Tag Archives: Prince

I Like You So Much Better When You’re Naked

It’s been quite a beautiful day, no rain, sun shining, nice warm temperature and a cool breeze every now and then. I’ve been busy, up early, running around Hoboken. Bill was up way earlier than me, out before 6:00 this morning to make it to the gym. He’s lost quite a bit of weight and is looking very good. He gave the now customary kiss goodbye, telling me that I looked good as I lay there looking like crap. If that’s not love, then I don’t know what love is. Of course there is more to it than that, but it was a good line that I couldn’t pass up.

Last night before Bill went to bed so early, after watching Michael Eric Dyson filing in for Ed Shultz, we watched Purple Rain. Both of us had seen it before, and both of us loved it. It is truly a 1980’s movie. Prince was great, the Revolution was great and the Time stole the movie. No wonder Prince was so bothered by the fact that the Time stole the show opening up for Prince on the 1999 tour, that he had them playing off stage while Vanity 6 wound up opening.

I saw Prince & the Revolution on the Purple Rain tour. It was an Easter matinee out at the Nassau Coliseum and I went with Rand, his roommate Andrew, their neighbor Ken as well as Debbie Robinson who I worked with and the daughter of a woman that worked with my mom. Me and the guys all dipped into some lysergic and the girls didn’t know, especially since the daughter of the woman that worked with my mom had a police officer for a father. It was a great show from what I remember but what I really remember is the car ride back.

Instead of taking the Long Island Expressway we decided to take a more scenic route, taking he roads rather than the highway. The girls were oblivious and the driver was cautious, getting them home safely to Saddle Brook NJ, then heading to Hoboken where we stuffed ourselves with pizza at the pizzeria no one eats at anymore, then to Maxwells to continue our giggles through the night. Of course, being chemically enhanced all sense of time was distorted and though it seemed relatively early, it was actually pretty late, so much that we closed Maxwells and wound up at Rand & Andrew’s apartment across the street.

I saw Prince a few times since then, the last time being just a year or so ago, and before that in 1988 on the Lovesexy tour. I went the first time with Chaz and Kathe, having seats right above the floor. Great show once again, stage in the middle of the arena. Sheila E was playing drums at that time. It was such a good time I had to go again the next night. But I had no tickets. I did have a contact at Warner Brothers and was able to score one ticket.

The seat was all the way on top in the nosebleed section and after sitting where I was the night before, this location just wouldn’t do. Somehow I developed balls and since I was alone I decided to move. I would walk around the arena, each circle getting me closer to the floor. I would stand at the gate and watch the show until an usher would say I couldn’t stay there. Sometimes the usher would ask for my ticket and I would show them and they would point to the ceiling saying that was where I should be.

The show had an intermission and thanks to my persistent moving I wound up on the main floor in the hallway when people stretched their legs and whatnot. I ran into someone I knew who had floor seats, like 15th row from the stage and he told me to stay where I was as he headed back to his seat. A few minutes later he had a friend’s stub which got me on the floor when the second half started and since everyone was dancing and having a good time, no one was paying attention to their assigned seating.

It was a good time and a good show. No lysergic needed.
In between the Madison Square Garden shows was an early morning show at Roseland Ballroom. I certainly felt like I was tripping but I wasn’t that morning…

01 the beautiful ones

I Could Make You Care

It’s late, it’s cold and I am home. It’s been difficult for me to get back into the work mindset after one day off. But I prevailed and here I am at home, at 11:00 and writing. It was a sort of busy day at the cigar shop.

Most of the regulars kept asking me how Prince was on Saturday night and I don’t know how many time I mentioned how hot Sheila E was and how Prince does not wear high heels anymore. Most everyone agreed he’s a giant with his talent, big enough that the heels were not needed at all. And now with a possible hip replacement, he no longer needs the heels and he doesn’t do splits anymore anyhow.

It was a long day and of course some people had some drama, mainly Sean who is having an ordeal in court regarding child support payments on a part time, college student salary. Homeboy has to learn to stop listening to the smaller head. He’s cute and the girls find him irresistible and he can’t help himself but he is going to have to. 20 years old and in such a mess.

Last night I had a long phone call with Julio who is trying to get a lot done before he flies off to join Stine and Alexander in Denmark. Clean the apartment, tie things up at work, get things set at the West New York property so he could afford to be away. His job is having it’s holiday party at the Cafe Elysian in Hoboken and he mentioned the bonus that he’s expecting which is quite a nice bonus.

No bonus expected for me, except for what is planned on Friday. Calvin is buying a bottle of Port and we will be able to smoke any cigar in the humidor. I intend on having a Padron Family Reserve cigar, a cigar that is usually off limits to the staff.

I mean, we can buy one of those cigars but it’s definitely not one of the freebies that we’re entitled to each day. So that forbidden fruit will be mine to smoke on Friday night after work. Calvin expects the thing to go on until 7:30, I think it will be a 6:30 departure for me. I do have to make it out to Garfield with Bill that night.

I was able to get a nice package sent to California this afternoon. I was going to use the post office to send it, but it was pandemonium at the post office and using FedEx would be about the same cost and getting there in time for Christmas whereas if I used USPS, it might not get there until next week. And of course, I obsessively track the box of presents.

Four days left in the week, and already I am down one day. I’m sure I will be more in the swing of things by Friday. Tonight I of course listened to Prince as I left the cigar shop and stomped my way down to the bus terminal. Kiss and 1999 and half of Little Red Corvette, in about 16 minutes and change. And now here I am, done with writing for the night.

Someone in Bala Cynwyd definitely sports wood for this here blog. What is up with that?

I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man

It’s a new day and quite an eventful 24 hours. It didn’t start out too easy since I closed the store on Friday night and had to open the store on Saturday morning. All part of switching hours with Calvin. The day was a good one, I sold about $6000.00 worth of merchandise.

It wasn’t easy, there were a few tire kickers that stopped by, people that take up a lot of time and energy and never buy anything. You never can tell though so one has to go through the whole process in order to get to the disappointment when they say they’ll think about it and walk out the door.

Calvin said he didn’t care if I left an hour earlier, at 7PM instead of 8PM. The store really slows to a crawl once night falls. I’m sure they did alright with 3 on staff, no need for 4 people. I left the store at 7:00 and was soon on a downtown train to Madison Square Garden.

At 7:11 I sent a text to Roda, letting him know I was at 33rd and 8th Avenue. We had a plan to take a quick stroll before the show so we could get a little jazzy for the concert. These days the sweet smell of cannabis no longer wafts through the arenas or any other venues.

I waited about 30 minutes when I heard from Roda. He was held up by the Path train and I walked over to 32nd and 7th to meet up with him. He almost fired up a one hit before going in, but I stopped him, pointing out a few police officers about 10 feet behind us.

We walked to the turnstiles, Roda giving me a printed ticket as well as half a tablet. I trust Roda implicitly so I swallowed it and we made our way to our seats, buying $5.00 bottles of water so that we wouldn’t be dehydrated during the show. Being impetuous, we drank the water too fast and eventually had to get 2 more bottles.

Larry Graham and Graham Central Station opened the show and after One in a Million You, his big solo hit, Prince came out and joined him for a Sly & the Family Stone medley.

Meanwhile the pill started to take effect and there was a mild panic within me, my first instinct was to get out of there, but the voice of reason spoke to me, reminding me that I was with Roda and he wouldn’t let anything happen to me, plus it was all good vibrations all around. Roda sensed something was amiss and asked if I was OK and I assured him I was.

Prince hit the stage after being introduced by Sinbad and soon we were off on a trip through nothing but hits from the former Imp of the Perverse. Prince was astounding as we sat and watched from our seats right above the floor. Let’s Go Crazy, 1999, Raspberry Beret, Nothing Compares 2 U, Uptown, Kiss, U Got the Look (with Sheila E, who looked positively HOT), The Beautiful Ones, Purple Rain. Sheila E also sang The Glamorous Life and A Love Bizarre.

Though Purple Rain isn’t one of my favorite Prince songs, the version he did last night was incredible. It flew by all so fast, perhaps due to our altered consciousness. The last song had the stage filled with celebrities like Spike Lee, Whoopi Goldberg, Sinbad, Jamie Foxx, Alicia Keys and quite a few more. It was over by 11:00 and we took our time getting out of the Garden.

On the sidewalk opposite the Garden we ran into my neighbor Claire who also saw the show and was headed back to Montauk. That was a surprise, though I had a feeling I would run into someone I knew.

Roda and I made it back to Hoboken safe and sound and we spent the next hours just hanging out, listening to Prince songs and drinking beers while finally getting jazzy. Really a fun evening with a really good friend. I am quite a lucky bastard.


Blurry cellphone pic from the Garden

Stranger In Moscow

Once again, tonight’s entry is brought to you by Bill’s Mac, for when your own computer just won’t do what you want it to do, use Bill’s Mac.

It’s Thursday again. Been raining on and off for the past 5 hours. And it’s been raining hard. Bill just texted me, apparently he was on a bus with the bus driver from hell. A short message with the bus number, driver’s ID number and how many passengers.

He thought he was going to die in a bus accident and wanted me to have the information in case the worst happened. It’s not often that Bill will complain about a fellow bus driver, so you know that this was probably a white knuckle ride in the rain speeding down slick ramps into the Lincoln Tunnel outside the Port Authority Bus Terminal.

I’m in that netherworld after taking a nap and waking up and it’s just muggy inside with the windows being closed because of the rain.

Right now Bill is repeating from a TV commercial whatever they are asking him to repeat.

I had a strange dream with me driving a car I parked in the intersection of Riverview Avenue and Essex Street. I was doing something not far from where I grew up.

Juan was in the dream as well, oddly silent. We were heading into Manhattan for some reason. And the car was one of my broken down jalopies or the van I used to drive for HBJ.

It kept changing. It was a dream after all.

And I wasn’t too keen on driving. I don’t miss driving at all. Being a pedestrian I see bad, terrible drivers all the time.

This afternoon crossing Washington Street, a driver just couldn’t bear to wait at the red light and felt it was alright to inch out into the intersection and make a left turn.

I can understand a right on red, but a left on red just is bad news. Nothing happened though it should have. I see it a lot on my way to work, especially at the corner of 49th Street and Park Avenue.

A few months ago when Vivek and Sanjay were all hot and bothered for their movie box scheme, one of their plans were for me to drive around the tri-state area and visit various hotels and motels, such was their belief in me as a salesman.

That dream was dashed when I showed my incredulous face, telling them I don’t drive. That was ok with them, they would pay for driving lessons.

I explained to them that I knew how to drive, I drove back and forth to California, to Texas and Florida as well as to Washington DC, and driving back and forth from Saddle Brook NJ to 757 Third Avenue, about 100 yards from where I was sitting with Vivek and Sanjay.

I guess they never met anyone in the United States who did not want to drive. I guess I’m an urbanite. If it’s not within walking distance or available via public transportation, why bother?

The last car I had went up in flames and I had a premonition that the next car I owned would be the car I died in. So in order to achieve immortality, I don’t drive anymore.

I took a quiz on Facebook, What Michael Jackson Song are You? I was told my song was Stranger in Moscow, which was a song I wasn’t familiar with and I wrote that in the comments section.

An online friend said it was a really good song, no hiccups or yelps, which were sometimes distracting in Michael’s songs so I sought it out. It turns out it really is a nice song, beautiful even and I since purchased it via iTunes.

A decent song that isn’t overplayed and is a good song to remember Michael Jackson by. I can’t say that I was a major fan but I did have a few of his songs online, had Off the Wall and Thriller like everyone else, but I did mention to a few friends months ago that Michael Jackson’s songs where more enjoyable to me than Prince’s were.

Of course I am disappointed in Prince lately and took all his songs off my iPod. Not so much because of his music, but because of his latest Jehovah’s Witness beliefs about gay people.

Well, John said ‘Enough’ and that was that.

It didn’t help that he hasn’t released anything worthwhile since Sexy MF and that was 17 years ago. I would be interesting to hear what the Purple Imp would have to say about Michael Jackson though.

Ice Cream Castles

It’s a Tuesday afternoon, early evening. Just got home about 2 hours later than I planned. I did have a plan to perhaps go to a Suit and Tie gathering but decided not to. I just don’t like to go to these social situations alone, leaning against the wall, listening to music I can’t stand, being in Chelsea and I really don’t drink anymore (at least not during the week, plus drinking alone sucks). Those are all very good reasons not to go and so I didn’t. I wound up staying later at work.

Things had finally gotten busy and dear sweet Lydia was swamped. I was glad to be able to help her out. I was doing things that if I was asked to do would have knocked it out. But they asked her. I guess it’s because I’m the office manager now, and not a receptionist. Still she would not have been able to do what she was doing without me. So instead of leaving around 4:30 and catching a bus, I left around 5:45 and waited on a long line in the bus terminal.

Bill may be home tonight so that’s pretty cool. That is, if it happens. If not, there’s nothing I could do but chill. I’ve been sleeping really well and waking up in a pretty good mood. I usually like to hear what they’re playing on the oldies station and last night was Come Together by the Beatles. I read that Prince did a cover of Come Together at Coachella last weekend but couldn’t find a clip. At some point between going to sleep and waking up I turned down the volume and did not hear the alarm go off. I was only oversleeping by about 15 minutes so it wasn’t that bad.

No one is ever in the office before me lately so I could take my time getting in, though the crowds of commuters does get thicker in every sense of the word as the time goes by. Heard from Pedro this afternoon checking in. I love him. One of the people on the planet who always makes me laugh and I do the same for him. My Superman.

Once again the earphones Julio and Stine got me for Xmas last year crapped out. This was the third pair. I give up. I’ve sent them in twice for replacement and now I just give up. They spent a lot more on earphones that I would have, hence my trying again and again to get them to work properly. The $15.00 pair I got from Radio Shack work just fine so I guess they’ll be my headphones of choice now.

I found out my sister and her family will not be coming out this summer due to her husband having to travel to Ohio to have his heart checked out. It’s good that they can have that done, but it sucks since Annemarie won’t be in New Jersey. A bummer and a half if you ask me. I know they were looking forward as I was to spending hours on the beach then stopping off for ice cream in Rumson. There will be other times I know, but I was really looking forward to spending time with them. Argh.

Real by Reel

It’s Sunday night, and I just got back from the movies. I went to see There Will Be Blood. Daniel Day Lewis is of course, phenomenal. Paul Thomas Anderson is truly one of the best American filmmakers around today. I wonder if he is still with Maya Rudolph? It’s another recommended movie. Chaz and I have been planning to see this for a few weeks and finally both of us had our schedules in sync. Crowded theater too for a Sunday afternoon.

Last night I had a good time writing the blog which I hope shows. Spoke to Harpy, who was telling me about how Lois, a co-owner of Farfetched just got her first computer. So much to learn. Of course there is the initial paranoia about strangers having access to your information, but they would only have access if you put it out there. I don’t put anything out there and though I’m still wary, the Internet works out just fine, for me at least.

Harpy wanted to know about why I call this blog, johnozed instead of my real name. Well that’s because there are things that I write under my blog de plume, that I am not too keen on coming back and biting me on the arse. A lawyer friend hipped me to the fact of changing the names of some executives and companies I work for both in the past and the present, and he commended me on the pen name. So even though my real name is music to some peoples ears, I don’t need the real name to sound like a cash register to lawyers ears.

On the way home from Brooklyn last night I had stopped off at Mision Burrito for what turned out to be a very mediocre burrito. On the way through Church Square Park I passed a couple of people, one of whom I though was my other friend named Lois. I called out ‘Lois’ and the woman turned and as she turned I realized it wasn’t the Lois (or the other Lois) that I knew. I apologized and she laughed saying that I wasn’t who she thought I was either. That made us both laugh and I walked away wishing the two of them a good night.

It reminded me of how I was DJ’ing at McSwells years ago and in my clouded mind I thought I saw Raul Menares walk through the back room door. I waved frantically and as the figure approached it wasn’t Raul at all, but rather some other guy named Michael Vasquez. Michael Vasquez turned out to be a good acquaintance along with his girlfriend, who’s name escapes me at this moment. So the moral is, sometimes friendships can sprout from mistaken identities. Sometimes, not all the time of course.

There really wasn’t anything on TV last night, so as I surfed I stumbled upon Graffiti Bridge, the sequel to Purple Rain. Looking back Purple Rain is good, if only for the concert sequences, especially the sequences involving The Time. Graffiti Bridge makes Purple Rain look like a masterpiece. Even The Time couldn’t save it. I lasted about 20 minutes until the first commercial, then I bailed. Even the soundtrack is spotty. Two songs from it made it to my iPod.

I remember when Graffiti Bridge came out, I was either out of work, or off from work so I went to the first showing on the first day at the multiplex. But I wandered into the wrong theater and sat as the movie, Soap Dish was starting and it took me a while to realize I was in the wrong theater. After seeing Graffiti Bridge I wasn’t sure if I saw the correct film, and 17 years later, I’m still not sure.

And Robert Plant was in Farfetched buying wrapping paper and cards on Friday.