Archive for the ‘Horrible Stuff’ Category

The Wolfpack

Wednesday, May 4th, 2016

wolfpack-boys

I finally got around to seeing The Wolfpack, but I was not prepared for it.

The true story of six brothers, aged 11 to 18, who were imprisoned in their New York apartment by their crazy parents, how could it be anything but dark and disturbing?

Somehow, from the promotional pictures I’d seen, I expected something more ‘quirky’ and lighthearted.

I knew the boys had learned about life from the movies that were their only link to the world outside. They were discovered walking down the street in the lower Eastside, dressed like characters from Reservoir Dogs, by a young filmmaker who ended up making a documentary about them.

Watching the family’s home movies, you see a group of children who are almost like puppies, clinging together with affection and loyalty and in the end, fear.

Fear of their father, a delusional South American devotee of Hindu, who didn’t believe in haircuts or exposure to the ‘poisonous capitalist society’ outside their front door, which he kept locked.

The mother has given up all power to her husband, who doesn’t believe in working but appears to like a drink or three.

The story is also a tale of resilience; the six boys are clearly damaged but somehow thrive. They are smart, sensitive, and loving. They are remarkably curious and life-affirming despite all odds.

But the picture of long-term abuse is just staggering. How does this go on?

It made me wonder how many households are run by little individual Hitlers, making crazy rules that no one has the nerve to disobey. The father here is like a paranoid Charles Manson without the charisma. A total shithead who somehow managed to get an idealistic farm-girl to buy into his delusions and bear him seven children.

The boys have a sister, Krishna, who was born with a disorder that keeps her tied to her parents, evidently.

Free Krishna, somebody!

One thing that startled me during this movie is the intensity of my revulsion for the Dictatorial Father. It is a visceral loathing that I carry around with me, ready to explode. All instances of dictatorial men, in books or movies or in the lives of my friends, trigger a deep antipathy, And by antipathy, I mean I want to kill them.

The Wolfpack father will never have to pay for his actions. All the petty authoritarian husbands and fathers out there will keep getting their way and ruining people’s lives. But why do women let this happen?

My own father left when I was 3 but maybe I’ve blocked out memories of his presence in the home. Or maybe it’s just the injustice of the situation that makes me want to kill these fucking bastards.

Everyone who has a daughter or who is in a position to influence young girls should make a point of teaching them to stand up and say No. Say No and walk away or run away if you have to.

It seems so obvious, and yet we haven’t made it clear.

See this movie for its unique gaze into the heart of darkness or because of the beautiful boys with the long silky hair.

But make sure you pass along the message to never let anyone control you. Ever. No matter what.

Donald Trump: Is The Nightmare Over?

Friday, April 1st, 2016

trump ugly face

After all we have endured from this piece of shit, it’s hard to believe that his comment about abortion is the thing that broke the spell.

Who knew that people cared so much about women’s rights? It seemed like a majority of Americans were in favor of rolling back Roe vs Wade, and that’s been scary.

But lo and behold, Trump’s absurd statement that women who have abortions should be punished is striking a chord with everyone. For some reason, this is where they’re drawing the line.

I hope.

The news is telling me tonight that the tide has turned. Please make it be true!

Remember when it was fun to see Trump’s bloated red face, emitting outrageous noises that no one in their right mind would ever say if they were running for President, or even Boyscout Leader?

The fun turned to horror, didn’t it? I head a reporter call him a ‘steaming pile of human refuse’ on MSNBC the other night, and it felt like an understatement.

Now we’re hearing that women won’t support Tump, which makes perfect sense, but what the fuck has been wrong with men in that case?

Racism doesn’t begin to explain the attraction. Neither does the ‘people are sick of the status quo’ argument. They could have sided with Rand Paul if all they wanted was a maverick.

What is it about a fat loud bully that American men find so appealing? Is it some kind of projection? Is it a vicarious thrill to see some shameless lowlife insulting his betters?

My visceral hatred of this cunt has reached defcon whatever. His every facial movement is like a knife in my heart. That O-shape he makes with his mouth. The plump frown. The crazy hand motions and the way he says “believe me” twice after every ridiculous lie.

Is it over for real? Can we actually get out of this without anyone getting killed? Wouldn’t that be wonderful?

I blame the press. I blame Donald Trump’s parents. And I blame the Idiocracy that America’s anti-intellectualism has spawned. Feel more comfortable with stupidity, America? How stupid is stupid enough?

Sure, Ted Cruz is a crazy prick and Kasich is a jerk. But there is nothing on earth as awful as Donald Trump.

Let us pray.

 

Fuck!

Monday, January 18th, 2016

jesus wept again

What an awful week.

I have been struggling with the shock of losing David Bowie and its attendant triggers, and then the more prosaic helpless rage of dealing with my malfunctioning website that some fucker has been trying to hack.

I can’t add anything to the many beautiful words already written about David Bowie and his impact on music and culture. Lots of us feel the loss so personally that it has permeated everything…I am playing his music in my head every day. I am thinking about what it means to face death when you don’t welcome it. A new and heartbreaking perspective for me.

I can’t handle it. I can’t dwell in this sadness without going under so I am turning to hate.

Want to join me?

If you too are having an awful week for whatever reason, I invite you to redirect yourself to the cleansing joy of righteous disdain if not downright hatred.

I could not have discovered this awful girl at a better time!

Her name is Jessica Gebhart and she is featured in a video series called Denim Dudes.

Stop what you’re doing and watch this 35 second video. It is heaven. It will take your breath away.

Thank you Jessica, you are a fucking gift from god and I hate the ground you walk on! Never leave me.

What Is The Word For Donald Trump?

Wednesday, December 23rd, 2015

donald-trump

The schlonging finally got me.

It’s just too much. The schlonging and the taunt about Hillary Clinton going to the bathroom. The Wall Street Journal calls it ‘potty talk.’

Potty Talk, from a Presidential candidate???

How can we take this, every day, more and more, and still feel like decent human beings? Or even semi-decent?

Every politician and news person who doesn’t object to this shit is complicit somehow.

They need to stand up as one and say, “SHUT THE FUCK UP, YOU MORON!”

The immigrant hating, woman fearing, lying, egotistical stupidity is part of it but not all.

It’s like there’s a hidden factor that elevates Donald Trump from a standard cunt to an actual monster.

What is it, and is it the ‘secret’ to his appeal?

I don’t think his appeal is a mystery actually, it’s just the number of Americans who respond to infantile stupidity that comes as a surprise to the rest of us. We’d like to think that racist, hate-filled, drooling cretins are a small minority, but no. Trump is like a mirror of their own ignorance and repulsiveness, and they are mesmerized by the reflection.

The schlonging sent me looking for Yiddish words to throw back at him but nothing seems adequate to describe how deeply objectionable this cunt is.

‘Traif’ is the best I could come up with, but now I’ve discovered ‘vyzoso,’ a Yiddish word that means both idiot and penis!

If you know a better word, in any language, please, let’s hear it.

First World Problems

Sunday, December 13th, 2015

converse nope

Let me start by telling you how mad I am that I can’t have a pair of limited edition Converse sneakers with little lions on them.

I wish I’d never seen these fucking shoes but unfortunately for me, I subscribe to a couple of fashion sites for cutting edge men’s street-wear. If you recall, I am a gay man in a woman’s body.

A few months ago, one of these sites showed me an overpriced Japanese jacket meant to look like a souvenir jacket from Korea or Vietnam, the kind with embroidered tigers and maps on them. When the jacket sold out, I was mad that I’d passed it up.

So the Converse shoes reminded me of the jacket and even better, they were affordable. But they were sold out everywhere by the time I clicked on the email. The more unattainable they are, the more they promise the key to perfect happiness.

But just a few days earlier, I was horrified to learn that the Rihanna Puma Creepers I already have in black were released in pink. How could this happen without me being notified?? I found out from a girl in the mall who was showing me some cheap make-up, and she must have been amazed that a 62 year old woman wanted those fucking shoes as much as she did, if not more. We bonded in our sense of thwarted desire.

After a tense search of the entire internet, I found a pair on eBay. Problem solved.

But not really. Not at all.

This obsession and longing for material goods is the foundation of our economy but it serves a deeper purpose, for me, anyway.

It’s the ultimate First World Problem, in that it masks other First World Problems that I simply can’t handle.

Those problems are grief and loss. They are persistent like a toothache. I can’t bear the reality of them, and when I can’t distract myself with more superficial problems, I have to take myself to bed. When I take myself to bed, I know I would give anything to not wake up, but just blotting out a few hours usually gets me through the worst of it.

Last year, I became Facebook friends with a guru from Tibet. I liked his wisdom and his sense of humor. So I asked him how to cope with grief. When I told him that I’d lost a son, he replied that mortality was high in Tibet; families are used to losing children.

I felt he was chastising me but perhaps he was merely being factual.

Why was I making a big deal over my loss? Families in Tibet lose a child but still have to worry about typhoons and lack of plumbing and hunger and disease. They expect life to be hard and it is.

The guru directed me to a philosophy than might help to redirect me but like everything else I have tried, it was a hurdle beyond my capacity. Mindfulness, Dialectic Behavior Therapy, Tonglen, support groups, grief studies, Radical Acceptance, nothing matches the force of this unspeakable grief and loss.

I have spent most of my life saving baby teeth, book reports, handmade crafts, mother’s day cards, school photos, birthday party photos, baseball cards, rock collections, and I have lovingly organized them or displayed them.

I have boxes of Christmas ornaments, many hand made by my sons, but no sons to hang them on a tree or to open presents with.

Christmas will pass, so the sense of deprivation will be less acute but it will take a lot of limited edition sneakers to pull me away from the fucking abyss.

In Chennai, India, there is historic flooding, the worst in 100 years. Three million people are without basic services and 269 people have died in this epic disaster. I can’t imagine how desperate these people must feel because I only know First World Problems.

Feeling ambivalent about living is a First World Problem, and I guess I’ll have to wrestle with it in my White Privileged manner, wearing my pink Pumas if they ever show up.

The Gucci Dead Animal Shoe, $15,000

Wednesday, October 14th, 2015

gucci shoe 15,000A sharp-eyed reader sent me to this shoe, which looks like it’s trying to run away.

Run, Gucci goat-hair slipper, run as fast as you can!

You know what, the poor thing is dead. Too late.

[These} slippers are one of the most talked-about designs from Alessandro Michele’s debut runway collection. They’re finished with the label’s signature gold horsebit, nestled in the floor-sweeping honey-colored strands that also line the shoe.

The floor-sweeping honey-colored strands of a dead goat is what I see here but let’s try another view.

gucci shoes ew

Now, with feet inside, you can see how these little critters will keep you company all day long, with floaty dresses as well as casual jeans, according to the editor’s styling tips. If they start to get smelly, just blame the goats. If your friends and associates don’t gasp in envy at your edgy taxidermy-driven style, you can show them your receipt for $15,000 and say. “Now what, bitch?”

Sadly, that figure is Hong Kong dollars, so in fact the price is a bargain at only around $1,900 USD.

In France or Russia, these shoes might have sparked a revolution. Here in the US, we just roll our eyes and go off to bed with murder in our hearts.

Death Cafe: Stupid Or Awful?

Thursday, September 17th, 2015

death cafe website

Death Cafe is sort of a coffee klatch for would-be coroners. At present, it’s more of a movement than a physical space, with pop-up Death Cafe’s in 31 countries.

Here’s how Death Cafe defines itself:

At a Death Cafe people, often strangers, gather to eat cake, drink tea and discuss death.

Our objective is ‘to increase awareness of death with a view to helping people make the most of their (finite) lives’

How nice! Because, who doesn’t like death? You can never have enough death, evidently. But here’s what Death Cafe isn’t:

It is a discussion group rather than a grief support or counselling session.

It’s not a spelling class either, but that’s okay. What isn’t okay for me is the concept of death as something cool because, you know, it’s so dark and transgressive. It’s like one big memento mori festival, full of arty skull motifs and and Victorian post-mortem photos.

Death Cafe is a ‘social franchise’. This means that people who sign up to our guide and principles can use the name Death Cafe, post events to this website and talk to the press as an affiliate of Death Cafe.

Yay, we can all host a Death Cafe if we follow the guidelines. I like this one: The main qualities of a host are enthusiasm for talking about death and dying and high ethical standards. That rules me out, since I have ethics but no enthusiasm.

I’m aware that a fetishistic interest in morbid things has long been a feature of hipsterism.  Taxidermy, Day of the Dead artifacts, the Morbid Anatomy Museum, zombies, all those tumblr pictures of dead girls in bathtubs. I get that it seems cool to embrace the taboo.

But this Death Cafe thing, no. A big No.

What a bunch of fatuous fuckers.

Cat Cafes, fine. *Baby Cafes, even better (*as soon as I get the idea off the ground. Contact me if you want to fund my business plan!)

Death is a drag and there’s already so much of it. It isn’t really cute. Let’s not trivialize it.

Calibrating Distress

Monday, August 10th, 2015

Sappho

For those of you who use ‘social media,’ did you notice how quickly concern for the dead lion evoked angry complaints that ‘black lives matter?’

People weren’t done mourning for whoever they were mourning for and they resented the outrage about the lion. Then some geniuses wrote think-pieces suggesting that it’s not an either/or situation: We could be upset about black lives AND lions.

Me, I don’t know what to feel upset about, or rather, what to put at the top of my list. There is just too much going on.

Mass shootings, police shootings, dead lions, Donald Trump, dead Palestinian baby, starving children in Yemen, transgender teen bullying, more riots in Ferguson, and a little hippo being mauled to death (Daily Mail online, don’t look!)

I couldn’t even feel a thing for the latest movie theater episode, except to feel sorry for Amy Schumer. Am I broken?

I don’t understand why the poor Palestinian baby is worth more discussion that the dying refugees in Yemen, complete with malnourished babies who look like tiny skeletons.

And while we’re on the subject, I was unable to be horrified at Planned Parenthood for marketing fetus organs. If someone wants to abort a fetus, why can’t it be used to promote life elsewhere? Because ‘life begins at conception?’ Why do Americans care so much more about the unborn than the born?

Tonight, there is a woman out on the cliffs near my house, deciding whether to jump. There are helicopters and firetrucks and lots of commotion. I would personally go out to talk to her if I were allowed to. Meanwhile, people on our local community Facebook page are sending their prayers or complaining about the noise. A couple of people want her to jump and get it over with.

I’ll bet you anything that those people are beside themselves about the fucking lion.

The Awfulness Inside The Awfulness

Sunday, June 21st, 2015

littlle shit

Let’s say your dad is a tattooed bully with pierced nipples who had a nasty divorce from your mom before you were even born, and later leaves you with his new wife four days a week.

Let’s say you changed schools six times before you dropped out after repeating ninth grade. Your dad still fights with your mom about visitation, his second wife can’t stand the abuse and finally leaves after dad beats her up.

You’re frail and weird looking and ‘painfully shy’, and you don’t have friends so you spend a lot of time in your room at your computer. No one pays much attention to you until you get kicked out of the local mall for acting strange and the cops find your Suboxone, a drug for opiate users trying to get clean.

Your sister plans her wedding but you’re not invited. She’s registered at Kohl’s.

You’re just an angry little shit with a bad haircut and probably some kind of brain damage from drugs or trauma, and you form some idiotic sub-KKK philosophy just to have someone to despise more than you despise yourself. You take a bunch of stupid pictures of yourself in your room with your Confederate flag, glaring like Robert Di Niro in Taxi Driver only worse.

Why the fuck would someone let you have a gun??

That made all the difference: You were just a little shit but now you’re a monster.

 

Happy As A Werewolf

Saturday, April 25th, 2015

Niraj Budhathoki, 12, sits under the shade of a tree a normal routine for the villager to spend time under a tree and speak with each others as there are very few televisions or any other means of entertainment at the homes of the villagers at Kharay

Earlier this month, I came across a  story about a family in Nepal who suffer from a genetic disorder known as Congenital Hypertrichosis Lanuginosa (CHL).  It causes excessive body hair growth and is sometimes referred to as “werewolf syndrome.”

The photos by Navesh Chitrakar are staggeringly beautiful. They show a very poor family living in a remote village in Nepal, making regular trips to a hospital in Katmandu for free laser hair-removing treatments.

Despite their unsettling looks, I thought I could perceive a kind of happiness that I’m incapable of achieving.

They are a family,  joined in a team effort to survive poverty and disfigurement. They are surrounded by natural beauty. The children look cared for and happy. They know what matters and what doesn’t.

I’m probably projecting a fantasy on them but it helps me to see how depression not only distorts everything, but how traumatic childhood experiences deprive you of something essential. I don’t feel okay being me. I feel disfigured and unlovable. I find it hard to be at one with nature. I want my mommy.

Devi Budhathoki

Devi-Budhathoki

Mandira-Budhathoki

Anyway, today I woke up to learn there has been a massive earthquake in Nepal. What about my werewolf family?!? It is unbearable. Are they okay? What about everybody else??

Let’s all give money to relief efforts in Nepal, because we are so blessed, no matter how miserable we are, to have somewhere to sleep tonight and to know where our loved one are.

Doctors Without Borders, Mercy Corps, and CARE.