Friday, September 18, 2009


I'm in the Auckland airport, feeling nostalgic for a place I have never visited but have long adored. Everyone is speaking English here, but in a variety of patois, mostly Australian. There's a rugby game on one television, the BBC international news on the other. Short men with treetrunk legs and cannonball buttocks on the one screen and skinny black youth in a garbage dump in Africa on the other ... I'm not sure what the story is.

I tried to pay for the Internet here, but it couldn't handle the transaction ... not sure why. I did manage to pay for a double espresso with a credit card, and I plan to pay for another one once I get up from my labors here. (I'll post this when I get to Australia, but adjust the date accordingly.)

I love long flights, and this one was uneventful. 12 plus hours, around 7 of which were spent uncomfortably in the arms of Morpheus. I have a bum left shoulder which responds to Ibuprofen, but only for so long. And speaking of buttocks ... not the cannonball sort ... why can we not invent an airline seat that handles the buttockal demands of reclining contorted in a chair for hours without putting the pitied pair to sleep. We've all got butts ... let's let science get a grip on this!

Reminds me of my old friend, turned enemy, now deceased, Maurice Flood, the driven pioneer of Canadian gay liberation who was, characteristically for Canada, an American exile. After he first met me, he reported to a mutual friend that I had the cutest ass but a face that would stop a clock. My friend relayed this to me, and Maurice was embarrassed and apologetic. He should not have been ... I laughed about it and still do. I know my face would stop a clock ... it probably has.

What am I rambling on about? O yeah, buttocks and beggars on the TV. The buttocks get the best of it, and that, my friends, is the way it goes in history.

For this recently closed flight, NZ 7, I brought along a 4 month supply of New York Times Review of Books which my good friend Roy gives me week by week. He attaches a stickie on the front with page references to the relevant articles ... useful given that Roy and I are likely to read the same ones. The press of everyday life is such that it takes me a while to read these things, and I often do it in concentrated sessions. So this is what I got, inter alia: God is not dead, but he might as well be since he doesn't exisst. Whores tell interesting, pithy, but literally flawed stories, and ... shock ... people have sex. Donald Rumsfeld is a force of nature whose one good idea eventually set an empire to ruin. And academics should not devise financial strategies.

All of these stories illustrate that third principle that adorns the top of this blg: any force given long enough turns into its opposite. Religion may have been the proximate attendant upon the founding of civilization, but it is the root of all modern evil. Sex is good unless it is bad ... or se is bad until you admit that it is good. Beware the smiling ideologue for surely he will lead you to hell. And god save us from experts and know-it-alls.

Gotta fly ... literally. I plan to mount this ramble without editing ... except for the sake of my own pride, I will fix any spelling errors.

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