Well I got a lot off my chest last night and thank you for your comments. The reaction to the events in Knoxville from the right wing were particularly heinous. Michelle Malkin who so successfully led the charge against Dunkin’ Donuts for Rachel Ray wearing an Arabesque scarf in a television commercial. Writes about how she doesn’t believe the misbegotten jizz was a conservative, that the gun owner was more than likely a liberal trying to get attention.

Of course her chorus of like minded simpletons chimed in saying that if this guy wanted to take out ‘libtards’ why didn’t he shoot up a college? Yes, why didn’t he shoot at students rather than churchgoers? Oh these people deserve Steely Dan up their holes. And I’m not talking Becker/Fagen, I’m talking Burroughs.

And bhikkhu reminded me of something Burroughs wrote about how gays should act like the Mossad and wipe out someone who attacks one of our own. Thanks for the memory.

Last night I had a nice phone call with Harpy who didn’t sound like talk radio for once. A wide range of issues but what stood out for me was talking about bicycles. I remembered when I was a kid, I sort of figured that I wouldn’t have a car and I would have a bicycle to get around.

I don’t know what made me think that then, perhaps it was an early indication of my penchant for going left when everyone else is going right. I used to ride a lot back then in my Bergen County days. Occasionally my sister and I would ride together, up to a Saddle River county park in Paramus. We wouldn’t tell anyone where we were going, just hop on our bikes and ride, even insanely rushing across Route 4 to get from Saddle Brook to Paramus.

NJ wasn’t bike friendly then and it still isn’t. I rode a lot then, not as much as I do now, but still for an adolescent it was enough. I was doored once in Elmwood Park by the father of a friend of my sister. Luckily all I wound up with was a nasty cut on my leg even though I went flying across the street into the opposite lane of traffic. It’s a great way to get around if you’re not being doored and I would do it year round if I could. I would ride to work if I didn’t have to dress so nicely.

I ran into Curtis, I mean Casey on the bus yesterday and today. I wrote about him a week or so ago. Really nice guy, intelligent and opinionated which is somewhat rare these days. He’s been concentrating on writing scripts. I told him about this blog (which is fast approaching a milestone) and also mentioned a script that I found a week or so ago.

I wrote it about 10 years ago when Julio and I had an idea to write a script and see if former Phosphene Tim Sherry would be interested in producing it. Well I took the whole thing seriously, Julio didn’t take it seriously at all. I wound up feeling like a schmuck and shelved the whole thing. Having found it again, I read it and still think it’s not bad. Of course it could use some work but I would have given it a B.

I mentioned to Casey that I also collaborated on a script with someone (John Bruce), called This Is My Plus One. That was supposed to have Maurice Menares and Bob Mould’s then boyfriend Kevin in it. John and I stayed up all night working on it. A few days later John called me up telling me what I had written moved him to tears, it was that good.

Well that’s what I heard at least. Maybe John actually said that he cried because it was such crap and he couldn’t believe I wasted his time working with him. I think it was the former. Anyway I offered to collaborate with Casey at some point down the line, telling him that dialog was something I was good at. At least thats what the voices in my head tell me.

Listen!

No Words

Nothing to say today. Did some riding around Hoboken. It was a nice day. Ran into Julio, Stine and Alexander. Finally some pictures with Alexander and his eyes open. So here they are. Meeting Rand at McSwells for a few pints so maybe I’ll write later. In the meantime, here’s some pictures.

I actually wrote. See after the pictures

The view from 16th street in Hoboken

Laughing baby!

My Lotus

“we shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds… ”

the soon to be 40 father with his 2 month old son

The remarkably non-plussed Alexander and me.

Ooojah boo boo!

making a point

Stine and Alexander

Un famile

Choochie time

Someone’s getting tired

Well I was supposed to meet Rand at 8:00 but I just called to let him know I would be a little late, he replied in kind so now we’re looking at 8:30-ish. Which should give me enough time to perhaps rub one out. Another entry, that is. Let’s see, last night watched TV, including a very good show on PBS about Arab satellite television, specifically a show for women.

Sort of like the View, but not. 3 women in modern dress, one woman in a head scarf. They get a lot of shit from the extremists, the 3 women for the way they dress, which is quite tasteful to my western eyes. They talked about the subjugation of women, of homosexuality and of masturbation, all taboo subjects.

Not just to the Imams and such, but also over here. It was like both the right wing christians here and the right wing muslims there both read from the same script. Of course it’s a bullshit script, but you can’t tell them that. It was engrossing and I watched the whole hour with heavily lidded eyes. Soon after that I fell into a deep sleep without any zombie dreams or Justin Long (tee hee).

Woke up at 5:00 with the sun already up, so I tossed and turned and tossed again finally awaking and getting out of bed around 8:00. Did my thing, bagels for the family on the third floor, some grocery shopping for myself including my dear Stevia. Hoboken Farm boy has been rather strange as of late, rather cold people behind the counter.

So I went to Basic Foods which had a sale, and they were nice behind the counter, so points for that. It makes a difference obviously. Did laundry and since it was a nice day out I decided to break out the bicycle. I inflated the tires and rode around Hoboken’s empty streets. Swung by the Hoboken Museum and looked through a photography book of Hoboken in the 1970’s.

What a run down place Hoboken was. I moved to the Mile Square City in 1984, when it started to crawl back to ‘respectability’. I thought the book would make a nice present for Julio for his upcoming 40th birthday next week, since he was born and raised here, he would remember how it was, places he used to play around.

I also bought 2 tickets to Xanadu for Bill’s birthday which is the day after Julio’s. I got 2 seats on stage, pretty cheap too. Below $50.00 which is cheap considering Broadway shows are over $100.00. It’s a matinée on July 6, so I told him to keep that afternoon open, but not telling him what for. I’m excited about seeing the show.

That’s the Theater Fag coming out of me I guess. I don’t think I really qualify since I only see a Broadway show once every 5 years or so. Sunday in the Park with George last weekend was the exception. I also heard from Donna Rinaldi, my girlfriend from 32 years ago and Andrea Voto again.

I’d love to see them again, find out how their lives are, but that remains to be discussed down the line I suppose. Still it was a thrill. Donna was surprised I remembered her, and Andrea was surprised I remembered that she once owned a Beatles lunch box. Time to go for a pint or two. Cheers!