Archives for posts with tag: Melbourne

On the Phone

As the elderly gray-haired gays tittle-tattle at Joe’s Coffee shop on Commercial Street, making snide comments about those they like and those they don’t… like so many teenage girls, bullying, name calling and whispering. The lesbians remain dignified and polite.  They say good morning or make easy conversation. They comment on the weather or ones choice of croissant in such a way that improves the quality of the day.

Not all lesbian are like this of course but my experience here in Provincetown is irrefutable.

We chanced upon a lesbian memorial at Herring Cove a few nights ago, a memorial for a woman who died last October.  There were photographs of her set around the fire on sticks.  I sat with her wife of 30 years and she reminisced.  She told me their story.  I wondered how she would cope on her own.

“Oh, you get used to it.”  She said.

I didn’t believe her.  Dude sat on her lap.  She loved Dude and Dude loved her.  We ate her Red Velvet gluten free cup cake and sprayed ourselves with insect repellent.

Memorial

Last night I stopped for a slice of pizza with Brent and Derek, my crime fighting buddies.

Derek

We’d had a long day, I was up at 5am.  I’d spent an hour or so on the phone with lawyers.  I spent time answering emails.  I filled in forms and scanned them.   I made time to have a pair of sandals made here:

Sandle Workshop

Like most days I walked the dogs in the graveyard with Benoit.  I walked the dogs on the beach.  I walked the dogs to Joe’s coffee shop.  I walked the dogs to the West End and back east again.  Dude is still fat.  The Little Dog is lithe and eager.

Dude in a Grave

I found a beautiful dusky gray/mauve tamarisk at Captain Jack’s Wharf.

Tamarisk

Brent and I poked our noses into John Derian’s home/shop.  His little shop of curiosities.  He sells French glass cloche and rattan and decoupage.  Who buys decoupage?  Everyone apparently.

I ordered the slice of Pizza and sat with Derek.  It was delicious.  As I was leaving, I heard a Northern English accent.  Two elderly women from Manchester… eating the largest pizza I have ever seen.  They looked embarrassed.

They said, “This is too big for us, d’you want some?”

I overcame my English reserve and sat with them and ate their pizza.   They were retired PE teachers from Bolton.  They had lived together the past 15 years.  They had a small house and garden and took the bus into central Manchester which, they assured me, was very safe and had loads to do.

I wanted to know what they were doing with their retirement.

They said they went to concerts and the theatre and sat outside ‘weather permitting’ enjoying Manchester’s ‘cafe society’.  They rode their bikes and looked after their cats.  Mostly they travelled, this year they had been to The Galapagos and seen the giant tortoise and snorkel with penguins, they had taken a safari in Africa and showered out doors under the stars.  They had visited a brother in Sydney and driven to Melbourne along the coast, like I had with that beautiful boy… all those years ago.

I found myself talking about getting older.

Old people aren’t the same as when I was growing up.” I wondered.  “Yes,” they said, “Not the same at all.”

“They retired and spent time just waiting to die.” I said.  “Yes.” They nodded in unison.

I told them about my grandmother who was widowed when she was in her 50’s and at that very moment became an old lady.  Cut her hair short, permed it and let it whiten.   She died when she was 96.  I didn’t cry.  My mother did, she sobbed like I sobbed when the big dog was killed.  She was inconsolable, as was I about my dog.

I thought a great deal about my grandmother, chatting with these dear old lesbians.  I wondered how she could have lived so long feeling so miserable, stuck in one town, complaining about this and that… isolated from all her daughters (how can a mother hate her own daughters?) other than my mother.  I remembered just how much she didn’t want to die.  She was terrified.  I wondered if my uncle Norman killed her.  There was little love lost between them and he was with her at the end.  She would have been too weak to fight.

We said our goodbyes and good nights.  I’m sure I’ll bump into them again.  I hope I do.  I wish I was an old lady.

The light is beautiful here today.  The sea is sparkling.  I want for nothing.  Happily looking over the Atlantic, the Cape swinging around me teaming with life.  Lobsters, basking sharks, oysters, cod and herring.  I had fish and chips for lunch yesterday.

Here are my finished sandals:

New Sandals

 

 

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At this time of life it is time to take a good hard look at what is and what could be.

The obvious frailties: reading glasses, aching joints, the prospect of a life without enduring love.

If I had only invested in a surrogate child. All my fears may be allayed.

That, for the uninitiated, was irony. You know how I feel about those surrogate gaybies. Abandoned to nannies until they can talk. Dressed up like performing monkeys.

“They spent every weekend on Fire Island this season and didn’t take the baby once.”

I am judged by what I own, by the company I keep, the baby I can afford, the art on my walls, the boy in my bed, the ideas in my head, the club I belong to, the house of my dreams, the car in the drive, the clothes on my back, the God of my understanding. I am judged.

Who am I? Take all of this away and leave me on the streets of Brooklyn and I am content. I want to be just like you. My history erased. My name changed. Once again.

The fire sweeps through the apartment building. The fire captains excited by the prospect of a real fire, manageable, heroic. Nobody is injured. The windows are smashed. The art deco facade blackened.

The jews are on the streets blowing their horns for the new year.

“Are you Jewish?” The young Hasidic Jew asks me.

” No. I’m not a Jew.”

I change my mind the next time I am asked. “Yes,” I lie, “I’m a Jew.”

He takes out the ram’s horn. I stand there in front of this eager youth with boyish whiskers and a large black hat, (the bastard child hat of the sombrero and the fedora) and for ten minutes he chants incantations and blows his horn.

We walk to Park Slope, enjoying the multi-million dollar mansions, the Art Deco Brooklyn Library, the renovated Museum with oddly placed Rodin in the foyer.

Delightful Prospect Park adjoining the Museum could have been designed by Capability Brown but was (of course) designed by Frederick Law Olmsted the designer of Central Park.

We ate at the new burger joint in Park Slope. My burger was made of Elk.

As I was ordering my elk burger I opened an urgent email. My friend’s brother had been shot dead on his farm in Maryland. He was found, partially eaten by animals, on his tractor. They have no idea if it is suicide or murder.

I filed the tragic news as ‘pending’.  I called his Mother and offered condolences and help.

These streets. They yield all manner of fine opportunity. I can disappear on these streets.

Today it is dark, wet and grey. The wind is warm however, the rain splashes onto my face. The Little Dog sits patiently outside the coffee shop.

Yesterday I lay in the arms of a beautiful boy who wanted me to fuck him. His cat curled up in a shoe box.

After he came we lay watching Glee in bed.

Mawkish, sentimental nonsense, a world invented by gay men where periodically an entire orchestra will appear from nowhere and youngsters will start singing hearty cover versions of popular tunes. A world run by the LGBT community. Bullying each other with waspish bon mot.

The drama is lackluster and situational.

The one-dimensional characters problems are slight, their solutions are wholly achievable. They worry to the point of suicide about their home town until they are saved by the gay hero.

This new gay frontier, where blue-collar dads talk like Kant, where black trans boys walk freely and unchallenged around a mid-west high school in full drag… this homo-utopia merely betray the dreams these gay writers had about their own youth. The dream of freedom.

The episode starred Whoopie Goldberg and Kate Hudson as teachers. Teachers masquerading as judges from America’s Got Talent.

“You’re Fired!” “You’re Cut!”

But of course Kate has a drinking problem and a lost dream and Whoopie wants to be Maya Angelou.

I took the dog and the train into Manhattan where I met with old friend Oscar Humphries who looked amazingly well.

We have had our fair share of adventure (all over the world) these past ten years:  Driving 24 hours into the Australian bush to a Bachelor and Spinster ball  for the Sydney Morning Herald.  Louche nights in Paris and London…

Son of Dame Edna Everage creator Barry Humphries he is perhaps one of the most talented yet self-destructive people I know. We went to an NA meeting on Prince St. Then dinner at Cafe Select.  I just adore him.

I had a late date after dinner with a charming man. We brought cup cakes and drank hot chocolate on West 4th St.

I climbed into bed at midnight and fell straight to sleep.

Nightmare: The Cohen’s, David and his 6 children are looking after The Little Dog. I bump into the youngest son who tells me without compassion that “You’ll probably be sad when I tell you this but…” they had to put The Little Dog to sleep because it was too ‘nippy’.

Were I the Moor I would not be Iago.
In following him I follow but myself;
Heaven is my judge, not I for love and duty,
But seeming so for my peculiar end.
For when my outward action doth demonstrate
The native act and figure of my heart
In compliment extern, ’tis not long after
But I will wear my heart upon my sleeve
For daws to peck at. I am not what I am

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