Billy Ray

It’s been an odd few weeks in Seattle, it seems I moved into the American epicenter of the Coronavirus pandemic – some guys have all the luck.

Today, Seattle is now in utter lock down, I can’t help but feel its all a bit over the top- I have a feeling lots of people are pretending to be more anxious than they actually are, in order to get their employers to furnish them with a laptop and let them do the nine to five, at home, in their favorite pajamas

Nevertheless, the highways are hideaways , the center of town now merely caters for bags that swirl in the wind and the shop shelves hang wistful like a mausoleum afternoon

It’s even been banded about on social media, news print media, as well as on World Wide television media… That, due to the, Billy Ray, virus, we should no longer partake in the age old custom of “shaking hands”.. Even though the custom has been around since medieval times.. Surviving civil unrest, wars, the great plague and the career of Bonnie Langford.
I think it would be a shame if the custom died out, if only through fear of it being replaced by the French habit “Faire la bise” or social hugs – I’m all for hugging a loved one, but have always failed to divine why ANYONE would want to hug a stranger.

I remember around 1981,
The council estate I grew up on had a number of people in rattle vans that they would plod around and push their product from .. There was a mobile library , a sweet van, a fish van (P U K E), a chip van and also a couple of soda pop pushers, who would sell their one liter delights, come pink skinned summer.
Whats curious to me in 2020 is the name of the pop being pushed was Corna.
Could it be, it was these sunny afternoon frizz pop slingers that were the real genesis of the modern day killer?

It’s worth maybe nothing, but I will note that one of the Corna delivery boys had three nipples.
The tough and tumble kids would play football on the grass, then stop their game and say “look its three nipples”
If I was nearby, I’d run home to the safety of my bedroom. I didn’t know if his spare nipple was a symbol of something more sinister.
More than that the thought of having three nipple made me anxious .. I didn’t know what to do with the two I had.

In spite of COVID-19 I have managed to scout around Seattle and have found another area I like….Magnolia.
It’s only a mile away from where I live – basically I walk out the front door and over a bridge (see picture)


Bridge.jpg

It’s, rather, expensive there but is one of those Whistle Stop Cafe type villages-Lewes, in the UK, kind of, has that kinda feel, also.
That is, if Whistle Stop Cafe was in the Northwest and populated by lots of Catholics and Jews-I’ve come to notice, nearly, all my fave parts of the world are Catholic and/or Jewish

In Magnolia, the views are fantastic and the houses range from bungalow to Parasite style modernism.
It manages to keep alive that sense of white picket fence 50s Americana- toy town style Fire stations, garden furniture and so on.

Magnolia, Is where my wife used to own a home , which is probably worth a million now…
I try to be supportive with a “well, money isn’t everything ..You like romance and adventure ”
However, I think if I was her I’d take out legal action against certain British pop stars and authors, for bending her mind enough to give all that up.

Speaking of The Wife, she said last night (after I explained why getting up early doesn’t agree with me)
“You people from working class stock are meant to be hardy but really you are wimps, you cant cope with anything”

I advised most are hardy.. Unfortunately, her Quality Street selection was one of the softer centers.

She didn’t laugh, I also got the distinct impression she would never buy Quality Streets again.

The end

Beat The Clock

I just watched a documentary about being a Mod and various other British Youth cults.

As much as I like some of the art and people that come from these subcultures, I personally could never sign myself up and be a member.

It all just seemed so limited, shoehorning yourself into a way of life. In a way its not a universe away from joining the army – men often need that feeling of being in a gang, a movement and creating some sense of purpose.. Which is usually fake , once you get out a pen ,paper and ontological microscope to study it .

All, that said , it became clear to me the other day , that if pressed I would have to admit the philosophy , look , feel and art of the Beat movement was something I related to hugely, as a teen. In fact I only let go of its hand about 12 years ago – I’m aware to be “hip” you have to pretend you are above the Beats and see through them, you have to say you much prefer the French Left Bank writers and that, frankly, you think On The Road is childish boys games. Such is life.

I guess, “Beat” is something you is or isn’t there isn’t much you can do about it. Bit like being homosexual in a way.

To be “Beat”, isn’t about going on a gap year before going on to Uni or touring Europe or America when you are in your teens/early 20s (as romantic as that is) and then living in London or NY city for the rest of your days…..A provincialist with a city a view form your kitchen window.

Nope, to be “Beat” is to be a full time adventurer (the art is a byproduct of that) ..Movement is premaritally forward and there isn’t anything you can do about it.

The end

Seattle Blue Collar Stories

Last day of working with Seattle’s blue-collar ..Before returning to the land of remote administration Have to say it was an amusing mix of On The Buses, Mind Your Language and Tucker Carlson

These people, EVERY day, on EVERY break, would trash any left-leaning idea while showing they live in the land of total conspiracy-this is coming from someone who is critical of the modern “left”

I haven’t worked with “everyday people” for a while and to my horror found a number of white folk in the US now speak as if they are making Twatter updates- that’s to say a series of short rants in place of actual conversation.

One man, Mr Bombay was so anti-Muslim and Pro-Trump , every time he spoke I heard “ Thou doth Protest too much “

Another guy, Mr Hong Kong, was truly lost to the land of Youtube conspiracy theories. One day, swat team vans sped by, he said, more than once “ That’s the Democrats trying to take our guns away” – ie this is a pretend event to scare Americans to give up guns.

Then we had Mr Polish and his Tommy Robson rants – he ( like a number of Tommy’s lot) was deeply against homosexuality, which confirmed what I always thought when certain gays show “firm” support for Tommy, believe me if it was up to this lot the gays would be not too far under the Muslims on their “ Rid the country of… “ list.

Speaking of which there were one or two decent People I met, Mr BeardedQueen,. 26 and recently married. He had a fondness for mushrooms and was funny and Win, a 21-year-old student from Vietnam. Win, is 6ft and teenage thin, with flawless Asian skin and trendy jet black side-parted hair. His family owns three homes in SF and a nightclub in ‘Nam. He said, “ That is their money, I must make my own”. He also said, one day, he may create a site called “Winbay” ….. Which for some reason I found hilarious

In all, it was kinda scary to see, how far the tentacles of lies reach into the publics mindsI actually half-expected , one of the workers to come to work with a machine gun and spray bullets into our bodies

Sean Lock


Sean was, maybe, one of Englands most underrated comedy acts .
He came into focus at a time when The Mighty Bossh , Russell Brand, Ricky Gervaise and Eddie Izzard were blasting pop culture.
These were the “pop stars” of comedy, if you will. International names that were Hollywood known .
Sean was a more a English local affair, working the road with his stand up and appearing on telly.
This wasn’t a reflection of his talents, more his wants. He seemed quiet happy with his set up


Besides, along the way, Sean managed to co create one of the UK’s better sit coms., 15 Storeys High.
Was I a fan of this show? You bet your grandmother …..Or to answer another way “Yes, I was”


In fact it irks me greatly that the media have announced Seans passing with the disappointing

“ Sean Lock, star out of 8 Out Of Ten Cats dies” ,


8 Out Of Ten Cats is a successful C4 entertainment show…BUT its hardly art, 15 Storeys High, is art.,
This, as well as his stand up, is what Sean should be remembered for.

Sean was both co creator and star, of 15 Stories High, a show that hooked me, as soon as I saw it, one boring English night.

The show started out as a radio comedy around 2000 , before moving to TV a couple of years later.
Filmed in the great British tradition of drab reality, the show follows Seans character Vince Clark, a depressed hermit (how could I not relate?) who sardonically navigates the day to day…Mostly from his. tower block flat , in London . Vince shares his flat with his side kick/ whipping boy Errol Spears, played brilliantly, by Benedict Wong.


Subjectively , this is one of the better British sitcoms and objectively its one of the better, British sitcoms .The trouble was another sitcom, that also followed two friends sharing a flat in London, blasted on to the scene and, almost immoderately, secured its place as one, if not “The” greatest British Sitcoms ever This was the remarkable “Peep Show”-
I would guess Peep Show was influenced by 15 Storeys High , however Im not sure its ever been officially credited .

Sadly, 15 Stories High, only ran for two seasons and now seems to have been almost forgotten apart form me and 106 other people, who forgot to get a life .


Still, life is about the moments and I am grateful to Sean for improving some of mine.




The conversation- With Van The Bus Driver

V “Are you veggie or vegan? ‘

Me ” I am veggie, yes..And I would be vegan if not for ice cream and Cadburys chocolate”

V “I thought you might be,” giggling.
“Bro, I don’t know how you lot do it ….Bro, I fuckin’ love meat ‘

Me, ignoring the reason for his giggles, I say
“Well, I’ve been veggie
For 26 years. However, I’m not in the veggie militia. I don’t judge people on these matters “

V ” Yes, you do seem chill and live and let live. im also live and let live, bro “

Me ” Live and let live?…Apart from when you want a meal that is? “

(Van, didn’t get it)

Van ” Bro, Do you mind if people eat meat in front of you?”

Me “I’d rather people didn’t, if it’s at all possible

It’s not that I’m trying to be awkward, it’s just that after so many years of not eating meat, watching someone eat a Sunday roast isn’t that dissimilar from a scene from Ruggero Deodato’s Cannibal Holocaust.. But again, im not trying to be a bother, if the dinner party are all happy eating Elizabeth Warren
the family bitch Rottweiler..im more than content to take my ” veggie option” and sit with Larry, the family cat, in the garden

Van ” BRO, I don’t eat dog. lol, Bro.
Not 💯 but for the most part I source my meat from ethically sourced farms that I’ve visited or raised myself.”

Me “Quite, I think Jeffrey Dahmer: souced and visited his meat “

(Van, didn’t get it )

The end

The Tale Of The Tape

Shannon Lee, daughter of Bruce Lee has wrtitten a column stating “white men” should stop telling her fathers story .
Now, I understand her frustration..If she feels her father is being attacked, she jumps to his defence,
However, to say “white men” in the way she has is the definiton of racism, odd as her mother is also white.

The things is Bruce Lee’s daughter would be the definition of ” privileged ” Not to mention, yes sure if Jews, Blacks, and to some extend Muslims say this kind of stuff , its understandable they have all been kept down in one way or other for 100s of years BUT the Chinese ( a culture I have always liked, generally speaking) have a worse human rights history than most white countries – to this day..

Look how they treat women , workers and Muslims and of course the lies around the pandemic

Now, getting to the point at hand the white man Shannon is talking about is Quentin Tarantino. Now, sure Quentin can be mouthy, he can be shallow , his films are a stranger to depth, largely speaking….He tends to be someone who speaks a good game BUT the truth of him doesn’t quite match up, a bit like Russell Brand.

However, he is 100% correct about what he says regarding the truth behind the TV series Kung Fu.

I was/am a huge fan of the show and of Bruce Lee. For a while, I believed the myth, that is to say Buce wrote the show , took it to Warner Bros, they turned it down , then turned it out with a different actor, one David Carradine .
This I soon discovered was a lie . The tale of the tape, shows the truth, click here for more detail https://tvwriter.com/herbie-j-pilato-tells-all-about-the-origin-of-the-classic-series-kung-fu/ . Ed Spielman wrote/produced the show, they wanted Bruce to be involved , at one point, but the person Bruce spoke to, couldn’t understand what he was saying .. So , Bruce was passed on . The irony is it was Bruce who based his story Warror on Ed’s show.

As I say, I am a fan of Bruce Lee and I don’t see that any of this takes away from Bruce , the man or the myth.
The reason for this is Bruce achieved so much and reamins an important figure in film, TV, Martial Arts history and pop culture in general
Also, and this is key …It wasnt Bruce that claimed he wrote the TV show Kung Fu, it was his wife in Linda Lee, in a book she wrote about Bruce.

The

End




Fairweather Friends

I was never really into Friends BUT I wasn’t a Friends hater , it was what it was ..Well meaning, well crafted light entertainment. Anyway, the cast break up and go out into the show biz world…Some surviving better than others

The decades pass..Now suddenly along comes a “Reunion” show for HBO MAX. To many this is an exciting moment, Friends was hugely successful and birthed millions of hardcore fans.

However, as science states, every action causes a reaction..Thus, to counter the ocean of love for the show, comes an ice age of hate. The reason given, for not meeting todays moral, social standards and. of course, the examples they give are so daft..

“Chandler Kept being worried about being gay” – they say this shows he was anti gay . Fine, in 2021 that kinda storyline MAY border on using “gay” in a pejorative way.

But I say, so what .. .Do we all have to want to be gay now? Do we have to pretend some people who are gay would rather not be gay and do we have to pretend, Hetero males aren’t at times, comically terrified of becoming gay. These are facts of life, its better to laugh at them that to pretend you are more emotionally sophisticated than we are

It has been argued that pop culture has become SO gay , its completely shallow and lacking. . I don’t fully agree with that BUT there is room for agreement in aspects. More than that though and this is whats worrying me..

The show wasn’t being homophobic in the least,It was anti being anti gay, the joke WAS ON Chandlers character for being so up tight and worried about being gay..THAT WAS THE JOKE Even 8 year olds in the 90s, saw this was a joke .. The fact adults don’t is scary.

WE live in idiot Times

Green Card – A short story long


In 2016 my wife and I decided enough is enough and fled the UK We did so with an embarrassment of funds.
In fact all we had was 3 months rent paid and 3k, 1.5k of which had to be used on a visa application
On top of that , we arrived with no jobs and ONLY my Wife could legally work for the first 5 months.

Not one immigration forum or lawyer ( some of which wanted over 10k) thought I would get a green card, due to a light police charge with a serious drug, in the 90s.


Basically, the stack was stacked against us .
Thus, I worked illegally and came up with a plan based on delay.
The trouble with this was I couldn’t leave the country and employers didn’t want to risk employing someone who’s visa needed to be reviewed each year .

This was fine for the first few years, I was living (at last) under a Hockney blue Californian sky, why go anywhere else?
However, after 4 years being on house arrest, even if the house is the whole of the USA , I needed to force immigration’s hand and so I did and they replied by denying my visa (Prats!)

Even though the denial was part of the plan, by this time I was pandemic tied, worn out and depressed, basically I thought “ Sod this”…

Suddenly comes the sound of trumpets and from stage left in flies Cross Reference Krissy (my Wife) ….
Krissy, who until this point hadn’t had anything to do with the visa application, beyond signing a few forms,.took over.
Amazingly, she managed to find a lawyer for FREE who agreed with my legal assertion and agreed to represent me.
Mainly the lawyer (and Krissy) did this by taking my files and said legal assertion and stripping my statements of an air of a pompous, mental patient and putting it all in a more professional legal setting

Only 4 months after having my application denied, an email arrived stating they had changed their mind and they are granting me a Green Card

And so it was… When my Wife and I decided enough is enough, tc🙄🙄🙄ime to give America a go.😪There’s been a speeding disaster so we’ll go 🔙cqqqf🔙 theqf motorway🤤

At last I feel free…
Wwwhhooopppiiie

The View

For the last 6 months my days and nights have been divided philosophically and spiritually. Generally speaking, the day is flavored by European realism and the nights are infused with a kind of cozy American fantasy
In the day I mainly watch English, French and Italian “New Wave”, mainly the films of (and about)
Pier Paolo Pasolini. In fact, I’ve been re-reading quite a lot of Pasolini’s poems and other various writings.
After, living in in America for 5 years, the heart longs for something and someone searingly poetic .
There is an odd kind of brainwashing and slight of hand, that goes on in America, where the notions of “Freedom ” and “Personal Rights” are used to take away peoples freedoms and give less rights. Americans are the new puritans that live within a comfy lie, in someways.
When on the run from the American attitude, Pasolini is the perfect refuge .

At night, I join my wife for Little House On The Prairie…. Isn’t Albet such a cute kid, isn’t Laura Ingalls brilliant, Isn’t Nellie Olseson a horror….I quite like the pitiless camp of Harriet Olsen, played by Katherine MacGregor

It’s a dangerous show to watch.. As its one of those “Why isn’t life like this? ” shows..The constant nagging of crisis and human loneliness never gets a look in or if it does it’s dealt with in the handy time frame of 50 minutes..No matter what the crisis, blindness, heartbreak or death… By the 46th minute its all peachy…Michael Landon will cry and they will share some home baked cookies around the table.

The key to the eternal happiness is the fact life in Walnut Grove is, nearly always, fair, there is usually a “silver lining” to most mishaps and the unkind will, nearly always, get their karmic kick in the privates (of course, in 2021 most peoples “Privates” are far from Private, it seems the whole World snaps, jpegs and sends theirs in speedy zeal) In short, the folk at Walnut Grove are spared the bitterness of the unfairness of “real life’ I think Little House On The Prairie should be essential viewing in these pandemic times

“Woe to him who doesn’t know this Christian faith is bourgeois.”― Pier Paolo Pasolini, Poems

Baynard Rustin

Years before Rosa Parks refused give up her seat , Bayard Rustin did it first…He was  a prominant voice in the Civil Rights movement and chief organiser of the march on Washington with MLK , in-spite of this Bayard was written out of black history , almost, completely..This was mainly because he was gay .. Also he didn’t see every problem as a “black” and “white” issue.
He was interested with truth NOT with political game playing and getting a story in The Guardian .

He was a socialist , in an old school way, and wouldn’t have joined the “identity politics ” , “cancel culture ” mob of today (like many on the old left)…. He said limiting the freedom of one race, in the end limits it for all- he would have been at odds with BLM and ANTIFA , in a few ways.

He loathed “white liberal syndrome” …He felt the left , via their forcing forever victimdom on blacks .. Were patronising and only doing it for moral absolution. He could see how it limited the black persons reach
I’d never heard of Baynard before…Until a black lady from Georgia told me about him last last week when she asked me what my thoughts were on the recent troubles,..She said “Read Byard Rustin , he was saying the all stuff you are saying years ago, honey ..You would like him”

She was right I do.

 

bayard-rustin

 

My Worry

This was one of the scenes in London during the many BLM marches. Any other time I’d be all for this
Although this time I have to wonder what its really about …?

Black Lives Matter protests

The officers involved in the George Floyd incident have been sacked and charged …

So why is it all still going on and how come Covid was so bad we had to stay in for 3 months and a person would get dragged all over the internet and thrown in a police car if they stood an inch too close to someone in the local supermarket , yet now its Ok to go on mass protests ..You can’t go to the pub BUT its fine and dandy to join thousands and march through the street

Black Brits don’t get treated no where near as badly as black Americans (I’m not saying there is no racism though, there is plenty that needs stamping out ) …

Even the George Floyd incident wasn’t actually a racist attack, I don’t think.
It was the police going too far with a guy who was , acting odd and who had a rap sheet with home invasion on it. Who had just used fake money ( he may not have known it was fake)

NOW it is a disgrace how they treated him but it wasn’t a racist attack…Just like it was a disgrace that a white old man, about 76, got knocked over by police and that wasn’t a racist attack- I wouldn’t say these scumbag Police officers speak for all the Police in America, let alone the world.

I’d also , politely, like to say “whitey ” is no more racist than the blacks, mexican or chinese etc .
The issue isn’t really a “race” issue in that sense its the side effect of being a minorty in a white country, a power and influence issue (the UK ) or founded by whites (USA)
However, If you are white in Iran, China , Korea , parts of Africa etc then the power dynamic would be reversed–I only mention this as I’ve read in various places that “whites” are inherently more racist than any other race.. I don’t think this is true.

My worry is this, it’s been proven that blacks are dying more from covid than whites… So, if there is another spike due to protests and riots, which is already happening in the USA..Wont that kill more black people?

Basically, we could be in a situation where these protests kill more black people than the Police.