THE HOUSE OF DELICIOUS
blog entry #1
It’s a warm cloudy day as we pull into a rest stop on the Merritt Parkway: “GRL i gotsa open de door from de outside…” in perfect black-eeze…sez Rosette Royalle, driving me in her 10 yr old beat up red Jetta from Ptown, dashboard replete with sage, feathers, and other assorted woo. It’s 30 October, later in the afternoon, the traffic is getting thicker as we try to make it to Brooklyn in time to unload her vehicle, settle in and get to the faerie Samhain ritual that eve in Prospect Park.
Rosette and I lived together three years beforehand in Pearly Heights, before she moved in with Philip Yenawine near a pond in the woods of Wellfleet, while she was still journalisting for the Ptown Banner, owned by that fat dyke (who opened an alternative voice to the earlier Portugi minded rag operated by the Steele’s, whose intentions were dubious if not civic minded). I can remember hearing from Duane Steele the first night I was washing dishes + mopping floors of the The Red Inn (which they also ran into the tidal flats, before it was saved by some better financed fag who who moved to town when Ptown had been getting gentrified in the later Clinton administration = yes, after Glass Steagel act was abolished and Wall Street took off); well, he was telling me his version about the fire that hit the restaurant the Winter before = and as naive as I was, something smelled fishy about this account…
THAT was in 1990, when I moved to Ptown on the fly from DC, thinking I would get a great waitering gig and make some big bucks before moving to California to get my permanent residency and get a PhD in religious anthropology from either UCLA or Berkeley. But I was disabused rather quickly as it WAS 1 August 1990, and as I learned later, the GOOD jobs were gone by 1 April every year, but what did I know, except that I HAD to get out of DC, loved Ptown, and was happy just to wash dishes, mop floors in between the beach and it’s assorted pleasures. THAT was many moons ago at this point, with a lot of tides going in and out…I never left Ptown until now, PhD be damned, I was a working artist…the Eggman.
NOW it was 30 October 1998, a ‘4’ day, which adding it to my life path number (5) meant it was a ‘9’ day for me = how auspicious, the totality of it all and the end before a new beginning. Prince LavaLava had taught me about numerology, tracking it daily and the signs one might find allowing one to create meaning.
ALL meaning is applied.
Rosette moved to Ptown with her lover, Paul, who was dying of AIDS. She used to be Toffee Fey before she found the faeries, was known for fierce fun riding her girl’s bike thru crowded Commercial Street screaming “WATCH OUT WHITE BABY in my BASket = watch out for dat WHITE BABY!!!” with her dreadlocks pulled back and tied up like tresses comin outa her long face wearin some shades and something fey on her slim figure on the streets….she used to dj a weekly 60’s/70’s soul and r+b 2-4 a.m. slot on Sunday nights and would get so HIGH on that yardlong red bong she used 2 use (she introduced me to snowbongs on that thang) = oooof!
Now she would be also wearing a porcupine beaded choker as she was on the red warrior path in a red Jetta jetting me to a new life in Ms NYTitty…I had done the Maine Naraya that September, her second there, and that confirmed my choice as I was also splitting up with Prince LavaLava (who was moving to his parents’ house in the Catskills); and it felt like it was time to move. Ptown was changing, so me Rosette and PussPuss all left Ptown at the same time. PussPuss was heading back to San Antonio, TX, to help his mom take care of his Baptist preacher father die in their double wide trailer (I call them tornado traps = you know how it’s always trailer parks getting ripped apart by tornadoes in the South?)…and I was headed to further my art career + Rosette was going to live with her Mom for a bit outside DC.
We arrived at Union and Smith Sts, found parking in front of the corner building and proceeded to unload boxes and bags and suitcases of clothes up 4 flights to my 1 br. sublet, owned by a chef I knew and worked for briefly as he opened a new cafe in Ptown that Summer. The floor was strewn with boxes from previous trips we had made; this was our third and I wondered how I had accumulated so much crap! Well there were clothes, books, and – o yeah = art supplies, including boxes of broken eggshells (why the HELL did I save them? well – they were the lightest boxes to haul up 4 flights!) Rosette left to relax where she was staying and there I was = ALONE in a mess called moving; the ritual was a couple of hours away, it looked like rain, and I was exhausted! So what do I do? Get on a phone sex line…
You may asking yourself = what the HELL was I doing getting on some line to whack off or try 2 connect 4 sex b4 the ritual? I sure am = but this is what my memory is serving me right now; and memory is a weird thing = the things we DO remember amidst the multiplicity of sensory perceptions and experiential moments that bombard our minds – especially in a fast-paced, crowded and noisy place like NYC! I will not try to deconstruct in the inner working of my psyche as that moment = that is what this writing project is about = so that I too may learn, with you, the intricacies of my experience as I dole it out as creatively as possible to keep your attention in these lines. All I can say now is that THIS story is about a crazy artist, who is also a sex freak and a spiritual seeker…or would it be more accurate to say a sex seeker who is an artist becoming a spiritual adept…or perhaps a sexual adept who works as an artist while seeking spirit? Play with these words in your mind, mix them up and toss them out for different views on the same one who writes them for you to ponder.
Samhain is the end of a cycle and beginning of another; is a high holy holiday for those whose path is ‘pagan,’ which generally means the cycle of the year as interpreted by the Celtic Druids. In fact, “Happy New Year!” is the most appropriate greeting to give a witch in this tradition, as it is the beginning of Winter on that ancient calendar, a time when the veils between the worlds (meaning the worlds of the living and the dead) is thinnest – if not torn asunder, that one may commune with one’s ancestors: give them gifts and/or entreat them for wisdom. This communing with the dead is the basis for much of the ‘spookiness’ that pervades American Hallowe’en, but the silly way most folks approach this time belies the serious intent behind what pagans view as the meaning of their rites (not that these rituals, especially among the fey, cannot be riotous, jovial events!)
The faerie Samhain ritual that Friday night was in the Sacred Grove, a ring of large American Elms that ring a mound that juts into the Lawn in Prospect Park; they are old and twist about in their dance with the aethers looking for as much sunlight as they sway yards above the ground. It’s a great spot for Hallowe’en ritual, as the gnarled branches create a spooky aura against the sky which is never truly black in the city with so much lighting coming from the streets below….I probably got there as most had gathered, being encumbered by the time on the phone sex line…I remember little else that evening. The ritual was scheduled for Friday as Saturday was the 31st, when most of us would be going to Dick n Daisy’s loft for a fab costume party overlooking the Village Hallowe’en Parade marching up 6th Avenue in the city.
Hotel 57, the aforementioned loft on the NE corner of 6th Avenue and 16th St, was a 4th floor walk-up above the Holiday Diner (bad Greek cooking), which included a HUGE living space that could accommodate large parties, AND have guests stay over. Both qualities are a rare exception for NYC apartments, hence the name befitted the place. It was now occupied by Dickie, a freelance photographer, and Daisy Shaver, a nurse practitioner, who were old friends from Ptown (NO – they were NOT boyfriends! they used to retort adamantly when queried, as many would simply say = “oh we’re going over to Dick n Daisy’s for such n such…leading to this FALSE impression). The loft’s living space had HUGE industrial style windows that overlooked that corner, hence it was the perfect place to have a throw down on Hallowe’en as the parade wound it’s way up 6th Avenue.
We had just gotten into the city and were psyched for the fun we would co-create through cavorting, dancing and prancing in our costumes as we overlooked the crowds below…and I do remember that party was BIG = amazing crowd (you HAD to be costumed or your entry would be denied = unless you stripped to nothing!), a great DJ (though no one can remember who spun that night), plenty of weed and other assorted comestibles were to be had…who can remember? What I can recall is that folks seemed to come from everywhere = even Stoney was in town from Indiana wearing a fierce Centaur outfit…we had a great time looking cute – though I have no recollection of what I wore (perhaps due to something whipped together out of packed boxes?),,,and the dancing went on till 4 a.m. The music from our party spilled into the streets and whoever was handling the door had to deny entry to those who did not know the password, or we would have be inundated with strangers.
At one point I must have gotten up on a chair and did some gogo routine that garnered some attention, for the strongest memory to this day of that party is talking to DIckie afterward. He’d say something like: “We’ve heard that someone got fisted while gogo dancing at our party…Was that YOU Rosie?” I’d try to remember who or what I did that night; but all I can recall retorting:”NO Dickie, three fingers does NOT constitute getting fisted!”