Latin Quarter – Paris 1995

Latin Quarter - Paris 1995

When I was in Paris in 1995, I walked around the city. I shot each day for a week. I came upon this window and inside the store were these elements: Mirror, antique statue, bedpost, etc. and behind me was a building and a bike on the street. It spoke of the medium given my being upside down in the mirror. The black and white spoke of timelessness. The age and articulation of Europe as the origins of my soul, that I could apprehend catharsis itself in an image meant that I could stop. I have never shot a better image than this. It represents me, my eye, and aesthetic capacity. I hope to continue this journey when I eventually get to London, another city with windows in an urban environment.


Wearing Women Down

Jessica Valenti said: “True change isn’t going to just be about stopping clearcut rape and harassment – but interrogating the way that men are taught to wear women down to acquiescence rather than looking for an enthusiastic yes.” Valenti said this in The Guardian, in the piece entitled: “Our standard for women has to be about more than what’s legal – it’s about what’s right,” 1/20/18 (See:

This is the crux of the women’s movement and complaint. I am well-aware of how men use reverse psychology to make women feel insecure about themselves due to a created environment that makes them feel insecure and then men seem to swoop down and save them. The environment has to be made safe to begin with. This is where men have and will continue to fail. It is their job not to take advantage of women, but to work to protect them from themselves and all men, who would demonstrate character flaws of predation.


I guess as a writer, who typically or should stay at home to write and read without distraction, but does so to be among the living, I love this place, where they also have salads. They may have a branch in WC, where I have heard music and poetry read.


What if you were sitting there and I thought you interesting? You seem substantial and intelligent. How else would I ever get to know you? How would we ever actually meet? Don’t we need such a neutral zone for our first date? Anyway, I am intrigued by this. I would love to see where you have your coffee and what kind you like.


As my title says, I am a cafe writer. In responding to me, are you giving me a chance to redeem myself?


I do see the word “sarcasm” in your repertoire. I always wonder about this in psychological terms. Inherently, it means to insult. All the pretty girls in grade school, who were dating other boys used it. It stems from intelligence and confidence. They were always that. My father died when I was 10, I guess I was sarcastic before that. So, when a woman is sarcastic with me, it triggers a kind of sadness, in memory of a free and easy time. I got everything I wanted. My father was a successful urologist, my mother a commercial artist and fashion model.


She “smoked regularly,” which seems not to have ever bothered her. She remains in a nursing home with Alzheimer’s.


I would love to know your artistic side, the painting perhaps?


I have never read The Greenage Summer, the title seems intriguing. When was the green age?


I either read and watched The Scarlet Letter or just watched it. Wasn’t it with a brunette actress as the woman who wanted to cheat with him. I can’t remember her name, but the storyline seems to follow less hopefully The Notebook, which of course is not truly hopeful either. The heart follows no rules but does feel them.


Twin Peaks and all Lynch’s movies are especially important to me as an artist. He makes me think about the importance of culture and the complexity of life.


I would like to listen to Sublime with you.


Beef jerky and cheese? That sounds like a logistical nightmare.


I am currently reading William Gass’ book On Being Blue in reference to your favorite color. I bought it because I opened it and the first words I read were: “What a page before was a woman is suddenly a breast, and then a nipple, then a little ring of risen flesh, a pacifier, water bottle, rubber cushion. Without plan or purpose we slide from substance to sensation, fact to feeling, all out becomes in, and we hear only exclamations of suspicious satisfaction: the ums, the ohs, the aha,” p. 17. He is talking about how talking about sex has to be about something else, because to speak of it exactly is to diminish what is arousing. Then he cites Henry Miller, who writes in such a way as to talk about something else entirely and yet it is really all about sex and how we feel and think, I guess because given our puritanical upbringing, that’s the only way we can enjoy it. It reminds me of another book by Wilhelm Stekel, where he talks about fetishism: At war with inner reality, p. 21.


The citation appealed to me because I am currently working on a piece about how women are responding to men.


I have no sense of humor. I am a Man Without Qualities, which by the way is another great book by Robert Musil.


Anyway, I go on. How was your cup of coffee?


Burning the American Flag

Burning the American Flag, A Letter to Senator Feinstein


[I am submitting this piece in honor of Colin Rand Kaepernick because in his eyes, he feels an injustice has been committed against his people. Until those people feel apart of this great country, he has a right to protest. In kind, attacks of his not standing for the National Anthem deal in the realm of free speech assurances. In not standing for the flag is akin to being able to burn the American flag. Both acts are ultimate manifestations of the right to free speech and protest. A way to measure the morality of a position is how it infringes upon the rights and freedoms of another person. If someone takes offense in Kaepernick’s not standing for the American flag, and then demands that he do so, speaks of the need to control. It is egotistical in nature and beneath the intentions and spirit of our forefathers.]

Dear Senator Feinstein,


I noted your chief co-sponsorship of the constitutional amendment that would have given Congress the power to ban desecration of the U.S. flag and have so composed the following.


This whole issue has to be resolved and put to bed given the fallacy it embodies.


Your argument that as a young girl the picture of the Marines raising a flag on Iwo Jima gave you a ‘bolt of electricity’ and made you see the flag as “More than a symbol,” should not now preclude you from being able to tell the difference between seeing the flag as “More than a symbol” and so legislating that as the lawful interpretation.


A symbol is “An arbitrary sign (written or printed) that has acquired a conventional significance,” (See: which assumes, in your case, that the conventional significance is limited to your experience of the flag.


You cannot possibly legislate a particular interpretation, especially since the sign is an ‘arbitrary’ one.


Moreover, the flag is an inanimate object, which if your legislation had so enacted, would have been protected over the constitutional rights of an individual to elect to burn the flag as say for reasons that he/she wished to engage in the freedom of speech, the right to peaceably assemble, and/or to petition the government for a redress of grievances, if any of these be the cases.


People should always be more important than things: Flying a Flag over another Person’s Rights.


The very act of burning a flag is American.


It used to be the case that we could laugh at ourselves because we had the self-confidence that our flag would still be there.


The flag is nothing but a symbol. It stands for liberty and justice for all, even those who would burn the flag to prove this point. To weigh the punishment of a flag burner against the flag burner him/herself is to miss the point of freedom.The American flag must stand for eloquence of the idea that we have a right to act in a manner that supports our views, to protest, unless we are hurtful to another, but the pain someone may or may not feel to the viewing of an enflamed yard of fabric raked from cotton, the result of dried and stretched chemicals, and/or dyed (changed from its original form), forgets that I care more for the American or No American who burns our flag and his ideas for doing so than the flag itself.


The flag is nothing but a symbol that changes with the Americans who represent it. It can never replace the acts that gave it meaning, nor can it stand or have been memorialized unless those acts occurred. No one by burning the flag can erase this meaning, but a person who arrests or incarcerates another for burning the flag incinerates freedom.


Is there a psychological law at work in the mind of the person who wishes to stop flag desecration? Is it a person who would hope they could wield power over another, implying that they do not have power over themselves? Is it to blame when sympathies are not shared? Isn’t the person blamed more important than the condemnation?


I love my country and support the people in it; but I will not support the rights of an inanimate object over life itself. In fact, I do not fly the flag because I believe it is presumptuous. That which makes my country great are ideals that tolerate differences of opinion, embrace all peoples, but it is not so proud as to fool itself into thinking that it can stand on its laurels. The flag is a representation only of success or glory, this country shall be perpetuated in righteousness, not the laggard of blame. Our country’s greatness stands on the words of our forefathers and by the actions of good men who have followed them in protecting those ideals, not as symbols, but as actions against real threats. – Mario Savioni, Wednesday, June 28, 2006 12:42:21 AM.

First Experience with Shapr

My first meet from Shapr, a Networking app, Aaron Charles-Rhymes (a multidisciplinary designer/developer specializing in Graphic, Production, UI/UX, Visual Design, and Web Development, innovative creator that works hard to find design solutions in brand identity, print, packaging, and marketing) who said that he saw problems with user interfaces that he could repair visually and via code correction. I told him that this was marketable and that he should begin by surveying company sites, analyzing them, suggest edits, and see if he catches a job offer as a result. Is there anyone here, who might suggest a contact for him?

He suggested that I initiate a freelance effort that might turn into a full-time position or band together with friends and do a startup, if I like risk (which I do not, having worked at the same place for 24 years, although as a shop steward for most of that time, implying imminent danger) with the help of angel investors, but wait until things are working out, then cross-over. He recommended watching a video called “Welcome to Silicon Valley” by Ympact that inspires him.

First Love Poem

sophia sips coffee poem image copy

Sophia sips coffee

In Oakland irreverently.

She pushes paper while listening.

Knitting a hammock to lay in,

There’s dog-walking and

Yoga, cooking, and Coptic book binding

As explained in The Private Library.

She’s closed the chapter on the end of the world.

Says its her word against time.

She bakes her way into silver linings

Via two-steps.

She hears the Withering Spoon.

Reality is fictionalized through

Witchery and Wild Love.

Sources her ethics

Through Americans, pillows, and breakfast.

Her mouth is an art object.

Hiking with puppies

And binging on Netflix.

I am curious

Wanting to share, and

Grow together like hair.

I ride my bike to get Euphoria.

Could this be you?

I like ice cream, but my body

Abhors it.

I have photography at the Oakland Museum,

But it is locked away.

I would love to make more

With you and I don’t mind dirt.

I love hiking and conversations,

But not steep overlooks.