Archive for the ‘travel’ Category

August 7th, 2009

I used to Hate New York. Now I don’t Mind it so Much …

The reading last night at Happy Ending was a big success. Click below to watch the video in its entirety.


Besides getting up and performing, which I love, I met a host of interesting people who practice a host of interesting professions. I became acquainted with a woman who creates educational sex films and runs workshops; a sex therapist; more than a few writers; a good-hearted black man whose specialty is Cuckolding; and a couple of dominatrixes who were getting out of the business - except they weren’t.

I loved everyone equally, but those dominatrixes who couldn’t decide whether or not to get out of the game? I connected with them. We were all in the same boat. Life after porno is sweet - except life after porno is poor. As in: a financial step down.

It’s god’s honest truth. The three of us huddled in the street after the performance was over, clucking and sympathizing, ruminating over the eternal truth of sex work: it’s dirty and you want to stop doing it - always. You never really like it. Even if you own it, you don’t like it. You know you could be doing something else … and sex work is holding you back … so you quit it! Victorious.

But when it’s gone, you miss the dirt. You miss the raw emotions and you miss the real. You miss the living wage and damn you miss the power. You miss the “respect” from those who are indebted to you even though it’s mostly based on fear and addiction. You miss the fame that you pretend you have.

I attempted to grill these women on what the New York City dominatrix life is all about - I really don’t know much about it, when all’s said and done - but it was getting late and we all agreed it would be done better on paper. So look for that in the coming week- Articulate NYC dominatrices Discuss Life.

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July 22nd, 2009

Good-bye, Peru.

I get on the plane tonight, at precisely 11:30 PM.

But right now my soul is sitting in an internet cafe in Miraflores, the posh part of Lima, listening to a Grateful Dead show from 1984 on a crystalline soundsystem, my ears hurting from the tight metal of the headphones, Incan businessmen all around me but the show is spectacular and I´m marveling at its spectacularness, drinking a take-out coffee, running my tongue over my teeth, staring at the glowing radiation of a ViewSonic screen, trying to figure out how to best waste the rest of this long, bleak day, trying to figure out how to best waste the rest of my long, strong life…

My life will soon be one of North Carolinian texture. I´m going to have a couple of weeks in New York in August, but that´s just a reprieve … no, Sam is going home and he will be commenting upon the progresses of his book and the progresses of his life from within the confines of a room he used to inhabit while twelve years old - surely a plan that cannot withstand more than a month or so before crackling and exploding like a damned heathen in the fiery bowels of everlasting hell — yet just as surely a plan that cannot be avoided, and so must be undertaken, because this is what happens when you work without a net.

I am actually thinking of going back to school. I´ve been a diehard short-term man more or less my entire adult life. I got extremely lucky right out of college and something that I thought a rather far-fetched dream - to create my own independent movies and produce, edit, and distribute them myself for profit and for adventure - actually materialized, seemingly without any effort on my part, and despite an admitted lack of understanding in regards to the business side of things. That kind of thing simply doesn´t happen often, yet the stars aligned and for better and for worse it did, for me, in the very first business venture of my life. And of course that convinced me that all of the other far-fetched dreams and experiments would too blossom and burst open, simply because I desired them to. This was not exactly the case.

And so now I am recognizing the need to get real. Will I continue to publicize my book and work like hell to get it out to an adoring public who wants nothing more than to read about modern-day pornography, the cultural artifact that resides alongside minor-league baseball as one of the more amusing tragicomic industries of our time? Clearly, I will. I love writing and I love blogging. I particularly like writing about sex, and I particularly love blogging about my lack of ever having sex. There´s just something satisfying about it. Is it because the act of writing about sex allows me to recall a time during which I partook of the pastime? Or is it because writing in general allows me to in some sense avoid or at least transmute many of the basic characteristics of life, which can often be painful, and, especially in North Carolina, excruciatingly boring? I´m not sure. But I do know that my writing path, pursuant to sex or no, can and in fact must be joined by a get-real path, which is to say, a man can go to school. And pursue a degree. Which will eventually lead to a job for which he is paid a grown-up salary.

I can´t go into my 40´s forever financially unstable, jaunting off to Lima at a moment´s notice because the road is paved with gold therein, and then panicking because my bank account has dropped into double-digits again. It´s not a good look, it´s not becoming. Not for me or for any man. I have much to offer the world. I need to figure out what that is.

In the meantime, I will continue to write about ten-inch penises, because That is What I Do.

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July 12th, 2009

Looks Like I’m Going Home.

My grandfather is a man from another era.

An ex-communist who went to hundreds of Yankee games in the Ruth-Gehrig era (including a good handful in the 1927 “Murderer’s Row” season), he was married to my grandmother for more than 50 years and spent most of his adult life as a purveyor of kosher chickens, selling Southern Fried rotissieres to the Jewish people of Queens and Astoria. He put three sons through medical school on chickens, sent me and my sister to camp on chickens.

I don’t suppose he especially wanted to be a chicken man when he was growing up. Or maybe he did want to be - I never asked him, really.

South America’s been an adventure, but I guess this one’s over. My grandfather’s sick, and I’m going to try to go see him before he dies. He’s paralyzed, has cancer, is 94 years old…it doesn’t look great.

The only question is when. As always, it’s hard to know when people are going to die. Part of me is saying go back right away. Part of me says wait till the beginning of August when I can stay in New York for a couple of solid weeks. If his condition remains stable, I think I’m going to wait.

Anyway, the long and short of it is that I’m going back. And since I don’t have any money anyway, I figure I might as well stay in the United States for a while - kick it in North Carolina, maybe get a job. Make some cash and stack my chips. Feel real old and kinda weird, living with my folks. A man at home with his folks. A scary sight at age 32. It sure is.

But who the hell cares? I mean at this point… really? You still give a fuck about how people see you … really? I don’t know when I started being self-conscious, but it’s a habit I’m pretty keen to kick. I mean, I’m not proud, exactly, of being a major-league fuck up, but the fact is, everybody and his brother is out of work, changing their careers, “re-tooling” … I’m not the only one struggling, am I? If California can’t pay its bills, why should I be able to?

My grandfather was more than a chicken man. He was an electrician for a while, worked in the shipyards. He was well-read, a funny public speaker, and a fervent spokesman for his political ideals (which he remains, to this day). Nonetheless, he did chickens. To a certain extent, I don’t think it much mattered to him how he made his money. I gather he never thought of using his profession to fulfill some noble desire; rather, the goal was to be able to survive, and provide well for your family. Your family bestowed meaning upon your life. Not your job.

When my grandfather was my age, the year was 1946. My father was four and my uncle had just been born. The family was living in Brooklyn, he’d been married for more than five years, owned a house, had been through the Great Depression, was surrounded by a family of Orthodox Jews who were more observant than him. When he drove around on the Sabbath to deliver chickens, in the early days of his business, he used to crouch low in the seat to avoid being spotted …

And me? The only job I’ve ever held down for longer than six months is shooting large groups of black dudes overpowering a tiny little sex object, film it wrap it up and send it off. I’ve got nothing to show for my work but thousands of dollars of debt, a haphazard map of short-sighted international travels, complemented by a handful of broken-spoken languages, a massive supply of off-color stories, a small cluster of old girlfriends who must automatically shake their heads ruefully whenever they hear my name, barrels of thrift store clothing, ten million journals, 250 hours of carefully labeled Grateful Dead bootlegs, an unfinished documentary film, an unfinished comic book, an unfinished novel.

They bestowed upon me freedom and opportunity.

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July 5th, 2009







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July 1st, 2009







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June 28th, 2009

Arriving in Pisco.






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June 25th, 2009

One Year.




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June 22nd, 2009

hare hare hare hare hare om.

Sunday June 21st.


It’s time for me to be movin’ on, I think.



One Krishna week was all fun and good, but a man’s got to eat something other than starches or he just might go crazy and shoot someone. Also my sweet little bachelor pad just got invaded by an Argentinian and a Greek, and this place is hardly as cool with roomies. No place is. Hairy-chested Spanish words are flying around my head. It is time to leave.



They took us into town on Friday night to sell whole-wheat bread and propagandize for vegetarianism.


I truly never thought I would be that guy: you know, the Krishna chanting and hopping his way through town with a blissful look around the eyes, a fistful of prayer beads and Hare Om Hare Om on the lips. But then, there I was: carrying my tray of bread like a proper disciple, singing along because there was nothing better to do, in the end.


The townspeople didn’t blink. They dead-eyed us, and I knew then that we were recognized, a familiar sight. A few approached and asked specifically for the bread; but most of our sales came when tired people just pulled out their coins to make us go away.  I walked through the streets of Huaral chanting Hare Om Hare Om, secretly eyeing the deep-fried, seductively-breaded chicken breasts with dark, desirous eyes. Aji-spiced corazon-on-a-stick is heartmeat, a rubbery, smooth, black delight, three stickfuls for a single dollar, washed down with a yellow Inca Cola, then followed by a furtive Caribe, watch the grey-smoke cloud unfold. A man can get horny for other than sex. 


We got back late, exhausted, the monotonous chant ringing in my ears, a cold hole of hunger like a cave in my stomach and there was just cold tomato soup for dinner.





It’s peaceful, tranquil, and dangerously boring here. Today a spiritual master came from Chile to spread his benedictions, but I could not be asked to sit through his lectures. I skipped silently through the potato fields, pushing aside the dark earth, and tramped my way up to the main road, where cars whizzed by me, their honks vigorous and mean. All my underwear is dirty and unusable, all have been worn at least four days apiece and must officially be burned or at the very least washed by someone who is not me. I must leave here . . . but to go where? The money is a horrible problem.




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June 18th, 2009

When Money Gets Tight, I Turn to Hare Om.

Been in South America for three months now, and as of late I´m hovering near the thousand dollar mark - which means it´s time to hit the panic button. Or, it´s time to start doing weird things which cost almost no money.


In past travels,  I´ve been able to make my way quite affordably by living at yoga centers and/or working on organic farms. I spent three weeks at the Kripalu Center for Health and Yoga in the winter of 2006, and gained a lot of sanity in the process. Not to mention I kicked it with great people eating amazing food and falling in love with a skinny ayurvedic black-haired raven delight for the grand total of like fifty bucks all said and done.

Later that same year I spent a month at the Salt Spring Center of Yoga and washed my share of floors, stacked my share of firewood, took my share of midnight naked saunas in the British Colombia October rain.

I’ve worked on organic farms in Israel, Italy, Laos and New Zealand.  Every experience was a fresh and delicious one. Work-exchange is a great way to see cultures, make odd friends, eat live foods, and see, taste, and smell and fart in real nature.

It is also an excellent way to meet Peruvian Hare Krishnas, in this weird incarnation I call my 32nd year of life.


 . . . I found this place, which is called “Eco-Truly”, on-line when I punched in “Peru” and “organic farm” (or, it might have been “peru volunteer yoga”, I can´t remember) . . . and it didn´t say a single thing about “you will get up at 6:00 in the cold drizzle and eat potatoes while odd men dressed in orange gallavant about muttering “hare bo!” and “hare om!” in the most pleasant way possible and you will grin and bear it and in fact enjoy it, knowing that there is no fucking way on god’s green earth that while using your pitiful little Spanish you could explain that seven years ago today you were  moving your corduroyed porno possessions into a 12-room mansion in the Malibu sunshine hills and readying yourself to reap the benefits of a different kind of subculture, yet one no less dedicated to baffling group-think and weird customology. . .


The architecture here is baffling and beautiful . . . we are in some sort of arid desert region that is also by some weird stroke of luck by the beach, which is to say we´re in Huaral, or Aucallama, or some town that is one hour north of Lima as the crow flies, winding dusty desert roads that dropped me off with my backpack and shoulderbag and a pile of dirty laundry and bit of white soap in a plastic sac into this freakish oasis wherein old Peruvian troubadors from the hills came to work the fields and craft insanely textured round buildings which shoot up your meditative energies straight to Krishna, if that´s what you like to do.

I´m living inside of one of these weird tunnels, having solid black sleepy dreams, sitting by myself in the cold mysto-dark on a hardis mattress thinking about girls and time gone by. There´s much quiet in the ashram, a quiet only disturbed by the dinging of a bell that tells us it´s time to eat potatoes - again.


Last night two women, wearing orange robes with noses painted white, dots on the center of their forehead, opening up to god, entertained around the campfire, late at night. Two women from Spain. They played a guitar and an accordian lovingly. I had never heard an accordian that sounded good before last night. The Spanish Catalan voices and the orange spark glowing embers, in the background the roll of the beach, waves crashing against the shore.

And I was freezing but I couldn´t leave because their voices sounded so thick and swollen with joyful death and in the space of three days I had not known either of these rather serious women to smile but last night while the darker-haired of the two played guitar she would not stop smiling and while the silkener-haired of the two pushed the folds of her accordian together she would not stop smiling. They sat fifteen feet apart and the fire separated them from one another, but they shared something between them. I stumbled off to bed and thought about them both for a long time until my scratchy blanket turned soft on me and I was asleep.


They expect four good hours of out of me of work every day, and I will give that willingly. We are building some sort of chicken-coop roof. I am not exactly sure what it is going to be, to be honest. But I am not much for construction. I am not much for hammering, gardening, painting, cooking, or listening to informational talks about Hare Om in Spanish. I am more into wandering, walking, sitting by myself, and feeling the mysterious desert breeze. But I am working on this chicken coop roof with two new compadres, one 34 years old and handsome, with the paint of Krishna on his face, the other 50 and tiny and skinny and rat-like complete with the whiskers, a good man from Lima who is not one of them. He is here to escape something and be somewhere safe, like me. We are working on this coop roof every morning for four hourse. And to be honest I´m starting to care about how level it falls.


This whole trip I´ve been keeping to myself,  sitting in rooms that have as few people as possible, sticking my head behind a computer . . . I’ve not tried to flex my Spanish skills and neither have I made too many friends. The friends I’ve made were drunken Irishmen with indecipherable wild eyes and honeyhaired English girls from Essex and Nottingshire and Israelis smoking Caribes eating ceviche on broken beds. This is my first taste of really traveling, getting to know a singular strange culture, and I have to admit that I’m digging it. I feel alive, for the first time in a very long time.


I am heading to Pisco in one week, to volunteer in a spot that was hard hit by a 2007 earthquake. More construction, I will share my neglible talents. But I gather that they can use all the grunts who want to be there.  Bad food, cold weather, stale sweat: I will taste of you. Hare Om.


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April 21st, 2009

Embracing the Cliché I Embody

I don’t think I’ve commented too extensively about the particulars of running this whole operation from South America. And to be quite honest, I don’t exactly have a truly concrete reason for being here, apart from it feeling like the perfect, cliched thing to do.

I didn’t come to Colombia to promote this book, really; it’s just something that’s developed since I’ve been over here. I came over here to work, not in writing and certainly not in porn. I had a limited-contract employment in Cartagena for one month, and only then did it seem feasible that I might be able to make this project come to some sort of fruition.

Since meeting my marketing guru and project manager Shane and beginning to work with him in late March, this thing has come a long way. Notably, we’ve added a surprising number of personnel to our staff. Shane’s brought aboard a web technology expert, and a design superstar, both of whom will be working to make the site and the book look flawless and enticing.

For someone who’s so used to doing absolutely everythin (very much to a fault) in his creative life by himself, it’s absolutely flabbergasting to suddenly be part of a “team,” the stated purpose of which is to improve and ultimately bring success to a book that I wrote . . .

I love it! I absolutely love it.

And yet none of this can keep me from realizing that I’m being a fucking cliche over here in Colombia. Maybe it’s not Paris of the 1920’s, but the concept of being a writer-expatriate is as well-worn as the very idea of “finding yourself,” or serving your country as a foot soldier in some noble battalion . . .

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