Archive for December, 2009

Story – One day after Christmas and ice cream

Saturday, December 26th, 2009

Around Christmas 2004 I was in Vegas with my mother in her mobile home for the holidays, just me and her and her sleeping a lot because her heart disease was slowing her down to stop, although we would not know this until a couple of months into 2005.


The day after Christmas, my mother slept and slept and slept.
I waited and then I didn’t. Decided to give myself a treat and at 8:30 A.M. I drove in her beat-up car to a casino on the Strip. I wanted a nice breakfast, or an American Breakfast, something I couldn’t get in Europe, something that would clog my heart values at least through lunch.


I went to one of of so-called classy casinos, The Bellagio, which I thought might have an upmarket breakfast the day after Christmas. I didn’t know America and its ways anymore. I was just guessing the possible.
Entering, there were less bells ringing or money tingling slot-machine sounds. Compared to other times, I could even say muted, if muted were a word that went with Vegas.


I went breakfast hunting and walked by one, two, three closed restaurants. Four, five, six closed themed mini-cafés. Where was my post-Christmas day breakfast hiding out? This was America; everything was on offer 24-hours a year. Seeking breakfast down another corridor, I spotted midway down a line of people waiting. A-ha. I walked down to checked where the end of the line went, wanting to know what kind of breakfast I could expect.


It was a compact, hole in the wall ice cream joint. The only place open for breakfast in the whole casino. People came out gripping tubs of ice cream covered in melted chocolate sauce. They sat at thin, painted white wrought-iron tables, and with large plastic spoons, they devoured their Sunday morning breakfast with a scary, steady concentration.


I left before 9 A.M. to find a Denny’s or another casino or nothing at all, I don’t remember anything else about that day. Except muted. I remember muted, though.


muted

Self-Portrait of Someone Else — novel re-issued

Saturday, December 19th, 2009

Announcing the re-issue of the novel, “Self-Portrait of Someone Else”.


SELFPORTRAIT03


Chapters of the novel will be available for free download soon.


To read reviews when it first appeared (N.Y. Times, others).


Here’s a 47 second audio clip of theFirst sentences of novel Self-Portrait of Someone Else.

Free audio clip of “Case Study—Business & Identity”

Tuesday, December 15th, 2009

Here’s a free audio clip of the entire chapter, “Case Study—Business & Identity” from my self-help humor book, “How to Find Yourself (or a reasonable facsimile)”, available at www.hidden-people.net.


It runs about 10 minutes. It features the author with some help from Richard Wells and Helena Snow .


Ta-da!...the link to listen to “Case Study—Business & Identity”: Business & Identity

The Role of the Anatomy in the Search for Self – excerpt from “How to Find Yourself…”

Monday, December 14th, 2009

Here’s a chapter excerpt from my book, “How to Find Yourself (or a reasonable facsimile)” called The Role of the Anatomy in the Search for Self.


Hope you have .pdf installed.


Have fun: The Role of the Anatomy in the Search for Self



Favorite excerpts read from “How to Find Yourself…”

Tuesday, December 8th, 2009

Yes! Actual readers reading their favorite excerpts from my humor book, “How to Find Yourself (or a reasonable facsimile)”. Listen to the best bits read out loud!


This is the last in the series. Many kind brave foolhardy friends and actors and the mainly naive gave of their time and talent for a number of videos wherein they were being wonderful. What I had hoped and planned and aimed was amusing stuff. Just to see. Anyone buying anything was a big extra. But to the people who starred & made these videos worthwhile–double cheek kisses.
kiss-face-angels
I’m not big on selling. It’s why I’m where I am today. Where that is will remain undisclosed for now. But I like fooling around in a serious way. And these videos were part of this, to use a horribly fashionable word, “Process”. And I’m trying things out as I launch this publishing company. What works best, what works less. What I feel like doing, what I’m capable of doing.


Oh and that’s it for How To for now. I’ve been writing and posting a lot recently; will tomorrow, too. Things popping, but I will have some series playwriting to do between now and the beginning of 2010. Rehearsals begin in a month and I got…no, that’s for tomorrow (after this evening’s final auditions).


To the point here! Watch the video here.


Leave comments–here or YouTube–pass this around! Rate it five stars and hug me online!


Read some excerpts your own self, free of charge (!):


A case history… The False-Self-Actualization Syndrome…of a man who found himself too quickly….


It’s tough being a kid…How to Find Yourself during Adolescence…it’s all in the footnote…


This could confuse the philosophically rigid.The Moral Dilemma of Finding Yourself

Ray Bradbury and me, many years ago

Monday, December 7th, 2009

Many years ago in a different land when I was a different person than the one I am today, I encountered, very briefly,Ray Bradbury. The real deal sci-fi author who got mainstream respect.


At that time, I worked in commercial television as a television operations engineer. At home alone, my free time was spent writing, scribbling, white paper and pen battling. Getting my imagination to imagine. I was writing because I had to and to do so meant perhaps I could be a full-time writer. One day, someday, that big hope day.


And then one evening Ray Bradbury, whose work was being made into movies during those years, showed up for a broadcast interview. I was working at KCOP-TV, Hollywood, California. I had been assigned to the show where the interview would happen to work the boom (microphone controlled on a long cable that would dangle over his head out of camera shot).


Before the show, in the main hallway outside the studio door, there were lined up several soft drink machines. I was hanging around this area, waiting for the call for the start of the show when Ray Bradbury came sliding out of the studio, his eyes immediately focused on the soft drinks machines, his right hand already digging in his pant’s pocket, seeking coins.


I felt hesitation and thrill. Budding writer who wanted and needed to know from established, haloed writer in the flesh, an answer, The Answer.


Bradbury held a coin before the slot of the machine while his eyes took the measure of its contents. Standard soft drinks in bottles, not cans, nesting, waiting in a row. He seemed in a rush yet willing to spend some time on this significant decision. I shuffled, shy and hopeful, to the machine, to his side. I stood there. I looked at him, then the machine, then him. His eyes huge behind very thick eyeglasses never strayed from the machine’s offerings.


“Mr. Bradbury?” He did not look over. “I want to say I admire your work.”
Now he looked over. “Thank you.” He returned to his decision-making process, slightly bent over, his head like an outdoor elevator going up and down, checking the various floors of the soft drinks rack inside the machine.
“May I ask you a question?”


He let his coin fall and moved his fingers to the buttons where he would punch in the code for his soft drink decision.


“What does it take to be a writer?” Feeling this was one of the most bold questions ever poised during the history of mankind, I held my breath in anticipation of the reply.


He did not look at me as he pressed the code and replied, “Some’s got it, some’s don’t.”


His chosen bottle rattled down the shoot and smacked hard against the bottom drawer. He pressed up the plastic flap, reached in, got his bottle, used the cap opener lodged in the machine, turned and walked off.


I don’t remember the TV show or his remarks during the interview I was running boom on. I do remember “Some’s got it, some’s don’t.”


And all these decades later on the other side of my writing life I know this about Ray. He was right.

A story – The woman who said Fuck You

Sunday, December 6th, 2009

She’d gotten up early that morning and began the day walking up and down the stairs of the three floors of her house shouting one phrase, “Fuck you.”


She said it with vigor. “Fuck you!” She said it on every floor. Three fuck you’s, one per floor. And every one she meant. She did it again. Three floors, one phrase. Almost methodically. As though she was a business person with a To Do list, or a mad woman who had stopped taking her medication and could feel again.


She had a fuck-you for every floor of the house.


She only half-owned the house with somebody who was no longer there. So all her fuck you’s were for the house. For all the friends who said they loved her but didn’t. And for all the love spoken about but might as well have been shouted fuck you’s.


She continued going up and down the stairs, slowing a bit, getting tired, with time and redundancy. Eventually, the fuck you’s were coming out with less conviction. They were evolving from wrath to bathos.


The New Year was fast approaching and soon she knew she would be be shaking off the dust of her annual resolution. Which was, “If things don’t get better, in ten years I will kill myself.” But things were going to be different this year. She was turning over a new leaf. This year, her resolution would be, “In nine years I will kill myself.” The preface of her phrase, If things don’t get better had received its unbending answer for years. Now “in nine years” was a plain and simple resolution.


On the third floor she stopped yelling fuck you. She stopped after fuck and never got to the last you. Her decision causing an abrupt warped peace.


She went to the kitchen on the second floor to make herself some breakfast. Like a placid condemned being eating her last meal. The first of the last for the next nine years.

Laughing at a How To

Thursday, December 3rd, 2009

Another week, another quick entertainment.


No Zombies this week. Just people laughing. At my book. Like good actors/friends carrying out their jobs. Video link


You can buy this book on Amazon, any Amazon, in your neck of the woods/world. Go to Amazon.dot-whatever, type in my name in the book section. It’ll pop up, along with ANOTHER book which I’ll be hitting some lucky souls over the eyeballs soon, too soon. (If that was too vague and lazy, see direct links way below on this post…got to do everything for you folks….)


Meanwhile, want to read the intro to this book? Well, here’s some. In fact, I’m going to be posting very regularly, probably every Monday (but that’s not a promise–I’m putting this together) maybe both audio and text chapter samples…so if you want to know when these are posted please CLICK THE RSS feed on my Blog page so you’ll be automatically warned, and warmed, and wonderful. (Man, organizing you readers is like herding cats, but someone’s got to do it….)


Anyway. Sample chapter to read. Start of How to Find Yourself….. …. Beginning of How to Find Yourself (or a reasonable facsimile)


Various links to Amazon & the How To book….


USA


UK


CANADA


FRANCE


GERMANY


JAPAN
(Yeah, I know, but who knows?)