August 30, 2001


So the big buzz at the moment is Burning Man. I hadn’t given it much thought since last year having faced the challenges of cold/windy/rainy weather, a twisted group of candy-flippers for travel companions, and a manic closet-homosexual posing as a foster camp. The vibe itself was fundamentally good, it’s amazing to be surrounded by 26,000 diverse people who come together with the intention to bring creativity to life and treating everyone like a close friend, but I also think that it was used as a platform for perverts to gather and exhibit their tastelessness. I know, I know, freedom of expression means allowing ALL to be free, and who am I to justify one act as art and another as obscene, however, if you can find artistic merit or brotherly love in a 65 year old naked man who rides a bike around making good use of a dildo strapped to the seat and I will gladly retract my statement.

I tossed the idea of going again around briefly last month when the hum was growing stronger, but seeing as I’ve been traveling the country for the last 10 weeks, funding would not allow it. I wouldn’t mind visiting Black Rock city again, now that I’ve been I have a better concept of do’s and don’ts, but I have to admit I’m a bit jaded by the freak appeal, especially after what I saw Friday night.

A friend and I were walking home around 1:00 am in the Richmond. We turned the corner from 4th Street onto Clement, and fast approaching was a 7 foot tall Satan. I found it most remarkable that he was actually walking on black hooves with black fur around the ankles. He had shoulder length straight black hair, and his hairline was extremely receded exposing the entire top of his head. He was sporting incredibly realistic horns and fangs, against convincingly pale skin. He was dressed in black pants and a rich red, cape like jacket that hung down below his knees. I actually don’t remember how our conversation was initiated; I was so engrossed in the genuineness of his get up. As not to offend, I asked if this was his usual form or if he was in costume for a reason. He answered that he was on his way home from performing stand-up comedy down the street. I complimented him on his fabulous duds, and like a child at show-and-tell, he lifted the bald skin from atop his head, exposing a gnarly, what I can only presume to be life like brain, and laughed a demonic laugh with the aid of a voice altering box. Running with the oddity of it all, I suggested he add gooey blood to the brain for effect, and drink some hot tea for his throat. I bid him a good evening to which he replied, “You too. See you later, but you guys got a while”. Wow, I feel like I've been given a new license to live! I'm going to make every day count!

Who needs to go all the way to Nevada to see freaks?

p.s. would NOT date the Prince of Darkness

August 23, 2001

So I went to L.A. this weekend, and amazingly enough I wasn’t discovered! I’m sure the stone faced patron that popped in to the Green Room cafĂ© had much better luck, all the best to you bucko!

I checked into my plush Motel 6 hotel room mid afternoon, and headed out to immerse myself in the celebrity playground. Friday night after a quick dip in the nazi guarded swimming pool and a public fainting spell at Cat & the Fiddle, I was ready to retire! Then at five a.m., just a couple of hours before I was ready to rise and search for Britney Spear’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Gordy decided to stop partying like a rock star and come back to the hotel. In stumbles Gordy, clicking one the bright white light and slurring the mis-heard Lenny Kravitz lyrics, “I’m a stone cold killer”. I denied my little Hannibal Lector wannabe the pleasure of chopping me up with a knife, or even removing a limb, and in mid-rebuttal, he passed out.

That morning I stopped at the visitor’s center and picked up a copy of the local periodical of what’s happening in the city called the L.A. Weekly, grabbed a croissant and chamomile tea, and perused the pages next to a sweet little fountain in the ninety degree morning sun. I strolled up and down Hollywood Blvd. window-shopping in such fine stores as Frederick’s of Hollywood and The Temptress. I spotted Spiderman and X-Man hanging out in from of Mann’s Chinese Theatre. Had I had any cash left I could have had my photo taken with these true to life Super Heroes. Alas I was tapped from breakfast, and I settled for their broken English, classic Saturday morning cartoon tag line, “We like girls”.

Later on that day Gordy, Simon and I drove through the Hollywood Hills looking for Wonderland Ave. (now why didn’t we keep an eye out for rabbit holes) making a brief pit stop so that Gordy could make his mark on Hollywood. Actually, he left his mark on Sunset Blvd. near Le Brea. And he marked the sidewalk. With melon infused vomit. We then took to Melrose Avenue for spending money that we just didn’t have on things that we just didn’t need. Two hours of searching for something funky and cool in commission driven piranha infested boutiques, and we came to the conclusion that the male styles weren’t male enough, and the female styles were cheap; and I don’t mean inexpensive.

After a twelve-hour cat nap Keely was now ready to join us for a tasty meal. We stuffed ourselves with yummy Italian food served to us by the assumed aspiring screenwriter, who coincidentally seemed to share a similar style with our beloved Simon. Keely promptly retired, after all she had been horizontal all day, so the boys and I set out to mingle with the plastic people. We found ourselves in a saloon of sorts, where Wranglers were replaced with Gucci, and the boots were made by Prada. Gordy fulfilled his dream of living like a cowboy by taking the old mechanical bull for a ride. He looked damn good up there too, and we overheard someone confirming it. Unfortunately, Gordy is still singing falsetto and the doctor said the skin on his left knee should grow back within a few days. We turned in early after an amusing walk home, witnessing fashion statements that were more like commands, “Fuck me, Fuck me, Fuck me”, and a parade of luxury cars with intoxicated girls hanging out of sunroofs proclaiming their love for L.A.

Our last day in SoCal was spent in colorful Venice Beach. On our way out of Hollywood, Keely shared her suspicion of the Star Map conspiracy. Her theory is that these hoodlums actually direct you to average people’s homes who are merely dressed as celebrities, hmmmm? Once in Venice we were welcomed with a more familiar atmosphere of the homeless, street performers, sidewalk artists, and tourons. (See Reese’s collection of amalgamated words) We covered the entire strip, popping into the countless t-shirt shops and tattoo shops. Simon tickled my funny bone by pronouncing words much differently than I the Yank would. He ordered his Middle Eastern lunch as a falafel pita with the accent on the first syllable of falafel and short ‘a’s, and a short ‘i’ sound in pita. Soon after Simon’s exquisite artwork purchase and a brief it’s a small world chat about a mutual friend that he and the artist shared from overseas, and we were ever ready to return to Fog City.

Reese’s Top Five from L.A.

5. Simon is completely disgusted by watching someone vomit and day old wet swimming trunks that have been incubating in the sun in the back of the Jeep.

4. Gordy is obsessed with silicon breasts

3. To blend in while in L.A., always have a look on your face as if you’ve just smelled something really foul.

2. There are no grocery stores in L.A.

1. Motel 6 does not offer the following amenities: an iron, an in-room coffee maker, any sort of view, a friendly parking attendant, a pool, an iron, competent reservations staff, complimentary coffee/hot water after 9a.m., mini fridge, microwave, those cute little bottles of hair care and lotion, an iron, continental breakfast, laundry service, shuttle service, porters, a hot tub, room service, or an iron.
> Nothing says 'Yer not from 'round heer' like walking
> into the local T.G.I.Friday's in Newport News, Va and
> having the ENTIRE establishment turn and gawk. A few
> fine citizens were bold enough to actually reach out
> and grope my weave as I walked by. Aside from this
> incident of feeling like the main attraction at the
> county fair freak show, I'm having a great time in lil
> ol VA. My first night here my five year old brother
> and I took a long walk down a country road at dusk ,
> to chase fireflies and listen to the sound of crickets
> and frogs in the woods. My 10 year reunion was
> typical, everyone stuck to their former click, those
> who had plump potential did, and many who didn't did!
> A few alumni took in a bit too much moonshine and
> either revealed a little more than I needed to know
> about a decade of hardships or used the liquid courage
> to express desires that were kept hidden for darn good
> reason. I hung out with the other 2 single folk, my
> friend Wade who I ventured to Europe with when I was
> 14, and my friend Jimmy who I went to my 11th grade
> prom with. Wade is a lifeguard in Nags Head, NC which
> is where I'll be spending the next 3 days with my
> sibs, so he's going to hook us up with neat-o stuff to
> get into. I haven't adjusted to the time difference
> yet nor have I really tried, so I've been up until 3am
> and sleeping until close to noon, spending the early
> part of my day with my friends Tom & Jerry, Scooby-Doo
> and Dexter, PRAISE CARTOON NETWORK!! I took my little
> brother bowling last night, he calls it rollin', he
> hurls the ball down the alley and then assumes one of
> two positions to watch it hit the pins. He either
> lays flat on his stomach to get the eye line view, or
> he turns around and bends over and gets the upside
> down between the knee view.
> I hope all is well on the West side, until next time,
> keeps yer pigs in the pen, and remember Jesus Saves.
> qr