Haight Street scene report

Most of the morning was spent sitting and writing, filling in details and subtracting some of the longwindedness of diary days gone by. Then I did some slight grocery shopping, and checked my messages, dreading to hear Mom’s voice, but instead it was Maggie. 

She still calls once or twice weekly, keeping me informed about the frustrations of her life, and I’m glad she does. She’s about the only person from my old life who’s kept in touch. Today she was mega-talky, and the abridged version is: her psychiatrist has taken her off lithium, so her mood swings are going into orbit again. Wish I could suggest something better than chamomile tea. 

Here’s a bit of a looper: She wants her friends and family to chip in what they can afford, call it a Christmas present, to buy her a one-way ticket to San Francisco, to move in with Doug. What? What? 

We have discussed this already, quite a bit, actually. Maggie decided, already, and announced clearly, already, that she did not want to move here and live with me. It was just a few weeks ago that she laughed and confirmed again that we were broken up. Now she’s changed her mind?

Well, I haven’t changed mine, and I said so. We are friends. If she's in the mood and in the neighborhood, a boink would be nice, but we are still broken up, and she’s not invited to move in. And she laughed like she’d been messing with me, but it’s hard to be sure.

There was a time not so long ago when having Maggie with me here in San Francisco sounded sweet, but that was the before-times. Then she visited, and sparks were flying in all directions, and I became a bruised and battered man — all of which ended any daydreams of happily ever after for Maggie & Me. I remain very fond of the lady, but she is not mentally well and I am not capable of taking care of her. I am barely capable of taking care of me.

♦ ♦ ♦

The 71 took me out to the Red Victorian for Tommy, the star-studded rock opera by Peter Townshend and Ken Russell. It’s over the top, but that’s what Ken Russell does, and it has too much Oliver Reed, which for me is any Oliver Reed at all.

Tommy is truly an opera — there's not a word of dialogue, only arias to propel the plot — and like most operas, several stretches of the story are incomprehensible. The music rocks, though, and Russell’s visuals are hypnotically un-not-watchable, so let’s not quibble about coherency. 

It’s jumping with great songs and perverted plot twists and bad singing by Reed, and surprisingly good singing by Ann-Margaret. Even Jack Nicholson carries a tune without dropping it, but Roger Daltry, as that deaf dumb and blind kid who sure plays a mean pinball, steals the show from the pro actors. With Tina Turner and Elton John dropping in to sing one dynamite song each, I was humming Who hymns as I walked back home.

♦ ♦ ♦

Stopped at Naked Eye to do a little zine shopping and drop off the September issue. I always wish I could talk to Steve, the Naked Eye guy, for a little longer, but there are other customers waiting for his expertise. How unlike me, though, to want to talk to someone a little longer.

Had pastry and a spot of tea at the International Cafe at Fillmore, which is my favorite club because they don’t serve booze. You can sit back and enjoy the band without the obnoxious, rambunctious sorts who sometimes ruin the fun at liquorish night clubs.

I didn’t get the name of the band, sorry, but it was three white guys. One on guitar, one on drums, and an older fat balding dude (not me) on vocals. Send for their CD! 

It didn’t occur to me until too late to take notes for a scene report, because this ain’t that kind of zine. I wasn’t being a critic on duty, just a plump putz pounding calories and tapping my toes. The band, whoever they were, was good in a Fogerty Joel Springsteen Crosby Stills Nash & Young way, but not good enough to make me want to ask the waitress for a dance.

From Pathetic Life #5
Saturday, October 22, 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.


Pathetic Life 

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