By Tom H. Brooks 3

“ONE SHOULD NEVER UNDERESTIMATE THE POWER OF BOOKS.”…………………..………………………………………………………….

Paul Auster
Is everyone as flawed as I am?  I wonder how well they hide it….
Life only has the meaning that WE give it…
No complaints…
well, maybe a few…
10/10/06  10:40pm Staten Island rooftop
It is a very cruel world.
“We may be through with the past,
but the past ain`t through with us.”
(I think I was stressed out here because Chiharu and I had our first BIG argument.  Like women
tend to do, she went digging through my papers and books and found all kinds of incriminating
writings and pictures of sexy girls from my past…
She was out somewhere, totally pissed at me, and I was in something like a state of despair and
She`s used to my shady past nowadays…can`t change what`s already happened, eh?…
“I just wanna say that you are so beautiful heart.  I never met like a you in my life.  Thanks a lot.
Good luck your new work and everything.  Take a vegetable.”
(this could be my last text message ever from Chiharu…)
“I wanted you to be my forever partner…”
What a fucking heartbreaker….
Ironically, I`m watching “Katrina; Requiem for New Orleans by Spike Lee, as my own ceiling begins to
leak water, a good amount at that.  (it`s like that horror movie, Dark Water)
“Weary blues from waiting
Lord, I`ve been waiting too long
these blues have got me crying
Oh sweet mama, please come home
The snow falls round my window
but it can`t chill my heart
god knows it died the day you left
My dream world fell apart
Through tears I watch young lovers
as they go strolling by
Oh, all the things that might`ve been
god, forgive me if I cry
Weary blues from waiting
Lord, I`ve been waiting too long
these blues have got me crying
Oh sweet mama, please come home…”
Hank Williams
“Weary Blues”
find the “Neon Boneyard” next time I`m in Las Vegas, Nevada….
“Do what you will, because you will anyway…”
The sea and sky
wash over me
a million shades
of blue tides
and sunlight
golden filtered
through the cosmos
comes to me in
warm molecular diamonds
The cool wind
blows across
the sands of time
the breath of angels
the wheeling of birds
cries across the void
The questions remain,
The answers are….
“I don`t want to be a product of my environment;
I want my environment to be a product of ME.”
“The Departed”
“No Art is possible without a dance with Death”
“Awww….everything`s everybody else`s fault but mine…”
Homer Simpson
Just off Chemical Lane in Rossville (what a name for a street!), Staten Island in Saint someone or other`s graveyard…
I`m sitting alone in warm autumn sunlight.  2 GIANT old Chemical tanks are before me across the sea of the dead;
they are off-white, rusted, seemingly unused and forgotten.  A white horse neighs and runs in the foreground just
beyond the graveyard.  A surreal setting once again….indeed….
“Still he felt that if he could only annul the force of these million winding fingers that gripped his senses, he was capable
of the most brilliant and entertaining things…”
Stephen Crane
“George`s Mother”
“Drive your cart and plow
over the bones of the dead…”
William Blake
Cast adrift
on a moody purple
sea of sadness
Muted pastel tones
color my dark soul
in a veil of discontent
Gray clouds of vapor
envelop my mind
in a poisonous fog
I drift slowly
through the void
of myself
holding my tiny lantern
against the elements
a tiny pinprick of light
floating amongst
an endless universe
of stars and comets
the cosmos unfolding
to the end of time
A quiet whisper
a mournful sigh
10/20/06  1:40pm
written on the Staten Island Ferry
“The firmament that is New York is greater than the sum of its constituent parts.  It is a city and it is also a creature, a mentality,
a disease, a threat, an electromagnet, a cheap stage set, an accident corridor.  It is an implausible character, a monstrous vortex
of contradictions, an attraction-repulsion mechanism so extreme no one could have made it up.”
Luc Sante
“Low Life”
I know I`ve written this before, but New York City has NEVER been described with better words than this….
The policy of the northern Pakistani tribal grounds….”The Defenders of Khyber Pass”……….
WATCH OUT, they have GRANDMOTHERS that could dismantle and clean and reassemble an automatic weapon in under 10 minutes…..
“Death makes angels of us all
and gives us wings
where we had shoulders
smooth as raven`s claws
No more money
no more fancy dress
This other Kingdom
seems by far the best
A man searching for lost paradise
can seem a fool
to those who never sought
the other world
This thing upon me
crawling like a snake
It`s not death
but dying will solve its power
And as my graying hands
drop a last desperate pen
in some cheap room
they will find me there
They`ll never know
my name
my meaning
nor the treasure of my escape…”
A combination of Jim Morrison and Charles Bukowski
arranged by Tom Brooks (These words just seemed to FIT together…)
I`ll never forget that blinking, red electric DON`T WALK sign on the Lower East Side
that someone manipulated the design to give you the finger….HA!
I can`t even describe it, you just have to see it…..
Halloween NYC:  I just saw a pregnant nun smoking a cigarette…….
Dias de los Muertos….
“The City changes faster than the human heart…..”
“Here lyes the body of
James Davis Late Smith
of the Royal Artillery Who
Departed this life 17th Day of
December 1769 Aged 39 Years
Behold and see as you pass by
As you are now so once was I
As I am now you soon will be
Prepare for Death and follow me
very old gravestone in OLD English calligraphic letters at St. Paul`s
Cathedral Graveyard in Downtown New York City…..
NYC……….everybody is so busy being busy……..
“There is something fascinating about science.
One gets such wholesale returns of conjecture
out of such trifling investment of fact.”
Mark Twain
“With any important issue, there are always aspects no one wishes to discuss.”
George Orwell
“Sitting over words
very late I have heard a
kind of whispering sighing
not far…
like a night wind in pines
or like the sea in the dark
the echo of everything that
has ever been spoken
still spinning its one syllable
between the earth and silence.”
W.S. Merwin
“Freedom is a road
seldom traveled
by the multitude.”
Los Angeles/New York
Sometimes I think I prefer
Lady “I despise my husband!”
Homer “Well, he didn`t get the prize pig at the fair either…”
The Simpsons
“You take FOREVER to say NOTHING.”
Homer Simpson
“Tomorrow Never Comes”
Tomorrow might get here eventually but by then it could be too late…
“One of the first things you learned in law school was that the law was NOT about TRUTH.
It was about DISPUTE RESOLUTION.  In the course of resolving a dispute, the truth might
or might not emerge.”
Michael Crichton
“State of Fear”
“This is all a dream
we dreamed
one afternoon long ago…”
The Grateful Dead
“Box of Rain”
“Nothing is so firmly believed as that which is least known.”
The “military-industrial complex” is a concept outdated from the days of the Cold War…..
today it is the “PLM”, the “Politico-Legal-Media Complex,” a whole new game.
Welcome to the future….
Corporate Stooge
” `This is like that Twilight Zone where the guy wakes up and he`s the same but everybody else is different…`
`Which one is that?`
`Awww, they were ALL like that….` “
Staten Island Moment #7704
a black woman rushing down the stairs to catch the 1:30pm ferry, rapidly carrying baby carriage; the black male
security guard at the bottom of the stairs makes no move to help…pointing, he says, “Miss, take the elevator.”
Out of breath, she replies, “If I miss that damn boat, I`m coming back for YOU…”
Staten Island Moment #7893
I was wearing one of my flashy, ridiculous, gaudy “Saturday Night Fever” disco shirts…..
Male High-School Punk Scumbag with Pizza Face  “Nice shirt, homo…”
ME(smiling, without missing a beat)  “I can change the shirt, son, but I`d have to chop your goddamned head off to solve your problem.”
Needless to say, everyone in earshot laughed at him…..
LeAp Of fAiTh
“`Homer, don`t drink and drive!`
(irritated)….`Fine, I`ll drive between sips…`”
The scene at the end of the movie, “Ocean`s Twelve” with the master thief doing the crazy acrobatic dance
through the laser beams in the grand hall of some museum in Rome……HA!  This is what makes Hollywood,
HOLLYWOOD, the grandest of all illusions and the very best of all our ridiculous imaginations….VISUALIZED….
(If you forgot this scene or have never seen it, simply Google …..Ocean`s Twelve Laser Dance, watch it on YouTube and refresh your memory…)
The Memory Priest of the Creech People
  One person alone, always a man, serves as the memory for all the dates and names and events of the Creech, the
hill-dwelling aboriginals of south-central Sumatra.  This person possesses an entire history of the people and may
spend as much as a week, day and night, reciting the various genealogies.
  This Memory Priest reminds the Creech of who they are and what they have done.  He is their entertainment and their
historian, their memory and mind and imagination.  He keeps the Creech amused and informed.  The Creech have no
chief or headman.  The Memory Priest serves as the sole authority.
  The Memory Priest is awarded his title at birth.  As soon as he is able to talk he is given to understand that he is the
repository of all the Creech lore.
  His is not an easy career.  He must memorize great lists of family names and must be able to recite all the events that
took place from the moment of his birth.
  The Creech are mostly placid, though they are subject to odd fits of violence.  Biting themselves in order to show remorse
is not unknown, and clawing their own faces is common.  They are also untruthful and unreliable, prone to thieving, gossiping,
gambling, and sudden spasms of the most aggressive behavior.
  What the Memory Priest knows, the immensity of his storehouse of facts, is nothing compared to the one fact that he does
not know, a secret that is withheld from him: After thirty years have passed, and he is old by Creech standards (possibly toothless,
almost certainly wrinkled and shrunken), a meeting is convened.  He recites the Creech history, and at the conclusion of this
he is put to death.  He is finally roasted and eaten by every member of the Creech, in a ritual known as the Ceremony of Purification.
  The next male child born to a Creech woman is designated Memory Priest and elevated; history begins once again.  Nothing that
has taken place before his birth has any reality, all quarrels are settled, all debts nullified.
  So the Memory Priest, now an infant, soon a man, learns his role, believing that history begins with him and never aware that
at a specified moment his life will end.  Yet it is the death of the Memory Priest that the Creech people live for and whisper about,
the wiping out of all debts, all crimes, all shame and failure.  They eagerly anticipate the amnesia his death will bring.  Throughout
his life, though he is unaware of it, he is less a supreme authority than a convenient receptacle into which all the ill-assorted details
of the Creech are tossed.  Secretly, he is mocked for not knowing that it will all end in oblivion, at the time of his certain death.”
Paul Theroux
A big, fat, red-faced, Italian-looking guy, built like a retired linebacker, is walking around Union Square, sweating and stepping in front of
people, blocking their paths and singing “The Star-Spangled Banner” at the top of his lungs.  Bizarre, senseless, circus NYC….
The many paths I`ve found on Staten Island, these forgotten roads–they disappear behind me, to be forgotten again, fading into oblivion…
Marge Simpson “Oh yes, and punish Lisa for lying to us…”
Homer  (sternly) “Alright, young lady, I want you to march yourself straight to the Kwik-e-Mart and buy me some chips and beer.  Oh, and
buy something for yourself too, sweetheart.”
“The Simpsons”
12/1/06  1am  S.I. N.Y.
A quiet moment in the yard coming home….late season crickets in the grass…..
“…and I know this…..only when it is dark enough can you see the stars…”
Martin Luther King Jr.
I dig my own graves.
I`ve been doing it for many years…
`change your fucking underwear and brush your teeth, `cause daddy`s comin home…`
Large personalities canNOT be restrained…
I`ll never understand how these Jesus freaks think that they`re doing god`s work by passing out stupid little flyers and pamphlets
that tell us we`re all going to hell.  I just DON`T get it.
“Remember that young man–you have to appreciate what you`ve got while you still have it.”
Veteran reporter, John Lawton speaking to the American Association of Broadcast Journalists in 1995
“You think you`re big time?!  You`re gonna fucking DIE big time!!”
“Carlito`s Way”
“All animals are created equal, but some are more equal than others.”
George Orwell
There is no security
no comfort in this life
No sure things
nothing lasts forever
No assurances
nothing solid
nothing permanent
Everything is fleeting
and temporary
a wisp of air
smelling of flowers
a breath of fire
Every moment
a tiny millisecond
on the eternal clock
given significance
only by ourselves
Time marches onward
crushing the brittle bones
of the dead past underfoot
marching towards you
with you
past you
disappearing in the distance
a tiny black speck
on an unreachable bright horizon
while you stand alone
for something you cannot name…
Saturday 12/9/06  2:30pm
written on the Staten Island Ferry
the man who would be defined as “smart”
learns from his mistakes…
(I guess I`m pretty stupid then…and I`d DO IT ALL AGAIN….)
“All the great empires of the future will be empires of the mind.”
Winston Churchill
“Heavenly shades of night are falling…
It`s Twilight Time…”
The Platters
“The days are bright
and filled with pain,
Enclose me in
your gentle rain…”
Jim Morrison
“The Crystal Ship”
“If you don`t know history, you don`t know anything.
You are a leaf that doesn`t know it`s part of a tree.”
Michael Crichton
“The West is the best…”
“I see your hair is burning,
hills are filled with fire,
If they say I never loved you,
you know they are a liar,
Driving down your freeways,
midnight alleys roam…”
Jim Morrison
I am getting kind of excited to go back to Los Angeles….
“Risk everything or gain nothing.”
Geoffrey de Charny  1358
“It`s a beautiful day,
don`t let it get away…”
Death is the only true certainty we can count on in this life;
and that alone should give us a nice sense of security.
12/18/06  6pm  BLT Fish Beer Break at 16th St. and 6th Ave.  (I pretend I`m just going to the bank, but I have a beer and a puff too; ain`t management great?)
When this melancholy, philosophical mood overtakes me, it`s kind of like I`m seeing EVERYTHING for what it is; and what I see
kind of scares me……..perhaps, the futility of fighting?
or is there?
“Nothing in the world is as certain as death.”
Jean Froissart  1359
I really like Tottenville, Staten Island because it`s as far SOUTH as I can go in this damned city!
HAPPY    ha ha ha    HAPPY  ^_^   ha ha ha  
it drives me crazy BEING so crazy
“You can`t get the truth from a man who trades in lies.”
“The X-Files”
Another Jesus freak disturbing the peace on the subway car….they REALLY irritate the fuck out of me……
I gave him a dose of my angry side, just like the last time….”Thanks, buddy, THANKS A LOT!!  Early
in the fucking morning and we get to find out we`re ALL going to hell and half of us are already there!!
Hell could be LISTENING TO YOU!!”
I threw up my arms in exasperation and slammed into the next train car….
Still more Staten Island tastelessness….I`ll never forget that cheesy, spooky, plastic Christmas tree in my
white mental-hospital-looking apartment lobby that played electronic X-mas music 24 hours a day….hello,
calling David Lynch, hello?
“I just can`t keep going along
making believe nothing`s wrong…”
Norah Jones
XMAS morning 2006……………..”Miles Runs the Voodoo Down”  from “Bitches Brew”
“In everyone there sleeps a sense of life lived according to love.
To some it means the difference they could make by loving others,
but across most it sweeps as all they MIGHT have done had they been loved.”
Philip Larkin
“Faith Healing”
“contented misanthrope”
about Arthur Rimbaud in Abyssinia
taking photos
of unlikely and unusual
12/29/06   sarcasm regarding that goddamned fish shack….
“I want that marlin fish dusted and polished, I want the bunghole cleaned, I want that dorsal fin sparkling blue in the starlight….”
“Tom, I`d tell ya to keep it real, but that`s what you do best…”
BLT Fish
12/30/06  2:30am
To top of this PERFECT FUCKING DAY I`ve had, I have to go BACK TO THE CITY to get Chiharu cause she`s WAY too drunk, apparently.
I got a call about 10 minutes after I walked into the apartment from her friend Yuki.  I was butt-nekkid, about to jump in the shower when I
get this wonderful news.  So, I get dressed again, catch a 3am ferry, and get on the 1 train for Times Square.  JUST MY LUCK, the only other
guy who gets in the train car is a 6 foot, 6 inch, 300 pound black guy with bug eyes and the chalk-white film of CRACK lips.  Of course, he`s
talking to himself about demons and devil winds and the apocalypse and he`s carrying a box of cutlery….that`s right, KNIVES.  NO, I`m NOT
kidding.  Oh please, NEVER call ME paranoid or scared, but JEEBUS CHRIST, I mean come on, man!  This is how my day is going from the
minute I got up 18 hours ago.  Oh yeah, I love New York tonight.  He didn`t kill me, but I did not enjoy the ride.  I finally found the restaurant
following the girl`s BAD description.  It was SO FAR from Times Square, actually almost to the Upper East Side.  Chiharu was lying on the rug
floor outside the restroom.  She was trying to hit anyone that came near her.  I grabbed her and wrestled her into a taxi.  Then I had to pay almost
a hundred bucks to go over the bridges to Brooklyn and over the Verrazano Narrows Bridge to Staten.  There was no fucking way we were gonna
catch trains and the ferry with her in that condition.  The sun was rising when I finally got to sleep.  I didn’t care if I ever woke up….
“What if you told somebody the most important thing in the world but you knew they`d never believe you?”
“I`d try.”
“See Lisa?  Now you`ve done it…instead of one giant controlling all media, now there are a thousand freaks xeroxing their worthless opinions!”
Homer Simpson
Once again, seems the same as last year to me….
“Ya gotta have a dream….if you don`t have a dream, how ya gonna have a dream come true?”
“I am sure that no law made by man is sacred before the impulse of passion.
There is no law before impulse.”
“Raise a python and he will swallow you.”
“Matako alaabili tabuli kucumbana”
A couple of sayings from Malawi in the Chichewa language…
A bit of African wisdom
Timeline for a St. George, Staten Island haunted place right by our house….
before 1670:  Lenape Indian lands
1670-1701:  Duxbury Glebe (farm)
1756-1763:  French and Indian War campground
1775-1786:  Revolutionary War campground
1799-1863:  Quarantine Station and U.S. Revenue Cutter Service, established by Alexander Hamilton in 1790…(which was like a precursor to the Coast Guard…)
In 1858 there was some kind of uprising which resulted in the destruction of the Quarantine Station……etc…..
this place has a turbulent and violent history….
A funny medieval tapestry at the Cloisters; A unicorn stabbing a skinny, mangy dog with its horn…
1/09/07  Staten Island Borough Hall   11:30am
The day I got married to Chiharu.  We were married by a nice man with an African accent named Edison Stewart.
Afterwards we went to Karl`s Klipper for a nice lunch and we planned to make our honeymoon a drive
across America when we go back to Los Angeles…..
“When a sighing begins
in the violins
of the autumn-song,
my heart is drowned
in the slow sound
languorous and long…”
Paul Verlaine
1/9/07  Wedding Day
“whatever you do
just stay offa my blue-suede shoes…”
Carl Perkins and Elvis
Jerry “If I killed somebody, would you turn me in?”
Kramer “Definitely.”
J (shocked) “If I killed somebody, you`d turn me in?!!?”
K “Oh, absolutely.”
J “But we`re supposed to be friends!”
K “If we`re such good friends, then why are you going around killing people?”
J “But you KNOW me!”
K “I THOUGHT I did!”
“I was alone and reckless and both passive and quick to fury.
It was a beautiful time, everything electric and hideous.”
Dave Eggers
“The man is watching the smoke from the factory, and though there are many things that he could do that day, he will do none of them.”
“…but that you found her, and you had a chance to love her–well, maybe that was meant to be too–it was ALL meant to be…”
Why didn`t they just LISTEN to “Fox Mulder”?  He was always right…
“The longest journey begins with but a single step.”
Lao Tzu
“…a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away…”
If you don`t know what this is from, you live under a fucking rock
“I travel along the edge of your thoughts,
and my shadow falls from your white forehead,
my shadow shatters, and I gather the pieces,
and go with no body, groping my way,
the endless corridors of memory,
the doors that open into an empty room
where all summers have come to rot,
jewels of thirst burn at its depths,
the face that vanishes upon recall,
the hand that crumbles at my touch;
the hair spun by a mob of spiders
over the smiles of years ago…”
Octavio Paz
4:07am  Friday morning  1/19/07
Jesus of Nazareth
John 6:12
“I want to love you forever, Tom!!  You are my special super man!!  You are!!
I`m not perfect but I always try my best for you!  See you later *LOVE*  Unnnnma!!
Text Message from Chiharu that I just found from our wedding day….
So, we just found out that Chiharu has Multiple FUCKING Sclerosis!!  That poor girl.  This is a cruel goddamned joke.  It`s just not fair!
Chiharu, my dearest Pineapple Head, the love of my life, my beautiful wife…..every second with you,
well, it`s worth a lifetime.  I always love you, baby….
“Never give up on a miracle.”
1/23/07  2:06am
psychic vibes….I knew she had to go away somewhere, deep down, I knew.  The other night, before she had told me any details, I woke
up in a sleep-dream state (she tells me) saying abruptly, “Chiharu, honey, where are you?!?”  She was right there next to me, where she should be…
“I`m not here
this isn`t happening…”
I`m afraid I`m losing my better half…
Remember back in the Hollywood Hills when I would wake up, take a valium, and go back to sleep while listening to Coltrane`s “India?”
Well, that`s how I feel all the time lately…
“walk with me
like a tree in a soft wind
walk with me
like a river flowing
your face
a nebula
between my hands…”
Octavio Paz
“sometimes it`s darkest just before dawn”
1/25/07  a gray Thursday morning…
Chiharu is leaving for Japan for an unspecified amount of time
to receive proper medical care for MS….
“Oh, every time it rains, it rains
Pennies from Heaven,
Don`t you know each cloud contains
Pennies from Heaven,
You`ll find your fortune falling
All over town,
Be sure that your umbrella
is upside down,
Trade them for a package of
sunshine and flowers,
If you want the things you love,
you must have showers,
So when you hear it thunder
don`t run under a tree,
There`ll be Pennies from Heaven
for you and me…”
“I can`t give you anything but love,
that`s the only thing I`ve plenty of ….”
Billie Holiday
I always love you, Chiharu…..
alone again
Walking through Central Park on a brisk January day listening to D`Angelo`s “Feel Like Making Love.”
It is an unbelievably gloomy Sunday.  I`m on my way to the Metropolitan Museum of Art.  Trying not
to dwell on all these terrible recent developments….to lose myself in Art, as it were……
Afterwards, I will go to Inoteca on Rivington on the Lower East Side for a panini and a couple of glasses
of Calabrian red wine….
These are the things I saw that day that made the biggest impressions:
New Objectivity   Post WW1 German Art
Otto Dix Metropolis  1928
Skat Players
Self-Portrait With Easel
Amazing stuff……
George Grosz  The Eclipse of the Sun  1926
Max Beckmann
Ludwig Meidner
Spirit Boards, New Guinea
Dogon Masks, Africa
Joseph Stella  Coney Island  1914
Wassily Kandinsky  The Garden of Love (Improvisation Number 27)  1912
Pablo Picasso  Nude Standing by the Sea  1929
The Dreamer  1932
Mandolin, Fruit Bowl, and Plaster Arm  1925
Balthus  The Mountain  1937
Therese Awake  1938
Giorgio de Chirico  Metaphysical Still Life  1914
Marc Chagall  The Lovers  1913-1914
Vincent Van Gogh  Wheat Field with Cypresses
Watching a video that I got from Vice Magazine……
Drunken Shane Smith (co-founder of the mag…), traipsing around red-faced in the snow with a hot chick from Berlin, pounding vodka.
They were packing Soviet-made AK-47s, running around the desolate and destroyed streets of Chernobyl (nuclear meltdown 1986)
hunting radioactive, mutant wild boars.  It was the most ridiculously crazy thing I`ve ever seen, besides that show, “Jackass”…..
(slurring) “when we see the radioactive wild boars, we`re gonna shoot `em with these machine-guns…”
regarding Pakistan`s Guardians of Khyber Pass
“The Americans want to suppress some of these people, put down the Taliban, and they think they can do this by sending in American
troops to march around these rugged mountains.  Good luck!  These people have been doing this for centuries!  They live in caves, they
have no tongues and they make guns with their bare hands!”
“Many sons, many guns…”
another guy in this film is obsessed with trying to get a Pygmy in Africa to make a porno film……
“The future`s so bright I gotta wear shades….”
Goddamn, how the world has changed! Paul Gauguin could never have dreamed that his masterpieces could and would be used as wallpaper
of screensavers for these modern things called computers and cellphones.  I found myself complaining about stupid kids nowadays with their
empty-headed conversations, weaned on MTV and video games.  And yet, they are SO MUCH better on computers than I am.  Go figure.
Yeah, that`s right….I sound like a grumpy OLD MAN.  I`m getting there, MOFOS!!!
the name I gave a painting by Chiharu…
“When the twilight is gone
and no songbirds are singing
When the twilight is gone
you come into my heart
and here in my heart you will stay,
while I pray………….
My prayer, is to linger with you
at the end of the day
in a dream that`s divine,
My prayer, is a rapture in blue
with the world far away
and your lips close to mine…”
The Platters
“Sometimes I think we live through things only to be able to say that it happened, that is wasn`t to someone else, it was to me.  Sometimes,
we live to beat the odds.  I live in the same world as everyone else, I just saw more of it.
“The Jacket”
“Sometimes life can only really begin with the knowledge of death, that it can all end, even when you least want it to.”
“We bury our dead alive, don`t we?  They`re all around us, speaking to us, haunting us.  Conscience; it`s just the voices of the dead trying to save us from our own damnation….”
2/2 and 2/3/07  Midnight Wind
Olympic Stilt High-Diving
Human Wrecking Ball
The Red Cart
she used this word in an e-mail.  Cute.  She MUST have used her translator `cause this is a tough one.  Good job, girl….
“A heart that`s full up like a landfill
a job that slowly kills you
bruises that won`t heal
You look so tired and unhappy
bring down the government
they don`t….they don`t speak for us
I`ll take the quiet life
a handshake
some carbon monoxide
No alarms and No Surprises (3)
This is my final fit
my final bellyache
No alarms and No Surprises
Such a pretty house
and such a pretty garden
No Alarms and No Surprises…
The courage to fight the good fight….
“I wanna be sedated…”
The Ramones
I was walking along in the FREEZING cold 4 degree Fahrenheit streets of Staten Island, thinking how I was a semi-contented
misanthrope, when I encountered another human, who said in his strong NY accent, “Fuck this weather; it`s too goddamned hot out….”
Just waiting for the white flash of light….
New York Post headline regarding some former astronaut implicated in an attempted murder…….
HA!!  Who writes these goddamned headlines?!?
…”daddy would you like some sausage?”
“I need more cowbell….”
“The Falling Rains of Life”
“Jesus said, `Know what is within your sight, and what is hidden from you will become clear.
For there is nothing hidden that will not be revealed.` “
The Gospel of Thomas
referring to page-turner, pulp-fiction type books…..
“It`s like a bad action movie.  You want to turn it off, but you just can`t.”
“One of the saddest things about these poor blind kids; they can`t even SEE their own toys….”
“We can put everyone with AIDS on the moon…”
“I`ve learned a lot today, like when you open your heart to try to help people, they`re eventually gonna try to stab you to death…”
“The Sarah Silverman Show”
“Why go out for a hamburger when you got a steak at home?”
Do you remember Drive-In Movies?  I do.  Damn, I`m getting OLD !
“I`ve traveled all over the world searching for happiness, but all the happiness I`ve found has been in my heart…”
“Once we walked in the sun,
we`ll feel the light
until our lives are done…”
Pope Leo X
Build bridges, not walls….
2/18/07  Sunday
Lying in bed, reading and looking out the window at a white, winter sky and listening to psychedelic Alice Coltrane jazz (“Blue Nile”) .  A flock
of birds flies just over the tree line in a giant V formation, heading SOUTH.  A quiet and introspective moment, just for me…..
Homer Simpson, crying over a beer….
“Greystash, Greystash……it`s not fair!  No man should outlive his fictional wizard!”
After watching “The Buena Vista Social Club,” I sit alone in the dark in my empty apartment, trying to strum soft Cuban-flavored guitar riffs.  I look
out the window at the cold, indifferent night sky…….
I`m an artist:  I see EVERYTHING and then alter it to use for my own purposes….
Schneider-Weisse   “It`s only one of the best beers in the world…”
                                 Brian Newman  (who is now doing great in NYC playing his trumpet all over the place and playing with Lady Gaga and on TV shows like “Boardwalk Empire.”
                                                          And to think he used to work at stinking BLT Fish…….)
He was right about that beer too….
Brian Newman and I used to smoke joints together all the time, ESPECIALLY after work at that fucking fish shack.  He told me one time about an old friend of his, the one he called,
“The Holy Roller.”  He said the guy used to roll HUGE joints wrapped in Bible pages, from the mid-Old Testament, specifically.  Boring genealogies, really…..
Here`s a quote from “The Holy Roller”….
“I had two Bibles; the one I read, and the one I rolled…”
“Some of us prefer illusions to despair.”
Lisa Simpson
“Starting when I was only 12 years old, I have never chain-smoked anything but unfiltered Pall Malls.  And for many years now, right on the package, Brown and Williamson have promised to kill me.
But I am now 82.  Thanks a lot, you dirty rats.  The last thing I ever wanted was to be alive when the 3 most powerful people on the planet would be named Bush, Dick and Colin.”
Kurt Vonnegut
“Man Without a Country”
“Prohibition is Prohibited”
“If you can make it, you can drink it.”
“I`ll allow it…”
The insane mini-country of Bam Margera on “Jackass” in a sketch that I believe was called “Bill of Rights”
Oh shit, the world is going more and more haywire and YOU CAN WATCH IT ALL HAPPEN ON TV WHILE EATING SNACKS AND DRINKING BEER….
“The devil can cite scripture for his purpose.”
William Shakespeare
“Human beings seldom notice when they are happy.  I urge you to please notice when you are happy,
and exclaim or murmur or think at some point, “If this isn`t nice, I don`t know what is.”
Kurt Vonnegut
“Man Without a Country”
I emerge from the subway in Union Square on a crisp, blue, sunny winter day and millions of feathers are flying all around me.  Hundreds, even thousands
of people are shaking out their down feather pillows and engaging in a massive, free-for-all pillow fight.  What the hell is going on?  Only in NYC…..
“There are two sorts of artists, one not being in the least superior to the other.  But one responds to the history of his or her art so far, and the other responds
to life itself.  What you respond to in any work of art is the artist`s struggle against his or her limitations.”
“…one of those rare people in whom mind ultimately wins out over matter.  Age doesn’t diminish these people.  It makes them old, but it doesn’t alter who they
are, and the longer they go on living, the more fully and implacably they incarnate themselves.”
Paul Auster
“The Book of Illusions”
I want to be one of these types of old people…
Big sign at a mall in front of the complex…..
“Gimme a bottle of bourbon–I got a new liver and I`m breakin` it in….”
The Texan
“The Simpsons”
“The idea is……to remain in a state of constant departure, while always arriving….”
“…saves time on introductions and goodbyes….”
“Waking Life”
We`re ALL a mess.  The whole human race is in shambles, which is really nothing new, I suppose.  Everyone is nuts, each and every one of us, in our own ways,
with our own faults and our own personal patterns of self-destruction, vices, sins, and flawed ways.  Everyone is mental, just in 7 billion different forms and, of course,
some of us do MORE with our insanity than others, perhaps some of us even USE it to our own advantage.  There is more to insanity than crapping in your shoes and
drinking from the toilet bowl….
3/4/07  6:51pm
A burnt-orange, blood-reddish moon is rising over Brooklyn and its light is interwoven with black, lacy clouds….
“But now I have come to believe that the whole world is an enigma, a harmless enigma that is made terrible
by our own mad attempt to interpret it as though it had an underlying truth.”
Umberto Eco
“Focault`s Pendulum”
My first slightly noticeable gray hairs coming around my temple and sideburns…….hello middle age…..
“But in its loftiest sense, syncretism is the acknowledgement that a single Tradition runs through and nurtures all
religion, all learning, all philosophy.  The wise man does not discriminate: he gathers together all shreds of light,
from wherever they may come.”
Umberto Eco
“Focault`s Pendulum”
“If I look hard enough into the setting sun,
my love will laugh with me before the morning comes….
I look inside myself and see my heart is black…”
The Rolling Stones
I`m gonna write a novel about fluffy bunnies in an emerald green field
and their adventures in the briar patch with old Mr. Fox……….
The red-headed stepchild of the Apocalypse…..
“Ok, but I`m not very good at details…..or the big picture; and I have to warn you, I show up late….
and `drunk`…(takes the guy`s hand whispering…)….I`ve got a good feeling about this….”
Homer Simpson
a tragedy written with love…
There is one really good reason for living, for staying alive;  that is the journey through the land of my own mind…….
I have been SO FUCKING SICK since Saturday night.  I think it peaked yesterday, although I can`t say that I really feel any better today.
I laid in bed all day…aching muscles, joints and bones, I coughed and coughed, feeling as if I would hack up a lung.  My head hurts and
my soul is tired.  I miss Chiharu so much that I suspect that not only germs, but stress and worry are partially responsible for this deathly
illness.  I have been feeling utterly miserable 90% of the time and even smoke and alcohol do no good to kill the pain.  I only think more
honestly and more intensely.  To top it off, I get mad when I get sick rather than whiny and bitchy like most people.  So, I guess I`ve been
a grumpy asshole for days now.  I don`t want to talk to anybody, crowds in the City make me disgusted and claustrophobic and crazy.  I
just want to start stabbin` and burnin`.  And now, oh yes, AND NOW I am going into work at that goddamned fish shack to pretend that I
give a fuck.  I can`t WAIT to quit that fucking job.  They`ve been good to me and I`ve definitely met some real characters and nice people,
but I`ve just been there too long now.  I am so tired of the employees crying about this and that, complaining and making their constant
stupid schedule requests.  “I want this and I want that….”  SHUT THE FUCK UP AND DO YOUR JOB!  YOU THINK I`M HAVING FUN IN
THIS DUMP?!  I am sick of idiocy and incompetence.  Everything is always broken and I am so tired.  I`ve got to get out of there before
I snap and get myself fired.  Alright, enough!  Now I sound like one of them complaining.  I am waiting for Thursday, my next day off.
Good night…….
(somebody`s BITTER…
“There are worse things
than being alone,
but sometimes one doesn`t
realize this until years later
and then it is too late.
There is nothing worse
than being too late.”
Charles Bukowski
“War All the Time”
“What did you say your name was again?”
“I didn`t.”
Clint Eastwood in “High Plains Drifter”, the best Western ever made….
(my own included…)
I never realized how tripped out my Staten Island apartment looked from the outside until the early morning of 3/15/07 at 3:30am
when I took a little night stroll and looked up to the window from the garden.  Flashing lights from hippy bulbs, lava lamps and
candles and the flicker of the TV made the inside of my apartment look like an acid dream…….gotta love it.  I`m gonna smoke
a joint out here and go back up there…..
A beautiful spring morning, sick or not, the weather is too nice to sit inside.  I had to take a bike ride to the beach.  Last night, Chiharu
called and said she got a plane ticket to come home on April 3rd, so I am finally getting happier again…..
Incidentally, there was a shootout last night in Greenwich Village, in the EXACT spot where I was walking just a couple of days ago
when I abandoned my 12-year-old sneak-a-toke pipe in front of Cafe Wha right across from the head shop where I bought it.  3 people
were killed.  Something about DeMarco`s Pizzeria and some guy putting 15 shots into someone`s back.  2 cops were also killed on
Bleecker between MacDougal and Sullivan.  Damn!  Wrong place at the wrong time and it could all be over……
Although it is still officially winter on this gorgeous, spring-like Thursday, I stand on the waterfront at Hylan Blvd and look under the Verrazano
Narrows Bridge at the surreal skyline of Coney Island, blurred in the mist…..
So, now I`m sitting here at Karl`s Klipper after my bike ride.  I was sitting in perfect stillness, alone on an empty beach, no wind and a glassy sea.
Suddenly, the wind picked up, the sky turned gray and I decided I`d better get the hell out of there before it rained or something.  So I rode, against
the wind, fighting the whole way, huffing and puffing, and I finally made it back to my hood…….
I`m about to have some French Onion soup and a grilled cheese sandwich with tomato and bacon and french fries.  Then I`ll head home to read in
the garden before the snow or rain or whatever hits…..
Now they are talking about SNOW tomorrow…..really?  Fucking snow?!?  The weather is just unpredictable here!  I can`t believe this shit; from a perfect
morning to a snowstorm tomorrow.  I`ve never seen the temperature drop so fast.  Now they`re just messing with my emotions…….
It`s always my habit to find the quietest and most isolated spot on the Staten Island Ferry to sit….anything to escape from the howling mob.  Always the
misanthrope, always the eccentric, always searching for MY OWN SPACE……
Middle of the night, in a snowstorm…….
I think that it is entirely possible that I am the ONLY 37-year-old man EVER who is running down Staten Island streets and hills in the snow, helter-skelter in
Harley Davidson boots in a driving, icy snow and sliding like 25 feet a go…… snow surfing or boot skiing……whatever.  The few people who were out,
saw me and were like, “What the FUCK?!?”  Their expressions said it all.  I will always remember nights like this….being a weirdo, a freak……being ME……
and he finally loses it…….






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