back to nomad

ok, g moved yesterday, so i'm back to roaming around. for some reason it's always scary at first even tho it's not at all scary after that. but as i do if i can, i spent my first note visiting with street friends, to ease back in.

i hope wifi won't be a hassle. i want to upload artwork, of course. i want to do photos too, and george would prolly lend a camera, but one of the few quirks i have still basically untouched by the tornado of my life is this: i hate to borrow things.

why? it makes sense, really. i don't like owning much, i routinely give away most of whatever i've gathered when my life changes (holy moly, as i get older, even i am astonished at the number of astronomically unlikely (and dramatic) things i just literally run into while going to do laundry or whatever. as to change: i've moved *at least* 300 times, i estimate. i mean, seventeen moves just in my first year on oahu, and maybe 10 or 12 when i lived in the bay area.
tenderloin, nob hill, geary st, ellis st, 16th and ission, polk, just off polk, raphaelhouse, haight and masonic, then just across the panhandle from haight and masonic (across from the sacred grounds cafe, where a railroad guy once played possibly the best acoustic guitat i've ever heard; where i met russel's ex -- i'd just unkowingly been moved into here old room in the flat -- made my acquaintence by hissing, the spitting on me. big, wet spit, loogie spit. it dripped off my forhead and right eye. as i was pondering this - just a totally random new roomie with no idea of anyones situation yet -- pancho asks, "are you ok?" i said yes. i was ok, not hurt... but it was a clue the flat dealie might ne short lived...)

also fairfax and somewhere in marin, in yeshe's garage making hangers for the fake but sparkley crystals he soldoutside at firsherman's wharf. going to lama lodra talks was mandatory. my first encounter with a tibetan lama. i refused to prostrate, occasionally woke from daydreaming as he talked to a small group of us in yeshe's living room to bait him. i asked questions i thought would either anger him or fluster him because there was no answer (or for the same reason, spreveal him to be talking out his ass). but no.

"so how do you know you're enlightened, then? does somebody tell you? or you just decide you are? or what?" his answer thawed me (tho yeshe was a fool, of course i didn't prostrate, i knew nothing, about tibet, buddhism, or lamas.) anyway, he didn't even try toanswer. he just threw his head back and laughed. a good laugh, real, easy, the kind that makes you smile. "ha ha, good question! good question!" he said, and laughed some more.

i thought it was the only possible good answer. still do (tho i could give a different, legit but not magical, answer now). i loved it that he was just honest, retained his humor, didn't try to bullshit or get huffy, or (like shrinks of a certain school), turnit around: "well, what do *you* think?)

that tactic, btw, turning the question back? i should do more of that (and quite telling my fucking life story on the rareoccasionsi make an actual friend). it's valuable, if you're paying attention to the person rather than just deploying by rote a technique younlearned in grad school (and worse, if you deploy 1.cover your cluelessness about the entire endeavor of chinical psychology and 2. also use it to half tune outand half be cobtrolling viaa remaining the dark, hooded figure. i realize part of this, in psychoanalysis at least, is to sit still likea crash test dummy, give nothing, and hope the client's brain will make you into a kind of human lilly tank...but even if that happens and they start flinginh up their reality onto the "blank" canvas of the dr, its worthless if the personisn't reallytryingto helpbut just trying to get thru the workday with all wins and no losses...i'm looking at you, gelker.)

anyway, it was cool and i felt somewhat good towards lama lodra and very goodtowards buddhism and lamas in general. i remembered just a few months back, when i'd done this four month kamakaziedive into lsd and the losses i'd had (already, by 17, major losses and pretty much total ones, given that i'd been on my own less than two years, and had left behind my family, friends, place of being raised, group home, two or three colleges, an abusive guy, two fertilized eggs... and been left *by" my mother, my first friend forrest, my kindergarten friends, every teacheri really liked through all of elementary school, the kid jason whom i loved and love and pray he somehow managed to turn out ok, and of stardancer, crazy magical dangerous ethan,allison, la, santa barbarbra, paso robles, susanville, dunsmuir, shasta, and a few really awful jobs...

all by 17. i'm 50 now and there was a five year peaceful, sort of suburb-is time wherei was (techinically) married and raising kids, reading to them, cooking, keeping house... but it wasn't at all secure or coventional, of course. royand the samurai sword, the me-ian-colleen business, xenon hounding me about that stupid datsun, the move to the haunted trailer in the hollow, then to koa, then meeting leta (from a dream) in ron otrin's dream workshop. the lynn andrews books, the hugw three week wang, haika and deena eating all but the lentils, mewalking at night down the path in the woods. after a few days, i realuzed that the one giving the wang (pednor ri poche? dilgo kentse rpch? who??) never slept. no matter what timeof nightor day i walked past the wang site, he was there, just where he sat to give the initiations, quietly doing mantra and looking fine, as fresh as on the first day.

this impressed me. first, he was a true yogi. obviously he'd mastered his need for sleep, and i reconed likely his other needs too (i never saw him eat, either). second -- and any focused person quitely doing mantra affects me like this -- i was struck bu his utter serenity. he was relaxed, not tense or holding upor back or in. just like i read later somewhere, he was just sitting and doing his beads, content, alert, happy as far as i could see.

guess what? in my su sequent 19 or so years of summers (and a couolewinters too) at tashi choling, doing all sorts of things smart, magical, hard as tradgedy, and flat out dumb -- in all my time there, this is how all lamas (and most tibetans, lama or not) were. always. i never saw themflustered, tense, upset, mean, or in even thetiniest way dishonest. nor were they bossy. far from it. once in awhile i'dwork up my nerve andask ri poche's advice. all but once, ha said, "ah, just do vajrasattva, don't worryabout [whatever my thi g was]. even more often, like almost every time, he listeded and said, oh fine, just do what your doing."

rinpoche's small, almost delicate, and he always made me think of a frog because of his sort of bucktoothed mouth and vaguely fish-like lips.he loved to laugh and joke. he was accessible to nearly all, dharma student or anyone, usually. so why did i lack nerve? power. the first second i met him -- prepared to win a bet and pinch his butt and getianto shut up already about this old dude i'd never heard of -- well, instantly i turned to ian and said, hey, ok, you won your bet. after which ian and i were seated right up front, like maybe 15 inches from rinpoche's face (i generally sit inthebacl of everything except concerts). i spent the entire time uncomfortably wondering if rinpoche really could see what i was thinking (i'd heard it, and had already met two peoplewho could do this, just aroundnot a show or fair, and i have a bit of it too, tho it's not that silly carnival new age etc crap. it's just being very, very open and knowing enough about your own mind to see/feel someof another person's, somewhat like how you know emotions by reading the expression, voice, and so on.some do it really well, most do a bit, some don't at all, maybe asperger's, maybe psychopaths, maybe -- but probably not --people sobprofoundly retarded they can't even stand or use a cup. but animals do it, quantam particles seem to have a flavor of it and role in howonethi g connects to another thing (or how one part of "what is" takes close, intimate stock of another part).

i get lost in all this. i want to write everything. all! all the events, miracles, deaths, weirdness, kindness, growth, jail bankruptcy deep love total freedom chaos loss food scavenging invites to tour the world and weeks in good hotels. insane roomates going all gaslight on me (why?i'm still not sure), lighting fires, hilding me by the throat out that high high window where sinisa...
i often remember my utter recklessness during that time. surreal, devastated, shocked, surrounded by thieves addicts rich asian clubbers, working a job with massive random (and not random) nnumbers with my dyscalculia, with everything going on, and taking photos photos photos. i took thousands. i didn't realize phones fill up. this one got so full th os could no longer function "not enough memory to" do anything - deletesome shots, leave photos, open anything. ok, phone dead. sin dead. each day dreading my shift more and more because it was one long ordeal of mistakes i couldn't ever fix. ever.

ooening the drawer one night, 3 am. alone. since sin left this place on day two, and it had freshly remodled, totally clean and light and like shiney shiney, the drawers were all empty. i had no thought puttering. i spent hours on the ledge where he launched into what i pray and sing and wish and hope was something good for him, or even just not worse or oblivion or something... i spent hours there, or enshrining every object he's ever touched (the bottle of joy dishwashing liquid-- so symbolic on many levels, obvious and also quirky abd private only he and i would see...)

without a plan, i had about 10 shrines tosinisa in my timy studio (and one downstars at the booth, that drew a young japanese wraith girl...and complaints...and oh god, i could write a novella on practically any week of my life and still leave out far more than i put in...but especially this time. it's radically and permanently changed my life, my modeof living, my attitude toward people friends sex social causes etc).

i could write many books, if i werent's lazy much of the time. but that's just onesmall part of it. i filled up maybe 15 journals, then and over threemore years. i had sinisa's too, and i treasured it beyond sanity and survival. it was him, it held the keyto both his problems and my salvation. the sad, poetic symbolism of what he wrote, the deepyetunbalanced meditatiinson the natureof human blood, both literal and many flavors of metaphor. his lyrical adviceto rudy..."what if you had a flower? would you feedtha flower? would you love and protect it....(etc) ... or would you forget? would you start tryingso much to get mo ey that your flower is forgotten in a corner, it dies" (he wrote it better)

the weird -- ok, lunatic -- way to stop smoking, which involved smoking your ass off as a featured element. rudy laughed his head of


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