Tag Archives: Harpy

The Hungry Wolf

Well I just got back from a fun visit with Harpy to the American Museum of Natural History. It’s a great place to visit, to see your relatives. Always busy and always crowded though.

The first time I had ever gone to the museum was on a class trip with St Francis de Sales in 4th or 5th grade. Somehow they had gotten it together and got a bus or two full of students into the city which was not as kid friendly as it is now.

Eventually, we were herded together into the museum and the Hayden Planetarium. It must have been 5th grade because word was Jimmy Murray had copped a feel on a girl during the planetarium show in the dark.

He said he did, whether or not that was true remains unknown. She was a girl that I recently re-friended on Facebook and if we ever meet again I’ll have to ask her.

I do remember the big blue whale in a great hall. Not as darkly lit as it was today. Creating an environment that looked as natural as possible wasn’t a concern then.

The other thing I mainly remember was most of the boys fleeing from the class mother, Mrs. Munafo and running wild up and down the stairwells in the museum creating a ruckus.

The second time was probably 15 years ago with Meghan Taylor, the funniest girl alive. Meghan and I took Meghan’s daughter Lily to the museum. I believe it may have been an early spring day, with Meghan and myself pushing Lily in her stroller.

Meghan and I enjoyed ourselves as did Lily. The main thing I remember from that is that the three of us with our Irish faces looked like a family which cause a few other people to comment on what a lovely family we were. We didn’t discourage them.

That is when Lily became my ersatz daughter basically. We decided to run with that and we are still running to this day. The other time was when I took Perry Brody for a trip to the museum.

Perry lived around the block from me in Weehawken, the son of Cheryl Welch and the late Don Brody. Cheryl thought I would make for a good male role model in Perry’s life at that time and a trip to the city sounded like a fun idea.

Perry must have been around 6 or 7 at the time. We rode in on the bus and took a subway. I chose the first car of the train and Perry and I stood looking out the door window next to the engineer. It had a roller coaster effect that we both enjoyed.

Perry, of course loved the museum but we had to hurry through the dinosaur skeletons since they were a bit overpowering and scary for his young mind. Basically I picked him up and hustled him from one end of the hall to the other which his face buried in my shoulder.

After that was a trip to a playground in Central Park where Perry fell and nicked his knee. He cried a bit so I made it looked like I had hurt myself too and I wasn’t crying, so why should he?

It seemed to have worked but that was the last time I ever went anywhere with Perry. I did babysit a few times for him and his sister Molly though where I was declared to be cooler than Coolio.

I went once again after going with Perry, this time with Annemarie and Earl when he was a kid. Another good time with Anne and Earl but the main thing I remember was running around in the summertime heat in the Diana Ross playground, getting wet in the sprinklers.

So today was a visit with Harpy and it was a lot of fun. But by the end after schlepping around the museum, dodging strollers and restraining ourselves from braking the mini-mega phones that a few kids had going on and on, we were exhausted.

We parted ways, Harpy and I. He getting on the C train heading uptown and me trekking south to get a hot dog at Gray’s Papaya. Most of the pictures were posted on Facebook but there are some posted here as well.

This is actually from yesterday. They were all startled by a pigeon.

This is actually from yesterday. They were all startled by a pigeon.

8.31.09 AMNH with Harpy 001

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Does anybody really know what day it is?

Does anybody really know what day it is?

John Ozed time!

John Ozed time!

Napping guard in the Amazonian room

Napping guard in the Amazonian room

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Triceratops!

Triceratops!

Stegasaurus

Stegosaurus

Marc Bolan

Marc Bolan

♫ 3 Buffalo Gals go round the outside ♪

♫ 3 Buffalo Gals go round the outside ♪

Hanging with a bear

Hanging with a bear

Me and my wolf brethren

Me and my wolf brethren

An unhappy Toltec god about to take his revenge

An unhappy Toltec god about to take his revenge

the ancestors

the ancestors

Great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great ad infinitum grandma and grandpa

Great great great great great great great great great great great great great great great ad infinitum grandma and grandpa

Dear sweet Lucy

Dear sweet Lucy

'You're a pest'

'You're a pest'


Grrrr!

Grrrr!

I heart BATS

I heart BATS

The magnificent Blue Whale

The magnificent Blue Whale


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Blue Whale belly!

Blue Whale belly!

Harpy on the Moon

Harpy on the Moon

That is it!

That is it!

Move On

It’s been a quiet day. Woke up to pouring rain which meant no visit to the Metropolitan Museum of Art with Harpy. I put the kibosh on that one. Just didn’t want to deal with the rain.

And it’s supposed to rain tomorrow, with Sunday just a threat of rain. That means on Sunday I might be able to see Excer’s band playing the band shell in Central Park. And Grizzly Bear is doing a free show in Williamsburg on Sunday night.

Dare I do both? Dare I?

I did make plans again with Harpy, this time I suggested the American Museum of Natural History. It’s an easier trip for Harpy, being on the West Side. And I reserved a museum pass from the Hoboken Library, good for one day which will be Monday. With or without the permission of the weather.

I just got choked up watching Jean Kennedy Smith describing the tribute to her brother Ted.

Last night Bill came home out of sorts, claiming to be very ill and not really making much sense. He attributed it to going in and out of various office climates and the heat on the street.

I tried telling him that he might be overdoing it (and he has) and not eating right.

Some people might get a chuckle out of someone like me commenting on what someone else is eating, but having gotten to 46 and having various people in my life telling me about the importance of diet I did actually listen.

Annemarie, Rex and Earl are all vegetarians, Julio was for a while and I did live with William for 11 years and he was thisclose to being macro-biotic. Last heard he was all about raw foods. And Rand & Lisa are 99.9% veggie.

So I tried to impart my cobbled together wisdom on eating right, without nagging but it fell on deaf ears mainly. I did mention it this morning once again with Bill on Google chat and he said it was a comfort.

Like me and my flirtations with certain jazz cigarettes from time to time. But I reminded him that this wasn’t about me, it was about him. It was best to let the chat end soon after that.

Like my friends and family wanted for me, I wanted the same for Bill. And like how I resented at the time to be ‘lectured’ on what I was eating, Bill probably resented me for doing the same.

I guess since I eventually came around somewhat and modified my diet, I can only hope Bill will do the same before it becomes too late.

I spent some time with Casey and the missus this afternoon. They’ve moving away tomorrow and were all packed up. I’m going to miss them. I wish we were able to spend more time together, but that’s adulthood I suppose.

That's him, Casey Chasm

That's him, Casey Chasm

People move up and away all the time. Sometimes you reconnect, sometimes you don’t. I certainly hope we all reconnect. But the Chasms read this frequently so perhaps they’ll post a comment every now and then.

So that is that. Hope you all have a good weekend.

Since it’s supposed to be rainy tomorrow, I picked up Woody Allen’s Manhattan, Mel Brooks High Anxiety and a vampire movie which is supposed to be one of the best ever made, Let the Right One In. Should make for an interesting viewing.

Razor Face

Nothing much happened today. Did some laundry. That’s about it. I may have another Susquehanna Investment Groups job coming up from another refugee from the jungle where I used to work. That remains to be seen.

I do have a job on Saturday, hanging some pictures in an office. That should take about an hour.

Tomorrow will be the trip to the Metropolitan Museum with Harpy. Then Hurricane Danny might hit here this weekend, making it an indoor weekend which is no fun. But I won’t know until I get there.

I hope it doesn’t happen. My friend Excer is supposed to play the Central Park band shell on Sunday afternoon and I would like to check that out. So fingers are crossed (which makes for difficult typing) for Sunday.

Time for you to roll your eyes since I’m about to write about the iPod shuffle.

Smalltown Boy- Bronski Beat
This came out in 1984. Jimmy Somerville’s falsetto. Patrick Morrissey and Alphonso Portillo’s apartment at 201 Madison Street. Crashed my last car in the afternoon, Patrick took me in and made me dinner. He and Alphonso lived on a floor below. Meat Loaf with cream cheese inside. And white wine. A good way to end a terrible day. A song about coming out and leaving home. It was a hit in the UK and got some airplay here on New Wave stations.

Towers of Dub- The Orb
A 10:24 track on a CD that Bill gave me as well as giving me an iPod one Christmas years ago. Fun trippy dance oriented stuff. Sounds great on headphones. Maybe in a club as well. But I’m not clubbing anymore, Blow Off was more than enough for me. I’ll be in the chill out room if you need to find me. Actually this would work better in the chill out room.

Filthy/Gorgeous- Scissor Sisters
From their first and best album. They are a fun group. Juan had a crush on Baby Daddy. Baby Daddy would probably have a crush on Juan if he ever met him. This album reminds me of being with Annemarie and Earl driving from the Saddle Brook A&P.

99 Problems- Jay Z & Danger Mouse
Most everyone knows who Jay Z is. Danger Mouse is a producer who is also one half of Gnarls Barkley. This is from the Gray Album which was Jay Z’s Black Album, mixed with the Beatles White Album. In this track, it’s Jay Z rapping over Helter Skelter. Of course it’s a totally illegal release, but it was everywhere a few years ago, and could be bought on Canal Street for $5.00.

Change- Killing Joke
Killing Joke was a band that a few people told me I would like since I liked Gang of Four so much. I couldn’t get into them. This is the only song of theirs that I like. Youth who was in Killing Joke is one half of the Fireman with Paul McCartney. I think it’s the right half since Macca is a lefty.

1/2- Brian Eno
From Music for Airports. Definitely a chill out track. I think the first time I heard this was when my brother Frank had a cassette of quiet songs to help with his wife Elaine’s delivery of their first daughter Meghan. I don’t think it was played since Elaine wound up having a caesarian section. I think it was played at La Guardia Airport for a time to help passengers relax.

Robber Dub- The Clash
I know the first time I heard this was when Laszlo Papp bought the 45 when it first came out at St. Mark Sounds. Then we traipsed over to some friend of his apartment and played our latest purchases. My purchase was Private Idaho by the B-52’s. Summer of 1980 it was. I was learning the truth at 17.

Get on the Good Foot (Pt 1) – James Brown
I never really heard James Brown when growing up. It wasn’t until the 1980’s that I really discovered him and that was mainly through the use of his beats and the sampling that went on in Hip Hop. I did go to see him once or twice at outdoor concerts. But I was so far away I couldn’t see him, only hear him. Would have loved to have seen him at the Apollo in the 1960’s though.

Be Here- Raphael Saadiq
I love Raphael Saadiq. He has one of the best voices out there and his music these days is very soulful, like in a 1970’s vibe. This also features D’Angelo who used to be the sexiest man in music 10 years ago. They also sang ‘She’s Always in my Hair’ by Prince together. Raphael Saadiq is always worth checking out if given the chance, especially if you like soul music.

Coal to Diamonds- The Gossip
From a collection of songs that Juan made for me when we first started hanging out. The Gossip are fronted by Beth Ditto and she’s a sensation in the UK. Here she wouldn’t get arrested, much like Scissor Sisters. I can easily picture Juan singing this song onstage. He’s be a good performer I think. Does he think so?

That’s it. Nothing more to see. Move on.

Da Doo Ron Ron

Well it’s a later posting than usual and I am sure you have all been sitting on pins and needles and with bated breath.

That must be an uncomfortable position for all concerned. Sitting next to someone who’s on pins and needles with breath that is bated.

Bill was up and out around 7:00 this morning. I just lay there. What am I supposed to do, get up and see him out the door? Nah, me lying there totally disoriented is the way to go for me.

I did get out of bed earlier than usual. 8:30! I showered and shaved and had some cereal and coffee in that order.

Got a text from Bill that Senator Ted Kennedy died. Everyone knew it was coming, especially Ted. True he fucked up in a major major major way, and would never forget it or be allowed to forget it.

I think that Ted Kennedy did the unexpected and poured his energies into making this nation a great country for all. Especially the downtrodden, the shunned and the loathed.

I was surprised to find some people remembering only the bad things, but I guess it was like when my father died, all I could remember was the shit he put me through. Oddly enough that’s about all I could remember about my father.

Of course when I saw a comment about Ted Kennedy that I didn’t agree with I spoke up which further opened the can of worms. I was just glad I had my cereal before embarking on a diet of worms.

I was glad and thankful that Senator Kennedy was able to make life easier for LGBT people, and also hopeful that a torch has been passed to a new generation who will help the fight for equal rights for LGBT people.

But until then know nothing/do nothing people like Rush Limbaugh, Michelle Bachmann, Maggie Gallagher will do their best to maintain their status quo on the necks of the oppressed.

Christian compassion like that can only be found under rocks.

For Bill and myself, a lion has passed. For others, a spoiled rich man who got away with murder, even though the Kopechne family never said anything like that, at least not publicly.

I was planning on going to the Metropolitan Museum with Harpy but he bagged it, being hungover and whining about the temperature supposed to go up to 90 degrees. Maybe Friday.

I decided to head into the office to take care of something and to smooth the waters for Greg Stevens since Vivek seems to be showing his true colors. Greg is on vacation and I needed to take care of that so it wouldn’t explode on his face when he returned.

I’m so loyal.

Also lined up a chance to get some Cafe Press T-shirts on the weekend so the office visit worked out well for me.

I had a pass for the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) so I decided to go there on my own. It’s not my favorite museum but it was free and it actually turned out to be one of the better times I’ve ever had at MoMA.

There was a surrealist sculpture show which was as entertaining as I would have expected it to be, as well as a Punk Rock exhibition and of course the usual Warhol, Johns, Rauschenberg, and Pollock works that I always like to visit.

Then a quick bus ride home and out the door again to have dinner with Casey Chasm and the missus at McSwells. Casey and the missus are fleeing Hoboken on Saturday and it’s off to the land of maple syrup for them.

I’m sure they will do well, they’ve both have good heads on their shoulders and the missus has an extra one in her uterus which will be debuting in a week or two. The missus had that glow about her and I think everything will be alright.

Casey, the missus and I met up with Bill at 14th and Washington where he got off the bus. The four of us walked down Washington Street in a light summer rain, just chatting.

The missus invited Bill and me up for a visit somewhere down the line and as we parted ways at 10th and Washington, Casey gave the same invite. So that might be something to look forward to in the future.

And also Rest in Peace Ellie Greenwich.

The work begins anew, the hope rises again and the dream lives on.
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David Wojnarowicz

David Wojnarowicz


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Chicago 7

Chicago 7


Malcolm X

Malcolm X


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Lew Alcindor

Lew Alcindor


Picasso

Picasso


Diego Rivera

Diego Rivera


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Man Ray

Man Ray


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Never mind the Pollocks

Never mind the Pollocks


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Joseph Beuys

Joseph Beuys


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Andy's Gold Marilyn

Andy's Gold Marilyn

Po’Boy

I can only assume that the weekend is over in Hoboken by the fact that all the parking spots have been filled. A lot of people leave town, head down the shore of weekends, and Sunday nights is when they generally return.

And Sunday night is when True Blood comes on and last night was a pretty good episode, but ended at 46 minutes which left Bill and I all ‘what the fuck?’. 2 episodes left so I guess they might be leading up into a big 2 part finale.

Marianne vs Sookie! Bill and the Vampire Queen! Eric and his grief (and Sookie?) Jason and that peanut sized brain and well endowed cock! Lafayette and his attitude and mascara and Tara & her mom (and Sookie)! Oh it’s on! Lafayette is seriously becoming the most loved character on the show.

Bill and I forgot all about Mad Men being on, since we’ve ignored the first 2 seasons. We watched Hung and Entourage instead. Both were good, Entourage was better and Johnny Drama is a great character. An asshole with a heart of gold and a head full of rocks.

I stayed up a bit watching Ramones Raw, Marky Ramone’s DVD of life with the bruddas. Harrowing and fascinating but on VH1 Classics so filled with commercials. Some footage of the Uncle Floyd show as well which was fun.

The night before on WLIW Bill and I watched Jimi Hendrix at Monterrey. To my surprise Bill really dug watching Jimi play in concert which he had never seen before. That’s always a thrill for me, turning Bill onto music that he had never heard before.

And there is a lot he has never heard before. Classic rock & soul, Punk, Post Punk, New Wave, all unknown to him.

Today was a nice day, in the 80 degree range and not as humid as it’s been the past week or so. I was planning on heading into the city, perhaps checking out the Highline Park that was opened a few months ago.

Actually just to see if there were any live sex acts going on and encouraged by a hotel that straddles the park. It’s been reported that porn movies have been made as well as exhibitionists of both sexes putting on a show.

But I couldn’t seem to get it together and just stayed local in Hoboken which doesn’t have the appeal that it had last month when Annemarie and Earl were around.

C’est la vie, that’s just the way that it goes.

Tonight is the finale of Nurse Jackie. I think her house of cards and pills and extra marital affair will come crashing down. I don’t know if this will be the season finale of Weeds. But that’s winding up to something big.

I’m sure it will be twisted, especially if it involves the wonderful Andy, played to perfection by one of my favorite actors, Justin Kirk. Funny, another one of my favorite actors is Jeffery Wright and they’ve both starred in Angels in America.

Made a date with Harpy to check out the Francis Bacon show at the Met on Wednesday afternoon. That should be fun.

That’s it for me. Smell ya later.

Elvis?

Elvis?

August Day

Well today is Saturday, I figured that out by myself. Bill is here and we’ve been cooped up all day. It’s been raining on and off but I was able to get out for an hour or so.

So I walked by the river and sat, reading the New Yorker and enjoying a cigar. Deep sea diving without scuba apparatus is not on my list of things to do. That was one of the articles I read.

The other was a pretty funny piece by David Sedaris about going to Australia as well as about living with his father when he was growing up and singing a song about the Kookaburra bird with his sister Amy.

It was funny until he was smacked with a fraternity paddle by his father after being told to go to bed 3 times. Ah memories.

Not much of anything going on today, just waiting for the next rainstorm I guess. The cicadas are still doing their thing and it’s quite humid out.

I have some DVD’s from Netflix that Bill and I are planning on watching tonight. One is the Luis Bunuel directed version of Robinson Crusoe.

The other is John Huston’s production of Flannery O’Connor’s Wise Blood, but I think Bill would be more interested in the third DVD, The Panic in Needle Park.

My Uncle Joseph lived in the Bronx for a time and called basically any NYC playground Needle Park. When visiting we would sometimes go play in Needle Park, or what he said was Needle Park.

It didn’t sound charming but it was somewhere to go while the adults kibbutzed. I’ve never seen the movie before but it should be an interesting period piece of Manhattan starring a young Al Pacino.

Right now we’re watching the end of The Fugitive, starring Harrison Ford and Tommy Lee Jones. I pointed out former Chicago politician, now US Senator Roland Burris in the St. Patrick’s Day parade.

I’m just waiting for the Janitor from Scrubs to make his appearance as the cop on the train. They even mentioned it in an episode of Scrubs a few years ago.

Today is also my sister’s birthday! Happy birthday to Annemarie! Tried calling at my usual weekend time but there was now answer so Bill & I left a nice happy birthday greeting accompanied by Altered Images singing Happy Birthday.

I’ll be giving a call later so hopefully Bill and I can sing live rather than committing to tape. That’s what I think would be preferable, don’t you?

No other plans for the evening and what I do tomorrow would depend on the weather as well. I’m hoping for a nice day. I guess a trip to Central Park would be nice.

Now Harpy is on the phone, bemoaning the fact that it’s so humid. As if it wasn’t humid here in the swamplands of Hoboken. But it’s an outlet for him and I’m glad to oblige. It gives him a cooler head somewhat which is good for him and the rest of Washington Heights I suppose.

Spellbound

It’s Wednesday. Not much to report on that. Last night Bill was with some theater friends down by the South Street Seaport. Stayed out and had a few drinks. That’s something that I used to do.

Not anymore, not me. I stayed in, watched The Daily Show, Colbert Report, Keith Olbermann and even some Rachel Maddow.

I also watched a PBS documentary on Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. How the armed forces are depleted but won’t take gays and lesbians. Other countries do, but not the US. Oh no, can’t have that.

They’ll take white supremacists and gang bangers before taking someone who can speak Arabic and could actually help out the situation.

They had some present day soldiers, faces blurred going off to Iraq, willing to die while living a lie for their country. Some sit ins were shown, gay & gay friendly college students who tried to enlist.

The police were called, complaining about how they had better things to do rather than deal with civil disobedience. A few clips of Bill Clinton who introduced Don’t Ask Don’t Tell (DADT) as well as the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).

Both issues have been in the news lately and are also 2 of the main reasons why there will be a March on Washington in October. Obama made promises to overturn both, and yes he has a lot on his plate but these are matters that also affect families.

Of course he and the Democratic party don’t want to risk losing elections next year so the gays and lesbians are thrown under a bus once again.

In fact last week, the Justice Department argued against repealing the DOMA stating that Traditional marriage is between a man and a woman. No word from the White House on that, and the LGBT community has a massive flash of deja vu.

Today at work was really nothing special. I did very little work, not out of choice, just that there was not much for me to do. I do have some leads with regards to a new job. One is for a non profit staffing agency and the other is for another for profit staffing agency.

Greg Stevens told me he was putting out the word, asking if anyone needs a receptionist, which in a way is a step backward, but more than likely easier to get than an office manager position. Can’t be too choosy these days.

Good that I have some people looking out.

Today was like watching paint dry, and occasionally making a pot of coffee. And it crawled.

Now I’m home, got to the building the same time as Bill. That rarely happens. Even when we’re together I find a reason to hang back and let him arrive first.

No I don’t. Just being silly.

Another night of rain is promised. Can’t get enough of that wet stuff. Nothing planned for tonight. Bill is on a conference call in the next room.

I’m watching the Colbert Report, recorded from last night. Had a fun talk with Harpy. Less antagonistic than usual.

Only 1.5 sheets to the wind.

20th Century Boy

Presently in the phone with Harpy. Blood pressure which is usually low is quite high while talking to him. It all stemmed when for some strange reason I tried giving him a call to let him know the latest developments at work.

Like last week when I wrote I have all these phone numbers in my cellphone and hardly any of them were available. Well, Rand was available and I told him about the latest.

Harpy was unavailable, as was Bill, Annemarie, and everyone else. That’s fine. They have their lives, their problems and I’ve got mine.

What happened was mainly a continuation of last week. Last week was when I started phoning up a few hotels and motels and asking them questions regarding beaming movies to their rooms.

I couldn’t do it all the way through since the people on the other end had questions that I couldn’t answer. Vivek and his business partner and Abby were all unavailable.

Still I felt it best if I went through the questionnaire with one of the three next to me in case there were questions. I told them this today and they agreed.

It didn’t mean they were going to find time to sit there next to me. In fact they still wanted me to call, looking and sounding stupid sitting next to an empty chair. It’s just ridiculous.

But the peak of ridiculousness was when they told me that I would be driving to different hotels and motels to check out the properties. Oh how their faces fell when I told them I didn’t drive.

They offered to pay for driving lessons but I told them I knew how to drive, it’s just that I don’t want to drive. And I don’t have a license.

I am probably one of the few Americans they’ve met who steadfastly refuses to drive.

I explained to them that I used to drive for a living. I drove to California and back. I’ve driven to Florida and back. I drove to Austin, Texas. And twice a day I used to drive from Saddle Brook NJ to 757 Third Avenue, only a few blocks away.

When I had to do an “impersonation of Janet Leigh” for Vivek’s business partner is when I tried calling.

Rand understood. He was my unofficial co-pilot for about a year.

Things have changed since I last drove 23 years ago. More new drivers and more older drivers. It’s not so much I don’t trust them, but the tons of metal are unsafe at any speed.

All it takes is one split second, one thing to go wrong and everything could all go bad.

And I do not want to drive a car or truck or van ever again.

Harpy insisted on telling me over and over that it would be something new to do. That if I want to keep my job I had better start to drive again. Sorry, but if it comes down to that I would rather walk than drive.

And dealing with Vivek and his business partner and Abby is something else entirely. Several times as I sat with them, plans for what I should do change within seconds. ‘John should do this.’ Then ‘John should do that’ which totally conflicts with the initial proposal.

What am I getting myself into? I was also told that I could start coming into the office at 10:00 since Vivek and his business partner don’t usually make it in until noon sometimes.

So they want me to stay later, until 6:00 or 7:00.

Sorry if tonight’s entry is incoherent. I think I should put off talking on the phone until after I’ve written since whatever state of mind I might have been in previously, it’s gone now and I am a bit tense.

Down From Dover

It’s a late Friday posting. And what a day it’s been. No word from Harpy all day so I guess I’m on his shit list. I couldn’t tell you if it’s a long list or a short list or even if there is a list at all.

Still he’s back in the good graces of Susan and so I guess I’m out of his good graces, or graces period. A gray cloud of Harpiness hung overhead through most of my day.

I did enjoy sleeping until 9:00 this morning, woke up checked some email and found I had a new T Mobile bill. A bill that is over twice the usual amount. Apparently according to them I went over my 600 anytime minutes.

I suppose that was possible since there was a few long calls with Harpy before 9:00 and I found out today that mobile to mobile calls aren’t free. And a few long calls with my brother Frank during daytime hours too.

Plus a $9.99 text charge which more than likely came from the ‘IQ’ test I took via Facebook and had the answer sent to my phone. Apparently having an ‘IQ’ of ‘145’ isn’t smart enough to outfox a texting scam like that so be forewarned and learn from my mistake.

So a part of my morning was arguing with Tiffany and Chris from T Mobile. Actually there was no arguing, it was me venting as I drank my first cups of coffee and Chris and Tiffany thanking me and apologizing.

It was a drizzly gray morning as I did my laundry which now hangs on racks and in the bathroom drying in the dampness. I had a plan to meet up with Mr. & Mrs. Casey Chasm this afternoon. Casey Chasm asked if I liked lasagna and I said I sure did.

Around 1:30 it was still drizzling out as I headed over to the Chasm residence. It wasn’t so bad when I left my building but as I walked a few doors up the block, the sky opened up and I reached for my umbrella which didn’t do any good besides keeping my upper torso and head relatively dry.

Everything below the waist was wet. I needed to run to CVS and when I left CVS it was still pissing out. I decided the best thing to do would be to head home since the sneakers, socks and blue jeans I was wearing were quite soaked. Up four flights of stairs for a quick change and then I was out on the street again where it had stopped raining.

I hung out with Mr and Mrs Chasm, chatting. They even got me to play Wii which I did for the first time. I did good on bowling, on tennis I won over Mr Chasm though Mrs Chasm wiped the virtual tennis courts with Johnno’s body.

Then came boxing and it wasn’t foxy boxing to my chagrin. Casey Chasm went easy on me but my left uppercut was most ineffectual which was understandable since I didn’t think an uppercut was actually possible.

He set the Wii for training after a practice round, me throwing punches all arms akimbo, Casey Chasm all tight and controlled. I was getting hungry, looking forward to some lasagna when Bill called.

His mother was being moved from Beth Israel hospital to a center on Roosevelt Island. He asked if I could go with him and of course I said yes. I made a hasty exit from the Chasm abode and on my way home had a slice of lackluster pizza which while filling couldn’t compare to homemade lasagna.

I went home again, up four flights again and unloaded some crap and got some new crap. I needed something to read since I was going to be back on the bus on a late afternoon on Friday.

That meant some rush hour traffic which like last time, brought me closer to 34th street rather than 42nd street where the bus terminal is. Two other passengers and myself persuaded the drive to let us off on 35th street and I once again navigated the crowds milling towards either the bus terminal or Penn Station.

I got to Bill’s office building and he came down a minute or so later. We then caught an F train to Roosevelt Island. The plan was to have Bill and I there at the facility when he mother arrived, to have two friendly faces to make her transition a little bit easier.

We got there a little after 6:00 and waited for nearly two hours when we found out that Bill’s mother wasn’t going to be transferred tonight after all. Bill handled that news admirably and we had a pleasant walk to the Tram which we took back to Manhattan.

I had never been to Roosevelt Island so I took a few snapshots.

4309-roosevelt-001

4309-roosevelt-002

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from the Tram

from the Tram


We got off the Tram on 59th street and would have walked back to the bus terminal smoking our cigars, but of course that wasn’t going to happen since it was raining once again. We rode the subway to the bus terminal and caught a waiting bus. And now we’re here. The day ended better than it began oddly enough.

Where are you?

Alpha Beta Gaga

Well it’s Thursday. I found that out the hard way this morning. I lay in bed, barely remember Bill saying good bye like he always does. I lay there, the alarm on my cellphone going off to remind me not to forget it.

I drifted closer to the shores of being awake when I realized that as comfortable as I was in bed, it was Thursday and not Friday and I had better get moving.

Interruption at present: Harpy being a most curmudgeonly curmudgeon. Drunken call at 9:15 whining about how much he hates that I post things on Facebook that his other friends have posted already. It’s so cute to be berated by the drunken Harpy.

He complains that everyone is dumping on him so the thing to do is to call the guy who always takes his call and give him (me) a hard time. Oh he’s just dripping with charm tonight.

Anyway back to me, I got my act together and walked across midtown to the office winding up in the office at 9:20. No one seemed to care or notice. I ran a few errands and picked up a bagel. I actually had a few projects going on.

Next week I’ll probably be alone in the office since Greg Stevens will be back in Arizona and Vivek will be in Acapulco. Still there are four other companies I have to support. Harpy called me Apollo since out of most of his friends I am getting a steady paycheck.

I stayed a little later in the office since I had plans on going to the United Nations to support Jon Fried and Deena Shoshkes as well as their friend John O’Neil from the New York Times. It was a concert of sorts in support of World Autism Day.

John O’Neil would say a few words, ending on a keyword that would be the title of a song that he wrote with either Jon or Deena. It was quite nice and they had a good crowd. A few researchers and teachers of children with autism also said a few informative and encouraging words.

It was a nice change of pace and definitely good to see Jon and Deena. I always liked the Cucumbers, from the first time they played McSwells. I even gave their first EP as a holiday gift when it came out.

I didn’t get a chance to speak with Deena but I did speak with Jon. We gave each other a hug and he told me that his mother in law Googled his name and what came up was John Ozed, specifically last night’s entry about how Deena was shooting daggers at me from the back seat as Jon was driving me close to my apartment in Weehawken.

We had a larf about that, and Jon said he remembered the night perfectly and that Deena was shooting the daggers at him, not me. I was only collateral damage.

It was all in all a pleasant evening, topped off with a Padron as I strolled down 42nd Street, from the United Nations to the bus terminal where a bus was waiting.

Jon Fried & Deena Shoshkes

Jon Fried & Deena Shoshkes

Jon

Jon

Deena

Deena

almost like the Exploding  Plastic Inevitable

almost like the Exploding Plastic Inevitable

Me

Me

You’re Not From Brighton

It was back to work for me today. Fewer and fewer people have been able to say that lately. Last night Bill and I watched 60 Minutes, then watched the Sex and the City movie. It was one of the few gay things we do.

It was enjoyable though midway through I thought it would take a dark macabre turn ala Lawn Hors d’oeuvre with Steve separated from Miranda, he was going to take their kid and do a murder/suicide. Of course that didn’t happen.

Happy endings all around. We both enjoyed it though not enough to actually go see it in a theater. A Sunday night viewing on HBO was enough.

Bill was off to bed and I soon joined him as he snored quite loudly. He got his results from the sleep apnea test and it turns out he has sleep apnea. So he has to go back for more testing. I told him if he dies on me I would kill him. There- I put it in writing.

I woke up and got my act together in time to see Bill heading out the door. I had a nice breakfast and soon I too was out the door heading to the bus. Made it to the office with no problems. Came in though and saw milk that was left out for a few days, most of the office and conference rooms in disarray.

I grumbled but it is my job to put things in order.

On Facebook this morning I wrote: Dumbfounded by the people I share office space with and their overwhelming ineptitude. But still I am not complaining since their foolhardiness gets me out of the office. So there!

I thought it was humorous and hit the nail on the head. Harpy tells me later that he was worried because so many people in the world use Facebook, but I think the people I work with, if they went looking for me on Facebook they would not be looking for John Ozed. They would be looking for that other guy.

I think Harpy’s fear while appreciated was unwarranted. And what I wrote wasn’t so bad after all. And if they called me on what I wrote, I could back up what I wrote.

I was out running errands earlier than usual this morning. I needed to buy milk for the coffee I made so I was out and about. I was busier than usual as the day went on, and was also able to leave early. I had to run an errand for Vivek and his partner which meant going down to the printer in Chinatown and pick up some more business cards.

That was fine by me. It was a nice enough afternoon to walk around the City Hall area and enjoy a Padron while heading to the Path train.

Couldn’t get a seat on the train so I stood and read the new book from the library that I have taken out, April 4, 1968. It’s about Martin Luther King’s death and how it changed America and written by Michael Eric Dyson who was really good on Bill Maher a few weeks ago.

So far it’s a good read. I’m looking forward to reading more of his books.

I love my library and not because it’s a block and a half away from my apartment. I loved the Weehawken library too and that wasn’t that close to my apartment. I love the fact that if there is anything I might want I could go online and order it from the cooperative system and within days it will be available to me in Hoboken.

DVD’s books, CD’s all available but not always in good condition. When I took out Bruce Springsteen’s The River, it looked like someone was practicing ice skating on it. But hey, you take your chances.

Giant

It’s Wednesday again. An out of the ordinary day. One day left for me this week at work. Last night Bill was doing the sleep apnea test thing and it went well I suppose. I’m sure I’ll hear all about it later. More than likely during the last 5 minutes of Lost which will have steam almost leaving my ears. I do want to hear all about it, but not between 9:00 and 10:00.

Harpy is scheduled to go to the NYU Dental Clinic for dentures. He needs ’em. He’s been getting a little too close to Shane McGowan’s dentistry as of late and this should improve his chances of getting a job and perhaps eating solid food again.

Don’t get me wrong, I love me my Harpy and only want the best for him. This morning I was out on an errand and saw in my building, at the Staples store a notice on the window for positions opening up downtown at Broadway and Vesey Street.

I only glanced and called Harpy to tell him. It probably wouldn’t be his thing so I asked him to forward the info to Susan, former co-owner of Farfetched. The news about Harpy’s scheduled dental visit was posted on Facebook and commented on by Susan and myself.

When I finished my errand I stopped and called Susan who immediately was in attack mode, thinking that I was calling up about the dentist. I had to raise my voice a bit to let Susan know that I was calling to let her know about the possible job info and to help her out.

Still she filled me in about Harpy’s problem which I knew all about from Harpy himself. She dutifully wrote down the info that I recited over the phone, where to log in and apply, where to go for the actual store. I just hope it doesn’t turn out to be a madhouse, with hundreds of people lined up around the block.

That’s how it’s been lately. I spoke with my former boss, present friend Risotto see how he was doing. He is in a human resources position and told me how he listed a job for sales and was inundated with a couple of thousand applicants, for one job.

Robert and I made plans to see a mutual friend, Fay Victor singing at 55 Bar on Christopher Street when the weather gets warmer and when Fay returns to the States from Holland.

Work was all deck chairs today. Steve, former co-worker who’s been lingering and using the office facilities to get a new job since he was released from his job in October when he came back from his honeymoon in Greece, came in again.

It seems that he has gotten a new job in Tarrytown, just finalizing the details. He asked me if I wanted to go have a cigar with him to celebrate and of course I said yes. We headed out around 2:30, no one really noticing that I was out of the office, but I left a note letting them know they could reach me on my cell.

He brought along a bottle of Woodland Reserve, a nice bourbon that went very well with the San Luis Rey cigar I picked out. We sat in the lounge at the Cigar Inn on Second Avenue and sipped and puffed with quite a few other men smoking cigars on a Wednesday afternoon.

A nice mellow scene indeed and quite aromatic. Of course that ended about an hour later, Steve was off to his wife and me back to the office, quite buzzed and wondering what the hell was I doing there.

After a half hour of bewilderment I got my stuff together and headed towards the bus terminal. Finally coming down from the cigar/bourbon buzz and not complaining at all, just wishing I had another cigar and more bourbon.

The fact that Steve was able to get a new job, really gives me hope for my other unemployed friends.

It’s Tricky

Tuesday evening. A little drizzly outside but it’s ok. I’m happy that Bill will be staying here tonight in Hoboken. His mom was put in Beth Israel hospital for observation. It was the doctor’s idea. Bill wasn’t able to handle what was going on with her and this option seems to be the best for all concerned.

I guess it’s selfish of me to want Bill home with me, but it’s been a few months that he’s actually spent the night here. Bill’s mother won’t be wandering around on the street as she’s been doing the past week.

Last night I saw Watchmen with Harpy and it was enjoyable despite a crying baby midway through the showing. Who would bring an infant to an R rated movie? Idiots, that’s who. Then towards the end of the movie, I thought it was odd that Tubular Bells (the theme from the Exorcist) was part of the soundtrack.

It actually wasn’t. It was Harpy’s cellphone. He turned it off at the beginning of the movie as we were instructed but unbeknownst to Harpy, even though the cellphone is off the alarm will still go off regardless. That was funny and embarrassing.

I forgot most of the details since I had read the original comic books 22 years ago when they were first issued. Rand had gotten me an issue a month for my birthday. It was a complicated plot, not your average comic book superhero stories.

But from what I gathered and from what Harpy told me it was basically faithful to the original. ‘The most fucking amazing job’ Harpy just told me on the phone about the movie. I’d take a gander at the issues I had but I usually avoid issues from my past and these issues were lost in a few moves.

They could be floating around Lodi or possibly in a garbage dump, sorry Rand. Harpy is presently on the phone, raving about it more today than he did last night.

Last Friday when I was off work and before things got screwy I watched a little bit of Martha Stewart’s TV show. He guest was Q-Tip from A Tribe Called Quest. As they were making whatever it was they were making, Martha asked Q-Tip who his music publisher was and he replied that he was his own publisher, which is a smart move.

The money that’s made in music is generally through publishing, other artists singing your songs. But the thing is, who covers Rap & Hip Hop songs? No one really. A rapper usually raps about their life experience or a story, and the few instances I can think of are Duran Duran covering White Lines by Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five and Tricky covering Slick Rick’s Children’s Story.

That’s about it for Rap covers I can think of. Young MC also wrote Wild Thing and Funky Cold Medina for Tone Loc but thats as far as that got. I’m sure there is a novelty record out there with Sonic Youth or someone else covering Baby’s Got Back. Filed under ‘Ironic’.

Work today was ok. Greg Stevens still in Arizona, Vivek somewhere in the southeast with his partner working on some new project, and Tom Chin has been quite nice lately, perhaps due to his retirement which I guess will be at the end of the month. I had to go to New Zealand Town, I mean, Chinatown to pick up some business cards for Vivek’s partner.

It was enjoyable to be out of the office and I got off the train at Bleecker Street and walked down Broadway to Howard Street in Chinatown. And like last night with Harpy stepping on my dress shoes, some neck bone stepped on my right foot at the corner of Prince Street. I of course gave him ‘the look’ which caused the neck bone to apologize profusely.

Still no word from my landlord about me cleaning up the hallways and the front of the building which is overrun with recyclables for the third week. All I’m asking is for a rent reduction of maybe $100.00 (which I never mentioned to the landlord) rather than him paying hundreds of dollars a month to a maintenance company that is supposed to clean the hallway but haven’t been here in months, or the moron down the street who’s supposed to move the recyclables and the trash to the curb.

I did take some pictures of the mess which I’ll include with the next rent check. Sooner or later he’ll get a ticket for having the front of the building in such an untidy state.

On my downtown travels, I looked into what was Farfetched amd took some pictures. I couldn’t see inside and this is what the camera picked up.

Farfetched?

Farfetched?

Recyclables

Recyclables

Piranha Salad

Well it’s Monday and so far it seems like a waste of time. There was a plan to go see Watchmen tonight, talked about it with Harpy. Told him weeks ago I would take him to see it tonight. I call him earlier, to remind him but he’s going to Susan’s and says he can’t make it.

I berate him and he relents. You see, I figured that I would do the smart thing and buy the tickets online in case it gets sold out. I did that Friday in the midst of the fiascos going on. I think that is what changed Harpy’s mind.

So I just get a phone call from Bill, his mother left the apartment again and was wandering around Stuyvesant Town on her own. Luckily someone found her and brought her to Bill’s cousin Elsie’s apartment. So now Bill can’t make it.

I am quite sure this will be the last time I ever make plans in advance to go to a movie, much less buy the tickets in advance. You buy the ticket as well as a processing fee and there’s a good chance that I will be eating that ticket.

I’m not happy about this. Not there was anything Bill could have done about his mother. She wandered off. Oh and Medicare has rejected his claim for assistance which I didn’t say anything about but had a feeling it could turn out that way.

Other than that it’s been a mediocre Monday. Rearranging deck chairs which seems to be my current lot in life. Last night I watched Big Love and despite not catching the previous couple of episodes it still is quite good and I need to catch up.

Flight of the Conchords was hilarious though, New Zealand Town and hair gel were the 2 themes and it was one of their best so far, featuring Lucy Lawless! I did watch East Bound & Down, starring Danny McBride. I’m not so sure about that despite what my brother Frank has to say. He loves the show for some reason. For me it’s just not that good.

Still haven’t gotten over the effects of the daylight savings thing. Thought I would have after taking a nap yesterday afternoon but no, that didn’t work. Nice nap though. It was dark when I woke up this morning and I didn’t like that one bit.

I’ve really been enjoying both Jenny Lewis ‘Acid Tongue’ and the Bird and the Bee “Ray Guns are not Just the Future’. Haven’t heard all of the War Child – Heroes compilation and haven’t heard the Red Hot compilation, Dark Was the Night at all. Soon though, I can feel it.

Now I have 2 hours to kill before heading out to the movie. Yes I am writing this at work. This goes to show you how much work there is for me to do. At least for today. Vivek and his partner are out today so it’s just me and Tom Chin and he’ll be out Wednesday and Thursday which is fine by me.

Bill has me worried, he is at wit’s end with his mother. She’s just been a handful, argumentive and restless. Walking back and forth in the apartment, asking the same questions over and over. It’s affecting him quite a bit, he’s not sleeping well and it’s causing his left arm and his chest to have pain from the stress and that ain’t good at all for anyone.

Bill has brought his mother home and looks like he will have to put her in a home since this can’t going on much longer, roaming the streets without any idea of where she is and not dressed for whatever weather is going on outside. She is basically a danger to herself.

Read A Book

Just got back from visiting friends in Hoboken. Never been to their place. Didn’t know exactly where they lived, but I had an inkling for some reason which was on target. Oh by they I mean Elsie and Dutch. 2 people that I know and readers of the blog.

Or at least one of them read it and tells the other I don’t know but I do know their cats like me and from what I heard their cats don’t like just anyone. Always a hit with the pussy I suppose. No possible threat. A bit randy perhaps? Perhaps I was. 4 or 5 Heinekens will do that.

Still it was a last minute thing, phone call, invite of food, sounded good to me. Fast chatter and wandering tangents over a few hours wore me out and I still had to come home to write. I’d be open for another invite and since they read this from time to time I’m putting that out there.

Food was good despite a heavy parmigiana presence and I’m no fan of the parm. Still I left stuffed. There promises to be a heavy snowstorm tomorrow, from what I read they’re anticipating 6 inches or more. Unless it was a male meteorologist then we can actually expect 2 inches.

Last night I had a good phone call with Harpy. He was himself as usual but relatively coherent this time which made it fun. Running down various things Harpy can do for employment.

His girlfriend Deborah is a yoga teacher and I suggested that since she’s successful with that maybe he can manage her and her calendar as well as her fellow yoga teachers, sending them out on various assignments getting a commission or whatnot.

Sort of like Harpy’s Angels, ‘Hello Angels’, ‘Hello Harpy’.

Why not? It could work and wouldn’t hurt to try. He’s another decent cook, that Harpy. Perhaps that angle. I also suggested a government job. In any event we have to find Harpy a job. Him first since he’s been unemployed the longest out of all my friends.

He’s not collecting either so if you know anything let me know and I’ll forward it to him. He’s also a very good bookkeeper which was his last job was. This afternoon I watched 2 DVD’s. The first was the Homecoming with Ian Holm. A film of the Harold Pinter play from 1973 which was quite harrowing.

I’m sure it would have been more intense and perhaps more entertaining (if that’s the right word) watching it live on stage. In fact it was recently on Broadway with Ian McShane, Michael McKean and Raul Esparza which of course, I wasn’t interested in seeing until after it closed.

After that I watched Grizzly Man by Werner Herzog which was engrossing and not as harrowing as I thought it would be. True story of Timothy Treadwell who left civilization to commune with brown grizzly bears in the wilds of Alaska.

It was a collection of videos made by Treadwell that were gathered and edited and made into a documentary by Herzog. Sad, deluded Treadwell, it did not end well for him and his girlfriend. There was an audio track of their attack and slaughter by a grizzly bear, one that wasn’t used to them and vice versa.

You don’t hear the audio but Herzog listens to it and tells a friend of Treadwell to turn it off and then he tells the friend to never listen to it, instructing her to destroy the tape.

It reminded me of Into the Wild, a DVD that I had a few weeks ago, starring Emile Hirsch as yet another young man fed up with civilization and goes off on walkabout eventually meeting an untimely demise.

My walkabout usually involves me staying within the mile square confines of Hoboken and the only bears I see are generally hirsute men.

And to end tonight’s entry on a very Up note, here are 2 recent pictures of Kal-El, who is learning to walk. Still the cutest baby in the world!

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alexander-photo-0153

Crackerbox Palace

Not a bad Fat Tuesday. Not that I’m celebrating Mardi Gras. Just today was an agreeable day. Sure there was a bit of nonsense but nothing that couldn’t be overcome. Last night was rather ho hum. I thought Heroes would be the big thrill of the day, but actually it focused on the boring characters.

Harpy called when it started and I told him I would call him back In retrospect, I should have taken his call. The horned rimmed glasses guy’s back story simply isn’t compelling, and the cheerleader would have been a better storyline. Also, no Syler which means dull dull dull.

After that I watched Futurama and Demitri Martin’s show on Comedy Central. My brother Frank recommended it and he was right, it’s pretty funny. He does remind me of John Hamilton though. Speaking of John Hamilton, Bill and I are attending a surprise party for him on Sunday. Hopefully he doesn’t read this blog, or Google his name, where this entry might pop up.

Went to bed after the big news story of New York getting a new archbishop, replacing the old archbishop who’s retiring. Not that anything with change, they’ll just have to let out or take in the brocaded cape and gowns.

Haute couture while schools are closing. Yeah they have their priorities straight.

Yesterday was the first time in a while that I’ve walked on the property of St. Patrick’s cathedral. I usually cross the street, but it couldn’t be avoided. Did you hear or read that the catholic church is bringing back selling indulgences? Yep. Sure are. Gotta raise some money and bishop needs a new pair of (Prada) shoes.

Slept really well last night, woke up to the sound of the Monkees singing Daydream Believer. I like leaving a little later, the bus isn’t that crowded since there are buses rolling down Washington Street every 5 minutes and I get to ride in a coach bus. Very comfortable.

Since I finished Sarah Vowell last week as well as the double issue of the New Yorker I had nothing to read yesterday and wound up staring out the window. Today I made sure I had something and brought the latest issue of Uncut magazine and read about the formation of Apple Records 41 years ago. What a mess that turned out to be. Good intentions, lousy results.

Work was a breeze today. Tom Chin has the flu and didn’t stay all day which was good. He gave me something to fax when he gave me the go ahead and then he left the office. I got the thing ready but didn’t fax it, but sent an email telling him I did.

I’d get yelled at if I didn’t fax it and wasn’t sure if he wanted me to, perhaps I missed his go ahead. He responded, probably while on Metro North heading back to Connecticut, in caps writing ‘I told you to wait until I told you!’ I replied that the fax machine wasn’t working properly so it didn’t go out after all.

Actually it never left my desk. He’ll probably have something to say about it tomorrow, if he comes in.

Today’s comedy was courtesy of Vivek. He gives me some checks to deposit. One goes to this bank A, the other goes to that bank B.I get the deposit slips all set but the account number has one too many digits. I ask him if he’s sure it goes to bank B and he says yes.

I go to bank A and that went well, I was able to make the deposit. I go to bank B and they tell me it’s not their bank. I then go to bank C across the street and it’s not them either. I then cross another street and go to bank D where I’m met by some helpful staff.

They escort me to an office and a handsome young man comes in and enters the info. It turns out it is his bank, bank D. He does the transaction while I wait in the office and comes back with the deposit receipt. I ask him how things are with the current economic climate and he tells me he works at a bank that actually has shown a profit.

Then he asks where I bank and I tell him. I’m getting a vibe from this guy, that he’s into me. Imagine that, being seduced so I could perhaps switch banks. It was a pleasant experience and I left after complimenting him on his suit. Gave him something to dream about.

Left work an hour or so later, on my way to see Bill for a few minutes. I had every green light and made it across town in surprisingly record time. Saw Bill and we had a few laughs. He asked me to go to Easter services with him and his mother.

Sure, I said, mentioning that I will have 40 days from tomorrow to think about it in case I change my mind. He mentioned that he wouldn’t be able to get ashes tomorrow due to his hectic schedule. I told him that Ash Wednesday is probably a favorite holiday of dermatologists around the world.

Shakin’ All Over

Oh that Kenny G. He’s on TV right now playing his horn on some ice skating program. He’s the butt of a lot of jokes but I talked with him a while ago on the phone while working for Arista Records and found him to be quite a nice guy.

So I have no beef with him. I won’t run out and buy his records or anything like that but I really have nothing bad to say about him. I wish I knew him better so I could recommend Harpy working for him.

I just got home from Manhattan. Nice day to walk around the city. I headed into the office and cleaned some vases with bamboo shoots in them and roots and rocks covered in algae. I try to clean them once a month but I’ve been lax in that department.

I was also able to take care of a few things that occurred during my absence yesterday. It’s true, these people I work with and support can’t do anything for themselves. They are spoiled. I’m not complaining since I’m the one who’s spoiled them and it keeps me busy. The smallest thing I do makes me look good I think and I intend to keep this up until the lease runs out in March 2010.

Last night I watched a little bit of Factory Girl (The Edie Sedgwick story) which had a bit of the song, Shakin’ All Over. I loved the version and went to iTunes to find out who had done it. Of course it’s a classic and covered by dozens of artists. I found a version I really liked by Iggy Pop and downloaded it. But still- who did the classic 1960’s version?

I enjoyed a Padron as I walked back to the Path train. I wasn’t going to take the bus home since it took forever to get into the city on the bus. One lane going in through the Lincoln Tunnel, plus the bus had a slight collision with a truck. Nothing bad happened and we only stopped for a few minutes.

I was reading about Caroline Kennedy in the New Yorker and a woman next to me asked what I thought about the article I had just finished. We would up having a nice chat about the Kennedy’s and politics. I mentioned that it’s sometimes confusing and infuriating that being so close to New York, we get all the information about New York politics, like Caroline Kennedy thinking about becoming a Senator for the Empire State.

Ultimately it wouldn’t concern me one way or another, but I was drawn into it due to the Kennedy myths. My seat mate felt the same way. She’s an Irish Catholic and I’m a Irish Atheist, formerly catholic. It was a nice chat. She was chubby cheeked enough that she could have passed for one of my cousins. And we both still feel bad about John F. Kennedy Jr and his untimely demise.

I talked with my sister on the phone as I puffed on my Padron and walked down Fifth Avenue towards the Path train. She and her husband, Rex are enjoying the Robert Plant and Alison Krauss CD I got Rex for his birthday this past week, Raising Sand.

Annemarie is going to burn it for me since I was pretty much intrigued by the song that I had heard. I, in turn promised to burn a copy of Raphael Saadiq, The Way I See It. I posted the 100 Yard Dash on my Facebook page page and Annemarie liked it.

It promises to be another quiet night tonight. No plans really. Got the new Mojo and Uncut magazines which I will likely peruse while perhaps watching Renee Fleming on the Elvis Costello show, Spectacle. That’s it on this end. Hope all is well with you and yours, as it is with me and mine.

I’ll Go Crazy

Well it’s Friday and I’m not at 100%, still have this cold which seems to be subsiding at 3:18PM. I listened to Bill’s advice and stayed home. I had a feeling that I wouldn’t be going into work and set things up to take care of themselves today in the office.

So I’m legitimately out today yet still I feel some guilt about not going in. True, I probably wouldn’t be of much use today, things on Fridays have been generally running at half speed lately, but I feel like I should have made an appearance.

And on the news today was all bad news, unemployment at it’s highest in 37 years. That didn’t help my mindset at all. Harpy and I talked last week about how odd it is that I’m the only one working out of several people we know.

It’s not easy working knowing the rug could be pulled out from under you at any time. The sword of Damocles hangs overhead while precariously perched on a shaky rug. It seems more intense not being in the office than it is when I am in the office.

Had a strange dream last night. I was on a motor boat in the Hudson River with Paul McCartney and one of his grand kids. I was steering it towards where the Air Bus was docked in the World Financial Center/Battery Park area before being moved on shore in NJ.

Lot’s of watercraft and despite the feeling of near collisions I was able to get the motor boat back to Jersey City where Macca and I walked around looking for his grand kid. That’s it, that’s all that happened and it was certainly a sign of a fever dream.

I can’t say that I’ve dreamed of Paul or any other Beatles lately though I used to when I was growing up in Lodi. I used to dream that John, Paul, George and Ringo lived in a neighbor’s house, the Janowsky’s much like the Beatles lived in one big flat in Help.

I would go over to see if they were around but almost always they were away. I would see them going in or out of the house in various dreams. Here it is quite a few years later and I’m dreaming of Paul in Jersey City. I guess I still am a strange kid.

It’s cold outside and I’ve been cooped up all day in the apartment. No need to go out though stretching my legs seems like a good enough excuse. Tomorrow is supposed to be a nice day and I am thinking about heading into the office to take care of some dirty stuff.

That means cleaning out the bamboo stalks from the algae covered rocks in a few vases in the office. It’s a messy job and I’m thinking that tomorrow would be perfect since no one will be in and I can do it at my own pace. It’s basically a pain in the ass.

Well I just got back from a short walk to the store. It’s certainly cold out, but I enjoyed just being outside. Broke up the day somewhat. Nothing else planned for today or rather, tonight. More sitting around the apartment seems likely. But tomorrow, tomorrow I will go out. This much I know.

Let’s Go Away for Awhile

Well here I am over 24 hours after the last posting. What did I do? Where did I go? Well, after writing I walked from 50th street and Third Avenue to 12th Street and Fourth Avenue, enjoying a Padron and listening to a play list for the Farfetched finale. After 28 years, Farfetched has bit the dust. Not that Susan or Lois did anything wrong.

Lousy landlord wouldn’t renew their lease since there seems to be quite a demand for Goth shoes in the neighborhood. Well, we’ll see how that goes. Raccoon eyed customers with deep pockets always shop during economic downturns.

Even if the landlord did renew the lease it probably would have been a stressful year for Susan and Lois. They were clobbered for the holiday season and that’s their best time of year. So a whole year of that wouldn’t have done them well and they would possibly end the year with multiple ulcers.

I got to the store which was barren and sparsely decorated. Plenty of wine to accompany the six pack of Heineken’s I bought. $13.00 for a six pack is a bit much. I could get two six packs in Hoboken for the same price, but I was on the island of Manhattan where everything is imported. Lois, Susan and Harpy were in the store and we were anticipating a few guests.

We were fine with it being the four of us, but we welcomed the incoming well wishers. And that’s what they were, well wishers coming to wish Susan and Lois and quite possibly Harpy well. The night progressed, I’d say about 50 people were there at one point. Actually more like 25 as I was seeing double.

People came in from as far as Ohio to say goodbye. Bill even was there for a while, taking it all in as well as taking a few photos. I just drank and drank, my hand always having a green bottle in my hand. I had to replenish my supply and I went over to Third Avenue at Harpy’s suggestion and bout 2 six packs at $10.00 per, a slight improvement.

Jen, Me, Sharon, Jessica and Harpy (missing: Amy who left early)

Jen, Me, Sharon, Jessica and Harpy (missing: Amy who left early)

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We were a festive crowd, even when Skeletor from the Halloween Adventure Store had the gall to stop by and collect the keys from Lois. After Skeletor left it seemed to be the proper time to throw many bags of shredded paper in the air creating a snowstorm of confetti a few inches deep.

Music was constantly played supplied by Harpy, myself and Sharon, another former employee. Susan’s sister Karen recited a poem, I mistook Susan’s other sister Linda to be a guy, as she’s quite a butch lesbian. Sharon, the distaff DJ was there with her husband Jocko who told me that he doesn’t use Facebook since he thinks it has a cult like mentality.

Perhaps he’s right. I’ve never been much of a joiner but I am enthralled by the Facebook and the connections it allows. Some hooliganism was underfoot during the party with the toilet getting backed up as a welcoming for the Goth shoe store.

That should have been done at the end of the party but someone (and it’s not me) thought otherwise. Some squatting in the basement occurred after that and that wasn’t me either. It was a happy/sad occasion over all.

I stumbled out a little after 12:30 after kissing Susan and Lois and Harpy. Plodded my way to 14th Street and Sixth Avenue to a crowded Path station. Had to ride uptown to get back to Hoboken and I found myself a corner seat, hat pulled down to my eyebrows and waited to get to Hoboken where I walked very fast towards home since I really had to pee.

In bed soon after that and tossed and turned all night. This morning I saw Julio and Stine with Superboy as they were headed out. I made breakfast, did some laundry, watching a movie called Human Traffic on DVD.

Obligatory picture of Alexander Lopez

Obligatory picture of Alexander Lopez

Pretty funny movie about a group of British youths doing ecstasy and partying for a weekend. Some very funny, very true things in the movie, though I still can’t figure out why I rented it.

After that, a much needed nap for about 3 hours and now I find myself in front of the computer again.

Other pics are posted in Facebook under my nom de blog, John Ozed
and some short vids on YouTube under johnotoole99 whomever that is…

Low

Nice to write on a Friday evening. Been a long week though it was only a 4 day work week. Haven’t heard of any other friends getting laid off today. Trudy whom I wrote about yesterday is leaving next Friday. Farfetched, according to Susan’s Facebook page will probably be shuttered this weekend.

Next Friday is a farewell get together at the store and Harpy wants to dance with me. ♪’I’m Harpy just to dance with you’♫. I may fob Bill off on him since Bill is more of a dancer, I’m more of a music selecter. No typo or sic, just an homage to a favorite 2 Tone band.

Tonight I’m not doing much of anything except for laundry. I’m off to Otisville, land of the alpha male Pedro. Trying to figure out how to get that nude shot of him from his phone to mine. The nude shot that sobered me right up last May, burned into my consciousness.

Speaking of nude shots, I saw (and saved) a video of two hot guys going at it a while ago. That’s one of the advantages of not having children around, graphic images and their availability. Well the other day I am pretty sure I saw one of the participants on the street the other morning as I was going to work.

I wasn’t sure since he was fully clothed and couldn’t tell since I didn’t hear his voice. Of course ever since I saw him I made it a point to walk the same bat route at the same bat time but he was nowhere to be found this morning.

Just 2 ships passing in the night (or morning) and one with quite a heavy anchor. What would I say? What would I do if I saw him again? Just a daydream again, albeit a lustful daydream. Oh sex, such a welcome distraction from life’s drudgery.

That was a return to the early days of this blog when I wrote freely about sexual matters, now I use discretion and ennui. Last night was nothing extraordinary. No O & RM, watched Ugly Betty. It’s been awhile since I watched it and while it’s still sweet I really don’t know what’s going on.

Easy to jump back in though. Bill is into the show and I could always ask him who’s who and what’s what. I had no idea that Betty was living in Manhattan with Amanda and I had no idea Amanda could be nice. Amanda is the receptionist and also the illegitimate daughter of the horrid Gene Simmons from Kiss.

I never liked Kiss and always felt their fans, the Kiss Army were a bunch of suckers. They were big but never reached the upper echelons of the Rock and Roll hierarchy and are rarely mentioned in those Rock and Roll documentaries on VH1 Classics.

Unlike Led Zeppelin who I used to resent, but now I respect, I will never like Kiss.

Harpy called midway through Ugly Betty, reading me the pulse on Farfetched and then proceeded to froth at the mouth about something. I don’t remember and as Harpy was nearly 3 sheets to the wind I doubt if he will remember.

I do recall his mentioning Ambien and how he took it once only to find himself on the living room floor surrounded by stacks of books that he piled up when sleep walking. That sounds like fun, if only as an experiment.

Take an Ambien and let the camera roll. Of course someone would need to use the camera and prevent me from doing something really stupid. The perfect person to man the camera would be Juan who just called me a little while ago wondering if we were going to meet up later.

He gets out of work at 10:00 and he’s in Princeton which is a few hours away which means midnight, and that might be too late for me. Still, I told him to call me to gauge the situation. I’m hopeful since I haven’t seen him since last year.

I just wouldn’t want him to come over and then me kicking him out soon after. He’s working and going to school so he has a full dance card.

I doubt that I’ll be posting tomorrow night since I’ll be in Otisville with Pedro and Connie, as well as Excer and his girlfriend and Gary- a friend of theirs from back in the day. I meet Gary every couple of years and the last time was last year.

And last time I saw Excer he was complaining about how his girlfriend wants to get married and that’s something Excer doesn’t want to do again. Another friend, Ulysses may show up but I’m not placing any bets on that.

It would be fun if Ulysses showed up, it would raise the party to a whole different level but I’m not holding my breath. Ulysses is such a cool name though, isn’t it? I suppose it made him tough, much like A Boy Named Sue.

Aretha’s hat takes over the world!
2009_1_arethahat

Oomingmak

It’s Saturday. And it’s freezing outside. Right now, according to the New York Times it’s 18 degrees. That’s 11 degrees more than it was when I woke up this morning. Still alive, carbon monoxide detectors are doing their job and not beeping. That’s a good thing I think.

Last night was a quiet night, just me and some Bushmills. Perfect for a winter night, some sipping. I watched Elvis Costello’s TV show on the Sundance Channel, Spectacle. Watched 2 episodes. The first featured the Police, Sting, Andy Summers and Stewart Copeland.

The first time I heard the Police was in 1978, riding to school in Scott Miskuff’s car. It was his brother’s 8 track actually and to my ears it sounded like Boston was doing reggae. I don’t know why I thought that, especially since they don’t sound like that at all.

Roxanne was the big hit and they were considered Punk so I eventually bought it. It was ok, their better record was the second album, Regatta de Blanc. I was more into Elvis Costello at the time so when he was putting down the Police, I paid even less attention to them.

Elvis: I just wish Sting would stop singing in his cod Jamaican accent.
Sting: I wish Elvis Costello would stop singing in his cod American accent.
Meow!

Now they are all nice nice. It was ok. Andy Summers in now 79 years old, Stewart Copeland is a gangly goofy father of 7, and Sting has gotten handsomer and his voice carries a resonance it never had 30 years ago. The Watching the Detectives/Walking on the Moon medley was adequate.

After the Police I watched Elvis Costello with Rufus Wainwright. That was ok. Rufus to me, came off like a 30 something gay guy from Manhattan, which is exactly what he is. He did part of Memphis Skyline which is his song about the late Jeff Buckley and a complete version of My Phone’s on Vibrate for You which was great as it always is when Rufus hit’s that high note.

He really is a good singer songwriter. He’s playing the Wellmont Theater in Montclair in a month or so, just him and his piano. His half sister Lucy Wainwright Roche is opening so I guess there will be a duet or two. I’m not going. Not in the budget you see.

Like I said, when I woke up it was 7 degrees outside. Bitterly cold, I walked outside, past Mr. L’s. I was due for a haircut but I didn’t have enough cash on me. I went and got bagels instead and stopped by Alexander Lopez’s apartment and talked with his dad.

It had been about a month since I last saw Alexander so he had completely forgotten about me, making me this exotic thing in a leather coat in the middle of his kitchen. Julio was telling me that Alexander weighs 22 pounds now and wears the clothing of a 12 month old. He’s only 8 months old. It was good to see them. Stine was in the shower and I only saw her briefly, clad in a bathrobe.

After doing laundry I decided to head into the city and visit Farfetched. Lois and Harpy were working and it was busy. Not much left in the store, everything was up for sale, sometimes with an 80% discount.

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Lois & Harpy

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That didn’t stop people from trying to haggle. Things that were on sale for $50.00 were marked down to $10.00 and that was still too much money for some people. Some woman wearing a big ass fur coat was the Marvin Hagler when I was there. And she wasn’t marvelous.

For me it was a bittersweet visit. I got a bib for Alexander and some cards as well as a Wicked Witch of the West key chain that has Margaret Hamilton’s voice cackling, saying ‘How about some fire Scarecrow?’ among other things.

It was too cold to enjoy a Padron and walk up to 33rd street so I made a beeline to the 14th street Path station. I also bought Elton John’s Madman Across the Water for $5.00 in the soon to be shuttered Virgin mega store on Union Square, next to the rapidly closing Circuit City.

Also picked up Bon Iver, whom I saw on Letterman last month and posted their appearance on this blog. While walking around I was playing Bob Frank and John Murry, World Without End. That’s a album of murder ballads, each and every one quite gruesome, but it sounds amazing.

I bought that last night using the iTunes gift card my brother Brian and his family gave me over the holidays last month. I heard one song by Bob Frank and John Murry sometime last year and it was really good and when I picked up the latest issue of Uncut and saw they had another track on the free CD I decided to dive in and buy the album.

Like I said, it’s gruesome, hearing them sing, ‘He cut her throat and gutted her insides’. Basically they took murder stories from the past 100 years and put them to some down home country tinged music. Murder ballads aren’t new at all, a strain of folk music for the past century.

Worth checking out I think, both Bon Iver- For Emma, Forever ago and Bob Frank and John Murry- World Without End.

Also bought a new CO detector and got a haircut from Tony at Mr. L’s. He once again outdid himself, trimming gray hairs from my goatee, trimming my nose and ear hair as well as trimming my eyebrows. He earns his tip every time.

Bill is quite ill right now, laid up in Stuyvesant Town with a fever and sore throat. That sounds like what I had back in October. I hope to go see him tomorrow and on the way I’ll pick up some chicken soup from a Chinese kitchen on the way. A quart or two for Bill and his mother.

It’s supposed to be warmer tomorrow they say. Could make it into the 20 degree range. Almost beach weather.

Add my friend Billie in Washington DC to the unemployment rolls. He invited Bill and myself to stay with him if we wanted to go to the inauguration, but I said thanks but no thanks. It’s going to be too cold and very crowded. I can watch it on TV.


Don’t Come Around Here No More

Well Harpy swore me to secrecy, that Farfetched will be closing at the end of February. Yesterday I found out that they will be closing at the end of January. Everything must go. They’re even selling the shelves. Harpy just called and wondered why I wasn’t there at the store.

After a 28 year run, Susan Zappone and Lois Marsilio are being forced out of business. The raising of the rent you see. It was outrageous rent to begin with, now it can only be described as out of control.

I started working there on and off about 10 years ago. The store had just been robbed by a guy named Delroy Kemp. He had a gun and not only did he rob the store, he robbed the customers as well. The employees at the time were women, Susan, Lois and Denise. Harpy was living the life of a country squire in Rhinebeck or La Grangeville.

I was working at Right Track at the time and was invited to a gathering at the Paramount Hotel that Harpy was having for his then companion, Carol. That’s where I met Susan. Actually I think it might have been when I passed a package of powders to Harpy.

Harpy mentioned that I might be interested in extra money and it would probably be a good thing to have a big guy behind the counter. I qualified as a big guy. Still not sure how intimidating I could be. No robberies on my watch I have to say.

For a while I mainly worked with Denise on weekends. Me coming in at 1PM and working until 7PM for $10.00 an hour. I enjoyed working there though even after all these years I never really felt I fit in. I knew the writing was on the wall the past holiday season where I usually would work one or two days to help out with the rush, this year there was no rush, therefore no need for me.

I helped them out however I could though. Even standing behind the counter when someone needed to go to the bathroom or put quarters in the parking meter. I did see Susan Sarandon shopping there as well as Tim Robbins on a different day. Also Julia Roberts and Benjamin Bratt.

The celebrity that stands out for me would be Joey Ramone buying about $100.00 worth of discounted holiday cards the day after Christmas. I didn’t get a chance to see Robert Plant shopping there a few months ago. I did alert Gawker Stalker on that celebrity sighting of Percy but they ignored that as well as other postings I sent them, so I don’t read Gawker anymore.

So it’s sad to see some friends business go belly up. I don’t know what’s in the works for Susan and Lois and I don’t think they know either. I do wish them well and I plan on visiting them soon enough before the end and before it turns into the hot spot to buy some authentic cruddy Goth shoes and boots which seems to be in the works.

Susan and Lois were at my 40th birthday surprise party that Bill threw 6 years ago at Rand and Lisa’s apartment. I wonder if Susan figured out her digital camera yet…

In other news, I have been home for an hour, heater is on, no carbon monoxide detectors going off. My brother Brian called me, a bit alarmed at the CO problems. CO meaning Carbon Monoxide, not Corrections Officer. That’s Pedro’s department and he doesn’t care. Great to hear from Brian despite the messed up news he had to say. And that’s all I have to say on that.

The Cutter

So happy it’s Thursday makes for a good acronym. The week went by not too fast but not too slow either. Keep your head down and muddle through is basically how its done.

I am through with the Today Show. One day they cancel Ann Cunter, the next day they have that anorexic twat on anyway. Matt ‘Sans scrotum’ Lauer talked with her in the first 10 minutes and I of course caught it like a bad cold.

I never heard of her until 9/11 and when I heard about how the US should invade foreign countries and convert the inhabitants to christianity, I figured she was just an old hag like Phyllis Schafly. Nope, I was wrong. She’s a middle aged hag. And the less said the better.

It seems like this might be a busy weekend coming up. Jeff the guy who works at Empire Coffee has a band that’s playing at McSwells tomorrow night. I think Jeff’s band is called the Poconos. He’s a good guy and I told him I would make an attempt to see him.

I also told him that I’m supposed to go out for a cigar and some whiskey with Steve like I did last week. I feel bad for Steve, he’s having a tough time trying to find a new job. So is Harpy, Rita and a few others that I know.

It used to be that I was the one who was unemployed and everyone else was working. Except for Harpy who was living the life of a country squire in upstate NY. I am keeping my ears open for all concerned, but I’m not hearing anything.

Last night was another in a series of quiet nights. Olbermann, but I turned off Rachel Maddow. I watched the recording of the Daily Show which was funny of course, but I was disappointed when the recording of The Colbert Report didn’t take. Does my DVR have something against Stephen Colbert?
It did erase the Colbert Christmas Special after all. I’m trying again tonight.

I might forgo Olbermann tonight and watch Ugly Betty. I need levity damn it! Since I missed the Colbert Report I was able to watch the new episodes of what else, but Scrubs. And they were actually pretty funny, though the second one was a touch sad with Glynn Thurman playing a dying man.

Good new characters introduced and I’m glad they kept Keith who was dumped a few days before his wedding to Eliot last year. That was a good way to resolve that plot line.

Saturday is Chaz’ party which Bill and I are attending. Kathe is supposed to be there as well as Connie, who I can’t believe I haven’t seen in a number of years. Just maintaining contact via the phone. I hope to see them as well as a certain commenter on this blog.

Just planing on relaxing tonight. Some TV, some reading, and probably a lot of surfing online. Don’t really have much else to write about so I should end it here. Or here.

Oh wait I should also send some good thoughts to my brother in law Rex who is en route to San Francisco with Annemarie for some tests to figure out what the hell is wrong with him.

So good thoughts are on the way!

Meeting Across the River

Saturday night. Things are getting back to what could only be described as relative normalcy. Last night was quiet. Juan was out gallivanting, Bill back in Stuyvesant Town.

I watched Charlie Chaplin’s The Great Dictator, which was actually the first Charlie Chaplin film I had seen from start to finish. Also the first Chaplin film that I had seen where he actually speaks.

I never knew that he spoke in his later films and often wondered how long he would have done silent roles. Apparently in 1940 he was speaking in films. According to Wikipedia it was Chaplin’s first talking picture.

It was a daring movie that he made, since the US was at ‘peace’ with Germany at the time and it certainly pissed Hitler off which was an added bonus. A year later we were at war with the Axis powers.

After that I basically started reading a book that I had gotten from the library, John Lennon- The Life by Philip Norman. Supposed to be the best biography of Lennon so far. It is pretty good.

Philip Norman wrote an excellent biography on the Beatles in the 1980’s called Shout! The Lennon book was written with Yoko Ono’s blessing and she asked her son Sean and Paul McCartney to cooperate with the author, which they did.

But as luck would have it, once Yoko and Paul read the galleys they both did some furious backpedaling and denounced the book.

So far the only dodgy thing was John accidentally touching his mother’s breast and wondering what else he could get away with.

That would raise some eyebrows, but Yoko did give access to Lennon’s diaries and journals and as great a songwriter and musician Lennon was, he was also a flawed individual and he would probably be the first to admit it.

It’s a weighty tome and carried some heft as I had it in my shoulder bag and wandered around Manhattan en route to the Guggenheim Museum where I was meeting Bill and Meghan Taylor Mastro with Lily and Ruby, as well as Pat Paterson and his wife, the one and only Ann Boyles Paterson.

I do prefer going to art galleries instead of museums but the Guggenheim was on the agenda so it was off to the Upper East Side. Bill got there a minute or two before me and as we were waiting for the others Juan called wondering what was going on.

It was around 3:00 and he had just woken up. Nice life, which Juan has. I would have invited him along but this was the first I had heard from him since yesterday. He was cool with it, he had to go back to Trenton anyhow.

The Glen Ridge contingent arrived and soon we were inside the Frank Lloyd Wright designed building. I’m always reminded of the roller skating joke from Hannah and Her Sisters regarding the rotunda of the Guggenheim.

After walking around being nonplussed at the exhibitions we were on the street again, $18.00 lighter in each of our wallets. We could have gone to the Bergen County History Museum and looked at the mastodon bones, that would have been cheaper.

I used to go there with Annemarie when I was growing up. It was cheap then, but could be about the same price as the Guggenheim nowadays.

We decided on a bus downtown so we would roll past the Rockefeller Christmas Tree. Unfortunately it was stop and go traffic for about 40 blocks which screwed up my spine somewhat.

Still the company made all the difference and we had shared some truffles and other chocolates and had many laughs as well as taking snapshots of each other. Bill and I got off at 14th street, the others continued onto the West Village to meet up with Jim Mastro.

After parting ways with Bill I stopped by Farfetched to try to persuade Harpy to come with me to see Ann and Meghan but he just wanted to go home after working retail in a shop that’s taken quite a beating this holiday season.

Nothing that Farfetched has done, just that no one is buying anything anywhere these days.

So now I’m home, just had a nice dinner, watched a decent documentary on Groucho Marx and here I am sitting at Bill’s Mac and writing this.

What have YOU been up to?

Bill outside the Guggenheim Museum

Bill outside the Guggenheim Museum

Me outside the Guggenheim Museum on cellphone with Juan

Me outside the Guggenheim Museum on cellphone with Juan

Ruby, Meghan and Lily outside the Guggenheim Museum

Ruby, Meghan and Lily outside the Guggenheim Museum

Pat Paterson, Ann Boyles and Meghan outside the Guggenheim Museum

Pat Paterson, Ann Boyles and Meghan outside the Guggenheim Museum

Lily

Lily

Inside the Guggenheim

Inside the Guggenheim

What happened to Pinocchio?

What happened to Pinocchio?

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Ann & Me

Ann & Me

Meghan with her camera phone

Meghan with her camera phone

some words, between children

some words, between children

Super Mastro girls outside the Guggenheim Museum

Super Mastro girls outside the Guggenheim Museum

Kisses outside the Guggenheim Museum

Kisses outside the Guggenheim Museum

Awesome foursome on the bus

Awesome foursome on the bus

Ruby's patented pose

Ruby's patented pose

Harpy outside of Farfetched

Harpy outside of Farfetched

Me and Harpy

Me and Harpy

Spirits Having Flown

Here we are. In a room full of strangers. Standing in the dark, where your eyes couldn’t see me.

Well that’s me. That guy in the dark. Do you know what song that’s from?
Do ya? I ain’t saying.

Last night I watched O & RM again. Recorded Heroes, which meant I missed the last couple of minutes and have no idea how it ended. In a fit of pique I erased it. Happened the previous two weeks. Disappointment. I lived though.

Then I watched some Billy Joel footage from the late 70’s as a penance of sorts. Penance for what, I couldn’t tell you. It is Tuesday though, that much I do know.

Good news from my sister Annemarie regarding her husband’s health. The rheumatologist doesn’t think he has an autoimmune disease. They were afraid it was lupus and I know how bad lupus can be. So that’s a relief.

Good to get some good news for a change. Mostly everything I heard was bad news lately.

Woke up late this morning. I didn’t sweat it though. I was in the office by 8:30 somehow. Still on last weeks New Yorker which is a good one.

Haven’t heard from Harpy regarding this week’s issue. He’s been calling me up telling me how good the issue he is reading is. So I guess I will have to find out for myself.

The stalker phoned a few times again today. What will it take to drive her away? I just checked my messages. She called three times since I left the office this afternoon. Consecutive minutes, from 4:43 to 4:45. Each time in what may be Korean, which I don’t speak at all.

I am feeling better today, more so than last night. Last night, just doldrums of a sort. Feeling blue, feeling lonely.

This arrangement of Bill staying with his mother has been a strain. Can’t really say if Bill’s noticed how I’ve been feeling. It’s doubtful since he hardly ever sees me. Maybe five minutes a day lately.

It’s all a sacrifice I suppose for his mother’s own good. I can bite the bullet, I have to. It’s just that I wish he were here. And I’m sure he wishes the same. Bill has to do what Bill has to do. Plain and simple.

Tomorrow is Wednesday and I am taking a day off from work. Tomorrow is also International Human Rights Day, which this year has A Day Without Gay tied to it.

A Day Without Gay takes it’s lead from A Day Without Immigrants from a few years ago, when a lot of recent immigrants did not go to work to prove the point that these recent immigrants do a lot of work that gets overlooked and not accounted for, while the immigrants got scorn and abuse.

Tomorrow LGBT people are to do the same. I first heard of it via Harpy’s girlfriend’s Facebook profile and it seemed like a good idea. Plus I had some vacation days to use before the year’s end. I immediately put in for a vacation day when I heard.

Apparently I was supposed to call up and say I wouldn’t be going in since I was gay. But me being me, I didn’t follow the rules. Still I will be absent and not spending any money, which meant I had some food shopping to do tonight. It should be interesting to see how it turns out.

There is some sadness to report tonight. Over the weekend, Saturday night/Sunday morning two Ecuadorian brothers were leaving a bar and headed home.

They were a bit drunk and walking arm in arm when a truck pulls up and four big guys come out and start bashing their heads in with an aluminum baseball bat shouting about fucking spics and fucking faggots.

The assailants got away of course, hiding in Bushwick. The two brothers were brought to the hospital, where one of them reportedly died this afternoon. The two brothers were not gay, just perceived to be gay.

It sickens me when I read about Huckabee saying gay people haven’t had dogs turned on them like black people did during the civil rights struggles in the 1960’s.

It sickens me when right wing religious leaders take out a full page advertisement in last Friday’s New York Times complaining about how put upon and abused Christians have been since the passage of Prop h8.

It definitely sickens me, hearing their silence when these two brothers are assaulted and possibly killed, when Matthew Shepherd is murdered in Wyoming, when transgendered teenagers are slaughtered in their homes in Colorado and elsewhere, when other LGBT are assaulted or killed.

Oh yes, those poor put upon christians, life is just so hard for them.

How can their put their biblically approved hatred into practice when people are starting to call them on it?

Jesus must be so proud of these douche bag motherfuckers, the assailants and those in the fucking pulpits condoning such vile, heinous actions through their words of hatred and loathing.

11:10PM- The brother who is on life support is still barely alive. They are waiting for the parents to arrive and decide whether or not to take their son off life support.