by Tom H. Brooks 3


  The following text is the digitized version of a little pocket notebook, one of MANY, that I began carrying around everywhere with me sometime around the turn of the millennium, about 2000.  The dates are hazy in the first ones and the organization, haphazard at best, but they consist of pure, free flow writings from a strange man, me.  I have another ten or fifteen years worth of writings before these, but they were written in full-sized larger notebooks that are currently in Los Angeles in the possession of our good friend, William Case, and there they shall remain.

   I had lived in San Diego in Mission Beach from `89 to about `95.  Then I lived in New Jersey in Tom`s River on Barnegat Bay until early `99.  I had my first NYC adventures around this time.  Sometime around 2000, back in LA, it occurred to me that I had been taking way too many notes on scraps of paper and cocktail napkins and such.   My intent was to add them to my bigger notebooks later and I often did, if I didn`t lose them (the scraps) .  However, they often lost their original purity from my waiting to add them to the bigger notebooks.  I wanted something IN THE MOMENT, as it were.  You need to know, I am a minimalist and an EXTREMELY light traveler.  I do not like carrying around bags and backpacks and such.  Just me and my skateboard and my camera and my legs, taking buses and trains and sometimes cars.  So one day, I began carrying small pocket notebooks, which started out as little cheap mini spirals and evolved into Moleskines and other fancy little books that I could get my hands on. These are an ongoing chronicle of MY strange and fascinating life (of which we all have our own versions.)  I just happened to record a lot of mine in these Street Journals.
  The notes are often brief and/or hallucinatory.  I was often high or buzzed (not always, mind you), but often enough.  Sometimes I was even scribbling WHILE rolling along on my skateboard, the ultimate in mobile thought….literally–THOUGHT IN MOTION. The notes are often fragmentary, a necessity when you are on the move for a thirty-five mile skateboard ride.  I intend to one day soon take these stories and expand more on the details.  There is much more behind every scribble. The Street Journals; these books are hard to classify.  They are not journals or diaries in a strict sense; they are random thoughts, philosophical meanderings, strange drawings and pictures that I taped inside (which I will be unable to render for you here).  They are anecdotes, truths, lies, exaggerations, obscenities, aphorisms, strange tales, poems, original writings, quotes from books and other writers whom I admire.  As a whole, they are really quite fascinating and amusing and I myself enjoy revisiting them here.  At times, they may be a little repetitive.  After 20 years of furious writing, it is hard to remember what is new and what has already been transcribed.  My mind is a tangled web of words and it is often hard to sort them out in an organized fashion.  The originals are much better, as something solid and real, a book in your hand, always is.  It is hard to feel the power of something that exists digitally in the matrix but it is better than nothing and it is good backup, just in case (god forbid), any of them were ever to get lost.  I actually have lost one or two (maybe more) of them, probably while drunk.  One of them was surely lost in the Runyon Canyon part of the Hollywood Hills near Errol Flynn`s old estate.  Dave Polston and I spent a good two or three hours up there one day drinking beer and smoking herb and searching around for it, but to no avail.  Mostly we were just drinking and smoking.  Whatever.  You get the idea.  This is my way of recording my life…erratic, fleeting, eccentric, and perhaps just plain crazy.  I have been having a great fucking time.  Join me, my friends.  We will travel around Los Angeles, Mexico, New York City and back to LA again.  We will move to Japan.  And all of this, with my words accompanied by quotes from great literature. Read them on your portable electronic devices while you are riding a train, taking a bus, waiting for something; whatever lights your fire.   The world is a mystery.  Let us see if this digital re-telling helps us shed any light on this strange existence we all lead.  Come, won`t you… enter my mind, my cave of illusions, my ocean of discontent.  Let us take a ride down the longest road into the sunset of memories….
 “The longest journey begins with but a single step…”
   Lao Tzu
” `I want true love, loyalty, devotion, and harmony.`
  ` Yeah, and I want a pet unicorn to give me a magical ride all the way to Candyland.` “
Bukowski`s b-day night…fell down some stairs at the Standard Hotel downtown….WAY too much
whiskey…before that, I had been in some girls hotel room doing cocaine and her, and then back to
the roof and then more unnecessary whiskey, and then the stairway fall, but I was alone by then,
who the hell did I come here with anyway?!  downtown streets, wandering, cops, lights, sirens,
are they after me?  no, just blurs of light and skyscrapers spinning above me.  Somehow, I made
it back to Hollywood, don`t ask me `cause I don`t know, Mexican food at a cheap taco shop,
laughter in the canyons….It`s 4am and I`m stumbling up Mulholland or Outpost or one of these
fucking streets, half-blacked out confused and stupid with drink.  I think my ankle is sprained but
I can`t feel the pain…I bet I`ll feel it in the morning, oh yes, I`m laughing hysterically as I limp
up this dark street, cackling in the darkness, a coyote runs from me in terror, I fall in the gutter,
I walk forward, step by step with superhuman endurance….my house must be up here somewhere…
(You should have seen this one in the book….it looks like Egyptian hieroglyphics, I don`t know how
I managed to decipher it and I don`t remember getting home but obviously I made it somehow because
I`m still alive today and on the next page in my book there is legible writing again.  I can just picture
myself scribbling in the dim light beneath a streetlamp in some nameless canyon, limping up the hill
with my busted ankle….what an idiot.  And you know what? I wouldn`t change a thing.)
“The game is never over,
birth and death are even,
the terms are not final.”
The Lost Pearl
The Emperor went wandering to the north of the Red Water to the Kwan Lun Mountain.  He looked
around over the edge of the world.  On the way home, he lost his night-colored pearl.  He sent out
Science to seek his pearl and got nothing.  He sent out Analysis to seek his pearl and, likewise,
got nothing.  He sent out Logic to seek his pearl and got nothing.  Then he asked Nothingness and
Nothingness had it!  The Emperor said, `Strange, indeed: Nothingness, who was not sent, who did
not work to find it, had the night-colored pearl.` “
“All things have different uses.  Fine horses can travel 100 miles in a day,
but they cannot catch mice like terriers or weasels.
All creatures have gifts of their own.  The owl can catch fleas at midnight
and distinguish the tip of a hair, but in bright day, it stares, helpless, and cannot even see the mountain.
All things have varying capacities.
Consequently, he who wants to have right without wrong,
order without disorder,
does not understand the principles of heaven and earth.
He does not know how things hang together.”
“The Man of Spirit hates to see people gather around him.
He avoids the crowd.
For where there are many men, there are also many opinions and little agreement.
There is nothing to be gained from the support of a bunch of half-wits
who are doomed to end up in a fight with each other.
The Man of Spirit is neither very intimate with anyone, nor too aloof.
He keeps himself interiorly aware, and he maintains his BALANCE so that
he is in conflict with nobody.
This is your true man.”
“By not wanting, there is calm,
and the world will straighten itself.”
Lao Tzu
“If you`re not part of the solution,
you`re part of the problem.”
“If you`re not in a hurry and you`re patient,
you can go just about anywhere and do just about anything…”
“From this remote path blowing with wildflowers, the far-off people
I thought of seemed tiny and rather pathetic in their need for witnesses.
`Bullshit!` I yelled into the wind, smiling…”
Paul Theroux
“The Happy Isles of Oceania”
The Pointless Journey
a robot
the only way to survive
the mass-media onslaught
It`s nonsense
all of it
to laugh mindlessly in horror
don`t worry
don`t try
sleep well
As machine gunners
take aim at suicide bombers
who take out buildings
full of monkeys
who talk on cell phones
as they fall
and breathe fire
on all the sheep
they see on the way down
and nothing
speaks to somebody
about whatever
and it all begins
to make a lot of sense
You find yourself
in a junkyard
full of burnt-out TVs
looking for a golden ring
and a jade statue
that you must find
before the next crescent moon
or all is lost
It rises….the moon….
blood red
like a scimitar
but in your hands
you hold the treasure
the answer
but alas
it falls from your grip
into an open sewer grate
you dive in after it….
Sunday 8/25/02 10:30am
After listening to some fat, beer-bellied Goumba yapping full blast and at high-volume
on his goddamned cell phone in a tiny restaurant for like 15 minutes, my ears began
to ring.  He literally took over the place; you could hear nothing else, not even your
own thoughts.  It was a pathetic and inane conversation, not even worth mentioning.
I`ve made a decision; I`m going to try to go my whole life without ever getting a cell
phone or a computer.
(HA!!  This one`s a laugh!  You see how resistant I was to technology?  And now, of course,
I have been using cell phones for years and I am writing this crap to you on a computer.
Let`s face it, I was wrong, I admit it.  I could have never pulled it off.  And this was only 10
years ago….it just goes to show how fast things change and how easily one changes one`s
A Moment of Inspired Genius  (but just a moment)
You have NO IDEA
what you`re doing
nor do I
You really shouldn`t care
I shouldn`t either
Let`s just agree
to blunder
through this Grand Show
as if there`s no tomorrow
there might not be
be damned
Live life the best that you can
Leave them a smiling corpse
young or old
no matter
it`s out of our hands
Death will take us
when he wants
and there`s nothing
we can do but accept it
keep walking
keep laughing
keep running
Every minute counts
the clock is ticking…
there`s only so much time…
A bus
An airplane
A gun
Falling off a cliff
An earthquake
A tidal wave
An explosion
yes, so many ways to die
don`t hold your breath…
No matter what
IT WILL be a surprise
Just fucking live
and try not to ask stupid questions….
As Night Falls
I sat alone
in the fading light
of afternoon
by the sea…
Footfalls echoed
on the wooden planks
of the pier
and the air was
with ocean spray
the cries of seagulls
the laughter of children
The rays of sunshine
angled shadows
across the throngs
of people
and always
the music of the ocean
crashing below
As night falls
two lovers kiss
under a lone streetlamp
and suddenly
couples are all around me
and walking hand in hand
I withdraw
further into shadow
into my own
private darkness…
“Rain falls and the flowers bloom.  No rain, they wither up.  Bugs are eaten by lizards, lizards are
eaten by birds.  But in the end, every one of them dies.  They die and dry up.  One generation
dies, and the next one takes over.  That`s how it goes.  Lots of different ways to live.  And lots
of different ways to die.  But in the end that doesn`t make a bit of difference.  ALL THAT REMAINS
IS A DESERT.  I sat alone at the counter, drinking.  After the bar was closed for the night, after
all the customers had gone and the staff had cleaned up and went home, I still sat there, alone.
I turned out the lights and sat there in the dark, drinking whiskey.
  Everyone just keeps disappearing.  Some things just vanish, like they were cut away.  Others
fade slowly into the mist.  AND ALL THAT REMAINS IS A DESERT.
  When I left the bar, just before dawn, a light rain was falling on the street.  I was exhausted.
Soundlessly, the rain soaked the rows of tall buildings standing there like so many gravestones.
I began to walk home.  On the way, I sat down on a guardrail and watched a large crow that was
cawing from the top of a traffic signal.  The 4am streets looked shabby and filthy.  The shadow
of decay and disintegration lurked everywhere, and I was part of it.  Like a shadow burned into
a wall.”
Haruki Murakami
“South of the Border, West of the Sun”
There`s so much anger and hatred and war in the world.  I am well aware that often times I sound
bitter and jaded in my writings, which is in stark contrast to my humorous and extroverted behavior
when I`m around people.  Perhaps I am bitter.  But I am also happy.  I have always been a
walking contradiction.  I have no excuses, it is just the way I am.
I am mad at the haters and the warmongers.  But, I can very easily love people for who they are
or at least like them.  Race, religion, beliefs, politics; none of these things matter to me.  You see,
none of us are perfect….not a one of us is beyond reproach.  We all make many mistakes.  It is
what we are and we must forgive ourselves for our stupidities.  I like people that are simply nice,
people that are funny and kind and friendly and ALIVE.  At least they TRY to make a difference
in this futile existence we lead.  We are doomed from the start.  Let`s at least enjoy the ride
somehow, be it a smile, a friendly word, or helping an old lady find the Post Office.  Kindness,
at the core of one`s being.  Plain and simple.  It`s not astrophysics.  Decent and reasonable human
behavior.  It is not much to ask and when I see it, it makes me happy.  When I live it, my own
words, I feel better.  It gives me just the tiniest glimmer of hope for us all.
“Alone; I leaned over the edge of my boat and looked down to the bottom of the sea.  It was so
clear, I could see pebbles on the bottom.  The water`s calm surface reflected the blue of the sky.
Little waves–like silk pajamas fluttering in a breeze–lapped against the side of the boat.  There
was nothing else.  I stretched out on the bottom of the boat and closed my eyes, waiting for the
rising tide to carry me where I belonged.”
Haruki Murakami
Never Satisfied
We live and we exist
always wanting
always dreaming
of more…
It is an uncontrollable beast
constant nagging
for something bigger
something substantial
something to make us
something to
give us a reason
You don`t have enough?
you need MORE money
Not enough space?
get a bigger house
You are sick of LA?
move to Hawaii
Got island fever?
go to New York City
Too many people?
go to a remote island in the Philippines
Tired of rice and strange meat?
return to Los Angeles
the land of convenience
and shattered dreams
a great place to sit and talk
about someplace better
to sit and complain
while drinking lattes
on the terrace
Oh, look
there`s Winona
with some bald guy
It`s that Vin Diesel character
Keep complaining
keep hoping
and wishing
keep trying
It`s very likely
that no matter how much
we get
we will never stop wanting
We are relentless
we are human
and we are
“Our city, these streets, I don`t know why it makes me so depressed.  That old
familiar gloom that befalls the city dweller, regular as due dates, cloudy as mental
Jell-O.  The dirty facades, the nameless crowds, the unremitting noise, the packed
rush hour trains, the gray skies, the billboards on every square centimeter of
available space, the hopes and resignation, irritation and excitement.  And everywhere,
infinite options, infinite possibilities.  An infinity, and at the same time, zero.  We
try to scoop it all up in our hands, and what we get is a handful of zero.  That`s
the city.”
Haruki Murakami
“Slow Boat to China”
So, I`m in the hood by USC waiting for a bus.  There`s a USC football game at the
coliseum and a bunch of hot little college girls are running around in the old scarlet
and gold colors–hot pants and whatnot, with USC on the ass.  5 of `em, sexy, accost
me giggling and ask me to take pictures of them on the corner with 3 of their cameras.
So they proceed to flip their little asses around and shake and wiggle them provacatively.
So there I am, taking pictures of 5 hot babes and their asses for USC.  I tell you, my
life is hell.  I don`t know how I get up in the morning.
Labor Day 7:30pm
San Pedro, 6th and Pacific
I cross the street rapidly to avoid a huge street fight that comes bursting out the front
of a barbecue at some bungalow.  It is a bunch of Mexican chollo gangster types
covered in gang ink.  They are brawling hard; bottles are flying, fists are thumping
on skulls, bodies slam onto car hoods.  I glide by them like a phantom, unnoticed.
You see, death is always near…….or a fucking beating.
I got a huge dose of Labor Day crowds at the Ports O`Call fish market, just about all
Latinos.  Tomorrow, I will wake up under a tree and a hot, sunny blue sky and the
crowds will be gone.  My summer will then begin.  The city is mine.  More importantly,
the beach is mine.
Since 9am, I`ve been lying in the sand at Malaga Cove and swimming in crystal clear
ocean, 70 degrees.  It`s now 1pm.  The humidity has caused a fog bank that has been
approaching me slowly all morning from the north and west.  It swallowed up Santa
Monica, Manhattan, Hermosa, and Redondo Pier.  Now it is 400 yards north of me,
enveloping the lifeguard tower and to my left, at the point, all of it gone in a white
billowing mist.  It is upon me.  I continue to lie there and dream.
Soundtrack to the End
I walked down an
endless sandy beach
under a dazzling blue sky
that went on forever
and ever
To my left were
rounded black pebbles
strewn across the land
and throughout them
coconut palms were
scattered like green dreams
To my right
was an ocean
as clear and blue
as a swimming pool
and every bit as inviting
The beach curved this way
and that
I could hear John Coltrane`s
screeching in my head
and the sky was changing
colors rapidly
and the sun
was pulsating
and expanding and shrinking
in psychedelic diagrammatic
colors and designs
and I was surrounded
by strange white birds
that swooped and dived
about me
tweeting a strange song
in rhythm with the music
in my head
The gentle waves
lapped upon the shore
and the soft wind
rustled the palms
A storm seemed to be
brewing over the
inland mountains
It looked like rain
A rainbow arched
across a green valley
wreathed in misty waterfalls
And I walked alone
through this acid dream
drenched in bright colors
and birds
and watched the sun
change colors
I came to a
thicket of trees
on a sandy point
and suddenly
everything went still
and the colors
became real and natural
I stared out
at the endless blue sky
blue sea
blue Asia
and I smiled
Even out here
in the middle of nowhere
I was always somehow alright
A dolphin swam by closely
surfacing and looking at me
with a big black intelligent eye
and he winked at me
twittered something
in that lovable dolphin language
and splashed off
jumping along the way
into the sunset
I`m not sure
but I think he said
I smiled again
laughed out loud
and continued walking
deeper into my dream…
“The courts might not work anymore but as long as everyone is
videotaping everyone else, justice will be done…”
Homer Simpson
Taurus (April 20-May 20)
“You can write your way into and out of almost anything.
Focus on the job you do best; you are so skillful that you
make it seem easy.  You will beat the odds and win the game.”
again….HOCUS POCUS….perchance to dream….
“Softly as a morning sunrise…”
“You little punks think you own this town”
“What we do know is that in the last year, the deaths of September 11th have
been used over and over as a rationale to erode the Constitution, reorganize
the Federal Government and for launching a pre-emptive unilateral strike on a
nation not implicated in the attacks.”
Robert Scheer The Los Angeles Times 9/10/02
One year later…9/11/02…  WTC RIP  Never Forget…..indeed, how could we?
This morning, early, Los Angeles is quiet, relieved perhaps.  The air hums with
quiet sighs and a new energy.  The sun has not yet risen, however, I have.
As I ride swiftly on the subway, I get the sensation of tunneling through the heart
of the beast, engulfed in the circuitry, the bloodline of the Giant Metropolis.  The
City is above, below, and all around me.  I travel cold and silent right into the
heart of it…
At this point, it seems like this story should be going somewhere, right?  Perhaps
a car chase or a shootout or a sex scandal would satisfy your needs.  Maybe
I`ll just go ahead and turn this into a real Tom Clancy super-spy thriller.  But no, I
think I`ll give it to you straight instead.  How the fuck we get up everyday I do not
know.  It is all so sad, so pointless.  The sun shining with me on the beach somewhere
are my biggest joys.  Otherwise, I may as well watch TV until my eyes bleed.  In
any case, something is bound to happen soon, right?
you`d think…
But let`s face it people, day to day life can be quite ordinary.  We watch things
happen on TV, fictional or otherwise, no matter.  We wait.  We wonder.  When
something DOES happen, we wish everything would go back to normal.  We long
for our comfortable routines, our warm beds, our womb-like security.  This is the
paradox of life.  It goes on and on, and even in our monotony, we are living it.
“If you`re scared to die, you had better not be scared TO LIVE.”
“I`m not here,
this isn`t happening…”
“You may bury my body
down by the highway side,
so my old evil spirit
can catch a Greyhound bus and ride…”
Robert Johnson
“I looked out the window at the dark clouds hanging over the sea, thinking of what
I had lost in the course of my life; times gone forever, friends who had died or
disappeared, feelings I would never know again.”
“The thought fills me with an almost unbearable sorrow.  Because I realize now that
she never loved me.  At this moment, all that flashed into my eyes were countless
shapes of people walking by to nowhere.  Again and again, I called out for her from
the dead center of this place that was no place.”
Haruki Murakami
“Norwegian Wood”
The kindest people are often strangers.
At this point in time, She seems like a good dream of bliss that I once had, a figment
of my imagination, a special place in time that is no more.  It has been that long since
I`ve seen her.  The past fades into a gentle mist and only returns in flashes of clarity.
I was waiting for a bus on Santa Monica Blvd and some homo pulled over and said
in a swishy lisp, “Are you working?”  I told him to fuck off and he drove away rapidly.
Oh well, that`s what I get for standing around on street corners on Santa Monica….
” `I want you always to remember me.  Will you remember that I existed, and that I
stood next to you here like this?`
`Always.  I`ll always remember.  I`ll never forget you.  I could never forget you.` “
Haruki Murakami
“I am alone at the furthest periphery of existence.
Here the world expires and is still.”
Haruki Murakami
“Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World”
“Only the naked live in the sun.
Only the artless ride the wind.
And he alone who loses his way 1000 times
shall have a homecoming.
The angels are tired of the clever.
Hell was created for those who glitter.
What else but fire can erase a shining surface
and melt a thing to its core?
My friends,
only the rudderless can sail the greater sea.
Only he who is dark with the night
shall wake with the dawn.
Only he who sleeps with roots under the snow
shall reach the spring.
For you are like roots,
and like roots, you are simple,
yet you have wisdom from the earth.
And you are silent yet you have
within your unborn branches
the choir of the four winds…”
Kahlil Gibran
Father and son
with MULLET haircuts…
“This old world is gonna chew you up
swallow you down
then spit you back out…
the sooner you realize
this simple fact,
this rotten world will
give you what you lack…”
“22 miles of hard road
33 years of tough luck
44 skulls buried in the ground
crawling down into the muck
The Eels
“I`ve been down so goddamned long,
that it looks like up to me,
why don`t one of you ladies
and set me free…”
Jim Morrison
Road Kings, South Bay Car Show at Point Fermin;
I just chanced upon it…dope, bad-ass cars, about 100 of `em…
we`re talking glittering low riders with shining paint jobs, chrome, fancy rims,
beautiful and immaculate engines, sometimes even with airbrushed graffiti
artworks under the hood….unbelievable.  I love Southern California car culture.
“No god hearkens to my helpless cry…”
The path I walk is for me alone.
Saw a dead sea lion today; don`t know if it means anything, don`t really care.
Never observed death this closely–sea lion rotting in the sun, eyes eaten out,
dead flesh crawling with scavengers, pulsating with slimy insects, maggots in
every open orifice, eyes squirming with wet soggy worms….oh yes, here is
something for us all to look forward too.  I`m getting cremated.  I turn around
again and contemplate the sea.  On the point, a photographer takes pictures
of a 3/4 naked black girl.  The sun keeps shining and I keep walking through
the dream…
Monday 9/16/02
Haven`t known the time all day or night…been at the beach for like 32 hours.
What a beach bum.
Sitting in the middle of the freeway waiting for a bus is an overwhelming
experience.  The terrifying noise of the cars roaring by at high speed
is deafening.  I am an ant in the center of a maelstrom of rushing metal.
They are mere yards away….death, oh yes, always so near……
Walking the Chinatown streets by night.  Just had a couple of Jack Daniels on the rocks
at Grand Star jazz bar with Tippy and Harry.  I was walking by ABC Seafood Restaurant
and I started laughing as I looked inside and saw all the awestruck Chinese inside staring
at the red-faced man with the bloodshot eyes walking by out front….that would be me…HA!
At Union Station, Amtrak trains beckon me with their bewitching names; The Coast Starlight,
The Sunset Limited, The Southwest Chief, The Pacific Surfliner…..if I could, I would leave
for anywhere tonight…
Still loving that subway wind, those air pockets pushed ahead of the train that create the
push of air–like bellows of the earth, subterranean breath…
Later, there is a guy on the train playing guitar and singing Lennon`s “Imagine.”  He`s good, but not great…
Under the Hollywood Hills on the Red Line, zooming through a tube at 70mph.  I`m going to
Universal City to check out the weekend crowds, a little people watching, as it were.  When
I get there, I see a billboard reminiscent of a Liechtenstein, “Oh Andy, the hot tub overflowed
and ruined my cell phone and the cappuccino maker exploded and the top on the convertible
is stuck shut–AGAIN.”  I guess this is what one might call LOS ANGELES ANGST.
Later, walking down Highland by the Hollywood Bowl, laughing at trash–McDonald`s wrappers
everywhere, a Ford hubcap, a pair of dirty panties and a big 9 inch dildo covered in mud.
This city is so beautiful.
Back up to the hills with me…
“brisk the music of pulled shades,
a last man`s cave
in an eternity of swarm and explosion…”
The next day, at dusk, I saw a HUGE spider hanging, framed on his barely perceptible web
against a periwinkle twilight sky, between a tree and the roof of the house…
“…cause I`m a million miles away
and at the same time
I`m right here in your picture frame…
cause I`m a Voodoo Chile…”
Jimi Hendrix
honestly “India” by John Coltrane leaves me feeling exhausted and delirious,
like a difficult and chaotic musical journey through the ether…
“No man should go through life without once experiencing healthy, even bored solitude
in the wilderness, finding himself, depending solely on himself and thereby learning his
true and hidden strengths.”
Jack Kerouac
“Lonesome Traveler”
“If I can be allowed a mediocre generalization, don`t pointless things have a place, too,
in this far from perfect world?  Remove everything pointless and it`d lose even its imperfection.”
Haruki Murakami
“Sputnik Sweetheart”
breakfast at my taco stand on Park View and 6th St. followed by a walk down Alvarado.
Later, the Standard Hotel rooftop pool.  Swimming to Cuban Music and drinking bloody marys.
After that, to the Golden Gopher on 8th Street, playing pool alone and listening to Sinaloa
Narcocorridos (Jesse Morales El Originale de la Sierra).  All Mexicans in this bar except for
me and the old toothless, blonde-wigged female bartender right out of Tales of Ordinary
Madness.  Her dentures move as she talks.  She gets me a pitcher of what they`re calling
Budweiser but I suspect it`s Pabst Blue Ribbon or Schlitz.  Whatever, same effect and
green beer.  Bukowski would have loved this place, before he got tired of bars anyway.
Blonde wig tells me she`s from Thailand, of all places.  I have to conclude that she is lying
but that`s fine with me, it makes it more interesting.  I talk to a couple of the Mexican dudes
and then I go back to my solo pool games.
Later, I see beautiful whitish-yellow butterflies with graceful and delicate wings fluttering in
the gutter like it is a pristine river.  Well, the sun shines, even on trash…
LA river…AGAIN…people would say “why the fuck are you sitting in that sewer?!”
I am nuts, that`s why, like a bum; it`s quiet and there is no one here.  It`s peaceful
guttersong flow reminds me of ghosts, of lost voices and forgotten times and old winds
that have gone before, and sad things that have washed away with time.  These moments
in the afternoon sunshine, alone, the mournful call of passing trains going somewhere…
well, if nothing else, my life is not ordinary; that`s gotta count for something…
Later, yelling under the ECHO echo echo echo echo…..Bridge, I think it`s Spring Street….
hundreds of strange LA river birds swooping and diving all around me; for a filthy runoff
canal, this river has a lot of wildlife.  I feel like I`m making a Discover Channel documentary…
2 Reasons there are no phonebooks at pay phones:
1) civilized people have cell phones nowadays
2) bums burn phonebooks to keep warm at night
Feels like the end of the world out here at Spring and Casanova streets at sunset…
Saw Harry from the Grand Star at Hop Louie`s …this character is a real Chinatown local drunk…classic….
Full moon rising over New High Street…
Night mockingbird`s song mixed with traffic on the Harbor Freeway….city music….
Towers in the sky….
Good night….
Huge billboard at the Whisky on Sunset….it is a cartoon poster of Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney
posing like Dr. Evil….the caption reads, “Pre-emptive Moralizing Warfare; It`s Groovy, Baby…”
9/21/02 to 9/22/02
Last Day of Summer and the First Day of Fall
I will bring it in prowling the midnight coastline from Santa Monica to Topanga…why not?
My own “Starlight Express” into sunlight….
Sunrise at Sunset Blvd and PCH….BLAZE ONE UP
“I was still young, certain that this kind of thrilling event happened all the time.
Later in life, I realized how wrong I was.”
“It made me sad.  I felt like I was a meaningless bug clinging for no special
reason to a high stone wall on a windy night, with no plans, no beliefs.  I had
no one.  All I had was–me.  Same as always.”
“So that`s how we live our lives.  No matter how deep and fatal the loss, no matter how
important the thing that`s stolen from us–that`s snatched right out of our hands–even if
we are left completely changed, with only the outer layer of skin from before, we continue
to play our lives this way, in silence.  We draw ever nearer to the end of our allotted span
of time, bidding it farewell as it trails off behind.  Repeating, often adroitly, the endless
deeds of the everyday.  Leaving behind a feeling of immeasurable emptiness.”
“I often dream about the Dolphin Hotel.  In those dreams, I`m there, implicated in some kind
of ongoing circumstance.  All indications are that I BELONG to this dream continuity.  The
Hotel is distorted, much too narrow.  It seems more like a long, covered bridge.  A bridge
stretching endlessly though time.  And there I am, in the middle of it.  Someone else is there
too, crying.  The Hotel envelops me, I can feel its pulse, its heat.  In dreams, I am part of
the hotel.  I wake up, but where?  Where am I?  As if I didn`t know: I`m here.  In my life.
A feature of the world that is my existence.  Not that I particularly recall ever having approved
these matters, this condition, this state of affairs.  There might be a woman sleeping next
to me.  More often, I`m alone.  Just me and the expressway that runs right next to my
apartment and bedside, a nice belt of whiskey, and that malicious–no, indifferent, dusty,
morning light.  If there`s whiskey left, I`ll drink it.  I`ll think about the Hotel.  I`ll stretch nice
and slow, long enough for me to be sure I`m myself and not part of something else.  Yet,
I`ll remember the feel of the dream.  So much that I swear I can reach out and touch it.
I listen carefully.  That`s when I hear softly, almost imperceptibly, weeping.  A sobbing from
somewhere in the darkness.  Someone is crying out for me.”
Haruki Murakami
(What the Maori people of New Zealand call the Pacific Ocean)
And so concludes another storybook of a happy little life that just goes on and on and on….

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