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1970 1 of 8




Call Joe and he wants me to pose for the portrait again, so I go over at one, read "Journey to the East", and then he gets a call at three from his friend Margo for brunch, so we walk up to 85th or 86th Street and go into another old lobby, and Margo is a plump pretty-faced Englishwoman, and there are two dolls sitting on the sofa, one is Jim something like Serpentino, and the other is named an invented monosyllable that sounds something like Tud or Huk or something like that. Tuk seems spaced out for some reason, and he and Jim seem like lovers, so I leave them alone for a bit until they start talking about drugs, so I ask them what the deal is, and they said they had a lot last night, and that's probably still affecting them. Then Jim and I begin talking and it seems there's some sort of click, and we begin talking about inner feelings and the conversation gets very interesting by the time brunch comes around. It's very strange, comprised of Greek sandwiches composed partly of eggplant, anchovies, and olives, and coddled eggs which are too soft to eat without gagging, and tasty hot rolls. Then there are the drinks and more drinks, and then Jim has to leave for the opera, which he seems to go to quite frequently, and it turns out that he has a lover, and that Hud is only staying with Margo for awhile, so I fantasize that there might be further connections, but Joe rather surprises me by saying that neither of them is really his type. He asks me up for the evening as we walk south, but I really don't feel like going back, and come back home to work on new approvals from 8-11. It really seems that I will have to stop Royal from coming at this point, since they seem to be hung up on selling me everything they can, but the bargains get rarer and rarer, and they like their stupid "Sand dune" countries which Scott might never recognize, and they might be pretty worthless bits of paper if they never enter the catalog. Then I probably settle down to read a bit, or listen to records, or more probably get the Tom pictures out and masturbate nicely before bed.


FRIDAY, JANUARY 2. Again Channel 13 is showing their series of Charlie Chaplin films, and I heard they have fifteen of them, and watch "The Cure, The Immigrant, and The Adventurer," and they're all fun, but so similar, and many times so unconnected with their topic, that it's hard to say which I've seen before and which I haven't. So many of them seem to take place in a restaurant, too, and with exactly the same characters: the fat huge fellow with glaring eyes and handlebar mustache, and the tall skinny gook with rather sexy legs. Decide that I'd always wanted to re-read "Lord of the Rings," so I get it out and begin reading it, and get about 80 pages done before it's time to go to Avi's for dinner. He'd called Joe and Cynthia at work, and they were both there, and there was meatloaf (shades of Joan) and a salad and green beans and potatoes, baked, to a perfect texture inside and a black crispness outside, and even though he didn't have butter, only margarine, it was very tasty, and I ate the entire skin of mine and half of Cynthia's. There were drinks, but mainly there was a nice feeling of friendship and good cheer among the four of us, and I fell for the first time in a long time back into my old banter, taking off from any topic of conversation brought up, and flying off into flights of imagination, coming up with ridiculous puns, being reminded of jokes, or actually creating jokes at the table, and everyone seemed very receptive, laughing long and well, and Cynthia added a feminine charm and bubble to everything. Avi was telling about his gonorrhea contracted from Sally in Puerto Rico, how they toasted each other with pills at each meal (and that will become the RAGE), and how Sally first found out about crabs, when "her whole bush waved at her; it did a left face and marched up her stomach; they had nowhere to go, so they had a fiesta there, with castanets and everything;" her mother found her and said "If your father could see us now, with her shoulders under her knees," and other such lovely topics. Then we settled down to a fun game of Scrabble (maybe it was fun because I won it), and then I took a cab down with Cynthia about 12:30 to 57th.


SATURDAY, JANUARY 3. Up in the morning feeling very horny, and decide I had wanted to finish up some of the drawings that I only indicated the body lines, but that I wanted to put in shading and emphasis and make more of them appear like coming, since that seems to be particularly exciting to me: indeed, I really don't see the reason for buying any more pictures and slides unless they're pornographic, and the epitome of pornography seems to involved the instant of coming, when the semen spurts under the exquisite pressure from the head of the taut cock. Trace the outlines, and get a rousing erection, which I play with as I draw, shades of college days back home in the bedroom before the card table, and I come most satisfactorily. Then I finish the last few pages of Allen's books (Paul's coming allowed me to finish off two items of the "to do" list, though he didn't want to see the color-organ places), and telephone him. He's home, and anxious to have it back, so I type up all the comments, getting about ten pages of them, and go up to his place at 5. We talk about it and talk about it, and he seems grateful, except that he really has to start at the beginning and take it from there, though he will be able to use the center section pretty much as he has it. Then I show him the Christmas Day writing, and he comments about how he'd like to see it reduced (as Paul had), and he is confused about the beginning of the novel that I typed early on the morning of New Year's Day, when I couldn't get to sleep, kept thinking about the book, and decided right then to start it INSIDE the first session: truly starting as far inside the story as possible, and being rather pleased with the idea), but it seems to have some interest to him. Then it's nine o'clock, and he has some sick friend to visit, and he'd just gotten over a hepatitis siege of two weeks, so I walk down, decide that the Times has come out this early, buy three slices of pizza to go, as usual, though it's gone up to 30¢, and it used to be only 20¢, and I think I remember 15¢ on First Avenue, and buy the Times and settle in for the evening until midnight, when I've completely finished it.


SUNDAY, JANUARY 4. Joe calls and reminds me we'd sort of agreed to go to the Cloisters to see the wrought iron exhibit, so we ride up on the subway and mistake the stop and ride back two stops and walk through the snowed-in park, having to retrace our steps because the stairs are a frozen slippery slide, but the garden effect under the snow is very beautiful under the clear skies. The exhibit is in one room, but Joe explains many details to me, and we spend time deciding that a lock which looks massively solid is actually pieced together like a cardboard model. Then we sit in the tapestry room, looking at the people wandering by, listening to the motets coming from the court, and it's relaxing and pleasant, though far more crowded than we'd expected. Wait outside in the cold for the bus back, and ride down to 57th and Fifth, and he comes here for something to eat, and I have only a lunch sort of meal with soup and sandwiches, and he eats everything, commenting how good the relish is, and after talking a bit, it's time for the "Forsyte Saga," and I'm getting less and less interested in it, since the older people are all settled, it's obvious that Jolyon played by Kenneth More is going to die at any moment, Irene is still as lovely as ever and isn't going to age, Winifred shifts back and forth in age, looking more or less like Queen Victoria, the children are reasonably attractive, but even Jon, handsome as he is, isn't as engaging as the older ones, and Fleur is quite unattractive, and one really can't care about her. Soames is old and grouchy, as was expected, his wife is deceiving him with some terribly heave who tells Fleur what the situation was in the past, and when she cuts the relation off with Jon, I figure there really isn't very much more to see, so I don't even bother to watch it the next week, and I'll look in from time to time to see how it finally ends, probably, but I can hardly see watching each one religiously as before. He leaves after the newscast, and I settle down to read a number of more pages in the "Rings" and try to get to bed reasonable early, since Joe's due here for brunch tomorrow, and we're off to see "The Damned" which got such great reviews.


MONDAY, JANUARY 5. Joe's here at 11, and I go through the Swiss cheese and scrambled egg demi-omelet, and he drinks cup after cup of tea, as is his custom, and we get off to the Festival Theater at 11:45, see a short line beginning to form, and I fantasize it being cut off, saying the theater is full, just as we get to the box office, but we get inside to find it almost empty, most people smoking in the balcony, and we're literally the third and fourth persons in the orchestra. Sit and laugh about getting there so early, and the movie goes on, confused as to characters: at first I thought everyone was family, then I concluded almost no one was family, then I find from the program that Arnie gives me later that almost everyone WAS family. Most confusing. The "rape of the house" was the most effective scene for me, possibly since it was the only one I didn't know about: the rape of the mother by the son, the Marlene Dietrich imitation, and the SA killings in a gay orgy were all disappointing because I'd heard so much about them and expected too much from them. We wander out of the theater, talking about everything that went on, and walk up Broadway to his place where I pose for a bit, looking at a great book about the movements of cultures in the Old World from about 50,000 BC, with an excellent set of maps and cultural outlines, and then we have dinner, an enormous hunk of steak intended for London broil, and then I'm to Marty's as agreed at 8. We talk for a bit, him telling me all about the book and the discoveries he had trying to re-date recording sessions by Caruso, and then we listen to some of the "Mefistofeles" recordings he has, and it's interrupted for feeding Christopher, who's so babyish I can't even bring myself to praise him except to say "He's so tiny," and Marty feeds him, but he empties the bottle and wants more, so he cries on until midnight, when he fixes a new set of formulas and feeds him again, but he won't go to sleep, and Marty and I are both losing patience with him, except that he smiles and grimaces when Marty whistles "La Traviata" and "Carmen" to him. Then Marty brings out some of the book, and I read and correct it until 4 am, when I cab down, tired!


TUESDAY, JANUARY 6. Get out of bed at 12:30, and I've stopped doing my exercises, so there's no time lost. Get a call from Food Fare and the glasses have actually come in, so I call the Ramakrishna-Vivekananda center and find they're selling books, so I'm off about three, walking through the icy park, watching them ice skating, looking at all the byways and even swards trampled underfoot, and get up to 94th and buy the book on Jnana yoga from a smooth-faced fellow who's terribly attractive, yet I can't bring myself to bring any word of compliment to his face or manner, which I would so much want to, since openness seems to be all, and I have the inner desire that "Anything that you want, ANYTHING, and we will give it to you," sort of an international Club Mediterrane, is true of these people, and they would forgive any momentary quirk I would care to indulge in, such as undressing them, caressing their bodies, and sucking their cocks. Then walk down to Food Fare, fearing their stamp department is closed at 4, but it's open until 5, and he triumphantly hands me down the "Specially delivered box" and there's the sad shower of broken glass inside. He unpacks it and I refuse to get it re-ordered: there are only two glasses broken, ten are really still too many, I refuse to go through the business of calling and checking again, and I walk away with the feeling of triumph that the order of October 30, which was sitting on the "to do" list all that time, is finally completed, and THAT'S a cycle that won't be repeated! Walk back with the box under my arm, buy "Demian" since Joe recommended it, and home rather tired. Read "Demian" in one sitting, and it's rather good, but Hesse MUST have been a latent homosexual, since all his boys are so beautiful and unattainable and kissable, and then read through the "Cooking of Provincial France," which Life finally sent me after the girl on the telephone sweet-talked me into accepting it, and Joe didn't want it, and now I can mail that back, getting rid of some of the new stack of mail that has been piling up to send out, this book the main part of it, and than I read a few more chapters of the "Ring," going more slowly now, sadly.


WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 7. Get down to typing some more of the diary, but not nearly as quickly as I would choose, getting ten more pages done, but I'm falling behind almost more quickly than I'm doing it, yet the pressure to do it is still there. Get some mailing out, but on some of these days both Screw and Gay come in the mail, and I spend an hour or two looking through them, and then by the time I'm finished, I'm so horny I have to draw the drapes and come, again with finishing up the tracing, which is very gratifying, but I keep telling myself I have to save it for building up steam for going to the baths or bars or cruising. Arnie calls, and I tell him I'm going to the gay meeting tonight, and do so, getting there at 8, but finding it really starts at 8:30. The crew that begins filing in is dreadful, but toward the end some dolls come in, and the place turns out to be somewhat better than bars for cruising: the percentage of acceptable people is larger, everyone is known to be gay and not trade, and there are more opportunities to talk to people. No one cute sits near me, though, so I don't talk, and the discussion is rather stupid about cruising, since it doesn't say WHERE or HOW, and the panel gets side-tracked and some of the comments are terribly stupid, everyone standing up mainly to blow his own horn and tell everyone "Hey, here I am, aren't I gorgeous?" Then afterwards I go upstairs to look for the blood test, but he seems to have gone, and take coffee and wander around, but the old bar-fear comes over me and I can't seem to talk to anyone. Downstairs to survey the dancing, but there are only five or six people down there, only one couple dancing, and no one I'd really care to ask. Back upstairs, determined to talk to anybody, but there's no one who turns me on, so I leave about 10:30, rather disgusted, and walk back home, through the busy Broadway area, looking at the people, wishing I had any one of a number of them, but not being able to blow my own horn enough to loosen up enough to make the first approach: and they certainly aren't going to approach me, as my dreams would have it be: dreams are farther and farther from reality. Read more of the Rings.


THURSDAY, JANUARY 8. Arnie calls and I take three rings to answer, and lie and say that I brought someone home from the meeting with me, and he's here now. He understands, sounds disappointed, tells me about the sneak preview scheduled with "Midnight Cowboy" tonight, and hangs up. I busy myself around the apartment, coming over the tracings for the third and last time of this series, and cleaning things up and putting things in order. The only thing left from my to-do list is the Color-Organ place, and Joe said I should definitely come down to the Door Store to see what the sexy gay Russ looks like, and one of the places is just down the block, and I'd like to check out the gay bookshops, too, so I figure I can do it all at once, but I don't feel inclined to do it at all. The Rings is now sort of the center of my life, and I continue reading them. Something else will come up afterwards, I'm sure, but I don't know what it would be. But the time zips by uncontrollably and it's time to get ready for the movies, and down at 5:15 to stand in line from 5:45, but there aren't many people waiting to get in, which is a good things, since an enormous section, about half the theater both in the balcony and orchestra, is roped off for guests, and I sit in the last row before the roped-off section, and it's about as far forward as I'd care to be. He thought it was "SMASH," but then he said it wasn't, and I figured it might be "Magic Christian." The "Midnight Cowboy" is pretty good, though it didn't really break me up, and Jon was sexier than he looked from the pictures outside. Then something called "Hi, Mom" came on, and it was serious when it tried to be funny, funny when it tried to be sexy (though there was no nudity to speak of, except for a lovely body painted black except for the cock, which was then painted), and sexy when it tried to be serious (the "Be Black, Baby," was great S-M sexy, though a tiny bit frightening and a whole lot true). Just a spatter-technique of "Oh, look how clever I am with plot" like "Putney Swope," more a put-on than anything else. Drop in for a word with Eddie, who says I'm getting fat under the chin, and home, thinking I AM getting fat.


FRIDAY, JANUARY 9. Had scheduled lunch with Cyndy today, so I get to her place about 1, wait until about 1:30, and we're east to the Brochetteria, with a great atmosphere, "beautiful people" clientele, cheap wine, good brochettes, and we talk and have fun in a good place. Leave her off just before 3 and I'm back by way of Bookmasters, and pick up four books, rather to my disgust: Hesse's "Siddhartha" and "Journey to the East," Vonnegut's "Cat's Cradle," and also "Steppenwolf" by Hesse. Thumb through "Journey to the East" and mark the parts I best remembered, then read "Siddhartha" at one sitting, and was quite impressed by it, though the beauty rather fell off at the end from the beginning: it was as if he spoke from experience right up to the part where Siddhartha was enlightened, and then he spoke only from his imagination. Which is the only way to do it, for "He who KNOWS does not speak," and he's certainly still speaking. Agree to meet Arnie for "Dr. Mabuse," and the theater is full and I don't see him. The film is slow, but in Arnie-fashion, he "persuades" me to stay to see the second half, just so the evening with him can be filled in some other way than WITH him. Then we're out into the cold looking for a place to eat, and they're all closing, and we get lost and wander, and there's Fedora's, so we're in there, to a stomach-twisting meal as I debate how to tell him that it's really all over. He says how much he's looking forward to tonight, and I say "You're not making it any easier," and then he remarks about my drinking, and I say it's to gather strength to tell him there isn't any tonight, and as I predicted, he said he expected it. He wants to do it tonight, but I refuse, and we talk about it for a bit, but I feel terrible in doing it, all knotted up, and I can't tell him the simple truth: Arnie, you're a BORE. He ends by asking me to keep in mind the idea of a threesome with him and Norma, and then we both take our separate subways, he walking off with his sort-of-assumed jauntiness and wide-eyed acceptance of everything, but I think he just might be boiling underneath, but not letting himself as a "nice guy" get angry about ANYTHING. IS he EVER like me!? Sad evening.


SATURDAY, JANUARY 10. Decide that I really am getting too fat under the chin and if I'm ever going to do anything about it, it's now, and I think about going on a complete diet for two or three days, building up to the seven-day fasts recommended by Ram Dass and Don Leventhal, but then I figure I won't be able to get to sleep on such an empty stomach, and there's no use overdoing it, so what I'll do is have just one meal in a day, the evening meal, and leave it go at that. Just get my stomach used to the idea that there won't be any food for it after I get up until sometime in the evening: I'd done that many times before, anyway, on weekends when I was working and reading most of Saturday and Sunday, so I figure to keep that up. Read Rings all day, and my stomach is growling, but it's not too difficult to ignore it. Joe's coming over with his paper to be edited, and I go out to shop for dinner and decide to use the catering service around the corner. There's a range of dishes, and I stupidly narrow the range to only chicken, and then even more stupidly get two of the SAME chicken, so I really didn't check their quality of cooking, except that Joe ended by saying that the chicken, by its texture, was obviously cooked and re-cooked, so it wasn't as good as something freshly done for the guest at once, and the rosemary seasoning was rather strange. But the portions were good-sized, being more than either of us could eat, and I put everything into one pot and into the refrigerator, and it sufficed, with more rice, for a meal for me one night next week. Then we go over his paper, and it's better than the one I read before, which was about his third draft, and I thought there wouldn't be much to do with it, but we went into it and into it, and suddenly it was 12:30, and we were finished, but I could hardly type it then. He leaves and I go down with him for the Times, and bring it back up, smelling the chicken which is still piled on the plates which I just threw into the sink along with the salad dishes and the dishes from the strawberry cream cake he brought me from Sutters, which means I didn't need the Sara Lee that I bought, and finally finish with the Times at 3 am!


SUNDAY, JANUARY 11. He calls me about noon, asking me to come over for dinner this evening, and I accept, which means I have to type his paper before I go there. Get it done in rather good time, though toward the end it gets sloppier and sloppier, but I just use the correctype and leave it go at that: the carbon is lousy, but he's only keeping that for himself. Then shower and wash my hair, and the Breck seems to be soapier than the Prell, and two washings ALWAYS suffices, whereas with the Prell, there sometimes had to be three, and the Breck is cheaper, so it's better so far, though the smell is not as nice as the Prell, being more of a castile smell to Prell's perfumedness. Dry it thoroughly since I'm washing it too late, but the day has gone past rather unobtrusively without my eating anything, and the diet seems to be catching on. Up to his place in the cold (though nothing was as cold as walking back from the "Midnight Cowboy" on Thursday, when it was 6 degrees, and I really thought the front of my legs were going to freeze, and I could feel the hairs in my nose freezing as I snuffled along in the cold, and my face really felt on the brink of being frostbitten in the cold wind I was walking into) and he apologizes for having chicken again, but it serves to show me what a GOOD chicken tastes like, though there are probably few people in the world who can make a chicken taste as good as Joe can. We chat about art and wrought iron and his dealings with Miss DeMazia and my portrait, and I'm back about 11:30, and find I have "A Night to Remember" on TV, and during the commercials, when I'm switching back and forth, come upon something called "Panic in the Year Zero" with Ray Milland acting the man-turned-temporarily-into-beast-owing-to-the-circumstances of a family man protecting his own by killing, causing an auto accident merely to get across a road to some meadows they were meaning to camp in, killing predators on them, refusing food, but I don't know the ending, because it was the same as the ending of "Night to Remember," which was really spectacularly great. Then switch back and there's "Incredible Shrinking Man" and he's cute, so watch IT to 3:30 am!


MONDAY, JANUARY 12. This week is the first full week in many a month, and there's a conflicting feeling toward it: I can tell everyone I'm busy for the rest of the week, so I can't add anything new, yet I fear being caught up in some sort of sociability rat race. Type fifteen pages of the diary, feeling good about that, and read some more of the Rings, almost finished with the third volume, and it's really not quite as EXCITING once you know the climax, but some of the writing is still extremely beautiful. Watch "The White Sister" with a stiff Helen Hayes and a rather silly Clark Gable, and she renounced and goes through all sorts of torment for the Church, and he goes unquestioningly to his death for the State, and though the movie is terrible, I get the strong impression that the world would be better off without a Church and without a State at all! Then Avi calls at 6, asking me to type a paper for a friend, who'll pay, and I say "Only if he's desperate," and Itai Zak calls back to say he's desperate, and he'll be over sometime between 7:30 and 8. I shower and eat my single meal for the day, chicken AGAIN out of a can, and he comes and it's a long thing, though I can read his handwriting, and his English isn't THAT bad, but he wants it by Thursday, and I tell him I have something every night this week, but I'm his last resort. Walk up to Cyndy's, buying a little Crème de Cacao and a little Triple Sec for her birthday today, and for her party, and there is the English Marion, a combination of Pat Balderston and Daisy Roach; the well-traveled Evelyn who's been in Ethiopia, Tanzania, Uganda, Kenya, Ivory Coast and Ghana, and we talk for a long time; Jim who works with Cyndy, who's brought the Crome Cyrcus for Cyndy, and we talk of Astarte; Percy, who works for Univac, is short and stocky and cute, and we talk about why he doesn't smoke, and how open he is---UM?---and then Bob and Diane come in and I smell the pot from the kitchen, which is when the plump Dorothy who lived next to Cyndy on 64th leaves, and Phyllis is there somewhere, too. It's very pleasant sitting on her huge bed with the feet all together, and it's too bad I read Vonnegut's sex method LATER in the week. Bed at 1:30, light-stoned.


TUESDAY, JANUARY 13. Wake up at 10, since he's supposed to be over at 1, beginning to type Itai's paper, and the first thing I did, and the WISEST thing I did, was to go to Woolworth's and buy some Ezerase paper, and that saved my life, since I made three or four errors on each page, and they erased absolutely invisibly, so I only had to type two or three pages over more for format than anything else, and it shortened the whole job considerably. It seems my INSTINCT for correctness is good: seldom do I fail to see where I type something wrong, yet the actual accuracy is rather poor. Type to a point where I need more editing, but can't figure what he wants to say, so I edit ahead until he gets in at 1, and we go over it until about 5, and then Azak calls and says he's meeting his Art Dealer friend and they're talking about Miro, so he won't be going for bridge at the Corduroy Club tonight, so there's an evening free. I get again my single dinner, finally finishing up the hamburger which has been in there for so long, preventing my defrosting the refrigerator, and back to the paper, going and going and going, finally finishing typing the 47th pages at a terrible 2 am, though I'm terribly tired: I actually TYPED 50 PAGES IN ONE DAY, though it wasn't original work. His point was all about the changes in attitude toward Israel and Jewishness encountered by American kids who went to summer camp in Israel, and then he went off into factor analysis and tests and questionnaires and inventions of accuracy and reliability and validity which I couldn't correct, because I suspect it was a lot of bullshit anyway, only put in to confuse the fellow who had to read it to OK it as a Doctor's thesis at NYU. But there it was, and if I'd known there were going to be so many tables, that the whole thing had to be footnoted, that it was going to be as long as 50 pages, I probably would have said no in the first place. But today went past almost without thought: and it went very well, and I did a lot. Everything except for the one meal was for the one purpose, and the one purpose was fulfilled, and when I got to bed at 2:30, I went to sleep immediately with the good feeling of having DONE!


WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 14. Up at 10 again and get the Bibliography pages typed, after checking for their use all the way through, and then get down to proofreading and find that I have corrections to make on 27 of the 49 pages, which isn't very good at all. Get down to making them, and they go rather quickly, although I find that the ink dries on the page quite a bit after it is typed, so it's harder to erase after the pages sit a bit, but easy when it's freshly typed. About halfway through, Azak calls and we make arrangements to come here for dinner at 7 before the WSDG meeting tonight, and Avi calls saying he'll be along, too, with Kenny and Marvin. Then I call Itai, and he's over to proofread it while I finish the last corrections, and he finds a couple of things wrong, but has to leave at 4:30 for a test, but assumes the rest will be OK. I'd said I'd charge him $2 an hour, which is made cheap when Joan, whom I called to see if SHE wanted a job, said she was getting $3.75 an hour! So I thought to charge him $60, but when I asked for it, came down to $50, which he STILL said was too much. So he gave me $40, and I said he should send me the rest of it, which he thinks is $4, since I worked 22 hours on it. So much the worse for my not have come to an agreement with him first! Avi says he's a "Schnorer," one who gets what he can for nothing, and I thank him for warning me in advance. Read "Cat's Cradle" as a reward for work done well, and it's a lot of fun with Ice-Nine and Bokononomism, and then Azak and Avi are over even early, we go to Angelo's, which Azak hates, and I have a small piece of liver and potatoes for my only meal, but a lot of bread. Down to the transsexual discussion, and Avi and I get blood tests, and the people are ugly except for the girls changing to guys, and I talk to each of them for a bit afterwards (except for the guy in drag, I figure I know all about him already), and John-Eileen is ugly but interesting, and the two "guys" are surprisingly masculine, even to a sort of five o'clock shadow and a thinning hair line. The dancing is better, and Kenny and Azak and Bill Berkowitz ask me, so I do, and we go to Stage 45 after, but it's a drag.


THURSDAY, JANUARY 15. Have a fantastic set of dreams this morning, and they remind me about the dreams I had on Saturday morning, which I meant to write down, and which Joe reminded me of on Saturday night when I was looking over his paper, and so I typed four pages of the dreams, the last set oddly colored by the transsexual discussion of last night. Joe calls me to pose for him, so I go up at 12 and I read some of the appendix of the Rings while I'm doing that, and then he gets out the old portrait, says he doesn't like the high forehead, and with a few stripes of brown puts in more hair, and he says he's satisfied with it, and "it's mine." I ask him to frame it, and he says he will, so that pleases me very much. Leave at 3, and get back to finally finish the last of the second reading of "The Lord of the Rings," and now I'm convinced that if I ever want to re-read it, I've underlined everything of interest, and the only thing I'd have to do is re-read the underlinings to get the full flavor of the whole thing. I start "Steppenwolf," but get tired of reading, so I listen to the records I feel like listening to, remembering that I listened to "Iris," the opera that Marty said I would like, sometime last week, but forgot to mention it. Joe doesn't want to eat out, so I finish up the chicken finally, and there's enough left for a meal, so it was $5.50 for three chicken dinners, which isn't bad. Then meet Joe at the ballet, and the "Glinka Valse" is fast and snappy, but just too short, and John Clifford is rather offensively showy and fey for a male dancer, though he's not bad AS a dancer. "The Cage" is rather shorter than I remember, though MacBride does a good job with it, though I'm thoroughly bored with Magallenes, and then we move down for "Apollo," which I find is dated and quite humorous, and Joe might even agree. The D'Amboise choreography of the "Tchaikovsky Suite" is patterned rather on "Jewels," but it just doesn't come off at all, having some awkwardly embarrassing moments, and even the music doesn't seem to come off too well. Back home to listen to the first five sides of "Die Frau Ohne Shatten," to see what parts of it are worth listening to, and there are interspersed interludes at most.


FRIDAY, JANUARY 16. Decide that this is the day I REALLY have to get back to the diary, to get it caught up to date, so I can get on to other things that have to be done, and I sit down to a fairly easy ten pages, and decide to continue with another 10, and then suddenly I'm actually finished with 1969, and I triumphantly come to page 800 for the first day of a new decade 1970, and I'm delighted with my progress: one more day should bring me up to date with the diary. Oh, joy. Read a bit more of "Steppenwolf," but I'm getting disenchanted with reading, and decide I really have to do something more productive, so I get out the paper towels from the closet and start to work on the windows, and they come clean just before the sun sinks behind the clouds at 4:30. Since Azak's dinner party doesn't start until 7:30, I even have time for the dishes, but when I'm in the middle, Norma calls at 5 to say that Arnie had lunch with her this week, and he seems to be trying to get on the good side of her, obviously thinking of a threesome, which I tell Norma I don't want with Arnie. She's talking about how happy she is, looking forward to her ski week next week, to being alone, and she wants to come to the WSDG with me, and we talk until 5:45 very nicely. Walter Yaciuk also called this morning, wanting to go to lunch with me sometime, and it's nice to hear he's got a good job with Sam Matsa, and the thought flits through my mind that maybe they'd have a good job for me, too, but I put it out as I finish the dishes. Then into the shower and alcohol my face to pull it together and put on the tan bells to look sexy for Azak's party, and I'm terribly early. Talk to Mr. Boyle, and Carlo Biordi, a cute, short, north Italian who was "fucked by four Arabs in Tangier," comes in with Stanley, a deaf, lisping designer who's rather odd; then Jim Hazel, tall and cute with glasses, from Bonwits, and Bruce, who startles when he says he's 41, a stage manager, sexy, stocky, long-haired, who LOVES CANASTA, as does Even, so there's a nice evening there, somewhere, and Herb, an older scenery painter for movies and opera, and the steaks are small, but the Louis Sherry rum raisin ice cream on Marron Glacé is good, and the wine, and we leave at 12:30, NICE!


SATURDAY, JANUARY 17. SIT DOWN AND TYPE THIS DIARY UP TO DATE WITH 16 PAGES, AT LAST!! Watch the last hour of "Return of Dr. Mabuse" since I'd just seen another Mabuse film, but this had no connection with Lang, I'm sure, being a terrible thing with a flabby Lex Barker and a masked man straight out of the "Shadow." Get down to typing, and type the last sixteen pages to get the diary up to date, and that's a great feeling. Then figure to finish the 1969 datebook completely by typing the last pages into the datebook list, and do so, and that finishes 20 pages with even greater triumph. Then I decide to catch the movie list up to date, and almost get finished doing that when Joe calls and asks to come over "because he wants to take a walk." I think this is strange until I remember that he was going to get my old portrait framed, and I figure he has it, and he has! I'd fixed the apartment up before he came, since it was rather a mess, and everything was done except for sweeping, and I left the vacuum cleaner out. Joe enters with the portrait and says something like "If you'd only rearrange your furniture," and I take him up on it immediately. Then it starts. We see what the place looks like with the sofa, together, making a small conversation room with its back to the back wall, but there's no room for anything else. Then the sofa is separated, facing but staggered so that both can open at the same time. Nothing works. I get discouraged and so is Joe, so I get out some tea and we sit and talk and think, and then I suggest putting it along the bedroom wall, and then things gradually fall into place, with many bookcases along the next apartment wall, and there are many things gained: the speakers are put at ear level, so that the whole sofa enjoys the stereo effect, the table is put before the window so that, when I resume eating during the day, I'll be looking outside, the far wall is opened out, and almost everything is taken out of the entranceway. We're finished about midnight, and I moan because the pizza place is closed, so we're out, and Angelo's is closed, so we go to Ralph's, and it's still bad. I get the Times, and it's nice reading until 3:30.


SUNDAY, JANUARY 18. Wake at 11 and out of bed, thinking it was 12, and Cyndy calls and we start talking about telling the truth and being the same person, and I start thinking about it and sit down and type the three pages of "Now Tell the Truth," and then she calls back and says she's ready for the walk, and I get up to meet her about 1:30. We're out into the park after she finds her eyeglasses under the bedclothes and loses her gloves, and it's cold and not terribly sloppy, and we go to the Mall, across the bottom of the Ramble and up to the castle, and then back where there's rather nice cruising going on, and Cyndy and I talk and talk about honesty and her man problems and the fact that EVERYONE has problems. Then we're cold and walk by way of the Pergola back to her place, and a doll and I exchange glances just as we're exiting at 69th Street, and I wished I could follow him, except that he undoubtedly thought I was "safe" being with Cyndy, who got all the glances in the Ramble, anyway. Back to her place at 4, and talk more, and I read part of Krishnamurti's first brochure, and then we're down to the Lutheran Church on CPW for the Bach Cantata #3, and there's a half-hour service beforehand and fifteen minutes afterward, and Cyndy says no to Joe's invitation for a drink afterwards, and I look at the goodly progress on an increasingly-contrasting portrait, and we chat, and he says he's giving pictures away, and I look through them, narrow them down to 11, he takes out two of his newer ones, and then I get down to 4, which he gives me, though I'm to tell Avi I bought them. We walk down Broadway because he wants to get out, but since he's eaten, he won't join me for dinner. Back just after nine to watch the end of the Forsyte episode, and then I eat, reading the Look article on Transsexuals, then reread much of the Jnana Yoga book getting back into it, and then I'm quite tired, so I get to bed, which has been changed around, and I don't quite like it, because it takes two trips around to draw the blinds and pull the drapes, and it's such a messy looking bed with the head, with the bare mattress, facing into the room, and I decide I can do without it, and get to sleep fairly early at 1.


MONDAY, JANUARY 19. It's a good thing, too, because I have earplugs in and Joe Elkins rings at 9:30, waking me, with an invitation for tomorrow evening "coffee and dessert," and then I figure it's time to connect the stereo set, and retrieve the wires and attach the speakers, and everything else is already connected through various chains of extension cords, and everything works nicely. Decide to move the sofa closer to the kitchen and keep the bookcase by the side, which makes a good telephone shelf, even holding the telephone books, and it doesn't block traffic. Move the other bookcases around to get the good tops in the exposed places, and the bad tops along the wall where I can put books on top of them. Then I think to connect the remote speaker, and it's a pain because I have to go under the rug, and thus have to move everything off it. Momentarily quail at the work, but decide it has to be done, and do it, sweeping the exposed section of the rug, Then I decide the reading stand is too big for the hall, it can go along the far wall with the souvenir stand, and the little nightstand is perfect for the hall, isn't it? Then Joe calls from downstairs, and doesn't even notice the eyesore where it is, so that succeeds. He wants to hear Piaf and Aznavour, and I suggest, since he's going to buy fish, that I treat him to dinner at the Jolly Fisherman, if he stays around. He reads Stanislavski while I strip the cellophanes from the record jackets, clean up the rest of the apartment, and at 7 it's just as it was Saturday: the vacuum cleaner is out ready to sweep the floor, and the rest of the apartment looks fairly neat. The Jolly Fisherman is a fiasco as his salmon is dirty gray and absolutely tasteless and he sends it back for bluefish. The baked potatoes are whipped ones put back into limp shells, the salad isn't normal, and the French waitress is charming, but the $12.60 bill is too much, especially 95¢ for a tiny piece of apple pie, and we leave deciding never to go back. Joe admits he's bored and would like to do something, so we're back up to the Times and then quickly across town for "Z" at the Beekman. We get to wait inside for the great, snappy, effective, paced movie, and cab home at 1.


TUESDAY, JANUARY 20. Loaf till 11, feeling logy, then sweep the apartment completely, even moving around the bed in the bedroom to get all the crud out from underneath, and rearrange the bedroom as it was before Joe got to it, and then it's time to get out for a haircut and pick up laundry, then back to finish up odds and ends, and the day is completely wasted and Joe's in at 8. We decide not to go to McGovern's Steak House because he doesn't like the smoke and the fact that no one's eating there, and we go down to the Morning Star, where I have ox-tail rogué, with an accent on the e, and he has London broil, and both are excellent for the cheap price. Walk over to Joe and Bob's at 10, and we're not the last ones to get there, and they just had dinner for three, and another came down from Connecticut who was doing all the talking with Joe and me until Ken came in, and then Ken and Bob and I started talking about the relative merits between California and New York, and finally everyone was drawn into it, and the fellow talking to Joe about Philly had to leave to get back home, and the other fellow on the sofa continued to say nothing at all, merely looking disinterestedly back and forth to the ping-ponging of the conversation. Ken got rather drunk, which sort of destroyed his appeal, and then he admitted to being 41 years old, too, and moving back to California. We left about 12:30, and I recalled that I'd set up a Canasta evening for Thursday without a fourth, since Bruce was staying home with his lover to plaster the ceiling and wasn't available. So I called Joe back but Ken had left, and I got him at 1:05, and he gurgled and asked me over, but I said no, and then he called again at 1:30 just to say goodnight, and called me the next day as well, just checking, so he really seems to be interested. I got back to reading "Steppenwolf," and got so well into it, liking it enormously after the plodding of the first 100 pages, that I finished it sometime at 4:15, loving the Magic Theater as it deserved, but even more the Herman-Hermine and Pablo and Maria characters were truly lovely, and there seems to be no doubt that he was at least bisexual, as the climax is a lovely celebration of polymorphous perversity.


WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 21. Avi gets me out of bed at 10 to say he's not coming to the WSDG meeting tonight, but Bill is, and maybe Azak. Then Azak calls in the evening and says he's NOT coming, and so Bill and I have to do it alone. I listen to the rest of "Die Frau Ohne Shatten," and don't really find too much about the record that I like, and then listen to a few other things, finishing the theater and movie list up to date, and again the day goes past quickly, and I fix everything up and shower and shave and get all ready for Bill at 7, and he shows up at 7:15 when I get into "The Art of Painting," that Joe gave me from Barnes. We're right out to Coq au Vin, and it's crowded, a good sign, and the duck is quite fatty but tasty, and it's not a bad place. Otto is sitting at the other table, and he gives me his card, and I find he's been doing nothing since August, and that Tom Deloy has quit, too, and that I started it all. We're late for the meeting, and break into the middle of some of the Rod McKeun poetry, and it's not bad and surprisingly gay, and then it's 9:30, I open the results of the blood test last week to find that it's negative, we go up for coffee and cake, and Bill seems determined to make himself entertaining: telling stories about life in Texas, about the courtesy down there, about his current problems in the hospital, we discovered we both know Zoltan, and he goes on and on about brain waves and myasthenia gravis, and serotonin and drugs and curare, and we dance a bit, but he dances even worse than I do, and we end up sitting watching the other dancers and talking. It's over about 11, and he drives me up, agreeing to drop by next week at 7 so we can have dinner before the next meeting. Then I'm up and don't feel like reading anything, so sit like a lump and watch "The Big House" with a cute Chester Morris and a nothing Robert Montgomery and a "Who ME? Aw, I was just kiddin'" Wallace Beery. Then "Hiawatha" comes on, and I don't find Vince Edwards nearly as attractive as I recall, and then at 3 I look at the top center apartment across the way, and there are 4 guys, three leave, and the other stands in front of a light, feels himself up, and masturbates! I come sympathetically.


THURSDAY, JANUARY 22. Avi calls at 10, waking me, to find how the evening went between Bill and me, and I say he should call Itai to check on when I'll be getting the rest of my pay for typing his paper. Decide to stay up and write letters to Bill and Claudia and Lisa and Grandma, clearing up the last of the correspondence pile, and everything is finishing up and I'm beginning to make commitments to myself to finish the book in the month of February, so I'm getting everything out of the way. But I still have things to do like finish up the movie list and tabulate the number of times I've seen things, and each day gets more and more picayune, as I pick up everything behind me, clean things beyond their need, and become generally a crotchety old lady about getting things done. Then Gay comes in and I read all of it, wasting a lot of time. Then I shower and shave and eat dinner in preparation for the Canasta party this evening, and Evan arrives first, and we talk nicely about things, then Ken comes in, and he strikes me as more dizzy than Monday, and he keeps on drinking and drinking. Azak arrives to say he hasn't eaten, but doesn't want anything besides tea. We talk until about 9:30 and then get down to Canasta, liking my rules, and we pair off and tutor the unknowing ones, and then by the second game we know what's going on, except for Ken, who seems odder than Azak, if that's possible, and though Azak gives two huge frozen discard piles to Evan, Evan gives me one on which I go out, and we win the game, the second one, where they trounced us the first time. Then Azak begins to talk about some Personality "defining" test that shows Americans like sex and eating above sight and use of the limbs, and we get into a huge hassle about the effectiveness of tests, the computerization of mankind, and problems of the world in general. Much of it is stupid talk, but some of it is interesting, and Evan shines through the evening as rather a nice guy, and when they leave and I check the clock, having fed the record player all evening with Prokofiev and Shostakovich, it's 4 am!


FRIDAY, JANUARY 23. Wake about 11:30 and decide I'll really finish off the list of things to do, and call the Levine caricature gallery to find that tomorrow is the last day, and call Marty to find he's working, but I can leave "Iris" off with Jerri's brother who's babysitting, and then call Azak, and he agrees to meet me at the Gallery of Erotic Art, whom I call and say I'll be there at 2:30. Take Cyndy's advice and walk downstairs for the mail, and even manage to trot back up, but get very winded and have to sit down, lungs feeling congested, and decide it IS very good exercise, though it only takes a little less than 4½ minutes to get down, get the mail, and get back up, door-to-door. Then walk out and get treated strangely (ignored) by Jerri's brother, I find the riding stables are on his block, 89th, and walk across the park gazing at the hundreds of geese, ducks, and seagulls on the frozen reservoir, and get to the corner just in time to meet Azak at 2:45, and Bob is glad to see us, talking up a streak again, and Azak and I discuss the paintings, and then it's 3:45 and Azak says he has an appointment, so I take off too, to the Levine, rather reasonable for $300 each, and the Surrealism, which is largely disbanded, having started in November, and a tiny Tanguy was priced at $15,000 and a larger at $50,000, so forget it! Then I searched for the last of the records, though I was tired of walking, and managed to find the "Te Deum" at Korvettes, the Riisager at Record Hunter, who referred me to King Carol, where I got the Berlioz, and tried a few other places until ordering the "Song of the Forests" for $6. Home exhausted at 6, and who calls but Bob Rosinek, who comes over with grass, and we listen to Moody Blues and turn on, and he's built curving downward like an enormous tongue-presser, and has a lovely slender ripply body which is very nice to hug, and we talk about astrology and his shop and his wife and music tastes and LSD, and I flatter him outrageously about his togetherness, and he seems terribly nice, and works over me when I can't come up, and I hope I didn't disgust him. Bed at 2:30.


SATURDAY, JANUARY 24. Up fairly late, still working on the one-meal-a-day plan, and get hungrier and hungrier, until finally about 5 I can't take it and make myself some Instant Cream of Wheat to fill my stomach before going to Azak's. The last thing to do is type the poems for Elaine's "The River," and I do so, putting everything together, and then it's all finished but putting the names of new conquests into the book, and that more or less finishes off the last bits of 1969, and we're fully into the new decade. Walk over to Azak's at 8:15, and meet Bill in the hall, and in a bit Harvey Odze comes in, and he's cute and graying and rather sexily dressed, and there's much eye contact and knee tugging and arm gripping, and Azak has to make do with Bill. He's out for bread, and we talk about doctors and their business, and then it's time for dinner, after strong screwdrivers, and there's a carafe of wine, and brandy over the ice cream and marron glacé, and the steaks are great, though I'm still hungry even after the cheese and hot rolls. Then we all drink Drambuie, Azak puts on records, we start dancing, and I kiss him first, then latch onto Harvey as Azak falls into Bill's arms, and Harvey and I get along very well, and then I even wander over to Bill to let him share in my embraces, and he's quite awkward, still, though plastered, as I am. Azak insists on coming to my place for grass, so we grab a cab over at 12:30, and I put on Mefisto and Moody Blues, and everyone smokes, and Harvey and I end up in the bedroom, where I'm now predictably limp, and finally I do him, and since he's small, he's manageable, and comes very nicely. Tries working over me, but I'm completely dead, and too drunk and slightly flying to care. Azak is in the chair and Bill on the sofa, and then Bill makes another for himself, and he's sleeping quietly, until he begins feeling his heart, and worriedly asks Azak into consultation, and they agree that he's in fibrillation, has tachycardia, and he lies down, the windows open, and Harvey exits in anxiety, taking two aspirins, and finally Azak calls the ambulance at 3:30.


SUNDAY, JANUARY 25. Bill looks frighteningly nervous, feeling his pulse, raising his right hand to his beard, coughing little sputters which he guards as if pushing his equilibrium just a bit too far would result in death. He later said he had a choking feeling, and he didn't cotton to Azak's glib assurance it was only "tachycardia," and he determined it was atrial fibrillation, with the block moving around in the heart. Finally the ambulance came, they questioned him about name, age, address, and cause of the reaction, and he confessed to taking a Benzedrine a number of hours before, a prerogative available to him as a doctor. We rode in the ambulance down to the Polyclinic Hospital on 51st, and he was gone. Azak sat and fretted about his lack of identification, and finally left about 4 am. I talked to the doctor and found his heart was beating regularly; he was sleeping; could I wait around until 6:30 or 7 and take him home? So I sat and read old magazines and looked out at the snow falling and paced the corridors until 7:30, and the nurse said I could go back and help him dress. There was the same self-deprecatory smile, but pallor and his fading hair on the top of his head was saddening: "It could have been very serious for me," he confessed, and I murmured "I know." Walked out to the taxi and after my insistence on coming with him, he replied "I'll fight you for the cab" and got in to go home. I wandered home in a daze, took the phone off the hook, and fell into bed at 8:30. The house phone rang at 1:15, but for the wrong person---that's two worried inquiries in a week for 309 West 57th, it almost seems like an epidemic. Up then to read the paper, and I called Azak to tell him Bill was OK, called Bill to find no answer, called Avi and Evan to find no answer, wrote a letter to Rita, listened to music, washed dishes, watched the end of "Cry, Terror" to see the scenes I'd witnessed being photographed in the Hudson Tubes so long ago, watched the beginning of "Hombre" with a dour Paul Newman, eating dinner just as Azak called inviting me to dinner with Dorothy Davies, who was important, but too much, for him. We ate at the Brasserie, here to bed at 1:30.


MONDAY, JANUARY 26. Starting to have a sore throat, so I lay in bed till 12. Then I'm up and decide I just have to finish one of the last tasks left to do: getting rid of the books, so I get them out of the closet and there on top is the 1960 diary, and I think to add that to the list of books thrown away, and I thumb through it and decide right there that I have to transcribe it, otherwise I'd written it for no purpose, and I couldn't stand that thought. Figure it's something between 60 and 80 pages, and I can do that in two days, so I'll be through with it tomorrow, and I start on it. The phone rings and it's Bob, asking if it would be OK to bring over a friend from the gallery. OK. So I hop into the shower and dress sexy and Bob and Joe come in at 2:30, Joe rather plump but still cute enough, and we sit around talking about a "salon" for a bit, and then I finish attaching the tape recorder in my new system, and they start feeling each other up and taking their clothes off, and we're all into bed, groping and forming a triangle of lips and mouths, tongues lapping about a common point, and it's strange and vaguely automatic. I still can't get up, and Joe goes down on me, then tries to screw me, but that doesn't work, even though I'm kissing Bob very nicely. Joe sort of rolls over on his back and lies there, and I figure I can only do him, and he really shoves his long cock down my throat until I can feel my stomach heaving, throat filled with head and shaft, and he pumps away, tears starting from my eyes, nose running, and he comes in great dry gasps, which indicates they aren't even kissing, and Bob's rubbing my back, and I roll back when my mouth is too much for Joe, and I jerk myself off, Bob watching, Joe lying there quiet. When I come, Joe dresses and leaves, and Bob and I continue, I doing him, pleasantly sexy, and he whacks away at me, and leaves at 6:30. I sigh and get the place back in order and finish typing 29 pages of the 1960 diary, finished through the month of March, over half done, and watch "Suddenly, Last Summer" again on TV, eating dinner during it, and then read a bit more of Jnana Yoga, but I'm tired, and get to bed, feeling worn out from the sex.


TUESDAY, JANUARY 27. Up determined to finish the 1960 diary, and I actually complete it, just about 24 hours after I'd started it, and I have the whole afternoon ahead of me after finishing the 25 pages. Then get to the other books, and I reread some of them in order to throw them away, and some I decide to keep, and it's a rather frustrating afternoon as I'm tempted to throw away many, but I want to have the security of knowing that I won't throw away anything that I'll conceivably use at some other time. Joe calls about 4 and says he's committed himself to writing a paper about the Sibelius Violin Concerto, and he comes over quickly to listen to the record I have of it. He hasn't eaten, so while I eat franks and beans, he has a sandwich. I call Avi and he has nothing to do, so I ask him over to learn how to play Canasta, though he asks himself over to play chess. I get him into the Canasta rules, and we're playing along nicely, and Azak calls and says he must pick up his suit and shirt, and I tell him what the situation is, and he says he has a cold and looks terrible, but must come over anyway. He shows up with glasses, wrinkled corduroy trousers and a red pullover which he immediately decorates with a scarf he takes from the shirt he had here. And he's more natural than he's ever been, and is quite a delight, waving his scarf at Avi and whispering "Turn to shit, turn to shit, turn to shit," when Avi says how dreadful he looks. Then Azak insists on playing cards with us, and we debate playing three-handed, and then Joe says he'll play, too. I put records on and they adore the Sibelius and many others, and we play along until midnight, everyone rather surprised by what came of the evening. I've fallen into the delightful position of not having to telephone anyone: everyone calls me, offers to come over, and more often than not there are people waiting in line to be with me, and it's terribly flattering, and I make no efforts to control anything: if it happens, it happens, if it doesn't, something else will turn up to take its place. There's an enormous feeling of freedom and happiness about the whole thing, and I literally smile at the end of the evening, it's been so nice.


WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 28. Continue to throw books away during the day, taking pains particularly with the American Men of Letters series to make sure I have captured in a couple of pages what the listless authors tried to say in a couple of hundred pages. Decide I also have to reorganize the books in the bookcases now that the room has been moved around, and there are many books out of order which must be filed in, and there's also the thought that many more could be thrown away. Bill calls at 5, saying he'll be around at 6, and I jump into the tub to wash my hair and get myself fixed up, and he shows up about 6:30, saying he wants to eat down at his place, and we drive down, I see the enormous apartment for which he pays $299 a month, which isn't a bargain, but he's happy with it (if he ever gets furniture for it), and we go downstairs to the Rajmahal, which isn't quite as good as the Ceylon or the Maharajah, but is passable, and it's pretty close to 8:30, so we're across town and I tell him about Bob's possibly being there, and the meeting has started and we have to stand. It's very campy and noisy and loud, with some very funny remarks, and I make a few comments, and then we're upstairs for coffee and Kenny is there, and also Bob, and we talk and he says he's taken out an ad for his Homosexual showing, will make an announcement next week, talks to Marie about getting some Lesbian art, and we chat on, down a bit to see that no one's dancing, and he keeps saying he wants to get home with me, so I tell Bill we're leaving (leaving my sweater in his car), and cab up to my place, where we smoke, and he finds out I have "Tommy," and I put that on, and we smoke three cigarettes in all, and I'm further out than I'd ever been, and he smiles and says he gets a trip just by latching onto mine. During intermissions there are drinks of ginger ale and 7-Up, and time stretches out, but I'm off the "everything is repeated" kick of before, though things look and taste the same, but the time sense is distorted, and the legs feel oil-coated when I stoop down to work with the tape recorder. He leaves at 2:30, and I still feel very high, so I sit around listening to music until I come down at 4.


THURSDAY, JANUARY 29. I'm not up until noon, when Joan calls to say she has a date tonight so she can't come over for the Church of the Awakening, as she'd wanted, but she's buying perfume for her boss at Sak's, so we can meet for lunch. I quickly dress and get out, meeting her at 1:15, and we walk over to the Brochetteria, both having giant hamburgers, and she entertains the people at the next table with her tales of sex and orgy and pot, and we get lots said but little interchanged, and it's rather typical when no one is listening. But the crowd was even better and more attractive than before. Out about 2:30, and I get up to Marlboro's to buy the Offenbach stereo recording of "Tales of Hoffman," and get back here to listen to it from start to finish (no, this on Friday, today I went to Bob's gallery at 6 pm!), reading the libretto, glancing through the book, and then Florence Levy calls to say she can't come out after dark, but we talk about Vedanta at 57th Street, Meher Baba who "dropped his body" before he said what he was going to say, yet people still flock to his center where "the vibrations are good, you know," and I tell her about Krishnamurti and say I'll call her some other time. Then I get fixed up for 8 pm, and at the stroke of 8 Dave Feld calls from the Americana and we talk until 9:30, about his apartment in Torrance, that he's making between $16-17,000, that a PhD in Physics was offered a starting job at $8000 a year, that there was a glut on the market, departments were dwindling, and then we got into the acid and pot scenes, and I shocked him a number of times. We talked about all the people we knew, about the Church, and how no one had arrived, and when I hung up, Bob came in, delighted that no one was around. So we sat down and smoked two, and again it was into bed, he trying manfully to get me erect, sucking or jerking, and we established, after he tried with his fingers, that I got nothing from anal stimulation, and it just ended up that I jerked myself off and he came lubricated with my come, and I finally got a feeling that coming with pot COULD be something special, as the spasms went on and on, and I flew out somewhere during each, and my whole body was permitted to enjoy it, and he got quite a bit, too. He left at 2.


FRIDAY, JANUARY 30. I had made arrangements to meet Norma at 12:30, and whether it was the pot or the sex or the emotion (DIARY 835, Pot with Bob, took place last night, too, which was a real mind-blower), I felt quite drained and slow moving, almost as if I had a hangover from the pot, a fact which Joan tended to verify yesterday. Didn't even shave after last night for Norma, and we went to La Cabana, which she liked, and I had the green banana soup, which was more curry than anything else, and she had the avocado and meat pie, which was small, but enough for her, and I had the sweetbreads, breaded strangely in cornmeal and rather tasteless. And had the frozen bonbon for dessert, which she HEARD was full of liquor, while I heard "licorice," yet she tasted it and called it "a slip." She talked about going to bed with the guy in the AA discussion group, other people in her life, how things were going nicely for her, and how she was looking for an apartment to cement her split with Lou. I told her about "Ken," and covered when I let slip with Bob---or at least think I did---and told her about Joan's thesis that EVERYONE was going through a period of turmoil, and we talked about that for a bit. Then it was 2:30 and she left for work and I got to work on the bookshelves, taking each book out and dusting it, setting up the one facing the hallway as the first of the alphabet, lining others up on the floor to be put away, then getting to the one in back of the TV to get a lot of them ready to be thrown away, and the sections seemed to fit into place nicely, and at the point when the room was in maximum mess, Avi called, said he was flying, and wanted to come down and eat with me. I'd called Joe, who couldn't come over last night because of the Church and Bob, to come over to listen to music for his paper, and then Bob called, and said he would call back. Avi floats in, listens to Mahler's Second, and we're down to a jammed Coq au Vin, and then over to Brittany du Soir, where HE entertains the couple next with his head and paranoias. Back and Joe enters, and then Bob comes in, and we sit and listen to music and talk to 10:30, and then Bob and I go until 1.


SATURDAY, JANUARY 31. I simply put his head into the wrong slot by conking out on him, letting him do all the work, and not even bothering to return the fantastic compliments he throws my way. I'm simply exhausted, and I have to get some sleep, and I sleep through until 10:30, feeling somewhat better, but still strung out and listless. Get back to the books and through the afternoon get rid of sacks full of paper and brochures, typing many pages of Thrown Away Books, and to empty out the evening, Harvey calls and says he won't be able to make it over at 9, since he has a very bad cold. This is fine, so I call Joe and say the record player is free again, and I half expect Bob to call, but he doesn't, and it may even be that I'll be the next one to call him, since when he left last night, it was with ominous words that he was going to be busy about the new show, and he took a few extra kisses to "tide him through the dry periods coming." Get all the books put away, and am very conscious that tomorrow I committed myself to get back to the novel, so at 5:30 I wash dishes, to get that out of the way, and I don't shower or shave, typing the last of the books thrown away, and Joe comes over at 8, I finish the lot by glancing through the Famous Writer's Magazine and getting rid of that, and it's 8:30, and I watch "Front Page" on TV with the Plumstead Playhouse, but it's a rather dreadful play, and Bill Hyde calls at 9:15 and talks for about a half hour, saying he wants to go back to school to get more credit so he can teach in college, or he wants to write, or he wants to find the philosopher's stone, and I talk to him about it, and he says he might be coming down to NYC for a week after February 15. Fine. He gets off the phone at 10, and I go out for pizza and make tea for Joe and we talk about his paper, and I read the Times, and he leaves at 12, saying he'll be back tomorrow. I still feel terribly dragged out, and actually get to bed at 1, thinking about the book that I have to get back to tomorrow, but also knowing that I have a week's diary to catch up with before I can get down to writing, and then there's the ballet tomorrow night, and before I know it, I fall asleep.


SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 1. Up at 11 and watch "Hundertwasser" on Camera Three, then feel that I have to shower and wash my hair and shave and type up the notes I'd taken before and something about Bob before I could get down to even typing the seven diary days I was behind schedule, but get all that done by the time Joe comes over at 1:30 to listen to his records, and then I actually fulfill my dream to get back to the book, setting up folders for the pages so it won't take me ages to get back into it each time (yet taking a bit of time, needed, away from today's efforts), and finally get down to it. Spend most of the time abbreviating the autobiographical section, and it fits awkwardly into the whole thing, but it will suffice for the second draft. I guess I should decide on the number of drafts: the second to pull the whole thing together in fairly finished form, the third to iron out all the remaining major kinks. And the fourth to finish it off finally, so I have to type about 336 pages to the second draft (that comes from 12 pages per day for each of the 28 days in February), and about 332 pages for each of the third and fourth drafts, so I can tell myself that I just have to type 1000 pages of the novel and I'll be finished with it---and that shouldn't take over 200 days, so I should be finished sometimes around the end of August, hardly the end of February as I've been saying. But if I stick to 10 pages per day, it'll take 100 days, and that shortens it down to May 11. Well, we'll see how it goes. That goes until 4:30, when I type a resume for Joe, and we walk up to his place at 5, he showers and shaves and I reread a bit of lousy Henry James, and we get to the Yano Restaurant at 5:45, where we have good Shabu-Shabu and Yosenabe for $11, but not much to eat. Get to the ballet at 7 to find a great "Reveries" by a very inventive John Clifford, a good production of "Apollo" to still the lousy taste from the last one, a rather disappointing "In the Night" by Jerome Robbins, and a lousy "Firebird" with a great Melissa Hayden. Avi joins Joe and me for waffles and dessert across the street, and I'm home at 11 to work the Times puzzle (WHY?) to 1 am, and bed.


MONDAY, FEBRUARY 2. Make Caribbean Island list until 12, when Bob phones from 57th and 6th, and I ask him to come over, and we get very high on each other without having to resort to pot or to music, just look out the window for awhile with the binoculars, then hop into bed for a casual relaxed session in which I'm more often up than down, for a pleasant change. He has to leave at 2:30 to meet Betty, and I have to go to the bank, so I walk him to the bus, toying with the idea of kissing goodbye on the corner, and we content ourselves with kissing the air which stands between us. I get to the bank and up to Lincoln Center to get "Lucia" tickets and find that "Mefistofeles" is completely sold out. Back to get a call from Avi and call Azak and invite him over for Canasta this evening, type a few pages of the book, falling behind for the first time in my schedule, and then call John, take a shower and eat dinner, and John's in even a bit early to tell me about his friend in Carnegie Hall Studios to whom he wants to introduce me, and Evan arrives and we sit around talking about sex, and Azak comes in a half hour late, having called, and we sit around talking a bit and get down to Canasta at 9:30. The games are fun, we winning the first, they winning the second on points alone, and at 1 Evan says he wants to go to a bar. I get out old Gay and Screw which everyone looks at, and they leave and we decide to try Salvation. Cab down to Sheridan Square and I see Richard walking across the street and ask him for the Gold Bug, and he walks us over there, telling about Tenth of Always, an all-night after-hours place in the fire house across the street, and we're in to dance, come over the veined arms of the waiter in tight stretch denims, but there's no one exciting, and we walk down Christopher to a local pub where everyone stands around like casting extras, and I get cruised a bit and talk to a lovely blue-eyed babyface whose love is sleeping in Jersey tonight, and we're down to the trucks, while I "stand watch" Evan goes into an open van and uses his "Smooth ass," while I talk to passersby. Up to the Toolbox at closing, really great, and walk back, cab up, bed at 5 am.


TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 3. Dial my phone off the hook, wake at 10:30, out of bed at 12:30. Put the phone back on and Norma calls, and we talk until 12:50 and she has to get to Beecher at 1. Put the phone back on and Bob calls, and we talk for a long time about his up-tight talk with Betty and Grant, how he's going to see an editor of an upcoming quality 3-D sex rag tonight, and hang up and Joe calls from the Door Store, and we talk for a bit, and then I call Joan to figure out my name numerically in response to Elaine's statement that Bob Zak is a groovy 3, while Robert Zolnerzak is an "eh" 8, and I find that Bob Zolnerzak is the same groovy three. By this time it's 3:30, and the day has practically gone. Decide I want to get stuff done for Elaine, so thumb through DIARY to pick out five good short things: Life-Sandwich, I-God, Immortality, Living Cosmos, and Beyond, and spend the rest of the day correcting them and changing them. Feel guilty about turning Avi off last night, and call him and Evan to invite Avi over for the evening, and he calls at 7 to say he'll be over at 8:30. I eat and leave myself and the apartment a mess, and he watches "First Tuesday" on TV for the Israel Air Force while I type test copies of most of what I've revised, and then I sit reading sections from his book while he reads my stuff, and likes most of it, not questioning what I saw, but quibbling about bits of punctuation, questioning words he doesn't happen to know, and I critique him on being verbose, elegiac, and stilted. He was supposed to hear music, and we could have played cards, but we look at the clock and it's midnight; he must leave. We look out the window to find a blizzard outside, and he moans having to walk home through it. After he leaves I sit and read everything aloud, changing small words and breaking up some long things into more sentences, and am rather pleased with them at last. This takes until 1:30, and I get into bed after having fixed up the apartment completely, and now that I have the time to keep things in perfect order, I tend to do so, which means that there's a flurry of putting things away and organizing and cleaning up about twice a day.


WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 4. Up at 10:30 and again walk up and downstairs to get the mail, and I still DO get Life, which means someone took it last week! Glance through it, and then decide to finish off the old holeless ICWU stationery, and type five DIARY pages, the five before this, and type this beginning of the first DIARY day on notebook paper again at 12:30 pm! Then, just at that moment, Joe calls and says he'll be going to the library to pick up records, then coming here, and I type a few more things and he's here, and I ransack my collection of violin music to find cadenzas and examples of them, and it's as late as 4:45 when we decide to get out and look for a Guide Bleu. We find lots of Guide Michelin's for $4.50, but that's expensive compared with the 15 franc price in France, about $3, so there's a 50% increase in price here, and I'm sure my "World Guide" which was blue in Morocco was about that much cheaper than here. We go to Scribner's, Doubleday's, Rizzoli in the freezing cold, and then I'm here at 6 to jump into the shower and get out just in time to welcome Bill at 6:30, and Bob enters at 6:50, and at 7, after wine and scotch and the Moody Blues, we're over to the Slate for a $13.50 tab, not bad for 3, and Bill drives us down to the Size Queen, where the funniest line was someone reading off records to sell with the titles "Darling, How Long?" and "Sweet Little Thing." Bill leaves, we coffee and dance, and leave at 10 to 11, cab uptown on the icy streets, and he begins to read some of my writing, but we turn on, and before we know it, we're in bed, and I'm gyrating to Mahler that he told me to put on, and I go from the 1st to the 2nd to the 8th, and get wilder at each one, so that I come on top of him in a blazing "Oh, God," and his fingers absolutely electrify me, and I even turn him on just by twitching and recoiling under his light fingers. My hands move over him somewhat less effectively, and he says he must leave at 1:20, which is rather early, and I'm still tingling and excited when he leaves, so I sit naked in the chair and write "God is the Orgasm of the Mind" and listen to the rest of the 8th, popular music, and get to bed at 4.


THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 5. Up at noon, walk down again for the mail, read till 2, and then get back to typing the pages for Elaine, with all Avi's and Joe's and Bob's corrections on them, plus some more of mine, making more short sentences, making things clearer, less train of thought. Avi calls and we talk about the size discussion of last night, Joe calls and says he'll be over later, I call Norma but there's no answer, and the day somehow slips by and the only thing I've finished are the thirteen final pages for Elaine, and Joe comes over at 8. I also took time from 5 to 6 to watch the color version of "The Lost World" with Michael Rennie, a gay Fernando Lamas looking for Santiago, his "brother" (hmmm), and a beautiful dark-eyed David Hedison. I eat dinner as Joe's here, and can't really get down to anything. Walter Joseph called LAST night to say he's going to Mexico on Saturday and planning to be back around the first of April, and Arno called tonight to talk about how bored he was with St. Martins, how great and gay St. Thomas was, and how lousy Puerto Rico was outside the rain forest. By then it's 10, and Joe and I watch the lousy Dean Martin show in order to see a few terrible minutes of Fonteyn and Nureyev, and then he leaves about 11:30. I don't feel like doing anything, so I put on a tape and read about an hour's worth of "Typee," and then I simply feel tired and decide to go to bed really early at 1:30. Beginning to worry about my determination to finish the book during this month of February, and here five days have passed, I'm supposed to be 60 pages into the book, and I've only finished 16. It's true that I could break my neck and make up in two days, but final revising, such as I did on Elaine's pages, I find, takes at least TWO days for twelve pages---not that I devoted that much time to it, but it takes SOME time to let one revision settle before starting on another. Oh, I remember I also called John, who hadn't been able to get Glenway Wescott's permission for the gallery to use his address, and I assume he'll let me find Pomeroy and Gebhart's addresses on my own. Feel so tired when I get to bed, even early. Climbing stairs?


FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 6. Wake at 9:30, up at 10:30, walk down for mail, nothing. Back to work on the book and actually finish typing through LSD-36, meaning I'd only have to finish 24 pages to get up to date, but I didn't do much more at all on that, since I'm typing this TWO WEEKS FROM THIS DATE, which is worse than I ever thought it would be, but that's now the fact. Harvey comes over at 6 and looks at me soulfully, and he lies down on the sofa on my lap as we listen to music, occasionally kissing, and he seems pent up behind his eyes, ready to explode into tears or words, yet I really don't give him a chance, as Arno and Bob call, and I invite both of them over, and we're still on the sofa and I decide we just have to get to dinner. He doesn't mind where we go, so we try the Fuji, after I change into a tie, and the food is quite good, the portions rather larger than many places, and we have three dishes, and I love the Tatsuta-Age chicken, though the beef teriyaki sauce isn't terribly strong, but his pork sukiyaki is good. Get back to find Arno waiting with the slide projector, and Bob comes in quickly, and I get out the slides of the US and the one of Canada and the one of Morocco, which everyone loves, and Arno shows his of the islands, and then Bob puts on his Hungarian pornography from 1875, while I play the Hungarian Rhapsodies, and they're more interesting in showing the range of perversions and age groups than sex, though there are good drawings of just plain cocks, one in the process of coming. Then I put on the Takemitsu for the Japanese erotica, and they're better, some of the white bodies very appealing. Then we talk more, Arno admits to turning on, and he leaves, and I put on music and can't think what to do next, and Bob and I are on the sofa and Harvey is unhappily on the chair, looking forlornly at me. We start smoking, and I go way out, described in DIARY 853-856, transcribed from jottings I made after it was all over. Harvey had to get home, and I promised to call and explain everything to him, but I really feared having some sort of heart seizure as Bill did, and Bob was wonderful through it all, staying right there with me, and not leaving till I was down at 2:30.


SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 7. Wake at 12:30, still feeling a sort of hangover and Joe calls to come over and listen to music. I use the time to get some small things done, but then he starts listening to other violin music, and my indexing comes in handy as I pull out all my violin music looking for a cadenza, and we succeed in finding some, and then we go out for a walk in the park and when I get back I don't feel like doing anything, so I just listen to more music, and then I get out for the Times. Don't know what else I did this day, but it wasn't work on the book. Kept trying to get back to it even after I finished the stuff for Elaine, but I just didn't feel like it, so I didn't. May have spent lots of time on the telephone, because it seems that I'm spending more and more time calling people and people calling me. Joan seems to be coming back, as I have detailed information bout aher staying one week with Vicki so she won't kill herself, moving into another apartment, and finally toward the end setting up her own showcase theater presentation, though she doesn't have any money to do it with, nor a theater in which to do it. But it seems I'm always on the phone with someone or other, taking Azak's time, keeping Joe occupied when the Door Store isn't busy, talking to Norma when she's not in some meeting or other, Pat Burrell calls and says he must invite me to his apartment, and I debate asking him for Sunday, for which I took a lot of time inviting people, too, like Laird and Joe and Bob. Eddie calls every so often, and Avi reports in with his affair with Ronnie, Evan has taken to calling me more and more and talking lengthily about nothing, Bill called from Maine while Joe was here to talk about coming down for a week, and going into graduate school for a doctorate, Walter Joseph called to say he was going to Mexico, John Kim calls, Bob calls almost every day and we talk for at least a half an hour, and Marty and Cyndy take up their no little time with long discussions. So the day goes by and nothing gets done, and since I'm not even recording them when they happen, everything is forgotten, and the page is filled.


SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 8. Work the puzzle and get to bed late, and John Connolly calls to say he ha a spare ticket to "Jewels," and would I like to meet him at the theater at 1. Have just time to put something into my stomach, shave and shower, and I'm off to the pretty Emeralds with the original cast, but Marnee Morris is no Patricia whoever in Rubies and Peter Martins and Kay Mazzo are rather dreadfully uninspired in Diamonds, and even the orchestra seemed muted for the glorious Tchaikovsky climax. John couldn't come over since he was entertaining a guest, so I went home and fussed with the Times some more, and then I ate and got up to meet Joe for the ballet again, having "Apollo" and "Firebird" substituted---no, we saw "Who Cares?" which had some nice touches, but the music was dreadful, more so because it wasn't orchestrated yet by Hershey Kay, since he was working on "Coco," and "Dances at a Gathering" was also piano solo, but quite a bit better, and some of the touches were sheer genius. We want to get dessert afterwards, and I think of the fudge, so we stop in the corner store and pick up heavy cream which Joe whips into too-tasteless topping without sugar or vanilla, and $1.65 pecans which I chop up for the top, and we guzzle the pint of Haagen-Dazs ice cream and lots of chocolate, and I dirty an enormous quantity of dishes, but the taste is really out of this world, and we love it. Sit around and talk and he leaves about midnight, when I don't feel tired and sit down to finish the rest of Melville's "Typee," and the thoughts of the horrors that the French brought to the islands, and how sweet life COULD be, drive into my head as I keep thinking I'm liking New York less and less, but there are no decent alternatives around where I can still get the opera and the ballet every week, along with old movies and a fantastic range of friends and references to friends and bars and baths. Finish the book at 1:30, and get to a cold bed, congratulating myself that I really haven't even had the thought of masturbating for the past couple of weeks, thanks mainly to Bob and partly to sheer exhaustion of body.


MONDAY, FEBRUARY 9. Bob calls early in the morning to say that he wants to see "Zabriskie Point" at the first showing at noon, so I quickly get down and he's gotten into line early, and it stretches practically to Second Avenue, and the place fills up and more for the first and second shows. We agree that it's a great flick, the hallucination of themselves as all fucking people in Death Valley, her visions of the "uptight" world exploding at the end in lovely slow motion are two mind-blowing, intrinsic beauties. Stop in at a coffee shop for lunch, and I have a cheeseburger, breaking my fast for the first time in a long time, and then we're here to have sex and talk without music and without smoking, which is a welcome relief, and I find I'm up more often than not, which is progress, and even he recognizes it as such. He leaves at 5 and I swing around the apartment for the rest of the time until Laugh-In from 8 to 9, and then I watch "Satan Bug" from 9-11, about a Richard Baseharted scientist who threatens to kill off LA unless war stops, and it would make a good plot, but the scientist goes screwy and the plot awry, and the next few days carries an article in the Times about a virus which is so virulent that they stop doing research on it, since it kills so many of the victims. Cheers for a happy dead planet! Then Vince Edwards is in "City of Fear," and again it's rather sci-fi, as he cuddles a canister to his getting-flabby arms and chest which he thinks contains heroin and really contains Cobalt-60, which gradually kills him, but the chase scenes are rather effective, and he is nice to look at, sweating and straining against his radioactive climax. Then watch the old Mark Twain story "Man with a Million" with a great Gregory Peck and a flock of unknowns in a brilliant rendition of a million pound note which gets him all the credit in London. Though I curse myself for boobily sitting in front of the TV set for seven solid hours, the time has passed very pleasantly, I'm tired enough to fall asleep immediately, and there was nothing else that I really wanted to do. Curse myself, yet excuse myself at the same time, and with that attitude, I can foresee no changes in life.


TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 10. Today's the last day for "Coming Apart" and "Model Shop" at the Apollo, so I call for the schedule and actually get down there before noon (there are benefits to not eating breakfast) and see the end of "Coming Apart," and it dawns on me that it isn't Max Schell who's the hero, it's Rip Torn, who is definitely second best. "Model Shop" is a good evocation of a fellow who does nothing and is interested in doing nothing, even though he has lots of potential. True, the army is hanging over his head, giving him directionless anxiety, but the parallel with my case is direct, and it seems Lelouche might have troubles there himself, since the point was so beautifully made. What do you say to yourself when you feel "But I just don't feel like DOING anything"? And girls and pornography and cars and TV just don't fill what you want to be filled. "Coming Apart" was a dreadful Ginsberg thing with the only good parts being Rip Torn questioning why he films everything, and I can see Ginsburg questioning himself and my own questions about this diary: nothing is done unless it's shared, maybe that's it, I want to be published, the doctor in "Coming Apart" has the urge to tell people he's filming them, Ginsberg want HIS film shown. Decide I want to see the first part of Model Shop again to gape at Gary Lockwood's humpy body, and go search out the innards of the Apollo (see Diary 874-877). Out just after 4:30 and get back home and eat and shower and walk up to John's for Canasta, but it's snowing and raining, so I take the subway and get there early. Azak calls to say he'll be late, and even Evan is late, and John shows them both the apartment for a couple of hours, so we don't get started playing until 10. We all love the game very much, and it's great competition and great fun, but Azak prefers bridge and he leaves at 1, after exasperating Evan with his chatting and his mistakes, and Evan and John and I decide to play cutthroat with three people, and it's enormous fun, interspersed with sexual comment back and forth among us, much tea and good chocolate cookies, and when we finish, worrying about Adair's absence, it's 4 am and we cab home.


WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 11. Wake about 11:30 and get right out to buy stamps and check 1970 catalog prices for my US want list and for the UN FDC #38, and take money with me, and end up buying $14 worth for a catalog value of about $60, which isn't bad, though some of them are really in rather sad shape, and I hear later that if only ONE perforation is missing, the value of the stamp is practically zero. But I do want to get that want-list completed. Buy Cue on the way back home to get my list up to date with both the new grouping of restaurants (from 34th-59th now divided, both east and west, into 34th-49th and 50th-59th, which still leaves them the largest in the set, but not so overwhelmingly large). Back and just prepare to dive into the whole thing when Joe calls and says he'd like to finish the portrait, so I walk up there and sit for a couple of hours, reading the start of "Magister Ludi" by Hesse, and it's a book I'll have to get and read. It ends up very well, and I discuss the colorations of the back window, the light on the fruit and the nuts, the planes in the painting, the changes by hanging it upside down, and we talk on very nicely until he says he wants to look for some of the Blue Guides for France. We go through the Librarie Francaise, Scribner's, Rizzoli, and Doubleday, and it's getting toward 6, and I have to get home. Bob was tentatively scheduled to come over about 10, but Azak calls with free tickets to something, so I cancel Bob and get over to Azak's, and he's on the phone most of the time and then we're down to a Blarney Stone type place where I have only a roast beef sandwich and milk, but I'm still hungry so I have some cherry pie and a chocolate-covered donut, and Azak critiques my dieting habits. Grab a cab down to search for Van Dam Street, and it's bitter cold and windy and we're to the theater early for "Transfers," with a garrulous Ron Leibman stealing most of the scene-chewing acting, and the third act is a monologue which is a tour-de-force, but I'm not sure I like his brand of force. Out again at 10:30 and walk all the way over to Washington Street and all the way up to the Den, and later to the Zodiac (see Diary 878-881), and bed at 3 am.


THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 12. Up at 11 and get right to the delightful stamps that I bought yesterday, and put everything in order in the stamp collection and put that away to get to the restaurant list. It seems no matter when I get a new Cue, there are always hundreds of changes to make, and I still haven't even gotten the hotel list quite up to date. To make things worse, they've changed print faces for about the fifth time since I started collecting restaurants, and many of the prices have gone up. Debate doing it at all before taking apart the 34th-59th sections, but again it's a question of investment: if I throw the whole thing out and say "fuck it," I will have wasted all the time I took to do it in the first place, a nice reference work will be gone, and I might even have to get to something serious today. Anyway, I rationalize, once I take care of THIS change, it will be strictly a matter of updating, since they don't change the format more than once every five or six years. So I get down to it, cutting and hinging and rearranging, listening to all sorts of music while I do so, and by 4 pm that's finished, too, much to my pleasure (though the thought that I'll have to go out NEXT week and get the next issue for the overlapping restaurants is in the back of my mind---but then it WILL be only an update, and hopefully I won't have to cut out more than 100 restaurants to replace old ones and add new ones). Avi calls and says he and Ronnie are coming over for Scrabble, and Bob agrees, so at 8 they're all here, and Bob gleefully says "Gee, I never played Scrabble high" and lights a joint. Ronnie settles into a controlling silence, Bob is quite quiet, and only Avi is tripping along, and I'm doing very badly, resulting in the fact that Bob wins the first game by one point over me, and I win the second game by one point over him, and we're exactly equal, and we exchange superior grins while Avi and Ronnie stagger off home at 10:30, as agreed. Bob and I smoke again and tumble into bed, and he's brought Janis Joplin's "Cosmic Blues" and the music is sexual, but I'm not really turned on, so we just rub together heavily and he leaves at 1:30, and I listen to 3, and then bed.


FRIDAY FEBRUARY 13. Get up about noon and feel like doing nothing at all. Don't write anything down on the calendar, so I must have moped around the house, taking the three pills that I've again started to take as vitamin and mineral supplements now that I'm on a diet, wearing my contact lenses, so now I'll assume I can wear them as much or as little as I want, unless I neglect wearing them for over a week, but I won't do that. It rather stacks up on the discomfort in my eyes, however, and it's sometimes a blessed relief not to wear them. I can reasonably see the point of not wearing them one day a week, but I'll think to wear them all the time, and more than one day I'll forget out of default, I'm sure. Again the house is getting rather messy, and I'm fixing it up, including washing a huge load of dishes, and telephoning people about the party on Sunday. Try to find someone to go with me to the New School films, but can't, and finally call Arnie. He's happy to hear from me, and we take up right where we left off, conversationally speaking. He's trying to stop his relationship with Joan, and he's also started seeing a psychiatrist about three things: his job, which he knows he'll mess up, if he ever finds one he likes, since he's always done that; me and his dependence on me, and Joan and his dependence on her. We talk for a bit over the phone, and then I hang up to talk to others and eat and get down a bit late to meet Arnie on the platform at 7:15, and we barely get there on time. "Lighter than Air" is a good 20-minute documentary on explosive and crashing dirigibles, and "Hell Divers" is pretty good, with Wallace Beery crying as usual and Clark Gable not doing too much, and the lead girl absolutely dreadful. Then we're out to eat at Felix's, where the waiters, the customers, the crowds all sing, and we try to ignore them (Arnie insists on applauding each one, I only applaud one guy who's passably good), and we talk about all sorts of things, and he admits that he was really a PEST when it came to me. I agreed. He was really being a BORE. Yes, he was. Out to Luigi's (see Diary 895-897), and get to bed at 3:30.


SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 14. Write letters during the day to Bill and Claudia, and get other bills and mailings out of the way, and both letters are rather hard to do, since I'd just talked to Bill and he wanted to know what I thought about his going back to school, and it was the first letter to Claudia after her miscarriage. The day goes on, and depending on the evening I listen to music and watch the sunset, because some of the sunsets have been terribly spectacular, and I sit on the window seat and watch for about an hour, listening to music, or it's cloudy and I can't see a thing and it gets dark about 4 pm. This evening it starts to snow, and again I take the subway up to John's for Canasta, because it's beginning to get wet and slippery, and anyway I'm late. Ring John just as HE gets in, as he was on the same train, and he hasn't eaten, and he asks if I brought the cards, which I'd forgotten to. He gives me a ten and directs me to the stationery shop, but they don't have any, so I walk down to 96th, wondering where I would go next, but they have them, and the snow gets deeper and deeper, and I gaze out over the park while John nibbles, and the black skeletons of trees are etched against my vision of the clean white snow. There's a startle at one point when it looks as if a brick road, kept clear by cars, curves off to the north, and then dwindles to a point and vanishes! I stare harder and it's only a brick wall that gets lower, and I'm looking at a vertical rather than a horizontal clear surface. Fog comes in and goes out, and Evan and Adair and I settle down to play about 8 pm, after our efforts to try to get together at 7. The game goes very well, Adair catching on slowly to the deeper tricks, but later on plays extremely well, and we beat them fantastically the first game and not so spectacularly the second game, and then we have a runoff game which we win too, with John and Evan screaming about our monopolization of the jokers in the deck. By now it's 1 am and we're ready to go off to the Zodiac (see Diary 898-908), getting there at 1:30 by subway in the deepening snow, I get to John's at 4, to bed at 6.


SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 15. The sun wakes me at 8 am. We go at it some more, covered earlier, and then we tear ourselves away from each other to get dressed and get into his car, first unburying it where the snow shovelers had generously heaped it with clotted slush, and drove down to Atlantic Avenue, so slushy that he had to get out my side to reach the sidewalk dryly. Into the Damascus Bakery and take the last of their meat pies, 23 @ 25¢, which makes $5.75, and since I don't have any money at all (had to borrow $1 to get into the Zodiac from John, all because Azak took my last cash on Wednesday for two checks for $55, and I didn't think I needed to go to the bank, but the meal at Felix cost me more than I thought, and the drinks at Luigi's were an unexpected amount, too, so I had nothing left and had to borrow from John), and we paid while getting highly charged looks from two very attractive Arabian types who were together, saw that we were together, and since we both looked fresh from bed, which we were, we felt they could smell us, sense us, and they changed from at first looking rather belligerent to being rather sweet and smiling about it, and we were quite taken with their open good looks. Next door to get some olives, and the boss led us into the back room through burlap-covered boxes (just like in Istanbul) to get to the back room to show us his frozen meat pies, and other goodies he had just waiting for us. We sampled the olives and got a combination of green and black ones, and that was 75¢, and I remarked to John in the car about the coincidence of my getting $6.50 from Azak for the poppers I got him last night from Evan via Avi, and my owing him the same amount. Driving in was pleasant, hands on knees and groaning at each other, and I had to borrow another 50¢ to buy a Times, and we got in at 4, with no Laird showing up yet. Then Joe called and wanted to come over and type a letter and a form, so I said he could come over at 5, and he did, and tried typing a bit while John and I lay and necked on the sofa and then I finished typing for Joe and the guests started arriving, and the rather fun party started (see Diary 909-911). Again to bed at 3 am.