Humor

Toronto housing is unaffordable…

but who cares, because… Booth!


Utilize your Booth. Or it’s Church Basement for you, loser.

Overflowing as I am with ideas like a genetically-enhanced Thanksgiving cornucopia, I found I have given life not to one post, but to two. Previously on slowpainful, death by conservative; today, affordable housing. Go on, feel gifted!


Drawing on an entrepreneurial offering that I keep bumping into online, I think stand-alone phone booths costing $3,495.00 USD — yes, this is an actual thing—would make a simply spiffing way of adding some affordable housing to the Toronto real estate scene.

I’m hoping to blatantly steal this idea and convince Mayor John Tory and/or Premier of Ontario Doug Ford that it’s the only way, once I have their attention. And I’m positive that I will have their attention after next Tuesday, which is when I plan to streak through Nathan Phillips Square and nail my scrotum to “The Archer”. (I did a course.)

I’m The Guy with Ideas About the Homeless and Affordable Housing Problem. Ideas that don’t involve simply waiting until after Christmas then putting homeless people and the other losers who can’t afford over two thousand a month, not including utilities, in a church basement, feeding them macaroni dinner and canned ambrosia pudding, then bringing out some Anabaptists to scream at them about how they’re all losers who’ll never amount to much.

(Are Anabaptists the ones with the tambourines? Or the ones who baptize the faithful by holding them under water, just not, and this is only my personal opinion, for a long enough period of time?)

Having ideas about housing people is not difficult. Even I can do it. I, David Roddis, whose last idea about paying my rent involved having a roommate, which hasn’t been successful in six years, but somehow I have ideas about housing people, so the complexity level is, as they say, low.

John Tory—I wish all politicians had to change their name to John Tory, or Justin Liberal or Jagmeet Endeepee, in the manner that people used to be called “John Norfolk Cowherd” or “Betsy Poxstrumpet Back-Alley”, so you could make an informed choice—John Tory, Toronto’s OK-ish, “if you have to have one it might as well be him” Mayor, promises more affordable housing but does nothing.

OK, this is positive! At least doing nothing means he doesn’t actively destroy anything, and this reassures me that he’s merely a lackluster, underachieving old-school conservative, and not secretly cooking up something involving virgins, junior hockey coaches and the Book of Revelation.

A “cuck,” in today’s parlance.

I shudder with revulsion as I type that word, like I shudder when examining plasticized fast-food menus offering “sliders,” or catching sight of a mall-goer wearing a sweatshirt that says, “wine me dine me sixty-nine me,” or learning that there is a porn category called “creampies.”

But for taxonomic purposes, comb Roget’s from dawn to dusk though I may, “cuck” gets right into the nooks and crannies of John Tory and his oh-so-Canadian brand of bland. Are you still awake?

You can’t not like John Tory. That would be almost abusive. It would be like not liking the runty, annoying kid in class, the kid with bad breath and whose kitten just died, who gives one answer in class per year, and it’s wrong. You give him a pity-hug, but you wince.

It would be like admitting to Carrie that you took her to the Prom on a dare while preparing a bucket of pig’s blood. Except John would just go, “Oh, OK. Thanks for letting me know,” look a bit crestfallen and go home to re-read “The Power of Positive Thinking.”

I’m gonna come through this! There’s always next prom, and I’m a Good Person!

A “cuck,” if you didn’t know, is a man who is so clueless, he is literally the only person in town who doesn’t know how clueless he is.

John Tory is so clueless he waits until it’s cold in January, expresses shock about how cold it is, then tells us how determined he is to get on top of this homeless shelter thing, because cold in January in Canada? Who knew? Goldarn weather in January, sneakin’ up on us!

Mad Magazine, where males first imbibed smart-ass satire at the ages of twelve to fourteen, may be shutting down, but we have Maclean’s to pick up the slack. Maclean’s magazine tells us that Trudeau’s housing plan, and I must have nodded off during that one, is a bad idea and that we should—now, I hope you’re sitting down, in case you fall over laughing and crash into that Lalique figurine you just finished paying for—we should let the market provide affordable housing.

Right? Talk about obvious, staring-us-right-in-the-face solutions!

This is the much-celebrated “trickle-down” effect, and for visuals I invite you to imagine the moment in “The Wizard of Oz” where Dorothy’s farmhouse trickles down right out of the tornado and lands right smack on top of the Wicked Witch of the East, if the tornado represents The Market and the Witch is, well, us.

Just to think of all the time we’ve wasted, annoying politicians with our suggestion that the market, released of pesky rent controls and awash with subsidies for first-time buyers’ mortgages, having spiraled so out of control that an average one-bedroom apartment in Toronto now costs $2,200 per month, does not seem to be getting with the program and providing affordable housing.

I can’t image what happened, the market having been so amazing at providing all the other things that the middle class, now reduced to a bunch of hobos sleeping in a dumpster, so desperately needs.

I think, on the balance of probabilities, that someone probably forgot to tell the market it was supposed to provide affordable housing. A simple oversight, and thanks, Maclean’s, for a well-needed reminder of that market-based approach that has never, ever, even once, achieved what it’s supposed to achieve without someone in government legislating in order to provide affordable housing and stop the market doing what it actually, in reality, does.

How off track is the market? Let’s see. Minimum wage, now rolled back by Doug Ford to $14.00 per hour because every small business in Ontario will founder if employees get one dollar more per hour, works out to $28,000 per year, assuming a forty-hour week (non-existent for the minimum wage crowd, but let’s play extra fair) and two weeks’ vacation.

Twenty-two hundred dollars per month for a one-bedroom apartment on the market is $26,400 a year, leaving that single mom a nifty $1,600 per year in disposable income, or a jaw-dropping $134 per month.

For everything.

But it’s me, as always, to the rescue, this time with my stand-alone phone booth idea. It’s win-win, just with both wins for me.

All mod cons:

Beautiful particle board finishes, which you won’t see because there’s no electricity. You can just maybe run a big-ass extension cord from the Don Valley to, say, the reference library if you’re not content with the sun in the morning and the moon at night. Also, the holes in the back of the booth for those self-replicating cords that come with your technology and get updated once a week by Apple are perfect for peeing out of, bit more challenging for the ladies, but when did we promise that your choice to be homeless would bear any resemblance to a bowl of cherries? Exactly!

And someone just said “glory hole,” but that’s possibly an extra level of market segmentation too far, at least before I’ve pitched John. We’ll reserve judgment on the glory hole thing, pending Tanya Granic Allen and any resolutions she might get on the agenda regarding gay people being a “liberal holocaust of heterosexuals and what about the children.”

Also the phone booth has just enough space that you can bring your own phone as long as its the Samsung foldable.

There’s no kitchen. Kitchen, already! So you can cook that filet mignon stuffed with foie gras from the Food Access Program, no doubt! Unbelievable!

Cutting-edge Iconic Design bit:

The Philip-Johnson inspired glass door with its twelve square feet of glass and awesome, jaw-dropping hinges will make you think your portable ghetto, or single-dwelling slum if you haven’t taken your meds in a while, is sitting in its very own National Trust landscape of rolling hills and, at first glance, galleries. Which is an easy mistake to make when you catch your first glimpse of artists jumping from the Overlea Bridge with burlap sacks of their best work because they can’t get a grant any more.

If an artist lands on your booth, they should just bounce off, due to its flexible yet durable construction.

Kiss our Boothy asses, Frank Gehry or do we mean Stella!

Minimalism+Modernism= Minimodmumism: We Bore Down and Birthed a Movement

You want to live the Toronto lifestyle, but you don’t have the cash. We understand.

You’re still fucked, though, because you can never stop working for the rest of your natural life, or save any money, or move, and every time you move out the landlord gets to jack up the rent as much as she likes.

Fast food workers can’t get a raise of one dollar after years and years, but landlords absolutely have to get a raise every year. Every year for a guaranteed amount. Otherwise, they’d be so resentful they’d come around to your place at night, sneak in and turn down the thermostat and close your windows, so extravagant are you with the utilities.

And at four times eight equals thirty-two people per booth, so the monthly rent of $3,495.00 plus any charges for spontaneous drug raids and to make sure everyone’s buying the cheap, zero-percent-fat yogurt, divided by thirty-two works out to—a helluva lot fairer, assuming the breadwinners for the booth can extract themselves enough times in a month to buy enough fifty-percent-off “enjoy this tonight!” pork chops to cook over the flame of someone’s torch lighter.

It’s all about density, guys.

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Conservatives finally broke the world…

… with help from my mom and dad


So I’m sitting on my balcony with a friend of my friend. The friend of my friend is black, from Jamaica, and looks like he might have some Indian blood mixed in there, too.

It’s an uncomfortable muggy July evening and we’re eating a chickpea stew over couscous from white Dollarama bowls. Our thoughts turn, don’t ask me how or why, to immigration, and this guy, Alex, says to me:

“The refugees get all these beautiful town houses, for free. They get more than you get on benefits.”

And after I mentally rehearse the vomiting up of a full bowl of couscous and chickpeas in spicy tomato sauce then the post-puke dabbing of my lips accompanied by a final, raucous belch, my heart seizes up and falls out of my shirt like a lump of concrete.

I’m thinking, “I’m a sixty-three- no I don’t, do I? year-old white guy and I have to explain to a black guy that refugees do not get all these beautiful town houses for free. I have to explain to a black guy that he’s repeating these fake news stories and urban myths and being racist.”

So that’s why I jumped off the eighth-floor balcony and landed on my feet, crunching my legs right up into my pelvis, which has meant having all my trousers re-hemmed and also turning in all my opera tickets for the COC and exchanging them for supernumerary work any time they stage “Rigoletto.”


I grew up, like any mid-range Boomer, inside a normal, white racist household, with a normal, white racist mom and dad. My mother, who did the talking for both of them, cleaned up nice and, when meeting a new department store charge card, would skip the introductions and press it tearfully to her bosom like Dorothy hugging Toto after his escape from Elvira Gulch’s basket.

I’m not going to even try to list the racist epithets and bons mots, but I do recall, “Barbra Streisand just opens her big J—–h mouth and yells”, an example of WASP musical criticism. Jews, and Italians, who were also Catholics, got kind of lumped together, and these people were not strictly “white” because, you know. Ethnic.

Ethnic meant colorful, so Gary and Adelina, the only Italians in Whitby, served as, you might say, the town throw cushions who lived three blocks down the street, throw cushions in black velvet and gold braiding and “Souvenir of Niagara Falls” stitched on the front. Ethnics were not expected to have or represent good taste, which for WASPS means how many shades of beige and cream can you deploy in one room. You’ll never go wrong with beige, my dear!

So we toddled along, making do with Italians and Jews, maybe the odd Polish Catholic if you were really desperate, in order to discharge our Anglo-Saxon bile and make them be the cause of things, rather than the cause being our obnoxious self-regard and personal manifest destiny.

And then of course came the sixties! Lyndon Johnson and civil rights, and race riots, and MLK Jr, and suddenly my mother and other family members were able to process the dusky Europeans into “white,” and focus on figuring out what to do about these new shiny black people.

We’d literally, in Whitby, Ontario, never seen a black person live. They existed only on American TV and in the pages of my children’s encyclopedia, god help me, where they were called “Negroes,” (the new N-word) and where it was suggested that they were “good at sports and as entertainers, even scientists!”

Well, pick that cotton to a chorus of “Mammy” and stick a jockey on the lawn, who knew?

My parents didn’t really say much that was bad about black people. The whole concept was so fantastically alien it eclipsed any concept of ethnic, leaving most people at a loss for words.

And so we went back to watching Judy Garland singing “Swanee,” her face loaded with more boot-polish than the entire U.S. infantry, in our leafy all-white enclaves, breathing a sigh of relief that we wouldn’t have to deal with integration. We considered black neighbors to be a rare, slightly suspect and peculiarly American custom.

I mean, if they’d just pull themselves up by the bootstraps, maybe they coulda been white? You know?


Thinking more about my mom, which reassures me that she’s still dead, I am reminded yet again about Trump’s comments that “the Squad” should “go back to their own countries.”

My mom did the same thing with sofas. This is a direct analogy. She would invite a sofa into our home — say, in coral silk or blue brocade, cover it in heavy plastic and, for a while, the two would co-exist happily.

This was “the honeymoon.”

Then, of course, as in any relationship, the sofa would begin to get ideas. We’d get up in the morning and the sofa would somehow have thrown off its plastic cover in the night, or it would deliberately heat up when you sat on it, so you’d be sitting in an embarrassing puddle of sweat. The valance on the bottom of the sofa would begin to fray. High and mighty, I call that.

My mother would not stand for any show of sofa independence. Sofas had to know their place: to please her, to be a source of comfort, and above all to exact the high interest rates that would keep her relationship with the Robert Simpson Company well-oiled and meaningful and my father permanently on the road earning too little money.

The day came that she would no longer be speaking to the sofa. This was the contempt period, following, like a case of crab lice follows hooker sex, the last gasp of the honeymoon and the nano-second period of contentment; for my mother was a consuming soul as restless as the westward wind, that wayward wind that’s sure to wander.

I don’t know if my mother ever told a sofa, “Go back where you came from.” But soon after the contempt came the delivery men, rolling their eyes, for this ritual was repeated once, twice, three times per year. My mother would get a full refund and a new sofa, this one more compliant, less uppity, than the one before.

You just have to be absolutely clear who’s boss.


Conservatives, most current among them Donald Trump, the Great Mouth Breather, have finally done it. They’ve finished the work that Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher and the two Bushes started, not to mention de facto conservatives like Bill Clinton.

They’ve ruined the world, broken the social contract, turned everyone against the people who should be their allies, namely all the other people, and made division an agenda.

Democracy is gone, busted, kaput. There is no longer any representative democracy, because the representatives just want to represent their ideology and redraw the boundaries to ensure their ideology gets woven so tightly into the law that plucking our own eyes out would be easier than unweaving it.

For a liberal, pluralist democracy to exist, we all have to agree on some basic principles: we have to realize that democracy is first and always about human rights, equality, justice and dignity, and we have to agree what this means.

Liberalism is incremental, contextual, progressing slowly as we learn. It’s not black and white, revolutionary or impatient. That’s why “the wheels of justice grind slowly,” and why Trump complains about that very slowness of the legal system. But justice demands time: for gathering evidence, for preparing a defense, for weighing of rights and responsibilities, for understanding mitigating factors. For presumption of innocence.

We have to agree that there is a role for government; that government is the best deliverer of universal services, and that these are not frills, and that to deliver services does not entail “stealing taxes,” but rather creating insurance programs not motivated by profit.

This is because we agree that government is not a business, but a trust representing our ideals in action. That leaders of our countries are not accountants, but visionaries who make us better together than we would be individually.

We have to agree, for example, that health care, and affordable housing, and hospitals and the utilities that consume our country’s resources which we collectively own, and day care for our youngest citizens, and prisons that rehabilitate rather than serve as a vehicle for society’s revenge, that these things exist not for profit for a few, that their role is not to be efficient, but to be redundant; that if they exist it is for the public good.

We have to agree to be there for each other; and that there is a level below which we will not let people sink. This is not pure altruism, pure sacrifice, but an investment in a robust, stable society over the long term.

Extremes of wealth inequality stop democracy from functioning:

  • If your life consists of a struggle to house, clothe and feed yourself and your family, there is no time or energy or will to do anything else. In this sense, democracy is a luxury item.
  • If you can’t afford access to the truth and get your “news” from Facebook, you are a sitting duck for disinformation and will soon end up in a bubble of lies, half-lies, fake “experts” and conspiracy theories; soon no information source is trusted and what you believe is what your fellow bubble-dwellers believe.

But for democracy to function we all need the tools to participate; we have to agree on the truth and know where we have a reasonable chance of finding it.

We have to agree that good government codifies our common belief that everyone deserves a fair start, everyone deserves respect, everyone can fall down but can stand up again, that university or the polytechnic or trades should be an option for everyone who wants this, and that this is not merely an expense but is offset by the productivity of well-paid workers and thinkers and experimenters and artists and plumbers and widget entrepreneurs who emerge from these institutions.

We have to agree, for example, that the effort to treat others with respect and hear their stories of oppression will bring us closer together, and is not “political correctness,” or an act of “white genocide.” We have to agree to have the courage to shut up, listen, think, respond, make reparations as necessary and change.

We have to agree that market competition might work well for selling shoes but has no place in education; that two-tiered systems create first- and second-class citizens.

We have to agree that there is never, ever, anywhere, a “them” and an “us.” We are the saints and the monsters, the successes and failures, the common and the exceptional, we are all of these.

Do we have this agreement? We used to. Somehow the project of turning informed, educated, rational adults into disinformed, confused, panic-stricken children has created a giant playground full of whimpering liberals whose balloons have been popped by the snarky bully conservatives as they scream “Snowflakes!” “Libtards!” “SJW’s!”

And the liberals, believe it or not, actually mind these epithets. Which more or less tells me that conservatives have a point, at least about the snowflake thing, which I would have twisted myself into a pretzel to avoid admitting.


No sooner had we started cooking pad Thai and buying hand-woven rugs at Pier One to show how cosmopolitan we were about the brown people when Reagan and Thatcher and Bush started to cast their evil spell. They convinced us that prosperity was scarce and only available to those rat-like and ruthless enough to win the race.

They proved their point by de-funding the New Deal and the War on Poverty until they didn’t work; preying on Protestant guilt and chastising us for being poor and lazy while they sat around country clubs in Prada sneakers drinking rum that someone once traded for slaves.

They made the effort to lift everyone up, the effort to reconnect the human family, into an evil. By hammering us with the words communism and socialism they planted in our poor heuristically-vulnerable brains the false idea that to offer universal government-delivered health care was akin to denouncing your family to Stalin and sending them to the gulag.

But not for one second did they stop plundering, stealing, making pacts with devils and gradually enriching themselves. The white, male lords of the planet sold us out, distracted us, plagued us with fakery, and created an artificial, ideological concept of scarcity that we still believe.

There is no scarcity. The world is awash with money. Awash with money.

In the world, now, in America and in Canada as well, there are huge numbers of people who will never believe the simple truth of how we’ve been manipulated to arrive at where we are, and who are teaching their children never to believe it. They’ll believe it’s all due to a few thousand refugees seeking asylum.

We, for believe what I will, the confusion will win, we will begin to realize what’s happened only on the day when the drones fly overhead, the levees collapse, the waters rush in, the deserts crack open like desiccated skin and we’re all refugees without a safe haven.

Hear that blast? Look up.

That’s fifty old white guys in a space ship built by Elon Musk, smoking Havana cigars, watching the blue planet glimmer and recede as they voyage to another world conceived and built to their specifications


And my mother, like most people, softened once we’d moved to the city and met black people, homosexuals, including me, and other exotic types. Because you learn tolerance, then acceptance, by being forced by life to rub elbows with humanity.

This is what makes cities the roiling, bustling, all-in-this-together hope for human progress, and rural enclaves the hard, intractable kernels of smug self-satisfaction and hatred.

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How to Read my Blog:

an instructional interlude



Dear valued visitors and followers: This is the content of a new page, accessible from the main menu (above) and let’s everyone wish it a very warm welcome. I wanted regular and new readers to know it exists, to draw your attention to it (me), to be encouraged to read it, and to take the hint. — DR


MY, HOW STANDARDS HAVE FALLEN! I can hear you rolling your eyes from here to Des Moines, and I know you’ll say to yourselves, “Of course, he’s doing the old-guy thing, the back in my day speech.” You may be right. I may simply be following tradition and experiencing inevitable change as a worsening, a dumbing down, when I should be grateful for progress.

That’s the narrative, isn’t it? That humans are following this trajectory of progress, albeit so slowly at first that nothing happens for millenia. Everyone just sits and stares at each other. And trust me, after a lifetime spent examining the fossil record so you don’t have to, I can confidently tell you that these millenia of staring are sheer tedium.

Sitting and staring. That’s it, dude. You could kill for a decent conversation, but because there’s no other activity—except for finding food, eating food, getting sick from the food, dying from the food or surviving the food, at which point the survivor carves the name of the food onto the Great Big Rock of Food That Won’t Kill You, with five stars and the “best before” date, which at this point is straightforward, “best before you starve to death”—because the only rainy-, or cloudy- or unseasonally cold- or even sunny-day activity is sitting around staring at everyone else who survived the food, good luck with that having a conversation thing.

I mean, there’s only so much feigned interest you can project in a lifetime.

While the proto-men and proto-women stare at each other it’s so quiet they can hear individual leaves falling onto the savannah, which they experience like bowling balls thudding onto parquet, notwithstanding they would likely not use that exact terminology just yet. Bowling, and therefore similes involving bowling  balls, have not been invented. We’ve got a long ways to go before they invent bowling, let me tell you! So they just shriek and run for cover.

Then once in a hundred years somebody pipes up, “Hey I was just thinking that maybe—” and everyone gasps and turns around in astonishment with a big whooshing sound to look at her.

Unfortunately, this is so intimidating she immediately forgets what she was going to say.

“Oh… nothing. Never mind. No, really, it’s OK, it was just—an idea…” (This, by the way, is the birth of passive-aggressive behavior, and not a moment too soon.)

Everyone sighs, maybe a couple of grumblers go I wish she’d stop DOING that! and then—silence again for another century or two.

Meanwhile everyone’s thinking, What are those pin pricks of light in the night sky, and how did they get up there and why don’t they fall down? If someone asks, I’ll say it’s Wilbur, The Great Caribou! We could use a little light humor! And anyway, what the heck are pin pricks, or for that matter, pins?

Gradually the silences get shorter and shorter, and you hear distinct noises as civilization develops. The chattering of villagers, the whoosh of the scythes, then, at exponentially increasing speeds, the rattling of looms, the hum of conveyor belts, the blasts of jet engines, ending in the present with the whine of one-sided conversations hitting the back of your neck, announced by smartphones generating what was probably supposed to sound like music but only if you’d never heard music.

Do you see how the standards fall? Nowadays you hear the one-sided conversation.

Growing up, I was taught: Ssh, not so loud! People will hear you! Use your indoor voice! Be seen and not heard! Conversations were restricted to the participants. Likewise telephone calls. You went into a little booth and slid the door shut because you didn’t want people to overhear you. Think what this means: a telephone call was as private as going to the bathroom.

Privacy has always been mankind’s greatest luxury, and no, I don’t mean data. We didn’t use words like data in the fifties, sixties, even seventies. You didn’t get data on your Princess phone. You got your mom’s voice asking why you hadn’t called, or your boyfriend saying he had a headache when you know very well he’s screwing the football coach. Data was a word you used, maybe, if you were Robert Oppenheimer. Probably even Einstein didn’t say data.

Yeah, right. I’ll show you “headache”! That’s rich!

We worry about data now, but back then we were worried about our conversations being overheard or disturbing other people.

Remember other people?

And we’d be mortified if someone had been listening to our conversation or found out our secrets. Secrets were still in their early phase of something you didn’t tell. My great aunts, Victorian women all, never told anyone that my eldest sister got pregnant before she married the guy, nor did they tell anyone about my parents’ divorce. This was private business, and if you talked about someone’s private business who wasn’t there, that was gossip.

Gossip was tacky, except for the rare occasion when it was a ray of sunshine in an otherwise cloudy afternoon.

How many months? She didn’t! Oh, I know! And you mustn’t say you heard this from me, but—apparently he’s that way!

We kept to ourselves out of fear of making the other person uncomfortable. No one knew your financial woes, the minutiae of office politics, the state of your marriage; we did not make our friends into our psychiatrists or social workers.

Now we live in public, holy prostitutes assuming the face-down spread-eagle to receive validation from anyone who might pass by. We are nothing on our own, because we are empty, and we are empty because we know nothing but the fascinating contents of our own heads and because we haven’t left the house since MySpace.

We have no allure, because we are so easily accessible. We are brands, personas, stories we tell that might as well be true.

We have no need for privacy, for we are at once the incentive and the prize, the scoop and the investigative journalist. Our mere bodies, those archaic chunks of pre-industrial too, too solid analog flesh, may melt, like so much ground beef past its sell-by date, into compost; but our personalities, fizzing with fake pizzazz like artificially sweetened soda and echoing third-hand opinions down broken phone lines crackling with static, have been uploaded to the cloud for all-device synchronization and easy universal obfuscation.

Standards have fallen. Where there was once charisma we now have persuasion; for glamour, brand loyalty; for thought, sponsored content. We long to read web copy that doesn’t suck instead of literature that, guaranteed, did not contain the word “suck” unless someone was talking about bees.

We no longer keep to ourselves in dark studies lined with ancient texts teaching ourselves eternal truths, while disciples as yet unknown to us spent a lifetime beating a path to our door; now we are everywhere, and depressingly unavoidable.

To award yourself Andy Warhol’s fifteen minutes of fame you at least had to throw on a metal mini-dress by Paco Rabanne, gloss your lips white and learn to frug before hailing a cab to The Factory. Compared to Instagram, this is like getting your Baccalaureate in semiotics at the Sorbonne.

We document the mysterious trail of our morning glory muffin from its perfect plating at Jet Fuel to its passage through our perfectly moisturized lips; we would, given our druthers, eagerly await and document its return to the primordial light and the roiling waters at the other end had we the time, the followers and the influence that really matters.


Not wishing to be thought an old piece of dried-up ear wax, a wizened pair of donkey testes, not au courant, I take a deep breath and, both melding with and standing out from the crowd, I vow to proffer my creative process for public, that’s you, consumption. Why wait, all high-and-mighty and flaunting my good taste, until my work is polished and ready?

That’s why, like a fledgling terrorist holding in front of me a terrified kindergarten child as hostage, I thrust into the limelight my crude first drafts and confused initial thoughts.

These are never totally crude and unworthy of your attention, though. I mean, this is me, dudes. I consider a pressed shirt and a bow-tie from Harry Rosen to be casual wear. Or at least, I considered that way during the three years I actually got paid by an employer and could afford to be abused by the Harry Rosen sales staff, and how, I ask you, how will they keep me down on the farm, once I have seen Harr-ee?

Exactly.

Oh my god will he ever get to the point, and meanwhile could someone drive right through that red light while I dart onto the crosswalk without looking? comes your exasperated cry.

I interpret this as a metaphor for wanting me to get to the point, the promised point being: how to read my blog. Very well, then.

Read each piece more than once. Again for emphasis: Read each piece more than once.

(Including this one.)

That’s it! Really. That’s how to read my posts. As a series of drafts that I polish into their final form, for I have turned the light and breezy blog post about making waffles or how to monetize your hate group into a soul-searching, overly-literate polysyllabic Proustian nightmare clocking in at anywhere from two to three thousand words.

Yep, that was me.

Thus, to get the full effect, and only if you’re interested in these things, read my unpolished initial thoughts, but return, once, twice or even three or more times, after a few days, weeks, or months, for my posts are not mere words on a screen, but living entities that materialize, mature and mutate at hectic, time-lapsing speeds.

And you’ll never know what living entity to expect. Sometimes you’ll see a peony fluttering its petals like runway model’s Oscar de la Renta ballgown; sometimes a gecko opening its lipless lizard maw to gulp down a—whatever it is geckos gulp down. I’m no one to judge.

This means that you can follow the progress of each piece as though I were on live cam, but without the cam.

Why no live cam? Because I write naked.

That’s correct. Tits to the breeze and always wary of my hot cup of coffee. And now that I’m certain you’ll never, ever be able to get that image out of your mind—

My work here is done.

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