“Dantons Tod” And No Gilets Jaunes?

dhaus_dantons_tod2_8719m (c) Thomas Aurin.jpg
Pic: Thomas Aurin, Source: see link at end of post

Get this, dear worst-reader. While I was walking through its front doors, which seem to be in a perpetual state of renovation, discard and renewal for the last couple of years, my better half asked me when was the last time I saw a play at the Düsseldorfer Schauspielhaus. Wow, I thought. It has to be at least a decade. Or what about fifteen years? But then I tried to think of the last play I saw there. As I write this, dear worst-reader, I can’t remember the most recent play I saw there. Shame on me, eh. I can remember vividly one of the first plays I saw there. It was Waiting For Godot. That must have been, if my worst-memory serves me correctly, ca. 1991. And it was outside of the iconic building, in the now under construction courtyard. It was a magnificent production. But I digress.

Yeah, it’s been a while. With that in worst-mind, my better half bought us two 2nd row, right in the middle tickets, for Danton’s Death by George Büchner. And while I couldn’t remember the last time I had seen a play at this particular venue, I do remember the fact that this viewing of Dantons Tod would place it at the top of my most viewed plays list. Indeed. This would be my third viewing of Dantons Tod. The only other plays that come close are Hamlet, Waiting For Godot, Endgame, Street Car Named Desire, all of which I’ve seen staged at least twice. Which begs the worst-question. Will I see Danton a fourth time? Or. Oh how I’m due to see Godot again.

Critics weren’t fond of this staging of Dantons Tod, a few of which I read after seeing it. And although I try not to play worst-critic, I thought it was a perfectly acceptable staging including all the text manipulations (re-write), character and gender role changes (re-write) and a bit of flamboyant ensemble pseudo-dancing that included the excessive dispersion of fake blood and other gore, which made it, at times, to the 2nd row. Then again, this is a play not only about the main characters of the French Revolution but also about collective terror and self-inflicted madness. With that in worst-mind, there is one small thing I cannot accept about the staging of this brilliant piece of art.

While mentally preparing myself to enjoy such a viewing in a pretty cool theatrical venue, I couldn’t stop knowing/thinking/hoping that this staging would include something as relevant as yellow vests. Half way to the intermission of a three hour production, there was not one yellow vest to be seen. Once we returned to our seat after the intermission (bier for worst-moi and a glass of white wine for my better-half), there was still no yellow vest. WTF!

As I may or may not have worst-said in this worst-blog, I am a Francophile. Not only that, but I am also a Neo-Jacobin1. How the hell can anyone stage such a play at such a time and not include, in one form/style/way or another, a fcuking yellow vest? It’s bad enough that most of the world’s press doesn’t cover what’s going on in France but is it also necessary for a theatre director who is making/re-writing what is probably the most profound theatrical analysis of the world’s greatest social and political revolution–that even tops the revolution of my beloved & missed united mistakes of #Americant–and not include at least some minor reference to what is obviously connected to that revolution to this day? One of the most profound things about the French, about being French, is how they are able to connect to their history not only through nationality, borders and language but also through a culture of unyielding distrust of government, authority and power. France today, IMHO, is the only remaining beacon of hope against the likes of #Trump, #Brexit, hate and collective fear-mongering. And that’s coming from an expat #Americant that’s been living amongst fcuking automaton Germans (The Borg) for the past thirty gottdamn years. Come on Armin Petras!

Indeed. This is a very acceptable production and a grand effort on the part of the director (re-writer) Armin Petras, including the guillotine-like stage-build by Olaf Altmann. Not only that but Danton (Wolfgang Michalek) made me cry (tears of joy), Robespierre (Lieke Hoppe) and her mane made me wish for more of a female Robespierre, and I really enjoyed the brief but utterly self-indulgent integration of Toussaint Louverture (Ron Iyamu)–who is not even in the original play, hence re-write by the director. Also, at the link below Toussaint Louverture is accredited with being “a former slave” when in fact he is the black Jacobin of history’s only black rebellion against slavery which took place in Haiti, 1791. You can read about Toussaint Louverture, by-the-buy, in The Black Jacobins by CLR James. Yeah, I’ve been meaning to worst-write something about that one. In the mean time, here and here is a bit more about my love/admiration for all things French and/or French Revolution. And so. Enough of worst-writer as worst-theatre-critic.

Go see a play, dear worst-reader. I’m so glad I did.

Rant on.



  1. Neo Jacobin, according to worst-writer, is a Jacobin who has learned from the mistakes of the reign of terror but adheres whole heartily to the annihilation of monarchs, ridding the world of unearned wealth, i.e. aristocracy and pseudo-aristrocacy and, where applicable, eating the fcuking useless rich. ↩︎

The Farnsworth Dictation

the farnsworth invention coverBeen too long, dear worst-reader. When was the last time I read a play? Back in the day, I used to read plays as fast as I could afford to get my hands on them. I love(d) reading plays. In fact, I preferred reading them to putting all that effort into watching them. But watch them I did as well. Yeah. Back in the day. Now that life has taken that turn (where so many lives are taken) and self-medicating and avoidance is a substitute for reading, it was gonna take a bit more than curiosity to get me back in the saddle. Which brings me to a different form of self-medication. Btw. Self medication is more than the use of caffeine, alcohol, recreational narcotics, sex as sport. Yeah. Self medication is also anything and everything that takes the mind away, where avoidance (of everything) is the norm. You can see it everyday. The automatons walking the sidewalks with their heads bent over and their eyes glued to those mini touch screens.  Or the compulsive behaviourists, aka careerists and corporatists, who spend their bored lives binge watching Mad Men, Sopranos, House of Cards (US), etc. And we see it in the rest of society that hasn’t made it, the Have-nots, who don’t know any better than to compete with the Haves so that they too can enter the realm of glorious avoidance and self medication. Yes. It would take more than just hearing about a new play and saying: yeah, maybe I’ll get to that one when I wake up (someday). Enter Podcasting.

Worst-writer prefers beer and podcasting when it comes to avoidance and self-medication. I prefer north German Pilsner to any other sort of beer. Goodness knows I hate all this “micro-brewed” krapp that’s popping up everywhere. The bitter and pure the beer the better. In summer, I like beer cold. In winter, I like my beer cool at best and sometimes will drink it at room temperature. And that’s all fine and good. Which brings me to another form of avoidance that has nothing to do with chemicals and misbegotten biology. Podcasting. I listen to at least one if not two podcasts everyday. Seriously. And I’m not even ashamed to admit it. In fact, I’m proud of it. Proud because I haven’t watched so-called “TV” in about five years. I know what you’re say dear worst-reader. You’re saying, “Well, Tommi, you asshole, you got off the norm only to replace it with the same difference.” And that may be true. Still. The point isn’t so much about competing–as a Have-not with the Haves–but instead being able to say I’m not a fucking lemming or an automaton and my life is bad-ass digitised to the hilt. Yeah, baby!

So I’m listening to a tech news podcast the other day before the daily beer drinking alarm goes off and the subject of who invented the television comes up. The moderator was shocked to hear that his audience didn’t know who invented the TV. At that moment I figured that the moderator was gonna proudly teach his audience something by saying the name Philo Farnsworth. But he didn’t say it. Instead he told his audience to go see a play called The Farnsworth Invention. And that’s when bells & whistles went off in my head. Talk about motivation. I had no idear that someone had written a play about Philo Farnsworth. What an interesting story that would make, I thought. In fact, I thought once or thrice about writing a play about something similar. Of course I never got around to it (because avoidance and self-medicating took over). But that’s all neither here nor there.

The Farnsworth Invention, a play by Aaron Sorkin, is a great read. And before I continue: WARNING! Spoiler alert.

I finished it the other night and although my usual think-about-it period after reading produces some interesting thoughts–in order to blog about it–not this time. Since I’m well aware of the drama of who invented television–as I’ve put some effort (even while self-medicated) into knowing #americant dysfunctional history–especially the parts of our blossoming as an industrial power–it would take a bit more than a dictation of events on a subject to make it worth my while. There really isn’t a lot to ponder about this piece of dramatic literature, except for the moments where Sorkin takes the author’s liberty. For example. Although it’s quite witty and I’m sure it will give rise to a few giggles in the audience, I really don’t see the necessity of having Philo mistake Douglas Fairbanks for Charlie Chaplin during a situation that never actually occurred–even though its occurrence is implied in this reenactment. Also. Sorkin basically leaves the door open in his story about who snitched on Philo to David Sarnoff so that RCA could utilise it’s legal rights because of an invalid patent. It’s just not necessary to throw in sex-crazed secretaries has potential snitches. The problem is, Sorkin chose a story that is basically a narration by one of the characters who, conveniently, breaks the fourth wall. I suppose it would work if the rest of the story didn’t fail at dramatising something that was ultimately evil–which is ultimately nothing more than yet another example of the true nature of the American Way: greed, coercion, manipulation, authoritarianism, predatory capitalism, etc. Still. The story, as Sorkin has framed it, works well. It’ll entertain a few (an audience). An artist can ask for nothing more. That said. This play, as much as I like it (because I must), just didn’t teach me anything I didn’t already know and on top of that it basically does nothing more than avoids reality. With that in mind. The play kinda reminds me of something Eugene O’Neill might write if he were on ecstasy or meth or both. But then again O’Neill didn’t have the writing staff Sorkin has. Ok. Maybe the drug reference and O’Neill is a stretch. But I’m gonna stick with it only because I could have written Philo’s story better. That’s right. My story would be better because I would get much deeper into the American Way of things–as opposed to buttering it all up. Still. This play is a great read. I liked it. It’s sufficient. Well done Mr. Sorkin. And thank you–and all those like you–for allowing us Have-nots to live in your world.

Rant on.


Roller Rink of Mind

Heavens GateBack in the day, dear worst-reader. Back in the day. I’m referring mostly to the 80s and 90s when I still had it in me. In fact it was so in-me that I couldn’t get the idears out of me. It was truly all I could do at the time for I knew that the end was near. The career end, that is. Yes, indeed, it ended with the millennium. Yeah, like you, I was working for the man thinking I had a career but reality dictated that it was all just another hire and fire job. Even though these “jobs” had served me well, unlike you, I wouldn’t give up on that other thing in the front (as opposed to the back) of my head, that thing that lead me down every road born of imagination and lingering of a thick pudding-like ether of dreams. And. The only way to express it ALL was through something written, usually dialogue. And so. Sit down, Tommi, worst-write another play. Which I did. But I never did it enough. Because there are those plays that I didn’t right. Oddly, some of them are still with me. Of course, as we all know, being a failed playwright has it’s advantages. But I won’t get into that here. For what I want to get into has to do with a movie that I recently (re)saw but for the life of me can’t remember when I first saw it. Or can I? Certainly I did see it. I know I did. More than twenty-five years ago I saw this movie. Even though it was very controversial–because of its costs and criticism. Is Heaven’s Gate in hind-sight a film before its time? Or. Is this (worst-post) an example of losing one’s mind, as is the case when getting old? Nomatter.

The movie I recently (re)saw is called Heaven’s Gate. This movie is embedded in my mind’s eye because it contained something that I new was a seed. The seed, aka an idear for a play, was supposed to be about Feuds. Feuds in my beloved #americant. I wanted to write something about Hatfield and McCoy, Earp and Clanton, and the grand fight between Mr. Rich and Mr. Poor, etc. For moi, there was always something singular about these feuds, something that bound them all together. Right or wrong. Left and right. Conservative, Liberal. And, yes, Poor and Rich. The film Heaven’s Gate is about all those things, especially the last one. And I know I saw it at a screening at State University of So-n-so sometime between 1984-88. The for-profit-state-institution had a huge auditorium that served, depending on requirements, as a lecture hall, theatre or cinema and it was a grand convenience. One of the things I often attended there were lectures given by the prominent. Various elites would appear at this place. I saw actors (Richard Dryfuss, Graham Chapman, etc.), TV personalities (numerous famous journalist who need not be named) and sometimes politicians (Jessie Jackson, Michael Dukakis, etc.) But one time there was supposed to be a prominent personality there but he didn’t show. It was either Kris Kristofferson or Jeff Bridges. (I think it was Bridges that we were supposed to see because he was less of a star.) The prominent was supposed to give a short speech about… Gee, I don’t know. Being #americant or something like that and then his/her movie would be shown. Well, like I said. The prominent one didn’t show. But the movie did. And I remember it because it was like four or five hours long. I remember enjoying the movie but also taking a lot of breaks. I remember standing in the isle-ways of the seats in order to rest my butt from sitting for so long. And I remember half the audience leaving the hall to never return. And then I remember the seed. The seed this movie planted in my head. This seed would be planted from other films, as well. I’m referring to Dances With Wolves, Dr. Strangelove, etc. These were films that questioned the #americant ideal. The ideal of greed, authority, subjugation, etc. Oh yeah! It was a great movie.

Now, so many years later, while reading a über-winded tech-book on #americant business and technology, the film Heaven’s Gate was mentioned because of the triviality of having brought down a Hollywood studio, United Artists. This in turn distracted my reading and I immediately took advantage of modernity and streamed the film via iTunes. Supposedly this is a new release of the film, hence it was only just over three hours. But enjoy it I did. In fact, it reminded me of a seed that still remains–perhaps waiting for its code to click-on so the germination process that has been so dormant in worst-writer’s mind can give it a go once again. Or maybe not. Nomatter. The thing I wish to worst-convey today is nothing more than elation regarding a wonderful film. A film that depicts the true heart and spirit of #americant–as negative and positive as that heart and spirit can be. And after seeing it again and realising what has become of my home, the place that raised me, I laugh. Indeed. #americant is in ruin because of empire, war-mongering, greed-society and our inability to transcend feud(alism). Heaven’s Gate is a movie that depicts #americant at the turn of the century. Or should I say that Michael Cimino depicts it all? In a way, during that turn of the century, a seed was also planted. A seed that would lead to the #americant century–the 20th century. Heaven’s Gate is a film that every #americant should see and then be required to write a short essay on and turn that essay into shit-for-brains teacher at bat-out-of-hell school for the mind-blind. Perhaps then, after all the worst-writing, enough Volk will realise the ills of our ways. Or maybe they’ll just see the beauty of something that has been misunderstood for so long.

Rant on.


Boy Girl Named

Watched August: Osage County the other night. So. Get prepared, dear worst-reader. This is gonna be a tumbler. Well. Maybe not.

Follow-up to this post here.

First. Julia Roberts can’t say the word fuck. She just can’t. I swear, in this film she tries, she really tries. But every time those innocent broad lips open up all one can see, because astonishment clouds sound, is her promoting that well-branded laugh that somehow spews effortlessly through a mouth that seems to have no end to its width and a limitless shine to those teeth. This woman, like the burden of the smile of a Dolphin, will forever be associated with the burden of one thing and one thing only. That laugh she barks in her bourgeoisie portrayal of how much fun it is to be a whore… Well. Nuff said.

Oh yeah, the smile. Roberts goes for cursing all the same but this time instead of taking the sure way she just spews the word fuck–through the same mouth so many people adore. And when she calls her dying mother–with nothing less than that same mouth: “you fucking bitch”, I couldn’t help but imagine a beautiful little girl finishing kindergarten and given an opportunity to speak at her graduation where she says the same thing to her lost and lonely teacher. You fucking bitch. Indeed, dear worst-reader. There’s seriously something wrong with that picture and with Julie Roberts struggling to say the word fuck. But more. There’s something wrong with the lack of astonishment from the Julia Roberts adoring world. Because. Hey. She’s Julia Roberts.

Second. The best thing about this movie is Juliett Lewis’ portrayal of a husband hunting bimbo. She really nailed it and I never thought she could do that again because she already did it so well in the movie Kalifornia across from Brad Pitt. Hats off to her!

And as far as… what’s her name goes… what’s her name? Oh yeah, Meryl Streep. As far as Streep goes, I saw cracks in her sunglasses and I think, if I were to re-rent this film on iTunes, I might be able to even prove exactly where those cracks are–because if you look closely when she fakes her smoking, the smoke comes through the cracks of her glasses. Seriously. Oh wait. iTunes doesn’t allow you to do anything with rented movies except watch them within 24hrs of starting them… Wait. Does Meryl Streep know this?

But enough about worst-writer’s attempt at criticizing a film. That sort of thing is better left to others more privileged. Still. I can’t wait to download the play and give it a read. Tracy Letts has obviously nailed it with his play. Transferring it to film went pretty well, too. Since the movie starts with Sam Shepard, a writer I (used to) read religiously–especially his plays–I couldn’t help but compare this play-to-film transfer to Shepard’s own Fool For Love, which was transferred way back in 1985. Short pause…

Warning: slight spoiler alert.

Of course the moment in Osage County when my thoughts of Shepard were sealed was when I realized that there was an incestuous affair about to be revealed. The same thing, of course, is in Shepard’s play Fool For Love. So. Tracy Letts was influenced by Shepard. Or? Goodness. I hope so.

Either way this was a beautiful film that I thoroughly enjoyed watching from start to end. Brilliant writing, acting and cinematography. I also thought it was a bit strange to categorize this film as a comedy. Seriously. A comedy? There are a few funny moments, especially the brawl between Streep and Roberts, where, after the film, I got to thinking that it wasn’t funny at all. If I could question Letts about his play it would be why he chose to put obvious male mind-set characters into female bodies. But that doesn’t really matter. He’s got a female name and so does his dead dramatic patriarch. All hands clap for men named Beverly.

Rant on.


What I Wish I Were

Endspiel by Samuel Beckett

A very silly title to a very silly post. To maintain some clarification, I do not wish I were Beckett. I only admire him for being an example that not everything the same can also be good. I do not believe Beckett to be the intellectual and/or difficult writer that so many claim of him – or that so many academics have given him. I think he’s a great example of purity and simpleness and how the two make for beautiful art… Or something like that. But before I continue with Beckett…

I still do not claim to believe in ”writer’s block”. But this morning, while working on a story, I realized that I had reached a dead end. I started writing it about two weeks ago and have since had two misleading breaks that have caused great pain in maintaining the focus, the concentration, the gist of the story. After the second break – this past weekend – I found that I had simply lost touch with what was streaming out of me only a few days prior. It’s sad, really, especially when one looks at such an unsuccessful (worts)writer as myself. Oh. The thousands of words I have obviously wasted. So much potential gone astray, one could say. Others would say: ”fuck it”, just get on with it all the same. Yet, how does a ”writer” explain to those who don’t write what it means to lose the connection, the trust, the fluidity of thecreative process? If only I had the courage to end it all – this writing madness. But I won’t give up. Especially when I think of all the grasshoppers for whom I’m providing such an example – you know, of how not to write. This grand trip we are taking together dear worst-reader, the places we are seeing, e.g. the corners of our rooms with too many cobwebs or the cracks in the tiles of our terraces, these places where our eyes gather and see what needs to be seen – the emptiness, the nothingness – is what keeps us going. Is it not?


Or knowing that we will at least dream of trying to achieve what the greats have done before us. I speak, no less, of he who haunts me (us?): Sam Beckett. The genius and purity, simpleness, precision of pen. I’m only barely worthy to read and own a few of his books or to have had the privilege of seeing some of his theater on varying stages.

(Image of book.)

I know. Though shallt not want. And at this point it doesn’t really matter. I only own a few books. Most of my books are just plain old paperbacks bought used – because I hate hardcover books and paperbacks were (at the time) easier to travel with. I also own a few – I guess you could call them – collector edition books. One of my favorite books is a special printed edition of Endgame from the September 26, 1967, Berlin premier that was directed by Sam Beckett himself. The publisher of the book is Suhrkamp. The cast of the play is as follows:

  • Nell (left can): Gudrun Genest
  • Nagg (right can): Werner Stock
  • Hamm (dude with glasses): Ernst Schröder
  • Clov (dude kinda bent over): Horst Bollmann


The thing that’s cool about this book is that when you unfold it you get the feeling your in the audience. It’s printed in hard cover A4 landscape. The cover has a pic of Sam Beckett directing, see above. The title is:

Samuel Beckett inszeniert das ”Endspiel”

The inner cover has a few pics of the actors from the inszenierung and when you open it completely the whole book resembles a fold-out, maybe pop-up theater stage. When all the folds/covers are opened the left and right folds have pictures of curtains on them. The inside of the main cover has pictures of a ceiling with strobe lights. As you flip through the pages the text of the play is printed on the top page and a picture of the corresponding scene is printed on the next page below in black &white. At the end of the play there is a rehearsal journal, or diary, that contains the daily happenings, including what Mr. Beckett was doing, where he sat in rehearsals, what he drank, etc. The journal begins on Friday, August 18, 1967, with: ”Im Hof des Schiller-Theaters…”

Yes. What a lovely book to own.



Rant and dream on.


It Didn't Bloom Until Tomorrow

The Night Thoreau Spent In Jail – A Play

Waldo: Henry! Henry! What are you doing in jail?

Henry: Waldo! What are you doing out of jail?

Re-read “The Night Thoreau Spent in Jail” last night. First read was in 2004… I think. It is a two-act play that pretty-much summarises Henry David Thoreau’s life. Not only that. It’s also a literary window into what potentially could be the answer to what’s possibly ailing life/America today–maybe. That is. The answer we’re all searching for, including those not searching, could be in not so much the play but the summary of Thoreau. But then again. Assuming that there is  an “answer” might be a bit much. Still. While trying to understand what motivates some people to act the way they act it’s sometimes best to seek out their opposite. Does that mean we need to seek out the people that don’t act the way some/other people act? Hence. I was initially motivated by thoughts of Walden. Even with a very limited knowledge of his work, the mirror of Thoreau’s anti-social nature is an answer to the disease that is convention. I mean. One can only imagine what people at the time thought of Henry David Thoreau. Also. Did rumours abound of what this man was actually doing the whole time in a shack near a lake? Or. Since life today is all about compromise and appeasement isn’t it only natural that so many of us never miss a lunch and look exactly that way? Nomatter. Thoreau definitely spent a night in jail and the reason for that is enough to provide some insight into what is still so terribly wrong with America today. Great play about a dollar tax left unpaid. But I reckon a great play just ain’t enough for the voters of anti-greatness as they all continue to pay more than just their tax.

Rant on.



Cypripedium, aka “Showy Lady Slipper” that Thoreau tried to show his students when he should have been teaching them math or history or civics. The authors of “The Night Thoreau Spent in Jail”, Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee, put this beautiful flower in their text and added “Last year it didn’t bloom until tomorrow!” at just the right moment.

Krapp vs Krapp

Eleuthéria by Samuel Beckett

All-time favourite word? “Krapp”. worstwriterdotcom is, fittingly, full of the word ‘krapp’. Oh, how I wish I could get credit for coining such a word. But all for naught. So much for worst-writer’s attempt at replacing the word absurd with it. I mean, what sounds better, dear worst-reader, “everything is absurd” or “everything is krapp”? Nomatter. If I could coin such a worst-word then the worst-world-over could forward me a nickel every time it’s used. And then maybe, just maybe, I would earn as much as Samuel Beckett earned from the receipts of his plays. But such is the absurd… I mean krapp. Which brings me to other earnings.

Curse the day I read Godot the first time. Although I’ve almost forgotten that special day, Godot hangs on to me like the stickiness of severed flesh where parts of my arm or leg dangle in a wind coming off the north sea coast, embellished and enriched with salty air and the million year murkiness of a future ready for more petroleum, less reading, absurdity status quo and sharks that bite but also forget. And all the above makes the (almost) forgotten day grand, to say the least. How counter intelligent, eh? For I realised at that moment after reading Godot that Theatre Of The Absurd ain’t such a damning thing and I need not lay waste to such days. What a great way to figure out the humdrum of this or that life, eh? Or to see through the valance covering the life of others. In this particular case, or valance, one can see through Samuel Beckett’s life–at least in part his literary life. I like to think of Eleutheria as Beckett’s first and last play. That is, he wrote it before he wrote Godot but Eleutheria was rejected for Godot and hence theatre has never been the same. When the play was finally published Beckett was no more. So who do we thank for this and what should have been published sooner? Again. Nomatter. Since publishers seem to be the ones that caused this to take so long (after Beckett’s death) then all that’s left is all the absurd… Krapp. Wait. Or do we thank death, the only real thing left?

M. Krap: One moment. Finding it therefore impossible to live and recoiling from the great cure, through a sense of decency, or through cowardce, or because of the very fact that he is not living, what can man do to avoid the oh so very discreet and unobtrusive insanity he has been taught to dread? He can pretend to be living and that others live. -Samuel Beckett “Eleutheria”

As is the case with all things of absurd  yet valuable, leave it up to publishers to have a shit-fit about who-when-where would publish this piece of literary history. Thank Godot it made it, thank Godot for human mortality, and thank him again for Beckett’s last breath. Indeed, a valued piece of literary history. Ad absurdum. Can be had by all.

What this play is about is irrelevant. Yet its content should, somehow, be known. So. It’s about the Krap family. They are a bourgeois family and after the death of the father the son must cope. Cope with what? Well, this is a Beckett play and it either holds the seeds to what will come or it is the blossom of what has been. But even that doesn’t matter. And unlike Godot, Eleutheria doesn’t contemplate death but maybe it should. For in Godot the main character never appears but in Eleutheria the main character is everybody–even an “audience member” that, without trickery or other forms of drama-magic, appears in the play. This play is extremely complicated and for the most part in-cohesive. But if you concentrate on the words, the mis-en-scene, nothingelsematters. Yet while trying to find  a way through it I eventually realised that the family name Krap was used again by Beckett in his infamous play Krapp’s Last Tape. Ah, maybe there is trickery going on here. This play is indeed connected to much of Beckett’s work, probably more his prose than his dialogue. But I will not go down that analytical path–as I don’t think Beckett did either. Instead I will stick with the unknown and the in-cohesive and Godot and dangling limbs and north sea sharks with small Germanic spicy teeth and überpowerful jaw. And the fact that a poet of this magnitude could use the same name twice? Yes, it’s hard to let go–this wondrous absurdity. Or is Beckett actually writing the absurdity twice but hidden under a different valance? Ah. The genius nobel laureates, dear worst-reader, they all deserve their titles and their earnings for coming up with tricks and dicks. For you see, Beckett added a ‘p’ to the infamous name and thereby also adding a bit more absurdity he created Krapp. If only another ‘p’ could be added to absurd. Nomatter. Eleutheria means liberty in greek but this play frees no one except maybe a whacked-out doctor that preaches to those who cannot face the absurdity of life and judging it so. Here, ironically, a “doctor” explains life and what should be done about it.

Dr. Piouk: Here it is. I would prohibit reproduction. I would perfect the condom and other appliances and generalise their use. I would create state-run corps of abortionists. I would impose the death sentence on every woman guilty of having given birth. I would drawn the newborn. I would campaign in the favour of homosexuality and myself set the example. And to get things going, I would encourage by every means the recourse to euthanasia, without, however, making it an obligation. Here you have the broad outlines. -Samuel Beckett “Eleutheria”

Rant on.


Way To The 20th Century

Picasso At The Lapin Agile by Steve Martin

In the movie From Hell, starring Johnny Depp, there is a line by Jack The Ripper (played by Ian Holm). It goes something like this: Someday people will know that I am the one that brought the 20th century. Even though I love the movie,the story it is based on — with the idear that the murders committed by Jack The Ripper directly involved the British monarchy — is even better. Hence, it is an underrated film where a brilliant story and writing gets lost. Nomatter. The line regarding who brought us the 20th century has stuck with me ever since. It is one of those lines I will simply never get out of my head. Which is kinda strange. For one, I hate the 20th century. Secondly, what’s the big deal? The passage from the 19th to 20th just can’t be the passage to end all historic passages? I mean, come on. The 20th century is a time where thousands of years of human evolution combined to result in nothing more than destruction, hate and ugliness comparable only to a space-time anomaly where an ice cream maker is suddenly transported from the comfort of the first world to the malcontent of the 3rd world, let’s say right in the middle of the Amazon or the Sahara, just as he was about to provide an over-priced banana split to the richest child New York City greed could ever produce. And as history witnesses this phenomenon the audience gasps and screams: Aw, fuck the kid, what about the poor ice cream?

“A bar in Paris, 1904. One year later, Albert Einstein published the special theory of relativity. Three years later, Pablo Picasso painted Les Demoiselles d’Avignon.” -Mise en scené from Picasso at the Lapin Agile, by Steve Martin

Ok. That’s one way to worst-see things. Another is provided by Steve Martin. Of the people I grew up watching on the boob-tube, Steve Martin I remember well. I used to love watching him on SNL in the 70s. His film “The Jerk” is one of the greatest comedies ever made and for weeks after I first saw it (at a drive-in) I went around saying: I was born a poor black child. Many years later, when I first saw “Roxanne“, I thought to myself, how talented can one person be? Well, that’s the thing about talent. When you got it, you got it. King Tut aside. So spring forward to a visit to one of my favourite bookstores in the world. Whenever I was visiting San Francisco I would spend hours in the basement of this store combing through the play section. When this book fell into my hands I had no idear that Steve Martin wrote plays. The clerk laughed at my ignorance and put another book by Marin in my hands. At that moment I started to hate Martin. Without even reading a line of one of his friggin’ books, I hated him. It just ain’t fair that nature put so much talent into one man and leave the rest of us to wallow in worst. Oh well.

So I bought both Picasso at the Lapin Agile and other plays and Shopgirl. I read them in hours. Never before did I embark on reading something and before my mind processed the first words I knew it was going to be good. This stuff comes out of the talent of Steve Martin. And even though it makes no sense that I should make the comparison to From Hell, a story written by someone who is probably the antithesis of a über-talented American comedian, both writers tapped into the question: who gave us the 20th century?

Einstein: “I never thought the twentieth century would be handed to me so casually…” -Steve Martin from his play. 

Rant on.


Tricky Hole

Early morning. Sun coming up. Groggy. I quit drinking coffee and the black tea takes longer to get me going. Quick reddit read woke me, though. Luv Sam Shepard and wish I was in Toronto. Here thoughts churned:

Not afraid to admit it: Spent most of my adult life dreaming. Big mistake there. But then again, the price (I paid) of freedom and independence is a price worth paying. No matter how poor it makes me. Would do it all again. For there is no greater sacrifice than being true to yourself. If only more people could do that. There would be less “success” in this misconstrued world but there would also be less of the nothingness we have to live with now. Wait. Reverse and twist that. And enough about me.

The problem with dreaming is that you are basically stuck in a box that has one hole in it. It is thru that hole that you consume your dreams. Not unlike a theatre, the hole being where/how the dream is viewed, dreaming, and especially living for a dream, can be very tricky. In fact, the trick is to not let that hole drive you mad. Well. I found a way to control the madness. It was in the form of documenting. Now this is kind of hard to explain, dear worst-reader, but let’s give it a go. I did not document the dreams, per say. What I did to curb/control the madness of youth, the paradox of freedom and being forced to make a living, was a complete waste of time, but I always grabbed something to write with–either pen and paper or a typewriter. And off to the races to nowhere I went.

Fast forward 15 wasted or so years. Looking back is ok. I mean, I’m ok with all that I wasted for a dream. Because when I think about the wondrous dreams of someone else, someone who was and still is able to master that hole… I mean his dreams, I am ok. (But I’m back on me again ain’t I? Sorry.) Sam Shepard saved my life when I was about 28 years old. I used to buy his plays to read even if it meant I couldn’t fill up my shit car with gas. I reckon it’s kinda sad I don’t read them anymore. But like I said. That hole beats you down.

I am forever indebted to this man’s work.



Rant on.



Marry Me Goat

The Goat or Who Is Sylvia by Edward Albee

Wiki about this play.

Reading through ballot Question 6 for MD election 2012. The language of it is strange and obviously appeases religious zealots who shouldn’t be in govt. in the first place. Personally, they should just get rid of the institution of marriage right after they get rid of tax free religion. I mean, the only purpose it all serves anymore is enslaving half the human race. On the other hand, where would universities be w/out issuing matrimony degrees and where would the economy be without divorce?

The Goat was a great play. Saw it during its premier run in San Francisco.

Rant on.


Boomer Shame Has No End

The Secret Knowledge by David Mamet

It was shocking reading David Mamet’s “The Secret Knowledge – On The Dismantling of American Culture”. First, I should say this: I’m finding it hard to write anything nice about this book. Seriously. If I start reading something and I feel as though I’ve committed myself to reading it, I will do just that – even if I don’t like it. That’s how I got through those college English Lit classes. I mean, Mamet truly is a writer that I’ve admired most of my life. But I’m starting to wonder if he’s always been over the edge or if I’m just now seeing it.

According to my birth year (1963) – correct me if I’m wrong – I think I’m exactly in-between the infamous baby boomer generation and the generation that followed. A confusing place, indeed. But this place (that I’ve spent my life being put into) taught me early that before it could even get started, life is over. For the longest time I blindly hoped – as we all do in this day and age of haves and have-mores – that the boomers would wake from their dream that is the nightmare of others. To me, obviously, the boomers are the worst thing that has ever happened to a nation, they are the seed and the tree of American’t dysfunction. Just look at what they’ve done. And now look at what Mamet has done. The only secret this book reveals is the true greedy and repugnant face of a generation of swindlers, under-achieving hoodlums and cry-babies.

I want to like everything written by David Mamet. Seriously. But that’s never going to be possible. Mamet will always remain one of the great American playwrights – but it seems as though he’s practically given that up. Obviously there is something that drives him to write about his conservatism, and I reckon that’s a good thing. The fact that he is, in the arts, a creative genius and, at the least, participates in political discourse, is OK by me. Yet this isn’t the first time I’ve reached wit’s end with his politics – just as I’ve reached wit’s end with all conservative politics.

This book does take the cake. It is proof-supreme how a brilliant writer can write so… (may all things worst the world over forgive me for using this word but there are moments when it fits perfectly) …stupidly. And I’m not alone in that opine-yon. See the external links below. Also. When one of the only people that would interview him about this book was the filthy, zombie spawn of Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, I kinda knew that I was in for a (mis)treat. Anywho. Mamet really should stick with writing plays or films. His batshit conservatism and the belief that right wingers and boomers are OK simply because they are in possession of something that someone else (mostly their own children!) cannot possess, making them the center of the universe, well… I digress. I fought my way through this book because, somehow, in that little S&M place in my heart, Mamet deserves it. I was wrong. The only thing he deserves is a snub.

Related links:


Rant on.


Explain It To A Three Year Old

The God Of Hell by Sam Shepard

The hardest thing about living abroad for so long is not so much the distance and proximity I’ve put between myself and home. The whole idear of home has become an enigma anyway. The real problem has been watching the place closest to my heart from the outside for more than twenty years. Strange travels indeed. In the beginning the air I breathed and walked was full of everything wrong, misleading, false-optimism and blindness. I was suffocating so I ran from the America of the 80s where the seed of greed was allowed to spawn and mutate freely. And then the Cold War ended. You would think that such a positive, happy, great-ending would change people. But it didn’t. It made everything worse. Everyone immediately started squandering any potential dividends of that war. And. Their mis-efforts made Das Volk even more stupid. So I continued watching from abroad. I reckon there lies the seriousness of it all. People of all walks of life just didn’t do much about the changing of the times. They all just stuck to the path set for them. That was it. Nothing else. But not for me. I had put myself on an edge because I couldn’t take the mediocrity and the mendacity that so many thought acceptable. As though life, liberty and everything else was just a transaction. So I went to Berlin and London and Köln and Prague. And with every trip I read The Harold Tribune, Time Magazine, etc. Every hotel I tuned in CNN. I did everything to see what was happening back home as my travels took me further and further away. But you know the old saying, right? You can take him out of home but you can’t take home out of….

Confusing times. Ever since I’ve watched with tear-filled eyes my home, the country that I adore, fall to ruin at the behest of politics taking advantage of a people hell-bent on following a life-doctrine dictated to them: consume-to-survive. I’ve watched my home fall from grace at the behest of rampant, ill-conceived political ideology, despicable talk-radio and never questioning misconstrued authority. And then there’s Faux Newz. I watched the literature I’ve read by Orwell & Co. begin to materialise. Then came that horrible day in September 2011. And how did my beloved country react? No different than how it reacted to the ending of the Cold War. And. Just look out the window or, if you please, read up on some history. Indeed. Things have gotten complicated. As worst-writer I’ll never attempt to try and explain it all. But what is obvious is that a once great nation has fallen from grace. The game is up.

So let’s move to shinny shores and old worn out places that can no longer be subsidised for the pleasure of the needy but can explain things worst-writer cannot. Plays. It’s one thing to love the art of dialog and what can happen on a stage but it’s another thing to love the art of the playwright. I wonder if America knows what it has with Sam Shepard? The actor, the writer, the hot stud women don’t know what to make of. “What? He’s a Pulitzer winning writer, too,” she squirmed watching him in The Right Stuff. I certainly know what I have with Shepard. Probably my life. While trying to figure out things during that hell-setting period known as the 80s, it was Shepard’s play The Tooth of Crime that woke me up. (Keep in mind, I’ve only ever read it, never seen it performed!) With that play all I ever wanted to do was read dialog. In fact, reading plays completely changed my perspective on reading in general. A world was opened up. Through the years I’ve spent considerable effort on acquiring Shepard’s work just to read it. How fortunate I’ve been to be able to fly to places like London or San Francisco to buy his work because they have book stores specialising in plays. Heck, was even able to fly to NYC once to see Kicking A Dead Horse, unfortunately it wasn’t available in print yet. But let me move on before I get lost.

If anyone wants a way to explain to an adult as though that adult were a third grader, so he or she can understand, what is truly wrong with America today then all you have to do is check out The God of Hell. Like today’s America it’s a farce, funny and full of bullshit that will make you squirm and laugh. And in order to make it fit the American TV mentality, it’s short, precise, has dick jokes and don’t have lots big words (grammar intended). But there’s something else in it. The truth. So beware.

Welch: What did you expect? You didn’t think you were going to get a free ride on the back of Democracy forever, did you? Well, did you? What have you done to deserve such rampant freedom? Such total lack of responsibility. Just lolling about here in the Wisconsin wilderness with your useless lumberjack of a husband, scraping the cream off the countryside. Sooner or later, the price had to be paid. Don’t you think? 

-Scene Three

Rant on.



David Mamet 2

Subtitle: Nothing Good Is Organized

What can one say about a man that writes the screenplay for “The Post Man Always Rings Twice” (the remake)? Is the American’t idiom or colloquialism “wow” or “amazing” appropriate here? Or how about the movie “House of Cards”? To this day when I’m in a conflict with Female I always quote House of Cards by saying, “Thank you mother may I have another.” And then I hear the shots fired and feel the projectile splattering away at my lower innards and outers.

But here’s the thing. I like David Mamet. I like him very much as a writer of plays and screenplays. I’m not a hundred percent sure but I think we’d see eye-to-eye on other issues, too. But then again, maybe not. And there is something that I really, really don’t like about him.

I got a little tethered while reading this article. Here a quote from the article: ”The force which kept it (US corporate management) honest was the American labour movement.”

I apologize if Im getting a bit out of context here but Mamet writes with too much fervour regarding politics, corporatism and labour. Of course corporations are behind so much ill fated lobbying and social chaos in America but that is not a predetermined by-product of our construed, misconstrued and brilliant system. Then he writes that corporations and the Bush admin are out of control. But a system was put in place to keep it all in check and that system did not break down. What is Mamets point with this article? Everything is bad, join a union or organize, it’s Bushs fault, vote Democrat?


Mamet’s tone is too cold war for me. He forgets one very important aspect of today’s America. This aspect I believe is that ignorance and a lack in consciousness is the American problem. It is not nineteen century ideals or political dogma. America has become a people that would rather be entertained by WWF and sold miracle hair tonic that does everything from fix your house to reduce your taxes. The seller of the tonic, btw, is immortal idealist PT Barnum.

The system of checks and balances that was created by our forefathers that would help us keep it all together did NOT break down! The system was meant to give individuals not just the right but the capability to choose – individually. Election stolen here or there, the situation America is in now was inevitable. As an American the only thing I learned growing up were selfishness and greed  from grade school all the way through college. “Giving” in America – and I dare anyone to challenge this – only happens if taking comes first. In order to be a decent American one has to manage all the negatives. What kind of life is that?

No, I disagree with Mamet because nothing organized can be good. History has shown this. America, from its inception, was about chaos, greed but most importantly, individuality and everything and all else would be controlled by checks and balances aka law. We are no longer a land of individuals. We didnt forget who we are but instead gave up a long time ago on who we could be. The system proved that it works and that the people do not.

Btw, the PT Barnum hair tonic tastes good, too.

Here Mamet I.

Here my minuscule review of Mamet’s “The Secret Knowledge – The Dismantling of America”.



Love Goat

The Goat ticket

Still jet-lagging? Can’t be. Been long enough. But this west coast thing…

It’s the last day of so many. But/And the many always win. Off to the theater.

Last night I saw “The Goat” from Albee. The tradition of absurdity is still alive. Perhaps even reinvigorated–but the final judgement has yet to emerge. Nonetheless I said that it is good that such a play is (can be) performed. But then again, I’m in SF. The house was full and the audience responded well. The dialog was spicy, bit in the right places, acting was weak, female better than male. Yes, such a play in such a venue is inspirational but would the play do so well if Albee’s name wasn’t attached? The play has left me stranded. Absurdity is alive and that is good. But… there is something Martha & George in this play. I can’t put my finger on it (yet). The disturbing thing to me is that without the Goat and/or beastiality the play is a bore. Yet Albee is addressing something else. What? The fact that under circumstances man can and will do anything. But why in the context of the American dream? Is it because the American dream is really about finding happiness via an epiphany to fuck a goat? Yes, Albee is pushing the envelope of dark humour here. Not about playwriting, mind you, but where this dream is taking us. We in this great land are ruined. There is no mistake about it. Because, as Albee puts it, at least as I hear this morning after, what/where do you do/go when you’ve reached the dream? There is something traditional in this play, a thread-common perhaps, like so many plays of the absurd-theater. Is it the threat of questions unanswerable? Yes… what does Albee want to say? He is the great interpreter of the American Dream, right? How did he do it–is the more relevant question. In thinking of illusions. Illusions of truth. WMD. Be on it long enough and it will become part of you–how a lie becomes truth. But if the lie doesn’t matter? If the lie doesn’t matter then one must understand what drives the teller to lie. In The best example of this is woman. The next best example is consumption. And what about this slight lie? Timothy Leary worked for the CIA. Full stop. Redact.

Change previous chapter about Stone’s (that name again! Stop it!) commenting on SF visit.


SF at night is beautiful. Long walk back to hotel.


By The Bog of Cats

“By The Bog of Cats”, by Marina Carr, starring Holly Hunt

@ Windhams Theatre, 2005.

At the end of the play I stood and clapped till I thought my hands would bleed. I also wept like the little boy I wish I were. I screamed “HOLLY, HOLLY, HOLLY, etc.” She was brilliant. Will never forget.

bog of cats ticket

I love London theatre.

Rant on.


Grappa & Godot

Note. This story took place in the early 90s. The notebook I transcribed this from isn’t exact with the date. I reckon that’s my bad. But I recall the play mentioned and the rest very well. Good luck.

April 5, 1990

A postcard arrived exactly three days after waking up alone on the living room floor, butt naked, of a chick named Heidrun. But before I get to her and how much of a blast that experience was – even though I still have a few carpet burns as I write this – some background. First. What  people fail to realize today is that there is a lot to a name. If you have smart parents they can play some neat tricks while naming you. This is mostly done with girls and has something to do with the history of fathers trying to protect and/or gain fortunes. But most modern pseudo democratic law has rid us of that nonsense. Thank goodness! If you have dumb parents even they can play some tricks with their naming of dumb offspring – but usually their tricks only spite themselves. It’s a kind of natural law. I think. Anywho.

The name Heidrun is long for Heidi. The name comes from  nordic mythology and originally was the name of a goddess-goat that had the special power of delivering mead from one of its teats. For those that don’t know – in ancient days (whatever that means), mead was the drink of choice for those trying to relax after a day of slaughtering nature – it was their beer.

Heidrun wasn’t always a goat. As the myth goes, the goat was some goddess that pissed off some god and to tame her he turned her into a goat and to humiliate her even further he made her so that she would supply him with god beer – or mead. Obviously that level of servitude would never suit a goddess – even if she was just a goat. So she found a way to split and started roaming various nordic plains and forests in search of… grass, I guess.

One day a run-of-the-mill goat herder discovered this special goat, became its owner and eventually became a king. He quickly discovered the intoxicating effects of the goat’s milk, I mean mead. After sharing his new treasure with some friends and then many more strangers the goat herder was able to acquire subjects and eventually a kingdom. (Yes. That’s exactly how it works even today.) When other kings eventually realized how this goat herder became a king – they managed to cut his head off, piss down his throat and while hundreds of years passed, various kings created a special part of human history buy slaughtering each other in the name of the almighty Heidrun – a goat with a teat of magic.

Long story short. The last king to have Heidrun was named Langlerloch (or something like that). The thing that makes Langlerloch special isn’t that he was just the last owner of Heidrun, but that he introduced the concept of legitimately sanctioned kinghood. (Yes. The nordic people had such a word.) He proclaimed and, as usual, his willing subjects believed, that he was nothing more than a curator of a higher power. This power enabled him to turn Heidrun’s byproduct into a profit center. The nordic people, all being a little bit thick because of the cold weather they had to live in and the boredom of the northern hemisphere, went along with it. Yet any fan of history should try to appreciate this myth because, in a way, it pretty-much describes the birth of modern political-economics. Anywho.

As we all know, the nordics eventually became extinct. The reason for that is they lost Heidrun because the god that made her returned and took her back. So. We can conclude that the nordic people are extinct today because they ran out of beer. I mean mead. They are also extinct because of a goat named Heidrun.
The consummation took place with Heidrun after an outdoor production of Waiting for Godot. Of course, I called her Heidi. But when I think of her, when I dream of her, she is and will always be Heidrun. It was a perfect match (almost) to be with her at one of my favorite plays. Although I knew Godot from reading it, it was the first time I’d ever seen it performed. So this was actually the beginning of two wonderful and/or questionable relationships. One was short (Heidrun) the other long (Eurowasteland). FYI, I will probably remain in Eurowasteland and die as an expatriate. Hopefully someone will have some mercy with my lost soul when I die and fulfill my last wish: to be cremated and my ashes thrown in the Rhine. But that’s not allowed in Eurowasteland. In fact, the bitch is, you can’t even take the ashes home. So maybe someone will have the balls to steal my ashes and as a consolation (for my having gotten locked into the golden piss hole of Eurowasteland), flush them down any toilet. You know what they say about toilets, don’t you? It all goes to the ocean anyway.

Digress I.

Culture, as enigmatic as the word is, is was one of the reasons I left American’t. The death of opportunity is another. Of course, as far as opportunity goes in bureaucratic, civil-servent Eurowasteland, things are even worse here. But. And here’s another consolation to being born in the dried-up old lady that is the western world and shitty life, you can actually drive to any town in Eurowasteland, almost any day of the week – except in July and August – and see a play. For an American’t interested in it – that’s nothing short of (short pause) spectacular. Not only that but without special ordering you can actually get books and plays in their original languages. Many of those same books and plays are not on corporate bookstore counters that marginalize literature based on radio-like top 40 statistics. Culture – even if it can be just about shit – is everywhere. Granted. Eurowasteland’s culture is old, outdated and often appears as though it could use a major revamp or renovation, but at least it’s there. And since, culturally, there’s nothing new coming out of the old dried-up lady western world, what the hell! Try to find culture in the drug-sick wasteland of American’t suburbia. Like the name says: it’s not whether you can but the fact that you can’t. American’t – fuck yeah! Anywho.

What a play production and Heidrun was eying me the whole time. Which was foreseeable. It was kind of a romantic evening. The weather was mild. The atmosphere, with the content of the play, vibrant. A good mix for all things foreplay. As far as the play production goes. For Godot they put up a small stadium in the parking lot of the state funded theater with bleachers and protection for rain. There were loudspeakers and the actors had microphones. How modern, eh. Is this Eurowasteland’s answer to revamping culture? It was very wow. And. You’d think that all the money Eurowasteland theatre gets from the state that they could have the performance somewhere other than the parking lot. But hey. I’m not complaining. Even though I could start-on about how much money could be spent on culture if it all weren’t gobbled up by pensioners from the Wirtschaftswunder and paying for weapons that Eurowasteland placation doesn’t even need.

Digress II.

Heidrun was actually Austrian born but, like most other Austrians with half a brain, she had to go elsewhere to find a job other than driving a bus or milking cows for a living. Ironically, she was from the same town as Arnold – you know, the Austrian governor of Cali-shitty-ya that slaughter poor people by injecting them with chemicals. But hey, we can’t be too hard on the man with the biceps cause, as far as Austria goes, at least he was able to get out of those inbred, pervert mountains and make a million or two.

Digress III.

When it comes to meeting Eurowastelanders and subsequently getting some sexual relief, I met Heidrun at work. She worked on a different floor as a junior consultant slash accountant slash mathematician. I mean, enough can’t be said about this career chick or about how well educmacated some Eurowastelanders are. Boy, she was really good with numbers. In fact, before our first date and long before I even started contemplating being able to do the math of a commercial transaction AND the constant disarray of watching my currency (American’t $) against the currency of Eurowasteland (DM), I used to call her up while standing in line at some retailer begging her to give me a quick add and substract lesson. She usually offered me a deal to do it. I appeased.

This might sound corny but, the tickets to the play were hard to get. I wanted to see the play as much as I needed some sexual relief. I was taking a chance here. You know, getting that kind of relief from a co-worker. I had to pull a Napoleon to get tickets. Unfortunately we couldn’t sit together. I tried to be strategic with our locations. She sat two rows below me and five seats to the right. I put her below because I didn’t want to have to turn around to see if I wanted to look at her while the play was on. I burdened her with that. The cool thing is, that allowed me to see whether I she was scoping me. Good move, I have to admit.

After the play was over I rushed to the bar for my obligatory beer and smoke and Heidrun made the first move by gently pinching a piece of fuzz from my shoulder. I offered her a cig and she took it and I quickly realized that that was probably the third or fourth cigarette she had ever had. While puffing away we conversed about Gogo and Didi and I let her babble about the common ultimate question of the play. She concluded that there was a Godot and I concluded that there wasn’t. With that we moved on to a jazz bar and got drunk on a bottle of red wine that she bought. A trumpeter and his band were trying to play Miles Davis’ Pharoh’s Dance and their ill-fated effort drew me closer to Heidrun. At around midnight she invited me to her place to have grappa and cheese.

When we got to her apartment I asked if she had any jazz and she pointed to a tall CD rack full of discs. I searched through it and noticed that many of the CDs were still in their original packaging. I found a 1963 Ella & Basie CD. It was a really cheap clone recording, AAD disc, but I unpacked it and put it on. She had a nice amplifier but a cheap TEAC CD player. I didn’t bother looking at the speakers but they seemed adequate. Her living room had all the basic furniture but the couch seemed out of place. It was new and everything else was old. But it matched, I guess. Then I noticed the rug atop the old and polished wooden floor. She later informed me that it was given to her by her late father who got it from his father who fought against the Turks. I knelt down to feel (test?) the rug. It was extremely rough and course and it looked older than the hills. It must be worth a fortune.

Heidrun brought out a glass of Proseco and put it in my hand. I didn’t question where the grappa was. She said “prost, welcome, nice to finally get you here,” and we drank and then she went off to her little kitchen again saying that she’d be right back. I took the time to orient myself. Her place, like every other single place, was small but neatly furnished. Battered but still functional Ikea shelves, small tube TV, tables with candles, flowers, and pictures in frames and one unused ashtray.

“Can I smoke,” I asked.

“Sure. Wait. I’ll bring you an ashtray,” she said from the small and well packed kitchen.

“I found it,” I said.

I lit up, took two deep puffs, laid the fag on the rim of the ashtray and peaked into the open door of her bedroom, it was opposite the kitchen. The bed was made and a blouse, the color I couldn’t make out because of the low lighting, lay sloppily on top of it. At that moment, somehow, I knew that her bed would go unused for this encounter. I turned and peaked into the bathroom, went in and laughed to myself at the sign above the toilet telling men to sit when they pee. I opened the lid, unzipped and pissed. I wiped the rim with a sheet of toilet paper and washed my hands. The only towel available was on the wall above the tub and shower, behind a white see-thru plastic curtain. I reached over the tub used the towel and smelled it. I pushed the curtain out of the way and the tub was clean. I noticed, on the edge of the tub, near the drain, a large purple dildo, a woman’s razor for those intimate places and an industrial sized, quart (or more) bottle of baby-oil. While I was staring at the intimate utensil, almost in a trance, Heidrun stood behind me with my cigarette in her lips, holding a plate of perfect room temperature cheese and a bottle of golden colored grappa.
Nothing more needs to be said. Really. In fact, I’ve already said too much. Allow me just this short pause. Ok. I’m ok now. I only need to say two more things.

Thanks for the memory, Heidrun.

Rant on.