Wednesday, February 28, 2007

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Notes from a recent visit to Eight-50 Bryant to deal with a Notice to Appear – I was penalized for an open container of alcohol on Haight earlier this month, a can of Pabst Blue Ribbon: good thing, the line went pretty fast…little girl with her mother in front of me – thought the girl’s knees were way too hyperextended, I think that’s the word – they seemed to be placed way too far back from where they should’ve been.

And liked the little girl’s expressive eyebrows when she was talking to her mother…and was looking at the rear end of a woman in front of me, assessing it. And had picked up the Bay Guardian from outside, something to read while in line. The Donnas on the cover, glanced through that story only. Then put it on the shelf with the books of outstanding warrants – for someone to read later, bored in line. Probably not a move the abundant police in there would like, but went ahead with it anyway.

And: it being the Hall of Justice, a lot of S.F.P.D. officers inside, in twos and threes. They seemed, in their environment, to be in a generally casual mood, chatting, laughing, even.

And asked the clerk about my confusion about dates to appear on the two pieces of paper I’d received…most definitely it seemed there were at least two different days being referred to that I had to appear by. He didn’t answer to my satisfaction…but the main thing was, got a court date, in April.

Then…later in the day, back in the hotel – went out for spinach, tofu. Am eating more whole, wholesome foods lately, and not drinking, not getting Notices to Appear.

Went to the nearby Asian store I buy tofu at – fifty-pound sacks of white rice in front, Golden Phoenix brand. Paid a dollar-76 for the packaged tofu – don’t trust the bulk ones in the open container – and an onion and a potato. Mangoes were enticing, but didn’t buy, didn’t even ask the price. Same for six-packs of little moon cakes.

And at another store, spent a buck-87 for spinach, an avocado, a banana. And back in my room – the instantaneous gratification of the tofu, the banana, the avocado.

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Then later, heading to the library – hotel elevator still not working then. Felt
bad for the maintenance guys, who had to lug big trash bins up and down the stairs.

And down Hyde – film crew, taking footage of the little kids’ playground at the intersection with Turk.

And at the library, ran into a guy who used to live in the hotel – had seen him a little earlier, but avoided him, didn’t want him to hit me up for money – had the last time I’d seen him given him fifty cents he wanted for a phone call. But he didn’t ask this time. Asked about his wife – he said she was using a computer on another floor.

And had a half hour to wait until a computer, decided to head outside. Leaving with me, two young girls in the same uniform I had: hoodie and jeans. Me dressing like a teenager. Stood outside in the light rain, taking in the fresh, cold air.

And coming by, another guy who used to live in the hotel, now homeless. Chatted with him a bit. Discussed his history in the Hare Krishna organization…and that he said he once fasted for five days. Well, we stood there for about ten minutes, and didn’t realize until he mentioned it he wanted to get out of the cold and wet, in the temporary sanctuary of the library.

And after we parted company I went over to the Salvation Army across Grove to inquire about a new California ID. Only photo identification I have now is my expired passport. But turns out the worker was gone for the day. Really need to get that…but the Department of Motor Vehicles is a ways out there. But I should be getting a new (used) bicycle soon, so I just have to make sure to get this done.

And did my blog…and looked for a new audio book. Picked Don Quixote, the first part. Had not long ago taken out Part Two, but didn’t like it. Same result for this one…don’t need to hear about a delusional character.

Also, passed on DVDs for Dick Cavett interviewing rock icons. One disc
devoted to Janis Joplin. Another person I don’t need to hear about, geez. For

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one thing, I’m not in that “rock and roll” beer drinkin’ mode anymore. And there are maybe two dozen Monty Python DVDs, with their Seventies TV show – might get into those sometime. Then out the door, back towards the hotel. Cute, a little boy in a yellow rain outfit, holding a plastic dinosaur.

And…had some money – had done work for Odd Fellow brother P. – so spent three bucks and 67 cents on a bag of a new flavor of Sun Chips, a can of tuna, a can of sweet peas, a stick of butter. That last one, a dollar for 800 calories, so that’s a good deal, in terms of fat. Then spent sixty on two potatoes at another store…noticed they’d sold a whole lot of their fifty-cent Mexican popsicles – the freezer unit used not long ago to be full of them.

And into the hotel – someone had left me a new issue of Spin, the music magazine, and also got the new Rolling Stone – hot new band Fall Out Boy on the covers of both.

And got to preparing the potatoes – concerned a bit about the green under their skin. Cooking would reduce that possible toxin. A new dietary pyramid I’m following recommends avoiding potatoes in general – too starchy – but they’re cheap, and at least they’re a whole food. Unlike pasta or white rice, which are highly processed. And turned on the Don Quixote. And noticed the butter seemed, the texture seemed, very like plastic. Guess it’s not organic…most food in the Tenderloin doesn’t fall in that category.

Then…the next day, a little after nine, yesterday. Odd Fellow Brother P. called, saying if I made two calls to one of the men working in the lodge building he’d get me two dollars the next day. So this I agreed to. He was going into a meeting and couldn’t make the calls himself.

Then showered, shit. Noted the barely-chewed fragments in my exudation. (Just Dogpiled on that verb…not the best one, since it indicates the quality of oozing, which wasn’t involved in that process.) And…did a usual in the shower, a yogic motion, lifting up the abdominal muscles – this exercises the organs in there. Determined to keep my abs in good shape, even to the point of concavity, which is not, to say the least, from what I have seen, the American norm.

And was in the countdown phase, still am, to my beginning-of-the-month

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disbursement of money. Unfortunately this time, will suffer the thirty-three dollar fine levied by Bank of America for a debit card indiscretion at the start of this month, geez. That’s a lot of money for me. And made myself a fresh pot of tea – at least I made my loose yerba mate last all month.

And have been reading William Gibson’s novel Idoru, actually reading it in a paperback, since I don’t have the audio form. Liked this description of a candle: “…banded horizontally in cream and indigo…”

And also lasting the entire month, the sixteen double A batteries I’d bought about four weeks ago. And…got to get my mind more around the Wayne Dyer self-development material I’ve been listening to. About aligning with God, or whatever one might term that, as an infinite source. I guess I get into scarcity thinking, the non-material, in case you haven’t noticed.

And another line in Idoru – a character whose “personality wasn’t together”. And…wasn’t really giving the William Gibson novel the proper attention it deserved, just reading the words like they were potato chips.

Then later, reading a book of interviews with J.G. Ballard – actually, called “conversations”, which is more of a two-way discussion. Liked the British author’s use of the phrase “quite rightly”. Same phrase used by Donovan in “Mellow Yellow”.

And looking at my fingernails – geez, more proper nutrition is in order. Calcium needed…and there’s a deficiency in other minerals, I’d say. Am working on this – getting more vegetables and fruits, in their whole form.

And…a heroic couplet I thought up recently:

She is his benefactress, to be sure,
but on the other foot, he is her cure.

And yesterday, 11am, an annoying low-pitched hum from outside – city workers doing something, I guess. And kept setting my cell phone’s alarm ahead hour by hour…didn’t really have to leave the room to get to the library. And…something to study, the index in the Ballard book, from “Acker, Kathy” to “World Trade Center” – no X, or Y, or Z.

posted by Velcro  # 1:07 PM

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

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…lecture on the radio early one morning by P.J. O’Rourke – has a new book about Adam Smith’s book The Wealth of Nations. Got something from his words, tho’ I couldn’t say just what now. He used to be an editor at National Lampoon – O’Rourke, not Adam Smith.

And O’Rourke – P.J. - said he used to be something like a hippie, countercultural, but he changed quickly after he got a job where nearly half his paycheck was taken out before he got it.

And: essentials to last until my next money: a stick of Nag Champa incense left, enough loose yerba mate tea. And returned recently to the library: a collection of Paul Bowles letters, and a very abridged audio version of Neal Stephenson’s Snow Crash. Would’ve listened, but the first cassette of the set didn’t play.

Sunday, two days ago, after the usual at the library, deciding to head to Walgreen’s, end my fast after almost forty-eight hours. Could get three dollars of something – had sardines on my mind, Top Ramen.

And had met at the library E., guy in the hotel. Wanted to sell something on eBay – a lot involved in that, and I frankly don’t think he can follow through with what it’d take. I’ve never done that, sold anything on eBay, and have never bought anything, either.

And had looked into the blog being constructed by my former junior high English teacher – each day she posts one of her digital photos, along with a quote from a notable. That day, I didn’t have anything to say about her close-up image of, I guess, the multiple layers of a colorful quilt.

And was definitely that day walking to the Walgreen’s on Eddy and Van Ness, at the far western edge of the Tenderloin, definitely on a mission to end the two-day fast. And got myself four cans of sardines, on sale at three for two dollars. And another drunken call from friend D., who had by then fallen off his non-drinking wagon, this while I was paying for the canned fish with my plastic.

And had on my mind packages of corn-based sugary things I had in my room I’d bought on the street some weeks back – didn’t want ‘em, really,

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but the seller was an acquaintance I wanted to help out – there are actually many who have less money than I do. Had those in my drawer for a long time but now, seriously falling from the food restriction, was gonna get to those.

Then heading back to the hotel – aggressive drug dealer encountered. I’m already yards past him and he’s calling to me – obviously I don’t want whatever he’s selling, but he’s talking after me – takes me a while to realize he’s addressing me. Guess I look like a very likely prospect, geez. Kept walking, made a gesture of my arms to indicate non-interest– thought that might be wise, lest he think I’m totally ignoring him and get violent at the dismissal. Then he begins yelling to someone up in a building – deranged behavior, but at least not directed towards me.

And back in my room, immediately opened up a can of the sardines – grey little fish bodies, not appetizing – could hardly get through it. Then, well…ate two little fruit roll-up things I’d had for a while – based on high fructose corn syrup. Then made a broth from a packet of Top Ramen flavoring, with added oil I had left over. There really went my fasting. Then some sour gummy tube-shaped candies…and then handfuls of tiny red candies called Cinnamon Imperials…

4:35pm, Sunday, two days ago – an hour until the Academy Awards. Cable still hooked up…the inside of my mouth coated with the sugary residue of the Cinnamon Imperials. At least sugar was the first listed ingredient, the actual thing, and not a corn-based sweetener. But the corn-based sweetener maltodextrin was listed farther down. Plus two kinds of red coloring, one blue kind, two kinds of yellows.

And: Tennessee was the source of the Cinnamon Imperials. Package also had a recipe for Christmas cookies – these are just the thing for those – green icing recommended, then the studding thereupon with the small red candies, Yuletide coloration. Bad sign: “Cinnamin” with a second “I” on a recipe. Slogan: “Making Smiles Since 1904.” And mouths devoid of teeth as well.

And got into the Oscars…began watching during the last of a pre-ceremony program. Three Mexican directors were interviewed, all up for awards. The woman interviewing them, couldn’t believe the harshness of the part in her

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hair, a painful swath of bare skin where the hair was separated. And: the usual pairing of actresses with dress designers. There was Rachel Weisz, “smashing in Vera Wang.”

And close-up of Will Smith in audience, applauding enthusiastically at a joke by hostess Ellen Degeneres. Enthusiastic, or at least acting that way. (Was myself last year, during the filming of The Pursuit of Happyness in the hotel I live in, very close to Mr. Smith, a few yards only, as he prepared to film a scene. Which I’ve been told wasn’t even used in the final cut – haven’t seen it myself. Out on DVD soon – not too enthusiastic about it.)

And there was a line about a billion people watching the Oscars. Can this be? I think I read an article once about how this number couldn’t be right. And also notable: flame throwers on Iwo Jima in a clip for one of the Clint Eastwood World War II movies. Nasty, being burned alive, to say the least.

And interesting on the show, the Pilobolus dance troupe appearances throughout the program. They were on stage in silhouette, tumbling towards the center and then forming a shape representative of the Academy Awards – like the Oscar itself, or a penguin, for that movie.

And there was Al Gore, with Leonardo DiCaprio, with an environmental message. They’re concerned about global warming. And…there was a little compilation of movie moments showing how writers have been portrayed by Hollywood over the decades. Clip from The Shining, the Jack Nicholson character saying, this before going insane in the snowbound Overlook Hotel: “Five months of peace is just what I want.”

And speaking of Nicholson – there were periodic closeups of a fat, bald man in the audience. Finally realized it was Nicholson, looking like Brando in Apocalypse Now. And liked a part honoring screenplays – the actual non-dialogue parts of scripts were read over clips of finished film. And: notable, the long hair of the winner for Best Adapted Screenplay for The Departed, which won big altogether. Mistake made – I think by him, saying the original material was from a Japanese movie. It was in fact Chinese, something called Infernal Affairs.

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And this long-haired guy said: “Valium does work.” And also throughout the show, in order to keep the acceptance speeches short, the orchestra started playing soft music after a certain point.

And this phrase in a sequence with models adorned in nominated costumes from various movies: “sexy modern influences” in garments from The Curse of the Golden Flower. Not strictly based on what was actual worn in the time depicted. Also liked the use of the word “Chinoiserie”. That word defined by Wikipedia: “a European artistic style which reflects Chinese influence and is characterized through the use of fanciful imagery of an imaginary China, asymmetry, and whimsical contrasts of scale, the use of lacquerlike materials and decoration.”

And…noted Milena Canonero winning for her costume design. Saw Barry Lyndon when it came out years ago – she did that one also. And…Sherry Lansing, one of the rare women executives in Hollywood, was given one of the night’s only standing ovations. She was given a special tribute. And noted the winning cinematographer, for Pan’s Labyrinth, thanking his wife and children, “for giving me wings.”

And really disliked so many car commercials during the entire program, which ran nearly four hours. I mean, there was a prominent environmental message throughout, focusing on global warming – ironic that automobile makers are such big sponsors. I doubt anyone rode their bicycles to the show, either.

And: Robert Downey, Jr. made a self-referential drug joke before awarding the Oscar in the special effects category. And found amusing Jerry Seinfeld’s joke about being told in a movie theater to pick up trash around the seats.

And liked the jaunty stride of Ennio Morricone, who was awarded a special Oscar for his musical contributions to film over decades. Gotta be at least in his late sixties, about the same age as Clint Eastwood, who’s over seventy. And Mr. Morricone spoke at great length, I think the longest speech by anyone at the awards, in untranslated Italian. Close-up of Japanese actor Ken Watanabe in the audience, also a bit challenged English-wise, taking in Ennio’s words.

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And: Ennio…said to have scored about four hundred movies over the years. And liked a Degeneres joke about Nicholson – she said she appreciated him sitting smiling and laughing in the audience. But then she says she saw him backstage, by himself, in a corner, smiling and laughing.

And got a call from my Former Lady Roommate about half after eight, and divided my attention between her and the tube. I hadn’t watched very much TV in days, and she had to call when I was. We chatted a little bit, but finally told her I wanted to concentrate on the final part of the program, geez.

And: long tribute to various actors and movie-related people who’d died in the past year. Final picture, the place of honor, awarded to Robert Altman. Also passing this past year, my namesake, Japanese actor Mako. Afterwards, the camera panned up to a bank of lights, like stars in the skies, then the screen faded to black, then into a Bank of America commercial.

Then to the big categories – Helen Mirren won for The Queen as Best Actress. My friend S. figured that movie would sweep, but he got that wrong. And wondered: the final three categories – was it Actor, then Director, then Movie, or Director then Actor? (It’s the first.)

And: clip from The Pursuit of Happyness – curious ‘cause it was filmed where I’m living. Was about the portrayed real person getting upset because someone had cut ahead of him in a line for a job, tho’ he’d been on time.

And winning for Best Actor, Forest Whittaker. I remember him in Fast Times at Ridgemont High. So he gets up there and thanks a whole lot of people, but he left out the supposedly cannibalistic Idi Amin, without whom the movie would never have been made.

And then…George Lucas, Spielberg, Coppola, all together to give the director award. Humor made of how Lucas was the only one who hadn’t won a directing Oscar himself. And, well, Scorsese won…mention made of him leaving the seminary in 1956, “channeling his passions into film.” And…he won for The Departed…and he confirmed what I’d thought – the film it was based on was originally from Hong Kong, not Japan.

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And: Diane Keaton helped present the big award, for Best Picture. Sure detected a trace of the Annie Hall “lah-de-dah” in her voice. And then, the next morning, back to reality. Call from Odd Fellow brother P. – had work for me, taking a check to be deposited at his bank on Montgomery.

And had planned also to get over to the Hall of Justice to deal with my Haight Street public intoxication Notice to Appear. And…friend D. had called – continuing with his drunken spree at a motel near the beach.

And tried to rendezvous with P. on the street – he wasn’t where I thought he’d be. Waited in the lobby, where the radiator was warm. Hadn’t worn as much as I should have, had misjudged the coldness of the day, had just a thin shirt on.

And got the work done, rode my impaired bike to Montgomery…the teller wondered about the Odd Fellows name on the check. On the ride back, flashed back to Jodie Foster on the Oscars, her toned facial muscles, the ones with the multi-syllabic Latin names.

And back at the building – spoke with Brother Jim, operating the elevator, about the Oscars, which he’d watched. We mentioned Nicholson looking like Brando.

And then got myself on my bike, heading to the Bryant Street Hall of Justice. Began to rain, and the atmosphere was chilly. But at least the ride wasn’t a long one.

And had to divest myself of metal before going in. Glad I didn’t have to remove my belt, since the pewter butterfly motif buckle didn’t set the machine off. And after a short wait in line got myself a court date in April…at which point my bail of over a hundred bucks should be dismissed, as the last two times this has happened. Just have to show up.

Then back on my bike, back north. Really raining, concerned about how the wetness on the seat would make the seat of my pants look. And on the way, veered around to the bike shop I patronize – but it was a Monday, a day they’re closed. And: it was coming down pretty hard, then two minutes later the sun’s coming out. So that’s the way it all went…

posted by Velcro  # 6:43 PM
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…a couple of days ago, on my mind, a mission, cheap cookies at the store next to the hotel. Paid for that, had a dime left until the first, a few days away. Could put that ten on my library copy card. And back into the hotel – residents had been stuck in the elevator, but they’d been gotten out.

And…thought of a line of iambic pentameter around then:

She would appreciate it very much…

Well…the concluding word to rhyme this, to compose a heroic couplet, would perhaps be “touch”. A poetic mind at work…

And also on my mind, for Claire, a woman at the Tenderloin computer center I go to, vegetables. Want to pay her back with those for a package of dehydrated veggie chili she’d given me.

And…was on the day being described listening to the recommended The Omnivore’s Dilemma. The narrator tells of going to a farm where chickens are slaughtered, and going through this process himself. Knife in hand, he located an artery on the side of an immobilized bird’s neck that must be severed. Guess I could do this myself, to some stupid chicken. The same act on a cow would be more of a stretch. I avoid animal products, basically.

And liked the author’s use, in The Omnivore’s Dilemma, of the word “desultory”. And he liked it himself so much he used it again at least once later in the text. Definition, courtesy of Merriam-Webster online: “marked by lack of definite plan, regularity, or purpose”. Used in the book to describe a conversation, during the subsequent evisceration of the chickens, after the decapitations.

And also noted by me on my digital recorder, the plural of “beef”: “beeves”. And liked the verb “transubstantiate”, to describe how chicken viscera can be changed into compost.

And one cow farmer in the book, because he doesn’t feed his animals the dead bodies of other cows, says Mad Cow Disease isn’t a problem – he’s got instead “Glad Cows at Ease”.

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And also liked this said about a person: he could sell a hat rack to a moose.

9:19am Saturday, three days ago – call from friend D., who has fallen off his non-alcohol program big time. Has in fact taken a motel room out on Judah near the beach, and with saved money has been hittin’ the bottle big time.

And myself recently, lying around in bed a lot, sleeping a lot – no drinking, tho’. No money to go and consume.

And spent very close to 48 hours this past weekend fasting, drinking only a lot of yerba mate tea, unsweetened.

And during that weekend gave friend Jean a call about getting stains out of what I consider my Steve McQueen pants – from where a bicycle chain rubbed, I think. She recommended the use of regular detergent with the additional application of a toothbrush. Got to get around to that. Will have money in less than 48 hours, so can attend to my laundry.

And sometime during the weekend turned on one of the Alias DVDs I have out from the library. Agent Sydney Bristow strapped down again to a table – seems like that happens a whole lot with her in her life of dangerous espionage. She has a aerodynamic hyper-slim body that’s a good example for me.

And about this time showered, defecated…about twenty hours at that point since eating.

12:46pm, Saturday. Starting the RE/Search book of interviews – they’re called, actually, “conversations” – with J.G. Ballard. Recommended – got through the entirety of both it and the companion book of quotes from the British author.

1:26pm – call from D. Offered to pay for a cab ride out to his motel, but I decided against – he can get a lot unpredictable when drinking.

And because of anti-television comments by J.G. Ballard, decided to once-and-for-all stop my Comcast cable service. Called ‘em – put on hold for several minutes, maybe to encourage the caller to give up. But got through

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eventually – there’s an order already out to have someone come and shut my
connection off.

And: Ballard made a point about the difference between the merely sensational and the truly aesthetic. And…was thinking…what was the word for the praise at the beginning of the book, the quotes from reviewers? Testimonials?

And was worrying a bit about the Notice to Appear that I’d received on Haight from the S.F.P.D. related to my bust for drinking beer from an open container. There’s an early March final day on what the citing officer gave me – and what seemed to me two different dates on the courtesy warning I’d been sent in the mail. Have since taken care of this – went down to the Hall of Justice on Bryant and have been given a court date.

There was on the courtesy warning a threat of an additional three hundred bucks to be added if I didn’t attend to this – really a large chunk of change for me. So determined to get to the Hall of Justice on Monday.

And then that afternoon, at the library. Guess it was Chinese New Year’s, the day of the parade – little kid in the elevator with his father, the child in a festive little golden suit. I murmured words appreciating the little boy’s cuteness.

And…my estimation of that day’s blog, “disjointed”. And noted that I was feeling isolated, alienated, words like that. And waiting for me to pick up that day, the highly-abridged audio book of Neal Stephenson’s Snow Crash, and a Wayne Dyer audio book called There’s a Spiritual Solution to Every Problem.

And had received an e-mail from Rachel Mills, editor of The Loin’s Mouth, a local literary publication. Maybe I can get some of this published in the next, summer issue. Perhaps with editing, selecting.

Rachel says she hangs out at some place called Whiskey Thieves. Well…not drinking these days, avoiding bars. Seems to mention transvestites a lot at the magazine’s MySpace – maybe Rachel’s one of those.

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And out of the library – had three bucks on my credit card – figured
Walgreen’s could transact that amount, since the little Tenderloin corner markets want a minimum purchase amount.

And to the hotel – woman on the street, D., kissed me on the cheek. Last time I’d seen her, I was drinking, had shared beer with her, but I’m not in that space anymore and, well, wasn’t welcoming her over-friendliness. But I was courteous nonetheless. She’s still needing a place to stay – previously, I’d offered to take her up to my room, get warm – but she didn’t have a identification. Now she does, but now I’m not welcoming. Told her this, and she didn’t seem to mind.

6:02pm, Saturday – heating up yerba mate tea – fasting then for twenty-four hours, continuing with the J.G. Ballard book of conversations. Then a whole long space, no voice notes…it was then Sunday, the next day, 9:32am – big deal to just stand up. Hadn’t eaten for nearly 40 hours. Something appropriate on the radio, about eating disorders. But I was fasting for health of mind and body, not starving.

And on the radio, mention of the eighty-eight constellations. At least in the system of the Western empire. I’m sure the Chinese have a different total, and the Arabic world another one too. They all have different calendars.

And noticed on my cell, two calls, from D., both not answered. Probably – surely – has been drinking continuously, and so I didn’t want to talk to him. And Odd Fellow brother Pat called – said he’d be at the hotel in a few minutes to pick up the e-mail from his daughter that I’d printed out for him, since he doesn’t do e-mails. And went down to give the message to Pat – chatted a bit with him in the lobby. Noted that it was mostly around money – we are both not rich, that’s for sure. And he didn’t want the copy of William Gibson’s novel Idoru that I’d offered.

And was around then continuing to clear stuff from my room – even a tiny bit of paper can be significant. Pulled out a book of Heloise’s household hints to take to the hotel lobby bookshelves – not altogether domestic, me, so don’t have a lot of use for a tip like: “Raisins, Preventing Them From Sinking in Baked Goods”.

posted by Velcro  # 12:17 PM

Monday, February 26, 2007

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…a few days ago – called Odd Fellow brother Pat, told him that I’d received and printed out an e-mail from daughter Lillian, who was studying in Ecuador. Sunny day then, cloudless blue, but for sure chilly.

Moving north towards the hotel. Looked at what was offered for sale on the street at a prime selling location, Turk and Hyde. Eye caught by a VHS tape for Black Street Hookers #8. Would sure not want to see this, even if I had a tape player. Got a DVD player set up, not been watching much – Alias compilations, and only parts of those. Maybe I’ll get some of the Monty Python TV shows, have a few familiar laughs.

And bought that day two potatoes and an onion, for a dollar. Had sixty cents, then, left from sale of four music discs at Rasputin’s. Trading in those becoming obsolete. At least have got a flash drive to store, digitally, in an up-to-date format, this blog.

And noted TBHQ listed as an ingredient in the vegetable oil blend (sunflower and canola) I’m using. Label says it’s an antioxidant, which is a good thing, but how good for you can a thing be that has nine thousand syllables in its name?

Listened to The Omnivore’s Dilemma recently, and it mentions the stuff. Says it’s a form of butane, geez. The amount is very small, just point-zero-zero-seven percent, but still. Got to a site that’s nothing but positive about it…said to prevent a rancid taste and flavor.

And recently avoided a bag of corn chips – the Tenderloin store wouldn’t take my card since I didn’t have their minimum purchase amount. A good thing, don’t need junk food. In The Omnivore’s Dilemma, became clear to me just how much so much average American food is based on corn. For instance, observe how much high fructose corn syrup – another set of initials, HFCS – is present in so much readily-available processed food.

And…this most recent series of pages continues to be called Love To Burn – LTB, more initials – and the blog name is still “Eldo Rado”. Undergoing some changes – no alcohol, for one thing. And am eating better.

2:58pm, Friday afternoon, three days ago. Waiting on the next free computer

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in half an hour. Noted dissatisfaction with music I have now. And then out the door. Hotel front desk man Vic told me to look at the baby blue car parked outside, his new, precious vehicle. Hotel tenant Ron outside, in grey sweats – I was wearing the same hoodie top. His had the U.C. Berkeley name on them – my near alma mater. He told me his wife told him to dress like that.

And to the local computer center. Guy came in handing out free passes to an independent film that was being shown on Turk. In honor of Black History Month. Maker was named Sanelle Sabanda, something like that, from South Africa. English Tea is the name of his movie. Not registering on a Dogpile search, off the radar of major media. Didn’t go.

And got another blog posting done. And then on my mind, a word of eight syllables that I could fit into a line of iambic pentameter, that, I guess, describes most of this blog: “….inconsequentialities abound…” And glanced at what was for sale at the little thrift shop on the corner of Leavenworth and Eddy: a Moody Blues cassette, On the Threshold of a Dream. Fifty cents. Skipping it – had sixty still in my room, tho’. And walked up past the Brown Jug – man sleeping there in a near-fetal and near-fatal position. How could he do that on the cold, hard concrete?

And headed to a corner market…but couldn’t buy the bag of chips I wanted since I wasn’t able to make the minimum purchase using that monetary medium. And another little market wouldn’t do it either. Guess it costs them for each plastic transaction. So into the hotel – two tenants stuck in the elevator on the first floor. That happened to me once in L.A. in the Nineties – not pleasant. Humans have a natural aversion to being stuck in small spaces. And…found a coat hanger on the way up to my room, something I could use. But it was broken.

4:59pm Friday, into the room – at least it was nice and warm. Had potatoes and an onion cooked. And got into overeating it, too much too fast. And turned on the recommended The Omnivore’s Dilemma…words that I noted: “bull semen”…and an unusual verb: “conflate”. And much made of the importance of grass in the food chain…can get wheatgrass juice at Juicy Lucy’s there on Columbus in North Beach – should do that, get on the bike, ride for it, experience the exhilaration. Money coming in about two days.

posted by Velcro  # 5:04 PM

Sunday, February 25, 2007

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Back to transcribing notes, the usual. Tho’ unusual for me these past nearly forty-eight hours, no eating, a total fast – only thing consumed, a whole lot of yerba mate tea. Wanting to get to someplace beyond the usual…

And…last music I was interested in, the Jim Croce love songs disc I bought at Amoeba on Haight. Have subsequently sold that at Rasputin – they gave me, geez, a quarter for it! A buyer said it was scratched, but it played fine…

And…call recently from the girlfriend of a guy of my acquaintance…he’d called recently, saying that she was in the hospital. But now am thinking maybe it was a scam – he said something about her needing money to leave the place. They’re both using some hard drugs, so that’s part of knowing them. They could both be grifters. Frankly, am pretty much innocent of such behavior – looked up the definition of “grifter”, at WordReference.com: “a person who swindles you by means of deception or fraud”. The word might fit them both.

And: called friend Cathead, thinking he might wanna go to the North Beach public house he likes – last week we were there, he bought me three pints. But…am avoiding alcohol lately…falling, I was that day, to less-than-noble behavior, catering to my urge to drink. Well, turns out he’s doing something else, putting in an application at a place he might work, so my plan was out.

And call from friend D. – in a hyper mood, words coming out fast. Had been thinking he’d be getting into an alcohol program out on Treasure Island soon, or one in the city – but yesterday he calls me again, and he’s really fallen from the wagon – had in fact used money he’d saved to take a motel room out on Judah, near the beach, and had called when he’d begun drinking again. And talked to him again this morning – back to his old habits.

And…thought to myself about then that I did have a little money I could access on my credit card, about six bucks. Plus I had four compact discs I could sell at Rasputin’s. Figured I’d get maybe even five dollars, but, geez, was I wrong! A quarter for that Jim Croce disc – had paid 8 for it used – and a dollar for a live AC/DC one. And secured a quarter for a Steely Dan. And a mere dime for a 10,000 Maniacs CD.

So…was out the door two days ago, Friday. The goal was to get a pair of

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cheap headphones for my digital voice recorder, so I wouldn’t have to handwrite notes before I did my blog – easier to just take it from the voice to the keyboard. Had those four discs, plus the small amount of credit card cash waiting the tapping thereof.

And thought I could walk up to O’Farrell and get a free Muni ride east to Powell and Rasputin’s through a back door, but decided to hoof it. And those discs – had what I liked most from the Jim Croce and the Steely Dan recorded onto a cassette, so it wasn’t a total loss to let them go. Also had a lot of the live AC/DC on a tape…but I associate that raucous music so much with beer drinking, and I’m moving away from that habit.

And as far as that 10,000 Maniacs – it was a gift from friend B.D., and just didn’t get into it. He got it real cheap at Tower when that franchise was going under. Only song I know from that band that I like is the Kerouac one.

And…from Jim Croce…a line from one of his, about “summer skies and lullabies,/nights we couldn’t say goodbye…” – that’s been repeating in my mind…and on my walk east to Powell, paused at a Chronicle box – photo of a “circumzenithal arc”, in color. Like an upside-down rainbow. A new word, but not one I can use too frequently.

So got to Rasputin’s, transacted that deal, got that way lower-than-expected amount. The young woman buyer seemed to be looking at me with a certain amount of skepticism. Like, why would I even be bothering with such a small amount of money? But: at least my expired passport as the necessary proof of identity to sell at Rasputin’s wasn’t an issue – either she didn’t notice, or didn’t care…and then got myself down Market to a Walgreen’s – figured I could get a pair of cheap headphones for five or less, which turned out to be the case. Bought a little green teardrop-shaped FM scanner with ear buds for three and change – perfect.

Then to the library, for the usual – could immediately begin to use my new cheap headphones. E-mail from the daughter of a friend – she’s in Ecuador, he doesn’t do e-mail, so I am the liaison for their communication. And also communicated with one Rachel Mills, the main force behind The Loin’s Mouth, a publication coming out of the Tenderloin, and having to do with the area. She might extract something from this blog for a future issue.

posted by Velcro  # 2:28 PM

Saturday, February 24, 2007

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...won something at the raffle at the end of this last Odd Fellows meeting: four plastic Coca-Cola glass replicas, with an American Idol tie-in. Actually, won two, and Sister Bonnie, who won the other two, gave hers to me. Got these back to the hotel I’m in and offered ‘em to the front desk guy, Vic, who took just one. Left the other three in the lobby, free for any takers. I don’t need more things, more items.

And: chatted a little with Brother Koichi, who was running the elevator when I was leaving. He said that it always rains on the Chinese New Year parade. Hadn’t noticed that.

And going to my room, met guy in the hotel who deals in weed. He knocked a little later and gave me an amount for free. Or, rather, in payment for the fifteen dollars he owed me for the DVD player he’d sold me that didn’t work. I’m not in the habit of smoking it, but added the amount to the amount I already had. Maybe someone will want it sometime.

And…took a few notes during the meeting, and during the socializing and eating time beforehand. Brother Tony had asked me for a donation for something, but told him I was broke. Am disengaged from the consumer system for the next five days – a spiritual exercise, to simply not buy anything.

And Brother Harry, talked with him a bit. Told him that Brother P. and I had recently been sifting through documents from the Thirties, but that we hadn’t come across anything with his name on it. He’s been an Odd Fellow for seventy years.

And Sister Lola shared with P. photos from a recent time she had at “The Top of the Mark”, at the summit of the Mark Hopkins Hotel. Pictures of her beautiful granddaughters.

And there was Brother Jesse, the new “Noble Grand” – the President for the year, basically, for our lodge. Like it that he runs the meetings fast – got a recent one done in thirty minutes, when the previous Noble Grand would often take over an hour.

And: had for my meal a burger…thought that I should’ve have the pastrami

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instead – more real meat. Not sure what that burger patty actually consisted of. (Been fasting, as of this, for a little short of twenty-four hours – part of the non-consumption. Having only a lot of yerba mate tea.)

And…felt a little bad about not knowing the name of one of the sisters in the lodge…knew her face. Geez, not necessarily that connected with these people, or anyone in who’s too involved in the fossil-fueled automobile system.

And: Brother Tony handed me a little slip of paper, and wanted me to write down the name of a non-profit that I wanted to benefit from the lodge’s benevolence – have a little donation sent their way if the slip was picked in at random. Couldn’t think of one off-hand…maybe the computer center I go to in the Western Addition. Really not involved in much of the economic and/or social system.

And had a little designer shirt that I wanted to give to Brother P.’s wife – I sensed he didn’t think it was an appropriate gift. But when she arrived I offered it to her anyway, but she said it was too small.

And: Brother Harry came up to me at one point before the meeting and wanted my support for a motion he intended to bring, something about his displeasure with lodge representatives at some event who left before it was over but still wanted to get paid. I guessed I went along with this.

And Brother Bernard, the lodge musician, showed up, Tony’s brother. Was gonna asked Bernard for a loan of twenty, but didn’t. Really need to get personal finances in order, not rely on loans and credit, geez.

And…during the meeting…noted Brother Lucky’s humorous use of a Nazi voice during one of the standard bits of wording we all have to recite.

And another brother, one I didn’t recognize, injured. He said he’d fallen off a bicycle – one designed with the seat twice as high off the ground as a regular one. So he’d blown out his back. Had trouble standing, even.

And: there was a moment of silence for P.’s grandfather, who had recently
died. He was the one who initially got him to join the Odd Fellows, about 14

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years ago.

And…then…those were the notes I took at the meeting…then, 8:15pm, Thursday, two days ago. Odd Fellow brother Pat called – said his leg was still hurting from an infection, so he wasn’t able to attend the meeting.

1:45am, had slept, then had taken a shower. Had experienced the revenge of friend Claire’s veggie chili mix that I’d consumed about twelve hours before. The jalapenos had burned a bit on the way out, as I thought they might…

And on the way back to the room then, the guy who’d given me that weed, with a cup, it looked like, for the sick lady down the hall from me. He asked me how it was – that weed. I said I wasn’t in the habit, but thanked him.

And wakeful in those early morning hours, got into an audio book called The Omnivore’s Dilemma – about the food Americans eat, where it comes from, how it’s produced. An expose, for the most part. Learned that so much of the average American diet comes from corn…uh…a lot made of how cows used to be fed on grass, which is their natural diet, but now, in the interests of fattening them up, and to save money, most are fed on corn, which in effect is cheaper and puts more weight on the beasts, but makes them sick in the process.

The author also focuses on one particular young male cow, as an example – he calls it “Steer #Five-Thirty-Four”…discussion of the creature’s “slaughter weight” – the poundage at which it’ll be killed.

And…thought back to that burger I had at the Odd Fellows meeting – making me complicit with the horrifying system of U.S. meat production. And…liked the use of the word “pestilential” in The Omnivore’s Dilemma…and…noted to request Tom Wolfe audio books from the library…

And…the idea in The Omnivore’s Dilemma, of how four cents worth of cereal is turned into a box selling for four dollars…and: had a vivid dream after this of a Tibetan ritual, with many fiercely burning candles, wind making them burn even more. And 10:37am…used my Buttoneer to attach a button to my yellow rayon/polyester shirt…

posted by Velcro  # 4:39 PM

Friday, February 23, 2007

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…thinking ahead yesterday to the Odd Fellows meeting that night – maybe I could borrow twenty bucks from Brother Bernard. But when it came to it, didn’t go there. Have a bad habit of asking for credit. Got to live within my means. Not a good thing, thinking of a gathering devoted to fellowship as a source of money, geez.

Then walking on the street – two beat cops ahead of me, peace in the Tenderloin so they didn’t have to get busy. Liked sight of a little girl reaching her arms up to a parent so she could be lifted up. And a walking kindergarten across the street, a dozen little children with their minders.

And got to the library, did my blog. Was gonna take out a Dick Cavett DVD with rock icons featured, but it’d been taken out. Got another Alias collection instead. Am really de-emphasizing moving visuals lately.

Took a dump in the library’s toilet – weird vibe in there. Checked out the books for sale at the little store: a biography of the young Katherine Hepburn for a dollar. Picked up items waiting for me: a Neal Stephenson audio book on twenty discs, and a Shirley MacLaine one, all about her love for her little dog. (So she’s a dog person…I’d rather hear about a cat.)

And there was a new Sasha Grey picture. The captions are interesting – this new one is: “Take in the extent of my sin…” Long-limbed she is, long arms and legs. She’s in some kind of Parisian brothel outfit. Not that I’ve been in a Parisian brothel – red garters, black bustier. I know that last word ‘cause of all the Madonna stuff I was fascinated by some while back.

And: still have credit at Wa’il’s corner market, but am not using that…was in the habit of getting forties of beer with that, but am refraining.

And: that Alias DVD, more from the third season. And the Shirley MacLaine one is called Out on a Leash – a play on words based on her volume of autobiography, Out on a Limb.

And repeating in my mind lately, a line from Jim Croce’s “Photographs and Memories”: “…summer stars and lullabies,/nights we couldn’t say goodbye…”

And then went to a homeless drop-in center to use their computer…but couldn’t get the Internet to work. Also, I’d say the fingertips of previous users would be ones it’d be good to avoid…

And: had made a copy of that day’s blog for Walter, the front desk man. He only wants to read the ones in which he’s mentioned…

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11:27am, back in the hotel. In the hallway, representatives of the Salvation Army, there to deliver food to someone, maybe to the sick lady down the hall, who really needs to get regular meals into her. Six hours until the Odd Fellows meeting.

Turned on the Neal Stephenson audio book…begins in 1713, with the hanging of a witch in London. Wanted science fiction…the novel has “baroque” in the title…not the subject I wanted to listen to. Also, had about this time about 200 calories worth of the sunflower/canola oil blend I’m using lately.

11:35am, turned on the Shirley MacLaine book. Computer in two-and-a-half hours. Missing a fully-functioning bicycle…hafta wait until the beginning of the month to take it in to Road Rage, have my mechanic Mike fix it.

Kafka quote at the beginning of Out on a Leash. Also, recently heard Kafka quoted by Wayne Dyer…this one, thanks to quotationspage.com:

You do not need to leave your room. Remain sitting at your table and listen. Do not even listen, simply wait, be quiet, still and solitary. The world will freely offer itself to you to be unmasked, it has no choice, it will roll in ecstasy at your feet.

That one also used by Tom Robbins in one of his novels…

Listened to a few minutes of the Shirley MacLaine book, but couldn’t really get into it – all about her obsession with her little dog. She’s enough of a presence in my mind, for years.

Also, have a lot of papers I’ve collected over the years to go through…

Noon-ish, called Odd Fellow brother P. – maybe I’d go in and use the Mac in the lodge office – something to do, even tho’ the set-up there isn’t perfect – can’t get that machine to configure like on other machines I use.

And something to do – guess I wasn’t following the Kafka advice quoted above, about just sitting, just waiting, still and solitary – always have to be doing something – something to do, cook up the last of the vegetable pills I’d bought on the street – had rehydrated them overnight, so they’d be easier to digest.

And got to a pile of papers from last year…USA Today article about a Christie’s auction of Warhol stuff – he’d given the things to his nephews.

And got into looking at my little calendar book for this year…thought to call friend
B.D. – had seen him the end of last month – he said he came into the city every

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four weeks, and I’d thought about that much time has elapsed.

So called him…but had got the dates wrong – next week will be four weeks. Chatted a little bit…involved with publicizing a bunch of Filipina models. He might go to Manila and host a show related to them. A real wheeler and dealer.

And call from Brother P. – he said the Mac in the lodge office wasn’t working…and he seemed uncertain about the food at the meeting – he’s got money issues of his own. I said I’d be there anyway.

Then got into a book of quotes from J.G. Ballard…monkey minded, me.

Then turned on a Deepak Chopra disc called The Spontaneous Fulfillment of Desire. Wanting to get his ideas into my consciousness.

And…saw in the hallway sign for the next Homeless Connect event. Am needing to get serious about getting a new California I.D. – could get one there. But…well…I think for six bucks I can get one through the Salvation Army, and save myself a long, long wait at Homeless Connect.

Also, somewhere else, a series of classes about coping with depression. Could use that, I guess. Mentioned the idea of going on “automatic pilot” (a bad thing) – and “patterned ways of thinking”. And the usefulness of “breathing mindfully”. Also, “…the links between thinking, feeling, body sensation, and depression.” At eight-70 Market – the Mental Health Association of San Francisco. This could be good for me…been fasting lately – that’s helping with negative “patterned ways of thinking.”

And got myself busy cooking up lentils I had – the last solid food I had in the room. Added those rehydrated vegetables to the mix.

3:20pm, Thursday, yesterday – leaving the local computer lab. Two hours and more until the Odd Fellows meeting.

Got a credit card statement from Bank of America about this time – have got that under control, enough to avoid unnecessary charges. Thirteen-29 in “finance charges”. Those’ll keep coming as long as I still owe.

Back in the room…Deepak Chopra on again…speaking about particles and waves, the quantum mechanics thing…

And had the idea for a cartoon for The New Yorker – Chopra had mentioned

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Werner Heisenberg and his famous Uncertainty Principle. So the cartoon would be a picture of the man, and the caption would go, like, “Uh, I’m not sure about that…” Would that work? Maybe too obscure a reference.

And…about then, a swift move – had left a glass of tea on a ledge near where I lay sprawled on my bed, knocked it over. At least it was just yerba mate leaf and water, nothing to stain the sheets.

And about this time got into cooking up the veggie chili mix given me by Claire, a woman at the neighborhood computer center. Uses a lot of textured vegetable protein, a form of soybeans – so it was satisfyingly thick. Deepak was talking about Schroedinger’s Cat. And liked one of Deepak’s words: “spermatozoa”.

And thought to myself about that veggie chili – it was likely to burn on the way out, a phenomenon I don’t care to experience. But it was what I had to eat.

And had a shirt I’d found from a local designer, Upper Playground. Had that name, but looking like the Paramount logo. Figured to give it to my Former Lady Roommate, who was likely to be at the meeting. But her husband might object to that gift.

And then back into the book of J.G. Ballard quotes. Liked photo of the publisher, V. Vale, in a photo with William Burroughs, Vale in the shadows, Burroughs in strong sunlight, examining his fingernails. And: note of the day Burroughs died, August 2nd, 1997 – a little before I left Los Angeles after over seven years.

And, restless…turned on the tube. Just about totally decided to stop the service – was looking for something of make me change my mind. On then, something about the death of Anna Nicole Smith.

Alternative viewing are DVDs…have two discs of the Alias TV series out from the library. Sydney Bristow’s cheekbones…she punches someone…a lot of her exposed, lean flesh…a example to follow…I could stand to lose maybe ten pounds.

And then yesterday afternoon, a helicopter, annoying, flying around outside. A crime? A media event?

5:34pm, deciding to ride my impaired bicycle over to the Odd Fellows meeting.

On the way out, a little gift for front desk man Vic, who’s into things Chinese, a bottle of ginseng extract I’d had sitting around for weeks.

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…neighborhood news: Turk and Hyde, construction at the site of a former gas station that’s been defunct for as long as I’ve been in the area, I believe, and that’s over three years. Asked young engineer guy in a hard hat what was going up, and he wasn’t sure. Across from The Fence, where sellers lay out their goods on the street – have bought much there in the time I’ve been in the Tenderloin.

Well, guy selling stuff – I told him I only had a quarter. He was willing to sell his Spider-Man hat for that much, but it wasn’t a thing I wanted. I’m pretty specific.

And into the hotel…paused to glance through a cover story about The Donnas. Their career not what it used to be. I’ve enjoyed their music, have actively sought it out. Like the local connection – they’re from down south, Palo Alto originally, I think. Gonna play at the Bottom of the Hill, a local club.

3:07pm, Wednesday, two days ago – having All-Bran cereal – found a box somewhere. The day I was up in North Beach drinking with Cathead – on auto-pilot, inebriated auto-pilot, and picked it up. Recall there were two, and left one for someone else – avoiding greediness.

And having glasses of tap water – woulda preferred a soda, but the money wasn’t there even for that. Studying a J.G. Ballard book of quotes. Next computer in eighteen hours.

5:50pm, up after sleeping for a couple of hours. Nowhere to go, nothing to do, outside of the room, no money to spend.

6:53pm, listening to a Wayne Dyer self-development audio book. Familiar voice – in the last weeks have listened to him a lot.

And then listened to a Deepak Chopra audio book. He says the cells of our skeletons are replaced every three months.

And: Dyer and Chopra combined for a lecture. Mention of My Dinner with Andre, how they wanted their presentation to be like that.

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Chopra said the universe is playful – just look at the trees reaching to the sky,
or the dolphins cavorting. But I was thinking of, oh, an octopus. How playful is that sneaky creature? And insects, Deepak – a lot of those aren’t particularly nice or playful. (I recalled Cathead’s joke name for Chopra, from a letter a while back: “Deep-Packed Chocolate”.)

And…Chopra mentioned the concept of bliss, beyond happiness. Bliss being happiness for no reason. Have been thinking of happiness and health and creativity as a crucial trinity in a life. Bliss goes beyond that, I guess.

8:15am, the 22nd of February, yesterday…back from a shit, shower. Preparing tea. Raining a little bit, as weatherpeople promised. Wet streets.

And, yesterday – it’d be exactly a week until I get a disbursement of money. Maybe in the meantime Odd Fellow brother P. would give me a little work. But I don’t need it, can do without the cash. And in fact, would be a good thing for me to disengage completely from the need to have it.

And had been listening a lot lately to the Jim Croce disc I bought used on Haight at Amoeba, my last purchase of music. Today just sold it at Rasputin’s on Powell – got a quarter for it, geez! One of the buyers said it was because it was scratched. But it played just fine. Well, got my 9 bucks worth from it. Croce also on the jukebox at the fine Tempest bar and restaurant, at Mary and Natoma.

And…that day wrote out five pages of notes onto paper from my digital recorder. Four didn’t seem like enough…have that sense of not having enough. Need to work on that aspect of my psychology…Deepak Chopra and Wayne Dyer emphasize the fact of the abundance of everything in the universe. I’m thinking incorrectly.

And…somewhere found a flyer for an event at the Two-22 Club, around the corner from the hotel – for The Loin’s Mouth, a Tenderloin publication. Didn’t know about this – third issue just out. Will look into this…

Well, it’s got its own MySpace…submissions requested – all about the Tenderloin…

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9:05am, back from taking a whole lotta shit – that All-Bran is responsible, in
part – had a lot of that the previous day. And a lot of lentils. Need to get into a serious fasting mode – read that one needs to not eat for at least 36 hours to begin to get the desired effect. Coming back, in the hallway, one of the more peculiar people in the hotel – always has newspapers stuck into his pants, into his shirt behind his head. Don’t know what his issue is. And he’s mumbling to himself often, about the weather, football.

And…it being the fourth Thursday of the month, the Odd Fellows were holding their meeting last night. Had missed the last one – too close to the beginning of the month, hadn’t realized it was already the second Thursday. But that day had noted to watch Sasha Grey on the Tyra Banks show.

And picked up yesterday for the first time in a while The Tibetan Book of Yoga, by one Geshe Michael Roach.

[Cutting this one short…got sidetracked by other things…]

posted by Velcro  # 1:04 PM

Thursday, February 22, 2007

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6:09pm, Monday, three days ago. Turned on cable briefly. Owe Comcast 66 bucks and change by the third, or else I’ll be disconnected. Don’t think it’s worth it. On the tube, Mayor Newsom talking about “wave energy systems” he’d like to see off the coast of California – alternative energy. Worthwhile programming. I get so self-involved with my little life, good to see something like that. He seems like a good man. I dunno, politics. Some think anyone in politics is crooked.

And: in terms of looking beyond my little life…have begun a list of people I know, that I’ve met, ones I see on a regular basis. Can review this periodically, keep them in mind. And…no notes until the next day, half after eight in the morning…considering suggestions in a book on natural vision improvement, by Janet Goodrich. Directing energy to the eyes, and through them.

9:40am, two days ago…back from taking a dump. Usual occurrence in the hotel – first toilet I went to, piss on the seat. Some real winners in the place. And…going back to my room, met Turtle, a fellow resident. Told me that the Balboa Theater way out in the Avenues would be screening the documentaries up for an Oscar, free. Too far to go, and really don’t care for the category, geez.

And…was that day listening to the 22-minute version of “Knock Yourself Out” by Tower of Power, from a ’76 live tape I’d bought on the street. Could find this useful these days – high energy music. Am changing the relationship to music I’ve had the past few weeks and months – so frequently I listen when drinking. But since I’ve stopped the daily consumption of alcohol, the way I listen to music is different, too. Today, enjoyed repeated listenings to the Jim Croce love song disc I have.

And: sign in the hallway for a screening of Mississippi Masala, the Denzel Washington flick from a few years ago. This at the Central City SRO Collaborative, an organization devoted to helping folks living in these little Tenderloin hotel rooms. Not a movie I’d care to see. Watched some of another Denzel flick when hotel neighbor Ishmael was in my room – his choice.

And: heading out that day to the library – talked briefly with hotel case manager M.K. She herself was in a little distress – had been out hiking in the woods with her sister and a tick had attached itself to her. And now she was thinking she was feeling it, feeling fatigued – the symptoms of Lyme disease. (That’s the way it’s spelled, I got through a Dogpile search – not “Lyme’s”, as I’d thought.)

Well, front desk man Walter was also there, next to me, and we encouraged M.K. – Walter in fact said Lyme disease was associated with Connecticut, not out here in California. And…down Hyde – ad for the new Zodiac flick – coming out in March. Remembered when they were filming in the Tenderloin, at Original Joe’s. Not one I

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want to see.

And, at the library, picked up free copies of new movie schedules, one each for me and for neighbor S., who’s very into cinema. And did my blog – printed it out in a new way, the four pages reduced all onto one. Can then tear and fold and make it into the shape of a little book. Currently, my blog name remains the same – “Eldo Rado” – and the title of the series of pages, for now, is “Love to Burn”.

And…am noticing the mentally ill more these days. Coming out of a library bathroom, weird vibe from a guy – he even motioned his hands in front of my face. And today, in a library copy room, weird vibe from a guy in there. Could be I’m more sensitive since I’m not drinking – I’m noticing things around me more.

And took out the day being described a new audio book, Frederick Pohl’s The Other Side of Time. Have listened to a bit of it – am liking it more than many I’ve taken out. Wikipedia about the man…very long-lived – this one came out in the mid-Nineties, and the man was born in 1919! So he was nearly 80 when he wrote it! Don’t know much about him – from “the Golden Age of Science Fiction” back in the Forties.

And also requested Wayne Dyer self-development discs from the Nineties, since I liked his more recent ones on inspiration and intention so much. (Today, listening to some Deepak Chopra. Got into him back in L.A. in the Nineties. Getting his clues on the cosmos…)

And…that day, two ago, got back from M.K. that Jim Croce disc – have been loaning her music. She had wrapped it in a paper, and was interested in what was on it: advice about getting good prices on stocks for stainless steel and copper, since these days China is gobbling up those minerals in incredible quantities. There are sure to be many wealthy people involved in that – rich getting richer. Not a message to me from her – just whatever she happened to have on hand.

And…happy with a healthy bowel movement about then – really need to get more of a life – taking too much of an interest in my bodily functions. Radio from someone’s room mentioned how Michael McDonald sang for Steely Dan briefly…

And looked briefly at one of those library movie listings – the local Cinematheque schedule in one. Disturbed by just reading about one flick which features nothing but intense images of cadavers. Yeah, really one I wanna see.

And…talked with Odd Fellow brother and general friend Pat on the phone about this time. Was curious about the bicycle he said he’d get me, currently in the garage of

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some woman in Berkeley. Well, he’s been sick with some infection the past couple of
days so, of course, that overrides any desire I had for those two wheels. He said antibiotics were really messing with him. I suggested yogurt…

And…got myself over to the Tenderloin computer center. But was an hour early – Presidents’ Day had confused my sense of what day it was…so back to the room…where I thought of a line of iambic pentameter – these random lines of poetry occur to me every so often:

The outlaw nature of that energy.

And: resisted the impulse to use my last quarter to buy a Top Ramen. That super-processed wheat, with excess salt, geez…and got into the RE/Search volume of J.G. Ballard quotes. The international references made me want to travel. A very global perspective he has. And added to what I was cooking that day a few of the concentrated vegetable pills I’d bought on the street. Better are original veggies, but it’s what I had.

And 1:37pm that day, call from Cathead. He was in the city putting out resumes, and said he’d be at the pub he likes in North Beach, and would I care to meet him there? So we arranged to meet in about 45 minutes – just had to hop on my bicycle, and it’d take me twenty minutes for the crosstown ride. Was planning to use a free computer at 2, but could save that activity for 6, when the local center would have extra hours.

And so got up there – Cathead already at the bar, ordering. I was intrigued by a sign for the twenty-seven-thousandth brewing by proprietor Allan G. Paul, and had me some of that, courtesy of Cathead’s dime. First beer for me in about a week – am being true to my decision to drink less. Last time, a Pilsner Urquell with the aforementioned Brother Pat at a place on Folsom, me buying that time.

And…hardly took note of what happened during my visit up there with Cathead – had that mind activity switched off. Did note words on sign in front, about how the place is “…the last of the Barbary Coast saloons.” Was called the Andromeda back exactly a hundred years ago, a year after the quake and fire.

Then, on my digital voice recorder, some drunken verbiage…about what was on display in the window at City Lights…and call at 7:10pm from a guy I know, Max – he said his girlfriend was in the hospital…and…in the City Lights window, flyer for an upcoming event…key phrase is “Hexen 2039” – a woman’s book about psychological warfare…hexen2039.net is the Website…got the following from that, to show you what I found interesting. The book…

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…charts Brodsky's scientific research towards the development of new mind control
technologies for the British Military. This work uncovers or constructs links between conspiracy theories, occult groups, Chernobyl, witchcraft, the US film industry, British Intelligence agencies, Soviet brainwashing, behaviour control experiments of the US Army and recent practices of its Civil Affairs and Psychological Operations Command (PSYOP), in light of alarming new research in contemporary neuroscience...

Brodsky is the alter-ego of author Suzanne Treister. A whole lot of U.K. events about this…and…got myself after the beer-fueled socializing with Cathead to the local computer center, spent time on the computer. (And wanted to mention an interesting coincidence – our mutual friend passed by the pub when we were there and sat for a while. She’d been working in the neighborhood at one of the art schools…)

And: 8:31pm that evening…noted sending an e-mail to Sasha Grey through her MySpace. Was interested in a picture of her as Pris in Blade Runner. She has a lot of potential. And back in the room, turned on an Alias DVD from the library. Beautiful sky in part of a show, taking up half the screen.

And was out later – still energized, from that beer…out on my bicycle to Union Square, looking for food in the trash cans around the perimeter. And it gave me something to do, geez – I just like the act of riding on two wheels…passed the Shoe Warehouse on Powell at one point, and noted to myself that they weren’t kidding with that name, so many square yards of nothing but shoes. Reminded me of something in J.G. Ballard, something he’d find noteworthy…

And back in the room, with the Frederick Pohl novel on. Liking the humor in it – not as over-the-top satirical as Douglas Adams, but with something of that flavor.

Then, 9:03am, Wednesday – noted it as “the day after”, after three pints at the pub with Cathead…and: recalled that he’d given me a two-dollar bill upon parting, and I had taken that, walking, to a liquor store on Broadway, bought a can of Pabst Blue Ribbon, then the same a bit later. Was really “tying one on”. Vaguely remember walking around there…recall standing in front of City Lights with my bicycle, drinking openly. No police ticket that time, tho’, as had happened on Haight earlier this month. And…yesterday morning, “quality time” with image from a flyer from one of the strip clubs up there in North Beach – liked the cowgirl motif on the woman’s costume. Really should retain my semen, geez. And…later that morning, the aforementioned Ishmael dropped by for a visit, made him some tea – nothing I could fix him to eat. He wanted to watch the tube, and we attended to some program about the stock market, designed for rich folks. His wife’s sick out at St. Luke’s, and he was heading there later, as he did every day, I think. More tomorrow…

posted by Velcro  # 2:27 PM
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Back a few days – out from the library, the audio books for Hunters of Dune, and Eckhart Tolle’s Through the Open Door to the Vastness of Your True Being, and Richard Carlson’s Easier Than You Think. Plus four episodes of Alias from its third season, on DVD.

And: Sandworms of Dune is coming next from Frank Herbert’s son Brian and his collaborator, Kevin J. Anderson. They’ve already done several prequels and sequels based on the Dune mythology. This Hunters and Sandworms are based, says the box text, on a final outline written by Daddy Frankie and hidden in a safe deposit box for a decade.

And…indulged recently in cheap coconut cookies. Must be a reaction to not drinking. But I haven’t gone whole freaky hog on these bad dietary items. Brea distributor – says they’re made in the U.S. somewhere, but the source not specified. Evil baked goods.

And…me coming in one day, person waiting in the hotel lobby. I take it upon myself sometimes to ask if they want someone’s door knocked on, a little act of kindness. Most of the folks in the building don’t have a phone. So did that for this person waiting, but no answer at the door. So what I do is call to the front desk and give them the message, either a response or not. Sometimes the person waiting gives a buck or something, but not generally.

And…liked this line from Hunters of Dune: “…a man-god who was partially a sandworm.” Really working the mythology – apparently somewhere along the way a human is spliced with one of the giant worms, geez.

5:40pm that day, a few ago. Not able to get into the Dune book. Turned on the Richard Carlson self-development one – he’s the guy that did the more famous Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff series…

KQED radio, Sunday, four days ago. Seems like when I’m not drinking I get into listening to this station on the radio. Okay program that evening, with mentions of biologist Richard Dawkins, who wrote The Selfish Gene, and Ken Wilber – read his Up from Eden some while back. Tho’ I can’t say what it was about. A real intellectual. Wilber said something along the lines of how a scientist can tell you where a planet will be a hundred years from now, but not where a dog will be in two seconds. Not sure what his point was. A

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very comprehensive thinker…

Well, since I’ve got Mr. Wilber on my so-called mind, here’s something from the Wikipedia entry: “…an American integral thinker and author. Working outside the academic mainstream, he has drawn on a variety of disciplines including psychology, sociology, philosophy, mysticism, postmodernism, science and systems theory to form what he calls an integral theory of consciousness.” Something of a maverick, a rebel of the mind.

Well…guess he’s like a Buckminster Fuller of his field. Fairly tough going, but I was attracted to his writing. Really gotta pay attention to the man, and even then it’s no sure thing that you can understand the vastness of his mind.

And…4:09am Sunday, the next morning. Had on a B.K.S. Iyengar Cd from the library, him discussing, duh, yoga. Like his use of the word “incrementally”.

7:58am that day, back from a shower. Gave a call to front desk man Walter, since the radiator hadn’t come on that night. Not really a big deal to me – can use my hot plate to heat up the room – and I am tending to be too over-heated, personally, in general. But many folks in the place really need that warmth.

And…frequently on my mind, my abdominal area, specifically isolating that, avoiding fatness. Have got a Gayelord Hauser health book from the Fifties that discusses the importance of keeping this part of the body fit. There’s a yoga move involving the lifting up and in of the stomach muscles that I often do, especially in the shower. And…read a few pages in a natural vision improvement book. Need to attend to my eyes as well.

And Odd Fellow brother P. called me about 9:30 that morning – had wanted to know if I could use the Apple computer in the lodge office that day, and he was fine with that, about noon.

And…got into a bit of an Earth, Wind and Fire tape I’d bought on the street some while back. “September” particularly got to me, so much so that I was in fact undulating my pelvic area, and that’s a sight. (Currently, have pretty much done with whatever music I have on hand…this morning, got into the

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Jim Croce greatest love songs disc I bought recently at Amoeba on Haight –
definitely worth the 9 bucks I paid. Come the first, guess it’ll be a Jackson Browne, in particular for “Fountain of Sorrow”.)

And…listened again to that Iyengar disc. Friend of mine, my Former Lady Roommate, really got into Bikram yoga classes big time for a while, taking them nearly every day, sometimes twice a day. Well…liked Iyengar’s phrase about how to turn instinct into intuition…

And…read a bit in one of the RE/Search books featuring stuff by British author J.G. Ballard. A lot of ideas about the effects of the media, and psychopathology, one of his favorite words. I’d much recommend looking these up – there’s one with nothing but quotes, which is the one I’m currently really focusing on, plus one with interviews, both just swell.

And…passing by the other day, the Conservatory of Music at 50 Oak Street, near Market. Formerly the home of the San Francisco Dance Center, which is now housed at the 26 7th Street Odd Fellows temple. And…call that Sunday morning to friend A. – hadn’t talked to him in a while. Recovering from pneumonia – had been sick in bed for a week.

And…noon, saw Brother P. He passworded me into the system…but first, something of interest to him, new film taken just before the Dallas assassination of JFK, of the motorcade, a lot of Jackie, before the shooting. I chimed in about how this could all be faked footage – can’t trust any images these days, geez. But I guess this is real and not just created recently.

And…well, did really want to use that Mac, but couldn’t get it set up the way I do at the other places I use free machines. I like to have at least three or four screens I can shift back and forth around: Blogger.com, where I post this, a Word document, Dogpile as the search engine, and, like, Sasha Grey’s MySpace, and Hotmail. But am not used to the Apple set-up and couldn’t configure it, so didn’t use it.

And…a bit later, helped Brother P. sift through old Odd Fellows documents, back to the Thirties. He needed proof that the 26 7th Street building we were in actually held dances, has held them over the decades. He and the city government are at loggerheads over…over something…P. needs proof of

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that specific use in order to get approval for something – I’m a little unclear
about the details. So we did go through hundreds of separate documents and found relevant ones. P. intends to display them in a folder as evidence for city officials. Glad I could help him a bit. And…later that day, that Sunday, call from Former Lady Roomate, a little chat. Notably, she told me she recently sent for some medicinal mushrooms, some name I didn’t recognize. There are a lot of these – the reishi kind are popular and well-known.

And also, we talked about the little oil painting that she’d given me recently – a student work – she poses for art school classes – thrown out at the end of a semester. Nice piece – an open book on a tabletop, with a tipped-over bottle of wine, the spout on top of the opened pages. Have had a lot to drink in her company, so therefore the relevance of the image.

And…around this time, got myself a big onion and a potato, for fifty cents, at the little store near the hotel. A bargain. And, 2:41pm, quality time with Amanda, a Playboy pictorial. Sex and food, geez, of the highest quality. For some reason, her image is retaining interest. In the absence of an actual woman, well, what’s a fella to do?

4pm, Monday, the next day. Overeating the lentil, potato, and onion dish I’d made. Turned on that Hunters of Dune disc set again, but, again, couldn’t get into it. I’m afraid it’ll be another one I won’t be listening to. But just now, waiting for me to pick up here at the library, a Neal Stephenson science fiction audio book – hopefully it’ll capture my interest. And about this time, got into more of Shirley MacLaine’s The Camino – recommended.

And…noted “deranged appetite” – had another package of those cheap Brea cookies. Have got a handle on that, tho’…not gonna go nutso and eat these every day, geez. And: when buying these, customer in the store, under the influence of something, going on and on about Hillary, him wanting her as President. Is she actually running? And…closing this with Wikipedia information about J.G. Ballard: “The adjective ‘Ballardian’, defined as ‘resembling or suggestive of the conditions described in JG Ballard's novels and stories, especially dystopian modernity, bleak man-made landscapes and the psychological effects of technological, social or environmental developments’, has been included in the Collins English Dictionary.” So there you go again…more later from another place…

posted by Velcro  # 10:04 AM

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

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…had listened to Shirley MacLaine’s The Camino recently – describing her month-long walk across hundreds of miles of Spain, along an ancient pilgrimage route that has been traversed for centuries. Discussion of her past life recall of Lemuria, an ancient continent in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, and the start of what came to be called original sin – she says it has to do with the beginnings of ideas of the self, of ego.

And: being a famous person, she was hounded by photographers. She says: “Celebrities are privileged to have no privacy.” More than once, when she was taking a shower, she was burst in on by a person with a camera. And also discussed, the influence of extraterrestrials on humans. Supposedly they intervened with primates, mated with them, even, and thereby the human race came into being.

And, at midnight one recent morning, heard from outside in the darkness of the Tenderloin what seemed like a thousand rounds of gunfire. I surely thought it was an outbreak of gang violence, one group really, really unloading on another in order to establish dominance once and for all. Well, there was more of the same a little later, and then it dawned on me that it was just a lot of firecrackers going off for Chinese New Year. Tho’ my original theory was not unfounded.

And…lately been getting into the talk on KQED radio again, geez – that state of mind. Coincides with not drinking. Really wanting a woman in my life, have a lot of time to fill…having the voices on the radio is a substitute for that. And…on the radio, learned that frogs are dying out in huge numbers. Linked to the presence of discarded human pregnancy test chemicals in the environment, it’s theorized.

And…Chinese New Year. Not into it...have some newspaper articles about it. It’s the Year of the Golden Boar, which happens every sixty years. The Chinese system has twelve signs, like the Western one, and five elements, so that combination multiplies out to sixty different variations altogether, a cycle of six decades. I’m a Dog of some kind, and not a golden one, I think – maybe a Water Dog.

And…9:15am Sunday, three days ago…shit, shower done, depression of a kind. Guess from the lack of beer in my life, for one thing. Found while taking care of that bodily business a discarded newspaper with an article about the Antiquarian Book Fair that was happening that weekend in the city.

The story focused on a woman named Chris, who used to work for Charles Schwab, 85 people on her staff, 85 hours in her workweek. Well, one day six years ago she went to a dealer’s shop on Geary, in search of a gift edition of T.S. Eliot for a friend, and was there introduced to the world of collecting rare books.

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And…have been really laying around a lot, not wanting to get up out of bed. At least
I do conscious breathing in and out through my nose, geez. And back to that woman who got into dealing old books. She focuses on “artfully illustrated” children’s books. She has at most about two hundred in her inventory at any one time. The late 1800s to early 1900s is her period of interest…and also, she collects some framed illustrations. (Personally, I’ve got John Tenniel’s illustration of Alice and the Cheshire Cat, from some free publication, in a frame I bought on the street for a dollar – gonna get that to a friend when I see her next, a friend who likes cats, as I do.)

And…that book fair. Some of the volumes go for as much as 300-thousand. The cheapest around a hundred, so that puts it out of my price range. But I’ve bought paperbacks on the street for a dollar that I treasure. I like that format, that size. And learned a term from that trade: books in perfect condition are called “high spots”. And learned that a British dealer recently sold a signed, spotless first edition of Catcher in the Rye to a member of the British Royal Family for about a hundred thousand.

And this Chris – she’s said to use corporate methods learned at her time at Charles Schwab to “set a course for growth”. She figures that in ten years she’ll have made as much as she would have had she stayed at the corporation, and had more fun doing it. She figures old books are a good investment, only becoming more valuable as the years go by.

9:40am that Sunday – call from Odd Fellow brother P. – could earn ten bucks by helping him copy a document at the lodge building. And had on a Smokey Robinson and the Miracles cassette I’d bought on the street…then out, heading to see P. The halal meat market was open – a good addition to the neighborhood. And had on my mind the idea of the androgynes of Lemuria – back then, said Shirley MacLaine, humans had both sexes in one body.

And to the lodge building – in the lobby, call from Comcast, telling me that service will soon be terminated unless I pay up. I believe I’ll just let ‘em do it. And: P. was concerned about an upcoming electrical inspection in the building. I was down in the basement with him for a while…he picked up a cigarette butt a worker had left – a no-no – no smoking allowed anywhere in the building.

And…P. said again I was very welcome to use the Mac computer in the lodge office, pretty much any time he was there. And…helped P. do his copies…and he gave me a couple of cans of beer. Was out on the street again, on my bicycle. Ran into guy I knew from the hotel, E., and passed those cans along.

And has also in my pocket, the latest issue of Time, another gift from P. And was

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thinking back to talking with him during the time I helped with the copying. The drawbacks of Liberia was one thing mentioned – the country in Africa created by freed American slaves.

And to the farmers’ market at U.N. Plaza. Desired a bundle of kale – have determined to add more vegetables into my diet – but was totally put off by the two dollar price – ridiculous. And so satisfied myself with a good quantity of broccoli for a dollar, plus two green peppers, an onion, and a carrot, all for another dollar. And rode up Hyde…Dutch lessons on cassette for sale on the street. Guess I should try to learn another language. But not that one. And on a bootleg DVD, The Protector, a martial arts flick, with new star Tony Jaa. Saw him in Ong-Bak and was impressed.

And at the halal meat market, a bag of lentils, a can of Moroccan sardines, about three bucks. Actually, two-98 – told the clerk to just give me two bucks, forget the pennies, but he misheard me and gave me two bags, not bucks. The fella also is not good with American money, has twice given me back more than was coming to me. Some colorfully-dressed women in there also – native eaters of the Middle Eastern food the place specializes in. Glad the store has got some business, want to see them do well. When I have cash I surely love their eggplant appetizers, and those sardines, and other goodies of an exotic kind.

And was flashing back to something Brother P. had said, about infantry Marines, the front line guys (and some women, I guess). Specifically, P. was indignant at court martials of those who shoot enemy soldiers after they’ve given up. Well, says P., the infantry people can’t be expected to just turn on and off their killer ways, especially after they’ve seen their comrades shot dead.

And back in the room, turned back on that Smokey Robinson tape, and prepared the food I’d bought. Hand-tore the bell peppers, didn’t use a knife. And in some newspaper I had, speaking of Liberia, the U.S. planned to cancel a major debt owed by that country – 391 million bucks. But Liberia still owed billions to other countries. (Guess this news was why P. had that country on his mind.)

And…oh, this was in that Time mag that P. had given me – a case made for giving an Oscar to Ennio Morricone. I’d be behind that – that famous spaghetti Western whistle by itself has been so prominent in pop culture.

And got into an entire article about Jim Carrey. The man quoted Emerson, for one thing, and Eckhart Tolle, a popular figure now on the spirituality circuit of speakers. Plus, Carrey spoke of the moment of his enlightenment…and he said that the idea of filling a hole in yourself is pointless, since we don’t have holes. And that time doesn’t even exist. (He has a new movie about, I gather, some guy who’s taken his interest in
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numerology – specifically, the number 23 of the title – to an unhealthy extreme.)

And: learned that Carrey doesn’t eat wheat, dairy, sugar, or drink alcohol. And liked the final quote from him, about “the light that gets through me”. He just needed to get out of the way of it and let it shine.

And downstairs – gave that Time to front desk man Walter. I’m still on his shit list for something stupid and rude I said to him, but he accepted it anyway. Was in the market for a little bottle of vegetable oil, and a bag of chips of some kind – a dietary indiscretion, but what the heck…

And went to Wa’il’s corner market for what I wanted – surprised that he was still in town – was told that he’d left for a long visit back to him homeland of Jordan. And a Tenderloin denizen was there in front of me, rambling on and on about I wasn’t sure what, with little bottles of alcohol in her hand. Wa’il gets people like that all the time. As long as they’re paying customers, it’s okay.

And got back to the room, turned on the B.K.S. Iyengar yoga CD I have out from the library. Liked the sexual metaphor used for the stages of breathing…the exhalation is the orgasm, for instance. Got to listen to that again, really get the symbolism. Should help with my cravings in that department – get into the sensuality of the breath alone.

And got into reading one of the J.G. Ballard books from RE/Search I have. He spoke of the myth of the British cooperating with each other in World War II prison camps. He says this idea was created entirely by movies like The Great Escape.

And: he said these days the idea most people have of the past is a rerun of Casablanca…

And Sunday, 3:10pm – on the way to the library, returning the Zane Grey 1914 Western novel I had on audio – another one I couldn’t get into for the entire length of it. And found left by a street seller the grey, simple hoodie I have been loving to wear lately.

And guy on the street said to someone: “Can you spare any change by any chance?” – a circuitiously-expressed request. Had an unusual little wooden box in front of him, and I told him it was nice.

And at the farmers’ market, got myself a decent little orange for only 30 cents, with the stem and leaves still attached. Ten percent of what money I had, but a wise purchase. [So that’s more of this life…more tomorrow…back to my room now – got lentils cooked, books to listen to…no money, but love to, like, burn…]

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3:24am, a Saturday, four days ago, past the middle of February. Back from an early shower – can be a good transition from one thing to another, that warm water on my body. Neighbor woman in hallway, sick – really has lost a lot of weight. She lifted up her shirt to show me how emaciated she was, ribs showing through. I left a middle-of-the-night message with the hotel case manager M.K. – maybe she could do something to help this woman.

Well…the woman told me she was even seeing the person who used to live in the room, the one who committed suicide, him just sitting there. Weird. Had listened in a Wayne Dyer audio book about how his grandmother used to have “involuntary hallucinations” when she was near death – this could be that.

And…in lighter news…was okay with this yellow – maybe “mustard” would be a better term – rayon/polyester blend shirt I bought for a dollar at The Fence at Turk and Hyde. A bit unusual – like me, I guess. Claire, a woman at a computer center I go to, called it a “blouse”, and that sort of put me off. I’m in general not necessarily projecting a real manfully manly image, and don’t need to soften it with a femme-looking shirt. But sometimes I might like to wear it. Lately, have been wearing a lot a neutral hoodie, grey, I found left at The Fence – which is actually a metal fence.

And…am thinking of attending a writing class held at a local community center. It was last night, but had gotten that afternoon a call from Cathead, wanting to meet at the San Francisco Brewing Company in North Beach, so no class. I feel confident enough in my writerly abilities to be able to get through something like that.

And…walking down the street, noticed the double ponytails on a little girl – a look I always like. Was heading to the library to return a Wayne Dyer book on inspiration that I’d listened to repeatedly, plus William Gibson’s Virtual Light – have been through that one over a dozen times, easy.

And: an “Eye of Horus” tattoo on the top of the spinal column of a woman walking down Hyde. And silver studded belt – a “punk” kind – might be out of fashion, frankly, but at least it was an effort at style. Plus a necklace of some kind. Liked the look, and her cute body as well.

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And down near the library, guy taking a digital photo of one of the giant
Roman faces on the U.N. Plaza fed building. And another motif on the same structure, an eagle. Reminded me of Phil Dick’s idea that when you see Roman Empire emblems like that, it’s a sign that that empire hasn’t gone away, that it’s still here all around.

And…did my blog…noted something about feeling spaced out – maybe it was my blood sugar. Need to tend to how my diet rates on that Glycemic Index. Well, in general, still working on the food thing, and the sex thing, geez. Still am wanting a good woman in my life, to share food with, and the aforementioned sex thing, geez.

And on the way out, checked books for sale, seven bucks each, at the little library store – two by Adam Parfrey, Cult Rapture and Apocalypse Culture, which later one I had a while back, in L.A. Strange fringe material – hard to typify it…got the Wikipedia entry about him: Feral House is his publishing company…his work “frequently centers on unusual, extreme, or ‘forbidden’ areas of knowledge.” Yeah, that about sums it up – thanks, Wikipedia, for saving me thought effort. (“You’re welcome, Eldo Rado, no sweat…”)

And…had taken out the abridged audio book of Shirley MacLaine’s The Camino…and…thinking back to the blog of my former junior high English teacher – she daily posts digital photos, along with quotes from the famous. That day, a pretty picture of ferns, and words from Nikos Kazantzakis. Didn’t have a response for either the text or the visuals.

And…got a call about this time from friend D., who’s out in the Mission now. Said I was welcome to visit, but he didn’t want me drinking. Coulda done that…but just wasn’t in the mood to go out there. But the no-alcohol policy was fine…last night had three pints of a special brew at the Brewing Company on Cathead’s dime, but had not had anything several previous days.

And…got back to my room, turned on the Shirley MacLaine tape – about her long walk in Spain along a famous pilgrimage route. Was eating broccoli soup I’d made. She was reading her own text, which was good. Noted her accent – “muh” spoken instead of “my”. Originally from Virginia, I think, somewhere south like that.

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12:59pm, that Saturday…another call from D. – he was in a little park in the Mission. Didn’t care for the bongo drums being pounded on in the area. We chatted for a bit – told him I wasn’t gonna make it that day. He’s thinking of getting into a treatment program for his imbibing in the city, instead of on Treasure Island, where he’d been thinking of going. He felt it was too isolated out there.

Well, D. doesn’t really care all that much for the city and for most of the people in it, but he also didn’t like the idea of being stuck out T.I. with nothing happening, either. Also, the in-city treatment program wouldn’t be charging him, so he could save up his veterans’ disbursement for a van he wanted to get so he can travel around the country.

And…got into the audio book – had heard it before. A lot of the metaphysical material she’s into, and had been made fun of for in the media. She says she was a young Moorish girl centuries ago. And that a man who was currently in her life was also in her companion way back then – they were together in this life in order to clear up some karma.

And…thought interesting the idea of how the soles of one’s feet are linked to one’s soul…and that walking along the special Spanish route she was on activated memories of her soul’s past lives.

And..about this time ran into Dave, a musician guy in the hotel…he’d attended the recent free Jefferson Starship show in the city, and had afterwards bought a live album by the band. Have heard the strains of “White Rabbit” emerging loud from his room recently. He spoke to me of Fender amps and details of the songs he liked – musician talk.

And…did a bit of shopping around then – a block of tofu at an Asian market. Wanted a little bottle of soy sauce, but was put off by this establishment’s helter skelter of bottles. Then a dollar’s worth of spinach at another place. And a buck-29 bottle of soy sauce at another – not the organic kind I like, available at Rainbow, but it was what the Tenderloin offers.

And back to the hotel – looked up to see over two dozen birds congregated on the roof right above my room. Took that as a good sign, that the avian tribe likes the vibe in there.

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And into the lobby – asked a woman sitting there if she wanted a door knocked on – a little random act of kindness. Went up to the one she said, but the guy said he was busy. Also, unusually, the guy had his own buzzer for his door. And upstairs…prepared the spinach – not as dirty as I thought it’d be – spinach is notoriously supposed to have a lot of dirt on it, right?

And…on my mind, working on having energy come more through my eyes. Have got a book on natural vision improvement, based in part on the theories of Wilhelm Reich, and that’s part of that.

And back to the Shirley MacLaine book – stuff about Lemuria, an ancient lost continent, which in the Bible is referred to as the Garden of Eden. And thought it interesting that the mango was the mainstay of the diet there, that it supposedly aided one’s telepathic abilities. (Recently had a Kern’s mango drink free courtesy of Odd Fellow P. – the whole fruit is recommended for the telepathic enhancement, I’d say.) And…well…apparently the Hawaiian Islands are all that’s left of Lemuria now…and there was something about the soul mates concepts – there are supposed to be trillions of these. Where’s mine? Hello, unattached soul here!

And out on the street a bit later – ran into L., who said she had “a nickel of weed” for two dollars. Had the cash but not in that habit now…still have a little amount in a plastic bag in my room that I’ve had for weeks. Last night was thinking to make tea out of it…or, perhaps more effectively, simmer it in oil for a while to extract the THC essence.

And…woman in the hotel, P., standing in the lobby, wondering if I’d buy her a drink, take her out and do that. Not into her in that way, geez. And then to the local computer center, did my thing, then out about 5pm that Saturday afternoon. Sun setting – stood outside a short while and took in some rays.

And had received a call from Odd Fellow brother Pat – was at the Nitecap bar a couple of blocks away. Guess I could’ve gotten a drink on him, but am in general in a non-imbibing mode. And he wanted to know if I’d e-mailed his message to daughter Lilly in Ecuador – had done so. And…not sure if his suggested trade of bicycles will happen. The one I’ve got now isn’t in the best of shapes, and the one he’s got is, but I like mine and I might just keep it.


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