the obvious, eh moonlight lady? You can try to prevent it,
forget about it, derail it....but we are all indeed hurtling
towards the obvious. Our paths are set, and no amount of
mind shrinkage, drug drinking or soul fucking is gonna change
it. I'm hurtling towards luminous, murderous mediocrity.
And you? Here's derailing it: jump off a bridge, or an eight-story
parking ramp for that matter. Take charge.
This year the obvious came and stole lots of people I knew
and loved. Before they left, they seemed just one of us,
the usual mortal slime. But once they were plucked from
the now, they began to take on this ghastly destined-to-die...they
were NOT like us. They were too beautiful, too kind, too
sensitive. Their hearts literally too big, too easily wounded.
I depend upon people to come in and fuck my shit up. Drugs
are too predictable. People aren't. The theologian Martin
Buber said, "All real living is meeting." I couldn't
agree more. I meet a LOT of people. To undermine the scourge
of the obvious, I throw myself into the strangest circumstances,
where I feast on the humans I meet. Sometimes I even love
them, but I try not to. TOO GODDAMN DANGEROUS. But the sneaky
bastards can get under your skin!!
I am an anthropologist by schooling and by disposition.
We are an intentionally dispossessed lot, always observing
communities, families, cultures, and yearning to belong.
But we don't allow ourselves to fit in, because that undermines
our dispassionate observational skills, our compulsive ideology
But freedom's just another word for nothing left to lose.
Down at the Magic Garden, I managed to get entangled in
spite of myself. Who knew that in the bowels of a chinatown
in the goldrush newWest was a little community where I inexplicably
belonged? For four years now I've been snaking around there,
paying homage to nicotine and Jim Beam. Lots of people pass
through the joint, some stay forever. But man it's quite
a spoonful who started out year 2000 with us and just ain't
around no more.
In the spring, L.A. Kid and his Girl did a nouveau Romeo
and Juliet a la stupid fucking horse. Same pony ride left
a great bass player and a beautiful punk rock girl cold
on the floor. Michael and Alexa were killed in the fall
by their own beautiful hearts. And last month Christian,
our beloved bartender and everyone's best friend, died choking
on those country-fried songs he loved, worshipped and was....with
his boots on.
If only we could have this year's Christmas bash with the
ghost of Christmas past!
But we're too busy, hurtling towards the obvious.
Here in front of me, standing on the corner, is the ghost
of Christmas now. A Mexican in tight jeans, gorgeous alligator
boots, a long black mane and wrap-around sunglasses. Chewing
gum cockily as he walks up Burnside into the sunset. Chewing
gum and strutting in the face of certain ruin. Draped in
vanity and soul, walking upright in spite of the weight
of the world, which is something like 32 feet per second
per second, which is really very, very heavy when you think
about it. He's hurtling towards the obvious, and doesn't
even seem to care! The BALLS.
Here's to you, ballsy pimp-dressin' dude. In the new year
I wanna follow you into the sunset. You've got it down.
I'll not laugh in the face of death necessarily, but clad
myself in gorgeous armour, the trappings of life. Every
moment is so precious that it can be overwhelming. So I'll
try not to think on it, but celebrate in minutiae: codes
of dress, a swagger and a cowboy hat. Four-inch heels to
the grocery store. Why the hell not?
When people die, they haunt the familiar, and occupy huge
psychic spaces with their ghosts. It makes the world around
you look a little less real.
But I'll tell you what's real: pink snakeskin high-heeled
sandals that make matching little pink puffy scars in your
feet. Somebody bought me some in the dead of winter. He's
inscrutable. They aren't. They are real.
Here's to 2001 and gum-chewing (getting hitched, having
babies) in the face of doom. And, if I could ask for one
thing, let the black angel's death song play on away from
my little life a while. I promise I'll be good.