Horseheads Carport

He went into the carport, angrily and slamming.

There is both a special clarity and a mundane ignorance to the eleven year old mind.

He was going and he was done.

I was here and what was going to happen to me?

His car looked special.

He was going to drive it away.

I said please take me with you.

And he said I will come back tomorrow to take you, which I believed.

I waited for tomorrow.

Totally ridiculous, absurdly melodramatic, utterly realistic for the 11 year old mind, tomorrow.

The face of Jim the Freak

In case anyone thinks is a joke, the answer is no.

It is earnest and sincere.

Jim’s face looked like the face on the shroud of Turin.

Nothing is intended beyond the fact.


The Deeds of the Divine Augustus

2. I drove the men who slaughtered my father into exile with a legal order, punishing their crime, and afterwards, when they waged war on the state, I conquered them in two battles.

On the road again

Pat and Mike are sitting in the front seat of the sedan on a run.

Pat makes a right onto a modest main road.

Two blocks ahead at an even more modest intersection, one not worthy of a light, the light changes to red.

Pat hits the steering wheel and says “It happens every time, and it only seems to happen to me!  Why? Why? Why?”

And Mike says, “Because every time you think it is going to turn red.”

And Pat says to Mike: “You mean my mind is controlling this light?”

And Mike says: “Yeah.”

“Good point,” says Pat.

Breezeway, carport

Horseheads, near Big Flats and Painted Post.

Chemung has breezeways and carports.

Call it a carport, an open garage.

This is the memory which will be described in full.


Jim the Freak

In 1970, calling yourself a freak meant something.

Maybe not what Jim meant, or what others understood it to mean, but something not trite, not vainglorious.

Probably was glomming onto the Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers, so what.  No one else was keen to be called a freak.

Jim entered the freshman class and quickly left, the class not  the campus.

Jim faithfully sat through a lot of weather Buddha-like in the quad. As you face Butler Library, he sat on the end point of the right wall, more than enough room for his slight body.


The quad is another world, a privilege to enter, unbeknownst as such by some inhabitants, not Jim.

Jim had impossibly straight blond hair.  It was long, parted in the middle.  His eyes were muddied blue.

He wore a black leather jacket in most of the weather.  The black and blond so striking.

Jim smoked Buddha-like on the pilaster, cigarettes he rolled himself.  He and Sam Steinberg (outside the student union, when you could drink beer) were roughly kitty-corner, if Jim was one of the corners and Sam the other.

Like Sam, who sold his paintings, Jim sold to support himself.  Sam also sold chocolate bars.

Was Jim a friend?

Jim was the premier pong player at the West End, there with us.  We were with him.

Our admiration (pride?) with the association was genuine.  We basked.

He took us once to the massage parlor where girlfriend Liz worked, and Liz was awesome, and she hung out with us a few times.

And when he wanted to kick heroin, he asked us to his apartment (and Liz’) on 72d street to lock him in a room for three days.

We obeyed his instructions to ignore him and were proud.

We ignored him, he was grateful, we were grateful.

Techno for Elise

Bach and Pong





1968 and 1972.


Who seeks finds

I will give my love an apple without e’er a core,
I will give my love a house without e’er a door,
I will give my love a palace wherein she may be,
And she may unlock it without any key.

My head is the apple without e’er a core,
My mind is the house without e’er a door,
My heart is the palace wherein she may be,
And she may unlock it without any key.

Irish joke

Mike is walking through a forest, lost, when he stumbles over a buried amphora left from Roman times.

Out pops a leprechaun!

And a shaggy dog!

The man and dog bark their express respective gratitudes for liberation.

The shaggy dog, being significantly more eloquent than the Leprechaun, says:

“Liberator!  How can we thank you?  My master and I have been shackled for longer than you can think.

“The amphora was enchanted by the makers to trap innocents such as me and my master.

“Without freedom, we were not free.

“How can we re-pay you?

“What we have is the power to grant three wishes, a power we can only give to others.”

Mike: “Three wishes?”


Mike: “Can I ask exactly what is the metaphysical relationship between you and the Leprechaun?”

Shaggy: “No.”

Mike: “Ok than I ask for a bottomless bottle of Guinness.”

Shaggy: “Here.”

Mike drinks fully, and lifting up the bottle, it is still full.

Mike:  Praise and praise.

Shaggy:  “And you still have two more wishes!”

Mike:  Having considered this against that, and the cost benefit analysis, the unintended consequences, and what would be most delightful – – “I will have two more of these!”