Thursday, January 31, 2008

She wears an Egyptian ring



Google is playing with my brains again.
Tells me all sorts of useful things when I try to blog.
"You are currently using 15MG (1%) of your 104MB.

What in *(*&%% are they talking about?

All I'm trying to do is put up a blog.

Well, I hope blogger lets me throw in italics and all kinds of fancy sh*t I want to do...But likely not. They are f*cked!

Ah well, it's a politically incorrect and somewhat prurient blog to begin with.

And so we begin:


"You haven't had any attention down there for a while, have you," the gypsy girl is saying.
"I too, have been alone, and for a long time."

Well. Two loners with gregarious tendencies get together.
It's not quite a parody on the old song, "My boyfriend's back
And there gonna be laundry," but it was something like that.

How is it that we end up alone sometimes.

From the very beginning, girls and women have made a huge fuss over me, as, I suppose, men have made over the beautiful gypsy girl. We have a surfeit of sex, and then, suddenly none at all.

But there is always the transitional person.

And old pop song by Melanie Safka:

Beautiful people
You take the same subway that I do
Every morning
You go the same direction too
And it ain't right
We never met before today
(I'm afraid to say)

We'll have a meeting, invite everyone we know...


Well, yes, there was the meeting, and we did invite everyone we knew, though largely "rounders" and lost people, a little like ourselves.

Screw up your marriage and you end up in the world of shot horses and fallen women, as Flaubert might say.
But what did Flaubert know?
Every time his long-distance girlfriend would come to see him, he would throw her out.
Why, after all his letters of intimacy and endearment?

Well, another song, not quite politically correct, a play on Puff, the Magic Dragon.

"Puff, the tragic faggot
Worked for the CBC
Went around the vestibules
Goosing you and me..."

Flaubert and his real needs.

Ah, we have needs, but the head gets in the way of the project at hand, a man's shift-lever mechanism sometimes fails--it is the guilt of it all; you should be with your wife.

Hemingway says the most noble thing a man can do is put a knife to his lower head and a gun to his upper head, but that, I think is pretty extreme. I don't want to go along with that object lesson.

Back to the transitional woman.
"Isis," she would say and you knew damn well that was really the case.
"Fix ya." And she did.

"She wears an Egyptian ring
Sparkles when she speaks"

Yes.

Ooh-ooh. Gypsy woman.

"Zagrai Cyganka," I hear in old Slavonic.

Play something, gypsy girl. Play me.

Well, better than poor old Puff.

"Puff, the tragic faggot
Sat there on the shelf
Couldn't find a .... to grab
So he ended up grabbing himself.

Here's to an oil change.
Here's to writing the unwritable...Again?


AND DAMN GOOGLE. SCREWED UP MY ITALICIZED SONG LYRICS AGAIN.
MAYBE GOOGLE IS TRYING TO TELL ME SOMETHING...MY LATE PAYMENT ON MY INTERNET BILL?

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Pornography is in the groin of the beholder



My friend Liona Boyd, famous guitarist, writes to me every so often.

We used to kind-of go to school together in Mexico, she At Belles Artes, and myself at the Insitituto Allende.
She studied music and I studied novel writing and Spanish culture.

She went on to fame, many world-class concerts (and Pierre Elliott Trudeu as a sometime boyfriend) and I went on to comfortable, self-abusive obscurity.

"Are you still writing about masturbation?" she asked with a giggle.

My blog that week had in fact been about one Mr. Portnoy and his complaints.

"Not just writing," I giggle back.

Sweet Liona.
Did I attain computer literacy just to hit the porn sites?

Liona, you were always more surefooted that I.
You studied Villa-Lobos and Ponce and I went on to become Ponce de Leon, searching for his fountain of youth, not realizing all the while that the fountain of youth is really one's libido.

I finally got a fellowhip to teach at the Instituto.
"It's not what you are saying, your erudtition, so-called; it's that bulge in your pants and the way you move," an old student confided."It's your body language."
"You mean I'm the Tiffany Boy of academia?"
"Something like that," she had said.

MIgod. All that application, all the bad novels. And I have been the Britney Spears of literature.
Friggin' airhead. Exhibitionist. Bouncy-Bouncy. If I catch you, you'll get a piece of me.

Well, Liona doesn't want a piece of me. Just an old friend emailing and old friend.
But she was onto my literary game thirty years ago.
"Are you still writing about masturbation?"

I had said yes.
No small wonder that Liona has stopped writing to me.

Merv the perv.

I am trying to justify myself. I hit the porn site for research--research you understand!
My intention was to do a newpaper article on porn sites and their effect on people.
Stunts your growth, drives you blind--that sort of thing.

But no.
Carnal sights. Curiosity.
Gorgeous California girls ingesting huge salamis.
I mean, wouldn't you?

Well, I do need glasses now and I never was all that tall.

Ah, but there is a karma, a price for everytyhing.

Viruses and spam. My computer is wrecked!
My brain is wrecked.
I am the old bum in the woodshed with his Hustler magazines.

My son happens to be my IT guy. He fixes my computer whenever I have problems.
"Dad, I see you have a bad virus in your computer.
"Wonder where it could have come from."

I know he knows all too well where that virus had come from.
"Wet Girls"--tha's where the virus had come from, right down to the unwanted new icon of a very wet, though fetching girl.

I have to make amends. I need to go to Father Confessor; need to do my penance.

I must, like Leonard Cohen, transmute all this into art.
I must, in fact read Mr. Cohen' much underrated novels--he was one of the best.

So I open a page.

It was a scene of separation, loss. A man and his woman were breaking up.

I read the dialogue.

"She watched me masturbate for the last time."

Oh Liona. At least I have something in common with Leonard Cohen.

I will write about masturbation.

So what else is new?

##

Monday, January 28, 2008

Definitely Writing the Unwritable



It is the semi-annual event of my erection.

And I'm so proud.

Waking up in the apartment all by myself.
Just me and my erection.

Ah well, at least that's something.

Better a pole-vaulter than an improverished "Pole".

Brings to mind an old Mac Davis song:

Oh Lord it's hard to be humble
when you're perfect in every way,
I can't wait to look in the mirror
cause I get better looking each day
To know me is to love me
I must be a hell of a man.
Oh Lord it's hard to be humble
but I'm doing the best that I can.

And:

Some folks say that I'm egotistical.
Hell, I don't even know what that means.
I guess it has something to do with the way that I
fill out my skin tight blue jeans.

LOL.


My last girlfriend, just before she left me, said, as she plugged in what looked like an egg-beater,
"Take a walk on the wild side."

Brought to mind another song:

It went this way and it went thataway
And whirred when it stood still.
I never knew just what it was
And I guess I never will.

...Except that she kept sending me down to Radio Shack for batteries.

That's what happens when you're a colossal fosssil with a docile tassle.

More Mac Davis:

Oh Lord it's hard to be humble
when you're perfect in every way.
I look at myself in the mirror
I get better looking each day

I used to have a girlfriend
but she just couldn't compete
with all of these love starved women
who keep clamoring at my feet.
Well I prob'ly could find me another
but I guess they're all in awe of me.
Who cares, I never get lonesome
cause I treasure my own company.

My own company for too long. I get lots of sex, but it's all in my head.

Roger Miller:

Dang me
Dang me
They ought to take a rope and hang me.

The way I'm going, I'll end up in jail.
Lots of sex there, but not the kind I want.

Lately, my email has been full of old girlfriends who want to come back.
I guess we're all a little too old for sex now and just want company.

Well, an added bonus this morning.
Feel like going to my doctor for an examination.

"Why, there's nothing wrong with it.
"Yeah, I know, but ain't it beaut?"

Ah well.
Small things occuy small minds.

##

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Brilliant Career Move--All I have to do is die.




Waiting for Blogger to put up the picture.
I tried something fancy this time, got the picture off a flikr. Hope it works.
It was the picture that gave me the idea;

I must make a brilliant career move.
All I have to do is die.

I mean it worked for Hank Williams, probably the best writer of songs in America...No kidding. Old Hiram Williams. Yes! Dead by 29, after hundreds of songs and much fame.
It worked for James Dean, and Harry Chapin (Rememer the song, Taxi?); it worked for Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison.

And now poor Heath Ledger.

"You will not achieve fame until after you die," said my sailor-suited Women's Lib copyeditor at the Canadian Magazine."Thanks," I'd said.
"Now will you edit my book so I can have some fame while I'm alive?" "It'll cost you big bucks," she had said.
"I got big bucks,"I told her...and I did at the time.

Well, the big bucks got me published, but not in the way I wanted to.
The book's success led to still another job. A newmspaper columnist.
"Stick to politics," they told me.
I hate politics.
It has a bad smell to it.

I have written another book.
I need a success, big-time.
But it seems all I have to do is die.

The Emperor Nero, caught in a parallel situation, asked a number of of his aides if he would show the emperor how to commit suicide. "I am afraid I would screw it up."
Nobody volunteered.

Very likely, nobody's going to show me either. :)

My mother is a hunded years old.

Egad. Another thirty years?

I just can't wait to get famous!

##

Thursday, January 24, 2008

What can you do when you live in a shoe.

I thought I would be a fancier of cheese, that is to say, a Krafty **cker; I would remember the image I wanted up on this blog and then go to the library computer and put it up.
Think I remembered the image number? No way. ppg--something.

So I am imageless in Gaza, very nearly a blogless serf.

"What can you do when you live in a shoe?" I ask my friend the drug dealer.
"Button it up and get laced," he says.

Goddamn jailbird. No-account. Ne'er do well!

"Yeah, but didn't I meet you at the halfway house?" he laughed.

Oh what the hell. I am a novelist. Well, at least a novelist-manque'. Wannabee- had- to- be. Looking up at the stars. Falling into wells and cesspits. And halfway houses.

Among the filthy, filthy too.


My intention in life was to have been lucky and wonderful.
The way it turned out, I was Ethelred the Unready,one of the dumbest kings of England.

Ah well. My pretentions to royalty had to be scaled down.

Perhaps I could be a writer of doggerel.

"He was dirty and lousy, and full of fleas
"But he had his women by twos and threes
"God bless the bastard king of En-gel-and."

Well the dirty and lousy and full of fleas part is true right now. Something is eating away at me, and it isn't one of the girls. Oh-oh.

"You got your health," says my former dentist. And you're mainstream.(Actually, he used another categorization.
I think the politically correct term these days is melanin-deprived. I am melanin deprived...Maybe that's why I got on so well in Texas).

Actually, at the time, I was free, white and 51, no spring chicken.
And a nightclub singer to largely black audiences.

"Play that funky music, white boy." Had everything but melanin. "Rock star with frequent trips to the washroom, as is the way of seniors. Lol.

"Why am I standing here in front of all these people?" I ask my manager.
"Because you are a rock star, asshole!"

Oh.

We go through life in a dream, like automatons, somewhow. The talent seems to come from way out there somewhere. All things come from God. First tenet of the Kaballah; no wonder Madonna is so enamored with it.


Well, anyway, here am I peacfully ratscrabbing away in the library.

"Can I have more computer time?"
"You'll have to show me your library card."

"But I've got enough notoriety not to need one."

"You've got the notoriety, all right. Now show me your library card."


I have a friend whose credit rating and personal reputation is so bad that he had to go to a lawyer to get back his library card...Now that's a persona non grata.

Gee, I hope the librarian said "notoriety" in the best sense. There had been a time when I'd walk into a library and everybody would almost salute.

Nowadays, it's more like Tom Swift and his electric dildo.

Alexander Portnoy and his pound of liver, doing the Portnoy Man.

Ivan and his pound of cheese.

Being Krafty.

What is it that got me into that l938 Tom Swift state of mind?

Damn, I love it.

"I love cheese," said Tom craftily"


"Are you sure you have a library card, or something with your name on it?"

So I gave the librarian my air miles card. "No. try again."

Oh what the hell. I have finished this blog.

I'm outta here.


..............



Hey, hey. Just when I'm in a maudlin mood, what should I find when I googled Ivan Prokopchuk at the library:


Google Books by Ivan Prokopchuk.


The Black Icon: A Story / by Ivan Prokopchuk
by Prokopchuk, Ivan - 1992
No preview available - About this book - Add to my library

The Fire in Bradford: A Novel
by Ivan Prokopchuk - Fiction - 1996 - 101 pages
Cover title.
No preview available - About this book - Add to my library

The Black Icon: A Story
by Ivan Prokopchuk - 1969
No preview available - About this book - Add to my library

Light Over Newmarket: A Novel
by Ivan Prokopchuk - 1991
No preview available - About this book - Add to my library

Storm and Stress on the Campaign Trail: The 1985 Election in a Small Ontario ...
by Ivan Prokopchuk - 1986
Cover title.
No preview available - About this book - Add to my library

The Hat People: A Novel
by Ivan Prokopchuk - 2001
No preview available - About this book - Add to my library.


Well, well, well. No previews available.

But at least I'm listed.

Kinda nice to have Google,unsolicited, check out my books in the various libraries.

Things are looking up!


##

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

no image download



Well, I finally managed to goose Blogger into uploading an image from me, even though I had to steal the image from E. A. Monroe's e-mail to the "Quarks" who inhabit these pages.

Still not sure if this copy goes through, but if it does, I'll be as happy as a Fifties Style "Cat" with a Chilly Willy ice pack on his back.

Don't know how I outsmarted Google, but the image is there anyway...And I didn't havbe to do anything hi-tech. Just kept picking, plucking and praying.

Ah well. Here goes nothing. Hope this blog works.


Ivan

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Be a Ho

I have been told that I think like a Chinaman, that is to say, obliquely, but somehow accurately. The Chinese person is great at thinking for him or herself, but has trouble with the collective.

I have trouble witht the collective, certainly my imposed world of Google and Bill Gates. Googlie will not put up my blog pictures for me, and as I try to put up images in my blog, the images do not only disappear, but my attempts at putting up pictures turn into spam; I have to shut off my computer, try again, try again and finally-- go crazy.

Long interested in things oriental, I see as I toss the I-Ching that serious work should not be attempted on a full moon. There is a full moon out today and it seems to be blunting any sharp edge I have had to my overworked brain; It has, in fact become mush. I seem to stand to one side, watching it pitch and turn.

But I cannot blame it all on my oriental studies, nor the full moon.

There has been serious suckage in my projects for the past two years.
My old Newfie buddy puts it succinctly: "Press F for F*ck- up."

I would dearly love to put this in Latin, but I don't do Latin to well. Donus nus. Sumus fornicatus!

"Give it to us. We'll f*ck it up!"

Smarting over a rejection a few weeks ago, I went to a sucessful editor and he says, "Do film. Mediums have changed. Nobody wants novels any more. You are producing things nobody wants."

Have you ever tried writing a feature-length film? It's impossible. Same as with writing a novel.
(Still, the proud, secret twerp within me says, "You nevertheless managed to cobble a novel together, Motherf*cker.").
Well, that was a long time ago. Written, published, reviewed.
And just when it seemed you were on the way to Hollywood, as your reviewers urged, you lost all your money and started distributing free pizza coupons on the street. This is a novelist? This is a f*ck-up!

Buck up, f*ck-up!

Sort of like the Newfie in a bank holdup. Says to the teller, "This is a fuck-up!"

I am tired of rallying from defeats. All the Hollywood movies feature a hero who turns a disaster into triumph.
Gone With the Wind. Birdman of Alcatraz. All the Henry Fonda films.

Seems to me, the best way to rally from a defeat is to sit down and shut up.
Says the Newfie, "If at first you don't succeed, give up. No sense in making a damfool of yourself."

I am desperate for a drink.


"You look like a guy who's had the sh*t kicked out of him," says the bar owner.

"Well, if you don't cut off and ban for life that Scotsman soon, he's going to come over and kick the sh*t out of me. Twelve beers, and the asshole wants to fight...I need my face to teach with.
"Oh don't take rejection so hard, says the bar owner. Tell you what. You put in three ads for my sports bar inside you novel and I'll be your publisher. Ricci's Sports Bar."

Hey.
There is hope here. Published by anybody but oneself is a boon.

I intend to go home to look for the manuscript.

But there is some serious drinking to do yet.



I go back to my regular drinking buddy, my enabler, unofficial patron.

"Do porn," says the Newf, my friend.

"What do I know about the writing of porn?" I ask.

(I had just, in fact, read a book on sexual astrology and was enlightened by the information that Pisces like to roll in sh*t). "Write about rolling in sh*t,'" says my Newfie friend. Rabelais could do it. Became a masterpiece. You can do it too."
"This is the stuff of greatness?" I ask.
"Indeed," says the Newf. "Sh*t is money. Write sh*t."

No. I think I'd rather go with the Beatles' old song, Paperback Writer.

I will change this, I will change that, I will turn my earstwhile manuscript into porn.

"Be a whore," the first line will begin.
"Share your welfare cheque with the pimp until things get better."

"Now you're talkin'," says the Newf.

"Be a Ho.

"Now there's a title for you."

Well, "Be a Ho" it shall be.

And my barkeep will publish it.

"This is only the beginning, my Ontario friend," says the Newf.

"Hate to think of how you're now going to defend all your titles."

Hm.

Somebody has already written Deliverance!

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Quoth the Raven, "How the f*ck should I know?"

When someone, out of the blue announces, "It is exactly 10:01 p.m. " and gives you the exact time every few minutes, you know for sure he's crazy as a bedbug.
Most of us are too loosely structured to keep our sense of time so exact. And to have some nut announce the time like a NASA computer is enough to drive one up to the standard "will you just f*ck off!" response. Or "Get a life!"

But there is a full moon coming on, and this lunatic is staring at his old French clock, which indicates, exactly 10:01. It is far from mindnight, but I am into an Edgar Allen Poe mood.

"Once upon a midnight dreary..."

I am even starting to test the social skills of my raven.

Quoth the raven, "How the f*ck should I know? You're a goddam lunatic!"

And yet and yet. We stare at the clockface, this symbol of French clock design, symbol of of our identity, I suppose.

We are missing somebody.

And the raven hasn't got a f*cking clue.

How often has a spouse gone off on holidays witht the kids, and you lef alone for whatever reason.
Sitting in the house. Drinking wine. Staring at the clockface.

After a few hours you seem vigilant enough to actually see the minute hand moving.

You really should get a life.

But what is a life all alone, the spouse gone to Florida witht the kiddies. And you having to work, could not get to go.


I am visited by my friend, the off-duty cop. He takes me out to a couple of pubs. We get drunk.
We are eating French fries in the plaza behind the Swiss chalet, in the cop's car.
I suddenly have to pee like a racehorse.
What to do? It is twilight. The parking lot is full of people.
Ah, the cop knows what to do.
He instructs. "See,you get down on your knees under the rocker panel of the truck, see, then you whiff her out and you have yourself a pee. Hardly anybody notices.
"I'm telling, you, Ivan. You don't get out enough!"

Se here we are peeing against the SUV's rocker panel, on our knees, as if we're fixing something.

I probably don't get out enough!


I am back in the house. Staring at the clock again.
Could it only have been a couple of hours since I'd had the drink with the cop.

Seems so.

Time standing still. I am beginning to actually see the minute hand move again.

What if wife and kiddies don't come back.

What if they never return.

I phone my typist. "Oh don't worry. They'll all be back. You just watch."

But I am on a watch.

Vigilant. The clock is ticking. The minute hand is moving. I can see it. I can follow it. Like some maddened computer out of a science fiction movie.

It is exactoly 02:01.
Now, if somebody around me would announce it like that, I would probably think about a good sharp slap to the face. It is unkind of me, but I hate retarded people. Heh. They make me think of myself, make me nervous.

But there is this state of mind, this state of being. It is a sure indication that I am missing somebody.

But I sure as hell can't get to them from here, neither they to me.

Major Tom to Ground Control!


The clockface is a symbol of ones identity

The clock face is starting to blur.

Einstinian fantasies that really are not.

The line out of T.S. Eliot is a bit church-like, but somehow a' propos.

"Leave us not be separated.
"And let my cry come unto thee."

Friday, January 18, 2008

Film, I say--not Flim-Flam

Between microsoft spamming me every time I click onto on of its stories on my home page, to Google with its brainfarts whenever I try to post a picture on my blog--this Windows way wants to make me break Windows.

I want a Mac!

But who can afford one.

So, unable to put up pictures, I am forced to just blog...And even here, I'm no sure if anything will go through.

Today's blog will deal with the trickster god that is forever in the background of our serious writing.

We mean to get our chapters right, we mean to be serious, committed writers.

But the trickster god of writing seems to always distract us.

Put us off on a Harlequin.

My intention today was to write about the need to stop uh, "jacking-off" in our writing, to write with a purpose, to write with the intention of selling.

But no. The Trickster god comes up. He wants me to write about Mexico and the travels there.

"Write about the time the sand fleas almost kicked you out of your bed. The night they almost kicked you to death.

Or write about the apothecary-philosopher, Dr. Olsina, who says the Aztecs were more up-front with their human sacrifice than we are over here with our soldiers.

And yet the manuscript sits moldering in its drawer.

So easy to blog.
So hard to market.

I had lunch yesterday with an editor. It did not go well.
The pub was noisy, and though the food was good, there was a certain seediness to the place neither of us were comfortable with.
And then I had to go off on conspiracy web sites, some of whose assertions made even my seasoned editor blanch. "You mean they were responsible for the 911 bombing. Preposterous."
I had only been echoing he assertions of a site called Killtown, and it has some way-out contributors

"You are losing your marbles, Ivan," the editor was saying. "You are too frustrated over the commercial non-success of your novels. You gotta do a switcheroo. Switch mediums. Go into television, film."

Well folks, I am going into television and film.
Can't hurt.
I mean, I have exhausted this novel thing.

Successful people finish things.

I hope I can finish his film I'm working on.

I am tired of Google wrecking all my blogs.

Do the demolition job myself, I think

Film, I say.

Not flim-flam. :)

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Super-Dave goes nuts

Generally speaking, you shouldn't write when you're depressed.
Worse still when you are in a manic phase.

You end up with a piece that's really scary.

Like:




It was fun being a superstar.

People would say, "There goes Super Dave , the superstar.
"Dave be nimble, Dave be quick!"

I was jumping over so many candlesticks.

A superstar is one who make his entire living on largely his own B.S., and I guess at this, I qualified.
I was a writer and a teacher of writing, I was a musician and a teacher of music
I was a sexual acrobat long before Cirque de Soleil, where I'm told they have some wild apres' performance parties.
I was convinced the whole world was really my idea.

"What," you may ask, "Did your wife think of all this?"
She didn't.

"Okay, Superstar, here's mop. The kitchen floor is filthy from where you do your nightly pace after class, drinking, and thinking. Thinking you're somebody.
"But I am a superstar, Martha. I am an artist."
"Artist isn't too far off from another word that starts with an a. Get the mop.!
Sigh.
Brought back down to earth again.

It all came from a slim novel that gained a large cult following. It dealt with survival and had a catchy title, certainly in todays world: The Black Icon.

Then the newpaper column, a dalliance with Martin Lynch, the Globe and Mail's typographer-poet who showed me how to get to the heart of the matter in writing; there was a groupie I dared not confess to and a call from the college, who wanted to make me an ein profesor! Ja, gemacht!

But then superstardom is something a family develops over many generations.

Dropped on a potato field in Ukraine many moons back, I knew my first cousin was really a potato and knew for sure my family crest had two crrossed hoes rampant on a potato field. I knew my luck wouldn't last, potato-head upstart, and it didn't.

I picked up a whiskey habit and a pint-sized hooker with an IQ of 140. Veritably, a f*cking genius.
Systems analyst by day, hooker at night.
But she did like to flatter me.
"We have IQ's of 140 plus. We can create things. We can make things sing and dance. People hate us."
Well, I knew for sure some people hated her.
And probably me.
We both shared an ability to really work on people's insecurities by our self confidence, our brashnes, our outright being bad.
"We be bad." Same as the two horny cats in the R.Crumb underground comic.

Hung up on each other and yowling madrigals to the world, in five tones. Oh, we were so hip. We superstars.
But she was a superstar of a different magnitude. Jezebel of Holland Landing.
And I was just poor Mr. Potato Head hoping for some, uh head..

Well, sometimes one's own wife can defuse a bad situation, where the poor professor has a guttening candle on his head and is following some image of a porn queen.
"Wha are you doin' McLuhan?"

Gave me a start
What was I doing?

Ah, excesses of the noveau riche. Never had any money. Never had any fame.
Now I just wanted to jump up and grab my own tail. Or apiece of the hooker's.

I was pulled back home, almost by the ear.

But I didn't stay long.
Foxy chicks. Gotta get. All the ones I missed in high school.


Soon I was in an "Eyes Wide Shut" world of Stanley Kubrick.

Pimps, priests, police, poltergeists.

No wonder young stars go wild in Hollywood. I was merely in Holland Landing, and that was bad enough.

I had written in my high school year book that I feared I would be "quite ordinary."

Oh if only.


And here am I in a psycho ward, throwing turds at my keeper.

"This is the guy who had been telling us what to think, how to behave.
"Friggin arsehole."

"Is that a diagonsis?"
"Yes, it is a diagonosis."

"But I was a superstar".
"You're an arsehole."

"I knew that! Now tell me what's wrong with me!"

"You believe in that sort of sh*t? You think psychoanalysis is for real?

"This place is for arseholes. They have fancy names for them, but they're still arsholes. Nobody want to know one. Nobody wants them, really. So they end up here.

Ah superstardom.

Maybe the whole thing was in my head to begin with.

Now I've got to design this really cool glider to get the hell out of here!

Brewster McCloud.

Superstar.

"Oh, Brewster," I heard my hooker pal sigh to me, next cage over.

LOL.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

In my paranoia, I swear the CBC has ripped off a script idea of mine and I am pissed right off

Also on your play writing.


On the stages of some sort of breakdown here.

Exhaustion. Paranoia.

Somebody has already done a short film about the play I was proposing last year.

Paranoia will destroy ya.

Here is what one film maker in Canada has put together:

The Other Celia follows Slim Walsh as he discovers the mysterious activities of Celia Sarton, one of his rooming house neighbors. Driven by curiosity, Slim pokes a small hole through the floor of his closet, allowing him to see into Celia's room. Witnessing Celia preform a bizarre transformation, Slim comes to the realization that she's unlike anyone he has ever known. He takes it upon himself r as much as possible about this strange being. Written by Skid Gasket

Here is what I had in my Act II, Scene Four of my Fire in Bradford, whose heroine's name is Celia.

Act II, Scene Four:
It is morning in the same yuppie apartment. A coffeepot is hissing merrily in the kitchenette stage left.
Lights: Up.
There is a woman in an 18th century corsetted paisley dress and red granny boots. It is Celia. She is all energy and crispness
Celia:
All right. Let's get it together! Lief! David!
There is noise overhead. Lief presently comes down the attic stairs centre stage. There is a VTR in his right arm. He is fumbling in his left-hand pocket for something. The professor has hastily put on his trousers. There is a shirttail hanging out. He enters from stage right. They gather around the oak dinner table. Celia busies herself, pouring coffee into portable plastic cups. The professor gets his coffee and is about to drink when he notices that there is an unnatural bulge in Lief's left-hand pocket. Lief had placed the VTR on the table.
Professor:
Doing something at work, Lief?
Lief: Uh.Yeah.
The professor is stil half-drunk. Lief is standing over him, a bulge in he left pant pocket. The professor gropes at the bulge.
Professor:
Whatcha hidin' there Lief?
Lief: Ah, just some equipment.
He is moving his left hip towards the professor, his crotch towards the professor's hand.
Professor:
You're kind of moving into that, Lief.
Come on whatcha got?
Lief follows the professor's hand, lingers there for a bit and finally produces a pair of jewelled opera glasses. He places the lorgnette on the table, beside the VTR.
Professor (looking right to Celia, who is having her cofee on the left side of the chesterfield with its cofee table, like a TV tray, in front).
He looks up again at Lief. Lief is half giggling.
Professor:
Nice paraphanelia, Lief. Made in China. Still has 'Peiping' on it. Hey, Peiping Tom!
Lief:
Peiping Tom?( He makes a face).
This breaks the ice. They all laugh.
Celia is now standing. She motions lief and the professor toawards the back door.
Celia:
No time for breakfast, guys. Sorry. We're running late.
They leave the house.
Music: First bar of theme from William Wyler's olf film"The Collector.'
Fade out.
Lights: Down........end act II, Scene Four, THE FIRE IN BRADFORD.


Ah paranoia.
Will destroy ya.

I am sure the CBC play was on another tack altogether.
But ya never know.

Captain Queeg (Rolling two steel balls between thumb and forfinger, like, perhaps, a frustrated masturbator):
"It was the strawfberries. That's where I knew I had them. I proved with geomettic logic that...they stole the strawberries...

Heh.
Who is plagiarizing whom?
...And I think I've lost my steel balls!
--Ivan

Friday, January 11, 2008

A horse with my name


"Aaah Prokopchuk! Overlooking the farm, he has (as had the others) a bad respiratory infection, he is spelling at the minute to let his airways recover fully and not be under any pressure....he is knee high in beautiful oats and pasture (from the good rain we have had last month)...He is King of the farm..and enjoying his leisure time and recuperation."
This was written some time ago by Sienna (Pam), from Australia.
The horse named after me has since been sold...No further news.
I hope my namesake did well in any upcoming harness races.
(Actually, I was quite thrilled to have a horse named after me.
All my friends in Toronto, some of whom had streets named after them, were visibly envious).
I wrote into my pen pal, Antonia Zerbisias at the Toronto Star.
She wrote back saying it was a great honour. And it was.
But it seems that like my four-footed namesake--how can the announcer ever pronounce the name right?--I am prone to respiratory infections, likely self-caused by a life style and diet that would shrivel a self-respecting starfish. Heh. Crown of Thorns starfish.
When I am ill, I abandon all positive thinking.
Positive thinking will kill you dead.
Gotta work on the stuff itself, as old Francis Bacon said.
So I am applying negative thinking, having cured myself of positive thinking, which is a salesman's self-con anyway.
I shall soon be dead.
This knowledge will make me fight all the harder. :)

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Who is this hombre named Art?




Who is this guy named Art?

I was not yet forty and I'd already given my life and energies to "him".

Ah the stupidity of youth.

Throwing everything away, doing a Jesus, but in a profane way, chucking job, family, money and off to a dream of
Ponce de Leon, of Gaugin, of George Orwell (Orwell too threw it all away, but look at the legacy!).

Giving one's life for art.

This is beautiful, but stupid.
Like dying for love, which is also beautiful but stupid.

At thirty-eight, I was clutching a ten-year- old manuscript, hoping for that final rewrite, that "orgasm" that Norman Mailer was always talking about--oh say it on, the placing of THE END at the end of your life's project, feeling so good about this that if a man, you'd want to masturbate!

(There is certainly a tragicomic aspect to all this).
Said a friend, watching me go through the "throes of creation"--"maybe your work is all one big jack-off."

Oh if only it were.
If only it were.

The tortured, lonely "creative artist" is hugely attractive to women, especially in an exotic locale.
The divorcee's are all around, like maybe six to every guy, and if you don't get laid on a Saturday night, you'll never get laid at all...And then every night seems like Saturday Night, with the fiestas, the pinata sticks, fireworks, icons carried through the streets, Mariachi bands trumpeting all the while and romance and marijuana wafting in the air...I mean, wouldn't you?

Que bonitos ojos tienes
De bajo de esas dos ceejas
Que bonito ojos tienes
Ellos me quiren mirar

Malagena salerosa
Besar tus labias quiensiera...

What beutiful eyes you have, my Malagena of the red room.

Yeah, yeah. I was Dr. Hook.
Hooka-tooka-my-hookah.

Hearing kids yelling at me from where they were playing another kind of music:
"Techno. Techno!Toronto just like New York. Everybody drive car. Go crazy!"

Go crazy indeed.

"We were all crazy in San Miguel, Ivan", a friend writes to me. "Nuttier than fruitcakes.
More vegetably than verduras, what the natives called us--vegetables. Hippies."

Decades later, I really wonder where my old ex-pats are now.

Ray Davies and the Kinks:

Where are the angry young men now
Where are the angry young men now

I wonder what became of the rockers and the mods
I guess they're all making it, they've all got steady jobs...


Well, we weren't rockers and we weren't mods; we were at the shank end of the Beatles and thieir magical mystery tour, we were following Burton Cummings and his American Woman.

American woman indeed.
American women were not like Canadian women.
They would put out, pour on the love, good for you and all that ailed you.
And the sun rose every morning. No clouds.

Oh blessed dissipation.

Straining your brains out through the eye of dissipation.

Hogarth, Rake's Progress.
Norman Rakewell.

But Norman had the art.
They were telling Norman that he was at least producing the best nonfiction at the Instituto.
They promoted him to El Profesor.
Which made him a rake all the more.
Going off at both ends.
Whizbang firecracker.

There would certainly be a bang and a fizzle.
Heaven forbid that the Big Bang theory that our "artist" was trying to figure out was nothing more than this.
The world ends not with a bang, but with a whimper?
Don't you believe it.
There is the bang, then some secondary bangs and you drift down through an acrid smell of cordite.
And without a parachute.
...............

Will you visit me in the nut house, Laura?
"I will, but if you stay nuts, I will start filing papers."

The laughing gods that rule us seem to leave their trail in documents.

Documents. Documents.
"Important Documents" says the arrogant Pakistani, civil servant, who is now your boss.
"White hog is stupid. Stupid.
You are stupid."


Recently, I visited Mexico again, back at the town of the blue hills, bougainvillia, beautiful 400-year old ruins, cathedrals wherein, among the smoky icons and high apses, you could hear the crack of centuries.

Kingston Trio: "An old man goes to Paris
"His dreams have turned to dust."

But wait. Who is that beautiful woman wandering alone int he Jardine, the town squre, among the rubber and the trueno trees and eucaluyptus flowers?
A tall, beautiful blonde woman who calls herself lonely.
She will meet an American man, or a Mexican man.
Either way, she will win.
By hook or by crook.

I am going to write an opera.
It will be about a paradise, a kind of "love among the ruins."

The ruins of my life.

But by God, did I ever live!

But Art does have a way of coming by to collect.

##

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

They're not making the girls the same this year...Been waitng in the pub, hoping they would come to me, but I think I've turned into a skeleton.





I've got two things in the can right now:

A script a former theatre director is editing;

And old isssue of The Main Street WhizBang being recopied by "Quarkettez" Josie so I can show some folks some of my projects of the past (mostly lead-balloon projects).

I don't have Photobucket, and am in fact about ready to kick the bucket, only my doctor and dentist in there pitching in.

Josie is down with a code in her node, I am down with bronchitis (which in no way diminishes my need for a cigarette).

This seems to be a period of waiting.

We are, I think, all of us, waiting.

Waiting to get "betta".

Monty Python: "The evil witch changed me into a newt.

" (I got betta!)."

Waiting, waiting, waiting.

We are all waiting.

To get " betta."

We need to be betta writers (though I think Josie is so good she hardly needs improvement).

Betta in our health, for something out there is out to get us this winter. And it ain't foolin'.

Like Josie, I can't wait for spring, that season of great promise, when the grass is green and all those winter viruses will finally be knocked.

We certainly wait for British Columbia to be a paradise once again, instead of a poor imitation of Colorado and Nevada those mythical vacation spots tuned so suddenly into inland lakes.

All good things come to those who wait, my wise ex-wife used to say.

But I don't think she's waiting for Ivan any more.

Literary "prize" turned booby-prize.

Oh if I'd only been a truckdriver!

...But then I have.

That wasn't so hot either. Southern rednecks throwing themselve under my eight-wheeler just "fer to get the insurance."

I guess they sit and whittle on the side of the road an wait.

Come on eighteeen-wheeler!

Run across eight lanes of traffic for one!

Beep! Beep!

Crash.

Some Canadian idiot made a movie of it.

I'm another Canadian idiot wating for his book to be turned into a movie.

Ah, the gloomy Slav still waits.

I still think of of my old prof.

"Two things are certain. You will get your book published, and you will get laid."

Come on eighteen wheeler!

##

Sunday, January 06, 2008

The Space Man Cometh


Damn that Spaceman.

(It's a radio show along the lines of Art Bell and George Noory).

If you believe the Spaceman, the Third World War is upon us, there will be death, destruction, mayhem.

Armies are already gathering for a final showdown.

But in the end, it is the "Illuminati" who will win, the Illuminati, that half-mythical group that the Spaceman says has been controlling everything and everyone since almost the beginning of history. Super high-priests. And they will make the world bow down to them.

Damn, why do I have to listen to outrageous moonshine like this when already depressed with the flu, really bad teeth and a mother wasting away in an old age home?

It's enough to drive one to Dostoevsky and his incredible flawed novel, "The Devils".

Certainly Bon Jovi:

"It's all the same
Only the names are changed
And every day
We're just wastin' away.


Is nihilism like botulism?
I think I've got the latter for sure..

I got something, somewhere. From somebody. And it's laying me low.

Memory kicks in:
I was waiting for the light to change, when this gorgeous teeny-bopper sidled right up against me and (I swear) coughed fruitily right into my face. I could tell from the hoarse cough that she really had something. Why did I have to pause, dirty old man, just so I could look at her unlined face and her blonde, frizzy hair. And the pretty mouth out of which issued a Chernobyl blast.

Bring in the helicopters!

Bring in the sandbags!
I swear I am glowing in the dark, like my countrymen in Chernobyl.

Chernobyl means "rotten wood".

I have become rotten wood.

Glow, little glow worm.

Anybody got any heavy water?

Oh hell, say it right on:

Anybody got any Vodka?

Otherwise it's just me and The Spaceman.

And he's enough to drive anybody to drink.

##

Friday, January 04, 2008

It's Wile- E. Coyote All Over AGain




The great Georgia writer Carson McCullers used to say you lose hair and teeth writing a novel, but I didn't think
she meant it literally.

Carramba.
I am losing hair and teeth.
The god has extracted his price.

Why me, sitting here with thinning hair, rotten teeth and a case of Yuppie flu that would fell an ox.

Why me, lord?

BECAUSE I DON'T LIKE YOUR ....ING FACE!

Yeah, yeah, but did you at least like my novel?

YOU CANNIBALIZED EVERYBODY, YOU CRAZY BASTARD. ANYBODY WHO USES HIS FAMILY AND ITS SINS IN A NOVEL HAS TO BE ....ING CRAZY.

Do I at least get an E for effort?

NO.
AND EFF- OFF AND LEAVE ME ALONE.


Losing hair and teeth after having written a novel.
Counting my blog tally over the last three years. Three hundred and sixty blogs. That's almost three hundred and sixty thousand words.
Crikey, that's a novel in itself.

Why do I do this lord?

LEAVE ME ALONE.
TOLDJA.
....................

Got the flu. Real bad. Teeth falling out. Balder than a chicken-plucker, almost.

With the kind of efford I'd expended on the novel, applied in another direction, I'd be a rich man today.

But then I have been a rich man.
It wasn't all that hot.
Every rich man wants to write a novel.
But somehow never does.

Oh the secret pride of puny men and their words.

Ah well.
Yesterday I couldn't even spell novelist.

Today I are one.


Coughing up oysters and losing teeth.

Well, I'm better off, I suppose than Ms. McCullers.

She got Lupus.

I got Lobo.

Roadrunner and Coyote.

I'm gonna catch that Beep--Beeping smartass MoFo.

Even if it kills me.