Lieutenant, you would do me an enormous favor if you stopped calling me sir.

$5/month or $50/year
Saturday, March 10, 2018 

Merry Spinster Book Tour Dates

Come and see me, won’t you, my darlings? Tomorrow night at 5pm at Skylight Books in LA, March 14th at 7pm at Moe’s in Berkeley, March 16th at 7:30pm (TRICKY, RIGHT?) at Pegasus also in Berkeley, March 18th at 7:30pm at Powell’s in Portland, March 19th at 7pm at The Strand in NYC, March 20th at 7pm at Politics & Prose in DC, and March 23rd at 7pm at Harvard Bookstore in Boston. It’s a peach of a book, and I’ve been so longing to see you.

If you see me, call me Daniel, if you’d like. Just between us.

Thursday, March 8, 2018 

Joan Didion Discovers Susan Sontag And Lesbianism

“My very nearly dear friend Anna Wintour! It’s me, mostly Joan Didion. Recently I’ve been made aware of Susan Sontag, a camera surrounded by scarves that achieved sentience in 1971, immediately whereafter it invented lesbianism. Pauline Kael, you’ll recall, gave lesbianism a terrible review later that year in the New York Times, and the two of them never spoke again, or before. I wanted your advice. I’m throwing a dinner party this evening for very sharply dressed New York women who are dead, and I wanted to know if you thought it would be a mistake to invite them both.

If you think so, I’ll instead spend the afternoon as I originally planned: very slowly buying every glove in the world. I await your response with eagerness and fashion in my heart. Joan Didion.”

Thursday, March 1, 2018 

The Stages Of Realizing You Are Late

Minute Zero: I am perfectly on time. I am at one with all things created and eternal. I am a stern and beautiful man of my word. Every morning I take Queen Victoria’s train to the Crystal Palace, where I am a model of efficiency and, like the angels in heaven, am neither married nor given in marriage. Soon – very soon – I will behold the cherished faces of my friends and colleagues alike, at the appointed hour and not a jot sooner, not a tittle later. We will clasp one another by the hand and by the waist, and we will be as good as our word and our bond.

Minute One: I will be in the car in three minutes exactly. It will take me fifteen minutes (“door-to-door”) to arrive at any location within the city. Should I need to be anywhere else in the entire Bay Area, whether that be San Francisco or San Jose, the journey will take forty-three minutes, due to Optimization. There are many bridges to choose from. I will drive over them all, and be met with welcome on the other side.

Minute Four: I am even more on time than I was four minutes ago! Had I left then, I would have been so organized, so ruthlessly effective, I would have somehow multiplied those four minutes into sixteen, and been sixteen minutes early, and had to sit alone with my thoughts. It would have been a grave error to have left then. Now is the time to leave.

Minute Six: None of the clocks in my home agree with the clock on my phone. I have attempted to sync them countless times, always in vain. There is no such thing as time. I am beset upon on all sides by perfidious, insurgent agents.

Minute Seven: It is a small, petty, cruel mind that dwells on details. What is five minutes one way or another between lovers? And what is ten minutes, if not five?

Minute Nine: Time to shower. How can I be on time if I am not clean? Showering will take forty-five seconds. I have never showered for longer than a minute.

Minute Twelve: Well now, what's it to be, Lord? Another widow? How many has it been? Six? Twelve? I disremember. You say the word, Lord, I'm on my way. You always send me money to go forth and preach your Word. The widow with a little wad of bills hid away in a sugar bowl. Lord, I am tired. Sometimes I wonder if you really understand. Not that You mind the killin's. Your book is full of killin's. But there are things you do hate, Lord: perfume-smellin' things, lacy things, things with curly hair.

Minute Thirteen: I want to be there. I long to be there. In my heart I am already on my way – have been on my way all my life. How then can it be a lie to text “On my way” when I have been in the condition of on-the-wayness ever since I was a small and forlorn child? How can it be a lie, when I mean it more than anything I have ever meant in my life? Oh, I want to see you. I want to be with you. I see your smiling faces across a bright and gladsome river, but my heart does not know how to cross. A water-demon has stolen my car keys.

Minute Fifteen: Ah, little lad, you're starin' at my fingers. Would you like me to tell you the little story of Right Hand-Left Hand? The story of good and evil? H-A-T-E! It was with this left hand that old brother Cain struck the blow that laid his brother low. L-O-V-E. You see these fingers, dear hearts? These fingers has veins that run straight to the soul of man. The right hand, friends! The hand of love! Now watch and I'll show you the story of life. These fingers, dear hearts, is always a-warrin' and a-tuggin', one agin the other. Now, watch 'em. Ol' brother Left Hand – Left hand, he's a-fightin'. And it looks like LOVE's a goner. But wait a minute, wait a minute! Hot dog! LOVE's a-winnin'? Yes, siree. It's LOVE that won, and ol' Left Hand HATE is down for the count!

Minute Sixteen: If I leave right now and also the Rapture has happened, there will be no cars on the road, and I will only be three minutes late, which no one will notice.

Minute Eighteen: The estimated time of arrival on my Maps function is a vicious lie perpetuated by my enemies, who have no faith in me. I have every confidence in myself. It would be an act of self-erasure to text and say “My ETA is now 7:17” when I have blessed, eternal assurance that I will be raised up in victory over the forces of entropy and darkness. I will arrive in a chariot of fire and exactly on time. Blessed am I, son of Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to me, but a spirit in Heaven. I am Peter, the rock upon which the sweet-good Lord will build the church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against me.

I am on my way.

Friday, February 23, 2018 

Bible Verses I Have Quoted To My Dog, To No Effect

Upon bestowing treats:

Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and you shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asks receives; and he that seeks finds; and to him that knocks it shall be opened. Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone? Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent?

Upon hearing him bark at another dog on television when I am trying to watch television:

And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell.

When I have to pick him up and put him on the bed every evening:

O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!

Whimsically, when I desire to express my satisfaction with his existence:

And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

When I open the door to let him outside and he stands in the doorway a-tremblin’, neither stepping out nor staying in:

And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God; I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.

When we are on a long drive and he drinks from a cup of water I hold for him in my hands:

To the chief Musician, Maschil, for the sons of Korah. As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God.

When I return home after an hour’s absence to find he has peed on the floor:

Yet man is born unto trouble, as the sparks fly upward.

Sunday, February 11, 2018 

Joan Didion Runs Through Her Enemies List

“Oh, I’ve got quite a lot of enemies, darling. Joan Didion makes enemies every morning before noon. Joni Mitchell’s been after me for years, ever since I abandoned her in the corridors beneath the basement of the Berkeley Community Theater with a man from the Air Force named Richard. Who else? Who else wishes me ill? Tom Wolfe’s never cared for me, never since I stole a group of hand towels from his bathroom, but to that I have to say, Sir, have the decency and the good sense to be born in Sacramento, or at least somewhere in Siskiyou County, California, instead of Virginia. Imagine! Not being born in Sacramento. Not being born to people who were born to people who were born to people who came over with the Donner Party. What do they talk about at Christmas, if not the Donner Party? Ridiculous man. Makes no sense.

Gloria Steinem hates me, but that woman wears carnations. Henry Kissinger doesn’t care for me, but to him I say, I have seen your death, and it is good. (Also never came over with the Donner Party.)

Yes, I’ve got a lot of enemies, a lot of enemies…Kurt Vonnegut? Breakfast of Champions? I never eat breakfast. Breakfast is for the weak. I eat a glass of cigarettes, and then I look at a coffee, and then I investigate something. because I’m a human being.”

Lieutenant, you would do me an enormous favor if you stopped calling me sir.

$5/month or $50/year