Tuesday, September 30, 2014

September 30, 2014

September 30, 2014

I will be leaving my home, or I should say running off from my current location.  I’m the type of guy who throws his hat on the bed, and that becomes my pad.  But now, at my advancing age, this will most likely be my last trip… of any kind.  Nevertheless, I just have to keep a brave face on and not let the others down.  I have always looked for a paradise, and most would like to say an island such as Hawaii or Tahiti fits that bill, but for me it will always be Asakusa.  Not an island, by itself mind you, but part of the bigger island that is Japan.  Or perhaps the island that is actually my mind.

The airline I’m taking is Japan Airlines, where once you enter, you must take your shoes off.  The entire plane has a series of tatami mats, and of course you can only wear socks on the material that is basically rice straw.  Once you get your seat, the stewardess offers you a hot towel to wipe your hands and neck.  Once you finish refreshing oneself, you then get a foot massage from them as well. It lasts maybe only three minutes, but it's a nice introduction to the mysterious Orient.  And one hasn’t even taken off to the heavenly blue skies.

I have high friends in high places.  One is being a gentleman by the name of Shintaro Ishihara.  A writer who specializes on the subject matter of the Japanese sun tribe of the late 1950s.  Not the first rebellious youth movement, but surely the most nihilistic group of young Japanese boys and girls who love and live for the beach culture.  He eventually made a sharp right hand turn and became the mayor of Tokyo.   Due to his reputation and fame, we in the past have met in secretly at a bar in Shinjuku, which is located on the top floor of a sushi boat place that is on the floor level.   It’s an odd bar that only plays the music of Marc Bolan’s first band Tyrannosaurus Rex.  What makes this place even odder, is that they mostly have  photographs of Steve Took (the bongo player) than Bolan on its walls   That is here and there, I’m sitting on the plane reading Truman Capote’s horrible novel “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” and having a glass of cold sake.

Many hours later, the plane of no hope arrives at Narita, where I decided to take an airport bus to a hotel in Meguro, Tokyo.  One hour and a half I’m in the middle of a hotel lobby looking forward to getting a room. I think my adventure will start now, but who knows, I can’t predict what will happen.  I’m just a writer you know.

Monday, September 29, 2014

September 29, 2014

September 29, 2014

As a writer, a publisher, a poet, and a lover, I very much follow the ancient code of chivalry, which is:

1 Believe the Church's teachings and observe all the Church's directions.
2 Defend the Church.
3 Respect and defend all weaknesses.
4 Love your country.
5 Show no mercy to the Infidel. Do not hesitate to make war with them.
6 Perform all your feudal duties as long as they do not conflict with the laws of God.
7 Never lie or go back on one's word.
8 Be generous to everyone.
9 Always and everywhere be right and good against evil and injustice

In a complex and dark world, I find this code simplifies things that make me function better as a human being.  For the past year, I have read nothing but books that deal with the chivalry code, for instance “The Ingenious Gentleman Don Quixote of La Mancha.” A very long novel, but a work that I enjoyed greatly while in the bathtub.  It was sometime during finishing the last page of the novel and draining the tub’s water that I decided to take a trip, to express the code that I believe is essential for the modern life.

I emptied my bank account and some others, to purchase an one-way ticket to Tokyo, for the purpose of bringing the code to the citizens of Edo.  I intend to penetrate into the Floating World by participating in various activities in the area, but alas, with a serious message.   Every culture has two sides of the coin, and the opposite of that coin is Sorrowful World. With the lightness of my touch, I’ll bring enlightenment to the masses and therefore hope will once again regain its stature against the hopeless.

All I have is my faith in the code, because there is no going back. I mustn’t look back, because the past is right behind, and my steely eyes must go forward, to the present and even beyond the entrance of the future.  When I wrote my book “Drugstore Cowboy” I was on the lam from the law.  Once they caught up and sentence me to prison, I arranged for a publisher to publish it, and even though I’m a forgotten man, the book lives on.  Now that I’m released I feel I have a second chance to make things right.  There is wrong, and I know that world quite well.  Now that I have cut everything off, including friends that I never really had, I’m free to roam for chivalry.  You may look like a windmill, but surely the devil lives inside.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

September 28, 2014

September 28, 2014

I only like film stars who are good looking.  As Vernon Sullivan once said “To hell with the ugly.” I don’t pay money to see ugly people showing their real life. I prefer the world of make-believe where beauty exists over anything that is ugly.  For me, the make-believe is real.  I don’t understand how anyone can say that they prefer ugliness, when clearly they can have beauty in their lives.  I was four-years old when I saw my first movie in a movie theater.  The film was “And God Created Woman,” and it was playing at the local movie theater in Larkspur California.  It was a dramatic event for me, because my father and mother had to argue with the theater’s manager about letting me in to see the film.  At the time, it was “adults only, ” but my father clearly wanted to see the film, and he had me with him that night, and it was a family gathering, so what’s the problem?   I remember he refused to leave the line or the box-office, and finally the manager caved into his demand that I can see the film at his theater.

Being in a movie theater was a totally new experience, and I remember being struck with the largeness of the movie screen.  I have no memory of the film’s plot at the time of the showing, but what I clearly remember is the image of Brigitte Bardot on the giant screen.   At the time, living in a rural area of Larkspur, I could identify with the figures in the film.  Not so much the men, but Bardot.  I identified with her boredom and her naturalness in the way she dressed and expressed herself in the film.  I cannot recall if the film was dubbed or had sub-titles, it didn’t make a difference to me, because due to my youth, I couldn’t understand the story.  I only understood the image of Bardot.

Besides my mom, who is an iconic beauty, the other woman in my life is Bardot.  Not by my choice, but my father always had an image of her on the wall - usually in his work-space or studio.  The images I remember being on the wall were Artaud, Cocteau, Nijinsky, and Bardot.  I didn’t know any of these people, but I did know their names and faces.  I knew one was a dancer, and it seems Cocteau did a bit of everything, and Artaud looked insane.  But Bardot I did know.  Also I remember in the household we had a book of photographs of Brigitte Bardot.  It’s odd for the household, because we had books with words, and books on painting or fine photography - but never a book on an actress.  I don’t remember any text in this book. Just one image after another of Bardot.  This was in the late 1950s, so the images were mostly when she was a teenager to her stardom in “And God Created Woman.”

Since I wasn’t reading text yet at the premature age, I did love books. And my favorite book was the book of photographs of Bardot.  My attraction to her was her beauty.  I knew nothing of her life, and I did know she came somewhere not in the United States.  I was mostly impressed with the images of her walking down a sunny street.  I knew wherever the photos were taken, it must have been warm.  She is wearing shorts, sunglasses and no shoes.  Viewing these images, I could feel the warm weather even though it was cold and gray in Larkspur.

As of this date, she is 80 and I’m 60 this year.  Twenty years apart.  When I turned 20, she was still 39.  I could have dated her!   But the truth is our lives are just so distant from each other.  Yet, it is funny how my life is still very close to the “ideal” of Bardot.  Like my father, I have a photograph of her on my work space, and later in life I published a short piece of fiction by her one-time boyfriend Serge Gainsbourg, as well as a biography (written by Gilles Verlant) on the great composer and entertainer.   Even though I never met her or even seen her in person, I feel very close to her presence or image.  She strikes me as a person who made her own world, over a period of time.  There is ugliness, but not by her design. Like a film editor she accepted certain practices and images, and eliminated or left what she didn’t want on the film editor’s floor.   The beauty of reflection is living in a world where ugliness is held back, and my memories are as pure as the sunshine somewhere in the South of France.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

September 27, 2014

September 27, 2014

I’m a moody guy.  I play with identity like a cat plays with a mouse before eating it.  As a performer, you have to take what is out there and make it your own.   My real name is Tosh Berman, and I used to be a roadie for a band called “Shane Fenton and the Fentones.” Shane and the boys made a demo and sent it off to the BBC.  Just right before they got accepted by the media giant, Shane died as a result of the rheumatic fever he had suffered in childhood.  The band was about to split up, but I told them “no, I can be Shane.” And so I did, and joined the band not as Tosh, but as Shane Fenton.  The first song we recorded became a hit called “I’m a Moody Guy.” After that, I never looked back.  I just recently took up the name “Tosh Berman” to be a writer.  I believe that name is suitable for a writer’s name.  As a singer, Tosh doesn’t really jell in my, or in the public’s mind.

I’m a so-so singer, but my main musical talent is as a pianist. My number one role model for that instrument is Bud Powell.  Amazing composer as well, but I really like how he takes a song and tears it apart and puts it back together again.  The Fentones don’t do jazz or blues, but rock n’ roll.  That music, to be honest, I’’m not that crazy about. Nevertheless I discovered numerous jazz recordings while on tour. I tend to like to go off by myself and visit the local record shops of towns that we visited for shows.  It was around this time that I started to think I could have another music career, or identity. After finishing the tour with the Fentones, I left the band and took up the name “Bud Powell the Third”.

Once I take up a new name or identity, I never allow people around me call me by my previous names.  At this point, I was Bud, and like the original Bud Powell, I took up drinking.  It has been reported that a single drink could change Powell into a remorseful figure.  It didn’t affect me the same way, but I pretended to be drunk after the first drink.  To get into the artist’s mind-set I felt it was very important to not only adopt their musical talents, but also their habits as well.   It took me 12-months to totally change my identity and be recognized as a jazz pianist.  I even signed with Blue Note Records, and put out a series of albums: “Bud Powell the Third," ” More of Bud Powell the Third, ” and so forth.

Critics and some of the public were down with me for taking up the name of such a classic musician, but I think they misunderstood my purpose here.   There’s a need or vacancy, and I feel my role in life is to fill the void.   My skills as a pianist are pretty good, but not as great as the original Bud. Still, if my work brings attention to the master, am I doing such a bad thing?  I roam east 53rd street where the jazz clubs used to be. Now there is nothing there but huge buildings.  Culture, or the urban life, is set out to destroy the original locations, and therefore I feel I must take a stand and re-invent a world that goes back to Bud or even my late friend Shane.

Now, it is time for me to give up music and focus on writing. I have a hard time making up narratives, so I started to focus on the books by Jim Thompson.  He knew how to tell the tale. So basically I took his novels as my own.  I changed a word here and there, but I somewhat made the books of my own.  Of all my novels, I’m quite fond of “The Killer Inside Me.” Thompson’s father was a sheriff in Caddo County, Oklahoma.   While “writing” my novels, I moved to the country to get closer to the source of Thompson’s life.  Like Powell, I took up drinking again, but this time, my role model was Thompson.  Without a doubt people are confused with the name “Tosh Berman” who writes Jim Thompson’s books.  There is no valid reason why I do this, except that inspiration works in strange ways.   Sometimes it is done by chance, and other times it is planned out like a military exercise.  Nevertheless I remain truly myself in a world of illusion.

Friday, September 26, 2014

September 26, 2014

September 26, 2014

When I wake up in the morning, I have the taste of fear in my mouth. “I will show you fear in a handful of dust.” I sometimes feel like I have no teeth, and my tongue is not part of my mouth.  I can never get out of bed quickly.  I need at least ten minutes to think where I am, and what my purpose here in life is or in this house. “I have measured out my life with coffee spoons.” One…Two…Three, that’s enough for now.  I never was a fan of strong coffee.  In actuality, I always prefer the coffee served in diners.  What I like about it is that it’s not precious.  It is something to drink while you concentrate on something else.  Or I should say, I’m just focusing on the space between objects.  “To think is to confine yourself to a single thought that one day stands still like a star in the world’s sky. ”

I reflect on the moments passing, as if I was dancing with my shadow.  I have a fear of moments of not being noted or paid attention to. When I look back, it is always the direction of my past. If I look forward, I’m deeply into the present.  The future is the entrance of my door. “If you haven’t the strength to impose your own terms upon life, then you must accept the terms it offers you.” Yet, I stand very still while stirring my coffee in the morning.

There is something that I want, but I can’t have it.  “Longing is the agony of the nearness of the distant.” I had some money, but now I don’t. “Part of the money went on gambling, and part of it went on women.  The rest I spent foolishly.” I tend to live in the moment, but alas, does that moment love me?  The indifference of the world, or time passing, I really can’t recall a moment when I first realized that I love you.  Or at the very least, the thought of loving you.   “I like having a secret life.” “I’ve had quite a few moments I’ve liked, so it’s good enough. ” So what I have I should keep, and then perhaps I can recall it back again, like an old friend who never lets me down.  

Only in the middle of the night, and I start having my dreams, that I realize that I plenty to fear.  All my defense mechanisms are down, and being repaired by the time I wake up in the morning.  But when I do wake up suddenly from a dream, or nightmare, it is the worst feeling of dread.  There are two lives.  One is here, writing to you, and the other is when I lose myself in a dream, and I can’t control the images and people that invade my life with my eyes closed.  I have awoken to see shadows briefly go by me, and I’m never sure if it is a part of the dream, or perhaps I’m truly not alone in this world.  There is a bridge between dream and awaken life, but due to my vertigo, I don’t want to look down.   The bridge is just a high wire and my balance is rather bad.  One thing that soothes my soul is music.   “I frequently hear music in the very heart of noise.” “You can never get silence anywhere nowadays, have you noticed? ”

Thursday, September 25, 2014

The Death Instinct ARTBOOK | D.A.P. 2014 Catalog TamTam Books Books Exhibition Catalogues 9780966234688

Ladies and Gentlemen,

You can now purchase "The Death Instinct" by Jacques Mesrine at the Art Book / D.A.P website. Also free shipping for those who live in the U.S.  Buy now!

The Death Instinct ARTBOOK | D.A.P. 2014 Catalog TamTam Books Books Exhibition Catalogues 9780966234688

September 25, 2014

September 25, 2014

Your lack of strength and backbone shocks me. I think the only reason that I let you be around me is that you’re an inspiration to me.  I note everything you do here, and I mediate on that list, and eventually I will do the total opposite.   If you turn left, I’ll go right.  If you go back, I go forward.  I wake up each morning to read your Facebook page, because it is exactly like watching a car accident in slow motion.  One knows the end of the narrative, but I can’t help myself watching the gradual drain down the sewer pipes. That is your life.  You have an instinctive genius in doing the wrong things at the moment when you should make changes for the better.  I wish that you were big or important enough as a subject matter to take a bet against in Las Vegas.  Your predictable choices and how you follow them are a peaceful meditation for me.  But that’s here or there.

I mostly spend my time comparing the two versions of Glenn Gould’s “Goldberg Variations.” The first version in which he recorded in 1955 is perfection.  Yet, just before he passed away in 1982, he did a new recording of the work.  Gould studied and learned this piece entirely without his teacher.  He instinctively knew that he had to slow down the work. What is interesting is that he made a comment that “the mental imagery involved with pianistic tactilia is not related to the striking of individual keys but rather to the rites of passage between notes. ”

With respect to the second and much later recording, Gould felt that the initial recording of the piece was too much of a pianistic affectation, and that it needed a more introspective interpretation that included more calculated phrasing and ornamentation. What is fascinating that he had the ability to look at his work, and willing to take and accept the time difference, yet, he is still working on it. “I believe that the justification of art is the internal combustion it ignites in the hearts of men and not its shallow, externalized, public manifestations. The purpose of art is not the release of a momentary ejection of adrenaline but is, rather, the gradual, lifelong construction of a state of wonder and serenity.”

What appeals to me regarding the two versions of The Goldberg Variations is that he takes his past and makes something new out of it.  The past is still there, but he added either a footnote or a totally different work, based on one’s past.  William Faulkner wrote that “the past is never dead.  It’s not even past.” The need to make up one’s identity is just as important when you deal with your past.  That is the reason why I get so annoyed with the nameless artist above (the first paragraph), because he chooses to whine about his condition, instead of doing art or making his life better.  He knows what he can do, yet, he rather plays to his audience.  Going back to Gould, he makes a good comment: “I detest audiences - not in their individual components, but en masse I detest audiences.  I think they’re a force of evil.  It seems to me rule of mob law. ”

Robert Bresson, the filmmaker, wrote beautiful advice in that “the most ordinary word, when put into place, suddenly acquires brilliance. That is the brilliance with which your images must shine.” To dwell in one’s misery for the purpose of bringing you second-rate attention, is surely, over time, will make you lose your audience.  And that is a bit of a problem.  Because you only live through your audience, not your now so-called art.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Bryan Ferry & Michael Bracewell - Museum Of Contemporary Art, Chicago

A recent discussion between Michael Bracewell, a writer I greatly admire, and Bryan Ferry.  A person of great interest!

September 24, 2014

September 24, 2014

With respect to Hollywood, “it’s only a village, you know.  Village life around the pump.” Everyone knows each other, and even those who don’t know, do know.  I actually like it that way, because I find the illusion of life more satisfying than what I see in the mirror. Of course living in London and New York, I chose to go west, as the saying goes “go west young man.” The thing is I’m not that young anymore, and more likely if I can’t sell my writing or this script thing, I will suffer greatly.  And my name is associated with failure, at least that is the way I’m thought of in London and New York.  I threw the dice and came up with the wrong numbers on a continuous basis.  So here I’m pumping my gas in a car that I can barely drive.

What was I thinking of when I married Zelda?  An incredible fuck, and a highly talented woman, who just couldn’t stay focused on the things in front of her.  I wouldn’t say she was my muse, because I really don’t believe in that there is a “fairy” out there that chooses one to write or create with inspiration.  No, her contributions to my work are one of as a critic and knew when I was bullshitting myself.  Every writer needs an audience of some sort, or someone who can look at your work and say “sucks” or “brilliant” - and you know that he or she is going to tell you the truth.  I accepted my wife in that light, as well as being in love with her, or at least, I like the idea of being in love with Zelda.  As metal turns to rust, my love or appreciation was tested when I became a caretaker for her, and therefore here I’m in Hollywood trying to fit in to the machine that produces popular culture. I think I pretty much did my best writing already, so now I’m trying to work just to survive and pay the bills.  I do love the cinema, but I wonder if that is a hindrance in writing a script these days.  I’m much older than everyone else, and when I go to the local Starbucks, I see a group of young men with caps worn backwards, struggling with words in a script format.  If I had t re-live my youth again, “I don’t want to repeat my innocence.  I want the pleasure of losing it again.”

At the moment, I’m writing a script for an entertainer I met in London, and there is a (very) slight chance we can make this into a limited TV series for AMC.  “The Strange World of Gurney Slade” is about a guy who is trapped in a TV series and he can’t escape from it. I wrote six episodes so far, and I think that is all that is needed.  Everyone I talk to in the business says they’re “excited” about this project. I, on the other hand, have been disappointed so many times, that I just take this on the chin, and keep going.  The lead character is heroic, but as a fellow writer once commented: “Show me a hero, and I’ll write you a tragedy. ”

I really shouldn’t fool myself.  The end is near.  If I squint my eyes towards the horizon, I can see it rearing its head over the vanishing line, trying to lure me into a trap.  At the very least, if one is a good shopper, you can find some of my books in the remainder bin. I did my best, and the most clearest moments in my life are when I held a pen and put it onto paper.  Beyond that, it was drinking and arguing with my wife.  I have no regrets.  “The loneliest moment in someone’s life is when they are watching their whole world fall apart, and all they can do is stare blankly.”

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

September 23, 2014

September 23, 2014

I loathe brutes. In fact, I’m not a fan of the brute male type at all.  I think all men need to be feminine and rely on wit, a sense of proper fashion, and always be brave when danger arrives at their doorstep.  What is truly a turn-off are brutish men who cry and seek assistance. If there is one thing that really turns my stomach inside out, is the masculine voice crying out for understanding and sympathy.  My first reaction is to reach out for a whip, and not actually touch them with the tool of my trade, but just make them think that there is greater pain out there, and one needs to be tough to cope with it.  In most cases, they just whimper more.

Due to circumstances that are obvious to any person who is under a brain, I had to take up another identity to fight these characters who have no backbone or principals.  The first thing I did was organize a Members of the League, which worked in total secrecy and only answer to me.  The members of great standing are: Pinkie, Dallow, Cubitt, Spicer, and Rose.  We meet once a week at various locations in the Silverlake area of Los Angeles.  Mostly on the property that was once the Coffee Table. I had the business torn down, and kept the basement, which has secret steps, hidden from the steer level, leading to the dungeon.  I call the meeting in order by reciting a poem that I wrote:

“We seek him here, we seek him there,
Those masculine thugs seek him everywhere.
Is he in heaven? - Is he in hell?
That damned, elusive Pimpernel. ”

The Pimpernel is a small plant, with creeping stems and flat five-petaled flower.  That is the reason why i limit the membership to the League to five. The stems start from the flower, but eventually will grow on to attract others in our battle against the brute.   I want everything to be literally attached to the flower itself.  A flower is a wisp of a life that survives in a world that is cruel, and with the pimpernel as its image, we strike back.  We will destroy the brute.  Wherever he may decide to live, or roam, we’ll be there to suck the air out of his lungs.

Monday, September 22, 2014

September 22, 2014

September 22, 2014

When I think of the name “Anna Karina” it brings up images of her former husband Jean-Luc Godard, but when I see a picture of her, I only think of her.  I’m crazy about her. “At the moment everything was being destroyed she had created that which was most difficult: she had not drawn something out of nothing (a meaningless act), but given to nothing, in its form of nothing, the form of something.” I never fully understand the meaning of a beautiful woman as it is defined in words.  Do they mean she’s pretty?  I’m struck by her character, or maybe the words she says through various writers and directors. I never think of Godard as being beautiful, but when I see Karina in his films, I think she’s “beautiful. ”

“I could not work with a girl who did not have a spiritual quality.” Throughout my life I tried to find my own Anna Karina, but my lack of spirituality held me back to find the happiness that is owed me.  The very image of love, I couldn’t really define in words, so it became a sense of nothingness.  I needed a name attached to it, to give me some meaning.  “Anna Karina” represents a sea of mixed passions that as a fisherman, I have to throw a line out there, and see what bites.  I watched her watching Renée Jeanne Falconetti on a movie screen that for me, reflects on attaching an identity to another.  To be so vulnerable, and to pick up on another person’s pain, is the precise definition of my unhappiness.

“We can’t do anything with an object that has no name.” But once we attach a name to it, or her, it becomes something painful. I have a faint memory of seeing a film that was 10 hours long called “Greed.” I sat through the whole film at the Cinémathèque Française and I couldn’t move from my fold-up chair as I watched it on the Steenbeck.  The images flickered in front of me as I cringed in knowing what will happen to the leading characters.  Only 12 people have seen the long version of this film, and if we were on a trial, we would find the film’s director, Erich von Stroheim, not guilty, for destroying his film.  If for nothing else, the time melts in front of you, but ironically enough, most people comment how long the film is, without giving merit or praise (deservedly so) to the work on hand.  It is now destroyed.

It has been re-constructed into a version that is almost like the 10-hour film, but alas, it is only a mirror image of the work.  The exquisite face of ZaSu Pitts still exists, in scenes and stills, but like my memory, it’s fading fast.  Anna Karina stays with me, because I presume I know her through the films.  Specifically the ones she did with Godard.  But again, it is mainly reflected through the eyes of her ex-husband, and therefore is that a ‘realistic’ knowledge of Karina?  As a publisher, I want to make a book that is nothing but close-up images of Anna Karina.  No text, and not even a title or copyright page. Words fail the image.  Just a mass-market designed book that holds the image of the greatest treasure on earth - Anna Karina.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

September 21, 2014

September 21, 2014

“To exist is to change, to change is to mature, to mature is to go on creating oneself endlessly.” When I think of my past, I immediately get an erection.  The only thing I care to remember is my series of sexual conquests.  Everything else is not important.   I used to know the names of my conquests, but now, all I can remember are their bodies, face, and intelligence.  I was never a big fan of names, because I have a hard time connecting something verbally to a face.  It’s uncommon for a writer to admit this, but the visual image is far more important to me than the vocabulary.  I think back to countless women I have touched, both in the literal and spiritual sense, and every one of them offered me great pleasure, that can’t be really recorded by words on a page.

When I close my eyes it is like being in H. G. Wells’ Time Machine, where I set the dials to a specific time and place, and go there.  I can visit ancient civilization or the pre-war Paris years, by just imagining what it would be just like.  I don’t need to be actually there, but just knowing a few names, for instance Boris Vian, Juliette Gréco and of that sort, I already have a place and time in mind.  So my time machine is really me closing my eyes and transporting myself to that world.  My sexual time-traveling sort of works the same.  Some are real memories of actual fuck sessions, and others are “imagined” get-togethers where I focus on a beauty of my choice.

There is a secret club, only for men of a certain age, that I belong to called “Gas, Grass, & Ass, ” where we discuss our sexual conquests among ourselves.  It’s rude to discuss these things in an open forum or even in public, but within this club we can freely discuss in detail our sexual adventures.  The one rule is the fact that we never mention the name of the woman, or give any personal background on her, except what she is like in bed, and after all, we are gentlemen of a certain age and time.

One of the things we really like to talk about is if we were in, or had the use of a Time Machine, who would we revisit again for carnal pleasure.  The irony is that this club only focuses on the past, so in a sense I’m in a room full of men who live in or for the past.  Some say one cannot live in the past, but I think we all know that is not exactly true.  The present only exists, because there is a past, and how we perceive that “past” is how we see our present.  The future we never knows.

“Think like a man of action, act like a man of thought.” The one thing we all agree with is that each woman has her own particular scent.  I commented that I had a fantasy of sitting in a room blindfolded and the women that I share intimacy with comes in.  I identify each one by their natural sexual scent.  To be wrong, would be fatal!  Nevertheless, it is interesting that all of us men at the club have a highly sense of smell, and that it’s a big part of our sexuality or desire.   When I get home from our weekly meetings, I feel exhausted.  Drained even.  The only thing that makes any sense to me is that “the pure present is an ungraspable advance of the past devouring the future.  In truth, all sensation is already memory.”

Saturday, September 20, 2014

September 20, 2014

September 20, 2014

There’s a hotel in Echo Park that I go to, and it is called “The Hotel for Lost Men.” This hotel is basically made for middle-aged men, to dwell in a passion where no one is watching or making demands on them. It is based on a series of ‘love’ hotels in Osaka, Japan, but this one has a twist.  What you get is a room, but also a sex doll.  And this is not just any sex doll, but one that if you touch it, you swear it’s human skin, and even the eyes look real.  A unique blend of high quality silicone has been applied to create the doll. Each doll is made with a skeletal structure.  Their skin is “soft to the touch, and the dolls breasts have been modified to enable a more softer, more realistic touch and feel."

I go to this hotel because by nature, I’m a shy man.  Also I really don’t have a need for a relationship, because I find them boring. If I wish to relate to another person or girl, I can do that easily with my post office clerk, or the young girl behind the counter at Starbucks. Human communication or one-on-one of course, is important for some, but for me, all my inner-thoughts are enough for me.  I never feel lonely. I don’t desire companionship.  I don’t desire heart-to-heart conversation; I desire to stick my penis in a doll.

With that in mind, “The Hotel for Lost Men” is on a side-street, in the hills of Echo Park. The structure looks like housing from Walt Disney’s “Snow White and the 7 Drawfs, in fact it is suspected that Disney built these structures for his workers, due that his studio was close by.  Once you walk in, you are in the lobby, where you can see the various dolls.  For instance there is a doll who dresses like a hotel receptionist, and you can actually go up to her and order a doll and room.  There is a giant menu which lists all the girl dolls, with photographs of course, and a picture of the room as well.  Prices are clearly listed as well as if you want to rest (two to three hours) or spend the night.  There are various types of rooms one can order. Some are over-the-top, like “Sade’s bedroom, ” or “Mustang Ranch Fantasy, ” and so forth.   I chose “Nightporter” room and requested Sarina, a doll that reminds me of an early girlfriend I had in Taft High School.   It takes them about ten minutes to secure the doll as well as the room.  I never see a live worker on the premise.  Every transaction is done through the hotel receptionist, whom I mention being a sex doll as well.  

The Nightporter room is based on the film, and is a large room with six or seven hospital beds.  Sarina was on one of the beds dressed in a black sweater and an off-white dress with a shirt collar. My high school sweetheart used to wear the same dress, and one of the wonderful things about this hotel is that you can custom made your dolls to whatever specific clothing or hair or eye color.  The girls look real, and I never have seen a dead girl before, but I imagine that this is the closest one can get to a dead girl.

When you touch Sarina, she feels real, but no sign of life.  Intellectually it is hard for me to penetrate a doll, but once I get in a mind-set, I’m fine.  I’m obsessed with my aging, and it is interesting that this hotel caters to men in my age bracket, and I’m not sure why?  But what is interesting is that I physically age, but the dolls look exactly the same. Of course they do not age, and they remind one of time being stopped, or perhaps a memory that one freezes, so one can observe over and over again.  After each encounter, one is responsible for cleaning up the doll, and in the drawer, they have assorted cleaning tools.  One would think, since I’m a paying customer, would just leave the dolls dirty, but I personally can’t do that.  Not thinking about the next guy, but more out of respect for the doll, and the pleasure she gave me, or is it more about the pleasure I give myself?

Friday, September 19, 2014

September 19, 2014

September 19, 2014

“I am determined to go through the horror of this world.” I don’t throw the dice, and I pretty much map out the plans on a massive desk in my office.   I have four men in my office at this moment, and they are wearing leather jackets with button up Levis, and motorcycle boots.  I don’t know if I should french-kiss each one, or dress them up for a party.  Nevertheless art-making and doing business is very well the same thing.  John and George are without a doubt the hottest here, and both are sort of emotionally damaged.  Not sure why, more likely due to the lost of a family member, or just not fitting in the world.  This is something that I totally understand, not fitting in the world.  I have been an outcast for my whole life, and I live in a world that hates me.  So, I either drown in self-pity, or make my own world.  I have four young men here that will make a new world, for you, and without a doubt for me as well.

When I look back, I must have been dreaming. I was led into a cave, somewhere in Damn Liverpool, and I came upon a vision that hit me right away.   I usually have doubts or have to re-think it, but here, was something that came upon me in a technicolor fashion, but clearly in a black and white world.  It reminded me when I first went to London by myself, and I picked up on a beautiful man, who was rough on the edges, and eventually punched me out, and took all my cash as well as my watch, that my father gave me, for being such a good salesperson in our family business.  Yet, it wasn’t a downer for me, it made me feel alive, and I was placed in a dangerous world, that I secretly have been craving for a long time.

I remember going into the cave, and realizing that there was not any exit.  I immediately felt the change in my life as soon as I enter the entrance opening.  The heat was the first sensual overload, and it was like if I was going back to the womb, but not my mothers, but someone else’s uterus. A male version if there is such a thing. It wasn’t the audience that appealed to my senses, but seeing four drunken musicians on the stage, that sort of reminded me of the chap who punched me out and took my dole.

Before that, I just wanted to study acting, but my father was against that plan.  He wanted me to work in the family business, and with half a heart I did so.  I eventually went to drama school, but I realize I hated school life.  At the time, it was bad as my world, but much smaller, and therefore I felt I couldn’t breathe in that environment.  I then realize that I can be a performer, but I needed the right medium to work with.  What I really wanted to do was re-shape the horrible world and somehow make it into a better place I was ill in my stomach thinking of all the lies that I had to put up with.  Here in front of me, is one way out, a new honesty at work, that will change mine as well as your life.  John, George, Paul and….. Pete.   That last name doesn’t fit well with the others.  I must make a note to change that in the very near future.

I know very little about music, even though I work in the record store department of the family store, but I know it's important to others. I recall a young man, or boy, who came in and asks for a song “My Bonnie, ” and I remember his face being so disappointed when we didn’t have that record in stock. I almost wanted to come up to him and put my arms around him.  It wasn’t eros, but more of a feeling or remembrance of my past disappointments.  I feel if I could supply people a certain amount of happiness, and not deal with bitter disappointments, then I have contributed something to “this” world. Alas, there are for two worlds.  I’m going to change one world and make it into my idealistic world.   I have the tools or instruments right in front of me.   I just need to fine-tuned or get rid of the Pete issue.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

September 18, 2014

September 18, 2014

“I never said, 'I want to be alone. ' I only said 'I want to be let alone! ' There is all the difference.” One should be able to choose who you want to be with, or who you want to work with.  This is my desire.  This is my right.   I was from Sweden, and came to America to become part of the motion picture business.   Well, I ended up in the business, and I didn’t like it.  Not one bit.  To improve my English dictation, I studied tapes made by Lord Haw-Haw, a British citizen who made broadcasts for the Nazis during the war.  He at times used an upper-class British accent, while making statements over the radio, and I found it hypnotic.  I just try to imagine that it’s P.G. Wodehouse’s Jeeves whispering in my ear, but what he said sounded so beautiful, but the ugliness of the content was something I had to move aside. “The people of England will curse themselves for having preferred ruin from Churchill to peace from Hitler.” I played it over and over again, till I got his accent just perfectly correct.  I didn't do this for a film role but to be part of a new world, and with that I needed a new identity.  By no means was I erasing my other identity, because I wanted to have the ability to switch roles or positions in life.

I’m going to do one more job in the film business, and then I’m going to spend the rest of my life drifting.  As I approached my 60th birthday, “in a few days, it will be the anniversary of the sorrow that never leaves me, that will never leave me for the rest of my life.” One can mark success in different ways, for me, it is to be alone with my heart and some close friends.  I always believed that there were two sides to me.  One being a recluse and the other, a social person.  But I cannot be treated like a performing monkey anymore.  I really resent my directors telling me to smile, not a smile, say my lines, not to say my lines, and so forth.  I don’t feel like I have a strong sense of self, and therefore acting is sort of a way of communicating with the public or the individual.  People think I’m beautiful, but what does that exactly mean?

My last role will be playing twins that are conjoined by the head, to be exact by the eye.  I’m playing both roles, so it will be tricky for me to convey two separate identities, yet one body.   To be honest, the script is not that great, but I think it will be an interesting role, or two roles (they should pay me twice!) and then say goodbye to my so-called public life.  What I have to imagine is having a part of me that is always there.   What I have done is practice my lines in front of the mirror and pretending that the image is another character, or my twin sister.  For one of the sisters, I chose the Lord Haw-Haw accent ("Jairmany calling, Jairmany calling”) but for the other sister, who is a country singer - I try to go for a soft southern accent.  It is sometimes difficult, because I feel like I’m separating my soul in doing this part.

“There are many things in your heart you can never tell to another person. They are you, your private joys and sorrows, and you can never tell them. You cheapen yourself, the inside of yourself, when you tell them.” So how does one sister keep her distance from the other, when physically they are together for always.   One of the sisters is able-bodied, but the other one has spine bifid, which causes a height difference.  So one has to carry the other around, but she made a bar stool, because it is the exact height, and just added wheels to the bottom of the stool.  The able-body sister serves as the manager as well as holding the microphone when the other sings.  The script is loosely based on a real set of twins, but of course, this being a film, there are many things that are made-up.  Once I finish that film, I will focus on nothing.  I won’t disappear, but I will decline to participate in the film world, or any other world that is out there.  It will just be me, and the private world of the other.  I walk alone, but there is always another angel inside me that guides me through the murky waters that are known as life.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

September 17, 2014

September 17, 2014

I barely exist.  Well, perhaps to you I barely exist, but for me, I am the star of my own world. I just don’t have the resources to make a proper appearance, or become the person you think I should be. I’m a songwriter as well as a writer, and yet, I don’t have a record deal nor a relationship with a publisher.  Still, I can create something, make something that can be admired if you allow me that pleasure. I have the tendency, or some say the talent to choose the wrong type of woman.  The one’s that make me purr, are usually married, and married to powerful men.  I guess I want a taste of that power by being with their women.   To taste what they have tasted, even though it’s a by-product of their power, their position, it is still a high for me to get close to it.  There is something in my DNA, that makes me want to throw a punch before thinking it through.  I don’t consider myself a vicious man, but once I taste their blood, it is like wine to my senses.  I once read that there are no accidents or coincidences, that every gesture or thought is pre-planned.  If I was meant to be rich, successful, and I guess happy, then it would happen.

I have been told that “You’ve got a million-dollar talent son, but a ten-cent brain.” The problem is that I need the attention before anything else. I can’t stand being ignored, or not to be the focus of attention.  It’s always a shock to me, when people don’t respond to me right away.  Everything I do or see is an extension of me.  I take a walk down Waverly Drive, and I see the architecture, the road signs, and even the trees as objects that should have a relationship with me. I find it odd that a thing can exist without me thinking about that thing.  As I try to finish my memoir “I Am Not Ashamed, ” I find myself in a deep sea of doubt, and that, to be honest with you, leave me scared.  I wrote a song called “Angel of Death, ” which confronts my fear of not being around.  “Can you truthfully say/With your dying breath/That you’re ready to meet/The Angel of Death. ”

My taste for married women came from the feeling that I’m alive and here at the moment. I don’t like to think about the next day, or even the next minute. When you get to it, I just want to be famous and admired - and the love or lust from a married woman brings that intensity in life.  My girlfriend’s husband Franchot, threw a punch at me the other night, he missed, and I broke his cheek bone.  It felt good to do that.  On the other hand, I won the battle, but I may have lost the war.  It felt right at that moment, but now people are beginning to doubt me or even worse, not caring at all.  There is only so much pain to go around, and I can’t be seen as the pain giver, because people will be tired of me.  And then what?  “Just a deck of cards and a jug of wine/And a woman’s lies makes a life like mine/Oh the day we met, I went astray/I started rolling down that lost highway. ”