Archive for June, 2012


June 28, 2012

Remember Justin Guarini of 1st season of American Idol fame?  He has a one man show now called From Idol to Broadway (bad, bad title) at Joe’s Pub in New York City.

Justin Guarini’s new show “From Idol to Broadway” captures the world-class entertainer’s journey from the days of paying his dues, to skyrocketing to fame on the inaugural season of American Idol, and right through to his first of many bows on Broadway.  A funny and touching look at what makes an entertainer who has carved out niches in radio, film, television, theatre, and music tick, join Justin for a blend of hilarious and sobering stories from the road, popular music that covers virtually every genre, and a voice that captivates audiences night after night.

Sidenote: doesn’t Justin Guarini circa AI look like Sideshow Bob?

Last Night In My Dream

June 27, 2012

… I simply didn’t show up to work one day and then was trying to brainstorm a nervous breakdown –– not really fake, per se, but cultivate.

Also, this $745 pom pom hat played a big role, which was… weird.

by Lanvin. Please note this post is not categorized as “buy me this.”

RIP Nora

June 27, 2012

A list originally published in The Huffington Post (or, I guess, ON The Huffington Post.)


1. Journalists sometimes make things up.

2. Journalists sometimes get things wrong.

3. Almost all books that are published as memoirs are initially written as novels, and then the agent/editor says, this might work better as a memoir.

4. Beautiful young women sometimes marry ugly, old rich men.

5. In business, there is no such thing as synergy in the good sense of the term.

6. Freedom of the press belongs to the man who owns one.

7. Nothing written in today’s sports pages makes sense to anyone who didn’t read yesterday’s sports pages.

8. There is no explaining the stock market but people try.

9. The Democrats are deeply disappointing.

10. Movies have no political effect whatsoever.

11. High-protein diets work.

12. A lot of people take the Bible literally.

13. Pornography is the opiate of the masses.

14. You can never know the truth of anyone’s marriage, including your own.

15. People actually sign pre-nuptial agreements.

16. Mary Matalin and James Carville are married.

17. Muslims hate us.

18. Everybody lies.

19. The reason why it’s important for a Democrat to be President is the Supreme Court.

20. Howard Stern is apparently very nice in person.

21. In Manhattan a small one-bedroom apartment that needs work costs $1 million.

22. People look like their dogs.

23. Cary Grant was Jewish.

24. Cary Grant wasn’t Jewish.

25. Larry King has never read a book.

Personal Ads in The New York Review of Books

June 26, 2012

Exactly as cliched and hilarious as you would imagine.

Personal Services

EROTIC EXPLOSION: Let me blow your mind, your ultimate erogenous zone.  Provocative talk with educated beauty.  No limits.  (xxx) xxx-xxxx

AURAL EROTICA: with a naughty raconteur.  Uninhibited, unhurried kinky fun and fetish friendly.  Elizabeth.  (xxx) xxx-xxxx –– Meet single book lovers who value green living, natural health, personal growth, spirituality.

SACRED EROTIC … The Incredible Lightness of Touch.  Private, safe, tasteful.  Greenwich Village.  (xxx) xxx-xxxx


LEGGY, LITERATE BRUNETTE seeks bookish sixty-something man with good stories to tell.

FABULOUS FEMALE MANHATTAN ARTIST seeks fit guy from anywhere, who lives in the Big Apple and could share with this happening gal of 80, dinners out, passion for travel, music, film, theater, books and art.

FIGHTING THE GOOD FIGHT against the fading light, Chicago financier seeks passion, romance, companionship and intelligent conversation to minimize impact of wife’s advanced Alzheimer’s.  He is superbly fit, mentally strong, financially able, socially adept, culturally competent, thoughtful, compassionate, handsome, and clever but these qualities are inadequate while caught in the web of confusion and stress that this illness creates.

TALL, GRACIOUS, slender yet shapely woman with a little Euro-chicness, low-key but top notch, newly empty nester (kids in college), based in NY and DC.  Fishing for sophistication, wit and enthusiasm in one man, age 50-65, with passion for both work and play, is focused but does not take himself too seriously.  Must also be tender, loving and enjoy a healthy lifestyle.

IF CONNECTING WITH A SOMEWHAT QUIRKY 29-year-old Columbia Ph.D. student who is at least reasonably attractive by most standards, and who has a sincere interest in much of the standard cultural fare of a reasonably well-educated urbanite (e.g. opera, theater, live (mostly classical) music, art museums) piques your interest, you might consider contacting me.  By way of greater disclosure, I might add that I have an incorrigibly curious nature, a handful of curmudgeonly views, a streak of friskiness, a touch of melancholy.  I’d like to find a partner, guide, lover, leader, and co-explorer and -idler.  Please be between roughly 40 and 55, at least a tad unconventional, kind (of course), passionate, and, at least in some one way, rather exceptional.  I’ll be happy to provide a photo once contact is established.

Reasons to Drop Out of Society

June 25, 2012

1. This:


2. This:


Part Three

June 21, 2012

Sorry it’s taken so long to get here!

“Found Jeanne, my eight-year-old, asleep in Suzie Blue’s room on the top floor, her hair full of pincurls.  She had been planning on a dazzling and glamorous entrance at dinner time.  I woke her just enough to ask if she wanted to come on downstairs and join the festivities.  But just at this point, Ted Cook, who had been captured in the ruined formal garden behind the ‘meditation house’ was standing among the extra turkeys in the butler’s pantry, alternately shouting horrifically in some abrupt, violent fright, and murmuring beatific nonsense at those who were trying to calm him.  Jeanne listened to the noises from downstairs for a while, and decided judiciously to stay where she was.  She asked me to bring her a dinner, which I painfully did, handling cape and gown and tray most clumsily on the stairs.  She and Suzie settled themselves in, cozy and snug, getting high and watching television.

I finally got around to eating, settled halfway up the first flight of stairs in the entry hall, as the dining room was way too crowded.  Alan passed by, looking totally out of his mind.  He was working on his third plate and his sixth glass of wine.  I told him what was going on upstairs, which hugely delighted him, and he went on up to join Jeanne and Suzie in front of the TV version of Jason and the Argonauts.

Soon after this, we had the kirtan that Ted Cook had interrupted before dinner, and Ted Cook brought it about.  He had wandered out of the butler’s pantry and settled down on a black trunk in the small entry hall, his trip still struggling between good and bad.  Allen Ginsberg followed closely behind and sat down on the floor next to him.  The hall was small, cold and drafty, and the floor was tiled and very hard.  Allen began to sing mantras to Ted, and slowly a crowd gathered in spite of the discomfort.  We brought cushions and our dinner plates, and sat on the ground or in each other’s laps, squeezed into that tiny space.

We sang for over two hours: ‘Hare Krishna,’ ‘Hare Om Namo Shivaya,’ ‘Om Sri Maitreya’ –– one after another of Allen’s favorites.  Kumar, our Hindu friend, with Naomi, one of his two women, me and the kids, Howie from the ashram, Karen Detweiler, a young blonde witchgirl who kept a cauldron in the Millbrook forest, Judy Mayhan, our blues singer, Jackie Leary, Tim’s son, and many of the Ashram people –– all joined together in singing for this strange, frightened man whom no one of us had known two or three hours before.  He slowly relaxed; his Buddha-nature began to shine forth –– reluctantly at first, and then stronger as our energy built.  He finally became perfectly joyous, joined us in singing a Shiva mantra over and over, and after a long time was able to wander about and join in the throng in which a good third of the guests were probably as stoned as he.

I had learned a lot from watching the kindness and understanding that Allen had so spontaneously held out to a fellow creature.  That kirtan remains to this day the most moving I’ve ever been in.  But the day was to hold one more heavy learning experience for me.

I heard from Joel Kramer that Tim, who hadn’t been downstairs to eat at all, was on a high dosage ‘sessions’ (usual Millbrook terminology for tripping), and that he ‘had to be seen to be believed.’  I was naturally a little curious to know what that meant –– to see what Tim was into.  So I went on up to the third floor, first stopping in Suzie Blue’s room to ask Alan if he had seen Tim since he turned on.  Alan nodded and said, in his best rhetorical style, ‘I’ll never be angry with him again.’  When I asked him why, he said simply, ‘Go in and see for yourself.’

I knocked on the door to Timothy and Rosemary’s room, and opened it.  The space in the room was warped –– a funny kind of visual effect curved it somehow, as if it were in a different time-space continuum.  I have since talked to other old-time trippers and hangers-around-trippers about this, and they all admit to seeing something similar at some point when they came ‘cold’ upon people who were on a very high dosage of acid.  The visual effect is a bit like the ‘heat waves’ that show around a candle flame, or a hot car in the summer sun, or the waves that rise from the hot asphalt of a highway in the desert.  I have seen it a few times since.  I remember waking one night later that winter when Alan Marlowe and John Wieners were tripping in the bowling alley and seeing the air around them curved in the same way –– some kind of high-energy charge that becomes visible.  But this was the first time I had ever seen anything like it, and it literally made me gasp.

Stepping into the room was like stepping into another dimension.  Timothy looked at me from a million light-years away, from a place of great sadness and loneliness and terrible tiredness, and after a long time he formed the one word ‘Beloved.’  I knelt down to where they were sitting side-by-side on the rug in front of a cold, dark fireplace, and kissed him and Rosemary, spent a moment holding their hands and looking into their eyes, and then went away as quietly as I could, leaving them to each other.

It turned out later that the sherry which had set Ted Cook off was what Tim and Rosemary had also had that day.  Nobody ever managed to figure out how strong it was.  What had happened was this: a new shipment of acid had arrived in powder form.  Timothy dumped half the powder in a two-pound coffee can, dumped in a quart of vodka, sloshed it around, and poured it back in the vodka bottle.  He then repeated the process with the other half of the powder a second quart of vodka.  After that, to save whatever might be sticking to the coffee can, he poured in a fifth of sherry to rinse it out.  It was this sherry that dominated the events of that Thanksgiving.”

— Diane di Prima, “The Holidays at Millbrook — 1966”

Where I Would Rather Be Right Now

June 20, 2012

The South of France

A Poet Peddling His Wares

June 19, 2012

On the subway this AM, there was a poet trying to sell books of his (self-published) and he cited two poems, titled:

“Don’t Beat Your Kids Or They Will End Up Like Me”

And, my personal favorite:

“Corner Store in the MIDDLE of the Block”

A Fictional Brain

June 18, 2012

“This is what the inside of my mind looks like: it’s a skinny white room with wide-planked floors and four windows, one on each wall.  In the middle of the room is a nineteenth-century, elaborately carved double-pedestal desk, stained black.  It’s a real eyesore.  The room is in an old farmhouse, and the farmhouse sits in the middle of a great green field.  It’s so quiet there.  Inside the farmhouse, I stay so still I forget I exist.  I barely make a ripple.”


June 15, 2012

This weekend I’m off to a SHARK FISHING COMPETITION in Montauk, which I will be covering for

In the meantime, he is Maurice Sendak’s contact information, in case he can emerge from the underworld to pick up his mail:

Phone: 203-438-6771


Address: 200 Chestnut Hill Road

Ridgefield, CT 06877