SUNDAY — Spent most of the afternoon in Union Square, watching the pigeons and panhandlers and tourists. Made faces at children, talked to the homeless, and had ice cream for lunch at Double Rainbow. Watched a cop lecturing and threatening some green-haired teenagers. I don't like teenagers but I really don't like cops (almost typed 'asshole cops', but in my experience all cops are asshole cops as soon as you don't say 'sir'.)

I recommend talking to the homeless. Most people don't, except to lie that they don't have any money. I do that too, sure, but something I've learned from living in the cheapest, slummiest, rez hotels and the most piss-scented neighborhoods is, most homeless folks are human beings. If you talk to them like they're human, you get a human response. Most of the time, anyway. And they don't just talk about the weather, like other humans. Ya never know what a homeless guy will say, but it'll be interesting.

Being nearly friendless isn't a problem for me. Usually I like the solitude. When I need someone to talk to, though, talking to the bums is the next best thing to having a friend.

♦ ♦ ♦

I'm not a huge fan of the Lethal Weapon movies, but the original was OK. It was on television tonight, and I figured if I turned the volume down during the commercials it might be a pleasant diversion. Clicked it off pretty quick, though. Mel Gibson's lips moved and it sounded like his voice, but the words he said — gosh, darn, fudge, etc — were not the words he said when I saw the movie in a theater.

Of course, movies are "edited for television," and I'm a fool for forgetting, for thinking I could watch Lethal Weapon on TV. It's just a batty sign of our loony times, that the telly can show murder and war and famine and preachers promising hellfire and eternal damnation, but it can't show Mel Gibson unless he speaks like a 1950s schoolmarm.

♦ ♦ ♦   

Coffee is great when its great but it’s easy to make it awful, and it's usually awful — acidy, bitter, lukewarm. It's especially bad when I make it, so I never do. When I need caffeine I take a generic NoDoz. One little white pill, and ten minutes later I’m awake, without coffee's unwanted side effect of making me pee every half hour. There's a bottle of those pills in my desk, so I said no when Penelope offered me coffee this morning.

Penelope is the new temp at work. She started several weeks ago, and she's nice, seems reasonably smart, doesn't take things too seriously, and she smiles in my direction and talks to me, which most people don't do. I don't know her well, but she's in my league (that's polite-speak for, she's fat like me) and I've daydreamed about asking her out (polite-speak for, I've thought about her while masturbating).

She offered me a cup of coffee as I was walking past the coffee pot, and I said no. My mind was elsewhere and I didn't even think about it. Didn't smile. Didn't say "No, thanks," just "No," and kept walking. I didn't understand and maybe still don't, but as I was walking home at the end of the work day, delayed reaction — was she offering more than coffee?

I mean, it's a self-serve coffee pot. Everyone pours their own coffee if they want coffee, so of course she was offering more than coffee. It was an opportunity to talk to a cute woman and see where it went, and where it went was nowhere, because I said no, because I'm a big, fat, stupid idiot.

Ah, well. She'll be in the office tomorrow, and I'll be in the office tomorrow, and she'll still be cute, and I'll still be an idiot.

♦ ♦ ♦

My mother is coming back. She called today, and left a message telling me she'll arrive on August 16th, at Oakland Airport. I hadn't specifically invited her, but she'd mentioned that she wanted another visit, and I hadn't said no. To Penelope I said no, but to my mom I said "We'll see," so we'll see each other in three weeks or so.

Last time Mom visited, she stayed at a hotel in Walnut Creek (white suburbia), and at some point during her visit I said something like, "Why are you staying way out in Walnut Creek? Heck, I could've gotten you a short-term room in my rez hotel for a lot less money, and a lot less time on BART." Didn't know it was an invitation when I said it, but now that's what Mom wants to do. She wants me to talk to Mr Patel, and reserve a room for her, in the residential hotel where I live.

I'm man enough to tell her no if I felt like saying no, but her last visit was pleasant and we got along OK and she's my mom and I want to see her, so I've accepted her cordial self-invitation. I'll be a gracious host, unless she wants to listen to that tape of Dad's funeral.

I love my ever-loving mother, but she knows how to push my buttons, and she pushes them all, and after she's pushed them all she starts over again with the first button. She's Christian and conservative and dishes out digs frequently, and she doesn't approve of my life and she's not shy about saying so. We don't have a lot in common except that I came out of her.

We'll have a marvelous time, I'm sure, and it's on the calendar: August 16-20.

 From Pathetic Life #2
Sunday - Monday,
July 24 & 25, 1994

This is an entry retyped from an on-paper zine I wrote many years ago, called Pathetic Life. The opinions stated were my opinions then, but might not be my opinions now. Also, I said and did some disgusting things, so parental guidance is advised.



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