One of Many Small Deaths of Innocence


In the spring of 1970 I walked around downtown Buffalo every day, picking up and delivering legal documents. One day, I was crossing Delaware from the Sheriff’s office to County Court, and passed within two feet of where a cop was putting handcuffs on a guy. You work downtown, you see stuff, and I didn’t think any more about it until the newspaper came out. The story was titled, “Police Deny Jail Escape; Witnesses Disagree”

Although several persons reported observing what appeared to be an escape attempt, the head of the police City Court detail Tuesday denied that a man sentenced to the County Penitentiary managed to break loose from detention….

Reports were circulated about 11 AM that the defendant managed to free himself… and run through a parking lot to Delaware Ave, between West Eagle and Church Sts.

This was denied by… head of the police City Court detail. He said that a member of the detail… had trouble with a prisoner in the detention cells but subdued him, that the prisoner never made his way out except under police escort…

Sadly for the City Court detail, another branch of law enforcement ratted them out.

Officials of the county sheriff’s office, asked if a prisoner had escaped from their custody, said they had been informed the prisoner escaped from Buffalo police.

Also, several people, including court officials, told the news reporter they had watched from courtroom windows as an officer waved a revolver at a fleeing man, and fired at least one warning shot.

Most importantly, I saw the cop handcuff the guy. I didn’t know it at the moment, not until the next day when I read the paper, but I had seen a thing the authorities definitely, undeniably lied about. Granted, as a participant in the dope culture, and a consumer of subversive literature, I was pretty sure the cops lied a lot.

But having suspicions, and seeing the proof right in front of you, those are two different things. That day made a difference in my life.

Photo credit: glennshootspeople on Visualhunt / CC BY-NC


What Facebook Thinks it Knows about Me

facebook head

I looked at certain areas of my Facebook archive, including “Ads Interests,” described as “based on your Facebook activity and other actions that help us show you relevant ads.”

Many of the terms ring a bell – sure, I love Jen Kirkman. But others of my interests, as logged by Facebook, are mystifying, such as Best Week Ever, Entre Rios Province, Federal Criminal Police Office (Germany), Green Party of Switzerland, Liberty (department store), Mazel tov, Owl City, Pop-up Ad, Pro-ject, Solera, The Epoch Times, The Young and the Restless characters (2012), and Western (genre)


Facebook also claims to have perceived my attraction to such generic categories as:


Another list is “Advertisers Who Uploaded a Contact List With Your Information

This list is a long, long one. So long I can’t be bothered to count the entries, not even for purposes of ridicule. A cursory scan reveals that the very, and I do mean very, great majority are products, services and causes I have zero probability of ever enriching by so much as a dime. These advertisers are wasting their money.

The roster of “Advertisers You’ve Interacted With”

This list contains a total of three (3) items, of which one was a single-question survey on marijuana decriminalization.

Things People Don’t Know About Me (not all the things)

Two New Years Eves in a row, I lost a $20 bill in a cab

I was once given the deed to a square inch of the Moon.

I have a certificate from Worm University, and for a while actually tended a worm farm and harvested the poop to enrich the garden.

I took 4 years of Latin and 6 years of French – in the public school system.

When I got mugged in Venice CA, my tape cassette machine was playing “Jungle Land.”

I once slow-danced with a very short man whose hard-on repeatedly bumped against my knee.

I once fast-danced with a Down Syndrome guy.

For more than 25 years, I’ve kept my clothes in a cardboard chest-of-drawers that a woman gave me when she relocated to Alaska for the sake of love.

I did Kirlian photography with a kit from Edmund Scientific.

At age 8, I had a broken finger for 9 days before being taken to doctor.

I once sat for many dark hours at a kitchen table clutching a large knife.

My paintings have been in 20 group shows (including a juried national show) and 8 one-person shows.

I’ve been drunk three times, and recall in hideous detail how each time proved that booze is not my jam.

I saw and heard Willie Nelson and his band – from just a few feet away — at Floore’s Country Store.

At age 21, I was accepted into Mensa.

My second ex-husband and his friend shot a game of pool to see which one would go home with me one night.

In seven consecutive grades, I was awarded pins for perfect Sunday School attendance. (Later stolen by a burglar.Sunday school pin

One of my short stories was published in Choppers magazine.

I sold my mother’s engagement ring, and also a good watch that some guy gave me.

I lived in a house with two kids and a man who kept a loaded gun under his pillow, and he was blind.

Trygve Bauge stored his grandpa’s corpse in a freezer, which led to the annual Frozen Dead Guy Days festival in Nederland, Colorado. Before he was deported, I met him once.

I moved to California with the intention of training to become a sex surrogate. Yes, that was a legitimate profession. Maybe still is.

In the high school orchestra I played first stand violin.

I was in group therapy with the mother of a guy I occasionally hooked up with.

I spent 7 years mentally and emotionally enthralled by a man I never met in person.

Back in 1969 I flipped a table in a very cinematically dramatic way, and made an angry mess.

My first son-in-law was connected with the Wu Tang Clan.

My second husband married me so his grandma could die happy.

I have five portraits of me, done by two different artists, and there used to be more.

In the home office of a man with brain cancer, I covered one wall with a mural in colors recommended by a healer.

Taken all together, my contributions to the original Hite Report made up about 6 pages of the book.

I took a course called Silva Mind Control.

I stole something from the FBI. (Surely, the statute of limitations has expired. Besides, I no longer have it.)

For a while, I took belly dance lessons.

Once I picked up David Carradine’s hitchhiking daughter, and later had the chance to tell him that.

When falling asleep as a child, and with no preconception of how a celestial chorus was supposed to sound, I sometimes heard an angel choir.

Many times, I stood with one foot on either side of an international border.

The community college I attended was housed in an old elementary school, a Ramada Inn, and the former Shredded Wheat Company headquarters.

In group therapy, I was designated most intimidating.

I’ve owned only two cars, and worked on them both. I’ve replaced three alternators, a water pump, and a whole lot of oil and spark plugs. And patched a gas tank.

I ghostwrote a political article published in Hustler magazine. (They pay great.)

I can set my brain to wake me up at a certain time.

My second son-in-law was killed by an unlicensed, underage, uninsured drunk driver.

I was once deemed an honorary (n-word).

On KCRW radio I did an interview in the character of erotica writer Felice Jordan.

Like comedian Ari Shaffir, I once took a dump in Griffith Park.

For a former Hells Angel who is serving a life sentence, I maintain a website.

I used to make X-rated cookies. Some were bought by the owner of a shop called Debbie Duz Donuts. Some were served at a meet&greet with a presidential candidate.

One night I got away with driving 40 miles of freeway, criminally drunk.

I tried an isolation tank, at what I believe was the first float-tank establishment ever to open in Los Angeles.

I shared an elevator ride alone with Arnold Schwarzenegger (and was not molested.)

The third time I got married, a guest brought her pet snake to the wedding.

As a grownup, I was scolded by another adult for something I said out loud in a restaurant. (The offending word was “abatement.”)

My only car accident was right at the entrance to Santa Monica Pier.

I helped Ace Backwords publish one of his books, Acid Heroes.

I went to Assertiveness Training.

I worked for a show business professional who had worked with Charlie Chaplin. Shook hands with this person who had shaken hands with Chaplin. Two degrees of separation. That blows my mind.

Also, I met someone who had known Duncan Grant. Few things in life have thrilled me to such an extent.

More than once, a guy drove from Odessa to San Antonio just to see me. That’s an almost 700-mile round trip.

I believe that women can be pricks and men can be cunts.

I have anniversaries that mean a lot to me. They’re just not the same ones you celebrate.

There are very few people whose company I enjoy as much as my own. And only a couple of people I care about being famous to, and one of them is dead.

I knew a man who backed a truck over (and killed) his two-year-old son.

In my teens, favorite radio was the Buffalo R&B station WUFO.

I knew somebody who was later on Howard Stern’s show.

When West Side Story hit the theaters, the piano teacher let me choose its songbook for my lessons.

In my teens, my literary heroes were James Baldwin and Lenny Bruce.

I was told more than once, by subjects I profiled, that it was the most interesting interview they ever had.

As a kid I listened repeatedly to Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto #1 in B Flat Minor.

I knew a blind vet who, one Halloween, removed his prosthetic eyes and, with empty sockets, answered the door to trick-or-treaters.

I was invited join a cult in Brownsville, Texas, who were building a landing pad for the spaceship that Jesus would return in.

I was once forced to learn the team sports song “Buckle Down, Winsocki.”

I met a man whose wife and girlfriend had babies on the same day, both his.

As a “tween” I was allowed to join choir practice at my girlfriend’s church, even though I couldn’t show up to sing on Sundays.

I find it in my heart and philosophical repertoire to defend Assata Shakur, the Branch Davidians, Bradley Smith, and a motley assortment of dissidents.

As a kid, I used to draw elaborate, complicated house plans. Not just a music room, no. A piano room, a violin room, a harp room…

I’m an est graduate, and still think it was the best $300 and two weekends I ever spent.

I knew a woman whose house was the set for the film Transamerica.

I made the National Junior Honor Society in middle school, the Honor Roll in high school, and the Dean’s List in college.

I have really good book-scout instincts.

I once learned a card game called Knucks.

When I was a kid, my cavities were drilled and filled without anesthetic, by a dentist who believed that children didn’t develop pain nerves until they were older.

I once participated in the effort to remove a pair of corrupt judges. It was successful, and extraordinarily satisfying.

My first pot dealer had lost a couple of fingers to a power saw, which did not faze any of his customers.

I knew somebody who had known Lenny Bruce.

Hartman at

Meatboy has his say

Added Jan 18, 2013 – The guy in this picture was right. No one ever goes again to because it no longer exists. The website’s content producer, Marc Madow, died in August of 2012 .

If there is a link, it’s good, because the piece was republished somewhere else.


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