Here Comes A Regular

Last night I wrote this on Facebook:

In about two hours it will have been 18 years since Allen Howland died.

This anniversary I mark each year and each year it affects me to varying degrees. 

This year was new: this year I wanted him back. I mean right here, right now, sitting right next to me because I needed him and I miss him.

The episode only lasted moments and passed, but it felt like a much longer time. It felt like 18 years

I wasn’t lying or even exaggerating. It was a first: I’d never veered even close to wishing I could have him back. What I didn’t say there was that I’d said so.  As in used my voice to express a want. As in aloud. I was alone when I said it, and I said it to no one in particular. Not to Allen. Not to the Universe. I merely said the words.

Also sprach „dein Gott von Gebäck”.

And in hearing it, I noted a kind of sickly sweet ardor, a quality which I found not revolting but rather somewhat companionable. And that was what I found revolting.

Yesterday was a horrible day. I’m not making excuses for what brought me to such maudlin, mawkish words—spoken-aloud-words—but rather pointing out it was the words that effectuated the horribleness of the day.

This is also no grand apologia to myself or to the Universe for deed or thought: you would be surprised, delightedly or appallingly, at how much and how often in agreement id and superego are with me. That is to say, my wants and my shoulds rarely find themselves out of alignment.

If yesterday was horrible, today is worse. And better. Worse because I’m further away from an immediacy I wasn’t quite done with (damn that companionability) and better because well, the past is a cemetery, not meant for the living.

Yesterday I was so close to eighteen years ago—the sense-memories of it all. It was all exactly, perfectly first-person. I wasn’t remembering, I was inhabiting. And I know the pathology of the third-person to first-person point-of-view switch and Ronald was nice enough not to lay that trip on me just yet (and who knew that a Vespa accident, a collapsed lung, three broken ribs and eight days in hospital could be a learning experience that would serve me thus?) and today I’m smarting a little and a lot from being left that much more a man apart.

Caught a glance in your eyes 
And fell through the skies 
Glance in your eyes 
And fell through the skies 

I’m walking down the freezing street 
Scarf goes out behind 
You said, “Get them away” 
Please don’t say a word 

Get me out of here 
Get me out of here 
I hate it here 
Get me out of here 
       — “Nighttime” by Big Star

Paul Haggis Sucks

The Black Donnellys premiered tonight on NBC.

I haven’t ever seen Million Dollar Baby, but this show clinches that I likely never ever will.

It’s official: Paul Haggis is the most overrated writer since Joe Eszterhas. Remember Showgirls? Yeah, that Eszterhas.

The other haggis:

Haggis

haggis |ˈhagis| |ˌhøgəs| |ˌhagɪs

noun ( pl. same)
a Scottish dish consisting of a sheep’s or calf’s offal mixed with suet, oatmeal, and seasoning and boiled in a bag, traditionally one made from the animal’s stomach.

I’m struggling with which haggis is actually more nauseating.

The Black Donnellys. Jesus fucking Christ what a horrible piece of shit. Did I equivocate too much there? You know us homos and our mincing, so here’s some evidence:

  • Actual voice-over lifted from the show: Salmonetta did all his business out of the same booth every day and every night for 46 years. People say he had a toilet under the table. OMG “toilet” and “did…his business”! Ow, my sides from laughter!
  • There was a moment when the “good” (hey, if Paul Haggis can telegraph plot points from a mile away, I can use scare quotes) Donnelly brother first gets sucked into his brothers’ badness. He’s chasing after a guy who escaped his brothers’ imprisonment down a DEAD END STREET. “Dead End” Sign and Everything. Bonk! Bonk! On the head! Bonk! Bonk!

I leave you with more haggis, which looks like shit. Irony.

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Loss

There are many things in the world I do not understand. There are not many things—at least in the once upon a time days—that I can not or will not understand. There is a vastness of bitter, bitter space between ability and desire.

Ability and Desire. Two things that have never been two separate things within me. Failure to do or failure to win or failure to achieve are old, old friends and I still know them well and recall them with fidelity.

Debussy plays now, now past Syrinx where the notes trickle and drop, falling off the edge of the world. Lost forever. He can’t bring them back, won’t bring them back, so he brings more notes. New ones to replace the goners. I have the music set to play from a Mac mini to multiple rooms in the house as an ersatz tune I carry ersatzly in my ersatz head.

And now comes a waltz. A slow one (La plue que lente), at that. Waltzes are my favorite. The only form of music where the dance paints the notes instead of the other way around. Feet do not land in the land of waltzing, instead forgetting to fall, or having lost the ability to fall. Each measure in a waltz has lost its last note and makes due by gliding forward, ever forward.

What has happened to the engine that has driven me forward-ever-forward for these nearly 43 years? It’s lost. Hidden, at least. Camouflaged by the upward and enveloping drip drip drip of pain and noise, rhythmic and random, respectively. I cannot glide and it feels like my life depends on this very ability.

Ability and Desire.

Who I am is not who I was. This is the way of things. We get older, we suffer joys and champion crises, we choose or refuse. We grow and die-back. We gain and we lose.

All so gradual, the diminishing years we have ahead of us and the growing years behind us, according to the calendar’s math. Its numbers are unassailable, exact. But? I used to think, “also simple. Too simple.”

I could say I’ve lost my way. I could say that even being stalled in backwaters and eddies can have purposiveness applied: the Learning Experience. But who can learn anything when one has the desire but lacks the ability to deeply focus, afflicted with a sort of mental claudication?

Ability and Desire.

Once I was able to have so many threads of thought in my grasp that a simple flick of the wrist would generate solutions to so varied a set of situations that I was almost prescient. Today, the ongoing pink noise of pain in my head often makes me forget to hold on to a single thread at a time, and off! off goes the balloon to which it was attached. Another it-thing lost.

Ability and Desire.

Maybe that’s just Cole Porter talking. Maybe it’s John Barrowman singing Porter. Or singing Sondheim. Maybe the 3:30-odd-minute song is the right sized portion for me. Maybe John Barrowman singing “Being Alive” properly tapes out the distance between Ability and Desire right now in a masturbatory way:

Someone to need you too much
Someone to know you too well
Someone to pull you up short
And put you through hell
And give you support for being alive - being alive
Make me alive, make me confused
Mock me with praise, let me be used
Vary my days, but alone is alone, not alive.

The Someone in the song is I. It is a grotesque and maudlin coincidence that there was just over a minute left in St. Valentine’s Day 2007 when I started this entry. Nothing more.

Ability and Desire.

What I wish to be able to do…throw the levers and crank the cranks of my brain to entertain, demure, self-exculpate, self-aggrandize, self-abnegate, self-identify…are not within my reach, much less my grasp.

What of my livelihood? And what to do without one?

It was, back in the day (pre August 2006), so easy to poke holes in much-vaunted (or at least much-attended-to) philosophies like nihilism (the self exists to question its own existence) or existentialism (the snake is swallowing its own tail and lives to tell the tale) or even Objectivism (Axiom #1: Thou shalt not accept axioms!) because the self remained intact and robust when compassing so many inner worlds.

In those better times, my unifying philosophy: it’s turtles, turtles, all the way down.

I can’t see any of those turtles any more, philosophies fail me and I am afraid.

What do you do when you can’t do what makes you you?

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A Moment of Snarky, Biting Silence

Story.Vert.Ivins.Gi I saw on cnn.com just a little while ago that Molly Ivins has died.

I was introduced to Ivins’ particular brand of humor by Allen, whose death preceded Ivins’ by 12 long short years. Molly was 62. Allen was 37—I shuddered to realize how far behind me 37 is already.

These are the times, if I believed in a god, that I’d question god’s existence. What kind of mutherfucker takes Allen away, takes Molly away, and leaves the Shrub alive and in a position of unspeakable power? Moot, really, and a good thing that I don’t believe in a god.

I believed in Molly’s voice. I believed in Allen’s love. I believed in so much and still do. I mean, someone’s got to believe, deep down, in the continuance of life and love. What else is there?

Rest not in peace, Molly, but in joy and laughter. While I live, so will your legacy.

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Happy New Year!

To everyone, a very Happy New Year!

Change is what you make it. We create our own realities and live according to our own ethics and morals.

If your 2006 sucked, I wish you restitution of spirit in 2007. If your 2006 was wonderful, I wish you abundance to overflowing and the hope that you share it with others, creating more wealth for us all.

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The Uphill Drive To The Ambien Pit

Sleep and Not.

Write and Not.

Comes the blanketing of the sky, thick clouds bursting forth from a small oblong pill.

There’s Fine work to do, a specific handicraft called to task, and I’m wearing giant mittens made out of wooly-thought.

Swat at the walls with kite-sized mittens held hamfisted and ungainly, making a mess.

The need to sleep and the wish to not. Groggily we roll along, roll along, roll along! Tetchily we stomp it down, stomp it down, stomp it down!

Stomp it down, Skippy. It’s time to surrender to the pill, even though it couldn’t be buggered to better itself, fashion itself into an ambien CR. No, this ambien is a one-pump-chump, so I only get one shot at, well, the shot.<?p>

If my fingers stop aping my thoughts (such as they are) because I’ve wandered away from the MacBook Pro and, say, out into the flirty-bitter Dead Night Air of Northern Pennsylvania, how will they eulogize the irony of the small thoughts vanquishing the big head; how will they work their irenics to spin the dull dun deed into a rainbow of ironics?

How will they explain Thomas A-Quinone using his unstoppable force of mind to move the unmovable frozen body of the God of Ambien into Toby’s Creek (pron: crick)? As nothing more than an attempt at a recipe he found in 1978 Mixologists Bible?

They slap their heads in a dozen individual “ah ha!” moments as they land on the final product: Gin & Chthonics!

Except they didn’t become 100% sure until the limes were dropped in the tumblers.<?p>

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So What Happens Now?

So Mary Cheney is pregnant. Done deal.

From a progressivist standpoint, she’s chosen to have the baby, but her choice wasn’t one based on anguish or even desperation. She chose before she got pregnant. It’s obviously a bit more difficult than an accidental unprotected cock clasped in vagina for a gay couple to become pregnant. They discuss the idea, do whatever level of math on it that they’re comfortable with, and take steps to make it happen. It’s quite Pro-Life, actually, to decide in favor of bringing a new life into the world. So yes, from a progressivist standpoint, she will have the baby.

From a neocon standpont, she’s stillllll pregnant! Only we all know ahead of time what kind of family the child will be born into. We know that the baby won’t have a one-mother, one-father environment. We know, as neocons, that he or she will be under the influence of the Gay Agenda. We know, as neocons, that the one-man-one-woman context is better than any kind of environment a gay couple—simply because they’re gay—could ever provide. We also know that we’d never “murder an unborn baby” because it’s wrong…meaning, we know, from a neocon standpoint, she will have the baby.

Progressives—at least the ones who put humanity before politics—are happy that the child will have loving parents who will provide a stable home. The same subset of progressives—among which I fancy myself to be included—breathed a huge sigh of relief when the more famous set of the the child’s presumptive grandparents announced how happy they were to be welcoming a grandchild.

We know that not all is well for the neocons. Janice “Vulvamatic” Crouse called the situation “unconscionable” and Carrie Gordon “Sugar Tits” Earll insisted that “Love can’t replace a mother and a father.”

So why haven’t the Crouses and Earlls of the world come forth to proactively be “prolife” and try to remove the baby from the custody of the two big dykes? I mean, if they want to live according to their principles, they should be fighting to remove the child once it’s born from the clutches of the obviously inferior parentage and into a foster home that has a one-man, one-woman configuration. Those neocons less interested in the christianist side of the argument should be encouraging Mary to abort.

If they don’t, they’re just talking out their nethermouths and should shut the fuck up—but not before admitting their hatefulness and apologizing to Mary and Heather.

There’s no way to directly contact Mrs. Crouse, but you can email her work to see how she intends to correct Mary Cheney’s unconscionable act. As for Butter Nipples Earll, well, there’s a less indirect route, but still not so satisfying as it could be. But then again, you’ll be emailing someone who’s probably never been truly satisfied in her own lifetime.

Maybe we should leave it up to that self-satisfied, never-satisfied screeder, Bill O’Reilly? From Salon.com:

the December 13 edition of Fox News’ The O’Reilly Factor, Bill O’Reilly dismissed scientific research on same-sex parenting to assert that “[n]ature dictates that a dad and a mom is the optimum” form of child-rearing. O’Reilly asked “why,” if children suffer no psychosocial deficit from being raised by same-sex parents, “wouldn’t nature then make it that anybody could get pregnant by eating a cupcake?” O’Reilly declared that by arguing in favor of same-sex couples’ right to raise children, “you’re taking Mother Nature and you’re throwing it right out the window, and I just think it’s crazy.”

Bill must have had some really good cupcakes in his day.

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Two, Two, Two Loves in One!

How did I not know until right now that two of my favorite actresses, Sarah Paulson and Cherry Jones, were a couple?

Tonys This is like Christmas come early! Ever since I saw Sarah Paulson in Down With Love, I knew she had that magnetic something going on. As for Cherry Jones, well, c’mon. Just look at her and you know there’s magic going on.

I’m not sure if I’m happy because it’s just two people who I admire, or if it’s because I’m happy to share a demographic with two such talented people, or if my affinity for each of them makes me extra happy that they both have each other.

I’m just happy about it!

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