Yesterday I went to see my new doctor, because my old doctor is apparently having a baby, and has gone away on maternity leave. This new dude’s name is Jess and he’s real cool. He asked me about my FAMILY HISTORY, and my medications, and how my vasectomy went, since I guess it was right there in my online chart. I told him I had got snipped right good, and had healed, and so on, but still had a weak-to-nonexistent sperm count that required one more follow-up test later this month. After that, I said, the door will be forever slammed shut on any possible Starsailor spawn. His face seemed to brighten when I said this for reasons I have decided not to wonder about too deeply.

He had me take my shirt off (oh baby~) and he checked my ears (eee!!) and took my blood pressure (yessss) and listened to my heart (ooo!!) and felt my lymph nodes (n i c e). The good doctor reported that despite all my efforts to destroy myself, I am in “excellent health”— with no end in sight! I said some dark thing, some thing about wanting death, I can’t remember what exactly, and we both laughed. You’ve got to laugh at things like that. If we, as PEOPLE, can’t share darkness, then what hope is there, really, for any of us. . . ??

My bloodwork was OK too. He said all my levels were “within normal range”. Hell, even my vitamins and all that shit were good. I’m not lacking!

Anyway: I put my shirt back on and shook his hand and split. I was a-walkin down Shattuck Avenue in downtown Berkeley, California listening to SUNCHOKES about as loud as my little pink headphones would go, feeling as good as I ever feel about anything—was strutting hard, even, strutting like it was the last time they would let me get away with it! It was as Bay Area as you can get: 60 degrees, chilly, with a lil’ bit-a warm sun up above. My body was on autopilot, knowing its way home, as I daydreamed and time-traveled inside my head. Yes, it was a fine day to be mentally deranged but otherwise healthy where it mattered, which for me was in my blood and my bones and my flesh and my godforsaken organs, and on and on. And sure: there were still some swimmers in my semen, maybe, who clung to some foolish hope of utility . . . but so what! They would be gone soon, flushed out from me and forgotten, and then finally my lifelong dream of truly being a useless mammal would be realized. ‘CLEAN JEANS’ came on, I’ll tell you what, as I passed the downtown BART station, and I thought, hell, if this ain’t all right, then I don’t know what is.

I walked for miles and miles through the neighborhoods west of campus to get to my own own home on the Oakland-Berkeley border. I could hardly believe how nice everything was . . . there were flowers everywhere, and everyone I passed was in a good mood. As JAMES DEAN says to NATALIE WOOD in ‘REBEL WITHOUT A CAUSE’:


I will conclude my story thusly: As I stepped into the alleyway leading to my front door, I received several text messages from my friends all over the Bay informing me that, at that very moment, a psychopath with a gun was shooting up YouTube headquarters 20 miles south in San Bruno.

Well. . . .