ANOTHER SET OF WORDS FOR YOU TO READ -/THEY QUALIFY AS LEAF AND BRANCH AND SEED...
Tuesday, January 25, 2005
SPEAK FREAK #26
by Sho Nuff
Yeah, I’ve been a little negligent of late in this...suffering some whiskey and money withdrawal...the former, I guess, isn’t that bad a thing, if simply to assuage my vanity somewhat – too much alcohol can wreak havoc on one’s skin. But seriously...
Made an error in sequencing of my notes – not that it makes a whole lotta difference, necessarily...the following, until I say otherwise, comes just before I was at the library requesting the Dick Cavett. I’m usually quite adept at getting the order correct.
I was walking down Market Street on the way to the Odd Fellows Building – this nearly five days ago...I had to pause at a large poster put up by the San Francisco Arts Commission – not sure what the content was, but look for these. It’s not often I’m forced to stop to look at something. The Web address is http://sfartscommission.org.
And up into the building – wanted to print something out but the machine in the office didn’t turn on for some reason...Brother Pete Sellars was busy with a meeting. No beer to be had. Pete tells me that the lodge in Hayward has a lot of free beer. On the way out, incoming was ballet teacher Kathy Mata and her mother.
Then back to the hotel – no food downstairs – not long before this there had been some potato skin creations and some spinach – woulda taken that and cooked up something, but it was gone before I returned. Hope they didn’t just throw it out.
Then, 5:19pm that Thursday...made note of “sexual and money desires”...turned on that Arthur C. Clarke short story audio book collection...one tale had a pretty high sexual content, for Clarke...and had some of my highly-nutritious green powder – Vitamineral Green. Also in that mix, Peruvian root powder called maca. Google on these, if curious – http://google.com.
And opened up a pack of Marlboro Menthol 72s – the short kind - that someone had given me – these 20 I smoked entirely through that entire evening...I can really
give or take cigarettes. I can see why professional dancers smoke ‘em – good to cut back on hunger pangs.
A little before six, on the way to the library...stopped in to see Naz before leaving the hotel – he had some tube news on – Supervisor Chris Daly speaking about a proposed San Francisco gun ban...and live coverage of an anti-Bush rally nearby in the Civic Center – live reporter from City Hall...a protestor was interviewed saying Bush was a liar, a murderer, and something else I forget. The reporter said there was, simultaneously, a pro-Bush rally happening at the Empress of China restaurant in Chinatown. And also: Bush’s 2nd term approval rating matches that low score received by Nixon at the start of his second.
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So I chatted with Naz a bit – his medication was making him sleepy, and he was gonna make it an early night...reminded him of the Odd Fellows meeting coming up in a few days – Brother Pete wants him to attend, have some food beforehand. Had some instant coffee from Naz’s stash, and was out the door.
And, downstairs – Keeta at the front desk – there was free cake downstairs and I had me a piece – sugar plus the Naz coffee, plus the cigarettes – the triple pillars of the American diet...another hotel resident came in and made fun of Keeta, what he supposed were her eating habits. She wasn’t laughing, and I figured his humor lacked a certain elevation, to say the least.
And I sat in the lobby and had that cake and coffee – called neighbor Steve to inform him that there was something sweet to be had downstairs – surprised that he came down for some. And I selected a volume from the collection of books in the lobby – a treatise on “Generation X”, with a foreword by Bob Guccione, Jr. – somewhat long-winded. Looked for a reference to Winona Ryder in the index, but there was none – she’s considered a celebrity epitome of Gen X – in the rich and famous category.
Then down Hyde to the library...got to the intersection at Golden Gate at just the time to see the anti-Bush marchers moving east, with much police coverage, on foot and motorcycle and car. Chanting a-plenty, about Bush, Cheney and the CIA being the real big terrorists. I watched for a while – a woman with a baby in one arm was beating a drum she held in the other. After a short while got me further down Hyde to the library, smoking...waited lawfully behind the “No Smoking” line near the entrance to the building to finish the last few drags of one. A smoker
vulture descended upon me – asked for a light, then a cigarette. I said “What the f*ck.” to him and turned him on to one. More copters in the sky about Civic Center than in a Stallone movie.
So that, the above, covers the material I had misplaced, so we can now continue on from where #25 leaves off – me, again heading east down Market to the Blue Cube to meet with Sister b and Brothers Pete and Lucky and, later, Brother Darick – Brother Sam was involved in a music event there – I wanted to see those Tim Gaskin canvases up closer, mainly. And it was then that I began trippin’ that I’d lost some notes...I am attemping some degree of meticulousness in these pages...thought I’d misplaced the notes referring to the oregano toke, but I wasn’t that careless.
So to the Blue Cube...met b there in the front – Pete and Lucky weren’t there at the time they were supposed to be – they were having dinner beforehand...so b and I stood outside...I wasn’t gonna pay that ten buck entrance fee – Lucky said he could get me in...b gave me a copy of the recent Herald, one of the independent free papers...hadn’t seen it for a while – I’ve got Gene Mahoney, the guy who puts it out, on my Hotmail contact list, so he gets notices from me about this blog, but he hasn’t responded much, if ever. He was associated with the 52 Mason space, There – but I didn’t see that sign up when b and I were standing there – the Blue Cube is mere yards from that.
So, eventually, Pete and Lucky come sauntering post-meal up Mason, some several minutes late, by my clock...like I said, wasn’t gonna pay ten bucks to get in – would’ve two months earlier
when I still had some of that six thousand...so Lucky turns me on to that entrance fee, and I get
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the blue wrist band, and in we go.
It’s a night club and art space that’s just getting started – they didn’t get the turn-out expected – Sam was figuring three-hundred – plenty of liquor and food prepared, but I don’t think they got even 20% of that figure...I had my mind on the alcohol and theTim Gaskin pieces, which were hung all around. Live band playing – postcards around for one Carmen Milagro and one Karney – not sure who exactly was on stage – just okay to my ear, Latin and jazzy. I mean, the band was good, but it’s just not my particular taste.
Prominent were Gaskin images of Angelina Jolie, Arnold, and Madonna – I guess it could just be “Angelina” – she’s earned her pop cultural one-name status, I
guess...took me a while to figure out what Gaskin was up to – behind the Warhol-esque celebrity images – painted replicas of already-famous photos – one of the Madonnas was her from the mid-Eighties, early in her career – she’s wearing Mouseketeer ears naked in bed, sheets around her breasts, eyes turned humorously upwards and cross-eyed – behind this image, the word “Disney” is repeated. So Gaskin is, I guess, commenting on the corporate source of funding for these icons. Behind the Jolie, “Chapstick” is repeated – and it’s “Hummer” for our beloved Herr Schwarzeneggar. Good work, Tim! Not sure what he’s asking for these – some multiple thousands, I’d reckon.
Anyway, at some early point Brother Pete got me a bottle of the Jamaican beer, Red Stripe, and he turned me on to half of another bottle he didn’t finish. So that got me a bit happier – was getting a little tedious in the joint, frankly. Lucky and b had gone upstairs to a lounge area and were chatting when I joined ‘em. I was up and down a couple a’ times...had some of b’s wine – she’d got one of the 7 buck glasses – don’t think they sold much, but more power to the Blue Cube, and to the art scenes of San Francisco in general!
Mingled a bit downstairs – some well-dressed folks were clustered chatting – I think I had on my ragged Gap khaki “Hipster” pants I’d groundscored somewhere...met a coupla fellas that worked at Saks Fifth Avenue, men’s clothing guys, I think – got one’s business card...b joked that they were gonna make me over, and I just wiggled my finger like a slow metronome and said that wasn’t gonna happen. Sam was there mingling as well...he’s into films in some way, the making of them...he indicated some other fella who was also similarly involved.
And, at some point, out the door was I with a buck from b to get a can of malt liquor at the Superette 128 market just a block away – desired more alcohol, and wasn’t gonna pay Blue Cube prices...by a great synchronicity, met buddy Feisal there, him checking out the candy bar selection, leaning on his crutches. Chatted with him a bit, and he said I should go see him at the hotel he lives in on Market...really, unusual to see him there. So I got my King Cobra – 80 cents for 16 ounces – and was back in the Blue Cube after flashing my wrist band – hid the drink, of course...
So, cheap malt liquor coursing through my system, was again able to enjoy enough the club’s interior...noted the Grace Jones image in a corner behind the band...not sure what her
sponsorship was, a la the other notables – in my notes I wrote “Keith Haring”...don’t know what
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that means...it’s possible Tim Gaskin admires Grace enough to make the connection with her and Haring...but both of ‘em had plenty enough corporate sponsorship. But I’m not sure of this – if ever I’m back in the Blue Cube, gonna look into this.
And...continued mingling, continued drinking the King Cobra...on the way to the men’s room, accidently brushed, lightly, the *ss of one Brian, one of the Saks guys...for a straight fellow I’ve got decent “gaydar” – I’m pretty sure he’s of that alternate persuasion – not sure if he took that for a signal...and at 8:58pm that Friday, out the door for a second King Cobra...and this time, wasn’t let in by the alert guards – I’d been pretty open about the previous can and the imbibing of it – so was denied entrance. Guess I coulda gone in had I discarded the can, but I wasn’t about to do that...called b and told her the situation...my notes and memory are a bit sketchy at this point...at some near point Brothers Darick and Pete and b and I were on our way north on Mason to the Cafe Mason, a 24-hour place...this at 9:17pm...
Previously, some four or some months ago, I’d been escorted out of the Cafe Mason due to something I’d done or said, but apparently this had been forgotten by the staff that night, so the four of us took a booth – fine ambiance in the place, and if it’s 3am with money to eat, it’s recommended...my three companions had food – on b’s dime I ordered a small soup and a glass of the house white from the nice newly-designed – I liked the quote on it: “Time is too precious to eat (anywhere else).”...money then and earlier had been passed from b to me – as of this, it’s 50 bucks I owe her on the 1st...
A good feature of Cafe Mason is the juke box – when we 4 arrived, some 10,000 Maniacs was on, then some Frank Sinatra...Pete put a buck in the box and made selections – I think it was 3 Stylistics...maybe a Creedence, “Fortunate Son” – sometimes these boxes play tricks on those selecting...so we got “You Are Everything”, and “You Make Me Feel Brand New”...
And I made my seven picks, thusly: “Hotel California”, Eagles; “One of These Nights”, same band; “Stayin’ Alive”, Bee-Gees; “Down on the Corner”, Creedence; “Heart of Gold”, Neil Young; “Scarlet Begonias”, Grateful Dead; and “Hey, Jack Kerouac”, 10,000 Maniacs...the box is all old school – I’m keen on hearing new music.
And after taking my seat again after the labor of tune selection – this about 9:49pm...two officers of the San Francisco Police Department entered for an evening meal...I’ve been okay in the eyes of the police of late after the three minor fines from some months back...and Brother Pete wanted me to note a hello to Sister Sami – and that’s done...and a little after ten, had the urge to use the men’s room – too much liquid, not enough food, had a little accident onto my pants, which was cleaned up easily enough.
Then back to the table...forgot I had a third King Cobra can secreted at my feet and knocked it over – a Cafe Mason fella came over to clean it up, and I said I’d help...at this point, Brother Pete figured it was about time for him to get back to BART for the ride to Hayward...Darick and b and I walked him down to the Powell Street station, and made our goodbyes...
Then...memory fails me again in exact details...Darick and b went back to the Blue Cube and I
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went back to my hotel on my bicycle...about 11pm noted being in my room with neighbor Stan...shared some of my drink with him, I had music on...we’ve exchanged cassettes of music... we enjoyed a certain communion with the sound of Tower of Power and the shared beverage...
And somewhere near midnight I was back in the Blue Cube, having ridden my bicycle back down Eddy...the guards let me through, since I didn’t have a can of out-of-club liquor on me...Darick and b were dancing to beat the band – both are trained in that regard, both have some ballroom class experience...good for Darick – another fine thing to like about him, besides his seven years of Apple corporate experienc and his advanced degree in Shotokan karate...
And, and, and...then it was the early part of Saturday the 22nd...just a bit after half after midnight...the band was playing “Guantanamera”, that Cuban classic...then this, then that...I was out the door for some reason...had plenty of liquor in me by then...no violent incident, but I was out the door like a two-buck 40 of Miller High Life...was talking with b outside briefly – Darick wanted to stay and b and gonna go back in, and I was riding back to the hotel. Noted to buy, when cash was there, a Seals & Crofts disc at Rasputins. And, from somewhere, The Bridge on the River Kwai...
And just rushing through this last set of notes...was then into Steve’s room to watch some videos – I musta bought some whiskey, but I sure don’t remember – often, my days are on auto-pilot – not that I don’t have some form of fun – Cypress Hill used in the Warren Beatty/Halle Berry vehicle Bulworth...Don Cheadle, very respected actor, also in it...then we watched some Pee-Wee’s Playhouse, with the remarkable Paul Rubens – quite the psychedelic experience, at least that particular episode, about a pajama party...
Then, sometime near 4am that Saturday morning, noted Janis Joplin for some reason – guess I was taping a cassette...and wrote down the names of two Jessicas, Alba and Garner...Sin City by the first, based on the Frank Miller graphic novel, is due soon...and bothered to write down two titles from my own psyche: Hillbilly Nights and Heaven’s Devils...and nearly 5am that morning, listed five names: Liv Tyler, Avril Lavign, Jennifer Garner, Jessica Alba, Gwen Stefani – have got cute pop stars on the brain, a condition of mine going back a long, long strange and trippy way...and five British writer names as well did I bother to write down: Pope, Swift, Wilde, Shaw, Waugh...
Then it was up about 12 hours later, Saturday evening...had my Og Mandino positive thinking tape on, was cooking rice in my skillet...concerned a little about what I’d done the previous night...found a red felt pen at the Blue Cube, had made marks across my throat and wrists...me, drama queen...three bucks left out of the 20 that b had loaned me...spent on candles and rice, and whiskey and salsa and chips for the video viewing with Steve...then more notes from I’m not sure when...Johnny Carson had died, I’d shaved, did push-ups, had my Shou Wu Chih essence tonic...radio criticism of the lack of objectivity in the media coverage of Iraq – somebody quoted as saying: “Somebody out there is telling some huge lies.”...then this and that...had my last two yerba mate tea bags with added Korean powdered ginseng, listening to No Doubt, more push-ups...recorded “Don’t Speak” onto a cassette...then to the library, returning audio books by F.Scott Fitzgerald, Teofilo Ruiz, Jack Kerouac, Og Mandino, Arthur C. Clarke...am pushing the envelope with this form of this blog...making changes, if only for your enjoyment...
Friday, January 21, 2005
SPEAK FREAK #25
By Sho Nuff
Just got a surprise visit from my man (deleted) – had a big bottle of Tecate and I took a hit of his oregano. Hadn’t seen him since he and his girlfriend had taken a trip down to San Diego to enjoy his friend’s house – lavish, from what he says…so we chatted about various topics – I turned on some Tower of Power to get a groove on…haven’t had any oregano in quite a while – for sure I feel much more psychically-open, more vulnerable, to some extent…a little bit disconcerting, but I can get some movement going, mind-wise, so I don’t get too stuck…so that was a pretty major change, head-wise, for me, and it still is, as of this.
Have got some notes to compile here, but to keep current with the local free papers I spent a good long while selecting items from the Guardian and the SF Weekly for your perusal, as follows, in shuffled order:
1. Rob Brezsny’s Free Will Astrology column, specifically for my sign (when I’m not a Neon, that is) – he uses, for Scorpios, a metaphor of the chromosome as a topic of meditation…he quotes physicist Erwin Schrodinger to the effect that chromosomes contain both life’s blueprint and the power to create what that blueprint describes – that is, the function of the architect, then that of the builder. Says Brezsny: “It’s time for you to make or find something that will serve as both architect’s plans and builder’s craft in the coming months.” Well, I suppose this blog serves that function.
2. Notice in the gallery section for tonight’s event at the Build art space at 483 Guerrero near 16th…Kim Weller installation, called “Neck”…reception at 8pm to 11pm. Got 13 cents but, I wonder, should I go? Gotta take my bicycle over…would it be gauche to seek out that free wine – if there even is any of that…and I’ve been meaning to fast from food and especially from liquor…still 3 hours til 8…it’s up in the air.
3. Full-page ad for the Shih Yu-Lang Central YMCA there on Golden Gate near Hyde – very close to the Jefferson Hotel, my residence. Just went there recently for their filtered water, free…healthy location, exercise equipment.
4. Ad for the Sunset Medical Resource Center at 445 Judah at 9th…high grade medical cannabis to be had for those with prescriptions – five bucks off each eighth until the 10th…but, like, it’s already the 21st! Perhaps they’ve been toking at their own product. (Just now coming down from the buzz from my friend’s oregano…I’m used to the whiskey intoxication, but that oregano…)
5. Suggestions by one Matthew Stafford regarding the enjoyment of San Francisco…not all of them require an expenditure of lucre…tho’ plenty do: sand dabs at the Tadich Grill (never been there – been twice to John’s Grill), Guinness at Ireland’s 32, Carnelian Room cocktails, membership to the Mechanics’ Institute Library, the Don Herron Dashiell Hammett tour. Free suggestions include murals in Balmy Alley, a stroll through Little Saigon in the Tenderloin, gazing at Art Deco in the Hearst Building lobby, and contemplation of “the sepulchral recesses” of Grace Cathedral.
6. Ad for one Nate Miyaki, personal trainer and “natural bodybuilding champion” – the guy is as muscular as they get…don’t know what the “natural” part is – no steroids, it occurs to me – thought it was no weights. Don’t really like his look – more muscular than Bruce Lee, whose physique was really smooth and highly functional.
7. One Karen Macklin’s suggestion to volunteer, for karma-improvement…various organizations need a free and helping hand…I’ve got some time on my hands – gotta see what is out there. Maybe Ancient Age needs a taster off the payroll.
8. Notice for ArtSF – an arts organization at 110 Capp at 16th that is “hosting a string of benefit shows geared toward funding a community art center to serve artists across all disciplines…” Five buck entrance fee for event tomorrow, the 21st…
9. Maya Kroth article about what’s hot in fitness for the new year…a Gold’s Gym receptionist quoted: right now it’s all about the core of the body, the abdominal and back muscles. Very.
10. Quarter-page ad for the San Francisco Art Institute – in my mind, my favorite arts instruction facility in the city – much history there, and the building itself is unique.
11. Ad for Live 105 radio showing the playlist for a recent hour of their music programming – The Candyskins covering Buffalo Springfield’s “For What It’s Worth” is one of the tunes.
12. Ad for the Osento women-only bathhouse on Valencia.
13. Ad featuring cute girl with strawberries splayed between her second knuckles for Planet Organics, a fruit and vegetable delivery service.
14. Ad for Delirium, the bar at 16th and Albion in the Mission – been there several times – deejays are spinning every night of the week – a lot of old school music.
15. Front page of the Guardian featuring “The Future of Music 2005” – cover lady is Liza Thorn of So So Many White Tiger Tigers. Writer is Kimberly Chun, whose style and knowledge I admire.
16. A page of “Bay Area players and observers” making picks for releases and trends in the coming year…the new Gwen Stefani, says one Baby Jaymes, will “dominate nominations” is upcoming music award shows.
17. Other pop culture magazine is hosting a “Ballerina Pie Fight” fundraiser plus more – at 1519 Mission…5 to ten buck sliding scale…audience is encouraged to dress up like ballerinas and, as the name suggests, toss baked goods at each other.
18. New Jean-Luc Godard movie called Notre Musique – didn’t know he was still alive…a very respected filmmaker…this at one of the Landmark Theatres…onsite wine tasting courtesy of VinoVenue.
19. A Grateful Dead movie to play for 3 days only at the Loews at the Metreon – January 24th to 26th.
20. Review of Elektra – mostly positive, but the reviewer says much of it is stupid. Fortunately, I probably don’t have such a critical eye for the movies, and would not doubt enjoy it pretty thoroughly.
21. AMC 1000 schedule, where Elektra is playing.
22. Ad for Elektra – one guess what my must-see movie of this time is…”Garner electrifies!” says one Baltimore reviewer.
23. Review of Gomez, a new British band…am seeking current good music…the writer typifies their sound as “rollicking, psychedlia-laced blues-pop”…sounds good to me.
24. Mention of band called Louis XIV – from San Diego…compared to T-Rex…Illegal Tender is their new one.
25. Local singer Joanna Newsom and Bjork will be on the same bill at some time soon, says local musician Jeff Ray.
26. Rainbow Grocery advertisement…In the Palm of Passion: Cooking with Culinary Aphrodisiacs is noted – event related to Rainbow to be held at the Chez Spencer restaurant, January 30th, 6:30-8:00pm…Chinese medical practitioner Tamara Wolfson will be edifying those attending on this subject.
27. In the cover story about music in the Guardian, Kimberly Chun mentions the new Green Day, American Idiot – its current high popularity said by Chun to be part of the phenomenon of “a Bay Area music scene that’s increasingly creeping into the rest of the country’s consciousness.”
28. Half-page ad for the aforementioned Gomez featuring a Sgt. Pepper-like image…special guests at their Fillmore shows include West Indian Girl – one bit of newer music that I actually have – their “Hollywood”.
So, whether you wanted to know or not, those 28 items are my selections for suggestions locally…and now, back to our regularly-scheduled programming, The Return of the Son of the Bride of the Revenge of the Dawn of the Blog…
Requested a book about Dick Cavett from the library yesterday – a unique figure in television, intellectual, witty…most of the electronic catalogue entries were for a video series about Japan that he had some part in.
And…used the 15-minute express Internet terminals at the library to do some Hotmailing…sent a message to Odd Fellows Webmaster Kenny related to typographic errors at the Yerba Buena #15 lodge site…looks like he’s doing a great job on the look of the new site.
Slow night last night, at the early evening – no bucks to spend, so I was in my room going through the two local freebies, the results of which effort you see above…had on that Tower of Power disc as well – good to accompany an oregano mind-change, too…neighbor Steve, heard him laughing from the next room – had videos to watch but he was in a more solitary mood, at least in the early evening.
And smoked a whole pack of cigarettes last night, short Marlboro menthols that someone had given me…bad habit, can’t imagine smoking several packs a day for years…but for me last night it was a novelty. And listened to some of my latest audio book, The Education of Henry Adams, a classic autobiography, from the early 20th century. At first I loved the tone of voice, of both the text and the reader – eloquent, educated, quite grand – but I began to lose interest after a while…so very 1919, I mean…
But that audio book’s tone inspired me to pen some more lofty verbiage than what is generally offered in this blog. To wit:
“Telepathy is not mean feat, you understand. Or you will, before much longer.”
A line for some character…am thinking of changing the voice in this blog to that of a woman, and one with an elevated manner of speaking.
And on my mind: had six bucks left, plus 31 cents I’d found in the pocket of my Levi’s jacket…actually, it was money owed to a friend, but I hadn’t seen him for a while, and might not see him for a while, so I figured to spend it and get the cash back to him by the beginning of next month. But I was refraining.
Had the last of the flax seed oil caps I’d gotten for a good price on the street…the others I’d split evenly with Nic and Sister b when the three of us had dinner one night together at the Oriental Restaurant…was feeling a bit hungry but with the intent to spend that six bucks on whiskey and Shou Wu Chih…so I was getting to whatever edibles I still had left – a cinnamon breath mint, for example.
And…got a call about that time from Sister b, and we chatted on diverse subjects for very nearly 30 minutes…she said she gave my blog address to her acquaintance Kim, who might find something of interest in this…I’d seen her in quick passing not long ago but didn’t make much note of that fast encounter. Could use and not abuse some female companionship, let it be said.
We also spoke a bit about Brother Darick – all three of us members of the lodge…Sister b said Darick had looked at some if not all of the current blog and she said he said it made him feel good, or happy…so I was pleased with that, that he enjoyed the flow – this is one of the desired effects.
And so, after the call, got back to the traditional Chinese medicine book I’d been reading, one that Brother Pete had given me…specifically, was studying just what alcohol did to the body, according to TCM. The book also tied Western astrology in with the medical part…and then, put the book down, got back into another audio book, a self-help guide from positive thinking speaker Og Mandino.
And, by my notes, out at about a half hour to midnight to spend that cash, part of it, on whiskey and two potatoes – 22 cents a piece for small taters at the corner market…which left me enough for a bottle of Shou Wu Chih. And about this time, called Keeta at the hotel front desk – I was planning to make an audio tape up for night man Keith and was wondering if he was gonna be in.
So back with the goods into my room – started drinking, and cooking up the potatoes, and compiling the cassette…made a couple of uncharacteristic mistakes during taping: turned off the tape a bit too soon during the Pink with Peaches song “Oh My God” and didn’t record her laughter at the end – and same mistake at the end of Don Henley’s “Nobody Else in the World But You” – Stevie Wonder says “Cool!” at the very end, but I missed that. It was cooking those spuds – my mind was divided between the two tasks…it wasn’t the whiskey – I can function fine under that, basically.
Then, 12:21am, this morning, called up neighbor Steve – had those videos to watch, and thought he might be ready to have a guest…he’s been keeping to himself a bit lately.
First thing he says is that he’s having a problem with a guy he helped with some legal and financial issues – apparently the guy didn’t follow Steve’s advice to the letter and now he’s losing a thousand bucks a day out of some 86 thousand dollar settlement.
So…had brought over the potatoes in my skillet, and whiskey, and this we shared while watching Iron & Silk, about an American man who goes to China to study martial arts – Mark Salzman wrote the original book and he starred in it as well, an unusual circumstance. Recommended movie. But not recommended by Steve were my potatoes…admittedly, they weren’t fully cooked – he had a bite and that was just about it…he’s had highly-trained chef friends and my offering was entirely unacceptable, even tho’ he musta been a bit hungry. Told him he needed to microwave ‘em a bit. He had little comment about my potatoes.
And, then, back in my room a little after 2am…I was up for another flick – I’d gotten, from the library, a Pee-Wee Herman video, and It with Clara Bow, and Bulworth – but Steve was ready to crash…had one of the Nortriptylines I’d gotten free recently – supposedly a mild sedative – I’d had five of ‘em for weeks and not taken one…didn’t feel much of an effect, if anything. Had 3 Prozacs once recently for the first time ever, this in the space of but 5 hours, but again didn’t feel anything much…
Anyway, that was it for last night…gotta run right now…don’t have even time to proofread, so there you go…Brother Lucky and Brother Pete invited me to a show at the Blue Cube, a new space there on Mason near Market – Brother Sam has some work up in there…so I really gotta go, now.
Thursday, January 20, 2005
SPEAK FREAK #24
By SHO NUFF
…something quite enjoyable about being in the Odd Fellows Building: the presence of the high school girls at the San Francisco Dance Center – good energy…part of some arts program that brings ‘em in from their regular school. I’m all for it, Lolitas notwithstanding.
And…back two days ago to Tuesday, the 18th…was on the way to one-seventy Otis to blog, waiting on Mission near twenty-six 7th for a free 14 Muni – covered this before: get on through the back doors on a crowded bus and it’s a done deal. But for me that day, was unable to board several passing buses – doors didn’t open in back, the vehicles weren’t crowded enough – so I hoofed it those several blocks to the free computers.
And got five blog pages done, then over to the library, one of my usual places to go – more freedom in the city…and: was reading in The Examiner about a Desperate Housewives male co-star who had fantasies, sexual ones, about Teri Hatcher and Nicolette Sheridan, co-stars. But he’s married, said he, and besides, he’d already fulfilled plenty of sex fantasies before getting hitched. This from the Bill Picture column, a source of interesting information.
And…must note the free roast beef sandwiches provided by Brother Pete earlier that day for the meeting between Chris and him and me…plus free drinks from the Club Room, which I secured. Pete figured I’d stopped to imbibe a beer, but I told him I resisted that temptation. Tho’ tempted I was...got an OJ, good boy, me.
And – you can tell this is the best of literature since I begin so many of these paragraphs with “And…”, not to mention the liberal use of hyphens and three dots – and: recently received the latest Rolling Stone with the marvy & groovy Gwen Stefani on the cover – have been reading that intently these past few days…still haven’t bought her newest CD, solo work apart from No Doubt. Well, gone are the days when I have those several grand to spend freely, so no new music for the longest for me. I’d check her work out, tho’, that’s for sure – sounds, from the reviews, like really, really fun work.
And…called hotel neighbor Steve up – he wasn’t in the mood for videos just then…we’ve been spending quite a bit of time together of late, as noted previously, drinking whiskey, watching flicks from the library, making all sorts of comments during viewing.
Then, to my room – turned on a new audio book, a collection of Arthur C. Clarke short stories, including those from Tales from the White Hart – tall tales with a science fiction angle set in the English pub of the title – more fun stuff. Clarke is considered, by some estimates, one of the big three of the genre – Bradbury and Asimov are the other two giants. Liked much the first story – a Cornish mad scientist decides to make his own whiskey due to inordinate war-time taxes, to explosive results.
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Then, a little after 6 in the evening – this two days ago, Tuesday – Steve called, or I did – was up for the videos I’d gotten – first choice was Saturday Night Fever…with more whiskey – I believe I spent the very last of my cash on the half-pint, along with a can of Hawaiian Punch to mix it with…and about this time, saw Naz in the hallway – he apologized for some behavior of his a previous day – I think I’d gone to his room early one morning and he was somewhat short with me – he doesn’t wanna antagonize his neighbors with odd folks coming ‘round to see him at unusual hours. Apology excepted – I’d not taken offense in the first place.
And…picked up an Evelyn Waugh collection on the way back from the whiskey run, this from the assortment of free books in the lobby…the man is said to be the most comic writer in English since G.B. Shaw…and in the same league with Wilde, Pope, Swift and Shaw. So that’s good company. Brought it up to Steve, and he liked the gift.
Then…the flick – liked and was surprised by the Cat Stevens mention in the Travolta dance movie…Steve said some guy named Danny Terrio, who was on a TV show called Dance Fever, choreographed the moves in the movie and didn’t get a lot of credit for that – if interested, check with Google for more information – he’s listed there…and, so, we enjoyed that one, and others, tho’ I didn’t note what they were.
Then…here’s a more detailed note: 7:31pm, that Tuesday – in the middle of Saturday Night Fever – it was then that I spent my last cash on whiskey…so it pays to keep accurate records…and about this time, another neighbor, John, came around with videos for sale – the only one that caught my eye was that Chris Rock reincarnation movie, Down to Earth. But the money was gone…and I thought that I was interested in that one enough to have traded something for it – I’ve got plenty of music discs in my room – coulda bartered for it. But I didn’t think of that until later. Maybe next time.
Then…Steve and I musta watched more – but all I noted was the year 2000 remake of the Eighties animated film Heavy Metal…then back in my room about 1am – due to my reading of the latest Rolling Stone, had Gwen Stefani on my mind, and started recording a cassette in tribute – included “True” by Spandau Ballet, from a CD that Brother Pete Sellars had given me…and had my Shou Wu Chih. Had even given Steve a partially-consumed bottle of that – not sure if he finds favor with that strange brew. Plus some Evian to mix it with.
And…some note from 2:24am on Wednesday, yesterday – about 36 hours ago, if my estimates are correct…reference to Marvin Gaye in that Spandau Ballet song seemed significant…and was thinking of the odd combination of actors in the upcoming Philip K. Dick-based movie, A Scanner Darkly – Winona Ryder, Keanu Reeves, Woody Harrelson, Robert Downey, Jr. – and thought of a line of iambic pentameter:
They’re getting over it, rest quite assured.
And at very nearly 4am that morning, included a live version of Robert Palmer’s “Bad
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Case (of Loving You)” on the cassette I was compiling…a good CD, got it for five bucks in a bookstore on Market Street. Surprised that the disc existed, even.
Then, a little over 24 hours ago – up after sleep – turned on that Arthur C. Clarke audio book…was cooking the last or nearly so of my lentils and noodles from the Asian market across Eddy…and was feeling a trifle hung over – musta been the brandy that Steve had shared with me – someone had left much of a bottle with him – plus the Steel Reserve he’d also shared…if possible, gotta just stick with a single alcohol, even if it’s only cheap whiskey. Mixing drinks too much doesn’t agree with me.
And, noted reading in Linda Goodman’s Sun Signs about the Aries woman – I’d also listened the previous night to the Joan Crawford interview I had on CD, recorded in ’73 – inadvertently very funny - and Joan was born under the ram’s sign…plus, seems that Jennifer Garner was also born under the sign of Aries. And now, reborn under Neon…
And me, reading about this time, another free book from the Jefferson Hotel lobby, Catherine Ponder’s The Healing Secrets of the Ages…unusual bookmark in that, from Florey’s Books, in Pacifica – I know just where that is – used to live in that coastal town in the Eighties…so that’s something of a little bit of a synchronicity.
And…had more Shou Wu Chih…had the little space heater that Steve had given me on…was aware of my unshaven face…had the urge to cr*p, and that was fulfilled.
Then, about 7pm-ish, yesterday, less than 24 hours ago – turned on the radio – details about the tsunami-aftermath in Aceh – turned that off, cooked more lentils and noodles, got back to the Clarke short stories. And when I’d gone out to the toilet, met neighbor Jean going into her room – I didn’t have my hat on, or my sunglasses – she noted my “natural look” – yeah, that’s me, Mr. Natural – nearly uncombed hair adds to that.
And at 8pm-ish, out the door with empty plastic Crystal Geyser bottle in hand to score free water at the YMCA – it’s filtered, which I can’t say about the stuff that comes outta the tap…the Jefferson has an arrangement with the “Y” so tenants can use the gym by bringing along a card, which is kept at the front desk…& that includes water privileges.
And in the lobby, Keeta at the front desk – chocolate cake was there, and spinach salad with Green Goddess – courtesy free from some source…went up to get a container for that…
Then this, then that…was I up late? On my feet this morning at nearly 1pm…no alcohol for about 36 hours – so I mighta been going through slight whiskey withdrawal and just slept – not to mention money withdrawal…had some of the sweet leftover cake…turned on the radio – the Bush second term inaugural parade was happening in Washington, and KQED was covering it…imagine, folks waiting overnight and longer for a 2-second glimpse of the Bush limo…Stetsons and fur said to be prominent on the D.C. Metro, all those proud visiting Texans paying homage to one of their own.
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And there were, the radio reported, few Hollywood celebrities there – not in a Republican climate…Hilary Duff, that paragon, is said to be performing…it’s doubtful the likes of Susan Sarandon were there in cowboy hats, cheering for our President.
And…glad that night man Keith had returned my own copies of Speak Freak that I’d loaned him…on the way down to get these, met neighbor Thomas in the hallway, carrying food up to his “momma” – his girlfriend – including won ton soup from the Chinese restaurant on the corner – recognized the Styrofoam cup it comes in.
And…on the way out to here to blog this, glanced through this morning’s Examiner – pulled the Thursday Chris Caen column for later closer reading…and learned in Bill Picture that Desperate Housewives star Eve Longoria’ best sex ever was with herself, so she said. And Lindsay Lohan continues to be present on Picture’s page.
So, the bike ride across town, and to this…online, ordered Buckminster Fuller’s Critical Path for Steve – another one he might find of interest – for sure he liked my recommendations of Food of the Gods by Terence McKenna and Camille Paglia’s Vamps & Tramps. (The former more than the latter – tho’ he agrees to disagree with Camille…)
And that brings this blog up to the moment…tho’ there is half a page to fill…gonna head over to see Brother Pete at the Odd Fellows Building after this – in my pocket, for elevator man Koichi, a request:: a James Brown cassette…and – and…not sure how much I like the references in today’s Chris Caen column – a wealthy San Francisco jeweler, global politics…the touch of “Namephreaking” was enjoyed: general in Iraq named Luck.
…and there are some new e-mails: additional listings for my former high school peers at Classmates.com – don’t really recognize any of ‘em; a hemp activist (among other things) friend apologizing for his HempEvolution.org site being down due to problems with his Web host not accepting PayPal payments – it’s not the content being objectionable that was the reason, tho’; message from Elliot Lessing of the Build art gallery on Guerrero near 16th in the Mission – new installation by one Kim Weller…reception Friday the 21st from 8 to 11…been there, and they are keeping an interesting artistic space happening…could find myself going across town for the free wine; and one from a long-time buddy – said he was gonna get to the new Guitar Center location on Van Ness on MLK Day and meet me there, but he writes that he got caught up in painting a room at his place…he’s in the market for new electronic drum equipment.
And in my “junk e-mail”, note about the “Sacred Shamanic Sex” event featuring the remarkable Koyote, this at the Sacred Space healing center in the Lower Haight…it’s about “an ancient tradition of esoteric work with the sacred sexual energies that act as basic fuel for Life.” Seven-seven-six Haight at Scott – 7:30pm – Friday – tomorrow, the 21st. Been to this before, will probably be the same event, with Koyote talking in his hypnotic manner, accompanied by very trippy, trance-y music, his lady assistants demonstrating moves…not a bad way to spend an evening…later, you all…
Tuesday, January 18, 2005
SPEAK FREAK #23
by Sho Nuff
…walked the six blocks from the Odd Fellows Building here to one-seventy Otis and its free computers – and those were six long city blocks, by the way…exhilarated I am by that rapid perambulation – was hoofing it pretty fast…got to get more exercise in general…gotta pedal my Trek up hills and such, really breathe hard…
Before the walk, was about two hours in the Odd Fellows Building with Pete and various sisters and brothers of “the Order”…mainly there to observe Pete as he generated the numbers from lodge finances for last year in order to send a summation to the Grand Lodge…some checks were written by Treasurer Craig for various expenditures…I got to see just where the money has been going, and where it will go this year…Brother Craig seems more than adequate to the task – Pete’s been at it for years and years.
So…listened to the last of the unabridged audio book of On the Road…so much about Neal Cassady in that…great and deserved classic, a Beatnik bible, to be quite sure.
And also have Jennifer Garner on my mind lately – she’s very hot with the new movie, plus the new season of her spy TV show. She was also at the very recent Golden Globes – The Examiner featured a shot of her there in a glamorous gown – don’t think she won for Alias, tho’ – Desperate Housewives and Teri Hatcher won…
Also yesterday Googled on Garner and looked through photo galleries of her…great body…her material was included among the porn ads at some locations. I had a recent vision of her for another movie: her character would be called “Daisy Jane” – like in the song by America…and the movie would be called Hillbilly Nights. This came to me after a part in On the Road which mentions a phrase about hillbilly nights related to Charleston, West Virginia, which is where Ms. Garner grew up. So that’s a contribution to her career.
And also recently: in neighbor Steve’s room – there was our mutual friend Nic there, intently watching The Sopranos on rented tapes…Steve turned me on to some eggs and sausage and hash browns that had been brought into the Jefferson Hotel free that morning. Gave Steve also then a copy of a recent blog in which I mentioned him. Steve and I went over to my room and left Nic to his video viewing.
Then, this was the 15th, Saturday night, about half after seven…got a call from Brother Pete saying I should come down and have a drink or two in the Club Room – I asked if it was okay for Steve to join us – it was…and we walked the few blocks to the building…Nic had by then left, but we got a hold of him and invited him down as well…
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So in an hour the three of us were in the Club Room – Nic doesn’t drink, but I had a coupla beers, and Steve had an Olympia or two…I turned on a music tape I’d made, and they two shot pool – Pete was elsewhere in the building taking care of business…it was nice to be able to have a place to bring friends for conviviality…was surprised that Pete called to invite me over, and glad as well…
And I also played a game of pool with Nic…he mighta been toying with me…I’m pretty average…in the end, Nic sank the 8-ball and won…
And…then back to the hotel…probably continued in Steve’s room with more drinking – there mighta been some leftover wine – or he mighta bought more whiskey…Nic was elsewhere by then…Steve and I have been together a lot lately watching videos, mostly rented from the library…not a bad selection they have…but for sure we are planning to get a cheap DVD player by the beginning of next month, and thereby catch up with the current technology.
Then it was Sunday morning – me on Mission Street waiting for the 14 for the long ride out to Daly City to meet my aunt…funny store name on the way: Cents & Sensibility…cute pre-teen girl on the bus who kept drawing my focus – a girl after my own heart, since she casually put her legs up on one of the long seats in back, for comfort’s sake…tho’ I mighta not allowed the heels of my feet to touch the seat where someone would later be sitting.
And with me, had a “tranquility fountain”, in plastic, that I’d bought at Walgreen’s some while ago…this as a gift for my aunt…a replica of a Japanese rock fountain – two double A batteries powered the water, which circulated continuously…only thing I didn’t like about it was the buzz of the motor, which overrode the tranquil sound of flowing water…and also had copies of two books in Japanese I’d found somewhere – perhaps philosophy – couldn’t tell.
So endured the ride on the 14…told my aunt I wanted to eat at the Round Table there at the top of the hill…surprised at the 28 buck cost for a pizza and two salads, plus a beer…& despite our language difference – she speaks only a little English, and my Japanese is nearly non-existent – we exchanged some words…she was concerned that if she moved back to Japan I’d be left without relatives in the U.S. – blood relatives, that is. I have little interest in even visiting Japan, tho’ I was born there.
After the meal, my aunt wanted to get coffee somewhere, so we got in her car and headed to Serramonte, where I spent a lot of time as a teenager…classical music on the car radio on the way – her favorite…she said she liked Chopin…then into the shopping center – she wondered if she might buy me some cologne as a birthday or Christmas gift – I hadn’t seen her in a few months, so that was a welcome suggestion – I was running real low on my Aramis and for sure I could use more.
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I noted the many changes in Serramonte – no B. Dalton’s bookstore anymore, where I worked in the Eighties for 5 years…and the central fountain had been replaced by a koi pond – I wondered if those delicate fish were much endangered by carelessly tossed burgers and spilled Sprite.
So we got some of that Aramis at a discount perfume store – tho’ the Aramis wasn’t among the reduced-price fragrances…then we walked over to the Starbuck’s – coffee for her, Odwalla tangerine juice for me. My aunt had to seriously water down the coffee – it was one of the really strongly-flavored kinds.
And I was by then getting anxious to be getting back…got a ride to the end of the 14 Muni line, we said our goodbyes for then…carried half of the pizza, an all-meat number, oily and cheesy…raw food messiah David Wolfe would collapse in utter horror at the site…the ride back to San Francisco seemed so much shorter than the ride out, for some reason…there was a guy right behind me who seemed to be talking to himself non-stop…he was possibly conversing with someone, or talking on his cell phone, but I was doubting that.
Then off the bus, the walk up into the Tenderloin, stopping at the library to get four videos for later watching with Steve, including All the Vermeers in New York, about the art and financial worlds in New York, & the romance therein…as I was getting in, there was neighbor Naz knocking at my door – spent some time with him ‘cause he was quite upset at a recent incident in the lobby when he was down to get some free food – apparently a black guy was insulting him repeatedly – Naz said everyone else there, including the staff, was “signing off” on this behavior. I tried to make him feel a bit better about this…he said he had friends who were gonna help him bring the law down upon the offender. I know the guy – he’s from L.A., always talking about Los Angeles…a real sphincter – not, I mean, because of talking about L.A. – it’s just his general sh*tty demeanor.
Then…I believe I gave the 4 videos to Steve and went back to my room, had some wine, took a nap…got a call from artiste friend Diallo, waking me up…we chatted a bit about this and that, jokingly…he’s been putting on small parties at his house in the Bayview the last coupla Tuesdays – was invited but didn’t care for the long ride out there on Muni. Told him to call me when he was in the Civic Center area.
So, up again – had some of the Shou Wu Chih blood & essence tonic syrup, continued my listening to of On the Road – began cooking lentils in my skillet…gonna be Glide time again soon – got about 7 bucks left for the rest of the month…
Then over to Steve’s…seems like he and Nic are having issues related to money, Nic’s stinginess with it vis-à-vis Steve…Steve has been quite generous to Nic in many ways but Steve feels this generosity hasn’t been reciprocated in even the most modest way. The final blow came when Nic asked Steve for the last piece of pizza in a box – that pizza that I’d brought over from Daly City…I’d given it to
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Steve…so this seemed to my man Steve quite the egregiously-greedy request, especially when, for instance, Nic didn’t share even one chicken wing of a batch he’d brought over and consumed all by himself a recent night. So maybe Nic has crossed over a line he shoulda known not to cross.
Then…guess we watched some videos – didn’t note this…then I was back in my room…whatever…in that Kerouac reading, part of the story is set in San Francisco, which the narrator calls “the most excited city” in the U.S. – and I especially found interest in the parts featuring “Bull Lee” – in actually, William Burroughs – the story changes everyone’s names, but it is based much on the facts of Kerouac’s own life.
And…made note of the upcoming movie Sin City, with Jessica Alba, another super-cutie of cinema. Honey was her immediately-previous flick, I think…lotta good dancin’ in that one – gotta see that sometime….then…for sure I was in Steve’s room about 9pm in order to watch Desperate Housewives, a very enjoyable program…he’d gotten a big bottle of whiskey – he’d exchanged the value on his EBT food stamp card for cash – so he had money for the hooch. Before the show, he had on some boxing movie – thought for a second it was one of the Rocky episodes, but it was just a close clone – the American flag boxing shorts on one of the combatants sure fooled me. Steve says he’s never seen even a one of the Rocky flicks, or any of the other action movies Stallone has been in…for reasons of, I think, respecting cinema too much to allow such fare to trespass upon the portals of his consciousness.
Then, the selected program – night-time soap…Steve compares it to Dallas or Dynasty – could have that potential, depending on the scripting…liked the yoga portion – one of the housewives takes classes…Teri Hatcher has always been okay in my estimation – I remember when Lois & Clark was beginning ten years ago and more – I recall seeing the posters for that in the empty lot next to the CNN Building, where I was working.
Then…we selected Sleeper to watch after Desperate Housewives…one of the San Francisco Public Library picks I’d made…before that, tho’, tuned in to just the very beginning of the next program, Boston Legal – was surprised that William Shatner is in it…and he’s got that new music CD out as well. He sure could stand to lose a little weight, tho’…and Lucy Liu came up in the discussion at that point – Steve and I were constantly talking throughout all of this, all the videos we watch…I think because Ms. Liu was in Ally McBeal, a program done by the same producer as this legal one. Yet another Hollywood cutie alrighty.
So…we really both enjoyed the Woody Allen movie – I hadn’t seen it in years and years and found so much pleasure in it…Diane Keaton also very fine…then Steve and I
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watched some of the Black Adder British historical comedy series – two thumbs up from us for that…then we turned on what we think is an Italian TV spaghetti Western, Trinity is Still My Name, with Terence Hill…I liked it enough, but for Steve it’s such an awful piece of work that he nearly found it vaguely amusing – and in parts, I think it even crossed that line and he did fine it watchable. The whiskey we were drinking helped with that assessment.
And…then, it was the next morning…we mighta watched something else after that, but I didn’t note it…not everything needs the notating thereof…so that brings us up to yesterday, the 17th, about 25 hours ago as of this…was up about 2 in the afternoon – I think Steve and I watched flicks all night…I was feeling fine, despite the heavy imbibing – got into some more of that Kerouac audio book…one line in there about whiskey versus wine – whiskey said to be the better drink…and I noted my financial situation: two bucks in Washingtons, and maybe 5 in coins.
And at some point that day, was using the laptop in the Odd Fellows Building to research Jennifer Garner, and this paragraph I wrote: “…born April 17th, seventy-two, in Houston – five-eight in height –middle name Anne – raised in Charleston, West Virginia – separated from husband…” And catching my attention during this, also: Jamie Pressley photo (great *ss), Jessica Alba (probably ditto), Avril Lavigne (another ditto)…
And…then, the next day, today…had that Hillbilly Nights idea about then, again…had more Shou Wu Chih…this mid-afternoon yesterday – I mean, today…carrying videos back to the library – saw front desk man Walter, and hotel general manager Brian on the way out…among the many returned: that Black Adder, Conceiving Ada, How to Make an American Quilt, Sleeper, Bus Stop, Performance…it was a sunny day in San Francisco, blue skies…thought of a current photo exhibit here in the city, featuring X-rated movie stars…got the Jenna Jameson double photo up on my wall, culled from the paper…the photographer – name escapes me – said the process felt very Warholian, and that if Warhol were still around he’d been hanging out with porn stars.
And…was on the way to the Odd Fellows Building to help Pete and Treasurer Craig work on the financial report for last year…passed by, after the dropping off of the videos, the students gathered outside the Art Institute of California there on UN Plaza…then into the building – Jim was handling the elevator – I asked him what he’d done for MLK Day yesterday…I joked that he at least had had a dream.
I’d shaved for the first time in weeks and weeks, felt different because of that…earlier, had listened to (I think it was) Condoleeza Rice interviewed on the radio – impressed that she used such words as “apocryphal” and “interlocutors”…and passed Darick in his barber shop there on 7th…and about three hours ago as of this, Pete and Chris and me and Phyllis and Kenny and Lucky and Icon Xavier and Wendy and Kim Lee all in the office at some time…and that was that.
Saturday, January 15, 2005
SPEAK FREAK #22
by Sho Nuff
...reporting in from the Computer Training Center on Eddy near Leavenworth...can of 65 cent Hamm’s hidden in my coat pocket...a few notes to attend to: yesterday, Friday – met with Sister b in Brother Pete’s office in the Odd Fellows Building – he had a pair of scissors for me for use in the office...b showed me a brochure for some peyote ritual happening in Arizona. She sounded like she would actually go there and go through with that - not me, even had I the money for that excursion.
And chastised myself a bit for forgetting about Odd Fellow envelopes I had told Pete I would attend to...had to sticker ‘em, put stamps on ‘em...got wrapped up in blogging and forgot that responsibility...
And Alex, one of the elevator guys in the building, questioned me about a recent incident involving me and one of the Lines dance company personnel...b was talking to her about something, and I felt that the woman showed a certain unacceeptable attitude towards me...I can take insult pretty quickly for no particular good reason, I suppose. Anyway, I verbally snapped at her...this got back to Pete, who is the building administrator – he wrote me a letter saying I was confined now to certain parts of the building due to inappropriate behavior...justified, I guess. I’m not as bad as I was in this regard. So, Alex asks me about this, and my response seemed to be agreeable enough to him.
So...after this, b and Brother Darick and I walked a few blocks to the Second Szechuan Chinese place for lunch – those three buck and a half plates I have mentioned before...we shared three plates, chatted over the meal...got to know Darick a bit better, what makes him tick...on the way there, drank openly an Olympia beer that had been left in the fridge in the Odd Fellows Building – no police incident ensued because of this...Darick also expressed interest in the currently-unoccupied Strand building – formerly a porn movie palace. He had extensive ideas about how the space should be used.
Also on the way to lunch, we three walked through the Artisan and Antiques Market in UN Plaza...my man Stephen Henel wasn’t there, again – he sells fine rare paperbacks...he’s been having health issues lately.
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And also on the way to the Chinese place, was flagged down by Jefferson Hotel neighbor Stan, who wanted to know if I had a double cassette player so I could record a tape he thought I’d like – duplicate it, that is. He said it featured some Beach Boys and that “don’t worry, be happy” song...neither of these numbers quite floated by boat – and I don’t have a double cassette player anyway. And this I told him.
So Darick and b and I got to the Second Szechuan, had our meal...it was the busiest I’ve ever seen it – nearly every table full...we three waited at a large circular that reminded me of King Arthur’s Table Round for a few minutes until a smaller one opened up...I joked about getting the hundred-and-seventy-eight dollar deal that fed ten...b mentioned being there a previous day with graffiti artist Jahwe – she remembered that he picked out the meat in his soup.
That day, yesterday, the soup was an excellent barley...b mentioned Odd Fellow Brother Sam...something about him being into films...something about some beaver shot that some art model had given him...she also talked about albinos, how they didn’t have color...this related to a comment about a “colored man” made by Brother Harry recently – meaning Sam – who is now a member of the Order where once there were none. Harry meant no harm by this at all – it’s just the language he is used to...and he’s, like, 90 years old...he’s just not up on the current correct terminology. The talk of albinos reminded me of Johnny Winter...have got two or three cassettes of his music – really fantastic work.
So we finished our meal – b and Darick paid – and I got a Tsing Tao in the bargain...we sauntered over to Eddy and Hyde, near the Jefferson...at this point Darick parted ways with us to run some errands...he offered to get me business cards for free, an offer I can’t refuse. I purchased some Shou Wu Chih essence tonic and took it upstairs while b waited in the lobby...left papers I’d collected upstairs, and picked up my Levi’s jacket...
Then over to the Odd Fellows Building...noted with some approval that the Naan ‘n’ Curry place at the intersection of Eddy and Leavenworth was opening again...so, to Pete’s office...had envelope business to attend to...exchanged snippy words with b over something...my final words in leaving were “Now nothing...” – she had asked, I think, “Now what?” I’d been drinking my whiskey and that made me a bit sharper-tongued than I might otherwise have been. We had planned to get to the Blue Cube to look at the Tim Gaskin art, but plans had changed, since
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Pete wanted me to do something else apart from what he’d wanted me to do...whatever.
So I was out the door, on my bicycle, cruising down Market...stopped in front of the closed Blue Cube – advertisement for vodka made from soy beans in front...some money being invested in that place...gotta get back there and check out the art.
Then, rode over to see spirit dancer Edward Jackson at the cable car turn...he was saying the word “surprise” to someone else there when I zoomed up – appropriate – I think me being suddenly at his side was just that...he had some sort of doll at his table there and I asked him if it was a gris-gris voodoo type thing...he said no, but that his grandmother had been a voodoo priestess. Told him that “the lineage continues”, and was off.
Went up Powell to Rasputin’s to check out the free papers in front...picked up the latest Zero music magazine...wanted to lean my bike around the corner up against the building, but the uptight security guard said I couldn’t do that...so I turned it upside down and left it in range of vision while I checked out the papers...
So...whatever...skipping details...back to the hotel...neighbor Steve gave me back the Gerald Malanga-Victor Bockris collaborative book about the Velvet Underground that I’d been keeping in his room for a while...there was some food downstairs so I went back down, container in hand, to get me some...one of the hotel oddballs was coming around the corner on my floor when I was getting in the elevator – courteously, I asked him if he was going down. The response, a rather mean “Do I look like I’m going down?” What an *sshole – try to be nice and this is what I get...told him he just might be.
So, downstairs, Bobby dished out some white rice and what was left of some meat dish – the very last sauce and mere fragments of meat...good enough...this was yesterday, Friday, about 4pm in the afternoon. So I took that up and ate...glanced into that Velvets book...learned that Jackson Browne and singer Nico had some sort of sexual relationship.
Then...guess I went to the library and got four videos, which I took over to Steve’s – Conceiving Ada, featuring Tim Leary, My Breakfast with Blassie, How to Make an American Quilt, and Fight Club. We watched parts of all of these – not enough
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Winona in Quilt for my tastes...Ada was unique-looking – didn’t get to the Leary part.
Then, later, Nic stops by, and we three go up to the Blockbuster on Leavenworth and Bush to jointly select a video...embarassment ensued, since Steve doesn’t have a DVD player and nearly everything in the store was in that format – videos are nearly the equivalent of stone tablets, sheesh! I mighta enjoyed personally that Jennifer Garner flick about being 13 going on 30, but that would not have suited Nic or Steve...so we went with the Spider-Man sequel. I stepped outside to avoid the embarassment of being seen buying a video instead of a DVD...
Then back down Leavenworth – on the way up, the fitness hierarchy went Nic-me-Steve – Steve seemed just slightly to be hurtin’ at the exertion getting up the inclination of that San Francisco boulevard – back down to the hotel – stopped at a corner market for beer – two two-buck forties of Miller High Light – plus other food...in the hotel, turned on that flick – really enjoyed it – had seen part of it before – incredible special effects...Steve cooked up some sausage that Nic had bought earlier...I had a half of one...
And, notably, on the way into Steve’s room, neighbor John had videos for sale...money’s short but I figured to spread it around and bought, for two bucks, an Elizabeth Berkley film called Random Encounter – not exactly a pinnacle of cinema, but at least she’s got a pretty good body. It was from 1998...apparently Showgirls was Ms. Berkley’s crowning achievement.
Then, back to my room...listened to some of the Frank Muller reading of On the Road, did some conscious breathing, drank whiskey...was up til 3am or so taping music from CDs in honor of Jennifer Garner...then up today around 1pm, about two hours ago as of this blogging...before sleep had really gotten into that audio version of Kerouac...the book deserves its accolades...earlier, Walter at the front desk had called to tell me food was there to be had for free, but I didn’t go for it then...around 1 called down to see if any was still there – no.
And Steve called about this time to asked what was happening...told him about the Elizabeth Berkley video – he said he had cash for alcohol and had some food to share, so I am going for that after I finish these last few lines...I have thirty bucks left in paper, maybe five in coins, this for the rest of the month, which has still two weeks left to go...oh well...so that’s it from Speak Freak at this certain juncture...
Friday, January 14, 2005
SPEAK FREAK #21 by Sho Nuff
Friday morning in mid-January, two-thousand-and-five…rode my bicycle over to one-70 Otis, got in a nice little workout thereby…fueled in part with whiskey and San Francisco tap water…on the way, picked up the free Examiner, and just looked at the front page of The Chronicle – only reason I’d buy it or look for it free is for the Datebook section, basically – there’s a notice for the review of Elektra in there – Jennifer Garner said to be “a killing machine” in it. Sounds good to me.
Now…back to yesterday…was in the Odd Fellows Building doing a blog on the newly-connected laptop there, this in the early afternoon. There was one of the bi-weekly meetings at 7pm, and that being several hours away, and me being chilled from the lack of much heat in the office where I was blogging, I determined to head back to the Jefferson for a hot shower and some back time. About 3pm-ish, Brothers Pete and Lucky and Sam were already there, as was Brother Sami, who gave me a nice gift: red, white and blue shoelaces – he said these were the colors of the Odd Fellows.
So, back on my bike to the hotel…bought egg drop soup for 50 cents as the Ho King Grill on 7th and drank that and walked my bike up most of the way up Leavenworth til I was done…back in the room, put on a CD that hotel night man Keith had given me, one by Everything But the Girl – good choice for me, and I hadn’t heard anything by them before, tho’ I’d heard the name – I like it all, pretty much…hard for me to typify the sound, tho’…gotta Google and determine some proper labels.
So I took a shower, got warmed up again…was looking forward to the free Chinese food the lodge was providing before the meeting…then, a little nap…about half-past-four I was up…was resting for under 52 minutes, since that was the length of the disc and it still wasn’t done by the time I was up again…turned it on again…and started boiling water in my skillet to heat the room up – radiator heat doesn’t start til the early evening.
And I thought: there are traces of Lisa Stansfield and Pet Shop Boys (particularly “West End Girls”) in the sound of Everything But the Girl…guess they’re a British band…the lead singer, a woman, sounds British, anyway. Maybe they’re some sort of house sound that emerged from the clubs to become more popular in the mainstream.
And then, down to the Asian herbal store next to the Jefferson for more Shou Wu Chih, but it was closed – supposed to be open ‘til 5…and saw hotel neighbor Dino downstairs – he had a bone to pick with me – turns out that porn tape, Road Trip, that I’d given him was in actuality all male! And he is quite the straight one. He figured this was an insult of some sort. Well, I hadn’t watched much of it, only enough to determine that it was X-rated…all I saw at the beginning was that slow pan across an expensive car, no people, no “action”. So I apologized to him…next time, gotta look more carefully before passing an unmarked tape on…after all, found it in a box outside the hotel, along with a Carpenters disc and one from No Doubt…perhaps if males are listening to those two bands, they are gay?
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And…got more mail from Comcast…I don’t want a cable connection, but friend Naz might – he’d pay, but the bill would be in my name…could be worth it to get it for myself, maybe – get Alias and Desperate Housewives at the very least.
Then, back to the Odd Fellows Building around 5-ish…finally met Kenny, Webmaster for the Yerba Buena #15 lodge Website…Pete’s choice for the role, since he’s an experienced site designer despite being a teen. We all looked at his fine work so far on the site…really an improvement on the fuddy-duddy site at http://yerbabuena15.org - that’s still there, but his work will be transferred from http://www.geocities.com/half_prep.
And also there – Treasurer Chris Craig, and Brother Darick, as well as those already mentioned…so we convivialized for a while – food was to be eaten at 6pm…helped sticker envelopes for an upcoming mailing…after we all sat down to eat, Pete wondered where Naz was – didn’t know he was okay to attend a meeting, not being officially an Odd Fellow…and Darick and Kenny are both into video games – talk of Local Area Network tournaments, Halo parties…I told ‘em I am still at the Ms. Pac-Man level…Darick said he used to get 8 hours of Defender at Pier 39 on a single quarter.
And spoke with Brother Sam a bit…apparently quite the world traveler – has visited the isles of Greece extensively, for example…he commented on knowing someone who had planned to go to Phuket (that’s FOO-ket, not FUH-kit, by the way) around the time of the killer tsunami, but skipped that trip.
And…new Grand Noble Icon Xavier didn’t make the meeting, so Past Grand Lucky did his thing again…and I did my thing as secretary well enough – at one point, the secretary has to read the minutes of the last meeting, and this takes a while – I have not much inclination to sit there and broadcast for 15 minutes, so Pete did this for me…guess I can work myself up enough to do this, but it’s not my natural inclination. As it was, I read the 7 bills for outgoing money, and the 7 incoming correspondences from the other lodges or businesses we have truck with.
And, after the meeting, more socializing…Kenny worked on the Website through the laptop in the office…the issue of no alcohol allowed in the office came up – I am the guilty party in that regard…so I have to avoid any imbibing when there.
And there was plenty of food left over, fried rice and noodles and sweet and sour pork…woulda taken some away but I was on my bicycle without a carrier, and I don’t have a fridge in my room…so others took it away…
And learned that I can’t record downloaded music onto the discs I have since something is already on them…planning to pull songs from http://kazaa.com and burn ‘em…
So it was out the door of the lodge with Sister b…down on 7th, Sister Kim came up in her car and offered to give b a ride back – she got in, I got on my bicycle, and was back in my room in mere minutes…then the usual, whatever…got a call from b about 9:30pm,
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something about the mail boxes in the Odd Fellows Building she planned to take over and rent out…and she felt a little bad for me because of the banning of alcohol in the office…apparently before Pete and Lucky fully took over, three guys before them were embezzling funds and drinking a lot, so they are wary of anyone who’s putting back alcohol in a position of some authority. Plus, it doesn’t look necessarily good that an officer of the lodge, me, is drinking too much, too openly, at too frequent intervals.
So I got myself to sleep again…put on one of the Teofilo Ruiz UCLA lectures about with witch craze to rest me into Slumberland…and drank an Oly that Pete had slipped to Sister b to give to me. Still had whiskey, but left that for the morning.
Before shut eye, tuned in the repeat of the Michael Krasny KQED program from 12 hours previously – all about saving the oceans. Interviewed was John McCosker, aquatic biologist, and former director of the Steinhart Aquarium…I believe he’s a shark expert, has gotten very up close and personal with Great Whites, that sort of thing.
And after that, listened to some of Pacific Time, the Asian affairs news program on KQED…a great deal about the aftermath of the killer tsunami – bloated corpses a-plenty, all stacked up with no place to go – this is apparently taxing the psychologies of even the most devoted Buddhists among the volunteers there. I tuned in to that for a while, then put on an Og Mandino self-help cassette, and then, into the arms of the Sand Lady.
So that brings us up to less than 2 hours ago – got a call from b wondering what she should tell Sister Kim when she asks b if I am b’s boyfriend. I told her I’m not her boyfriend…b thinks Kim might want to set me up with a relative.
And…more dreams, peculiar ones – was clearing away Steve Tyler’s dishes in some restaurant in one…then I was in a classroom where Brother Pete was teaching, and feeling out of place.
So…my day’s pretty open, but I like to get a blog in…put on my conscious breathing tape for a coupla minutes, and followed suit…then put on a tape of music I’d made, including Pink’s “God is a DJ”, and a live “Break on Through” by the Doors…Pink is an admitted LSD-head…used to take it before going to school, in fact, if I remember correctly an interview with her I’d read.
And…looked through some papers – that Tim Gaskin art event happened last night at the Blue Cube on Mason near Market – missed that, since I was Odd Fellow-ing it…but that was the reception – the show is on for some while, so that’s one to catch…very pop cultural, very.
So, then, drank some whiskey and water…put some in a bottle, put the bottle on my bicycle, and rode over here to blog…not wearing my Levi’s jacket as I always have, since it looked warm enough and I didn’t wanna be encumbered…checked my Hotmail – notice from Classmates.com – more of my high school fellas and gals have apparently signed on
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– I can get the names free, but contact information costs. Might check into it…a major anniversary of my high school graduation is approaching, in two-thousand-six.
So that’s it for my notes…just accessed the Yerba Buena #15 lodge Website, there at the above-noted address courtesy of Kenny…just e-mailed him with comments…he did a pretty scrolling text, right to left, with the words “Currently Under Construction” – sweet move…more text needs adding – I know Brother Pete has got a lot of essays and such that he’s done related to “the Order”…and for sure I always mention it in my blog – told Kenny to select relevant passages for inclusion at the site.
Which reminds me – met Kenny’s mother last night, Phyllis – she’s rather involved in Odd Fellowship over in the East Bay at another lodge…she wants to establish a Theta Rho lodge in the 7th and Market building – this being the branch of the Order suitable for girls 8 to 18. This is a possibility – there are several young ladies in that age group attending classes at the San Francisco Dance Center, which is located on an entire floor of the building.
…back after a step outside for a bit of a whiskey break…I’ve got a whole pack of unopened cigarettes plus a lot of Bali Shug loose tobacco, with papers, but I’m not going for that…one bad habit is enough…tho’ I don’t think drinking all that bad…a bit chilly outside, but I don’t regret not bringing along my Levi’s jacket – I like that upper-body freedom…
Now, got 21 lines left to go…filling up space…got that Examiner with me – let us examine that…malaria threat in Banda Aceh (prounced AH-chay) due to the aftermath of the tsunami…Bill Picture says Britney Spears reportedly took her little dog Bit Bit out to clubs in Los Angeles the other night…he also says Lindsay Lohan is reportedly prone to losing credit cards, including an “uber-exclusive American Express Black Card”; Hilary Swank quote: “I think I became a woman in New York.” (she’s starring with Clint Eastwood in the highly-praised boxing flick, Million Dollar Baby)…enough with the Bill Picture…I like only about 25% or less of the celebrities he mentions…and: there’s the P.J. Corkery “Friday fishwrap” column – I think that’s an echo of Herb Caen, that self-effacingness…I like the Thursday Christopher Caen column a lot…small black and white photo of Mayor Newsom accompanying article about vacancies in several key San Francisco government posts…
…but now, to the meat…mixed review of Sam Jackson in that basketball coach movie – geez, I wish that guy would make a few more movies a year, okay? We just don’t get to see enough of him. And, the real deal, for me – Jennifer Garner reviewed in Elektra! Christy Lemire of the Associated Press says she “makes action flick watchable.” – good enough for me…also, it’s “Blissfully Ben Affleck-free…”…she is called “the ideal action figure”…and this role “is a perfect fit for the perfectly fit actress…” – and the final observation by Christy: “…even when the movie takes itself too seriously, thankfully (Garner) never does.” Good press…I’m also looking forward to that new one based on Philip K. Dick with Winona…but that goes without the saying thereof.
Thursday, January 13, 2005
SPEAK FREAK #20 by Sho nuff
…been having several warm days in San Francisco, it seems, with blue skies, pretty…and…The Examiner has been running an astrology series lately – full page discussions of each of the 12 signs…pulled out the one related to mine – neon – I mean, Scorpio…evolved signs tend toward the neon, you know…anyway…didn’t really tell me anything I didn’t know, particularly…Oscar Wilde is quoted as emblematic of the sign – people need to do more of that, quote Wilde…there’s a good pub on Folsom near, I think, 14th, called Wilde Oscar’s – good jukebox, excellent pub food, and quotes from Wilde printed big on the walls – could it be any better?
Anyway…my sign is shared with the likes of Picasso, Hilary (Clinton), John Cleese, Julia Roberts, Winona Ryder, Grace Slick, Joni Mitchell…Charles Bronson, Goldie Hawn…so that’s company I’m happy to be in…I guess Hilary’s okay, for a politician…some think she may be the first female in the Oval Office…I’d be behind that.
So…been walking around with reddish glitter gel on the tops of my shoes…like the effect – a bit Dorothy-ish, those ruby slippers…
And…yesterday, after Jahwe and b and I parted company, met Nic by happenstance at UN Plaza…he mighta been trying to extort popcorn from the seller there…I don’t wanna know about it. And at the same time, there comes Naz walking up Hyde – so we three stood there for a while, chatted a bit. Eventually Nic got some signal from a friend and they went off, this after Naz continued his way up the street.
And, I had copies of the new Weekly and Guardian to select from…went over to the liquor store next to Ananda Fuara and got a Pabst Blue Ribbon to accompany my efforts with the freebie papers. Went over near the library, the Larkin side, and sat, drank my beer, pulled out pages, as follows:
1. The Mimi Barr Gallery on 16th near Guerrero is closing, perhaps moving…always liked that place – Diane Vargas and Brion Nuda Rosch are the main folks there, I think. Sorry to hear about this…Brion’s quoted to the effect that the local community couldn’t financially support a space that large. I wish them very well.
2. A critical look at film critic David Thomson, plus an interview with him. He seems to have been getting a lot of press lately – he’s got a new book out about Hollywood, called The Whole Equation. And interestingly, music critic Kimberly Chun did the interview of the man.
3. The Rasputin Manifesto, the free publication affiliated with the record store, is looking for freelance writers and editors…firstname.lastname@example.org is the address to send writing samples. Might try for this – gotta focus more on sheer music, tho’ – maybe related to the downloading of music I plan to do through kazaa.com.
4. The Sonic Reducer Kim Chun column – am impressed with her work.
5. Amoeba Music ad for, among other new releases, the Elektra soundtrack – happy that The Donnas have something on there – most likely from Gold Medal, their new one. I’m a big fan of that band – more power to ‘em! Especially providing sounds for the superlative Jennifer Garner to do her things by.
6. Bode art for a small ad for a tattoo parlor in the East Bay – could be the son of Vaughn – in the same style, but MarkBode.com is printed there…interesting figure of that era of underground comix – not my absolute favorite, but good work nonetheless.
7. Roy Lichtenstein image in ad for SFMOMA…only U.S. venue for the guy’s work…he did those paintings using blown-up panels from comic strips.
8. Ad for House of the Flying Daggers – Sister b and a friend saw it…featured is an image b talked about – woman with long sleeves using those to hit drums.
9. The Apologist column commenting on the Gavin and Kim split, making fun of it a bit.
10. The Dog Bites a”Weekly Obsessions” section commenting even more viciously on the same…writer says Kim on Court TV is “so stupid she’d have to opine from a trampoline for us to tune in.” Ouch…haven’t seen it…tho’ I suppose Kim’s “easy on the eyes”, as some would say – tho’ Oscar Wilde wouldn’t have said that – wit was his stock in trade, or one of them.
11. Notice for the Castro Theatre’s “Dystopia Series” of science fiction movies – ad featured for the Lucas early work THX-1138. Odd Fellow Brother Chris Craig works at that venue.
12. Notice that Carrie Fisher will be in town promoting her new book The Best Awful on Friday – mentioned this in a previous blog. Glad of the visit – would be fun to see her…off the top of my head, I remember an interview she did with Madonna back about ten years ago in Rolling Stone that I read really carefully.
13. Elektra ad…starts January 14th – would love to see this one, but money’s so tight, and I gotta get whiskey or Shou Wu Chih…Garner is just fantastic, simply for her work in Alias. Which I missed last night because I attended the installation of officers for Apollo Lodge #123 for zero-five. Gotta catch the show in re-runs, or DVD. Sorry, Jennifer!
14. Article, cover story in the Weekly, in fact, about band named Brightblack – the title “Bohemian Rhapsody” got my attention – supposedly hippie-looking…could find favor with my ears. Haven’t read the article yet, but will get around to it.
15. Pulled ad for radio station Live 105 – mentions Green Day – gonna get it to neighbor Steve, I guess, since he likes the band. Liked the format of the article – a list of songs played in the hour after midnight once recent morning…gotta get more familiar with these featured bands…I like “The Bone” well enough, but, like, geez!
16. Finally, the Rob Brezsny astrology column…for Scorpio, he concludes: “…don’t get stuck in dogmatic perspectives, and don’t get pinned down, period.” Me, maybe I should start a column for the trans-astrological, those natives of the sign of neon.
So…that’s it for the freebies this week…sure, there’s plenty of other material there – the above 16 items are a small, small fraction of even one percent of what’s happening currently, locally, but that’s what caught my eye in one swift pass through those pages.
Oh, and a 17th item – the 24 Hour Fitness ad – color photo of an extremely fit and extremely cute young lady, this from the Guardian. Sports bra in light shade of blue, curled-up yoga mat in a darker shade of blue…seen her image before…I believe she’s a triathlete…name not included.
So now…back to my notes…did ten blog pages yesterday, and this current one is stacking up – have access to a laptop in the Odd Fellows Building, so I can stretch out a bit more…and, back to yesterday, did those pages, locked up the office – went down to say g’bye to Brother Pete, and was told he might be in the Club Room – activity there – turns out the Apollo Lodge, aforementioned, was installing officers – hung out a bit, had a beer, talked with Sister Lola, Brother Albert Fluehr, Sister Kim Lee…decided to stick around – free food afterwards.
Folks gathered for the event were playing pool on both the tables in the Club Room, sitting around, talking…chatted with Lola a lot…she enjoyed her recent time down in Pasadena working on the Odd Fellows float for the Rose Parade down there…
And spoke a while with Brother Albert…he told me he came to California from Nebraska at age 19 – too cold there, not much happening – and he’s been here since.
And…I had my hat on…only one other person with one on…had my mirrored shades off, tho’…tho’ I like to cover up…then, all of us one flight up to the room where the installation was happening – chilly in there, but I managed to keep warm enough, practiced my conscious breathing. Pete was pretty much running the show, in a suit and tie – he’s ordinarily more casual during the day…
So, I’d seen this ceremony before – same words used…took over an hour…getting to know other Odd Fellows…Brother Alan Thomas played “Danny Boy” and”When Irish Eyes are Smiling” to accompany the proceedings, among many other songs…laughed to myself during one portion – Lola was swearing in the new officers, and she’s reading the ritual: “I (pronounce your name)…” – woulda been funny if they’d said that verbatim instead of filling in their own name…yeah, it’s an old joke, but I believe they’ve been using the same ritual for, like, a century, and more.
At ten to 9 last night, the ceremony was still on…knew it wouldn’t be more than I could endure, especially with food and drink waiting for us in the Club Room…did some conscious breathing to make the time passing endurable.
At one point, one of the new officers got a special “Three Link” tie to signify his status as “Past Grand” of Apollo Lodge…those 3 links being – repeat after me – Friendship, Love, and Truth.
And near the end, Apollo Lodge gave Brother Pete a donation for good work done, and Sister Lola also received something – money, I guess – for “dedication and service” to the Order.
And Brother Pete also made mention of changes in the Odd Fellows to allow for women – “no gender difference in the Order” now, said he.
Then, the installation was over…new officers stayed around for photos, but the rest of us – musta been nearly 4 dozen – retired to the Club Room for food and drink – beautiful spread of goodies awaited – meatballs, a delish avocado and shrimp salad, chicken wings, Brie, sushi…plus champagne…
Spoke with Brother Ravi, who was pouring out the bubbly, and with another brother I didn’t catch the name of – ex-Marine, fought in World War II…did a lot of gambling in Reno, and he explained his philosophy thereof. He asked me what I did and I told him I got SSI…felt slightly embarrassed at that, but just slightly…sounded like he was into some real estate venture, investing of some sort…
And, recognized Apollo member Niel Nielsen from previous events…who was also a member of the installation team…and…at the end, Brother Dennis Carrey sang “I Left My Heart in San Francisco” and “Moon River”, as he did at the installation I attended at the Swedish-American Hall…he sang with the fine piano accompaniment of Brother Alan Thomas, who was tickling those ivories when I was barely born.
So, had my fill of food and of drink, and made my goodbyes to Pete, Ravi…Lola had already gone by that time…got back to the hotel room a little after 10pm last night…Keeta was on at the front desk…went up with one of the loonier guys in the hotel – not quite all there – he was biting into something crisp on the way up in the elevator – turns out it’s a pepper – told him that was too much for me…
Then, the usual, whatever, sleep, music, radio, some reading…up this morning a little after 11…did I sleep that whole time? Was up a little earlier – tuned in some of the Michael Krasny radio program before sleeping again – talk of protection of the oceans, Governor Predator-Killer’s legal actions in that direction. I remember waking at intervals and practicing conscious breathing, falling back into the arms of the Sand Lady and her team of sisters in arms and legs and other parts…
Then, up, as I said, about exactly three hours ago…I’m typing this out in the Odd Fellows Building, on a newly-connected laptop – convenient, but no printer…gotta get over, maybe, to 170 Otis on my bicycle to get free copies…can use the exercise…
So I went to the toilet down the hall – one in the actual room itself is for those of greater means…had some Shou Wu Chih in water, then drank a bit of whiskey I had left…found a black vest in the hallway – so now I have a three-piece black outfit – black jeans, black jeans jacket, black silk shirt, plus the vest…turned on music I’d taped – some Dead, their “France”…
And recalled a dream about Madonna, featuring her, that I’d had…was up in some hilly area, she had her house there…saw her standing there, but didn’t approach…and in a related dream scene, there she was, working out – exercising – in some extraordinary manners…
So that about sums it up for the time being, and the space beings, and the doing of being…until next time, I remain your humble correspondent…
Wednesday, January 12, 2005
SPEAK FREAK #19 by SHO NUFF
…yesterday, up about half past 10 in the morning…weird dreams I had – explosions, bloody and peculiar violence – almost felt like someone was introducing those dreams into my mind – don’t know how I managed to get those created in my consciousness.
Anyway – turned on the radio, or mighta had it on all night like I sometimes do…tuned into Michael Krasny’s Forum on KQED – always highly intelligent talk…pretty much from 9am until the Terry Gross interview program ends at 2pm, it’s non-stop intelligence through the spoken word, and I’m not lying. Really, I figure these programs should be tuned in and daytime tube should be turned off.
So yesterday, there was some Jew defending his…thing. “Jew” is a bit harsh, I guess, but a guy I knew once, Ivan, made it clear to me that he thought it should be “Jew” and not “Jewish”. So this guy was on and on defending Jews…he said The Passion of Christ only served to propogate myths about Jews. Didn’t see it, never will. I got nothing against Jews, I guess…a Sri Lankan Muslim down in Los Angeles I knew said Jew(ish) bankers were instrumental in getting Japan into World War II – could be true.
Then…me to the toilet – paper in hand…and there is neighbor K., the one who pooh-poohed the “Friendship, Love, and Truth” aspects of Odd Fellowship. Turns out he was taking his stuff out of his room and moving…not sure if he’s gonna remain in the Jefferson…apparently he really didn’t get along with his neighbors. He’s pretty much the wrong color and wrong attitude for the hotel…possibly a racist.
So…back to the room after the deed was done…had my Shou Wu Chih Chinese blood and essence tonic syrup – see previous blog…having the dry heaves often in the mornings
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– symptomatic of alcohol intoxication, in the sense of poisoning thereby, I think. The Shou Wu Chih has a fair amount of alcohol in it itself…should just switch to drinking that. Plus kombucha and Rejuvelac…and Cellfood.
And…then to the library…had some whiskey, and sought a plastic bottle to pour it into so I could mix it with water. Sought in trash cans around the library – I’m not too proud to be seen sticking my head into the trash. Heck, many is the time I’ve openly eaten out of trash receptacles around the perimeter of Union Square, a good source of discarded food. So, at a trash can, up comes a guy with a lemonade bottle he’s tossing out – just perfect! So in I go into the temple of learning.
Did my blog…this at noon-time yesterday…somebody had left a copy of a book called Earth Magic by Francis Hitching out on a table and I picked up on it…all about ley lines, the energetic power in the Earth itself, the relationship of that to ancient structures like Stonehenge. Read about this as a teen in the books of John Michell, like City of Revelation and A View Over Atlantis. Recommended reading.
Then, over to the Odd Fellows Building to meet with Sister b, who was taking a class, a ballet class, at the San Francisco Dance Center…good energy among the teenies thereabouts, straight outta, like, Fame…I was there in my mirrored shades, drinking my drink, attending to my own mind, but overhearing fun conversations…someone talked about making a belt out of shoelaces…and something about a butterfly belt buckle that he wasn’t sure his friend would like as a gift.
Also there, ballet teacher Kathy Mata, and her mother. She’s about the only instructor there I know…I said something friendly to her, she said, “Thank you.” – and I
was like, “For what?” – and she said “For everything.”
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Funny thing to say…b later said she says that to everyone.
Then b’s out of class…we went down to Brother Pete Sellars’ temporary office, chatted a bit…leaving, I turned on a cassette I’d made, of music – the first song was “Cassidy”, by Bob Weir, solo work from him…all about Neal Cassady, who deserves more credit for bridging the gap between the beatniks and the hippies. From my understanding, he was, for one thing, very instrumental in the inception of the Grateful Dead…room-mated with Weir, did Cowboy Neal, and much influenced the consciousness of a young Jerry Garcia. The song “Neal’s Fandango” by the Doobie Brothers is also about the same dude…I’ve got a great live version of that number on a disc.
And speaking of which, am able now to burn CDs with songs straight from the Internet – Pete recommended using http://kazaa.com – haven’t done this yet, but soon intend to…for darn sure I’m a-gonna put a Neal Cassady-inspired song on the first disc. This connection into online music is a very good thing…for sure wanna get more current music recorded, not just the freakin’ classics from forty-plus years ago, okay?
And, so…b and I over to the Second Szechuan Chinese eatery on Ellis near, I think, Polk…lunch plates, and they are sizeable ones, are there to be had for three bucks and 50 cents, a true bargain. Passed by that culinary school at Turk and Polk…many of the students are thereabouts often, in the distinctive white chef uniforms. (Also, a San Francisco musical history note: that culinary school, the building, was a site of many Sixties concerts by the likes of the Dead, and Janis and her guys.)
So, quarter past two yesterday afternoon, a bit over 24 hours ago, there b and I were at the Second Szechuan…got three plates, surprisingly big…had to take some of it away
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with me. Worthy of your patronage, whoever is eyeballing this line.
And b brought out some chocolate she’d gotten from her aunt earlier that day, European, made by Kraft Foods Deutschland, as a matter of fact. The tentacles of that food conglomerate squeeze all ‘round the world.
And…b mentioned some event at the Creativity Explored venue on 16th near Guerrero in the Mission…developmentally-disabled folks can do art there…I said something about “retards”, echoing the Matt Dillon character in There’s Something About Mary. This was lost on her…as are many movie references. But that’s okay. For that, when I’m with my hotel neighbor Steve, I get all the cinematic trivia discussion I could possibly want, and then some.
And…had an article on me about the upcoming Tim Gaskin event at the Blue Cube there on Mason near Market…gonna get there, I guess…looks like he has a very interesting approach to art and the media…look into it. He’s famous for an image of Madonna – the music superstar – that was stolen from a Starbuck’s in the Castro. See http://timgaskin.com for all the info you can shake a paintbrush at.
Then…Sister b off to visit again with Brother Pete in the Odd Fellows Building, me to the library to check out some videos. Noted the cloud mountains, white, above the city, against the blue sky.
Then, four videos secured, over to the hotel…watched a bit of Performance with Naz…pretty much only for the Mick Jagger parts, these from 1970. Had heard about this one, the notoriety surrounding it…guess it deserved it’s reputation…lot of bare butt shots, violence. Got a bit bored
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with it and left during the scene with Mick in an ornate bath tub with two women, including the notorious Anita Pallenberg. Naz was more into it than I was…tho’ I saw him today and he says he fell asleep watching it. Steve told me that it was good enough for one viewing, but not more. Unless one’s a freak about Mick. Charismatic fellow, that one. Especially at his late Sixties glory.
So…then over to Steve’s room – we watched The Age of Innocence – he was into, very Daniel Day-Lewis. I had no use for him, particularly, or for Michelle Pfeiffer, tho’, admittedly, both are real lookers and fine actors. No, for me, just the other female lead was the apple and mango and veritable avocado of my discerning eye. But you knew that.
And…we watched that flick to the end…really classy production – Scorsese is a recognized genius of cinema, of course…Steve figured the DDL character shoulda really gone and left the Winona character, May, for Pfeiffer’s Countess – he figured he woulda had such the better, more fun, more influential life, but noooooo! Whatever…Ryder was radiant throughout.
Then, back to my room, this about 7pm-ish last night…guest on the Terry Gross show, Temple Granden – heard of her – an autistic person who, among other things, is an animal scientist who designs humane (or cow-mane) slaughterhouse systems – so that the doomed bovines will not be unduly traumatized by the killing. I’ve heard her before…pretty intense individual. She said she eats plenty of burgers and meat in general – in fact, said she, she cannot functioning well without eating meat.
And…at the end of Fresh Air, great segment by music commentator Ed Ward on the early career of Jimmy Page, before he hit it so big with Led Zeppelin. I’d know about Page’s mid-Sixties days as a session musician, working to
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make the headliners sound better with his killer riffing. And I thought it was pretty hip for Fresh Air to have this information on.
Turns out Page played on “It’s Not Unusual”, the Tom Jones tune…and, learned that he liked a Gibson Les Paul with filed-down frets in order to be able to move his fingers faster…and learned that our man Page was featured in Donovan’s “Sunshine Superman”, which was done in ’65 but came out a year later…checked my Donovan CD liner notes and verified this musical fact. And…in ’66, he joined the Yardbirds, and thereby hangs his later career, said Ed Ward, “not anonymous anymore…”
And…during this, continuing my whiskey drinkin’…used Cherry Coke I’d found on Hyde earlier to cut it…and listened to the next program on KQED radio, a tribute to the dearly departed intellect Susan Sontag. Read some of her work…a speed freak, so I have gathered – like Philip K. Dick. Good quote from Sontag mentioned, along the lines of interpretation being the revenge of the intellect upon art. Hey, good line!
So, learned that Sontag had issues about fiction writing, but managed to get over ‘em…y’know, I might have her confused a bit with Joan Didion…but Didion is more of a West Coast rock ‘n’ roll kinda gal, come to think of it.
So…taped the Sontag onto a cassette for later listening – the talk deserved that…and…learned that at 14 she actually had tea with legendary German novelist Thomas Mann…interesting fact…
And turns out Sontag was quite a movie freak – the interview was conducted in San Francisco, and she said that, indeed, this city is truly the best anywhere for getting a film education…and…she said she was squeamish about
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violence movies…she shielded her eyes, for example, in certain scenes in the first Alien…as did I…I quite well remember seeing that one when it came out – was living in Berkeley at the time. And that reminds me, was gonna get Alien: Resurrection out from the San Francisco Public Library – guess what my favorite part of that one is? – but it has turned up missing, yet another stolen library item.
And…during this, visited by neighbor in the Jefferson Dino, who wanted to use my cell phone to give his daughter a ring…let him do that…he’s a nice enough fella, I guess, but he seems to always take and not give…he couldn’t get through to her, tho’…I loaned him a copy of a porn video that I’d found recently, called Road Trip. Didn’t watch it yet myself – I prefer porn on film, anyway – that video just makes it all look cheap and unappetizing, generally…but I checked out the first part just to verify that it was indeed pornography…the first minute was devoted to a close-up and lingering pan across an expensive car…yup, no Welles of porn had their hands on that one.
And…back to the Sontag…she discussed the topic of how some authors didn’t appear in public – Beckett was the one she mentioned, and Pynchon also. These guys didn’t publicize their work, didn’t do panel discussions. Sontag said she thinks authors should take a different approach, get out there…she felt it was some form of vanity to refuse to appear. Not sure if I agree with her…certainly, most writers are by nature shy, but must face the public to promote sales. (Speaking of which, Carrie Fisher’s got a new novel out, a sequel to her first, Postcards from the Edge…and she’ll be in San Francisco at A Clean, Well-Lighted Place for Books on Friday…don’t think I’ll go, but it’s fun to think she’ll be so close…guess she doesn’t have a problem facing an audience.)
And…to change the subject…noted down names of sponsors
for that Sontag lecture: http://Iarchive.com and
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http://addis.com – for future reference…seemed important at the time…check ‘em out and get back to me. Some sort of archiving service using the Internet.
And…then taped over the rest of the cassette I’d recorded the Sontag interview on…included local rapper Mac Dre performing, along with The Whoridas, “F****k Off the Party”…yeah, there were 3 asterisks in there. I do admire the verbal facility of some of them rappers. Bought the Mac Dre because I didn’t wanna be accused of totally ignoring that branch of music.
And also on the tape, left what had been originally on it, the Madonna songs related to Dick Tracy – I don’t have quite the cash to buy new cassettes, so I’m recording over ones already used…put a little Scotch tape over the holes on the top and it’s good to go…not particularly thrilled with that collection by her…but really enjoyed the last song on the tape, “Vogue”. Kinduv a stretch to include that tune on a set of songs about a detective, but…
And from the Jefferson lobby, got some peas and couscous, which had been brought in free…and spent three bucks for more whiskey and a can of 7Up…and back to Steve’s room to watch the 1948 Vincente Minelli musical, The Pirate…featuring Gene Kelly and Judy Garland. Really a fun, fun movie.
And…half past midnight, today about 18 hours ago as of this blogging…night desk man Keith visited briefly in my room – first time he was there…we are on the same wavelength, pretty much…we both enjoy the same kind of music, and we have good and fun discussions when I sit in the lobby sometimes during his shift. So we discoursed about this and that…I’d given him that rock icons mag that Walter had given me, along with other assorted papers related to pop
cultural matters. Had some Kool Moe Dee on during Keith’s
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visit…old school rap, and of true substance.
Then…began listening to some cassettes I’d dubbed up…some “Scarlet Begonias” by the Dead…glanced through the Donovan liner notes – his e-mail address, in case anyone is interested, is Donovan1@indigo.ie – and thought of a name for some new something, Fun Key – and a new pen name, Al Tamont…but I guess I’ll just go with Speak Freak and Sho Nuff for now…and thought of a line of verse…
…it’s just a kiss away, it’s plain to see
because dear M. & K. comprise a “we”…
It ain’t Wordsworth…was listening to some live Stones when I came up with that couplet…not the best I’ve ever outputted…
And another one, while listening to some Big Brother:
…departed, dearly, Janis, ball and chained,
but not before her chorus is refrained…
A little better, that one…and thought of a line of dialogue for someone, something: “…nuttier than a big *ss case of Almond Joy…” And…half past four this morning…down in the lobby, spoke a bit with Keith…some Zeppelin was on his sound system, appropriate since all that Page stuff was on the radio earlier…and Keith was kind enough to give me some of the food he’d made, a beef dish…took it up and added it to the free food I’d had from earlier, cooked it all up in my skillet…
And also took up and studied a recent copy of Vanity Fair with all the Star Wars Lucas people on the cover – installment six is due in theaters quite soon…don’t care much for that Lucas vision – more of a Roddenberry kinda guy, me…
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More interesting in that mag was an article about a recent series of robberies in Hollywood…mentioned is victim Loree Rodkin, who(m) I believe used to be Don Henley’s girlfriend. She owns some boutique in Los Angeles frequented by the stars – maybe on Melrose Avenue, a stretch of Southland roadway I walked up and down so, so many times during my tour of duty in L.A. I mean, figuring I was there for well over 7 years, that would be about, roughly, 7 times 400 days – let’s says two-thousand-five-hundred days…and some areas I was in almost every day…I’d say, easy, I was up and down Melrose and Fairfax and La Brea and many of the rest 2000-plus times. Like the Rhinestone Cowboy, “…I’ve been walking these streets so long, singing the same old song…”
Anyway, got some sleep around then, then up at nearly 1am today, five hours ago as of this typing…couldn’t quite remember what I did the previous night, but at least I took some notes…ate food from my skillet, including Keith’s tasty addition…I’m not so carnivorous as some, but I’ll eat meat if it’s there, despite the slaughter of the innocent animals necessary…
Got a call from Sister b…planned to meet at the Second Szechuan noted earlier…and she had plans to take over the sixty mailboxes on the ground floor of the Odd Fellows Building – Brother Pete would let her have the keys and go-ahead to rent them out…she could stand to turn a nice profit, and easily-enough.
So…over to the Chinese restaurant…she had along an Art Institute International student she’d met named Jahwe…his variation on “Joey”…graffiti artist he is, and talented, by my somewhat uninformed estimation of work he had on him…we three had a meal, spent some time…took him to the Odd Fellows Building, introduced him to Pete…then we three parted…as we shall be doing shortly…a long blog today…got a new place to put this out…more next time.
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