Tag Archives: William

I Still Want You

It’s a Friday and so far so good. A lazy day at best, and the funny thing is, I am actually going out tonight. Me. On a Friday. It should be an early night, once more home by midnight. I am going to the Mercury Lounge to see Port St. Willow. A mention by Brian Eno in Mojo Magazine about Port St. Willow was enough to peak my curiosity. I trust Eno with musical choices. He was the one who hipped me onto My Bloody Valentine 22 years ago, and last year it was Port St. Willow. An affordable ticket, an early show and I am there.

But not yet, since I am still home. In all these years I don’t think I’ve been to a show at the Mercury Lounge, though I could be wrong. I do remember a friend who had a record label having a showcase with an open bar but once Rand and I got there, the bar was not so open so Rand and I wandered around the East Village winding up at Downtown Beirut instead. We had a good time there though Rand was a bit disgruntled about the bait and switch which he grumbled about.

Today has been very low key so far. I ran into the Russians in the hallway last night. Now there are 3 people plus a baby living downstairs. One speaks English. They don’t complain, and I don’t give them any reason to complain. I do try to walk light footed around the apartment. Living above Chang & Eng Kleinke for 11 years in Weehawken was a lesson learned since they were the landlords and prone to complain about everything thing I did, including complaints emailed about Bill’s raucous laughter while watching Saturday Night Live. They went so far as to restrict Bill’s visits.

They claimed it wasn’t fair to my roommate William, but William didn’t care. It was the beginning of the end for my relationship with Chang & Eng, and towards the end of the year I had moved out, back down to Hoboken. Apparently Chang & Eng were upset with my leaving and not saying goodbye as they watched through their venetian blinds. Chang Kleinke was heard to mutter that I should be glad the door didn’t hit me on the ass on the way out. Chang & Eng eventually royally screwed William and Chaz by not offering the house for them to buy.

Chaz and Kathe went one way (and then split again), William went another and Chang & Eng Kleinke have been safely ensconced in a condo a block away on Gregory Avenue in what was once some sort of factory. They will be together forever and I can only hope they are happy with that.

So tonight I am heading out. In a few hours I’ll be on the Path train, then walking through the Village to Houston and Ludlow. A Facebook friend expects a report so I suppose I will be writing one either tonight or tomorrow. More than likely it will be tomorrow.

Ist Pics 6.21.07 002
Oh Yeah

I Never Told You What I Did For A Living

Wow. I just woke up from a nap, did not set an alarm and still was able to sleep for a few minutes. I donned a suit and tie today and walked the drizzly streets of midtown Manhattan. I was in midtown last week and yesterday I had a phone call asking me to come in again. Well it wasn’t for anything earth shattering, just a request for me to come in and fill out some additional forms. Not a problem, I was happy too since not much seems to be happening at all on this side of the Hudson.

I came home after that and had a sandwich then decided to take a cat nap. I woke up to Mustang Sally playing in my head. I had a dream where I got into an argument with Rufus Wainwright (whom I’ve never met) about something on my iPod. He was quite a brat in the dream. It’s been a day with threatening rain and the occasional drizzle. Nice to stay in bed for that is for sure. It was a long nap, much needed since last night sleep was out of order despite being tired enough.

One of the forms I had to fill out asked how long have I been living where I’ve been living. And the answer to that is 10 years. It was around 10 years ago to the day that I left Weehawken for Hoboken. I still look fondly on my 11 years spent in Weehawken with my then roommate William. It wasn’t all a bed of roses during those 11 years but more often than not, we got along just fine. It was the landlords basically that sealed the deal for me up there on the Palisades. The demand that Bill not come over more than twice a week seemed unfair.

It was shortly after I turned 40 that Julio told me of an apartment in his building that was available. He might have offered it to both William and myself, not together but separately. Julio, being the mutual friend had heard enough sniping from me about William and vice versa. So I came and saw the apartment, and almost immediately agreed to move in. The landlord said it would be an extra $100 if I kept the washing machine and I told him that he could take the washing machine. It is still here.

William and his brother Chaz helped me move with Bill. I don’t think any of us had any idea what a difficult move it would be, four flights of stairs can be quite daunting and we moved over the weekend, a rainy weekend. I rode with William in his pickup and Chaz and Bill followed us. I recall hearing Cam’ron and his song Hey Ma a few times as we drove down the hill and so I will forever equate the song with the move. It was nerve wracking since after living in my parent’s house, Weehawken was the second place where I lived the longest.

I was also called Imelda Marcos since I had a lot of shoes. I still do, just don’t wear them that much anymore. I was between jobs and it was a risky maneuver, mainly working as a temp back then. The landlords in Weehawken were supposedly very upset that I didn’t say goodbye as they watched things leaving through the Venetian blinds. After everyone left and I was preparing to sleep in the apartment for the first time I was seized by a panic, ‘what the hell am I doing?’

As fate proved it turned out I was doing the right thing. The landlords in Weehawken decided after I moved to sell the building. They could have offered it to William and his brother Chaz, but instead went to a realtor and as the deal was going down, they promised the building would be empty of tenants. That was shitty since William and Chaz could have gotten a loan and bought the building from them. Instead they had to scramble. Chaz and his wife Kathe had poured thousands of dollars into their apartment to renovate, William turned a weed strewn yard into a wonderful garden full of flowers, vegetables and grapes.

Now they had to find somewhere else to live. Occasionally one of the landlords is seen in the bus terminal in Manhattan. They bought a condo a block away from where they grew up as brother and sister and it’s usually Chaz who sees the brother who never sees Chaz, which is how Chaz likes it. And now Bill lives here with me. An equal partner, no nonsense of being allowed over twice weekly. And the brother and sister are forever joined together in the Gregory Commons where they probably frighten their neighbors.

William and I were never frightened of them though we did find it odd that as the brother took a bath he would have a conversation with his sister while it sounded like she was right in the bathroom with him, or sitting just outside. They neighborhood changed after we all moved, some one was killed on the sidewalk around the block, Mary the sweet crossing guard passed away. And the building was converted from 4 apartments into 8.

give this guy a job!

Hey Ma – Cam’Ron

I Am the Law

Well here I am again, standing behind the counter at the cigar shack. Thomas is pounding out a rhythm, totally flat and off beat, his titanium ring hitting the wood of the counter and making quite a noise. No charm in that.

It’s been a better day than yesterday, time is flying by- not like the other day when it really zoomed but faster than yesterday. I finally finished the Keith Richards autobiography and I enjoyed it very much.

He explained how he fell off the ladder in his library as well as falling out of a tree in Fiji. He says he did not snort his father’s ashes and I believe him. That story came after his brain surgery and the doctor told him, ‘No more bumps’ which means no more cocaine.

And the story went that Keef mixed up his father’s ashes with some blow. His relationship with Mick is like 2 brothers, bitchy and forever intertwined. I can relate to that somehow.

Now perhaps I can get back to the New Yorker where I am reading about Jane Fonda and I have not even cracked open Mojo or Uncut yet. I’ve been carrying it around in my bag since I bought it a few weeks ago.

Listening to Bob Dylan’s Love & Theft in the store right now. It could be my favorite Dylan album. Bob is going to be 70 in a few weeks. I saw him in the 1990’s but did not stay for the whole show.

At the time I was more interested in seeing Patti Smith who just came out of exile after Fred Smith passed away. Bob was nice enough to offer her the opening slot on the tour and she wisely took it.

I went with my Weehawken roommate William. It was odd being in the lobby of the Beacon Theater and seeing familiar faces of people that I had assumed that had died a while ago. The look of shock on my face was more than likely noticeable.

Patti Smith was enjoyable and since I was not so much into Dylan at the time, we left midway through his set. I didn’t get it and I think he was doing Alabama Getaway when William and I made a hasty exit. Not into the Grateful Dead at all you see.

Right now I am downloading the Roches self-titled debut album. I’ve always liked them and was fortunate to see them twice, once at Town Hall as the Roches and once at the Bottom Line as the Caroling Carolers.

When I worked at Farfetched I would play Keep on Doing, the Roches third album often and almost every time I would play it, someone would ask if they were hearing the Roches and when I would answer affirmatively they would almost always go on about how much they loved them.

I also have to confess that I had a crush on Margaret A. Roche for the longest time, nothing sexual just a sheer admiration since she wrote some of their most beautiful songs. I have their debut on vinyl somewhere but I felt I needed to have The Hammond Song on mp3 and on my iPod.

And of course the Roches tie into the Wainwright family thanks to Loudon’s wandering eye. I expect to be playing it at the cigar shack tomorrow. That should raise a few eyebrows. Hey, if you’re in the neighborhood, stop on by and say hello. Just don’t be a douche.

Now I am home and quite happy to be here. Bill is awake, first time in days that he’s been awake when I walked through the door. It’s nice to see him in a vertical position.

Fela’s Riff (Unfinished Outtake)

Well here we are on a Monday. The Lady Maurice could be gone for good. I can only hope that it’s so. The only time I intend on mentioning that name is perhaps when writing about Charlie Brown’s sister.

It’s another beautiful day today, temperatures close to 60 degrees. Last night wasn’t so bad even though I didn’t go out, I did have the window open.

I planned on watching the Academy Awards in the bedroom since there was a fight between ABC TV and my cable provider Cablevision. I had the foresight, or rather Bill had the foresight, to get a digital converter box. I had the coupon for the box, Bill actually went out and got the box.

A part of the day was spent online advising friends on Facebook who also were in the same cable TV boat to go out and get the box if they intended to watch the Oscars.

I settled in expecting to be running back and forth, from room to room, bedroom to computer so I can provide my witty and insightful updates. OK, updates. Perhaps not so witty and probably not insightful.

About 15 minutes into the awards show a scroll at the bottom of the screen announced an agreement between ABC and Cablevision, that while they are still negotiating, ABC will still broadcast on Cablevision’s system.

I turned on the big TV and there it was as they said, just a foot or two from the computer. I announced on Facebook what had happened and apparently some Facebook friends didn’t know. I even called my niece Meghan to let her know since she had mentioned earlier how disappointed that she was going to have to watch the Oscars on her computer screen.

I enjoyed the Oscars and enjoyed exchanging snarky comments with my online friends. I’d like to think we all enjoyed ourselves. I stayed up and watched Jimmy Kimmel after the news following the Academy Awards which was generally pretty funny.

I wound up staying up until 2:00. Bill hadn’t come home yet and I was a bit worried but opted to go to sleep. He was home about 45 minutes later, trains and things run much slower after midnight and this play is definitely taking on a life on it’s own.

Woke up before he did this morning, I was in a better mood today than I was yesterday. I showed Bill yesterday’s post, he agreed that I was standoffish in the morning which I expected. He situated himself in the bedroom, working on his laptop and making phone calls to the stage hands.

Around noon I headed out, wandered around Hoboken. Saw Jim Mastro at the Guitar Bar for a little while. Also ran into my former roommate William on Washington Street with a friend of his David, a 75 year old gent that William seemed to be escorting around town.

Good to see William and nice to meet David. William’s friend Lisa showed up as well and we all parted ways after a bit, William and David off to feed quarters in the meter and Lisa and I headed uptown.

Came home, Bill en route to Manhattan. I decided to watch the DVD of Passing Strange which was most excellent. Bill and I had seen it at the Public Theater in 2007 and we both loved it, and Spike Lee decided to film the last night that it played on Broadway.

Forgot how good and touching it is. Definitely worth catching if you have the chance. I got it from the library so I guess it is available in most DVD rental stores.

Being the last show, weepiness abounds on both sides of the screen, them more than me. Still it’s a powerful, funny, sad and touching show and worth watching.

Will someone please beat Tom DeLay within an inch of his life? I have a ruler if needed.

The Hardest Button to Button

Well last night I wrote after thinking I wasn’t going to write. It came easily despite not really having anything to write about. After I wrote, Bill came home from his rehearsal and got himself together before we headed out again.

We walked to the Path train where in Hoboken it wasn’t that cold. Hopped on a train to Journal Square in Jersey City right before the train doors closed. Train was not that crowded, at least our car wasn’t. When we got into the open air my phone buzzed telling me I had a voice mail.

I checked it and it was Annemarie telling me there was a major earthquake in Northern California. She asked if I was still at home to check the USGS website. Luckily I was with Bill who has a Droid and an iPhone. But the iPhone was home.

It didn’t matter Bill was able to check the information with the Droid, which was that a 6.5 earthquake had struck off the coast of California. There was also a 3. something in San Francisco the day before. Even though Annemarie said there was no need to call, I called.

Spoke with my nephew Earl and asked him what was shakin’. Earl laughed and told me that the power was out and they had all been on the street where all you could hear were car alarms going off. Aftershocks continued no doubt and I talked to Annemarie who said it was the worst they had felt but all was OK.

Bill and I walked up Kennedy Boulevard to Carlton Avenue, in the bleedin’ cold, stopping every now and then to write down phone numbers regarding apartments for rent for Bill’s friend Tom who is looking for an apartment. It was so cold that it was easier to take a photo with the Droid rather than write down the phone number.

We made it to Chaz’ apartment soon enough which was comfy and cozy and quite warm. Lot’s of food and alcohol to drink. Chaz’ brother, my former roommate, William and Andy, one of Chaz’ oldest friends were there as were a few people from previous holiday parties that Chaz had thrown.

Jennifer Poulakos as well, all the way from California by way of the Highlands in NJ. She’s looking after her sister Connie who had surgery last month.

We settled in and chatted throughout the night many laughs, Bill telling his story about singing the National Anthem before the NY Knicks game last month and me talking about the Dark Was the Night CD and Paul McCartney at CitiField in July.

Unfortunately we had to be the first to leave since Bill was scheduled to drive a bus to Atlantic City today. Hasty goodbyes and all that and soon we were in a taxi coming back to Hoboken. Back in the apartment Bill found he had a message on his voice mail on his iPhone from the bus company.

It seemed that the full time drivers were resentful of the part time drivers taking weekend work from them and so Bill’s services wouldn’t be required for the Sunday morning trip. Bill seemed to get over it but was annoyed since we left a pretty good party so he could come home early and go to sleep.

He did go to sleep a little while after that and I stayed up watching Saturday Night Live. I thought it was pretty funny and of course the Digital Short was the best. I woke up before Bill and set about making coffee when I got a text from Julio asking if I wanted bagels.

Of course I did and I did not want to go out in 15 degree weather. I called him up and asked him if he wouldn’t mind getting a few bagels and the paper and Julio was more than happy to oblige.

He was knocking on the door a little while after that and I told Bill I was going downstairs with Julio to give Alexander his Cookie Monster toy. A nice hug and kiss greeted me at the door and Alexander though smiling was determined not to shake my hand or give me a high five.

He speaks a lot of Danish lately and ‘Ni’ or in English- ‘No’ is his word of choice. Eventually he did warm up to me after prodding from his mother and father. I eventually made my way upstairs to find the door locked.

I knocked but there was no answer. Apparently Bill decided to go to church. I knew he was thinking about it but was surprised that he didn’t even say goodbye and locked me out. I did have the foresight of having a key hidden somewhere in the hallway so I let myself in and made myself breakfast.

After that I decided to watch The Curious Case of Benjamin Button which I enjoyed a lot more than I though and was chocked up at the end. Watching it by myself I couldn’t help but think how much Bill would enjoy it.

Soon he came home, all silent and not saying much at all, just filling the apartment with a foul mood. I asked a few times what was wrong to no avail. I decided then to go out into the cold weather were it was a lot warmer.

After talking to Annemarie while walking around Hoboken I came back home and watched the second DVD, the extras of Benjamin Button. Bill had woken from his nap and I once again inquired what was wrong.

He reassured me that it wasn’t anything that I had done, he was just incredibly bitter about being knocked off the bus driving schedule. That was a relief of sorts and I asked him to next time, let me know what was going on instead of letting me feeling like I had done something wrong.

He responded that way back when, when I had a job, sometimes I would come home in a foul mood and despite his pleas I wouldn’t readily tell him what was going on. I told him that, that was true, but usually within a half hour he would hear all about it.

Things are back to normal relatively speaking, Bill is watching Benjamin Button as I write this and really enjoying it and here am I, with over 1000 words under my belt.

Bango (To The Batmobile)

And here is the last installment of what was written in 2002 about 1991/1992

Monica went back to Little Willy’s room and probably confronted Little Willy who shrank even further from reality. I didn’t care. Within a week she was gone, never for me to see her again. I did find out that while in her travels, she was badly bitten by a dog in Tibet. Poor dog, I hope he was alright.

That Thanksgiving, I woke up Thursday morning, to find that the phone had been turned off. It seems that Little Willy felt that I was reckless with the phone bill and perhaps he was right then.

But instead of talking about it with me, he took the advice of Sally Starfish an old drugging buddy of mine. The tiny terror they called her.

Good old Sally told Little Willy that he should, A) Shut off the phone and put it in his name only. B) Put a lock on his bedroom door since I was bound to go and use his phone C) Put a lock on his phone in his workshop in the basement because that would be on my list of places to visit and use his phone once I found out that his bedroom door was locked.

Sally Sally Sally. She always said she knew me better than anyone, even better than myself.

Little Willy still waiting for his backbone to arrive in the mail, merely left a note on the kitchen table, telling me what he had done.

Of course, being Thanksgiving, my family would probably try to contact me to check and see if I was ok, and I would’ve done the same, had I had a phone.

So that cold Thanksgiving morning I went out to the street armed with as much change as I could get, and set out for a pay phone. I went to the corner and it was cold in the shade of the building.

Then I remembered a block away on Palisades Ave was a pay phone in direct sunlight and went over there. Armed with all my change, I stood in the light and deposited my coins.

The coins came back out in the change slot, after the connection was made. A free call to California! A free call to Garfield! A free call to Montvale! I was living large! But without my phone book couldn’t call everyone, just the one’s who’s numbers I had committed to memory.

After the family, I called Julio. Julio I had known for a few years, both of us working at McSwells. Party buddies, drinking buddies. Very handsome he was, and all the gay barflies at McSwells couldn’t tell him enough.

I never did.

Alright I did, once, but that’s another story. He was surprised at our mutual ‘friend’ doing what he did, switching the phone off and creating a new line in his name. “That’s fucked up man.” He said. I agreed. He was busy getting ready to see his family for Thanksgiving dinner. I was getting ready to do nothing.
That was fine with me. Watched a lot of TV, smoked a lot of herb. Fairly typical. Just another day. I was able to call NJ Bell and arranged for a line to be installed in my room. Another expense, but one that was needed.

Julio mentioned my phone habit which I don’t think was that great, but he insisted otherwise. I called the Friday after Thanksgiving and scheduled an appointment for the next day. The phone guy showed up around 10am.

I was groggy from the night before and probably smelled like the night before. He took his ladder and made the connection outside and then came inside to finish the work.

When he came into my room this guy saw my records and pegged me for a DJ. He was right, and cute, but I concentrated more on his being right.

He started telling me about an old friend of his that he used to DJ with. “Goes by the name of Todd Terry. Ever hear of him?”

Almost instantly I pulled out “Bango/Back to the Beat” A very hot 12” by Todd Terry. He was impressed. I was impressed. We hung out for a while, or I hung out he worked.

I offered him some herb but he said no, he couldn’t. Small talk followed and when I asked him about the charge, he said there was none.

“You seem like a pretty cool guy. Don’t sweat it.” He left and I had a phone, free of charge, well, at least free installation.

That was a case of being in on the Cosmic Joke.

Little Willy still scampered about once again, staying out of sight.

Sally Starfish later wound up doing a similar thing to Julio vis-à-vis his roommate.

And dats da name of dat tune.

Non, Je Ne Regrette Rien

Well last night I went to the Yankees/Blue Jays game. Bill was right, saying that he didn’t want me to be intense, he wanted a good time. I wanted a good time too. Bill enjoyed himself, I didn’t. More about that further down the line. In the interim, here is the third installment about 1991/1992 written in 2002.

“What are you talking about?” Miss Pasty asked. “I have nowhere else to go. I’ll do anything to stay here. I like you guys. Please reconsider.” Mr. Derf and Miss Pasty looked at each other.

Mr. Derf said, “Well we had a problem with you dropping the coats on the chair and the chair crashing and you guys thump around a lot but we didn’t ask you to leave.”

Miss Pasty chimed in, “Where did you hear that?” “Little Willy told me that you guys wanted me out.” “Our parents rented the place to both of you and that’s it. You and Little Willy.”

Mr. Derf added, “If one of you goes, then the other has to go too. At least that’s what my father said.” “Yeah, you should talk to Little Willy.” “Thanks Pasty, I will. Have a good dinner.”

I was relieved and confused. I saw Little Willy and asked him. He shrugged his shoulders, ran into his room and hid. Monica was still floating around the apartment.

It was now about 6 months after we moved in. I ran into Miss Pasty one day outside the building. She mentioned that her mom wasn’t too thrilled with the idea of three people living in my apartment, and then she dropped a bombshell.

“Your roommate’s girlfriend has been going around the neighborhood telling all the neighbors that you’re gay.” Wow. Monica? What did I do to deserve that? I mean I was gay, still am, but never been one to be all up in your face about it.

“Everyone?” I asked Miss Pasty. “Everyone, even the firemen.” “The firemen? Hmmm….kinky…” Miss Pasty laughed, “Even my mother.” “Oh no, what did she say?” “She told Monica, that it was none of Monica’s business and it wasn’t her business either. She thinks you’re a good boy. She likes you.”

It was good to have someone in my corner.

I found out that Little Willy told Monica that he was going to kick me out and have her move in. And apparently Monica didn’t think Little Willy was acting fast enough so she decided to speed things up and attempt to slander me.

It didn’t work.

Monica being a German tourist figured that these Americans with their meat eating ways would be so disgusted that I’d be run out to the windmill like the Frankenstein monster chased by villagers.

Little Willy started playing both sides against the other. I was working at a video store and giving video rentals away to various friends and bartenders I knew, and also DJ-ing at McSwells. I was a DJ, ID checker, doorman, and bar back sometimes on consecutive nights.

There were records usually piled up by the stereo system that Little Willy and I shared. 2 Live Crew had a smash hit called ‘Me So Horny’. A decent song, usually guaranteed a laugh from me and my friends.

The B side to ‘Me So Horny’ was an aptly named song called ‘Get the fuck out of my House Bitch’. I left it lying around so Monica would see it.

She did.

One night while I was in my room, there was a knock on the door. It was Monica. Her German accent furious, eyes full of rage, she started screaming at me about how I was trying to seduce Little Willy.

“Leaving a record called ‘I am so horny’ around the apartment. Don’t take my man!” I laughed which enraged her even more.

“John, Little Willy said you were leaving. When will you leave?” “Leave? Monica, I ain’t going anywhere! And it’s not ‘I am so horny’ and I’m not horny for Little Willy. He’s not my type. I like MEN. Not skinny little toothpicks that can’t stand up straight.”

“Well he said…” Monica continued. “I don’t care what he said. And it’s the flip side you bitch. It’s called ‘Get the Fuck Out of my House Bitch.’

You should play it sometimes. It should have instructions on what to do.” She yelled. I yelled louder. Little Willy hid in his room.

It ended with me screaming, “Get the hell out of here you hag!”

Blue Jay Way

Well I am actually doing something today. Visiting Greg Stevens office for a few hours then meeting up with Bill and some of his compadres, heading off to see the Yankees/Blue Jays tonight. So since I won’t be back until late, here is part 2 of what I wrote in 2002 about 1991.

It seemed like a great deal. A nice apartment, close to the city, good neighborhood, and a decent room mate. I would find out later that 3 out of 4 wasn’t bad, but wasn’t entirely good either.

I was living in Lodi with my father who I hadn’t been getting along with for about 20 years. I moved in with him despite everyone’s warnings. I had seen a side of him that I had never seen before.

He was grieving.

Quite sad, his wife, my mother decided to leave her mortal coil on Mother’s Day. Talk about making a statement. May 12 was a day of infamy for me and my siblings. So having seen a side of him that I had never seen before, I moved in with him into the house I grew up and threw up in.

It was hell. Everyone was right. It was a mistake. I started drinking a lot and at night when I was hiding in my brother’s room where I slept fitfully at night. One night I had to pee but I didn’t want to risk waking up the old man who slept across from the bathroom.

So I did what anybody would do in a similar situation. I opened up the window and pissed down the side of the house. It seemed to be the only peaceful solution.

After battles and wars, I told my father I was moving out. Little Willy had parked his dilap-a-van outside and I warned him to stay away from the house I’ll bring my stuff outside to the van. Dad was watching me like the crotchety old hawk he was.

Annemarie, my sister was there at the time, calming me down and acting like a buffer between 2 grown men who couldn’t stand each other. Little Willy and I got all my stuff down to Weehawken.

Annemarie was sad to see the relationship die between my father and I but I was glad to see a toe tag on the body of the relationship.

It was quite pathetic when I moved. I didn’t have a bed; I had a sleeping bag lent to me by Raul the owner of the video store and a strip of foam rubber padding that I was using as a mattress of sorts.

My cat Zed was able to return from exile. I brought him with me to Lodi and he basically lived in the basement until my father almost tripped on the stairs one day and swore that Zed was trying to kill him.

I then brought Zed to Hoboken where he lived in the basement of the video store, which was actually the storage room rented in a basement 2 doors down. Poor Zed felt abandoned but now I was able to put a bona fide roof over his head.

Little Willy and I seemed to get along. I didn’t know then that he told Monica his traveling companion that he was going to kick me out and the two of them would live in quasi-Aztec bliss forever and ever.

Little Willy told me after a month or two that Miss Pasty and Mr. Derf were quite upset with me and wanted me out. I didn’t understand it.

There were one or two incidents where a chair over laden with coats crashed one late night hang out, but it was taken care of.

Sure there would be an adjustment to the fact that instead of one old man who couldn’t walk much living above them was now two men who can walk with relative ease taking his place. I asked Little Willy and he was vague, saying he didn’t know what was going on but I had to go.

Panic stricken and faced with no options, I was leaving the apartment one night when I saw Miss Pasty and Mr. Derf. I asked them I pleaded with them. “I’m so sorry. What have I done? Why do you want me to go? I have nowhere else to go. What can I do to change your mind?”

They didn’t know what the hell I was talking about. All they wanted to do was to go to dinner next door at their parent’s apartment. My eyes were tearing up. It’s been said I can cry at the drop of a hat, and a major sombrero had hit the floor.

Come Together

Nothing much happened today. In fact I just left the apartment building for the first time at 5:15. Ran out of juices you see. Too hot to do much of anything except lay in front of a fan.

It’s a scorcher. The most that I did today was take a nap.

Over the weekend, I bought a selection of songs from the Fun Boy Three on iTunes, after which I was asked to do a back up.

It seemed like the thing to do. As I ran the back up onto 6 discs, I lost my playlists, some of which were a few years old. So I’ve been trying to find them to no avail, but I also found something that I wrote in 2002, about 1991.

Since I didn’t do anything today, I thought I would serialize it. Today is part 1. In case I don’t do anything else this week, I may add the following parts as installments.

Riding the bus with Miss Pasty. I was unusually charming despite the unwelcome hour of 8:20am. I would’ve preferred being alone, but hey, she is my landlord. Or Landlady. Or something resembling both.

“I heard on the radio there was a 40 minute delay in getting into NYC. I’m gonna take a van” Now this would ordinarily sound fine, but Miss Pasty has a relatively shrill voice and for a non-morning person like myself it was nearly unbearable, and that was after my initial three cups of coffee, rocket fuel.

Miss Pasty and her brother Mr. Derf are my landlord and lady. Quite royal I think they think. It feels like I’ve been living above them all of my life though physically it’s been 11 years.

It’s been an up and down ride with them and any problems I’ve had with them are generally because of my room mate, Little Willy Archas.

For example, in 1991 when Carl and Katie Archas told me about the apt, Carl had mentioned that his brother Little Willy was probably going to look for an apartment since when Little Willy got back from Mexico he wouldn’t be living with his parents in Jersey City.

I took it into consideration.

So one day when I was walking down Washington St in Hoboken from Take 99 video to Blockbuster to pick up an errant video tape, I spied a dilapidated van with 2 even more dilapidated passengers within.

It was Little Willy. He was with Monica. Some chick that was in love with him, enough to travel to Mexico and back with him. Of course I had the luck of bumping into him as soon as he pulled into town.

“Your brother told me you might be looking for a new place. I might be looking for a room mate. Into it?” “Yeah, sure, I guess. Where is it?” “Weehawken. You know Pasty K from McSwells?” “Uh, I don’t know.” “Well your brother knows her. I once gave her a ride home. Nice neighborhood. Anyway if you want I can set something up for tomorrow night.” “Uh, yeah sure. I guess so.”

Little did I know that his vocabulary skills wouldn’t really go farther than that. “Alright, call me at the video store and I’ll see if I can set something up.” “Uh yeah sure. I guess.”

I called Miss Pasty and set it up. Little Willy met me at Take 99 Video the next night and I was able to take some time off and see the apartment.

We met Miss Pasty and Mr. Derf’s parents, Adele and Derf Sr. A very old couple. A bit strange at first. But so was my room mate to be. I wasn’t used to being the most normal in a group but that is how it was turning out to be.

We left 129 Jane Street, climbing downstairs in order to get to 127 Jane to climb upstairs. Little Willy was able to turn on the hallway light which greatly impressed Miss Pasty and Mr. Derf.

We saw the apartment which was previously occupied by an old man who really didn’t or couldn’t walk around much. Miss Pasty and Mr. Derf were quite used to this fact that no one was walking around the apartment above them.

Little Willy and I both liked the apartment and since Little Willy painted houses and apartments, offered to paint the rooms from a purple yellow Easter combination to something more than that.

We went back to Miss Pasty and Mr. Derf’s parents and told then we were interested. Derf Sr. thought that was fine and since it was the beginning of October we would be able to move in anytime and not have to pay any rent until November 1.

Walk Out to Winter

Well Chaz once again threw a pretty good party. All very adult, chit chat and cocktails. The promised snow storm didn’t happen. I was starving beforehand so I ate a light supper about two hours early. Bill was in the city, fortifying himself with Claratin. Chaz has a cat, Lily (who once tried to take my eye out) and Bill is hyper-allergic to cats.

Rand and Lisa were going too so plans were made to meet at the Path train. I stopped off at Karma Cafe gingerly stepping over the kitchen help laying about the floor and got a gift certificate for Chaz. I started walking down Washington Street when I got a phone call from Bill who was in the city and about to head into the 14th Street Path station.

He mentioned meeting at Journal Square which made sense since the train he would be on would be going to Journal Square after Hoboken. But he wasn’t going to make a move until I gave the go ahead. The plan was to meet at the station so I told Bill that yes we would meet in Jersey City.

Rand and Lisa were a block or two behind me so when I got to the station I called them. They thought we would all be taking a cab from Hoboken to Jersey City Heights and I explained the situation. Rand and Lisa and I met on the platform, Bill on a train already, somewhere.

Nice ride and a few laughs along the way. We got off at Journal Square where we found Bill disembarking from the same train that we were on. He was in a different car, you see. I figured we would be taking a taxi from Journal Square so I bought a six pack of Stella Artois which cost more than usual since it was part of the train station.

When I left the store, it was suggested that we could walk. That was fine by me and I was surprised to find out that Lisa and Bill were into it. I know Bill isn’t a fan of the cold. I could have bought a six pack closer to Chaz’ house but it didn’t matter. Rand and I led the way with Bill and Lisa chatting it up a few feet behind us.

It wasn’t too bad of a walk, a frozen drizzle would rain on occasion but overall it was harmless. We were on Carlton Avenue before we knew it and soon we were in Chaz’ warm living room next to a kitchen table crowded with food and snacks.

Chaz made some excellent vegetarian chili as well, which I only had a tiny portion. Chaz’ lifelong friend Andy was there with his friend Howard. They made for a nice couple as well as Debra and Roy another couple that I only seem to see at Chaz holiday party.

No Dave McKenzie, no Connie and no Kathe. Dave was in Kentucky, Connie was fearful of the blizzard that wasn’t happening and Kathe had gotten out of work in Astoria and was just too tired to make the hike. And it would have been a hike for Kathe from Astoria and Connie could be excused since it would be unnerving to drive home in the middle of the night back to Highlands.

From what Chaz said, Connie was angry with the fact that she wasn’t going to be at the party.

Chaz had presents for most everyone, Bill and I getting a Simpsons calendar as well as a Simpsons bottle opener and two DVD’s, the Outkast movie Idlewild and the Paul Giamatti movie Sideways. You could tell it was a good party, lot’s of food, and drinks and before we knew it it was 1:00 in the morning and Bill was on the phone calling for a taxi to take us back to Hoboken.

Bill was heading back to Stuyvesant Town so Rand, Lisa and I rode to the Path train and saw Bill off. The three of us walked up Washington Street in a light drizzle past people lined up outside of bars trying to get in. I parted ways with Rand and Lisa on 7th Street with hugs and kisses.

I came home and watched Saturday Night Live for a bit while enjoying a night cap before going to bed myself. I waited to hear from Bill to make sure he got home alright. He did but was waylaid by his allergy since the Claratin wore off.

That’s it for now, back to rearranging the deck chairs tomorrow.

Here’s some pics.

Chaz, the host with the most

Chaz, the host with the most

Lovely Lisa (always photgraphs beautifully)

Lovely Lisa (always photgraphs beautifully)

Ernie photographed by Bert

Ernie photographed by Bert



William and Marianne

William and Marianne

Andy & Howard

Beatles in a tree

Beatles in a tree

Smokers lounge

Smokers lounge




a John Lennon apparition

a John Lennon apparition

"where is the eye?!?"

A splendid time was had by all

A splendid time was had by all