Monday, January 17, 2005

When Does the Fun Start?

So I've been trying to eat less meat. I can just hear my old roommate, Ben, calling me a pussy right now. To that, I'll hold up my hands and say, "Sure, I cave. You got me." I'm not saying I'm doing the vegetarian get down, because I am a weak, weak man. But I'm having some meat-free days.

This said, the other night I went to one of my favorite taquerias, Taco Loco, and ordered a vegetarian burrito. I actually kind of felt like it, you know? I was hungry, and I was looking forward to it. But it got all up in my head. The first few bites were like the first few bites of any burrito, when you're getting close to the meat...anticipatory. But then, it was that "something is seriously wrong here" feeling. Like, all right, here's the filler...where the fuck is the flavor? And you know I got refried beans, because they're the tastiest...especially if lard finds its way into the mix. About half way through, I hit lettuce. That's like mining for gold and finding plastic. Not quite satisfying. I don't really go for the lechuga in my burritos, anyhow

By the time I got toward the end, it was just work for my jaws. Like a straight dude sucking dick for money...the motion was there, but not the emotion. "Sustenance, oh boy." Like space jacked do you think the astronauts really were on Tang? "Oh, more Tang, kick ass." All the machos around me are eating carnitas and al pastor and I'm eating fucking lettuce like a goddamned overgrown Brier Rabbit. I could smell the fun they were having.

And the grease pocket. The best part of a burrito is when you get down to the nub, where all the pork juice has filtered it's way down into the last bit of rice and beans and tortilla. Pure chewing satisfaction. Flavor country. Let's just say, when the water from the lettuce gets down there, it's not quite the same feeling, okay?

I really feel for people who have a bitch of a time getting sober. I quit drinking when I was 17, and I've never relapsed. (Golf applause.) I'm not going to fall for that AA meeting "out-drunking each other" get down. I think of the Ice Cube line, "a bunch a niggas on the floor trying to out-dance each other." You know, for shame, right? At every meeting, for every dude who shit his pants in church trying to pray his way out of a week long vodka drunk, there's another guy who'll step up to the mic and brag about selling his dead mother's wedding ring for a pint of Royal Gate. "My rock bottom is lower than your rock bottom, na na na na nah nah." Yeah, you go, girl. I was 17--I got punched in the face a few times, peed my pants in my friend's closet on top of a few dozen Meister Brau empties. It probably wasn't that rough, but I knew when I was through, you know?

Point is, I'm glad I quit when I was drinking shitty beer as fast as I could. Because as soon as I forgot what being drunk felt like, really, I didn't miss the taste or the ritual or the sensual pleasures of booze itself. But it's way too late for me with the meat. I really don't want to get the comment on this from the well-meaning vegetarian that's going to tell me about the awesome grilled veggies at Pancho Villa. Because it's like, fuck you buddy, what the fuck can you tell me about deep fried pork? You gonna match up your pathetic zucchini next to some car-fucking-nitas in a Pepsi challenge? Didn't think so. You done lost the memory of the flavor, so you don't know how bad the craving for meat relapse is for a guy like me. Ask Sassy, she tried it...she knows. It's rough.

So yeah, I had my cruelty-free burrito. It was about as fun as eating fiberglass insulation if you're not a Conehead. And the setting made it worse...I've had some of the best greasy Mexican meat products possible at Taco Loco. It was like getting back with the best fuck of your life and she's only down for a hand job. Don't do me any favors, you know?

Whores and Publicans

Okay. Just got back from needle exchange. No, wiseass, I was not picking up fresh rigs. I do HIV testing there. And I try to be humble, and to use it to cultivate understanding and compassion, and to lessen my tendency toward judgment, and all of that good shit. When I was working at the marketing agency, it was a good way to maintain awareness of a world outside of climate-controlled buildings and fatuous yuppie bullshit. Which is actually somewhat off, as well, since the office was in the basement and the climate-control didn't work, so it was either hard-tittie cold or two rats fucking in a wool sock hot.

Anyhow, I'm trying. Like Jules, I'm trying to be the shepherd. I'm reading Daniel Goleman's "Emotional Intelligence," and I realize my critical nature has probably over-taxed prior relationships. But when a twentysomething hipster in tight emo pants with two spike belts and all the right cool band buttons wants the nurse to lance the abcess in the crook of his elbow which is swollen and pustulant and she can't because needle exchange is in a fucking parking garage, yo, and there's no running water for minor surgery... Well, is it my fault I want to slap him like a bitch? Is this what you dreamed of during silent reading in high school, bro, when you thought you were all that with your Jim Carroll books? An abcess of your own? Or the 20 year old hippie kid who's been sharing needles and wants advice on how to slam grain alcohol? Yeah, I know that's big in farm worker communities, but I'm not real sure on how to go about spiking JD, my brother.

One thing about standing in a needle exchange asking people if they want to get tested for HIV is, people volunteer information. "Just tested. Negative, thank God." That one is easy, you say "stay safe" and "take care" and it's very warm and fuzzy, in a lightweight kind of way. But you get "I already know. I'm positive." And even my boss, who's been in this way longer than I have, is befuddled as to what to say to that. "Yeah, well, try not to die, bro." Today a guy said, "I've been positive for 16 years. No medication." I mean, on the one hand, I'm happy for you--for real. You beat the odds. On the other hand, what do you want? A fucking brownie? Do you feel validated? Shit, smack can't be all that've been sharing needles under a bridge for the better part of your adult life, and you're still making it to needle exchange on the regular. Rock on, brother! Maybe that's what I should say: "Rock the fuck on, my nigga! Where can I get me some a that health food?"

My friend Kwadwo has been homeless before. He grew up in the ghetto in Detroit, people getting shot in his front yard--for real. All his friends dead or on the crack. And he's pulled himself up, Horatio Alger-wise, by the bootstraps. I've said to him things along the lines of, "Well, you never know how low you can get...I always think 'that could be me.'" You know, the armchair Buddhist's guide to putting your nose in the sick and cultivating compassion. The suburban middle class white dude's crash course in Mother Theresa. And do you know what he said? "Fuck that, man. I'll never be that fucked up. That's a fact."

This is someone, in the words of the timeless philosopher, David Lee Roth, whose "been to the edge. You know I stood and looked around. I lost a lot of friends there, baby--I got no time to mess around." His standpoint is, "compassion, fuck that. I got my own thing to take care of."

I don't know, you know? I don't know what these people have been through to take them where they are, and I know the magic incantation is "harm reduction," and I do know you can't shake sense into folks...but does that make it wrong to want to? If only sometimes? The Buddhist teaching is that everyone in this world has been your mother and father and brother and sister and son and daughter...we've been around that long. But if your daughter was banging dope in the TL, wouldn't you want to tell her the what's what? Of course, some guidance and parenting has probably fallen by the wayside by then. Jesus took the teaching to the whores and publicans (I, for one, would rather break bread with a streetwalker than a tax collector...), because he knew that was where the teaching was needed. It's like Vinny said the other day..."If I was doing the backstroke in the Bahamas, I might not have come to the Dharma."

"Suffer the children to come unto me, and forbid them not, for of such is the kingdom of God."--Jesus.

Suffer the children, 'cause God knows how they've suffered.

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

A Really Fucking Buddhist Song or Two

"Someone Something"

Everything moves so fast I should know it won't last
Take some stock what you are what you see what you got

It tells me true I want a connection to
Someone something
Edge of a knife been missing it all my life
Someone something

They get you where you live
Don't go back you can't go back again

Yes it's true just a connection to
Someone something
Been up all night feel like sucking an Armalite
Someone something

Everything moves so fast I should know it won't last

I want a settled life I want to be calm and polite
Someone something
I'll get this right when I get there now
Someone something


Isn't this song fucking great? Whew. Read it again, and then go listen to it twice. It's Buddhist because he realizes that everything passes and nothing is permanent, and it's oh so fucking human because he still believes he's going to "get there," that there's going to be a connection to someone or something that is somehow true; immutable; unchanging; and permanent. A higher level, something "real." He's sick of grasping, yet, even in seeing the pain it causes, he's grasping for a time when he won't have to grasp. Which really makes it more poignant than if he said "Hey, I figured it all out and I'm totally unattached and Buddha-like and enlightened and superhuman." I love the Buddha and all, but really, the drama of the story ends under the bodhi tree. (Which, when you think of the teachings, is ironic--we're all grasping for that Buddha-like state, in our, "I'm not grasping" kind of way...sort of like the guy in the song.)

This was written by Britt Daniel and iis on "Kill the Moonlight," which isn't my favorite Spoon album, but is still damned good. Oh, and for those who don't know, an Armalite is a rifle...they built the AR-10 which became the AR-15 which became the M-16 which became the M-4, the current military rifle. Made famous in the song "Armalite Rifle" by Gang of Four. (Oh, and also made famous killing people the world over, much like it's Soviet contemporary the AK-47, proving the whole "Everything moves so fast I should know it won't last" bit.)

Here's another great Buddhist treatise in the guise of rock music:

"The Lonely"

Since I found out that all of this
Is nothing more than emptiness
Filled with impermanence
A guided tour of your deepest fears
Designed to help your vision clear
We'll depart from here

And then the strangest feeling drifted over me
Oh we'll begin where you give in now baby dear
Are thou misunderstood

I'll drink all day and play by night
Upon my Casio electric piano
Till in the darkness I see lights
But not candelabra
But things from other stars
Just like Liberace
I will return to haunt you with peculiar piano riffs

So take it back, back to the start
Rip out your lily livered hearts
And hand them over in a vacuum-sealed jar
I say I will not take half a risk
I will not walk half deceased
I believe bravery exists

And the strangest feeling drifted over me
Are thou misunderstood

I'll drink all day and play by night
Upon my casio electric piano
Till in the darkness I see lights
But not candelabra
But things from other stars
I'll drink all day and play by night
Upon my casio electric piano
Till in the darkness I see lights
But not candelabra
But things from other stars
But things from other stars
But things from other stars

--British Sea Power

Thursday, January 06, 2005

Make Sex

Okay, I've come up with a couple new pick up lines that are sure to get me LAAAID in the New Year. Let me try them out on you, dear supple young girl with her hand in her panties. I mean, "Dear Reader."

Line .1: "Do you know who I am?"

"No, why should I know who you are? Who the fuck are you?"

"I'm the second coming of Christ. And if you play you're cards right, you can witness the third coming a little later tonight."

Line .2 "Aren't you going to ask me where I'm going tonight?"

"Okay, where are you going tonight?"


"Japan, really?"


Smooth, huh? Please, ladies, please--form an orderly line to the left of the door. You'll all be serviced in due time. Oh, and another thing: flagrante delicto will no longer be known as fucking, doing it, making it, getting it on, boning, slappin' hams, getting nailed, screwing, humping, what have you. I'm changing it to the charmingly ESL "making sex." As in, "baby, do you want to make sex with me

Sunday, January 02, 2005


I had this revelation about how great my friend Lina is, and here is the email where I tell her. Below is an email I sent to her, detailing said revelation, followed by an email she sent me, that I'm ostensibly replying to in my manic freak-out way.

This is her site:

Lina Fucking Rules

So Lina, I was just sitting around, unbathed, being a total turd, laid off and unlaid and unloved and depressed, and I had this revelation that you fucking rule and you're going to be my best friend from now on. Which is kind of creepy and weird and stalky sounding, but you can understand weird shit, I think. (I am so fucking eloquent sometimes, I make myself cry.)

No, it's not as bad as all that...I'm just sitting in my dirty ass room with my sleeping cat in my dirty ass house, listening to Les Savy Fav ("We've been sleeping with our shoes on for much too long"), waiting to get motivated, and I realized I needed to write you back. And then I checked out your site, and that Valentine with the blow-up doll with the candy heart that says "not that hole" is just so fucking visionary...I'm feeling kind of manic now. I remember when I was a creative guy and didn't spend all my time moping in circles until I wore out the linoleum.

So yeah, I just have to blow smoke up your ass for being incredibly cool and inspiring. You know, you went from being that cool homeless chick to being that cool but unfortunate homeless junkie chick, to ruling the goddamned cafeteria at Google, for chrissakes. Like, I bet guys are buying you lime jello with Cool Whip every fucking day.

And a smore maker. That's what I fucking mean, Lina. You're the type of girl who asks someone to come over and hang out, and you're like, "Yeah, hey, why don't we make smores. I've got a smore maker." I mean, what the fuck? That's really off the charts, you know?

So, I don't know where you are on this dramatic break-up thing, but I say that guy is a retard and fuck him anyway. I mean, I could probably come up with some intelligent, less Tiger Beat, smacking gum in the girls room sounding advice, but that's really the base of it, you know? It's like, sometimes you have these sleeper friends that you don't really realize are so fucking rad and then you do, and you feel lucky.

It's Sunday and almost 4 PM, but if you want to hang out any time, call me up--I don't think I have your number anymore. 350-****.

Keep ruling,


p.s. I'm going to cut and paste this into my stupid blog that no one reads, because I'm feeling sort of "go tell it on the mountain" about Lina's radness. People who randomly toss of Ben Franklin quotes are too rock and roll for words.

p.p.s. what's with all the random search engine "donkey porn" and "free poker" comments on your journal? Is that what happens when people start posting comments?

Hi Scott,
I'm not on Myspace, and I rarely sign on to
Friendster except lately where I signed on about
25 times in the last week. The game is REALLY at because they give you fucked up
personality tests and then tell you how compatible
you are with your friends and potential sex

I linked to your webpage on MY webpage which is
at Having a webpage is fun
because weird guys post every two days offering
their "unrequited love."

I got a job at Google and commute to Mountain
View every day which kind of sucks but they have
a kick-ass cafeteria with better food than you can
imagine. So it's all good. I basically copy edit ads
and tell people to follow rules. It's kind of fun.

How was Xmas? I'd imagine that having a child
makes it worthwhile. I got a smore maker which is
kind of like a fondue kit but it's for making smores.
I love smores, and using sterno is pretty great too.

Which needle exchange are you working at? I
used to work at the one on Haight Street.

Honestly I don't have anything interesting to say.
I'm in the middle of a drawn out dramatic break up
and it is sucking the life out of me and making me
want to jump off of a cliff. Since I have decided that
you are the smartest man that I know, do you have
any sage advice for me?

Rock on with your bad self,

Saturday, January 01, 2005

Happy New Year, Asshole

I wasn't planning on going out New Year's Eve. Years of working in clubs (and years of sobriety) have made me dread International Amateur Night like the proverbial plague of puking nincompoop lightweights in stupid hats. Your life is no different that it was ten seconds ago, asshole--you've just picked an arbitrary date for self-renewal, which you will commemorate by becoming even more intoxicated and tool-like than you've been in 12 months! Party on, Garth.

My plan was to go to meditation at Urban Dharma, hang with Heather, go to sleep, wake up and go to the races in Livermore. Well, I have a hellacious cough, so I slept through meditation in order to get better. Least, that's how I explained my laziness to myself. Not so good in terms of "setting one's intention," but them's the breaks. Heather and I decided to go out, since it's been raining for a week and the possibility of racing looked slim. (Indeed, they were cancelled.) We were supposed to go to see Old Grandad at Sadie's Flying Elephant, which would have been rocking, but as we pulled up, her ex was standing in front, so she wasn't down.

Funny side note: Her ex is named Chris but everyone calls him Pink. My Master's thesis, written years before I met her, was a series of interconnected short stories called "Pink Stories," about a guy named Chris whom everyone called Pink. Weird.

So we went to her friend's party, more like a fancy dress soiree, in an awesome loft above the Slo Club. I was going to wear one of my superpimp Bangkok suits, but it was raining, so my daily get-up of Dickies and a hoodie was woefully underdressed. Heather looked fantabulous in a sequined butterfly fandango and pinstriped pants, with something saucy underneath. (Wouldn't you like to know...) We joined her friends in a little upstairs nook and drank soda whilst they passed around the cocaine. Like, woo! Par-tay! Whatever. As Aleister Crowley said: "Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law." Sassy and Sedusa, or "The Mashed Pototoes" as Heather calls them, wanted me to escort them to The Teenage Harlets and Thee Merry Widows at Butter, but a guy can only do so many things... Also, Wifey was supposed to play at my friend Lars Lava's warehouse, but they cancelled. So, instead, I was doing glamorous things, like watching grown adults ring in the New Year by pretending cocaine was still glamorous.

Oh, and the disco music. Yikes. What is it about New Year's that makes rational human beings tell themselves that disco is not only acceptable in the barest sort of "I won't pull it off the turntable and smash it" kind of way, but "fun." I suppose it goes with coke like your chocolate goes with my peanut buttter. A Spoon song came on, inexplicably, and I nearly came in my boxers.

So we left at 12:40, on the way to Lars's house. Despite my cantankerous blogging, it really wasn't so bad. Heather's friends were cool and pretty and I had a swell conversation with her friend's husband, Adam, about The Flaming Lips, aging, the Swans, his bitterness toward his chess master father, and Scrabble.

I was peeing out my festive holiday ginger ale (you think I don't know how to rage, fucker?) upside a telephone pole when I heard Heather say "Fuck!" She was standing next to my truck, so I knew what was passenger window. I used a map to scoop the glass fragments off the seat, forming a glistening pile of what my buddy Ben and I used to call "ghetto snow" on the asphalt. I'm not into that whole "blame the victim" thing, but I've lived in this city for 14 years, and I should've known not to leave CDs visible. Too used to living in the Richmond, where crackheads don't windowshop all night. And I wasn't feeling too victimized. Heather was really impressed that I was so mellow about it. So even though I missed meditation, I still heard Vinny's voice talking about how "everything's a lesson." Not too profound until you put it into practice. Practice isn't a cushion in a room full of people with their eyes closed, it's when someone's smashed your window and stolen 15 CDs, including your 2 CD Lefty Frizzell retrospective. Actually, they only got the case and one CD. The other was still in the deck, so I still had some Lefty to drive home to.

What can you do, you know? Say, "hey, better go tape this window up, it's raining" or go home, load up the Mossberg and go basehead hunting up and down Portrero. I went to Heather's, did a pretty impressive cardboard/trashbag/tape job, took my shoes off, and had a cup of coffee. And...wouldn't you like to know?

Candyland Debacle

I wouldn't necessarily describe myself as "competitive," but I have to admit I was feeling it yesterday at the Blue Danube, when Miss Dolly Rose stomped me four times in a row at Candyland. I was even feeling a little salty when I pulled ahead in the last game, like, "Looka that--all the way to the Lollipop Forest! Now whatchu gonna do?" Calm, cool, collected, and nearly four, D. quietly regained the lead and kept it all the way to the candy castle, that's what. Of course, I had to teach her to shake my hand and say "good game."

Losers are always concerned about sportsmanlike conduct.