Wednesday, June 27, 2007

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…taking up from yesterday, and in no particular order: wanna remind you about the excellent Tenderloin photographs at http://upfromthedeep.blogspot.com/ - Mark Ellinger is the creator, and I recommend his work much.
Keep getting Classmates.com material for my high school reunion. Maybe I’ll get to one of those sometime.
Just got the new RE/Search e-newsletter from S.F. publisher V. Vale – always great material. See http://www.researchpubs.com. Very literate in a countercultural way – probably THE source for anyone interested in British author J.G. Ballard.
And also this morning got my weekly Free Will Astrology e-mail from Rob Brezsny. Here’s the reading for… SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Welcome to Part Two of your outlook for the second half of 2007. We're checking up on how you're progressing with the long-term tasks you were assigned six months ago. I trust that by now you're supremely composed as the changes whirl around you and within you. I mean, you will always be the zodiac's master of transformation; you'll always thrive on going through ceaseless, deep- seated shifts that would terrify most of the other signs. But if you're taking advantage of this year's cosmic opportunities, Scorpio, your eruptions of *abracadabra!* are being buffered by a profound grace. Your experiments in turning lead into gold and garbage into treasure are proceeding with a generous-spirited poise. Now you're ready to take it to the next level of relaxed elegance. (See http://www.freewillastrology.com/newsletter/ for more information.)
And there are a few things I wanted to share, for some reason: Bought a package of Zig-Zags for the first time in a long while yesterday – tho’ when I got back to my room saw that I already had a package of Midnight Special ones that came with loose tobacco that I’d forgotten about. Coulda saved that dollar-plus expenditure.
Anyway, bought the papers since a friend I ran into on the street turned me on to a good quantity of shake. Had on me myself a few bottles of Corona that another friend had given me (albeit for a little work done), so gave the friend with the leaf one of ‘em. Wasn’t looking for the stuff, but I’ve been
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smoking it in the Zig-Zags. Pretty mellow. Perhaps too mellow. It’s the extremity of low-THC leafy material that growers tend to toss.
And…continuing with the Comcast Seventies channel – Blood, Sweat & Tears among the great artists featured. (Heard “Hi-De-Ho” this morning – just learned through Dogpile.com that it was written by the legendary songwriting team of Gerry Goffin and Carole King. Far from my favorite BST tune, but it was okay enough to hear it. Beer woulda helped a lot, but I’m out. Got a little work in three hours, so some of the money earned will go for more suds.)
And: still haven’t decided whether to continue with T-Mobile and their cell phone plan. A land line into my hotel room’s looking good right now – can save myself 50 bucks.
And getting much good use from the round wooden table that my immediate neighbor in the hotel gave me. How did I live without it? Have been using other, smaller surfaces to write on, put stuff, but this is the way to go.
And: considered again this morning the concept of a coven of college girls – twenty-one of them. They were the subject of a recent pair of iambic pentameter lines I wrote – I print them again: “The Twenty-One, a coven, college-style -/their graduation’s starting in a while.”
And: saw Odd Fellow brother P. yesterday – he had a little work for me. Asked him about the Thelema temple group that uses space in the 26 7th Street building some evenings. A public-invited group is happening in September –guess I’ll go there. Golden Dawn-oriented magic. Don’t know much about ‘em, really. Yeats was a member of that order a century ago.
And…someone had left a bunch of fat, yellow spaghetti squash in the hotel lobby – got three…can add ‘em to what I cook in my single pot. I gather they’re very fibrous.
And…got some food outta Union Square trash last night – happy with it – it’s in my pot now, awaiting my hunger.
And…couldn’t help but notice the many young women at the dance school at the 26 7th Street building when I was there yesterday.
And…currently wearing an item I found in a discarded shopping cart, a Guess somewhat thrashed jeans jacket – a space and not a midnight cowboy look…

posted by Velcro  # 9:12 AM

Monday, June 25, 2007

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…from e-mails…

One this morning from Rachel of a local Tenderloin zine. Still have to put together a page of something to send her for publication in her next issue – I’ve got about a week to do that. Just cutting and pasting paragraphs from this blog should do it. Not sure what her background is, but she gives good advice about how to think about what I write. And she possesses immaculate punctuational abilities, a good sign.

And…got an e-notice from the library about a book due – one of the Charles Bukowski biographies I have out. Just checked the right button and renewed the easy, electronic way.

And…e-mailed myself the Wikipedia entry on The Dirty Dozen. Got Lee Marvin on my mind recently – have a 1980 biography of him out, read in it during my recent visit to see a friend outside the city. Skipped most of his early life, his Marine stint – mainly interested in his acting life. A real character off-screen as well. And drank more than a school of fish.

And that reminds me…that quote of Lee Marvin’s making fun, I think, of “the Method” school of acting…gonna look that up. Might be hard to find…

…but, well, it was easy. See
http://www.fishonfilm.com/motivation/ - yeah, he was asked what his motivation was, and “Thursday” was his answer – pay day.

And…a fourth e-mail, another to myself, reminding me of something called The Bohemian Manifesto. Written by one Laren Stover. The Wikipedia entry says “it details the eccentricities, the peculiarities, and the informalities of being a Bohemian.” One to seek out.

And I also e-mailed myself the Wikipedia entry on “Bohemianism”, full of good information.

And…had e-mailed a friend thanking him for sending me some material about Gypsies. Guess he thinks I’m one. I sent him the Wikipedia entry on “Bohemian”, since I consider myself that and not a Gypsy. Somewhat similar concepts, tho’.

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The entry says the word “can describe any person who lives an unconventional artistic life, where self-expression is the highest value — that art (acting, poetry, writing, singing, dancing, painting etc) is a serious and main focus of his or her life.”

And…e-mailed myself a recent four-page blog entry. This stuff is useful mainly to myself to keep my thoughts together – that’s why it’s interesting to see what I can cut and paste out of it for Rachel’s zine, selected for a more general reader.

Well, the blog featured information about Sixties and Seventies star Britt Ekland. There’s one called The Bobo that she did with Peter Sellars that I remember from years and years ago. And she was in the original Wicker Man. And Charlize Theron portrayed her recently in a Sellars biopic.

And I quoted an extensive customer review of Ekland’s autobiography True Britt which said “…she's the only woman in Sellars's life who didn't end up dead or a drug addict or an alcoholic.” Nice guy.

And…printed out an e-mail from a friend – he answered a question I posed to him about whether the Rolling Stones are indeed “the greatest rock and roll band in the world”.

Well, he tells me he figured for a long time the Who were the greatest since, to his way of thinking, the Stones were more in the rhythm and blues category.

But now, he does think the Stones are #1 in rock. (The Beatles are, I guess, his favorite, but he doesn’t put them strictly in the rock genre.) And…he also quoted from mid-Nineties Rolling Stone interview with Mick Jagger, about how hugely popular the Beatles were, and that the Stones always came in second to the Fab Four, to his chagrin.

But, personally, there are so many more bands that have meant more to me than the Stones or Beatles – and never was a fan of the Who, for some reason. A band like the Eagles – now that’s music I like. Their new one’s not out yet – it’s called The Long Road Out of Eden. But could be in stores very soon. I’d buy it – Don Henley can do no wrong, or little.

posted by Velcro  # 11:07 AM
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Have been considering fiction, different from the non-fiction of this blog. Wrote down some ideas:

A title could be Soul Feed. Maybe a novel. Pen name attached: Cal Vero. A woman would be the protagonist, named Jilly, Jilly Back.

She would say things like, oh: “Two left, Ringo and Paul.” (She’s very into music.)

“Faster Crowds” – title for something, maybe a chapter.

Jilly would like listening to Seventies rock and pop songs. Like “Lucretia MacEvil”, by Blood, Sweat & Tears.

And Steely Dan, too.

And she would ask people, a game of hers, which of the following three Barrys is preferred: Bonds, Manilow, or White? An assessment of personality.

And “Evil Ways”, by Santana, another song she’d like.

And…she’d like Bachman-Turner Overdrive also. An album: Not Fragile, from ’74.

And also, Lulu’s 1970 hit “Oh Me Oh My (I’m a Fool For You Baby)”.

And the Atlanta Rhythm Section’s “So Into You”.

And she’d know that Jinx Dawson was the lead singer for Coven’s “One Tin Soldier”. (There’d be some sort of Billy Jack connection with this – the name “Jilly Back” is the same, with the first letters switched.)

And other songs: the Isley Brothers’ cover of “Summer Breeze”. And Firefall’s “You Are the Woman”. And there’s Tin Tin’s “Toast and Marmalade For Tea”. Jilly likes the obscure songs.

And there’s “Band of Gold” by Freda Payne.

And Jilly would wonder why “candle” and “candy” are spelled so similarly.

And…on and on. Those are just preliminary ideas. Now back to the usual content of this:

…rode a 14 bus from “The Top of the Hill” in Daly City back from a 24-hour visit to a friend in South City. Liked that it was a “limited”, which didn’t make every stop, so that I got back fairly quickly to the heart of the city. Was able to make observations about the layout of the
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town – such as where Valencia intersects Mission.

And thought during the ride of a line of iambic pentameter: “Fulfillments of their functionalities.”

And…off the bus, near Market, walking back to the hotel, ran into M., a guy I hadn’t seen in a while. Got his number, he and his girlfriend’s. They’re doing better than when last I saw them a few months ago – they’ve both got jobs, he says, and a place to live. He’s probably still doing heroin, but at least he’s keeping his life together.

And…later that afternoon, two days ago, thought to myself that the word “heterosexuality” has eight syllables – quite a lot.

And…thought of a good heroic couplet: “The Twenty-One, a coven, college-style -/their graduation’s starting in a while.” (Inspired by a special edition magazine from Playboy I have, featuring pictorials of twenty-one college girls.)

And…back in the room, continuing to listen solely to Comcast’s Seventies channel – stuff like Badfinger’s “Day After Day”, “The Way I Want To Touch You” by the Captain and Tennille (impressed with her voice), and Steely Dan’s first, “Do It Again”.

And…later, at a computer, researching stuff. Such as the current situation of Jim Kelly, one of the Enter the Dragon stars. (As of last year, teaching tennis in L.A.)

And…another line of iambic pentameter: “The triple X of empty-handed love.”

And thought about porn starlet Sasha Grey for the first time in a while – I guess because I got an e-mail notice of her latest MySpace blog posting. Featuring signing hours for her appearance at some porn industry meet-and-greet.

And title for something, maybe a martial arts movie: Furious. Featuring angry women. And…slipped back for a day or two into Ancient Age. Geez, if I gonna do that, got to maintain a good diet and exercise regimen. (Mixed the Kentucky whiskey with yerba mate tea – more healthful than 7Up or Sprite.)

And…looked at a calendar for upcoming events at Stern Grove – thought of this since one of the overnight front desk guys at the hotel likes the shows they put on there. Anoushka Shankar will be there (daughter of sitar legend Ravi). Also, an outdoor performance by members of the S.F. Ballet.

And…also listened to recently, on the Seventies channel, from 1978, Player’s “Baby Come Back”. (So that’s it for all my notes. More probably later…)

posted by Velcro  # 9:17 AM

Saturday, June 23, 2007

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Nine e-mails:

…one about Britt Ekland’s True Britt autobiography. This is one customer’s review, punctuation intact:

This is an interesting and entertaining book. Just how accurate it is of course is open to question. It was probably the first kiss and tell book and Britt certainly got around. When it came out back around 1980 Sellars had just died and many were shocked by her account of her 4 year marriage to him. In fact we now know she was probably telling the truth. In the 70's she had a 2 year relationship with Rod Stewart that generated acres of tabloid coverage. She famously tried to sue him for palimony when they split up but her case was thrown out by the courts and she accepted a $ 1/4 million payoff. Britt Ekalnd never really achieved any notable success as an actress although ironically she appeared in 2 of the best films of the 70's Get Carter and he Wicker Man. She probably could have had a better career but of course that's so true of a lot of people in the acting business. A lot of it is down to luck. She had some success in Sweden and had a Fox contract when she met Sellars in the early 60's. There's no doubt he did a huge amount of damage. What's very sad is how her daughter Victoria turned out. In later years Britt has made a living doing panto. She was stunningly beautiful in her day and was a great chat show guest. Finally she's the only woman in Sellars's life who didn't end up dead or a drug addict or an alcoholic. She's a survivor

And…next, #2, from the Wikipedia entry about La Ekland:

Ekland became famous as a result of her 1964 whirlwind romance and marriage to British actor and comedian, Peter Sellers, who proposed after seeing her photograph in the paper. She stood by him after he suffered a series of massive heart attacks shortly after their marriage, and in 1965 they had a daughter Victoria. The couple made two films together, After the Fox in 1966 and The Bobo in 1967, before she divorced Sellers. The divorce was acrimonious and Sellers behaved appalingly, significantly Sellers son Michael was aways extremely complimentary about his erstwhile stepmother. Ekland also has a son, Nicholai (born 1973) from her relationship with record producer Lou Adler. [There’s more that you can check for yourself.]

And here’s one I need to think about more before responding to, from JCB:
The Blogsite failed to put up several days of entries?Shit! I could've sent you replacements from theduplicates sent to my e-mail if I wasn't so damn quickto erase the imperfect copies...Hmmm; for a long timeI thought The Who the Greatest Rock 'n" Roll Bandbecause I considered the Stones to be more Rhythm andBlues (The Beatles not really being in eithercategory), but now I think the Keith and Co. might be

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the RNR Kings.Here's an excerpt from a 1995 Rolling Stone Interviewwith Mick, regarding thier relationship to theBeatles:RS: Weren't you particularly compared with theBeatles, though?MICK: The Beatles were so big that it's hard forpeople not alive at the time to realize just how bigthey were. There isn't a real comparison with anyonenow. I suppose Michael Jackson at one point, but itstill doesn't seem quite the same. They were so bigthat to be competitive with them was impossible. I'mtalking about in record sales and tours and all this.They were huge.RS: Bigger than Jesus?MICK: They were bigger than Jesus!RS: And there came a point where you were Band 2 afterthat.MICK: Yeah, we were Band 2. Like Avis. It's horriblebeing compared to a car......Robert Fripp, who's output, on the surface,sounds nothing like the Beatles, aspired to attain thelevels of their songs where the listener enjoys it onthe first hearing, then, on later listenings, finds
more and more in the instrumentation.

And…the next e-mail: my thrice-weekly Shakespeare sonnet – skipping that. And then…a new blog posting from Miss Sasha Grey, very excellent in her field, from what I gather…this posted at her MySpace…

Sixth…a notice from the library here in Frisco – the Truman Capote compilation I requested is there. Tho’ today the facility’s closed due to the Pride events in that area…

7th…this from a friend and former co-worker:

Re: Earth, Wind & Fire "Devotion": Yeah, that's good. I just bought their "Powerlight" CD; used to have the vinyl. The Atlanta Rhythm Section song "Spooky" was from 1979 and was by the Classics IV before that, from 1968. Re: "papers"; I suggest you leave that and tell any potential providers you don't do that illegal

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unhealthy stuff. Tobacco killed my dad among many and I suggest you don't be a provider of
that to others, either. Just my 2 cents but there is a lot of meaning in it (I say modestly).

And this from another friend, tho’ not a co-worker:

Thought you might be interested in this. Keep reading.

Dear Straight Dope:What are gypsies? Before I left the good ol´ U.S. of A., I thought theywere just carnies and traveling bohemian types. Turns out that inEurope,where I have seen them all over, they have a totally different language,clothing, and everything – in fact, they are considered here to be of acompletely different ethnicity. Also, are the traveling carnies of theU.S. any relation ethnically? —JimDear Straight Dope:My mother grew up in the late 40s and early 50s in south Philadelphia.Shesays she remembers gypsies living on the outskirts of town –dark-haired,dark-complexioned, gold-laden people she was warned about time and timeagain. She wasn't allowed to get her ears pierced until college becauseshe was admonished that she'd look like a gypsy. Where did they all go?Did they just decide to take out the earrings, sell the ponies, and joinmainstream America? —B. Devon, Oakdale, CTDear Straight Dope:Who or what is a gypsy? Gypsies have been featured in countless moviesandbooks but those depictions seem to be very different from the modern-dayones turned up by a simple Internet search. And the term "gypsy" seemstohave been made over to convey a spirit of romantic wanderlust... but I'mbetting the first gypsies weren't so taken with life on the road. So

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what's the truth? What race of people, if any, does the term refer to?When was the term coined? Who really, does it refer to today? And wasJohnny Depp's character in Chocolat anything close to the real thing?—Andrea GonsalvesDear Straight Dope:How come we never hear about gypsies anymore? How does one go aboutbecoming one? Are they accepting applications, and if so where would Iturn one in? —BriguySDStaff Gfactor and guest contributor Silenus reply:All that is gold does not glitter,not all those who wander are lost;the old that is strong does not wither,deep roots are not reached by the frost. —J.R.R. Tolkien We'll take these questions in order:1. It's complicated.2. Yes, basically.3. About as close as Jack Sparrow is to a Caribbean pirate.4. They're still around, but they aren't recruiting.Seriously, this is a complicated subject. If you saw Borat, you saw someRomani people, the ethnic group most often associated with Gypsies.Borat's home town was really a Romani village in Romania, but the Romaniwere portraying Kazakhs, not themselves. (Just the same, they weren'thappy – they sued the filmmakers over it.) How did the Romani peoplecometo be called Gypsies? Anthropology professor Anne Sutherland in Gypsies:The Hidden Americans (1975) says the word Gypsy derives from the timewhenthe Romani entered Western Europe and "represented themselves asEgyptians," the name subsequently evolving into Gypsies.
And finally, 9th – I believe my numbers are correct – another notice from the library – an item I have checked out is due back. Like to keep the fines down to non-existence, or the most minimal. [So that is that – four pages instead of the usual two. I’ve not myself read most of the above, so it’ll be surprising. Feedback desired…]

posted by Velcro  # 2:26 PM

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

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Various thoughts, some of them perhaps relevant to you…

…first song of this day, “He Don’t Love You”, Tony Orlando and Dawn – on the Comcast Seventies music channel. Not necessarily my favorite of their tunes, but I liked it well enough. The channel plays a lot of them, at their peak of popularity. 1970’s “Candida” may be my favorite they did.

And: noticed the similarity between the words “poverty” and “poetry”, whatever that connection means. (See Linda Goodman’s Star Signs for an interesting take on the meaning of similarities in words. Read it in the Nineties in L.A. at the Bodhi Tree metaphysical bookstore.)

And…another good song this morning: “Ring My Bell”, from ’79, a disco classic. I believe it’s a gay anthem, popular in places like Studio 54 and with the likes of Truman Capote.

And…saw a guy this morning on the street in front of the hotel who (whom?) I thought was a guy who burned me on acid a while back. Looked a lot like him, but it wasn’t the dude. But this guy knew the guy who burned me, and himself was burned by the guy and even, he says, beat this other guy up ‘cause of a bicycle theft. Made me feel sorry for the guy who’d burned me.

And…another question for you: “Kantner or McCartney, in terms of Pauls?” (Kantner for me.)

And…there’s a free phone in the hotel I can use sometimes, when the case worker’s in. Made two calls this morning, left messages. No incoming calls, tho’.

And…sign in the hotel calling the rooms “dwelling units” – four syllables instead of one. Legalese, I guess.

And…listened also to “Brown Sugar” on the Comcast system – “scarred old slaver” is a phrase that can confuse. See
http://www.lyrics007.com/Stones%20Rolling%20Lyrics/Brown%20Sugar%20Lyrics.html – not necessarily the best site, but it came up first on Dogpile.

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Anyway…since I was there, cut and pasted the following lyrics. Y’know, it’s really hard to tell some of what Mick’s singing:

I bet your Mama was a tent-show queen/And all her boyfriends were sweet sixteen./I’m no schoolboy but I know what I like -/You shoula heard ‘em just around midnight.

…”shoula” isn’t right, of course – bad transcription. Like the line about the schoolboy. Keith’s lyrics, I believe, due to the heroin parallel.

And…thinking that I was wearing muted solids this morning. Saw a guy in a colorful shirt and thought that tho’ I sometimes enjoy that look, today was into the (repeat after me) muted solids.

And…thought of the similarity between “stroll” and “street”. Same Indo-European root, I guess. And there’s “strand”, “strip”…

And…went into the Central City SRO Collaborative offices near the hotel this morning, for the heck of it. Picked up their calendar for this month, featuring important dates, like Prince’s birthday.

And…went into Wa’il’s corner market to see about more beer on credit – another ten bucks, which would take me to thirty owed the man. Saw him, but didn’t ask, thought better of it. Might see how I feel after this and go again.

And…talked to a lady I know in front of the hotel – gave me two instant soup packets, Vigo brand. She’d gotten them through the Internet, but didn’t like them when they arrived since there is a chicken component. So she’s givin’ them away now.

And…was thinking: this woman said cocaine is considered a narcotic. But, “narcotic” is from a word meaning “sleep”, I believe. Well, at
http://www.medterms.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=23586 it says, the word’s from the Greek, for “numbness or torpor”. So, like, does cocaine fall into that category? I think not. “Stimulant” is the proper category…anyway…that’s it for all my notes now, and these two pages…

posted by Velcro  # 1:24 PM
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…well, looks like Blogger.com, the site I use to post these, made a mistake, in that entries numbered nine-zero-five to nine-sixteen didn’t post. Have hard copies, but didn’t save ‘em to a flash drive, so it’d be so time-consuming to type them out again, geez.

And…am making good use of free address labels sent me, as a member in good standing, by the Odd Fellows organization. I occasionally do the odd snail mail, and the little labels look good on the envelopes. (They want a donation, but haven’t done that so far. Should send ‘em at least a token amount in appreciation, I guess. But they have more money than I do, geez.)

And…have begun listening to the radio through my Comcast room service. KQED is always there for intelligent spoken words. But as of just now am tuning in to the Seventies channel. A whole lot of very good music came from that decade – last song I heard this morning before heading here to the library, Roberta Flack’s “Killing Me Softly”, so how great is that?

And speaking of Seventies music, also on the tube, a ’71 concert by Ike and Tina Turner, from Holland. Altogether marvelous. The Ikettes, the three young lady back-up dancers and singers, are truly amazing. And there’s good ol’ bad ol’ Ike himself in the background, playing his instrument, adding his occasional deep bass vocals. And not slapping Tina, yet.

And…speaking of stuff on the tube, tuned in some of Taxi Driver the other night. Remarkably lean physique on De Niro, really convincing for the part.

And…go to Wikipedia to get a good entry for “Tenderloin, San Francisco, California”. Very informative, very. The link is

And…had some Royal Gate the other night, just a touch mixed with 7Up, since a friend in the hotel brought some over. Didn’t want to go there again, but it didn’t really hurt to have that little taste. Well, “been there and done that” with that cheap vodka – like the name – and also Ancient Age. Currently, have been good with just sticking to, when I can afford it, or get it on credit, small cans of Miller Genuine Draft. (That one since I was once told by a reputable source that it contains the least amount of toxins – it’s “cold filtered”, whatever that is.)
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And…super-loud jackhammering in the ‘hood recently for some reason. Certain squares of concrete are being cracked up, with a very loud noise. Can’t believe the physical stress that would cause to the workers – but I guess the guy holding the hammer’s being paid well, anyway. (Recently asked a sanitation worker picking up trash cans outside the hotel how much he made – about 36 an hour. So that’s pretty adequate compensation – over three times the hourly rate I ever made in my life…)

And…recently thought of a line of iambic pentameter: “The soft rock option, Comcast Frisco style.” Not exactly love poetry – tho’ I love the music, and I guess I love Comcast, sort of, for providing certain programming.

And…gotta love that Natasha Bedingfield – her “Unwritten” was on the other day (not on the Seventies channel, of course). One of my favorite pop/rock tunes of recent vintage. And she’s an extreme cutie to bootie…

…well, Dogpiling on “natasha bedingfield nude photos” – one site was not available…a very quick search rewarded me with this site, with a cute pic of the chanteuse:
http://www.hicelebs.com/gallery/natasha_bedingfield/9.html. She’s not primarily, as far as I know, an actor, so she wouldn’t be putting out the unclothed material, in general.

And…gotta curb my accessing credit at the New Princess little local market – am into the day man there for twenty bucks – that got me sixteen small cans of MGD. I could get another eight today, but that’d be thirty I owe him at the beginning of next month, geez. (After bills are paid, I have about ten smackers a day for everything – food, you name it.)

And…in positive money news, sent away yesterday for my rental assistance money from the California Franchise Tax Bureau. So I should be getting a nice little check for over 300 in a couple of months. And…I could save money by having only a land line phone in my hotel room at the cost of about five a month. Am paying T-Mobile 50 now a month for my cell.

And…another line of iambic pentameter: “Therea Lone, the real one, there alone.” (Friend Cathead told how how “therealone” can be divided different ways to make different words. The “Therea Lone” is my contribution – the name of a female character – as in “ethereal”, for one thing. Later…)

posted by Velcro  # 9:08 AM

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

#924 (Page 1 of 2) starplane.blogspot.com This from Rachel M. at… From : The Loin's Mouth <theloinsmouth@gmail.com> Sent : Tuesday, June 19, 2007 4:08 PM The last party was in February at the 222 Club. I'm not sure if I'll do a release party this time. I hate picking a hard release date since then I have to have the thing finished by then! (I know, I know! I'm such a slacker! haha) It'll definitely be out in the middle of July though, and I'll announce that we're having drinks somewhere to celebrate or something. Nothing fancy this time. I might do fundraisers at some point in the future. Especially if we win the Best of the Bay Contest! Anyway, I'll look at your blog tonight hopefully--although honestly, I'm pretty exhausted. Either way, I'll check it out before the end of the week. If you don't hear from me by Thursday then remind me! To which I replied: Oh, I like the Two-22 Club very much. Great subterranean space under the ground. And: remind you of what? But seriously, Rachel...you seem a bit overworked... And from televisionary@comcast.net – Rob Brezsny – his weekly newsletter… …uh…many great quotes from the man – see also http://FreeWillAstrology.com...and... …I always much love his take, his poetic take, on things astro-nomical-logical…such as this for the sign of Scorpio this week: SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Now that we're almost halfway through 2007, it's time to assess how well you're capitalizing on this year's unique opportunities. So let me ask you a few questions. Have you been working hard to increase your value? I don't just mean economically, although it's true that this is the best time in over a decade for you to make more money and launch long-term plans for financial growth. But I hope that you're also adding to your worth in every way you can imagine, like by

#924 (Page 2 of 2) starplane.blogspot.com getting the training and new skills that will make you irresistible to future employers, lovers, and collaborators; and by purifying your motivations and clarifying your ethics and bolstering your integrity. And… …additional verbiage about the above… …various keywords and such: 222 Club, The Loin’s Mouth, Free Will Astrology, Rob Brezsny…Marion Raven of Norway, dundas jeans (see Dogpile.com or Wikipedia or elsewhere)… Also: B.J. Thomas, his “I Just Can’t…” song and his “Raindrops” one… Also, Diana Ross from ’73, “Touch Me in the Morning”… And, a little fun quiz. Pick one of the two of the following three: “White or Bonds?” “Tony or Florida?” “Telma or Jerry?” Answers: Barry, Orlando, and Hopkins. Well, MY choices for those three would be: White, Tony, and…the third’s a bit more difficult. I like the way Telma sings, but Jerry wrote the book… And… As Don Henley sang in “Life in the Fast Lane” on Hotel California by the Eagles, “Are you with me so far?” And… …and…

posted by Velcro  # 7:24 PM

Monday, June 18, 2007

#923 (Page 1 of 2) starplane.blogspot.com

…from Rachel at The Loin’s Mouth, a very local zine:

I like the "slice of life" aspect. Toward the end you're describing a typical day. I like that you mention the hotel, people owing you money and not paying it back right away, getting beer on credit, a local landmark that's been kind of devoured by the union square tourist scene, etc. The best thing about it though is that it's not depressing. I like that you can wander around doing different things, not have a ton of money, have little set backs here and there, but you can still enjoy life (even if it might be difficult sometimes). That's essentially the spirit I like to capture. Everything people say is negative about the neighborhood can be seen as an asset. Also, I think it's okay to mention Union Square (Borders, the Gold Dust, etc.) as long as it's mostly rooted in the TL/Downtown area. We extend our boundaries of the TL to include Lower Nob Hill, Polk Street, etc.

Think about all of that and see if you can put something together based on what you wrote. Also, try to think of at least one specific incident that happened along the way (with specific details) that made you laugh or smile and think about WHY. That's the kind of stuff people like to read. People want to be uplifted. I know I do! :)

(Back to me: good editorial comments that can help – would like having some of this blog in her next issue of The Loin’s Mouth…)

And…came up with “Quinoa Sushi” this morning, using an organic form of the South American grain from a Rainbow Grocery bulk bin – see
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quinoa for information about the grain – tho’, actually, says the site, it’s a “psuedocereal”, not a true cereal.

Anyway…for flavor added a few splashes of a green Louisiana hot sauce I have on hand, plus some raw, unpasteurized soy sauce, also from Rainbow, plus seasoning given me by a friend in the hotel. And have some “nori”, flat sheets of seaweed – wrapped the quinoa in it. To remember for next time: toast the sheets a little on my hot plate, to make wrapping and eating easier.

And…a lot of jackhammering on the street outside the hotel I’m in this morning. Was standing out there a bit. Street repair, civic improvement.

#923 (Page 2 of 2) starplane.blogspot.com

Looked plenty fine to me the way it was. And: had been wearing for a while a shirt I found on the street – the main source of my threads. But it was a little ripped…not that I mind that, but decided to change to a more intact Sixties-looking shirt given me by another friend in the hotel. He found it amusing that the pattern quite closely resembles that on my bed sheet, which I also found on the street. The price, and the design, were quite right-ly…

And…another guy in the hotel still owes me ten. Said he was gonna get it to me this morning – that didn’t happen. Held out hope that he was gonna come through, but no. Saw him a little later in the lobby, and I think he saw me, but I didn’t mention the money. Better not to put his business out into common parlance. The man might be used to burning people, but even at this late date I am thinking he’ll eventually make good.

And…thought it significant that I was watching Goldfinger on the tube early this morning. Of particular interest, the Shirley Bassey rendition of the theme song. And…was at the library this morning. Got there early, went into the Salvation Army’s new office at One Grove, seeking a discount on a California I.D. But was told that St. Anthony’s was the place to get that. Currently, I’ve got an expired U.S. passport as my only real photo identification, if you don’t count my Bank of America debit card.

Well, was busted for drinking from an open can of beer on Haight a while back, and the officer doing the busting accepted that card, so I guess it’s valid. Plus had my Social Security card – they can run an on-board computer check on the number, as L.A. police did to me about ten years ago when I was jaywalking and looking suspicious ‘round 3am of a Tinseltown morn.

And was surprised to see a man named Tom, who (whom?) I knew from a stint volunteering for the Salvation Army about six years ago – my first Tenderloin experience of any duration, actually, delivering meals to the home-bound in hotels, in order to fulfill General Assistance requirements.

And…picked up a copy of The Examiner at the Army office, and thought this was most significant, news-wise: Barry’s closing in on Aaron – just hit number seven-48. And the Fantastic Four Silver Surfer flick was numero uno at the box office, taking in over 57 mil. And liked photo of Jessica “Sue Storm” Alba with the Surfer. And: today’s the birthday of Paul McCartney, when he’s sixty-five…

posted by Velcro  # 2:29 PM
#922: 6/18/2007 10:12 AM (Page 1 of 2)

Rachel M. at The Loin’s Mouth…go to
http://www.sfbg.com/bob/2007/ says she to vote for it as Best Local Zine in the Guardian’s annual contest. And the site for the publication itself is http://www.theloinsmouth.com/ - that for any interested. All about the good, bad, ugly, and fab zone of the Tenderloin.

And here’s an e-mail from Rachel – guess something from my blog can get published in the mag:

Hey, I'm not sure if you're still interested in submitting something to the next issue, but let me know! My absolute final FINAL deadline is the end of June, but preferably I'd like to get something sooner, so I can take a look at it. If you still want to try to piece something together from a blog that would be fine. It can be like a "Tenderloin Perspectives" piece. I prefer stuff that's clever and upbeat ( i.e., nothing overly depressing). It's too easy to write depressing stuff about the Tenderloin. I like stuff that's about people seeing the humor in everyday life (even under sometimes less than optimal conditions). Not stuff that's bitter though. Life is too beautiful! Also, nothing overly long. Something between 500-1000 is fine, but the shorter the better. I like to pack as much as possible into a tightly written piece.

(Back to me: Yeah, something to consider.)

And…got handwritten notes to fold into this – don’t wanna carry ‘em around anymore…was at the Union Square Borders th’ other day. Got myself a soy milk and found a seat on the second floor, in their fine lounge area.

And picked up a copy of a music mag called Fader, #46 in their series. Here’s the link to them:

Well, the issue’s cover guy was Jerry Garcia – that got to me. Great material inside. Noted something about “Sufis” – don’t know why. Guess Garcia was something of a guitar Sufi. (See
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sufis for Wikipedia’s take on this mystic branch of Islam.)

And…how about “Summer of Light” for this next little time period? 40 years after the love version. Was it my friend Tipper Cathead who came up

#922: 6/18/2007 10:12 AM (Page 2 of 2)

with this phrase? Or maybe it was one of my hotel neighbors. Anyway, I like it, like it, yes I do…and…was at the Gold Dust the other night as well – had myself two Irish coffees, enjoyed the live band, which cranked up some Creedence. (The Gold Dust is on Powell – a touch of old San Francisco. Hate to see the classic landmarks passing away.)

And…want to recommend the
http://2012ad.com/ site created by my friend C.S., who actually got me to starting this blog three-and-a-half years ago. A lot of material there – haven’t looked at it all myself, but you can tell how good my man C.S. is with the Website designing – renegade genius type.

And…thought of a title for something: Lover Poets. Can fancy myself something of a love poet, as a matter of fact and fancy. Have in years past posted lines of iambic pentameter in the classic love mode.

And…in the absence of my stolen cell phone, am getting free calls using 800 numbers. To Bank of America to check on my credit card (have reached, again, the limit of that monetary source), and my Comcast account (squared away as of now). So, am not necessarily missing having that phone. Frankly, can look at it as a favor – a lotta electronic weight to carry.

And…skipping around as usual…there’s the Five-35 Eddy location near Hyde – an empty store. Would love to see a bookstore in there – sell music as well, and incense, some non-perishable food items. Anyone have the money to get that happening? Have a few thoughts of input.

And…been reading recently a library book called Cursed From Birth, a biography written by the son of William Burroughs. Interesting lines. Am a student of Big Bill, and it’s a valuable take on that whole thing.

And…loaned a guy in the hotel ten bucks a few days ago. And he didn’t get it back to me when he said he would. Then he said he’d get it to me this morning, at 9am – it’s well after that now. Geez…he has not earned my trust and friendship through this delay, I tell you. Could use that cash.

Well…can probably get ten bucks worth of beer from Wa’il, a local store owner – get eight bucks of the brewed beverage and pay him ten, two bucks extra, for the credit. He trusts me, since I’ve always paid him back. Later…

posted by Velcro  # 10:43 AM

Sunday, June 17, 2007

sweetdango@hotmail.com #921 (1 of 2) starplane.blogspot.com

Notes from the past few days…enjoyed the Wednesday afternoon Bingo game in the hotel lobby this past week. Haven’t been attending for a while, but happened to walk by at the right time and decided to sit in. Finally, after a few hands, won a little brown bag of edibles.

And running it was friend Priscilla, part of the “roving team” of case workers who visit hotels bringing in good words and deeds. She dropped the name of “major French Renaissance writer” (thanks, Wikipedia) Rabelais. I guess because I mentioned him in my blog.

And also there at the game, selecting the numbers, new hotel case manager Adele, who’s replacing the very excellent Mary Katherine who, apparently, is moving up to Alaska, maybe to settle down a little.

And…snacks there at the Bingo game: a big bag of potato chips, and a big bottle of 7Up, and Oreo knock-offs called Tuxedos. (Hydrox is a third very similar cookie, and if I’m not mistaken they appeared first. But no doubt Oreo is the undisputed champion in that baked goods department.)

And…was scanning down through the Wikipedia entry on Rabelais and remembered how the guy came up in Priscilla’s speech. I’d been researching the Temple of Thelema and turns out there’s mention of it in Gargantua and Pantagruel, one of the man’s works.

And…learned something about Bingo, that two people can win at the same time, get those five spaces filled in simultaneously. ‘cause when I won, the young woman next to me did also.

And…need to get busy on the Franchise Tax Board 9000R form to get the yearly three-hundred-bucks-plus rental assistance rebate. That’s big, big money for me.

And…am currently going by the name “Cal Vero” for this. From the “Calvera” character in The Magnificent Seven, which I’ve been watching for free through Comcast’s “On Demand” system.

And…recently did a little job for my Odd Fellow brother P. – get to the local Ace Hardware store and pick up something. Ten bucks for the easy work.

sweetdango@hotmail.com #921 (2 of 2) starplane.blogspot.com

And…was at the much-recommended very truly Boho feeling Wild Awakenings coffee shop/hang out on McAllister between Hyde and Leavenworth the other day. They had on the classic rock “Bone” on their sound system. Two consecutive songs, to give an example of what that station offers: that Lynyrd Skynyrd smell one, followed by solo work by Eagles member Joe Walsh, “Life’s Been Good”. (Not really into that old rock lately, but at the time it was fine hearing those two, to go along with the bottled water I’d bought.) And, as said, like the Boho feel of Wild Awakenings – whirling ceiling fans for one thing.

And…also been watching Gimme Shelter, also free on Comcast. Liked the part with the Jefferson Airplane. Can’t name the song they played, tho’ – something about a sailing boat in the lyrics. I believe Paul Kantner’s got a thing for boats, as in “Wooden Ships”.

And…quote from Grace Slick about violence done by the Hell’s Angels on an audience member: “People get weird…”. (Got a fuller quote at
http://www.morethings.com/music/rolling_stones/images/hells_angels/index.html: “People get weird, and you need people like the Angels to keep people in line.” This site has a good write-up about the concert and the chaos there.) And…jumping around here – the new Fantastic Four flick. I’d watch for what they do with the Silver Surfer, and also for the fine Jessica Alba.

And…also free through Comcast, music videos. Recently watched and enjoyed David Bowie’s “Ashes to Ashes” (a fairly recent version). And also Madonna’s “Cherish”, from 1989. Plus thirty minutes of a Motley Crue performance. And also, from the early Eighties, “Rock the Casbah”, by the Clash. Interesting to see how primitive music video quality was then, very simple, albeit effective.

And…thinking of checking at LastGasp.com for their underground comic books. And…just want to get through a few quick notes, so therefore this jumping around…also enjoyed, the video for Avril Lavigne’s current big hit, “Girlfriend”. And…was listening to the Grateful Dead’s “Eyes of the World” on a tape I dubbed up a while back, with the lovely Jerry Garcia guitar. And, and…made up a title for something: “Pinker Towns”…from the Pinkerton agents in Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid, which I’ve also been watching lately.

posted by Velcro  # 12:45 PM

Thursday, June 14, 2007

sweetdango@hotmail.com #920 (1 of 2) starplane.blogspot.com

…the Deadwood cable series came to my attention – guess it was Cathead Tipper who said he was getting back into it. Then friend C. said he had the entirety of it and I could borrow it if desired. C. used the phrase “hooplehead” in his e-mail. Never seen the show, but knew there is all kinds of Old West swearing in it.

Looked up information at
http://www.worldwidewords.org/qa/qa-hoo3.htm - says it’s a common American term of slang, used by series character Al Swearengen. Given the man’s foul mouth, his last name is appropriate. The entry goes on and on, and for those curious it’s but a mouse click away.

And recommended is an audio book I’ve gotten into recently, Richard Carlson’s follow-up to his Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff series, a tome called Easier Than You Think. This sort of self-help book I can like a lot. One of his pieces of advice is to not take notes – so, I took a note on that. See
http://www.myshelf.com/selfhelp/05/easierthanyouthink.htm for more on the book. (The suggestion about not taking notes meant that he thought people should just listen, not feel the need to write down every little detail of, like, a speech. He felt you’d pick up on the main stuff anyway.)

And: the recent G8 summit. Didn’t look into this much, tho’ it’s important. Heard on the radio protesters blocked all the roads to the place – somewhere in Europe, I guess – so the delegates were forced into helicopters to get to the meeting site. (See
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G8 for the Wikipedia entry on this “international forum of governments”.)

And: sleep habits changing – going to bed early, arising early. Or at least earlier than I had been for some while. Had been up until 3am on average, sleeping for twelve hours at that point after having watched cable for twelve hours. Now, hardly watching any tube, keeping healthier hours. (Reminds me of the Ben Franklin “early to bed, early to rise” line – see
http://www.quotationspage.com/quote/34564.html for details about that.)

And…have been reading some in a Neeli Cherkovski biography of Charles Bukowski. A very personal account – apparently Cherkovski knew the man as a friend for decades.

And speaking of Wikipedia, begin with “mantra” and see where links lead.

sweetdango@hotmail.com #920 (2 of 2) starplane.blogspot.com

For me, there’s a link to the “concentration” entry. Then to “cocktail party effect”. Then from there to “figure-ground phenomenon”. Then to “figure and ground (media)” – it says this is a concept associated with Marshall McLuhan. And then on and on. (I find this a great use of the online encyclopedia.)

And…am not burning candles lately, but if and when I do, it’s gotta be the beeswax kind, more expensive than the commoner ones easily found in the Tenderloin. Rainbow would be a source, a good source. (Am continuing with the Aurobindo ashram frangipani variety I purchased recently there, an upgrade from the common Nag Champa type.)

And also noted to myself to check Wikipedia on astral projection. This links to the entry on, oh, “Alice Bailey”, and that to “esoteric”, and on and on again…

And: outside my hotel room, nearby sound I like of a bird or three singing. So Rachel Carson’s “Silent Spring” has not entirely visited itself upon us, even in the concrete heart of the Tenderloin.

And…recently got to my Odd Fellow brother P. a book I bought at the library called The Disrespectful Dictionary. Absolutely inspired by the Ambrose Bierce book of infernal definitions. I think he liked it. And also that day brought along many dozens of aluminum can pull-tops – the Odd Fellows collect them to give to the Ronald McDonald House organization, which somehow can get money from them for charities for children.

And liked seeing a copy of an excellent book about sex and yoga at “The Fence” street selling location at Turk and Hyde. Have a copy of the paperback already, so didn’t buy this second one, tho’ I thought of it. A book full of excellent information.

And…that day at the Odd Fellows lodge – first time there in about three months. There’s a meeting tonight that I guess I’ll attend – socialize with my brothers and sisters in “friendship, love, and truth” (three words comprising the main motto of the group). And that day did a little job for Brother P. – got five bucks to ride my bike over to one of his banks, on Montgomery, to deposit checks. (End of my two pages…more later, maybe.)

posted by Velcro  # 9:15 AM

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

sweetdango@hotmail.com #919 (1 of 2) starplane.blogspot.com

…saw a truck from a company called Far West Fungi near the U.N. Plaza farmers’ market the other day. Based in Moss Landing. See
http://www.farwestfungi.com/Page.aspx?_content=MushroomCalendar for an unusual year-long detailing of when certain mushrooms are available. October is the month, for instance, for something called “Chicken of the Woods”. (If the company dealt in the magic kind of ‘shroom, that would make them “Far Out Fungi”. A friend said he’d be interested in trying that special kind – I told him I’d done them a time or four in the past. Don’t have a specific source of them right now, but I can think of at least two people who may be able to hook that up.)

And recently thought of the line “A place for everything, and everything in its place.” That because I’ve been cleaning my room a bit and feel that I’ve got that happening. I don’t have a lot of stuff, but what I have I value, and know about.

Went to
http://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/14400.html and found the origin of it. Thought it was ol’ Ben Frankfarther from his Poor Richard’s Almanac, but apparently some reverend name of Goodrich in Ohio in 1827 who first wrote it in an article entitled, appropriately, “Neatness”. And I like this turn of words from the writer of the entry: “The phrase is typical of the uplifting homilies that were promoted during the Victorian era (beginning 1837), e.g. ‘cleanliness is next to godliness’ (circa 1880s).

And…have recorded on my Comcast DVR system a program from a public television pledge drive, about how to keep your “frame” – that is, the muscles, bones, and joints – healthy. The guy who was giving out this information said people are living longer, but often the body’s frame doesn’t keep up.

And the guy also said Baby Boomers are turning sixty at the rate of eleven thousand a day, so this frame thing should be of particular importance to them.

And…the Central City SRO Collaborative, an organization that helps us folks living in hotels, held a special Mexican meal event the other day. Walked over and checked it out. But didn’t want to hang around for an hour to get the food.

sweetdango@hotmail.com #919 (2 of 2) starplane.blogspot.com

Hadn’t been inside the Collaborative’s office space before – some dozens had turned out for the Mexican food and were milling around. One guy was pounding on drums. Me, just wanted the meal, not the socializing. Liked a Charles Bukowski photo and quote up on the wall – a hero to certain literary-minded of the Tenderloin hotel dwellers, as the man was no stranger to such inexpensive lodgings in his decades in Los Angeles.

And also enjoyed the many photos of area hotels on the walls. One in particular I especially liked, of a large 7Up ad on the side of the building, which probably dated from the Fifties, or earlier. These big, ancient advertisements are still to be found.

And that sighting of the Bukowski photo got me into a little bit of studying about the man. Got a biography from the library that I read a good seventy or more pages of the other day.

And around this time at “the Fence” at Turk and Hyde, where unlicensed street sellers have got their goods displayed on the ground, got a book with “optimum health” in the title, which got me interested in that. Glanced through it, looking for a reason to pay two bucks for it. The author discussed the value of adding “noni”, a South Pacific plant, to the diet. Was wondering about that substance, so that was the key for me to hand over the cash. (My former lady roommate took that once. Not sure what her verdict was. Supposed to work wonders on body and mind.)

And found on the ground a book in Spanish with many colorful drawings of what I figured were voodoo gods of some kind. Picked out the word “orisha” in the mostly non-understood text. Went to
http://altreligion.about.com/library/glossary/bldeforisha.htm and got this definition, that they are the deities of Santeria (“and related faiths”). So that’s like voodoo, I believe. Well, glanced through it, but decided not to keep it, and left it in the hallway of the hotel for someone else. It was quickly picked up – an unusual thing to find.

And…noted into my voice recorder to take a milk carton downstairs to the street and sit there, watching the passing Tenderloin show. Did that today, in fact, for a spell. Lots of foot traffic on the street of many types.

posted by Velcro  # 7:13 PM

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

sweetdango@hotmail.com #918 (1 of 2) starplane.blogspot.com

Back to handwritten notes from a few days ago:

Wrote down two album titles from years gone by: Hotel California (from ’76), and Back in Black (two years later). Have ‘em both on cassette. The former, listened to that at least twice in succession whilst imbibing a beer or three – Miller Genuine Draft, the smaller-than-pint-sized ones. Surely enhances the music experience to have that little buzz happening simultaneously.

And…title for something: Switching Hours. Like “the witching hour”. (Looked up the term on Wikipedia, and this is what it says first: In European folklore, the witching hour is the time when supernatural creatures such as witches, demons and ghosts are thought to be at their most powerful, and black magic at its most effective. This hour is typically midnight, and the term may now be used to refer to midnight, or any late hour, even without having the associated superstitious beliefs.”)

And also: “In neopaganism, it is sometimes used to refer solely to midnights occurring during a full moon, when a witch's power is supposedly at its greatest.” (The underlinings refer to words linked to other entries.)

And…watched on the tube a pledge drive special related to health advocate Gary Null’s book about mind power. Listened to it carefully all the way through and picked up some good information. He’s been writing and lecturing for decades, and I much admire him. (Tho’ friend Tipper was wondering where the man gets his funding. I’m not sure if that is relevant, but maybe so, in terms of what he recommends.)

And…next note, to remind me to look into, maybe, what the library has on Ken Kesey. Have done some studying of his work in the past.

And: like Avril Lavigne’s music well enough to buy her new The Best Damn Thing disc. Saw her perform, on the two, on two separate programs, her current big hit “Girlfriend”. Like her look (great teeth and hair, for one thing) and her brash style.

And…was out very early one morning, after 3am, on my bicycle, on to Mason Street, a 24-hour diner there, mainly to play their jukebox, which I remembered favorably from previous visits.

sweetdango@hotmail.com #918 (2 of 2) starplane.blogspot.com

Well, turns out they took out there box, unfortunately. So there wasn’t a good reason to stay there. So…back on the bike, and the long ride, some of it fairly uphill west on Market, to Sparky’s, another 24-hour Frisco joint. I’d’ve bet dollars to donuts they still had their music box. And I was right.

So got myself there around 4am, and the place was still quite lively – it was early Saturday after Friday night, so the late night revelers were still in attendance, apres-bar and club.

Put five bucks into the machine, which was familiar to me from many previous visits, and began selecting the eighteen numbers that money got me. Liked what a young woman who was sitting near the box said to me, about not wanting, and I quote, “shitty tunes”. She said, for one thing, Black Sabbath and Johnny Cash would be okay. I’m thinking what I picked she may have considered shitty, too common, but, heck…here’s the list of what I chose that early morning:

1. “Rock the Casbah”. 2. “Rock and Roll”, the Led Zeppelin one. 3. “Nowhere Man”. 4. “Suffragette City”. 5. “Get Off of My Cloud”. 6 “I Love Rock and Roll”. 7. “Knocks Me Off My Feet” (the beautiful one from Songs in the Key of Life). 8. “Pasttime Paradise” (same album). 9. “Over and Over”, early Madonna. 10. “Young Americans”. 11. “Changes”. 12. “Children of the Revolution” (really like this T. Rex one – need to get into more of them – the band is used at least twice in Blue Juice, a mid-90s Catherine Zeta-Jones pre-U.S. flick set in Cornwall, that I’ve seen recently).
And: 13. “Karma Chameleon”. 14. “Cherish” (another Madonna, from the 90s). 15. “Beat on the Brat” (maybe my most unusual pick that morning, the Ramones). 16. “Summer Wind” (Frank Sinatra…tell me, who else would play the Ramones, then “the Chairman of the Board” right after?). 17. “Angel” (another Madonna again).

Well, to observe jukebox etiquette, I left the 18th choice open for another to pick. And…the box played Stevie Wonder’s “Saturn”, not “Pasttime Paradise” – maybe I pushed the wrong buttons. And as well: “Cherish” stopped abruptly and the Ramones tune started – I believe one of the workers must’ve thought it was too precious (in a bad way) to hear, so reached for the plug. (So there you go. More later today, I guess.)

posted by Velcro  # 9:18 AM

Monday, June 11, 2007

sweetdango@hotmail.com #917 (1 of 2) starplane.blogspot.com

…variously: the Temple of Thelema – look it up on the ‘net…is reinstituting their meetings at the 26 7th Street (near Market) Odd Fellows building location, says O.F. Brother Pete. In September there’s some open house happening – guess I’ll be there. Haven’t met the members of the group, but from what P has told me they sound like something of an interesting bunch.

And: there’s a whole “Thelema” entry on Wikipedia. Will glance through and see what’s of import…the word is a “transliteration” – not a translation – of an ancient Greek noun for “will”…and some connection with Rabelais and his Gargantua and Pantagruel. This philosophical purview was later revived by the notorious Aleister Crowley in his 1904 The Book of the Law. Then there’s this quote at the site:

“From this, Crowley took Thelema as the name of the philosophical, mystical and religious system which he subsequently developed, which includes ideas from occultism, Yoga, and both Eastern and Western mysticism (especially the Qabalah). Thus Shri Gurudev Mahendranath, in speaking of svecchachara, a Sanskrit term which he considered the eastern equivalent of the term Thelema, wrote that ‘Rabelais, Dashwood, and Crowley must share the honor of perpetuating what has been such a high ideal in most of Asia.’”

Hmmm…all that. Well, it goes on and on. See
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thelema for the entirety of it, but for now I am moving on to other matters…

For instance, the “Essential Greens” drink from Trader Joe’s. No fruit, just the juice of spinach, celery, parsley, and other similar vegetables. I really recommend this, for the intense (but desirable) levels of vitamins A and C, as well as other nutrients. (Heard about it in a recent Rolling Stone – Fergie, the singer, mentioned it by name as helping with her energy, so I picked up on that from her…)

And…speaking of my Odd Fellow brother P., recently brought to him flip tops from canned drinks, many, many dozens I collected over the course of a few months. This to help the Ronald McDonald House efforts on behalf of kids. My good friend Tipper pooh-poohed the idea that this collection of flip tops was actually valid. But I’m going with what Brother P. says and did my

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part. I’m sure some money will get to where it’s supposed to go.

And…thought about one Loree Rodkin. An ex of Don Henley of the Eagles. (Was listening to some Eagles recently while drinking beer, and that got me to thinking of Loree Rodkin, whose name I picked up on in a biography of the band. She has, according to her own site, a “nonconformist visionary approach to jewelry making.” Read Winona Ryder likes Rodkin’s work.

And…that Eagles I was particularly listening to was a cassette I got somewhere for Hotel California. (Yes, someone is still using cassettes, God help me.) Enjoyed the musical experience, helped along by plentiful quantities of Miller Genuine Draft – that’s MGD to some cognoscenti. (WordReference.com defines that as: “an expert able to appreciate a field; especially in the fine arts.” Also, I go for the MGD, even tho’ a small can’s a dollar, Tenderloin-price, whereas there are 65 cent cans of something like Milwaukee’s Finest – go for it ‘cause I once was told it’s one of the least toxic of beers.)

And…wrote down the line from “Pretty Maids All in a Row” from Hotel California “…heroes they come and they go…” Seemed significant at the time, something I wanted to remember. And…going through a series of handwritten inebriated notes from a few days ago. Most seem not significant now. One I want to send along: that Charles Bukowski and William Burroughs were in no way hippies, I’d say.

And…if this posting seems more disjointed than usual, I feel it too, it’s not just you. Uh…watched some of the late Sixties “Rock and Roll Circus” featuring the Stones and other luminaries on the tube recently. Not so into it – got into, much more, Gimme Shelter, about the Stones at Altamont in ’69. What was supposed to be a western Woodstock surely became something not about love and peace and all that jazz.

And the flick got me to thinking again about a 40th anniversary Altamont, Altamont 2. Ideas for this, anyone? Let’s see – Mick and the Stones are still around. Sonny Barger and the Hell’s Angels must surely participate. The then-Airplane, including Paul Kantner and Grace Slick – they’d be on my list of participants in Altamont Resurrected. So: December 6th, two years from now. I’d like to see something along those lines happen. Later…

posted by Velcro  # 2:53 PM

Sunday, June 10, 2007

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Various handwritten notes I took, four pages worth, during a recent twelve-hour beer drinkin’ spree. First alcohol I had in over twelve weeks. But I won’t be binging like previously – I know myself that well enough.

Anyway…title for something: “That Tribe”. Sort of like “That Girl”, sort of, maybe. Inspired by something in one of Rob Brezsny’s Free Will Astrology columns – as in the twelve astrological tribes. (I used to be a Scorpio, but now I’m more Neon. As in a neon sign, geddit?)

And…thought of Linda Ronstadt. Still living in San Francisco? (Just looked at her Wikipedia entry to see if maybe she was a Scorpio. No, born July 16th…listened recently to “You’re No Good”. Thought of a joke: she’s disappointed with a guru and says to him: “You’re no God.” She was living in S.F., then wasn’t, then she moved back again. What now?)

Anyway…and while drinking, listened to a bit of music I had on cassette, including Hotel California. Just did a Wikipedia on “hotel california eagles satanic”. But then saw that that wouldn’t be a heading they’d have. They’d probably have “Hotel California”, “Eagles”, and “satanic”, in separate entries, but not all in one. So to Dogpile…

http://www.superseventies.com/ac4hotelcalifornia.html there’s this:

“A swirl of rumors greeted the album cover, which cost $60,000, once it hit the stores -- including stories that there were supernatural or satanic references buried in the lyrics and in the artwork. Kosh scoffs at those reports but eagerly confirms that there is a mysterious figure on the balcony, visible only on the LP version.”

“Kosh” is one John Kosh, attributed as a designer for the album, along with Henley. (Different from the photographer, that design role.)

And at
http://www.songfacts.com/detail.php?id=1121 there’s this (with the site’s slight punctuational lapses intact):

“Although it is well known that Hotel California is actually a metaphor, there are several strange internet theories and urban legends about the ‘real’ Hotel California. Some include suggestions that it was an old church taken

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over by devil worshippers, a psychiatric hospital, an inn run by cannibals or Aleister Crowley's mansion in Scotland. It's even been suggested that the "Hotel California" is the Playboy Mansion. (thanks, Adam - Dewsbury, England)”

This second site has a lot more interesting facts about the album, for your own exploration. A third site
http://www.snopes.com/music/songs/hotel.asp continues this line of inquiry - up to you to go there if desired.

And…back to my handwritten inebriated notes…thought of an okay line for some kind of deejay: “Straight outta ’76-Land, here ya go…” That would be for introducing a playing of the entire Hotel California. Listened to it at least twice that beer-sodden evening, and got much pleasure from that, and not only for the title track. Big Eagles fan, me, no surpise.. And: a new one from the Eagles is due very, very soon, from what I have determined via the ‘net. I believe it’s called The Long Road Out of Eden…

And: listened also to another of my cassettes, AC/DC’s first post-Bon Scott effort, Back in Black. But now, in a sober frame of mind, can’t remember listening to it. Maybe I just had it set aside to play, but got so into the Hotel California I didn’t get to it.

And…also ‘round this time thought of a line of iambic pentameter: “The spring of thirty years ago and more…” A more personal one than usual. Didn’t think of a matching line to rhyme – that’s more work - but maybe “bore” would complete the couplet. Not “store”. Maybe “more”…would go along with the “everything all the time” line from “Life in the Fast Lane”, which is also on Hotel California.

And…there’s the “Tiffany-twisted” phrase in the title track. Reminded me sort of of good ol’ Paris Hilton. Is she still in jail? She was in, then released, then I might’ve heard that she was sent back to serve the full 45 day term for some reason. (That drinking binge I mentioned? Began that day about 2pm up in North Beach with friend Cathead, with two pints of their “Emperor Norton Ale”, Cathead’s choice. Well, mentioning this ‘cause the place we were sitting, the inestimable San Francisco Brewing Company, had that day a special ale named after the hassled heiress. Thanks to proprietor Allan Paul for that contribution…but…outta space now, more tomorrow…)

posted by Velcro  # 12:21 PM

Thursday, June 07, 2007

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…was in suburbia just south of San Francisco a couple of recent days. Took a walk to a little shopping center. Passed by a front lawn that was far from manicured. In fact, it was just about overgrown. Not sure if it was a deliberately-created effect, tho’. I thought it very likely the neighbors would have complaints, but to me it possessed a certain charm that its more closely-tended counterparts didn’t.

And saw one of the locals jogging along uphill. Not a young man, but slim, getting in a good workout. Could see him living to a hundred. Am thinking lately of how different individuals differently experience their bodies and minds.

And perpetrated a bit of Tenderloin-style jaywalking across a major suburban boulevard. Reminded of the pedestrian in the Ray Bradbury short story, an innocent person picked up by police for the crime of walking in a near-future time when everyone is in cars. Don’t see a whole lot of foot traffic in the suburbs.

And then got to the shopping center proper. A mom was taking three cute little girls and a little boy to a Chinese restaurant called the Paradise. And the single biggest store in that center is devoted to pets. The friend I was staying with had a cat and I considered buying a toy or a treat for that feline, but chose against.

And went into the Radio Shack in the shopping center, curious about currently models of digital voice recorder. The one I have, bought at a Radio Shack some years ago, is still working well, tho’ it’s been displaced by newer incarnations. Sixty bucks now for one I liked, so that was in my range. Was told the sound quality was good, and that’s important.

And then to the store of main interest, a Walgreen’s, and ambulated the aisles – a fifteen-dollar flash drive caught my eye, andd a digital camera for a friend who likes to take snapshots. And a sixteen-ounce bottle of organic noni – the label said it’s been used for thousands of years to heal body, mind, and spirit – what’s not to like about that? Been meaning to get some of that and give it a go. And: leafed through a selection of pop star posters that would’ve been right at home in a head shop. None of the images rang a bell with me, tho’, even as gifts for someone else.
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Then out the door, beginning the mostly-uphill walk back to the house I was
staying in. Young guy with an energetic dog on a leash, entering the gigantic pet goods shops, muttered under his breath to his beast, “Bitch!” And leaving the place, a miniature greyhound-looking dog, literally prancing, its little legs jauntily moving up and down.

And paused to look into the window of a shop – Universal Giftware was the grandiose name. Have been in the neighborhood every now and then over the years – recalled that it used to be a video store. Front and center, an entirely baroque example of ceramic, festooned with large roses, one ugly piece of work.

And…for some reason the word “scintilla” occurred to me…as the phrase “lacking even a scintilla of imagination”. And also thought “Scintilla” resembled “Godzilla”. Such are my musings.

And crossed the wide suburban boulevard, a main east-west traffic corridor, and practiced some aggressive pedestrianism again. Then began the serious climb up the hill – been laying so low for three months that it was not nothing, exertion-wise.

And remembered the 3H0 organization I’d heard about years ago – the name stands for “Happy, Healthy, Holy”. Going to Wikipedia for info. Established in 1969. Teaches kundalini yoga. Founder, Yogi Bhajan. And from the entry: “This yogic lifestyle practice includes yoga, meditation, diet, and philosophy as methods for helping people live healthy, happy, and holy lives.”

There’s more at the short Wikipedia entry, but this sentence stood out: “World renowned cult expert Rick Ross alleges the 3HO is a classic example of a cult.” (Maybe so, but I was just fine with buying a box of Yogi Bhajan’s tea the next day.)

Then…my next note, watching the tube with my friend – problem in Eastern Europe because the U.S. wants to put missiles there to defend against attack from someplace like Iran, but Russia’s not happy with that scenario. Geopolitics. I don’t get to much news these days, preferring to contemplate upon my own circumscribed life. Might begin getting the local paper – a real deal at just ten bucks a month.

posted by Velcro  # 6:21 PM

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

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…and more about the revived Crawdaddy! magazine mentioned last posting. It’ll be out weekly and online. Begun as a magazine in 1966 by Paul Williams. This when he was a sophomore at Swarthmore College. Two years before Rolling Stone. Wolfgang’s Vault is this incarnation’s parent company. And it looks like it’s originating in San Francisco.

And somewhat similarly, in terms of online sources of information, Leah Garchik, the daily Chronicle columnist, has archived material accessible with a few clicks of the keyboard. There was something about the Dead in the paper this morning, a new disc of a concert from ’71, so that meant something to me.

And…randomly, somewhat…the line from a Neil Young song seemed relevant to me today: “Is it hard to make arrangements with yourself?” Not sure what Neil was precisely referring to, who he was asking this of, but it seemed an appropriate query to make of myself, even if only playfully.

And that ’71 Dead concert – it’s the one where the band played the song “Deal” for the first time. Of little relevance to anyone not into the Dead…but it made me look up information about the tune. Found a site featuring annotated Dead songs, created by one David Dodd, from the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs.

“Deal” – lyrics by Robert Hunter, Jerry Garcia music. Ice Nine is the name of the publisher, which took its name from something in Kurt Vonnegut’s Cat’s Cradle. The annotator said it was very reminiscent of the earlier folk song “Don’t Let Your Deal Go Down”, which mentions Memphis, and which seems more bluesy than folksy. And “Deal” is in the key of A, 4/4 is the time signature. And the annotator said this: “Moderately bright, with a 12/8 feeling.”

And on the Deadicated tribute album, Dr. John covered the song. The annotator also says when it was first played back at that ’71 concert, it occupied the fifth spot in the second set – a fact that only a real Deadhead could appreciate.

And…since I read about Heiress Paris Hilton beginning her 23-day jail stay today, in solitary, the thought occurred to me that it could be a very good

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thing for her. I’m not much into her as a celebrity, not sure why I’m even mentioning this. But…it’d be good if she asked for pen and paper and began writing something. She’s 26, has had an interesting, unusual life, and it’d make the incarceration more endurable, I’d think. If I was “locked down” 23 hours out of a day like she will be, it’s what I’d do.

And…changing subjects…am looking forward to going to the Trader Joe’s here where I am now in South City before getting on BART back to San Francisco. I am a totally confirmed customer of Rainbow Grocery, but since there’s an outlet right next to the BART station here I’ll make the visit.

Am needing a new bottle of olive oil for sure, and they should have a very acceptable kind, since they offer many organic and unusual products, as far as I know. Also, since singer Fergie mentioned Trader Joe’s in a recent Rolling Stone, that’s some sort of additional reason. The particular product she spoke of was a green drink with spinach, celery, and kale, which she said really kept her energy up. Sounds good to me.

And…that energy will be useful to pursue a new way of using Wikipedia that just occurred to me. I can start with an entry and see where the links through highlighted words and phrases go. For example, beginning with “karma”, that links to “Dharmic religion”, and that to “Taoic religion” (those two, along with “Abrahamic religion”, are the three major schools of religion – that concept wasn’t clear to me until I read about it in Wikipedia today).

And from “Taoic religion”, to show you the interesting places this process can go, there’s a link to “The Vinegar Tasters”, another new idea. There’s a picture at that entry of three Chinese guys standing together tasting vinegar – caption says it’s an allegory “representing Confucianism, Buddhism, and Taoism”. Then I went to the Wikipedia entry on vinegar, then specifically to “apple cider vinegar”, a substance which many claim promotes health and beauty.

Apple cider vinegar’s for sale in a strict macrobiotic-slash-vegan-slash-raw catalog I recently received in the mail, so I am thinking of how I am about it. Old school health guru Paul Bragg had nothing but praise for a daily dose of what he called ACV, so that’s something to keep in mind and in body.

posted by Velcro  # 6:35 PM
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…and back to recent voice notes to myself: been doing a lot of yerba mate tea the past few weeks, several cups a day. Might be a good idea to let that alone for a while. There was an entry about it in a book called Plant Intoxicants (first published in 1855, written by one Baron Ernst von Bibra, given me by my very valued friend, Odd Fellow Brother Pete), about how prolonged use can lead to exhaustion. So that’s something to consider…

And found recently on the ‘net something called the Shakespeare Navigators, specifically for Macbeth. Liked how the text was digitally presented. I would’ve liked certain words translated, tho’. It’s been centuries since these works came out and I for one have difficulty with much of the archaic language.

And: have gotten somehow on the PETA mailing list. I am pretty wholly in favor of their philosophy. Question on their site: “Want to do more to help animals?” Mention made of pregnant pigs suffering in “gestation crates”, which was a new idea to me, and also one that wasn’t: chickens getting their beaks cut off while living in small cages, so they wouldn’t viciously peck each other. Well, I support their cause with my vegan-leaning food purchases, and in conversations with whoever if the topic comes up.

And have looked into what’s up with the new Eagles disc. Is it out yet? Might be called The Long Road Out of Eden. I’d buy it, for sure.

And thought of a joke: in a recent posting I mentioned a current Muni stop poster featuring a large image of an Amanita muscaria, and wrote that there are some mushrooms not to be trifled with. The joke line: and some not to be truffled with. (Hey, it’s really a good pun – worthy of Herb Caen in his prime.)

Well, want to pause in my voice notes here to look into that new Eagles disc. Did a Dogpile search and the first hit, for some reason, is a poem called “Aurora Leigh” by Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1806-1861). Don’t know why, off hand…Don Henley’s quite the literate one, very into the likes of Henry David Thoreau, who was active in those same years.

Maybe The Long Road Out of Eden is from the poem? The site contains only one of the at least six books the work is divided into, and it’s very, very

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long just by its own bad self, hundreds of lines of iambic pentameter. And furthermore, it’s blank verse, unrhymed iambic pentameter – a harder feat to pull off, poetically, I’d say, than an equal amount of rhyming couplets.

Well, anyway…found other information about the disc: the band has an exclusive deal with Wal-Mart for distribution. I’m no fan of that corporation, but at least it’ll get the songs out to a very wide buying audience. One site says two new songs, “Fast Company” and “Do Something” – I like those titles – are already out. And to expect the album itself around the middle of this month.

Wikipedia has an entry also…it’ll be the seventh studio album from the guys…first one since ’79…so, that’s about that. I’ll be making music store inquiries this month about this. Am in the right state of mind to buy new music – already got and am happy with the new Rush one, Snakes & Arrows.

Now…back to my notes: in the same musical area, read in Rolling Stone about the revival of Crawdaddy!, the Seventies music magazine. Back to Dogpile: found an item from last month that says it’ll provide a “literary focus on music as the centerpiece of political and cultural analysis”. The crawdaddy.com site mentioned. Now sure how it’ll compare with Rolling Stone, which is from that same era and survived all the intervening years.

And…am currently visiting a friend in the suburbs and have access to a stocked fridge (don’t have one in my hotel room, stocked or otherwise) and a stove top (just have a hot plate in the room). So have been utilizing these – last night after midnight, after the friend I was staying with was already asleep, was cooking up some serious sausage with eggs - been eating mainly whole grains and vegetables recently – while watching the little kitchen counter tube. KQED program about nutrition had a line I liked: “The whiter the bread, the sooner you’re dead.” As good as E.B. Browning?

And had myself a shower this morning – clear glass walls. Turned on the water to get it hot, then turned it off while flossing to save water – I think in those specific ecological and resource-saving terms. And then checked the morning Chronicle: Heiress Paris in jail – had to relinquish her cell phone, it said. She’ll be in solitary confinement for 23 days. Before turning herself in, she was at the MTV Movie Awards, and looking very regal, I must say.

posted by Velcro  # 2:20 PM
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And…looked at a Chronicle for the first time in a while yesterday – the friend I’m staying with has a subscription. The Datebook’s the only thing I read, usually. I studied the Leah Garchik column: Chris Caen is publishing a new San Francisco philanthropy magazine called Aware. He says, due to “unexpected widespread interest” in last year’s similar Generocity mag, he and his needed to retool the whole structure of their endeavor. Some sort of money management issue that I’m unclear about. But good for him. I did indeed attend a few months back the premiere issue party for Generocity, up 500-some Hilton feet above the city, and that was memorable.

And also in the Garchik column, Grateful Dead news: Sirius is enacting a 24-hour commercial-free channel devoted exclusively to the band. And she also reports that a new disc is coming out of a 1971 show – the one in which the song “Deal” premiered, as a matter of truckin’ fact. Me, just getting back into listening to music after a three-month lay-off, so I may just buy this one. (Bought the new Rush the other day, Snakes & Arrows, and I highly recommend it. Vintage sound from three musical greats.)

And…working off handwritten notes here – sometimes I do that, but I like much reciting into my digital voice recorder – was given my choice of anything desired at the suburban supermarket I was in yesterday. Am taking a little break from the city at a friend’s house a few miles out of town. My selections: Safeway brands for pre-packed potato salad, and a clam chowder, fresh blueberries, yogurt.

Got those back to her place and in time enjoyed, in one bowl, some of the salad and chowder, plus olive oil and soy sauce. I was surprised at the significant nutritional value in the clam chowder…have been recently very strict in my diet, almost nothing but whole grains, beans, and fresh vegetables – no sugar, no meat, no junk food – but I’m letting that discipline go a little bit during this sojourn in suburbia.

And…enjoyed the food while studying selected pages from the Sunday paper. Jessica “Invisible Girl” Alba profiled in an article – learned that she is from Pomona, was an Air Force brat. And that there’s Mexican and Danish in her recent ancestry. Detail I liked: the report notes that Alba was a little bit discomforted at the intense scrutiny being given her by a ten-year-old fan – compared to a laser beam, it was.

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And also scrutinized, a review of a best of Moby Grape release – for certain Sixties psychedelia is enjoying a renewed general interest due to the 40th anniversary of the Summer of Love. Could see getting this one as well. Joel Selvin, long-time local music commentator, said something that was news to me, that Moby Grape really influenced the sound of the Doobie Brothers.

And…have adopted “Les Stress” as my new nom de blog, as mentioned. And am considering, as always, titles. I like “Uncommon Now”, and also “Like They Should”.

And…wanted to mention the excellent strawberry shortcake created by my friend as part of our dinner last night. Oh, that sugar – got to say that I’ve been feeling much better in body and mind since giving up all the ice cream and cheap Tenderloin cookies I’d been into the past three months. But I felt it was fine to have that shortcake.

So, my friend brought out her electric hand mixer to fluff up the whipping cream – very labor-intensive. But she knew what she was doing, adding a little vanilla, a bit of sugar. I said that she’d been doing this for decades, especially for family gatherings and she smiled and said that that was so.

And…my next handwritten note, about flipping through the many recent issues of The New Yorker she had on her living room coffee table. For the cartoons, mainly. She also has, stacked in a cabinet, a very large stash of issues from years past – a trove of humorous treasure awaits.

And…only two entries left on the page of notes. One, brought along a special notebook I’ve been compiling. Got the blank book at the very noteworthy Fields metaphysical book shop on Polk near Pine – the covers are metal, and feature a reproduction of the ornate gates of Cairo.

Have been handwriting sentences into that, and may delve into it today since out here in this suburban home I have unlimited computer time. Not that I feel cramped by the usual daily hour I’m afforded on a library terminal, but I’m one who can also wisely-enough use an expanded platform like this. (Oh, the specific thing I wrote down was that the metal-covered antiquey-looking book looks very Necromonicon-like. Pre-sleep reading last night was a 1928 H.P. Lovecraft story, so that’s why I had that on my mind.)

posted by Velcro  # 12:57 PM


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