Journal Entries (October 20th-26th, 2012).

Saturday, October 20th–I had another one of those dreams where I was threatened by some ethnic baddies. I forget the details, though. Then I was at some open pavilion on a college campus, in the wee hours of the morning. I had Belle with me and my long-deceased cat, Poose, as well as my camera, tripod, and possibly some other camera equipment.

The pavilion sat on a rise, surrounded by city streets on at least three sides. Poose went missing. Some ethnic baddies threatened my animals. Some pompous, pushy, rude young photographer also took offense that I was hanging out at this pavilion. He planned to shoot there, and I think he threatened me as well.

The young photographer left behind his camera bag, equipment, and props (including boxes for the models to pose upon and pieces of cloth with which the boxes were to be draped). He went off somewhere, confidently assuming he’d scared me off and that I’d not damage or steal his equipment. But I wasn’t going to leave until I found Poose. (Belle was being pretty quiet, sitting down, with her leash on.) It eventually got to be around 4 or 5am, and the first of the morning traffic began to stir in the streets surrounding the pavilion, but I wasn’t going to leave until I found Poose.

………………………………

I woke at 10:59am. Within slightly over thirty minutes I was overcome with a desire to cry–why, I have no idea.

During my first walk with Belle, I was approached by some Japanese kid who’d just moved in. He seemed scared of Belle, and backed away from her so far he almost fell off the edge of the hill–a slope paved with level after level of rock, going down about twelve feet. At any rate, he was having problems with an ant infestation and asked me about it. I took longer to reply than was needed, and I wasn’t entirely sure he understood everything I had to say.

When I took Belle out a second time, I ran into that neighbor lady with the two little dogs, and we talked a bit.

She is regularly given “pee pads” by a neighbor. They are used on an old man I see around now and then. He’s in a wheelchair, looks to be dying by degrees, and is often left outside in front of his apartment in his wheelchair so he can smoke. When he sees me and Belle he waves and calls out greetings.

Anyway, the family gets more pee pads than the old man can use, and they pass the extras on to this woman with the dogs. And she had more than she can use. So she passed her surplus on to me. We’ll see if they work better than newspapers spread atop plastic trash bags.

But while I was talking with her, one of her upstairs neighbors, a young man, was in the process of moving out. He asked her for a Phillips-head screw-driver and a pair of pliers. She said she had the former but not the latter, and went inside to get it and the pee-pads.

The guy went upstairs with the screw-driver, found it didn’t work, and it turned out he wanted a regular screw-driver, but had gotten the name wrong. Then he asked me if I had a regular screw-driver, and I said I thought I did, along with a “Leatherman” multi-purpose tool that had some pliers on it.

He followed me to my building. He asked what kind of dog Belle was, wondering if she was a Cocker Spaniel. I explained that she was a Basset Hound, and he said he’d had a Cocker Spaniel when he was a kid.

I said I’d go into my apartment and look, and eventually found both tools. And though he was standing outside the building, the guy asked which apartment was mine, and I said it was the one with the two index cards next to the door. He seemed a bit of a dunce.

Loaning this guy tools was a mistake, and I should’ve known better. I remained in a state of panic for quite awhile, dreading the guy showing up and knocking on my door or ringing the door-bell. I also kept my pants on, which was most uncomfortable. As it was, the guy never showed up.

I started tutorials for Abobe Illustrator CS6, and found that frustrating as well, since the narrator had a smug, stuck-up voice that annoyed me, and one of the videos ran over four minutes long. Since I had to stop every four to six words to copy down what he was saying, it took an eternity to get through the video.

Finally, after I’d been waiting about six goddamn hours, that guy showed up at my door with my tools.

He had an oddity about him I’ve noticed in a few other people: his fingernails seemed incorrectly-placed. Whereas most people have fingernails that extend to the tips of their fingers, with this guy, there was about one-fourth to one-half of an inch of flesh between the tip-ward edge of the nails and the fingertips. The nails looked to be sunken into the flesh of the fingers, and the tip-ward edges were rough, jagged, and torn, and basically useless for the limited purposes fingernails have.

I watched episodes Five, Six, Seven, and Eight of “Civilisation,” and retired around 3am or so.

Sunday, October 21st–I had a dream where I turned a corner and suddenly saw Kirkley dorm before me. “How is this possible? They tore Kirkley down,” I asked myself. Then I wandered around exploring, but I forget what happened next.

…………………

I woke initially around 10:20am, but that was too early, so I just pissed and went back to bed. Then I was finally awakened at 1:45pm by a persistent hammering, which I think was coming from the white trash downstairs–probably putting the finishing touches on their meth lab.

I spent most of the day puttering around. I did some tutorials and washed clothes, but I decided to give “Civilisation” a night off. I was too stressed out at the proposition of my appointment tomorrow.

At one point I walked Belle around the block. At the exact spot on Jollyville Road where I was assaulted a couple months ago, where I spied the car thief about a week ago, at the light pole on the bridge, I spotted something on the pole out of the corner of my eye, doubled back to see it closer, and saw one of those street art-style black and white stickers on the pole, close to the ground. I couldn’t make out the writing, but the picture was of H. P. Lovecraft, the reclusive horror writer to whom James is so fond of comparing me.

Monday, October 22nd–Belle woke me up today–her birthday–thirty minutes before my alarm. I walked her, then prepared a birthday breakfast of chicken white meat with buttered carrot medallions.

I spent a long time stressing over my DARS appointment, and developed a full-on panic attack.

I had the usual two nasty bus rides to North Austin.

I went to a convenience store and bought a bottle of orange juice and a bear claw with my Food Stamp money. I consumed them inside the store, staring out at the run-down, tacky neighborhood.

I went over to the DARS office, took over two uncomfortable chairs, and twisted my body around so I’d not have to see or have any contact with the other people in the waiting room, and went over my papers for thirty-five minutes.

I noticed a case worker moving from room to room, dragging his right leg behind him, his right hand and forearm, curled up like a Tyrannosaurus Rex’s.

After all of the other patients left the waiting room, I noticed two similar prints of paintings on the wall opposite me. Both featured two clumps of trees. Those on the left side of the pictures were in summer foliage, while those to the right of the pictures had autumnal foliage. The picture to the left had the word “demain” in faint script across it, while the other was labeled “aujourd’hui.” Naturally, I tried to over-analyze this, wondering what the “tomorrow” and “today” message meant, and if the person who decorated the room thought there’d actually be a lot of low-income patients coming through there who knew how to read French.

Finally, my Case Worker came in the front door, said she’d just be ten minutes (it was closer to twenty), and then called me into the back.

She started with the usual pleasantries and asked how I was, and I confessed I was in very bad shape. Talking 90 miles-per-hour the whole time, I explained how stressed I’ve been for weeks on end, arguing politics with friends, having bad dreams about being persecuted. I also told her what medications I was on and how that one mood medication had been such a huge disaster, and that I was terrified about DARS and what awful job-related things it might force me to do.

I told her about that vocational adjustment training protocol I read online and how traumatic it sounded to me. At first she said I must’ve been reading some other document from some other organization, but then she pulled the exact thing up. Then she told me it wasn’t as unpleasant as it sounded, and that I wouldn’t necessarily have to go through it.

She read me portions of that psychiatrist’s findings, which sounded rather vague and superficial, though she did say I would benefit from having a medical doctor treating my Hashimoto’s Disease and a psycho-therapist treating my psychological problems. Apparently the therapist wrote that I would benefit from being educated in the connection between medical problems and mental health, an observation I found condescending in the extreme.

I think overall I shocked her. She looked rattled and even a bit frightened by how stressed-out I was.

She was even worried that I might have such a major problem with social anxiety that I might not be able to work any time soon, and that DARS might have to drop me….

I said one of my major goals is relocating out of Texas, but when I look at jobs out of state I don’t see any that seem as if they’d pay to move me. She said her experience had always been that when she wanted to move for a job she always had to pay for it herself.

So the game plan is this: 1) She would call that therapist I met with a few weeks ago and arrange five cognitive therapy sessions for me. 2) I am to call Lone Star Circle of Care and try to get on their schedule for fifteen sessions. (I later found out that fucking place is way the fuck down in South Austin–very much out of my way.) 3) I am to go to a website called Onet and look at possible job descriptions that interest me. 4) She might refer me to a place with the silly name of “Choices” for a vocational evaluation.

I practically ran to the bus stop, but had to wait at least twenty minutes of more for the bus. There was a similar wait for the last bus at the North Lamar Transit Center.

I paced up and down. A small young black woman with short hair walked alongside me for a few seconds, and gave me an unsettling Grace Jones glare.

On the last bus I was sitting in the back, facing a huge, round young black man. He stared at me with expressionless eyes, and I realized this fit perfectly the description Ian Fleming gave of Mr. Big (also big, round, fat, and black) staring at James Bond in “Live And Let Die,” which I read recently.

When the forward-facing seat next to him freed up, he scrambled to his feet and took it. Presently, he began fishing something out of a plastic bag, and bringing it to his mouth. I thought at first he was secretly nibbling on a piece of beef jerky, but then again, he didn’t strike me as someone who was particularly worried about getting in trouble for violating the bus’s “No Food and Drink” policy, and so, would not be keeping his eating a secret.

It was only when I noticed him stealing looks over his shoulder at me and possibly other people, that I realized he was fixing up some blunts. I live such a sheltered life, this was the first time I’d ever seen such a thing done. Thereafter, I made a point of looking away at other things in the near and far distance, so as to not get him paranoid or violent.

I de-boarded in my neighborhood, went to McDonald’s, got myself some $1 fries, and two $1 hamburgers (just meat and buns), as an apology treat for Belle, since I really hated being away for any part of her birthday. I ate the fries on the way to a convenience store, where I bought a big Slurpee.

I got home, walked Belle, then cut up and fed her the birthday burgers. I cleaned up the newspapers upon which she’d relieved herself in my absence. I put down more papers (mostly Capital Metro city transit maps), and then spread some of those pee pads atop the maps.

I took a much-needed shower–it was a hot day and my clothes had that fecal stench that I always get when I ride the bus into poor parts of town. Afterwards, Belle sprawled all over the bathroom floor, letting out loud farts that sounded like the creaking door at the beginning of the old “Inner Sanctum” radio show. When I left the bathroom I saw Belle had plopped diarrhea on and off the pee pads. I cleaned them up, then, while walking into the living room with fresh socks on, I stepped onto a pee pad that held, bowl-like, a full load of pee.

I watched the last Presidential debate, then listened to it again right afterwards. I had a brief communication with James, telling him about my appointment. He re-iterated his belief that I need to get a full, formal diagnosis for my mental problems from a well-trained professional, but as usual, he offered no suggestion as to who would pay for it.

I was too tired for a tutorial or Kenneth Clark, so I read a bit in Genet and went to bed.

Tuesday, October 23rd–I had numerous dreams, but all I remember was me trying to avoid a room full of chattering people by hiding in a small dark room next to it–possibly a bathroom.

Not much happened today. Belle received a nice birthday card from “Momma C,” with $10 to go towards the purchase of treats. I did tutorials which seemed to take forever, then watched “They Live By Night.”

Wednesday, October 24th–I apparently had a repeat of some dreams where I found and was carrying around some cryptic pieces of paper. I was back at our old place in Conroe Texas, making the rounds of the property. Lots of trashy people in trashy cars had driven onto and parked on our property. One car looked abandoned, parked atop a small pile of earth with its doors, hood, and trunk left open.

Where did all these disgusting people go? Were they my grandfather’s beer joint friends?

Later I was with him, sitting in a car at night. I noticed eerie lights coming from the back part of our property, the part that I was always terrified to go to after dark.

(From childhood and on into adulthood I thought, with some justification, actually, that there were bad guys or monsters or something back in that thicket that meant me no good. Indeed, even though I’m now middle-aged, I would be afraid to go back to that place after dark, even if I had soldiers or a SWAT team with me, spot-lights shining all over every inch of the place, and high-powered weapons in both of my hands. That’s how intense and persistent my fear of that thicket has remained.

Actually, I should explain one of the main reasons why I was scared of that thicket. We moved out to that property when I was ten. I lived there full-time until I was eighteen, and off and on until I was twenty-five.

When we first lived out there, my father was a band director at an inner-city high school in Houston. One day, the school had its annual race riot. My father locked his students in the band hall and told my mom that she and I weren’t to come down to the football game that night to watch the half-time show, as we usually did. In fact, the band got escorted on and off the field that night by Houston Police.

So my mother and I were out there in the country in the little trailer house where we lived prior to building our house. We had already built a large storage building on the back of the place, and just outside of it was a mercury vapor light on a pole. There was no other light on the property at that time.

In the dark of night, my mother and I clearly heard someone beating on the walls and door of the storage house and calling out.

Naturally, it scared us shitless. Even though we had guns, my mother wasn’t about to go out there and investigate.

Instead, my mother telephoned our next-door neighbor, Mr. H___, who was an ex-FBI agent, and he came over with his rifle and looked around. Presently he came up to our house and said he didn’t see anyone, but found plenty of footprints.

A few weeks later, on a Sunday morning, my mother was doing dishes in the kitchen when she saw a car pull up on the road out front. The driver fired a few shots point blank at the house, and sped off.

These incidents created in my mind a firm sense that we were in danger on that property. After I went off to college and my parents moved away, my grandfather stayed on the place, and when I stayed with him I would often venture out late at night to the main store house, to look over the possessions I had stored there. I always took a flashlight and a gun. I kept the two doors of the building wide open, the lights on, and a radio blaring loudly to warn off potential intruders, but I was scared every minute I was out there, absolutely sure I’d look up and see a malign face poking around the door frame.

Many years later, I reconnected with my oldest friend, the next-door neighbor whose father was Mr. H___. I told him about my fears about the thicket and the intruders, and he filled in the rest of the story. It seems I was the last person to learn the truth.

Mr. H___ was in charge of security for Southwestern Bell, and in the early-to-mid-Seventies was investigating some crook for mail fraud, wire tapping, and a variety of other crimes. The crook got Mr. H___’s name, and found out he lived in the first house on the left on Old Highway 105, just north FM 2854 in Conroe, and he sent out some bad guys to, if not kill him, then at least to scare his family.

Mr. H___ did in fact live in the first house to the left up until late 1973–at which point my family moved onto the property between Mr. H___’s house and the corner. The hit men had the right address–but the wrong house. Mr. H___ soon busted the crook and sent him off to prison. {As I recall, Mr. H___ and some other men were hiding in mail sacks right before they made the bust.} In the trial the crook revealed the harassment campaign, and Mr. H___ told my parents about it soon afterwards. But no one bothered to tell me.)

…………………….

In my next dream I was back at SHSU in a dorm room in Kirkley, trying to deal with having a room-mate. I wandered out into the hallway and started crunching numbers, and realized my family hadn’t given me enough money to get on the Meal Plan. How would I eat that semester? Then I went back into my room.

In another dream I was at a lake in the country, possibly in the Adirondacks. My father was a guide or something by the name of “Tom Vanderbilt.” I found mentions of him in the indices of books and in newspapers. When I looked up the reference I learned that my father’s bosses were sabotaging him, screwing him over financially, and systematically destroying his boats and canoes in order to get him out of their way.

……………………

I got up in mid- to late-afternoon, went over to Petsmart, and after an extensive search for dog treats that weren’t from fucking China, I settled on a foot-long treat made of woven rawhide, along with two small Halloween-themed treats. Then I went to the dollar store and got a few things for myself. There was a notice on the front door saying they had discontinued selling balloons for the time being “due to the national helium shortage.”

(I had no idea such a thing was going on. And who the hell is using all of our helium? I joked to the clerk–another case of trying to talk down on a level that the hoi polloi might understand–that probably when everything goes to shit all the leaders of the world will just fly off in big balloons.)

On the way home I saw two more of those Lovecraft stickers.

Later in the evening, I took Belle on another walk, and met and got into a fairly lengthy conversation with an older lady, Frances, and a younger woman, whose name I’ve forgotten. It was very late before I got to my tutorials, and I had to quit halfway through because I was getting tired and the instructor just seemed to be babbling gibberish to me.

Later on, I watched “Side Street” with Farley Granger, and read a bit in “Breakfast With Scot,” before retiring after 9am.

Thursday, October 25th–I dreamt I returned to the backward, benighted region that is East Texas. I was in the company of three to five other people, including my “pseudo-parents.” By this I mean there were two people who in the dream were supposed to be my parents, but looked nothing like the ones I had in real life. Paradoxically, these pseudo-parents weren’t actually seen in the dream–they were just vague, amorphous figures glimpsed out of my peripheral vision. There presence was merely felt.

Anyway, we were going to visit country singer George Jones, who was supposedly a friend of my parents. We arrived at his farm, and spent some time inside a dark, old house, but I don’t recall ever actually seeing or meeting Jones.

The main thing I remember about the farm was that all of the female animals there were abnormally fertile, with a huge number of offspring, so there were constant comments about how the male animals on that farm were having lots of sex. We even made a comment as we were driving away, about one male animal (of what kind?), who was sitting in the open window of a barn by the front gate. We said the poor fellow looked exhausted from his duties.

We turned left out of the gate and onto a country road, but just as we did so, some white trash guy on a bicycle turned onto the road from a minor road opposite from the Jones Farm, and cut right in front of our car. I was furious, and commented, “How DARE that white trash filth cut in front of our car?!” I was in the front seat (though I doubt I was driving–I don’t drive in real life, and I really don’t have dreams about driving), and someone in the back hissed quietly, “I think he heard you!” “Well, good, I hope he did! He has no business getting in our way. Who does he think he is?”

(The cyclist was probably in his thirties, with long, stringy, dirty blonde hair, dirty, disheveled clothes, and the hard, ugly, angry features that indicated poor breeding, a poor diet, incarceration, substance abuse, and an inordinate amount of time spent outdoors.)

We drove on about one or two miles, stopping at a building where George Jones was doing a concert in an hour or so. It was a low, one-story building with white shingled siding, measuring maybe 125 feet long and 50 feet deep. It served as a community center, music venue, and store.

The stage was set up, oddly enough, opposite the entrance door along the long side rather than at the end, and much of the room was filled with folding metal chairs. We lined up to buy tickets in front of the stage, and I noticed along the walls white folding cafeteria tables, holding a variety of objects, and fruit crates, which were jammed with dusty, worn books which were for sale.

I noticed back and to my left out of my peripheral vision, the white trash cyclist, who was carrying a tire tool and was in the company of one friend. I knew immediately he wanted to hurt me. I made no attempt to alert my party as to my danger. (In real life, my parents would’ve almost certainly sided with the cyclist over me, and scolded me for my hatred of and snooty contempt for white trash. I was always the snob of the family.)

My pride was at stake here, but I also realized that I was scared of this guy. It enraged me to be scared of someone I considered to be so very much my inferior. I noticed what looked to be an over-sized clarinet on the table to my right. I thought if I had to fight this guy I could possibly use the clarinet as a weapon.

I forget exactly what he said to start our talk, but I wasn’t sure that he actually did hear me call him white trash, though clearly he picked up on my contempt for him and wanted to humiliate me. No, apparently the problem was that he resented strangers in his neck of the woods. I didn’t actually apologize, but I sounded more apologetic than I’d planned.

I explained that my parents were friends of “Mister Jones” (I thought adding the title would sound respectful, even though I despised and felt contempt for all the people in his locality–God, how I hated having to humble myself before this filth!), and I said we had gone by his farm to visit him, and now had decided to stay for the concert.

I don’t know what else was said, but the tension was high. I expected the guy to strike out at me at any second (he and his friend had already taken their seats in the front row while I remained standing), and he was definitely making me squirm. It took an incredible effort on my part not to reveal my anger or contempt, and I was worried I was showing too much fear and cowardice. I was filled with rage that anyone so far beneath me was daring to put me in this position. It was intolerable!

Finally, in a sarcastic tone of voice that left a great deal implied, he set down terms by which we would thereafter get along. He wanted to seal it with a handshake. I don’t even like having physical contact with clean people, and this guy was filthy in every sense of the word.

But I reluctantly took his hand. He twisted my wrist so that the back of my hand faced upwards, and he leaned in, hocked deep within his throat, and spat out a prodigious amount of yellow-brown spit all over the back of my hand, which then spilled over the sides and down my fingers. This, he indicated, was a local custom for sealing pacts. How I hid my revulsion I cannot imagine.

Finally I disentangled my hand from his and let the spit drip to the floor. I gave a weak smile and made a comment that he must’ve had fried eggs for breakfast. His fake smile disappeared, and I could tell I insulted him. I gestured to his friend, who was sitting to his left, and indicated that I meant the consistency of his spit indicated he’d probably recently eaten greasy eggs. The friend muttered this into the guy’s ear and he seemed to understand.

I then looked around for something upon which to wipe my hand, and the guy seemed insulted again, but I gave some lame explanation that I needed to have dry hands for something I wanted to do. I wiped my hands, then set about exploring the crates of books along the walls, and the guy seemed pacified.

But I slowly made my way around the walls and out the door, with the intention of going back to the place where my party was staying, and returning during the concert with guns. I also needed to thoroughly cleanse my hands from such a disgusting profanation. A mere washing with soap and water wasn’t going to be enough. I’d need rubbing alcohol, possibly bleach, holy water, and I don’t know what all else. And I’d have to wash in a ritualistic pattern, in combinations of three and six, washing myself over and over again until I was reasonably satisfied the filth was expunged from my flesh.

And as for the killing? I would either stride into the music hall in full view of everyone, go up to the front row, and shoot the two white trash men in their stomachs or faces, or would sneak in along the walls, go up to the front row, and shoot them at a point when the music was loud and the crowd was too distracted by George Jones and his band to notice what I was doing. Either way, this series of insults would be avenged.

………………….

I got up in the late afternoon/early evening and did the usual. A mere nine tutorials seemed to take over two hours. It was exhausting.
In the wee hours of the morning, Belle vomited some clear liquid, then an hour later vomited a great deal of food.

I watched episodes 9 and 10 of “Civilsation,” read in Genet, and retired close to 10am.

Friday, October 26th–I awoke at 7:26am. I took Belle out. She had diarrhea trouble tonight.

I got an IM from my friend M___, with news about his former friend MM.

I’m pretty sure I discussed MM in “Withholding.” He used to be M___’s main running buddy. He’s the same age as me, but always seemed older, disdainful, and contemptuous, which always rubbed me the wrong way.

We went to SHSU together. He was a film student, and an insufferable, pretentious snob. He also saw himself as God’s gift to women.

In those days I was a conservative Republican and he was a liberal Democrat, but somewhere over the passing decades we switched sides.

He was a low-talker, in a way that forced people to lean in towards him. He also had a sharp, unpleasant, medicinal odor that accompanied him at all times. I never quite narrowed down what it was, but the closest I could come to was a very strong acne medication.

By some snafu of the consistently fucked-up SHSU Housing Office, MM got paired as my room-mate in the Fall of 1984. I ran him off in two weeks by chain-smoking cigars, and keeping the phone unplugged. (He was trying to start a student organization, and his contacts had a nasty habit of calling early in the morning and waking me up.)

But MM persisted and managed to escape Texas, move out to Hollywood, and get a little success in the film business. At some point in the 1990s, he had job interviews in the same week with Dick Clark Productions and Joss Wheedon’s Mutant Enemy Productions (which was then making “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and “Angel”). Both outfits offered him jobs and he turned both down. Dick Clark himself followed MM out into the parking lot and said to MM, “You’re a very talented young man, and I do wish you’d change your mind.”

But MM’s mind was made up, or rather, it had been made up for him. He had met some loser chick who convinced him that show business wasn’t for him, and that they’d both be better off back home in Texas, doing “normal jobs.” (And you wonder why I’m so down on marriage?!)

So MM left Hollywood, moved to Colorado for a time, married this bitch, divorced her, then wound up back in the Houston area, driving a truck for the HEB grocery chain.

I saw MM around 2003 or 2004, when he and M__ came up to Austin for a concert. MM had lost none of his condescending manner nor his ability to annoy me. He also looked terrible. He had the worst sort of male balding I think I’d ever seen, or maybe it’s just that he had a really ugly skull.

MM injured himself on the job somehow, and spent months recuperating at home, passing the time in an Adam and the Ants chat room. There he met some gal from Indiana or Illinois. They decided they were soul mates, and fell in love, and she said she’d leave her husband and children if MM would drive up to Indiana and get her. So he did and she did.

She moved in with him in Conroe-fucking-Texas, and it soon became apparent that she had mental and possibly substance abuse problems. She claimed she was going to seek treatment for them, but always seemed to have an excuse about putting off doctor visits.

I forget all the details, but things got so bad that MM got sick of her bullshit, and called up the other guy she was fucking on the side (she’d been unfaithful to MM within a matter of weeks), and he told the guy he could have her with his compliments, that he wanted nothing more to do with her. Two days later the other guy showed up at MM’s door, apologetic, saying he was giving her back.

Finally, MM walked away from the whole mess, taking a job as a truck driver for a defense contractor working in Afghanistan. And that’s the last I heard of him until today.

M___ IM-ed me, said he’d sent something to my e-mail, and warned me to prepare myself:

Well, it turns out that MM got a sex-change operation last year, and now goes by the name “Monica Ann.”

I saw some pictures. What was an ugly man is now a seriously ugly woman. MM in women’s clothes, with lipstick, and wig looks like a cross between Ayn Rand, Bette Davis in her sixties, and a past-her-prime call-girl that works out of airport hotels.

I laughed for hours about this. I told M___ it was like a sub-plot on “Arrested Development.”

…………..

I did the usual things this evening. I watched episodes 11 and 12 of “Civilisation,” read some in Genet, and retired around mid-morning–or was it noon?

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