Saturday, March 28, 2015

How It Is



I'm a terrible wreck of a man right now, but I am going to straighten myself out.  I promise.  Today I woke to a cool, bright morning, the temperature in the low fifties, the sky turning blue.  A day like this is a promise. 

I am bad morning company.  The worst, really.  I have routinized myself, though I think of it more as ritual.  I am usually alone and haven't a morning voice.  Who does, really? 

I may not even be good evening company when I think of it.  I like to snuggle, get rubbed, fall asleep.  

The more I think about it, the more I think I am not fit company in any way at all.  I am best as a disembodied voice or, perhaps,  a voiceless body.  The two don't seem to work well in tandem. 

Jesus, I'm depressing myself. 

I don't think I told you that my phone was found.  I got a call from someone who said he was a police officer.  He called because I had wiped my phone with the "find my iPhone" app.  What appeared when the phone was turned on was a message that said this phone had been lost or stolen and to call the number I had left.  It was my office phone at the factory.  The call came just minutes after I left to go and buy the new phone.  But it is weird.  The officer left no call back number, only the address of the place where the phone was being held by a vendor.  It is in a very shady part of town.  I have done some research into the place and have gotten the phone number of the vendor, but my calls always go to voicemail and the voice mailbox is always full.  I will drive there today to see what's up.  Somehow it seems like a setup, but I can't figure out what the setup would be.  It is just weird.  I'll let you know. 

I will try to quit drinking for awhile.  My hands will shake and I'll get the twitches, I think, but I will counter that with yoga and teas.  So I say here in the morning.  Night, however, could be a different thing. 

O.K.  I have been delayed today.  This is all I have.  That is how it is sometimes.  It is just how it is.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Take Two and Call Me in the Morning



Oh, Spring.  Life is tumultuous and the cat is mad at me now.  She's a jealous girl.  What madness seizes sentient beings when the weather turns?  The blood thins, the head races.  I thought I'd tell you this in case you hadn't realized it yet.  Dull, dull, dull.

I hear a voice in my head saying, "give us details."  But the details are just as tedious as the general statements.  Sometimes one wonders what there is, truly, to write?  It is not, of course, what one says but the way one says it, and I was up too late drunker than I have been in years.  I was actually wobbly and the room began to spin.  I didn't even think I was capable of that.  I never drink to get drunk, not even to get tipsy.  No, I drink only to slow my mind down, to make it calm, simply to take the sharp edges off the day.  People are surprised that I don't, in general, take a drink until sundown.  There are bartenders in town who were surprised to learn that I drink at all.  So last night was a true anomaly.

That being said, the details are fuzzy.  I think I said things I wouldn't normally say.  Too much alcohol will definitely make you confess things better kept to yourself.

At least I didn't pee in the closet.

Today I must host a big meeting at work.  People will be there from other corporations, other factories.  I will look like I got drunk last night.  I will pass the baton as quickly as I can and sit in a far corner of the room drinking water.  We had this conference last year, too, and it caused me much trouble.  My heart won't take that again.  It is good, perhaps, that I will be a sweaty lump waiting for the end of the day, a little sushi tonight, perhaps, and some sake.  That is all.  Just the healing stuff.

O.K.  I must run.  I'll take two and call you in the morning.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Mojo No Mo'



And when the Mojo is gone. . . it isn't only romance.  I mean E_V_E_R_Y_T_H_I_N_G gets fucked. 

Yesterday while I was in a meeting, a man walked into my office and stole my iPhone.  My secretary and another woman saw him come out of my closed office.  It wasn't locked, but the door was closed.  "He was a tall black man," my secretary said.  "I mean, I didn't want to profile, you know?" 

Nope.  He was in my office when the door was closed.  Cold-cock the motherfucker. 

Whatever.  I had to rush to the studio to meet another model who didn't show up.  That's three nights in a row now.  After an hour, I headed to the AT&T store to buy a new phone.  I've had two stolen now.  This time, I bought the insurance.  The fucking phone is over $700. . . but wait--on the new plan, you pay only. . . .  Nothing is straightforward.  I had to have a phone and I had to make a decision, so I did, but I am certain to have chosen unwisely.  That is what you do when you lose your Mojo. 

Oh. . . and in case you buy iPhones because they have a "find my phone" app--forget about it.  That doesn't work when the phone is turned off.  No shit.  So I called Apple Service.  After about fifteen minutes of technical questions, I asked the woman on the phone what she could do to help me find my phone.  Nothing, really.  I was able to delete all the data from the phone, or so it says, but who knows, really.  The goddamned thing is going to get jailbroke and have the SIM card changed out and it will be used on one of the crazy, cheap services that uses someone else's towers and no one will ever know. 

I spent the rest of the evening trying to synch my phone with all my other Apple products and tried mostly unsuccessfully to get back the apps I had paid for. 

I spoke before a group of people the other day.  They paid no attention to me. 

This has all happened since I got beautified.  I am starting to suspect the little Russian Jew.  I think she got jealous when I told her how hot I was.  She gave me a bad cut, but I think she put some sort of old world ju-ju on me, too. 

Now I can't even look people in the eye.  I just want to hide.  I'm hideous.  Even my clothes stopped fitting. 

I've been listening to iTunes radio for free for a long time now.  Apple is going to change that, too.  They are going to charge $10/month for Beats radio.  iTunes radio is going to be much more commercial.  They make me want to be a pirate. 

I forget how long it takes to get your Mojo back, but I think it is dependent on a lot of factors.  And sometime or other, I think it just leaves for good.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Dorothy Parker is My Sylvia Plath



I was correct, of course.  Everything has changed.  Models don't show, no one responds to messages. . . and suddenly with the onslaught of Spring, I am alone.  It is an old story and I am plenty used to it, but oh, I had thoughts, I had plans.  Whatever they were. . . .

I have friends, of course, and they send me torturous things to torment me (though none of them, I think, means ill).  Here was a message from one of them last night.  Dorothy Parker.  I feel a kindred spirit with her.  She was a wonderful mess of a woman, I imagine, so much the disappointed romantic, though I don't really know much about her beyond "Dorothy Parker and her Vicious Circle."  I remember it as a wonderful movie. 

Fair Weather

This level reach of blue is not my sea;
Here are sweet waters, pretty in the sun,
Whose quiet ripples meet obediently
A marked and measured line, one after one.
This is no sea of mine that humbly laves
Untroubled sands, spread glittering and warm.
I have a need of wilder, crueler waves;
They sicken of the calm, who knew the storm.

So let a love beat over me again,
Loosing its million desperate breakers wide;
Sudden and terrible to rise and wane;
Roaring the heavens apart; a reckless tide
That casts upon the heart, as it recedes,
Splinters and spars and dripping, salty weeds.

I wish I had Parker's acerbic wit.  Sometimes.  But it comes from a place of hope and disappointment, and there many of us share her desires.  She can be my Sylvia Plath.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

A Bit Further. Timeless Time. Whatever.



I'll slouch forward for a few more days and see.  Of course my daredevil friends want me to try to jump the canyon, to take the chance.  It is good entertainment.  They want to watch.  Why do I have such friends?  Do they want me to live more or die quick?  Oh well, it is a philosophy, of course.  You must have one to be a member of the living and not just one of the walking numb. 

Life runs in cycles, and mine seems to have run a certain course.  The madness is over, I think, and now there will be the long, quiet days and nights again.  At least as far as love and sex and romance are concerned.  The lines are suddenly silent as if I hadn't paid the bill.  And perhaps I haven't.  The bill always comes.  What matters is getting your money's worth.  You always pay, but if you have lived well and with a great awareness. . . well, that's what old Hem said, anyway.  But we all go bankrupt at some point.  The trick is to try for a little spiritual or moral reserve.  And of course, always a sense of humor. 

I'm beginning to think that the cycle is psychological anyway.  You can only stand so much stimulation before you crash, so the mind finds ways to slow you down.  Perhaps it is a not-so-subtle change of behavior, something that moves you toward survival.  "Slow down, Jackson," it says, "you're about to go over the hill."  It might be comforting, at least, to think that it is our own volition and not the positioning of the stars and moon. 

Today's picture is all of that--love, desire, physical stimulation, psychological struggle. . . the stars. . . the moon.  What we wouldn't give to make this picture move, to wiggle and to writhe, all of nature desiring to strip her of both cloth and reason. 

Why aren't book companies buying my work for jacket covers?  Perhaps they are not reading the blog, though, as difficult as that is to fathom. 

And so I'll beat on a bit further upstream against the current of timeless time.  Or something.  Whatever.

Monday, March 23, 2015

My Work, My Loss



A long time ago, I was not careful.  Some internet sites had linked my name with my work and my blog so that anyone who knew me and was interested enough could eventually find me here.  It happened last night with someone, and as has happened so many times before with women who read my writing (whether in the form of journals or a blog). . . . 

I think I will have to take this blog down.  Over the years it has caused me trouble.  It doesn't seem fair and the site has never brought me fame nor fortune.  Perhaps it is time to try to turn my attention to things that will benefit me in the future.  Maybe I'll kill the studio as well.  An anonymous artistic life that serves a few hundred people is hardly a reason to compromise the rest of your life unless you are truly mad.  I am not.  I am far too reasonable and rational. 

I like to tell myself that there are no other photographers posting a picture a day for as long as I have. I like to tell myself that there are few other writers outside of journalists who post a writing a day.  I am pretty convinced that there is no one doing both simultaneously.  It is more work than is reasonable for no return except a sense of personal satisfaction. 

Except that I don't seem to be able to stop.  If I kill this blog, I will start another one, probably, more anonymous, harder to link to my identity.  For those of you who have corresponded with me over the years, I will send you a link if you send me an email.  I don't know.  I'm just feeling stung right now.  Perhaps tomorrow I will feel that I have been served an injustice.  But I cannot tell tales when people associate it all literally with the real person and not the narrator.  Hemingway suffered this, too, when he wrote "The Sun Also Rises," but he benefited more, heralded as the writer of his time.  He made lots of money.  And he never based his work on people he knew again.  I, on the other hand. . . am just some silly oaf. 

Someday it will all end any way, one way or another.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

A Runaway Train



Maybe I should become a diptych artist.  This is astounding to me.  But it is new and that is what new things do.  They are shiny and they astound you.  I will have to let it ripen before I can say "si" or "no".  But ripen it will. 

I have been drunk for a number of days, it seems, and I know I haven't drunk any water.  That is (almost) verifiable.  Virtually.  But I have drunk and fucked and not eaten or drunk water for days on end, and I have worked in the factory and then in the studio day after day after motherfucking day.  I haven't been to the gym for over a week.  I wanted to be a dissolute artist, I guess.  I am becoming just that. 

So. . . today was a most beautiful day, and I didn't step outside.  I chatted up a friend and then went to work on the images I so desperately need to get out.  I worked all day inside until it was time to meet a model at four.  I drank wine as I worked, both at home and there. 

She arrived. . . a chubby thing with a boy in tow, a seven foot biker looking dude who weighed about 300 pounds.  They worked at the local BDSM club.  I was certain they would chloroform me and eat me, but that never happened.  Afterwards, I went home and drank and then went to an art festival party that I have been going to every year for a while now.  You know. . . I go for the band.  They are called The Cook Trio, and I look forward to the party every year just for them.  I get a drink and a dinner and sit in a chair before the group in a yard that is a sculptured garden, and I eat a meal and listen to them and believe I am a Bohemian in Paris. 

Tonight, I sat next to a woman my age who was as cool as me, as pretty as me, strong but aging thick.  She was not objectionable, and she had good qualities, and she wanted to talk to me.  She would go to get me drinks when mine was finished.  I would hold her seat.  She would look at me while I was watching the band.  Eventually, she took a photo of me, I know, for she forgot to kill the flash.  She looked embarrassed, and she should have been. She was an interesting and good woman and I hope she is screwing younger men who will be fascinated by her.  I was not, however, only interested.  She had a look and a vivid life and I'm certain she has enough tales to be fascinating for a very long time. Her low, steady voice spoke of confidence.  She asked me if I were an artist, of course, for it was a party for the festival artists.  "Not of this ilk," I said.  I let her take that as she would. 

The band played on.  They had forgotten to bring lights, and so the video I tried to take to send to women I know in order to show how cool I was and how my life was to be envied didn't show much. Later, however, the host brought out some lights.  I took the video.  "Now I'm cool," I wrote.  As always, it was beautiful. 

I don't really know people at the party, but many of them seemed to know me.  There was a Salvador Dali looking fellow with an age appropriate wife and a young Asian woman in tow.  He got them both drinks, then put his arm around the young Asian.  It was a story I wanted to know, something out of the '20s, I was sure.  His wife had certainly allowed him a concubine.  Later the Asian woman walked around the party taking pictures of people with a big flash.  It made her very desirable. 

"You've been sitting in that same spot for four years," a man behind me said. 

"Yes.  Have you read "The Great Gatsby"?  I'm like old Owl Eyes in the library.  I have just taken up residence here." 

Later, a woman came up and said the same thing.  I didn't know I was so obvious.  As the band played, I overheard pieces of conversation.  "If they all come through, I will sell $60,000 worth of paintings to the ten of them. . . ."  I wondered what those looked like.  "How'd you do today?"  Etc. 

The Great Artist was always surrounded by a crowd.  He is a very talented Thai whose looks haven't changed for forty years, long black hair past his shoulders, long, thin mustache, thin like him.  He is very talented, really, and has made a good living.  They all wanted to be intimate with him, wanted to be inside the circle.  The mystique of the artist.  He had that. 

I sent the band video to Red.  She had been here two years ago and her voice can be heard in the video I shot then.  She wrote back--"Wish I were there."  I didn't even know she was in the U.S.  I was drunk, though, and full of gypsy music and moonlight and the blue darkness of a warm spring night.  And after awhile, early on, it was time for me to go.  There is always a beautiful sadness in exiting a thing like this, something you look forward to, the walking through the door and the automatic dimming of the party din, the walking into the street toward your car, remembering the half full scotch glass that is there awaiting you, the careful driving down residential streets toward your own neighborhood and home. 

And there is March Madness.  It is all too much for me.  It is sacred time, like trying to relive a memory.  My college roommate and I have had much fun watching the college playoffs, rooting for the underdogs, watching the come-from-behind victories and the unbelievably close endings to games.  It is an emotional memory that you want to consume again.  It is too much.  Everything is too much now.  I've lived a lot, done so many things.  It is impossible to bring them all back to life.  Everything is impossible, especially what is happening now.  My life, a runaway train of a thing.  The tracks are sure to run out somewhere, probably on some sharp curve you just can't see around, not a brick wall, just the end of the rails, not a crash but a rolling horror you get to watch for awhile. 

But not today.  There is to be a brunch with friends and then the festival.  Tonight there will be the usual dinner with mom.  But I am so tired.  I'm exhausted.  I must quit it, quit everything I do and just sit again without thinking or moving, barely breathing in and out, in and out. 

Ommmmmmmm.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Carnal Equinox Redux



The day is warm and bright.  The walkers and runners stream by.  Today the hordes will gather on the Boulevard to look at festival art (that is a category).  I will spend the day trying to recover from my bullet train of a life.  I got up tired this morning.  There were reasons.  Now, mid-morning, I'm able to get back to my own form of living.  Such as it is. 

The colors of spring are vibrant.  Yesterday was the Vernal Equinox, or as I most often call it, the Carnal Equinox.  The sap begins to flow, the creeks begin to rise.  Hearts begin to flutter.  There is a primal calling within and without.  The old goat-footed balloon man, etc. 

Seek joy, I say, the stuff that fills the heart and makes you sing.  Joyfulness trumps everything.  To the joyful goes the bounty.  To the joyful go the prize.

But I am tired and will have to sleep.  There has been too much champagne. 

In honor of the season, yesterday I spent the hours getting beautified. I am as fresh now as a spring kitten.  Puppy, I mean. 

The day spins on.  I must away.

Friday, March 20, 2015

You Could Lose Your Mind



I love this picture, love the big momma belly, the bold confidence of the pose.  Maybe I have started to grow up here at retirement age.  Things that never fascinated me before fascinate me now.  Perhaps it has simply been a string of remarkable things that has happened to me in this past tumultuous year. 

Nah.  I haven't grown up.  I've spent the past week chasing the same shiny coin I chased in college.  I am worn out with it.  Tired.  Weak.  Dissolute. 

It is wondrous. 

I went to a birthday party for one of the circle of friends at the factory after work yesterday.  I sat at the bar and drank without eating.  I had eaten only a bowl of soup at a Vietnamese restaurant that day, but I thought to eat at the next bar where I was supposed to meet a buddy.  As I was ready to go, though, an old friend walked in.  My college roommate.  He is married for a few years now to a new wife.  His life is very different from mine.  It needn't be.  It just is.  I could be him or he me.  It is just a matter of choice and chance, I think.  I asked him when was the last time he dropped acid.  Oh, he said, years.  You used to keep some in the freezer, I said.  Do you still have it?  He looked around the bar a bit then said no.  What happened to it, I asked.  I must have taken it, he said.  Why, he asked, are you wanting to drop some?  I don't know, I said.  What's the worst that could happen at this age?  You could lose your mind, he laughed.  I suspected that he meant that I already had. 

I stayed too long at the bar and had to bag the second one where I was supposed to meet a friend who was having drinks with another of his friends.  I hated not showing up, but I had to get downtown to meet a twenty year old film student who I was told liked my photography.  She wanted to meet me the fellow who used to work for me said.  Sorry old guys, I thought, I've got a date with destiny. 

Downtown was deserted at seven o'clock on a Thursday night.  The bar was renowned for its cocktails and was usually packed, I'd heard.  I had never been.  I walked in.  It was empty but for the boy and the girl I was there to see and photography crew who were taking pictures of cocktails.  Cocktails and no food.  I was charming, I think.  I have no idea, really.  I didn't feel so very cool, really, but later, after I got home with a bucket of Popeye's fried chicken, the boy texted to tell me she was ready for "round two." 

I have more people wanting to shoot with me than I could possibly shoot.  Women are making eyes at me.  I am drained. 

This week there is an art festival in my own home town.  Traveling from place to place will be impossible.  Perhaps I will take my camera into the crowd.  Or, perhaps, I'll work on the overwhelming backlog of pictures and sleep.  My nerves are jangled with the lack of it.  I am afraid that nothing I have said has really happened, that I have simply been hallucinating. 

"What's the worst that could happen at my age?"

"You could lose your mind." 

If only.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

No End to New Studies



What is the world going to be like when everyone becomes enamored of his or her own body?  It could happen, according to a new study:

"Sexting may be the new "normal' when it comes to adolescent sexual behavior, the study concluded."

The story continues:

"It appears to be widespread. It's engaged in by many kids who are functioning well and not having problems and it's not very unusual or rare." 


"It's very normal teenage behavior ... and we need to get with the times and get ahead of the problem, and just have these very easy to have discussions."

When I was a kid, we didn't have cell phones, of course, but I remember little girls taking me behind the shed to lift up their skirts and show me their privates.  I was a good boy and ran away, of course.  Terrified actually.  But you may have had much the same kind of experience.  Cute kids.  Where are they now?  

If they had cell phones with cameras, of course, they could be in jail.  That is what some people want to do with kids who have pictures of their friends on their phones, convict them of child pornography.  Hell yea, that will fix 'em.  Nobody will do that again.  

When I was in junior high school (a long gone concept, I think), we did have photo booths. In the ninth grade, the school's most sensual little girl took off her top and made a bunch of selfies.  We all liked her and envied her boyfriend, a good looking kid who somehow dated all the girls we liked.  

I ended up with the photos, and as I have said before, that may have been when I got interested in photography.  

I don't know.  Maybe we should keep teaching people that their bodies are the devil's temple, though, that they should not let anyone see it, that it is bad, bad, bad, and they are endangering themselves to a hundred rings of hell if anyone sees it.  It will give them a burning desire.  Taboo things always do.  If you are anything like me, you are drawn to the taboo.  You can't quit thinking about it.  Angel on one shoulder, Devil on the other, just like the old cartoons, halo and pitchfork included.  

If we can't stop it, we can at least punish people for it.  I'd like to see this happen for a lot of things.  I can make a list for you if you want.  

What would be fun, though, is to get my mother's card group to do selfies and start texting them to random phone numbers.  

"Sexting may be the new "normal" when it comes to octogenarian's sexual behavior a study concluded.  It appears widespread.  It is a very normal behavior as people age, and we need to get with the times. . . . "

True dat.  We need to learn not to fear the aging body so much.  All we see are the young and beautiful.  Do you know how many people over fifty want to come make pictures for my series?  

But I'm one to talk. 

**Warning:  This is where it just gets weird.  You don't need to read any further, really.  I just let myself go on a rant.**  

Of course this is what "community leaders" want us to be concerned about.  Oh, how I loathe such a meaningless term, but it is used everywhere there are aspiring leaders.  They have Leadership Academies almost everywhere now.  They are devised to make the hierarchy seem something natural and deserved.  They are promoted by that fuck all conglomerate of "business and political partners."  And that groups certainly wants you to look over there so you are not looking over here.  The problems of our times are. . . well, just don't look behind the curtain.  Watch the local news and see how many stories are about is happening to the money.  

"Big-time Hotelier has just purchased ten billion acres of wetland to build a new entertainment complex that he says will provide thousands of new jobs and be a boon to the local economy.  At a city community forum, there were some who expressed concern about the project's impact on the environment (cut to a seventy year old man dressed like Pee-Wee Herman wearing a Peace t-shirt).  Some say the jobs created by the proposed complex will be low-wage earning and that the city does not have the infrastructure to support the influx of new traffic.  City Leaders, however, say that the infusion of new money through the increased tax base will more than offset the cost of building new roads.

"Stay tuned.  You'll want to see this next story.  Have you ever worried about what your teen is doing when you are not watching?  You'll be surprised what a new study found!"

Of course the lead in gets mixed up and they show the old nut in the Peace t-shirt again for the video. 

Jesus, that man needs to be punished!  Honey. . . honey. . . you need to get in here and see this.  What are you doing in there?  You're always on the goddamned computer.  

I have no ending in mind to this entry, so I'll just invoke Q.  What's wrong with him?  Why is he so ornery?  Sometimes he just isn't appropriate.  But I think that is what working in the tech industry does to you.  I've read studies about it.  It isn't a healthy environment.  There is just too much money, they say, and it is not shared appropriately.  Uber is the answer, they say.  It is the future.  

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Morning Proclamations



Not a chance in hell of writing today.  I have an early morning meeting at the factory.  The CEO wants to speak.  It makes me miserable.  I can't imagine anything being said at this meeting that won't make me wince.  I will look at my shoes or at the back of the head of whoever is sitting in front of me.  I will try to meditate so that my face will stay a calm block of nothingness.  Oy!

I don't even get to drink enough coffee. 

But I will leave you with this picture.  And. . . I may have better news on the gallery front coming soon.  I was on the phone yesterday with someone who has raised my hopes heavenward. 

Now. . . I must go before the factory whistle blows.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Rejection


Jesus oh Jesus. . . I shot with the Polaroid the other night.  I still have a few boxes lying around.  The film has mostly gone bad, but some of it is still. . . well, it's bad but it still gives results.  I am crazy for it and can't believe that it will never be made again.  And so it goes.  If only. . . .

*   *   *   

Update.  There is only one good photo gallery in town, but it is very, very good.  It is NYC good.  I went in one day with a pretty girl.  The gallery owner chatted us up.  The girl I was with promoted me as a photographer.  Nice girl. . . but I try to avoid such things.  He asked me to let him see some work.  I sent him the link to "Lonesomville."  I did not hear back from him for over a month, so I though to email him again.  Oh. . . ugh. . . ouch. . . quit it!!!!

Here is his response:

Hi Bill. I am very sorry. I did get your email. Never had a chance to reply. Though you series is well done I do not see a fit for us. I do see that it can generate interest and I know you will be very successful with it. 
Thank you for you consideration of Snap! Space. I hope you will still visit us. 

Fuck me.  That is the last time.  

I share this with you, my pals. . . but it is awful.  I think the work worthy of much, much more, but I am convinced that it will never reach the venue I had hoped.  Oh. . . did I say "fuck me"?  

If I didn't, I meant to.  

Perhaps when I die. 

Selavy.

*   *   *

That was all written after midnight.  Drunk, of course.  Feeling low and sorry for myself.  But today is St. Patrick's Day and people will be drunker than I tonight.  I will not participate as is my wont.  I should have taken some of the big prints in instead of sending him to a website.  Oh, well.  Live and learn and try not to be bitter.  What did I think, anyway?  They are just fucking photographs.  Maybe I'll have better news soon.

Selah.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Revenge Art




She showed the picture to her mother.  Her mother liked it but said she looked like a corpse.  Of course, I said when she told me.  I am after a certain deadness of the soul.  I am glad it comes through.  Oh, it is a lovely picture, she said.  It is weird and beautiful. 

But it is getting less and less likely that you will be able to see weird and beautiful if there is any nudity in a picture.  Is there any in this one?  I don't know, but I am sure that it would break the undefined, vague, arbitrary standards of Facebook.  They are only arbitrary when it comes to content, though.  If they deem you a radical or think you have said a mean thing, they will take you down.  Only if they think so, though.  But when it comes to nudity. . . well, they understand art:


Facebook has always banned pornography and most other nudity, but it is now diving into the nuances. “We remove photographs of people displaying genitals or focusing in on fully exposed buttocks,” it says. It also restricts some images of female breasts if the nipple shows, “but we always allow photos of women actively engaged in breast-feeding or showing breasts with post-mastectomy scarring.” Photos of paintings, sculptures and other art that depicts nude figures are also fine.

There are no genitals shown in this picture, but I can't help to think that they would find it more offensive than beautiful (unlike the woman's mother).  Arbitrary arbiters of aesthetics.  It is good to be King.  

I can't argue with the "revenge porn" part.  Much.  A little.  Yes I can. 

The company is for the first time explicitly banning content promoting sexual violence or exploitation, including so-called revenge porn, which it defines as intimate images “shared in revenge or without permission from the people in the images.” (Twitter has also updated its rules to forbid revenge porn.)

It is only the permission thing, really, that confuses me.  I think you need permission, of course.  Privacy matters.  My only question is how does Facebook or Twitter know?  How do they know when permission has been given?  And what do they mean by "porn"?  I think they are willingly conflating nudity and pornography (unless the term "porn" does not invoke pornography but refers to something else).  Nudity is definitively not pornography.  I know it when I see it as the old court ruling goes.  

Paintings and sculptures are o.k., of course, so if you want to shame your ex, you need to make some quick sketches or get the Play Doh out and do a fast sculpture.  I have to wonder, though, if a painting or sculpture can be pornographic?  Here they seem to understand the difference, I think, since nudity is O.K. 

There is an inconsistency there.  But who says you have to be in the right to judge?  

"O.K.," you say, "there have to be some rules."  "I know," I say.  "I'm sure you'll make them."  

Here are mine:

1.  Be nice.  
2.  Try to look good.
3.  Don't talk loudly around people you don't know.
4.  State more fact than opinion.  
5.  Be figurative often. 
6.  Respect cowboys. 
7.  Never hit children or old people. 
8.  Be respectful of other people's space when walking on crowded sidewalks or in bars.
9.  Tell me stories. 
10. Let me take your picture.

That about does it, I think.  I was going to put "don't bite" in there, but sometimes in the throes of passion you just have to a little.  Just a little, nothing that leaves permanent marks.  Maybe there should be something in there about good food and drink.  Definitely there should be.  Maybe I'll replace the respect cowboys part, but I don't know.  We need cowboys badly.  A world full of artists and writers would be the worst place you've ever been.  No, I'm leaving that part in.  

Anyway (as my mother likes to say in transition), if you send me revenge porn, I'll appreciate it but won't post it unless it is a drawing or painting or sculpture.  I'd love to see a bunch of those soon--Revenge Art.  Fuck yea.  Maybe I'll start a site.  It could make me the rich man I was meant to be.  

Sunday, March 15, 2015

If Only. . . .



This being the last day of a min-staycation that was largely me staying in the house until mid-afternoon, of doing little of what I had planned to do, of not sleeping and finding that I am suffering from allergies and severe apnea, of dinners with friends and late night adventures. . . .

I'm more exhausted and further behind than when I started. 

I read not one book. 

I did not invent another secret photo process that will remake me a much desired artist. 

. . . I am resolved to take another vacation soon, or rather "a vacation" which means I will leave the house and travel.  Soon.  Very soon. 

Last night a friend wanted to come over for a chill night.  She is quite generous and never arrives empty handed.  On Friday she brought over a very expensive bottle of scotch (I had to look it up).  Last night, it was special water with organic lemons in a beautiful picnic basket that included two bottles of wine.  I cooked New York strips on the grill and steamed asparagus.  She cut red potatoes into bits and sprinkled them with olive oil and salt and pepper and wrapped them in aluminum foil to go on the grill.  We drank Cinq Cent ale while I made her watch some Mandolin Orange videos starting with "Boots of Spanish Leather."  Chills.  I can never get past the third and second to last verse without tears:

Oh, I got a letter on a lonesome day
It was from her ship a-sailin'
Saying, I don't know when I'll be comin' back again
It depends on how I'm a-feelin'

If you, my love, must think that-a-way
I'm sure your mind is roamin'
I'm sure you thoughts are not with me
But with the country to where you're goin'


You've had to had your heart broken, of course, to feel the way I do, but who hasn't?  Who hasn't been drinking with one and thinking of another?  

Dinner and wine on the couch, we lazy and drowsy watching Anthony Bourdain on Netflix (oh--you want to get haughty with me now?), talking and getting hungry all over again as he visited chef friends in Montreal, me wanting to see Quebec City where I will be heading sometime this late spring (I hope).  Then the last thing I remember is a massage and my friend leaving.  I had fallen profoundly and utterly asleep.  

But it could not last.  The night was full of waking as I neared death from lack of oxygen and adrenaline.  What am I to do?  I have begun to fear the night.  

Hence today's image.  I'll draw from my own experiences and emotions for the photos.  I am becoming self-conscious, though.  I haven't minded the jejune trickster that became this persona, but the blog has gotten too widely shared where I might hear or imagine to hear about it.  The New York crowd, of course can be brutally dismissive and I am making a clown of what some perceive to be myself in my own hometown.  It is the nature of daily posts, I know, but I could do no better if I posted once a week.  Worse, probably.  What I hate most, though, is that I am censoring what I can tell here more and more.  I don't want to out anyone or reveal anything that would hurt somebody's feelings.  It has already happened too much.  But my best and richest tales right now are so obscured by my desire to protect that they have become nothing at all.  I am too sweet a boy to purposely do harm, but I have a desire to tell the utter and metaphorically graphic truth of my life as I live it or as it lives me.  Somehow.  Somewhere.  

Oy.  We will see.