Archives for posts with tag: Abbot Kinney

Orange1.

The ACLU 2012 Bill of Rights awards at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel.   I sat with my lawyers Barry Litt and Peter Eliasberg.

We ate stewed pear salad, grilled chicken and for dessert they served a strange, solid cake.

During the dinner they projected various videos describing the work they do for Homeless Veterans, Immigrants Rights, The LGBTQ community.

Of course the work I have been contributing to was just part of what was projected.  I was incredibly proud to be asked to stand in front of the 1000 or so people and introduce myself.

Will Ferrell, Jay Roach, Ermin Chemerinsky and Jane Lynch all spoke beautifully on behalf of the ACLU and their various causes and friends.

During the interval both Usher (the singer) and Scooter Braun (2 million twitter followers) took the time to introduce themselves and congratulate me.

Of course, as usual, not one gay person, including honoree Jane Lynch made themselves known to me.  The chasm that exists between me and the gay community in LA was even more evident than usual at this event.

Only last week the gay ‘director’ Guy Shalem texted me telling me that I deserved to be in jail… mocking the time that I had spent there, telling me that I only had friends I made in jail.

Guy Shalem is a gay Israeli fame-whore who lives in Los Angeles.  I met him at some grimy gay party in the Hollywood Hills last year and he subsequently invited me to Griffith Park for a walk the following day.

The conversation on the mountain centered around his visa problems, his inability to make relationships work, his celebrity friends and his desire for younger boys.

He complained that Outfest were sniffy about his short film.  When I saw it I understood why.  “Bruce Vilanch is in it.” He boasted, “They should love it.”

After all, he’s obsessed with celebrity… why shouldn’t Outfest?

So, it was mildly shocking to see Guy at the ACLU event. Wearing a bad suit and even worse shoes.

He had seen the video lauding the work we are all doing for those held on spurious ICE holds.

He heard the applause I received when they asked me to stand.

He heard Hector Villagra, head of the ACLU talking publicly about my personal bravery and commitment to the ACLU.

Guy is the perennial plus one to any gay celebrity.  Last night, yet again, he was with Jane Lynch.   He saw me, headed toward me and shook my hand.  Apparently forgetting the vile things he said last week.

I told him in no uncertain terms how and what I felt about him coming up to me.

He motioned to his ugly short gay friends lawyer Aaron Rosenberg and his ‘husband’ that this was worth watching.  They snickered, like vile bullying children, behind my back.

Let’s face it, Guy was only there for the free dinner and to stand with his famous friend and hope to ensnare other famous people with his puppy eyes and his maudlin sob stories.

The point of the evening was completely lost on him.

After I walked away from Guy other honorees came up to me and offered their hands.

One of them, an elderly female philanthropist  said, “We are like kindred spirits, you and me.”   I was so touched by her generosity.

So many kind people… not one of them gay.

2.

There was a moment in Beverly Hills recently when my body decided enough was enough.  7am, Beverly Drive, walking the dogs… I fainted.

The last thing I remember:  kicking a fresh pine cone.  The next thing?  I crashed to the ground painfully twisting my wrist under the weight of my body.

Dude, my fat red dog ran away as fast as he could.  The Little Dog stayed beside me as loyal as any dog can be.

I probably should have seen a doctor but, like my Grandmother and my Mother, a visit to the doctor is the last thing I do willingly.

It took an hour or so to persuade Dude to come back to me.  For the rest of the day he looked at me differently.  Like I was a  stranger.

The criminal matter is resolved.

Do you want to know what happened?

As part of a plea deal crafted by the DA and my lawyer, I plead NO CONTEST to a misdemeanor.  My sentence?  An 18 month gagging order and a 52 hour course in anger management.

There was no jail time, no fine.  It was all over in 20 minutes.

I smoked a cigarette outside the courtroom.  So did the DA.  She sat there in her black coat.  Sitting where she always sits.  Behind a wall.

Like a naughty school girl.  Smoking.

And I felt like it was going to be OK.  Because she was smoking too.

The judge said goodbye, the bailiff smiled.  The stenographer watched with interest.

I said goodbye to my lawyers and drove to Venice.

I had a lot of thinking to do.

On the way to Abbot KinneyRussian woman rear ended me.  We stopped abruptly on Wilshire Blvd.

Her name was Natalie Volk.  She was very apologetic.  Her husband got out of the car.  Natalie must have been 80 years old, he was older.  She touched the back of the car to make sure it wasn’t all a bad dream.

We exchanged personal details.  I’m not going to call her insurance people.  I know what they’ll do to her.  How punitive they can be.

That night I stopped at a gas station to buy gas and soda.  A huge black woman begged me to fill her gas tank.  The station wagon was packed with kids.  They were homeless.  They lived in that car.

I paid for their gas.  I made it seem like a terrible imposition.

Absurdly, I didn’t want other people to think I was being hijacked.

I went to buy myself a soda.  The woman at the checkout said, “That was really kind of you, they were homeless.”  She smiled and said,  “I’ll pay for your soda.”

I felt badly that I hadn’t been kinder to the homeless women.

On my way out of the service station I saw the most beautiful black man.  A solid wall of muscle.  He was walking up Lincoln Avenue.   I circled around until I found him.  I stopped the car and asked him what he was doing.

We had a chai latte at the Coffee Bean in Marina Del Rey.  He was from Chicago.  28 years old.  A personal trainer.  He had moved to LA a few months ago to help his brother.  He used to have dreadlocks.

I dropped him off at his apartment.  He invited me into his empty place.

At 5am I drove him to the gym where he worked.

Perhaps I should have given him more?  More than a chai latte?

As I drove home up the PCH.  Looking over the Pacific Ocean.  I thought about the previous day.

All that public money wasted.  All that time taken by highly paid District Attorneys,  Attorneys who could have been solving real crimes.

Money that could be spent repairing a local school. Money that could have been spent investigating white-collar crimes.

I was listening to John Martyn.  Solid Air.  Synthesized sea gulls.  A heartbeat.  My heart is still beating.

2.

Whatever may happen.  How ever bad it gets.  It is is up to you… yes you…  you can turn the worst things that happen into the most extraordinary adventure.

As anyone who has a creative bone in their body knows, to carve something artful out of wherever you find yourself… well.  It’s up to you.

So, it was no coincidence that, after I spoke to the reporter about The Trust Act, after my involved and specific conversation with the  lawyer, after I had recorded the Youtube video….

I sat down at my desk and rewrote the ending of my script.

What a killing crime this love can be.

This is for you Daddy.  You bad, bad man.

On Friday at 10am I will stand before you all again, on your televisions, in your newspapers, sparking up the internet.

Damning the authority.

On behalf of the brown people.

And after it is all over?  I am left on my own.  Well, that’s not entirely true.  Because I have you.

I want to tell you about my neck.  The arthritis in my neck.  The arthritis that makes my arms numb.  My fingers tingle.

I am pleased not to share that with anyone.

The audience is singing along with the familiar tune.

It is 2am.  The dog is farting.  He’ll want to go out in the middle of the night.

It feels like I haven’t written anything for weeks. Living this simple and unexpected life. I’ve no idea what comes next nor do I care. Occasionally I wonder what it would be like to be back at home…Whitstable. It is waiting for me.

Sunday, I drove 100 miles North East to the Inland Empire to meet my lover. We booked into a cheap hotel and spent the day in bed. It was languorous and passionate. We ate free ‘home made’ cookies given to us when we checked in. We left the hotel briefly to buy fried chicken. We looked at the pool but didn’t swim.

After he left I walked on my own through a huge discount mall, I saw vibrant, sequined dressed for unplanned Quinceanera.

On the way home I wondered what the ham hocks would taste like that had been slowly cooking in the stove all day. They were delicious.

I have, of late, developed sexual desires and needs formally ignored. Today my legs are weak from indulging myself.

I may drive to NYC next week to fetch the art that remains in the East Village. Dan has been looking after it.

I like driving across country. I should take a different route but the familiarity of Route 66 lures me south.

I spoke at an ACLU event last week in the lush Hancock Park gardens of a rich gay man. His large mock Tudor home filled with Arts and Crafts furniture and paintings by dead artists like Otto Dix. Even though there were many sofas and well upholstered club chairs there didn’t seem to be anywhere to sit.

The speech was well received.

One afternoon last week (May 1st) I spoke to David Cruz, the KTLK liberal chat show host. I felt primed and confident. It was easier to talk about the LA jail system than it was to talk about Dorian Gray. Ethnic Cleansing. Secure Communities. Institutional racism and homophobia.

I have not been to any 12 step meeting but was stopped in the street by the crazy Sean McFarland sex therapist who kissed me and hugged me. I told him that the deaths of his clients should be on his conscience. He wished me all the best and crawled, like the slimy reptile he is, back into the Porsche despair has paid for.

On Saturday I met another 12 step buddy at Gjelina but we didn’t talk much. I don’t want to hear about the cult. Even though he is an old friend I eyed him suspiciously. We talked about my 85-year-old friend Coach who died last week. I’m glad he never knew that I turned by back on AA.

Robby and I had lunch last Thursday. He is delightful.

I have been ignoring calls from people I’m usually happy to hear from.

Everyday I drive along the PCH to Venice where I drink coffee at Intelligentsia on Abbot Kinney. I take pictures of strangers for my portrait project updated daily.

We peered briefly at the Super Moon. It was large and bright. It wasn’t nearly as exciting as seeing the comet, Hale Bop.

For the past ten days I have logged onto gay hook up app Grindr to see what is going on…what I am missing. I’ve been sent many picture of cocks but had no desire to sit on any of them…many pictures of asses but have no need to fuck. Next week I am going to publish them all here on WordPress in a password protected blog.

Life is all at once full up and completely empty.

In The Hot Tub Under The Lantern

Did you ever play Monopoly? Do you remember winning? An embarrassment of riches. Did you ever cheat? Letting your friends stay at your hotel on Park Lane for free because you wanted the game to go on? The thrill of being benevolent, philanthropic?

Did you enjoy forcing your enemies off the board. Did you learn about risk, acquisition, luxury?

Whenever I won the game of Monopoly I felt badly. It gave me no pleasure bankrupting my friends.

The game ends when one player takes total control of the bank and the board.

We are witnessing in the USA the end game. A few men and women who have won over all the rest. They have trillions of dollars. Some have acquired this cash from (amongst other things) war profiteering. From private prisons. From bloated healthcare costs. From gouging oil, gas and utilities. Stealing directly from the people.

The rich pay for laws to protect their interests, the rich consider the rest of us expendable.

Their riches and how they acquired them have not gone unnoticed.

In London, the people know something is up with the system. They couldn’t articulate what is wrong…because we have deliberately kept these people stupid. They just needed an excuse to act upon their frustration.

They have an inkling that they might be able to throw the Monopoly board in the air. Fuck the winner. I’m taking mine.

The rich have some serious thinking to do.

It is all very well to take all the money but what use is it when the cities are burning?

The rich must surely know that their ‘hard work’ and ‘good fortune’ without paying fair taxes is destroying their country…perhaps the world. It has not gone unnoticed. For that is the way of humanity. The people wake up and disparity is challenged.

British Prime Minister David Cameron sounds like he has a handle on the British riots.

Cameron said: “In the banking crisis, with MPs’ expenses, in the phone-hacking scandal, we have seen some of the worst cases of greed, irresponsibility and entitlement. The restoration of responsibility has to cut right across our society.”

The leader of the opposition agrees!

At last. An intelligent, cross party reaction to the shopping with violence that devastated London and other British cities.

Times they are a changing.

Solution is hard. What can any government do to put the pieces of society back together when it seems irreparable? Blame is frankly irresponsible, context is key.

Is it impossible to teach young people how to respect the established order when the established order is revealed to be corrupt? Respect cannot be forced upon our youth. As much as this breaks my heart to write: we must listen to those thugs and vandals.

Now, I am not interested in sitting down with a bunch of dim-witted, inarticulate youths. They have nothing to say that will teach me anything. Their actions, however, must be respected and understood.

There is no boot camp, army training, national service, prison that will change these young men and women. We have created monsters. We have given them false hope, rancid dreams, easy money.

They do not aspire to anything more than gadgets and fancy trainers.

Their limited aspirations are shocking to someone like me. Gadgets and trainers. Good God.

When Bagdad was sacked the youth took really valuable antiquities from the museums. They seemed to understand the value of their culture. Perhaps we are what we steal?

Rampaging through a city, stealing, breaking and screaming….takes a certain amount of guts. Physically challenging an army of police officers. Their actions must be understood.

We will never return to a time when young people respected their elders, the establishment, society and themselves. That time never existed. Young people have always and quite rightly challenged the status quo.

I’m glad Cameron mentioned the banks. Nobody would do that here.

The more I dwell upon the bank bailouts in the USA the more I realize just how catastrophic it was for the American People. Cauterizing the banking crisis with huge amounts of cash rather than letting those institutions fail has proved very problematic. It confused the message of capitalism. It undermined capitalist principles and laid bare the lies of successive US governments.

Mostly it disheartened those of us who understand that change is imperative for growth.

If the banks had been allowed to fail a new order would be established. A power shift. Other men would hold the reins. New ideas would have flourished. Capitalism would have sorted it out all on its own. Where there is weakness others come to make good. New opportunities revealed for the brave. The next generation of fearless entrepreneurs would have made themselves known.

By bailing out the banks we merely hold on to what we know rather than doing what humans are best at…striking into the unknown.

Does the USA deserve it’s AAA credit rating? Does it matter? I heard many times that Americans, after losing their AAA rating..had their self-esteem knocked.

America’s self-esteem exists in a putrid vat of delusion and self aggrandisement.

I am told over and over again that the US economy is the largest in the world. That may be true but somehow the people have become confused. They tell me that their police, fire department, health system etc. is the best in the world. We are the best at everything. We are the champions of the world. My army keeps you free.

I keep my mouth shut.

It is obvious to those of us who have lived in many different countries that this simply is not true.

I often tell the gays in this blog to get off their asses and break some windows if they want to see change in their country. I am scolded for doing so. Government is petrified of insurrection, rebellion, people on the streets.

David Cameron and the leader of the opposition have impressed me with their willingness to understand what is happening in Britain. Commentators, baffled by the violence, murder and mayhem are trying to work it out. It just didn’t make any sense. Now it is.

The British, like the French are good at letting their frustrations boil over onto the streets. It is part of the fabric of our lives. It sends messages, good and bad, to everyone who complacently enjoys a peaceful life. That peaceful life cannot be taken for granted. Peace, harmony, respect, order…they are earned together.

Together we create society so together we must find solution if we are to keep what we value.

P.S. Yesterday the beautiful deaf boy came to the house and came over my chest.

Dinner at AXE on Abbot Kinney.

So happy that it reopened after the fire that took it out a year ago. Great food, lovely people, delightfully limited menu. We ate goat stew. We ate delicious flat bread. We ate home-grown tomatoes and burrata.

Party at Gabe’s. Sat by the fire talking to a beautiful surfer with long blond hair and thick thighs.

Finally, this beautiful army man blew his brains out because he thought no God would ever forgive what he had done to others in Iraq. Very sad.

Gabe Paradise Cove
“Don’t pester old film makers about your film making.   I don’t care about your process, your poverty or your inertia.   All I care about is that you make a film.   Just do it and make it good.”           Duncan Roy  June 2011

So,  here I am again.  Good morning hipsters!  I spent an hour in the garden at 7am weeding and watering.  It looks just dandy.  Then I came in and within two minutes I had broken a sugar bowl, a cafetière and jammed my fingers into a draw.

I AM ONE CLUMSY QUEEN.

Yesterday Gabe and I went to Paradise Cove Beach Cafe on the PCH for lunch.  We were charged $5 each for walking from the PCH where we parked into the restaurant rather than paying $3 to use their car park.  I thought they were kidding.  A $5 ‘walking fee’?  Rip Off USA.  It made me so mad.  Gabe just looked bemused as I let the manager have two barrels of shit.  In turn the manager just looked at the crazy man and  rolled over like a puppy.

He offered us a beach side table, a waitress with psychiatric training and a refund.

A $5 walking fee?  How can they get away with that shit?

We ate their mediocre ribs, drank their weak tea, sat on their grubby beach.  Thankfully we sat next to an attractive married couple from Hollywood who really were worth meeting.  He sells sex toys on-line.  They were like a gay couple.  Hot tub parties and three ways.  I really liked them.  She said that when they have a baby they might calm down a bit.

Gabe sat on my lap and held my hand, massaged my fingers.  It was so sweet.  We were the only gays on the beach.  The out of towners looked at us suspiciously.  Yet again I felt uncomfortable.  Fuck!  When I was with the Penguin/Matt/Jamie I didn’t care.  Because, I suppose, when I was with them I didn’t care what other people thought.  It was just us…and as I have said before:  I would have defended my love with my life.

After lunch we investigated the pier, the peace paddle (some hippy event) we talked for ages to a lady who had worked in India on an ashram who now sells South Indian food from a food truck.  She told us dolefully how the city of LA is targeting the food truck community (there are 500 of them) with all sorts of horrible rules.  What ever happened to American innovation being encouraged and celebrated?

(Even the sex toy guy is despondent about how small businesses are treated.  He is moving his cash to Brazil.)

Food trucks are a recessionary necessity.  A perfect response.

The previous day Anna and I had been on Abbot Kinney.  The first Friday of every month the streets has a kind of street party.  The galleries open late and every thirty feet there is a food truck.  It was so much fun.  We bumped into Meg Ryan and her friend Laura Dern.

Anyway, we ate all sorts.  We struggled through the crowds.  Some man who thought he knew me.  Said, “Hey!  How are you?”  I let him think he knew me.  At the end of the conversation he realised who I was and the meeting came to an abrupt ending.  This happened in Ojai too.  It seems to happen more and more.

Last night I was talking to a young film maker and gave him the advice quoted at the top of the page.  Very Ayn Rand of me.

Today I am hiking with Tom.  Gabe is coming over to relax.  Miles has recovered from his binge.  Cooking dinner for us all tonight.

I feel rather wonderful.  Having fun.  At peace.

Let’s not forget shall we that I was nominated for a BAFTA for my film AKA.  However insane you might think me now…there was a time when I could get things done and to a certain extent I still can.  I only mention this because some people would like to forget that it ever happened…rendering me and my life utterly useless.

So, I decided to fetch out all of my awards put them on my desk.

Last day of the vile tasting chinese herbal medicine yesterday.   No more foul-smelling pee.

There seems to be a small window of creative opportunity that I can mine the first thing in the morning.  Just after I have had my coffee.  If I am lucky I can spin this into a day of writing.  If I fail to act then I tend not to write a thing.

I bought a small publication at The New Museum called For Lonely Adults Only.  A pictorial diary by Regis Trigano.  It is very beautiful.  Documenting this gay artists various hookups.

I feel sad.

Set adrift in an ocean of self-pity.  FUCK!

I am often asked where one can buy my version of Dorian Gray.  Well, we only really played it at festivals.  When the cast becomes more famous (as they are doing) we may very well release it.  It is proving nicely.  One day it will be released.

I am in LA.  At the house.  Another huge rattle snake in the garden resting on the step.  I hit it with spade but it slithered away.   Thankfully the Little Dog didn’t see it.   He may very well have chased it.

The twins are a joy.  So sweet to me.  The house was perfectly well-kept when I got home.  The larder well stocked and the fridge full of things I would never eat but hey ho.

I bought the most beautiful new hat.  A Derby from Stronghold on Abbot Kinney.  Dinner at Nobu with Miami Henri.   He looked better in my hat than I did.  See above.  Damn.

Sharon S came by and I made cauliflower cheese and pasta ripiena.  The twins need to learn how to cook.  I taught them how to make a roux then showed then how to turn that into a delicious cheese sauce.  They don’t even know how to boil pasta!  Miles makes the most inedible, lumpy, often burned scrambled egg.

I forced them to watch Rachel Maddow.  They are self-proclaimed born again christian republicans.  Once they understand what is really going on they are amazed at how the world really is.

One of them said, “Obama is trying to cut funding for education.”  No, I grimaced, he’s not.

The other said, “Is there a Republican Rachel Maddow?”  I balked.

I think that they were anti-abortion.  Hmmm.  Not for much longer.  I feel like Socrates corrupting the youth of Greece.  Let’s hope that I don’t end up like him.  Oh why not?

Will be back in NYC in two weeks then Cannes, after Cannes I will spend a week or so in London and Whitstable.  I bought a ticket to Sydney for next winter.   I need me some Southern Hemisphere.

This is great!  Please listen to this lecture from the good people at TED.

The young twins arrived last night.  Spent a couple of hours making beds and sorting where they are going to stow their things.

Because of the terrible storm I could not get up to my house until late yesterday so as I was staying over at J & J’s house.  I drove with Jason to Venice through the Santa Monica Mountains.  The storm has caused huge amounts of damage.   Thankfully CalTrans have dealt with the worst of the mess.  Did I mention that during the storm we saw 5 Pepperdine boys surfing the steep lawn on their campus.  Wetsuits in the rain.  Looked like fun.

I dropped Jason off at work then arranged to meet Sinatra and Hilary at Intelligentsia on Abbot Kinney.  After an hour and some extraordinarily expensive Rwandan blend coffee and an ‘artisan made’ orange and cranberry muffin I picked Lily up from school in Malibu and drove her home.

The logistical nightmare that is having three kids in different schools all over LA.

Found myself alone with Max, we sat at home discussing rap music.  He is 13.

My stomach ached all day.  A mixture of anxiety from having JB at the forefront of my thoughts once again and exhaustion from staying up all night at the Sober Living facility.

This morning I woke early and made tea for us all and set about doing long overdue desk work.  All three of us are tapping away quietly on our macs.   Must go buy loo roll.  These boys sure get through it.

I find myself in limbo once again.

However beautiful the twins are I am discombobulated.   Absent.   Sad.

It certainly is.

Balls not withstanding.   The heavy snow and cold conditions don’t stop me from getting in my little car and driving to Canterbury.

We are only seven miles from one of the most beautiful Cathedrals cities in the world.

Meandering through the snowy Kent countryside listening to BBC Radio 4 I arrived, parked inside the Roman city walls and walked down Palace Street looking for a man to unlock my iPhone.  The ancient and the modern.

I love Canterbury, I love the tiny medieval streets, the busy shops.  I ended up buying a cell phone…as it looks as if I maybe here for longer than I anticipated and I have to keep in contact with the hospital.  I bought the correct adaptors and leads etc for my lap top so I no longer need to pop into Georgina’s and use hers.

The economy seems really good.  Really good.  The shops are packed with paying customers.  We are well out of recession.  It’s like the British are embarrassed to let the American’s know that our economy is just fine.

The average British person really doesn’t have a clue just how bad things are in the USA.  No idea at all.  They don’t know about the unemployment, the foreclosures, the corruption or the burgeoning right-wing tea party movement.  They are oblivious to Sarah Palin or Glenn Beck.

One day very soon they will wake up to a very different America and a very different world run by ignorant, xenophobic thugs.

Even on a wet, cold, miserable Tuesday in Canterbury people look quite unlike those you see not shopping in sunny Santa Monica.

All of the little restaurants and gift shops are packed with customers in Whitstable too.  The Whitstable shopping equivalent: Venice CA the shops on the main drag Abbot Kinney are still boarded up.

If things are fine why is the government hell-bent of dealing so aggressively with what is evidently a self solving problem like the deficit?  THE DEFICIT!

This British government is forcing austerity upon the nation because?  Because the people have had things so good for so long?

This country is not falling apart, seems very stable and prosperous from what I can see..but under the guise of the DEFICIT reduction plan this new government stealthily returns to Thatcher type fiscal/social conservatism.  The class havoc deliberately caused with unnecessary job reduction ends up merely furthering their class war aims.

Governments like drama.

British Governments, like Hollywood studio execs, cause problems so that they can be seen to fix them.  The people, our British people, unlike the sleepy time/weed brained/prozaced citizens of my adopted home the USA…we will get off our angry asses and break some windows.  Make our voices heard.  No, you bloody can’t start charging our children for a university education…something you had for free.  NO.

Thanks to the bankers to whom we are already indebted in so many, many ways we can give extra thanks that we can now officially add the innocuous word deficit to the list of things we are encouraged to fear.  Along with Asylum Seeker, ASBO, global warming, that millennium bug thing (remember that?) and, of course…terrorist.

DEFICIT=TERRORIST.  Something abstract and confusing to be frightened of.

In the UK everybody complains about their gas bill and it’s true that utility bills here are out of control…a recent price hike of 40%.  Where the people have no option the corporation steps in and gouges whatever it can.  Same as the Insurance industry.  The law states that you must buy car insurance so the insurance industry just demands what ever it likes from whom ever it likes.

You want to know about the hospital?   The German oncologist was very nice.   Do you need to know more?  We wait for further test results.  Who could have foreseen that a jolly German oncologist would make his way center stage into my life.

I actually feel a great deal better already.  I just trust European doctors more than American doctors and they agreed that me coming here was the best possible thing to do.  Not having to worry about paying a huge amount of money to anyone anytime soon for what should be a human right sure takes the pressure off.

After it was all over at the surgery I came home and lay down under a pile of blankets and fell asleep.  What with the Jake stuff this has not been a great year.  Not one of my best.  Not a great vintage.

The little dog just hates the snow and who can blame him?  His little paws are soaked in cold water up to the ankles.  He tags along after me very bravely.

last night Carol cooked a delicious dinner here at the house and we greedily scoffed baked potatoes, ham and a delicious salad made of crunchy endive and baby tomatoes and watercress.

Seeing Charlie tomorrow and others in London.  Going to risk the roads in my little car.

Oh yes…I read yesterday that somebody somewhere in the US press demanded that Obama get some ‘backbone’.  How dare anyone ask President Obama to have ‘backbone’ when his constituents lack any kind of skeleton what so ever.

In Obama the liberals chose a limp shield made of skin (albeit black) and gristle behind which to gripe about their own inertia.

There were many times when I was with him that I wanted to drink.  Not because I wanted to get drunk but because I wanted to be where he was.

I didn’t want to feel apart from him.  I wanted to share his experience.  Our experience as he experienced it.  Making love after a couple of glasses of wine.

Wanting so much to feel that warm glow that I remember being ever so slightly tipsy affords me.

So glad I didn’t.  Could you imagine giving up sobriety for him?  For anyone?  I shudder when I think about it.

The desire to fit in never really goes away.

So, yet again, fate has been kind.  I’m lucky to have escaped without totally ruining my life.  I’m telling you if I was drinking now I would never be able to deal with half of what is being thrown at me.

Even though we have been estranged.  My relationship with AA has really been the best thing that ever happened to me.

Even though I don’t want to believe it.

My relationship with LA AA has been particularly beneficial.

Going back to my 7am meeting in the Palisades.   That’s why I’ve been waking at 5am, write this blog then schlepping down the mountain to that little room.  It was the men in that room that persuaded me to move here to California.  After a couple of years of getting involved I stopped going.  The personalities there started to annoy me.  I stopped listening.  So, this time, I have been pretending I don’t know anyone.  Like it’s my first time.  Listening for the similarities, going back to basics.  Relearning the language of AA.

It has been a time of great reflection.  AA birthdays always make one think of how life might have been if I hadn’t stopped drinking.   Good God.   I was always so angry.  Every day.

My anger is so destructive.  I wonder if it has anything to do with that massive head injury I suffered when I was a kid?

Even though you might not believe it, I really hate me when I am angry (really hate me) and as you have seen these past few months I am not well served when I get angry.  Letting myself down like that.  Love, it seems, not only brings me sorrow but makes me very angry.  Angry is not the man I want to be.

My real father was a very angry man.  Not my step-father.  My real father was pathologically angry.  My step-father was just frustrated by me. If I hadn’t been around he would have been much calmer.  Probably.  There I go again, letting him off the hook.

So, I shall be off in a minute.  Making my entrance again with my usual flair.

I had my Manhunt date Number Seven last night.  It was lovely.  Let’s see what happens.  I told him about the blog and (you wont believe this) I decided that after this entry I wouldn’t write about what happens between us.  Do I wish I hadn’t written about Jake?  No, he deserved it.  To be written about.  But, I may have learned my lesson.  Some things just need to be not written about.

I’ll tell you this before I keep my mouth shut:

We walked up Abbot Kinney in Venice.  We ate at all the food trucks.  It was really, really sweet.

The house is now officially on the market.  First viewing today.  I am in two minds.  Part of me doesn’t want to sell.  Part of me is desperate to.  I will never have the opportunity to own such a gorgeous house ever again but buying a small place in NYC is perhaps a better idea.

Jerome popped by yesterday and said, “You have too much stuff.”

He’s right.

I spent a great part of yesterday getting rid of half of my books.  I now have a much leaner library.  Dictionaries gone.  Thanks internet.  Thanks Kindle.  Thanks new technology.  Thanks spell-check.

I am not the sort of person who hoards crap.  Everything I have is beautiful and could probably sell for exactly or even more than I bought it.

I love heavy, white linen.  When the house is rented I put colored sheets on the bed.  Now I live here full-time I have stripped off the dark green sheets and remade the bed with my freshly laundered, white Irish linen.

It is still dark.  Waiting for the dawn.  The light on my desk attracts moths.  Tiny little moths.  I crush them and put them in the bin.

A HUGE cricket just landed on my desk.

This morning Ashley and I went for a long walk down the mountain to the new road.  The contractors don’t seem to be working today.  When the old road tarmac runs out we walk on the new, unmade road.

Willie runs like a mad thing through the dust and kicks up quite a storm.  The little dog scampers off leash but I dare not let Willie off his quite yet and risk him running off..even though he sticks close and checks in constantly.

We all worked up quite a sweat on the steep path home.

Watered the garden, skimmed the pond.

Waiting for my watch.  Must pay water bill.

Yesterday I demanded that Toby (couldn’t get out of bed) drive from Mid Wilshire to Venice where we had breakfast with Beautiful Brazilian Frank at Sauce.  The traditional breakfast, poached eggs..grilled tomatoes (they called them heirloom) and delicious bacon.  the Persian guy who owns the place made me some wonderful hot chocolate with almond milk.  Must buy Mexican chocolate.  Must buy Mexican chocolate.

After breakfast we walked Abbot Kinney.  I bumped into Andrew who looked very chic in a blue cotton jacket and tight jeans.  That boy has STYLE.  He is so tall and knows how to wear clothes rather than letting them wear him..I just can’t help myself..lol..but the ex (Fame Whore) couldn’t wear a stitch without it looking like something hauled out of a thrift store.

We stopped off at Intelligentsia for coffee and bought a new collar for the dog.

After our long walk I went home and took a nap before Manhunt date number 6 turned up.  Wow!  What a beauty.  28, architect..into S&M.  I think I will be seeing more of him.  We clicked on so many levels.  Out since he was a teenager, knows what he wants, great looking and eager to please.

Somehow the age difference did not matter as our particular interests and pursuits dovetailed seamlessly.  We talked for hours about art and architects.  Discussed my favorite contemporary high-rise the Swiss Re building designed by the hideously talented Norman Foster.  I am sure I have discussed this before but viewed from the Tate Modern this exquisite barley twist lozenge causes all of its neighbours to look so dated, miserable and bland.

It is almost TOO beautiful.

As I move away from Jake I still feel like I have stepped in dog shit and even though I have scrubbed my shoes a million times there is a lingering smell.  Just enough to remember his skank face.

Must do chores today.  Boring chores.

I looked over an old script that needs resurrecting.  I need to write the film of my relationship with Jake.  Of course I will make him far worse than he is but that is my prerogative as a film maker.  I will also make me worse than I am.  I am, after all, no saint.

Joke!  I’m not wasting my time rehashing that miserable tale.  Fuck him.

When the architect left last night I watched TV.  I dipped into Madmen which is a really terrible show.  So clumsily written.  Settled for HGT and the Food Network flipping between Iron Chef..a show about Food Trucks and endless make over shows.   Just what I needed.

Sneering at other people’s bad taste.

I’m in Malibu.  It ‘s 7.30am.

A veil of mist has enveloped the house.

The fierce sunlight refracting through the pure white cloud is exactly the same light as if it had been snowing.

Yesterday, after making peace with the memory of JB, I met Michael at Solar and discussed scripts.  He is a delightful man.  I told him that I’d read his script but was loathed to say anything.

People ask for criticism but they only want praise.

I dashed off to see Danielle and she worked through her slate, her list of projects.

We sat opposite Jane Fonda who looked a little frail but still radiant.  I was briefly introduced and told her how much I adored Klute.   She shared a few anecdotal memories about the making of the film.

Bumped into Degan who is moving in with his younger boyfriend.  I didn’t balk.  I thought to myself (as the ghost of what could have been passed through me) well, that was then this is now.  As I’ve said before it’s quite obvious that I’m never going to have that moving in thing happen to me so I may as well just accept things as they are and get on with it.

There is no room in my life for melancholy.  I have devoted too much time to drama, misery and bad choices.

It’s an illusion that the young are happy, an illusion for those who have lost it.  The young know they are wretched, for they are full of truthless ideal and each time they come in contact with the real, they are bruised and wounded.

My meeting with the accountant was fruitful.  Apparently life is not quite as fraught as I thought it was.

I met Hillary in Venice and walked the entire length of Abbot Kinney gossiping and laughing.

We ate a light supper at Wholefoods.  I’m sorry but eating food outside a grimy supermarket is just too much.  I bought a grilled chicken that I shared with the Lil Dog.

Fantabulosa is the bio pic of actor and British TV personality Kenneth Williams starring Michael Sheen.

BAFTA organized a screening for the members in a small Santa Monica cinema.

It’s a sad film.  I identified very much with Kenneth’s sexual anorexia, his inability to form loving relationships with other men and the mask he wore to get through a life he considered useless.

Met the boy who played Joe Orton in Fantabulosa.  Kenny Doughty and his wife seem very pleasant.

“It is difficult to know people and I don’t think one can ever really know any but one’s own countrymen.

For men and women are not only themselves; they are also the county in which they are born, the city or the farm in which they learnt to walk, the games they played as children, the old wives’ tales they overheard, the food they ate, the schools they attended, the sports they played, the poets they read, and the God they believed in.

It is all these things that have made them what they are, and these are the things that you can’t come to know by hearsay, you can only know them if you have lived them.”

It seems so easy, helping my friend in London put his film together without any thought of directing it myself.  It has given me a great deal of pleasure.  Of course I know how to negotiate the making of a film.  A big film or a small film.  Films naturally find their own scale.

I’ve no idea yet what sort of film we will make.  We are currently looking for a great script.

It was lovely listening to Michael Sheen talk about Kenneth Williams.  He obviously developed a profound affection for Kenneth by simply walking in his shoes.   I wondered what the similarities were between these two very different men.

Michael talked amusingly at dinner about meeting Tony Blair at Rupert Murdoch’s house.  He talked about Polari, the 17th Century gay slang, I introduced to Jake B.  He described his friendship with Barbra Windsor.

I hope I helped JB understand the culture and history that precedes him.  It’s so important for gay men to own their history, not as prescribed by straight people as they have written us in the pages of their newspapers…but the oral history that may get lost as another generation of gay men grow up.   We have such a rich history, such joy and tragedy…but we are loathed to own it.

There was a superb Somerset Maugham quote used in the movie:

“What do we any of us have but our illusions and what do we ask of others that we be allowed to keep them?”

When I was a young boy Maugham’s childhood home still stood on Canterbury Road in Whitstable.  It was a beautiful Victorian rectory that savage developers later pulled down and replaced with five vile, mock Georgian horrors.  Anyway, before it was demolished, I made friends with the owners and every Sunday after church I would sit in the huge conservatory, feed their chickens and look at the goldfish in their pond.  They gave me a small piece of amethyst that I still own.

When I went to bed last night I found a poisonous spider folded into the linen.  I didn’t kill it.  It’s nice to share your bed with something living even if it’s only a spider or a little dog.

As I look back over the past months I understand that one can’t do what one thinks is right without making someone else unhappy.

In the time that it has taken me to write this blog the mist has magically retreated revealing the ocean.  I am going for a long walk.

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