Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Cut Up At Northcott .

 Northcott Housing Ghetto can be deliciously silent late at night and I can even find the white light in the deepest dark, but mostly it's a dirt opera of cacophonous uproar and I'm awakened from my sleep like the Kraken monster to roar at the bustle breaking in from an uncaring world. Cursula next door makes more noise than ten neighbors from hell put together, she gives off noise like a cow farts methane, calling inanities from her doorstep so I in particular am made to hear every piece of nonsense, "Bawl, do you want cheese on your boots before I lick them? Oh look, there's potato-chip bags blowing in the wind. I want to know how our relationship is going? Are we together or aren't we? You can have desert if you screw me."

Bawl screams back, "How dare you! How dare you suggest I'm here at your bidding, to fuck your sloppy cunt at the snap of your fingers? Do you know what a dumb bitch you are?" Bawl berates her vehemently, as if he's trying to convert her to some radical brand of Christianity. "Oh you don't have to put me down like that after all the stuff I've given you, I'm the one who collects the treasures from the streets that people wastefully chuck away and which you enjoy without any thanks. Do you want a beer with your instant mashed potato?" I have to hear it ALL!!!

Her most stupid carrying-on is when her eldest child comes for a weekend visit, he's 6 and she's given him the dumbest name in history, Capsicum, and she thinks if she bellows his name a thousand times a day at the top of her lungs it will show the world, us poor suffering souls of Northcott, what a good, caring mother she is, when in truth her 2 kids were taken off her because she's a poly-drug abuser and they were in danger of suffocating under the heaps of falling trash she's piled up and then being devoured by the mice. When I hobbled home from work the other day she was out the front, near my door, churning thru cigarettes, her rat's nest of a flat too precious to have smoke mingle with the mounds of garbage. She tells me she's going off to the country and I grumbled, "Good! Stay there! You're driving me crazy with all that "Capsicum" bleating!" "You should stay in the old peoples' home!" she muttered. "You fucking lazy bitch, I'd laugh if THEY cut you off the dole and you had to go begging on the streets!" I said this with such emotional force you'd have thought I'd sprayed cockroach repellent on her, she scurried off down the footpath like a screaming banshee was chasing her.

It was a curse that reverberated badly for three days later I was awakened by wailings and admonishments from next door, she had indeed been cut off the dole and a woeful panic had set in. "I tried all day and they wouldn't give it to me. Perhaps if I ring thru the night then go first thing in the morning they'll give me a counter-check?" "Oh what the fuck are we going to do? I was counting on that money! I need it! I want my money! Oh fuck fuck fuck fuck!!!" Bawl howls like a born-again preacher, he rants, curses, badgers and carps, he's a true scold, tireless in his harangue. Cursula's down on her knees, I imagine, "Something will come thru for us. If I keep hassling, they'll have to give me my payment, I'm entitled to it, it's MY MONEY!!"

They squawk for hours and I don't get any rest that night, I even say a prayer for them and take my curse off the poor cow, and I hear her clitter-clatter out her door at 8 o'clock sharp in the a.m. and later on she clitter-clatters back, yelling from the footpath, "I got it! I got it! They gave me my money Bawl! I got a 100 bucks!!" The wire-screen door creak-creaks for the hundredth time that day, and I hear moans of appreciation from deep inside their cave. Towards evening Bawl latches onto his guitar and plays mellow tunes whilst howling like a wolf, he must have scored some inebriant, and it's rather pleasant to hear real music tinkling in the background instead of some brain-dead's boom-box or their arguing, it makes for a creative atmosphere and I scribble away pretending I'm in an artist's colony. Until she joins in plinking on the piano, trying to sing back-up vocals with a vacuous, flat soprano voice, Dr. Heckle and Mrs. Fried in a retarded love duet, how sweet, hours of it till my patience collapses and I scream thru the thin wall, "Shut it you stupid cow!!" We didn't speak for a week but she's soon scratching at my door, "Toby, are you OK?" She's really fishing for a cigarette, $5 or a Valium, her absurd antics reek of bathos and yet amuse me, I try to be kind to her tho not fill the ever-needy held-out hand too often for then she'd live on my door-step.

During the day I try to sleep to recover from night shift, but the real world screams in on me. I hear out front Old Dolly and Tony the Tooth fairy squabbling yet again, bad mirror magic repeating 1001 times, "Eric the Beserker and what a creature from the deep he is!" He's been at the bins again, even tho They locked most of them up behind barred gates, and he's emptied the slops all over, leaving a trail of shit to his door, and Tony the cleanliness freak is gargling hysterics, declaring, "Let's go put in more complaints, we're off to the front office right now! I'm sick of this!" This has been going on for years, I've gotten Housing Department bureaucrats to come and see for themselves several times the "Bad Boy Bubby" conditions Eric is forcing us all to live with, shit-stained walls and flooded bathroom. He should be getting looked after in a subsidised, open-door Care Hostel, for his extra-loud cackling like a Hyena rips thru my spine 24/7 and robs me of my last shreds of human compassion, on top of which he always loses his keys so he climbs thru his front window seventy times throughout the night, "scramble, scramble, scrape, scrape", "hee ha ha ha ha ha hee hee hee ha ha ha ha ha ha!" Will he ever be taken away?

A few acquaintances have mentioned to me in serious tones, " We should talk over the urban problem of Northcott, I've got a few ideas you might consider?" Like I'm some Housing God who has urban planning powers and can turn piss into fruit juice? I've got no solutions, certainly not vigilante groups going from flat to flat to hunt out and lynch the flakes, addicts and bludgers. I just observe and laugh, bitterly. After all, this monolithic edifice was built in the early '60s as a socialist worker's paradise, Bau Haus functionalism with one's fellow sap sap sapients piled on top for good community communication and communal living, and anyway, I'm just one more of the flakes. "Ha ha ha ha ha ha hee hee hee hee hoowwwwlllllll!!!!!!"

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

I Don't Go Out Much Anymore.

Once there was a time when I couldn't let a weekend go by without some rock'n'roll carousing in one of the hot venues of Sydney, jumping, pumping, crashing, smashing, slamming, bang-bamming, to punk, grunge, thrash electrics gone wild, we danced till we dropped on the floor, then was picked up by the stomping crowd to grapple some more, the electricity coursing along our nerve paths and radiating out of our spiked-up hair. Now in the 21st century I've slowed down, become tired and jaded, except for the occasional dance party on a sacred full moon where I still dance ecstatically to the rhythm of the cosmos just to keep the body/mind/soul in tune.

Now in my mid-fifties I leave it to the young-un's to let their hair down in public, live venues bore me as there's very little intellectual information available, I mostly stay at home and read hot text or watch hot video from around the world. My apartment is like a snug Himalayan cave wherein I can contemplate world history and knowledge, and my own foibles, then figure out what to do next. These days I'm hallucinating a huge painting of a scene I witnessed many years ago, Kings Cross on New Years Eve, 1980, and I spend hours at it, into the twilight of dawn, getting very high on my art, inspired by Heironymous Bosch, Van Gogh, Toulouse Lautrec, Picasso, Otto Dix, Diego Rivera and Robert Crumb. It's a personal painting, for myself, not for money or to please a critic, gallery owner or competition judge, tho I will hang it in this year's Kings Cross Art Festival Competition, and I don't give a flying fart if nobody else likes it.

For all my reclusive life I do love to go out into the world to see what my fellow humans are up to on the streets, I roam the city, claiming it as my personal space, like the Situationists of 1950s Paris, making certain landmarks my layabout rest-stop and sacred contemplation site, like Chinatown for the bustle of Paddy's Market and the Asian food-halls; the gangbusting action of the Entertainment Centre with it's vast temple to Cinema and eye-candy spunks crowding the game-parlors; the Surry Hills Shopping Mall for my daily needs and the local library to soak up the wondrous world of text; Oxford Street with the gay crowd trundling in and out of the clubs and pubs; and Kings Cross, magnet for sleazebags and dilletantes where one can watch humanity in its raw nasty splendor.

And of course I have my special club at the Piccolo Pirates Bar where I can meld in with other freaks and not stand out so much, tho my big mouth turns all eyes in my direction. A young friend who works there is also a painter and we discuss styles, philosophies, subject matter with relish, he's a young artist who I first met in India a few years ago, I was painting a wall mural in a freak's lodge, he told me how impressed he was by my work and acted humble, I hope he's a true friend but he's also deliriously ambitious, the usual hunger artist dreaming of fame and fortune, maybe not caring too much if I get bulldozed out of the way of his progress, like so many wannabes I've met in the "arts" industry. He's recently done a portrait of Vitto, Major Dodo of the Piccolo, all the clientele love it but I think it looks like a photographic likeness of Boris Karloff as a Dead Dwarf propped up in his coffin, most suitable for Cafe Freakshow Alley.

It's hilarious to visit the cafe in the arctic waste of pre-dawn and see the maestro sitting alone, glumly knitting with his portrait glowering down upon him, the pair of them like doppelgangers from a German expressionist horror movie, "The Cabinet Cafe of Dr.Calimari", a surreal mother and child, only who spawned who is the conundrum? I'm also reminded of that Tim Burton movie, "Ed Wood", when he visits Bela Lugosi in his low-rent hovel in Hollywood: the great cinematic monster, stoned on morphine, sits below a huge portrait of himself as Dracula, and that's what Vitto looks like under his corpse-like portrait and I can't help taking the piss. It's healthy to go out into the world sometime, just to get a laugh at the absurdity of human existence, my own included.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

The Beating of a Cool Warrior.

Why are people so cruel to each other, is it hard-wired into us from a vicious life on the African savannah, fighting over carrion with other bipedal ape tribes? Every day comes news of more slaughter, torture, murders, bombs dropped, I thought Richard Leakey said we were a co-operative species? I'm the kind of dude that has never really hurt anybody, except for hitting out in self-defence, and I wouldn't dream of killing one soul, but then I come from another planet, a throw-back from the future, sent to witness and report. I can honestly say I've been treated brutally from early childhood on, because of my difference and the innate viciousness of the herd. This is what twisted me.

When I was 4 years old my father tried to murder my mother and she was sent off to a sanitarium while I was put with my grandmother in inner-city Melbourne, Richmond, a working-class slum area in the 1950s, grey and tough. The local kids looked askance at my motherless existence and treated me like an alien. One morning they were playing with a heap of glass jewels on their veranda and I so much wanted to join in, find some human warmth and get a hold of those sparkling baubles, the light shining off them was delightfully entrancing. I pleaded and pleaded with the bigger kids to let me join them on the veranda but they continuously told me to "Fuck off!" I put my hand up onto the gate in an attempt to enter their sacrosanct domain and in a fury one of the little bastards slammed the gate to ward me off, my thumb getting crushed in the jam, blood spurting everywhere.

They all went into a panic and rushed to get my Nanna, I cried and cried, not believing kids could be mean as rabid dogs, they all stood back somewhat contrite as she carried me away to bandage me up, she even took me to the movies to placate my injured soul, to see a spirit-soaring pirate movie with Patricia Medina flouncing about in red-velvet and a tattoo on her arse, she came to stand in for my missing mother and I've never left the cinema palaces since. The 'lords of the flies' were conciliatory for a few days until they discovered my 'sissy' ways, then the torture set in in earnest, most days I couldn't go out of the house for they would round on me and push me about, pinching and slapping. This went on for 2 years and then my mother miraculously came back into my life, and she resumed brooding-hen duties. She found me out on the street being bashed in the circle of bigger kids and went wild with a broom, banging many over the head till they beat a hasty retreat and didn't dare come near me again.

Things never got any better for me as far as life in the 20th century was concerned. It's been one long battle, 1001 fisticuffs with any bully or gang that wanted to big-note themselves, and thus my view of humanity is skewed, I'm not quick to trust, always ready to defend. It only got worse in the adult world, the careerist wannabes I met in the arts, writing and film-making scenes were cut-throat in their ambition, ruthless, Machiavellian, vampyric to get the money, the awards, the kudos and the power, to be the next 'art gods' like "Van Gogh" or "Orson Welles", overlooking both artists died broke and terribly unhappy. The nasty part was the 'arts wankers' I ran headlong into and who killed me off with a smile, a pretense of "community-caring", mostly they were in the 'arts bureaucracy' and conniving to get the money and ideas flowing their way, and being naive I didn't see them coming, I overlooked the fact that the lure of fame can cause careerists to sell their fellow travelers into penury at the flip of a ball-point pen.

When Orson Welles was asked how he felt about his life, he replied "I spent 10 per cent of my time making films and 90 per cent chasing money, and it wasn't fun!" Only 1 in every 7 people I ever met was cool, capable of helping out, the others were indifferent or mean, out to exploit and fuck me, people I only thought of co-operating with, and who to this day will declaim on what a bastard I am yet it was them who did the ripping, for they got the careers and the millions, I got to eat their dust. What a bunch of smarmy fuckers, middle-class hierarchy climbers and power-suckers I met along the way, pretending social concern, as if in high capitalism and celebrity worship there could be any other consideration but greed and ego.

"They" probably hoped my life in the gutter would truly kill me off, but coming from the big-city streets of Melbourne, Delhi, Bombay and Sydney, I've grown into a formidable warrior, a cool one I hope, and much of this blogging, which seems so useless, and so fucking bitchy, is my way of hitting back so that those "artist" assassins don't get totally away with killing me off. Not that anybody gives a shit, it's always been about the "Lords of the Flies" ruling. In the end, the System wins, there's no beating The Beast, I'm toe-jam between its claws, a nobody, but it was fun trying to fight back. Remember, this Blog is a very long suicide note, trying to detail how I got taken down.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

In the Land of the Living, Sort Of.

Today I'm pissed off with the world, and to every human that comes near me I feel like roaring, "Fuck off shithead!" I was awoken from my much needed deep sleep by a telemarketer from some call-center in the Phillipines harassing me, "Good morning, this is Rose. How are you?" "You're a parasite Rose, get a real job and fuck off!" Slam! Ring, ring, ring, ring! I finally picked up, "Yeah?" "You fuck off too!" hissed Rose, like a snake. This after a super-hard slog at the Hospice, the lone RaNger, doing the job of 3 nurses, run around like a mouse in a maze for a tiny piece of cheese. At 5.30 in the morning chaos rained down, all the aged denizens decrepit neurones firing off at once, as if they'd felt the god of Entropy was about to descend upon them, and I had to run from the basement to the 4th floor like Kali with 8 arms to deal with it all.

I'd been nursing a guy who was on the brink of death, he'd been lying curled up like a vegetable in his bed for 11 years and finally the time had come, thank nogod. To help him die comfortably I had to give him morphine every 4 hours, and when I saw he'd gone into labored, sterterous breathing, I gave him 4 litres of oxygen per minute to help him breathe easier. Just as he passed out of the body, peacefully, breath quietened, finally at ease, the rest of the hospice exploded with demands and desperation, and I had to find my own peace to deal with it. Down in the basement a woman kept shrieking, "Help me! Help me!" over and over, she had a black eye from a fall and looked a sorry sight, I gave her 2 Panadols and tried to mollify her but her shrieking was fit to shatter glass, and my nerves frayed.

Another woman went into breathing difficulties and her oxygen cylinder was empty so I had to change it over to a new one, but the dam screw had been bolted so tight I couldn't wrench it loose and spent precious minutes banging away at it with a lump of metal, finally it gave way and I got the new bottle started, the nasal prongs in her nose, and her happy to be breathing easier. The other woman kept screaming, "Help me! Help me! Help me!" I focused on her, what is it I can do that will mollify her? Of course, the most simple thing! I make her a cup of tea and she quietened immediately, sucking on that heavenly brew.

Then I had to rush up to the 4th floor where a woman had a pressure wound on her elbow untreated, I quickly applied Betadine and dressed it. Another resident's call-bell chimed and I dropped the bottle of Betadine, spilling the brown goo all over, mopping it up as I cursed and scrabbled. A few rooms down a man suffering from Parkinson's called for yet more Panadol tablets, he'd been buzzing all night and I ran to placate his irate demands. Down on the ground floor, the dead guy was being laid out, I consoled his crying son who'd sat by his bed for 2 days, arranged a doctor to come in and sign the death certificate and filled out all the paper work to do with a death.

Suddenly my assistant ran in and squawked "There's something wrong with Mrs. Smith in room 4!" I rushed down there to find an old lady, feeble and wan upon her bed, all entangled in the gear of the lifting machine, cables wrapped around her like a spider's web, she'd just had a very minor stroke, a TIA in med lingo, from all the swinging about in the pelican-lifter for her dawn shower, like a whirly-gig at an un-amusement park, the whizzing in and out of the water and around and around to get her back to bed, it was all too much for her, she had spun out. I checked her neuro Obs and saw she was Ok, just a bit worn out, and I told the assistants to be more gentle and do it more gracefully, like in slow motion, and ordered bed-rest for her that morning.

Back to the office, where all the day staff were milling, confused as to what floor and ward they were on, pleading with me to sort it out, phone calls of staff ringing in sick and I had to replace them too. Uuuggghhhh!

Oh yeah, I forgot, towards 7 a.m. I had to give out more morphine to seven other dying residents plus a load of pills spread across 4 floors, 7 wards, mainly for the Parkingson's sufferers who'd get the shakes all day otherwise. I also had to write Progress notes and resident Classification Scheme updates for the many exceptions to routine that happened in the night, all this while signing my signature in every tiny little bureaucratic space to cover the S8 and other medications that had been disbursed. My assistants rush at me with lots of inane questions like, "Should I give Mrs. Wadarowski her shower at 5 past six or 10 past six?" "You decide!"

At seven thirty I'm supposed to hand out pills and nebulisers plus do a handover to a swarming gang of RNs ready to enter the trenches of the 7 wards, but many come late, till way past 8 when I'm supposed to knock off, so I can just manage handing out the pills while running, and the last of the paperwork, reminders of things in the Diary or notes about little things I remembered from the deep hours of the night, such as Mr. McGlintock telling me he felt pain down his right side after his TIA of the previous day, and maybe he's got a broken hip that nobody's noticed.

Then comes my relief nurse, Clarabelle, an officious little bitch who was until recently an AIN, an assistant, but did her 3 years studies and has now been a RN for a year, never worked in any other place, but thinks she knows everything, and orders me about like a dog's body, lots of little jobs she could fucking do herslef but taking enormous pleasure in stretching out my agony, she's not letting me knock off even a minute early, unlike me who arrives at work early so my fellow nurses can be relieved and go home half an hour early, for I care about my comrades as much as my patients.

She breathlessly tells me there's been a call from the 4th floor, a patient didn't get his 6 o'clock pills, disaster! I'm mystified as I definitely gave out all the pills, but I tiredly rush up there to be greeted by a 6 foot gay Polynesian AIN who lisps with great seriousness,
"Mr. Simpleton didn't get his pills!" I go to the demanding Panadol Parkingson guy's room, he's propped up all confused, doesn't know whether he's Arthur or Marthur, his empty pill pot by his bedside, he simply forgets he had his pills at 6a.m. Fuming, I go out into the corridor and the huge Islander queen again lisps, "He says he didn't get his pills!" I couldn't help myself, I yelled, "He doesn't know what time of day it is! He got his pills, OK?"

I stormed back downstairs and dear Clarabelle has more jobs for me, it's a minute to 8 when I should knock off, and I look at her with x-ray venom, "Get off my back sweetie or I'll spit chips!" She wants to count the S8s, the opiates, a job usually left to the morning shift, the precious drugs toted up ad nauseum in a red book, "They" are terrified we nurses will become junkies with so many drugs lying about, and of course it's been known to happen, the nurse guzzling the narcotics instead of giving it to the suffering, but not me, yuk, you could tell from a mile away if any nurse was stoned, they'd stagger about with bleary faces leaving havoc in their wake. Clarabelle couldn't give a shit that I'd worked thru the night, she just wanted to one-up me and be super-nurse. Fuck, humans shit me, hell is indeed other humans!

When I looked at my payslip I saw I'd been short-changed, didn't get the "In Charge" allowance, a mere $25 for doing 2 other nurses jobs and taking on the whole building alone. I looked up to see the poor dead guy being carried out, curled up and stiff like some ancient mummy from a lost, fallen civilization, the Mayans, Aztecs or Anzacs, whatever. Life and death sure is a mystery, he was once a Queen's Counsel, now he's back to the interstellar dust, and I'm back to the land of the living, sort of.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Pirates of the Piccolo Bar.

More missives from the basement bunker at Northcott Housing Ghetto, while civilization falls around me. My old neighbour Dolly has been warned by her doctor not to walk down side-streets from the shopping-centre as a few old woman have been attacked recently by two cavemen and their female ilk with baseball bats, robbing the shopping and purses of the frail and elderly, probably ICE zombies from the ghetto, missing links with missing humanity. And every day there is another report in the news of a child and mother murdered by some beast, all direct proof our civilization is crumbling, with Bushy brown-nose John Howard, our Prime Minister, at the steering wheel.

I myself was at "Pirates of the Carribean 2", enjoying it immensely, for I dress like a pirate and swashbuckle about the world, and if I catch the beasties who beat up old women I'll smash their ugly faces in with my bike-chain. "Pirates 2" gets 7 'dings' on my shlockometer for horrid monsters, thrills and spills, klunky story and amazing mis en scene' i.e spectacular visuals. Then I went for a drink to the Piccolo Bar where a gang of wizened pirates gather like wildcats at a watering hole, yo ho ho-ing with psychedelic glee, after all, Sydney was a South Seas pirate haunt in its early days.

I'm happy to note the Piccolo Pirate Haunt is regaining the bohemian milleu it had of old and the funky set is coming back at nights to debate art, philosophy and politics, and play music, with guitars and violins plinking and streaking away into the ether, and the curmudgeons getting their savage breasts soothed for a few short moments so that their jaundiced eyeball on the world gains some rainbow hues. Even Ayesha the Chinese dragon lady retracted her fangs, queen viper at the Cafe Nest of Vipers, she usually waits, ready to bite with vitriolic wit, and have us piss ourselves laughing. Or she'd relate some nasty gossip that had been crowed to her by the in-crowd of drag-stars about somebody's throat about to be cut. Thank nogod she spends most of her time in her manky flat waiting like a cobra atop a heap of costume jewelry to pounce upon some tradesman she's called to fix her broken-down world, the cable-guy, the plumber, the electrician, there's nothing wrong with her flat except, she merely has a ton of unsatisfiable desires like the rest of us seething humanity.

But while all the music was tinkling at our heart-strings a brainless junky came by and filched Lorenzo's leather jacket with all his keys in the pocket. The moron came back the next day to sell other stolen goods, still wearing the jacket and Tina had to tear it off him while scrabbling in the gutter, then call the cops to get the keys back. Stupidity has its blessings.

Another core member of the Curmudgeon's Club Cafe is Auntie Crack, an ancient of the old queer school of salacious writers, an American compatriot of such fag captains as William Burroughs and Tennessee Williams, often relating to his younger queer acolytes, like yours truly, hair-raising tales of being a fag in the American navy in the early 20th century, from which he got drummed out of, being made to run the gauntlet between two rows of burly sailors, after having sucked the cocks of quite a few of them. Ayesha got him screaming his tits off the other day by suggesting he was a pedophile, he had been kicked out of Mexico 50 years ago for seducing teenage boys but things were different in the old days, there were no rigid labels, p.c. rules and strict mores like today's responsible codes of conduct, so we all tend to ignore his peccadilloes, he's too senile for it these days, thank nogod.

Old Crack tells me he ran away from the circus to find a home, for he grew up in a traveling carnival, he had carnie-parents who often dumped him with a dirty old lascivious junkie in New York to look after him in the off season; and Crack's first love was a handsome 'geek', the lowest in the carnival pecking order for he bit off live chicken's heads for his act. Auntie Crack's best story was thatt he had to play the part of the 'bearded lady' for a few seasons as no one else was available, with false hair and coy manner, in one redneck town he had the local cop get enamored of him and he had to fend off the groping pig's mitts then beat it out of town before his disguise was discovered. Old Crack is one of the most hilarious curmudgeons I've had the horrible pleasure to interrogate and hopefully there will be many more tales of him in the future from the Cafe Freak-show Alley.

(P.S. Later in the night : I just got back from the Cafe Poofters Paradise where I went and had a fight with that old curmudgeon Auntie Crack, he was all chummy with Glum Bum, who I'm still on bad terms with, listening to all the ra-ra-revolution bullshit and Crack was sucking it up like a decrepit armchair-anarchist bore. I made the biggest mistake when I told the old geezer I'd recently had hot sex with a butch Lebbo guy I'd picked up while waiting for a bus in a bus shelter. I'd forgotten what a jealous old fart he could be, having not seen a dick in 20 years, except for the little one that got flashed at him at the Manly Beach toilet block. I'd got his hackles up and he was ready to tear into me over any issue. The old prick suddenly bristled when I said Glumbum was a wanker, he berated me for being a counter-revolutionary, "What have you done for the cause?" was his croaked comment. "I've bothered to befriend flaccid old dickheads like you!" I grumbled as he toddled off home in a huff. So much for my sitting at his knee to hear tales of the bad old days of swashbuckling faggotry!)

At least I survived another week of nursing, again in charge of 150 old and dying, running from floor to floor, giving succour wherever I could, pulling it all off with cool efficiency, like Nurse Batshit at the end of history. And now on my off days I'm going to have fun, get high, fuck myself stupid and bliss out on more shlock movies with great hunks of music thrown in as cosmic glue to keep it all together. Yo ho ho and a hookah of ganjha!

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Miffed by Stonecock's MUFF.

 I notice I'm getting plenty of hits on this story for some unfathomable reason, maybe it's funny, maybe it's twisted, I haven't got a fucking clue. I know it comes across as extra bitter, I honestly thought nobody would read this shit, I just have fun getting the hair out of my arse, so forgive my ratbag rave, it's part of running the gauntlet that is the 'arts' world, my life's travail.

I'm always amazed by how much people kid themselves, that is, believe their own bullshit eg. John Howard, George Bush, Kim Ill Jung: all the power-mongering fuckwits earnestly believe the guff they ladle out, especially when it's to do with their own prowess and activities. A case in point is Richard Woollstonecock, the "director" of MUFF, the Melbourne Underground Film Festival. In his brochure for this years crap-fest he writes, so badly it's almost unreadable, that he's a true-blue supporter of the grass-roots Auz Film Industry, that the govt. film funding bodies are a bunch of tokenistic, mean Philistines and that he and his gang are revolutionaries, eschewing money and fame for cinematic bean sprouts and tee-pee theaters in Utopia, or some such nonsense, behind the facade it's actually concentration camps, all the time quoting Heidegger, promoting German expressionism and squawking fascistic anarchism. (As if bad vampire videos and Tarantino-rip offs are revolutionary?) Who does he think he's kidding? 14 year old Hollywood wannabes?

Last year a friend of mine in Sydney got my film, "Virgin Beasts" into MUFF 6 and I flew down to Melbourne for the occasion. I was given the arctic slot of 11.30 pm on a winter's Saturday night and not a soul came, not Stonecock himself either, no gracious director like I've met at other festivals: an empty theatre, but I brought 7 members of my family and fulfilled a childhood dream, of showing my own movie in a real theatre on Collins Street, site of all my early silver-screen orgasms, (think Regent, Metro Collins, Plaza Cinerama and Athenaem Cinemas where I saw Some like It Hot, Gorgo, 2001 Space Odyssey and The Longest Day.) (I grew up in the movie theaters of Melbourne.) The night before my film screened, Dickie showed a piece of shit film by an American wanker who Dickie was all over like an STD: the film was a rip-off of the classic "The Warriors" and you could hear Dickie's tongue slurping as he followed the American around.

What truly irked me and has me writing this shite is the Yankee video nasty-guy was most infamous for making yet another exploitation flick of the Sharon Tate murders, this one in exceptionally bad taste, he's the only bastard to show poor Sharon Tate getting knifed on screen, repeatedly, like he got off on it, so gross it's a big turn off and to think Dickie sucked up to this creep. Also the mug got drunk, thought he was just too cool for us Aussie dags, abused us the audience and the projectionist till I wanted to kick him in the arse.

When I walked up to the great festival director to say hello and get my warm festival welcome, I got 4 free tickets to my own movie shoved briskly into my hands and as I tried to ask how his fest was going I found I was talking to his back as he walked away, he just wasn't interested in me. So much for supporting Aussie grass-roots artists, it was all a load of cods-wallop dished out for dumb shallow fame whores. (I often get this response, as soon as some upper-class trendoid power-monger spots me entering the door, an aging ugly homo in non-designer clothes, I'm given the blow-off.)

There was no friendly glass of beer at the bar, slap on the back in mate-ship or jolly dinner full of raconteur tales of film-making; no enthusiastic chat about my years of showing underground films in all the rock'n'roll venues of Sydney, no questions about my winning the 1st International Trash Film Festival in France beating 6 other freaky nations, nothing, just a view of his arse as it swayed off to chase the American braggart. When I got back to Sydney my friends asked if I'd been feted, met at the airport by a limmo, put up in a 3 star hotel? I laughed bitterly. Not that I expected it, I've been around the traps too long. I was left in the Melbourne gutter to eat the icy sleet that rained in my face, that's what I'm used to. Some revolutionary that Stonecock is. Has he ever been arrested for some civil disobedient, situationist stunt like I have 13 times? No, I don't think so. His idea of rebellion is to heckle the director of the St.Kilda Film Fest from which he'd been excluded years ago and over which he's been ruminating sour grapes like a cow with mad filmmaker's disease ever since.

His special guest for this year's MUFF is Lloyd Kaufman, of Trauma Film experiences, New York, and Stonecock lauds him like the 2nd cinematic coming, possibly fishing to have his own flatulent celluloid picked up by the Maestro of exploitation flicks. I just received my umpteenth invoice from Trauma telling me , after 15 years of showing it around the world, it has finally made $3000 and I now only OWE them $63000. The only reason it finally made money according to their fuzzy accounting is that my film product is all over the satellite  networks and obviously doing some business and thus they can't bullshit me forever. Underground filmmakers beware, don't dream of riches and fame thru Trauma, think of bloodsucking, triage and emergency bandages instead. "Virgin Beasts", with it's animation and rock'n'roll, took me 10 years to get it to see the light and as far as Trauma is concerned I could've starved to death since it's completion, for Lloyd's got his Rolls Royce and his kid's private school fees to pay for. It's a good thing I'm not down there in Melbourne for the meet and greet, otherwise I'd have lambasted all those pseudos with my intrepid punk vitriol.

The real truth is that Dickie Woollstonecock is hankering to be the great auteur filmmaker and have us all lick his shitty boots. If the Govt. Film Financiers offered him $10 million he'd stretch his arsehole to fit it all in comfortably, and eye Hollywood with feverish, delusional grandeur. His MUFF is for all those desperate wannabes who dream of celebrity and riches via a 7 minute piece of sludge wherein they stare wistfully at the camera for the whole shoot with some red paint, as blood, spurted across their mugs for vicarious enjoyment. Most of the underground films are dreary in the extreme, especially the celluloid dysentery that pours out of 'Stonecock', he shows his own crap every year, even if it's just the video time-stopped rough cut, he thinks he's such a genius even his bum-prints will impress us.

And every year he writes a long bitch rave in his brochures about being fucked over by the Establishment; well this Blogged one of mine is out in public to match it. Thank nogod I'm out of all that competitive posturing and vampiric glad-handling, especially to do with film. I've never met a bigger bunch of cunts than filmmakers, they'd sell their grandmothers into third world brothels for a slot in a cinema and a shot at some arse-lick awards. I know I come across as bitter and twisted, I am! Actually I'm relieved to be burnt out, non-caring, retired in my Surry Hills flat, contemplating world history and nursing the old and dying a few days a week, writing out my punk attitude as if in a bunker at the end of history, and all filmmakers, critics, festival directors, entrepreneurs and stars can go fuck themselves.

The reason I'm raving on and on about all this is I can't stand bullshit artists, the con most fools wank on with to get themselves some attention, like their soul's worth depends on it, (and now that religion has been dumped by these cynical times, movies are the only shot at immortality left.) Dick's rant in his MUFF brochure stuck in my craw; as a nobody human I expect to be shat on in the big rush to Somebodyhood, I just wish THEY would be honest about it and not pretend THEY are saving my arse when in reality THEY are standing on it to get a leg up.

P.S. I just got a chip-spitting reply from Stonecock, some American WEB eagle-eye had spotted my rave; I'm amused and stunned that it got read, by somebody on the other side of the world! And Dickie did his ingrained bullshit response, again kidding himself, calling me a bitter failure, and how cool in reality he was to me. In fact he was very rude, he actually showed me his arse when I tried to speak to him, like he's an alpha baboon, and I didn't even get 3 words in greeting. It never worries me too much about being fussed over by the organizers or attracting big audiences as long as I can get a few souls to put their bums on seats, which I did, it's the 'realness' of the people involved that I'm looking for. I tried to promote my own film by quickly flying down to Melbourne and putting up posters wherever I could; I'm over radio-interviews etc, and it's true my old film is not worth the effort, it's already done the rounds, I just expected some respect from the "director" who raves about supporting the "Aussie rebels of Filmdom", but he was too up himself to bother with "nobodies" like me. He was and is a star-fucker, the grass-roots strugglers and ground-breakers don't really interest him, I suspect he just wants to further his own non-career with all the bullshit. I actually paid him for the tickets to the American wanker's film because I felt sorry that no one was going to his low-rent festival, and yes, I'm a bitter/twisted punk who hates all the poseurs and starry-eyed careerists.

Repeat, I'm glad I'm out of the "Business", it was a horrible experience of vampiric inhumanity, the gladiator wannabe filmmakers, the Film Commission, the Festivals , the critics etc. When I was in the 'game' I got stabbed in the back so many times here in Auz, with the 'cringe factor' ruling, I was from the wrong class and gender and I always got shown the back-door even tho my films showed all around the world and won 2 cool International film awards, something Stonecock will never achieve. I can't even believe I'm still spending time wasting my glucose over it.

Blogging is fun,  it gets the hairs out of your arse, like hyperventilating, you can even catch your breath. But I should be careful what I moan about, for lo and behold, people actually read me and I could get lynched, an irreverent sense of humor is sorely lacking in this uptight world, and satire is mistaken for insults. I just can't help myself, I get anxious if I don't write or draw daily, my serontonin uptakes get clogged and I do silly things around the city like throw temper tantrums in cinema queues.

My diatribe upon Mr. Woolstone of MUFF fame got me his attention, he's now written a conciliatory letter asking my forgiveness for his rude treatment and the tripping of my sensitive artist's umbrage-meter, even inviting me to be special guest at next year's MUFF, promising air-tickets, a 3-Star serviced apartment, trumpet fanfare and grand prime-time sessions for my trashy non-films, also teaching up and comers the pitfalls of film-making, and asking me to reconsider my renunciation of the genre, for Auz cinema needs me. I think he's trying to pull my chain, as I pulled his, but I'll take it at face-value and see it as a rapprochement, and thank him kindly. But I was sincere, I'm out of 'the game', with much relief, blessedly, film-making no longer interests me, it's a mug's game for the most, one out of a 1000 might find celluloid satisfaction, even glory, but I don't want to waste my life chasing the false gold of 'tinsel town'.

I now find it hard to believe I put in so much effort making films all those years ago, and I was never so unhappy as then and, repeat, I never met such a bunch of awful people as hungry filmmakers on the make, trust me, they fucked me over mercilessly for the few scraps of fame they clawed their way to. Even living in Northcott Housing Ghetto and getting my face wiped with the arse of Kings Cross has been pleasant in comparison. I'll eventually tell the horrid story of my torturous journey in the Z-list level of the Auz film industry in "The 7 Lives of the Punk Poofy Cat" and I'll leave it to readers to discover it in any future publication, if it happens, maybe later in this Blog site. I'm proud to be a nurse and help the dying reach the 'Pearly Gates' in comfort and peace, and I still draw/paint/write works that deeply satisfy my artistic soul, and that's enough to scratch my artist's compulsive itch.

So Richard, forgive me for my over-reaction, the more you read of the "7 Lives", the more you'll come to understand why I'm such a monster, I've received so many kicks in the teeth, I just don't take it with a whimper, and never did. I'm bemused by your huge efforts at running a film festival for all the Underground/no budget, big dream projects, and if you want to hit out at the A-listers, that makes me laugh as they need shit thrown on their snooty, designer outfits/outlooks. As do you. I eventually discovered you are indeed a neo-nazi, a holocaust denier, a sado-masochist and racist dickhead, anathema to my beliefs. You apparently long have been a fuckwit gronk, showing shit films that any cool person would be ashamed of just to play at being clever and daring, an enfant terrible who needs a brain swap. My intuition about your personality was spot-on, as ever. Just to show you what my daily life involves,and  your rants and festivals don't register as important, read my diary entry that follows.

As I rode out of Northcott this morning on my trusty bike, I ran into the Housing Estate's Liason Officer, and he told me he's reading my blog. Nogod help me, I wonder how he get onto it, except maybe WEB searching for Northcott and finding missives from my bunker like "Murder Mystery at Northcott". I'm terrified my life will be disrupted by all my little hyperventilations getting aired, "They" will now be able to pinpoint me exactly, like computerized bombers, and I might get blown away, but modern living has that as a given, and a cool artist should never be afraid if his/her art causes ripples in the muddy pond. Dom, the Northcott Liason Officer, took offense at the words "Housing Ghetto", I can only reply that for us actually living in the place, it's a version of Purgatory. At least it's great grist for the mill of my psycho scribblings.

Housing Dept and Health Dept officials are welcome to their 'brick tower' views, but it's we denizens who suffer, from the muggings, the robberies, the murders, the mess, the noise, the breakdowns, and I simply have to get the horror off my chest, after 16 years of surviving it. "They" should live next to Eric the Beserker and see how "They" like it. Poor 85 year old Dolly on the other side of Eric deserves a quiet old age after 60 years of slavery and bringing up a family, but no, she's daily tortured by the creature, he even broke her arm once in a furor, all because the Health Dept. have dumped him there to save money, and the Housing Dept. don't have a say in the matter. It's me who gets to chase him off and listen out for her.

And only yesterday, on my way home after a tough night-shift in the Hospice for the Dying, I was importuned by a zombie who offered me ICE. When I told him to go to Antarctica if he wanted ICE he got aggressive, like the ape-man he is, and said he would bash me the next time he saw me. He then staggered back into the Pottery, the Paris end of Northcott, where some brainless cave-woman is putting him up, no doubt. This is what we denizens of the Housing Ghetto constantly face, and we walk in fear whenever we leave our doors, it's like a horror movie, surely in my old age I can find a little peace? No, now I have to look over my shoulder every time I go out, but I'm ready with my bike-chain, old as I am, I've survived years on the streets of Melbourne, India, Sydney's squats, and the back-alleys of Kings Cross, so I'm not that scared. But I'll leave it to "The 7 Lives of the Punk Poofy Cat" for you to figure out how I got to be in this invidious position, and become this monstrous character, like Frankenstein's creature crying for a human heart in the ice-cold wastelands.

If you enjoyed this story please go to the WEB address above and consider buying my book of tales about growing up anarcho-queer, rock and roll punter and mystic adventurer in Australia and India of the 1950s, ‘60s and ‘70s.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Superman Regurgitates.

As a madman ever trying to escape reality, i.e. the world full of people, I've hid out in movie theaters, like most people, and lived other lives from other dimensions. Oh how I love to ge lost in thedark and mesmerised by flickering shadows, scintillating lights, and stirring music.

For the 7 thousandth  time I've just gotten out of the theatre and yet again I feel ripped off by Hollywood, for "Superman Returns" should have been called "Superman Takes a Galactic Dump": the equivalent of cinematic junk food, I've got the farts now I'm trying to digest all the silly mythic guff. Not even sci-fi, as an alien he's still able to propagate with a totally different species, like Kate Bonksworth. He looks more like a gay icon to me, great eye candy but not enough to save the dreary plot of Lex Luther yet again hankering after real estate. I read all the comic books as a kid and they had a soul of mystique in them with lurid alien villains, the planet Krypton, shrunken cities in a bell-jar, the League of Super-heroes that met in a mysterious tower etc, all of which was passed by for this humdrum neo-religious twaddle of wishful dreaming for a saviour of the world's ills.

But not even J.C. could do it, and certainly humanity is too collectively stupid to save itself, supremo capitalist overlords will continue to profit from wars and plagues and bad movies, and we the masses will be herded to our graves with barely a bleat of intelligent comment, happily munching on stale popcorn while being slaughtered. On my shlockometer gizmo the movie barely rates 5 'dings', no cool monsters, no rock'n'roll sound track, no creepy chills, just Kevin Spacey's ubiquitous homo nastiness, (ever noticed how many of the great cinematic villains are 'gay' = Charles Laughton as Captain Bligh in "Mutiny on the Bounty" and Lord Fatgut in "Jamaica Inn", Frank Thring as Herod and Pontius Pilate in the '50s Biblical epics, Robert Helpman as the Kiddie-catcher in "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang", as if their hideous homo natures shone through their acting and able to portray quintessential wickedness and evil.)

Superman's flat crotch was a disappointment, they could've at least given us the outline of his knob, then we could've really believed he'd bonked Louis Lane and not be a neutered automatom saving us like some new techno-gadget saving consumer capitalism. Boring! I'll save myself, if I can, for no one else is going to, otherwise it's bite the interstellar dust and wake up in a new life on another planet, maybe Krypton.

Monday, July 03, 2006

Murder Mystery at Northcott Ghetto.

 It must be obvious from reading these raves that they are the entries in a diary of a madman, made crazy by the world he grew into, that beat him about the head and punctured his psyche with countless meme-screws from infancy on. And thus he saw the world as a   sci-fi cyberpunk opera with him ever wailing in the foreground, and it all got to him, shallow, unenlightened people most of all.

YEAR 56 : So what have I done the last week? Not much, except work my arse off till I was near collapse. They put me in charge of the whole Aged Care Facility, 4 floors, 158 old, sick and dying people, me the lone RN with a few assistants, and I had to run from floor to floor and pray no one had difficulties while I was elsewhere. It's illegal for my employers to do this, the residents pay a fortune to be there and no one knows where the money goes as it's not in the service they deserve.

One old cancer victim, who blames the world for her deterioration and abuses the nurses roundly, shat on the floor on purpose just to see me clean it up, and I chased an ancient Chinese guy around all night who wouldn't stay in bed and couldn't understand a word of English, him squalling in my face, incomprehensibly! I was in fear of him tottering to the floor, and I tried to be ever in his vicinity, ready to catch him, I'd rather he hate my presence than get a broken hip, it would be the end of him. I'm falling apart and want to retire, I'd rather stay home and paint and live on a few dollars, I don't need money that bad. It's like being stretched on the rack in the hope of pleasures to come.

Because of night shift I never get enough sleep, and my neighbors at Northcott Ghetto make as much noise as they can, just to screw me, none of them have ever had a job in their lives and don't know what it means to be tired, except for the eternal going in and out of their creaky door a hundred times a day like a cuckoo in a clock, as if that's their job, where they go and what they do defeats me, probably hunting for cigarette butts on the streets. And my next door neighbor, that monster Eric the Berserker, cackles like a howling hyena 24/7 outside my door, it echoes up the brutal edifice of Northcott like the sound effects from a horror movie and must drive the thousand tenants to distraction as it does me. I ran out with a wooden club the other night and threatened to smash his face in if he didn't stop wailing, it made him rush back into his flat and gave me a break for a few seconds.


I fantasized a murder mystery wherein his body was found in a dumpster, just his long ccrooked legs poking out, his shrunken brains spilled among the garbage. Who did it? Cursula and Bawl, hoping to squat in his manky flat and store the trash overflowing from their flat that she'd collected from the Ghetto's rubbish heaps? No, they're wrapped in their own lassitude and only have saccharine hellos for him, like he's a perfect match for their own monstrous Dr. Heckle and Mrs. Fried personalities.

Could it have been 84 year old Dolly, reduced to madness from him scrabbling like Frankenstein at her door, dribbling filth on her doorstep and cursing everyone who visits her? He'd even broken her arm once when in a paranoid frenzy. No, she's tool frail, couldn't lift his 6 foot 2 cadaverous body and is too kind a soul to think of hurting even him, her brutal nemesis. Maybe Tony the Tooth Fairy and his undertaker boyfriend Dreadful Dravid, tired of the mess Eric trails behind him, feces leaking from his trousers; cleanliness fetishists they're forever hosing down the communal veranda out front? No, as poofs they're too wimpy and girly, they love to shriek but actually hitting out is too macho for them.

Would the cops zero in on me, the most likely maniac, well-known for temper-tantrums, storming from my flat to take on whoever so that all the neighbors steer clear of me and don't dare break in to rob or rape me for they'll get their ears torn off? But I couldn't be bothered, too much trouble, I love my freedom, world travel, movies and dancing, Eric's not worth the sacrifice. Perhaps Freda the Frump, Hillsong Christian evangelist, always trying to convert the bums on the pathways, thumping her Bible, furious because Eric is too deranged to understand what's she's on about like the rest of us pagans? But she's too fat, all that whorish make-up she wears would get smeared, she'd have to drop her Bible and that she'd never do.

So who would do it, bump off Eric the Berserker Viking and give us all an early Christmas present? I know, it could be the ICE zombies, clambering down from their brick aeries to battle it out with him at the dumpsters, their personal scavenging domain. They're well known for bad mood swings, instant violence and intolerance of other rubbish sorters, and surely they must have their dazed existences disturbed just as much as the rest of us by his maniacal laughter and, once busted, they could easily be shipped off to Long Bay Gaol: they wouldn't know the difference and no one would miss them, and they'd be doing a public service for once in their tawdry lives. If only!!!!

An Holy Order of Brown Nunshas  had taken Eric under their wings for the last twenty-one years and, protected by Christ, he was untouchable. No matter the shit wiped on the walls of his unit to head-height, and the rats and the cockroaches teeming, for all our begging them to do something to give us relief, like euthenaise him, they stoically brandished their rosaries and mumbled prayers. He needed a supervised hostel, that made sure he took his medication, bathed, dressed appropriately and stopped eating out of the garbage cans.

(Thank nogod he was eventually moved, after nearly destroying the building's foundations by flooding his flat continuously. But it took a lot of hissing and scratching on my part.) Since I brandished the club at him, Eric has chilled with the howling hyena act: for a few days we've had peace, glorious peace. And I've got a few hours sleep, enabling me to go back to the hospice for the dying, like going from one battle-front to another, such is life.