Friday, January 31, 2014

Sunday, January 26, 2014

I Can Hear Them Out in the Void

I've come to the blistering fact that I could never be alone. No matter how hard I tried, people - or the evidence of them - followed me everywhere.
In an empty room, I could smell body odor and perfume; spot the depression in the cushion where the most recent visitor had sat. In an empty street, I navigated around the fresh exportation of passersby. On and around doorknobs, I could see oily fingerprints, smudged by movement. I imagined all of the microscopic flakes of skin—casually sloughed off by everyday friction or scraped off by nervous fingernails—covering every inch of the landscape, every upholstered surface.
I knew that I was surrounded by pieces of other humans, so it seemed that there was very little space between me and them. The potential for contamination repulsed me.
I thought I’d succeeded in Saran-wrapping my life. In the three years since I’d moved into this one-bedroom flat, no one had entered it but me. And for good reason: it had taken long enough, and a great deal of rented equipment, to make it worthy of my things.
The ringing phone that morning was an ear-piercing alarm. A phone call was never good news, and as soon as I heard it, I knew I was about to get the air knocked out of me.
The landlord had gotten right to the point: “We got bedbugs in the building. That hippie college boy that just moved in musta brought ’em home from Thailand or the frickin’ ashah-ram or some shit,” he said. “I don’t know what the hell he’s on about half the time. Or why he thinks I give a goddamn rat's ass!” Hank always spoke to me this way, even though the garrulous chatter was in no way reciprocated.
Now, to prevent an invasion from the tiniest of Trojan horses - these insidious vermin with their bellies engorged of the blood of others - my sanctuary would be violated. I imagined all the pairs of work boots that would track in the fragments of others. Soon my empty apartment would be overcrowded, and I already felt the suffocation setting in.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Friday, January 24, 2014

Mexicali Bebop

I weaved through the bar with longing, and they all stared at me, sniffing game. Beautiful men, spanning all ages and various states of seduction. It’s hard to brand and separate me from what they are. The symbiotic undertones were interchangeable. Top, bottom. Prey, predator. Hunter, target. We all blend in the neon, in the black light, in the liquor and the racy music, the freedom of choosing and being chosen. This is what happens when you are new to a place with a steady clientele. Everyone is curious. Everyone wants to know how far you’d take it.
But it was the bartender that caught the aperture sight of my MP5. Spontaneous or cliché, it wasn’t a ceremonial pick. He was the right kind and I wasn’t interested in anyone else. Over six feet tall, lanky, a long neck, thick lips, tattooed, an Aztec’s nose, large eyes that glinted like glass, and a neat haircut. If he was disconcerted by the way I stared at him, he didn’t show it.
I marched to the barstools, settled on the available leather seat without my stare breaking away. He regarded what I wore as I sat. A snug leather jacket, a tight white shirt underneath, metal-studded belt, and washed-out straight-cut jeans. I hoped he saw my footwear. Those boots meant I could afford to buy everyone in the place.
The rings I wore intrigued the bartender. The silver skull pendant of my almost-indiscernible necklace made him gaze longer.
“What can I get you tonight?”
“Are you allowed to fuck customers?” I asked.
He stopped himself mid-laughter when he realized I meant business. “I get out in an hour,” he replied over the music and the noise. We were surrounded by men gyrating against each other.
“Rum,” I said. “Rocks with it.” It meant I would wait. “I’m not leaving this place without you.” I added, matter-of-factly and gave him my squint.
“Make that thirty minutes.” he said as he handed me the drink. Our fingers touched. He whispered something to his companion’s ear. The other bartender nodded and grinned at me.
This was going to be easier than I thought.
fade to black
He lifted my hands above my head, shackled my wrists with one hand, the other kneaded the skin on my stomach, pulling me in so he could drive deeper. He exhaled on my neck, while I breathed the dust off mausoleum brick, rammed up the wall, grunting the way he wanted me to match his own. He thrust himself into me to the hilt, savoring every inch of entry, and exit, undulating with a rhythmic urgency. I freed one hand and reached back to pull his hair, curling my fingers cruelly around the strands, drawing his mouth into mine. This seemed to goad him into something akin to fury. I savored his ferocity. My knees grazed the edges of the brick wall. I felt the blood trickle as the skin started to tear. His fingers twisted between mine, and they coiled into fists. The sweat was sticky between our bodies. The slapping sounds echoed above the tombs. He told me he was close. I told him I wanted him to spend every drop on my face. Fuck, he cursed. He didn’t make it.
fade to black
Of course he left, idiot. But I slept in his arms last night hoping to wake up in them as well. At least I wasn’t robbed, and letting a stranger sleep over didn’t leave me gutted or splayed on the wall.  But I feel gutted all the same, and the graveyard of my dreams is splayed all over my room. Even the ceiling. I step into the kitchen with a frown and for a second I forget his name. What do you call a man who makes you breakfast? I freeze and try to take it all in. Yes, he’s really there. Still I stop myself from smiling. I shouldn’t be building fantasies around this moment, too. Right now, I just need to listen to him talk as though cooking eggs in the morning is normal after a one-night fling. That’s right. I stop myself from melting when he gives me a kiss. No fantasies, I remind myself. Just calm down, find a chair, drown in the sunlight, and eat.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Dodging Responsibility.

Shoe polish kicked my face back up at me, a reflection sharper than any other. The deal was done – laid upon whatever table stood, and those greasy, little hands were clapping somewhere. I knew in my head, at least.
I took to the street that Tuesday morning and walked North. Hands stuffed in my pockets, I stared down, watching my mirror image come and go on those black shoe tops. Occasionally, I’d glance up, catching myself in the store windows. A smile would form, but the sight read incorrect, sending eyes only back to feet.
The sun lit the breath seething from my mouth, and the top button of my wraparound, grey coat wouldn’t clasp, creating a breach for the chill.
The mantra rolled on repeat. I knew better, but like any addict my decay knew a certain righteousness. It stoked me even, this Negative, moving me toward the social cusp while happiness left others tolerant and slack. I took odd pride in the thought. That the lie failed to bait me as it did so many. Maybe I was necessary.
Calexico. A classic pit stop of a town, it sat beneath foreign objects, forcing the natives to sniff out their old haunts. The city planners, happy with any opportunity, couldn’t draw fast enough. They were ready to execute and frame the new model. A fact visible with each and every drudge across town.
At 3rd Street, I turned left to head up Heber Ave. Already late, I couldn’t care. Five minutes meant nothing; ten just as so. The new gig left me anxious and ill, and this Tuesday deserved a bullet, certainly. I wanted nothing but that twin size back in the dark. Beds were meant to be crawled into, I thought, not left.
My skin itched, and I wondered if the guy with the shaggy, black hair and declarative eyes could tell as he approached, parallel to his side of the sidewalk.
“Bet he can,” I told myself.
Five feet off, and I still couldn’t decide whether or not to smile at him. It seemed too painful – a disingenuous ploy to secure a destructive end. Instead, I flirted with the sidewalk, and he passed on, like so many others.
Twelve minutes now.
The deal clung to me. I’d work – writing travelogues, freelance lurid tales of the underground for foreign magazines – all in hope of moving on and up to the wanted role. Which made sense. The world favored those roadblocks, but they never sat well with me. I grew tired of wasting effort on the mundane, having my true desire undercut by the lobby, and those greasy hands rubbing laminated the whole emotion.
At the end of Herber, I sat at a coffee shop. I needed the kick today. Inside, the baristas scuffled about, and the literature hounds, with their scarves, hung onto their conversations and faces.
I waited and caught the early morning sun beams streaming through the front window of the shop. They danced down to the table which sat dead center of the frame. I wondered what made those beams seem so sharp, crisp and directed. Like crystals.
Cell phone vibrated. Messages sprawled across the display.
“Where are you?”
“Ur late!”
Now they own me, I thought. Even here on the street.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Hope in Humanity Restored

The other man was wearing his best clothes that day. His only pair of jeans that didn’t have a hole in them and a faded dark blue collared shirt with the top button missing. Sleeves rolled up to his elbows, exposing the sun baked skin beneath and hands stained by dirt; hands that have been worked far too hard for far too long. As he stepped out of the diner and down the steps he found himself staring at a man with a desperate look on his face making his way towards him.
The desperate man came to a stop a few feet before him, unsure of what to say until the other man spoke up first.
“Is there something I can help you with?”
The desperate man was taken aback by the sincerity in the other man’s voice.
“Y-yeah. I, uh, so I know that this is a longshot and whatnot but…” He hesitated, staring into the other man’s solid, yet comforting gaze.
“I don’t live here, I live a few hours north in Bakersfield, but I ran out of gas on my way back from visiting my mother. I have no money and no phone, is there any way I could use your phone or have some coins for a phone booth or..”
As he finished his sentence the other man wordlessly reached into the back pocket and pulled out a wallet that has seen many years. His calloused fingers ruffled through the paper thin stack of cash and brought out a singular twenty dollar bill. He placed it into the desperate man’s now outstretched hand.
“Get home safely.”
The desperate man stood there, mouth agape. A soft thank you escaped his lips as the other man tucked the slim stack of bills into his wallet and walked away, the faded blue shirt fluttering in the wind as he got into his truck and drove off.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

The Human Condition

The small slit between my eyelids revealed a pint-sized bottle of vodka lying on it’s side on the night stand. There’s nothing left in the bottle, of course. Attempting to remember why I was suddenly awake, I groggily glanced around parts of the dark room without shifting in my prone state. Since I couldn’t see anything but the bottle of vodka, now empty, and my phone, I came to the intelligent conclusion that the vodka bottle probably didn’t rustle in a way that woke me up. So I rekoned the phone must've rang or vibrated or played a little chipper note in the way phones do. Not that I checked the phone once I came to that conclusion, you understand.
Fog was still murked over my eyes like a faded film. Even as I struggled to open them completely. Figuring it must had been four in the morning when I finally lost the battle to stay awake, I wasn’t in a hurry to get out of bed. It seemed dark so it must still be damn early. They say that alcoholics and smokers and depressive types and the occasional drug user make fantastic writers. I will tell you this; possessing those four qualifications myself, I must be a hell of a writer. I shifted slowly upwards, using my hands to bring myself against the wall in a sitting position, leaning against a lumpy, dingy pillow. I was careful not to make myself completely uncomfortable as in it would cause me to get out of bed this early. To my surprise, except that it wasn’t actually a surprise, I was still fully dressed. A note pad and a pack of cigarettes were bundled in the bed beside me, looking as though they had slept comfortably with me all morning. I suppose this is appropriate, as I am married to those two just as much as I could be married to any one person.
With no intention of lighting it inside, I slid a cigarette carefully out of it’s pack and let it dangle from my lip. My stinging eyes fell lazily over the words scribbled across my wrinkled note pad. Last night I hadn’t really had any inspiration, so I looked up one of those writing prompts you find online. I tried to create something; it came out like a botched romantic murder mystery that I ended with a suicide just because I got sick of writing. Or maybe at the point I threw in the suicide, I was just too drunk to keep writing. Either way, the creased, shaggy pieces of paper had slept with me faithfully through the morning nap.
Damn, my joints were stiff. It seemed as good a time as any to seriously begin the journey out of bed, I swung my legs over to the floor quick enough that I couldn’t turn back. The floor was cold. I knew it must be early. Dark outside, cold floors, no motivation. The smell of tobacco was filling my nostrils and I just didn’t want to wait for that cigarette anymore. I pulled myself up to the standing position with one groaning swoop. I noticed my anti-depressants had rolled onto the floor, and I prayed to God I didn't take any extra last night. It’s funny how when you’re depressed and you decide to drink, quantity begins to matter much more than quality when it comes to your crazy drugs. I hadn’t taken them in a month anyway.
Shuffling down the hallway, I ultimately made my way to the front door. I opened it quietly, careful not to disturb anyone on this early, chilly morning, and stepped onto the porch. A bit of a breeze flowed through the air and made me curl my toes in tight as if that alone would keep me warm. Struggling against my still-sleeping ligaments, I managed to flick the lighter fast enough to get a glow on the end of the cigarette. Inhaled deep, exhaled slow.
l’ll be damned, I thought, as I took in the outside world for the first time that morning. I finally peered at my wristwatch and realized it was 3:33 p.m.. This wasn’t an early morning accidental wake up call. I had passed out for nearly twelve hours. Sleep, writing exhaustion, or alcohol had taken me so deep into slumber I didn’t even know half a day had passed. It wasn’t early freaking morning it was just a damn, dark rainy day.

Encounters in Mexicali

Pablo always took the stairs but we met in the elevator. I had seen him before. Down the hallway or in the earlier part of a day. What are you writing? I forget which one of us asks for the other’s name, but we do. From the first floor to the second. I don’t tell him what I’m writing.
In the morning he’s holding a hot coffee cup. The outdoor tables, shaded by just one tree or two. So what is the title of your piece? Which piece? The one you’re writing. Just tell me the title. And two sentences of what it’s about. Fine, I say, The Final Seduction.” That’s the title.
The sun is bright even though I have my sun hat on. I put my mouth to the straw and cold water on my hand drops to my thigh, the iced coffee is gone sooner than expected. Afterwards I realize how much I had been sweating.
So. You write about men.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Suicide of Dreams

It still seemed strange after so many times to wake up from being someone else. So it felt, was there no other way to describe, no that still seemed the best. Yet tonight with my heart bursting adrenaline and a panicked laugh trickling soft as tears from me while the thunder sounded inside and out. What was that noise, there, in the wall. The faint thrum. Pulse, pulse, pulse. Just my heart in the distance. Deep music of the city.
I sat up in bed. The quiet returned to me and a dry throat came with it. Parched. Dreams they seemed at first, yet the shadow of blood remained in the corner of my eye on the skin of a clenched hand. Tightly it gripped the handle of a knife. Did grip. Hadn’t it? It felt so. Sickly I rose and floated to the shower, socks drifting in the calming caress between my flesh and the floor. I washed myself. The water wailed through me and crashed about my head and with a deep breath I expelled the thought of puncturing my soft body repeatedly with steel. Wherever I went when I slept, whoever I became, I had no idea. Different every time now wasn’t it. And not always so bad as tonight. Tonight I had murdered.
Yesterday, what was it, I cried into the tufts of a huge dog because my grandmother died. Me, allergic to dogs, didn’t own one and my grandmother died long ago. The night before, ten again but a boy playing by a river with his dad blowing through reeds pressed between his thumbs while they fished.
Dreams they were, or so was said. I no longer seemed sure. So many people I had become. And now as I washed the feeling of a murderous sleep from my skin, I felt sure that somewhere a man with guilty hands washed blood from himself as well. What would he do with the clothes? The blue button-down and silky yellow tie, the gray slacks. Dispose of them to be sure. But the pleading fear and the screams left in his mind, the image of his reflection in his wife’s dimming eyes. What with those?
Suicide is a one way street.

Monday, January 13, 2014


When we met I was in a good place, contemporary and sober and unravelled. Dancing on the open road, amazed by all those tiny lights in my vision. When you pulled my head towards yours and kissed me on the lips, you held it like it was the most precious thing in the world. So gentle. As your eyes were seeking for misfits or sport in my face. But to you I was spotless. But I repulsed myself, I wanted to turn my head and tell you it’s probably because I am hideous. But you kept saying that I was beautiful and for a moment I believed you, I wanted to open up my mind so you discover me. I wanted to free my words.
Days pass as we talked, the nights are still blurry. When I was brave enough to agree to see you again, you couldn’t stop talking about how excited you are and it would be fun. You sounded so sincere. And when the time was there, I was all ready. But you stopped replaying to my messages, you didn’t even send me a lousy ‘I don’t feel well’ text. Just nothing. Exactly how I felt. Like nothing.
Until the next day. You apologized for treating me disrespectful. Buy you lied, you were never sorry. You disappointed me again, twice. You couldn’t even just fuck me and leave, I wasn’t even worth that, I was nothing again. Even after these cries I still wanted to talk to you, tell you how fragile and unstable I am. I am dancing on a rope, underneath me howls abyss for my fall. You are the most dangerous smooth breeze but I will always be my puny ankles. And still, disregarding those unfortunate happenings, I still want to see you.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Tell Me.

This is by far my favorite line during the first season of American Horror Story.

Thursday, January 09, 2014

Curious Events.

I left the hotel in the hopes that I could receive some sort of assistance from Calexico's Department of Housing. After securing my laptop and luggage in a self storage unit I had rented for a month, I made my way to HUD. Much to my dismay, they were not taking applications for apartments - huge ass sign was posting that fact at the door. The clerk was pleased as punch as she stated there were absolutely no services she could offer me.
I sat apprehensive and depressed in a local park surrounded by crackheads, biding my time until the men's shelter opened at three that afternoon. My hope's were low. I accepted the fact that I most likely had to sleep outside for a month until I got paid. What a bore.
Luck would have it, they did have bunks available and I was allotted a two months stay.
The low building was nestled in a pleasant neighborhood. A mural of the Virgin of Guadalupe scowled down at you from the main entrance. As I waited the few minutes before they unlocked the door, I was serenaded by a local crackpot - he of ratty clothes and cascading beard, yet beautiful voice - with various Mexican folks songs he claimed to have penned. After signing various paperwork, I was shown the dorm that housed fifty men - most migrant workers from across the border who tilled the surrounding farmlands of various produce.
After settling in, I walked out back for a smoke where I was greeted by a handsome, young Mexican washing his clothes in a plastic bucket. He smiled that smile, "You a Mexican or a gringo?"
"I am an American, like you." I joked.
He laughed and asked how I wound up in Calexico.
"Obviously, I made a wrong turn."
"Like all of us, huh?" He smiled.
We chatted and I found his name was Javier and he held a job harvesting broccoli at one of the local farms. After a messy dinner of what I suspected was chicken, I returned out back for another smoke only to meet another American. A shirtless, old thing - obviously queer - named Carl.
"So, how was your day?" He lisped, puffing on that smoke regally. I thought just the tone was hilarious and I burst out laughing, exclaiming in lieu of recent events, he made my day.
Though these guys - even the raucous crew in the dorm - were homeless, they emitted such positive vibes unlike the sad sacks who dwelt in El Paso. What a breath of fresh air.

Wednesday, January 08, 2014

No Response.

The neighborhood was dark. The row of houses lay silent with their dark windows and long shadows. Miguel sat slumped over in the passenger seat of his parked car, door open, one leg extended out onto the curb. We had been drinking heavily most of that afternoon. His wife and baby girl were already asleep in their beds. I approached the car and whispered his name. Twice.
He was stocky with a muscular physic common to his breed. He wore a multicolor futbol uniform. The word Calexico emblazoned in fiery fonts across his wide chest. Jet black hair tumbled across a round Asian-like face. A face of smooth copper skin with thick, black eye brows like some one had slashed them across his forehead with a marker.
I stooped down in front of Miguel and whispered his name. The neighborhood was quiet and the moon soared across a dark, navy sky. I whispered his name. No response.
My eyes took on a predatory sheen as I glanced along his hairless legs spread before me. My hand casually stroked that muscular, inner thigh, inching upwards, past the line of his shorts. My eyes darted up to his serene face. He was still out. My meandering hand continued up, finally coming across his shiny, black pubic hairs. They were cropped short. I found his penis. It was flaccid. Fat and uncircumcised. I whispered his name again. He was out. I began to slowly stroke his dick. It began to engorge itself with blood, I could feel his heartbeat when it throbbed to full erection. I looked up at his face. He didn't flinch. I swung my gaze back towards the silent dark house to see if the prying eyes of the wife was snooping in on this random encounter. Nope. I moved his leg back into the car and gently closed the door. Walking around to the drivers side, I slid in and sat down. Again, I whispered his name. "Miguel." No response. I reached over. His penis was fully erect. Long now, and so thick I could barely grasp completely around the girth. I pulled it out and rubbed the foreskin about the head. His penis jumped and throbbed. I looked over to the house. Nothing. In the most lurid way, I bent over and began sucking his cock. Slowly at first and then picking up a rhythm.
A few moments passed and Miguel stirred. He sighed and then I heard, "What the fuck you doing, dude?"
I mumbled with penis still firmly in my mouth, "I'm sucking your cock." No need to be coy, I reckoned.
He placed his thick fingered hand onto the back of my head as he guided my movements. Eventually, Miguel let out a long sigh as I tasted hot semen splashing across my tongue. Wordlessly, I placed the wet shaft back into his shorts. Miguel stirred. Uttered "Fuck." And then stated that I needed to leave. He was returning inside, back to his family. I silently exited the car and stumbled down the shadowy street back to the hotel. In the distance dogs howled and the night air smelled like cow manure.

Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Calexico City Blues

Calexico is a tiny city on the border of it's much larger neighbor Mexicali. The city definitely has it's small town charm with arched buildings and frescoes of Spanish design. The locals are friendly and don't mind casual chatter with a stranger. Downtown is a grid system of dollar stores and quaint clothing shops.
I awoke from my usual disturbed sleep, dressed and searched out a small cafe that served good coffee and Mexican breakfast. To much my dismay, this does not exist in centro - or at least the several blocks which I covered. I did not want to eat at any of the fast food joints that lined the main entrance to Mexico. I inquired about a good eatery from some elderly men stooping on a corner under one of the many archways that support the main mall. They directed me to a place nearby and off I went. It was a small dingy place with several ratty denizens squatting in shabby booths. Mainly the cafe sold just donuts, but I was surprised that they also had menudo, which I ordered. I was also pleased that several of the rugged rancheros where silently sipping on bottled beer at nine in the morning. It was like a dream unhampered by the political correctness that mired the rest of this country.
After enjoying my menudo it was off to do what had to be done. I found The Lady of Guadalupe Shelter for Men, but was told that they had no beds so return tomorrow. And, so I will. I am at a loss. I realize that I had chosen to relocate here and relocate here I will. But it seems I will have to go underground again and off the internet radar to do so. Bare with me, Reader. I'm doing my fucking best, okay?
I located a small park near the hotel and sat and smoked and thinked. It will all work out. It always does. Sitting at the metal picnic table in the park regarding the tranquility and wafting aroma of manure from the surrounding farmlands, I noticed the public mensroom was extra cruisy - several men darted in and out it's darkened maw with that look of guilt so common to public sex addicts of this land. Except one. He approached and asked for a cigarette. After inquiring what I was doing and learning of my recent arrival, he invited me to his apartment to eat dinner with himself and his wife.
Sure. Why not? Wouldn't you?

Sunday, January 05, 2014

Once Again Down The Lost Highway

The bus from El Paso finally departed at seven that evening. Once again, I found myself leaving a place that I would not miss. I can state with the utmost conviction that I will never reside there again. With that being said, the bus shot West up the I-10 through darkening vistas of sage brush and jagged rock formations.
I was the only white person on the carriage - which was kind of a relief. Greyhound has that nasty reputation of the filthiest buses cram packed with the loudest and obnoxious of American citizens. I took a Mexican line - the Tres Estrellas de Oro - and zipped right along in somewhat comfort. My seat mate was a handsome late twenties man who said little and didn't snore. As always, I can not sleep on a moving vehicle, I sat through the night listening to my ipod, gazing up at the stars and passing roadway signs lit by random flashing lights in the night.
I arrived in Los Angeles at 8:30 the following morning. I said it once and I'll say it again, the tepid air of that metropolis always smells like 9 million people all farted at once. The black spotted sidewalks were lined with makeshift tents and cardboard shacks propped against as yet unopened shops. I had informed my friend Victor that I would arrive at ten. I knew he worked late the previous night, so as to give him more sleep, I found a little cafe - Cafe Floma - and breakfast on delicious coffee and a fat juevos y jamon burrito.
Afterwards, I made my way up 8th Street to Olivera were his apartment lay. The renovated Hotel Bristol. I knew I was leaving skid row and entering the hipster area in lieu of all the fags out walking their dogs. As I approached the landing of the apartments, Victor was outside, we noticed each other and greeted one another with familiar hugs and kisses.
We chatted and joked as Victor assisted me with my luggage up to the second floor to his tiny apartment. I was greeted by his hyperactive dog in which we both took a liking to each other. His apartment was a converted hotel room which consisted of a tiny room and bathroom. His bed was a mat splayed across the floor, a desk for his laptop and wadded clothes cascaded from an open closet. Not two seconds in the door, Victor began and continued to heavily badger on having sex. The only problem was that not only was I tired from the trip but I did not find the man sexually attractive at all. I mean, I knew him from online and enjoyed the witty banter, but in person he quickly came across as a desperate, over bearing douche. How sad. I sat and chatted, dodging his continual advances, seeing the slow burn of anger in his eyes with each time I diverted the subject of sex. The dialog became tense and awkward. At one brief point, he quickly devolved into a snarling psychopath over his dogs antics. As the moments passed, I regretted my decision on this trip. I expected a friend, someone to enjoy the brief time together and have good memories, not simply to become another nameless asshole who he slid his dick into.
I lay on his floor and casually stated that I had no idea what I was doing. Where I was going. I did have to admit, I was at a loss. I knew eventually that I wanted to finish this book and at the same time time save for relocation to Southeast Asia, but I didn't have a jump off destination planned. I stated, because of this, that I wanted to enjoy my day with him and in all fairness in lieu of my travel pattern, we would never meet again. So, he began crying.
I sat and attempted to alleviate this sad, beat character with humor. I remained calm and aloof, I mean why would I get so emotional? I hardly know the guy. It was rather sad.
To maintain the good memories angle, I suggested that we go for a bite to eat at Cole's - a favorite spot of mine in downtown which serves the best french dip sandwiches. He offered to flip the bill which was quite generous. Again, we sat out on the sidewalk tables joking and conversing of films and general interests, again with me dodging his blatant advances. It was all becoming too pat. After the meal, I stated that I would have sex with him, but first if I needed to shower and get at least an hours sleep.
Scurrying through the multitudes of people in that ominous concrete labyrinth, we returned to his apartment where I showered and eventually lay down. I did not sleep, though. I remained quiet as I thought and thought and thought. Victor showered and fell asleep eventually. I arose, quickly dressed, and grabbed my luggage. I gently kissed him on the forehead and whispered, "Goodbye, Victor." He stirred and swung a fist at me in his sleep. I paused before I left, looking down at him from the door. I felt so sorry for him.
I gathered my things and returned to skid row as the sun was setting over the spires, basking the haggard multitude of hobos and all in an sickly orange glow...

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I found myself in Calexico. Back on the fringe. The border. Between light and dark. Here and there. It was 1:30 in the morning as I wearily dragged my luggage across dusty, trash strewn sidewalks. Campesinos slept huddled in doorways of closed shops as coyotes howled in the full moon night. I secured a room in a cheap hotel and hunkered down for the night. I need to find and enter the shelter they have here. To finish what I started. To unfurl my plans within plans.
People think it’s an obsession. A compulsion. As if there were an irresistible impulse to act. It’s never been like that. I chose this life. I know what I’m doing. And on any given day, I could stop doing it. Today, however, isn’t that day. And tomorrow won’t be either.

Saturday, January 04, 2014

The Waiting Game

It's ten in the morning and I sit here dozing off in the public library in downtown El Paso. I had woken up at 5:30 in my room at the Hotel Gardner to prepare for the seven o'clock bus to Los Angeles. I shed my hobo outfit I had adorned for nine months and finally put on some decent clothes. As I wearily shuffled through the cold, dark predawn dragging my wheeled luggage clakclakclak on gray sidewalks, I still had second thoughts about simply heading to Calexico. Anywhere but this beat town was preferable. But, fate it seems has other plans.
After a light breakfast of coffee and some nasty ass burrito at Burger King, I headed to the Tres Estrellas de Oro bus terminal. It sat cold and dark and silent. Not a soul around. No worries, I'll smoke and wait. Wait I did. And wait. And wait.
Seven o'clock rolled around and no bus. No passengers. Eventually, a Hispanic family arrived and inquired when the terminal would open. I stated I hadn't a clue. Well, the cholo who had sold me the ticket yesterday arrived and was yelling in broken English that I had missed the bus. What bus? No bus arrived. I was informed that the departure was at 7pm, not 7am, and then he hit me up for a cigarette. I was upset, but kept my cool. No need to agitate these inbred morons. I checked on my iphone if the 10:40 to Calexico was available through Greyhound. Nope. Sold out.
So, I sit in this library, dozing off, attempting to still get the hang of Windows 8 on my laptop - I hate it - and bide my time until I fling myself into that steel and concrete madhouse of LA.

Friday, January 03, 2014

Here We Go Again

Here I sit in a ratty hotel in this miserable desert town. I have been invited to stay in Los Angeles by an old friend. I took him up on it. I rested in bed most of the day occasionally purchasing several items that I knew cost more in the City of Angels. For some reason I am dog tired. I'm going to watch that Star Trek episode The Cage before retiring. My bus leaves at 7am tomorrow and arrives the following day at 9am. That's a brutal trek. But, for $50 I can't complain. I am taking a Mexican bus route and from what the tattooed, snaggle toothed cholo from behind the counter showed me, the bus will be pack. So, I asked for a 5:30 wake up call and then it's off to Los Angeles and new adventures!

Thursday, January 02, 2014

Norman's Revenge.

On a lark and perhaps on just a passing fancy, I decided to rent an apartment in El Paso. I had known of the SRO on Missouri Street, and actually been shown a room once before, several years ago. It was a small, filthy den that reeked of cat piss and hobo ass. I turned it down and headed elsewhere.
Flash forward to now: I again made plans to rent there in lieu that I knew it was a quick route out of that damn shelter. All I wanted was a quiet place to begin this next book which is exploding in my head. The assistant manager of the old red brick building was a gimpy, pedophile named Norman - I actually had a run in with him years ago. In San Jacinto Park, I witnessed he was blatantly attempting to seduce a fifteen year old boy. After harsh words from myself and spitting in his face, I whisked the kid away to safety. I was hoping this Norman didn't hold a grudge. After awkward pleasantries, Norman had me fill out the various paperwork and it being the holidays, slotted me to move into a room on the first of January. He even showed me a decent room on the third floor with ample natural light, decent furniture, a desk by the window...sure, I'll take it.
Days, weeks passed and I received not as much as a phone call on how much my rent was to be - it was subsidized through HUD, so about 30% of my monthly pay. On the last day of December, I made an impromptu visit to the SRO for inquiries.
Norman seemed to be on leave, so I was greeted by the manager, a ratty hag named Cristine. On the landing, I politely demanded to know my rent and asked if that room was ready for I was to move in the next day.
"I'm not blindly going to pay for a room and not see it first." I stated.
I was given the keys to room #13. In the basement.
"What happened to the upstairs room I was shown?" I asked.
"Oh, we gave that to a tenant who had to move in early." She grinned with cold, dead fish eyes. "You'll like the basement room. Lucky 13"
Down a dank hall, I found 13. I turned the latch, opened the door, and flicked the light switch. No lights. The darkness reeked of mildewed rags and vomit.
I returned to the office and asked, "Will the room be cleaned before I move in?"
"Oh no," She stated firmly, "You'll have to clean it. We are short staffed. Did you see the room? Did you like it?"
"The bulbs are out." I droned.
She grunted at me like I just shit on her carpet, walked down the hall and returned with a ladder and two fresh bulbs. Meanwhile, the creepiest gay Indian in in the entire southwest, who babbled that he was a "20 year volunteer" leered at me with that look of thirsty lust so common to the fags here, he was obviously maintenance but refused to assist cleaning that stink pit.
I grudgingly went down to the basement room and changed the lights out. I wish I hadn't. It was the grimiest, filthiest shithole I had seen in many a moon. The normally gray tiles were blotched in brown and black grunge, tattered, smelly bedding lay wadded on the rickety bed, a towel was saturated with what appeared as dried vomit lay next to a pile of discarded cigarette butts in the corner, a foul evil wafted from the rattling refrigerator.
Norman's revenge.
I returned the ladder to the manager. Before I could utter a remark on the dire state of the room, Cristine began to drone on about no knives, no drugs, no alcohol, no nothing in the rooms all the while handing me a big ass jug of bed bug spray. "We have this horrible bed bug problem. Here, use this. Where did you say you're staying right now?"
"The Rescue Mission." I whimpered.
She flipped a clawed wrist, "Well, all you people keep bringing them here. You're infesting the entire city!"
I actually wanted to punch her.
"There aren't any at the mission now." I stated.
I returned again like a dumbass to the room and soaked the mattress in the toxic, foul chemical. Squirting every crack and tear in the walls and every dark smudged corner. Halfway through I said to myself, Fuck this shit, I'm not staying here!
I angrily returned the spray and said my goodbyes, mumbling that I would be back in a day or so to mop and wipe down the room. Out in the street, I tossed the keys into some bushes.

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Hello, 2014

To everyone who reads this blog:
You're amazing, you're beautiful, you're strong and if 2013 wasn't your year, then I hope 2014 is because you deserve it, you deserve laughter, happiness, and smiles and if you're going through something rough I hope 2014 can make it easier for you, I hope you make new friends and make new relationships that make you happy. I hope 2014 is your year.