It’s an argument that swings in the black hearts of chaos.
Warm, like rats leaving wooden ships that burn in the dark soul of human terror.
Like the first monkey to scream, stop! stop!
He’s eaten by the snake that crawled through the dark of night hunger to pluck him from the tree.

Vampire Bait

My nerves twitch like roaches in hallways of fumigated apartment complexes.

In the 1960s and 1970s, government trucks roamed the streets spraying DEET into the neighborhood trees. My mother called us inside and shut the windows while the neighborhood kids ran after the trucks laughing and playing in the fog of chemical death.


That Cleveland summer and every Cleveland summer, I got eaten alive by mosquitoes. Fourteen bites in one night is my record. My father may have me beat but he’s a stoic man who never talks about such things publicly.

If only I could make a deal with the insect vampires of the world. Every night I would gladly leave them a half pint of my finest blood if only they would stop biting me. These things, sadly, are not arrangeable. Some have said money can buy anything, but it is not true. These insects are clumsy degenerates that will compromise all to get just a tiny taste.

It’s like that show Monkey Thieves, where a monkey and his tribe find food in the city and they all run over and go crazy eating it while they spill 90% of the proceeds of their conquest all over the floor to be wasted. We cannot make deals with such vagrants. So I lay under a mosquito net covered in DEET in the tropics with my socks on, knowing full well that I will wake up with three to four new bug bites in the morning. I guess this is what rum is for. I’ve heard it also called acceptance.

I worried often about the mosquitoes, but alas, I was being bitten by sand fleas. The price of paradise for those of the sweet blood tribe.




Sea Monkeys

I had them as a child. They got really big. Eventually they became our slaves and would clean the house and change the oil in my fathers car. But one day they revolted and killed everyone, and raised me as one of them.

We (me and the sea monkeys) eventually started a company called Shrinky Dinks. It got so successful people took notice. They said “Monkeys cannot run a company… especially Sea Monkeys.” The company was taken away from us. The Sea Monkeys tried to explain I was human and the real owner of the company. But the sea monkeys only spoke pig Latin and I hadn’t shaved in a long time.

The Sea Monkeys were very angry at this point. I couldn’t blame them. There was a small uprising in a northern section of Ohio in the early 1960’s. The Sea Monkeys were quickly destroyed. The remaining few of us were made to pick up the trash as help on the trash trucks of Cleveland and surrounding areas.

In 1967, a movie came out called Planet of the Apes based on the short-lived sea monkey rise to power. It was such a tragic disgrace to the remaining sea monkeys. We all gathered together and ate pop rocks and coca cola. The emergency room would not admit us, being sea monkeys. Eventually it was found out that I was human and they took me in to the emergency room and pumped my stomach.

I am the only survivor.

Sea Monkeys add

Three Monkeys and a Secret

Joe went to the bank. When he got there, he couldn’t help but notice there were three monkeys with a screwdriver trying to break into the bank manager’s desk. The bank manager had just been given a large loaf of banana bread and the monkeys had smelled it as they swung by the bank. The monkeys had been watching a second-hand copy of the DVD The Secret and were spending a lot of their time trying to manifest things… like banana bread. An older woman named Charlotte, an ex-B-movie star who was long past her prime, had baked the banana bread for the middle-aged bank manager. She was trying to send him a message and she thought the banana part of the banana bread might have Freudian overtones.

The bank manager caught the monkeys trying to break into his desk. He had grown interested in the idea the banana bread implied, but not really the bread itself. He called security and an overweight man with a gun approached the monkeys that now brandished the screwdriver more as a weapon. You see, all the watching of the second-hand copy of The Secret had given these three monkeys a sense of entitlement. The monkey on the left who was not holding a screwdriver said to the guard, now holding his gun, “Isn’t there enough for everyone in this world?” The guard looked mostly confused because he himself did not speak English well, and the monkeys’ English was more like pig-Latin.

All three of the monkeys were growing upset and this made them even more upset, because they knew that if they had negative thoughts and emotions, this would make manifesting anything good nearly impossible and then all they would be left with would be their desire… which all three knew was the root of all suffering.

The monkey on the right (also not the one holding the screwdriver) jumped up on the bank manager’s desk as Joe looked on. The security guard jumped back and made the sign of the cross (it’s a Catholic thing). The monkey who jumped up on the desk pulled down his board shorts and began peeing on the bank manager’s desk while he sang “Me So Horny” by 2 Live Crew. All three monkeys began laughing and ran out the door and down the street. One was still holding the screwdriver as he ran.

Joe was very angry by the time he got back to his apartment and his anger, which he was unable to control, was upsetting him even more because he, too, had watched The Secret and knew that his bad mood was probably manifesting more of the same and he felt trapped. If only that stupid cop hadn’t kept asking him, “Are you sure the monkeys said they had been watching The Secret?” Joe had finally said, “I told you three times already, yes, those fucking criminal monkeys said they had been watching The Secret.” The cop got pissed when Joe raised his voice and started getting passive-aggressive with Joe. Joe shut down a little inside as a defense mechanism.

Joe immediately took his copy of The Secret off his shelf and took it to the biggest, non-corporate music and book store in his town. This non-corporate music and book store was so big, it put all of the other non-corporate music and book stores out of business a few years ago. Anyway, Joe walked in with his copy of The Secret and the girl behind the counter rolled her eyes, which embarrassed Joe a little. He felt judged. Maybe he wasn’t hip enough to sell his copy of The Secret here.

The girl behind the counter said, “You’re too late. We have had people bringing that DVD in for the last year in truck-fulls and I just got the last copy of The Secret we will ever need. I gave a monkey in board shorts a copy of The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success by Deepak Chopra in exchange for the DVD.” Then she said, in a whisper, “I would not have made the trade, but the monkey looked a little upset and he had a screwdriver in his hand.”

Live from Mysore #13 (animals)

I was standing on Double Road watching 5 monkeys in a tree. I took out my camera and started to film them. I looked over my shoulder for a second and I noticed an Indian woman in a slow passing bus using her cell phone to take a picture of me.

I woke up in the middle of the night to use the toilet. I lifted the toilet seat – because I am a gentleman – and an orange gecko jumped out of the toilet and onto the wall. The gecko moved quickly up the wall and out the window.

The next morning BNS Iyengar was pushing me really hard in Marichyasana D. I was trying to remain silent, but a sound came out of me—a squeak, like Ned Beatty in Deliverance.

We went back to the Devaraja Market to see if the 3 boys that ran the incense and oil stand I visited in 2006 were still there. They were- They have everyone who buys something sign a book with a list of what they bought. They have a guest books for every year and every country. While they put together my small order of incense, I filled out some info in the America 2010 book.

We then went to the Ashoka bookstore to buy a couple of Osho books. I decided I wanted some more incense so we went back to the oil and incense stand and the boys had gone through their old guest books and found my entry from 2006.

Tonight—as always—dinner at Aunty’s

Live from Mysore #10 (Monkeys!!!)

Every night we eat at Aunty’s. I feel great after eating her dinners. Chapatis dripping in ghee. Shredded carrot salad. And chutney. Last night we went to Aunty’s just like we always do but no Aunty. Just her husband. He speaks very little, even when Aunty is there. Aunty is always upbeat and happy. The husband’s always quiet. So now it’s just us and him. I don’t know where Aunty is, but the husband is making us dinner tonight. Did your father ever make you dinner when your mother was out of town? Same. Not the same.

We quickly ate, paid and left. I hope Aunty’s back tomorrow.

On the way back to our place, I see a monkey on the top of a 2-story building. Last time I was in India, I didn’t see any monkeys without having to drive out of town. This time, there’s one climbing down the side of the building 20 feet in front of us. He grabs a telephone line and swings down to the awning on the house and sits for a minute. A girl and her mother stand in the street watching with us, just as tripped out. The monkey then jumps off the awning and onto the roof of a parked car with a thump. Then he jumps down to the street like he doesn’t have a care in the world. And maybe he doesn’t.

He monkey walks across the street and starts to climb another building. As he climbs with no troubles like Spiderman, I think of what my TM teacher said… “Why do you do yoga poses? Monkeys don’t have to do yoga. They can just jump up and climb a building. No yoga. No problem.” As the monkey climbs up the building, I notice 3 of his dirty monkey friends already on the top of the building waiting for him. He jumps up to them, defying gravity, walks over to his friend, climbs on his friend’s back and humps his friend a couple times, then jumps down and disappears for about 25 seconds. When he comes back out on the ledge, he is holding an unopened package of cookies. He tears the top open and takes out one cookie, sits down and eats it.

When I got home, I wrote this note and had 4 cookies. I tried to eat only one just like the monkey, but didn’t have the self-control. But I assume the monkey stole his cookies. I paid for mine. Evolution?

Live from Mysore #7 (full of shit)

My meditation teacher says I am full of shit. So he sent me on a run for tools. Every morning I am supposed to drink a glass of water with honey and lemon. Every night I am supposed to drink a glass of water with a spoon of Triphala Churna in it. I have heard people say this stuff is a miracle. I hear you can find it at Whole Foods. The first miracle will then be paying for it. It is a digestive system toner and mild laxative. So first thing in the morning you can clear out because doing yoga or trying to meditate with a digestive system still full is ”no good”.

We had to walk way down Double Tank Road to the ayurvedic hospital, which is directly across the street from the western medicine hospital. The ayurvedic hospital is where I would find the Triphala. On the walk there, a young boy with 2 monkeys on hand-made leashes walked towards us. Monkeys are notorious criminals in India. Also they are dirty biters. I wished I had my camera with me but didn’t. The boy with the monkeys called out to us. I was afraid if he got too close, his monkeys—which were constantly running back and forth on his shoulders and up and down his sides like tweaker monkeys—would jump off the boy and onto me. The boy’s hair was dark and wild as were his eyes. He moved quickly towards us with monkeys jumping all around on their leashes and we made a b-line fast to a place away from the monkey boy. Ironically we ran past a hanuman temple and soon found the hospital where I went in and bought my stuff.

120g for 32 rupees. About 75 cents. I know it’s all relative.

I’ll try it tonight but am a little nervous, as the food here has already made my digestive system a little more active than I like. Are you following me? In fact a couple days ago it was BAD. Like Michael Jackson. I was sure I had picked up a bug. Spending any time more than 30 feet from my bathroom was potentially dangerous. I know worrying never solved anything so let’s say I was concerned. You can shit yourself to death. I’m not sure how long it takes but I don’t care to find out. Nancy ran out and got me an antibiotic 3-pack (generic Zithromax). You can just walk down the street—full of cows, chickens, people and monkey boys—and buy antibiotics. Thank god. A lot of things are a pain in the ass in India. I keep expecting someone to ask me to bring them the broom of the wicked witch of the west before they give me what I want. But getting antibiotics—that did the trick—was simple and cheap. About 1/16 the price as in America. The same stuff. Someone is making a killing on our health.

Feeling great today. Doing my best to retain all the info I am collecting.