Mar 31, 2014

San Francisco (8) --- Lufthansa flight 454 (reposted)

We posted this once before, a year ago, in a post "not about erotic writing," and in blissful ignorance of our future. So here it is again, and this time it is about erotic writing, at least in the sense that it is about us, and our flight into the world capital of erotic writing:

It appears to be difficult to arrive in San Francisco once and for all, this is our 8th post already, but anyhow. Watch the clip, it's fascinating.

Go here for the previous SF post, and there for the next.

Mar 29, 2014

San Francisco (7) --- Pitch-O-rama (1)

We arrive at San Francisco SFO (San Francisco International Airport, why SFO?) and the international press, the paparazzi ("paps"), the adolescent girls and boys, all of them, there's a riot. A blogger with 390,000 page views comes all the way from Europe and there's a riot. Well, no, sorry, that was Seoul, Korea, the airport, when we got mixed up with a charismatic baseball player.

So we feel un-famous and under-appreciated and seek consolation on the internet and find a page belonging to the San Francisco Writer's Conference. We send them a message about feeling un-famous and under-appreciated and get a prompt reply pointing us to an upcoming pitchfest of the Women's National Book Association San Francisco Chapter on Saturday in the Women's building around the corner from where we reside. It would be an opportunity to "connect." We procrastinate, then sign up via Paypal.

Spoiler alert: a pitchfest is about pitching manuscripts to agents and publishers, and we're in possession of such a manuscript, the Green Eyes, gay romance/erotica, easily the most topical subject when it comes to Women's Lib. We're not, however, in possession of  a printer here in our temporary abode, and the battery of the laptop won't live for longer than a minute when unplugged. So we don't have any material to take to the event, not even a calling card or anything that could get agents and publishers interested in our work. Plus, one of the participating agents, Andy Ross, has a post on his blog about this: he, Andy, would never go to a pitchfest, not as a pitcher at least, since he wouldn't survive the humiliation of being turned down by his colleagues. That decides the case. We will go, but not pitch. Perhaps there's enough in it for another short story. That's what failed writers do, they write about failed writers. Do your research.

We're apprehensive nonetheless, and it starts early, at 8 AM, and it rains, and we overtip the taxi driver out of sheer apprehension. We expect a crowd of young women, multi-faceted, multi-racial, done up in neo-Afro-look, i.e., all looking like Angela Davis waiving Angela-Davis-inspired manuscripts---waiving their manuscripts at us, balding, aging, failed writers of gay porn---think of a wind farm during a hurricane.

Angela Davis

Mar 23, 2014

Re: Pictures of our neighborhood (Glenn)

In reply to our last post, Glenn sends this picture of his neighborhood:

San Francisco (5) Potrero Hill

Potrero Hill, that's where we reside, on 1229 de Haro Street. "Potrero" means paddock in English, and the place probably was a paddock before the city took over. The neighborhood is still Spanish (mostly).

1229, de Haro Street --- we're on the second floor, left (Chang in the left corner) 

Opposite side of the street

Health warning (Glenn)

Mar 21, 2014

San Francisco (4) Telegraph Avenue

We're in San Francisco now, which means that the first thing in the morning would be a trip to Telegraph Road, Oakland, CA, where Morning Glory is located, the KP-Asian Supermarket, where they sell Korean food.

The Korean supermarket on Telegraph Avenue
Oakland---you will possibly agree with us---has---or at least had---a notoriously bad reputation---because bad reputations are always notorious---especially next to San Francisco, the reputation---and now we know why.

What we didn't know at that point---or, more precisely, didn't remember---Michael Chabon's latest novel is set on Telegraph Road there---or Avenue---something about a record store and race etc.

Michael Chabon

And then we had a little connubial bliss with Chang---in the afternoon---who abruptly changed directions during a walk through the Mission District after a very brief verbal exchange (the bliss), and departed in the other direction, yelling a departing "f@@k you,  f@@k you," at us, so we went to the Castro district to find a new lover, and went into a bookstore to buy a new York Times, and the Staff's Choice of Book was Michael Chabon's new novel, and since Chabon is one of the new American authors we in fact did read---quite extensively by our standards---we picked up his new book and re-discovered---we had read a review---that it was set on Telegraph Avenue, whence the title of the book---spoiler alert---Telegraph Avenue. We feel---spoiler alert---part of new literary history now. Not yet Chang though, because I didn't tell him yet; we have, however---spoiler alert---reconciled.

Previous SF-post here.

Mar 20, 2014

San Francisco (3) Flight 370

Lets start with a picture:

 Malaysia Airline advertisement (as found on Facebook; perhaps you can explain to us why a normal Boing 777 has only two engines, instead of four)

Flight 370, that would be Malaysian Air, the missing plane. Not Flight 545 to San Francisco though, because that would be Lufthansa, our flight from Frankfurt.

You guessed right, our conspiracy theories would revolve around sex and crime, and our departure would be supposedly a real story (I mean, we would start with a real story), told by a stewardess (female flight attendant) who enters the cockpit---spoiler alert---never thought about this, no word is safe in English---and finds the autopilot on, and---spoiler alert---pilot and copilot in the nude, and in a significant embrace. They got fired, supposedly, the---no spoiler alert---fucking pilots. Perhaps they went on to work for Malaysian Air, and---spoiler alert (in the sense that the remainder of this sentence is real silly)---and had it in their contract that they would have to fly Flight 69 only. No, that's not what I wanted to say. I wanted to say that one fine day, namely on March 7---spoiler alert---that they forgot to switch the autopilot on.

Along those lines. In the meantime, let's marvel at the brilliance of our colleagues from the Huffpost blog, who use the following picture---spoiler alert

"I wonder where they are."

---to illustrate a post about the search for the missing plane.

Next SF post here. Previous SF post here.

Mar 18, 2014

San Francisco (2) ("Sex im Zeitalter seiner technischer Reproduzierbarkeit")

Right. "Das Kunstwerk im Zeitalter..." Even readers of The New Yorker will know, this was Walter Benjamin. What they don't know, what even I didn't know at the time, I went to school with Walter Benjamin, sort of, in the sense that the house of his (Walter's) parents was located right opposite to my primary school in Grunewald, Berlin, Germany. He was born there. I didn't know since I didn't know about Benjamin at the age of 6 through 11, and because the plaque that informs post-nazi Germany about his birthplace had not been in place so soon after the war.

Walter Benjamin

Reader's of the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung will certainly know (about Benjamin), Germany's newspaper of record, although a bit less than the New York Times (the record), because they (the Frankfurters) had been leaning a bit too far to the right (then). They sound more balanced now (the FAZ), (are you still there?) (nice, isn't it, running your own blog, no anal copy editor to deal with), the layout has changed (the FAZ's), and square miles of its tree-based newspaper space are now dedicated to large, pictogrammatical pieces of artwork so that Germany's post-intellectual elite doesn't have to read so much. The German sounds different, too, a bit more modern. What sounds surprisingly old-fashioned is an article in the last weekend edition of the FAZ about sex and the internet. I didn't keep the copy of the paper, so this is from memory (stupid). (See below for more about Ampersant's hyper-parenthesization).

San Francisco (1)

"We're on our way" (no, actually, "I'm on my way") was the sad swansong of an aging Phil Collins eight years ago. Well, we are on our way now, even arrived in San Francisco already, but stopped over in Frankfurt, Germany, at the Hilton Garden Inn of Frankfurt Airport, the Ikea among the Hilton brands. Right next to the entrance for the Hilton Garden Inn there's the entrance of the Hilton Frankfurt Airport, The Hilton among the Hilton brands, and both outfits share a common atrium, 11 floors high. We're sent up in Hollywood glass elevators to the 11th floor, to room 1126, and an atrium bridge sends us to the other side, the Hilton-hilton side of the atrium.

Not painted by Piero della Francesca

Everything is new here, including the smallness of a room that radiates the coziness of a mansarde of three-pane insulation windows 6 inches thick, and a fashionable bathroom design (if bathroom designs can be radiated (lol, (loller)))---a fashionable bathroom design of misleading tiles that look like hardwood but are made of materials from Mars (this sounds unintentionally old-fashioned but there's no way to salvage this sentence anyway).

We take a shower. Shower and bathtub are integrated, as usual in hotels, and our eye falls on the sink.

Now what?

Have you ever seen a sink like this? Yes. Have you ever seen a sink in this location, right at the center of the tub? Come on, it's not so difficult. It's all about sex, or at least foreplay. You understand if you ever tried in a traditional bath tub.

In the next post we'll hazard a mini-essay about sex and modernity, which, if it were written in German, would be titled "Sex im Zeitalter seiner technischen Reproduzierbarkeit."

Go here for the next SF post.

Mar 9, 2014

"We just don't live in a world that celebrates the penetrated male" (Mr. E.) (reblogged)

From the celebrated blog Fifty shady gays (reblogged with the permission of the author):

While recently having a prostate examination, I had decided to make a stupid camp joke. Even though my doctor is a super lovely man, it led to one of those awkward silences that suggested that I had tumbled across an invisible line. I was lying on the examination table on my side and he informed me that he would be inserting a couple of fingers (what we in the UK call a "Kit Kat") and I remember feeling relaxed; so, for some unknown reason I had said:

"You know me, I'm always up for a cheeky finger."

For some reason I had thought that this would be okay, but as the words tumbled out of my mouth, I was reminded of the desolation wrought by a piss poor stand up comedian. It was a terrible moment of silence during which I had a chance to consider what a pain in the arse it is being a bottom in a gay man's world. I used to mainly top, but having since discovered the delights of oriental orgies and decadent fuck pits, I have been exploring the realms of my own brown Narnia. Also, it has become more apparent to me just how arrogant strict "top" men can be and how much they confuse the act of penetration with social interaction.

It's so much hassle being a bottom - we just don't live in a world that celebrates the penetrated male.

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