This is world-famous French Canadian multimedia artist Laura Rokas and me drinkin teeny tiny little baby cups of coffee (TTLBCCs) in the Tenderloin in San Francisco! Laura’s sister and my honorary sister Eli took these pix the night we had a pizza party at Laura’s apartment!!
Later, after Laura’s friends and my new friends Gayle and Rachael arrived to eat a whole bunch of pizza, we recorded a video:
I slept on the floor that night! In Laura’s apartment! It was very loud outside because the Tenderloin is a strange trashy Blade Runner-y place. I can’t sleep anymore, not really, so I only slept for two or three hours before waking up round about five a.m. to the sound of a man shrieking way down below on Geary Street.
In the dark I lay on the ground and tried to fall back asleep. I grabbed one of Laura’s black T-shirts and wrapped it around my head. I have absolutely no idea how to meditate but I tried to do it anyway. I stopped thinking about words. It was very difficult! Every time I started to create a sentence in my head, or describe to myself the images my mind was producing, I pushed them away as best I could.
Eventually my mind was completely blank, and I saw a desert at night. There was nothing there but sun-baked dead earth and stars in the sky. There was a sort of black vortex in the center of the desert and so I walked over to it, took all my clothes off, and crawled into it!
Inside the hole was a warm jelly-like substance. It was porous and so I could breathe. I swam to the center of the thing, to the big deep black nothingness, and stayed there for a long time. I didn’t know if I was upside down or facing east or west or anything. I still had a body because I felt the protoplasm stuff covering it. It was real nice and comforting. Nothing hurt!
And I could still hear the traffic and the yelling and the dump trucks and whatever else in the Tenderloin, and knew that I was technically awake, and in Laura’s apartment, and so on—but I was still resting in some way. I reckon it felt like being underwater. It was a strange muted semi-dream!
Laura and her sister Eli woke up and started making breakfast at 10 a.m. I got up and wandered around and washed my face and combed my hair. We ate toast and eggs and cheese and tofu. Then we went to Dolores Park and got ice cream!
Here is Eli and me eating ice cream:
Here is Eli and me in Dolores Park:
Here is Laura and Eli in Dolores Park:
Here is Laura and me in Dolores Park:
(Laura and Eli are related! Do I look like I could be related to them too??)
((Those are California poppies by the way. They’re so cool!!))
An hour later they walked me to the 16th Street BART station in the Mission, and then I went all the way back to Oakland and got my bag, and then went all the way to Oakland Airport to go back to Portland. My plane was delayed by two hours because of huge winds in Portland and Seattle. I put on my headphones and fell asleep. The winds abated and I got on a plane. I flew home in the dimly-lit plane. I was tired as hell.
The first part of the story, which I am putting here at the end, is this: I got a job at a publishing company in Oakland. I start next Monday. I am in Portland one last time to say good-bye, or whatever. I’m driving back down to the Bay on Friday evening. Yeah. That’s pretty cool. I’m real excited. I’m also so nervous I feel like throwing up.
My babies, I’m back.
The end for now!