Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The Fade of Glory

Earlier this month Hollywood bestowed its highest honor to Sandra Bullock for her role in BLINDSIDE. That Academy Award evening the actress proudly stood in the loving limelight of her peers and press. The gold on her Oscar tarnished with the report that her biker husband was seen in the presence of LA's leading tattoo model.

What can you expect from a man named Jesse James?


Maybe Second thoughts, for one-night stands are always fun until the cameras start clicking like locust and now the biker doesn't want to trashcan his marriage for a 26 year-old who looks like a 40 year transvestite hooker. Instead his next residence will be Tiger Woods' sex rehab clinic, where he will learn how to be faithful or at least discreet.

Personally I go for the tattoo chick.

I like freaks.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

BAD COMPANY - Bad Company

Some music still is kick-ass and none better than Bad Company's BAD COMPANY. They were one of the premiere supergroups of the 1970s with singer Paul Rodgers and drummer Simon Kirke of Free; former Mott the Hoople guitarist Mick Ralphs; and King Crimson bassist Boz Burrell. Their album BAD COMPANY went to #1.

Side note Paul rodgers had a thing for two of his sidemen.

To see this clip go to this URL

Rock on.

God is All-Powerful

The Iraq War has entered its 8th year. The cost in human life and treasure is a constant drain on the nation. The sacrifice of the military is numbered in the tens of thousands and the toll on their family members took a wicked twist with the father of fallen marine was court-ordered to pay the legal costs of a extreme religious group. The leader of the Westboro's Baptist Church has been picket hundreds of military funerals for the sin of the Pentagon protecting gays from god's righteous retribution.


Their placards are deemed free speech by Kansas' Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit. The judges deigned not to explain their rationale on this ruling. My youngest brother died on AIDS. If someone had praised his death as god's justice, I would have fucked up his 1st Amendment right with a baseball bat. That assault would have been my free speech in action. I'm never good at funerals.


Nuns for Nope

Pope Benedict has a ticking bomb in his closet. As a German bishop he presided over the investigation of a pedophile priest. Over 200 boys were counted as his victims and like an iceberg more are thought to have been molested by this man. His punishment was to be transferred to another church without any warning to the parishioners about his predilection for young boys. The pope's brother was intimate with this offender's history and even a causal observer has to come to the conclusion that the Catholic Church has been acting with criminal intent to prevent any convictions of their priests.

I attended Catholic grammar and high school. My alma mater is the Jesuit-run Boston College. The only time I can recall a religious member acting strange was at Xaverian, when the librarian Brother Jerome would ask students to sit on his lap. None of us thought this request strange, even though we regarded gays as queers. Other than that episode the priests and brothers led exemplary lives dedicated to learning.

Other students haven't been so lucky judging from the newspaper reports telling of the widespread scandal. The cover-up is over and the highest ranks of the Church are guilty of conspiracy.

Thousands if not millions of Catholics are questioning their faith and Op-Ed writer Maureen Dowd has suggested that it is now time to transform the male hierarchy of the Vatican by naming a female Pope from the ranks of the religious orders of nuns.

A Nope.

A human who would look natural in a dress.

Not that the sisters of mercy are without sin.

At the local school of the deaf the nuns mistreated the unfortunate.

A friend's sister went to this school and through sign language explained how the nuns punished the girls by making them drink urine from the nuns. I was no longer a Catholic at this point. I was 17. I never told anyone about her story. It sounded unreal. Now I realize that it was the truth.

And because of this I say nope to Nopes.

Then again the Pope is infallible.

He can do no wrong.

Monday, March 29, 2010

The Exterminating Angel of Passaich

My birthday is May 29. The year was midway back in the last century. The country celebrated Memorial day on May 30 to honor those who have fallen in the service of the USA. Schools closing doubled the pleasure of my birthday, however during the 70s the government shifted Memorial Day to a convenient Monday or Friday to create 3-day weekends. Other national holidays followed suit and wandered the calender like gaunt Indian cows on the streets of New Delhi. Hawaii's Senator Daniel Inouye has led a lonely fight to return Memorial Day to May 30. It would be nice to sleep on my birthday drunk with a paid holiday.

Jewish holidays roam the months with more abandon and today the chosen people celebrate Passover. Monday afternoon everyone was closing their booths. Our firm was staying to the bitter end of 6pm. Manny my boss didn't believe in cutting out early. I asked several of the home-bound, "What does Passaich celebrate?"

"When the angel of god passed over the Jewish houses in Egypt." Marty answered putting on his coat. A light cold rain was a threat to a man his age.

"The last of the ten plagues." I had seen THE TEN COMMANDMENTS at the South Shore Drive-In. A drunk teenager threw a rock at our station wagon. My father chased him into the brush. He came back red in the face, but satisfied with his vengeance.

"Yahweh instructed the Hebrews to sprinkle lamb's blood on this doors so his spirit would skip their houses in his search for the first-born males of the Egyptians." Marty was a reformed Jew. He ate bacon, but had been instructed in a Brooklyn schul in his youth. The Old Testament was a living instrument of his god.

"You know I was taught that god was all-knowing and all-seeing, so why couldn't he see which houses were Jewish?"

"What kind of question is that?" Marty accepted some profane thought.

"Here you have this god." Most people think the killer of the male first-borns was an angel. "Super powerful Yahweh blundering through the night killing young boys. Do you think there was any collateral damage like how our smart bombs hit schools in Afghanistan?"

"How should I know? I wasn't there." Marty was fed up with my narishkait or foolishness.

"So you turn your back on the massacre of innocents." I was pro-Palestinian.

"Don't start." Marty was a firm believer in the right of Israel to exist on the ancient lands of the Hebrew kings.

"It's just a thought, happy exterminating angel day."

Marty walked out in disgust. He would forgive me until my next outburst. Marsha from across the aisle was shaking his head. She had been in the death camps. A Nazi tattoo was hidden by a gold bracelet.

"You really think god was a murderer?"

"Actually I think that the second-sons of Egypt plotted to kill all the first-borns to destroy the rules of primogeniture."

"What's primogeniture?" Andrea asked while putting away Marsha's jewelry for the day. She loved my writing. We had once made out in a Soho parking lot. 20 years ago. I started to explain the term. Marsha beat me to it. "Primogeniture is where the first born inherits everything from the father. Like Cain and Abel."

"Cain killed Abel." Andrea was horrified. She was a sweet girl still.

"The second son plot."

"Es iz nit geshtoygen un nit gefloygen." Manny my boss said from his desk. He hated my wasting my time talking about nonsense. Work was time to work and nothing else mattered to him.

"What's that mean?" Andrea had never heard the expression and neither had I.

"It never rose and it never flew." Marsha smiled with the pleasure of hearing Yiddish.

"Plain speaking 'bullshit'." Manny whispered loud enough for only me to hear. A miser with his help he was a gentlemen to women other than his wives and girlfriends.

"It's not foolishness." I protested with the fervor of a devotee to the untruth. "The only logical explanation of passover is that the Egyptians killed the first borns."

"It was God." Manny attended temple once a year. Never on the same high holiday, so that each decade he had covered them all. "And his killing angel."

"Isn't that the same name they called Josef Mengele?"

"He was called the Angel of Death." Marsha soured on the mention of his name. She had lost family in the camps. It was only a miracle that she had escaped the Nazi pogrom. "Who knows what passaich really was? It was over 3000 years ago. I can barely remember what I had to eat for lunch."

"Me neither." I liked Marsha. She had a kind word for my kids, even though neither of them looked like me. I wished her a good holiday.

"And you have a good Bunny Day." Marsha knew I was a non-believer and respected my choice. I was a goy and goys were meshuggah or crazy.

"I'll bring you some chocolate."

"Viele danke." Marsha had been brought up in Berlin.

"Gar nichts." I had studied German in high school. My bible knowledge came from the nuns and priests. They thought that the Jews had killed Jesus. It was a crime for eternity. As a sinner I was willing to forgive everyone for everything. To err is human to forgive is divine.

No Fear of Flying

Witches were fearsome creatures in my youth. They consorted with Satan and seduced the souls of pure men. I must have met a score of the wanton succubus in my 20s. My faith wavered under the flames of their desire. The want for wealth weakened with their every caress. Sex was their reward and their punishment was celibacy. I've gone four months without a woman's touch and Mam, my wife, cursed me as I caught the bus from Jomtien to the Bangkok Airport.

"I never want see you again."

And her curse was effective.

Such is the power of an angry woman.

I've spoken with her every day. She calls to have me listen to my son, Superstar Fenway. My plans to return to Thailand have been crushed every month. Sales fall through with regularity. No one is buying diamonds. Least not my friends and clients, so I remained trapped in New York, far from my son. But I know my magic can be stronger than a woman's curse.

I've fought Mrs. Adorno's curse. She said that I would never have sex again. The old bruja was right for several years. In the end I had to ask her forgiveness and she gave it with a smile. We had been neighbors for over 20 years.

"You suffer enough." The wiry 4-3 Puerto Rican hated my throwing out a Spanish girlfriend. I had my reasons. Mrs. Adorno hadn't wanted to hear them in the past and neither had she asked for any excuses at the moment she accepted my contrition. I suppose Mam will have to forgive me too.

It's a word not many Thais know.

อภัย ; ให้อภัย
à-pai ; hâi à-pai

Not many farangs know the word in their language too.

Forgiving is easy, it's the forgetting that is hard.

Especially for witches.

Israeli War Plans

The New York Times published a multi-step scenario after an Israeli air attack on various Iranian nuclear facilities. The air attack is relatively successful in knocking out vital components such as centrifuges and fueling stations. The writer makes no mention on collateral civilian damages and feels that Mideast tensions will escalate only on the front lines of Gaza and Lebanon. The increased missile attacks will cause widespread flight from the attacks and Israel will respond with another punishing bombardment of the Hezbollah and Hamas strongholds. Iran plays the oil card sending gas prices into the stratosphere, pleasing the oil barons of Texas and that's what it's all about; oil and the Armageddon bringing Jesus back to Earth for his 2nd coming.

Hallelujah Glenn Beck the prophet of doom will be so happy.

I see the Israeli attack as a disaster; loss of planes, the spread of nuclear poison ala Three Mile Island, and the USA telling Israel finally YOYO.

You're on your own.

It's about time for the only 'true' democracy in the Mideast to stand alone.

And then they drop the A-bombs on Cairo and Damascus.

Angels trumpets blowing out 'Jesus is coming' all over the world.

At that moment I drinking the rest of my beer, because there will be no cold beer in Hell.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Guns and Elephants

My godson Fast Eddie Silver is flying into New York for a visit with his mother. He was once a baby. I held Eddie in my arms as a one-month old infant over 17 years ago. He is a teenager into skateboarding and music and I'm looking forward to seeing him. His late father was one of my best friends.

Our last time together was in Thailand. Eddie and his mother Sara had come out for a holiday. I took them to Koh Samet and Bangkok, but my best photo of Eddie was taken at the Elephant Camp south of Jomtien. We rode the pachyderms through the coconut trees and fed them bananas before entering the gun range to shoot at paper targets. My choice was a 44 Magnum. Eddie liked the Glock. We shot two clips each.

"You're crazy." His mother disapproved of guns, but was angered by the location of the shooting range. "Guns and elephants. What do you think the elephants think about hearing those shots?"

"They seem okay with it." I looked out the door. The Thai mahouts were lounging peacefully atop their changs. The elephants showed no sign of alarm, as other tourists banged away at the targets. Most of them missed the bull's eyes by feet. Eddie actually hit the target every shot.

"Right." Sara was pissed at us.

"It's not like these guns can hurt them." .50 caliber bullets from a elephant gun might spook them, but the giant creatures were basically impervious to the under-powered bullets of the shooting range.

"What if one of the elephants was shooting at you?"

"I don't think they could hold this pistol." Eddie put his rented weapon on the table after cocking the chamber to see if it was empty.

"Probably have to built them a cannon gun."

"And they pull the trigger with their trunk."

Elephants chasing you with a cannon was a scary thought. I put down my gun too. Sara had a good point. Riling an elephant was a bad idea. Almost as bad as pissing of a woman, but I'd rather risk my chances with an amok elephant than a mad woman. Any day of the week.

420 - 2010

California's Secretary of State has certified the voting ballot for the legalization of marijuana. 420. The forces of ganga are asking reefer smokers around the nation to support this measure with a donation of $4.20 in recognition of the legendary Point Reyes high school students who would met at the statue of Louis Pasteur to smoke reefer. Millions of potheads gather on 4/20 every year to promote a change in the United States' failed prohibition against the weed.

While other states have decriminalized possession or sanctioned medical use, California's initiative would permit growth, possession, sale, and ingestion of marijuana for casual smokers. Progressive legislators are seeking to free up billions of tax dollars wasted on the war against marijuana as well as the potential state revenues gained from the sales tax on marijuana. The police are divided on the issue, although a majority of Californians are in favor of the measure.

If the law passes through the voting process, California would be in conflict with the federal laws against the herb and also New York City's anti-marijuana jihad led by the ayatollah of uncool, Mayor Bloomberg. Arrests for weed in the 90s hovered around 1000. In 2008 the NYPD rounded up over 40,000 people, mostly young males of color. Andy, the ex-cop at the diamond exchange, said of his years on the force, "You can tell when someone's high on pot. The stupid smile. An easy arrest and most of the time non-violent too."

"So you don't smoke weed?" I knew better.

"Don't ask, don't tell." Andy was a straight Vietnam vet, but was smart enough to recognize when to follow the Pentagon's policy on homosexuals in the military.

California would be wise if it copied the Netherlands' lead on marijuana

1. To prevent drug use and to treat and rehabilitate drug users.
2. To reduce harm to users.
3. To diminish public nuisance by drug users (the disturbance of public order and safety in the neighborhood).
4. To combat the production and trafficking of drugs.

(from Wikpedia)

In other words no naked hot tub parties after midnight playing the Grateful Dead at 10 on the volume knob unless you invite the neighbors too.


Send in your contribution of $4.20 to NORML

It's time to end the madness.

One more thing.

Fuck Bloomberg.

Friday, March 26, 2010

SIGNED DC - Arthur Lee and Love

Arthur Lee wrote SIGNED DC watching his drummer fall under the spell of heroin.

Released in 1966 the song caters to the reality of smack versus the Velvet Underground's romanticism of the narcotic.

Everyone made their own choices no matter what song you heard first.

Love Signed D C lyrics

Verse 1:
Sometimes I feel so lonely
My comedown I'm scared to face
I've pierced my skin again, Lord
No one cares
For me
Verse 2:
My soul belongs to the dealer
He keeps my mind as well
I play the part of the leecher
No one cares
For me, cares for me
Verse 3:
Look out Joe, I'm fallin'
I can't unfold my arms
I've got one foot in the graveyard
No one cares
For me, cares for me

Listen to this classic by going to the following URL

Bad Influence

Last winter the president of a private jet charter service invited me to dinner at the Oyster Bar. We're old friends, even though his family forced him to quit drugs and drink. Overweight and overdose. Death was knocking on his heart. 2 weeks of cold turkey rehab and Enos was clean for eternity.

"You don't mind if i bring my my girlfriend and her daughter?" Enos liked to compartmentalize his world. I had met his lover once. She was older.

"Why would it bother me?" I was dying for a good plate of oyster followed by a pan-friend lobster stew.

"Just I don't want to hear anything about a diamond ring." My boss Richie Boy constantly bugged Enos about not making his girlfriend his wife. He was thinking about a diamond sale.

"We're go back before I was diamonds." My cousin Ty Spaulding had introduced us. "The Oyster Bar is about eating fish, oyster, and lobster."

"Exactly." Enos was more interested in pussy. He said his girlfriend was great in bed. That was good enough for me.

The Oyster Bar had a few good selling points. Best oysters in New York. The vaulted ceiling. A timelessness permanence. Fish fresh from the ocean and I descended from the main floor of Grand Central Terminal with an appetite bolstered by memory. I spotted Enos at the entrance. He greeted me with a smile. Toothy happiness.

"Where's your girls?"

"Her daughter is a vegan. She doesn't eat fish."

"No oysters?"

"None." Enos came from a good Jewish family in the Rockaways, but nothing was tref or unclean for his palate. We entered the restaurant and sat at the long service bar. We didn't need to look at the menu. "Clams casino."

"I have a question." The Bangladeshi waiter brought an Austrian Riesling. "Bacon is tref and clams are tref. So if you put them together, is that like two negatives equal
a positive?"

"Like bacon and shellfish aren't tref if you eat them together?" Enos might have stopped blow, but he regained an unhealthy appetite for a man approaching 250 at 50.


"As long as we eat them before my girlfriend's daughter arrives. She's a vegan Nazi."

"They hate us." We were omnivores and finished the clams casino, a dozen Malpecs, and a lobster stew before his dates entered the restaurant. I liked Enos' girlfriend. She was older, but smart and funny. Helen also liked Enos, which in many ways was better than loving him. She introduced her daughter. 12 year-old, a child-actress, skinny, cute, and more than precocious. Her name was Naomi. "Did you eat dead food?"

"We had a bi-valval feast." The Malpecs tasted of cold Atlantic ocean.

"You're a bad man." Her neo-ingenue eyes were trained to seduce casting directors. her beauty would blossom into stardom with the right training. At this point her Lolita power could overwhelm the weak. Her succubus eyes disregarded my age. I was simply another old geezer.

"You couldn't believe how bad." Enos and Helen were deep in conversation, happy that I was diverting the little monster. "I was brought up along the coast of Maine. Every summer a whale would get confused in the shoals and end up beached on the sands as the sea retreated on the tide. The fishermen fought off the sharks and cut off the best pieces of whale meat for their families."

"You ate whale?" Her eyes widened in horror. She was no longer acting.

"And it tasted good. No, actually it was the best thing I've eaten in my life." The story was bullshit, based on a A Whale for the Killing by Farley Mowat. I has tasted whale meat in Boston's Haymarket. 1970 with a hippie friend. We both agreed it was better than beef. Once was enough for a lifetime. I didn't tell this to the little precious actress.

"You're worst than bad."


"Fucking evil." Those two words got her mother's attention off Enos' cock. Her daughter and I smiled without explanation and I lifted a finger. "I like your conviction. You want that I give your headshot to a casting director."

I mentioned a name. The woman was the biggest in the city. The skinny waif flipflopped with delight.

"Could you?"

"It'd be my pleasure."

After all it wasn't every day you got called evil by a 12 year-old girl.

Thursday, March 25, 2010


This cover of a blues classic was played on WMEX.


A growling voice.

Tom Rush

"A little bitty chimney made of human skulls."

Go to this url to hear WHO DO YOU LOVE

Farrah is a Betty

Zombie Strippers / Kelly's Heroes

My parents exposed their children to the magic of cinema at the Cornish Drive-In in Maine. The screen faced the pine forest and the owner's house served as the concession stand. The grandmother sold salted popcorn and bottles of ice-cold Coke from the porch and her son worked the projector housed in an old chicken coop. My brother, two sisters, and I worn pajamas. None of us could stay awake past the first several minutes of the second more adult feature, although I fought off sleep to see all of Billy Wilder's THE APARTMENT. I fell in love with Shirley Maclaine that night and years later would lose my heart to a hillbilly actress from West Virginia who was her twin.

After moving to Boston my Irish grandmother would take my brother and me into the city. A visit to St. Anthony's Shrine. A hot dog at WT Grant's Department Store. The third act was a movie show at the Orpheum. She took us to see THUNDER ROAD. It featured Robert Mitchum as a hot rod bootlegger. My mother would not have approved of Nana's choice, but she had brewed 'whiskey' during the Prohibition and more importantly thought Robert Mitchum was handsome.

As teenagers my brotehr and I ventured to the Mattapan Oriental. Catholic girls were our prey or we were their beaus for the afternoon matinee. I made out with a girl called Jo. Her hair was stiff with a spray of lacquer. In the dark she looked like Kim Novak. I have no idea what film was on the screen.

GONE WITH THE WIND with Janet Stetson. THE HARDER THEY COME at an empty Orson Welles Cinema on a winter's day. GOING PLACES at the St. Marks Theater. APOCALYPSE NOW the first showing at the Ziegfield.

Epic movie outings spanning the globe for decades.

And now I never go to the movies.

I hate the cineplexes.

Partially because they feel so cheap.

Same as the movies.

I even avoided AVATAR on the big screen. My viewing was on my computer screen. I had to imagine the 3-D. It was easy on reefer. Last summer I drove past the old drive-in in Cornish. The parking area is overgrown by high grass. The screen has been ravaged by the Maine winters. I stood next to a vandalized audio pole. even with my eyes open I could see Jack Lemmon holding Shirley Maclaine.

I still love her and movies too.

They are the dreams we can dream ourselves.


In Greek mythology Pandora was the first woman. She was moulded out of the Earth by a goddess to punish Prometheus for creating fire. Her name in ancient Greek means 'giver of all'. Her benign reputation has been maligned by the legend of her opening a box containing all the ills besetting this planet. The act was not malicious and neither is the power of to open a new music world to those deaf to the AM-FM radio stations. Setting up an account is easy and free. Listeners can sculpt radio stations according to their wasted taste. I've mixed metal, folk, world, punk, psychedelia, jazz, reggae, and blues.


There are a few commercials based on age. I get a promotion for the Hebrew Home in the Bronx. Spend your last days in Talmudic bliss. At least they're not selling grave plots. Lie about your age and find out what the world is pushing on the young.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

I just urled

Nothing online signalling a future free-thinker has bought the site in expectation of legalization.

The armies of Tony Montana are ever-victorious.

Tony Montana: You know what capitalism is? Getting fucked!

Civil War 2010

The politics on 47th Street run right of center. Manny, my boss, is a radical. the 80 year-old believes in legalization of all drugs, withdrawal from Iraq and Afghanistan, universal health care, and the re-education of right-wing extremists. being Jewish he also is a proponent of wiping every Arab off the face of the Earth. An old man is entitled to his morality contradictions. No one in the diamond exchange takes our opinions seriously, although the retired Bronx cop seconding as a security guard for the diamond exchange considers both of us commie bastards.

"If it were up to me, I'd shoot you." Andy is pissed off by he passage of the Obama Health Care Bill and parrots Fox News when he says like an altar boy molested by a priest, "They're ramming this down our throat."

"Free health care is a bad thing?"

"We'll end up like Canada or France."

"My friend had brain cancer in France." Randy passed through the operations with success. He filmed my story THE LAST QUALLUDES ON EARTH last summer. French socialized medicine saved his life. I told Andy about his struggle. "When he left the hospital the staff got hi a taxi."

'And what does that prove?" The ex-cop was boiling like a man on the verge of joining a lynch mob. "He was a commie like you."

"I'll tell you how I see the future. Free wine. Free health care. Free pussy too."

"And who's going pay for all that?"

"We're going to pay for that through conquest. Fuck democracy. Rob Iraq. Invade Saudi Arabia. Steal all their oil." This was Rome's strategy. It worked for 600 years and then I whispered, "Fuck Israel too."

It was a welfare state.

No one in the exchange wanted to hear this. They were angry about the new medical plan. None of them understood its offerings. Me too, except the government wanted a payment for my health care. I haven't been sick once in my life. I can faded into the fabric of chaos, however the irate right have declared war on the measure seeking to offer them better health. Bricks have smashed the windows of Democratic offices.

"Extremism in defense of liberty is no vice." Barry Goldwater.

It almost seems as if America is on the verge of a civil war with the pat VP candidate for the GOP cross-hairing the opposition majority party as if they were moose in Alaska.

I've promised Andy a safe place to hide if it comes to bullets.

"As long as I get some of that free pussy I'm your man."

Viva la revolution.

LOST AND FOUND / Bet on Crazy by Peter Nolan Smith

Our store ships diamonds mostly with Fed-Ex. More expensive items go Brinks and overseas transaction are transported by Ferrari. Each company delivers countless millions of packages every day without mishap. No thefts or lost packages, although we always pray for a slip-up since shipments are insured for their exact value. When I first started working at the diamond exchange, I asked my boss to explain such a contrary desire.

"If they lose a package, we get paid twice. Once by the customer and another by Fed-Ex." Richie Boy told me while at the same time making sure that I followed Fed-Ex's stringent packing policies. Customers liked their merchandise without any problems and for my twenty years working for Richie Boy's father I can't recall Fed-Ex ever losing a package despite our wishes otherwise.

Thankfully our customers are more helpful. Their houses are burgled by thieves. Diamond studs fly off the ear at weddings, and on occasion they forget where they put their jewelry. I once cached a diamond ring in my apartment in the East Village after a night of drink. The next morning I searched my usual hiding holes without success. It was gone and I blamed its disappearance on the mice infesting our tenement building since they looked fatter thereafter.

My Irish grandmother said whatever you lose wasn't yours in the first place. I agreed with her, but at the diamond exchange we listen to tales of loss with practiced sang-froid. Commiseration with a query about replacing the lost bracelet, ring, or necklace. My co-worker Cindy had a client this week looking to replace two vanished items. An emerald ring and another diamond ring. A $30,000 purchase. Her commission would pay a month's mortgage. She waited for a month for the insurance company to settle with the suburban couple. Everything looked green light for the new sale until the woman called and said that she had found the rings. Her eight year-old daughter had traded them to a campmate for a sandwich. Bologna for tuna. It seemed like a good deal in the summer. Cindy's client was honest and reported her discovery to the relieved insurance company.

"The little bastard." Manny said without hesitation. He liked Cindy and in these hard times understood she needed this sale. "Better luck next time."

Cindy was a good person. She was happy with her client's good luck, although probably not as much as her client's insurance adjuster. they would be able to dine out on that story at Outback for the next month. Bonne Chance.

Message from the Grave

My younger brother's best friend was Tom Ferris. They met in Provincetown. Michael was sunning on Race Point Beach. A beautiful speedboat anchored close to shore. My brother told his friends that he was going to swim out to see who owned the boat. Tom greeted my brother with open arms. Michael's nickname was 'Aquaman' to Tom, who survived my brother by a decade. He joined the ranks of the missing some years ago, which was why I was surprised to received an email from him this morning. It wasn't from the grave but London.

I'm sorry for this odd request because it might get to you too urgent but it's because of the situation of things right now, I'm stuck in London, United Kingdom right now. I came down here on vacation, i was robbed, worse of it is that bags, cash and cards and my cell phone was stolen at GUN POINT, it's such a crazy experience for me, i need help in sorting out the hotel bills, the authorities are not being 100% supportive but the good thing is i still have my passport but don't have enough money to pay the hotel bills and get back home, please i need you to loan me some money, will refund you as soon as I'm back home, i promise.

I haven't responded to this plaintive plea.

Somehow I feel it's a fake.



What does sound right is that the authorities weren't cooperative.

Looks like this other Tom Ferris is going to stuck in purgatory for the time being.


Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Smoke Dens of the Orient

My first trip to the Orient was in 1990. A round-the-world ticket. One destination was Singapore. The Straits city was already undergoing its metamorphosis from a colonial port to a gleaming metropolis of skyscrapers. Raffles was closed for renovations. I stayed at a cheap Chinese hotel in a decrepit godown. The walls climbed toward the ceiling without reaching their destination. A yard of wire covered the gap. The bedding was soiled by a thousand weary bodies and the languid fan spun with lazy fatigue. I left the room and walked toward the harbor. A rickshaw driver stopped me.

"You want ma." His clothing was shredded by a decade of useless washes. His body was dessicated to bones wrapped in parchment. His eyes shone with a dull want.

"Ma." Horse in Chinese. The word had one meaning in New York City. "Where?"

"I know place." His claw of a hand beckoned to accompany him. Drugs were contraband in Singapore. The penalty for possession was death in the most grievous cases. A long prison sentence for anyone else foolish enough to challenge the system. Most arrests came from informers such as this rickshaw driver. "I not police."

"I know." Snitch maybe, but the appeal of opium was an old friend. I climbed into his vehicle and we traveled into the night far from the new towers of glass and steel. The streetlights were dim in this neighborhood. Several doorways were populated by Indonesian transvestites. Others by Chinese whores. Men drank openly on the sidewalk in rebellion against the Singapore leader's draconian measures for public behavior. The rickshaw driver braked with a whining screech.

"Here." He looked over his shoulder to check for anything out of place. "My name Rami. This place good. Give $10."

I handed over the money. We entered the battered house. The smell of opium greeted us. I tapped Rami and gave him another $10. "Half for you. Half for me."

"You good man." Rami smiled with two front teeth. The rest were brown as cigar butts.

An old woman of indistinguishable racial origins led us into a tiny cubicle. The furnishing were two wooden benches and a wax-covered stool. Sweat shadows marking the proper position for lying on them. Money passed hands and she shut the door. Rami produced tin foil, which he tore into two separate pieces.

"Sorry, no have pipe."

"I know how to chase the dragon." I opened my packet and dropped the black ball on the aluminum foil. Rami rolled two paper tubes. A candle was lit on the stool. Rami was an expert and I followed his lead.

"Good horse."

Within minutes we were transported to another century before planes, telephones, and movies. Opium was king and I was its slave. If only for that night.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Baby Killer Maniacs

Congress acted as one with the two parties voting their separate ways to pass the Health Reform Bill. This legislation was seen as a sell-out by the radical left and the opening of abortion factories by the GOP tea-baggers. Not a single republican cross the aisle during the tally and a Texas congressman responded to a turncoat Democrat's yea vote with a cry of 'baby-killer' despite the fact that the bill contains nothing about federal funds paying for abortion.

'Baby klller."

The shout was heard by all present, although the arch-conservative legislator denied accusing the Michigan representative of being a 'baby killer'.

"It's a baby killer." He said was what he shouted in Congress

At least it wasn't 'nigger lover'.

The GOP hate this Health Reform Bill for its intrusion into the private freedom of Americans to pay the most money for the unhealthy medical care in the West. They have vowed to fight for the repeal of this measure in the Congress and state legislature.

Anything but socialism.

Because everyone knows know much they hate fat people.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Rules of the Game

The bishops of the American Catholic Church have urged congressmen to vote no on the health reform bill. These churchmen have stated the issue of publicly-funded abortion as the basis of their objection. The nuns in charge of the schools and hospitals have broken ranks with their male counterparts to voice support of the Obama measure. This schism has been long coming as the nuns have witnessed the widening scandal of sexual abuse of minors by priests throughout the Americas and Europe. Rome has sheltered the offenders from legal prosecution, as if fucking young boys was a holy sacrament of birth control.

The sacrament of pedastry.

Earl Butz, the Nixon appointee as Secrertary of Agriculture, pointed out the Churhc's hypocrisy at the 1974 World Hunger Congress, when the prime promoter of King Corn refuted the pope's objection to birth control by saying, "He no playa the game, he no maka the rules."

The GOP bureaucrat apologized to Catholics, but two years later was overheard responding to singer Pat Boone's question about why the Republicans had so few blacks in their ranks.

Earl Butz was quick on his feet.

"I'll tell you what the coloreds want. It's three things: first, a tight pussy; second, loose shoes; and third, a warm place to shit."

'Loose shoes'?

I liked tight pussy and a warm place to shit, but my affinity for tight shoes prevented my designation as 'colored'. That and my parents being white.

The public outrage over this statement ended Butz's political career.

One could only hope that the Catholic church's comments on the Obama health reform will lead to the total ban on this criminal man/boy love organization.

"He no playa the game, he no maka the rules."

Earl was not always wrong.

A Not Very August Afternoon - The Beacon Street Union

I was 16 in 1968. Boston was my hometown. The two best bands were Ultimate Spinach and Beacon Street Union. I attended several of their concerts on Cambridge Commons. The girls there had long hair and didn't wear bras. None of them were fat. My high school friend Jim Lally and I lied about our age. Neither of us got lucky with the co-eds. this afternoon I played several song from BSU's 2nd LP THE CLOWN DIED IN MARVIN GARDENS. The best is A Not Very August Afternoon. It'll make you feel very hippish, whihc is not a bad thing of a sunny Sunday afternoon.

Click on this url to hear the song.

Band Reunion of Bad Boys

Thursday had been a long day at the diamond exchange. Manny was worried about money and Richie Boy had shown up late. Schitkah or drunk. His eyes were the color of deviled ham and vodka vapors were fuming from his flesh. His father is a hard worker, but at age 80 his hearing is 90% of a normal person. He can't answer the telephone without saying 'huh' a hundred times. His son was transported to the same age by a fierce night on the town. I was suffering from Padraic's Day. Too much beer.

Manny decided to close early and I headed to Grand Central with my pillow as a final destination for the evening. dinner would be a bowl of clam chowder at the Oyster Bar. The terminal was bustling with rushing commuters and I descended the western steps to the main floor. As I poised to turn, a spectral apparition appeared from the well-fed faces.

A man gaunt and grey. His head lowered in a heroin nod. At first I thought that I was seeing the ghost of William Burroughs. Our paths crossed often in the late afternoon. Grand Central Terminal had to be close to where the infamous novelist scored his drugs. He didn't know my name. in fact he knew nothing about me other than we shared the same affliction, mine a mere shadow of his colossal addiction. still he would acknowledge my affiliation with a finger to his head. An old signal between comrades.

For a second I expected the same from the man approaching me. it was not william Burroughs. He had been dead for years. The phantasm was familiar for another reason. It was an old friend. He looked horrible. Heroin had stolen his youth in his 20s. Younger than me by a decade he looked twice my age, although just as likely to survive every person in the terminal with a junkie's determination. I almost let him walk by, then called out his name.

His greeting was bereft of any surprise or pleasure.

He yellow teeth gleamed in the half-light of the sunset streaming through the terminal's cathedral windows. My sober morning was an anomaly. He was happy that I didn't ask many questions. Even happier that I didn't ask him if he was holding any dope. I would have loved some. A little smoke would take away the pain of being in new York. The pain of being in my late-50s and the remaining residue of my hangover.

I mentioned a soiree featuring punk rock. Emily and Pat were showing their film NIGHTCLUBBING at NYU.

"I really don't go out much anymore."

"Neither do I." We had our reasons. His was more believable than mine. "I have a picture of you, Barney, and Phillip. We look like an old rock band re-uniting for an oldies tour. I'll send you a copy."

"I'd like that." My friend bid me farewell.

I wanted to say that I wouldn't tell anyone about seeing him. His name sets everyone's heads to shaking. He's a bad boy. Still alive and I am glad for that too. There are too few of him around these days and one day I might need to ask him for help. My days of being a bad boy aren't over only delayed

Wonderful World of Yesteryear published this color photo on their website. The caption said 'Chonburi'. I have pinpointed its location to Wongamat Beach in Naklua. If only it was like that now. The problem was only few people could foresee the future and one of them was Mr. McGuire in the film THE GRADUATE.

Mr. McGuire: I just want to say one word to you - just one word.
Ben: Yes sir.
Mr. McGuire: Are you listening?
Ben: Yes I am.
Mr. McGuire: 'Plastics.'
Ben: Exactly how do you mean?
Mr. McGuire: There's a great future in plastics. Think about it. Will you think about it?
Ben: Yes I will.

There was no plastic bottles in 1967.

There are billions now.

And some of them end up on Wongamat Beach every tide. Plastic refuse lines Jomtien too. Any time I go their with my son Fenway I pick up all the trash. It's a Sisyphean task. His beautiful mother thinks that I'm crazy. At least he'll see the beach the way it used to be before plastic. Nothing but sand.

Spring 2010 NYC

JoJo, the security guard at the diamond exchange, is a betting man. He gambles the left-overs from his monthly NYPD pension on baseball, basketball, and football. His losses even out his wins. JoJo also wagers on odd parlays and at the beginning of this month I said that there would be another snowstorm. It was raining outside on West 47th Street. A hard rain. Umbrella were peeling from their ferules like bananas

'It ain't gonna snow." The big Pole/Mick was a native of the Bronx. The weather is colder up in that northern borough. He sounded certain of his prediction

"I say that we get one more dusting." I was counting on 'global weirding'. The last decade saw three snows in the 'cruelest month of all'. March offered and even better chance for a blizzard.

"Dusting is bullshit. It snowed a little last year." JoJo was a knowledgeable gambler.

"Okay, 2 to 1 odds that New York gets 4 inches of snow before the end of April."

"In Central Park." JoJo was fixing the wager. Manhattan is 5 degrees warmer than the outer boroughs thanks to a micro-climate created by concrete, steel, and carbon emissions along with the body temperatures of fat people. JoJo had lost 15 pounds in the last month. The ex-cop had stopped drinking beer.

"Okay." I had a good hunch. Cops like hunches too. His was a sure thing. Mine was more a feeling and I started singing the Arrowsmith hit MORE THAN A FEELING.

"Hey, no fair." JoJo was a rock fan. Red Sox too. "Keep that Boston stuff out of the bet. This is New York."

We shook hands. JoJo went downstairs to the vault. It was lunch time. Manny my boss shook his head.


"That was a stupid bet." Manny had lost every wager on the Superbowl since 1967. He was an expert at bad bets.

"It's only ten dollars. Plus you never know." Like the lottery you can't win unless you play.

"No way it'll snow in the next two months." Manny returned to his paperwork. A purgatory of bills and invoices. I pulled out the job box. Not a single envelope came from my sales. Money was tight same as last year. There was no recovery for the middle-class, although Manny's son was selling fast and furious to his rich friends. The weeks passed with the temperature rising every day, until this weekend the thermometer hit 70. I studied the meteorological map of the USA. Snow in the Rockies. Canada nothing. The Red River was cresting with ice floes in the Dakotas. The trees in Fort Greene Park were showing red buds. Today is the equinox. The planet is on an even keel. I'm wearing shorts. This weather is no good.

"Looks like I've lose my bet." I said at the breakfast table to AP, my landlord.

"It was a stupid bet." He had won a bet on St. Patrick's Day for when our party of four would see a green plastic hat. $5 for the time from each of his three friends. Another $5 for it being worn by a female.

"It might snow in April." His wife was from San Diego. Coronado Beach had never experienced a snowfall.

"Thanks for the optimism." Snow crowned the thrones of the mountains east of San Diego. I was positive too. 10 more days of March and another 30 in April. The odds are heavily in JoJo's favor, then again he bet that the Red Sox would sweep the Yankees last year. He was right the first half of the season and dead wrong the second half. That was a bet I hated seeing him lose. We're Bosox fans. Winning my snow bet is a goof, but neither of us are welshers and $10 will buy 3 beers in the East Village on an unseasonably cold April day.

They will taste good.

Win or lose.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

A Good Defense

The problem in defense is how far you can go without destroying from within what you are trying to defend from without. ~Dwight D. Eisenhower

7 Years of Iraq

7 years ago GW Bush gave the green light for the invasion of Iraq. Saddam's military quickly was overwhelmed by the Pentagon's 'shock and awe' tactics and the American public cheered the president for the swift victory.

Mission accomplished was declared on the US aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln.

Somehow the war refused to heed those words.

The occupation has had some brilliant moments of failure. No WMDs, widespread looting. IEDs. Unprotected Humvees. Re-rotation of troops. Abu Dhabi prison. Blackwater security guards. Internecine warfare. Car bombs. Civil war. The surge. Elections. No electricity. No water. No security. Corruption.

The list of failures lengthens with every year as does the death toll.

Nearly 5000 American dead and over 200,000 Iraqis.

Yet today no one in America is talking about this war.

It's March Madness.

Time to band together to watch some b-ball.

Cinderella St. Mary's College beats Villanova.

Homer Simpson Everywhere

THE SIMPSONS have been one of the funniest shows on TV. Homer's face is everywhere. This photo has been making the rounds on the Internet. The big question?

Is it a man or a woman?

My moobs are smaller so it's not me.


White Trash Fairy Tale

Traditionally there are only three ways to get rich; birth, marriage, or theft. Anne Nichole Smith, Texas sex bomb, stepped off the runway of a strip club into popular culture by wedding an admiring oil tycoon. Their age difference of 63 years evoked cries of gold-digger from the billionaire's family. he certainly looked happy in all the photos of them together and upon his death the lawyers for his estate announced that Anne Nicole Smith was left with a third of his fortune. The rags to riches fairy tale was denied a happy ending by her in-laws' legal battle to deny the buxom blonde high-school dropout her share of the fortune, nearly $300 million. The potential heiress was constantly in the tabloid headlines. Nothing those scandal sheets like better than to see someone fall back to earth. first her son dies of a drug overdose and then Anna Nicole Smith herself is found dead of a drug overdose administered by her 'doctor'. All the drugs were legal. She left a daughter and the US Federal Court has decreed that the deceased starlet's young girl will never see any of the money left to her by the tycoon.

The rich get rich and the poor get dead.

Her daughter should be happy to be alive.

The only question is for how long.

Fairy tale over for now.

I See Stupid People from David Russell


1. When his .38 caliber revolver failed to fire at his intended victim during a hold-up in Provo, Utah would-be robber Jason Ellison did something that can only inspire wonder. He peered down the barrel and tried the trigger again. This time it worked.

And now, the honorable mentions:

2. The chef at a hotel in Switzerland lost a finger in a meat cutting machine and after a little shopping around, submitted a claim to his insurance company. The company expecting negligence sent out one of its men to have a look for himself. He tried the machine and he also lost a finger. The chef's claim was approved.

3. A man who shoveled snow for an hour to clear a space for his car during a blizzard in Chicago returned with his vehicle to find a woman had taken the space. Understandably, he shot her.

4. After stopping for drinks at an illegal bar, a Zimbabwean bus driver found that the 20 mental patients he was supposed to be transporting from Harare to Bulawayo had escaped... Not wanting to admit his incompetence, the driver went to a nearby bus stop and offered everyone waiting there a free ride. He then delivered the passengers to the mental hospital, telling the staff that the patients were very excitable and prone to bizarre fantasies. The deception wasn't discovered for 3 days.

5. A teenager was in the hospital recovering from serious head wounds received from an oncoming train. When asked how he received the injuries, the lad told police that he was simply trying to see how close he could get his head to a moving train before he was hit.

6. A man walked into a Louisiana Circle-K, put a $20 bill on the counter, and asked for change. When the clerk opened the cash drawer, the man pulled a gun and asked for all the cash in the register, which the clerk promptly provided. The man took the cash from the clerk and fled, leaving the $20 bill on the counter. The total amount of cash he got from the drawer. $15. [If someone points a gun at you and gives you money, is a crime committed?]

7. Seems an Arkansas guy wanted some beer pretty badly. He decided that he'd just throw a cinder block through a liquor store window, grab some booze, and run. So he lifted the cinder block and heaved it over his head at the window. The cinder block bounced back and hit the would-be thief on the head, knocking him unconscious. The liquor store window was made of Plexiglas. The whole event was caught on videotape.

8. As a female shopper exited a South Carolina convenience store, a man grabbed her purse and ran. The clerk called 911 immediately, and the woman was able to give them a detailed description of the snatcher. Within minutes, the police apprehended the snatcher. They put him in the car and drove back to the store. The thief was then taken out of the car and told to stand there for a positive ID. To which he replied, "Yes, officer, that's her. That's the lady I stole the purse from."

9. The Ann Arbor News crime column reported that a man walked into a Burger King in Ypsilanti , Michigan at 5 A.M., flashed a gun, and demanded cash. The clerk turned him down because he said he couldn't open the cash register without a food order. When the man ordered onion rings, the clerk said they weren't available for breakfast. The man, frustrated, walked away. [*A 5-STAR STUPIDITY AWARD WINNER]

10. When a man attempted to siphon gasoline from a motor home parked on an Atlanta street, he got much more than he bargained for. Police arrived at the scene to find a very sick man curled up next to a motor home near spilled sewage. A police spokesman said that the man admitted to trying to steal gasoline, but he plugged his siphon hose into the motor home's sewage tank by mistake. The owner of the vehicle declined to press charges saying that it was the best laugh he'd ever had.

And we're growing more stupid people all the time.

Porno Cover-Up

My cousin Sherri had been in over 2000 XXX films. I have only seen one of them, THE ABDUCTION OF JULIE. The teenage girl had sex with three men in the film. Each of their orgasms culminated in an explosion of semen in her mouth, belly, or back. In the parlance of the adult film industry this pay-off is called 'the money shot'. Sherri once asked me to be in a small film. It was a foot fetish video. Very low-rent. I was offered $200 for my role of submissive male. The director promised that my face would never be in the shot. Only my penis. It was flaccid during the ten takes during which Sharon's high heel ground into my balls and cock. I wore no condom and Sharon was careful not to hurt me. We were family. A month later an acquaintance said, "Nice cock." He had seen Sharon's film. Apparently the director had lied about giving a face to the unerect penis. I felt betrayed, but what can you expect from the XXX film industry.

My cousin quit the business to start up a clinic to protect sex- workers and adult film actors and actresses. Her protocols suggested stringent testing to prevent the transfer of STDs or sexually transmitted diseases and even worse that of AIDS. Her suggestion for condom use was ignored, for the money shot is what sells the films. It's the resolution of the storyline, especially in bukkakee films where women are covered in semen.

These dangerous behaviors are now threatened by a proposed California state regulation mandating the use of condoms for adult entertainers as well as sexual awareness training for workers in the XXX films.

No more bareback anal films is considered an infringement of the First Amendment by the adult film industry. Money shots are as important to the Freedom of Speech as words to the producers, although workers live with the danger of getting HIV such as those infected during the 2004 HIV outbreak in the San Fernando Valley.

My cousin Sherri is pro-condom. I don't use them when I masturbate. I wish I had worn one during that foot fetish film. Not over my cashew penis, but over my head to protect my identity. I was such a bad actor.

Friday, March 19, 2010

BET ON CRAZY - Chinese Food by Peter Nolan Smith

After Valentine’s Day business on 47th Street gets really slow. Customers are blown away by the arctic winds howling down Manhattan’s avenues and purchasing a diamond is the last thing on most people’s mind in the dead of winter. Some days no one enters the diamond exchange. At least no one with an honest intention of buying jewelry.

Once we set up the counters and front window, the standard procedure was to plod through the repairs and pick-ups from the setters and polishers. Those tasks usually lasted up to lunch, but not in the last days of February. By 11am Richie Boy, his longtime employee Domingo, and I were standing around the space heater shooting the shit. Richie Boy’s brother was on vacation. Manny, my boss and Richie Boy’s father, wasn’t happy with our obvious idleness.

“I might as well hired three brooms than you heroes.” Manny hates his help doing nothing.

“There aren’t any customers. What else should we do? Get down on our knees and pray for customers?” Richie Boy’s clientele came from his going out at night. None of them were getting out of bed before noon or out of work until lunch.

“Maybe that would do us some good.” Manny pointed to Domingo and me. “I got two goys. Both of you must know some prayers for getting money. Who’s the patron saint for money.”

“St. Matthew is the patron saint of money managers. He doesn’t really count.” I had been an altar and a good Catholic in my youth. Some of the nuns learning still stuck with me. “Saint Agatha is the patron saint of jewelers. She was martyred for refusing the sexual advances of a Roman. Her body is supposedly incorruptible.”

“Bleech.” The thought of a 2000 year-old virgin corpse disgusted Manny. “But say a little prayer to here. You too, Domingo.”

“I don’t know any prayers.” Domingo had dropped out of Sunday school in 2d grade.

“Say something. We need money.”

I muttered out several words to St. Agatha in hopes of making a sale, but stopped before saying how much cash I wanted, because lunch had arrived from the Chinese take-out.

“Great, first I have bullshitters and now I have loafers.”

“A man has to eat.” Richie Boy was paying for lunch. Domingo was good at tearing open the paper bag. He was always hungry. “Who ordered General Tso’s chicken?”

“Me.” I loved the succulent meat covered with crunchy batter and the sweet tang of the sauce. None of us ever mentioned the source of the meat after whoever ordered the General Tso’s chicken had finished their meal. It was just good manners.

“What about me?” Manny asked from his desk. The surface was cluttering with bills, invoices, and folded packets of loose diamonds. He never seemed to make any progress on this pile.

“What you order?” Richie Boy pulled out his order of dim sum.

“Nothing.” Manny had said earlier that he didn’t want anything.

“Then you get nothing chow mein, fat boy.” Richie poked his father’s belly. A good three inches of fat hung over his belt. He liked his food.

“Great.” Manny threw down his pen. “I pay everyone to do nothing and I get to starve.”

“You’re not going to starve. We ordered you Moo Sho Pork.” Richie put Manny’s food on the counter. “Eat here.”

“I’ll eat at my desk.” Manny started pushing his papers aside.

“No you won’t. Last time you did that you ate a diamond with a dumpling.”

“It was only a twenty-pointer.” Manny remembered everything that he had ever done with diamonds. “And I found it two days later.”

“Don’t tell us where. We’re eating.” Richie Boy had a delicate stomach.

Manny stood up and put a paper towel under his collar. His tie was Armani. Mine was Cerruti. I ate at my desk with a real fork and spoon. Something about eating with Richie was on the phone with his wife. He mumbled out his apologies. He had had a late night last evening.

“Were you with my son last night?” Manny was making a small crepe from the pancake accompanying the Moo Shu Pork.

“Only until midnight, then we both went home.” I had left Richie Boy at 11. I had no idea what time he went home.

“You’re a good friend, but a bad liar.” Manny crammed the Moo Shu Pork into his mouth. The sauce dripped on the counter. Pork was tref to most Jews, but Manny, Richie Boy, and everyone from our partners’ firm were bacon Jews. They loved the taste of pork.

“Manny, when you were a kid, did your mother let you eat pork?”

“I’m from Brownsville. We couldn’t afford pork. My mother covered everything in a gravy. I had no idea what we ate. It could have been cat same as that General Tso’s Chicken.”

“Thanks.” I put down my fork.

“What you think a Chinaman is going to serve you cat?”

“There are no cats in Chinatown.” Richie Boy shouted from his desk. “We were on Canal Street 20 years and I never saw a single cat and the Italians in Little Italy never let their cats out of the house. Cat very good General Tso’s Chicken.”

“If it’s cat, I have to admit cat tastes pretty damn good, but I have a question for you. Why do Jews like Chinese food so much?”

“Because it’s cheap.” Richie Boy never went to Chinese restaurants. He was more into Italian.

“It has nothing to do with the money. Chinese culture and Jewish culture go back thousands of years. We know each other since Adam.”

“Marco Polo found Jews in China.”

“Probably from one of the lost tribes. My father said we were a lost tribe in America. He was right, but we found China in Brooklyn. When I was a kid, there were Chinese restaurants on every corner and every Sunday the Chinese restaurants were crowded with families. We never went, because my father was so poor, but sometimes my father would treat us with take-out. We ate on paper plates, but my mother would hide them, so the neighbors wouldn’t know we were so poor. Like she was fooling anyone.”

“So you went, because it was cheap.” Richie Boy wasn’t letting go. Manny liked to save money. He wore the same shirt twice. To prevent his collars from getting dirty, Manny placed a paper towel between his neck and his collar. We called it his ’sweat rag’.

“Sure, it was cheap, but it was also good, plus we ate pork, because eating forbidden foods showed we were Americans. My father never mixed dairy and meat, which the Chinese rarely combine, plus he never ate pork, except at Chinese restaurants. He wouldn’t even look at the menu. he’d order #3. Pork Chow Mein. The waiter would say, “#3 and never mention pork. They were respectful that way. Number two, Chinese weren’t goys. At an Italian restaurant there was a always a cross. How can you eat at a restaurant with a Jew nailed to the wall. Feh. But Buddha, he always had a smile and as kids we rubbed his stomach for good luck.”

“I thought you said you didn’t eat at restaurants.” I thought I had caught Manny on this, but he shook his head. “What you think we had telephones back then. Take-out meant you went to the restaurant, ordered, and brought the food home and another thing we weren’t Jews to the Chinese. They thought all white people looked the same, so we were the same as everyone, because they couldn’t care less about anyone as long as you had money.”

“So you never ate in a Chinese restaurant as a kid?” Richie was finished with his dumplings.

“I never said never. We went on Christmas, because they’d be no one there and afterwards we’d go to the movies. Also no one there. My old man didn’t like waiting for nothing.” Manny made himself another crepe. He was an expert. “Stop looking at my food. If there’s anything I hate, it’s a schnorrer.”

“Your son is the worst in here.”

“Only because he studied with the best.” Manny bit into the pancake loaded with pork and pointed to the door. Two customers were coming out of the cold. A man and woman. My prayer to St. Agatha had come through. “Enough talk. Work.”

“You got it.” I put away my food before Richie Boy or Domingo could get out of their chairs. I was hungry for money and ‘nimmt geld’ or tale money was the first rule of 47th Street. I could eat my lunch later. Chinese food always tastes better with a little money in your pocket. Even cold.

Porno Cover-Up

My cousin Sherri had been in over 2000 XXX films. I have only seen one of them, THE ABDUCTION OF JULIE. The teenage girl had sex with three men in the film. Each of their orgasms culminated in an explosion of semen in her mouth, belly, or back. In the parlance of the adult film industry this pay-off is called 'the money shot'. Sherri once asked me to be in a small film. It was a foot fetish video. Very low-rent. I was offered $200 for my role of submissive male. The director promised that my face would never be in the shot. Only my penis. It was flaccid during the ten takes during which Sharon's high heel ground into my balls and cock. I wore no condom and Sharon was careful not to hurt me. We were family. A month later an acquaintance said, "Nice cock." He had seen Sharon's film. Apparently the director had lied about giving a face to the unerect penis. I felt betrayed, but what can you expect from the XXX film industry.

My cousin quit the business to start up a clinic to protect sex- workers and adult film actors and actresses. Her protocols suggested stringent testing to prevent the transfer of STDs or sexually transmitted diseases and even worse that of AIDS. Her suggestion for condom use was ignored, for the money shot is what sells the films. It's the resolution of the storyline, especially in bukkakee films where women are covered in semen.

These dangerous behaviors are now threatened by a proposed California state regulation mandating the use of condoms for adult entertainers as well as sexual awareness training for workers in the XXX films.

No more bareback anal films is considered an infringement of the First Amendment by the adult film industry. Money shots are as important to the Freedom of Speech as words to the producers, although workers live with the danger of getting HIV such as those infected during the 2004 HIV outbreak in the San Fernando Valley.

My cousin Sherri is pro-condom. I don't use them when I masturbate. I wish I had worn one during that foot fetish film. Not over my cashew penis, but over my head to protect my identity. I was such a bad actor.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

god's WC

A drunk staggers into a Catholic Church, enters a confessional booth, sits down, but says nothing. The Priest coughs a few times to get his attention, but the drunk continues to sit there. Finally, the Priest pounds three times on the wall. The drunk mumbles, "Ain't no use knockin, there's no paper on this side either.

Happy Padraic Day 2010

My most difficult decision this morning was whether to wear a black leather jacket or a green plaid suit coat. I'll be drinking at an East Village bar at 2 pm. My choice was green plaid. Up the rebels as my sainted mother said pouring the food coloring dye into the milk.


Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Vladmar is heading to Florida. he's never been there before. 50 years old and never to the Holy Land.

My first time was in Spring 1971. 4 friends in a Chevy Nova from Boston to Fort Lauderdale. The highway was half-finished. No beltways. Straight through Savannah. We drank and smoked reefer the entire journey. The cops didn't stop us once. We were 18 year-old freshmen on college break. Only I had long hair.

We crossed the state line listening to WBZ's broadcast of the Bruins-Canadians playoff. Boston up 5-3 in the 3rd. The station faded to static at the welcoming rest stop. Free OJ and dreams about finally throwing off the curse of the Les Habs over the Bs. Woke the next morning on a beach.

Our crash pad was across the street from the infamous Elbow Room in which more co-eds have exorcised the demons of alcohol than any other south Florida bar. Got the local newspaper. Jean Beliveau scored 2 goals to tie the game. We lost in overtime. Fucking Canadians. That night I drank in the Elbow Room. It had been featured in the movie WHERE THE BOYS ARE.

I met a girl and we walked on the beach. Stars glistening above the Gulf Stream. I let a joint. We smoked surrounded by other teenage couples making out like turtles getting ready to lay eggs. I stared the constellation Orion. It glowed in the night. Florida. The smell of salt off the breeze.

The Way We Live

Tristam Dequatremare posted this prediction for our lives.

I'm definitely in the abyss of work.

I dream of death for a release from its grasp.

On my death bed I can tell my boss to take this job and shove it.

ps all you vision-challenged neo-seniors click on the image so you can read it and then weep.

Life so fleeting, the end so ruthless. It comes before we know its too late.

Fucking Daylight Savings Time

"Time is part of the measuring system used to sequence events, to compare the durations of events and the intervals between them, and to quantify the motions of objects. Time has been a major subject of religion, philosophy, and science, but defining it in a non-controversial manner applicable to all fields of study has consistently eluded the greatest scholars." According to Wikpedia.

For countless millenia time was judged strictly by the simple binary system of day or night. Shaman for the neanderthals kenned out the passage of the sun throughout the year. The autumn equinox signaled the time for retreat from winter. For the first centuries of civilization the religious hierarchy were the only ones who could tell the time. For the rest of humanity day or night worked just fine and still does for modern man. Dark - sleep. Light - work. That process wasn't good enough for everyone.

This morning I woke at 6am. Two days ago it would have been 7am. My internal clock was set for that hour by a winter of having to get out of bed. The reason for the extra hour arose from the end of the annual sacrifice to Daylight Savings Time. On the way to work the subway clocks showed winter time. Most people weren't certain if they were early or late.

set for that hour by a winter of having to get out of bed. The reason for the extra hour arose from the end of the annual sacrifice to Daylight Savings Time. On the way to work the subway clocks showed winter time. Most people weren't certain if they were early or late.

I was one of them and cursed William Willett. This British busybody labored to convince his government to shift the hour of sunrise and sunset so he didn't have to end his golf game in the waning hours of dusk, but also because he was angered by the lower classes sleeping away useful daylight hours.

The desire to standardize time across the globe was the dream of western men such as Benjamin Franklin who proposed that the Paris police fire cannons at sunrise to walk the hoi polloi to take advantage of his adage, "Early to bed, and early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise."

Germany was the first to adopt Willett's suggestion during WWI and the rest of the world followed suite to make attacks in the sunlight.

So the only two reasons for this 'innovation' were war and golf.

Fuck DST.

I'll vote for anyone who campaigns for its repeal.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Route 7 to Pattaya

The first highway in Thailand was built with American assistance in 1957. Route 2 connected the Satthathip naval base with the airfields in the Isaan Plateau. The road was later extended to the Laotian border. The all-weather surface allowed military convoys to transport war material even during the monsoon season. The US air campaign against Laos, South Vietnam, Cambodia, and North Vietnam would have been impossible without this supply route. The dual carriageway has faded into obscurity with the end of the Vietnam War and other highways are link Thai cities and port. The most important is Route 7 to Pattaya and the Eastern Seaboard.

For years this road ended at a barrier some 20 kilometers from the resort on the Gulf of Siam. Traffic was detoured back onto Sukhumvit. Thai police preyed on motorists exiting off and heading toward the highway. The most famous speedtrap was the one on the Bangkok-bound section after the International School. The police stopped cars for a variety of violations; speeding, passing without a signal, no seatbelts, bad lights, out-of-date permits. 200 baht was the regular fine. Farangs got off with 500. A 1000 if they were in a hurry. I was stopped once with only 100 baht in my pocket. The tam-luat waved me on my way, disgusted that I had nothing more.

This snare will probably become extinct with the opening of the new extension of the Chonburi-Pattaya Motorway will open before the end of March. Traffic will skirt Naklua and Banglamung, easing congestion on Sukhumvit. The completion of this bypass will delight developers keen to exploit the pastoral farmland along the route. Once the roadsigns and lane dividers are finished, the project will be turned over to the Highway Department and Thai drivers can compete for the dubious honor of having the first accident on the motorway.

I give it a day.

Red Is the Color Of My True Love

The fall of the Iron Curtain inspires various other countries to embrace democracy. Eastern Europe immediately opened its borders and their populaces flooded the West. The US sent the GOP into eight years of exile from the White House. Asian countries were not so lucky with their aspirations for freedom. Their leaders were well-supported by the rich, the military, and the police. Burma remained under a draconian dictatorship. Nepal's monarchy repressed the dissidents with gunfire. I was in Bangkok during the 1992 demonstrations against the return of military rule. The newly-appointed Prime minister had broken his vow to the King. The hopes of the Thai people was bolstered by the lack of action from from hometown troops. No one thought that the protests would ended in violence.

"Violence not Thai Way." Kenny told me, as we stood at the tail-end of the hundreds of thousands gathered before the Democracy Monument not far from the temple of the Golden Mount The sun was blazing down on their heads. Kenny and I retreated to the Hotel Royale. The beer was cold and the room was cheap. Tourist had fled the city in anticipation of serious trouble. The balcony overlooked the entire avenue and I surveyed the masses with a pair of counterfeit binoculars I had bought in Patpong.

"Things are going to get ugly." I spotted a shift in troops stationed beyond the distant traffic circle. Fresh troops were their replacements. Thousands of frightened murmurs wavered through the crowd. "Suchinda has found loyal soldiers."

"They not shoot Thai people." Kenny had a bar near the Malaysia Hotel. He dealt with the police and soldiers. They laughed playing poker in his backroom. None of them ever mentioned anything about his being gay

"I'm not so sure about that." The drunk farangs in the bar joked about how small they were, but something about their smile spoke murder. "Suchinda and his bosses don't want the people to be free."

"Free?" Kenny dismissed the idea with a wave of his hand. "No one free. My mother slave to father. Father slave to big people. And Kenny slave to good time. But Khon Yai not free. Rich people slave to poor people. Everyone know place. Good. Not mob. No one know what come next."

"Nothing good."

And I was right.

The troops had been brought from the country. Their officers told them that they were putting down a communist revolution. The gunfire came as a surprise to the demonstrators. They died by the hundreds. The number will never be known. Kenny and I hide several in our hotel room. The police wanted to take them outside. Kenny gave them all his money. I gave all mine too. The students were left alone.

The next day I took a bus to Chiang Mai. Suchinda was ousted by the King. A week later everything was back to normal. Kenny was right. The Thais knew their place.

Nearly twenty years later the people are not so obedient. The yellow-shirts represent the old school of Khon Yai. Privilege and power. Cars are 30% more expensive in Thailand. Gas too. The money lines the pockets of the rich. Thaksin's red-shirts want change. The deposed leader promises redistribution of wealth if he resumes his position as prime minister.

Tens of thousands of red-shirts are in Bangkok. They have no intention of going home. The military sits in their barracks. No one is willing to give Suchinda's order to shot on the people. Not yet and Kenny would be happy about that.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

NEW ROSE - The Damned 1979

The Damned played Hurrah in September 1979. New York's Misfits opened the show. The 62nd Street club was packed with punks. I was working security and my job was to lead the band up to the stage. Several minutes before the show I asked them if they needed anything and one of them said, "4 Bottles of Vodka."

I went to the bar and returned with the requested 4 bottles. They twisted off the caps and poured the vodka straight into their mouths like hungry baby birds feeding on their mother's spew. Most of it ended up on the floor.

The show was classic. Fast and Loud.

Afterwards Cheetah Chrome of the Dead Boys fell asleep in the baggage storage of the group's touring bus. He woke up in some other town.

Punk rock at its best and I love NEW ROSE

Red Rhum Rally

Tens of thousands of Thaksin's red-shirt supporters have descended on Bangkok in an effort to overthrow the present government of Prime Minister Abhisit. The numbers fall far short of the million predicted by the UDD. Funds are short for the Thaksinites. The Thai Supreme Court seized a billion dollars last month. According the reports the rally has been jovial, although several pro-Thaksin leaders have called for a siege to the 11th Army HQ and threatened to stay in Bangkok until a new vote dignifies the democratic process trashed by the 2006 military coup organized by the old power elite. The poor showing of demonstrators is a marked reversal to last year's tumultuous mobs violently opposing the police and army. Mr. Thaksin has yet to address the crowds. He has been exiled from Dubai and is now in transit to Switzerland, where he might be presented with extradition papers. His options are limited for flights from there. Only Cambodia is offering refuge and Thais would view that choice as the act of a traitor.

The magic or 'red-rhum' is fading from the great leader.

Sometimes it's best to know when to quit for good.

He still has a billion dollars.

And a billion dollars can always buy another chance at success because nothing is going to happen in the next month. Songkran is never the time for revolution. It's party time.